Mushroom, Bean and Barley Soup

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When I learned that October 15 is National Mushroom Day, I felt inspired to try a new recipe that features mushrooms. My Vegan Under Pressure cookbook provided a dozen opportunities to create such a recipe. I slightly adapted one of the recipes in that book.

This Mushroom, Bean and Barley Soup is perfect to celebrate the special day. And it is a wholesome, hearty soup for a chilly fall evening. Using the pressure cooker means this soup is ready in minutes.

 

Mushroom Bean and Barley Soup title meme

Mushroom Day

This unique holiday celebrates all mushrooms…Portobello, shiitake, button and truffle. Mushrooms, which are members of the fungi family, are highly nutritious. They are a staple in a plant based diet, due to their high protein and fiber content. Mushrooms also contain B vitamins and a potent antioxidant called selenium, which supports the immune system and prevents damage to cells and tissues. Button mushrooms are an excellent source of vitamin D as well.

Today’s soup includes baby Portobello Mushrooms, along with other vegetables and dried herbs.

Mushrooms and Green Beans
Fresh Portobello Mushrooms and green beans, two of the ingredients in Mushroom, Bean and Barley Soup.

Mushroom, Bean and Barley Soup

Look for baby Portobello Mushrooms. If those are not available, substitute button or cremini mushrooms. Similarly, you can swap out the navy beans for pinto, black or white beans.

Mushroom Bean and Barley Soup

This hearty plant based soup features mushrooms and other vegetables.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Mushroom Bean and Barley, Soup
Servings: 6

Equipment

  • Pressure Cooker

Ingredients

  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 1/2 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1/2 cup portobello mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 can diced tomatoes, in juice
  • 1 cup green beans, chopped may substitute canned green beans
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp herbs de provence
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup dried navy beans
  • 3/4 cup dried pearl barley may substitute instant barley
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom
  • 1 tsp sea salt

Instructions

  • In an uncovered pressure cooker, heat coconut oil on medium-high heat. Add onion and celery and saute for 3 minutes.
  • Add mushrooms, green beans, tomatoes, bay leaf, spices (except for cardamom), vegetable broth, water, navy beans and barley.
  • Lock on lid and bring to pressure. Cook for 22 - 25 minutes. Allow natural release.
  • Remove lid and stir in lemon juice, cardamom and sea salt. Test beans for doneness. If the beans are not quite done, simmer, uncovered, until cooked through. Remove bay leaf before serving. Makes 6 servings.
Ingredients for Mushroom Bean and Barley Soup
Ingredients for Mushroom, Bean and Barley Soup.
Cooking veggies.
The beginning of a wonderful soup.

Enjoying Mushrooms on Mushroom Day

I enjoyed preparing this nutritious soup. As my DIY Vegetable Broth cooked in the pressure pot, I chopped veggies for the soup. As soon as the broth finished, I strained it to use in the recipe.

After washing the pot I popped it back into the cooker, readying it for the ingredients for the Mushroom, Bean and Barley Soup.

I purchased the herbs de provence today, a seasoning I’ve heard of but have never used. It is a combination of basil, fennel, marjoram, parsley and rosemary. You can substitute with a blend of 1/4 teaspoon each of basil, fennel seeds, marjoram and rosemary.

The aroma of the soup filled my home and whetted my appetite.

I was not disappointed! Mushroom, Bean and Barley Soup is a perfect fall or winter dish that warms the body while boosting health. The soup is rich and full of flavor. I appreciated the combination of vegetables and herbs.

I have fresh mushrooms and green beans left over. Another pot of Mushroom, Bean and Barley Soup is in my near future!

Mushroom Bean and Barley Soup

Pick up these pressure cooking items by clicking on links below.

 

 


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Purple Hull Beans and Vegetables

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In a recent post, I mentioned that I looked for hull beans at the farmer’s market, without success. I have a recipe I’m eager to try and hull beans are a late summer crop.

However, on the next visit, I scored! One market vendor offered purple hull beans for sale. I purchased a large container of the beans, excited to create a hearty meal from them.

Purple hull beans and vegetables are another perfect end of the season treat, using fresh produce. For another great recipe, check out Summer Succotash.

Purple Hull Beans and Vegetables Title Meme
Background template created by my blogging friend, Lisa Mitchell.

What are Purple Hull Beans?

These staples of the south are closely related to black eyed peas. They thrive in warm, sunny environments. Other names for this bean are southern peas or cowpeas. Purple hull beans originated in Africa and came to the United States by way of Egypt, Asia and Europe.

The outer pod, or hull, turns a deep purple color as the seeds inside mature. Peel back the hull and snap out the beans, which are a pale green color when fresh. Purple hull beans are considered creamier, smoother in texture and sweeter than black eyed peas.

My cousin, Michael Lauderdale, used to grow purple hull beans in his garden. I loved visiting his farm and dining on a big bowl of freshly prepared beans. My favorite summer meals continue to be simple ones made from garden produce. I couldn’t wait to try my new recipe featuring a mix of purple hull beans and vegetables.

