Vegan - Vegetarian RecipesSeasonings, Condiments, Mushrooms, Pasta, Etc - Ingredients Descriptions and Photos
From All-Creatures.org Vegan - Vegetarian Recipe Book: How Mary and Frank and Friends Eat

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Ingredients Descriptions and Photos
Seasonings, Condiments, Mushrooms, Pasta, Etc
Table of Contents

Allspice, ground
(Allspice, ground)  Ground allspice seasoning (also called Pimento) is made by grinding the dried unripe berries of the Pimenta dioica tree, which is also know as Jamaican pepper, and can grow to heights of 30 feet. We use ground allspice to season a variety of dishes from cookies to pasta sauces to soups. Allspice has the flavor and taste similar to a combination of equal parts of cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and black pepper (which could also be use as a substitute).  See the nutritional chart and enlarged photo by clicking on the photo or link.
Apple Juice
(Apple Juice) Apple juice is sold in almost every super market.  It usually comes in three varieties: frozen concentrate, filtered pasteurized, and unfiltered pasteurized, the filtered pasteurized apple juice is the one pictured in the photo.  Since these forms of apple juice are processed, we don't recommend them as a beverage, excepted when making some special beverage such as hot spiced apple juice.  Mostly we use apple juice as an ingredient in our recipes, or on cereal. To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional information for apple juice with vitamin C, and without vitamin C, click on the photo or link.
Apple Juice, Unfiltered
(Apple Juice, Unfiltered)  Apple juice is sold in almost every super market.  It usually comes in three varieties: frozen concentrate, filtered pasteurized, and unfiltered pasteurized, the latter of which is the one pictured in the photo.  Since these forms of apple juice are processed, we don't recommend them as a beverage, excepted when making some special beverage such as hot spiced apple juice.  Mostly we use apple juice as an ingredient in our recipes, or on cereal.
Baking Powder
(Baking Powder)  Baking powder is used in baking non-yeast breads, cakes, and muffins, and causes the dough to rise by producing tiny bubbles of carbon dioxide that get trapped in the dough, just as yeast does.  It is a leavening agent composed of different chemical formulations of an acid salt (various), and an alkaline salt, usually baking soda (sodium bicarbonate).  There are two types of baking powder: single acting, which contain such chemicals as calcium hydrogen tartrate (cream of tarter), calcium phosphate, or calcium citrate, which begins to work at room temperature as soon as the wet ingredients are added to the dry ingredients; and double acting, which also reacts at higher temperatures during the baking process, and usually contain an aluminum salt, such as calcium aluminum phosphate, which may be harmful to health because of its aluminum content.  To keep baking powder fresh and to prevent the moisture in the air from starting the chemical reaction, it is best to store baking powder in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator or freezer.  If you wish to avoid the aluminum, and use only the single acting baking powder, a less expensive substitute can be used: for every teaspoon of baking powder called for in the the recipe, add 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda to the dry ingredients, and 1-1/2 teaspoons of lemon juice or vinegar to the wet ingredients.  Happy baking!
Baking Soda
(Baking Soda)  Baking soda is used in non-yeast baking recipes to help the dough rise during the baking process.  Chemically, baking soda is known as sodium bicarbonate.  When it is heated, it decomposes and carbon dioxide gas is given off.  The tiny gas bubbles are trapped in the dough which rises in the process.
Basil, Sweet, Dry
(Basil, Sweet, Dry)  Basil is an aromatic seasoning of the Mint family, but it does not have any minty flavor.  It is commonly used as a seasoning with tomatoes and in salad dressings.  We like it in our chili and other similarly flavored dishes.  See the nutritional chart below which is for ground dry basil leaves.
Bay Leaves
(Bay Leaves)  Bay leaves are the officially accepted seasoning name for laurel leaves, which are the dried leaves of the Laurus nobilis, an evergreen leaf tree that can grow to heights of 25 feet. The elliptically shaped leaves are light green in color and brittle when dried.  Even when cooked in a recipe, these leaves can still be quite hard with shark edges where broken, and caution should be taken to remove them so that they will not be eaten.  They have a distinctively strong, aromatic, spicy flavor. We use bay leaves mostly in soups.  A bit of history: the wreaths worn by Olympic champions were made of laurel leaves.  See the nutritional chart below.
Bragg Liquid Aminos
(Bragg Liquid Aminos)  Bragg Liquid Aminos is a proprietary product produced by Live Food Products that we use as a substitute for soy sauce and tamari.  It is not fermented and contains no gluten, and the only listed ingredients are vegetable protein from soy beans and purified water, and that it contains 16 amino acids; however, like soy sauce, it is very high in sodium.  We have found it for sale is health food stores, specialty supermarkets, and form food cooperatives.  No nutritional information is available.
Cafix Instant Beverage, Crystals
(Cafix Instant Beverage, Crystals) Cafix is a naturally caffeine free instant beverage coffee substitute. It is made in Poland from roasted barley, rye, chicory, and sugar beets. Cafix is available in most specialty supermarkets, health food stores, and coops. We could not find any comprehensive nutritional information.
Cardamom Seed
(Cardamom Seed)  This is a photo of cardamom seed pods.  Cardamom is an expensive seasoning, second only to saffron, thus it is often adulterated.  This is why it's important to buy only pure Elettaria cardamomum.  We have found that because the flavor of pure cardamom is so strong that a little goes a long way, and in the end is less expensive than adulterated varieties.  Each seed pod contains three double rows of seeds (the bulge of the seeds can be seen on the pods in this photo).  We use whole or split cardamom seed pods in beverages and in some curry recipes.  For more information on cardamom and to see the nutritional chart, see our description of ground cardamom.
Cardamom, ground
(Cardamom, ground)  Cardamom can also be spelled Cardamon.  Cardamom is the fruit or seed of Elettaria cardamomum, a herbaceous perennial plant of the ginger family (Zingiberaceae), which can grow to heights of 12 feet. The seeds have a warm, slightly pungent, and highly aromatic odor and flavor. Originally cultivated in India, Cardamom was probably imported into Europe around A.D. 1214. Today, cardamom is cultivated in India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Guatemala, Mexico, Thailand and Central America.  Cardamom is used in a variety of cuisines today, primarily in and around the Indian subcontinent (curries) and in Scandinavia (Danish pastry). Enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart by clicking on the photo or link.
