Thursday, March 29, 2012

Eggplant Parmesan with Roasted Broccoli

Dinner 03/29

Eggplant Parmesan

Roasted Broccoli

The kids were asking for eggplant -- and it's always good for sandwiches the next day -- so we made a batch of Eggplant Parmesan (recipe) along with Roasted Broccoli (olive oil, salt, pepper, 450°F, 15 minutes).

No-Bean Hummus, Flax Crackers, Cucumbers

Lunch 03/29

No-Bean Hummus

Flax Crackers


A nice simple lunch of zucchini based hummus from Matt Amsden's RAWvolution...

2 zucchini, peeled/chopped
3/4 cup raw tahini
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup olive oil
4 cloves garlic, peeled
2 1/2 tsp. sea salt
1/2 t. fresh ground cumin

Add everything to the vita-mix and puree until smooth.

PROTIP: go easy on the garlic depending on their size -- two or three might be enough. ;)

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Raw Food Wednesday: BBQ Mushroom Pizza

Raw Food Wednesday 03/28

BBQ Mushroom Pizza

We haven't made a raw pizza in ages, but it turned out really well...

(This is another recipe-in-progress -- but here's a rough outline of what we tried.)

In the spice grinder we started out with a 3:1 ratio of flax seeds to sunflower seeds along with oregano, fennel seeds, sun-dried tomato (not the wet kind). That was added to the vita-mix along with minced red onion and a tiny bit of garlic. The wet ingredients -- nama shoyu, olive oil, lemon juice -- were added with enough water to turn it into a fairly thick paste.

The crust was rolled out with a (moist) rolling pin, transferred to a teflex sheet and dehydrated at 105°F for 1 hr, flipped, scored into individual slices before it got too dry, and dehydrated another 5 hours.

The cheese (soaked cashews, quinoa rejuvelac, shallot, miso, lemon juice) was pureed in the vita-mix and spread over the slices with an offset spatula and dehydrated for another hour.

Finally, the BBQ Mushrooms (King Trumpet mushroom stems sliced about 1/4" thick, marinated with nama shoyu, miso, raw agave, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice) were dehydrated for about an hour, then placed on top of the cheese and dehydrated for another hour.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Ramen with Shiitake Mushroom Broth

Dinner 03/26

Ramen with Shiitake Mushroom Broth

A slight twist on our usual Ramen combination using Shirataki Noodles in place of the regular udon or soba noodles. As always though, it starts with the incredible Shiitake Mushroom Stock joined this time by carrots, red bell peppers, bok choy, tea-smoked tofu, kombu, King Trumpet mushrooms, Beech mushrooms, red miso, black pepper and tamari.

Shirataki Noodles and Tofu with Coconut Curry Sauce

Lunch 03/26

Shirataki Noodles and Tofu with Coconut Curry Sauce

Let me break lunch down for you...

Stir-fried (tofu+carrots+red bell peppers) x (coconut milk+curry paste)
______________________________________________________________________ = Yum!
Red Leaf Lettuce + Shirataki Noodles

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Korean BBQ Portobello Burgers with Kimchi, Sweet Potato Fries

Dinner 03/25

Korean BBQ Portobello Burgers with Kimchi

Sweet Potato Fries

With all of the nice weather we've been having, we've been giving the grill a workout. Tonight's meal was another Isa test recipe -- the portobello mushrooms were smoked for 20 minutes, then marinated for 30 minutes, and finally grilled -- the burgers were then topped with kimchi and vegenaise. Served on top of with Liz's Einkorn flour buns.

We paired the burgers with sweet potato oven fries, tossed with olive oil, sprinkled with smoked paprika, black pepper and smoked sea salt and roasted at 425°F for 25 minutes.

This is a test recipe for Isa's upcoming cookbook, so you know the drill -- we can't give out the recipe.

