Friday, November 25, 2011

Vegan Pot Pie

This simple and QUICK recipe will have your belly warm and sooo full.

Makes two pies
  • 10-12 medium red potatoes
  • 2 medium purple potatoes  
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped (I like rough chops, you may prefer a fine chop)
  • 6 cups diced vegetables of your choice
    (choose 3 or 4 from among cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, leeks, peas, corn kernels, zucchini, kale, etc.)
  • ¼ cup tablespoons unbleached white flour
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast  
  • 1 ½  tablespoons adobo seasoning (or Mrs. Dash)
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • Two 9-inch prepared pie crust,
  • 1 cup fine whole grain bread crumbs (make your own, its cheaper)
  • Smoked Paprika for topping
Cut the potatoes into sixths. Boil until fork tender, mash them coarsely leaving many large potato bites (you want that, trust me). Set aside until needed.
Preheat the oven to 350º F.
Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the onion and sauté over medium heat until  golden. Add the vegetables of your choice, add a bit of water; cover and cook until the vegetables are tender but not overdone, about 5 minutes.
Sprinkle the flour into the skillet, and then pour in the stock. Add the nutritional yeast. Cook for a minute or two, stirring constantly until the liquid thickens. Stir in both the diced and mashed potatoes. Heat through gently. Stir in the seasoning blend, thyme, and parsley. Season with salt and pepper. Pour the mixture into the pie crust and pat in.
Sprinkle the bread crumbs evenly over each pie, then top with a sprinkling of paprika. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the crust is golden. Let the pies stand at room temperature for 10 minutes or so, then cut into wedges and serve.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Dutch Apple Pie

With fall comes baking. Here is an amazing pie recipe. Enjoy!

5 1/2 cups peeled cored sliced cooking apples
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
3 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

3/4 cup flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
1/3 cup butter or 1/3 cup margarine, room temperature

1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
2. Fit pie crust into pie plate.
3. In a large bowl, mix sliced apples, lemon juice, both sugars, flour, cinnamon and nutmeg.
4. Pile into crust.
5. Prepare topping: In a medium bowl, with a pastry blender or a fork, mix flour, both sugars, and butter until coarsely crumbled.
6. Sprinkle evenly over apples.
7. Bake at 375°F for 50 minutes.

Pesto Pasta Salad Recipe

Here is a nice summer/fall salad. this salad anytime!

·         4 cups uncooked spiral pasta (use rice pasta for wheat-free version)
·         1 cup fresh pesto (your favorite-click here)
·         2 Tbs chopped green olives, or olive tapenade
·         1/4 cup pine nuts
·         1 cup frozen peas, defrosted (or fresh if you can get them)
·         12 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved
·         Several fresh basil leaves, coarsely chopped
·         1 Tbsp olive oil
·         Salt and pepper

Cook pasta according to instructions on the package. Make sure the water is salted (at least a half teaspoon per quart). Remove pasta from heat and strain when pasta is cooked, but still firm (al dente).
Put pasta in a big bowl. Mix in fresh basil pesto, green olives, and pine nuts. Gently mix in cherry tomatoes, peas, fresh basil leaves and olive oil. Salt and pepper to taste. Chill or serve at room temperature

Vegan Blackberry Pie

Do you know what warms my heart more than anything? No, not an amazing sale at Target- geeze…A yummy warm berry pie.

4 cups fresh blackberries
½ cup white sugar
½ cup all-purpose flour
1 recipe pastry for a 9 inch double crust pie
2 tbs almond milk
1/4 cup white sugar
1 tsb cinnamon

Combine 3 ½ cups berries with the sugar and flour. Spoon the mixture into an unbaked pie shell. Spread the remaining ½ cup berries on top of the sweetened berries, and cover with the top crust. Seal and crimp the edges. Brush the top crust with milk, and sprinkle with ¼ cup sugar and cinnamon.

