Tag Archives: recipe

White Bean and Greens Soup

Loaded with protein (and fiber, too!) this wintry soup makes a hearty and nutritious meal. Season generously with dried herbs of your choosing and top each steaming bowl with a veggie based Parmesan style topping.

1 bunch kale, very coarsely chopped
1/2 bunch chard, very coarsely chopped
1 big yellow onion, diced
5 cloves garlic, minced
2 cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
5 medium tomatoes, diced large
6 cups vegetable stock
1/2 teaspoon crushed red chili flakes
1 1/2 tablespoons mixture of dried herbs such as thyme, basil, marjoram, or oregano
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup coarsely minced parsley
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Heat the oil in a large soup pot. Sauté the onion for a few minutes until it begins to soften. Add the garlic and chili flakes and sauté another minute. Stir in the tomatoes, kale, chard, and about 2/3 of the beans. Add 5 cups of stock. Bring to a boil and simmer a few minutes.

Puree the remaining beans with the last cup of stock in a blender and add to the soup. Simmer another 15 minutes or until the kale is tender. If you have one, use an immersion blender to thicken the soup. Alternatively, you can add some of the soup to a blender, puree it, and return it to the pot. (Be sure to leave an opening in the lid so the steam escapes and the top doesn’t blow off.) Season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir in the parsley.

Serves 5

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories: 256
Fat: 7 g
Saturated Fat: 1 g
Trans Fat: 0 g
Cholesterol: 0 mg
Carbohydrate: 42 g
Fiber: 12 g
Sugars: 8 g
Sodium: 466 mg
Protein: 12 g

See related post: The Power of Protein

Soup Formula

One of our teachers emphasizes food formulas rather than recipes (Joan Jackson,  joanjackson.tumblr.com). That is, know the basic components of a dish, and be prepared to substitute according to food on hand or taste preferences. So, here is a formula that we use for a basic vegetable soup with protein.

Base: 4-8 cups of the following in any combination – water, vegetable stock,  a carton soup (like carrot ginger, or butternut squash)
Seasoning: If using a soup base, may not need any seasoning. If not, we like to add Chinese 5 spices, a dash of Thai seasoning, and/or Worchestershire sauce. You could also add fresh parsley, basil, oregano, cilantro, or thyme if you have them on hand. Some people don’t like their soup sweet, but for David, it makes all the difference. So he adds a splash of agave or a teaspoon or two of his favorite sweeteners (e.g. xylitol or erythritol) to taste.
Vegetables (raw) : onions, sweet potatoes, carrots, celery, bell peppers (all colors), yellow squash, zucchini, fennel, broccoli, kale leaves, swiss chard, collard greens (add green leafys toward the end so they don’t overcook)
Canned items: beans – one or two cans should do it. kidney, black, garbonzo, pinto. This adds some protein.
Meat substitute: for more protein, add your favorite meat substitute. We like Gardein’s Chick’n Scallopini or Chick’n strips. Cook according to the package directions.
1. Sauté onions in some water (use bit of oil if desired).  If you want to caramelize them, keep stirring them until they are a nice golden brown color and the water is evaporated.  Add water as needed to keep from burning. You can also add celery at this point.
2. Add soup base(s) and stir
3. Add seasonings
4. Add vegetables putting in the hardest first (e.g. carrots and hard squash)
5. Add beans/legumes
6. Prepare meat substitute, and add it if desired
7. You may need to add more liquid if it cooks down too much or if you want a thinner soup.
8. Add the green leafy veggies near the end.
9. Cook until all vegetables are al dente or more to your taste.
Optional – pour soup over cooked quinoa (more protein) or spaghetti squash or cooked rice.
We like to make a big pot of soup on the weekend and eat it for several meals during the week.
Above all, have fun!  🙂

Plant strong Recipes on Youtube

I’ve been eating plant strong for about a year now. Where do I get the recipes? Well, I bought a few vegan cookbooks, and attended numerous cooking classes in which the presenter provided recipes. However, the main source of recipes has simply been to do a Google search. Sometimes I’ll find a non-vegan recipe and have to “veganize” it. I select the text of the recipe from the website, copy it, then open up a new note in my Evernote database app. Evernote is great. I can copy and paste a new recipe in on my iPhone, iPad, or iMac, and the recipe is instantly available on all my devices. So, when it’s time to cook, I open evernote on the iPad, and the recipe follows me as I move about the kitchen.


But today, I had a epiphany in how I look for recipes. It’s called Youtube. Yes, I knew youtube existed, but I spend very little time poking around for Youtube videos.

So, I had an urge to watch a vegan cooking show on the televison. In the past, I’ve searched through Netflix and HuluPlus on my Roku box. Yes, there are cooking shows, but I haven’t found any that are really dedicated to plant strong eating. So, I decide to switch from Roku to Apple TV, on which I can access Youtube on TV. As you can see from the picture below, I did a search for vegan desserts. It brought up an incredible number of videos – something like 88,000 recipes. Shocking!


Then the magic happened. I scrolled down a bit further, to discover that there are playlists. In fact, there were about 16,600 playlists relating to vegan dessert – vegan dessert, sweet vegan desserts, raw vegan desserts, etc. So, I tried out a couple of playlists. The playlists are great. You load in one show, and it just keeps playing video after video. If you don’t like the host or the recipe, backup up and try another one. Many of the shows listed the ingredients and measurements as text overlays on the videos, but some didn’t. That’s okay. Most of the videos have an associated website where you can find the complete recipes.


This will change the way I search for recipes. I’ll browse for recipes on TV, then use a computer or iPad to save the recipe to Evernote if it is a keeper.

Granola bars

Donna and I attended a  cooking class with Joan Jackson on eating raw. One of her main points of emphasis is that recipes are really formulas. That is, if the recipe calls for a particular nut, you can substitute  the kind you want to achieve your goal. and as far as measurements, relative proportions are important, but there wasn’t much exact measurement going on in the class.

Thus inspired, I endeavored to make my own granola bars without a recipe or plan. I put each ingredient in the food processor individually, then added to the mix.

sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, shredded coconut, and pecans. mixed in a medium bowl. Added some vegan white chocolate (purchased online) chopped fine. I soaked some flax seed meal for about 20 minutes, then added it as a binder. Also added enough agave to make the mix hold together.

Then spread out on a flat plastic sheet on a dehydrator, and set to 105 degrees. The goal was to dehydrate for 12 hours, turn it over, then do another 12 hours. I only had time for 6 hours or so on a side. They came out amazingly well.IMG_3134 IMG_3135