October 16, 2022


I've been posting a lot of tofu recipes lately, and since not everybody likes--or is familiar with--tofu, I figured I would try out a recipe that uses ordinary ingredients. I still like being somewhat adventurous, though, so I chose to make a chickpea loaf (similar to a meatloaf, only using chickpeas in place of meat).

I made the chickpea loaf yesterday and uploaded the photos to my computer... 

And you know what? I just now searched my blog for "lentil loaf" because I was sure I reviewed lentil loaf for one of my first vegan recipes. It turns out, I had actually made Chickpea Loaf in March! It was the same exact recipe that I made yesterday. Hahaha, I'm cracking up! My memory is horrible. Interestingly, though, I really didn't care for the chickpea loaf this time, even though I loved it before. Maybe now that I've tried so many other amazing vegan foods, the chickpea loaf is just meh. 

It's so funny--all that I just read in my post from March is pretty much what I was going to write today, except that I didn't care for the loaf this time.

Thankfully, I prepared another recipe today and I took photos just in case I wanted to use it for a recipe review. Today, I made Pasta e Fagioli. I have been making my own recipe for years, and my whole family loves it. However, it's not vegan. I could easily make it vegan, but I thought it would be fun to try something completely new.

I picked Pasta e Fagioli by Cookie + Kate (I'll link to it again at the end of the post). The ingredients were simple enough. The only thing I didn't have was the kale. I wasn't a fan of kale the last time I had it, but I found "baby kale" and it looked better.

Ingredients: olive oil, carrots, celery, onions, garlic, canned tomatoes, white beans, pasta, parsley, kale, bay leaves, crushed red pepper, oregano, vegetable broth, water, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. (I don't buy vegetable broth; I make a bouillon powder and mix it with water to make broth.)

This recipe took me a while because I prepped everything first instead of doing it as I was cooking, but it was easy enough.

First, you heat the oil in a pot, then add the celery, carrots, and onions. I always like how pretty the three look together.

Cook until soft (it took about five minutes) and then add the garlic and cook for another minute. I meant to take a picture, but forgot until after I added the tomatoes (the next step).

Cook a few more minutes, and then add the broth, water, and spices. At this point, it looked very watery, and I hoped that the end result would be thicker.

Simmer for 10 minutes or so, and then comes the scary part. I didn't read this ahead of time... but you have to add 1-1/2 cups of the hot soup to the blender with 3/4 cup of the beans and then purée until very smooth. Well, remember what happened when the bullet blender nearly took my head off? It was because I wasn't supposed to blend hot liquid in it--when the seal is airtight, the pressure builds up and causes it to explode.

I carefully put a cup and a half of the soup, along with 3/4 cup of beans, into the blender. The Ninja blender I have has an airtight seal, but there is a pouring spout on one end--so when the spout is open, it's obviously not airtight. I opened it up and then covered it with a towel (to avoid spattering) before blending. Thankfully, it worked out just fine!

Then you pour it back into the pot. The soup was still very watery, but I know that adding pasta really thickens up soup--even if there isn't a ton of pasta. After you pour it back into the pot, you add the beans, pasta, kale, and parsley. 

Bring it to a simmer and let it cook for about 20 minutes. I hoped it wouldn't make the pasta soggy by cooking it for so long, but I was glad to see that it had thickened up quite a bit!

Finally, you add a little more olive oil, the lemon juice, and salt. I couldn't wait to eat it! Lately, I've been making dinner super early in the afternoon, which isn't ideal. I like to eat dinner late (like 7:30 ish) but Jerry goes to work before then. So I cook dinner, and then he takes some to work and I save some for later. So we are both reheating food, haha. 

We tasted the soup when it was done, though, and it was SO good. Absolutely perfect for a fall day! I added some vegan parmesan that I made a couple of days ago (also a recipe from Cookie + Kate). Jerry and I both agreed that the soup was delicious. The pasta e fagioli that I've been making all these years has sausage in it, but this vegan one is so flavorful that it doesn't need meat. And I like the addition of the kale!

The kids weren't here to taste it, so I can't write their opinions, but I am fairly certain they would like it. Eli would probably pick around the kale, but there aren't any "weird" ingredients, so I think he'd give it a chance ;)  (ETA: Eli just came home as I was writing and he ate a whole bowl--so he likes it!)

Overall: I'll definitely be adding this to my collection of "make this again" recipes. If the kids don't eat the leftovers, I'm going to have it again tomorrow.

Here is a link to the recipe for Pasta e Fagioli from Cookie + Kate.

1 comment:

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