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Old 10-19-2015, 06:38 PM   #211
lotus33
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Hi all! Jeesh haven't been in here is a LONG time!!! Glad to see some folks chatting away!

I have slipped back to maybe only 25% vegetarian. I just found it so hard but love it so its very strange combination for me. The kids actually brought it up this past week and both said they want to eat vegetarian. I am really excited about that! With them both on board it will be easier. My husband will eat anything I put in front of him so I am lucky that way! He won't put up a fight as long as there is something when he gets home
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Old 10-20-2015, 09:00 AM   #212
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Lotus, having a supportive family makes a big difference, especially the kids.

My husband likes pretty much everything but likes meat so I never go more than a couple days without adding it to his plate.
Sometimes I just add it in to whatever I'm cooking for myself and sometimes I just cook up something he can eat on for a couple days.

We eat out at least a couple times weekly so can bring home leftovers that he can eat.
And, of course, TJ's has some great meat items that can be nuked.

He prepares his own breakfast and lunch so no problem there. If he didn't he'd have to eat things like yogurt and oatmeal which would not make him happy at all!
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Old 10-20-2015, 05:36 PM   #213
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I've been taking B-12 supplements, even though I do feel I get some through nutritional yeast and the occasional non-vegan meal I eat. My doc had my level tested as part of my recent physical and even though my results were within the acceptable range, she felt I should take the supplements. So I have been, but haven't noticed anything from them.

jem - I made this recipe the other day with polenta instead of grits and we loved it! It's from Susan Voison's "Fat Free Vegan" website. I love her recipes. My husband said he wants a repeat soon. She calls it a breakfast recipe but we had ours for dinner. I also put a little splash of marinara sauce over the polenta before topping it with the beans, but we like all things with sauce lol.


Sausage-Flavored Breakfast Beans and Grits


Ingredients

1 large onion, chopped
pinch of baking soda (see notes)
water or vegetable broth
1/2 large red bell pepper, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups cooked cannellini beans (or other white beans), drained (or 2 cans, rinsed and drained)
1 cup vegetable broth (I used Imagine’s No-Chicken), plus additional, as needed
1 teaspoon rubbed sage
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon fennel seed, crushed (see note)
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/4-1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, depending on how spicy want it to be
4 cups chopped fresh spinach
smoked salt, to taste
1 cup yellow corn grits, prepared according to package instructions

Instructions

Heat a large non-stick pot or skillet. Add the onion, sprinkle it with the baking soda, and immediately stir in one tablespoon of water or vegetable broth. Cook, stirring frequently, until the onion changes color and begins to soften, adding more water if it starts to stick to the pan. Add the chopped pepper and garlic along with another tablespoon of water or broth. Cook for 2-3 minutes, adding another splash of water if necessary and making sure that the garlic does not burn.
Add the drained beans, vegetable broth, and all seasonings. Cover tightly, reduce heat to very low, and cook for at least 30 minutes, adding broth if it starts to dry out. The longer and slower you cook them, the more flavorful the beans will be.
While the beans are cooking, prepare the grits according to package instructions. (I used 1 cup of Bob’s Red Mill organic grits cooked in 3 cups of water.) Keep warm until beans are ready.
Check the beans, and if they seem dry, add a good splash of broth. (The beans should have a little liquid around them, but not as much as a soup or stew.) Increase the heat to medium, add the spinach, sprinkle with smoked salt if you want, stir well, cover tightly, and cook until the spinach wilts. Serve over the grits.

Notes

Baking soda speeds the cooking of the onion so that no oil and little liquid is needed.

Fennel helps give the beans the flavor of Italian sausage, but if you’re not a big fennel fan, start with 1/4 teaspoon and add more to taste.

Preparation time: 20 minute(s) | Cooking time: 30 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 4 generous servings or 6 small ones

Nutrition (per serving, 1/4 of recipe including grits): 338 calories, 12 calories from fat, 1.5g total fat, 0mg cholesterol, 438mg sodium, 872.4mg potassium, 66.6g carbohydrates, 12.2g fiber, 2.6g sugar, 16.5g protein. (For beans without grits: 193 calories, .9g total fat, 35.6g carbohydrates, 13g protein.)
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Old 10-21-2015, 10:51 AM   #214
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Oh, PP, nice to see you.
That recipe sounds fabulous and I just started some beans soaking for it. I'll need to pick up some fennel seeds and sage.
I had sage growing in OR but only have rosemary here so far....gotta get those herbs in.
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Old 10-21-2015, 05:17 PM   #215
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I scored some good stuff at the Grocery Outlet today; Marantha organic PB $3.99, Gardien chipotle black bean burgers $3.99, Cedarlane enchilada pie $2.99, GG crisp bread (pumpkin seed) .99.

I've never had the crisp bread because it is an online purchase and I wasn't sure I'd like it. Some people loved it, others thought it was like cardboard.

If I like it, I'll pick up a few more packages. It is close dated but the packaging is pretty thick so I think it'll last longer.