Bake at 425 degree F for 15 minutes. Reduce the temperature of the oven to 375 degrees F and bake for an additional 20 to 25 minutes. Let stand for several hours before serving.

Pistachio Arugula Pesto

Pesto recipe # 21544....haha, kidding of course. This pesto has an earthy spice that only arugula can provide. This is best served with a penne pasta and grilled veggies!

1/2 Cup Roasted, salted Pistachios
2 Cups Arugula
4-5 Tbs Olive Oil (or to taste)

1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 small seeded jalapeno (optional)
Fresh Cracked Pepper

Mix all ingredients in a food processor. Mix well, or to your favorite texture.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Vegan Blackberry Pie

Do you know what warms my heart more than anything? No, not an amazing sale at Target- geeze…A yummy warm berry pie.

4 cups fresh blackberries
½ cup white sugar
½ cup all-purpose flour
1 recipe pastry for a 9 inch double crust pie
2 tbs almond milk
1/4 cup white sugar
1 tsb cinnamon

Combine 3 ½ cups berries with the sugar and flour. Spoon the mixture into an unbaked pie shell. Spread the remaining ½ cup berries on top of the sweetened berries, and cover with the top crust. Seal and crimp the edges. Brush the top crust with milk, and sprinkle with ¼ cup sugar and cinnamon.

Bake at 425 degree F for 15 minutes. Reduce the temperature of the oven to 375 degrees F and bake for an additional 20 to 25 minutes. Let stand for several hours before serving.

Roasted Purple Potatoes

Last weekend I had the ladies over for lunch and holiday decorating- YES, I decorate in early November. The menu was a sweet potato and roasted onion sandwich and roasted purple potatoes. Here is the recipe for the potatoes. Fair warning- don’t make too many, because you’ll never stop eating them….

6 large purple potatoes (quartered lengthwise)
1/8 cup olive oil
1 tbs garlic (minced or dried)
½ tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried dill weed
½ tsp dried thyme
½ tsp dried sage
½ tsp dried parsley
1 tsp crushed red pepper
Salt and pepper to taste

Toss the oil, potatoes and spices in a bowl, coat well. Place evenly, skin side down, on a roasting pan/baking sheet (I use silpat). Bake at 475 for 25 minutes.

This is a great side dish or an amazing main course when smothered in pesto!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Pumpkin Pancakes

Twas the weekend after Halloween and all though the house
Not a gourd was safe, not even the pumpkin
The knife was sharpened by Furi with care
In hopes that St. David would soon be there

---okay--- cheesy, I know. Anyway, I was SOO hungry for some hearty pumpkin pancakes, so I went to the kitchen and started playing with ingredients.

2 ½ cups whole wheat flour
2 ½ cups water
½ cup “milk” (I used pumpkin spiced soy milk)
2 tbs baking powder
1 tsp salt
½ cup mashed, cooked pumpkin
½  tsp cinnamon
½ tsp nutmeg
¼ tsp ginger powder (slightly less than 1/4 )
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp baking soda
1 tsp apple cider vinegar

Combine soymilk with the tsp vinegar in a separate bowl. Give it 5 minutes to curdle (this is like using buttermilk). Stir together pumpkin, spices, water and soymilk in mixing bowl. Add in remaining ingredients and stir JUST UNTIL MOIST, NO LONGER- DO NOT OVERMIX. Let sit 5 minutes to rise and lightly stir again. This makes about 20 pancakes.

FYI- I cooked mine on a cast iron grill coated with hazelnut oil…YUM

Monday, October 31, 2011

Vegan Taco Pie

This is one of my favorite “lazy dishes” to make on a cool fall evening. It is SOOO satisfying and spicy. My version is different than most, because the crust is incorporated into the dish. This dish is best paired with a cheesy 1980’s thriller movie- I ate mine while watching “The Hitcher”…..that’s right, Ruther Hauer, C. Thomas Howell and Jennifer Jason Leigh. It was good…..both the pie AND movie.

