2014. What a year this has been. Time flies when you’re having fun . . . and sometimes when life has knocked you down, too. I have experienced a series of highs and lows during this past year – everything from celebrating my Dad’s 85th birthday by throwing him a surprise party in February to almost losing our dog to a seizure that left him temporarily paralyzed in August. Throughout it all, I cooked. And I ate.
Sprinkled among the pots and pans, the pleasure eating and the bold culinary explorations were moments of cooking and eating with a purpose. Meatless Monday gave me the opportunity to not only flex my creative muscles in the kitchen but also uncover a myriad of recipes sans meat.
Many of my Meatless Monday dishes were unmitigated successes, but there were also a few failures in the bunch. C’est la vie. Regardless of the outcome, I persevered.
As we approach the end of 2014 and glide (hopefully) effortlessly into 2015, I am recounting my top 10 favorite Meatless Monday recipes of the year. Read along, salivate if you must, click on the recipe names to try them yourself and, above all, enjoy.
Seasoned croutons stood in wonderfully for bread crumbs for this recipe. Sweet, crunchy corn mixed with eggs flow throughout the strata, making this a great single-serve dish.
Whether for breakfast, lunch, brunch or dinner, a frittata is a great way to use the existing ingredients in your fridge or pantry to create a wholesome and tasty meal. When you add a meat substitute, you can keep the flavor profile familiar and not skimp on taste.
Ummmmm, asparagus! This bisque is just the thing to warm you up on the inside on a chilly winter day.
Eggs are a wonderful way to get that much-needed protein into your system, but when you combine them with complementary ingredients, the outcome is a delicious quiche that stands up to reheating several times.
I have to tip my hat to my husband on this one. Although not the prettiest dish on the list, these Sloppy Joe Pockets were so good that I almost wanted to give some to the neighbor’s kids so they could enjoy them as well!
Corn is a recurring ingredient for my Meatless Monday recipes, but in this recipe it is the star.
Smoked Gruyere left a smoky footprint on this fluffy tart that won over my husband and 13 year old stepson!
This is another cold weather favorite. The smoked apple sage sausage pairs well with the butternut squash and gave the dish a stick-to-your-ribs quality. It’s the soup that eats like a meal.
Although this would serve you well as a side dish, it’s also completely acceptable as a main course. Folks, this one was a stupendous buttery delight!
And my #1 Meatless Monday recipe of 2014 . . .
I am in culinary lust with this dish. Fresh plump tomatoes served as an edible bowl for this Mediterranean-inspired recipe. A crumbled meat substitute was the perfect stand-in for ground beef or turkey. Modesty aside, I have to say I pulled this dish off in grand style! Just thinking about it has me yearning for another helping . . .
2015 will bring a whole new batch of Meatless Monday recipes, but it’s good to know I have these delicious recipes to fall back on. Which ones was your favorite?
Happy eating in 2015 and Bon Appetit!