Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Summer Expres: 101 10-Minute Vegan Meals

Check out Urban Vegan's blog!

It's 101 veganized meals that take 10 minutes or less to make. There's some added prep time like water boiling or rice-cooking, but it's very handy.

Thanks, Urban Vegan!

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Dinner Party!

Tonight we had a dinner party! I started on a lot of this late last night so I wouldn't be scrambling but I always scramble!

I like appetizer dinners. You get a little of everything, and a variety of tastes can be suited. Tonight the menu was:

Avocado Salad
Stuffed Mushrooms
Beer-Battered Onion Rings
Tempeh "Wingz"
Spinach & Artichoke Dip
Yummy Spread
Oreo Cheesecake!!

(Recipes that I can give out are below)

Pictures of the guests and the food:

Group, clockwise from left: bf, Lauren and Zack, Luis, Sam, Jaime, Scooter, and Becky

Luis and me and the dogs

I wonder what John Cusack's up to tonight...

Bread pan battle scar!

Stuffed Mushrooms- I love stuffing and I love mushrooms so this is pretty much awesome for me. This recipe is based off of VWAV but I changed it a bit.)

30 large mushrooms, cleaned
3 Tbsp. olive oil
*1 small or 1/2 of 1 large onion (1 cup finely chopped)
*2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
*handful of your fav. herbs: I used a lot of basil, some oregano, and thyme, fresh
salt and pepper to taste
*1+ cup your favourite stuffing bread (I use bagged plain stuffing bread, not StoveTop type)
*bullion powder
*tad water

Preheat oven to 375 F
De-stem mushrooms, and finely chop stems and put stems in separate bowl
Bake mushrooms in oiled or sprayed large pan for 10 minutes.

While the mushrooms are baking, make stuffing: saute stems for 5 min, add garlic, onion, herbs, salt, and pepper and cook 5 more minutes
Add stuffing bread, water, and bullion. Add some water to fully hydrate stuffing, but give it time before adding water. Don't add too much. Just enough to hydrate bread. Set aside.

When mushrooms are done, drain liquid and place stem-side up. Stuff each mushroom and place back in oven. Bake 20 minutes more.

Beer-Battered Onion Rings*- I got this recipe here. *If you prefer to not use alcohol, chilled club soda will work fine.

Tempeh "Wingz" and Spinach-Artichoke Dip are both from "Don't Eat Off The Sidewalk". It's a cook-zine and it's only $2.50 and that includes shipping. You really should get it! I added some Follow Your Heart cheese to the dip but that's completely optional.

Yummy Spread is from Lolo at VeganYumYum. She has a book coming out. Her site is in my links. She is pretty awesome and really nice so when her books comes out you should buy it.

Bread. I made an easy bread from this recipe at Vegweb. Thanks M. Gorhon from PPK for the suggestion. I used about 1/2 and 1/2 white flour and Whole Wheat Pastry Flour. This makes 2 good size loaves, so feel free to cut in 1/2! With this appetizer dinner, no one will talk bad about you if you get storebought bread. I decided not to though, because I cannot really find a nice crusty bread that's vegan. All the ones a Publix have egg wash. Eggwash, you are dead to me. Soymilk works just fine!

Oreo Cheesecake (with raspberry sauce) This cheesecake is from Delicious Choices. I simply used a store-bought Oreo crust and added about 1 cup crushed Oreo-style sandwich cookies to the batter before baking. Since I believe the Delicious Choices recipes are no longer being sold, I will post it here. If you DO find them, please support the author and buy them.

Oreo Cheesecake

2- 8oz pkg Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese
2 cups Sour Supreme Sour Cream
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 Tbsp (1 Tbsp + 1 1/2 tsp) egg replacer powder dissolved in 1/2 cup water
1 cup crushed Oreo-style cookies
Comb. cream cheese, sour cream, and sugar until fluffy.
Add vanilla, flour, and egg replacer/water, and cookies beating well after each addition.
Pour into prepared 8" springform pan. Set in 8" pan in a 10" springform pan.
Pour hot water into 10" pan until 1/2 of the 8" pan is submerged.
Place in preheated 300F oven and cook 1 1/2-2 hours until center is set and sides begin to pull away from pan.
Do not unmold cheesecake until completely chilled. Chill 10 hours or more.

