Nasu Dengaku (Japanese Eggplants Broiled with Miso)

Japanese miso eggplant appetizer

Japanese eggplants are broiled (or grilled, if you have the time), spread with a sweetened miso mixture, and then broiled again for a few seconds. The results are creamy, smoky eggplant with a sweet and salty sauce. You’ll notice that my recipe contains agave nectar, which is hardly a traditional Japanese ingredient. You can choose to substitute sugar, or you can try another natural sweetener, but you may need a little more because agave is sweeter than sugar and much sweeter than, for example, rice syrup or barley malt syrup.

Stay away from maple syrup or any sweetener that’s strongly flavored, though; the sweetener’s just there to sweeten, not to deliver any flavor. Recipe and photos contributed by Susan Voisin, FatFree Vegan Kitchen. more →

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Lentils with Greens and Sun-Dried Tomatoes

Lentils with sun-dried tomatoes and greens

Since my family loves lentils, I keep a few cans of organic canned lentils on hand to use when we want a meal with this nourishing legume in a hurry. If you prefer to cook your own, the dish will also come together in a snap if you have them cooked ahead of time. To make this dish a little fancier, try using beluga lentils. There diminutive, gleaming black lentils contrast attractively with the greens and dried tomatoes. Green or brown lentils will taste just as good, though they’re not as pretty. This is great served with Cauliflower Rice Pilaf, Quinoa with Cauliflower, Cranberries, and Nuts, or another grain dish, plus a simple salad. more →

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