These irresistible, coconut-dusted granola “bites” are lightly sweet, with a delicious combination of oats, nuts, and seeds inside. They are essentially my no-bake granola bars (a popular recipe on my blog) in ball form. I’ve learned that rolling the oats mixture into balls is way easier than slicing them into bars. Plus, they’re more portable this way.
Beryl Bender Birch’s Vegan Black Bean Soup
This soup is great in the fall and winter. I love the spicy, smoky flavor from the chili peppers—and the sweetness from the tomatoes. Plus, it delivers a huge hit of protein. Savor it on its own, or serve it with a salad, guacamole, corn tortillas, or rice with steamed greens.
1½ cups dried black beans (or 3 cans, 15 oz each)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
1 jalapeño, seeded, finely chopped
1 tsp oregano
½ tsp cumin
3 medium garlic cloves, minced
1 quart vegetable broth
1 can (14.5 oz) fire-roasted, diced tomatoes with green chilies (I like Muir Glen.)
1 dried chipotle pepper (or 1 tsp chipotle powder)
1 dried guajillo pepper
1 dried pasilla pepper (If your local grocer doesn’t carry pasillas or guajillos, order them online at americanspice.com.)
6 cilantro sprigs
In a bowl, submerge dry beans in water, and soak overnight. Drain, and rinse thoroughly. (If using canned beans, drain and rinse before cooking.) Add beans and 6 cups water to a large pot (beans should be covered by a couple inches of water). Cover, and simmer over medium-low heat until beans are soft, about 1 hour. (Keep an eye on it to make sure there is a soupy layer of water in the pot at all times. Add more if necessary to ensure beans don’t burn.)
Warm oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add onion and jalapeño, and cook until onions are soft and transparent, about 5 minutes. Turn heat to low, and add oregano and cumin (and chipotle powder, if using), stirring constantly until you smell the cumin toasting, about 1 minute. Remove from heat, add garlic, and stir for 1 minute. Add mixture to beans.
Combine broth, tomatoes, chipotle pepper, guajillo pepper, and pasilla pepper in the pot, and bring to a simmer. Cover, and simmer over low heat, 1 hour. (If you prefer a thinner soup, add additional water.) Carefully scoop out the chilies, and discard them. Transfer mixture in batches into a blender, and pulse to a slightly chunky consistency. Season with salt and black pepper to taste. Serve garnished with avocado slices and a sprig of cilantro.
NUTRITIONAL INFO 241 calories per serving, 6 g fat (1 g saturated), 38 g carbs, 5 g fiber, 9 g protein, 761 mg sodium
About the Author
Beryl Bender Birch, founder of The Hard & The Soft Yoga Institute and cofounder and board chair of the Give Back Yoga Foundation (GBYF), has been studying and teaching yoga and meditation for over 40 years.