domestic - vegetarian recipes

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domestic vegetarian recipes

Mediterranean Nachos

March 20 2017 Meatless Monday 

For National Nutrition Month, why not try a healthy spin on a classic “junk food” dish, nachos? This Mediterranean version is packed to the brim with veggies and flavorful herbs, plus it uses whole wheat pitas rather than fried corn chips as a base. This recipe comes to us from Brynn of The Domestic Dietitian. Serves 4 - 3 whole wheat pitas, cut into triangles - Olive oil - 1 medium cucumber, diced - 2 medium tomatoes, diced - 1/­­2 red onion, diced - 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice - 1/­­4 cup hummus - 1/­­4 cup tzatziki - 1-2 tbsp kalamata olives, chopped - fresh dill, chopped (for garnish) Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lay cut pita triangles on sheet pan in a single layer. Drizzle lightly with olive oil and bake for 6-8 minutes, until crispy. Layer baked pita chips on platter. Top with hummus, tzatziki, cucumber, tomato, and onion. Top with fresh squeezed lemon juice. Sprinkle chopped olives and dill over the top. Serve and enjoy! The post Mediterranean Nachos appeared first on Meatless Monday.

Syrian Yogurt Soup + More Than Food

October 17 2016 Green Kitchen Stories 

Syrian Yogurt Soup + More Than Food The recipe for this soup is at the end of this post, but we hope that you will take the time to read this text as well. It is slightly longer but way more important than our usual posts. Let’s start from the beginning. The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and the European Commission asked if we would be interested in meeting Syrian refugees living in and outside of camps in Turkey to bring home some of their stories, learn how modern food aid is working and explore the different aspects of food. It was doubtless the most meaningful request we have ever received and something we really wanted to do. Timing wise it wasn’t perfect. I had to leave Luise alone with the kids while she was 36 weeks pregnant, but she gave her blessing. So a few weeks ago, I went on this mission. I flew to Istanbul, Turkey on an early flight and then on to a domestic flight to Hatay, a few miles from the Syrian border. During my days there, I visited a refugee camp to see how it works and talk to some of the people living there. I got to know the WFP staff and was amazed by their compassion. I was also invited home to a few Syrian families living outside of camps. Their situation is often a lot more difficult than inside the camps, as they have more costs and less support but the families were incredibly friendly and inviting. We talked, drank tea, cooked together and shared food. If you follow me on instagram, you might already have read the stories of some of the people I met. I have included the story from one of the families in this post, and I have also recreated one of the dishes that I learnt to cook together with them. It is very easy to look away from the horrible situation that is going on in Syria. But I hope that by reading these stories that do have bright moments in the midst of all the darkness, you will get a better understanding and openness towards the millions of Syrian people that have been forced from their homes and don’t wish anything more than being able to return to them one day. It was a very emotional trip and it affected me a lot deeper than I was prepared for. I am still trying to figure out what to comes next. Obviously, we want to continue working with recipe development and food photography as it is something we love doing. But it’s my hope and intention that we also will continue working more actively with human aid and support this cause any way we can in the future. Enough about this. Here is Suad. (1/­­5) I had everything before the war. My husband and I were the owners of a supermarket in Aleppo. We lived in a large and beautiful two-story house in a rural area. All my furniture was new - nothing was second hand - and we had many rooms. There was a big courtyard outside our house where the children played and rode their bicycles. ***** This is the story of Suad. She is Syrian and fled from her home together with her family when the conflict came to her town, 4 years ago. Suad is nine months pregnant and lives with her husband, their two sons Ahmed (10 years) and Muhammed (6 years) and their daughter Nurulhuda (12 years) in a small one-bedroom apartment in a rundown building in the old town of Antakya in Turkey, close to the Syrian border. Her parents and sisters live in an apartment one floor up. Her husband now works as a tailor so they can pay the rent. Even though they have lost everything, Suad is not broken. Her strength and pride really got to me. They cant afford decorating their home but have instead made paper and textile decorations and drawings that are covering the walls inside, making it less a lodging and more of a home. I had the honour to be welcomed into her home and I spent a day together with her and her family, listening to their story, drinking many cups of tea, going to the supermarket and preparing a dinner together. (2/­­5) Back in Aleppo, we renovated our kitchen entirely when we got married. It looked very nice. It was a big, bright kitchen with a large marble countertop. The kitchen was the colour of cappuccino and some of the cabinets had glass doors. I used to place some of my finest colourful vases and glasses there, so you could see them through the glass. ***** I was invited into Suads kitchen to assist her in dinner preparations. There were no marble countertops. And no glass doors. But she still placed her best looking glasses and plates on the shelf above the sink, hiding the rest behind a curtain her husband had sewn. Due to the small space, we did all chopping and preparations while sitting on the living room rug. The family laughed at my difficulties sitting with my legs crossed on the floor doing the chopping and they kept telling me that the tomatoes needed to be more finely chopped for the tabbouleh. Her mother also pointed out that I had very thorough knife skills (meaning slow). (3/­­5) My mother-in-law taught me most of these recipes in Aleppo, as she was living in our house. And cooking this reminds me of our life there. Now, my mother lives in the same house as us, so I am actually