Bean & Kale Miso Dip

I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. And I will not let what I cannot do interfere with what I can do.
— Edward Everett Hale

When my blogging buddy over at The Roasted Root, Julia Mueller, asked if I wanted to review her new book, "Let Them Eat Kale!"...I'm not going to lie, I was a little hesitant. Don't get me wrong, Julia is an immensely talented writer and recipe developer, her site is gorgeous and there are few blogs I enjoy reading more than hers. She has a clever, sarcastic, and downright hilarious voice that always has me laughing. I feel as though Julia's down to earth vibe and realistic approach to food and life itself are similar to my own. 

Produce On Parade

However, her recipes aren't vegan or vegetarian. Gasp! Admittedly, I felt a bit squeamish promoting a book that had recipes with meat and dairy, but I'm not about "all or nothing" when it comes to others and consuming less animal products. As we always hear, it's about progress, not perfection. I know many of my readers aren't vegan or vegetarian, but may still want to be more plant-based.

So I agreed to review her book. Julia was so wonderful and she said if I wasn't comfortable doing it, I was under no obligation and that she totally understood. She's such a sweetie. However, I have loads of non-vegan cookbooks that I love and if you're vegan, you probably do too. We know how to substitute for meat and dairy, what works, what doesn't, what can be emulated and what you seriously should not (faux salmon, anyone?)!

"Let Them Eat Kale!" is a book where many of the non-vegan products can be heavily substituted. The recipes are majorly plant-based (hello, it's a book entirely about kale...come on) and while reading through, I kept making mental notes of recipes that I just had to try. Sweet Potato Veggie Burritos with Coconut Curry Sauce. Yes, please. Indian Chickpea Stew with Kale. Give it to me now. Superfood Stuffed Acorn Squash. Never met a squash I didn't like, especially a stuffed one. It was my Thanksgiving feast!  

If you're new to veganism or just not really sure how to substitute, below you'll find a handy list of what I like to use. Like I said, you could eat your way through half this book without making a single change, still keeping it vegan. However for the recipes that may need substitutions, here's a list of vegan superstars I used to replace animal-exploiting foods/products:

  • chicken egg = (for baking) 1 Tbsp. ground flaxseed and 2 Tbsp. water/ = (for scramble) firm tofu
  • cow's milk = coconut, almond, soy, hazelnut, hemp, cashew milk...the list goes on and on..
  • cow's cream = full-fat coconut milk
  • cow's milk yogurt = soy or coconut yogurt
  • cow's cheese = really depends on the type but I've used miso, Parmela, tofu, or just omitted completely
  • chicken meat = usually tofu but I've used chicken alternatives such as Gardein
  • cow's meat (steak or hamburger) =  really depends, but I enjoy the alternatives like seiten or just use veggies like eggplant
  • fish meat = I will use tofu but fish is hard to replicate so I don't try to very often but there are veggie alternatives in the frozen food section
  • chicken or beef broth = vegetable broth ( because why wouldn't you!?)
  • honey = agave nectar or maple syrup

See how easy? What do you like to use as vegan substitutes? 

I especially enjoyed that the book has several pages in the beginning devoted to the knowledge of all things kale. It's nutritional content, differing varieties, and even how to grow it!

Yesterday, I picked up some stunning multi-colored kale at the grocery store. It was mostly purple with streaks of deep green and I knew I wanted to showcase the beauty. It had such a sweet smell to it and was so tender. This kale needed to be the star in a recipe, so I decided to make a variation of Julia's White Bean Kale Dip.

Produce On Parade - Bean & Kale Miso Dip

Instead of two cans of cannellini beans, I used one can, and then one can of chickpeas. I don't often use cannellini beans and I happened to only have one on hand. A big change I made was adding 4 tsp. of red miso to the dip in place of the salt. I thought it really gave the dip some dimension. I enjoy bold flavors and for some reason I'm going through a miso-fanatic craze right now, if you couldn't tell by yesterdays recipe. MISO FOREVER!

