A hearty vegan winter vegetable chili filled with a hint of spice, pinto beans, and winter squash.
Hearty Vegan Winter Vegetable Chili

Count me out for any sort of restrictive, disordered January eating plans, but count me WAY IN for plant-filled, hearty delicious meals all year long.

Rather than any specific strategy or program, I’m more of the Mark Bittman “eat real food, mostly plants” mindset. It keeps me on the straight and narrow about 80% of the time, and the remaining 20% of the time I eat cake (okay, more likely pie).

Ain’t nothing wrong with that.

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First meal plan of the new year and I am really excited!!

I was looking back at my first post from last year to see if I had publicly committed to any resolutions, food or otherwise. NOPE. Call it intuition, kismet, whatever but I (apparently) went into 2019 with exactly ZERO goals. Well played, blissfully ignorant self of early 2020.

One of my intentions had been to cook my way through the Fresh India cookbook and, while I haven’t quite made it there yet, I am *so close*. Most of the recipes left are desserts, which I just have a hard time taking the time to bake because there are so many things I want to bake in this world. I’m taking votes for what I should cook my way through next (preferably a vegetarian cookbook)! I am leaning towards one of the Moosewood cookbooks because they are way underused in my kitchen but I feel like they are classics and probably have a lot of recipe gems that I’m missing out on.

Whatever your food goals for the new year, hopefully they involve eating more delicious things – and I can help with that. Here’s what we’ve got for you in this week’s meal plan:

  • grapefruit quinoa salad – so fresh!
  • red pepper and tomato soup – totally going to be making this with grilled cheese
  • sweet potato vindaloo – the perfect mix of sweet and spicy
  • vegan chili cornbread casserole – yes yes yes
  • tempeh and chickpea sloppy joes – so fun
  • chickpea chocolate chip cookies – impressive

Happy eating!

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What a year.

One of the best parts of having a blog is having a written memory of your past. I can look at a blog post and remember exactly where I was, what I was doing, how I was feeling when I was writing it, eating it, living it. Food bloggers especially get a lot of flack for writing long intros to their recipe posts, but I don’t mind them. (Clearly, I’m biased.)

What’s interesting about this year’s top 10 is that about half of the recipes are from the before times. How innocent, carefree, reckless we were then! We let our child play in communal play spaces, we went to crowded areas, rode the subway and didn’t think twice. It seems so strange now.

My husband and I tell each other almost daily that 2020 will go down as the most difficult year of our lives. And I sincerely hope that is true, because anything harder than this seems terrifying. From having to take on 24/7 childcare while also working (which for me included being on call 24/7 for over a month at a time during the worst of NY’s spring surge), fearing for my life every time I went to work or saw a patient, constantly being afraid that I’d touched something/breathed something/did something that would cause the virus to enter my home. It was just too much. And we have been the lucky ones. My heart goes out to everyone whose lives this pandemic has touched in more tangible and heartbreaking ways.

Hope is on the horizon, but we can never unlearn what what we lived through. We can only move forward.

This year we cooked more than ever before (and that says a lot because I thought I did a lot of cooking to begin with) and it shows in this year’s top ten recipes, which are a mix of comfort, health, and wholesome meals. Here’s to more of that in 2021.

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Addictive roasted sweet potatoes in a fragrant tomato, lime, and cardamom sauce and topped with a garlic and jalapeno salsa.
Roasted Sweet Potatoes in Tomato, Lime, and Cardamom Sauce

They say that whatever you do on New Year’s Day sets the tone for the rest of the year, so I am planning on eating like a QUEEN.

If nothing else, next year had better be full of exceptional, exquisite¬†delicious¬†food. I feel like that’s just about all we can hope for at this point.

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Happy holidays!

We had a (not so) quiet Christmas all to ourselves, which, when you have a four year old, is a mixed blessing. It was less stressful in that I wasn’t cooking for 48 hours straight but there was also no one around to entertain my child for me. So, yeah.

Full truth, I am really not in the mood to cook anything BUT I’m also not in the mood to eat Christmas cookies for every meal. Time to meal plan!

Here’s what we’ve got for you this week to break you out of your holiday food haze:

  • vegan cranberry chili – so hearty!
  • sheet pan chickpeas and veggies – the easiest
  • butternut and rosemary risotto – a little fancy
  • vegan enchiladas – FUN
  • gnocchi, broccoli, and white bean bake – the coziest

Happy eating!

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Whole roasted cauliflower topped with a spicy tomato masala sauce – the perfect vegetarian centerpiece for a dinner party or holiday meal.
Whole Roasted Cauliflower with Spicy Tomato Masala Sauce

I feel like most people I know are doing completely non-traditional Christmas dinners this year.

Everything about this year has been completely insane so…..why not?!

If you’re a longtime reader, you know that I usually host my husband’s family on Christmas Eve and then my family on Christmas day (or vice versa) and do all of the cooking! They are all quite picky and sticklers for tradition, so I usually do a different pasta dish with a bunch of sides for both days.

This year, since we couldn’t fully quarantine due to work (I literally have ten patients of unknown COVID status to see in clinic today), it will just be the three of us so I am going completely rogue on the holiday eats.

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