Raspberry Sauce:
1 standard bag frozen raspberries
more water
maple syrup (opt.)

*Set bag of raspberries on counter and thaw. Place thawed raspberries (and juice) into a sauce pan and add sugar. The amount is up to you. I would say I used 1/3 a cup or less, but added some maple syrup. It's to taste.
*Add a little water (1/4 cup?) and bring to a boil, whisking often.
*Mix about 1 Tbsp. corn starch/arrow root starch in a couple Tbsp water and dissolve completely. Add cornstarch/water right before mixture comes to a boil. *Continue to cook and whisk until thick. Set aside to cool.
*optional for presentation: strain through a fine mesh strainer. Put strained sauce in a squeeze bottle and decorate anything you want. The seeds can be added to bread or yogurt for breakfast or whatever. Don't throw them out.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Fried Rice,Coconut Milk Soup, Taco Salad, Boston Cream Cupcakes

First up is Fried Rice. It's based off the Basic Fried Rice recipe from Bryanna Clark Grogan's Authentic Chinese Food for the Contemporary Kitchen. It's really great, and you don't have to use a ton of oil. You get the flavour with little fat. The basic procedure is to use COLD rice, heat up your pan very hot, add oil, then stir fry tofu/veggies for a bit then add the rice. Add a little soy sauce for colour and some sesame oil. Buy her book!

Thai Coconut Milk Soup from The Garden of Vegan. Yummy! Only problem I had was that it called for "3 pieces galangal" with no size specification so I use 3 large chunks (smaller than 1-Tbsp. each). It was really yummy with the rice!

Basic Taco Salad. Publix brand veggie-ground "beef"

Boston Cream Cupcakes from VCTOTW. I used pudding because I had problems with my filling. These were excellent though. I used all Whole Wheat Pastry Flour and subbed 1/2 the oil for applesauce. Soooo good!

This is my friend, Jaime. We cook together and watch "Curb Your Enthusiasm" a lot. Hey Jaime, it's like a jetstream of bull#@*! coming out of your mouth!" XOX. Jaime's shirt got bleached because she is a hair stylist. If I had non-dreaded hair, I would go to Jaime.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Appetizer Dinner w/ Lolo Food, "Crab" cakes, and Mac and Cheese

I decided to do an all-appetizer dinner. I had made the mac-and-cheese (soul veg recipe) the day before, and started the "crab cakes" before work and let them sit in the fridge while I was gone.

Lolo's jalapeno poppers were awesome...I just don't like the flavour/heat of jalapenos. The batter and the filling were both excellent, and the person I made them for liked them a lot. I tried to just eat the batter and filling and it was *still* too hot for me because it was in the pepper. If I find a pepper I love then I will definitely make these again!

"Crab" Cakes
This recipe is from We actually ate at Sluggo's once. It was a weird day. My cat Coral had passed away and we had his funeral and needed to get out and so we drove and saw Islands in Pensacola at Sluggo's. I had the crab cakes and they were really good. I was glad to see the recipe on vegweb.

1 block firm tofu
1/4 green pepper, finely chopped
1/4 red pepper, finely chopped
1/2 red onion, finely chopped
3 medium carrots, grated
2 celery stalks, diced
1/2 cup dried cornbread crumbs (I used more than this to keep it together)
1/2 cup vegan mayonnaise (try Vegenaise)
1/8 cup Dijon mustard
2 Tbsp. dill
1 Tbsp. dried basil
2 Tbsp. Cajun seasoning (I used Cachere's and Old Bay)
1 tsp. white pepper
Salt, to taste
Japanese panko bread crumbs for coating the cakes
Oil for frying

• Crumble the tofu into a mixing bowl. Add all the ingredients, except for the panko and oil, and stir together well, making sure that the cornbread crumbs are thoroughly mashed so that there aren’t any big pieces. If the mixture is too wet, add another 1/4 cup of cornbread crumbs. If it’s too dry, add a little more vegan mayonnaise.
• Using your hands, roll about 1/4 cup of the mixture at a time into balls, then roll in the panko until coated. Flatten into cakes.
• Heat the oil on a flat-top grill or in a large iron skillet until hot. Fry the cakes until golden brown.