passing these recipes on to her and my daughter as well. Food means sharing to me - with my neighbours, friends and family. Before the conflict, we were a couple of families that took turns inviting each other over. We baked sweets, cooked food, ate and sang together. Now, the most important thing is to make sure my children arent hungry, but we still share food with our neighbours, even if it just is a small plate or the smell of our cooking. When we first arrived, we didnt have any money to buy ingredients and therefore we had to eat whatever food was provided for us. But after we were approved for the e-food card we were able to buy our own ingredients, so now I can cook food that reminds me of home. ***** We prepared a Syrian version of Tabbouleh with cucumber, tomatoes, lemon, lettuce, fresh parsley, fresh and dried mint, pomegranate syrup, tomato paste and a finely textured bulgur. We also did a delicious yogurt, rice and mint soup called Lebeniyye, a fried eggplant dish with tomato sauce called Mutabbaqa and a vegetarian version of Kepse, which is a flavorful long-grain rice dish topped with toasted almonds and walnuts instead of meat. (4/­­5) Me being a man, a stranger in their house and also a foreigner, I was aware that my visit would be an awkward situation and a difficult environment for everyone to be relaxed in. And the first hours of conversation were quite honestly very polite and trembling. But something happened when we started cooking. Once we gathered around the ingredients and Suad started explaining the dishes we were making, she suddenly began smiling. In the complete sadness of their situation, food definitely brings out a spark of joy. It connected us. In-between exchanging chopping boards and mincing vegetables, they suddenly started asking me questions about how we eat in my country, how my kitchen looks and how we take care of the elderly in our families in Europe (her father gave me a disapproving mutter, when hearing my response). We started sharing photos of our children and all of a sudden, we werent strangers anymore. We finished preparing the last recipe just as it got dark outside. Nurulhuda placed all the food on a large tray on the rug in the living room. Suad invited her children, parents, all her sisters and even the driver of our car to join. And with one spoon each, we all shared from the same plates. It is a very intimate way of eating, sitting on the floor, dipping our spoons into the same bowls of soup. They also ended the meal with a traditional Arabic saying: Now that we have shared bread and salt, we are like relatives. (5/­­5) My story is the story of every Syrian ***** The Syria conflict is the worlds largest humanitarian crisis since World War II. There are currently over 2,7 million Syrian refugees living in Turkey. Only about 10% are living in refugee camps and have guaranteed access to food, shelter and basic needs. The rest are living off-camps - in small apartments, basements, garages and even caves. If you found this story interesting, please also read Emira’s story. And the story of Semira, who works as a Field Monitor Assistant for WFP. I have also written about the E-cards that WFP have developed with help from the European Commission to support refugees and give them the ability to shop and choose food themselves. The trip was part of a initiative that WFP call More Than Food. Pauline and Rens will also be going on similar trips. Here is a short video that explains the project and the E-card a bit more. Thank you for following along! Lebaniyye - Syrian Yogurt Soup Serves 4  I was particularly intrigued by Suad’s Yogurt Soup as I had never tried anything similar before. I have now been cooking it a few times since I returned. Warm yogurt might sound awkward but I found its tanginess really tasty when combined with the mint and rice. Suad served it more as a starter (traditionally I believe it is served with meatballs) but I have taken the liberty to add a bit more topping to make it even more nourishing and flavourful. Suad also cooked the rice and yogurt together from the start but I found that if you dont stay focused and stir continuously, there is a risk that the yogurt will curdle. So I instead cook the rice until its almost done before slowly stirring in the yogurt mixture. Make sure to check the cooking time for the rice. Our rice cooks in 30-35 minutes, but some are pre-steamed which would half the cooking time for the soup. Yogurt Soup 1 cup /­­ 200 g wholegrain rice or brown rice 5 cups /­­ 1,25 liter vegetable stock (or water) 1 garlic clove, grated or finely chopped 4 cups /­­ 1 liter full fat yogurt (we use Turkish yogurt) 1 egg 1 tbsp cornstarch 1 tbsp dried mint 1 tsp salt black pepper   Garlic & Chili Oil 1/­­4 cup olive oil 2 garlic cloves 2 tsp chili flakes    To serve 2 cups /­­  500 ml cooked puy lentils (or chickpeas) 1 large handful fresh spinach 1 large handful fresh mint 1 large handful fresh parsley Rinse the rice and add it to a large, thick-bottomed sauce pan along with vegetable stock and garlic. Bring to a boil and then turn the heat down slightly until it simmers. Meanwhile, add yogurt and egg to a mixing bowl and whisk rapidly until combined and smooth. After the rice has cooked for about 20 minutes, add the cornstarch to the yogurt and then use a soup spoon to ladle some of the warm stock into the yogurt mixture while using your other hand to stir (this is to slowly heat the yogurt and prevent it from curdle when mixed with the rest of the stock and rice). Then pour the yogurt mixture slowly back into the large saucepan with rice and stock while stirring. Add mint, salt and black pepper. Keep the heat on low/­­medium, so it just barely simmers and keep stirring slowly but frequently. When the rice is cooked through and the soup has thickened slightly, it is ready. Taste and adjust the flavours to your liking (I find that it needs quite a bit of salt to balance the tanginess). Remove from the heat and prepare the Garlic & Chili Oil. Heat oil in a small sauce pan on low/­­medium heat. When warm, add garlic and chili flakes, let sauté for about 45 seconds and then remove from the heat. Let steep while you ladle the soup into bowls and chop the spinach and herbs. Top the soup with a generous scoop of lentils, chopped fresh spinach, mint, parsley and a drizzle of the Garlic & Chili Oil.

