The Flaming Vegan

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Simple is Better
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Simple is Better

Prep Time: 5 mins.

Cook Time: 20 mins.

Simple is better.

Have you ever bumped into impossible recipes? Scary recipes that are so complicated, containing unfamiliar techniques, special equipment and hard-to-find ingredients, that no one could possibly understand them, never mind make them? (Like the famous Pâté de Canard en Croûte that was featured in "Julie & Julia"? The seven page long recipe that starts off with deboning a five-pound duck). Most of them are hell to make, take hours, and in my honest opinion, are not really worth any of the trouble.

Not having a clue of what to make for dinner, I checked out my pantry and fridge. My friend Sonia brought us a big bag of lemons from her backyard, which I’ve been using for lemonade. My friend Pedro brought us a big bag of homegrown grape tomatoes. I had some pasta and extra virgin olive oil in the pantry; garlic and red pepper flakes and decided to put everything together and came out with a great dish -simple, light and bursting with flavor


Grape Tomatoes and Lemon Pasta

(6 servings)


  • 1 pound pasta
  • 4 cups grape tomatoes
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 4 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 3 tbsp red pepper flakes
  • Sea Salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar



1. Cook pasta in boiling salted water until al dente. Drain well, drizzle a little olive oil and keep warm.

2. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute, stirring occasionally. Add the tomatoes, lemon juice, sugar, salt and red pepper flakes. Cook about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

3. Add the pasta to the sauce and stir well to combine. Serve warm.

Isn’t simple better? Healthier? Less expensive? And delicious? If you don't have recipes, just throw together what ever you happen to have on hand. That’s what I do every day and I end up with the tastiest dishes- like my delicious rice and beans which is basically brown rice and black beans with coconut oil, garlic, cumin, salt and pepper.


So remember:

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication-

Leonardo Da Vinci

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  1. Melissa Nott
    Melissa Nott
    I'm with you. Complicated recipes turn me off (although they taste great when someone else prepares them!). Thanks for sharing this. I have made something like it before, but without the lemon. Will try with the lemon next time!
    1. Norma Plum
      Norma Plum
      Lemon gives it a fresh yet sophisticated taste. Let me know how you like it.
  2. Veganara
    Voted. Great recipe, and I agree with you wholeheartedly, simple is best! I also find complicated recipes with mile-long lists of ingredients and instructions very off-putting. Most of my recipes are the opposite - fairly quick and easy cooking! (That is the focus of the vegan cookbook I am currently writing). You might like my latest drink recipe, which is simple and few ingredients: Tan-Maximiser Cantaloupe Cooler.
    1. Norma Plum
      Norma Plum
      oh yeah! Less is MORE. Will check out your recipe. Thanks! and hope you enjoy mine.
      1. Veganara
        I have just seen that you have a masters in nutrition Norma, very impressive! When you check out my recipe, maybe you can advise me if it is true what I hypothesise about beta-carotene!!
  3. Tonya Kubo
    Tonya Kubo
    I love preparing elaborate recipes but rarely have the time to do so daily. Thanks for sharing something that can be whipped up after a long day at the office without making dinner interfere with bedtime..
    1. Norma Plum
      Norma Plum
      you're welcome Tonya. I just made some more, still had lemons and grape tomatoes. This time I added some nutritional yeast as well to give it a cheesy flavor.
  4. Buster509
    Right, you are! One night we were very hungry, the cupboards were kind of bare, & we didn't feel like going anywhere. I cooked linguine, sauteed some garlic in EVOO, threw it together with red pepper flakes, salt & pepper -- and it was simply marvelous!!!! Simple.
    1. Norma Plum
      Norma Plum
      try adding a little lemon next time Buster, it's soooo o good!


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