Makes 3 Servings

Tartar Sauce
"Glop" Vegenaise
smaller "glop" dill relish
squirt lemon juice
black pepper

*If using a food processor to fine-chop the veggies/tofu, DRAIN WELL. I had to add a lot of cornbread crumbs even though I dried pretty well.
*I also tried baking these by doing everything above, except cooking at 400F for about 20 minutes in an oiled pan.
*If baking, you may want to add egg replacer powder. 1 Tbsp egg replacer and 1-2 Tbsp water. You want to add as little moisture as possible, as it will already be pretty wet.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Cheesecake and Produce

I made Mocha cheesecake for my friend for her birthday. The recipe is from Delicious Choices, but I cannot find the website! I heard the recipes are no longer being sold, but if you come across them, PLEASE buy her recipes. It's a $10 download and worth every penny.

The recipe called for rum, but I subbed Kahlua. These were wonderful! The crust is an Oreo store crust. The recipe made more than 24 cupcake-sized minicakes. Be sure to reduce the time cooking. Recipe Below

Flea Market- All of this produce was really well-priced.

Eggplant 3/$1
Green/Red Peppers 3/$1
Avocado Basket 5/$5
Peaches 6/$2
Blueberries Pint/$1.50
Mangoes $.80 each
Onions 4/$2
Tomatoes- free since I bought other produce from this nice family

Mocha Cheesecake

3- 8oz pkg Tofutti Cream Cheese
1 c + 2 Tbsp granulated sugar
3/4 c flour
1 1/2 Tbsp egg replacer dissolved in 1/2 c water
3/4 c melted chocolate chips (I like Ghiradelli semi-sweet!)
3 Tbsp rum (I subbed Kahlua and Kahlua is non-alcoholic as well)
3 1/2 Tbsp instant coffee granules
1/4 c water
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 Oreo Crust

Preheat oven to 300F.
Press 1/2 c crust into 8" lined springform pan OR 1/2-1 Tbsp crust into each 24 sprayed cupcakes liners in a muffin pan. If using 8" pan, use a 10" springform pan as a waterbath. If using cupcake pan, do your best and put a cookie sheet with high sides under it for a water bath.

*Mix coffee, rum, water, and vanilla in small bowl and set aside.
*Combine cream cheese and sugar until fluffy (beat MED speed)
*Add flour, egg replacer/water, and melted chocolate chips, beating well after each addition
*Pour coffee mixture into cream cheese mixture and beat until fluffy.
*Pour into prepared pan/cupcake pan. Add hot water so that 1/2 of the 8" pan is submerged.
*Place in oven and bake until cake rises slightly and starts pulling away from the sides. Middle will be shiny and not quite set. This should take about an hour for the 8" or 30-40 min for the cupcake pan.
*Cool in pan on wire rack.
*Place cooled pan in refrigerator over night. DO not unmold cake until thoroughly chilled and set, at least 10 hours (longer is better).
*If using 8" pan, unmold cake and turn upside down onto a plate, then right side up to serve. Cake can be frozen.
*If you do cupcake-sized, there will be batter left over so if you have 3 cupcake pans, use them. I like the single-serving cupcake-size.

1 Tbsp = 3 tsp.

Friday, July 06, 2007

BBQ/Potluck Recipes- Need Your Submissions

Here in the states, we had Independence Day on the 4th, which means we as Americans must stuff our patriotic faces. Post your recipes here and don't vote Republican. Post in the comment, and I will post it here if you wish, *please specify*). Or link to them, or whatever you want!
Hope you had a safe and happy 4th!