1 package Soyrizo
1 package vegan ground beef
1 large onion, minced
3 large garlic cloves, chopped
2 jalapenos finely chopped
1 15 oz can tomato sauce
1 8 oz can spicy tomato sauce (your favorite brand)
2 tbs chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1 cup corn (fresh, frozen or can)
1 cup black olives, chopped
2 tbs oil
2/3 bag corn chips

Start by heating the oil over medium heat; add the onion, jalapeño and sauté for about 5 minutes. Next, add all the ingredients except the chips, corn and olives- cook on low for 10 minutes. Taste the mixture; it should be spicy, but not overly.

Add the chips to a very large mixing bowl, pour the mixture and mix well, try not to crunch up the chips. Add to a large baking dish and top with corn and olives. Bake covered for 30 minutes at 375.

Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

I top mine with avocado, fresh tomatoes, vegan sour cream and green onions.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Pear Crumb Pie

I have the EASIEST pie recipe you will bake. Last week while lying around the house, I had this overwhelming craving for an apple pie. I get these cravings every now and again, and they mostly go away- this one did not. Upon inspection of my kitchen, I had all the necessary ingredients to make an apple pie- but no apples. In my refrigerator were 7 pears, and I knew my fancy would be tickled.  The best part about this recipe- you can sub the pears for any fresh fruit (apples, peaches, berries) and the recipe remains the same! Enjoy!

1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 dash ground nutmeg
6 cups thinly sliced peeled pears
1 tablespoon lemon juice

2/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup cold earth balance


1 premade 9” pie crust (use whole-wheat or organic)
Combine filling ingredients; spoon into the crust. Bake at 400 degrees F for 25 minutes. For topping, combine flour and brown sugar; cut in butter until crumbly. Sprinkle over filling, bake 40 minutes longer. Cover edges with foil during the last 15 minutes to prevent overbrowning if necessary.
BAKE THIS ON A COOKIE SHEET! It will bubble over…..

Friday, September 23, 2011

Cilantro Jalapeno Pesto

Do you want a yummy, spicy pesto that is ready in less than 5 minutes? Well, wait no longer- that recipe has arrived!

Cilantro Jalapeno Pesto

2 large bunches Cilantro (cut off the ends)
2 cups pistachios (or your favorite nut)
2 large jalapenos roughly chopped
1 tbs cumin
½-1 cup of oil (based on your taste)
Salt and pepper to taste

Place all of the ingredients into a food processor except oil. Blend for 20 seconds and slowly add oil. You will need to stop and scrape the side down. Repeat until you get a texture you like!

This dish is best enjoyed with bread, pasta and of course- a Modelo especial.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Vegan "Rice-a-Roni"

Last night was a “fat” night. I was tired, hungry, lazy and wanted to be a fatty. I made my version of “Rice-a-Roni” that was much healthier than a box….Here is my creation

3 cups white rice
1 cup vermicelli or fido pasta (you can buy it in broken bits in the Mexican food aisle)
½ large onion- chopped
1 large jalapeno finely chopped
2 tbs granulated garlic
1 tbs cumin
3 tbs chili powder
1tsp red pepper
1 oz can “jalapeno tomato sauce” (available in the Mexican section)
1 can diced tomatoes
3 cups vegetable broth
3 cups water
¼ cup olive oil

Start by heating the oil in a large skillet. When hot add the rice and pasta. Cook until pasta browns. Add the onions, jalapenos and all the spices. Cook for 2-3 more minutes, stirring. Next, add the remaining ingredients. Cook on high until it begins to boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer on very low for 20 minutes.

Easy, easy, easy! Wash this down with an ice cold modelo and have party! FYI- this is a MASSIVE portion. Make sure you are ready to eat it for a few days. 

Walnut Oat Scones

I am SOO excited for fall. Why am I so excited? BAKING!!! I love scones, cakes, cookies- well, everything. I will begin posting all of my baking recipes. Here is a classic from last winter. I encourage you to make this---AND--- invite me over for scones and coffee.