Purple Hull Beans and Vegetables In the Shell
Purple hull beans in the pod.
Purple Hull Beans Shelled
Shelled beans.

Purple Hull Beans and Vegetables

The recipe is adapted from the wonderful book, Vegan Under Pressure. I used garden fresh tomatoes, onions, green bell peppers and hull beans along with canned non GMO corn. The pressure cooker creates a healthy meal in minutes.

Purple Hull Beans and Vegetables
Print Recipe
5 from 3 votes

Purple Hull Beans and Vegetables

Enjoy end of the summer produce with this savory dish.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time5 mins
Total Time20 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Purple Hull Beans and Vegetables

Equipment

  • Pressure Cooker

Ingredients

  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 small bell pepper, diced
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 cups shelled hull beans
  • 1/2 cup vegetable broth
  • 3/4 cup tomato, diced
  • 1 1/2 cups corn, fresh or canned, non GMO

Instructions

  • Heat pressure cooker (I use the meat setting). Saute onion and garlic in small amount of vegetable broth, for 2 minutes. Add bell pepper and continue to stir and cook, for another minute.
  • Add hull beans, vegetable broth and cumin. Lock on lid and bring to pressure. Cook for 5 minutes. Let pressure release naturally. Carefully remove lid.
  • Taste to make sure hull beans are tender. If not, cover and return to pressure and cook for 1 - 3 minutes more. Carefully remove lid.
  • Stir in diced tomatoes and corn. Simmer in open pressure cooker for 5 minutes, until tomatoes begin to break down. Or replace lid and allow to sit for 5 minutes. Makes 4 servings.
Purple Hull Beans and Vegetables Before Cooking
Purple Hull Beans and Vegetables before cooking…
After cooking purple hull beans
…and after.

Savoring an End of Summer Meal

This pot of purple hull beans and vegetables completely satisfied my craving for a hearty end of the season meal. The combination of beans and vegetables was perfect. I used my own DIY Broth from Vegetable Scraps for the stock. And the cumin lent a hint of spice to the mix.

Greg and I enjoyed a steaming bowl of this delicious meal, without adding anything else. However, purple hull beans and vegetables are excellent as well served over brown rice, quinoa or a plain baked potato.

I’ll be looking for more hull beans on my next trip to the farmer’s market. This is a meal I can enjoy well into fall, as long as the beans are available.

Purple Hull Beans and Vegetables
A bowl of summer goodness.

Pick up a copy of Vegan Under Pressure and get your own Pressure Pot. They are so handy to have in the kitchen.

 

 

 


 

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Summer Succotash

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my Disclosure Policy for details.

As summer winds down and fall approaches, gardens offer their final harvests. It’s the perfect time to enjoy the bounty with meals created with fresh produce.

I browsed through cookbooks today, looking for something new, something different to try, that incorporates end of the season vegetables. The one that appealed to me the most is a simple, wholesome recipe that is quickly prepared in the pressure cooker. This summer succotash features fresh foods such as onions, tomatoes, corn and okra.

Summer Succotash Title Meme

Creating a Summer Succotash

Succotash is an American culinary dish consisting of sweet corn and lima beans or other shell beans. Other ingredients include tomatoes, green bell peppers and okra. When served with a grain, such as brown rice or quinoa, succotash is high in all the essential amino acids that the body requires.

Fresh shell beans are removed from a pod and eaten. There are many varieties. The most common shell beans are lima, fava, borlotti and chickpeas. I’ve also seen what’s called purple hull beans in my area of the Midwest. However, a search at the farmer’s market and local grocery stores didn’t yield any shell beans. No worries. The original recipe didn’t include them. I scratched them off my list.

Summer Succotash Fresh Produce

Creating a Summer Succotash

At the local farmer’s market I did find plenty of tomatoes (my plants at home are just about done for the season) and containers of fresh okra. People either love okra or they don’t! I’m in the love category.

This flowering plant in the mallow family produces bright green pods that are edible. Known to many as a food to pickle or to cover in corn meal and fry, okra also does well lightly sauteed with other veggies and as an ingredient in soups and stews.

Okra is a great source of fiber. It’s also high in vitamins A, B6, C and K and minerals such as potassium, magnesium and calcium.

Summer Succotash Mix

Summer Succotash in the Pressure Cooker

Summer Succotash Recipe

Use fresh produce for this easy summer succotash. Because I only eat non GMO corn, I purchased a can labeled such, rather than use fresh corn on the cob. This recipe came from my Vegan Under Pressure Cookbook.

