Saturday, December 31, 2005
If you're reading this in C-ville, regardless of whether or not you're vegan, you have to check this place out (Preston Plaza, next to Integral Yoga).
Friday, December 30, 2005
The salad was pretty filling, but we also made some lentil soup kind of like the basic recipe we already posted.
Thursday, December 29, 2005
Wednesday, December 28, 2005
Monday, December 26, 2005
Anyway, we had a late breakfast this morning and stuffed ourselves with waffles, and we just got back from a late lunch at Ming Dynasty (which we've already written about), where we also stuffed ourselves. So there won't be a dinner post since dinner will probably be something small - maybe just leftovers from last night.
Sunday, December 25, 2005
- Brussels Sprouts (thanks to Vegan Lunch Box)
- Mashed Potatoes and Celery Root with Roasted Garlic (similar to what we posted here but with the addition of celery root)
- Tangerine-glazed Beets (from Vegan with a Vengeance, but we used tangerines instead of oranges since we just got a nice shipment of tangerines from my parents in Florida)
Dessert was an apple and blueberry cobbler that was loosely based on the cobbler recipe in Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison. We served the cobbler with Wild Berry Supreme Tofutti - harder to find but definitely my favorite flavor outside of chocolate.
The fried tofu & gravy recipe is something I clipped out of the newspaper many years ago and we still make it from time to time. The credit in the tattered clipping says it's adapted from Heart of the Home by Ann Jackson.
For the fried tofu:
1 block tofu (1 lb.), sliced into 8 pieces
1 Tbs. sesame seeds
2 Tbs. olive oil
2 Tbs. tamari
1/3 c. nutritional yeast
For the gravy:
2 Tbs. vegan margarine
1/4 c. flour
leftover nutritional yeast from fried tofu
1-3/4 c. plain soy milk
1 Tbs. tamari
salt & pepper to taste
Heat oil over medium heat in a cast iron (or other) skillet and add sesame seeds. Dredge each slice of tofu in nutritional yeast and add to skillet. Drizzle tamari over top. Fry on both sides until brown. Remove tofu from pan and leave pan as is to start the gravy.
Add margarine and let it melt. Whisk in flour and nutritional yeast and let it brown a little. Whisk in soy milk and continue whisking vigorously to make sure you get rid of any lumps. Continue stirring until thickened, then add tamari and salt & pepper.
In our Thanksgiving post, I mentioned the puff pastry dough we made and the fact that we froze half of it. Well, we thawed the frozen puff pastry in the fridge a day or so in advance, then rolled it out into a large rectangle (around 9"x15") on a lightly floured counter. We spread a mushroom filling on it (recipe follows), and topped that with some fresh spinach leaves, leaving a little space along the borders. Then we rolled it up starting from a long side; having a piece of parchment underneath it can help with this process. We brushed the last edge with a little Silk creamer to help it seal, then brushed the whole roll with a little more creamer, then cut a few very small slits in the top and baked it at 350 for about 45 minutes; you want it to be nice and golden brown on top. Once it cooled a little, I cut it into roughly 1" pieces to serve.
Here's what we did for the filling:
1 large shallot, cut into small dice
1 clove garlic, minced
1 lb. button mushrooms, coarsely chopped
2 tsp. fresh thyme
4 oz. Tofutti cream cheese
1 large roasted red pepper
salt & pepper to taste
Saute shallot & mushrooms in some olive oil for several minutes until mushrooms are getting soft. Add garlic and thyme and cook a little more. You want to make sure that all the liquid that's released from the mushrooms is cooked off. Allow this mixture to cool a little, then add to a food processor along with cream cheese and salt & pepper. Process until well combined, then add red pepper and pulse a few times just until red pepper is coarsley chopped.
Saturday, December 24, 2005
Friday, December 23, 2005
Thursday, December 22, 2005
In a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat, saute about 1/4 c. onion, diced, 1 carrot, peeled and diced, about 2 c. chopped green cabbage, and 1 c. chopped seitan in 2 Tbs. peanut oil. Cook until seitan is starting to get brown, then add 1 clove minced garlic, and a little finely minced ginger. Cook for a few seconds more, then add 1 package gnocchi and mix well. Then add 1/3 c. vegetable stock and 2 Tbs. of soy sauce. Mix well, scraping the bottom of the pan, then cover, reduce heat and cook for a few minutes more until the gnocchi are done. Mix in about 1 Tbs. sesame oil at the end.
