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The Best Brothy White Beans

These are the best brothy white beans! Turn a pound of dry white beans into a tender, savory, all-purpose vegan protein. This is a one-pot recipe that's versatile, simple to make, and freezer-friendly.

Two matching, white bowls are filled with beans, broth, and torn pieces of fresh bread.

I've spent the last week trying to work up the energy to make something a little special in the kitchen. I was hoping to redeem some of my recent kitchen trials and tribulations and feel inspired about cooking again.

But is anyone really inspired with cooking lately? I'm sure the answer is yes, but I keep having conversation after conversation with people who are as tired of cooking as I am. It's the pandemic, the monotony, the cold, the fatigue. I think most of us are craving food as comfort, but actually making that food feels onerous.

It would have been tempting to cook nothing at all, and that would have been OK. There are times when dinner toast and frozen foods make the most sense. But I knew it would feel good to stock my freezer with something, anything homemade.

These brothy white beans are the thing that I was able to make. A one-pot recipe that results in many portions of tender, plump beans swimming in a rich, savory broth.

You can serve the brothy white beans in so many ways once you make them. And you'll definitely have plenty to stock your freezer with.

What are brothy beans?

Brothy beans are just what they sound like: a big pot of beans that has been simmered in broth, rather than water.

The broth thickens as the beans cook, which gives it a concentrated savory flavor by the time the beans are ready. Thanks to some olive oil, it also develops a rich, luxurious quality—you'll see what I mean!

Dry vs cooked beans in cooking

The brothy white bean recipe calls for 1 pound of dry white beans. The beans can be cannellini, Great Northern, or navy beans.

A confession: I usually cook with, and use, canned beans at home. I've gone through phases of always soaking and cooking beans from scratch. But I become really forgetful about it, and I usually end up using canned beans from my pantry in spite of my best laid plans.

I don't usually find that cooking beans from scratch is so much better than using canned from a taste and texture perspective. I know that it's a minority opinion, but canned beans can be seasoned through cooking, and I like the fact that there are so many low-sodium varieties available now.

All of this said, I love the economy of cooking a pound of beans from scratch! So many meals can be created from a single, inexpensive plant-protein. And when I do cook my beans from scratch, as with these brothy white beans, I always feel a sense of accomplishment. Especially as I load container after container of cooked beans into my freezer for later use.

Do I need to pre-soak my beans for this recipe?

Yes, the recipe calls for white beans that have been pre-soaked.

There are two ways of soaking dry beans before cooking: a quick soak and an overnight soak method. Overnight soaking just means covering the beans you plan to cook in a few inches of water and allowing them to sit overnight.

Quick soaking involves bringing your beans to a rolling boil for a minute, removing them from heat, and then allowing them to sit for one hour before rinsing and using them in your recipe.

You can use either the overnight or the quick soak method for the brothy white beans recipe. I usually find it easiest to soak overnight. If I wake up in the morning and want to cook with beans, but I know that I'll need to reserve an hour for quick soaking, I usually opt for the shortcut of canned beans instead.

Two ceramic bowls have each been filled with a cooked batch of legumes. Brothy white beans ingredients

This is a simple recipe. To make it, you'll need:

Olive oil

The brothy white beans recipe calls for four tablespoons olive oil. It's not a lot when you take into consideration that you'll have at least eight servings of beans.

But the olive oil is hard-working, and it goes a long way. It's responsible for the silky richness of the broth component in this recipe. I think that broth is what makes the beans so delightful over toast!

You can use your favorite olive oil for cooking in the recipe.

Onion and garlic

Alliums help to make the recipe more flavorful. I usually use two onions in my pot of beans, but if I happen to be working with a giant onion, I'll use only one.

Dry beans

As I mentioned, you can use cannellini, Great Northern, or navy beans in the recipe. Cannellini is my preference, but I've prepared each one of them this way, and they all work nicely.

I haven't yet tested this recipe with chickpeas, but I think it would work well, maybe with a slightly altered cooking time. I already know that I love braising cranberry beans, and they would also be a good bean to use here.


You can use either vegetable broth or a vegan "no-chicken" style broth for the recipe. You can use either a low-sodium version, which you'll season more aggressively, or a regular version. Either is OK! Just adjust the salt to taste.

I use vegan bouillon, broth base, or Yondu interchangeably with broth in a lot of recipes. But for this particular recipe, I do recommend using broth itself.

If you happen to make your own vegetable broth, so much the better! It's another one of those food prep things that I just cant make a habit of. But I always feel impressed when I see homemade stock in another person's fridge 🙂


I like to season the beans with some bay leaves, thyme, and rosemary. I tie the thyme and rosemary together with twine to make a tiny, rustic bouquet garni. I like that little thyme leaves are released into the broth during cooking, so I don't wrap my bouquet in cheesecloth.

If you don't have any string to tie your bouquet with, you can just add fresh, roughly chopped herbs to the broth instead. I like the ease of using whole sprigs and just tying them together.

Two small serving plates hold toast that has been covered in braised, brothy white beans. A sprig of thyme rests on a nearby surface. Ten ways to serve brothy white beans

The brothy white beans couldn't be a better investment from a meal prep standpoint. Once you make them, you can use them in so many different ways. Here are ten of my favorites:

  • Serve the beans on toast (of course!)
  • Throw the beans into a pasta dish
  • Use the beans as a quick lunch bowl component
  • Use the beans in a whole wrap, along with some lightly dressed greens
  • Stir the beans together with a sheet pan of roasted winter vegetables and serve everything over a cooked grain or couscous (a nutritious plant-based meal!)
  • Mix them with cooked rice and a few tablespoons of pesto (or a big handful of chopped herbs) for a Mediterranean-inspired rice and bean dish
  • Lightly smash the beans and use them as a sandwich filling
  • Top a vegan pizza or flatbread with the beans—an easy way to give pizza night a boost of plant-protein
  • Quickly sauté with some cooked gnocchi and greens for a delicious, satisfying supper
  • Use them to add extra protein, fiber, and substance to a pureed vegetable soup

These are just my favorite uses. I'm sure that you'll be able to think of your own!

