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Overstuffed Pleasure

These overstuffed vegetables won't overstuff you.
Artichoke Overload-0023

Savory, warm and romantic

Avocado Overflow-0010

Creamy, cool and charming

Overloaded Artichoke

SIMPLE STUFFERS
Large artichokes
Westsoy Roma Tomato Basil Baked Tofu, diced
Onion, diced
Jar of button mushrooms
Multiple garlic cloves, minced
Olive oil
Sea salt
Italian seasoning
Dried or fresh parsley
Granulated garlic (optional)

Artichoke Overload-0020

Artichokes can be intimidating. The tender heart is protected by layers of spiny leaves and a choke that resembles a miniature porcupine. Fear no more!  FITskitz to the rescue! This exotic looking vegetable is simple to prepare and loads of fun to eat. Artichokes, an antioxidant, are good for digestion.

Here’s how I cook it:

  1. With a large, sharp knife, cut off entire stem exposing the base of the artichoke.
  2. Use kitchen shears to snip off any sharp points on leaves.
  3. Fill large sauce pan with approximately 2″ of water. Turn burner on high.
  4. Set artichoke face up in the water and wait for water to boil.
  5. Reduce heat to simmer immediately and cover pot. Allow artichoke to steam in pot for approximately 40-45 minutes.

Here’s how I prepare it:

  1. Allow artichoke to cool slightly on cutting board.
  2. Turn over and with a paring knife, cut a plug out of the center (where stem was removed). Pull out the plug and slice off the spiny choke. Put plug back in.
  3. Turn artichoke right side up and separate leaves in the center. With a spoon, scoop out the tiny colorless leaves and any remaining choke near the bottom.

Here’s how I stuff it:

  1. Sauté onion in a little olive oil until soft. Add in mushrooms and diced tofu. Continue to sauté until tofu starts to brown on the edges. Add in the minced garlic toward the end of cooking.
  2. Open leaves of artichoke from the center and drizzle olive oil over the top and sprinkle with sea salt. (This is where I add additional granulated garlic because I love garlic!!)
  3. Stuff tofu mixture into the center and pile on top. 
  4. Shake italian seasoning over the artichoke and sprinkle with parsley.

Here’s how I eat it:

  1. Carefully watching my competitors at the table. I love the tender meat on the leaves but the artichoke heart is the ultimate gift to my palate.
  2. With LOTS of napkins:)

Overflowing Avocado

Avocado Overflow-0013

COOL COMPONENTS
Westsoy chicken style seitan
1 T olive oil
1 tsp onion powder
Onion, diced
Tri color mini peppers, diced
Sweet pickle relish
1 small tomato, seeded and diced
2-3 T Vegenaise (cold)
1 tsp tarragon
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1 tsp onion powder
Fresh ground pepper
Ripe avocados
Organic baby spinach

Cut chick’n style seitan into small chunks. Heat olive oil in skillet and cook seitan until it begins to brown. While browning, sprinkle in onion powder. Total cook time approximately 5 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Refrigerate in a covered container until cold.

In large bowl, mix cold seitan with remaining ingredients except for spinach and avocados. Adjust amount of Veganaise to your liking.

Slice avocado in half and remove seed. Scoop out each half with a spoon. Lay them on a bed of baby spinach.

Stuff each avocado half with the freshly prepared chick’n salad.

The creaminess of the avocado reigns supreme so there is no need for additional dressing. Unless adding a few dribbles of my homemade vegan ranch dressing gets you to eat all of your heart-healthy spinach!

***

Stuffing is one of my favorite kitchen secrets. It’s easy, fun for kids, and can turn an ordinary dinner into something special. There’s also a hidden benefit. An indirect way to portion control. Depending on what you’re stuffing, of course:).

So enjoy the overflow. This is one time everyone enjoys picking up the pieces!

"One of the hardest decisions of life is whether to walk away or try harder."

 

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