Produce On Parade - Bean & Kale Miso Dip
Produce On Parade - Bean & Kale Miso Dip
Produce On Parade - Bean & Kale Miso Dip
Produce On Parade - Bean & Kale Miso Dip
Produce On Parade - Bean & Kale Miso Dip
Produce On Parade - Bean & Kale Miso Dip
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Bean & Kale Miso Dip
A quick and healthy dip for crackers, veggies, or to spread on a sandwiches. Slightly adapted from Julia Mueller's cookbook, "Let Them Eat Kale!"
  • 1 15 oz. can of cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 15 oz. can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 3 fresh sage leaves
  • 2 cups packed kale leaves, de-stemmed, washed and torn
  • 4 tsp. miso paste
  • 2 garlic cloves, halved
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
Add all the ingredients to a food processor and blend until smooth and creamy, scraping down the sides often. Serve with crackers or a veggie tray, spread on sandwiches, or whatever you like!
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 6
Produce On Parade - Bean & Kale Miso Dip
Produce On Parade - Bean & Kale Miso Dip
Produce On Parade - Bean & Kale Miso Dip

I think this book would be a great addition to any kitchen that's trying to get in more veggies or lean towards a healthier, more plant-based diet. Or if you just really freaking love kale. Josh N., this books for you! Yes, there are some animal-based recipes, but the vast majority of cookbooks do and there are substitutions that can be made, just with any great recipe. 

I hope you check it out! I have several recipes already tabbed to try and many of them are vegan or vegetarian already! "Let Them Eat Kale" can be found on Amazon or in your local bookstore.

Bob likes to drink out of the bird bath (they don't use it anyway..). It was one rainy day! Look at my poor herbs!

Bob likes to drink out of the bird bath (they don't use it anyway..). It was one rainy day! Look at my poor herbs!

German Word of The Day

Dip --> Soße (zoo-sehl)

Good Deed of The Day

Did you see this article on Tuesday from the Wall Street Journal about how meat prices well on the rise compared to vegetables? "It’s a good time to be a vegan. Meat prices are up 9.4% in June from a year earlier, and pork, fish and eggs are more expensive, too." Well, you heard it here first. It's a good time to be a vegan!

Windy Hearth Stew

I love it when I stumble upon a dish that is so perfect, it'll be entered into the regular rotation for dinner. This is one of those allstar recipes. I love this soup. It may look like a long list of ingredients, but it comes to together very easily. It's pretty hands off too, which is always good.  The flavors in this stew can't be beat. Rice, sprouted beans, spinach, and sweet potato all make a debut, offering up loads of wholesome protein and fiber. There's ample seasoning suggested by turmeric, cumin, and savory. Rich and silky coconut milk make this stew delightfully creamy. This dish is hearty, delicious, and the perfect balance between rustic and modern. 

Produce On Parade - Windy Hearth Stew

My decision to call this dish Windy Heath Stew came to fruition based off the fact that it's been insanely, insanely windy around here lately. Yesterday, I came home to every single ski and pole crashed on the ground beside the house. I guess that's what I get for not putting them away? In the loft, the windows were being battered so hard that it actually knocked a large, multi-photo frame off the windowsill.

After picking up the wreckage, I searched the house until I found Bob cowered on his bed, in the corner, tucked into a tiny ball of fur and limbs. He has a strong aversion to wind, poor thing. He's basically a big chicken. When I let him out the front door, he looked around sketchily with his ears back flat against his pinhead and then nervously sprinted to the back to door to be let inside at once. Knocking loudly at the door. Yes, he seriously knocks at the door. Sometimes more urgently than others.

Todd had some errands to do after work, so there I found myself...just Bob, the wind, and me. While making this soup, I couldn't help the feeling that I was in a storybook in which the wind was some evil omen and all I was trying to do was cook up some hot and hearty stew in my apron, over the oven hearth for my companion and me to fill our bellies with. Why yes, on occasion I might have a bit of an overactive imagination. Why do you ask? Oh and also, in this imaginary tale...I don't have an electric rice cooker. Just ignore that bit. 

Produce On Parade - Windy Hearth Stew

Windy Hearth Stew

Serves 8

Notes: Feel free to use any type of rice and/or sprouted beans you'd like. Also, this soup would probably freeze well. 