Summer Succotash

Enjoy late summer produce with this quick and easy succotash.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time2 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Succotash, Summer Succotash
Servings: 4

Equipment

  • Pressure Cooker

Ingredients

  • 1 cup yellow onion, diced
  • 1 cup fresh okra, sliced
  • 1 large ear of sweet corn, kernels removed about 1 1/2 cups (may use 1 can non GMO corn)
  • 1/4 cup vegetable broth
  • 2 cups ripe tomatoes, diced
  • salt & pepper to taste

Instructions

  • With the top removed, heat pressure cooker and saute onion in small amount of vegetable stock or coconut oil.
  • When onions are translucent, add okra. Stir and cook for 30 seconds.
  • Add corn and vegetable broth. Stir. Lay diced tomatoes on top of other veggies. Do not stir.
  • Lock on lid of pressure cooker. Cook on steamer setting for 2 minutes. Quick release the pressure. Remove lid, stir and serve over grain such as brown rice or quinoa. Season to taste with sea salt and pepper.

Delicious Summer Meal

Because of the pressure cooker, this recipe came together so fast, I barely had time to reheat the brown rice I’d already prepared! I love a quick and healthy homecooked meal when I come in late after a long day. This one is perfect.

And I used my vegetable broth made from scraps in this recipe as well. I’m loving the convenience of this simple and flavorful broth. You can find the recipe HERE. I made a fresh batch of vegetable broth this afternoon and used some of it for the summer succotash.

This meal is light and yet filling. The fresh flavors of late summer shine through. Add smoked paprika or a small amount of chopped pepper, to spice it up. Or garnish with favorite fresh herbs. Until the frost comes and officially ends the growing season, summer succotash goes into my meal rotation!

Summer Succotash Meal

 

Order Vegan Under Pressure by clicking link above or clicking on the photo below.

 

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DIY Broth from Vegetable Scraps

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Have you ever thought about making your own vegetable broth?

I’ve thought about it. However, I’ve never been inspired enough to do so. All that chopping of veggies deterred me. For convenience, I’ve purchased organic vegetable stock.

Last week I came across a simple and amazing recipe for DIY broth from vegetable scraps. Inspiration struck! Because I make juices and eat a plant based diet, I have lots of vegetable scraps. Those go into the trash or into a compost canister…and often then into the trash as I don’t have a dedicated compost pile.

What if I used the veggie leftovers to create broth? I can, I discovered. And the best part? Because these are the scraps, they are already in small pieces. No additional chopping required. Second best part? I used my pressure cooker to create a perfect batch of broth in 30 minutes.

DIY Broth from Vegetable Scraps Title Meme

What Scraps to Use

Throughout the week, as you prep meals, place vegetable scraps in a gallon size container and store in the freezer. When the container is full, it’s time to make broth.

These vegetables are perfect for broth making:

  •  red and yellow onion pieces and skins
  •  garlic pieces and skins
  •  celery ends and tips – avoid using many leaves as they can be bitter
  •  carrot ends and tips
  •  tomatoes pieces
  •  asparagus stems
  •  bell pepper ends, stems and seeds
  •  mushroom stems and pieces
  •  spinach
  •  zucchini pieces and ends

Don’t use starchy vegetables such as potatoes and sweet potatoes. They cloud the broth. Also avoid cruciferous veggies such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale and Brussels sprouts because of bitterness.

DIY Broth from Vegetable Scraps
Thawed and rinsed veggie scraps ready to cook. I added additional fresh tomatoes from my garden.

DIY Broth from Vegetable Scraps

Vegetable broth may be used for soup and stew starters, to cook rice and pasta in, to saute vegetables in or to replace water for cooking vegetables.

Print Recipe
5 from 2 votes

DIY Broth from Vegetable Scraps

Make your own delicious and nutritious broth from leftover vegetable scraps.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: DIY Broth from Vegetable Scraps
Servings: 8 cups

Equipment

  • Pressure Cooker

Ingredients

  • 1 gallon container vegetable scraps, frozen
  • 8 cups water
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp dried rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil

Instructions

  • Thaw, at least partially, gallon container of frozen vegetable scraps. Rinse veggies.
  • Place vegetable scraps in pressure cooker.
  • Add water, bay leaves, sea salt and dried herbs.
  • Cover cooker and bring to pressure. Cook for 30 minutes. Allow natural release.
  • Carefully remove lid. Strain broth through fine mesh strainer or through cheesecloth. Store in covered container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Or freeze and keep for 3 - 6 months.
DIY Broth from Vegetable Scraps Ready to cook
Veggie scraps in the pressure cooker with herbs. I added two chopped carrots to the scraps.
Cooked vegetable scraps.
Cooked vegetable scraps. It isn’t beautiful, however, doesn’t it look yummy?
Draining veggie scrapsl
I used cheesecloth inside a colander to strain the broth.

The Finished DIY Broth from Vegetable Scraps

The broth smelled wonderful as it cooked. Smell is an important sense for me when I’m cooking, as it is for many. When something “smells right”, that’s a good indicator. The broth smelled very right.

After allowing the pressure cooker to release steam naturally, meaning I didn’t turn the knob on top to release it manually, I lifted the lid and peeked inside.

