Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Summery Meals

As you know, I am a loyal farmer's market shopper, and this time of year is just so fantastically abundant. As a result, we've been doing some pretty good eating around here lately...

Of course, I am still trying to use up lots of tomatoes with each and every meal. Last week I made up a half-batch of "Tomato and Rice Soup with Roasted Garlic and Navy Beans" (what a name!) from "Veganomicon." It was great! Hearty and light all at once - rich and flavorful but not excessively complex. So good, and definitely something I'll make again. Especially for Mr. Vegan Eats & Treats who loves Tomato Soup with Rice as much as anything else on this planet.

For dessert, I made a Pear Pie, following an old favorite recipe from "Quick Vegetarian Pleasures." This pie is so darned good! A lovely yoga student gave us a big bag of pears - Mr. VE&T's most favorite fruit, and so I made his most favorite dessert of all time. It was delicious, and it was devoured. Mmmmmm!

Next, I put some more tomatoes to good use and made some great tofu omlettes. I used the "Fresh Tomatoes and Corn Frittata" filling from "Fresh Food Fast" and instead of mixing it up with a bunch of eggs, I used it as the filling for the tofu omlettes from "Vegan Brunch." It was a perfectly delicious and filling summer meal. The omlettes are so fluffy and flavorful, and the fresh veggie-rific filling was a perfect balance.

An Indian-inspired meal:
Nima Sherpa's totally amazing Potato Salad. I love this recipe so much. It's really delicious. Nima Sherpa is from Nepal, and the flavors in this potato salad are surprising and unexpected, but totally harmonious and satisfying.

This was the "Indian Split Pea Soup" from "Olive Trees and Honey." It was good, but there are other Indian soup recipes and other traditional split pea soup recipes that I prefer... so I probably wouldn't make it again.

Of course, there had to be some tomatoes in the meal: a light Indian tomato salad - tomatoes, hot peppers, scallions, cilantro, and a light dash of oil and salt for dressing. Very fresh and refreshing!

A Tennis Party:
Mr. Vegan Eats & Treats' tennis team had a party to celebrate the end of their season, and their especially good results. I brought along a HUGE bowl of "Mexicali Chop" from "Real Food Daily" cookbook - one of my favorite dishes of all time, and a great potluck dish. It was all eaten up by the end of the party!

I also came up with the "great idea" of making a sheet cake and decorating it like a tennis court! The cake came out very yummy, but the tennis court decoration ended up looking a bit drab. Ha ha! Either way, those crazy tennis nuts all appreciated the idea!

Using Up More Cherry Tomatoes:
I love, love, LOVE this recipe: it's the "Fresh Corn Polenta with Cherry Tomatoes" from "Fresh Food Fast" by Peter Berley. It's light, summery, sweet and savory... totally delectable. I also love the way the corn kernels and the whole cherry tomatoes both literally pop their flavors in your mouth.

Family Dinner:
I loved Diann's recommendation for the "sofregit" recipe from one of the recent Daring Chef challenges... So, I made a big double batch of the sofregit, and mixed it up with some cooked farro & pearl barley for a very yummy dish. I cooked it up in the middle of a hot afternoon, thinking that we'd all enjoy a nice room-temperature salady-type dish. Well, by the time I got to my parents' house, the fog had rolled in, and we found out that it was great heated up as well. I really liked this combo, and I'd definitely make it again.

For dessert I made a beautiful and simple peach tart from an old Martha Stewart baking book that my mom and I picked up at the library book sale last year. I didn't have a fancy "flower-shaped tart pan," like Martha suggested, so I just free-formed it and it turned out great. Yummy!

Fruity Delights:
We have been eating SO MUCH WATERMELON. Maybe a 1/2 a melon every day? It's so delicious! Here you see my crazy system of just cubing the melon into big chunks right there in the peel. Then I dump the whole thing out into a bowl and we gobble it up!

We also went through quite a little blackberry phase... when the bushes near our house were abundant with yumminess. I'm always surprised that there aren't more people out there picking all that free and delicious fruit!



  1. What a post! There is so much awesome food!

    Love the look of that soup (anything with roasted garlic must be delicious!) and WOW! That Indian dish really looks amazing!

    And that pear dessert....yum!

  2. Anonymous3:32 AM

    I'm loving all the food but that pear good!

  3. I saw that soup and said to myself, Wow, that looks like the perfect way to welcome fall - very hearty. I was thrilled to see it is in Veganomicon and I will be making it...probably this coming week!
    I am so excited bout the pear dessert from QVP - I didn't think anyone else in the universe had that book besides me!

  4. I just got The Real Food Daily cookbook because I've read many a rave from you here about the recipes. I'm not 100% vegan, but it is my favorite way to cook and eat. Thanks for your influence!

  5. OMG...that omelet!! I need that now! I keep meaning to make the VB omelet again, as it's my favorite recipe in the book. And that filling looks perfect. I've also been meaning to make that tomato rice soup.

    And the peach tart looks so gourmet! Very Martha!

  6. Holy tofu - everything in this post looks like something I should make RIGHT NOW. The peach pie is brilliant but I want it all.

  7. Where do I begin?
    The use of tomatoes are perfect, I'm loving the cherry tomatoes over the polenta, oh yum!
    I've never thought of making a pear pie.
    the peach tart is too cute!

  8. I LOVE tomatoes! They are one of my top 5 foods. Everything looks delicious. I am so hungry now!!

  9. Anonymous4:35 PM

    Those are such beautiful meals! I love the flowery shape of the peach tart.

  10. Anonymous5:21 PM

    If that is the pear pie you put in one of your early holiday cookbooks, it IS very good and very easy.

    If you have any blackberries left I recommend using them in the bakery-style berry muffins from Vegan Brunch. I used ww pastry flour and I think also added some strawberries.

    :-) jen e.

  11. Can I come over and eat at your house? Everything looks and sounds so tempting!!

  12. Tooo many delicious meals! Tomatoes have been so delicious this season - all your meals look tasty! Your pear pie, frittata, and potato salad also look heavenly!

    FYI Check out for a giveaway for a sampler of Artisana nut butter and coconut products! Thanks.

  13. What a great looking bunch of food! I particularly like the omelet, it sounds amazing with the corn filling. Nice job on the cake too, I think it's cute! I'm usually to nervous to try writing on cakes.

  14. Wow, you have been eating really well! Everything looks so yummy! Can you send some my way? :-)

  15. Can I come over to eat?! I love all the use of the tomatoes here. Especially those little yellow cherry tomatoes, they're gorgeous! I'm actually going to be making the same soup from the Veganomican. I looove it. Especially now that the weather is turning. I must say your pictures of food are way better than mine. Any tips for that?

  16. You free-formed that peach pie perfectly! I love all the tomato dishes and the spicy Indian dishes too. I'm glad you tried the sofregit. I've got to remember to make that again!

  17. My GOD! I am coming to eat with you.


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