Sunday, November 29, 2009

Thanksgiving Feast 2009

Once again, our Thanksgiving feast was not as involved as years past but unlike last year we cooked more from scratch and didn't rely on a Tofurkey. We tried a number of recipes this year from the current edition of Vegetarian Times and they all came out great. For the first time in memory - maybe for the first time ever - their Thanksgiving menu was entirely vegan. We started with the Butternut Squash-Bartlett Pear soup. It was sublime.

The main course was Smothered Seitan in Mixed Mushroom Gravy, which we had over simple mashed Yukon gold potatoes. On the side were Citrus Collards with Raisins and Cranberry Conserve (slightly modified from Emeril's recipe). It wasn't quite as crowded of a plate as we've had in the past but it was all delicious - particularly the seitan.

Finally, dessert was a tried and true recipe from a back issue of Vegetarian Times - one of the first issues we ever bought from 1996. It's a pretty basic veganized pumpkin pie recipe that primarily uses silken tofu as the binder. Basic but yummy!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Eat Your Broccoli

This is by far the longest I've gone between posts so my apologies for leaving you hanging. It's a long story that I won't go into here but what I will go into are a couple of great ideas for using broccoli. And we all know broccoli is so good for you, right? We've been getting some great broccoli from our CSA recently and one night I grabbed the first cookbook that caught my eye and flipped to the first broccoli recipe that caught my eye. The book was Nava Atlas' The Vegetarian Family Cookbook and the recipe was the Creamy Tofu and Broccoli Skillet. I went with tempeh instead of tofu and also made a few other changes and I ended up with a scrumptious meal that came together very quickly.

Creamy Broccoli with Tempeh (adapted from Nava Atlas)

4 Tbs. olive oil, divided
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 green bell pepper, cut into strips
2 large heads broccoli, cut into bite-size pieces
1 c. rice milk
2 Tbs. flour
3 Tbs. nutritional yeast
salt & pepper to taste
2 8-oz. packages tempeh, cut into strips
2 Tbs. soy sauce

Heat 1 Tbs. oil in a very large skillet over medium heat and saute garlic for about 30 seconds. Add bell pepper, broccoli and 1/2 c. water. Cover and cook over medium heat until broccoli is just getting tender. Whisk flour and nutritional yeast into rice milk, stir into broccoli and cook until thickened. Season with salt and pepper. Meanwhile, heat remaining oil in another skillet over medium-high heat and fry tempeh strips until they're starting to get brown. Stir in soy sauce and cook for another minute or two. Serve broccoli over rice with tempeh on top.

We also got our broccoli fix recently from the Broccoli Quiche recipe from Vegan Brunch. This time we made the recipe as is and it came out great. I'm too lazy to type in another recipe and anyway, you really need to buy this book if you haven't already. And trust me when I tell you this is definitely a recipe you have to try.