Walnut Oat Scones

    2 tbs vegan  margarine
    1 3/4 cup rolled oats
    3/4 all-purpose white flour
    3/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
    3/4 cup sugar
    1 tbs baking powder
    1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/2 cup chopped walnuts
     1/2 cup sour soy milk (add 1 teaspoon vinegar)
    2 tbs canola oil


Preheat oven to 425F; spray cookie sheet with nonstick cooking spray, or parchment paper or my new favorite: silpat pad!!

Combine dry ingredients and walnuts in a large bowl. Melt margarine and combine in a small bowl with soymilk, and oil; add to dry ingredients and stir until just mixed.

Turn dough onto lightly floured surface and knead a few times to form into a ball; flatten dough into an 8-in.-diameter circle and cut into eight wedges.

Put wedges on cookie sheet and bake 12 to 15 minutes, until lightly browned. Cool slightly on rack.

These are best eaten right away!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Linguine with Spinach, Artichokes, and Red Lentil Sauce

I love to cook- I hate to cook in the heat. My house, being built in 1941 does not do a good job of regulating temperature. Last week, I was craving a summer-y pasta dish that would not cause me to suffer from heat exhaustion in the kitchen- save that for the celeb-u-tards. I begin playing around online and came across a non vegan version of this recipe. With a few minor modifications, I made it vegan AND much tastier!

Linguine with Spinach, Artichokes, and Red Lentil Sauce

2 tsp brown mustard seeds
1 cup vegetable broth
1 cup finely chopped yellow onion
3/4 cup dried red lentils
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tbs cumin
6 tbs lemon juice
1/2 pound whole wheat linguine*
1 bunch spinach, stemmed and roughly chopped
4 artichoke hearts, rinsed, drained and quartered

In a medium pot, heat mustard seeds over medium heat until they begin to pop, 2 to 3 minutes. Carefully add broth, 1 cup water, onion, lentils, cumin and garlic and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer until lentils are very tender and falling apart, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat, add lemon juice and stir until lentils break apart to make a sauce (you may need to use a blender). Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add linguine and cook until al dente, 8 to 10 minutes; drain and return to pot. Immediately add spinach, artichoke hearts and lentil sauce to hot pasta, toss well and serve.

This dish can be made creamier by adding almond milk or almond cream! Yummo!
What beer? Pilsner Urguell

Friday, August 12, 2011

Summer Squash Chili

I recently joined farm fresh to you, a company that delivers locally grown organic produce. The concept is great, but the price is way out of the market. I can get twice the produce from the Co-Op for the same amount of money. Anyway- I had a bunch of summer squash and needed a hearty recipe that I could eat for a couple of days. I made this on a Monday, and ate it for four nights! Each night, I added something different. One night was crackers, the other rice….This was really nice with a tall glass of ice cold pilsner.

3 Tbs, Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped
4 small summer squash thinly sliced
5 garlic cloves, minced
1 large jalapeno chopped
2 pinches of kosher salt
2 cups chopped fresh tomato
1  package vegan ground beef
1 can tomato sauce
3 Tbs chili powder
1/4 avocado, diced for garnish

In a large pan, sauté the onion, squash, jalapeno, garlic, salt on medium heat uncovered for about 10 minutes. Make sure you stir the veggies regularly to prevent burning. Add the remaining ingredients, less the avocado, and simmer for 20 minutes. This is the easiest summer chili you’ll ever make.
Want to jazz it up more? Add beans, add okra, add anything! Its chili, WHO CARES! YUM!!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Vegan Fettuccini Alfredo

Last week I was really craving some creamy noodles. I also ran a crazy amount of miles that day, and wanted something of real substance to eat, that would only take a few minutes to cook. I read multiple recipes online, and this is what I came up with. I took my favorite ingredients from about 6 different recipes until I got this! Enjoy!