Wednesday, December 21, 2005
Tuesday, December 20, 2005
You can buy soy sour cream (I think Tofutti is the best), but it's also easy to make it yourself. This is a recipe (with quantities roughly halved) from Peter Berley's great book, The Modern Vegetarian Kitchen: in a food processor, blend until very smooth half of a 12 oz. package silken tofu, 3 Tbs. olive oil, 2 Tbs. lemon juice, 3/4 tsp. cider vinegar, and 1/2 tsp. salt.
Recipes for guacamole abound, but I don't think you need to get too fancy. Basic guac can just be avacado, lime juice and salt. You can add onion, garlic, tomatoes, cilantro, chiles, etc. but I usually like to keep it simple and highlight the flavor of the avocado. Tonight's recipe was just 1 ripe avocado (a ripe avocado is a little soft to the touch and almost black) mashed with about 1 Tbs. finely minced red onion, 1 Tbs. lime juice and 1/4 tsp. salt. If tomatoes are in season, I might add a little chopped tomato, but that's usually it. And whatever you do, don't buy those packaged mixes for guacamole you see in the store. Too many ingredients you've never heard of.
Here is a recipe I came up with for peppermint candy cane cookies. They are easy to make and great for the holidays.
Candy Cane Cookies
6 candy canes
3 cups flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup soy milk
2 tsp flax powder
1/2 cup vegan magarine (Good Earth Buttery Sticks)
1/2 cup vegetable shortening (Good Earth Shortening Sticks)
1 cup brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp peppermint extract
Turn on oven to 350 F. Crush the candy canes in a plastic bag using a hammer until they are in small pieces. Add candy cane pieces, flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt to a large mixing bowl. Cream butter, shortening and sugar in a food processor. Mix together flax powder, soy milk, vanilla extract and peppermint extract in a small bowl. Add to butter and sugar and mix well in the food processor. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix well. You will have stiff dough. Scoop cookies onto a cookie sheet using either a small cookie scoop or two teaspoons. Flatten cookies slightly with the bottom of a glass. Sprinkle with a little turbinado sugar and bake for 20 minutes. Enjoy.
Monday, December 19, 2005
Sunday, December 18, 2005
1 large carrot, cut into matchsticks
1 small yellow onion, halved and sliced thin
small handful snow peas, cut into small pieces
1/2 of an 8 oz. box of seitan, cut into small pieces
1/2 head green cabbage, sliced thin
1 tsp. finely minced ginger
In a large skillet or wok, stir-fry the carrot, onion, snow peas, and seitan over medium-high heat for a few minutes. Add the cabbage and continue cooking until cabbage is very wilted. Add ginger and cook another minute or so. Allow to cool a little, then start assembling the spring rolls. Keep wrappers under a damp towel and pull out one at a time. Place the wrapper diagonally in front of you, brush the edges liberally with water, spoon about 3-4 Tbs. filling in the center, then fold the top corner down over the filling, fold both sides in, and fold the bottom up and over. We usually double wrap ours so they'll hold together better, so now you can take the single wrapped roll you just did and wrap it again in a similar fashion. Store the finished rolls under another damp towel. When you're done wrapping them all, fry them a few at a time in a healthy amount of canola oil in a skillet over medium-high heat until golden brown on each side. When you take them out of the skillet, put them on a paper towel lined plate and sprinke immediately with a little salt or seasoning mix. We usually serve them with a dipping sauce that goes something like this (amounts are approximate):
In a small bowl, whisk together 1/3 c. apricot jam, 2 Tbs. soy sauce, 1 Tbs. rice vinegar, and 1 tsp. sesame oil.
So now I'm getting a little tired of typing and there are many recipes out there for Pad Thai, but I'll give you the basics on what we made tonight. The sauce was the juice of 1 lime, 1 Tbs. tamarind concentrate, 3 Tbs. soy sauce, 2 Tbs. brown sugar, and Asian chile sauce to taste. The veggies were 1 carrot, cut into matchsticks, a handful of snow peas, a little sliced onion, scallions (sliced in half lengthwise and cut into 2" pieces), 2 c. mung bean sprouts, and garlic & ginger. All this with a 12 oz. package of rice noodles.