Chili Powder
(Chili Powder)  Chili powder is made from grinding dried chili peppers.  It is a major seasoning in chili, which gets it name from these peppers, and in other Mexican style recipes.  The chili powders we have used are generally on the low "heat" side, and require additional hot pepper (cayenne) to increase the spiciness and "heat".  Chili powder is very high in vitamin A.  See the nutritional chart by clinking on the photo or link.
Cilantro, Dried Leaves
(Cilantro, Dried Leaves)  Cilantro is the leaf of the young coriander plant, Coriandrum sativum, an herb in the parsley family.  The leaves are picked and dried and chopped to make the seasoning we have before us.  The seeds of the mature plant are called coriander.  We primarily use the dried cilantro because we rarely will use a whole bunch of fresh cilantro before it spoils.  Cilantro in commonly used Mexican and Middle Eastern dishes, and in soups and bean dips.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart click on the photo or link.
Cinnamon, ground
(Cinnamon, ground)  Cinnamon is prepared by peeling and drying the inner bark of the lower branches of Cinnamomum zeylanicum, trees and shrubs of the laurel (Lauraceae) family, which grow in the East Indies, Sri Lanka, and other tropical regions. The cinnamon laurel tree, which grows as high as twenty to thirty feet, has large, oval leaves and tiny pale yellow flowers that grow close together in large numbers. Its fruit is shaped like an acorn. Cinnamon trees, which are grown for their bark, are kept small by cutting them close to the lower buds. In Sri Lanka the bark is usually peeled in April and November. As the bark is dried it curls up and turns light brown. Cassia bark from the cassia plant, Cinnamomum cassia, is also sometimes used in place of cinnamon bark. This aromatic spice is available as the familiar ground cinnamon (see photo) and cinnamon sticks. Ground cinnamon is a light yellowish brown color and has a pleasant, sweetish taste. Cinnamon is used in a wide variety of recipes from breads and pastries to exotic curries.
Cloves, ground
(Cloves, ground)  The name “clove” is used to refer either to the dried, unopened flower bud of Caryophyllus aromaticus, a tropical evergreen tree of the family Myrtaceae, or to the tree itself. The shape of the dried flower bud resembles a nail, hence the name “clove,” derived from the Latin word for “nail”: clavus.  When fresh, the unopened flower buds are pink. They turn rust-brown when dried. Cloves, 1/2 to 5/8 inch long, resemble small nails with a tapered stem. The large end of the clove is the four-pointed flower bud.  This sweetly pungent, strongly aromatic spice ranks 5 (piquant) on a hotness scale of 1 to 10, and a little goes a long way. Cloves are used in a number of spice mixtures including curry powders, mulling spices, and pickling spices.  Native to Indonesia, the clove tree is cultivated in Brazil, India, Sri Lanka, and the West Indies. This conical tree, with gray bark and shiny dark green, oval, fragrant leaves, grows to a height of up to 45 feet and requires at least 60 inches of rain per year with a dry season for harvesting and curing.  Its small purplish-red flowers grow in triple clusters at the end of branches. The fruit is a purple drupe (like the peach, cherry, almond, etc. containing a nut enclosing the seed) about one inch long.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Coconut, Unsweetened Flaked
(Coconut, Unsweetened Flaked)  Flaked unsweetened coconut is made from dehydrated coconut meat, which has been separated from the shell.  We have not seen flaked unsweetened coconut sold in supermarkets, but it is commonly sold in health food stores and by coops.  It is prone to becoming rancid, so we only buy it in sealed containers and store it in our freezer.  We use unsweetened coconut mostly for flavoring of Oriental recipes, desserts, and smoothies.  Unsweetened flaked coconut is very high in calories, with 80% coming from fat.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Coriander, ground
(Coriander, ground)  Ground coriander seed has a mild, sweet, slightly pungent, citrus-like flavor with a hint of sage. Coriander complements, curries, Middle Eastern dishes, vegetables, stewed fruit, chutney, pickles, cakes, biscuits, breads and lentils.  Coriander is the common name of the seed of Coriandrum sativum, a feathery annual herb of the family Apiaceae (Umbelliferae). Native to the Mediterranean and Middle East regions, the herb is cultivated in Europe, Morocco, and the United States for its seeds.  The tender young leaves of the coriander plant, known as cilantro, are also used for seasoning, but their flavor is entirely different.  To enlarge the photo of the ground coriander seed, and to see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Corn Starch
(Corn Starch)  Corn starch is an inexpensive ingredient to thicken sauces and gravies or any other cooked recipe.  To use corn starch as a thickening agent, first disperse it in a little cold water or other "watery" ingredients such as soy sauce, and slowly add it (with constant stirring) to the other ingredients while they are cooking.  About one tablespoon of corn starch will gel about one cup of liquid.  If you have not used corn starch as a thickening agent before, it is best to experiment with it by beginning with lesser amounts, and adding as necessary until the desired consistency is reached.  For thickening non-heated recipes such as salad dressings or frozen desserts, we suggest using guar gum or xanthene gum.  See the nutritional information by clicking on the photo or link.
Corn Tortilla
(Corn Tortilla) This is a 6-inch diameter corn tortilla that is made from whole corn, water, and lime, which contains no additives. We purchase these tortillas in a 2-pound package in our supermarket. We primarily use them for making toasted and roll-up sandwiches, mini-pizzas, and snacks. There is almost always a package of them in our refrigerator. We also have found that they are best cooked in a microwave oven, since baking them in a conventional oven causes them to dry out and flake on the surface before the inner ingredients are cooked. To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Cumin, ground
(Cumin, ground)  A member of the carrot family, cumin has been cultivated since ancient times for the aromatic flavor of it's seed.  Cumin is widely used in curries and Mexican style dishes.  The photo of the ground cumin is about a twenty times enlargement.  See nutritional chart below.