How long can I store the beans?

You can store the broth white beans in an airtight container in the fridge for up to four days. If you need to store longer, I recommend freezing options, below!

Can the brothy white beans be frozen?

Most definitely. Because I meal prep for one person, I always freeze about half of the beans once they've been prepared. You could freeze them in a single, large container, or you could freeze in smaller portions (Stasher bags are great for this).

The brothy white beans will keep for up to six weeks in the freezer. I love remembering that I have one or a few servings of the beans available to defrost—such a nice alternative to scratching my head about what the next meal will be.

Two white ceramic bowls are filled with brothy white beans, olive oil, and small pieces of bread. Two matching, white bowls are filled with beans, broth, and torn pieces of fresh bread. Print Best Brothy White Beans These are the best brothy white beans! Turn a pound of dry white beans into a tender, savory, all-purpose vegan protein. This is a one-pot recipe that's versatile, simple to make, and freezer-friendly. Course sideCuisine MediterraneanDiet Gluten Free, Vegan, VegetarianKeyword broth, toast, white beans Prep Time 10 minutesCook Time 1 hour 45 minutesSoaking time for beans 8 hoursTotal Time 9 hours 55 minutes Servings 8 servings Author Gena Hamshaw Ingredients
  • 1 lb dry white beans (cannellini, Great Northern, or navy)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 white or yellow onions (or 1 very large), chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, chopped or very thinly sliced
  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 bay leaves
  • A few sprigs each fresh rosemary and fresh thyme, tied together with twine to make a small herb bouquet
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt (you can adjust to to one teaspoon if your broth is salty, but this recipe works well with a good amount of salt!)
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Squeeze of fresh lemon juice, optional
  • Soak your beans overnight, or use the quick soak method (submerge beans in enough water to cover them by 2 inches and a teaspoon salt, bring to a boil, let sit for 1 hour). Drain beans.
  • Heat your oil in a large, heavy bottomed pot over medium heat. Add the onion. Sauté for four minutes, stirring frequently. Add the garlic and sauté for another two minutes, stirring constantly.
  • Add the beans, broth, bay leaves, herbs, and salt to the pot. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low. Cook, covered, for 1 hour. Remove the lid to the pot and cook for another 30-45 minutes, or until the beans are quite tender. Remove the bay leaves from the pot. Taste and add freshly ground pepper to taste, along with any additional salt you might like. If you like, you can add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice to the pot, or you can squeeze it over the beans when you serve them.
  • Serve the beans however you'd like to, or store/freeze for later use.
A slice of toast, topped with beans, has been garnished with herbs. It rests on a small, fluted ceramic plate.

I first made these beans in the fall and shared them on Instagram. I'd made slow simmered, soupy beans before, and as I was cooking them, I didn't expect them to be anything out of the ordinary.

But they were out of the ordinary. They were richer and more flavorful than most of the beans I had tried cooking from scratch. In spite of the short ingredient list—not to mention the fact that a pot of beans is humble food to begin with—they felt like a treat.

I looked forward to eating the brothy white beans for the next few days, and I had so much fun finding places to put them. Happy to be sharing them, finally. Hope you find your own ways to enjoy them.


The post The Best Brothy White Beans appeared first on The Full Helping.

переводить | Wed, 17 Feb 2021 19:36:13 +0000

Magical Vegan Sticky Toffee Pudding

This vegan sticky toffee pudding is nothing short of magical! A plant-based spin on the classic dessert, made with gooey dates. The cake features whole grain flour and uses a creamy, cashew-based sauce in place of traditional toffee sauce.

Vegan sticky toffee pudding is on a small dessert plate, with cashew cream sauce and another ramekin of pudding in the background.

I think I've just found my new favorite dessert.

It's a combination of my favorite type of dessert (cake) and one of my favorite plant-based ingredients, Medjool dates. Plus a cashew maple sauce that tastes surprisingly like toffee, but is just a little more wholesome.

It comes as no surprise to me that I love this vegan sticky toffee pudding as much as I do. I'm just amazed that it took me so long to try it!

What is sticky toffee pudding?

Sticky toffee pudding (also known as sticky date pudding) is a classic British dessert. It's made with a sponge cake and finely chopped, pitted dates. It's traditionally topped with toffee sauce and vanilla ice cream or custard.

I have a lot of respect for traditional desserts. Watching all seasons of The Great British Bake Off more times than I can count has only made me honor and respect classic sweets more.

So it's not my style these days to mess with tradition too much. I hesitated to make some of the modifications that I made to this recipe, especially the cashew sauce (more below).

But sometimes it's worth experimenting with something a little risky and different. I love the way this recipe came together, unusual twists at all. I can't wait to make it again, and again, and again.

Three ramekins are positioned on a white surface, each containing a plant-based dessert. How to make vegan sticky toffee pudding

The process of making this cake is simple. You begin by soaking a cup and a half of pitted, chopped medjool dates in boiling water, along with a teaspoon of baking soda.

The baking soda helps to soften the dates. After twenty minutes of soaking, they're gooey and melty-textured. They turn an otherwise simple cake batter into a dark, sweet, caramel-tasting delight.

Vegan sticky toffee pudding can be baked in ramekins, which is how I chose to serve it. It can also be baked in a round baker — one and a half or two quarts would work well. An eight-by-eight square baking dish can be used if you don't have a round one or ramekins.

After the pudding bakes, you invert it and cover it with sauce. That could be the maple cashew sauce that I used. It could also be date syrup or a store-bought vegan caramel sauce (there are some made with coconut milk).

If you want to take the sticky toffee pudding over the top, you can add vegan vanilla ice cream as well as sauce.

The best dates for baked pudding

I recommend using pitted, medjool dates in the pudding if you can find them. Their texture will be perfect for the gooey, sticky cake.

If you can't find medjool dates, you can substitute deglet noor. Just give them an extra ten minutes of soaking time, as they're not quite as naturally soft as medjool.

