Sandwiches and Sides

Winter has finally struck San Francisco. I knew we were in for a wet spring after having months of sunny, cloudless skies for winter. I love the rain, even though it makes my commute ten times harder. Either I throw a fancy garbage bag over my backpack and take my bike, or, like this morning, I take a cab to the train station when riding my bike seems a little too dangerous.

And I’m still having trouble getting out of the house on time – not sure why after 10 months of doing just fine, the last two have been harder. I probably need to get back to packing my lunch the night before so it’s ready to go. And maybe laying out my clothes the night before will help too. Please send any tips or tricks you have to make my mornings more efficient.

To honor the winter weather, I made a bomb-ass meal last night. Yes, I said bomb-ass. That’s how good it was.

Everyone loves a good grilled cheese and bowl of tomato soup. Unless you avoid dairy*. Then maybe you stare longingly at a gooey grilled cheese sandwich and wish you could partake without ingesting a lot of shredded cheese-like substance made of soy. That was me. But one day I decided the best part about a grilled cheese sandwich is the crispy, buttery bread and I figured I could make a darn good sandwich with hummus and avocado. So I did, and it was heavenly.

Grilled hummus and avocado sandwich

Ingredients

  • 2 slices of whole wheat sourdough bread
  • 1/2 avocado
  • Hummus
  • Dijon mustard
  • Earth Balance/Butter

Method

1. Spread one side of each slice of bread with butter/EB.
2. On the other side of one slice of bread, slather on hummus.
3. On the other side of the other slice of bread, slather on dijon mustard.
4. Smoosh (technical term) avocado with a fork onto the hummus side.
5. Put sandwich together.
6.  Heat frying pan on medium high heat and grill both sides of the sandwich until crisp and golden, 4 – 5 minutes per side.

Super Simple Vegan Tomato Soup

Ingredients:

  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1/2 onion chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 tsp dried chili flakes
  • Fresh and dried herbs of your choice to taste (I used dried oregano, fresh rosemary, and fresh thyme)
  • 1 can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 can fire roasted tomatoes
  • 3 – 4 cups vegetable broth.

 Method: 

1. Heat olive oil in sauté pan over medium heat.
2. Add onion and cook until soft, 6 – 7 minutes.
3. Add celery and garlic, and cook until celery softens.
4. Add herbs and chili flakes and stir to coat.
5 Add tomatoes and vegetable broth and stir. Bring to a boil, reduce, and simmer for 20 – 30 minutes.
6. Use a hand blender or carefully ladle into a regular blender and blend until smooth.
7. Return mixture to the pot, simmer for another 10 minutes, and season to taste.

And then I served roasted Brussels sprouts on the side. I told you it was bomb ass. All of my favorite things in one meal – hummus, avocado, tomatoes, sourdough bread, and Brussels sprouts. I could probably eat this every day.

Dipping your sandwich into the soup is totally allowed and encouraged.

We enjoyed homemade maple almond butter cups for dessert while watching Mad Men. Only watching one episode at a time is torture! But I was good and got into bed early enough that my 4:50 am alarm for the gym didn’t seem so bad.

Had to also note that we made veggie burgers this week (which I tried to add curry powder to, which failed) and Angela’s onion rings (with smoked paprika and chili powder). They were so crispy and delicious – I can’t wait to make them again. We had them with tomato paste since we had no ketchup which was just as good!

*Note about my dairy consumption: I am just choosy – I don’t avoid it completely. Case in point: on Saturday night I had a double scoop of ice cream – Mexican chocolate and peanut butter indulgence – at a local ice cream shop after dinner. As much as I love cheese, I live for ice cream so that’s where I spend my dairy allowance. :D

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