Smoky Roasted Cauliflower Steaks

‘Sup guys! I’ve done a lot of sweet Christmas recipes so far, but today I have some Smoky Roasted Cauliflower Steaks that are a GREAT vegetarian main or side dish for your Christmas dinner. I also threw some mushrooms on the pan to toast with the steaks because mushrooms are so tasty and remind me of the holidays!

The concept of a cauliflower steak is a thick slab of cauliflower seared or roasted so that it is reminiscent of a steak. I actually love steaks- I’m not vegan or vegetarian, but I love veggies too, and these “steaks” are just so good and perfect for switching it up once and a while.

In this recipe, I amped up the meatiness of the cauliflower by using liquid smoke in the marinade!! My family and I made some homemade beef jerky the other week (it was so good I highly recommend), and an ingredient in the marinade was liquid smoke. It gave it such a good flavour! So I thought, why not add it to my cauliflower? And it worked its magic there too. Liquid smoke is used in a variety of vegan and vegetarian recipes because it does give that savoury, meaty flavour, so it’s worth picking some up. Also in the marinade, we have balsamic, garlic, and a bunch of spices that all work together to create a ziploc bag full of deliciousness😂

I marinaded the steaks for 4 hours- flipping the bag halfway through to make sure that everything got coated evenly. This made the cauliflower so flavourful! I then placed the steaks on a sheet pan in the oven, but not before tossing some sliced mushrooms in the leftover marinade and throwing them on the pan as well.

Everything roasts up SO nicely in the oven, getting crispy and tender and steak-like! These steaks, along with the mushrooms, would be great alongside some mashed potatoes (or sweet potatoes), more roasted veggies, and maybe some vegetable gravy! They’re super tasty and have a wonderful texture.

Hope you enjoy this vegan holiday dish!

Smoky Roasted Cauliflower Steaks

Serves: 3

Total Time: 5 hours

Ingredients:

For the Steaks and Mushrooms:

  • 1/2 a head of cauliflower, washed and cut lengthwise into about 3/4 inch slabs
  • 5-6 white mushrooms, sliced
  • Sprinkle of dried oregano and dried rosemary
  • Salt and pepper to taste

For the Marinade:

  • 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp maple syrup
  • 1/4 tsp liquid smoke
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp ground pepper
  • Red chilli flakes to taste

Directions:

  1. Combine all of the marinade ingredients in a large resealable bag. Add in the cauliflower steaks and place in the fridge for 4 hours, flipping over the bag halfway through to make sure that the marinade gets to every part of the veggies.
  2. Once the 4 hours are up, preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove the steaks from the marinade and place them on a parchment lined baking sheet.
  3. Toss the sliced mushrooms in the remaining marinade, and then place them on the baking sheet as well. Sprinkle some dried rosemary, oregano, salt and pepper over everything, throw the pan in the oven and roast for 35-40 minutes, until the cauliflower is tender.
  4. Remove the pan from the oven and serves the mushrooms and cauliflower warm.
  5. Enjoy!

Hope you’re all having a wonderful Christmas-week so far! I’ll see you on Wednesday with another holiday recipe🥰

Yours Truly,

Olivia:)))

Chickpea Shakshuka

Hey there! I have a really fun and awesome recipe for you guys today! Even though you may not have heard of it, Shakshuka is SO GOOD. It’s a middle eastern dish that combines a warming tomato stew with poached eggs, and is the perfect addition to your breakfast spread. I added some chickpeas to mine for some extra protein and fibre. This recipe is super easy to follow and comes together in less than an hour, because the faster this deliciousness gets into your mouth, the better.

I’ve seen shakshuka on a bunch of cooking shows and featured in the occasional Pinterest post, so I thought, why not try it out? I began by frying up onions and garlic. What a shocker! I find it interesting how so many different cultures use garlic and onions in their food. Making tomato sauce? Garlic and onions. Curry? Garlic and onions. Shakshuka? GARLIC AND ONIONS BABY. I am not complaining because the smell of frying onions is out of this world. After I got that aromatic veg all sauteed up, I threw in some amazing spices, tomatoes, tomato paste, chickpeas, and lots of salt and pepper. Those ingredients all get to know each other very well in the pan while you continue on with your morning routine. I did some stretching:)

Personally, I am an egg lover, and so this is next part was my favourite. After stirring up the stew, I cracked four eggs DIRECTLY into there, brought it to a nice heavy simmer, covered, and let them poach. This is a critical moment because you want that yolk to be nice and runny. I appreciate a good hard boiled egg, but this is not the time. So set your timers because it will be very disappointing is you overcook these. I will personally be disappointed in you.