A round, vegan sticky toffee pudding has been covered in cashew cream and cut into with a serving fork. More cashew cream is in a small pitcher behind the dessert. Speaking of sauce…

In the hopes of staying true to tradition, I tried this recipe with regular vegan toffee sauce. Plus a homemade vegan butterscotch sauce. It was a good excuse to learn about the differences between caramel, butterscotch, and toffee. But in the end, I took a different approach.

In spite of having a robust sweet tooth, I found the toffee sauce to be too sweet on top of the date-filled cake. Not to mention a little oily from the vegan butter.

Maybe I just need to perfect my vegan toffee. But in the meantime, I wondered what it would be like to make a sweet sauce with my beloved, all-purpose cashew cream. I think cashews have a buttery taste, and I've also found that maple syrup + vanilla is—for me—evocative of caramel flavor.

So, I experimented. I heated cashew cream with maple syrup, vanilla, and a pinch of salt. The resulting sauce is heavenly. It tastes like a cross between toffee sauce and melted ice cream, so it's more traditional than it might seem.

And the cashew sauce complements the vegan sticky toffee pudding perfectly. It's plenty sweet, but not over-the-top.

A bag of whole grain flour has been used to make a few small, round cakes, which are positioned on dessert plates. The perfect flour blend for vegan sticky toffee pudding

I use a mix of all purpose and sprouted, whole wheat flour in this recipe.

Why? Because the nutty, complex flavor of whole wheat flour works really nicely with the sweetness of the dates.

My sprouted grain flour of choice is the organic, sprouted whole wheat flour from One Degree Organics. As many of you know, I love this brand for its transparent sourcing and the quality of its own grain products. One Degree Oats are mainstays in my breakfast routine, and I love to use the sprouted wheat and spelt flours in baking.

Why sprouted? Sprouting may help to make the nutrients in whole grains more bioavailable. I also think that sprouted grains taste a little sweeter than their un-sprouted counterparts.

Storing sticky toffee pudding

This vegan sticky toffee pudding is the type of dessert that's best while it's warm. But I've had success storing the leftovers, especially since I've made it a few times now.

After you bake and release the puddings from their ramekins, allow them to cool completely. Then, store them in airtight containers till you're ready to cover them in cashew sauce.

Speaking of that, the cashew sauce can be kept in an airtight container in the fridge for up to four days. Reheat it in a saucepan while stirring it gently.

A few mini ramekins contain a golden-hued cake. They sit on a white surface, accompanied by a creamy sauce. Vegan sticky toffee pudding is on a small dessert plate, with cashew cream sauce and another ramekin of pudding in the background. Print Vegan Sticky Toffee Pudding This vegan sticky toffee pudding is nothing short of magical! Moist cake is studded with dates and topped with a caramel-like cashew sauce. Course DessertDiet Vegan, VegetarianKeyword dates Prep Time 10 minutesCook Time 25 minutesSoaking time 20 minutesTotal Time 55 minutes Servings 6 servings Author Gena Hamshaw Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 cups (8 ounces) packed, pitted, chopped Medjool dates
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup One Degree Organics Sprouted Whole Wheat Flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup unbleached, all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) melted vegan butter (plus extra for greasing your baking dish)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the creamy cashew sauce Instructions
  • Preheat the oven to 350F. Lightly grease 6 ramekins or a 9-inch, round soufflé dish.
  • Put the chopped dates into a bowl. Sprinkle them with the baking soda. Pour the boiling water over the dates and stir to make sure they're all covered. Allow the dates to soak for 20 minutes.
  • While the dates soak, whisk together the flours, baking powder, salt, and sugar in a large mixing bowl. When the dates are ready, add them—along with their soaking water—to the dry ingredients, followed by the melted vegan butter. Stir till the batter is evenly combined.
  • Divide the batter into the ramekins and place them onto a baking sheet. Transfer the sheet to the oven. Bake for 25 minutes, or until the tops of the puddings are domed and set. Allow the puddings to cool for 10 minutes before inverting them out of their ramekins.
  • To make the cashew sauce, combine all ingredients into a saucepan and bring to a simmer over low heat. Heat the sauce, stirring constantly, for 3-5 minutes, or until it's slightly thickened. Pour it over the puddings and serve them warm.
A plant-based version of sticky toffee pudding, studded with dates, sits on a dessert plate. A piece of the pudding has been cut into with a fork.

The recipe makes six servings, but they're generous servings! Especially for a sweet, sticky cake like this. One pudding could easily be enjoyed by two people.

That's one of many reasons that vegan sticky toffee pudding is a good Valentine's Day recipe. Make it to share with a loved one, if you're lucky enough to be quarantining with someone you care about.

Or, make the recipe and enjoy it as a gift to yourself. It's one of the nicest dessert gifts I can think of, and I hope you'll enjoy it.


This post is sponsored by One Degree Organics. All opinions are my own. Thanks for your support!

The post Magical Vegan Sticky Toffee Pudding appeared first on The Full Helping.

переводить | Thu, 11 Feb 2021 18:01:06 +0000

Lentil Tomato Pasta Stew

This one-pot lentil tomato pasta stew is so cozy, hearty, and comforting! It's also packed with plant-based nutrition from vegetables and legumes, and it's easy to make gluten-free.

A round bowl of vegan lentil tomato pasta stew is accompanied by pinch bowls of herbs and plant-based parmesan cheese.

New York City has been visited by a couple snowstorms in the last few weeks. Not to mention the customary 20- and 30-something degree temperatures of February. It's a very good time for stew.

I can't think of a better cozy bowl to dive into than this lentil tomato pasta stew.

This recipe came about in the most straightforward of ways. I thought about some of the things I love to eat most—lentils, tomato, kale, pasta—and threw them together in a soup pot.

I eat a lot of suppers of pasta with marinara sauce and lentils on top. Sometimes I throw greens or other vegetables into the mix. This meal is a variation on that formula, but it has a soupy, saucy, spoonable goodness that is all its own.

I've made two batches in less than a month, and I've looked forward to every single helping.

