For nearly a year, we’ve been on an air frying kick. In fact, we have TWO air fryers, because we use them THAT much. From breakfast to dinner, there’s always a great time to put the air fryer to user. One of our favorite dishes to make involves air fried tofu!
We’re going to be completely honest here. Tonight’s dish was an unplanned surprise. We originally set out to make yummy salad taco, BUT…that didn’t happen. Instead, we ended up making a taco soup, sort of. What made us change gears was the fact that the intended dressing, was too watery to use atop the salad filling. So, instead of wasting the dressing, we used our faithful Vitamix and blended it for several minutes until it yielded a pretty good take on a fresh soup.
So what was in the dressing-turned-soup-base? It had a block of silken tofu, lemon juice, shallots, garlic, cilantro, tomato paste, chipotle spice, black pepper and agave nectar. To add a little cheesiness, nutritional yeast made for a nice touch. All the ingredients were whipped up in 6 minutes in our Vitamix!
Plopping refried beans, tomatoes, salsa, shredded carrot, lettuce with a garnish of hot sauce and cilantro made the dish easy on the eyes and pleasant in our tummies. This isn’t the first time, and certainly won’t be the last time that a recipe went awry and needed saving. But, as other with other ad-hoc dinners, we were pretty happy with the results. If you’re interested in the recipe, we don’t have one, as this was a true whip-up.
Have you heard about Trader Giotto’s Organic Riced Cauliflower? NO?!?!?! This has to be one of the best, if not THE BEST, products to come from Trader Joe’s to date. It’s so hot right now that some locations are having trouble keeping it in stock. In fact, we learned that one store has a “wait list” and another had to set a limit on the number of units purchased.
Why is this product so popular? Well…a couple of reasons:
- It’s $1.99 per 12oz bag
- It’s organic…and $1.99 per bag (had to repeat that)
- It comes from Italy, hence it’s called Trader Giotto’s, not Trader Joe’s
- It’s a rice made from cauliflower, making it a grain-free alternative
- Cauliflower is the “IT” vegetable right now (Google “cauliflower!”)
Now, this isn’t a new product. We first saw the riced cauliflower hit stores last summer, but the buzz now that they’re back in stores is amazing.
What’s great about the organic riced cauliflower is that it has the texture and flavor plain cooked rice. Therefore, you can add whatever you want to it. Another plus is that the cauliflower isn’t waterlogged. Ricing, then freezing, seems to help keep the cauliflower from getting mushy while it cooks. It stays fluffy when cooking straight from frozen. It can made into a nice risotto with the right ingredients.
So, how have we prepared the riced cauliflower? We’ve used it in rice bowls, but we’ve just found a brand new way to use it…TACO (or burrito) FILLING! YES!
Here’s our recipe for Buffalo Cauliflower & Chickpea Tacos. We’re even including Carlo’s latest Buffalo sauce recipe that he created just for this dish! Give it all a whirl and let us know what ways you’d work cauliflower rice into a meal!
- 1 c. Frank's Red Hot (or your favorite hot sauce)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 T. apple cider vinegar
- 1 T. tomato paste
- 1 t. agave nectar
- 1 t. cumin
- 1 t. onion powder
- 1 t. paprika
- 1/2 yellow onion
- 1 12oz pkg Trader Giotto's Organic Riced Cauliflower (or 2 c. of homemade riced cauliflower)
- 1 c. Buffalo sauce (see recipe)
- 1 15oz. can chickpeas
- Juice of 1 lime
- Fresh cracked black pepper to taste
- 8-10 small to medium corn tortillas
- 1/2 avocado mashed
- 1/2 c. salsa
- Chopped celery and shredded carrots for garnish
- Your favorite vegan bleu cheese or ranch dressing, optional
- Make the Buffalo sauce by combining all ingredients in a saucepan. Bring to a boil and simmer for 7-10 minutes, until thickened
- While sauce is cooking, add onions to a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Cook until softened and slightly browned
- Add riced cauliflower and stir with onions. Cook for 2-3 minutes before pouring in the Buffalo sauce
- Stir in chickpeas and lime juice and cook for additional 3-5 minutes
- Fill tortillas evenly with cauliflower rice mixture, add favorite toppings and serve
- Can't find cauliflower rice? Minimalist Baker has a great step-by-step recipe to make your own cauliflower rice. Check it out: http://minimalistbaker.com/how-to-make-cauliflower-rice/
- You can also make this filling for burritos. Oh so good!