Saturday, March 24, 2012


Vegan-Palooza 03/24

Kudos to Vegan Sweet Tooth for putting together Vegan-Palooza, with tons of vegan goodies for all to try! It was very busy in the time we were there -- nice job guys!

Frosting Shots

Cupcake Testing -- because someone has to do it! ;)

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Jerk Tofu, Caribbean Vegetables with Coconut Rice

Dinner 03/22

Jerk Tofu

Caribbean Vegetables with Coconut Rice

Well, this started out as a recipe (below) from Chloe Coscarelli's cookbook "Chloe's Kitchen" but we ended up changing every single element -- so thanks for the inspiration Chloe! ;)

For the record, we already had leftover cooked rice, so we simply reheated it, added some baby spinach and half the coconut milk with a little salt and pepper.

Instead of steaming the broccoli and sweet potatoes, we roasted them at 425°F for 20 minutes with the seasoning (salt, pepper, smoked paprika, cinnamon, thyme, cayenne and we also added allspice).

We skipped the plantains and black beans entirely, and used the Jerk Tofu in its place. We started with apple wood smoked tofu, then used our usual marinade (olive oil, tamari, agave, pepper, ketchup) with the addition of lime juice and the remaining jerk seasoning from the veggies, which were sprinkled on top before grilling.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Black Pepper Tofu and Green Beans, Yuba Rolls in a Sweet & Sour Sauce

Dinner 03/20

Black Pepper Tofu and Green Beans

Yuba Rolls in a Sweet & Sour Sauce

Continuing on with cookbook week, the Black Pepper Tofu recipe comes from "Plenty" by Yotam Ottolenghi -- we subbed Earth Balance for the butter and added green beans (trimmed, coated with cornstarch and cooked separately). Spicy!

The yuba roll featured fresh yuba sheets wrapped around a piece of tea-smoked tofu that. The yuba was then fried gently (seam side down) until crispy, flipped and fried a little further, then the sweet and sour sauce (agave, tamari, sesame oil, black vinegar, sriracha) was poured over the top until thickened to a glaze. Also spicy! ;)

Monday, March 19, 2012

Artichoke and Oyster Mushroom Rockefeller, Fresh Pea Soup

Dinner 03/19

Artichoke and Oyster Mushroom Rockefeller

Fresh Pea Soup

We're on Spring Break this week and Liz picked up some cookbooks at the library, so we're trying out a few new dishes.

While we've never made this dish before, it was not unknown to us. It was the winning dish at the first Vegan Iron Chef competition four years ago when it was made by Scot Jones. Now you can find the recipe as well in Tal Ronnen's "The Conscious Cook." These were a visual as well as a visceral treat.

The soup (adapted from Jean-Georges Vongerichten, below) is a family favorite, one that we've made many times before -- and it's always a sure sign that Spring is here -- as if the 70°+ days we've been having haven't been a large enough clue. ;)

Saturday, March 17, 2012

St. Patrick's Day 2012

Dinner 03/17

Cock of the North
Apple Wood Smoked Tofu Stew, Flambéed w/Irish Whiskey


Beer Gravy

Soda Farls

For the 10th straight year, we made this recipe, a hearty and filling stew that is combined with Colcannon (Mashed Potatoes & Cabbage) and Beer Gravy (we used Samuel Smith Nut Brown this year). The other twist was using Apple Wood Smoked Tofu in place of the seitan.

The Soda Farls (recipe) turned on their edge look a bit like the monolith from 2001: A Space Odyssey, but are in fact, much light in color, flavor and density. ;)

Friday, March 16, 2012

Fettuccine Alfredo with Brown Oyster and Hedgehog Mushrooms

Dinner 03/16

Fettuccine Alfredo with Brown Oyster and Hedgehog Mushrooms

Pasta and mushrooms -- a classic combination.

We made a quick alfredo-ish sauce starting with a large saute pan on medium heat with 1 tbs. olive oil. Add one small minced shallot and sauteed until softened, 2-3 minutes. Add 2 cloves of minced garlic, and cook for one additional minute. Deglaze with a 1/4 cup white wine and reduced by half.