Once those eggs are done, you’re done! Step back! That’s all! I just took these off the heat, removed the lid so that the eggs don’t keep steaming, and I want to say that I dug in right then and there but no, I took the whole pan down to the fridge in our basement to preserve it for when the lighting was better, so I could take a good picture. Do you see the sacrifices that I make for you guys? Annnnnyways, when I finally got around to eating this, I scooped myself a big bowl, warmed it up, and topped it with fresh chives, parsley flakes, and avocado because you’ve gotta go big or go home. And let me tell you, this is AMAZING. It’s so full of flavour from all those spices, and then the chickpeas give you some texture, and that runny yolk is just perfection. This is such a great fall/winter breakfast, because it’s so cozy! Traditionally it is a breakfast dish, but I would be very happy to eat this any time of day.

Make sure that you try this out! I can’t wait to make it again for my family on a weekend.

Chickpea Shakshuka

Serves: 2-4

Total Time: 50 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium sized white onion, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon (trust me)
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp red chilli flakes
  • 2 tsp parsley flakes (plus more for garnish)
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 can of tomato paste
  • 1 can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 4 eggs
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Chopped chives, for garnish (optional)
  • 1 avocado for serving, sliced (optional)

Directions:

  1. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large, deep pan or skillet. Add in the onions and cook for around 4 minutes, until they’re just translucent. Next add in the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes.
  2. Add the all of the spices and herbs to the pan and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes, until they’re somewhat browned and nice and fragrant.
  3. Dump the tomatoes, tomato paste, and paprika into the pan. Season generously with salt and pepper, give everything a good stir, then lower the heat to a slow simmer. Cover the pan and let cook for 30 minutes.
  4. Remove the lid from the pan, stir everything again and make sure the stew is level across the top. Crack the 4 eggs directly into the pan, in a kind of square pattern so that they’re not too close to each other. Bring the stew back up to a faster simmer, cover again, and let the eggs poach for EXACTLY 5 minutes.
  5. Remove then pan from the heat and take the lid off. serve immediately and garnish with more parsley flakes, chopped chives, or avocado.
  6. Enjoy!

Hope you guys love this recipe! It’s one of my faves. Come back on Friday for my December Reading List!

Yours Truly,

Olivia:))

Double Pea Fried Quinoa

Hey there! I just wanted to start off by saying that on Sunday it was my three year blogging anniversary and I didn’t even realize it! I can’t believe it’s been three years already and want to thank you guys for all your support:) I’ve come a long way from just book reviews to lots of food stuff- if you’d like to check out my very first post I’ll put the link here.

So yeah, today we’ve got some Double Pea Fried Quinoa! Olivia is my name and frozen veggies are my GAME. Sorry that was a bit cringy but I just had to assert somehow that I really like using frozen veggies. This dish makes a great side, or base for a bowl or salad. It includes both green peas and chickpeas- hence the double peas. It’s also super speedy and has lots of flavour. Plus the bright greens from the peas and parsley will lift your spirits during the winter months.

I started by frying A LOT of garlic and some onions- you know how I love that garlic. Then I added in the green peas, chickpeas, cooked quinoa, and some parsley, salt and peppered it up, and bang it was done! It’s full of bright, fresh deliciousness and also some protein. And, like most of my recipes, it’s great for meal prep which is a bonus. Today I had this Double Pea Fried Quinoa with some tuna mixed with avocado, sprouts, and hummus for a very tasty and nutritious lunch. Yum:)

I don’t really know what else to say, except that you should probably go and make this right now. Go on!

Double Pea Fried Quinoa

Serves: 4

Total Time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small white onion, thinly sliced
  • 4 large cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 cups of frozen green peas
  • 2 cups of cooked quinoa
  • 1/2 cup packed fresh parsley
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. And in the onions and garlic and cook for 4 minutes, making sure that the garlic doesn’t burn.
  2. Add the frozen peas to a pan and stir until they’re defrosted, about 2 minutes.
  3. Add the quinoa and cook for an additional 4 minutes, stirring every once in a while to get even cooking.
  4. Mix in the parsley, season with salt and pepper, remove from the heat and enjoy!!

Simple as that! I hope you enjoy:) I’ll see you on Friday with my December Bullet Journal Set-Up! It’s a good one:))

Yours Truly,

Olivia

Butternut Squash Spaghetti

Anyone craving pasta? Stupid question, I know. Pasta is just one of those comforting and delicious things that I’m down for anytime🙌 Today we’re both health-ifying and fall-ifying some spaghetti by using butternut squash, roasted garlic, and juicy tomatoes. Yes please!

