Archive for July, 2009

12 Days of Daiya!

The title of this post is fitting because for me, being able to purchase Daiya Vegan Cheese is like christmas! Anyone that knows me knows I love cheese and it was hands down the most difficult thing to give up when becoming vegan. Well, fret no more my friends, Daiya is here to save the day. This is the BEST vegan cheese on the market – it melts, has a great flavor and texture, and comes in mozarella and cheddar shreds. I was lucky enough to get my hands on 2 lbs. of mozarella and 1 lbs. of cheddar at Locali– so if you live in Los Angeles get over there before I buy it all! So without further ado let the Daiya food porn begin:

Pizza!

Pizza!

Pizza with red onions, mushrooms, tomatoes, and basil!
Pizza Slice

Pizza Slice

Next up quesadillas! Some with cheddar, some with mozarella, and some with both!
Quesadillas

Quesadillas

Can you see the cheese oozing down – YES! Of course I couldn’t resist trying a grilled cheese sandwich…Did I tell you this stuff really melts?
Grilled Cheese

Grilled Cheese

If you crave cheese that is not soy or nut based, this is it! It is made from plant ingredients and doesn’t make you feel like crap later like the other stuff does.  Alright, this is where it starts to get interesting – Mac n Cheese!  I made a cheese sauce from 1/2 cup soymilk, 3 tbs. of EB, and 1 cup of the cheddar cheese. I added a little nooch for good measure. Oh boy, this stuff rocks!
Mac n Cheese

Mac n Cheese

Do you see how creamy it looks, that’s because it is! Next up, pour the cheese sauce over some broccoli:
Broccoli & Cheese

Broccoli & Cheese

Both of these cheeses have a great flavor and it is definitely more pronounced the more you use. I tried baking with it by topping some tofu ricotta stuffed manicotti:

Manicotti

Manicotti

I simply had to try it on nachos:
Nachos

Nachos

It gets kinda crunchy when baked and there is only a thin layer – just like cheese does. If you want it more gooey and melty just add more. Here’s a close-up:
Nachos Close Up

Nachos Close Up

Of course I made another pizza, this one with black olives, onions, and tomatoes!
Pizza

Pizza

Can you believe I’ve made all of this food and still have about a pound of cheese left! I will state this again – BEST VEGAN CHEESE! Where ever you are look for it, ask your local merchant to carry it, order it online, heck sell your soul to the devil – but get your hands on Daiya Vegan Cheese! (this post is my personal opinion, no one has asked me or sent me any free samples although Daiya if you are reading this I would love some more cheese please…)
Til next time…

I Like Pie!

So when I was I college I took this music appreciation class and sat next to an international student from China. She was very timid and sweet and we just kind of smiled at each other at the beginning of class. Little by little we started talking to each other but it was difficult at times because of the language barrier. One thing I do remember about our talks was that she really liked pie – her face would light up when she would tell me about the pies she had tried! Well, this week I have had that same excitement over pies and so the title of the post is my friend’s famous line “I Like Pie!”

Cranberry Cherry Pie

Cranberry Cherry Pie

First up, a cranberry cherry lattice pie! This pie is sweet and tart and oh so wonderful for breakfast! The recipe is from here. Here’s a close-up:
Pie Close-Up

Pie Close-Up

When making a lattice top, I always end up with extra crust so I made these two mini-pies:
Mini Apple Pie

Mini Apple Pie

This one is filled with 2 fuji apples and a little bit of brown sugar and cinnamon.
Mini Strawberry!

Mini Strawberry!

Fresh strawberries from the farmer’s market sprinkled with a little bit of sugar.
For the grand finale I made a peach pie with a crumble topping:
Peach Pie!

Peach Pie!

This is about 3 lbs. of fresh peaches tossed with a cup of brown sugar, 1 tablespoon of cornstarch, and some cinnamon. The topping is 1/2 cup of oats, 1/2 cup of brown sugar, 4 tbs. of EB vegan butter, and cinnamon.
Peach Pie Slice!

Peach Pie Slice!

This one turned out absolutely delicious! Nothing beats making your own pies with fresh, ripe fruit – totally worth the time and energy!
The crust on all of these pies is one that I found on Vegetarian Times several years ago and it never fails me!
Pie Crust:
1 1/2 cups flour
1 tbs. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup Earth Balance vegan margarine, cut up
1/4 cup cold water
In  food processor combine first 3 ingredients. Add margarine and process for a few seconds. Add water and process until dough starts to form. Make a ball and wrap it in plastic wrap and put in fridge until ready to use.
At this point you can either roll it out on a lightly floured surface or just press it into a pie plate. It really does work both ways!
I hope you like pie as much as I do and that this post has inspired you to make your own!
Til next time…

2 Days of Cornbread Buns Courtesy of The Urban Housewife!

Anyone that knows me knows how much I love corn. Hell, I think it should be its own food group! You can have it in many of its multiple forms for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks! So when I was reading The Urban Housewife’s  blog and she posted a recipe for cornbread burger buns, I knew I had to make them! I sure am glad I did, they are delicious!  