Curry Powder
(Curry Powder)  Curry powder is a blended seasoning, which is popular in Asia, Africa, and in other parts of the world.  This particular blend was purchased from Frontier, and contains the following ingredients: turmeric, paprika, fenugreek, coriander, black pepper, cumin, ginger, celery seed, caraway, and red pepper.  Because curry is a blend of various seasoning, we have not included any nutritional information for this blend.
Curry Powder, Dal
(Curry Powder, Dal) This dal curry powder, like all other curry powders, is a blending of several seasonings. We call this one dal because we first used it in yellow split pea soup. Since then, we decided to make this blend to use in other recipes, such as some of our green smoothies. To make this dal curry powder, thoroughly mix together the following ingredients and store in a tightly closed bottle with your other seasonings until ready to use:
2 tbsp. Coriander Seed, ground
2 tbsp. Cumin, ground
2 tsp. Cardamom, ground
2 tsp. Ginger, ground
2 tsp. Turmeric, ground
2 tsp. Yellow Mustard Seed, ground
Cayenne Pepper, ground (optional, to taste)
Dill Weed, Dried Leaves
(Dill Weed, Dried Leaves)  Both dill weed (dried leaves) and dill seed come from the same plant. Although we prefer using the dried leaves (see photo) in our recipes, fresh, dried or frozen dill seeds and flowers, as well as leaves, are also used. The flavor of dill weed has been described as bright, tangy, clean, and pungent. In use since ancient times, dill is indigenous to Europe. A member of the carrot family, or Umbelliferae, dill weed (Anethum graveolens) is a self-seeding annual with delicate lacy aromatic foliage, reaching a height of 3 feet.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart click on the photo or link.
Ginger
(Ginger)  Ginger is a tuber that is consumed whole as a delicacy, medicine, or spice. It is the rhizome of the plant Zingiber officinale.  Fresh ginger can be substituted for ground ginger at a ratio of 6 to 1 (1/4 cup ginger root = 2 tsp ground ginger), although the flavors of fresh and dried ginger are somewhat different. Ginger is native to Southern Asia and has long been a staple addition to Asian cuisines, but its use has spread around the world. The characteristic odor and flavor of ginger is caused by a mixture of zingerone, shogaols and gingerols, volatile oils that compose one to three percent of the weight of fresh ginger, mature ginger having the higher percentage.  See the nutritional chart below.
Ginger, dried ground
(Ginger, dried ground)  Ground ginger comes from drying and grinding the thickened, pungent, aromatic rhizome (root) of the tropically grown ginger plant, Zingiber officinale.  Ginger is widely used in Chinese food and is one of the seasonings in pumpkin pie.  See the nutritional information by clicking on the photo or link.
Guar Gum
(Guar Gum)  Guar gum, also called guaran, is extracted from the seed of the leguminous shrub Cyamopsis tetragonoloba, where it acts as a food and water store. It's similar to locust bean gum. Guar gum is a polysaccharide (a long chain of sugars) made of the sugars galactose and mannose. This long chain acts as a thickening agent in dressings and other recipes, particularly where heating is not desired. Guar gum is not usually sold in markets, but some health food stores and drug stores carry it, as do some coops.
Horseradish Root
(Horseradish Root)  The root of the horseradish is usually washed, peeled, and ground and sold in its processed form in jars; but it is also found as a whole root in the produce section of most larger supermarkets.  The raw horseradish root is much spicier than the processed form.  It can be stored in the vegetable bin of your refrigerator for several weeks.  The inside of the horseradish root should be white.  Select only firm roots.  Fresh raw horseradish root is excellent for making spicy salad dressings, dips and sandwich spreads.  See the nutritional chart by clicking on the photo or link.
Inka Instant Grain Beverage
(Inka Instant Grain Beverage) Inka instant grain beverage is a product of Poland, which is made from roasted barley and rye with no additives or preservatives. We first found it in a health food store. It is the least expensive of the instant grain beverages. We could not find any comprehensive nutritional information.
Kelp or Kombu, Granulated
(Kelp or Kombu, Granulated) Kelp or kombu (Japanese) is a sea vegetable. We mostly use granulated kelp on our salads for both flavor, and to add some iodine (an essential mineral) to our diet, which is needed to give us good thyroid function and health. It can also be added to soups and stir-fry recipes. Kelp or kombu is an important part of Japanese cuisine. To make the granulated kelp, the freshly harvested kelp is dried and coarsely ground.  According to Wikipedia, kelps are large seaweeds (algae) belonging to the brown algae (Phaeophyceae) in the order Laminariales. There are about 30 different genera. See Nutritional information by clicking on the photo or link.
Lecithin, Soya
(Lecithin, Soya)  We primarily us soya lecithin as an emulsifier in our bread recipes.  It is also used as an ingredient of dough enhancers: for every cup of flour, we use 1 tsp. of soya lecithin, 1/8 tsp. vitamin C (ascorbic acid), and 1/8 tsp. of ground ginger. Lecithin is a mixture of fats: glycolipids, triglycerides, and phospholipids.  It also produced naturally in our livers, when the person is eating a healthful diet. Every cell in the body requires lecithin for building the cell walls, for without it, the walls would become hardened.  Soya lecithin is extracted from soy beans using hexane and then refined.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Lemon Juice, Reconstituted
(Lemon Juice, Reconstituted)  Reconstituted lemon juice is, as the name implies, made by adding water back into concentrated lemon juice.  Because it's a processed food project, it also requires the flavor to be adjusted in order to main a uniform flavor.  This is accomplished by adding lemon oil that has been extracted from the peel.  And because it is a processed project, all bottled brands that we have encountered, have also added preservatives to maintain color and freshness, which usually include sodium bisulfate and sodium benzoate.  We recommend buy brands that have the least number and quantities of additives.  We mostly use bottled lemon juice in recipes that require a large quantity of lemon juice (a cup or more), for convenience, or when fresh lemons are not available.  Reconstituted lemon juice is not a substitute for the flavor of fresh lemons.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Mace, Ground
(Mace, Ground) Mace is a highly flavored spice, usually ground, which is made from the dried outer covering of nutmeg. The fragrance and flavor of mace is similar to that of nutmeg. Nutmeg is the seed or kernel inside the nut-like pit of a tropical fruit growing on evergreen trees (Myristica fragrans, of the family Myristicaceae, the nutmeg family) in the East Indies, India, Sri Lanka, West Indies, and Brazil. The flowers of these 60-foot tall trees are pale yellow and droop in clusters. When the fruit is ripe, it looks like a golden-yellow pear hanging among shiny, gray-green leaves that are long and pointed. As the fruit continues to ripen, the fleshy part becomes hard until it finally splits open at the top, revealing the yellow to red aril, the dried external fibrous membrane covering the pit. This covering is called mace. To enlarge the photo and see nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Molasses, Unsulphured
(Molasses, Unsulphured)  The highest grade, pure molasses is made from 100% pure, natural sugarcane juices, clarified, reduced, and blended to get just the right color and consistency. But there's difference in grades of molasses. The purest molasses is pure cane juice. If a manufacturer wants sugar, the cane juice will be processed. For most of our recipes that call for molasses, we use unsulphured molasses, because it sweetens with a rich pleasant flavor.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Mushrooms
(Mushrooms)  When most people think of edible mushrooms, they picture these common white ones.  Choose mushrooms that are white and have few brown spots, such as the ones in this photo.  Mushrooms are a good source of many vitamins and minerals.  See the nutritional charts by clicking on the photo or link.
