1 Medjool Date
1 TBL Veg Cuisine Soy Bleu cheese, crumbled
1 walnut

Make a slit lengthwise in date. Carefully remove pit. Stuff date with crumbled bleu cheese. Top with walnut.

Makes 1 stuffed date

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12 oz container Tofutti Sour Cream
3 small lemons (1 teaspoon of grated zest and 3 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice)
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh dill
1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
3 oz Soy Feta (Mediterranean Herb Feta by, crumbled
20 radishes, trim ends and wash well (15 sliced thin, cut into matchsticks then chopped for the dip mixture, 5 sliced thin to use as dipping radish rounds for the dip)

In a medium bowl, mix together the sour cream, lemon zest and juice, chopped dill, and sea salt. Add in crumbled feta and radishes just before serving. If you add in radishes the day before the nice white dip will be discolored. Stir well to combine. Serve with sliced radish rounds and crackers or crusty bread. Makes a delicious sandwich spread as well!

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1/2 small onion, chopped
1 small carrot, peeled and chopped
1 clove garlic, peeled and chopped
1 tsp sea salt (divided into two 1/2 teaspoons)
1/4 tsp celery seed
1 TBL olive oil, plus more for frying
1 lb cooked lentils, drained
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
2 TBL cornstarch
1 TBL Worcestershire Sauce (Annie’s Naturals is vegan)
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup pumpkin seeds, lightly crushed (place on a flat plate)

In a food processor, add onion, carrot, garlic, 1/2 tsp sea salt, and celery seed and pulse until finely chopped.  In a large pan over medium heat, add 1 TBL olive oil and carrot mixture and saute until tender, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes.

In a large bowl, mix together lentils, breadcrumbs, 1/2 tsp sea salt, pepper, and cooked carrot mixture.

In a small bowl, combine cornstarch, Worcestershire, and water. Add to lentil mixture and combine well. Form mixture into round patties. I like to use square pieces of parchment paper to press out each patty. It is easy to work with and remove patty without smashing. Press one side into lightly crushed pumpkin seeds. If you want to do both sides, you will need to double the amount of seeds.

Heat 1 TBL olive oil in a large pan and cook 2 lentil patties at a time over medium-high heat, about 5 minutes each side. Once done, add your favorite dairy-free cheese, and cover to melt. Serve on Ezekiel sprouted grain bun with arugula.

Makes 12 patties. Freeze uncooked patties in between parchment paper and store in a zip-lock freezer bag. 

1/4 cup uncooked lentils contain 13 grams of protein and 15 grams of fiber.

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1/2 cup Silk Soy Milk Very Vanilla
1 cup orange juice (I like Naked OJ)
1/2 banana, best if cut into pieces and frozen
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp lemon juice
6 ice cubes

Blend all ingredients, except for ice, until smooth, combined, and frothy (30 seconds-1 minute). Add in ice and blend for another 30 seconds.

Makes about 2 cups

Minerals are elements originating in the soil, so fruits and vegetables are the obvious choice to feed your body with these nutrients. Minerals help your body to grow, develop and stay healthy. Your body uses minerals to perform building functions, transmit nerve impulses and to maintain a normal heartbeat.

Calcium is an important mineral for your body.  Calcium helps to ease insomnia, regulate nutrients through cell walls and feeds your muscles so they contract properly.  Vegetarians and vegans are less likely to form kidney stones or gallstones.  High protein diets actually cause calcium loss. Most fruits contain calcium, with the top choices being blackberries, blackcurrants, dates, dried figs, grapefruit, mulberries, oranges, pomegranate and prickly pears. Vegetables also contain a lot of calcium with greater benefits coming from amaranth leaves, bok choy, brussel sprouts, butternut squash, celery, chinese broccoli, french beans, collards, kale, okra, parsnip, spirulina, swiss chard, sweet potato, broccoli and turnips. You can’t go wrong with any dark green vegetables, lentils, tofu, soymilk, rice milk and nuts. And, plant based eaters tend to have stronger bones than meat eaters.

Nuts, seeds and grains also provide calcium intake. Best choices are almonds, amaranth, brazil nuts, filberts and hazelnuts, oats, pistachios, sesame seeds, wheat (durum and hard) and white grains.  Try almond butter and other nut betters too. There are non-dairy and vegetarian meat protein sources (soy drinks and yogurts, tofu and tempeh) that also contain calcium, so read labels to see what you are consuming. On the average, most adults need 1000 mg/day, while children range from 800-1300 mg/day.

Iron is another important mineral. Many people believe eating red meat is the only way to get sufficient amounts of iron. You can get enough from plant based fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and grains. Combining vitamin C rich foods with an iron source helps to aid in the absorption of this mineral. Women and teen girls need 15 mg/day, while men only need 10 mg/day and children require 10-12 mg/day. Fruits rich in iron are raisins, avocado, blackberries, blackcurrant, boysenberries, cherries, dates, figs, grapes, kiwi, lemon, loganberries, lychee, mulberries, passion fruit, persimmon, pomegranate, raspberries, strawberries and watermelon.  Vegetable choices include amaranth leaves, bok choy, brussel sprouts, butternut squash, french beans, kale, leeks, lima beans, peas, potatoes, pumpkin, spirulina and swiss chard.

Some nuts, seeds and grain sources include amaranth, buckwheat, cashews, coconut, oats, pine nuts, pignolias, pumpkin seeds, rye, spelt, quinoa, wheat (durum and hard) and white grains.

Other minerals, such as copper, iodine, magnesium, manganese, phosphorous, potassium, selenium, sodium and zinc can all be supplemented by eating fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and grains. Always go for variety. For a healthy vegetarian (vegan) breakfast recipe, try the Warm Quinoa.

Visit this site for healthy vegetarian recipes (vegan) that are easy to make. You will also be delighted with the delicious and healthy dessert recipes. With plant based ingredients, it is easy to get a healthy dessert recipe that contains protein and is low in calories, sugar and fat. Try the Chocolate Mousse.

Visit here for kid and teen mineral RDA and here for adults.