What began as a mess of scraps transformed into a rich and savory looking broth. In the sink the cheesecloth draped colander rested over a glass bowl. I carefully poured the contents of the cooker into the colander and allowed it to drain completely.

The broth is excellent. I sampled a spoonful, to make sure the flavor is up to par. It is! In fact, it tastes much better than what I purchase.

I LOVE that I have a use for all my leftover vegetable scraps. It makes me feel so good to know I am not wasting those bits and pieces. Rather, I am turning waste into something that I can use. And, I know exactly what’s in my broth: veggies, water, herbs, sea salt. Nothing more.

Tomorrow night I’ll prepare Lentils and Brown Rice in my pressure cooker, using one of my containers of DIY Broth from Vegetable Scraps. And I’m already collecting veggie scraps for my next batch of broth. I feel ridiculously excited!

DIY Broth from Vegetable Scraps Finished
The recipe made three containers of broth, about 3 cups each.

 

Pick up Vegan Pressure Cooking, the book that inspired the DIY Broth from Vegetable Scraps.

And grab a Pressure Cooker by clicking on the photo below:

 

 

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Navy Beans, Brown Rice & Kale

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When I have the itch to try a new recipe, on a hot and muggy day, I turn to my pressure pot. Not only is my meal ready in minutes, the kitchen stays cool. I thumbed through one of my vegan pressure cooker books for inspiration. The one that caught my interest, Navy Beans, Brown Rice & Kale, was easily adapted to meet my dietary needs. I also had most of the ingredients on hand.

Navy Beans Brown Rice & Kale Title Meme

Navy Beans, Brown Rice & Kale

I chose this recipe because I love the combination of beans and rice. Throw in some greens…kale in this case…and some onion, garlic and seasonings and it’s the perfect quick meal for me.

After an afternoon busy with real estate, it was a joy to come home and prepare a fast and nutritious meal in the pressure cooker.

Navy Beans, Brown Rice & Kale

This delicious recipe comes together quickly in the pressure cooker.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Navy Beans Brown Rice Kale

Equipment

  • Pressure Cooker

Ingredients

  • 1 cup dried navy beans
  • 1/2 cup uncooked brown rice
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 cups chopped kale, loosely packed
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 3 cups vegetable broth or water
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp sea salt

Instructions

  • Rinse and drain navy beans
  • In uncovered pressure cooker, heat coconut oil. I set the pressure cooker to the "fish" setting to saute. Saute onion and garlic for 3 minutes, until onion softens. Cancel setting,
  • Add navy beans, brown rice, kale, bay leaf, thyme and vegetable broth. Stir and cover. Cook for 25. Allow for a natural release.
  • Carefully remove lid. Discard bay leaf. Add lemon juice and sea salt. Makes four servings.
  • *Collard greens or spinach may be substituted for kale, if desired. Water may be substituted for vegetable broth.
Navy Bean Brown Rice & Kale
The start of something good. Remove stems from kale and tear leaves into bite sized pieces.
Onions in Pressure Cooker
Onions and garlic in pressure cooker.

The Start of Something Good

As I tidied up the kitchen, the tantalizing aroma of dinner cooking filled the room. If the navy beans, brown rice & kale tasted as good as it smelled, I’d count this recipe a success.

I didn’t have to wait long to find out! Twenty five minutes later, the timer went off. I allowed the steam to release naturally, which means I didn’t turn the knob on top of the pressure cooker to manually release the steam. Instead, I let it seep out, which took another 10 minutes or so.

At last I carefully lifted the lid. After removing the bay leaf, I added freshly squeezed lemon juice and a teaspoon of sea salt.

Into the pressure cooker
Into the pressure pot.

Navy Beans, Brown Rice & Kale Taste Test

After ladling up a bowl of this quick and hearty meal, and taking a photo of course, I sampled a spoonful.

This easy to prepare meal was SO GOOD! The flavors of the beans, rice and kale blended perfectly. And the thyme and bay leaf added just the right amount of seasoning.

I carried my steaming bowl into the living room and savored my meal, sitting in my favorite chair. I’ll definitely be making this recipe often. As summer gives way to the cooler temps of fall, navy beans, brown rice & kale will go into my meal rotation, to be enjoyed often.

Navy Beans Brown Rice & Kale

Check out this pressure cooker recipe as well:

Lentils & Brown Rice

Order one of these plant based pressure pot cookbooks!

 

Plant Based in Edinburgh

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As one who eats a plant based diet, it is crucial for me to adhere to that lifestyle when I travel. For me there’s no eating whatever I want while on vacation or exploring another country. The consequences are almost immediate and dire, if I stray.

I’m okay with following healthy practices away from home. I know my body thanks me for not throwing it off balance and I thrive, no matter where I am. Therefore, I am fine being plant based in Edinburgh…or any other city in the world.

