So many good eats!

March 14, 2011 at 12:56 am | Posted in cooking, Life, tempeh, tvp, utah, vegan, vegetarian | 1 Comment
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Hi! It’s been about a month or two since I’ve posted last. Sorry about that. I have just been so busy working overtime and long days that I have had no motivation to blog, just too pooped. But that hasn’t stopped me from cooking up some great food. When I downloaded the pictures to the PC today I was overwhelmed, with 115 pictures! Can you believe it? That’s a lot of food. I have been experimenting a lot with recipes from Appetite for Reduction. Its a great cookbook, if you don’t own a copy run out and get one right now! I think I must make that Jerk Asparagus twice a month now as it’s so darn tasty. I am also a bit obsessed with the Cajun Blackened Tofu too. My husband said it was a little bit spicy though, so if your not a pepper head like me you might want to tone down the spices in the recipe a little. Here are some of the pictures of things that I’ve cooked over the past month.

Rainbow Chard with Shells, TVP, and Daiya

Not healthy, but yummy tasty comfort food. And it tastes pretty kid friendly too

Fronch Toast with real Maple Syrup.

Smokey braised turnip greens and tempeh.

Italian tofu with uncheese bread and Panko n herb Cauliflower.

Seitan taco night!

A salads not complete without raw sunflower seeds!

Chickpea Seitan patties with Coconut Rice and Jerk Asparagus

Leftover Chickpea Cutletts with Mustard Sauce and Rainbow Chard

 

Thats all for now. I’ll post more later. 🙂

The most perfect sandwich, ever.

January 11, 2011 at 2:21 pm | Posted in baking, cooking, dehydrator, Life, vegan, vegetarian | 1 Comment
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No really, this is the most perfect sandwich I have ever had. After eating this particular sandwich I realized that I really can be vegan the rest of my life. The sandwich I am talking about is the Hummus, Tempeh, and Cucumber Wrap out of Skinny Bitch in the Kitch. These Skinny Bitches know whats up too as every recipe that I have used out of this book is easy and foolproof. This was my first vegan cookbook, back when I didn’t know what seitan was. No really, one of the recipes calls for seitan and I bought tempeh. It took me an entire year to figure out why the recipe came out so bad. My husband makes the best hummus, he is the Hummus Master and I made the tempeh. I guess that makes me the Tempeh Mastah. Basically the sandwich is a hummus wrap filled with cucumber, tomato, and tempeh. (The book has cucumber, lettuce, and tempeh.) We wrapped them in warmed whole wheat tortillas. I steamed the tempeh before I cut and fried it in the spices. Steaming tempeh before use reduces some of the bitterness and makes it more ready to absorb flavors. Steaming tempeh also gives it an undeniably moist and delicious texture. The spices and flavoring stuck nicely to the tempeh forming a tasty crust.

Fried tempeh.

Worth the effort.

I am currently making tofu jerky in the new dehydrator that I got for Xmas. It’s not done yet, but it will be soon. Well I hope so because I don’t want to have to stay up all night waiting for it. It’s been in the dehydrator for almost four hours. I have tempeh in the marinade right now that I plan on dehydrating overnight, I did not steam it before marinading as I want the jerky to have a chewy texture. I am also afraid that steaming it might cause it to fall apart in the dehydrator.

Tofu jerky in the dehydrator.

Here is the recipe I found online. I kept seeing it everywhere so I figured this must be the “official” vegan jerky recipe. Then I found it that it’s by my vegan fashion heroine Sara Kramer out of How It All Vegan. I still don’t own any of her cookbooks, but my house smells like jerky and I can’t honestly understand why I don’t yet. This will have to change sometime soon.

     

  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 3 to 4 tbsp liquid smoke
  • 1/8 cup water
  • 1 tbsp onion powder (devotees use hing instead of garlic and onion powder, about a tsp.)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder or 1 clove crushed fresh garlic
  • 1 tbsp fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp agave
  • 1 pound firm or extra firm tofu
  •  

In other food news I ate the most delicious prasadam bagel for breakfast this morning. Thank you Aarti. 🙂 It was a sweet little mini bagel. I now wish all bagels came in that size as I didn’t have to slice it to make it fit in the toaster. And I covered it in Toffuti Better than Cream Cheese.

Mmmm, prasadam...