In a high speed blender, add 1/4 cup vegan sour cream, 1/3 cup vegan cream cheese, 1/4 cup nutritional yeast, 8 oz. soft tofu, 1/4 cup tbs. microplaned cheddar sheese and a few zests of nutmeg. Puree until smooth. If needed, add 1/4 cup of water to get the mixture to turn.

Add the blender mixture to the shallots along with a 1/4 cup minced parsley, stir to combine and bring to a simmer. Add the cooked pasta and turn to coat. If it's too thick, add a little pasta water to get it to the desired consistency. Add to the plate, top with the pan-fried mushrooms -- in this case Brown Oyster & Hedgehog (as seen below).

You can see where they got their name ;)

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Whoopie Pies

Dessert 03/15

Whoopie Pies

A recipe-in-progress (about 85% there) -- the pies still need more "whoopie" -- but a tasty recipe-in-progress. Next time should be the clincher.

Hickory-Smoked Mushroom Quinoa Burgers, Sweet Potato Fries

Dinner 03/15

Hickory-Smoked Mushroom Quinoa Burgers

Sweet Potato Oven Fries

Arugula Salad with Toasted Almonds and Raisin Vinaigrette

So much awesome on one plate!

The sweet potatoes were cut into eighths and tossed with olive oil, smoked salt and pepper. Then they were put onto a baking sheet in a single layer and baked for 25 minutes at 425°F.

The salad is a test recipe for Isa -- the raisin vinaigrette was a really refreshing change of pace.

and onto the main event...

Hickory-Smoked Mushroom Quinoa Burgers
Makes 10-12 burgers

1 tbs. olive oil
1 lb portobello or cremini mushroom, diced
1 tbs. tamari

Smoke the diced mushroom for 20 minutes with hickory wood chips. Remove from smoker and grind in a food processor or high-speed blender until well ground (not pureed). In a wok on medium-high heat saute the mushrooms until they've lost most of their liquid, about 6-8 minutes. At the end of cooking splash with the tamari and turn to coat. Remove from heat and set aside.

1 1/2 cups of water
1 cup red quinoa

Rinse the quinoa well, bring the water to a boil and add the quinoa, cook for 12-14 minutes or until cooked through. Drain, set aside.

1 tbs. olive oil
1 red onion, sliced thinly
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 small zucchini, peeled, grated
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
2 tsp. fresh parsley, minced
1 tsp. fresh thyme, minced
1 tsp. smoked paprika
salt & pepper

While the quinoa is cooking, set a large saute pan on medium-low heat, add the olive oil and cook the onions slowly until caramelized, about 8-10 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste, then add the garlic and cook one additional minute. Add zucchini fry for 5 minutes more. Add parsley, thyme and smoked paprika. Stir to combine, cook for one additional minute. Remove from heat, set aside.

2 tbs. flax seeds, ground
1/4 cup potato flour
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/2 cup grated Daiya (Mozzarella or Cheddar)
1 tbs. tamari

In a large bowl, add the cooked mushrooms, onion/zucchini mixture, quinoa, ground flax seeds, potato flour, nutritional yeast and grated cheese together and mix until well incorporated. Add the tamari and mix a little more. Check for seasoning. Let chill in the fridge for a few hours.

1 tbs. olive oil

Set a cast iron pan on medium-high heat, form the mixture into 3"-4" patties about 3/4" thick and fry 4-5 minutes on the first side, flip and cook for an additional 3-4 minutes until finished.

Lentil Quinoa Stew with Kale

Lunch 03/15

Lentil Quinoa Stew with Kale

Any dish with brown lentils, red quinoa and loads of kale is going to do well in our house. Throw in some hot sauce at the end and you have an instant classic...