TJ's had bags of organic pears. The smaller ones so perfect size. They smell so good.

It seems like since that salmonella at the peanut factory there is much less organic available. I felt like filling my fridge with many jars but used self control.
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Old 10-22-2015, 12:57 PM   #216
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You scored good, jem.

You can put the cripsbread in the freezer to keep it longer. I put so many things in the freezer, my wife thinks we need a second one. LOL
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Old 10-22-2015, 06:18 PM   #217
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PP, I cooked up that recipe for dinner tonight but didn't have the polenta....it was very filling on it's own.

I pressure cooked the beans, which had soaked for 24 hours, and they were pretty soft.

I have enough beans left for a 'cheese' sauce and maybe a white bean dip.

Love the flavors of this stew.
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Old 10-22-2015, 06:50 PM   #218
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Do you guys ever cook beans in a crock pot?

I just throw them in dry before I go to bed, no pre soaking and turn them on low, they are perfect in the morning.


I love beans!


Tonight we had rice noodles and stir fry veggies with a peanut sauce. Sauce was just peanut butter, sriracha, soy and water to thin. Really good!
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Old 10-24-2015, 07:07 AM   #219
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I cook them in the crock pot all the time.
I learned that trick from my Mom and her beans are the best.
I never remember to soak them, so the crock pot is my friend on bean day.
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Old 10-24-2015, 09:09 AM   #220
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Glad you liked the recipe, jem! We really enjoyed it. With the polenta it stretched it out to several big meals for both of us, and my DH finished up the last little bit of beans all by themselves and loved it that way too, as you did. I'm hungry for them now, maybe I'll make them again tomorrow.

Costco always had the best organic peanut butter, then they stopped carrying it during the salmonella scare. They've since started carrying it again but it's not as good as it used to be From what I recall, the old jars used to say "organic Virginia peanuts" but now they just say "organic peanuts". Makes a difference, I guess. I was in Virginia Beach all last week and loaded up on roasted Virginia peanuts while there. So yummy.

I have an Instant Pot and make my beans in it all the time now. Love that Instant Pot. I've also canned beans which was very easy, but more time-consuming but it is kinda nice to have all those jars of beans ready to go.

We don't have a Grocery Outlet here - sounds like you scored some great deals! I did stop at "Ollie's" in Virginia Beach, and scored a dozen BIG cans of Glen Muir organic fire-roasted tomatoes for 99 cents a can. They're usually almost $3 around here. Canned tomatoes and roasted peanuts were my trip souvenirs lol.
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Old 10-24-2015, 02:41 PM   #221
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Oh, that is a great deal on those fire roasted tomatoes. I hope they show up out here.

I have the old stove top stainless steel pressure cooker but I've been looking hard at the electric ones. The Cuisinart has good reviews and one of the vegan bloggers likes it better than the IP.
I want to see what Costco has in the store and maybe look at Walmart online for the store pick-up.
I don't really know if I need one but I love the idea of setting it and walking away.

I always soak beans. Mainly because that's what I'm accustomed to and learned long ago of the health aspect.
I also feel that they cook more evenly.

The crockpot would be similar because it heats so slowly.
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Old 10-29-2015, 12:37 PM   #222
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We bought Del Monte bananas the other day.
Today I read the little sticker and they are from Guatamela.
The Del Monte canning plant is about 2 hours from us, but I guess they don't do bananas. They have to send out to Guatamala to get a banana...strange.
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Old 10-29-2015, 05:15 PM   #223
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I think the US weather is too iffy for large banana crops. They were easy to grow as a backyard crop in FL but if the weather varied too much in a year (which it did often), there may not be much to harvest.
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Old 10-30-2015, 12:22 PM   #224
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I thought about getting banana plants/trees, whichever they are called, but I read that if it freezes, then they die off and don't come back. It freezes every winter even though our winter is fairly mild here. I don't have any place to put a dwarf banana tree in the house either. My wife says, just buy the dang bananas...lol (she is starting to sound like me.)
I just think its fun to try and grow stuff, as a hobby.

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Old 10-30-2015, 12:28 PM   #225
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Last Friday I scored heirloom baby tomatoes at the .99 cent store.
I did a lot of shopping that day. I also got good cucumbers 3/$1, whole pineapple $1, yellow and orange peppers 2/$1, and a lot of other stuff.
I am always excited when I get great deals on produce.
I found tiny baby pumpkins at TJ's, which I've never tried fresh pumpkin, so I thought I'd give it a try.
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Old 10-30-2015, 07:06 PM   #226
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Wow, great produce deals, Nigel! I love getting produce deals, too. We often have good luck at one of the area flea markets, but the season is definitely winding down for that. We'll most get our product at Aldi in the winter. It's funny you mention the pumpkin - I bought a couple of cute little pie pumpkins at Kroger and have no idea how to handle them. I'm going to pop one in the Instant Pot tomorrow and see how it turns out.
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Old 10-30-2015, 07:56 PM   #227
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I love to find great produce deals.

