One of the biggest challenges for me as a plant-based eater is lunch. On days where there are leftovers from the night before, lunch is usually the leftovers as i always cook for four, even though there are just two of us. I'm a pretty left-over friendly person the first time, and when something is really good, I welcome the opportunity to eat it the next day.
But I digress.
Sandwiches and wraps can be especially hard for the newly vegan or veganish. After all, we tend to think of sandwich meat and sandwich slices of cheese--everything is sliced to go on the sandwich to the point that the meat and dairy industry have shaped their foods to fit on a slice of bread. So, it can take some invention to figure out how to do sandwiches that are not animal centric. If you're ovo-lacto and eat eggs and/or cheese, it is not quite as difficult. But even then, how many variations on grilled cheese can you eat?
Enter today's lunch. This recipe is inspired by Giada De Laurentis' Tuna and White Bean salad, which I used to make fairly often when I still ate fish. Here, the artichoke hearts stand in for the tuna. I was working from memory here, which is why I didn't do the full 1/3 cup of capers.
Artichoke and White Bean Salad
Serves 4 (mileage may vary); approximately 1 cup per serving
1 can of quartered artichoke hearts in brine
1 can of white kidney beans
2 cloves of minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds (substitute 1/4 t. ground cumin in that's what you have)
1/2 cup minced onion
1/2 cup minced celery (the leaves are nice to leave in)
Parsley (I had dried, so I put in a heaping Tablespoon)
Zest and juice of one large lemon
1 Tablespoon of good extra virgin olive oil
1 Tablespoon of capers (optional, but I love capers. Sliced green olives would be good here, too, if you are into that kind of thing)
Drain and rinse the white beans. Put them in a bowl. Drain the liquid from the artichoke hearts and add the hearts to the bowl. I like to paste the garlic, salt, and cumin seed together. To do this, simply mince all of it together, then take the flat side of your knife and press the mix between the blade and your cutting board. This helps break up the garlic and the flavor of the salt and cumin gets in the garlic juice which means better distribution in the bowl. Add that to the bowl, and then add all of the other ingredients. Stir, taste, and add more salt and fresh ground black pepper if you like.
I scooped a cup of this onto a flat out bread and went to town. Note that tomatoes are optional and I would not recommend you stir them into the salad for storage because they get wimpy and water things down.
Today's dish is really simple: Cauliflower Ceviche. We enjoyed this last night, but are having the remains for lunch today as part of a salad. Here's how to do this one:
1 pound bag of cauliflower, thawed and chopped up (yes, you can start with fresh and blanch it, but I like the no waste, no fuss of frozen).
1-2 seeded chopped jalapeño peppers (or whatever pepper you prefer)
2 cloves minced garlic
3 roma tomatoes, chopped
1/2 finely minced onion (red is great but yellow is what's in the picture above)
2 limes, juiced
1 bunch of cilantro or parsley minced
salt, pepper, cumin, and chili powder to taste. I use a lot of cumin. I also put in a bit of hot smoked paprika
Stir it all together, taste it and add more spices if you want. This is also great with avocado thrown in or sweet bell pepper added. Serve with your chip of choice. Also great on a saltine.
Below is a picture of salad made with the leftovers. On our New Years Day menu is Crescent Dragonwagon's New South Falafel made with cornbread crumbs, black eyed peas, greens, and rice. It's in the Passionate Vegetarian, and the recipe doesn't seem to be available online, so I'm not going to share the recipe, but will share pictures tomorrow. I'll be doing one day a week where I cook someone else's recipe and do some book review type post, and that'll be the first one!
Angel lives in Camden, Arkansas where she writes stuff and sometimes sends it out to other people to read. She used to grade papers, but not anymore. Check out her main site to see what she's up to lately.