Soup vs stew (does it matter?)

My intention for this recipe was to make soup. But it turned into stew instead.

What's the difference? It's sort of a blurry distinction. Both soups and stews are any combination of vegetables and/or proteins that have been cooked in liquid.

The amount of liquid is what differentiates the two dishes. Soups generally contain more liquid than stews. A liquid base (broth, water, puree) is usually the main component of a soup, while a stew is more of an assemblage of ingredients that cook together in, or with, liquid.

That's what's happening with this lentil tomato pasta stew. You'll add plenty of liquid to the dish, but this meal is a little too thick to qualify as soup. So stew it is, though of course these are very interrelated categories. Especially for me, since I like my soups on the thicker side to begin with.

No matter what you call it, the recipe is a one-pot meal that's as easy to make as it is delicious.

Lentil tomato pasta stew ingredients

Simple ingredients add up to something wonderfully comforting in this lentil tomato pasta stew recipe. Here's what you'll need:


The stew could be made with green, brown, black, or even red lentils. I have a real soft spot for pardina lentils. They're a type of brown lentils that are buttery and tender, yet still firm enough to hold their round shape after cooking.


You'll need both a 28-ounce (794 gram) can of crusted tomatoes and a few tablespoons of tomato paste for the recipe. The crushed tomatoes add body and Italian-inspired flavor to the soup. The tomato paste adds umami and deep, concentrated flavor.

If you're out of crushed tomatoes, you can go soupier and use pureed tomatoes instead. Or, you can make the stew more chunky by using diced tomatoes.


I recommend a medium pasta shape for the soup. I've made it so far with orecchiette and lumache, but I'm eager to try it with cavatappi and campanelle.

You could also use a short pasta shape, like elbows, ditali, or shells. Personally, I like the way a medium pasta shape provides contrast with the small diced vegetables and tiny lentils!


I usually throw greens into my soups and stews for added nutrition, and this lentil tomato pasta stew is no exception.

The green you choose could be kale, spinach, rapini, collards, or beet greens. You could also add chopped broccoli florets, zucchini half-moons, or green beans for a pop of green. Nobody wants to make unnecessary grocery trips in the cold, let alone a pandemic winter, so by all means, use what you have.


Vegetable broth and vegan no-chicken broth will work well in the recipe. If you have homemade, so much the better.

But if you, like me, can't remember to keep vegetable broth stocked, let alone make your own, then it's helpful to keep some vegan bouillon cubes handy. Lately, my favorite vegan broth-hack is Yondu. Yondu is an all-purpose, plant-based savory seasoning, that turns easily into broth for recipes.

Cashew parmesan

A sprinkle of cashew parmesan cheese will take your bowl of lentil tomato pasta stew over the top. Vegan parmesan compliments the Mediterranean flavors of the dish so nicely.

If you don't feel like making your own vegan parmesan, you can substitute your favorite store-bought version. A melty, shredded-style plant-based mozzarella will also work well.

Stew variations

No lentils? No problem. Try adding 3 cups of cooked chickpeas, kidney beans, navy beans, or another cooked legume to the stew. I don't recommend adding another dry legume, because the cooking time will be much longer than what's listed here. So if you don't use lentils, cook your beans first.

You can make the lentil tomato pasta stew even heartier and more flavorful, not to mention protein-rich, by adding chopped vegan sausage or beef-style crumbles to your pot.

I've kept a three-year pasta supply in my pantry through all of quarantine (only a small exaggeration). If I happened to run out of pasta, though, I'd definitely try this stew with pearled farro, barley, or quinoa.

Add liquid to taste

The stew recipe calls for four cups of broth and two cups of water. Once the soup has simmered for the indicated amount of time, you can choose to add extra broth or water as needed. You might want something more soup-y; if so, go for it!

Can lentil tomato pasta stew be frozen?

Two pieces of good news. First, the lentil tomato pasta stew leftovers will keep for a while. They're good up to five or six days in an airtight container in the fridge.

And if you don't think you'll get around to polishing off this whole recipe before then, yes! You can freeze the lentil tomato pasta stew leftovers for up to six weeks.

Can lentil tomato pasta stew be prepared gluten-free?

The soup has complete gluten-free potential. Just use your favorite gluten-free pasta shape or legume-based pasta in place of traditional pasta when you make the recipe.

A small bowl of a pasta, lentil, and green dish, which has been topped with ground cashews. More stews to savor

If you can't get enough wintery stews, here are some more of my favorites:

A round bowl of vegan lentil tomato pasta stew is accompanied by pinch bowls of herbs and plant-based parmesan cheese. Print Lentil Tomato Pasta Stew This one-pot, plant-based lentil tomato pasta stew is so cozy, hearty, and comforting! It's also packed with nutrition from vegetables and legumes. Easy to make gluten free! Course main, Soup, stewCuisine ItalianDiet Gluten Free, Vegan, VegetarianKeyword carrots, celery, lentils, onion, pasta, soup, stew Prep Time 10 minutesCook Time 30 minutesTotal Time 40 minutes Servings 6 servings Author Gena Hamshaw Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped
  • 3 carrots, scrubbed or peeled and chopped
  • 4-5 (to taste) cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 cup (200 g) brown, green, black, or French lentils
  • 1 1/2 cups (5 oz/280 g) medium or small pasta shape
  • 28 ounces crushed tomatoes (3 cups)
  • 4 cups vegetable or vegan no-chicken broth 
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano or Italian seasoning
  • 1/2-1 teaspoon kosher salt (adjust based on how salty your broth is, and to taste)
  • 1 bunch Tuscan or curly kale, stemmed and chopped (or another leafy green of choice)
  • Freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
  • Cashew parmesan cheese (optional, for topping)
  • Chopped fresh parsley leaves (optional, for topping)
  • Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat. When the oil is shimmering, add the onion, carrots, and celery. Sauté the vegetables for 6-7 minutes, stirring often, or until the vegetables are clear and soft. Add the garlic and tomato paste to the pot. Continue sautéing the ingredients for another minute, till the garlic is fragrant.
  • Add the lentils, pasta, tomatoes, broth, water, and oregano to the pot. Bring everything to a boil. Reduce the heat to low. Cover and simmer the stew for 15 minutes.
  • After 15 minutes, add the chopped kale and salt to the pot. Recover and simmer for another 10 minutes. Taste the stew to be sure that the lentils and pasta are both tender; if not, simmer the stew for another 5-10 minutes.
  • Taste the stew. Add additional salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste, as well as some extra water to loosen the stew up if you like. Divide the stew into bowls and top with cashew Parmesan or fresh chopped parsley leaves, if desired.
A close up, overhead image of a bowl of vegan lentil tomato pasta stew, made with lumache and wilted greens.