I got my first bag of small Fuji apples at the Grocery Outlet for 3.79 then went to TJ's and they were a buck less!!
It could be the complete opposite next time.

That pumpkin should be good but if it's not a sugar pumpkin may just be more squash like.

I bought some organic canned pumpkin from Costco but haven't done anything with it....no rush but I'm seeing some great sounding recipes.
Actually, I was thinking about making some golden milk with some pumpkin stirred in and maybe some molasses.
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Old 10-31-2015, 11:01 AM   #228
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Penguinpower, please let me know how your pumpkin turns out in the instant pot.

The little ones I got were the white ones..I don't know if that makes any difference or not.

Jem51, it seems that way for me too when I go to SA...if sprouts has sweet peppers for $2, then the dollar store has them for a buck...etc. Some weeks all the produce is out of sight.

I got organic baby watermelons 2/$5 at TJ's and then they had them for a buck at the dollar store. I've bought them in the past at the dollar store and they were great. I use them for juicing mostly. I got one at Walmart last week and it was pure sugar...no telling how long they had it. So no more melons from Walmart.

The produce I get from Sam's never lasts either. It used to. This time I got a big carton of sliced mushrooms and a big container of strawberries and they were going bad in just a couple of days. I got strawberries from the dollar store and they lasted over a week!

It seems that around here, produce is a constant battle to get some that will last more than a day or two.
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Old 10-31-2015, 02:46 PM   #229
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Sometimes you just need to go ahead and cook or freeze stuff.

If I have mushrooms that I know won't get used quickly enough, I go ahead and sauté them.
Strawberries or any berry or fruit that is freezable, I'll stem/peel/chunk and pop into the freezer.
Bell peppers, I'll chop or slice and freeze in a ziplock.

Same with fresh herbs. I'll chop up the extra and freeze it in water or lemon juice.

It seemed like I threw so much in the compost, something had to give. I prefer fresh so....

Our food bills are so much cheaper now.
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Old 11-01-2015, 02:45 PM   #230
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I have a kid that loves tofu. I have never cooked it but think I better learn for her. Anyone have an easy beginner recipe? I just think the stuff is gross!
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Old 11-01-2015, 02:45 PM   #231
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If you eat oatmeal, pumpkin oatmeal is outstanding!
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Old 11-02-2015, 10:18 AM   #232
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Lotus33, I haven't actually cooked tofu. I have some, but haven't gotten around to it.

Now I did buy some smoked tofu and just added it to a stir fry recipe, but the texture was very soft...weird to me.

I see lots of recipes where you marinate it and then bake it or fry it. To me, the possibly crispy aspect of it sounds much better.

Hopefully someone will post some tried and true tofu recipes for you (and me).
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Old 11-04-2015, 04:11 PM   #233
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Well I got extra firm tofu and just cubed it, fried it and tossed it in pad thai sauce. Kid loved it, I took 1 bite
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Old 11-07-2015, 07:46 PM   #234
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Lotus, I love fried tofu. I'm sure it's somewhere in here but I do slabs or cubes then I can add it to other dishes.
I used a 'bacon' marinade last time for pan fried slabs and it was delicious.

We have a curry monthly, at least, and use those cubes....a real favorite.

This is where a deep fryer would come in handy but it's just not worth it for one item considering all that oil and what to do with it.
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Old 11-10-2015, 04:14 PM   #235
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Oh, I just got back from the .99 store and scored those big cans of Muir Glen fire roasted tomatoes....only six cans but I'll stop and get another bunch soon as they stock.
I am excited to have these! I love them!
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Old 11-11-2015, 01:26 PM   #236
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Good deal on the tomatoes Jem. I like shopping the dollar stores and always find some kind of bargain.
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Old 11-16-2015, 12:09 AM   #237
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Sorry it took me a while to get back to you Nigel - the pumpkin cooked beautifully in the instant pot. I washed the pumpkin and put it whole into the pot. 15 minutes at pressure then let it release naturally. I made some really delicious pumpkin soup with it; we liked it so much I cooked the second pumpkin a couple of days later and made the same soup and we gobbled it up right away. Wish I had bought more of those pumpkins. But, I made the same soup using a butternut squash yesterday and it was just as good! (Cooked that squash in the IP too).
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Old 11-16-2015, 11:30 AM   #238
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Thanks Penguimpower.
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Old 11-16-2015, 01:32 PM   #239
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PP is you pumpkin soup savory. I make a very simple one by sautéing garlic and pepper flakes, then adding broth and the cooked pumpkin. In the past I stirred in a little neufchatel but I may blend in some tofu or something.

Share your recipe, please.

I'm still eyeing the IP's. Black Friday is looking good for one. Costco had the Cuisinart which got good reviews. We'll see.
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Old 11-16-2015, 02:34 PM   #240
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Okay so you know how there's always someone writing about being saved (or almost dying) from veganism.
Eat Plants Drink Beer blogged about how their vegan diet almost killed them. Take a look. It's a fun read.
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