This is a test recipe for Isa's upcoming cookbook, so you know the drill -- we can't give out the recipe.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Baked Penne Rigate with Asparagus, Zucchini and Spinach

Dinner 03/14

Baked Penne Rigate with Asparagus, Zucchini and Spinach

Tonight's was another in a series of "things that needed to be used in the fridge" dinners starring silken tofu, asparagus, zucchini and baby spinach.

We started by marinating the asparagus in tamari and olive oil and then grilling them for 10 minutes or so until almost cooked through. We removed it from the grill and cut it into 1" pieces and set it aside.

While the asparagus was grilling, we heated a large saute pan on medium heat, added 1 tbs. of olive oil and sauteed a medium shallot (minced) for 2-3 minutes, then added 2 cloves of minced garlic for an additional 1 minute, along with salt, pepper. Then we added 1 cup of diced zucchini and cooked that for 5-6 minutes until just cooked through. Next, we turned off the heat, added 2 cups of baby spinach and turned it until lightly wilted.

In a large mixing bowl we added 8oz of silken tofu, 1/2 cup vegan cream cheese, 1/4 cup of vegan sour cream, and used the immersion blender to combine. Using a microplane, we added a couple of zests of fresh nutmeg, then used it to zest 2 tbs. of Cheddar Sheese. 1/4 cup of Daiya Mozzarella, an extra pinch of salt & pepper, and 1/2 cup minced parsley and mixed it all together.

We then folded in the zucchini & spinach mixture, the grilled asparagus and cooked pasta into the bowl and stirred to combine everything. Finally, we put the pasta into buttered (with Earth Balance) ramekins and baked it at 375°F for 25min.

Cupcakes from Vegan Sweet Tooth

Cupcakes 03/14

Strawberry Shortcake, Caramel, Mint Chocolate Chip, Vanilla & Lavender Cupcakes

It's 72°F outside, I'm wearing shorts for the first time this year and we went to Vegan Sweet Tooth* as part of our shopping excursion. If you need me, I'll be outside eating these.

Close-ups of the Strawberry Shortcake and Caramel Cupcakes

Close-ups of the Mint Chocolate Chip and Vanilla & Lavender cupcakes

* also, for those of you in NEO, we're going to try to make it up for Vegan-Palooza on 3/24.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Harira with Eggplant and Lentils, Shish Kabob

Dinner 03/12

Harira with Eggplant and Lentils

Shish Kabob

The Harira with Eggplant and Lentils is an inspired riff on a Moroccan soup/stew that gets better the longer it sits and would works ideally as a dinner plus lunch the next day. Slow cooked, the spices meld with the eggplant & lentils for a delicious and hearty meal.

The kabobs were comprised of hickory-smoked tofu, mushroom, red bell pepper and tomatoes marinated in olive oil, tamari, ketchup and agave and grilled while the Harira was doing its thing on the stove.

This is a test recipe for Isa's upcoming cookbook, so you know the drill -- we can't give out the recipe.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

My Thai Overnight Scramble

Breakfast 03/10

My Thai Overnight Scramble

Venturing into breakfast for a change, it's another test recipe for Isa's upcoming cookbook, with an intriguing combination of flavors that marinate with the tofu overnight.

This is a test recipe for Isa's upcoming cookbook, so you know the drill -- we can't give out the recipe.

Friday, March 09, 2012

Savory Mini-Cheesecake on an Arugula Salad

Dinner 03/09

Savory Mini-Cheesecake

Arugula Salad

Tonight we brought back the adapted Jacques Pepin recipe for savory mini-cheesecakes (making the usual vegan subs plus 1/2 cup soft tofu for the eggs, with the addition of 1/2 tsp. of baking powder to the mix) and adding roasted garlic and microplaned cheddar sheese.

Served on top of an arugula salad with a red wine vinaigrette, which was a great pepper/acidic combo to pair with the creamy, garlic cheesecakes. Yum!