Mushrooms, Oyster
(Mushrooms, Oyster) Oyster mushrooms (pleurotus ostreatus) are a common variety of edible mushroom; however, even though they are common, we rarely see them in supermarkets. Their name came from the fact that they look very similar to oyster shells. In the wild, oyster mushrooms grow on dead trees. They are cultivated commercially and are easy to grow. Oyster mushrooms can be used in many different recipes. We mostly use oyster mushrooms in our oriental style recipes. To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional information, click on the photo or link.
Mushrooms, Oyster, Dry
(Mushrooms, Oyster, Dry)  Oyster mushrooms are one of the milder tasting mushrooms, but they have a distinctive flavor.  We purchase dry oyster mushrooms in one pound packages (D'Allasandro) from the co-op, because of their convenience and storability.  They are great in soups and stir-fries, and reconstitute quickly when soaked in water.
Mushrooms, Porcini B (Cepes), dried
(Mushrooms, Porcini B (Cepes), dried) We only could find references to these mushrooms being wild and not domestically farmed. Also the porcini B cepes are much less expensive that the porcini, and their flavor is still very good. We usually buy them in one pound packages from our coop, but have seen them in health food stores and some supermarkets. Porcini mushrooms (Boletus Edulis) are a very popular mushroom throughout Europe and the United States. During late spring and early summer the porcini grows in abundance. Porcini mushrooms have a distinct flavor. The flavor can be almost addicting. Dried porcinis are a very economical mushroom as the flavor is very concentrated. Porcini mushrooms are delicious in soups, sauces, stuffing and stews. Dried Porcini can be substituted for any Mushroom in any recipe; typically a smaller amount of Dried Porcini can be used in recipes than other mushrooms because of the intense flavor.
Mushrooms, Portabella
(Mushrooms, Portabella)  Portabella mushrooms are the largest variety of mushrooms that we have seen being sold in markets.  The portabella mushrooms in this full-sized photo are approximately the actual size or slightly smaller than actual.  They are excellent for making mushroom steaks and for sandwiches.  See the nutritional chart by clicking on the photo or link.
Mushrooms, Shiitake, Dry
(Mushrooms, Shiitake, Dry)   When reconstituted in water, shiitake mushrooms are medium to strong tasting with a distinctive taste and a chewy texture.  We purchase these dry shiitake mushrooms from the co-op in one pound packages (D'Allasandro) because of their convenience and storability.  Since they reconstitute very quickly, we enjoy them in quickie soups, stir-fries, and steamed vegetable dishes.  See nutritional charts for dry and cooked shiitake mushrooms by clicking on the photo or link.
Mushrooms, Stir-Fry Mix, Dry
(Mushrooms, Stir-Fry Mix, Dry)  As the name implies, these dry mushrooms are blended together to add a special treat to stir-fries.  They are also great in soups.  We purchase this mushroom mix from the co-op (D'Allasandro) in one pound packages because of their convenience and storability.  This blend has a wide range of tastes and textures, which adds interest to the soups and stir-fries.
Mustard Seed, Ground
(Mustard Seed, Ground)  Ground mustard seed is an excellent way of adding a spicy mustard taste to recipes such as stir fries, soups, and salad dressings, without the other flavors associated with prepared mustards.  See the nutritional chart by clicking on the photo or link.
Nutmeg, ground
(Nutmeg, ground)  Nutmeg is the seed or kernel of a tropical fruit growing on evergreen trees (Myristica fragrans, of the family Myristicaceae, the nutmeg family) in the East Indies, India, Sri Lanka, West Indies, and Brazil. The flowers of these 60-foot tall trees are pale yellow and droop in clusters. When the fruit is ripe, it looks like a golden-yellow pear hanging among shiny, gray-green leaves that are long and pointed. As the fruit continues to ripen, the fleshy part becomes hard until it finally splits open at the top, revealing the yellow to red aril, the dried external fibrous covering or membrane of the seed. This covering is called mace. Under the aril is a dark, shiny nut-like pit. The nutmeg is the oval shaped seed inside this pit. Nutmeg is aromatic with a flavor that is warm, nutty, and slightly sweet. We use ground nutmeg (see photo) as an ingredient in some of our recipes.
Olive Oil, Extra Virgin
(Olive Oil, Extra Virgin)  Extra virgin olive oil is, by far, the best tasting of all types of olive oil.  It is made from the first cold pressing or "select" ripe olives.  Also, in order to be classified as extra virgin, the olive oil much contain less than one percent acid.  Extra virgin olive oil also has the best aroma and flavor.  Since we only use olive oil for flavoring, and never cook with oil, it is the only type of olive oil that we purchase.  Unfortunately, the only nutritional information we could find is for ungraded olive oil.