The butternut squash sauce for these noodles is INSANELY easy and INSANELY good. First, you oven roast some squash (I used frozen squash chunks for extra convenience), a tomato, and garlic. Then all of that goodness is blended with herbs that remind me of fall- rosemary, thyme, and sage, and lots of salt and pepper. This makes a sauce so with an amazing flavour and an even more amazing colour😍😍 Yum!

I used some nice whole wheat pasta as a base for my sauce, because it’s a great way to get more nutrients in👌 I also love lentil or chickpea noodles, which have lots of protein! Even if you’re using regular pasta, this is still a delicious and healthy meal. We need carbs people! They give us energy so we can be our amazing selves😉 Also, they’re really tasty. So it’s a win-win!

Hope you enjoy this fall pasta dish! I know it’s going to be on repeat at my house all season long🥰

Butternut Squash Spaghetti

Serves: 2

Total Time: 35 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 servings of whole wheat spaghetti
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cups frozen butternut squash chunks, or fresh butternut squash cut into centimetre cubes.
  • 1 large tomato, cut in half
  • 5 cloves of garlic, in the skins
  • 1/4 tsp ground sage
  • 1/4 tsp ground thyme
  • 1/2 tsp dried rosemary
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Add the tomato and the butternut squash onto a parchment lined baking sheet, and toss with the olive oil and some salt and pepper. Wrap the garlic cloves in tinfoil to create a little packet, and place that on the pan as well. Throw it in the oven and roast for 25-30 minutes, until the squash and the tomato are soft.
  3. Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to a boil and cook the pasta until al dente, about 8-10 minutes. Set aside.
  4. Once the veggies are done roasting, toss them into a blender or food processor with the thyme, rosemary, sage, and some salt and pepper. Remove the garlic cloves from their skins and add them as well. Blend until a smooth sauce forms.
  5. Add the sauce to the pasta and coat the noodles evenly. Serve warm and enjoy!

Have a great weekend everyone!!

Yours Truly,

MyDayIsBooked:)

Lentil and Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

It seems too early to be transitioning from fall to winter, but it’s kind of already happening. Why the heck is it so cold? And why is the sun rising at like nine and setting at like six? These are questions we have yet to answer, my friends. But in the meantime, we might as well embrace the freezing darkness that is winter and enjoy these stuffed peppers.

Stuffed peppers are an amazing comfort food🥰 They’re hearty and delicious, perfect for a cold winter night. These ones also happen to be super healthy, as well as vegan and gluten free. I used lentils and quinoa for the meat substitute, and it makes a filling that is INCREDIBLE. My advice is to double or triple the recipe so you can have tasty peppers for lunch all week long.

Also, if you don’t feel like cooking for hours or washing a TON of dishes, these are for you! I used canned lentils and already cooked quinoa for increased simplicity. You just need to fry up some onions and basically mix everything tightest in the pot. Then stuff your peppers, pop em in the oven, and let them get nice and soft on the outside, warm on the inside, and crispy on top😍 (Those crispy bits are the best part). You’re left with a meal that is so flavourful and filling that you’ll be like, take that, stupid winter. So yeah, the season might not be too bad if you’ve got these hanging around!

Hope you enjoy this recipe!:)

Lentil and Quinoa Stuffed Peppers

Serves: 2

Total Time: 45 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 large bell peppers, any colour
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 can of tomato paste (6 oz)
  • 1 cup cooked lentils (I used the brown canned variety)
  • 2/3 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 cup packed spinach
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. In a medium sized pot, heat the olive oil. Add in the diced onions and cook for 6-8 minutes, until translucent.
  2. Add the minced garlic to the pot and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Then dump in the tomato paste, lentils, quinoa, balsamic, soy sauce, herbs and spices, and stir to combine.
  3. Let the mixture cook for about 5 minutes, then add in the spinach and continue to cook until it’s wilted. Season with salt and pepper to taste, then remove from the heat.
  4. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Cut out the tops of your peppers so that a round hole is left. Full each pepper with half of the lentil and quinoa filling, then place in a glass baking dish.
  5. Bake the peppers for about 15 minutes in the oven; then reduce the heat to 375 degrees Fahrenheit and cook for an additional 5-10 minutes, until the peppers are soft and the top of the filling is crispy.
  6. Remove from the oven and enjoy!

Hope you guys are having a great week! I have another great pumpkin recipe for you guys on Friday. We’ve got to milk this pumpkin and apple stuff before fall is over, am I right? See you then!

Yours Truly,

Olivia:))