Saturday, December 17, 2005
It's called The Flat, and it's a little take-out window on Water Street offering crepes with sweet or savory fillings. And they did indeed have a vegan option. We each got a huge vegan crepe filled with mushrooms, fresh spinach and soy cheese (not sure if the soy cheese was totally vegan but we let that slide since we were so excited that the crepe itself was vegan). Anyway, it was quite yummy and if you're in Charlottesville, regardless of whether or not you're vegan, you have to check this place out.
We probably won't post anything about our dinner tonight since we've got various leftovers from the last several days in the fridge. I think dinner will be a salad and a clean-out-the-fridge sort of affair.
Friday, December 16, 2005
We also made onion bahjis from a recipe I wrote down while watching Jamie Oliver on the Food Network quite a while ago. I don't know how authentic this is, but here goes:
Peel a large red onion, cut in half and then into fairly thin slices. Mix in a large bowl with 2 grated carrots, 3-4 chopped scallions (white and some green parts), and about 1/2 a bunch cilantro, coarsley chopped. In another bowl, make a batter from 1 c. all-purpose flour, 1 c. chickpea flour, 2 tsp. black mustard seeds, 2 tsp. cumin, 1 tsp. chili powder, 1 tsp. turmeric, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 1 1/3 c. water. Add batter to onion mixture and mix well (it's messy, but best to use your hands for this). Heat a little oil in a large skillet over medium to medium-high heat. Pick up a small handful of the mixture and add to the pan, pressing down a little to flatten it some. Repeat until you've filled up your pan (I fit 3 large ones in a 12" skillet). Fry until golden brown on one side, then flip over and repeat for the other side. We served ours with prepared mango chutney.
Thursday, December 15, 2005
I also made the mushroom fritatta with mushroom sauce from Vegan with a Vengeance. The fritatta is basically mashed tofu, seasoned and mixed with sauteed onions, mushrooms, sun-dried tomatoes, and black olives then pressed into a pan and baked. It didn't hold together that well since I used a larger pan than what was called for in the recipe and it was a little thin, but it still tasted good. And the mushroom sauce was out of this world. If you have the book I highly recommend that you try it. And if you don't have the book, what're you waiting for?!
Wednesday, December 14, 2005
Now every good vegan knows that collards are way good for you (lots of calcium and all that) but I'm sometimes at a loss as to what to do with them. Not too long ago we found a recipe in a back issue of Vegetarian Times from several years ago that looked pretty good and I've cooked collards this way a few times since then and they come out really good. Here's my slightly tweaked version of the recipe:
In a medium-sized pot, add 1 c. water, about 1/4 c. diced onion, 1 bay leaf, 1/4 tsp. allspice, 1/2 tsp. cumin, 1 minced clove of garlic, 1 Tbs. veg. worcestershire sauce (I used Annie's brand), 1 Tbs. soy sauce, and 1 tsp. maple syrup. Bring that mixture to a boil. Meanwhile, remove thick stems from 1 bunch of collards and chop into fairly small pieces (I had about 3-4 cups chopped). Once the liquid boils for a couple of minutes, add collards, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Then remove from heat, remove bay leaf, stir in 1 Tbs. olive oil and add salt & pepper to taste.
Tuesday, December 13, 2005
Monday, December 12, 2005
Sunday, December 11, 2005
2 ripe bananas
1/2 c. canola oil
1/2 c. sugar
1/4 c. + 2 Tbs. soy milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 Tbs. Ener-G egg replacer (available at most natural food stores or on-line)
2 c. flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 c. chopped walnuts (optional)
Mash bananas in a large bowl then add oil, sugar, soy milk and vanilla and mix well. Sift in flour, baking powder, baking soda, egg replacer and salt and gently mix until well combined (it will be a fairly stiff batter). Fold in nuts if using then spread into a greased 4” x 8” loaf pan and bake at 350º for 55-60 minutes.