Perhaps you have not adopted a plant based lifestyle…yet…however there are simple health practices that can help you feel your very best while you travel.

Plant Based in Edinburgh Title Meme

Health Tips for Traveling

These are health practices that my sister Debbie and I observed, during our 11 day stay in Edinburgh, to ensure the greatest level of health. Why is that important? To enjoy ourselves the most, it’s important to feel our best. We walked…a lot. We stayed busy throughout the day with explorations, tours and family gatherings. Energy and stamina were crucial.

It was our great joy to be in Scotland. The last thing I wanted was the distraction of not feeling well.

Request Special-Diet Meals

I discovered on my last international trip that vegan and gluten free meals can be requested on flights, as long as they are made prior to the travel dates. My travel agent Ken, with GalaxSea Cruises & Tours, listed our meal preferences when he booked our flights. On our long travel days, going to Scotland and returning home, our primary meals were in airports and on board airplanes. We ate simple vegan snacks like fruit or veggie sushi in the airports and enjoyed plant based meals on the plane.

For six days, Debbie and I explored Edinburgh on our own. The remaining five we joined family members from around the world for the Clan Maitland Gathering. Carolyn, our North American clan officer, arranged all of the meals that we shared as a family. She contacted the restaurants and made sure they prepared vegan meals for us. My food was gluten free as well. From tea houses to cafés to formal restaurants to lunch at Thirlestane Castle, I enjoyed wonderfully prepared meals that supported my health, rather than weakened my body.

Tip: Don’t be afraid to make your dietary needs known. My experience is that the cooks and chefs go above and beyond to prepare healthy and delicious meals that meet those needs. They seem to take great pride in presenting those carefully prepared dishes and appreciate hearing that they are wonderful.

Plant Based Meal at New ClubBeautifully prepared plant based meal at New Club in Edinburgh, with gluten free bread.

Stay Hydrated

Traveling makes one thirsty, especially when flying for an extended time. I discovered that it is permissible to carry an empty metal water bottle through airport security. Once through security we filled our bottles and carried them onto the plane.

In Edinburgh, we took those water bottles everywhere. It saved us money, since we didn’t have to purchase bottled water, and it cut our plastic use to virtually zero. And we could easily refill the bottles throughout the day, to help us stay hydrated. Choose foods that help to hydrate the body too.

Tip: Consider carrying a metal or glass water bottle and refilling as needed, to stay hydrated.


Click on photo to order a metal water bottle.

Prepare and Cook Your Own Food

Being plant based in Edinburgh, for us, meant purchasing, preparing and cooking many of our own meals. We chose to stay in an apartment in the New Town part of Edinburgh so that we could have a full kitchen. It was very easy to shop for fresh fruit and veggies, hummus, gluten free pasta and no sugar pasta sauce and prepare our own simple meals, when not dining with family. I cooked and my sister cleaned up!

Tip: Consider staying in an apartment or a room with a mini kitchen, and prepare many of your own meals. You’ll know what you are eating.

Plant Based in Edinburgh CookingPreparing a simple meal of boiled new potatoes and stir fried veggies.

Make Healthy Choices

The few times that we ate in a restaurant, on our own, we made healthy choices. I love how easy it is to be plant based in Edinburgh. They have many vegan cafés to choose from and regular restaurants offer plant based options. We found a vegan and gluten free bakery just down the street and a vegan café across from the apartment we stayed in.

I researched vegan restaurants in Edinburgh before the trip. As a blogger, I offered several a blog post and social media shares, in exchange for a healthy meal or afternoon tea. I’m grateful to these restaurants:

Beetroot Sauvage Café – Vegan Afternoon Tea

Seeds for the Soul Café – Plant Based Lunch

Naked Bakery – Vegan and Gluten Free Goodies to take back to the apartment

We also enjoyed plant based meals at The Elephant House and Henderson’s Vegan Restaurant.

Tip: Before a trip, Google restaurants and cafés that meet your dietary needs. If you happen upon a delightful eatery, while wandering around, make wise choices that support your health.

Seeds for the Soul Cafe An amazing lunch from Seeds for the Soul.

Pack Supplements and Meds

If you take supplements and prescription meds at home, by all means pack those for the trip. Prescriptions needs to be in bottles with your name and your doctor’s name on them. I carry vitamin B12, Cat’s Claw and MSM with me when I travel, in their original bottles. Most of the time you can carry supplements through security in the plastic daily pill sorters as well.

For this trip, Voke Superfood Supplements sent two boxes of tablets with us to try. These all natural supplements overcome jet lag quickly, support the body and boost energy. We started them as soon as we arrived in Edinburgh and found them to be very helpful.

Tip: Travel with any necessary prescription meds and include supplements that are most crucial to your well being.

Voke Superfood Supplements

Listen to Your Body

I’ve learned to pay close attention to my body’s needs. When traveling, with changed schedules, more activities and different time zones, this becomes very important.