In spite of the intensity and difficulty of the times we're living in, I'm trying to lean into this stay-at-home winter. This means lots of reading (I've had the attention span to finish a few novels for the first time in a while), getting focused with my work, and cooking.

Cooking fatigue and kitchen disasters aside, cozy homemade food is one of the things I love most about these cold months. And this wonderful stew is a highlight. I hope it brings comfort and joy to your February afternoons and evenings, too.


The post Lentil Tomato Pasta Stew appeared first on The Full Helping.

переводить | Wed, 10 Feb 2021 19:52:23 +0000

Tahini Beet Dressing

This sweet and tangy tahini beet dressing will brighten up your salads and bowls with its beautiful pink color!

A small green salad has been drizzled with a creamy pink plant-based dressing.

I'm writing this post as an impressive snow storm carries on outside my window. It snowed through the night, it was snowing when I woke up this morning, and it's supposed to keep snowing tomorrow.

I love snow, and I love winter. But while it's all shades of gray, white, and black outside, it's nice to have something colorful and vibrant on my plate. This beautiful tahini beet dressing is just the thing.

Tahini + beets: a perfect match

One of my favorite restaurants in NYC is Urban Vegan Kitchen. It serves up hearty comfort food, along with great music.

The restaurant used to have a grain bowl that I believe was created by Timothy Pakron of Mississippi Vegan. It featured a tahini beet dressing.

I loved everything else in the bowl (tempeh, garlicky kale, quinoa, roasted carrots), but I especially loved that dressing. The tahini beet dressing I'm sharing today is my little tribute to it, and it's a new favorite around here.

Tahini and beets are a perfect pairing. Tahini can be a little bitter on its own. Beets offset that bitterness with their sweetness. They also lend a beautiful color to what would otherwise be a beige dressing, turning it into a treat for both tastebuds and eyes.

Making tahini beet dressing

The process of making tahini beet dressing is basically simple: blend up a roasted beet, tahini, water, and seasonings. The most time-consuming step in this recipe is roasting your beet.

You only need a single beet for this recipe. It should be a medium or large round beet. (Unless you happen to pick up a beet that looks an awful lot like a sweet potato, like the one that got blended into this dressing!)

An oval shaped beet and a peeled clove of garlic on a while surface. My go-to method for cooking beets

As I mentioned when sharing my lentil beet salad, peeling raw beets is one of my least favorite kitchen tasks.

As a result, I always use the same method for cooking beets: I rub them lightly with oil, wrap each of them tightly in foil or parchment, roast them for 45-60 minutes, and then slip the skins off while I run them under cold water.

This is the easiest method I've found for preparing beets with minimal fuss, and it's the method that I use for this recipe.

When you make the tahini beet dressing, you may not wish to go to the trouble of roasting a single beet. Makes perfect sense to me! I've been making this recipe when I'm roasting beets, anyway. I roast the whole bunch, and then I set one beet aside for the dressing.

Blend, serve & store

Once the beet is roasted, you simply blend it together with tahini, salt, vinegar, water, garlic, and a little Dijon mustard. You can use either a food processor or a blender for this step, though I think a blender does the job more easily.

The dressing can be stored for up to five days in an airtight container in the fridge. It can also be frozen if you don't think you'll use it up that quickly. However, it's so versatile and tasty that I suspect you'll have a hard time holding onto it for very long.

A bed of greens has been dressed with a plant-based, bright pink salad dressing. Serving tahini beet dressing

The dressing is a little tangy and a little sweet. It's really nice on a simple, leafy green salad, as you can see above. It's also nice on grain bowls, and it adds a pop of color to roasted vegetables.

When I was down to the last few tablespoons of my batch of dressing, I discovered that it's also really nice as a spread in a sandwich or wrap. Try it in place of vegan mayo or hummus for something extra colorful and special.

More wintertime beet recipes

If the looks of the tahini beet dressing have you craving more electric pink recipes, here are a few of my favorites:

An overhead image of a glass jar filled with vegan tahini beet dressing. A glass jar holds a bright pink tahini beet dressing and a mixing spoon. Print Tahini Beet Dressing This creamy vegan tahini beet dressing has the most beautiful, vibrant pink color! Sweet and tangy, it's the perfect accompaniment to your plant-based salads and bowls. Course dressing, sauceDiet Vegan, VegetarianKeyword beets, dressing, tahini Prep Time 45 minutesCook Time 5 minutesTotal Time 50 minutes Servings 8 servings Author Gena Hamshaw Equipment
  • blender
  • 1 medium sized red beet, trimmed and scrubbed
  • 2 tablespoons tahini
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 small clove garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup water
  • Preheat your oven to 400F. Rub the beet with a light coating of olive oil. Wrap the beet tightly in foil or parchment. Roast it for 45 minutes-1 hour, or until it's completely tender when pierced with a knife. When the beet has cooled for about fifteen minutes, run it under cold water while you slip off the skin. Cut the beet into quarters.
  • Blend the beet and all remaining ingredients in a blender or a food processor till they're completely smooth. Adjust the salt as needed. If the dressing is a bit thick, add in water by the teaspoon.
  • Serve the dressing over salads, bowls, or on a sandwich. The dressing will keep for up to 5 days in an airtight container in the fridge.
A glass jar holds a bright pink tahini beet dressing and a mixing spoon.

