Last night I made this recipe from vegweb.com and it turned out pretty well!
Southwest Sweet Potato Chickpea Delight
1 large sweet potato, peeled and diced
1 (16 ounce) jar salsa
1 (15 ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 cups yellow corn tortilla chips, crushed
1 medium white onion, finely diced
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 cup vegan cheese, grated, divided
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
cilantro, chopped, optional
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine all ingredients, but reserve a small handful of the vegan cheese.
2. Spread into a shallow casserole dish. Cover with lid or foil and bake for 45 minutes.
3. Remove foil, stir, and top with remaining vegan cheese. Bake another 20 minutes or so, until the sweet potatoes can be easily pierced with a fork. (Watch carefully, as the top will get crispy fairly quick, and you may need to stir occasionally to prevent burning.)
4. If desired, sprinkle with fresh chopped cilantro right before serving.
Serves: 3-4, Preparation time: 1/2 Hour
Recipe on vegweb
I briefly sauteed the onions and garlic because I hate it when they stay crunchy. Despite following the recipe and even cooking longer, there were still a few hard sweet potatoes per serving. I’m hoping when we reheat the leftovers tonight this won’t be as noticeable. I left out cilantro, because I hate the stuff I used On The Border Medium salsa and daiya pepperjack vegan cheese. Vegan cheese is hit or miss with me, but in this it was great. Melted just right and tasted good, not weird.
I’ve refrained from cooking with eggplants because I’ve heard that if you screw it up they’re really bad. I just need to throw that idea out the window because they’re so yummy and cool looking! Last night we made Eggplant Paprikash from FatFreeVegan.com.
The only real changes we made were maybe not using enough eggplant or peppers (we had a green pepper) and using store bought Tofutti sour cream. As we made it I worried it wasn’t going to turn out right, but in the end it was really delicious!
I have leftovers for lunch and I can’t wait!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! No really, I mean that!
Her recipe can be found at the above link with a yummy looking photo, but this is what she has (please still see her site, lots of great recipes!)
Eggplant Paprikash by fatfreevegan.com
1 large onion, halved and cut into thin wedges
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 tbsp. paprika
1/2 tsp. red pepper (optional)
1 tsp. salt (optional)
1 1/2 – 2 lbs. eggplant (about 2 medium) cut into 1-inch cubes
2 bell peppers, any color, sliced (I used red and yellow)
1 cup vegetable broth
1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes (I used Muir Glen Fire Roasted)
1/8 tsp. Liquid Smoke flavoring
1/2 cup tofu sour cream (see below)
Tofu Sour Cream:
1/2 package (about 6 ounces) lite silken tofu
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1/2 tbsp. cashew butter or tahini
1/4 tsp. salt (optional)
Blend all the ingredients for the tofu sour cream until completely smooth, and set aside in the refrigerator until needed.
In a large, non-stick saucepan, sauté the onion in a small amount of water until it begins to brown, about 5-8 minutes. Add the garlic, paprika, and red pepper (optional), and stir for one minute. Add the salt, eggplant, peppers, vegetable broth, and tomatoes. Cover and simmer until the eggplant is tender, about 15-20 minutes.
When the eggplant is done, check the seasonings and add more salt if necessary. Stir in the Liquid Smoke (optional) and the sour cream, and cook for another minute, until warmed through. Serve over pasta (I used Tinkyada Pasta Joy brown rice noodles) or rice. Serves 4.
580 Walnut St
Cincinnati, OH 45202
By the time we met up with our friend after work and got downtown it was going on eight o’clock. I don’t know if that’s early or late by weeknight downtown standards but we found Mr. Sushi at light capacity, with only a few tables of hipsters at the front making a ruckus. We’d heard that the service was slow but were surprised that both our appetizer of vegetable tempura and our combo plate of sushi came out quickly. Maybe it was the right time of day or that our sushi didn’t require any special handling like an exotic dead-fish roll.
