White Bean Hummus with Lime, Parsley, and Cilantro

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I don’t know about you all, but here in Virginia, Richmond is flirting with spring. Whenever the weather starts to warm up and the sun comes back out, I start craving those fun and refreshing flavors of summer.

I generally try to shop in season, to help ensure a variety in my diet and to help protect the Earth. As a result, I should have restrained from purchasing limes or these fresh summer herbs at the moment; however, we all have moments of weakness! With spring just around the corner, I broke and had a great time pulling together this scrumptious and refreshing hummus spread. Try it with raw vegetables, pita chips and pretzels, or as a spread on your sandwich or savory bagel!

Happy Cooking!

Love, a rented kitchen

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Ingredients:

  • 2- 16 ounce cans of white beans
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon water
  • Juice from 1 lime
  • ½ teaspoon dried cilantro leaves (or a handful of fresh leaves!)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper

Directions:

  1. Combine the first three ingredients in a large food processor, and blend until the white beans are a smooth consistency. (You may need to stop and wipe the side of your food processor with a spatula!)
  2. Add the spices and herbs to the beans and process until completely mixed in.
  3. Serve with vegetables, carrots, on sandwiches, or on a savory bagel!

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Notes and Tips!:

  •  Source: A Rented Kitchen
  • If you like this recipe, try this other yummy dips from ‘A Rented Kitchen’! (Recipe links below):

 

Let’s Taco’bout it!: Chipotle Tofu Tacos with Cilantro Quinoa and Mango

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Well, here it is! The fifth and final taco in my series, “Let’s Taco’bout it!” Of all the tacos posted in the last few weeks, I think this was my favorite one! The flavor combination of the zesty chipotle, the citrusy lime and mango, and the sweet agave and pomegranate bits, combine to create one beautiful meal. My talented boyfriend Brian, even made homemade tortillas for these tacos, which were absolutely incredible! (Look for that recipe soon!) Although I am sure this looks like a lot of work, I promise you, this meal is not very hard, and will only take you 30 minutes! Give it a try! Seriously, there’s so much to love. And don’t forget to try the other tacos in this series as well!

Day One: Spiced Corn and Bean Tacos

Day Two: Island Tacos

Day Three: Veggie Tacos

Day Four: Tempeh Tacos with Avocado-Lime Sauce

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Lime Cilantro Superfood Quinoa

Yield: 4 servings

  • 1 cup dry quinoa
  • 1 ½ cups water
  • ½ cup chopped kale
  • ¼ cup chopped parsley
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 lime, squeezed
  • 1 teaspoon grated lime zest
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed black pepper
  • salt to taste (feel free to try a seasoned salt here!)

Quinoa Directions:

  1. Cook the quinoa by bringing 1 cup dry quinoa and 1 ½ cups water to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the head to a simmer, top with a tight fitting lid, and allow to cook untouched for 15- 20 minutes. (While this is cooking, get started on the tofu and mango topping!)
  2. After 20 minutes, remove from heat, but allow to sit untouched for another 5.
  3. Fluff with fork and add the chopped kale, parsley, cilantro, lime juice and zest, as well as other seasonings to the pot. Stir together and garnish with lime wedges.

Chipotle Tofu Ingredients:

Yield: 12 small triangles

  • 14 ounces extra firm tofu (1 block)
  • 1-2 teaspoons safflower oil (or other)
  • 1-2 Tablespoons agave syrup
  • 2 Tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle powder (to taste)
  • 1 Tablespoon mixed seasoning*
  • Salt (as desired)
  • Spritz of lime juice

Tofu Directions:

  1. Slice tofu into 12 triangles and squeeze dry using paper towels or a hand rag (this can take a while!)
  2. Head oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat and add the tofu triangles.
  3. Drizzle each triangle with soy sauce, agave, and sprinkle with seasonings. Flip and repeat this on the other side. Continue to cook each triangle, occasionally adding more seasoning or sauce if desired, until crispy on the outside- about 6 minutes total.
  4. Squeeze a little lime juice over the top of the triangles and remove from heat.

Mango Avocado Topping

Yield: 4 servings

  • 1 ½ avocados, diced
  • 1 champagne mango, diced
  • 2 limes, squeezed
  • 2 Tablespoons dried pomegranate bits

Mango Topping Directions:

  1. Combine the fruit in a bowl, toss well, and plate.

Assemble each taco with a few spoonfuls of the quinoa, a few tofu triangles, and a scoop of the mango avocado topping! Enjoy!

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Notes and Tips!:

  • The mixed seasoning blend I used for the tofu was a herb and dry vegetable blend with lots of garlic, onion powder, oregano, etc. It helped to add a little more texture and flavor to the tofu. You can find these blends in the spice section of your grocery store, and pick one that seems to fit your pallet! Pay attention to whether you want a salted or unsalted version. This particular spice blend was unsalted, which I preferred since the soy sauce is relatively salty.
  • Gluten free? Try corn tortillas!
  • Slightly adapted from: Kathy at Vegan Lunchbox
  • Check out some other delicious recipes from ‘a rented kitchen,’ like these Southwestern Egg Rolls, Teriyaki Tofu and Pineapple Bake, and my Quinoa and Parmesan Kale Patties!

