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Easy Thai Red Curry

RecipesAmanda Walter | Maple Alps3 Comments

When I went to school in Tennessee, there was this Thai place that I went to a few times. The curry was to die for. It came surrounding this adorable little cake-shaped rice mound, and I loved every bite of it. I naturally tried to recreate it when I got back to my apartment and I've been making this curry (or a similar version of it) ever since.

Here's the thing: I'm terrible at writing recipes for cooking because I don't really follow them. I just kind of taste as I go. I'm trying to be more intentional about writing down the recipes that come to my mind. As I mentioned, this red curry is one that I've been making for a while, but always just kind of went along with whatever was in my fridge (I can't be the only one who does this though, so I don't feel too bad). It's perfect for leftover veggies or veggies you have no idea what to do with. I think it's pretty much impossible to mess this one up! I like broccoli in it, but this one has peppers, onions and carrots!

The Easiest Vegan Thai Red Curry | www.maplealps.com

The secret is the homemade red curry paste. It contains most of the spices you are going to need. It's easy to make and I keep some frozen in the freezer in 1 TBSP sections to use at a moment's notice. Fun fact: I only have a moose-shaped ice cube tray, so my curry bag is full of little moose friends. It puts a smile on my face anyway.

This meal is simple and delicious. It's quick to whip up and tastes delicious on rice or even noodles if that is what floats your boat!

Related: Vegan Pad Thai

Easiest Thai Red Curry | www.maplealps.com
Easiest Thai Red Curry | www.maplealps.com

Easy Thai Red Curry
Serves about 6

1 large red pepper, sliced
1 large yellow pepper, sliced
1 yellow onion, sliced
1 large carrot, sliced in long strips
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 TBSP maple syrup
3 TBSP red curry paste
1 tsp fresh grated ginger
Juice from half a lime
1 can coconut milk
Sea Salt to taste
Cilantro and onion to garnish

1) With a little water add the onion to a large saucepan. Cook about 5 minutes until tender.


2) Add the peppers and carrots and red thai curry and cook until the vegetables are well coated.


3) Add ginger, lime, maple syrup, and garlic.


4) Pour in the coconut milk and cook a few more minutes until the sauce coats a spoon.


5) Adjust your seasonings - adding salt if need be.


6) Garnish with green onion and cilantro and serve with fresh wedges of lime over a bed of rice or noodles!

 

What are some of your favourite quick and easy dinners?


 

Creamy Roasted Garlic & Tomato Pasta (nut free)

RecipesAmanda Walter | Maple Alps11 Comments

I suppose everyone has a staple that is always in their pantry. When I was growing up, we always had rice. I would eat rice for every meal and I had no qualms about it. Now, it's all about pasta.

We love pasta in this house. It's quick, it's easy, and it's delicious. There are all different varieties - the kind made from black beans or rice or gorbonzo beans. They can be red or green or brown. Pasta is just so much fun! I know many people who would agree with me.

So because of my love for pasta, and becuase of my love for creamy sauces that contain no yucky ingredients, I bring to you: creamy roasted garlic and tomato pasta! It's nut free, but still creamy!

This post contains affiliate links

Creamy Roasted Garlic & Tomato Pasta (nut free) | www.maplealps.com

This dish is the perfect main if you're expecting last-minute company. Seriously. It takes 30 minutes to whip up, but still looks good and impressive on a table. It's perfect and light and tasty! Plus, if there is a nut allergy, no need to look any further!

I love making a full batch of this just for the two of us and packing it up for lunches the next day too. Leftovers are the bomb dot com!

Roasted Garlic & Tomato Pasta | www.maplealps.com

It's all about the sauce! You can use any kind of pasta with it and add any kind of additional vegetables! The tomato and spinach by themselves is fabulous too. Obviously, you can add less pasta if you want a higher sauce to pasta ratio too. I'm super hungry just thinking about it. 

The roasted garlic adds that extra kick of flavour it needs!

I love enjoying this on a warm summer evening out on the deck. Yes! Don't tell me I'm the only one who loves eating outside!