Saturday, December 10, 2005
Friday, December 09, 2005
1 can artichoke hearts (14oz), drained and rinsed
1-2 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 cup Vegenaise
1/4 cup Tofutti non-cream cheese
2 tablespoons bread crumbs
Combine garlic, lemon juice, vegenaise, non-cream cheese and pinch of salt in food processor and process until smooth. Add artichoke hearts and pulse a few more times. Pour mixture into a small casserole dish. Sprinkle bread crumbs on top. Bake at 375 for 20 to 25 minutes until bubbly.
Thursday, December 08, 2005
1 pound extra firm tofu, drained
2 tsp. lemon juice
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. salt
fresh ground black pepper to taste
1/3 c. olive oil
2 Tbs. nutritional yeast
3 veggie sausage patties, fried in a little oil and crumbled
2 tsp. capers
handful of green olives, chopped
Crumble tofu into a bowl, then add remaining ingredients except capers and olives and mix well. Then fold in capers and olives.
Meanwhile cook a pound of penne in plenty of water until not quite al dente. Spread a little olive oil in a large shallow baking dish then add a few tablespoons marinara (we used an organic marinara from a jar; if you have time and inclination, you can make your own). Add 1/3 of the pasta to the baking dish, top with 1/3 of the tofu mixture then 1/3 of the marinara. Continue layering like this with the remaining ingredients. Sprinkle a little olive oil on top and bake at 350 for 30 minutes.
Wednesday, December 07, 2005
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
When we were in Northern Virginia this weekend, we stopped at Trader Joe's and stocked up (which we usually do whenever we're in that neck o' the woods since we don't have a Trader Joe's here). We mainly do this because they're much less expensive than any of the natural food stores we have here. Anyway, we usually get a few packages of potato gnocchi there which makes for a fairly quick one-pot meal. I do this a little differently every time I make it, but here's what I did tonight; amounts are approximate.
In a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat, saute 1/2 of a medium onion, diced, 2 c. chopped broccoli, and 1 c. chopped seitan in 2 Tbs. olive oil. Cook until seitan is starting to get brown, then add 2 cloves minced garlic, a few coarsley chopped kalamata olives and sun-dried tomatoes, and 1 Tbs. capers. Cook for a few seconds more, then add gnocchi and mix well. Then add 1/3 c. red wine and a few Tbs. of tomato sauce. Mix well, scraping the bottom of the pan, then cover, reduce heat and cook for a few minutes more until the gnocchi are done. Season with salt & pepper to taste.
Adding some liquid to the pan then covering it for a few minutes allows the gnocchi to cook without having to boil them. And when you don't own a dishwasher every dish you can avoid mucking up helps.
Monday, December 05, 2005
We don't have much in the way of fresh veggies in our fridge at the moment and we were hungry and wanted something quick so we made something like the Hijiki-Chickpea Salad from the book. I looked for hijiki the last time I made this recipe and couldn't find it, but I did find arame which is another sea vegetable. You can tweak the proportions to your liking, but basically I reconstituted a few tablespoons of the arame in hot water and while that was soaking, I drained and rinsed a can of chick peas then smashed them in a bowl with some vegenaise, whole grain mustard, and apple cider vinegar, then mixed in some shredded carrot, finely diced onion, diced celery, diced sweet pickle and salt & pepper. Then I drained and chopped the sea vegetable, mixed that in and made sandwiches with it on some whole grain toast.
Saturday, December 03, 2005
And now we're thoroughly stuffed...
For dinner we went to Woodlands in Fairfax which is an entirely vegetarian Indian restaurant with an extensive South Indian menu. If you've never had South Indian food before you should definitely seek it out the next time you're in a bigger city. A mainstay of South Indian cooking is the dosa which is sort of a savory crepe from a batter made from ground and fermented rice and lentils. If you're interested in knowing more, I just found a good blog entry all about dosas. We had a masala dosa which is filled with a potato and onion curry, and also an uthapam, which is a thicker pancake sort of creation made from a similar batter to the dosa and topped with veggies.
One of the more challenging things about eating a vegan diet is travelling and eating out, but there are so many good resources on-line today that if you poke around on the web before you go you can usually find something, especially in bigger cities (VegGuide.org is a good place to start).
