So, for the next few weeks, I’ll be eating a vegan diet. There are a couple of reasons for this:
1. I like a challenge. I want to learn to cook without staples like meat, eggs, and cheese, and still eat a balanced diet.
2. Ever since I got the flu in February, I’ve been sick with something or other. Vegans always talk about how awesome they feel, so I want to see if this is actually true or if they’re just trying to convince people to not eat animals. I know from my brief stint as a vegetarian that I’ll probably never be able to give up barbecue permanently, but if eating vegan, say, 90% of the time makes me feel awesome, that’s what I’ll do.
I concocted this recipe today to kick off my vegan-ness. Even though I’m not officially starting till tomorrow, I needed to go ahead and make something that would reheat well, use a lot of Greenling ingredients, and would serve as a tasty lunch at work. I figured I could still make an awesome pesto without basil or cheese, and I was right (if I do say so myself). Plus, I got a nice surprise when I cut into the potatoes and they were purple!
I served the potatoes and squash with some prepared garlic-and-herb baked tofu, which was ridiculously good. I think my next task will be to create some great baked tofu on my own. But, for now, I give you this quick recipe.
Potatoes and Squash with (Vegan) Parsley Pesto
Leaves from 1 bunch parsley (about 2 cups)
1/3 c. sliced almonds
2 cloves garlic
1/3 c. olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Juice from 1/2 an orange
1 lb new potatoes, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 lb summer squash, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 tbsp olive oil
For the pesto, combine the parsley, almonds, garlic, oil, salt, pepper, and orange juice in a food processor. Process until only slightly chunky, about 1 minute. Set aside.
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add potatoes and cook for 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cover and cook for 4 minutes, until almost tender. A fork should slide into a piece of potato, but not easily. Add squash, cover, and cook for 5 more minutes, until squash and potatoes are tender. Add pesto and stir to combine. Serve warm.