  • Rice:
  • 1 cup red rice, dry
  • 2 cups water
  • pinch of kosher salt
  • Aromatics:
  • 1 Tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp. ground savory
  • 1/2 tsp. ground turmeric
  • Sustenance:
  • 10 oz. frozen spinach, thawed
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 medium sweet potato, cubed small
  • 2 cups dried sprouted beans (I use TruRoots Sprouted Bean Trio)
  • 2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
  • Conclusion: 
  • 1 Tbsp. liquid amino acids or soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 15 oz. can of full-fat coconut milk

First, cook the rice. I cook mine by combining the rice, water, and salt in an electric rice cooker and allowing it to sit for about 45 minutes. Please cook the rice according to your package and/or rice cooker. 

Produce On Parade - Windy Hearth StewMeanwhile, heat the coconut oil over medium-low in a large soup pot. Add the remaining aromatic ingredients and saute about 5 minutes or until the onions are tender. 

Produce On Parade - Windy Hearth StewDefrost the spinach, then add to the soup pot along with the remaining sustenance ingredients. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce to low and simmer for 5 minutes. Cover and simmer for an additional 5-10 minutes, until the beans and sweet potato cubes are tender. 

Produce On Parade - Windy Hearth StewRemove from heat and add the conclusion ingredients. By now the rice should be done cooking and can be added as well. Stir to combine.

Produce On Parade - Windy Hearth Stew

Serve hot. 

Produce On Parade - Windy Hearth StewListening to: Shakira – Broken Record

German Word of The Day: Stew --> Eintopf (pronounced: eyen-topf)

Good Deed of The Day: Please sign this petition to have United Airlines change their policies to protect animals that are flying on airplanes, after a dog was found dead when the negligent airline left him in extreme heat. Bob's never flown anywhere but I couldn't even begin imagine the suffering! So tragic.


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Protein Packed Vegan Sloppy Joes

I cannot believe I've never shared my sloppy joe recipe with you before! Todd was surprised too, as we make them enough.

Protein Packed Vegan Sloppy JoesSloppy joes were kind of a treat when I was growing up, and so every now and again I really enjoy making them. Back in the day, ours were moose sloppy joes...always with the moose! My Dad loves to tell the story of one particular time when he made hamburgers. Us kids were confused and delighted by the taste.  They were the best burgers we'd ever had...they were beef. We had never had beef hamburgers before. Such is the childhood of an Alaskan girl.

Well, I'm happy to say that my moose (and cow) eating days are behind me. Of course, these sloppy joes have undergone a good-for-you veggie makeover. Lentils, black beans, and TVP give these sloppies a super healthy protein punch! No animals need be harmed in the making of these two-thumbs-up, delicious sloppy joes. 

Protein Packed Vegan Sloppy JoesAre you paying attention, Alaskan friends and family? Just put down the moose sloppy joe...

Protein Packed Vegan Sloppy Joes

Serves 6

  • 1 cup red lentils, dry
  • 3 cups water
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 15 oz. can of black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 15 oz. can of tomato sauce
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 1 Tbsp. Worchestershire sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp. mustard
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 1/2 cup TVP (textured vegetable protein), dry
  • 1 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
  • hamburger buns

In a small saucepan combine the lentils, water, and salt. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce to low and simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the lentils are tender. Drain and set aside. 

Protein Packed Vegan Sloppy JoesIn a medium saucepan, heat the oil over medium-low. Add the onions and garlic. Saute for a few minutes. Add the cumin and chili powder and continue to saute another few minutes, until fragrant. 

Protein Packed Vegan Sloppy JoesAdd in the remaining ingredients, including the cooked lentils (but not the buns, of course!) and simmer for about five minutes, or until the water has been absorbed, stirring occasionally.

Produce On Parade - Protein Packed Vegan Sloppy JoesProtein Packed Vegan Sloppy JoesSpoon onto a hamburger bun and serve hot!  

Protein Packed Vegan Sloppy Joes

Reliving my high school angst... 

AFI – Silver And Cold

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