Another tip we use when travelling (especially for finding breakfast) is to seek out bagel shops. Bagels are usually vegan and you can also usually get them with peanut butter. If you go to Google maps and use the find businesses link you can type in "bagels" and the town you're interested in and up will come a map with a bunch of bagel shops located.
Thursday, December 01, 2005
The great thing about coming to the DC area is the abundance of veg-friendly restaurants. Earlier today I was checking out VegDC.com trying to decide where to eat while we're here. I'll let you know what we find.
I also figured out what the link was for the RSS feed which was not obvious to me just viewing the web site. If you want to add the site to your RSS reader, here's the link: http://eatair.blogspot.com/atom.xml
On another note, we'll be travelling this weekend and we'll have access to a computer, but we may not post every day.
Wednesday, November 30, 2005
The keys to risotto are 1) get the right kind of rice (arborio), 2) have your water or stock simmering on another burner and add it a little at a time, and 3) constant stirring. Keep all this in mind and your risotto will be fine. Here's how I made mine:
4 c. water or veg. broth (or make a broth from the squash and leek trimmings)
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 medium leek (white part only), halved and thinly sliced
2 c. butternut squash cut in 1/2 in. dice (a smallish ~1 lb. squash should do)
1/2 c. arborio rice
1/3 c. quinoa
2 Tbs. white wine
1 tsp. dried ground sage (or use fresh if you've got it)
salt & pepper to taste
- Bring the water or broth to a boil in a saucepan then reduce heat and keep at a simmer.
- In a larger saucepan, saute the leek in 1 Tbs. olive oil with a pinch of salt and pepper over medium heat for about 2 min. Add the squash and cook for another minute or two. Add the rice and quinoa and stir until they're well coated with the oil, then add the sage and wine and cook until dry.
- Now ladle in the water or broth, 1/2 c. at a time, stirring constantly until the liquid is absorbed. Continue adding the liquid in this fashion until the grains are creamy and tender. For me that's about 22 minutes. Turn off heat and stir in the remaining 1 Tbs. olive oil and season with salt & pepper to taste. I garnished mine with chives and toasted pine nuts. Enjoy!
Tuesday, November 29, 2005
Monday, November 28, 2005
Add 1/2 c. flour and 1/4 c. nutritional yeast to a saucepan. Whisk in 2 c. water then add 1 veg. boullion cube. Turn on medium heat and cook until the mixture thickens, stirring frequently. Add 1 Tbs. miso, 1 tsp. garlic powder, 1/2 tsp. paprika, and 1 tsp. salt. Mix well and simmer for about 5 min. Add 2 Tbs. vegan margarine and 1 tsp. mustard of your choice. Meanwhile, cook a pound of your favorite pasta. Before draining the pasta, add 1 c. of the pasta water to the sauce. Then put 1/2 c. frozen peas in your colander and drain the pasta over the peas. Mix pasta & peas with the sauce in a large bowl and enjoy! If you want to add some protien, fry up some seitan or TVP chunks and add to the pasta.
Sunday, November 27, 2005
I had a nice picture of this creation, but I just accidentally deleted it from the camera before I downloaded it. D'oh!!
Thursday, November 24, 2005
- Vegetable Pie with homemade puff pastry, filled with sweet potatoes, seitan, mushrooms and spinach
- Roasted root vegetables
- Steamed green beans
- Mushroom-walnut gravy
- Cranberry sauce
- Pumpkin Cheesecake
This is our version of various similar recipes we've seen in Vegetarian Times through the years. In the past we've done something like this with store-bought puff pastry (which is usually not entirely vegan), but this year we found this recipe one night while watching Emeril. It's time consuming, but most of that time is spent letting it rest in the fridge. It helps to have some pastry skills (which Darlene has) when doing this, but if you're pretty comfortable cooking and baking you can probably do it. We just substituted vegan margarine for the butter and it came out great - much better than the store-bought stuff.
For the crust, take half of the puff pastry recipe (you can freeze the rest), then roll out about 3/4 of that into a circle large enough to cover the bottom and sides of a 9" springform pan. Press the dough into the pan, then add the filling which goes like this:
Bottom layer is about 2 lbs. sweet potatoes, baked, peeled and mashed with 1/4 c. orange juice, 1/4 tsp. nutmeg, and salt & pepper to taste.
