Saturday, July 12, 2008

Rainy Day French Toast

Whether you are of the maple syrup variety or a powdered sugar purist, french toast hits the spot. Today it's raining outside and there's a smell of cinnamon coming from the kitchen. That might be misleading, because I am actually about 2 feet from the kitchen.
Anyway, I'm making easy french toast. The chickpea flour makes the toast crispy and "eggy". Very simple. Just adjust quantities as needed.

I can't really call this a recipe without being embarrassed, so I'll call it a "method".

All you need is:
Soy/Rice Milk
Chickpea Flour (Besan)
Pinch sugar
Bread of choice

The only bread I would not advise using is white sliced bread. Bread cut from a loaf (like french bread) would be fine, but a bread like Sunshine or other white pre-sliced bread will probably not hold up.
I use a whole wheat grain bread and I don't even let it get stale first.

To the making! (This makes 2-4 slices of bread)

Place 3-4 Tbsp chickpea flour in a bowl
Pour in a little milk (1/4 cup?) and whisk until most of the lumps are out of the flour.
Add more soy milk (to make about 1 c or less)
Add a generous shake of cinnamon
Add a pinch of sugar

Heat a cast iron skillet and add margarine, oil, or a mix of the two and heat.
Dip each slice of bread on both sides into milk mixture and place in pan.

Don't flip too early, or bread will stick. Once flipped, cook until toasty and done.
Serve with syrup or powdered sugar.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Italian Herb Roasted Corn-Bean Salad, Homemade Pasta

I wanted a simple corn and black bean salad, but was out of black beans and so this came up! I think I like it better than a plain corn and bean salad. The Olive-Tofu Ricotta for the pasta is a very easy variation on the one I regularly make, and today I did a ravioli and tortellini.

Italian Herb Roasted Corn-Bean Salad
1/2 large red onion, roughly chopped
3 ears of fresh corn, husk removed
1 average can white beans (northern, cannelini) drained and rinsed
about 3 Tbsp (more if desired) Italian dressing (I like Balsamic Vinaigrette)
10-15 small button mushrooms (can use other kinds, buttons are cheapest)
1 small sprig rosemary, chopped fine
4-5 large basil leaves, chopped fine
fresh ground pepper
pinch salt
extra salt and olive oil for baking
tamari/soy sauce for baking

Preheat oven to 350
Put corn and onion in a large baking pan and drizzle with olive oil and a pinch of salt/pepper
Put mushrooms in a separate smaller baking pan and add about 1/4 c or less tamari/soy sauce, and drizzle with olive oil.
Let mushrooms, corn, and onion bake for 1 hour.
Remove from oven, cool completely and chill completely.

Cut mushrooms in 1/2, and cut the corn kernels off the ears. Place onions, cut corn, and mushrooms in a bowl. Add remaining ingredients and chill further.

Serve with entree and enjoy!

Homemade pasta (Almost Whole Wheat)
This is pretty much entirely Crystal's dough recipe, I just substituted some of the flour for whole wheat pastry flour.

You can do tortellini or ravioli easily. If doing ravioli, be careful and make them small. The large ones break really easily. You can possibly do a fettuccine with a pasta roller; I haven't tried that yet.


Ricotta Ready To Go

All of them, all of them

All of them, all of them all lined up

2 c whole wheat pastry flour
1 c all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
2 Tbsp Ener-G Egg Replacer powder completely dissolved in 1/2 c water
6 Tbsp extra water

Sift flour and salt into a bowl. Mix all other ingredients together in a small bowl. Make a little hole in the center of the flour and pour in liquids. Bring together with a fork or your hands and knead until flour comes together.
Wrap in plastic and let sit for 1 hour. I refrigerated mine and it still came out fine.

To the rolling!
I rolled to a 5 on my pasta roller.
Dough will seem rough at first. You will have to roll on level 1 3-4 times. After this, keep rolling on to 2, then 3, then 4, then 5.

Olive Ricotta
1 pack tofu (14-16 oz) drained and pressed
3-4 Tbsp vegan mayo (I use Vegenaise)
Very generous shake Italian seasoning (dried)
1-2 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp garlic powder (give or take)
fresh pepper
pinch sea/kosher salt
small handful green olives, chopped
small handful kalamata or black olives, chopped

Process all ingredients in food processor until smooth but not soupy. Tastes best when chilled for at least 1 hour.