Many things are tricky about this pandemic winter. We're all a little burnt out. Cold temperatures don't make outdoor socializing easy, which spells more isolation and longing for community. Many of us have the sense that things will get a little better this year, but we're not sure when or how. The uncertainty is exhausting.

I think that one of the best things we can do in the here and now is to simply look for bright spots. They take the form of good books, comforting text exchanges or Zoom calls, juicy TV binges, and bits and pieces of good news from around the world.

Today, my bright spot is a magical, enveloping winter snow storm. It's the sound of neighborhood kids laughing as they romp through traffic-free streets.

Tasty things to eat are always bright spots, too. This dressing is that kind of bright spot. It's a literal bright spot, too—something eye-catching and vibrant to remind me of all the beauty out there.

Hope it makes you smile, too. Stay warm, everyone!


The post Tahini Beet Dressing appeared first on The Full Helping.

переводить | Mon, 01 Feb 2021 22:48:00 +0000

Vegan Savory Chickpea Cobbler

This vegan savory chickpea cobbler is the ultimate plant-based winter comfort food dish! Made with chickpeas, a rustic biscuit topping, and a flavorful sauce built from an umami-rich broth.

A vegan savory chickpea cobbler has is served on a small plate with the round cooking skillet nearby.

It's safe to say that comfort food has been my desire and my cooking style for most of the past year. But even putting pandemic circumstances aside, these deep winter months are the time when I crave vegan comfort food more than ever.

Enter savory cobbler. This savory chickpea cobbler is everything I want comfort food to be: warm, filling, and carb-forward. Also nutritious, rich in legumes and vegetables and all of the nutrients they offer.

I love regular, dessert cobbler. But the idea of a savory cobbler, made with un-sweet biscuits and a creamy filling, has always appealed to me. I'm so glad I finally tried it.

I took the savory part seriously, whipping up an umami-rich sauce to hold the dish together. And I called on chickpeas, one of my favorite plant proteins, to play a starring role.

All about umami

"Umami" is a word that I tend to throw around casually when I write about food. Sometimes I use it without really explaining what I mean by it.

What is umami, exactly? It's hard to define. I generally see it referenced as "savoriness." The Japanese translation is, roughly, "deliciousness."

This rings true to me, anyway. Many plant-based ingredients that are rich in umami are very delicious to me. These include soy sauce, miso, mushrooms, ripe tomatoes, and nutritional yeast. (I put the latter in almost everything.)

Technically speaking, umami taste is the result of glutamate, an amino acid. Glutamate is abundant in protein-rich animal foods. Dietitian Ginny Messina wrote a great blog post some time ago that asked the question of whether glutamate-rich foods might be especially useful for vegans.

Ginny's post got me thinking about my own love of umami-rich ingredients, how much I value their presence in my diet. And that got me thinking about creating a new, savory supper, which is how this savory chickpea cobbler came to be.

A small serving plate with a savory, wintery vegan chickpea dish, along with a container of savory cooking liquid. Yondu All-Purpose Umami Seasoning

Given my love of umami-rich foods, I'm so glad that I discovered Yondu's all-purpose umami seasoning this year!

This product isn't like any other that I've tried. It's not bouillon, soy sauce or tamari, or a broth. But it can act like any of those ingredients, and it can be used in countless other ways.

Yondu is made from fermented soybeans and a concentrated broth from eight slow-simmered vegetables. The fermented soybeans create glutamate as well as other amino acids, which means plenty of umami flavor. You can read more about how Yondu's unique, "complex umami" here.

Yondu can be used either as a seasoning or as a broth. To turn it into a broth, as I did in this savory cobbler, you simply add a tablespoon to 2 cups water. To use it as a seasoning, simply add a teaspoon to your dish, be it sauteed vegetables or a pasta sauce.

Yondu tastes a little bit like soy sauce, but it's, well, more savory. There's vegetable essence in it, too. So it's more flavorful and complex, I think, than soy sauce and tamari are.

It's hard to describe, but if you try it, you'll know what I mean (more details below on a way to taste Yondu at a little discount!).

A recipe with vegetables and a crumbly baked topping is held in a white casserole dish. The joys of savory cobbler

Yondu is a perfect addition to this savory chickpea cobbler. And what a wonderful surprise savory cobbler is, generally!

This one is cooked and baked in the same dish, which means streamlined cleanup after cooking. I think that it evokes the nostalgia that other savory pies do. But it's a lot easier to make than a vegan chik'n pot pie. And it has more texture contrast than my other beloved winter favorite, shepherds pie.

There are debates about how to construct cobbler. Some recipes call for a cake-like batter to be poured on top of other ingredients. Some call for neat biscuits, made with a biscuit cutter.

A savory skillet meal with carrots, celery, chickpeas, and a creamy sauce

I've made peach cobbler with fully formed biscuits. But when I made cherry cobbler over the summer, I learned that it's quicker and every bit as tasty to do a free-form, biscuit crumble on top of cobbler.

And that's the method that I used here. For this savory chickpea cobbler, I used totally unsweetened biscuit dough in place of one that's got some sugar (as in my fruit cobblers). Making the topping is really easy—no rolling or cutting required.

Meanwhile, the savory chickpea filling is so delicious: creamy, full of vegetables and tender chickpeas. And plenty savory, of course, thanks to a Yondu-based broth. I actually liked the filling so much I thought I might serve it on top of mashed potatoes or baked potatoes sometime (similar to the presentation in my holiday bowls).

Best of all, the filling doesn't take long to make. And once the cobbler is in the oven, the preparation process is hands-off. Easy comfort food is the best kind, I think—at least lately.

More comforting chickpea entrees

Love this savory chickpea cobbler? A few more savory, creamy, and comforting chickpea recipes for cold weather:

If you've run out of chickpeas, you can try using white beans or pinto beans instead.