Olives, Ripe Pitted
(Olives, Ripe Pitted)  We usually buy ripe olives in 6-ounce cans.  We use them mostly for adding flavor to various cooked dishes, and for garnish and flavor on salads.  Since ripe olives are processed with salt, and thus high in sodium, we don't recommend "chowing down" on them, but they do enhance the flavor of many recipes.  Slicing the ripe olives helps to distribute the flavor throughout the recipe.  We have also found a variety of flavors and textures between brands of ripe olives, and recommend that people find the brand that they like best.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Olives, Ripe, Sliced
(Olives, Ripe, Sliced)  We usually buy ripe olives in 6-ounce cans, and slice them as shown in the photo.  We use them mostly for adding flavor to various cooked dishes, and for garnish and flavor on salads.  Since ripe olives are processed with salt, and thus high in sodium, we don't recommend "chowing down" on them, but they do enhance the flavor of many recipes.  Slicing the ripe olives helps to distribute the flavor throughout the recipe.  We have also found a variety of flavors and textures between brands of ripe olives, and recommend that people find the brand that they like best.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Oregano, dried
(Oregano, dried)  Oregano is a member of the Mint family, though the flavor is quite different.  The dried aromatic leaves of the bushy plant can be stored for some time in a tightly sealed jar, for use whenever desired.  We have found some variation in the flavor of oregano leaves, and prefer the Mediterranean variety.  Oregano is used in Italian and Chinese cooking.  See the nutritional information for "ground" oregano (it was the only oregano nutritional information we could find) by clicking on the photo or link.
Paprika
(Paprika)  Paprika (Capsicum annuum) is a New World seasoning,  It is commonly found in powdered form, which is made by grinding dried, aromatic, sweet red peppers, usually the Tomato or Bell pepper. Most commercial brands come from California, Hungary, Spain, and South America. It is very popular ingredient in Hungarian recipes, and we also prefer to use the Hungarian Paprika, as the flavor seems to be the best.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Parsley, Dried
(Parsley, Dried) Dried parsley is also referred to as parsley flakes. We keep dried parsley leaves on hand for adding a mild parsley flavor to cooked foods, and when we don't have fresh parsley on hand. A simple rule to use for substituting dried for fresh is to use 1/3 of the amount of dried parsley for the amount of fresh parsley called for in the recipe (i.e. 1/3 cup of dried = 1 cup fresh, or 1 teaspoon dried = 1 tablespoon fresh). Commercially made dried parsley or parsley flakes are made by freeze drying. It can also be made at home in a dehydrator. To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional information click on the photo or link.
Pasta, Angel Hair or Spaghettini, Whole Wheat
(Pasta, Angel Hair or Spaghettini, Whole Wheat)  Angel hair or spaghettini is a thin form of spaghetti.  Since this form of pasta has more surface area it holds more sauce, which in our opinion makes each mouthful more flavorful.  We always purchase 100% whole wheat or other whole grain pasta.  Most major supermarkets, and all health food stores sell 100% whole wheat pasta in various shapes and sizes to suit any desired recipe.  It is always best to read the labels to make sure that what you are buying is 100% whole grain.  The one in this photo contains only 100% certified organic whole durum wheat and water, with no other ingredients.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Pasta, Chiocciole, Whole Wheat
(Pasta, Chiocciole, Whole Wheat)  Chiocciole is a less well known shape of pasta, which looks like a large elbow with one end pinched nearly shut.  We always purchase 100% whole wheat or other whole grain pasta.  Most major supermarkets and all health food stores sell 100% whole wheat pasta in various shapes and sizes to suit any desired recipe.  It is always best to read the labels to make sure that what you are buying is 100% whole grain.  The one in this photo contains only 100% certified organic whole durum wheat and water, with no other ingredients.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Pasta, Elbows, Whole Grain Brown Rice
(Pasta, Elbows, Whole Grain Brown Rice) This is an excellent pasta for people who want gluten-free grain products. The ingredients are: stone-ground brown rice, rice bran, and water.  The cooking instructions were somewhat different than we've seen for whole wheat pasta: place in 4 quarts of boiling water, with 1 tbsp. salt (it cooks just as well without the salt), and cook for about 15 minutes; or let it boil for 2 minutes; cover, turn off the heat, and let stand for 20 minutes. The whole grain brown rice elbows cooked to a very nice al dente texture, and can be used with any sauce, in stir-fries, or in soups.  We could not find a complete nutrition list, but believe that the cooked whole grain brown rice spaghetti should be similar to cooked brown rice.