Stretch legs and walk back to the rest room frequently, on the airplane. (If you are staying hydrated, this will be a necessity!) Do yoga poses in the hotel room or apartment. Rest when you are tired. Get enough sleep. We retired earlier than we normally do at home, most evenings, to ensure we were well rested each morning. And we gladly observed the practice of afternoon tea, which provided a welcome break in our busy days.

We walked all over Edinburgh. Proper fitting shoes prevent blisters and sore feet. Pay attention to weather through online apps and pack accordingly to stay cool enough or warm enough. Don’t go too long without a healthy snack or a light meal. The body needs the fuel to keep energy levels up all day. My sister brought along packets of nuts and seeds, which were great for toting.

Tip: Listen to what your body tells you. Stretch. Rest. Eat. Pause. Take a break. Wear comfortable supportive shoes if you are walking or hiking. Begin checking a weather app a couple of weeks before the trip, to get an idea of temperatures and weather conditions, and pack accordingly.

Walking in EdinburghWe climbed to the top of Calton Hill in Edinburgh, twice!

Enjoy Your Travels

The whole point of following health practices while away from home is so that I can focus on enjoying myself, rather than battling an upset stomach or a flare up of inflammation due to eating foods I shouldn’t. I know what my body needs, to operate at a high level of health and wellness, and I’m happy to support it.

It’s not worth it to me, to abandon a plant based diet and suffer the consequences while I’m traveling. Rather, I’ve found that I do so much better if I eat in a healthy way and listen, really listen, to the feedback I’m continually receiving from my body.

I know I can drink a Thistly Cross hard cider in Scotland, and be okay. And I enjoyed one. I also know that if I indulge in gluten laden foods or allow dairy or meat products into my diet that I will pay a price for that, one I’m not willing to pay.

Tip: Learn what foods best support your body and adhere to that lifestyle, even when traveling. As I often say, NOTHING tastes as good as healthy feels. And when I’m traveling, that is especially so. Nothing taste as good as exploring a country or a city feels to me.

Plant based in Edinburgh? Oh yes, gladly so. And I’ll be plant based anywhere else that I go.

Plant Based in EdinburghPlant based in Edinburgh.

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Vegan and Gluten Free Goulash

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It’s known by many names, this easy to make dish. Some call it beefy macaroni or macaroni dish. Others call it hash or just stew. My mom calls it one pot meal. I call it goulash. My kids grew up eating it.

The actual name of this tasty meal is Hungarian goulash. Originating in Hungary, goulash is a meat and vegetable stew, seasoned with paprika. Although it is now eaten around the world, it is one of Hungary’s national dishes and symbolic of that country.

Traditionally, goulash is prepared with tender chunks of beef or for a quicker version, ground beef. I haven’t eaten goulash since shifting to a plant based lifestyle. However, with leftover brown rice macaroni in the fridge, this evening presented the perfect opportunity to cook up a pot of vegan and gluten free goulash.

Vegan and Gluten Free Goulash

Vegan and Gluten Free Goulash

I not only avoid meat, dairy and eggs, I also don’t eat foods with gluten in them. Pasta doesn’t have to be off the menu however. Gluten free pastas are readily available. Look for them in the gluten free section of regular supermarkets and health conscious food stores as well. My favorite product is a brown rice pasta available as macaroni, spaghetti and other pasta favorites. It cooks just like regular pasta and looks and tastes the same. It just doesn’t have the gluten in it.

Vegan and Gluten Free Goulash
Print Recipe
5 from 6 votes

Vegan and Gluten Free Goulash

This tasty goulash recipe has all the flavor without the meat and wheat pasta.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time20 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Vegan and Gluten Free Goulash
Author: journeywithhealthyme
Cost: $2/person

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp coconut oil (Optional) May water saute instead.
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 can red beans
  • 2 cups gluten free macaroni, cooked
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper

Instructions

  • Add one cup dried gluten free macaroni to pan of boiling water. Allow to cook while prepping veggies. Need two cups cooked macaroni.
  • Heat coconut oil over medium high heat in large skillet. Or add small amount of water to water saute. Add onions, garlic and green bell pepper, cooking and stirring until onions are translucent, about 5 minutes.
  • Add diced tomatoes. Heat through. Stir in red beans, paprika, sea salt and pepper. Continue cooking and stirring, until beans are heated through.
  • Drain gluten free macaroni and add to bean and tomato mixture. Mix well and allow to simmer for a few minutes. Serves 4.

Vegan and Gluten Free Goulash

Vegan and Gluten Free Goulash

Vegan and Gluten Free Goulash

The Taste Test

So, how is goulash, without the beef?

I didn’t miss the meat at all. The vegan and gluten free goulash was full of the robust flavor of veggies and pasta in a rich tomato sauce. The paprika gave a hint of spiciness without overpowering the vegetables. I loved it.