Grilled Figs with Thyme & Honey

September 19 2016 Meatless Monday 

This is the perfect note to end late season barbeque on. Figs are grilled soft and topped with savory thyme leaves and sweet honey in this simple dessert which shows off the fruit of fall. This recipe comes to us from Jen of Domestic Divas. Serves 2 - 2 cups figs, stems removed and halved - 1 tablespoon honey - 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves Preheat the grill to medium-low heat. When the grill is heated, place the figs on a grill pan in 1 single layer. Grill for 1-2 minutes, or until slightly soft. Flip and grill another 1-2 minutes more on the other side. Transfer the grilled figs to a serving platter. Carefully place a few leaves thyme on each fig, drizzle with honey and enjoy! The post Grilled Figs with Thyme & Honey appeared first on Meatless Monday.

Arugula Fig Almond Salad

January 4 2016 Meatless Monday 

Sweet figs, tangy feta and spicy arugula dont need much help to shine in this salad celebrating falls bounty. A simple balsamic vinaigrette seasons the greens, while almonds add an earthy crunch. This recipe comes to us from Jen of Domestic Divas. Serves 4 - 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar - 1/­­4 cup extra virgin olive oil - salt and pepper, to taste - 1 pint figs, quartered - 4 cups arugula - 1/­­2 cup Marcona almonds - 1/­­4 cup feta cheese, crumbled Place the balsamic vinegar in a small bowl, Whisk in the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Layer 1/­­4 of the arugula and figs onto a small plate. Top with 1/­­4 of the almonds and feta. Drizzle with the balsamic vinaigrette. Repeat with the remaining ingriedients on 3 other plates and enjoy! The post Arugula Fig Almond Salad appeared first on Meatless Monday.