Next layer is about 2 c. homemade seitan (we used this recipe), fried until well browned.
Next layer is about 2 lbs. button mushrooms, coarsely chopped, sauteed and seasoned with fresh thyme, salt & pepper. Make sure you cook off all the moisture and drain on a paper towel lined plate.
Final layer is 2 big bunches (1 1/2 lbs.) fresh spinach cooked until soft with 1/4 tsp. nutmeg and salt & pepper. Again, make sure it's drained well.
Then roll out the remaining puff pastry into a circle large enough to cover the pie, place it on top and crimp around the edges. Cut a few small slits in the top and bake at 375 for about an hour or until golden brown.
Important step: Make sure you put another pan under the pie to catch any drippings. We forgot to do this and had burning nastiness on the bottom of our oven which filled the house with smoke and briefly set off the smoke detector. Fortunately it was warmer and very windy here today and we opened all the windows and aired the place out.
We used white fingerling potatoes, purple potatoes, beets, and a rutabaga. We chopped these into bite-sized pieces and mixed them with olive oil, fresh thyme, salt & pepper, and roasted in a baking dish for about an hour at 375. It helps to cut the beets and rutabaga into smaller pieces than the potatoes because they'll take a little longer to cook.
I cut a loaf of fresh bread into about a 1" dice and dried the pieces in the warming drawer of our oven (you could just do it in the oven over low heat). I'm not sure of the exact quantity but I'm thinking it amounted to around 8 cups. I sauted diced onion and celery in olive oil, added about 2 tsp. each dried ground sage and dried parsley, salt & pepper, 1/2 c. chopped walnuts and 1 medium granny smith apple, peeled, cored and diced. I then added 2 c. homemade vegetable stock (many veg. cookbooks have recipes), stirred until most of the liquid was incorporated, transferred to a covered casserole dish, and baked at 375 for 30 minutes.
This recipe is only slightly modified from one in the November, 1996 issue of Vegetarian Times. That was our first vegetarian Thanksgiving and we've made this gravy almost every year since then.
2 c. boiling water
1 c. dried wild mushrooms
1/2 c. all-purposes flour
1/2 c. finely chopped shallot
1 Tbs. olive oil
1 1/2 to 2 c. vegetable stock
1/2 c. toasted and finely chopped walnuts
1/2 tsp. fresh thyme
salt & pepper to taste
Pour boiling water over mushrooms and let steep for 20 min.
In a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat, brown flour, stirring constantly until color is deep amber, about 5-10 min. Be careful not to burn. Scrape flour onto a plate to cool.
In skillet, saute shallot in olive oil until translucent.
Drain mushrooms, reserving liquid. Rinse mushrooms and chop finely. Strain reserved liquid through several layers of cheesecloth.
In a saucepan, combine flour with a little stock, whisking until smooth. Add remaining stock and mushroom liquid. Cook over medium heat, whisking frequently until it starts to thicken. Add mushrooms, onion, walnuts, thyme, salt & pepper. Cook until heated through and fairly thick. Add more stock if it's too thick.
Cook 1 12 oz. bag fresh cranberries, 1 1/2 c. orange juice, and 1 c. sugar over medium heat until cranberries have popped. Remove from heat and let cool, then refrigerate for at least an hour before serving.
Whew! That's a lot of cooking (and a lot of writing). Now we can spend the rest of the weekend eating all the leftovers so we may not be posting much the next few days.
Wednesday, November 23, 2005
We spent a lot of time cooking today because we got started on a few things for our Thanksgiving feast tomorrow (like Darlene's cheesecake below). More on the feast soon.
Hi Everyone! I just finished making our Thanksgiving dessert. It is best to make it the day before you plan to serve so the flavors can intensify. The recipe is similar to the one in Sinfully Vegan by Lois Dieterly (a great book for vegans with a sweet tooth) with some modifications to cut the recipe in half and still use lots of fresh pumpkin. Chris found the crust recipe in our local alternative weekly, the C-ville. They published a very non-vegan pumpkin cheesecake recipe from local restaurant Rapture, but the crust looked good (and simple). The recipe called for butter but I substituted vegan margarine.