Being on vacation has been wonderful. It’s enabled me to relax, center myself, and detox from caffeine and oodles of processed foods. (Thank you evil yet convenient work vending machines.) This vacation has enabled me to spend some much needed time with my husband to as he took this week off with me. I have been working almost non stop since our honeymoon ended. The last six months have passed very fast and I don’t plan on letting this year pass nearly as fast. I am going to stop and smell the roses more often, or in this case stop and smell the Toll House Cookies.

Gooey....

I used the “official” Toll House Cookies recipe off the internet but instead of eggs I substituted flax seed meal and water and I added about a teaspoon of baking powder. They rose nicely in contrast to last time where they barely rose at all. Last time I made these cookies I used Egg Replacer mix and they were extremely dry so I believe the flax seeds and baking powder were a better choice but not the correct one. The cookies were crumbly this time and had a nice mealy taste to them due to the flax but they were not dry and hard. Next time I bake these cookies I will add apple sauce to moisten them up and see how that goes. If that fails I will substitute out the flax seeds and apple sauce with plain soy yogurt and see how they come out.

Here is the recipe.

Original Nestle Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookies:


2 1/4 Cup flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup soft butter (margarine)
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 eggs (I used powdered Energy egg replacer)
2 cups chocolate chips
1 cup nuts (I left these out)

Combine flour, soda, and salt.
Beat butter, both sugars, and vanilla in a large bowl. Add the egg substitute and beat once more. Slowly add the flour mixture until well combined. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts.
Drop rounded tablespoons of batter onto baking sheets.
Bake in a preheated 375-degree oven for 9-11 minutes, or until golden brown.

PAN COOKIE VARIATION: PREPARE dough as above. Spread into greased 15″x10″ jelly-roll pan. Bake in preheated 375ºF oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown. Cool in pan on wire rack.

The most perfect dinner ever

January 6, 2011 at 2:22 am | Posted in cooking, Life, vegan, vegetarian | Leave a comment
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It really was the most perfect dinner ever. Three courses, like real people eat: Smoky Grilled Tempeh out of Veganomicon, Swiss Chard, and Roasted Red Potatoes. Problem is that the pictures I took didn’t come out, well at all.

What are you planning on changing or doing in the year 2011? Are you making any new years resolutions? I am not making any resolutions, but I do have a few goals to meet by the end of the year.

1. Be a better devotee of Krishna, by this I mean chant more, attend the temple more (not necessarily Sunday programs, but go to do seva and classes).

2. Be a purer vegan, no more making exceptions about what I eat to be polite. My stomach can’t handle these exceptions.

3. Loose about 30 pounds. I just joined the 21 Day Vegan Kickstart with PCRM and return to the gym tomorrow after a very long absence.

Down home vegan

December 2, 2010 at 3:46 am | Posted in cats, cooking, Life, utah, vegan, vegetarian | 3 Comments
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Wow, tonight’s dinner was so good I had to blog about it when it was still fresh in my mind. I made Hot Sauce Glazed Tempeh with mashed potatoes smothered in Jalapeno Corn Gravy. Wow, talk about delish broke food. 🙂

Both recipes come from Veganomicon. (Normally I would just embed links for everything, but the link thing on WordPress is still broken.)

Hot Sauce Glazed Tempeh
By Isa Chandra Moskowitz

Ingredients:

1 8 ounce package of tempeh

1/2 cup broth
1/4 cup hot sauce
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (juice from 1 lemon)
hing
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Bring a pot of water to boil.

Whisk all marinade ingredients together in a bowl large enough to fit the tempeh slices.

Cut the tempeh in half widthwise then cut each of those squares diagonally to form 4 large triangles. When the water is boiling, add the tempeh, lower the heat and steam for 10 minutes.

Use tongs to remove the tempeh and then immediately place them in the marinade bowl for 1 hour, flipping them every now again to cover with the marinade.

Preheat a greased grill pan over medium high heat. To grease it, brush lightly with olive oil or if you have a spray bottle of olive oil, that works, too. (Get a spray bottle of olive oil already!)

Grill each side for 5 minutes. When the second side is almost done, spoon some of the marinade over the tempeh and let cook for 30 more seconds.

Alternative broiling instructions:
Preheat the oven broiler. Place tempeh in a rimmed pan (I like to use my cast iron pan for such purposes). Spoon some of the marinade over it and broil for 5 minutes. Flip it and spoon some more marinade over it and cook for another 5 minutes. When the second side is almost done, spoon some of the marinade over the tempeh and let cook for 30 more seconds.

