Sunday, April 19, 2009

Pork Wonton Soup

Yum! I found this tasty, cheap "pork" gluten at my local Asian market. So far we've done hot BBQ pork/cucumber sushi. It's delicious grilled with sauce. So I decided to make wonton soup. I wanted the soup to be simple and the dumplings to be the star. Have I said a million times that I love dumplings of all sorts? You can also make these dumplings (do a simple triangle) and pan-steam them. Yum!

"Pork" Wonton Soup
1 can Wu-Chung fried pork, drained and pulsed to crumbles in food processor
2 cups small-chopped green cabbage
2 cloves garlic
1 small dried chili pepper, chopped very tiny
small piece ginger, minced (1 tsp)
2 green onions, chopped
2-3 dried shiitake mushrooms
1 pkg vegan wonton wrappers
1 tsp sesame oil
2 tsp soy sauce
6 cups water
6 tsp/2 Tbsp Better Than Bouillon vegan "chicken" broth, or vegetable broth.

-Soak mushrooms in hot water for 20 min. If using fresh, saute and set aside. Chop small. Can use water in broth for soup if desired.
-Heat a large skillet and add 1 tsp peanut/other neutral oil. Fry garlic, ginger, and chili pepper for about 30-45 seconds. Do not burn garlic because burned garlic will make everything bitter and it can't be fixed.
-Add "pork", soy sauce, and sesame oil and saute about 2-3 minutes, until mixture is not too wet.
-Add cabbage and a small handful of chopped green onions. Cook until cabbage is tender and wilted. Cool to room temperature or colder before making dumplings.
-Shape dumplings as desired, using 1/2-1 tsp filling per wonton. Do not overstuff.
Here is a great demonstration with 3 different folds, from Cmtoy on Youtube. Video posted with permission.
-Heat water to dissolve bouillon; boil and add dumplings. Add mushrooms and rest of green onion. Cook about 2 min or until dumplings are not starchy-looking, and wrappers have tightened around filling. Finish with sesame oil and extra soy sauce to taste in the broth.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

This Cake. Is so. Good.

This cake's components are: 2 recipes basic chocolate cupcakes, 2 recipes Peanut Buttercream, and Ganache, all from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World

I brought it in to work, and everyone liked it! I work at an omni restaurant and this cake was compared to egg- and dairy-containing counterparts. I was a little upset because on the ride to work, it smooshed up against the carrier :( oh well, it got devoured.

Friday, April 03, 2009

Nachos, Cantaloupe Smoothies, Cooking Idea

I made these nachos from those little tortilla bowls, but any tortilla chip will do. Added this easy, delicious bean dip from Veggie Kitchen (recipe below), nacho sauce recipe from Uncheese Cookbook and changed it a little. You can use any nacho saucy-type recipe you'd like. I added sliced black olives and roasted red pepper, and piped on some sour cream. Topped off with the thiiiiinnest slivers of raw jalapeno w/o the seeds.

Frijoles Negros/Black Bean Dip/Sandwich Spread -Reprinted with author's permission:
Black Bean Dip/Sandwich Spread
3 cups cooked black beans (2 cans)
1/2 lime, juiced
1/2 jalapeno pepper, seeded & minced (more to taste)
2 small shallots (2-3 tbs total)
1/4 cup salsa
1 tbs Vegenaise
1/2 tsp cumin
1 tsp chili powder
dash cayenne pepper (or to taste)
salt to taste

Partially mash the beans so that they somewhat clump, but still have many whole beans. Stir the remaining ingredients together with the beans and season to taste with salt. The flavors, especially the shallot and jalapeno will mellow and blend with time. The were best eaten the next day, but let them sit, for at least an hour.(uh, that's assuming you can wait one hour)

I also have discovered that sometimes cantaloupes (actually musk melons) aren't as sweet as you'd like, or if they go a little soft but aren't bad...they make really good smoothies! They lend almost a creamy texture to the smoothie. I like to put cantaloupe, a couple ice cubes, water or juice, and frozen or fresh fruit.

And DUH, I never thought of it until I saw it on TV, but use a piping bag when making ravioli. Why did I use a spoon and a finger for so long!?