Pumpkin Cheesecake - Vegan Style
¾ c. quick oats
¾ c. chopped walnuts
¾ c. light brown sugar
½ tsp. Cinnamon
¼ c. melted margarine
Mix together all dry ingredients, then add margarine and mix well. Press into the bottom of a 9” springform pan and bake at 325 for about 20 minutes, until golden brown. Remove and allow to cool. I put a circle of parchment paper on the bottom to make it a little easier to remove the pie from the pan.
2 8-oz. containers Tofutti cream cheese
1 12-oz. box silken tofu
1 cup sugar (I used organic turbinado sugar)
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup fresh pureed pumpkin
1/4 cup flour
1 tsp. cinnamon
¼ tsp. nutmeg
¼ tsp. ground ginger
Combine cream cheese and tofu in food processor and process until smooth, scraping down sides as necessary. Add sugar and blend until creamy. Add remaining ingredients, blend and pour into cooled prepared crust. Place on top rack of oven. Place a shallow pan filled with water on the lower rack of oven and bake at 350 for 50 minutes.
1 12-oz. box silken tofu
1 Tbs. canola oil
1 ½ tsp. lemon juice
¼ tsp. salt
1/2 cup sugar
¾ tsp. vanilla
½ tsp. cinnamon
While cheesecake is baking, place tofu in food processor and process until smooth, scraping down sides as necessary. Add other ingredients and process to blend. After 50 minutes, pull cheesecake out of oven and carefully spread on topping.
Return to oven and bake an additional 10 minutes. Turn the oven off and leave the cheesecake in the oven for an additional hour. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely. Refrigerate at least 8 hours or overnight before serving. Enjoy!!
The home fries this morning were just from 2 yukon gold potatoes diced and fried in peanut oil with salt and pepper to taste. Many recipes for home fries will tell you to boil the potatoes first until they're just barely tender and then fry them, but I'm lazy and usually skip that step. I've found that if the potatoes are diced fairly small (like 1/2" or less) then they'll get tender just from frying them.
We rounded out our breakfast with some toast from yesterday's bread.
Tuesday, November 22, 2005
Since we were snacking again today on some more of Darlene's oatmeal peanut butter cookies dinner was just a salad and sandwiches on some of the fresh bread. Our sandwiches were pretty simple - soy turkey, lettuce and veganaise. We try not to overdo it with processed convenience foods, but sometimes they're, well, convenient.
Monday, November 21, 2005
1 medium onion, diced
1 large stalk celery, diced
2 medium carrots, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
4 cups water
1 veg. boullion cube
1/2 tsp. dried marjoram
1 bay leaf
1 cup dried green split peas, rinsed
1 large yukon gold potato, diced into bite sized pieces
1 tsp. liquid smoke
Saute onion, celery and carrots in olive oil with a little salt and pepper until they start getting soft. Add garlic and cook about 1 min. more. Add marjoram, bay leaf, water, veg. boullion, split peas, and salt to taste. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, partially covered until split peas are just getting soft, about 45-60 min. Add potato and liquid smoke and continue to simmer until potato is tender, about 10 min. more. Season with salt and fresh ground pepper to taste.
We had this with toast from some whole grain bread I made a couple weeks ago and had in the freezer and started with a small salad.
Sunday, November 20, 2005
1 medium onion, diced
garlic and ginger to taste, finely minced
1 head cauliflower, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 large yukon gold potato, cut into 1/2 inch dice
1 Tsp. curry powder
1 can lite coconut milk
1/3 c. soy creamer
1 can chickpeas, rinsed
Saute onion in a little oil over medium-high heat until lightly browned. Add garlic and ginger and cook for 1 min. more. Add curry powder and cook for a few seconds, then add cauliflower, potato, coconut milk and creamer and stir well. Bring liquid to a boil, then reduce heat, cover and simmer until cauliflower and potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes. Add chickpeas and cook for about 1 min. more until chickpeas are heated through. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve over rice (or whatever other grain you like).