A small ceramic plate holds a portion of a baked comfort food dish. A savory skillet meal with carrots, celery, chickpeas, and a creamy sauce Print Savory Chickpea Cobbler This vegan savory chickpea cobbler is the ultimate plant-based winter comfort food dish! Made with chickpeas, a rustic biscuit topping, and a flavorful sauce built from an umami-rich broth. Course main, Main CourseCuisine AmericanDiet Vegan, VegetarianKeyword carrots, celery, chickpeas, cobbler, flour Prep Time 20 minutesCook Time 40 minutesTotal Time 1 hour Servings 6 servings Author Gena Hamshaw IngredientsFor the cobbler filling
  • 2 tablespoons vegan butter (substitute neutral vegetable oil)
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 large or 3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 large or 3 medium stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup (30 g) unbleached, all-purpose flour (substitute all-purpose, gluten-free flour)
  • 1 1/2 cups hot water
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Yondu all-purpose savory seasoning
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened, non-dairy milk
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas (1 can, drained and rinsed)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
For the biscuit topping
  • 1 1/3 cups (160 g) unbleached, all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 5 tablespoons (70 g) cold vegan butter, cubed
  • 6 tablespoons (90 mL) cold, non-dairy milk
  • Preheat your oven to 375F.
  • Heat the butter in a 10-inch, oven-safe skillet over medium heat. When the butter is sizzling, add the onion, carrots, and celery. Sauté for 7-10 minutes, stirring often, or until the vegetables are soft. Stir in the garlic. Cook for a minute, stirring constantly, or until the the garlic is very fragrant.
  • Mix the hot water and Yondu seasoning. Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables. Pour the Yondu broth over the vegetables in a thin stream, stirring constantly as you go to prevent lumps of flour from forming. Add the milk to the skillet, followed by the chickpeas, salt, and pepper. Stir well.
  • Allow the chickpeas to simmer for 3-4 minutes, or until the sauce is thickened. Taste and adjust salt and pepper as needed. Remove the skillet from heat.
  • To make the biscuit topping, combine the flour, baking powder and salt in a large mixing bowl. Using a pastry cutter (or by hand), cut in the vegan butter. The butter should be in pea-sized pieces. Pour the non-dairy milk into the center of this mixture. Mix with a spatula or spoon until the dough is moistened throughout and minimal flour remains at the bottom of the mixing bowl. You should have big clumps of dough (not a single mass, but not crumbs, either). Sprinkle this biscuit topping over the chickpea and vegetable mixture and transfer the cobbler to the oven.
  • Bake the cobbler for 40 minutes, or until the filling is bubbling and the biscuit topping is turning golden. Allow the cobbler to cool for a few minutes before serving.
NotesIf you don't have Yondu seasoning at home, you can substitute 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth of choice. A round casserole dish filled with vegetables and beans in a creamy sauce is accompanied by a liquid seasoning in its packaging. Storing savory chickpea cobbler

In addition to all of its other good qualities, this savory chickpea cobbler is a good candidate for both storing and freezing! The leftovers will keep for up to five days in an airtight container in the fridge. And they can be frozen for up to six weeks.

Savory recipe inspiration with Yondu

Yondu is one of the plant-based products I've been most impressed with in the last year. This savory chickpea cobbler is only the beginning of what I hope to create with it. I'm thinking about stir fries, pasta, savory toasts, and many other ideas.

If you'd like to sample Yondu for yourself, the brand is offering my readers a discount code for Amazon orders. Simply enter "20TFHELPING" at checkout for 20% off of the brand's all-purpose, vegetable umami.

I hope that this savory and cozy skillet meal will bring warmth and comfort to your winter days. Enjoy, friends, and I'll be back around here soon.


This post is sponsored by Yondu Vegetable Umami. All opinions are my own. Thanks for your support!

The post Vegan Savory Chickpea Cobbler appeared first on The Full Helping.

переводить | Sat, 30 Jan 2021 00:04:32 +0000

Beans and Greens Pasta

Beans and greens pasta is a tasty, adaptable formula for countless plant-based dinners!

Two white porcelain plates hold portions of a simple, plant-based pasta with beans and greens.

With all of the exhaustion going around, it's an especially good time for easy, adaptable meal templates.

This vegan beans and greens pasta is a riff on the reliable "a green, bean, a grain" formula. Here, the beans and greens are whatever you like, and pasta is the grain.

I can't get enough of this dinner right now. It satisfies my constant pandemic year craving for comfort food and my desire for nourishing ingredients at the same time.

The pasta is also a vehicle for favorite toppings and flourishes. My go-to cashew parmesan cheese is folded into the recipe itself. Most of the time, I simply add more of that as garnish. But the recipe would be great with vegan feta, toasted pine nuts, or a slew of other fun toppings.

Best of all, this pasta is ready quickly. It requires very little planning, which makes it a perfect meal for these disorienting times.

Typically, I'm pretty organized with my meal prep. Lately, not so much. I'm learning that I can feel completely scattered and still manage to eat well.

An angled photograph of a simple, hearty plant-based dinner, prepared with pasta, kale, and beans. Why Beans & Greens are a Perfect Pasta Addition

It's not hard to love a pasta dinner. Pasta is filling, comforting, and it cooks quickly.

The downside of a pasta meal is that it doesn't always provide the nutritional balance that I care about so much, both as a dietitian and for my own well-being.

Beans and greens pasta is a good example of how an added protein and some vegetables can quickly turn pasta into a complete meal.

Most wheat pasta has some protein, but not quite enough to qualify as a great protein source. Here, beans help to amplify the plant-protein in the meal. At the same time, they add fiber, calcium (depending on the bean), and iron.

Greens, meanwhile, add all of the nutrient-density that leafy greens are famous for. This includes vitamins A, C, K, and vitamins in the B family, phytonutrients associated with disease prevention, fiber, and calcium.

Finally, beans and greens quickly transform this meal into a power plate. A leafy green salad is a nice compliment to the dish and will make it more satisfying. But you don't need to serve it with a complicated array of sides for it to feel fulsome.