Vegan Fettuccini Alfredo

2 Tbs Olive Oil
1 medium onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, chopped
10 oz bag frozen cauliflower, thawed (or fresh steamed)
1 carton of silken tofu
2 Tbs of vegan butter
2 Tbs nutritional yeast
¼ cup salted and roasted cashews
Juice of ½ of a lemon
¼ cup fresh Italian parsley, chopped
Enough fettuccini noodles for 4

Sauté the onion on medium heat until translucent- add the garlic and cook for 2 more minutes.
While the garlic is cooking, add the cashews and a tiny bit of “milk” or water to the food processor, begin to blend. Add the onion mixture and all of the remaining ingredients except the parsley. Process until creamy, you may need to add a bit of “milk” to thin it out.

Move the mixture to a large skillet and cook on low. When hot, add the noodles, toss and serve!

I serve mine with lots of parsley and cracked black pepper! Yummo!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Vegan Sweet Potato Salad

Baseball, beer, and potato salad…what do they all have in common? SUMMER!! One of my favorite salads is potato salad in all of its creamy yummy-ness! My salad takes a bit of a twist on the typical salad and will leave your guests drooling for more!

1 large sweet potato (cubed in even bite size pieces)
1 pound purple potatoes- cubed
5 celery stalks with the leafy tops, finely chopped
1 red onion minced
1 small jar pimentos
1 small jar capers
2 cans sliced olives
3 dill pickles- chopped (I prefer Clausen)  
1 ½ cups vegan mayo
2 Tbs mustard
1 tsp garlic powder
1 Tbs apple cider vinegar
3 Tbs vegan white sugar
Salt and pepper to taste

In a large pot, bring potatoes to a boil, cook until for tender. When cooked, strain and set aside. While potatoes are cooking, put all the chopped vegetables in a very large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, mix the “mayo”, mustard, vinegar, sugar, and garlic. Taste the wet mixture, adjust for your own sweetness level (not too sweet, both potatoes are sweet).

Mix everything together in a large bowl! Let it stand in the refrigerator  for several hours before service!

TURST ME- your friends and family will love the sweet potatoes in this recipe.

Salt and Pepper Cocktail

Okay- I have fallen in love with a local Sacramento restaurant called “The Press” it is a gem of our city. The reason I love this place, amazing food and drinks at great prices. I have always been a fan of Greyhounds (thank you FDR)- this is that drink with a twist! I must warn, this is a very easy drink- so be careful!

Salt and Pepper Cocktail

1 1/2 ounces gin 
 1 drop Simple syrup 
 1/2 Juice of a lime 
 1/2 Juice of a grapefruit 
 2 dashes  bitters 
Tiny amount of chopped rosemary
 Lime Juice; for garnish 
 Salt; course for garnish 

Mix the ingredient into a martini shaker, and shake well! Strain into a martini glass and serve.

And, please have a second one waiting for me. Thank you.

Vegan Spanish Rice

This is a go to dish for me. I can make a HUGE batch and eat it for a week. I’ll have tacos and rice one night, rice for lunch the next day and so on! This is the recipe I use. I know there are many more out there and I am sure some better than mine. The beauty of this recipe, you can adjust it any way you see fit! Please, play with the recipe and post crazy changes you have made!

Vegan Spanish Rice

2 cups white rice
1 cup broken vermicelli pasta
¼ cup vegetable oil
2 chopped tomatoes
1 chopped onion (finely chopped)
3 cloves garlic chopped
½ bunch of chopped cilantro
1 jalapeno chopped
6 oz tomato sauce
5 cups of water

In a large skillet, add the oil and heat. When the oil is hot add the rice and pasta. Cook for 2-3 minutes constantly stirring. When the rice and pasta begin to brown, add the seasoning, onions, garlic, jalapeno and cook for 30 seconds. Next, add the remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil for 2 minutes. Reduce heat to a low simmer, cover and cook for 20-25 minutes.

You’re done! You have yummy, spicy Spanish rice.

Tip- if using brown rice, please adjust water and cooking times.