Pasta, Elbows, Whole Wheat
(Pasta, Elbows, Whole Wheat)  Elbows are a small curved type of pasta or macaroni that looks something like a bent elbow. They can be used in any recipe calling for a small size pasta, such as in casseroles, soups and salads. We always purchase 100% whole wheat or other whole grain pasta. Most major supermarkets, and all health food stores sell 100% whole wheat pasta in various shapes and sizes to suit any desired recipe. It is always best to read the label to make sure that what you are buying is 100% whole grain. The one in this photo contains only 100% certified organic whole durum wheat and water, with no other ingredients. To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Pasta, Fettuccine, Whole Wheat
(Pasta, Fettuccine, Whole Wheat)  Fettuccine is a flat, ¼ inch wide, type of spaghetti. They can be used as either spaghetti type pasta or as a noodle. We always purchase 100% whole wheat or other whole grain pasta. Most major supermarkets, and all health food stores sell 100% whole wheat pasta in various shapes and sizes to suit any desired recipe. It is always best to read the label to make sure that what you are buying is 100% whole grain. The one in this photo contains only 100% certified organic whole durum wheat and water, with no other ingredients. To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Pasta, Fusilli, Whole Wheat
(Pasta, Fusilli, Whole Wheat)  We always purchase 100% whole wheat or other whole grain pasta.  Most major supermarkets, and all health food stores sell 100% whole wheat pasta in various shapes and sizes to suit any desired recipe.  It is always best to read the labels to make sure that what you are buying is 100% whole grain.  The one in this photo contains only 100% certified organic whole durum wheat and water, with no other ingredients.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Pasta, Gobbetti, Whole Wheat
(Pasta, Gobbetti, Whole Wheat)  We always purchase 100% whole wheat or other whole grain pasta.  Most major supermarkets, and all health food stores sell 100% whole wheat pasta in various shapes and sizes to suit any desired recipe.  It is always best to read the labels to make sure that what you are buying is 100% whole grain.  The one in this photo contains only 100% certified organic whole durum wheat and water, with no other ingredients.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Pasta, Penne Rigate, Whole Wheat
(Pasta, Penne Rigate, Whole Wheat)  We always purchase 100% whole wheat or other whole grain penne rigate.  Most major supermarkets, and all health food stores sell 100% whole wheat pasta in various shapes and sizes to suit any desired recipe.  It is always best to read the labels to make sure that what you are buying is 100% whole grain.  The one in this photo contains only 100% certified organic whole durum wheat and water, with no other ingredients.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Pasta, Rigatoni, Whole Wheat
(Pasta, Rigatoni, Whole Wheat)  Rigatoni are tubular shaped with square cut ends.  They are great in any pasta dish where short, bite sized pasta is desired.  We always purchase 100% whole wheat or other whole grain pasta.  Most major supermarkets, and all health food stores sell 100% whole wheat pasta in various shapes and sizes to suit any desired recipe.  It is always best to read the labels to make sure that what you are buying is 100% whole grain.  The one in this photo contains only 100% certified organic whole durum wheat and water, with no other ingredients.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Pasta, Rotini, Whole Wheat
(Pasta, Rotini, Whole Wheat)  Rotini is a type of helix- or corkscrew-shaped pasta. The name derives from the Italian for twists. It is related to fusilli, but has a tighter helix, i.e. with a smaller pitch. It should not be confused with rotelle ("wagon wheel" pasta). Rotini originated from Northern Italy and the tight twists help them retain a wide variety of sauces better. They are often used in pasta salads with pesto or tomato-based sauces.  We always purchase 100% whole wheat or other whole grain pasta. Most major supermarkets, and all health food stores sell 100% whole wheat pasta in various shapes and sizes to suit any desired recipe.  The one in this photo contains only 100%  whole durum wheat and water, with no other ingredients. See the nutritional chart by clicking on the photo or link.
Spaghetti, Whole Grain Brown Rice
(Spaghetti, Whole Grain Brown Rice)  This is an excellent pasta for people who want gluten-free grain products. The ingredients are: stone-ground brown rice, rice bran, and water.  The cooking instructions were somewhat different than we've seen for whole wheat pasta: place in 4 quarts of boiling water, with 1 tbsp. salt (it cooks just as well without the salt), and cook for about 15 minutes; or let it boil for 2 minutes; cover, turn off the heat, and let stand for 20 minutes. The whole grain brown rice spaghetti cooked to a very nice al dente texture, and can be used with any sauce, in stir-fries, or in soups.  We could not find a complete nutrition list, but believe that the cooked whole grain brown rice spaghetti should be similar to cooked brown rice.
Pasta, Spaghetti, Whole Wheat
(Pasta, Spaghetti, Whole Wheat)  We always purchase 100% whole wheat or other whole grain pasta.  Most major supermarkets, and all health food stores sell 100% whole wheat pasta in various shapes and sizes to suit any desired recipe.  It is always best to read the labels to make sure that what you are buying is 100% whole grain.  The one in this photo contains only 100% certified organic whole durum wheat and water, with no other ingredients.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Peppercorns, black
(Peppercorns, black)  Pink, white, and green peppercorns all come from the same plant: Piper nigrum of the family Piperaceae, a trailing or climbing shrub grown in hot climates. The color is determined by the stage of ripeness at harvest time. Black peppercorns are really green when harvested, but turn black when dried. From the photo, we can see that not all of the peppercorns are fully black..  Since the 1930’s Brazil’s pepper plantations supply most of the peppercorns used in the United States. The different colors of this pungent spice have slightly different aromas and tastes. Green peppercorns are slightly sweeter, white are hot and spicy, red are not very hot but very aromatic, and black peppercorns are pungent and spicy. We believe that freshly ground peppercorns have a superior flavor to that of factory ground.  To enlarge the photo and see the Nutritional Chart, click on the photo or link.
Pepper, ground black
(Pepper, ground black)  This is a photo of freshly ground black pepper.  We began with the pepper grinder making finely ground pepper and than then loosened up the grinder to produce coarsely ground black pepper.  We prefer the flavor of freshly ground black pepper to that of the factory pre-ground.  A pepper grinder is a nice touch to have on the table, so that anyone who wants to add some spiciness to their meal can do so, individually, as one would do with a pepper shaker.  See Peppercorns, black to learn more about black pepper.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart click on the photo or link.
Pepper, hot red, ground
(Pepper, hot red, ground)  The ground hot red pepper we purchase is often referred to as cayenne pepper.  We use it in a wide variety of dishes to add a spicy flavor.  A little goes a long way!  The use of hot red pepper is a matter of taste, and we suggest that you try a little at a time until you reach the spiciness you desire.  See nutritional information by clicking on the photo or link.
Peppermint Leaves, Dried
(Peppermint Leaves, Dried) Dried peppermint leaves are a wonderful addition to many ethnic recipes such as Armenian and Greek. The thing we like most about dried peppermint leaves is that they retain a strong peppermint aroma, which makes it great for making mint tea. It is most commonly thought of as a flavoring for tea, candy, ice cream (hopefully vegan), and other products such as toothpaste. Peppermint is a cross between spearmint and watermint, which grow in the wild, but is mostly cultivated today. It was first catalogued in England in 1753.
Peppers, Ancho Chili
(Peppers, Ancho Chili)  Ancho chili peppers are widely used in Mexican food and have a fruity, smokey taste that adds a wonderful flavor to many dishes. Ancho chili peppers have only 1,000 to 2,000 Scoville heat units, compared to 5,000 to 8,000 for the jalapeno pepper. Ancho chilies are actually dried poblano chili peppers and the drying process imparts a nice smokiness to the chilies. The chilies are a two to three inches wide and 4 to 5 inches long with a dark reddish-green, wrinkled skin. We use the pepper shin and seeds (only removing the stem and hard inner section upon which the seeds grow). Ancho chilies are commonly ground into a powder and used in spice mixes.  They are available in most supermarkets.
