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Vegetarian cooking has become increasingly popular over recent years. At first, vegetarian cooking was somewhat bland and boring, but now there are many delicious, simple vegetarian recipes that anyone can enjoy.

The following are several vegetarian recipes that are healthy and full of taste. Some of them do include dairy so they would not be good for vegans.


CURRIED POTATOES AND CAULIFLOWER (serves 4)

Ingredients:

1 large head of cauliflower (just use the crown, cut into small flowerets)

3 large or 4 medium Idaho or russet potatoes (cut into 1/2 squares)

5 tablespoons curry powder

1 small white onion (finely diced)

1 teaspoon tumeric

1/2 cup plain yogurt

3 tablespoons butter

1/2 cup coconut milk

Directions:

1. Cook cauliflower in microwave for approximatley 3 minutes.

2. Peel and cut potatoes and cook in microwave for approximately 6 minutes, until tender when poked with a fork.

3. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter on a low heat.

4. Add the onion and sautee until soft and clear.

5 Add the curry powder and tumeric.

6. Add the cooked cauliflower, potatoes, and coconut milk.

7. Bring to a boil and then immediatley cover and reduce heat.

8. Let simmer on low heat for 30-40 minutes.

9. Take off stove top and slowly stir in the plain yogurt.

Note: This dish is best served with or over rice.


CHICK PEA SALAD (serves 2)

Ingredients:

1 large can of chick peas (also called garbonzo beans)

1 large red onion (finely minced)

1 bunch flat parsley (roughly cut)

1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice

5 tablespoons olive oil

Directions:

Drain the chick peas and mix in large bowl with the minced onion and cut parsley. Mix in the lemon juice and olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste and mix thouroughly.

Note: This salad can be eaten as a great side dish or as a meal with toasted pita bread.


PORTOBELLO MUSHROOM SANDWICHES (serves 4)

Ingredients:

4 portobello mushroom caps

2 cloves of garlic (crushed)

2 large, roasted red peppers (available in jars if you don't want to make your own)

1/4 lb. of mozzarella cheese, sliced very thin

4 sliced in half crusty rolls (Italian or French)

1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar

Directions:

1. In a baking dish, mix the mushrooms with the crushed garlic and balsamic vinager. Broil for approximately 20-30 minutes or until mushrooms are tender.

2. Place the portobello on the bottom of the roll.

3. Divide the roasted peppers and cheese evenly and put them on top of the peppers. The cheese should be on the very top of the sandwich.

4. Put the sandwiches under the broiler for a few seconds to melt the cheese.

5. Take the leftover liquid from the pan (the vinegar, garlic, and mushroom drippings) and pour into a small bowl for a dipping sauce everyone will love.

6. Slice sandwiches and serve.


PENNE PASTA WITH FRESH TOMATOES AND BASIL
(serves 4)

Ingredients:

1 lb. penne pasta

20-25 fresh cherry tomatoes sliced in half

1 bunch of fresh basil (must be fresh)

1 clove of minced garlic

2 tablespoons olive oil

Directions:

1. Cook pasta (al dente); drain

2. In a saucepan, sautee the tomatoes and garlic in the olive oil for about 1-2 minutes.

3. Put the pasta back into the pan and mix with the other ingredients.

4. Sprinkle fresh basil all over the top of the pasta dish.

5. Serve immediately, while hot and fresh.