Sunday, May 13, 2012

Vegan Sweet Potato Pasta Salad

Happy Mother's Day! I hope it was a great day for all you mother's. I know I enjoyed it. Church hosted a Parent/Child Dedication service today. We dedicated our little Aubrey. I think it was more fun for us then her. She was quite upset she couldn't have a donut until after the service. Seriously, when I tell her we are going to church, she puts on this real mischievous grin and says "Donuts?" All that girl thinks about is sweets. Her newest thing is being a princess. The child will place her hands on her hips, flip her hair, and say "Mommy, I'm pretty!" and she is only 2... Huh... 16 is going to be fun.
Well my Mother's day was jam packed. Woke up to breakfast in bed. Got ready for church, after that we took my mother-in-law to lunch at this awesome vegan place! Had a grilled portabello wrap, YUM! Next up, we headed home for a nap. I love my naps! Seriously, Chris probably thinks all I do is snack, watch tv, and nap, but at least I always have dinner on the table. That may be the only reason he lets me stay home.
Now for the good stuff! This one, I made after a long day filled with slacking. I was supposed to get the housework done, but instead I spent 5 hours at my cousin's and let Aubrey play with her little girl. So, needless to say I had to cook something fast to ensure dinner in a timely manner. Get ready to lick your lips, cause this stuff is so good. Honestly, I do recommend it.
Sweet Potato Pasta Salad
1 large sweet potato, large dice
1/2 large onion, diced
2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
4 mushrooms, sliced
1/2 head broccoli, florets and slice stalk
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 zucchini sliced
1/2 yellow squash sliced
1 1/2 cup black beans, cooked (or 1 can drained and rinsed)
1/8 cup olive oil
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tsp dry mustard
1/2 box quino veggie curls pasta
2 large handfuls fresh spinach

  • Preheat oven to 400F. Put sweet potato in a bowl and drizzle olive oil, salt, and pepper. Stir to coat and put on baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, stir half way. Should be fork tender.
  • Boil pasta as stated in the directions. Try the quinoa pasta. I get it inexpensively at Sprouts or Whole Foods. After it is boiled, strain.
  •  In a saute pan, add onions carrots, and mushrooms. (I don't use oil because onions are full of it which is why I cry like a baby when I chop them) After onions are translucent, add broccoli, squashes, beans, garlic, and 1/4 cup water. Stir often, don't cover. Should cook up and become tender. 
  • In another bowl, combine olive oil, vinegar, dry mustard, and salt and pepper to taste. Whisk well. I prefer to put it in a little tupper ware bowl so I can put the lid on and shake it up. I also always make lots because it stays fresh in the fridge a long time. Make sure to taste test. My vinegar to oil ratio preference may be way different than yours.
  • I a BIG bowl, combine the veggies, sweet potatoes, and the pasta. Add in the dressing. Half first, then more if needed. Stir in the spinach last. It will wilt a little. Serve warm. Sprinkle some nutritional yeast if you need the "cheese" effect.
Eat as much as you want. There will be leftovers. Serve with wine. I had reisling, but I think sauvignon blanc may be better. The reisling was too sweet.The best part about cooking at home, is that there are no rules. If you don't like a vegetable, then change it. I am not going to hunt you down if you decide asparagus or frozen peas would be better. So experiment and make some good food! That is what it is all about anyways right? Eat, live, and be merry.

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