Jalapeno Corn Gravy

Ingredients:

1 cup veggie broth
1 tbsp cornstarch
1 tbsp olive oil
hing
2 jalapenos, diced
2 cups corn
1/4 cup milk (I used almond)
2 tbsp lemon juice

Saute the hing and jalapenos in the oil for 5 minutes, until soft.
Add the corn and cook for 5 minutes.
Mix cornstarch and broth together in a bowl. Add broth mix and milk to pan, stir, and let thicken for four minutes. Remove from heat.

Transfer to blender or food processor and puree. Add lemon juice to taste.

I felt like such a grownup eating this.

Things soon to come: seitan, more greens, and fudge!

Simply Vegan

November 21, 2010 at 8:58 pm | Posted in cooking, Life, vegan, vegan mofo | 2 Comments
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Three years ago when I decided to become vegan it seemed an insurmountable task. I had become a pretty good vegetarian cook by that point in my life, but becoming vegan I had to learn to cook all over again and rethink how I eat. First I learned how to make a whole bunch of seemingly complected stuff out of Vegan With a Vengeance. Those initial recipes have become some of my staples. Then I learned how to make two things that changed how I eat: cheeze sauce and prepare tempeh. This post is about super simple food and how good it can be. The ingredients for the following picture are: baked potatoes, can of black beans, vegan shredded cheese (I used cheddar Daiya), and a pat of non-hydrogenated margarine.

Vegan CAN be easy!

The next easy vegan dish I would like to share with you is Smokey Tempeh with Collards. Mmmmm, deliciousness. Both recipes came out of Veganomicon, but I barely followed the Collards recipe as I disbelieve that you can cook them in under an hour. I don’t like to eat chewy greens. Oh yeah, eating this tempeh will change your life. If you havent cooked some yet give it a try.

Tempeh marinating.

Instead of sauteeing onions I used cherry tomatoes as they are also very flavorful. It worked out well.

Mmmmm. Dinner is served.

Today’s packaged food review is for Four Seasons Cakes that I picked up at the Asian Market.

Well, here’s the rating. The pink one that I am eating in the above photo was the best. It tasted like a very high end Hostess Snowball. Eating this makes me think that this is where they got the idea. The green one was weird. It had a gooey jelloey outside that tasted like seaweed and the inside was a yummy mung bean paste. My husband thought it was gross and could only take one bite. The yellow one was okay, I would eat it again. I can’t explain what it tasted like but it did have coconut in it. The black one still remains uneaten after eating the green one. When we took it off the plate to store it it stuck to the plate like a snail would. Weird.

Gaura Nitai last Sunday.

Tempeh fried Rice

November 14, 2010 at 5:28 pm | Posted in cooking, vegan, vegan mofo | Leave a comment
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Hola vegan mofoers. 🙂 Sorry this year I havent been well, active much at all  but I have been working soooo much that I have not really been cooking much at all. It actually took all my determination to photograph last nights dinner. But heck, it was so good and tasty that I felt obligated.

Tempeh Fried Rice with baked Butternut Squash. What a good dinner that was. I just really wanted something real to eat as I haven’t made dinner much since my job offered me some overtime and I took advantage of it. I was tired and needed something easy and full of flavor to eat and I really wanted to eat some tempeh and this squash that has been sitting in our pantry for some time now. I was pretty happy when I found this recipe for the fried rice.  It was very easy to make, but I did change it a little bit in that I steamed the tempeh before I fried it to take away the bitterness and make it ready to absorb the flavors I cooked it with. I also used Braggs instead of soy sauce. I must say that this is such a good recipe for fried rice. It really tastes like the fried rice you get at a Chinese restaurant.

Fall Cooking.

October 17, 2010 at 8:21 pm | Posted in Life, vegan, vegetarian | Leave a comment
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Fall is my fave time of year. I get to decorate for Halloween and watch Tim Burton movies for the umteenth time. I began baking again as it’s been too hot to bake since spring ended, and various squashes come into season. I have yet to meet a squash I don’t like to cook. My husband Tota really likes Acorn Squash so we bought some and I made them very simply with seasoned rice on the side and just slow baked with savory seasonings on the inside. Unless I’m eating pumpkin pie my squash has to be savory. That also goes for sweet potatoes and yams.

