July 17, 2020

A Twist on a Childhood Memory: 2 Vegan Side Dishes. {Recipes}

Summer in Florida calls for cool side dishes.

A modern take on two meals I remember growing up in the 1950s as a young girl. Watching my mom show me how to make a coleslaw and a potato salad, American style. Store-bought mayonnaise, Idaho potatoes, celery, and salt and pepper for one. Green cabbage, carrots, mayonnaise, and salt and pepper for the other.

She used a box grater, and I learned to make it; sly mom—teach and let the child learn to do. Good mom, smart mom.

Later, the busy school and work schedules had me eating in the hospital cafeteria after I left home. Do not even ask about hospital cafeteria food. Meals out with friends, take out, free bar food during my happy hour years, luckily not for too long, left my minimal cooking skills on the back burner. Making reservations became a laughable comment about me when someone asked what I like to make. Reservations?

Venturing into some form of vegetarian to finally plant-based vegan, opened a new world, and I do mean a global exploration of tastes and ideas. Thanks to no shortage of recipes and some creative experimentation, I found a passion for preparing foods to my taste.

I invite you to experiment and explore, use my suggestions, or toss them in the compost pail.

Raw Vegan Tahini Coleslaw {Recipe}

Ingredients:

Cabbage: both green and purple, as much as you desire

Carrots: 4 to 6 depending on the size

Tahini: 1 to 2 tablespoons

EVOO (Extra-virgin Olive Oil): about 1 tablespoon, but, more or less is cool

Coconut liquid aminos: a dash, 3 dashes, dash to your taste

Lime juice: juice from ¼ to entire lime

Black pepper: cracked or ground, to taste (I use a lot)

Cardamom: ground okay, this was an accident, ½ teaspoon

Now the fun begins!

Assemble all the goods, and grab a glass bowl, probably large—it’s easier to mix the goodies.

Wash, with love, all the produce and place on a thick drying cloth, add a dish towel unless you air dry. Well, you do not air dry, the veggies do.

Select an eco-friendly cutting board and a sharp knife—I use ceramic one, but be careful, one drop to the floor and it’s an expensive mistake.

Measuring spoons if you use them. I have adorable ones a friend gave me, but I eyeball the amounts or use regular spoons of various sizes—your choice, as always.

In the large glass bowl, add the EVOO, liquid coconut aminos, lime juice, and tahini.

Working in colorful layers, chop tiny, chop chunky, chop with precision, slice in length, or grate your green cabbage and put some (1/2 or 1/3) in the bowl. Repeat the process with 1/2 or 1/3 of the carrots. Repeat again with the purple cabbage. Why do they call it red? Looks purple to me.

Repeat two or three times.

Add the spices, pepper, and salt if you use it. I personally do not, but you are making it for your taste buds.

Remember the mistake I mentioned in the ingredient list? Cardamom—I took it out to use for the cold potato salad, but accidentally sprinkled a generous amount in the bowl. Decided not to use it in the potato dish.

Let’s move onto the next recipe, and we will wrap up at the end.

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Cold Potato Salad Surprise {Recipe}

Ingredients:

Red small new potatoes: 5-15 or more depending on how many folks are eating

Celery: 4-6 stalks, more is good, it’s heart-healthy

Hot (or not) pepper: I had a large Poblano and used half of it

Red bell pepper: decided it needed more color, used 1/2

Parsley: any type, I switch around or go with what’s available fresh and organic

Chopped organic cashews: about ½ cup

Hot water: equal ratio to the cashews

Lime and lemon: ½ to one whole of each, yep, the lime was another mistake

Black pepper: to taste, remember I go for lots

Salt: Optional, my blood pressure does not want extra sodium

Cayenne pepper: Also optional, it’s hot in Florida so I went a tad on the extra dash

Follow the initial steps from the first recipe, with love, mindfulness, and attention to the process.

Savor the sensory pleasure of the feel of the veggies, the sight of the colors, and the smells. Yes, sniff those ingredients, close your eyes (or not), and let the corners of your lips turn up.

Now let’s get to work.

The cute red potatoes are close to bite-size and may only need a single cut in half. Fork-ready pieces, so cut as needed, to not need a knife when eating. No reason, just simplifying.

Feel free to keep the skin on, I enjoy the beauty of the color and added fiber. But, do cut off any areas of question. Place them into a pot, add filter water to cover, and get those cuties cooking.

Add hot water to the cashews, an equal amount, and let them soak 10 to 20 minutes. So, start this as soon as you start cooking the potatoes.

Put the soaked cashews and hot water into your bullet, blender, or food processor. I have a small bullet. Blend it—it’s fast—and pour it into a large glass bowl. Add the lemon, and if you like, the mistake of a lime.

Chop the celery and add it to the bowl.

No mixing anything yet.

Once the potatoes are to your liking, drain them in the colander and let them cool a few minutes. I tend to be impatient here because I want to eat it. No rush. Gently dump the cooked potatoes into the bowl. Okay, “dump” is a bit harsh, where is my love!? Gently add them to the bowl.

Add the spices of choice, either mentioned above and then the mixing commences. Fold, lightly turn, maybe turning the bowl in a reverse clockwise fashion as you work that silicone spatula, mine is blue, sometimes I use the red one.

Both recipes go into the fridge, covered, for no less than 20 minutes, an hour works well, to chill and mingle the goods.

Select a plate, fancy or plain. And scoop each on to the plate.

Garnish with the parsley or add it to the potato salad.

Take a moment to give gratitude to the veggies, nuts, spices, herbs for nourishing you and your loved ones. Give thanks to all the farmers, truck drivers, stock people, cashiers, local farmers, friends, and family.

Take in the sight and smells, and take a bite. Chew thoroughly, we’ve talked about this before. Get those juices and enzymes working for a healthy gut. Your microbiome will thank you; from your mouth to the other end, it will thank you.

Enjoy!

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Bonus! Yes, a warm potato salad for those in cooler temperatures. Read here: Warm-Me-Up Vegan Potato Salad. {Recipe}

For a whole bunch of delicious recipes, scroll through my author page.

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