Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Engine 2 Plate


One of our favorite things to do after sweating our butts off running, or walking Town Lake in Austin is to go to the vegan food counter at the flagship Whole Foods for a delicious lunch.  A while ago, I got it into my head to make my own knocked off version of our favorite E2 Plate.  This always consists of some kind of bean over brown rice and a green.  Without fail we pay an extra buck to sub the raw kale salad for our green...soooo worth it!  Get the plate "all the way" and they'll plunk some pico de gallo and "sour cream" made of cashews on top.  *swoon*
I got bold and served this to company the other night and thankfully they liked it just as much as we do!

If you make nothing else in this recipe, know that the raw kale salad takes no time or cooking ability to make and if you're anything like us, you'll soon become an addict.

Looks like a lot of pieces parts, but most or all can be done in advance.  Even easier if you've got brown rice cooked and stored in the freezer.

Serve up a mound of kale salad with brown rice piled up with your seasoned beans, topped with pico and then drizzled with cashew sour cream.  Take a bite and see if your eyeballs roll back in your head like mine do. :)

Cashew "Sour Cream":
1 cup raw cashews, soaked a couple hours, or overnight covered in filtered water
1/4+ cup extra filtered water
juice of a small lemon, or to taste
1-2 tsp cider vinegar (start with a little and add to taste)
salt to taste (about 1/4 tsp)
optional: sometimes I add a pinch of onion powder

Drain soaked cashews and add all ingredients to a high-powered blender (I use a BlendTec) and blend until smooth and creamy, adding more of anything you think it needs taste-wise.

I like to keep this in a generic ketchup squeezy bottle.  Refrigerate until needed.

Raw Kale and Avocado Salad:
1 bunch of organic curly kale, washed, torn into bite-sized pieces
~1 1/4 large avocados
~1/4 cup finely diced red onion
juice of a lemon
salt to taste
optional: sometimes I'll add a couple Tbs of hemp hearts

Place all in a large bowl, remove your rings, and mash with your paws until the avocado is smoothed out into a dressing of sorts.  That's it!  Won't brown up, so you can rest easy about making this ahead.

Get your paws in there and mush.
Green goodness

Seasoned Black Beans:
olive oil
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
~1 tsp dried Greek oregano
1 large diced jalapeno, seeded
1 29oz can of black beans, or homecooked beans, drained and rinsed
~1 tsp ground cumin
~1/2 tsp of dried corriander
~1/2+ cups veggie broth
~1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
lime juice if desired

Saute garlic, oregano, jalapeno in olive oil until fragrant.
Add beans, cumin, coriander, veggie broth and cilantro.
Bring to a simmer, cover, reduce heat and simmer for ~10 minutes.

Mash some of the beans with a potato masher to thicken.
Add some lime juice, and or salt to taste.

Pico de Gallo:
tomatoes, chopped
serrano pepper, minced (I leave the seeds in)
sweet white onion, diced
cilantro, chopped
lime juice
salt to taste

Add any amount of these ingredients you'd like together til you get a nice balance of flavors.

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