Monday, September 13, 2010

Two dinners and a dessert!

Since I have been slacking on the blog, I thought I would add a few recipes that I have made since the last post. I have been busy!  In fact, one recipe I made will not be shown because I'm not finished. It is cup cakes and I haven't iced them yet.

I read a few vegan blogs faithfully every day. I mentioned Peas and Thank You in the last post. Mama Pea can make anything vegan and I mean anything! She is awesome! I recommend reading her addition to mine that is! :o)  She decided to do cheese stuffed bean burgers. The recipe looked very interesting to me. It didn't look like the other bean burger recipes I had seen. So, I had to make them! I cut the recipe in half because it is only me eating them, not a family of four. They were awesome! I think the only thing I would do different is add more spices. I also did not use her cheese filling. I just shredded some of my vegan gourmet cheddar cheese and put it in the middle. Go check out her blog and recipe for cheese stuffed bean burgers!

Here is a picture of mine. The patties were huge because I flattened it a lot to make sure the cheese melted. 
It was my Dad's birthday-dinner night. Naturally my Mom made him home-made hamburgers and fries. His favorite... *rolls eyes* --Notice my home-made pickles too! 

 That night I also tried another Mama Pea recipe. Home-made Reese cups! I was ecstatic when I saw this. I absolutely love love love peanut butter and chocolate together. Prior to becoming a vegan that was my candy of choice. Of course the bastards make them with dark chocolate after I became a vegan, but I digress. These are better! And so simple. 

Just take 1/2 cup of vegan chocolate. Melt it in a double broiler or in the microwave. 

Take 1/4 cup peanut butter + 1 tbsp of nutritional yeast flakes and mix together.  * I would also suggest using milk instead of flakes. Doing that makes it even more awesome. I will do that next time.

Take muffin liners and put 1 tbsp of the melted chocolate down. Then add a tbsp of the peanut butter, then cover with another tbsp of chocolate. Freeze until set. O...M..G!!! They were awesome. It was good I only made 2 each for us or we would have eaten the whole batch! 

The picture isn't all that pretty. My camera battery is almost dead and I'm a messy preparer! lol Next time I'll do better and re-post.
And finally, for dinner tonight I made tofu-veggie pot pie for myself and chicken ones for my parents. I found the best crust recipe. I love eating raw dough. Yes, I know I'm weird. This dough was awesome. So I knew the crust would be too. What's nice is it can be used for anything. Pies, dinner, whatever. The filling recipe comes from my La Dolce Vegan cookbook by Sarah Kramer. I have modified it to fit my taste buds. And since I'm notorious for not measuring, this should be interesting. 

Tofu-Veggie Pot Pie

1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup pastry flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
3/4 cup vegetable shortening
6 tbsp ice cold water

Sift together dry ingredients. Cut in shortening. Add water and mix until dough forms. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 45 minutes. When ready for pie. Cut into two and roll out on floured surface. 

1 small onion, chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
2 celery stalks
1 large carrot
1/2 bell pepper, chopped
1 medium potato, chopped
1/3 cup frozen peas
1/4 -1/2 block of extra-firm tofu, drained
1 - 1 1/4 cup of vegetable stock
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp red pepper
2 tbsp flour
3/4 cup milk

I made them in 6 individual dishes. You can just as easily make them in a casserole dish. 
 In a large sauce pan add onions and oil and saute until translucent. Add in peppers, celery, carrots and saute for additional 2-3 minutes. Add the potatoes, peas, tofu, stock, and spices. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 4-6 minutes. Stir in flour and milk and simmer until sauce begins to thicken. Transfer to baking dish. Bake on 400 degrees  for 20-25 minutes.

Hope you guys enjoy! :o)

Sunday, September 12, 2010

I'm back!

Hi Peeps! Sorry for the long delay between posts. I have been busy and for a minute there forgot I had a blog to write! Whoops. After going to school for seven years to be a school psychologist, I am now working in retail! Wooo  Quite sad, but better than not having a job at all! I believe I will enjoy working at this new job. It isn't forever. 

I also haven't tried anything new since the last post. I should have named my blog The Picky Vegan. I tend to eat the same things. I've been eating oatmeal for breakfast and salad with some other protein for dinner. I could have shared a few things I eat, but like I said, I forgot. I'm sorry, there will be other times! 

My parents gave me an early birthday gift! It was kind of hard to have me wait since I found it, showed it to my Mom, then it came in the mail. Granted I didn't read the box when it came in, which is not like me. She thought I did and gave it to me early anyways. On to what I got!!!!! Extremely excited about this. A Tofu Press! EEEE :o)   

Since I started cooking tofu, I learned it is hard to get all of the water out. You have to press that thing in between two towels for like 3 hours to get it dry enough. I never plan that far in advance so mine usually only sits for 30 minutes. This then usually causes me to get burned if I'm frying it in a pan. Hot oil and water DO NOT mix! I now bake my tofu, much easier. So, all this time I've been thinking there should be some kind of contraption for getting all the water out. Well, low and be hold...I was reading Peas and Thank You blog (one of my favorites) and she had a tofu press on there. I asked her where she got it and she gave me the web page and said it's worth it!

I couldn't wait to try it out.  
 As you can see the water pools on top. And you just drain it off when you've let it sit long enough. Again, the directions said to let it press for 1 hour or overnight. I only did 30 minutes lol. This was mainly because I was going to try a new recipe and it called for marinating the tofu for an hour as well. I only did 30 minutes! :o) It all worked out.  Also notice that my tofu is lop sided? It did that when I would press it with two towels and a grill press? I'm not sure. Maybe our counters are not level. 

I tried this new recipe called Oven Fried Tofu. It was really good! 

Oven Fried Tofu

o      1 block of tofu
o      ¼ cup soy sauce
o      ¼ cup water
o      ¼ cup flour
o      ¼ cup cornmeal
o      ¼ cup nutritional yeast
o      Spices (use whatever you like, I used paprika, red pepper, black pepper, garlic powder)

Drain tofu for 1 hour or over night (30 minutes!). Marinate in soy sauce and water for 1 hour or over night (30 minutes). Cut into fillets. Dredge through flour, cornmeal, spices mixture. Place on slightly oiled pan and bake at 425˚  for 30 minutes

Marinating the tofu, notice the lid!!! It's an all in one dish, drains tofu and allows you to marinate it as well! Awesome!

After dredging through flour mixture and placing on stoneware

What it looks like when it's done cooking! Yum 
Doesn't look like much because Madre and I already sampled a few! :o)

And there you have it! I absolutely love my new tofu press! I learned on another website I follow that you can make your own yogurt at home! I'm really excited about that and plan to make the purchase one day. Especially since I have to drive 45 minutes once a month to buy plain yogurt at Whole Foods. Kroger only has the fruit ones. I like them but I like the plain better. Less sugar and more versatile. 

More too come...there are  a lot of birthday's this month. So, I will be baking! :o)