Enjoy!

Roasted Garlic & Tomato Pasta | www.maplealps.com

Creamy Roasted Garlic & Tomato Pasta

Makes about 8 servings

what you need:

  • 1 bulb garlic

  • 1 large onion, sliced

  • 16 ounces (1 lb) pasta of your choice

  • Olive oil

  • 2 tsp sea salt

  • Pinch sea salt

  • 3 TBSP arrowroot powder

  • 3 TBSP nutritional yeast flakes

  • 2 ½ cups unsweetened plain non-dairy milk

  • 2 cups grape tomatoes, halved

  • 4 cups fresh spinach

what to do:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

  2. Clean the outside layer of the garlic bulb, keeping the whole thing intact. Cut the top off the bulb, and brush the exposed garlic with olive oil. Roast entire bulb for 30 minutes.

  3. Wash and halve the tomatoes and place them on a baking tray. Toss with a bit of olive oil and a pinch of salt and add them to the oven to roast for 20 minutes.

  4. While the garlic and tomatoes are roasting, cook pasta and set aside.

  5. Once the garlic and tomatoes are finished, set aside.

  6. Prepare the sauce by adding onions to a large saucepan on low-medium heat. Begin cooking the onions, adding a pinch of salt. Cook until soft.

  7. Add onions, roasted garlic, almond milk, 2 tsp sea salt, arrowroot powder, and nutritional yeast flakes to a high speed blender.

  8. Blend until smooth.

  9. Add mixture back to saucepan and slowly bring it to a simmer.

  10. Add the spinach to the mixture, cooking until wilted. Then add the pasta. To finish, stir in the roasted tomatoes.

  11. Serve right away. Keep leftovers in an airtight container up to 3 days - though it won’t likely last that long!

 

 
vegan pantry | www.maplealps.com
 

 

Lime Maple Tofu Fajitas (vegan + gluten free options)

RecipesAmanda Walter | Maple Alps13 Comments

When you think about a busy day you've just had rushing around doing everything under the sun, do you enjoy coming home to cook a meal? I personally do not. During the school year, a typical work day for me is both physically and emotionally draining. Kids are crazy (I do LOVE my job)! If it were at all possible, I would totally hire a chef to come and cook nutritious dinners for me - but alas, my budget does not allow for that (I don't even think I have to double check it to come to that conclusion, hehe!)

Thankfully, there are a few meals I can easily whip up that taste like they were being prepped for hours. These fajitas are one of those meals. It's quick, easy, and nutritious! They are also very versatile and work with just about any leftover in your kitchen. They also taste great the next day for lunch which is a huge bonus for me!

Lime Maple Tofu Fajitas (vegan + gluten free options) | www.maplealps.com

I'm not a Mexican food expert by any means. The very first time I ever made fajitas I was in Austria and decided to take a weekend trip to visit a friend. I wanted to make her dinner, so I threw some peppers, tomatoes and tofu in a pan and whipped up a similar product. Since that day, I've made these, and the recipe changes pretty much every time. I've since omitted the tomatoes from my original mixture, but I love the lime and maple I put in these. I actually have never looked up a fajita recipe, so I don't even honestly know if I can call these fajitas - but I suppose they are. Haha!

The trick is keeping your pan on low heat. It gives the onions a really nice caramelization and flavour. You can seriously add anything to the filling. I've added beans before. I've also done a crumbled TVP instead of tofu. And as I mentioned before, I've added tomatoes - crushed or diced or whatever my heart desired.

Lime Maple Tofu Fajitas (vegan + gluten free options) | www.maplealps.com

For the tofu, I baked it in the oven. It got to soak up some more of the lime and maple and doing it in the oven allowed it to get firmer and chewier. 

Anyhow, I'm glad to share this super quick and easy meal with you - hopefully it makes your work week easier!