The beauty of this recipe is its versatility. A pinch of cayenne pepper ups the heat level. Or lean toward Italian spices like oregano and basil. Thyme and rosemary bring their own unique flavors to the mix.

On a whim, I added a can of red beans to my goulash, as a protein source. Mushrooms make a flavorful addition as well, or add carrots. I like using what I have on hand, which was, after all, the inspiration for creating goulash tonight. Leftover pasta should never go to waste!

This satisfying and delicious vegan and gluten free goulash goes into my menu rotation. I’ll enjoy playing around with the ingredients!

Vegan and Gluten Free Goulash

You might like these vegan recipes too:

Vegan Stuffed Peppers

Vegan Black Bean & Corn Salsa

Lentil Shepherd’s Pie

Find gluten free pasta by clicking on photos below:



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Steamed Apple Dessert

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Since completed the liver cleanse, as detailed in the book, Liver Rescue, one of my ongoing goals is to eat three apples a day. I’ve mostly enjoyed a sliced apple or two with afternoon tea and another one as an after dinner snack. Occasionally I combine apples with other fruits or veggies to create a freshly prepared blended juice.

This evening I came up with another way to meet my apple quota, using the pressure pot. Simple, nutritious and delicious, the steamed apple dessert was a perfect after dinner treat.

Steamed Apple Dessert

Steamed Apple Dessert

Steamed Apple Dessert
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Steamed Apple Dessert

Easy to prepared steamed apple dessert, sugar and gluten free.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time5 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Steamed Apple Dessert
Servings: 2
Author: journeywithhealthyme

Ingredients

  • 4 apples
  • 1/2 cup organic maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp raisins optional
  • 2 tbsp walnuts optional

Instructions

  • Wash, core and slice apples, leaving the peeling on. Place sliced apples in a large bowl.
  • In a small bowl, combine organic maple syrup and cinnamon.
  • Pour maple syrup mixture over sliced apple, mixing to coat.
  • Add 1/2 water to bottom of pressure pot. Arrange apple slices on steamer rack.
  • Cover pressure pot and lock lid into place. Select steamer option. Steam for 5 minutes. Release steam manually.
  • Serve steamed apple slices with organic raisins and walnuts if desired.

Steamed Apple Dessert

Simple Goodness

The steamed apple dessert took less than 10 minutes to prepare. Warm and fragrant, the apples tasted like the filling in apple pie, but without the sugar.

I added a spoonful of organic raisins and a few walnuts. What a great after dinner treat. These steamed apples could top banana ice cream or gluten free oatmeal as well.

Apples, red skinned apples especially, provide powerful benefits. They play a crucial role in fighting inflammation of all kinds. Apples calm the systems of the body by reducing viral and bacterial loads that contribute to inflammation. In addition, the phytochemicals in apples feed the neurons of the brain and increase electrical activity. That makes them brain food! Apples also cleanse the liver and help to dissolve gallstones.

I am determined to do more than eat an apple a day, to keep the doctor away. If one is good for my health, three are even better. To that end, I’ll be enjoying steamed apple dessert frequently, as a lovely and tasty tribute to all the goodness in this amazing fruit.

Steamed Apple Dessert

You can purchase a pressure pot, also called an instant pot, by clicking on the photo below.

 

 

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Gluten & Oil Free Blueberry Mini Bites

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my Disclosure Policy for details.

Preparing a simple meal this evening, in the pressure pot, I considered ideas for an equally simple after dinner treat. I remembered a recipe for mini blueberry muffins in Liver Rescue by Anthony William.

Created without gluten, oil, refined sugar or eggs, these bite sized snacks seemed perfect! Best of all, I had time to prep the blueberry mini bites and pop them in the oven while dinner cooked without my aid.

Gluten & Oil Free Blueberry Mini Bites

Gluten & Oil Free Blueberry Mini Bites

Scanning the recipe, I saw that I had all the ingredients on hand. At least, what I had on hand would work. One of the things I love about recipes is that they can typically hold up to minor adaptations.

I had black chia seeds rather than white ones. I’m out of organic maple syrup, however my raw organic honey container is almost full. And my muffin tin is small, but not a mini size. Game on!

Gluten & Oil Free Blueberry Mini Bites
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Gluten & Oil Free Blueberry Mini Bites

An easy to make healthy treat. Gluten, oil, refined sugar and egg free.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time30 mins
Servings: 12 Mini Muffins

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup chia seeds regular or white
  • 1 cup mashed banana approx 2 bananas
  • 1/2 cup gluten free oat flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda aluminum free
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup may use raw organic honey
  • 1 tbs lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup frozen wild blueberries

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 375F.
    Place chia seeds in blender and blend on high until finely ground.
  • Add mashed bananas, oat flour, baking soda, sea salt, maple syrup and lemon juice to blender and blend until smooth batter forms.
  • Pour batter into a bowl and add frozen wild blueberries. Mix gently.
  • Line a mini muffin pan with 16 mini parchment baking cups and fill each one with a heaping tablespoon of batter.
  • Bake for 20 minutes, until muffins turn golden brown and inserted toothpick comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow muffins to cool completely before eating. Muffins continue to firm up as they cool.