You can usually find a copy of the book used on ebay. There are also tons of web sites dedicated to sourdough though I don't know of a particular one to recommend - just google "sourdough bread". If you happen to have a starter or you get into it and make one, here's something you can do with the leftovers:
1 1/2 c. sourdough starter (assuming you have a wet starter)
1 very ripe banana
2 Tbs. canola oil
2 Tbs. maple syrup
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
Mash banana in a large bowl, then mix in the oil and maple syrup. Mix in starter, then add the remaining ingredients and mix well. Cook in a skillet or griddle as you would with any other pancakes.
Saturday, November 19, 2005
Back to dinner... last month we went to the Green Valley Book Fair, which we had heard has tons of books for really cheap. Well, that's true, but they're mostly older and/or less popular books. Their cookbook section was decidedly mainstream, but we did pick up Moby's "teany book" for 4 bucks. It has stories and recipes from his cafe called teany, and was definitely well worth it at that price.
So dinner tonight was a salad similar to a couple of nights ago and these sandwiches from teany book (thanks Moby!):
We used a light wheat bread and spread cashew butter generously on one slice and apple butter on the other slice. On the cashew butter side put about a quarter of a large banana, sliced and on the apple butter side drizzle about a half teaspoon of maple syrup. Put together, spread margarine on both sides and grill in a skillet over medium heat until nice and brown on both sides. Oh, and make more than one because once you've had one you'll definitely want another.
Here's what ours looked like...
Friday, November 18, 2005
Anyway, Darlene was driving by Ming Dynasty a few days ago and commented that we hadn't been there in a while. There have been a few new veg-friendly restaurant offerings in our humble little town lately (which I'm sure we'll address in due time), but Ming is still one of our favorites. It was actually the first place I ate in Charlottesville when I came here for my job interview.
When I first became vegetarian about 10 years ago I did so somewhat gradually. I had finally gotten to the point where I was eating almost no meat, but I was on a work trip in eastern North Carolina and eating dinner at a Chinese buffet with maybe 2 veggie options. They also had Sesame Chicken on the buffet and I just had to have some - I love Chinese food and I really loved sesame chicken. Well, that was the last time I ate meat, but after that I was on a quest to find a good veggie alternative. Enter Ming Dynasty. Not only do they have Sesame Vegetarian Chicken (made with soy), but an entire menu full of Chinese favorites made with veggies and/or soy & wheat based meat alternatives. Darlene had the Sweet & Sour Vegetarian Meatballs and we shared. These "meatballs" are made with soy and veggies and quickly deep-fried so they're crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. To die for. They were actually named by one of our alternative weeklies as one of the best tastes in Charlottesville. Oh, and another thing we like about Ming is that you can get brown rice instead of white. Much better for you. And more tasty I think.
Thursday, November 17, 2005
The fresh tomatoes and cucumbers from our garden are gone (wah!) so we had a big bowl full of a mix of romaine and red leaf lettuce with carrots, a couple of mushrooms that didn't make it into last night's dinner, a small handful of slivered almonds and a handful of chickpeas.
Then for the really easy tasty dressing: a generous drizzle of toasted sesame oil, a healthy splash of rice vinegar and a couple of dashes of soy sauce.
This morning I finished off the last of a batch of granola I made last week. I had never made granola before until I discovered this great recipe from Alton Brown on the Food Network. Yeah, we're Food Network junkies, taking whatever vegan crumbs they throw our way. I really like Alton Brown's show Good Eats, well except when he's doing something stupid like the beef jerkey show from the other night.
Anyway, back to the granola. If you've never made it before, give it a try (and even if you have made it try the recipe above). It's really easy and well, good eats. If you want to jazz it up, try using dried blueberries instead of the raisins.
Wednesday, November 16, 2005
Tuesday, November 15, 2005
Let me explain. In 2001 we were living in Tempe and my appendix ruptured and I spent 13 days in the hospital. There's a lot more to that story, but here's the relevant part. For probably half that time I couldn't eat solid food, but when I could start eating I immediately realized that as a vegan, the hospital had almost nothing for me. So Darlene would go down the street to the local co-op and bring me food. Most of the nurses there understood and many were interested in hearing more about our diet. One particular nurse though was incredulous and when we tried to explain our diet she said, "What do you eat, air?"
I should've explained to her that she might want to check out that rather large section of the grocery store called Produce, but I was too drugged at the time and I let it go.
Now let's eat.