I have a couple. Maybe pictures will be added at a later time:

Chips and Fruit Salsa
Yes, this salsa is for chip-dipping! For a completely raw version, use raw flax crackers or even romaine lettuce. This is a free-style recipe. Everything to taste.

2 mangoes, peeled and fruit chopped small
3-4 large strawberries, hulled and chopped small
1/4- 1/3 medium red onion, diced very small
1-2 green onions, sliced thin (white and green parts)
1 bunch cilantro (or half, or none), chopped finely
agave nectar (raw agave for raw version)
1 japaleno pepper, deseeded and chopped fine (optional. I didn't use one because I didn't have any gloves!) This is only if you want a very spicy version.

Mix all ingredients in a bowl and chill for a few minutes to allow flavours to blend. Serve with tortilla chips.

Yummy Potato Salad
I made the perfect potato salad yesterday. It will probably never happen exactly the same again. This is the best I can remember.

2-3 cups red (new) potatoes, unpeeled and small diced (about sugar cube-sized)
1-2 or a little less red onion, chopped fine
2-3 green onions, sliced thin or minced
1 handful cilantro, chopped (opt)
2 large "glops" Vegenaise, add more to taste or use less to taste
1 dollop regular yellow mustard
1 dollop stone-ground mustard (I like the kind with the seeds in it)
Fresh ground pepper
Kosher salt to taste

Cook potatoes until done but still firm. Drain well. Mix all ingredients well. Chill thoroughly. It is very important to chill. It is great room temperature but awesome chilled.

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Mike's "Skallop" Cilantro-Coconut Pasta

Mike on the PPK Forums sent me this recipe a long while ago. I altered it just slightly, so I will post my version. This makes a large amount, probably 6 good-sized servings. We all know pasta is better the next day! This is a very freestlye recipe, as much is not specifically measured and you can add whatever seasonings you wish.

1 can coconut milk
1/4 c olive oil, or a mixture of oil/broth, or omit
3 cloves garlic, rough chopped
Couple handfuls or 1 bunch cilantro**
Chili Sambal sauce, to taste (start out with 1 tsp. and work up)
3-4 sugar-cube size chunks ginger, cut up
1/2 sheet nori seaweed, chopped*

**If you hate cilantro, consider using green onion, spinach, roasted red pepper or any other vegetable. Play around with it!
*Use nori only if you want the "sea" flavour. If not using Skallops, you may want to omit it.

*1 can Worthington "Skallops" OR 1 1/4 lb pressed tofu OR seitan, cut into small-ish chunks
*soy sauce
*lemon juice (from 1-2 lemons below)
*fresh grated ginger

Skallop Coating:
1/2 sheet nori, cut up (use scissors, very easy!)
Flour to coat
Few Good Shakes Old Bay seasoning
1-2 Lemons for cooking (will be explained)

1 box (16 oz) Angel Hair Pasta


Marinate Skallops in marinade mixture (soy sauce,lemon juice, ginger) for 20 minutes. They do not have to be submerged, just keep them wet.

Blend sauce ingredients in blender. Set aside.

Heat some oil in a skillet, coat Skallops in flour/spice/nori mixture, and saute. You may have to do this in 2 batches to not overcrowd. Add juice from 1/2 lemon and flip over/stir when golden brown. (If doing 2 batches, make sure not to use juice from 1/2 lemon in *each* batch unless you really want a lemony flavour).
Keep Skallops moving and let both sides cook. If necessary, deglaze pan with lemon juice or white wine. Add more oil as necessary.

Meanwhile, cook and drain pasta.

Pour liquid from blender into hot skillet or pan. Make sure this is a large pan! You can add:
*Tomato (I used 1 cup but could have easily used 2)
*Few pinches turmeric
*Few pinches coriander

When liquid starts to bubble, add pasta and evenly coat pasta in sauce. At this point, you can add more seasoning: soy sauce, lemon juice, salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, etc. Anything you want.

Plate noodles, top with cooked Skallops and garnish.