Dinner tonight was inspired by my lovely afternoon spent at the Power of Women conference at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.
Okay to be honest most of it was a bit of a yawn and at points it was downright offensive BUT I went because the keynote speaker was none other than gay icon/heartthrob/superhero Ellen Degeneris.
I have been a huge fan of Ellen for a long time now. In fact when I was in elementary school I wrote a book report on Ellen’s autobiography. The assignment was to choose a piece of non-fiction writing that we felt inspired by. Other children chose to write about key historical figures like Nelson Mandela, Marie Curie and Ghandi. But for me, a sassy 4th grader who spelled women with a “Y” (because the word men in our name when they don’t define who we are…obvz) and spent most of my life living on an organic farm/hippie commune, Ellen’s unique brand of spunky, self-effacing joi de vivre seemed to strike a chord. I saw her as a woman who had experienced alienation as a young person and bigotry as an adult but still managed to muddle through it all with compassion and a crooked half smile the world can’t help but love.
I’ll stop gushing. Really I will. But not before passing along the recipe I used for my dinner tonight. And in honour of Ellen’s kind animal lovin’ heart, it has a little vegan twist.
Vegan Rose Sauce:
- 2 tbsp hummus
- 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1/2 cup (or a little more) of unsweetened almond breeze or other non-dairy milk
- 1/4 cup fire roasted diced tomatoes (or use regular but add a little smoked paprika or liquid smoke)
- Salt (I used lightly seasoned herbamare)
- Boil 1 serving of your favourite whole grain noodles according to the package. I used Japanese buckwheat (soba) noodles.
- Toss 1/2 yellow pepper, 1/2 zuchini, 2 large handfuls of spinach, and 1 floret of broccoli in a little olive oil, salt and italian seasoning (oregano, thyme, garlic powder) until well coated.
- Grill or stir fry until they blacken a little and are cooked through.
- As the veggies are cooking prepare your protein of choice. The options are limitless here but my suggestions are: 1/2 cup shelled edamame or 1 serving of herbed tofu (either of which you can just toss in with the veggies) OR 1 fillet of steamed, grilled or broiled fish – ideally fatty varieties like salmon or tuna.
- Drain your noodles and place them at the bottom of a large bowl, covered in about half your sauce. Then add veggies, protein and the remainder of sauce.
- Top with chopped scallions and a handful of toasted pepitas (this is an essential component. don’t skimp on the smoky crunch!)