Fun with Vegetarian Cooking

10 01 2010
Katherine Dignan

Katherine Dignan

Vegout Gourmet is going global this year. I spend a lot of time on the road, traveling in many exotic countries, and experiencing diverse cuisines and flavors. I always purchase spices from my travels and then come home and play in the kitchen. So this year, I have decided to write more about my travels and include my international food creations.

Hopefully you will be inspired to stretch out your taste buds a bit and try new and exotic flavors. It is always important to keep creating and not to get stuck in a rut in your kitchen. Just looking at my drawer of spices is an inspiration in itself. Be playful and dare to create something new.

So come travel the world with me and experience the olives of Morocco, the many salads of Egypt, the spicy cuisine of Szechuan, the subtle flavors of Japan and the bold flavors of South America.  And who knows what else we will discover?

I am thrilled to share my life with you and perhaps throw a little inspiration into your pot.


Katherine Dignan


Red Lentil Soup

29 12 2021


Olive oil

1 onion

8 garlic cloves

2 carrots

1 tbsp cumin

1 tsp red pepper flakes

3 kaffir lime leaves or 3 bay leaves

1 cup crushed tomatoes (from a can)

7 cups low-sodium vegetable broth

2 cups red lentils, rinsed and drained

sea salt and pepper to taste

Zest of 1 lemon

Juice of 1 lemon

Crumbled feta cheese to serve, optional

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Caesar Salad Dressing

9 04 2021


  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tsp anchovy paste (or more to taste)
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1 garlic clove, pressed or minced
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 olive oil
  • 1/4 cup peanut oil, grapeseed or avocado oil
  • 2 tbsp grated parmigiano reggiano

In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, lemon juice, anchovy paste, dijon mustard, garlic, salt and pepper until smooth.

While whisking continuously, add in the oil in a thin steady stream. You want to add it slowly so that it emulsifies. Take your time and remember to whisk continuously. You can adjust the flavors at this point. You may want to add more lemon juice or anchovy paste or mustard depending on your preferences.

The dressing should have a thick texture. Stir in the cheese.

Cream of Broccoli Soup

22 07 2019

I made this delicious broccoli soup for a group gathering and they could not get enough of it. This is the basic recipe. You can add grated cheddar into it if you want a richer taste. Also, I had some leftover sauteed spinach which I pureed with some of the stock and then added it into the soup. That made it a beautiful green color. 

Serves 4


6 tbsp unsalted butter

1 small onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 cup flour

2 cups half and half

3 cups vegetable stock (I made a nice leek stock.)

2 bay leaves

1/4 tsp mace, ground

sea salt and black pepper, to taste

4 cups broccoli, cut into florets

1 large carrot, diced

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Creamy Keto Lemon Curd Cheesecake with Raspberry Sauce

31 05 2019

I was challenged to make a delicious cheesecake that would fill all the Keto requirements and my friend, Jocelyn, and I came up with this one. First of all the pecan crust with a hint of cinnamon is delicious with the silky texture of this cheesecake. The key is cream cheese, mascarpone and sour cream blended together. Make sure that all of your ingredients are at room temperature and mix by a hand with a stiff spatula. If you mix it in an electric mixer, it tends to get too much air whipped into it and then it cracks and is a little drier. Then we wanted a little zing to our flavor profile and so we decided to top the cheesecake with a tart lemon curd and then drizzle a raspberry coulis over the top for presentation purpose. It was a flavor burst in the mouth. The cheesecake is delicious on its own as well if you don’t want to go to the trouble of making the lemon curd and sauce. 

Now my biggest challenge is writing this recipe down because I am not sure at times what proportions I used particularly on the pecan crust. So be flexible and make sure you have enough crust to cover a 9″x 13″ glass casserole pan.

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Pumpkin Cheesecake Pie

8 01 2019

I made this recipe for Thanksgiving and my guests went nuts. They said it was the best pumpkin pie they have ever eaten. This includes people who don’t even like pumpkin pie. It was light and flavorful but I think the cream cheese and mascarpone cut through the cloying pumpkin taste that turns some people off. Also I made it with a pecan crust just like a cheesecake. That was a nice twist to a regular pie. I doubled the recipe and made it in a casserole dish but a deep dish pie pan works for a single recipe.



