Tuesday, November 06, 2007


I just love quinoa is soups. This was an easy black bean/quinoa chili. My youngest son loves this. It is even better the next day and freezes well. I used my pressure cooked black beans. I haven't bought canned beans since I bought my pressure cooker.
I am always trying to come up with one pot meals. I swear, my next cookbook (oh, I have lofty goals!) will be one pot meals. This is half and half pasta.. white and whole wheat. The sauce is a low fat pesto. I used chickpeas, garlic, basil, and entire 10oz bag of organic baby spinach, toasted sesame seeds, lemon juice/zest and vegetable stock. Just before serving, I will spray the dishes with my olive oil pump sprayer. My kids ate this up. I haven't made a dairy containing pesto is so long, I think they've forgotten what it tastes like and are 100% satisfied with my low fat/vegan versions. I only used 3 T of toasted sesame seeds for the sauce.
Chana Aloo Stew... spicy, healthy and delicious.

Thank you all for your kind words and support during this transition. It isn't easy.. and the ups and downs are difficult. It helps to have caring people, even on the net.


  1. really really nice work you have here!!!!

    i had a post once about the same topic! see it here!


    lets trade links if you want to.. just let me know!
    i'll give you a stumble upon thumbs up for now!

  2. mmm, I love quinoa, but never thought to add it to soups - thanks for the inspiration, as always!!

    wow that Aloo Stew sounds sensational - I love spicy dishes!!

    We're here for you, Mel - I hope everything continues looking up for you, during your transition period.

  3. I love vegan pesto. Way better I think than cheesy pesto.
    I love the look of that quinoa and black bean chili!! Once it gets cool enough here for chili, I'd love to eat something like that!

  4. Beautiful stuff, Melody! glad you're hanging in there.

    Even though I'm not a vegan, I make pesto vegan. I prefer it without the cheese - its over the top rich with cheese.

  5. It all looks great. I agree about one pot meals - the less dishes in my tiny apartment kitchen, the better!

  6. A casserole cookbook would be great!

    There's an empty restaurant space here in Austin that needs filling. The landlord is vegan and very picky about her tenants, but she would welcome you - so would I!

  7. I would just love a one pot meal cookbooks. Usually, I'm too busy or tired to do a whole production with dinner.

    Melody, I'm sorry I haven't been by in a while and didn't know about the change in your life. I will keep you in my heart and think of you. I know it's hard, very hard... starting over is a rebirth. I truly wish you the best. <3

  8. That pesto looks great, chickpeas in there huh? I love pesto but haven't found a way to make it without lots of olive oil, maybe I'll try something like this next time.

    Haven't made quinoa anything in a long time. Never used it in soup before, that's a great idea. I saw quinoa pasta at the grocery store this week, once I eat through my pasta reserves I plan to try it.

    Glad the support you're getting is making this uncertain time a little easier for you. Hang tough.

  9. Oh... I love drooling over your blog. Like you, I love my pressure cooker and don't buy canned beans very often any more. And like you, I love quinoa, but should use it in soups more often.

  10. Wow -- this looks amazing! I am a vegetarian trying to become vegan and have just started cooking... I may have to use your site as a resource often! (Also, your pictures are wonderful!)

  11. Quinoa soup is an awesome idea.

    Everything else looks delectable as usual!

    Hang in there Melody!

  12. I'm been catching up on your posts (now that my computers cooperating again) and I'm so sorry to hear about your marriage. I will be praying for you during this very hard time.

  13. Everything looks delish, as usual.

    Have you ever thought about writing quarterly newsletters with your recipes for a paid subscription?

    I'm really curious to know. I've never made any of your posted recipes that disappoint. And I'm always wishing you'd include recipes with your food photos! (But of course, I understand you're working on a cookbook.)

  14. love my pressure cooker too! I have to admit that I was afraid of it as first... it just seemed so scary.