Chickpea Quinoa Burgers

April 20 2015 Meatless Monday 

Yams are cooked until tender and mixed with chickpeas and crunchy pumpkin seeds for a veggie patty which highlights the sweetly spiced flavors of autumn. If served without a bun, this burger is ideal for those who suffer from common food allergies; this recipe contains no soy, no wheat and no animal products. This recipe comes to us from Jen Brody of Domestic Divas. Serves 8 - 1 yam - 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil, divided - 1 cup quinoa, prepared according to package instructions - 1 (14 ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed - 1 small onion, peeled and chopped - 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped - 2 carrots, peeled and chopped - 1 cup fresh spinach, tightly packed - 2 tablespoons sunflower seeds - 1 tablespoon pumpkin seeds - juice of 1 lemon - 1 tablespoon ground cumin - 2 tablespoons sesame tahini - 1 tablespoon hot sauce* - salt and pepper, to taste - a little flour, for dusting the burger patties *Optional Preheat an oven to 375 degrees. Poke several holes in the yam using a fork. Place the yam in a paper towel and microwave on high for 5 minutes. Flip the yam and microwave 5 minutes more, or until tender. Slip off the yams skin. Place 1 of the tablespoons of grapeseed oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until it begins to soften. Add the carrot and bell pepper to the pan and cook 3-5 minutes more, or until the veggies are just tender. Transfer the sautéed veggies to a food processor and pulse to chop. Add the spinach and pulse a few more times until combined. Transfer the veggies to a large mixing bowl. Add the chickpeas and tahini to the food processor and pulse until broken down and combined. Transfer to the mixing bowl with the veggies. Add the cooked quinoa, yam, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds to the mixing bowl. Season the veggie quinoa mixture with the lemon juice, cumin and hot sauce, if using. Stir until well combined, taking care to ensure all ingredients are evenly distributed. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Shape the veggie quinoa mixture into 8 patties using your hands. Dust each patty with flour. Heat the remaining tablespoon grapeseed oil in an oven-safe skillet over medium-high heat. Add the burger patties and cook for about 2 minutes per side, or until browned on both sides. Transfer the patties to a baking sheet and bake about 10-12 minutes more, or until cooked through. Enjoy! The post Chickpea Quinoa Burgers appeared first on Meatless Monday.

Strawberry Ginger Honeyed Yogurt

March 16 2015 Meatless Monday 

Creamy Greek yogurt makes a delectable breakfast base after its sweetened with honey and spiced with ginger. Fresh strawberries bring the taste of summer and the mint garnish refreshes the palate after your last bite. This recipe comes to us from Jen of Domestic Divas. Serves 4 - 1 cup Greek yogurt - 2 tablespoons honey - pinch of salt - 1/­­2 teaspoon ground ginger - 2 cups fresh strawberries, sliced - 4 sprigs of mint, for garnish In a medium sized bowl, combine the yogurt, honey, ground ginger and a pinch of salt. Stir until smooth. Taste and add more honey if needed. Place sliced strawberries in equal parts in 4 bowls. Spoon the yogurt into the bowls and drizzle each with a little honey. Garnish with the mint springs. To eat, dip the strawberries into the yogurt fondue style. The post Strawberry Ginger Honeyed Yogurt appeared first on Meatless Monday.

Greek Frittata

January 26 2015 Meatless Monday 

The briny saltiness of black olives and feta cheese perfectly punctuates sweet caramelized onions and cherry tomatoes in this delicious frittata. Baby spinach is wilted slightly in a sauté pan, then covered in eggs and broiled to perfection. This recipe comes to us from Jen of Domestic Divas. Serves 4 - 2 tablespoons olive oil plus a little more for drizzle - 3 eggs - 3 eggs whites, beaten - 1 cup baby spinach - 1/­­2 cup red onion, chopped - 1/­­4 cup Greek black olives without pits - 1/­­4 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half - 2 tablespoons feta cheese - salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste Place the olive oil in a small nonstick frying pan over medium heat. Add the onions and sauté for 5-7 minutes, or until the onions are beginning to caramelize. Add the spinach, stir and cook for 1-2 minutes, or until just wilted. Season with a little salt and pepper. Season the egg whites with a little salt and pepper. Add the beaten eggs and egg whites to the pan. Top with the cherry tomato halves cut side up. Sprinkle with the feta. Add the egg mixture to the pan. Top the eggs mixture with the olives and cherry tomatoes, placing the tomatoes cut side up. Sprinkle with feta and drizzle with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Continue to cook for 7-8 minutes, or until the frittata begins to set 5-7 minutes. Drizzle with a little extra olive oil and turn on the broiler. Place the frittata under the broiler and cook for 1-3 minutes, or until the cheese has melted. Allow to rest for 5 minutes, cut into 4 slices and enjoy! The post Greek Frittata appeared first on Meatless Monday.