- BTW, "Mild" is subjective. Carlo can eat ghost peppers.
It’s another #TacoMonday, friends! Time for us to share a yummy recipe, using one of our favorite proteins, TEMPEH! We wanted to have a little fun while making a filling meal to “work for!” That’s what went into our recipe for Loaded Smoky Tempeh Slaw Tacos.
Tempeh’s one of those ingredients that can be tricky for some. If you caught our 7 for $30 Trader Joe’s challenge, you may have read where we called out NOT to eat tempeh straight from the package. Well, that’s because tempeh on its own can be rather bitter. Sure, there are flavored, ready-made tempeh products on the market, and you can work with those. However, we like to start out plain and putting our own flavor twist together, for which we steam our tempeh before including in a recipe.
We like making our own spice blends. When it comes to tacos, we find many are high in sodium. So, we try to scale back on that by putting a mix together ourselves. For this recipe, we used chili powder, chipotle powder, cumin, paprika among others. Yeah, we went really smoky with this one, especially when you see we added liquid smoke to boot! That’s just how we roll.
The best tacos really are made with both flavor and texture in mind, in our opinion. The slaw with lime juice adds a citrus CRUNCH. The mashed avocado complements the smoky tempeh. The salsa just brightens things up all the more. You can’t go wrong with that, right?
You know what else you can’t go wrong with? Turning this dish into a salad. Taco salads are great. They’re just like an inside-out taco with more veggies! Your lime slaw can become the base, topped with the tempeh mixture, salsa, avocado and anything else you like to add. Of course, tortilla chips too!
One of my NEW favorite ways to make tortilla chips and strips comes from the “Clean out the Fridge” Soup we made from Spoon University. No fry. No bake. Microwave the tortillas for 2 minutes and it’s all good!
Here’s the recipe below! Give it a try and let us know what you think in the comments! Also tell us how you like to make your tempeh!
- 1 T. chili powder
- 1 t. chipotle powder
- 1/4 t. cumin
- 1/4 t. garlic powder
- 1/4 t. onion powder
- 1/4 t. paprika
- 1/4 t. cracked black pepper
- 1 8oz. pkg tempeh
- 1 T. olive oil (optional)
- 2-3 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1/2 yellow onion, sliced
- 1 medium red bell pepper, sliced
- 3 T. tomato paste
- 1/2 c. water
- 2-3 dashes of liquid smoke
- For the slaw
- 1 lime
- 2 c. slaw mix (ex. cole or kale-sprout - see notes)
- 6-8 corn tortillas
- 1/2 c. salsa
- 1/2 avocado, mashed
- In a small bowl, mix together all the ingredients for the spice blend. Set aside.
- Using a steamer or double-boiler, steam tempeh for 25-30 minutes. When ready, remove from steamer and roughly chop the tempeh
- Heat a cast-iron pan over a medium-high flame. If using oil, add to the warm pan. Then, add garlic, onions and peppers. Saute for 2-3 minutes
- Add the chopped tempeh and sprinkle the spice blend. Cook for another 5 minutes
- In a small bowl, mix together tomato paste, water and liquid smoke. Pour it over the tempeh and cook for another 5 minutes until liquid has reduced. (Tempeh will begin to break down and resemble taco meat)
- While tempeh cooks, add slaw mix to a medium bowl, and squeeze the juice of the lime over it. Give toss the slaw
- In a warm skillet, heat your tortillas 1-2 minutes on each side to make them more pliable
- Assemble your tacos, filling with the tempeh mixture, salsa, mashed avocado and the slaw
- *For the slaw, you have options from cole slaw to carrot slaw. For this recipe, we like to use Trader Joe's Kale & Brussels sprout slaw, not using the dressing, sunflower seeds or cranberries that come with it
- Note: The dressing with the Trader Joe's slaw is NOT vegan and does NOT come in contact with the slaw