Sunday, June 2, 2013

Black Bean Pasta

June 1 & 2, 2013

Yesterday we went to Moe's for lunch. My son had a cheese quesadilla. My hubby had nachos with beans, onions, peppers, mushrooms, jalapenos, and queso. My daughter had a burrito with tofu, black beans, rice, sour cream, cilantro, black olives, cheese, and lettuce. I tried a stack called the wrong doug. I had tofu (gasp!), black beans, cilantro, mushrooms, onions, peppers, pico de gallo, sour cream, cheese, and guacamole. It is stuffed between two corn shells then wrapped in a grilled tortilla. It was awesome but super filling. I was stuffed after only eating half!

We had friends over for dinner. We made tacos. Local ground beef for them and black beans for us. We topped our tacos with romaine lettuce, tomatoes, onion, black olives, cheese, sour cream, grilled onions/peppers/portobello mushrooms, and avocado. I wanted to make some type of appetizer. Even though we had it twice in the past few days, I knew just what would go perfect with tacos....the salsa corn queso dip. Yes! It was delicious. I set out some pineapple, pears, grapes, and strawberries and we were all set. For dessert, our friends had brought over a tray of assorted cheesecake. Yum.

We woke up today and my hubby asked me if I wanted to do a day trip. I did what any rational person would do. Scream yes and start searching menus to see where we would eat lunch! I found a little cafe that is all vegan. We were all pretty excited to try it. I had a portobello mushroom garlic flavored seitan, spinach, tomato, alfalfa sprouts, mozzarella cheese, avocado and roasted garlic mayo sandwich served on toasted rye bread. It was good. I think I would enjoy seitan more if it had been cut thinner and I would rather a different cheese. My son had pancakes. They were the best pancakes ever. I had the kids ask what was in them but I only got a half hearted reply. I may need to do some research! My daughter had buckwheat soba noodles, marinated tofu and mushrooms atop a bed of leafy greens topped with sesame seeds served with a sesame ginger dressing. Her salad was really good. My hubby had thinly sliced seitan, sauerkraut, 1,000 island dressing, and vegan cheese on toasted rye. Ah, yes. Thinly sliced seitan is the way to go. We heard their milkshakes were great so we decided to share one. We had the peanut butter oreo shake. Oh my gosh. It was amazing. It was so smooth and the flavors were awesome. I made a comment that if only they had a raspberry one that we could share another. My daughter pointed out my mistake: pineapple raspberry. Uh oh! We went back in for another round. It. Was. Heaven. I will definitely need to try to duplicate that!

We hit up a natural foods store. I found such cool stuff. My favorite find was pasta made out of black beans. Imagine eating spaghetti (my fav) but with the added bonus of 25 grams of protein. Wohoo! I also bought dry black beans, brown rice, peanut butter and honey (travel pack for my daughter), vegetarian teriyaki jerky (my daughter's choice again), acai energy drink (for hubby), and cranberry orzo.

I wanted to try out the black bean pasta for dinner. I also had a new recipe to try for roasted pepper sauce. After reading through the recipe, I realized that I would want to make a few changes to it. I sauteed two tablespoons of garlic, two fresh basil leaves, and about 3/4 jar of roasted red peppers. I put it through the food processor then added it back to the pan. I stirred in 2 cups of half and half, 1/4 cup of asiago, 1/2 cup of parmesan, and 1/4 cup of mozzarella. The only reason that I used parmesan is that I used up the end of the asiago. I use any good block of cheese interchangeably so just use what kind you like. Seasoned the sauce with salt and pepper and it was set. I steamed some broccolini as our side. If you have never had broccolini, you are missing out. It tastes almost like a cross between asparagus and broccoli. I LOVE it but have a hard time finding it at stores. How did we like the pasta? My daughter took a couple bites and said "this spaghetti is awesome"! My son said he liked it but would rather the sauce a little thinner. Ok. My hubby said it was delicious. I loved it. You could tell it was different than a store bought pasta. Although, fresh pasta also tastes different than store bought. Take a look at the ingredient list on a box of white pasta. I bet you will find multiple ingredients that you don't know what they are. This pasta had two ingredients: black beans and water. Score. I need to find this pasta closer to home! We finished off our dinner with some of the leftover cheesecake that our friends left behind. We topped it with caramel sauce from Pampered Chef. Yum!

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