Lime Maple Tofu Fajitas (vegan + gluten free options) | www.maplealps.com

Lime Maple Tofu Fajitas

1 large red onion, sliced
1 large red bell pepper, sliced
1 large orange or yellow bell pepper, sliced
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 block extra firm tofu
2 tsp sea salt
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 lime
3 tsp maple syrup
Splash of olive oil

8 fajita sized tortillas (can get gluten free)

Garnish/Toppings Ideas:
Fresh cilantro
Fresh lime wedges
Fresh avocados/Guac
Lettuce
Diced tomatoes
Sour cream
Cashew cream sauce

1) Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F
2) Press the tofu in a kitchen towel so that you get as much water out as you can and cut it into long strips
3) On a prepared baking pan, lay the tofu and sprinkle with 1 tsp sea salt, 1 tsp maple syrup, a bit of olive oil, and squeeze half a lime. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until nicely browned. Turn off oven and leave them in there until you're ready to add them to the vegetables.
4) To a pan, add a tiny bit of olive oil. On low heat, cool your onion for about 5 minutes until soft. 
5) Next, add the peppers and continue cooking.
6) Add the remaining tsp of salt, the cumin, chilli powder, and red pepper flakes and mix until the vegetables are coated.
7) Drizzle the maple syrup and the other half of the lime over it and add the garlic.
8) Carefully add the tofu, mix, and you are done!

 

What's your favourite quick dinner recipe?


 

Spinach & Black Bean Enchiladas (vegan)

RecipesAmanda Walter | Maple Alps21 Comments

After the holidays and travelling for so long, the last thing I wanted to do after I came home was cook. There's nothing worse than coming home after living out of a suitcase for 2 weeks and having to come up with a complete meal when the fridge and pantry are basically empty. It's not motivating in the least.

We ended up running to the grocery store and making some paninis with our panini grill, but I was reminded later that I probably had some freezer meals left over. 

I love freezer meals. Once in a while I'll do a huge cooking haul, and prep meals enough for the month. The freezer is a wonderful thing, especially on days I don't want to cook, or know I will be too busy to do so. It's mostly for the benefit of my husband, who requires good and balanced meals. I suppose I do too, but I'm honestly the eat-cereal-for-dinner kind of gal when I'm too tired to care. 

On those days, it's very handy to have my freezer stocked with some of our favourite meals. It's win-win, since I don't really have to cook, and we still get to enjoy a homemade meal. That being said, we don't eat a meal from the freezer every day - I'm not that lazy! Today I'm going to share with you one of our favourite freezer meals!

Spinach & Black Bean Enchiladas (vegan) | www.maplealps.com

I've been experimenting with all sorts of enchilada recipes, but I keep coming back to this basic recipe, since it's quick, simple, and still really yummy! Spinach is probably my favourite thing to add to dishes, so naturally, I love this.

On meal prep days, sometimes I will make double the amount so that our freezer is always full of enchiladas! 

Black Bean & Spinach Enchiladas (vegan) | www.maplealps.com
Black Bean & Spinach Enchiladas (vegan) | www.maplealps.com

They're quick to make up too, which makes Sunday prep days really painless. I can't complain when something is easy, and still tastes like a lot more effort went into it. 

I'm hoping to share some more freezer friendly meals soon, but for now, try this one out. You will love it.

Black Bean & Spinach Enchiladas (vegan) | www.maplealps.com

Spinach and Black Bean Enchiladas

For the Enchiladas

  • 15 oz. can black beans

  • 1 cup frozen corn

  • 6 oz. baby spinach

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 small red onion

  • 1/3 cup chopped cilantro

  • 2 tsp. cumin

  • 2 cups shredded vegan cheese (optional)

  • Green onion for garnish

  • 10 large tortilla shells

Sauce (or use this recipe)

  • 3 cups vegetable broth

  • 1/2 C tomato paste

  • 1/4 C flour (I use whole wheat white flour)

  • 2 TBSP olive oil

  • 2 tsp. cumin

  • 1/2 tsp each: garlic powder, onion powder, chilli powder

  • salt/pepper to taste

1) Make the sauce by heating olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add tomato paste, flour and spices.