Pepper Sauce - Hot Red
(Pepper Sauce - Hot Red)  There are many brands of hot pepper sauce with differing degrees of "heat".  We usually keep two kinds on hand: a high heat type, and a milder lower heat variety to produce the desired taste.  We suggest that you buy those that taste the best to you.  If you do not like very spicy food, we suggest that you only buy the lower heat varieties.  We have found that, in many cases, a combination of lemon juice and hot sauce, can satisfy the taste for salt in many recipes.
Peppers, Chipotle
(Peppers, Chipotle)  Chipotle peppers are dried and smoked jalapeno peppers.  The spicy smoke taste and flavor of chipotle peppers make an excellent addition to Mexican and Chinese style dishes.  They can be purchased in one ounce bags in most larger supermarkets; but we have found that the best pricing is from our food co-op, where we buy them in one pound bags.  The chipotle peppers should be cut into tiny pieces, chopped, or pureed in a blender (for liquid application such as in soups or sauces), before adding to the recipe.
Peppers, Guajillo Chili
(Peppers, Guajillo Chili)  Guajillo are one of the most popular chilies in Mexico. Most of the guajillo chilies are grown in the drier climate of north central Mexico. Guajillo are usually dried, and are used in hot sauces, and for pigment. It is a larger chili with a thicker skin, medium heat, and reddish brown in color, guajillo chilies do come in a number of other forms besides whole dried chilies. You can find them whole, dried whole, ground, powdered, granulated, julienne, diced, de-stemmed, or rendered into a paste. Guajillo, Ancho, and Pasilla together are referred to as the Holy Trinity of Chiles. Guajillo are rated at 2,500-5,000 Scoville units.
Peppers, Pasilla Chili
(Peppers, Pasilla Chili) Pasilla chili peppers are also referred to as pasilla negro chili peppers. A true pasilla (pronounced pah-SEE-yah; literally "little raisin") is the dried form of the long and narrow chilaca pepper (pictured above). Pasilla chili peppers are mostly used in sauces, and are sold in the dried form pictured here or powdered. The pasilla has a heat index of from 250 - 3,999 Scoville units. It typically grows from 8 to 10 inches long, but we have seen smaller ones in the bags of pasilla chili peppers we have purchased. See the nutritional information by clicking on the photo or link.
Pero, Instant Beverage, Coffee Alternative
(Pero, Instant Beverage, Coffee Alternative) Pero is an instant natural beverage. It is naturally caffeine free, which makes it an ideal coffee substitute or coffee alternative. Pero is made from barley, malted barley, chicory, and rye. Barley is a source of gluten. On the internet, it states that Pero is GMO free. Pero is made in Germany.
Radish, Black
(Radish, Black)  The taste and texture of the black radish are very similar to that of horseradish.  It is not an eating radish like the common small red one, but it is great for use in making salad dressings, dips, and condiments.  Select black radishes that are firm.  We could not find the nutritional chart information for the black radish, as we have with other ingredient items in this series.
Roma Instant Beverage
(Roma Instant Beverage) Pictured here is a close-up view of Roma air dried crystals. According to the label, Roma is instant roasted grain beverage, which is made from roasted barley, roasted malt barley, roasted chicory, and roasted rye. It is produced in Germany and distributed by Kellogg Sales Co. Roma is available in most specialty supermarkets, health food stores, and coops. We could not find any comprehensive nutritional information.
Rosemary
(Rosemary)  Rosemary grows on a small evergreen shrub belonging to the Labiatae family that is related to mint. Its leaves look like flat pine-tree needles, deep green in color on top while silver-white on their underside. Its memorable pine-like fragrant flavor and unique health benefits makes it an indispensable herb for every kitchen.  Rosemary is native to the Mediterranean, but is now grown in many temperate regions of the world, including the United States. To enlarge the photo and see the nutrition chart and other information, click on the photo or link.
Sauerkraut
(Sauerkraut)  Sauerkraut is shredded, salted, and fermented white cabbage.  We have not found a lot of difference between the quality and taste of sauerkraut sold in cans, jars, or plastic bags, though we have had one brand of canned sauerkraut with an off flavor; thus, we stay with the brands we like.  We use sauerkraut in several of our recipes.  The only drawback is the high salt content, but other than that the flavor is great!  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Smoke Flavor, Liquid
(Smoke Flavor, Liquid) Liquid smoke flavoring is made from either mesquite or hickory wood, which has been externally heated in a retort (oven) to the point where it begins to char and decompose. The smoke or vapor (mostly water) which is given off is then condensed into a liquid, which is aged in oak barrels before being filtered and bottled for sale.  Since the liquid smoke flavor is sold in this concentrated form, only a few drops are usually required to give the recipe a smoked taste.  Since liquid smoke is not a food, we do  not have any nutritional information available.
Soy Sauce
(Soy Sauce)  Soy sauce is a traditional ingredient in many Chinese recipes.  However, soy sauce does have a high salt content, which people on reduced salt diets should be aware of.  We have found that a little soy sauce is also an excellent addition to sauces and marinades.  There are several flavors of soy sauce, and most larger super markets carry several brands.  Select the one that is most pleasing to you.  See the nutritional chart by clicking on the photo or link.
Stevia Extract Powder
(Stevia Extract Powder)  The form of Stevia we use most often is the white powdered extract. This is the sweetest form, which is approximately 200 to 300 times sweeter than sugar, by weight. By comparison, this means that the 1/8 teaspoon of stevia extract in the photo is sweeter than 1/2 cup of cane sugar.  Because it is so sweet, it should be used by the pinch. Start with a very small amount, less than you intended to use, and add more only if necessary, after tasting. Other forms of Stevia are liquid concentrates, and fresh Stevia leaves, dried leaves, and ground powdered leaves, which are greenish in color and have a distinctive flavor, somewhat similar to licorice. We don’t like the green stevia because it leaves an aftertaste, which can alter the flavor of the recipe. Stevia Extract is available from health food stores and food co-ops.
