Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Baja Style Grilled Tempeh Tacos - Worth a try

Ok, this is a full two page recipe for tempeh tacos from Veganomicon (also known as our current favorite vegan cookbook).  We (yeah, my husband cooked this one up for us) tried this out since it was so much different from our normal - maybe a little too differnt - there was a little too much work involved for the end result.  A different taste, nice texture, but not a favorite - we won't do this recipe again. Maybe using red cabbage wasn't the right thing.

It was fun to try out Tempeh again - the spicy beer marinade was tasty - I think I will use tempeh in this way again in a different recipe.

The recipe - two pages

Adding the filling - marinated then pan fried tempeh, lime sauce, slaw, avocado, pepper & tomato

A peak inside - good texture, interesting taste - I would say it's worth a try


Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Chickpea Cutlets with Onion Gravy

I've played with the Veganomicon recipe for Chickpea cutlets and made them my own.  The basic recipe is still the same but I've adjusted and added.  I also like to smother these in vegetarian gravy. A plate of chickpea cutlets and mashed potatoes smothered in veggie gravy is just to die for.  My husband says he could eat this everyday and not get sick of it.

The key here is wheat gluten - buy it at most grocery stores - it makes everything stick together.  I like Bob's Red Mill brand Vital Wheat Gluten (Safeway has this).

The recipe is pretty easty and I prefer baking to panfrying.  I'm sure you'll find this on blogs everywhere but here's my go at it.

Cutlets Ingredients:
1 can (422 ml) cooked chickpeas (rinsed)

2 tablespoons olive oil
2/3 cup vital wheat gluten
2/3 cup plain breadcrumbs
1/4 cup vegetable broth or water
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 cloves garlic, pressed or grated with a Microplane grater (or garlic powder)
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest (or lemon juice)
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 onion chopped finely
1. In a mixing bowl, mash the chickpeas together with the oil until no chickpeas are left. Add the remaining ingredients and knead together for about 3 minutes, until strings of gluten have formed.

2. Preheat oven to 375 F.  Meanwhile, divide the cutlet dough into 6-8 equal pieces. To form cutlets, knead each piece in your hand for a few moments and then flatten and stretch each one into a roughly 6 by 4 inch rectangular cutlet shape (about 1/2" thick). The easiest way to do this is to form a rectangle shape in your hands and then place the cutlets on a clean surface to flatten and stretch them.
3. Put the cutlets on a lightely greased baking sheet and bake 20 minutes one side - flip - then bake another 10 minutes on the other. 
Onion Gravy Ingredients:
1.5 cup heated vegetable broth (I like onion cubes)
1/2 onion chopped finely
2 tbsp flour
2 tbsp Earth Balance or vegan margarine
2 tbsp corn starch
2 tbsp soy sauce
1. In a sauce pan cook onion until soft in the vegan butter.
2. Add the flour and mix.
3. Add the cornstarch and soy sauce to the veggie broth.  Pour into the onion mix. Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer until thick. 
Now go and mash some potatoes, put everything on a plate, and smother it in gravy!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Yogi Trail Mix Granola Bars - No Bake!

I really wanted a no-bake granola bar recipe where the granola bar stayed together.  This site had a recipe for yogi trail mix bars and it really served the need.  I didn't have any vegan choco chips so I used a square of baking chocolate crushed in the food processor - and added at the end like a choco topping.  FYI: Yum, yum, yum. 

These are good. I will definitely make them again.  Although... for those die hard vegans, I use honey, so this isn't total vegan.  Next time I'll maybe try brown rice syrup or agave nectar and see if they turn out.

If you want to try out the recipe check out the link for instructions.  I've pasted the ingredients here.  It's pretty easy.... (1) boil the honey, peanutbutter & sugar, (2) dump this over the dry & mix, and (3) press down hard into a pan. Voila.

Tip: We kept these in the fridge for the week or at least the 5 days they lasted.

1 cup honey
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4th tsp salt
2 T granulated sugar
1/4 cup peanut butter
1 1/2 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup oat bran (or ground flax seed - that's what I used)
1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/2 cup sunflower seeds
3/4 cup dried cherries, cranberries or berry blend

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Mexican Wedding Cookies

I'm trying out recipes from a vegan cook book - "The Joy of Vegan Baking"" by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau.  This cookie recipe caught my eye right away - My mom used to make these Mexican Wedding Cookies - but she would make them into little crescents.  I only made half a batch (some bad luck in the baking department lately got me a little oven shy)... I did a few replacements: almonds instead of pecans, agave nectar instead of sugar, and whole wheat flour versus white.  For me a good recipe is one that does well with substitutions - I cannot help myself but make them - this was a good recipe.  These little balls of joy are bite sized (at least for my husband), melty in the mouth and easy to make; a little bit like shortbread.  I will definitely do this recipe again.

Very easy - (1) blend sugar & earth balance, (2) add the rest of the ingredients (note: I put the nuts in my food processor), (3) Use your hands to make them into little balls - place on cookie sheet with wax paper (wax side down), (4) bake 30 minutes at 300 F, (5) while they are still hot add the icing sugar to a bowl and roll them around (tip: I used tongs to set them on a tray after rolled), (6) eat 'em up!