2) Whisk for about a minute and add broth, slowly bringing it to a boil.

3) Reduce to simmer and cook until slightly thickened. Add salt/pepper for taste and set aside.

4) Saute red onion and garlic until softened. Add spinach and cook until slightly wilted.

5) In a large bowl, combine the rest of the ingredients and add onion, garlic and spinach mixture. 

6) Fill tortillas with mixture and roll tightly

7) Coat a 9x13 inch baking dish with some enchilada sauce and line the dish with rolled enchiladas, seam side down.

8) Pour remaining sauce generously over the enchiladas. Sprinkle some cheese on top (optional)

9) Bake at 375 degrees F for about 20 minutes

10) Garnish with fresh cilantro and green onions and try it with some homemade vegan sour cream

Freezer Friendly: As mentioned, I love freezing these for a quick meal on a busy weeknight. To freeze, line rolled enchiladas up on a parchment-lined baking sheet and place in the freezer until firm and ready to transfer to a freezer bag. 

Freeze enchilada sauce separately. 

To prepare, heat up sauce slowly in a saucepan and prepare as normal (see above). Bake covered for about 30 minutes and uncovered for another 20, or until done. 

 

Do you prepare meals in the freezer? Let me know if you try this or anything else by posting to social media and tagging #MapleAlps!


 
 
Spinach & Black Bean Enchiladas (vegan) | www.maplealps.com

"Meaty" Black Bean Vegan Burgers

RecipesAmanda Walter | Maple Alps21 Comments

This weekend we celebrated Fall with a Fall Fest, complete with a hayride, veggie dogs and all the potato salad you could imagine. Now, we do love veggie dogs, but I think I've finally reached my limit for the year. Interestingly enough, we haven't had one burger bonfire, and I think next summer, we'll have to make that happen. Until then, I'll be experimenting with some patties, and sharing them with you.

In all honesty, these burgers are a result of wanting to use up leftovers in the fridge. Just goes to show, that your fridge can indeed be carrying treasures you didn't think of.

"Meaty" Black Bean Vegan Burger. Delicious! | www.maplealps.com

Beans are a serious staple around here. Once I started understanding how to prepare and keep them so that I don't have to buy cans of the stuff anymore (cheaper and healthier to buy dry!), life became so much easier. I had made some enchiladas with these beans. Since I had plenty left, I figured a burger would be the perfect project. 

I wanted something more "meaty" in texture, however; something a little chewier... That does sound strange now that I type it out, but I'm just going to leave that there. I decided to add some TVP and see what happened. 

"Meaty" Black Bean Vegan Burgers. Delicious! | www.maplealps.com

Because the beans were already cooked, it cut down greatly on prep time for these delicious burgers! I even called a friend to come over for lunch, and did we feast! We topped them with fried onions and had sweet potato fries on the side.

"Meaty" Black Bean Vegan Burgers. Delicious! | www.maplealps.com

1 ½ C black beans - cooked (you could use canned too)
2 C TVP
1 large yellow onion - caramelized
¾ C vital gluten flour
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp cumin
2 tsp sea salt
BBQ sauce

1) Soak TVP in about 2C hot water for ten minutes and drain well
2) While soaking, caramelize your onion and set aside - low heat and slow cooking is the key!
3) Add back beans to food processor and pulse until almost smooth. Add caramelized onions and pulse until a paste forms.
4) Add paste, drained TVP and spices to large bowl. Mix well and then add vital gluten flour.
5) Combine and start creating patties out of the mixture. You will get 8-10, depending on the size.
6) Heat a bit of oil in the pan and place a few patties in to pan fry. Slather each side with BBQ sauce and flip. 
7) Serve with your favourite toppings and enjoy!

"Meaty" Black Bean Vegan Burger. Delicious! | www.maplealps.com

PS: If you prefer something gluten-free, try these Juicy Smoked Chickpea Burgers


We love these topped with fried onions and with sweet potato fries on the side!


"Meaty" Black Bean Vegan Burgers | www.maplealps.com