Spiced Black Bean, Corn, and Avocado Quesadillas

I had a friend yesterday ask me what my form of “chicken” was since I am a vegetarian- that one food that I can cook any way I like and eat all the time. I am not sure that I have any one food I depend on that much in my regular diet. I enjoy a great variety. I do cook tofu a good amount, and tofu can be prepared in numerous ways. (Check out my Teriyaki Tofu and Pineapple Bake recipe here!) However, if I were to be honest, the answer might be beans! I love beans! Beans are so healthy for you, high in protein and amino acids, and can be thrown in just about anything- taco salad, beans and rice, bean dip, the list goes on! This recipe is my favorite bean, corn, and avocado quesadilla recipe. It’s seriously delicious, and really filling! Cut your quesadilla up and serve it as an appetizer, or use it as the entrée for a meal as I usually do.  You can’t go wrong!

 

Ingredients:

  • 15 oz. can of black beans
  • 1 can of sweet corn
  • ¼ cup sliced cilantro
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • Mexican cheese blend
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • Whole wheat tortillas
  • Salsa (for dipping)

Directions:

  1. Empty the can of black beans and sweet corn into a small stovetop pot and heat until warm, 5-8 minutes. 
  2. Once warm, empty the beans and corn into a strainer, removing the excess liquid. Return the beans and corn to their pot and add the cilantro and spices. Mix well.
  3. Spread a thin layer of olive oil onto a frying pan, preheating it to medium/medium-high heat.
  4. Place one tortilla on the pan and sprinkle a thin layer of cheese. Top with a scoop of beans and corn- evenly distributed across the tortilla. 
  5. Arrange 3-6 thin slices of avocado across the beans and corn and top with another thin layer of cheese and a second tortilla.
  6. Once the first layer of cheese has melted and the bottom tortilla has slightly browned, flip the quesadilla and heat for a few more minutes. Be careful in the flipping process, it is easy for beans and corn to fall out!
  7. Once all the cheese is melted and the tortillas are lightly browned, remove the quesadilla from the heat and place on a cutting board.
  8. Using a pizza cutter, slice the quesadilla into wedges, and serve with salsa. Enjoy!

 

Notes and Tips!:

  • Yield: 2 full quesadillas (about 12- 16 wedges)
  • If you like this recipe, check out my Southwestern Eggrolls

 

Zucchini Ribbon Salad with Sweet Corn, Avocado, & Feta

This is old news, but pinterest is the bomb. I think I could easily spend an hour “fetching more pins” and not even notice.

My roommates and I each have our own corner of pinterest that we love to explore.  My roommate Trinity has an entire section dedicated to pugs, and more clothes pictures than my closet could ever dream of. My other roomie Stephanie has enough DIY pins to keep me thoroughly entertained for every rainy day for the next ten years. My contribution to this hot pinterest mess is enough food and drink pins to overload a grocery store. Some might say it’s getting out of control.

This pinterest surplus, however, is what led me to this gem of a recipe, which was truly fantastic. This elegant salad is beautiful, light, and the perfect combination of tangy and fresh. I have enjoyed it as a meal three times in the last two days, and am still loving every bite. Enjoy it while the zucchini and squash are still in season!

In the mean time, I’m going to continue being in denial that there can be too much of a good thing.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 medium zucchini
  • 2 medium yellow squash
  • 1 can of sweet corn*
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced
  • 2 medium ripe avocados, peeled, pitted, and sliced
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese*

Directions:

  1. Whisk together the lime juice and olive oil in a small bowl, season with salt and pepper to taste.
  2. Empty the can of corn into a small pot and heat on low while preparing the zucchini and squash.
  3.  Rinse the zucchini and yellow squash, and cut off the ends of each.  Using a vegetable peeler, shave each squash into long thin strips. Start on one side of the vegetable and shave until reaching the center (you’ll see seeds!), then flip the vegetable over and repeat from the other side. Throw the centers away (or better yet, compost them!)
  4. Remove the corn from the heat and drain. Combine with the zucchini and squash ribbons in a large bowl.
  5. Add cilantro, red onion, and avocado to the corn/squash mixture. Crumble feta on top of the salad and season with salt and pepper as desired.
  6. Serve the lime juice/olive oil mixture on the side.*  Enjoy!

Notes and Tips!:

  • Yield: Serves 4-6
  • I used a can of sweet corn in this recipe and it turned out great, however if fresh corn is in season, that is an easy alternative to use! Simply husk and boil two corn cobs for 3-5 minutes, and let cool. Cut the ends off of each ear of corn and then cut kernels off the cob, cutting as close to the center as possible.
  • Another alternative for feta cheese is Queso fresco! This is an ingredient that is not sold at every grocery store, but could easily be found at a Mexican food market. The good news is both feta and queso fresco would be delicious in this recipe.
  • I served the dressing on the side, however it is equally delicious to toss the salad in the dressing before serving.
  • To make vegan, replace the feta with a vegan cheese, or simply omit the cheese all together.
  • Source: two peas & their pod
  • Check out my pinterest page here!
  • Zucchini Fan?! You should check out my Parmesan Zucchini chips, Zucchini Bites, and Roasted Zucchini Wrap!