Blogger Update

Blogger Update

Okay world, friends, and followers: The move away from blogger is harder than I thought. I have a dedicated web address and plan to move to word press. I am struggling with the Google search feature and it blocking my content for double posts. Needless to say, I will stay on blogger a bit longer. I will continue to build the new site and hope to have it up before Christmas. Some of the features:

1.       Recipe sharing tools
2.       Recipe box tied in with a shopping list
3.       Vegan ingredient “scrub list”
4.       Real time recipe updates from visitors
5.       An so much more

Keep an eye out!

Salt and Pepper Cocktail

Okay- I have fallen in love with a local Sacramento restaurant called “The Press” it is a gem of our city. The reason I love this place, amazing food and drinks at great prices. I have always been a fan of Greyhounds (thank you FDR)- this is that drink with a twist! I must warn, this is a very easy drink- so be careful!

Salt and Pepper Cocktail

1 1/2 ounces gin 
 1 drop Simple syrup 
 1/2 Juice of a lime 
 1/2 Juice of a grapefruit 
 2 dashes  bitters 
Tiny amount of chopped rosemary
 Lime Juice; for garnish 
 Salt; course for garnish 

Mix the ingredient into a martini shaker, and shake well! Strain into a martini glass and serve.

And, please have a second one waiting for me. Thank you.

Chilled Cucumber and Dill Soup

Chilled Cucumber and Dill Soup

Last week the temperature in Sacramento exceeded 100 degrees. I was a MESS! I had gone for a run and used all the possible energy in my body. I needed a simple, protein rich, creamy, COLD dinner! I was too lazy to make a salad, so I busted out the blaneder. 5 minutes later, I had dinner!
2 medium cucumbers, peeled, seeded, and chopped
12 ounces soft or silken organic tofu, drained and cubed
2 tbs fresh lemon juice
1 tsp dried dill, or 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill (save a bit for garnish)
1/2 medium sweet onion, chopped
1 to 2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp vegan brown sugar
Sea salt and pepper (to taste)
1 tsp cumin
Place all of the ingredients in a blender and wiz until nice and creamy! You can serve some right away! This soup is best when chilled for several hours.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Leaving Blogger

I wanted to let you know that I am leaving the blogger platform next month. I am sure you have noticed that I have not posted too many recipes, runs, beer reviews, etc.. Blogger is always changing my colors, fonts, formats. I am in the process of having my very own website. This will take some time to transfer over all of the posts from this site. Thanks for reading.

Bhindi Masala (Okra)

Okra is one of my favorite vegetables or fruit? Who cares, its yummy. It is now early June and California okra growers are at the beggining of the peak production season. So, EAT California Okra as much as possible for the next three months!

1 ½  lb okra/bhindi
3 small  onions, chopped long thinly
5 green Chilies or Jalapenos
1 inch ginger
10 cloves garlic
4 tomatoes ripe red
3 tbsp Oil
3 tsp garam masala
2 tsp turmeric powder
2 tsp Coriander powder
Salt as required
coriander leaves to taste (Cilantro)  
1. Half grind garlic, ginger, chilies, coriander leaves, do not grind to paste.
2. Add salt, little oil, coriander powder, garam masala and turmeric powder in to the mixture and keep it aside.
3. Slit the bhindis from the center slicing the length
4. Now fill bhindis with all the prepared mixture.
5. Heat oil in a wide pan-  add onions, stir and then slide bhindis gently in the pan.
6. Stir it gently so that the masala does not come out. Keep it on slow fire and cover it with lid, let it cook till the bhindis have become dark green in color and almost cooked.

Now add finely chopped tomatoes. Again cover it with the lid and cook it on slow fire till the tomatoes almost disappear.
Serve with hot your favorite rice or bread.
Side Note: if you do not have the patience (like me most of the time) to stuff the bhindis, simple sauté everything in the pan for about 20 minutes. Follow the rest of the instructions so the tomatoes do not overwhelm the dish.  