Notes

If you don't have mini parchment baking cups, lightly grease muffin tin with coconut oil.

Gluten & Oil Free Blueberry Mini Bites

Gluten & Oil Free Blueberry Mini BitesUse wild blueberries, if possible, as the health benefits are greater. I purchase them in the frozen foods section.

Improvise as Necessary

As you can see, in the photo above, I also lacked mini parchment baking cups. No worries! I very lightly greased the muffin tin with coconut oil.

Since I didn’t have a mini muffin tin, I filled 12 compartments with heaping tablespoons of batter, rather than 16. I’m calling the results mini bites. However, the treat was excellent in taste and texture. Slightly sweet, these blueberry mini bites pair well with a cup of hot mint tea.

I so appreciate that Anthony William continually offers new recipes along with his wisdom about health and fighting disease. It may seem like a small thing, preparing these decadent little high nutrient desserts. However, it means a great deal to me. Discovering I can create a wide variety of meals, dishes and treats completely shifted my perspective of what it meant to live a plant based lifestyle.

My food fuels my health. I eat well. And I love every bite.

Gluten & Oil Free Blueberry Mini Bites

 

 

 

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Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my Disclosure Policy for details.

I practice the refreshing tradition of afternoon tea. Typically, sweet treats, finger sandwiches and scones accompany hot cups of herbal tea. Embracing a plant based lifestyle necessitated a change in my customary tea time. No more sweets or finger sandwiches. Gluten free, dairy free scones serve as yummy treats occasionally. Or simple fresh fruits and veggies make a great mid afternoon snack.

I love, however, coming across healthy alternatives to replace the sweet treats. Author Anthony William offers a wide range of recipes, along with an abundance of life changing health info and tips. Recently he posted an oatmeal raisin cookie recipe that I’ve been excited to try.

I was not disappointed!

Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

This easy to prepare recipe features gluten free oat flour and rolled oats. Check the packages, to make sure the oats are not processed in a plant along with wheat flour. Oats are naturally gluten free but can become contaminated if wheat is processed in the same facility.

The recipe is gluten, dairy, egg and refined sugar free.

I purchase oat flour, rolled oats, coconut sugar and organic raisins in bulk, finding that’s better, cost wise. Any health-minded grocery store carries such items in bulk.

Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
Print Recipe
5 from 4 votes

Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

This delicious treat is gluten, dairy, egg and refined sugar free.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time20 mins
Course: Dessert
Servings: 24 cookies
Author: Anthony William

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp ground golden flax seeds
  • 6 tbsp water
  • 1 1/2 cups gluten free rolled oats
  • 1 cup gluten free oat flour
  • 2 tbsp coconut sugar
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder aluminum free
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 cup coconut or avocado oil
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup organic raisins

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350F. Line 2 cookie sheets with parchment paper. Mix together ground flax seeds and water and set aside for 15 minutes, creating a flax egg.
  • Combine oats, oat flour, coconut sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and sea salt in a bow. Mix well.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together coconut or avocado oil, maple syrup, vanilla and flax egg. Add to dry ingredients, stirring until uniform dough forms. Add raisins.
  • Using spoon or cookie scoop, drop dough by spoonful onto parchment paper. Flatten into circles with a fork. Bake for 8 -10 minutes, until slightly browned. Remove from oven and cool. Makes approximately 24 cookies.

Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Perfect Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Mixing up this batch of cookies transported me back to my childhood. Standing beside my mom or grandmother, I’d help make cookies. One whiff of the fragrant cinnamon and I became that child again.

Of course, I sampled a bite of dough. Since it’s egg free, the dough can be eaten without concern. It tasted so good!

My kitchen filled with the scent of baking cookies as I cleaned up. Waiting for those cookies to cool required an exit from the room!

It was worth the wait. I settled into my favorite chair, with a cup of hot peppermint tea, and a small plate of vegan oatmeal raisin cookies.

The cookies are marvelous…soft, chewy, rich in flavor and not too sweet. They are, indeed, perfect oatmeal raisin cookies, and a wonderful addition to afternoon tea time. I keep all the ingredients on hand, making this a quick and easy recipe to prepare.

I look forward to making these delightfully healthy cookies a couple of times a month.

Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Other Afternoon Tea Time Treats

Looking for other tea time treats or healthy after dinner desserts? Try these:

Vegan Snickerdoodle Cookies

Gluten Free Wild Blueberry Scones

Wild Blueberry Banana Bread

 

Check out my Amazon Storefront to purchase Anthony’s books and to pre-order his new book, Medical Medium Celery Juice: The Most Powerful Medicine of Our Time Healing Millions Worldwide.

 

Journey With Healthy Me is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. This affiliate program is designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com, all at no extra cost to you.