One of my college friends was a committed vegetarian. She told me once, “You can be a good vegetarian or a bad vegetarian. A good vegetarian actually eats vegetables. A bad one eats grilled cheese and cereal.” So true, I thought.

I’m no vegetarian, much less a vegan. But we do eat limited amounts of meat and tend to only purchase grass-fed, organic, pasture-raised, free-range animal products. And on other days, we stick to our vegetables.

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Recently I’ve been inspired to be more creative with vegetarian meals. I’m convinced that they don’t have to be boring or smothered in cheese. Furthermore, I often find myself hungry soon after a “vegetarian” meal (i.e., salad), so I’ve wanted to discover ways to create vegetarian meals that aren’t too low-cal.

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One of the things I adore about cooking vegetarian is that it forces me to become more aware of what’s in season. Since we shop at the farmer’s market, we love discovering new ingredients we have yet to learn to use. In addition, I love Cookie and Kate’s monthly produce guides. Here’s her guide for November! (Hint: Broccoli is in season…)

Having become a bit more vegetable-savvy from reading Kate’s blog, I was able to throw this dish together quickly. We’ve been making our own hummus lately for parties and hosting, and I absolutely LOVE the taste of it. With a food processor or sturdy blender, you can make your own hummus as well! And it can be delicious on salads, pastas, and yes– pita chips.

Do YOU have a favorite vegetarian recipe to share with me? I’d love to hear about it!

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Soba with Broccoli, Tofu and Avocado Hummus Sauce

Ingredients (makes 2 meal-sized servings):

  • 1 avocado, ripened.
  • 4 tablespoons hummus, or to taste.
  • 2 bunches soba noodles (available in health food stores, Japanese markets or here)
  • Florets from 1 broccoli stalk, chopped; reserve stem for other uses.
  • 1/2 packaged tofu, cubed (optional).
  • Salt and pepper, to taste.
  • Olive oil, as needed.

Lay the broccoli florets on a baking tray and drizzle with olive oil and salt. Roast the broccoli florets to desired degree of brownness. I roasted these at 425F for about 10 minutes.

In a pot over high heat, boil water for soba and cook according to instructions. While the soba cooks, mix the avocado and hummus in a bowl until combined. If necessary, add a bit of olive oil to make the sauce a bit more liquidy. Salt and pepper the sauce to taste.

Strain the soba and mix the noodles and sauce together. Serve in deep bowls, and top with tofu and broccoli. Enjoy!

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