Quinoa is quite bland, but takes on the flavor of the other things in your dish. It's simple and quick to cook. Use 2 cups of water to 1 cup of quinoa. Bring the water to a boil. Add the quinoa and bring it back to a boil. Then cook over medium heat for about 12 minutes or until all the water is absorbed. Be careful not to let it burn. Remove from heat, cover and let stand for 15 minutes. That's all.
Barley is a very easy grain to cook. I'll cook a lot of good stir fry type veggies (but without oil) with a little extra water and then at the end toss in a bit of barley (just toss it in dry, uncooked). It cooks very quickly and can make a soup more like a stew, or make a wet stir fry like a casserole.
Don't forget about sweet potatoes and yams. Full of nutrition and filling. You can just microwave them.
A great snack is air popped popcorn. I spray it with Bragg's Liquid Aminos (you will find it in the soy sauce section at the health food store and some regular groceries), then shake on nutritional yeast and maybe some other spices.
I usually make up my recipes, but good vegan cookbooks I know: Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease by Caldwell B. Esselstyn, Jr, M.D., and the Engine 2 Diet by Rip Esselstyn both have extensive recipe sections. I love those. There's "Vegan with a Vengeance" by Isa Chandra Moskowitz. I know other people will be able to offer other good suggestions.
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