So one of my friends is a Sous Chef at Lolinda’s and treated me and my BFF out to Beretta, which is Lolinda’s sister restaurant. What I love about Beretta is the fact that they also cater to vegans! For their vegetable appetizers, they’ll veganize it for you by substituting butter with olive oil, etc. They also make one of the best wood fired vegan pizzas I’ve tried so far! Check Beretta out!!! Nice ambiance, delicious tapas, and yummy pizza!!!!!
my favorite food on the planet are spanish tapas. a couple of weeks ago i had dinner with some good friends at one of my favorite tapas restaurants in sf, esperpento in the mission district. one of my favorite dishes i order is an eggplant dish that is basically sauteed with tomatoes, onions and peppers. here is my version of escalivada. my twist to this dish is to serve it as a stuffed eggplant. hope you like it.
1 large purple eggplant
2 medium tomatoes, sliced
1/4 purple onion, sliced
4-5 garlic cloves, minced
1/4-1/2 cup of tempeh, crumbled
salt and pepper
red pepper flakes
1) preheat oven to 400 degrees
2) slice eggplant in half and brush eggplant with olive oil all over. season with salt, pepper, and red pepper. line baking sheet with foil and place eggplant face up. place another sheet of foil on top of eggplant and wrap eggplant with both sheets of foil. bake for 50 minutes.
3) while eggplant is baking, prepare the stuffing by heating 3 tbs of olive oil in a pan on medium high heat. when oil is hot, saute onions until cooked. stir in tomato slices. cook for about 2-3 minutes. add 1/2 cup of vegetable broth and cook for another 3 minutes until some of the broth has evaporated. add tempeh and garlic and saute for 3 minutes. add a cup of vegetable broth, salt, pepper, red pepper, and a couple of dashes of paprika and simmer on medium low until broth has evaporated. set aside until eggplant is cooked.
4) when eggplant is ready, spoon out eggplant into saute mixture making sure you are careful not to pierce through the skin of the eggplant. when all the mixture is added to the saute mixture, add 1/2 cup of vegetable broth and cook on medium high heat. using a fork, smash in the eggplant while cooking. when the vegetable broth has slightly evaporated, it is ready. spoon eggplant mixture back into cooked eggplant shells. enjoy!
another one of my favorite tapas. fried potatoes with a spicy garlic aioli sauce.
6 medium potatoes, cut into medium cubes
salt and pepper
1) heat olive oil in a deep frying pot/pan on medium high heat.
2) in a large bowl combine cubed potatoes, seasoning and 2 tbs of olive oil.
3) when oil is ready, fry half of the cubed potatoes for about 8 minutes. take the cooked potatoes out and fry the rest of the potatoes.
4) for aioli sauce, refer to sauce section. i just added sriracha sauce to make it spicy. you can add any type of hot sauce you have on hand.
i was inspired to make these today from a dish i tried a couple of weeks ago in palm springs. when i was having brunch with my friends, i ordered a cheese frittata. i tried to eat the dish but since i have not eaten eggs in forever, my stomach could not hold the food down.
frittatas are a spanish/italian dish that is made with egg and is similar to quiche and omelletes. they are usually filled with cheeses, meats and vegatables.
today for brunch, i decided to whip up my take on a vegan frittata. although i wanted to make a light and healthy meal, this dish ended up to be extremely rich and fulfilling. i thought a great way to serve this was making individual portions so i baked them in muffin pans.
1 potato, cut into small cubes
5-6 slices of vegan bacon, cut into ity bitty bacon bits
1/2 cup of chopped green, yellow and red bell peppers
1 bunch of spinach, chopped
1/2 cup of sliced mushrooms
1/4 onion, chopped
2-3 tbs olive oil
your favorite all purpose seasoning
salt, pepper and red pepper to taste
2 tbs lemon juice
firm tofu, blended (you may need to add 2-3 tbs of soy milk to get a creamy texture)
1/4-1/2 cup of panko breading
vegan shredded cheddar and mozzarella cheese **for topping**
1) preheat oven to 350 and coat muffin pans with non-stick spray.
2) mix all the ingredients together except for the cheese, panko breading, tofu and the non-stick spray of course! and let ingredients sit and marinate for about 10mins.
3) heat a large pan on medium heat. saute mixture and cook for about 5-7 minutes.
4) transfer cooked mixture into a large bowl. add tofu mixture and mix until everything is covered. then add panko breading. the panko breading is just used to bind the mixture together.
5) spoon in mixture into muffin pans and top with shredded cheese.
6) bake for 25-30 minutes.
7) top with louisana hot sauce and enjoy!