Thai Composed Rice Salad (Kao Yum Pahk Dai)

December 23 2014 VegKitchen 

Thai Composed Rice Salad (Kao Yum Pahk Dai)Though you wont find this on domestic restaurant menus as often as you would traditional green papaya salad, the basic ingredients for this southern Thai composed salad are more readily available to the home cook. Central to this gorgeous composition is a mound of rice, which is surrounded by a variety of veggies plus one fruit -- usually pineapple or green apple. A feast of flavors, textures and colors, what really pulls it together is the toasted coconut. Once youve got the rice cooked and cooled, this dish comes together quickly. Though this version makes use of common ingredients, we present options for using more authentic ones if theyre available to you -- Thai basil in place of ordinary basil, and galangal in place of ginger. Serves: 4 Dressing - 1/­­4 cup natural reduced-sodium soy sauce or tamari - 1/­­4 cup lime juice - 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger or galangal - 2 tablespoons natural granulated sugar (coconut sugar is good) - 2 shallot cloves, minced, or 2 tablespoons minced scallion (white part) - 1/­­4 cup minced fresh cilantro - 8 to 10 leaves fresh basil or Thai basil, thinly sliced Salad - 2 cups cooked whole-grain rice (any variety of brown rice, or an exotic rice blend), cooled to room temperature - 1 cup fresh mung bean sprouts, or green sprouts such as sweet pea shoots - 1 cup coarsely shredded carrots - 1 cup shredded green or red cabbage, or a combination - 1 cup diced pineapple or papaya, or 1 medium diced green apple - 1 cup thinly sliced cucumber, cut into half-circles Garnishes: - Lime wedges - 2 thinly sliced scallions, green parts only - 1/­­4 cup thinly sliced lemongrass, optional - 1/­­2 cup shredded coconut, toasted on a dry skillet Combine the ingredients for the dressing in a small serving bowl and set aside to allow the sugar to dissolve. Lightly oil a round soup bowl. Pack the rice into it, then invert onto the middle of a platter to release, forming a nice mound. Surround the rice with the sprouts, carrots, cabbage, pineapple or apple, and cucumber in separate small mounds. Garnish the platter lime wedges, sliced scallion, and optional lemongrass. Just before serving, place the toasted coconut in its own small serving bowl, and whisk the dressing together. To serve, have everyone take about 1/­­2 cup of rice, and arrange a little of the other components over or next to it. Pass around the dressing and coconut for embellishing individual portions. Originally published in the Sept. 2014 issue of Vegetarian Times. - Here are more Main-Dish Salads.

Slow Cooker Corn Chili

November 3 2014 Meatless Monday 

Both kidney and black beans are seasoned with cumin, chili powder, garlic, cinnamon and cocoa in this deceptively simple chili. Corn brings a slight crunch and fire roasted tomatoes allow for a subtly smoky flavor in this one pot wonder. This recipe comes to us from Jen of Domestic Divas. Serves 6 - 1 medium onion, chopped - 4 garlic cloves, chopped - 1 tablespoon chili powder - 1 tablespoon ground cumin - 2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder - 1/­­4 teaspoon ground cinnamon - 1 teaspoon salt - 1/­­4 teaspoon black pepper - 1 28-ounce can fire-roasted diced tomatoes - 1 15.5-ounce can black beans, rinsed - 1 15.5-ounce can kidney beans, rinsed - 1 1/­­2 cups frozen corn - cilantro*, for garnish - scallions*, for garnish - radishes*, for garnish *Optional. Place the onion, garlic, chili powder, cumin, cocoa, cinnamon, salt and pepper together in a 4-6 quart slow cooker. Add the tomatoes with their liquid, beans, frozen corn and 1 cup water to the slow cooker. Cook on low for 7-8 hours, or cook on high for 4-5 hours, or until the onions are tender and the chili has thickened. Divide into 6 portions, garnish with cilantro, scallions and radishes The post Slow Cooker Corn Chili appeared first on Meatless Monday.

Grilled Figs with Thyme & Honey

September 29 2014 Meatless Monday 

This is the perfect note to end late season barbeque on. Figs are grilled soft and topped with savory thyme leaves and sweet honey in this simple dessert which shows off the fruit of fall. This recipe comes to us from Jen of Domestic Divas. Serves 2 - 2 cups figs, stems removed and halved - 1 tablespoon honey - 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves Preheat the grill to medium-low heat. When the grill is heated, place the figs on a grill pan in 1 single layer. Grill for 1-2 minutes, or until slightly soft. Flip and grill another 1-2 minutes more on the other side. Transfer the grilled figs to a serving platter. Carefully place a few leaves thyme on each fig, drizzle with honey and enjoy! The post Grilled Figs with Thyme & Honey appeared first on Meatless Monday.