I had bought an issue of Veg News magazine at Whole Foods and it had a recipe for some Spicy Tempeh Quesadillas and I felt inspired to make my own version as I had just bought some Daiya. I used that marinade from Whole Foods I keep raving about and I made some of my own. I cooked them in the oven as the faux cheese takes a while to melt.

Served with a side of black beans and home made salsa.

 

Feeling that faux cream cheeses in the store are too expensive, not to mention I havent found one yet that I like I decided to make my own. I used the recipe for almond creme cheese out of  The Ultimate  Uncheese Cookbook with some modifications. It was pretty good.

 

With home made pesto.

More tacos…

Taco filling is a mix of black beans and zucchini.

The taco filling reincarnated well in these nachos we had the next day.

Everything is homemade except the sour cream by Tofutti which I bought.

Tota and I had an apple pie bakeoff.

More to come!

Italian Marinated Tempeh

August 27, 2010 at 8:56 pm | Posted in books, cooking, Life, vegan, vegetarian | Leave a comment
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I remember the first time I tried to go vegan way back in say, 97ish. I was living in Ocean Beach in hipster/hippie town. Full of cool dives and antique stores. There is a really nice vegetarian Co-Op in OB called People’s and I spied tempeh one day, and brought it home and cooked it with disastrous results.  I had never eaten it before and had no friends who knew how to cook it either. I think I cut it up and fried it in oil. So gross. I vowed never to cook it again. Fast forward to 12 or so years later when I buy Isa’s Vegan With A Vengeance. It has a really great recipe for Tempeh Bacon. I held off for almost a year before I took the plunge and bought some tempeh and made this stuff. It’s so delicious and easy to make. After that I was sold on tempeh, but that was all I knew how to make out of it. On our honeymoon in Vegas I bought a copy of Veganomicon and it has a recipe for Smokey Grilled Tempeh. Due to these two cookbooks tempeh has been demystified. No more is it some strange hard to cook substance. It is now something I cook on a pretty regular basis and I have future plans of teaching myself how to make it at home. I am even starting to make my own recipes for tempeh marinades. Today for lunch I made Italian Marinated Tempeh. I used the Italian Tofu Marinade recipe out of V*Con and steamed the tempeh and marinated it for a few hours while I went and got a much needed mani-pedi. 🙂 Fried it up and served it with some mashed potatoes.

Do any of you have the Ultimate Uncheese Cookbook? I just got my copy in the mail a few days ago and I really want to make the block cheeses but I am unsure as to what to use as a mold. Any suggestions?

Tempeh

April 23, 2010 at 5:15 pm | Posted in cooking, vegan, vegetarian | Leave a comment
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I have been vegetarian for 15 years this June and I am only now learning how to cook tempeh thanks to Isa Chandra Moskowiz in her lovely cookbooks and blogs. I am convinced that she is the tempeh master and I am only a small grasshopper in her shadow. Thanks to the link that I posted here I learned how to make some yummy BBQ tempeh. I cheated and used BBQ sauce that I had in the fridge rather than making my own as I happened to have some on hand. And I also didnt bake the sweet potatoes with the tempeh but made them into mashed potatoes. Yum.  Here are some pictures of my experiment with tempeh.

BBQ marinated baked tempeh.

BBQ Tempeh with sweet mashed potatoes.

I had to buy leeks last payday for a casserole and I have never bought them before so I ended up walking out of the grocery store with bok choy instead. 😦 But I really like bok choy so I made a bok choy tofu stir fry out if them and served it over white rice. Pretty tasty!

Tomorrow is Ekadasi so expect a post soon of tomorrows Ekadasi goodies. 🙂 I have been listening to a lot of new wave and new romantics music lately so keeping with the devotional tone of my food blog I am going to share the music video of Boy George’s Bow Down Mister with you.

Vegan breakfast madness!

January 12, 2010 at 6:18 pm | Posted in cooking | 1 Comment
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Howdy all! I still have not gotten around to baking bread, but I did make an awesome breakfast a few days back. Tofu scramble with peas and sundried tomatoes, toast with Earth Balance and jam, and homemade tempeh bacon. Yum…..

Later on that week we went out for sushi with my parents in law in Provo. Mine is the sushi without cream cheese. I really really miss eating vegan sushi rolls at Sipz in San Diego. 😦

Some pictures of our last snowstorm.

Till next post take care and stay warm!

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