Do not cook okra in pans made of iron, copper or brass. Even though the flavor remains unaffected, the metal creates a chemical reaction that turns pods black.

Cilantro pesto

Here is a cool yet hot summer treat for all of you pesto lovers. I made mine extra spicy, because I love the pain of spice! Yummo

3 cups washed : Cilantro Leaves
5 Garlic cloves
¼ cup Olive oil
½ cup Walnuts/Cashews/Pistachios (your choice)
2 Jalapeno peppers

1/4 TSP cumin
¼ cup Ice cold water
Salt: ¼ tsp

Combine all the ingredients in the food processor (use water if necessary to move the blade). This can be made more or less spicy by adjusting your jalapenos. The cumin will keep your guests wondering for hours about the special spice! Nothing fancy, but it hits the spot. The BEST part? Its all done in less than 5 minutes!!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Vegan Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto

Vegan Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto

¼ cup oil soaked sun dried tomatoes (separated from oil)
2-4 tbs fresh chopped basil (based on your taste)
2 tbs Italian parsley chopped
2 tbs chopped garlic
¼ cup of nuts (pine, walnut, pistachio) your favorite
3 tbs chopped red onion
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
1 tbs tomato paste
½ cup crushed tomatoes
¼ cup of red wine
½ cup of olive oil
½ cup of nutritional yeast (optional- I don’t care for it much)

Okay- this is simple- put all of the ingredients into the food processor and blend. Once you get a texture that you like, add it to your favorite pasta. You can heat this recipe if you like, but I do not.

Vegan Tuna Salad

I am in the process of moving, and have almost packed away my entire kitchen. I looked in my pantry and saw my food processor was still out! Craving a nice spring time sandwich- I put my thinking cap on. I have had other vegan tuna mixtures made with almonds and root vegetables, but I had none of that on hand. I had to make this with the small amount of food I had left in my old house. After pulling out what fresh vegetables I had left (as you can see not much), I made this “tuna” salad. It was quite good, and even better the next day. This is a BIG recipe, have a few guests or plan several meals.

Vegan Tuna Salad

2 cans chickpeas
1 large bunch green onions
4 celery stalks with the leafy tops
1-2 large dill pickle(s) depending on taste
1/3 cup vegan mayo
3 tbs mustard (your favorite type)
1 tbs granulated garlic
1 tsp kosher salt
Fresh cracked black pepper to taste

Start by draining the chickpeas and adding to a food processor. Wiz the beans for 1-2 seconds and repeat until the beans are broken up (do not cream or mash, just break them up)- this should take no more than 6-8 seconds . Dice the celery with the leafy tops, add to the mixture. Chop the green onions and pickles and add. Now, slowly combine the rest of the ingredients to taste. Some will like more “mayo” some will like less. I like less with extra mustard!

Once the “tuna” is done, chill it for an hour. I served mine over thick whole wheat bread, red leaf lettuce, tomatoes, and avocados. I sprinkled some diced jalapeno for a little kick!

Combine this with a nice Kona Lager!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Red Velvet Cupcakes

Okay- I have to admit that I HATE the cupcake craze of the last few years, and I cannot wait for it to pass! Putting my feelings aside, I made a batch of red velvet cupcakes for my friends 32nd birthday!

2 cups coconut milk (not from a can)
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
4 tablespoons cocoa powder (or carob)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup vegetable oil
2 ounces red food coloring (make sure it is vegan)
4 teaspoons vanilla extract

Add vinegar to coconut milk, and set aside to curdle. Sift flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. Add vegetable oil, food coloring, and vanilla extract to the curdled soy milk, and mix. Pour liquid ingredients into the dry ingredients, and mix. The mixture will be very thin- it is supposed to be that way! Fill cupcake liners ¾ full.
Bake in a preheated 350° oven for 20 minutes or until done.
½ cup earth balance, room temperature
½ cup Tofutti Better Than Cream Cheese, room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 cups sifted vegan powdered sugar

Cream margarine, cream cheese, and vanilla extract.  Slowly mix the confectioner’s sugar into the creamed sugar, and then beat until smooth and fluffy. Frost cooled cupcakes.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Vegan Buttermilk Biscuits

Vegan Buttermilk Biscuits
I know it is late in the season for biscuits, but if you get up SUPER early on a Sunday, you can make these before it gets too hot. Add some yummy jam, maple syrup, gravy or whatever you are in the mood for!