Spiced Okra

July 28 2014 Meatless Monday 

Okra is caramelized in the oven and tossed with tart lemon juice. Curry powder adds a kick to this simple side dish that highlights okras naturally savory flavor. This recipe comes to us from Jen of Domestic Divas. Serves 8 - 4 cups okra, halved diagonally - 2 tablespoons olive oil - salt and pepper - 1 tablespoon lemon juice - 1 teaspoon curry powder Preheat an oven to 450 degrees. Place the okra in a large baking dish and toss with the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for about 30 minutes, or until tender and beginning to caramelize. Remove the okra from the oven. Toss with the lemon juice and season with the curry powder. The post Spiced Okra appeared first on Meatless Monday.

Movie on a Mission: Seeds of Time

May 14 2015 Vegetarian Times 

Movie on a Mission: Seeds of TimePhoto: Damian Caisson The future of food is in peril, warns the documentary film Seeds of Time. Gorgeously shot, the film follows the global odyssey of agriculture pioneer Cary Fowler to help ensure food security for the worlds population. Here, we dig a bit deeper with Fowler about what makes for a sustainable food system. In the film you say agriculture is facing a perfect storm of threats. What do you mean by that? What makes the current situation so daunting is that agriculture faces multiple threats simultaneously, each of which would be difficult to address on its own: climate/­­weather, water availability, rising demand, loss of cropland and land degradation, new pests and diseases (plus increasing resistance to chemical controls), and terribly inadequate investments in agricultural research and plant breeding, particularly for crops other than the major staples. We need agriculture to produce 50 to 70 percent more food by midcentury, but little in our actions conveys confidence that were committed to making this happen. Yet, if it doesnt, hunger and malnutrition will increase dramatically, food prices will rise, and incidents of war and civil strife will likely increase. The Svalbard Global Seed Vault near the Arctic Circle has been called a Noahs Ark for the worlds crops. So why cant we simply sit back and rest secure that the work ends with stocking the vault? The Seed Vault has put an end to the extinction of the crop varieties it holds: 864,000 different ones at the moment. It is a backup to traditional seed banks, and is necessary because many of those seed banks operate sub-optimally, without the ability to guarantee conservation. Moreover, those seed banks--the depositors of seed in Svalbard--are responsible for researching the diversity they hold and providing it to plant breeders and other researchers. It is not enough simply to conserve diversity. We must build comprehensive inventories of the traits held in the seed samples so that when the need arises for a particular type of pest or disease resistance, for example, we will know where to find it. How would you respond to those who say the future of agriculture lies in genetically engineered crops? I dont think the future of agriculture lies with any particular technology, but I do think it depends significantly on research and plant breeding. With climate change we are entering unchartered waters and we are doing so very quickly. The adaptation and evolution of our domesticated crops is in our hands, and yet for a number of crops there are zero scientifically trained plant breeders. There are, I believe, only six yam breeders in the world. This is not a crop easily bred by farmers. How secure can the future of yams be in a rapidly changing environment? Sadly this is the situation faced by many crops. What can the average person do to help preserve our food heritage?  Many people can participate concretely in conserving diversity by growing endangered varieties and seed saving. If you have room for a tomato plant, you have room for a dwarf apple tree of a rare variety! But everyone--whether they have a garden or farm or not--has the ability to provide support to organizations active in this field, such as Seed Savers Exchange or the Global Crop Diversity Trust. Everyone also has the capacity to send a letter to their political representatives. Since our politicians dont expect any mail on this topic whatsoever, a single letter can grab their attention. Personally, I advocate more public support for our national germplasm [living genetic resources, such as seeds] system, including the national seed bank for the U.S. in Ft. Collins, Colo. Seed banks are never high on the priority list for funding. In fact, they are largely invisible. Imagine that--the biological foundation of agriculture, and its of no particular concern! In real terms, the national seed bank in Ft. Collins gets by at or somewhat below its budget of a decade ago. It rather should be getting more funding and gearing up to provide the tools needed to help our crop varieties adapt to climate change.