Turmeric, ground
(Turmeric, ground)  Turmeric is the rhizome or root of a ginger-like plant, Curcuma domestica. It is usually available ground, as a bright yellow to orange colored, fine powder. Turmeric is an ancient spice, a native of South East Asia, used from antiquity as dye and a condiment. It is cultivated primarily in Bengal, China, Taiwan, Sri Lanka, Java. Peru. Australia and the West Indies. Turmeric is primarily used in curries, pickles, dressings, and to impart a yellow color to other foods such as rice.  To enlarge the photo and to see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Vanilla Extract
(Vanilla Extract)  What is considered to be pure vanilla extract also contains water and alcohol necessary for the extraction process.  Vanilla Beans are the long, greenish-yellow seed pods of the tropical orchid plant, Vanilla planifolia. Before the plant flowers, the pods are picked, unripe, and cured until they're dark brown. The process takes up to six months. To obtain Pure Vanilla Extract, cured Vanilla Beans are steeped in alcohol. According to law, Pure Vanilla Extract must be 35 percent alcohol by volume.
Vinegar, Apple Cider
(Vinegar, Apple Cider) Apple cider vinegar, otherwise known as cider vinegar is a type of vinegar made from apple cider or juice. It has a pale to medium amber color, and to us, it has a milder taste than distilled white vinegar, even though it has the same acid content. Apple cider vinegar is used in salad dressings, marinades, vinaigrettes, food preservatives, and chutneys, among other things. It is made by crushing apples and squeezing out the liquid. Bacteria and yeast are added to the liquid to start the alcoholic fermentation process, which turns the sugars into alcohol. In a second stage of the fermentation process, the alcohol is converted into vinegar by acetic acid-forming bacteria (acetobacter). Acetic acid and malic acid give vinegar its sour taste. Apple cider vinegar in available in most supermarkets.
Vinegar, Balsamic
(Vinegar, Balsamic)  In our opinion, balsamic vinegar is the finest of all grape wine vinegars.  It is also the most expensive, having been aged in wooden barrels for many years.  The lesser expensive brands have been aged for about least five years.  The more expensive brands of balsamic vinegar have been aged in several different flavored wood barrels for longer periods of time.  The aging process also concentrates the flavors. Balsamic is not technically vinegar, and the manufacturing process has more in common with sherry than with other vinegars. It is made from cooked grape juice - white grapes, surprisingly, given balsamic's intense color.   Straight from the bottle or slightly sweetened with a little stevia extract it is great on salads, and adds a wonderful full bodied flavor to dressings and other recipes.  We could not find any nutritional information for balsamic vinegar.
Vinegar, Distilled White
(Vinegar, Distilled White)  The term, "white", in the name distilled white vinegar is a misnomer, because the vinegar is actually clear.  Distilled white vinegar is the "lowest grade" of vinegar and is distilled from the dregs of other vinegars.  Most distilled white vinegar also has the acidity adjusted with industrially manufactured, food grade, acetic acid, and we often suspect that it is mostly acetic acid.  However, because if its clear color, it is excellent for pickling and for salad dressings where no added color is desired.  To enlarge the photo and see the nutritional chart, click on the photo or link.
Vinegar, Red Wine
(Vinegar, Red Wine)  Red wine vinegar is made from fermenting grape juice, and we suspect that it is usually made from poor wine grade grapes.  The more expensive brands have been aged in wooden barrels, and are darker in color.  The lower priced brands are lighter in color and more transparent.  Red wine vinegar is excellent for making salad dressings.  The higher quality are best to use with unseasoned oil and vinegar dressings.  If other seasonings are added, we have found that less expensive brands are perfectly acceptable.  We could not find any nutritional information for red wine vinegar.
Xanthan Gum
(Xanthan Gum)  Xanthan gum is a long chain polysaccharide composed of the sugars glucose, mannose, and glucuronic acid. It is made by the aerobic fermentation process of the bacterium Xanthomonas campestris, which causes black rot on cruciferous vegetables such as cauliflower and broccoli. It is an excellent thickening agent for salad dressings and other recipes, particularly where heating is not necessary. Xanthan gum is not usually sold in markets, but some health food stores and drug stores carry it, as do some coops.
Nutritional Yeast, Mini-Flake
(Nutritional Yeast, Mini-Flake)  The nutritional yeast we purchase is commonly known as Red Star Mini Flake T6635+ Vegetarian Support Formula™. This yeast is easy to use  and blends well with liquids. It can be used in almost any recipe and in small amounts will enhance the flavor. We use nutritional to give a "cheese-like" flavor and taste to many of our recipes.  It's also great on popcorn.  Nutritional yeast is produced specifically for its nutritional value, and is naturally low in fat and salt.  It is high in B-complex vitamins, including vitamin B-12.  Ingredients: Inactive dry yeast, Niacin (B3), Thiamin hydrochloride (B1), Riboflavin (B2), Pyridoxine hydrochloride (B6), and Vitamin B12.  We purchase our nutritional yeast at either a health food store or from a co-op.
Nutritional Yeast, Powder
(Nutritional Yeast, Powder) The nutritional yeast we purchase is commonly known as Red Star  Vegetarian Support Formula™. This yeast is easy to use and blends well with liquids. It can be used in almost any recipe and in small amounts will enhance the flavor. We use nutritional to give a "cheese-like" flavor and taste to many of our recipes.  It's also great on popcorn.  Nutritional yeast is produced specifically for its nutritional value, and is naturally low in fat and salt.  It is high in B-complex vitamins, including vitamin B-12.  Ingredients: Inactive dry yeast, Niacin (B3), Thiamin hydrochloride (B1), Riboflavin (B2), Pyridoxine hydrochloride (B6), and Vitamin B12.  We purchase our nutritional yeast at either a health food store or from a co-op.

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Vegan FlagThe above recipe is in keeping with God's creation intent (Genesis 1:29-31): 'Then God said, "I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food. And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air and all the creatures that move on the ground-- everything that has the breath of life in it-- I give every green plant for food." And it was so. God saw all that he had made, and it was very good.' (NIV) Let no animal suffer or die that we may live!