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tbs baking powder
1 tsp salt (kosher preferred)
½ tsp baking soda
2 tbs Earth Balance margarine
3 tbs of vegan vegetable shortening
1 cup curdled soy milk (add 1 tbs of apple cider vinegar to a cup of plain soy milk, mix and let sit for at least 15 minutes.)

Preheat oven to 400˚F. Line a baking sheet with parchment or use your favorite non-stick cookie sheet. Mix the vinegar and milk, set aside. In a food processor (or cut with hands) add the earth balance and shortening. In a separate bowl, mix the dry ingredients. Add the dry ingredients and pulse until well incorporated. Add the soy and pulse until a ball forms. Remove the ball and place in the refrigerator (about 10 mins)

With a wood cutting board, spread flour. Roll out the dough until it’s an even ½ inch in thick- cut with a round cutter (I use the top of a cup).

Place the biscuits on the sheet, bake for 10-12 minutes at 400˚F. about 9 minutes in, wash a bit of earth balance across the tops, continue baking.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Kale Hummus

While most of the world was dreaming of royal wedding events and blissful after parties, my mind was engrossed with hummus. That’s right; I could not care less about the royals, their wedding or anything else- because I had hummus on the brain. I wanted a hearty earthy hummus that I could use a sandwich spread with some tomatoes, sprouts and so on. After some tinkering with the food processor, spice rack and nearly expires vegetables, this is what I came up with:

Kale Hummus

1 can chickpeas (liquid reserved)
2 tbs tahini
2 tbs Olive Oil
¼ cup of chickpea water
1 tbs cumin
1 tsp curry powder (mild)
¼ cup of sundried tomatoes (not the ones in oil)
6 large kale leaves
Salt and pepper to taste.

In the bowl of your food processor, mix the chickpeas, tahini, water, spices and pulse until creamy. Let that mixture sit while you work on the kale. Start by boiling a pot of water. Cut the leaves from the kale stem (I hold the stem and cut downward). When you have all the leaves, add it to the boiling water. Let it boil for about 3 minutes. Once slightly tender and bright green, drain and add to an ice bath to stop the cooking. Next drain the kale and squeeze all of the water out, the kale should look like a tennis ball! Add the kale and sundried tomatoes to the mixture and pulse. Once well incorporated, you’re done!

This is great as a sandwich spread, general dip, or the base of a falafel ball. Experiment and Enjoy!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Vegan Coconut Cake

To me, nothing says Easter time treats like a thick slice of coconut cake! I made this cake for Easter 2011 and it turned out AMAZING, sort of. This cake ended up on the floor due to my two left feet and a dog that would not leave me along. How do I know it turned out amazing- because I ate a piece off of the floor- that’s right, I have NO SHAME. Anyway, this is a great, rich, tasty spring time treat! Enjoy!

8 ounces silken tofu
2 1/3 cups sugar
2 cups coconut milk (from the can)
12 ounces coconut flakes
1 cup canola oil
2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
1 ½ teaspoons baking soda

2 cups soy margarine
2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
1/4 cup coconut milk
2 cups shredded coconut

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Put first 5 ingredients the bowl of a food processor and puree until thick and uniform in texture. Add last 3 ingredients and process until incorporated. Pour batter into 2 (9-inch) parchment lined cake pans that have been coated with non-stick cooking spray. Bake for about 1 hour. It is very important that you line the pan with parchment paper, this cake tend to stick.

For the icing, mix ingredients until incorporated. Spread on cooled cake. Add the coconut after you have frosted! Yum!