Avocado Radish Salad

March 23 2015 Meatless Monday 

Sometimes all you need for a delicious salad is to bring out the natural flavors of ripe fruits and veggies. Creamy avocado and crisp radish slices are seasoned with lemon juice, salt and pepper in this simple and satisfying salad. This recipe comes to us from Jen of Domestic Divas. Serves 2 - 1 ripe avocado, peeled, pit removed, and sliced - 1 cup radishes, trimmed and sliced - juice of 1 lemon - 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil - salt and freshly ground pepper Divide avocados and radishes in half and place each half in a medium sized bowl. Drizzle each bowl with half the lemon juice and half the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste and enjoy. The post Avocado Radish Salad appeared first on Meatless Monday.

Navy Bean Bruschetta

March 9 2015 Meatless Monday 

In this protein packed bruschetta, navy beans are tossed together with baby spinach, shallots and cherry tomatoes, then seasoned with fresh thyme and champagne vinegar. Grilling the bread base is the only stove time needed for this simple bean appetizer, finished with a sprinkling of parmesan reggiano. This recipe comes to us from Jen of Domestic Divas. Serves 10 - 1 15 ounce can navy beans, drained and rinsed - 1 cup baby spinach, rinsed, picked through and sliced - 1/­­2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved - 1 shallot, peeled and chopped - 1 tablespoon fresh thyme - 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil - 2 tablespoons white wine or champagne vinegar - salt and pepper, to taste - 6 slices crusty whole wheat bread, cut into thick slices - 2 garlic cloves, peeled and cut in half - 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, to grill the bread - fresh cracked black pepper, to taste - 1/­­3 cup parmesan reggiano, to shave on top Toss the navy beans, spinach, cherry tomatoes, shallot, thyme and olive oil together in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Heat a cast iron skillet or sauté pan over medium heat. Rub the bread with garlic and drizzle with olive oil. Grill the bread for 3-5 minutes per side, or until the bread has reached the desired level of crunch. To make the bruschetta topping, toss the ingredients together in a mixing bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Heat a cast iron skillet or sauté pan over medium heat. Rub the bread with olive oil and the garlic cloves. Grill both sides of the bread. Spoon a generous portion of the navy bean topping on each slice of toasted bread. Top with fresh cracked black pepper and shaved parmesan reggiano and enjoy! The post Navy Bean Bruschetta appeared first on Meatless Monday.

Orzo Spinach Soup

January 12 2015 Meatless Monday 

Whole-wheat orzo, spinach and white beans are sure to keep you full in this hearty soup. Tomatoes and chile flakes add some spice while freshly grated parmesan finishes the dish on a salty note. This recipe was created by Jennifer Brody of Domestic Divas. Serves 4 - 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil - 1 medium onion, peeled and chopped - 2 carrots, peeled and chopped - 2 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced - 1/­­8 teaspoon chili flakes - 1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes - 1 (28 ounce) can white beans, rinsed and drained - 1/­­2 cup whole wheat orzo - 4 cups fresh spinach - 2 cups low sodium vegetable stock - salt and pepper, to taste - parmigiano reggiano for grating Place the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion and carrots and saute for about 5 minutes, or until the veggies are beginning to soften. Add the garlic and chili flakes and saute one minute more. Add the tomatoes, stock, and white beans. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to a simmer. Cover and cook for about twenty minutes. Add the orzo and simmer in the soup for about ten more minutes, or until the orzo becomes tender. Add the spinach and cook for 2-3 minutes more, or until the spinach is tender. Season to taste with salt and pepper. To serve, ladle a generous portion of soup into a bowl. Top with freshly grated parmigiano reggiano and fresh cracked pepper and enjoy! The post Orzo Spinach Soup appeared first on Meatless Monday.

