My household is a mixed bag of eaters, which has been one of my greatest struggles and learned teachers.
When I met my husband in 2014, I admittedly ate a lot different than now. While I considered myself a “healthy eater,” I wasn’t as conscious of what went into my body and how it affected me. Since then, I have learned how sensitive I am to certain foods, and I aim to nourish myself accordingly with clean, vegan eating.
In my ideal world, everyone would eat vegan and mainly gluten-free. But, it’s not my world, and it’s not always perfect. I have, at times, struggled to keep things deliciously enticing for my conscious pallet while also being able to cook for my family. I also have a past of disordered eating, and I know I must avoid any eating plans that make me feel deprived.
My functional medicine doctor, who is always cheering me on, encouraged me to keep cooking dinners simply, so the task remains manageable. The goal was to prepare satiating veggie-heavy dishes and add the proteins my family members enjoy. While it was easy-to-apply sound advice, it became more boring than watching paint dry; the food was bland, and I did feel deprived. I knew I needed to find creative ways to prepare meals and play with delicious recipes.
Exploring ways to make food clean and mouthwatering has become a pastime and hobby for me now. I am constantly playing with vegan recipes, highlighting those that are quick.
One, in particular, continues to be a family favorite and has become a weekly meal everyone loves. It is clean, vegan, tasty, and can be gluten-free. It is also easy to switch up for variety!
Here is the recipe for our weekly go-to creamy soba noodle dish. I don’t do measurements but:
What you will need:
For the veggies:
2 types of veggies to fill a large sheet pan evenly: I always use 16 oz of mushrooms and add 2-4 cups of something green like green beans, asparagus, broccoli
2-3 tbsp olive oil (or another oil of preference to coat veggies)
Salt for sprinkling
Red pepper flakes for sprinkling; omit for non-spicy
For the sauce:
1/3 cup tahini
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2 tbsp white miso paste
2 tbsp sriracha (I like probiotic sriracha) omit for non-spicy
2 tbsp cup Bragg Liquid Aminos
1/4-1/2 cup water (pending sauce thickness)
2 garlic cloves
A bit of ginger if desired
Finishing touches and noodles:
1 package of soba noodles (gluten-free if preferred)
6 cups arugula and/or spinach
2-3 chopped green onions
Sesame seeds for topping
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
1. Wash the veggies, pat them dry, and lay them out on a sheet pan.
2. Drizzle the veggies with olive oil, and if desired, sprinkle with Celtic sea salt and red pepper flakes. Mix and massage them with your hands, talk to them, thank them, and send light to them. Bless any veggies that fall to the floor for any animals that may find them. In my case, my sweet and food-driven Goldendoodle, Cali, is always there waiting for some to drop. Bake the veggies for about 12ish minutes.
3. Prepare a pot of water to boil for the soba noodles. Cook the noodles according to the directions on the package (usually six to seven minutes).
4. Make the sauce by mixing the tahini, rice vinegar, white miso paste, sriracha, Bragg Liquid Aminos, garlic, and ginger. Use a small smoothie blender for ease. If mixing by hand, mince the garlic and ginger. After the sauce is mixed, add 1/4-1/2 cup water until you reach a desirable thickness.
5. Check on the veggies and noodles, and either remove them or leave them be for a few more moments. Fill bowls with arugula and/or spinach. When the noodles and veggies are ready, place a serving of noodles over the greens, place a layer of veggies, and add sauce (about 1/4 cup each, but some like less). Top with the green scallions and sesame seeds, and enjoy.
I am a meal planner, complete with the dry erase board and all, and this is without fail on our menu once a week. My family enjoys this the most, even the pickiest eater. If you try it or experiment with it, I would love to hear how you shift it. Happy clean eating!