These are some recipes dedicated to the easy vegetarian chefs, the ones who like it simple but tasty. When I first began to prepare vegetarian food, I had a background of heating water and poking holes in a lean cuisine bag. I soon realized that if I was going to thrive as a vegetarian and get all the necessary nutrients, cooking would be essential.
Around the same time I became a vegetarian, I also began to study meditation. Having gotten used to dining out every meal, cooking seemed about as fun as chopping wood. But I soon learned with a little soothing music and a recipe simple enough to allow me to meditate in motion, cooking became a time to unwind, relax and enjoy myself.
One evening though, I realized meditating while cooking does more than just make it more enjoyable. My mother had been in a frenetic, anxious mode scrambling around in the mutli- task world. In the midst of this, she whipped up broccoli and pasta and I ate it. That night I went to bed and noticed that my whole body was anxious. My muscles were shaky and I felt like I had been plugged into a high voltage socket. I was wondering what was happening and then it dawned on me. Everything is energy and when I ate that food, I also consumed the energy that poured into the preparation process. I had taken some bites of frenetic multi-task anxiety. Cooking in meditation then became a mindful act of love for the self and others, a way of nourishing every thought and cell with peace.
Below are a few easy recipes to nourish the body and soul. They are ideal if you have minutes but not hours, if you love raw food but not completely and if you're healthy but like it savory. Enjoy!
Good News about the Fresh Herbs in these salads!
Cilantro detoxifies the blood and is a rich source of vitamin A and the antioxidant beta carotene. It also helps reduce high blood sugar and some have used it in chelation therapy to remove heavy metals from the body.
Parsley is rich in beta carotene . It contains vitamin A, C, B12 and K. Parsley is one of the world''s seven most potent disease-fighting spices which also include Ginger, Oregano, Cinnamon, Turmeric, Sage, and Red chili peppers. In addition to containing chlorophyll, folate and calcium, it is also high in iron. This helps build up the blood and comes to the rescue of fatigue which seems to be the ailment of the day. The high vitamin C content assists the absorption of iron. Because of its high digestive enzyme content, it improves the digestion of proteins and fats.
1 small box of bowtie pasta or penne pasta
2 heads of broccoli
1 large red pepper (chopped)
3/4 cup finely chopped parsely (great source of Iron)
1 can quartered artichokes
1 can dark red kidney beans rinsed and drained
green or black olives to taste
salt and coarsely ground pepper to taste
1) Boil the pasta. Al dente tastes best with this dish.
2) In a large bowl, add the chopped red pepper, green or black olives, the parsley, artichokes and rinsed kidney beans.
Tip- the parsley is better when finely chopped because it releases the flavor and has a less scratchy texture.
3) The only vegetable that you cook is the broccoli. I also chop up the stem. Season it with basil, hing and some olive oil as it's cooking.
4) Rinse and drain pasta. Add it to the large bowl along with the broccoli.
5) Pour olive oil over the contents. The dish should glisten. If the pasta salad is too dry, the ingredients don't release all their flavor.
6) Squeeze one medium sized lemon over the dish. You may want more. It's up to you how far you like to push the thermostat of tart.
7) Add salt and pepper to taste and enjoy.
1 cup of quinoa.
1 can of black beans rinsed and drained
1 large red pepper chopped
1 royal gala apple chopped ( squeeze a little lemon on it to keep it from turning brown)
Capers to your liking...I usually put about 1/3 cup in
1 cup finely sliced celery
3/4 cup fresh cilantro chopped
1 medium sized lemon
salt and pepper to taste
1) Rinse a cup of quinoa and cook. The flavor will be better when rinsed because there is a bit of a bitter residue on the seed.
2) Add chopped red pepper, cilantro, rinsed black beans, capers, chopped apple and celery to large bowl.
Tip- The celery tastes better if it is thinly diced in slivers.
3) Add cooked quinoa to bowl. Pour over olive oil so that the contents glisten and look visibly moist.
4) Squeeze lemon over dish and add salt and pepper to taste.