TV Talk: Saving Africa’s Giants with Yao Ming

November 13 2014 Vegetarian Times 

TV Talk: Saving Africa’s Giants with Yao MingPhotography: Kristian Schmidt/­­WildAid Premiering this Tuesday on Animal Planet, Saving Africas Giants with Yao Ming doesnt flinch from showing the mutilation perpetrated by poachers of ivory and rhino horn. But it also offers hope in the form of animal survivors of black market profiteers, and the people committed to rescuing them. Using the wattage of his global stardom to shine a light on the scandal of wildlife trafficking, basketball icon Yao Ming hosts the documentary. Here, we pose questions to Peter Knights, executive director of the nonprofit WildAid, which advocates an end to the illegal wildlife trade; WildAid co-produced the program. Is there an argument beyond the ethical that, as the film states, a living elephant is worth more than its ivory, and a living rhino worth more than its horn? Elephants and rhinos are the star attraction for a tourism industry that brings in much-needed income to the countries that are home to these animals. This tourism is important for the tax base, and supports local community development and helps pay for schools and hospitals. These iconic wild animals are crucial to the countries economies. How effective is dehorning rhinos as a deterrent against poaching? Sadly, not very. Poachers have been known to still kill rhinos for the stump, or to kill dehorned rhinos so they dont waste their time tracking them in the future. How difficult is it to discourage the long-standing use of ivory and of rhino horn, particularly in China? China already has a ban on rhino horn for traditional medicine, and that should be extended to all trade. A ban on the legal sale of ivory could be the biggest single step taken to reduce poaching, and we hope that China will rise to the challenge and be a global leader. Thats why were asking people to go to IvoryFree.org and to take the Ivory Free pledge to never buy or accept ivory, and to encourage their governments to enact stronger domestic bans on the ivory trade.

Arugala Fig Almond Salad

October 27 2014 Meatless Monday 

Sweet figs, tangy feta and spicy arugula dont need much help to shine in this salad celebrating falls bounty. A simple balsamic vinaigrette seasons the greens, while almonds add an earthy crunch. This recipe comes to us from Jen of Domestic Divas. Serves 4 - 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar - 1/­­4 cup extra virgin olive oil - salt and pepper, to taste - 1 pint figs, quartered - 4 cups arugula - 1/­­2 cup Marcona almonds - 1/­­4 cup feta cheese, crumbled Place the balsamic vinegar in a small bowl, Whisk in the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Layer 1/­­4 of the arugula and figs onto a small plate. Top with 1/­­4 of the almonds and feta. Drizzle with the balsamic vinaigrette. Repeat with the remaining ingriedients on 3 other plates and enjoy! The post Arugala Fig Almond Salad appeared first on Meatless Monday.

Blackberry Walnut Muffins

August 11 2014 Meatless Monday 

The burst of blackberries and crunch of walnuts stand out even in these hearty whole-wheat cornmeal muffins. Vanilla and cinnamon gives these breakfast pastries a sweetly spiced flavor to compliment their tasty texture. This recipe comes to us from Jen of Domestic Divas. Serves 10 - a little oil or nonstick cooking spray, for preparing the pan - 1 cup cornmeal - 1 cup whole wheat spelt flour - 4 teaspoons baking powder - 1/­­2 teaspoon salt - 1 teaspoon cinnamon - 1 cup almond or rice milk - or - 1 cup nonfat milk - 1/­­4 cup olive oil - 1 teaspoon vanilla - 1 cup fresh blackberries - 1/­­2 cup walnuts, chopped Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Prepare muffin tins with a light layer of oil or nonstick cooking spray. Place the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon together in a mixing bowl. Stir to combine. In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together the milk, olive oil and vanilla. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir to combine, taking care not to over beat. Fold the blackberries and chopped walnuts carefully into the batter. Spoon the matter evenly into 10 of the prepared muffin cups. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out of the muffins clean and the muffins are golden brown. Serve 1 muffin per person and enjoy! The post Blackberry Walnut Muffins appeared first on Meatless Monday.

Spicy Cilantro Corn on the Cob

July 14 2014 Meatless Monday 

Summer corn is so naturally delicious, not much preparation is needed to make it shine. Spicy paprika, fresh cilantro and salt and pepper contrast corns sweetness to add nuance to the flavor of the classic corn on the cob.This recipe comes to us from Jen Brody, The Domestic Diva. Serves 4 - 4 ears of corn, husked - 2 tablespoons olive oil - 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped - 1 teaspoon spicy paprika - salt and pepper Preheat an oven to 350 degrees. Lay all the corn cobs out on a big sheet of aluminum foil. Drizzle with the olive oil. Coat each ear in the chopped cilantro. Season with the spicy paprika, salt and pepper. Bring the edges of foil up around the outside of the corn to form a packet of aluminum foil which contains all 4 ears of corn. Transfer the packet to a baking sheet and roast in the oven for about 30 minutes, or until the corn is tender. Remove from the foil and enjoy! The post Spicy Cilantro Corn on the Cob appeared first on Meatless Monday.


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