Cornbread Burger Bun

Cornbread Burger Bun

I thought it would be a good idea to make a BBQ veggie burger patty to go with the cornbread bun. Boy was I right – the BBQ with the cornbread was fantastic! I used Trader Joe’s Kansas City Style BBQ Sauce because I just plain love this stuff! I used red kidney beans and millet for these burgers and they creepily looked like meat burgers but the flavor was incredible. Here’s a close-up of the patty:
BBQ Burger

BBQ Burger

And the recipe:
BBQ Burgers

 Yields aprox. 6 burgers

 15 oz. can of red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

½ cup onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

½ cup red bell pepper, diced

½ cup mushrooms, diced

1 cup cooked millet

1 cup breadcrumbs

¼ cup BBQ Sauce

½ tsp. onion powder

½ tsp. garlic powder

½ cup corn

 Directions:

In a food processor add all of the ingredients except the corn. Process for a few seconds and scrape down the sides. Process for a few more seconds and check the consistency. You may need to add more breadcrumbs until the mixture is neither too wet nor too dry. The mixture should be a good consistency for forming patties. Taste the mixture and adjust the seasoning to your taste. Add the corn and incorporate by hand. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and put in the fridge for at least 15 minutes. Form patties and cook in a cast iron skillet with a bit of oil for approximately 5 minutes per side.

On the 2nd day, I decided to use the left over burger mixture and create a kind of “sloppy joe” filling because again, I thought this would be tasty with the cornbread buns.  I sauteed half of an onion, half a red bellpepper, and 2 cloves of garlic in aprox. 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Then I added the crumbled up burger mixture and let this cook for about 5 minutes in a cast iron skillet. Then I added 1 small can of tomato sauce and let it simmer for about 10 minutes. I added about 1/2 cup of BBQ sauce and a bit of pepper and let it simmer for 5 more minutes. This is what I got:

Sloppt BBQ Joe

Sloppy BBQ Joe

And sloppy it was indeed but the flavor with the cornbread bun was outta this world! I also made some coleslaw following the recipe from Veganomicon!
Coleslaw

Coleslaw

All in all it was 2 days of cornbread deliciousness! Thanks Melisser!

Best Oatmeal Raisin Cookies Ever!

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

Seriously these are the best oatmeal raisin cookies I have ever had – crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside, and just the right amount of sweetness. They are another tester recipe for Jae Steele’s  upcoming book, Ripe From Around Here.  Here’s a close-up:
Cookie Close Up

Cookie Close Up

I’ve also been testing more recipes for Terry Hope Romero’s  upcoming book, Vegan Latina. First up I made some vegan posole – man o man was this good!
Posole!

Posole!

I also made some homemade corn tortillas to go with the posole:
Corn Tortillas

Corn Tortillas

Next up is tempeh asado tacos and savory orange rice. The rice is outta this word tasty. If you are into latin food this book is gonna rock your kitchen. I can’t wait for it to come out and I have access to the recipes!
Tempeh Asado Tacos

Tempeh Asado Tacos

Here’s a close-up of the orange rice – yum!
Savory Orange Rice

Savory Orange Rice

Til next time…

Scones, Greens, and Falafel!

Apricot Oatbran Scones

Apricot Oatbran Scones

This post is mostly just food porn – enjoy! These lovely scones are a tester recipe for Ripe From Around Here. I can’t even tell you how much I liked these – I hope the picture does them justice! I also tested this shiitake and dandelion greens saute, even though I am not a huge bitter greens fan this was tasty:

Shiitake and Dandelion Greens Saute

Shiitake and Dandelion Greens Saute

As a treat for eating my greens, I made a baked potato with Tofutti sour cream and chives!
Baked Potato

Baked Potato

As it starts to get warmer here in So. Cal I’ve been craving falafel and tabouleh because this is one of my favorite summertime meals. I’m always on the quest to find a great falafel recipe and this time I tried the one in Vegan With A Vengeance – tasty indeed!
Falafel!

Falafel!

The tabouleh has parsley, mint, millet, red spring onions, cucumbers, tomatoes, lemon juice, olive oil, and a bit of salt & pepper. It tastes even better a day later!
Tabouleh

Tabouleh

Oh and the hummus recipe is also from VWAV – I made it super garlicy and threw in some green spring onions too and it turned out spicy – delicious!
Til next time…