The tempura veggies were a little pricey at $5 and there wasn’t as much as I would’ve expected but what we got was a tasty mix of deep fried peppers, onion, carrot and zucchini. Pretty typical stuff but good. The Vegetable Roll Combination on their web menu is a little different than what we had. Ours was an AAC (Avocado, Asparagus, Cucumber) roll, a Vegetable (Carrot, Avocado, Cucumber) roll and Inari for $13. Both are pretty typical rolls but Mr. Sushi’s had a sweeter flavor that I think of fondly as I type this and the Inari, of course, were scrumptious; a little small but well packed with tasty rice, nice and cold.
The only downside, really, is that Mr. Sushi is downtown but for the crowd who live, work, and play down there on a daily basis it’s well worth stopping in. They’re maybe a little pricier than some of the nearby alternatives but not by much!
Fusion Wok Sushi Bar
3645 Stone Creek Blvd, Suite H
Cincinnati, OH 45251
Katy: We went to check out the new sushi place in the Stone Creek shopping center on Colerain south of I-275 for dinner Sunday night. We were excited that there would be an alternative to Kabuto in the area.
Shawn: Kabuto is a pretty miserable stop for sushi so, like Katy said, we were thrilled to see a new place opening up. Located in the fancy-pants area of Northgate, Fusion Wok is a small restaurant, not much bigger than University Heights’ Maki Express, with similarly spartan decoration. The furnishings are nice and new with lacquered dark wood and the sushi bar is as colorful and lively as any but overall it’s a typical sushi joint.
So that leaves us with the food. A complimentary dish of sugared peanuts surprised us both but I passed on account of them being nuts and all. After a few questions with one of the chefs to confirm what was vegan we had ordered veggie roll ($3.25), sweet potato roll ($4.25), avocado roll ($2.95), cucumber roll ($2.50) and some inari ($3.50).
Fusion Wok Sushi Bar decor
Fusion Wok Sushi Bar sushi 1
Katy: The presentation of the sushi was very nice and we were thrilled to see the sweet potato roll is tempura sweet potato like we’ve had at Tokyo. The inari had a very small amount of rice and the tofu wrapper was folded up into itself making these the smallest we’ve had at this price. The veggie roll had a miso sauce on top that was a little sweet & spicy (very slight) and very tasty. Nothing thrilling to say about the avocado or cucumber rolls, they were tasty, not bad and not amazing – average priced. In total, I think all the rolls were reasonably priced for size & quality except the inari being skimpy.
We are looking forward to going again within the next week to try non-sushi foods. Shawn uploaded their menu to Urban Spoon, but as of this moment it hasn’t shown up yet.
Here are the rest of the photos we took
Fusion Wok Sushi Bar complimentary treat
Fusion Wok Sushi Bar sushi 2
Fusion Wok Sushi Bar sushi 3
Fusion Wok Sushi Bar complimentary after meal treat 2
Fusion Wok Sushi Bar soy sauce
6227 Montgomery Road
Cincinnati, OH 45213
Loving cafe always has specials on Saturday’s at lunch, but some of them have been added permanently to the menu. My favorite is the BBQ Chik’n Wrap pictured below. For those concerned, it’s not spicy at all from what I can tell. It’s more the sweet BBQ flavor similar to the BW-3′s sweet BBQ sauce that’s 1 or 2 from the bottom in spiciness. Inside the wrap is fried rice with veggies in it like edamame & corn, lettuce, vegan mayo and some sort of fake chicken that has a great texture and taste. It’s all I’ve ordered since last fall when eating there, I believe. I crave it sometimes, yum yum!
Loving Cafe BBQ Chik’n wrap
Loving Cafe BBQ Chik’n wrap closed
4165 Hamilton Ave
Cincinnati, OH 45223
Actually, Melt is great for any meal. I always get the same meal, except at brunch when I can’t. This photo is from a lunch with Shawn, myself and our friend @Simpleton001. Shawn (left) got the vegan coney which is served open faced & he got mixed greens. Center is my halvsies custom seitan burger, vegan cheesy sauce & vegan mayo. Other half is vegan Caesar salad with tofu. I order this EVERY time. On right @Simpleton001 tried the sandwich I get with a side of rosemary redskins.