2 cups pecans

1 tbsp. melted butter

pinch of sea salt

1/2 tsp vanilla

1 tsp cinnamon

2 tbsp. Erythritol or Xylitol


4 oz cream cheese, softened

4 oz, mascarpone, softened

1 15oz. can pumpkin puree

1/2 cup butter, melted

2 tsp vanilla

3 eggs

2 to 2 1/2 cups powdered Xylitol or Erythritol, depending on how sweet you like it (you can powder it in a high speed blender like a Nutribullet or Vitamix)

1 1/2 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp nutmeg or 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

1/4 tsp salt

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Keto Friendly Blueberry Poppyseed Muffins

8 01 2019

I have a lot of friends who are following a Keto diet and I enjoy finding recipes that will satisfy their requirements and are delicious. For a New Year’s day brunch, I made these blueberry muffins and they were a big hit. In fact, I made regular blueberry muffins as well but the Keto ones were voted the unanimous winners by Keto and non-Keto diners alike. So these are a keeper. They are light and moist and have plenty of blueberries. This makes one dozen muffins.


2 1/2 cups blanched almond flour

1/2 cup Erythritol or Xylitol ( or any of your favorite granulated sweetener)

1 1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

1 tbsp. poppy seeds

1/3 cup melted butter

1/3 cup unsweetened almond milk

3 large eggs

1/2 tsp vanilla extract (or you can use lemon extract if you prefer)

(If using lemon extract, add a little lemon zest as well)

3/4 cup blueberries

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Cilantro Basil Mint Chimichurri Sauce

27 08 2018

This herbaceous sauce is simple to make and fantastic drizzled on just about anything from seafood to chicken to grilled vegetables. I roasted some cauliflower and Brussels sprouts and drizzled this sauce over and topped it off with shredded Parmesan and toasted pine nuts. It was a delicious side dish. This sauce can also be used as a base for a salad dressing. Just add a little more oil and maybe water to thin it out before tossing with your favorite salad fixings.


2 limes, juiced

1/3 cup olive oil

1/4 cup white wine vinegar or champagne vinegar

leaves from one bunch of Italian parsley

leaves from one bunch of cilantro

20 leaves mint

20 leaves basil

3 cloves garlic

1 tsp red pepper flakes

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Chard and Caramelized Garlic Quittata with a Sweet Potato Crust

26 08 2018


You may ask, “What the heck is a quittata?” Well my husband just coined the name after I made this dish which was not quite a frittata nor a quiche but something in between. Either way, it was absolutely delicious. What really made it was the Maple Balsamic Caramelized Garlic. OMG!! And to top it  off, it was a really beautiful dish as well. This would be great for a brunch. I served it as part of a celebrate summer harvest feast. Who knows, quittatas could become trendy.


4 sweet potatoes, about 2 – 21/2 pounds, peeled and cut into 1/4″ pieces

Olive oil

5 large eggs

3 heads of garlic, cloves peeled

1 tbsp. olive oil

1 tbsp. balsamic vinegar (I used a delicious dark chocolate balsamic)

1 tbsp. pure maple syrup

1 tsp chopped rosemary

1 tsp chopped thyme

Freshly ground black pepper

Sea Salt

3 cups grated sharp white cheddar cheese

2 heads chard, leaves removed, washed and roughly chopped

3/4 cup crème fraiche

3/4 cup heavy cream

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Mexican Quinoa Chili Stew

22 05 2018

quinoa stew 2This stew tastes a lot like a chili without the heaviness of a lot of beans and beef. I recommend it garnished with chopped avocado, sour cream, shredded cheese, fresh lime, crushed tortilla chips and chopped cilantro. 


1 tbsp olive oil

1 yellow onion, chopped

2 celery stalks, chopped

3 carrots, chopped

4 cloves of garlic, minced

2 jalapenos, seeded and minced

3 1/2 cups water

1 28 oz can diced tomatoes

1 15 oz. can black beans, rinsed and drained

2 tsp ground cumin

2 tsp ground chili powder

1 tsp chipotle powder

1 tsp paprika

cayenne pepper to taste if you want it hotter

salt and pepper to taste

(please use all the spices liberally and to taste)

3/4 cup quinoa

1/4 cup chopped cilantro plus more to garnish

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Dark Chocolate Chunk Brownie Bites

19 04 2018

browniesWe all love dark chocolate in my household. Today, at the store, I discovered some organic 72% cacao Dark Chocolate Chunks. I made these brownie bites which are rich in chocolate flavor but quite light and moist since there is hardly any flour. You could easily substitute almond flour, coconut flour or even a gluten free flour to make them gluten free. Warning; only for dark chocolate lovers!

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