Pasta components

It's easy to run through the ingredients of the beans and greens pasta. They are, in no particular order:


Pick your favorite legume and run with it! The dish will work with any of the following:

  • White beans (navy, great northern, or cannellini)
  • Chickpeas
  • Black beans
  • Pinto beans
  • Cranberry beans
  • Lentils
  • Kidney beans
  • Gigante beans
  • Lima beans

I make the recipe with 1 1/2 cups of cooked beans, which is the equivalent of what you'll find in a 14.5-ounce can of beans. If you cook from scratch, then you can simply use 1 1/2-2 cups total.


Once again, so many good options here. I've made (and loved) the recipe with the following:

  • Curly kale
  • Dinosaur kale
  • Collard greens
  • Escarole
  • Broccoli rabe
  • Spinach

Swiss chard, beet greens, and mustard greens are additional options. You can be a bit flexible with the amount of greens that you use. I'd say that a standard sized bunch of any of these options is fine.

Be sure to wash, dry, and chop your greens before adding them.


In spite of the fact that the beans and greens pasta doesn't contain any cream, it still tastes flavorful and satisfying. Broth is part of what helps to create flavor in the recipe. I use vegetable broth most of the time, but a vegan chicken-style broth will work, too.

I also like to cook the pasta with a splash of white wine. It helps to build some flavor and will let off a wonderful aroma as the pasta cooks. I use half a cup. If you don't have white wine at home or prefer to omit it, it's no big deal.

Vegan parmesan

Vegan parmesan cheese is also key to achieving a flavorful pasta dish without too many ingredients.

I like to use the cashew parmesan that's nearly always in my fridge. But I often make and store walnut parmesan and hemp seed parmesan, too.

Alternatively, there are a number of really tasty, store-bought vegan parmesan options. The Violife brand makes a great one. I'm also a fan of the parmesan shreds from Follow Your Heart.


Can't forget the pasta in this pasta meal! Use your pasta of choice. I usually keep a bunch of shapes in my pantry for fun: trumpets, casarecce, radiatori, reginetti, fusilli, orechiette, and rigatoni, to name a few.

For added fiber, you can choose a whole wheat pasta variety (these are some of my favorites). A legume pasta, such as red lentil or chickpea pasta, will add protein to the recipe.

For gluten-free eaters, quinoa and brown rice pasta are good options.

Two white plates are piled with a pasta that's flecked with leafy greens. Preparation, storage, and reheating

The preparation process for the beans and greens pasta can be sped up if you wash/chop your greens and cook (or rinse) your beans ahead of time.

I think this particular pasta tastes best right after cooking. Since I live alone, however, I usually end up leftovers. That's just fine! You can store the pasta in an airtight container in the fridge for up to four days.

I reheat the pasta in my microwave when I'm feeling lazy, but it tastes even better when I reheat it in a pot or pan with a little splash of vegetable broth.

Pick your toppings

While simplicity is part of what I love about this meal, I'm not opposed to livening it with some fun toppings. Here are fifteen of the ones I like best:

  • Toasted pine nuts
  • Fresh, chopped herbs
  • Tempeh or seitan bacon
  • Vegan feta
  • Olives
  • Cashew cheese
  • Caramelized onions
  • Vegan sausage, sliced or crumbled
  • Sun-dried tomatoes
  • Nutritional yeast
  • Vegan beef-style crumbles
  • Lemon zest
  • Capers
  • Oven-dried tomatoes
  • Toasted breadcrumbs
Other meals with beans and greens

If the idea of a simple meal with beans and greens is calling to you, but this pasta isn't it, there are so many other options. I plan many of my meals around greens, beans, and grains. Here are some favorites:

A close up photograph of a vegan pasta dish with dinosaur kale and beans. Two white porcelain plates hold portions of a simple, plant-based pasta with beans and greens. Print Beans & Greens Pasta This vegan beans and greens pasta can be adapted in countless ways! Just use your favorite bean and your favorite leafy green to create a fast, flavorful, nutritious plant-based supper. Course mainCuisine ItalianDiet Vegan, VegetarianKeyword beans, greens, pasta Prep Time 10 minutesCook Time 15 minutesTotal Time 25 minutes Servings 4 servings Author Gena Hamshaw Ingredients
  • 8 ounces pasta of choice
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large shallot, chopped (substitute 1/3 cup chopped onion)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bunch greens of choice, such as broccoli rabe, collard greens, kale, or escarole, stemmed, washed, dried, and chopped
  • 1/2 cup white wine (optional)
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked beans (1 14.5-ounce can, drained and rinsed)
  • 3 tablespoons cashew parmesan cheese (substitute a store-bought vegan parmesan cheese)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt plus extra for salting the water and seasoning to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper or a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes, to taste
  • Squeeze of fresh lemon juice (optional)
  • Optional toppings of choice (see list above)
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta. Cook according to package instructions, until the pasta is tender but still a little al dente. Drain the pasta.
  • While the pasta cooks, heat the oil in a large, deep skillet over medium heat. Add the shallot. Cook for two minutes, stirring constantly. Add the garlic and give everything a stir. Add the greens in handfuls, stirring as you go.
  • When the greens have wilted down a bit (about a minute), add the white wine. Cook, stirring the greens, for about 3 minutes, or until the white wine has mostly reduced (you can skip this step if omitting the wine). Add the broth to the skillet. 
  • Allow the broth to come to a simmer and reduce the heat to low. Cook the greens for another 5-10 minutes, or until the greens are tender. Cooking time will depend on the type of greens you choose.
  • Add the beans to the skillet, followed by the cooked pasta. Stir and heat everything through. Then, stir in the vegan parmesan and pepper to taste. Add a squeeze of lemon juice, if desired. Serve right away. 
Two small serving plates with a plant-based dinner of cooked pasta, legumes, and vegetables.

The cold winter months can feel long. I think that's especially true this year.

But nourishing food is a balm. It warms us up, comforts us, and helps to brace us for the chill. I hope you'll get as much satisfaction from this simple pasta meal as I have, friends.

Till soon,


The post Beans and Greens Pasta appeared first on The Full Helping.

переводить | Mon, 18 Jan 2021 20:03:31 +0000
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