Melt for lunch
VeggieMealMaker.com came through again! Our second recipe attempt was Eggplant Parmigiana and it was easy turned out great.
This breaded eggplant recipe is my stab at mimicking Olive Garden’s Eggplant Parmesan – which I love! I had never cooked eggplant and I’m glad that I did – this dish rocks! Don’t let the big purple vegetable scare your from going gourmet at home. Give this dish a try!
- 1 large eggplant
- 1/3 c cornmeal
- 1/3 c nutritional yeast
- 1/3 t basil
- 1/3 t onion powder
- 1/3 t garlic powder
- 1 pk spaghetti
- 1 cn pasta sauce (or jar)
- 4 oz mozzarella cheese (optional)
- 1/3 c whole wheat bread crumbs*
- dash Parmesan cheese (optional)
1. Cook pasta according to package instructions. Drain, rinse and set aside. Heat pasta sauce in a medium sauce pan until warm.
2. Peel and slice eggplant into 1/4” rounds.
3. Combine dry ingredients mixing thoroughly.
4. Press eggplant rounds in bread mixture coating each side thoroughly.
5. Bake breaded eggplant on a lightly oiled cookie sheet at 350 degrees for 15-20 min on each side or until golden brown.
6. Serve eggplant topped with marinara sauce and mozzarella and parmesan cheese over spaghetti.
Finely chop 2 pieces whole wheat bread in a food processor or blender low. Spread on a baking sheet and bake at 300 degrees for 6-8 min or until dry and crunchy.
For a vegan option, omit the cheese or replace with a suitable alternative.
Lightly misting eggplant with h20 will help the bread crumbs to stick to the eggplant.
- swapping for vegan cheeses
- We used whole wheat bread crumbs we had on hand rather than preparing them.
- I dipped the eggplants in water rather than misting them because misting wasn’t enough to make a difference
VeggieMealMaker.com should totally give me a free subscription so I can just make everyone else want to use it!
Cancun Mexican Restaurant
11930 Hamilton Ave
Mount Healthy, OH 45231
Shawn and I were driving home down Hamilton Ave. and we were hungry! I recalled there being a Cancun Mexican restaurant on route and suggested checking it out. We had eaten at the Cancun on Glenway Ave. back when we lived in Westwood and were still meat eaters. The only things I recall about that were the building being attached to Western Bowl (bowling alley) and the salsa being loaded with cilantro. I may or may not have mentioned that cilantro is the bane of my existence. Most people either love or hate it and I’m in the hate realm. It literally tastes like metal to me. meh.
The parking lot was littered with holes, the bar next door had smokers on route to the front door, I was on the verge of saying forget it. We went in anyway and saw a half dozen vegetarian options. Typical Mexican restaurant vegetarian fare such as bean burritos, cheese enchiladas, and bean and cheese tostadas. The last item was called a “Kentucky Burrito” that sounded unlike any other items we’ve had at Mexican restaurants so we got in line. A couple in line saw us looking at a menu and assured us their food was “really good”. Once we were seated and our chips and salsa arrived I was thrilled to see that the salsa wasn’t as I remembered the Western Hills location being. It was the salsa style I like which seems as if it’s pureed tomatoes and peppers with some spices. It was spicy and good with a little green (possibly cilantro), but so little it didn’t take away from the good and spicy taste.
We both ordered the “Kentucky Burrito” without cheese, but it arrived with cheese. We shoved our cheese to the edges of the plates and dove in. The burritos were filled with carrots, celery and potatoes and it was covered with a tomato sauce. The plate also had refried beans, rice and what several Mexican restaurants call “A touch of salad.” A lettuce and tomato salad with a vinegar based dressing. The burrito was tasty, but the inner veggies seemed seasoned in a way that almost clashed with the rest of the meal. As if they were a veggie stew, seasoned as a normal stew and then thrown into a Mexican meal. Different, but I’m unsure I’d eat it again.