Brown Rice Burgers

Lunch 03/09

Brown Rice Burger

We made Brown Rice burgers for dinner the other night (recipe), and the nice thing is there's always extra leftover for lunch. Liz also made extra buns (using the Einkorn flour), so we froze half and kept a few back for today -- and as a bonus: Heart-Shaped Pickle! ;)

Thursday, March 08, 2012


Lunch 03/08


As a long-term vegan, tabbouleh (along with hummus) is one of those things you quickly learn is (usually) safe to eat out in public or at parties. Having said that, it's been more than a few years since we've made tabbouleh on our own.

But this test recipe for Isa is like welcoming back an old friend. Chickpeas, tomatoes & cucumber all join the party with the couscous for a quick and easy lunch that comes together in under a half-hour.

This is a test recipe for Isa's upcoming cookbook, so you know the drill -- we can't give out the recipe.

Monday, March 05, 2012

Buttermilk Tofu, Braised Red Cabbage, Mashed Potatoes and Gravy

Dinner 03/05

Buttermilk Tofu

Braised Red Cabbage

Mashed Potatoes and Gravy

We haven't made the buttermilk tofu recipe in a while, and frankly I don't know why -- it's so good.

We did a little something different with the gravy this time around, using the creamy leftover vegan buttermilk that the tofu was dipped in as the liquid to thicken the roux. Because we used smoked cashews in the making of the buttermilk, it really added another dimension of flavor and complexity to what is already a pretty great gravy.

The base was braised red cabbage, slow cooked onions, garlic and thinly sliced red cabbage in olive oil with smoked salt, pepper, herbes de provence and a 1 tbs. of tomato paste. Near the end of cooking we added a splash of apple cider vinegar (to bring back the color) and tamari for seasoning. I could eat an entire meal of the cabbage alone. ;)

Sunday, March 04, 2012

Tofu 'n Waffles 'n Sprouts

Dinner 03/04

Tofu 'n Waffles 'n Sprouts

Busby Berkeley called from the 30s and would like his art direction back.

The savory waffle recipe is simply dry ingredients (1 cup of Einkorn flour, 1 cup of cornmeal, 1 tsp. salt, 1 tbs. baking powder) plus wet ingredients (1/2 cup water and 1/2 cup of smoked cashew, pureed together, plus 3/4 cup of rice milk). Whisk the wet into the dry and adjust the liquid (add a little water if it seems too dry). You should be able to get four waffles out of the batter depending on the size of your machine. Cook the waffles to your machine's spec.

The tofu was smoked (25 minutes, hickory wood), marinated (olive oil, tamari, ketchup, pepper, agave) and grilled.

The gravy started with a minced shallot cooked in 1 tbs. of Earth Balance and 1 tbs. olive oil, salt and pepper. Next 2 tbs. of Einkorn flour was sprinkled in to make a roux. After that cooked for a while and got some color, 2 tbs. of nooch was added. Finally, 2 cups of veg stock, plus 1 tbs. of tamari was whisked in making the gravy smooth. It may seem like a lot of gravy, but in our house, it's not. ;)

The Brussels Sprouts were trimmed, cut in half, tossed with 1 tbs. of olive oil, smoked salt and pepper to taste and roasted at 450°F for 15 minutes.

Friday, March 02, 2012

Tofu au Vin, Fingerling Potatoes, Grilled Asparagus

Dinner 03/02

Tofu au Vin

Fingerling Potatoes

Grilled Asparagus

The block of tofu was portioned into six cutlets (rather than the usual eight), smoked in hickory wood for 25 minutes, then pan-fried until golden brown on both sides (5-6 minutes) and splashed with tamari at the end of cooking. Then a slit was added in the center of the cutlet and stuffed with roasted garlic.

(We used a garlic roaster, cutting off the top of the cloves, with a little olive oil, salt, pepper over the tops, roasted 1 hour at 350°F -- try not to eat it all before stuffing the tofu.)

2 cups of cremini mushrooms were cleaned, quartered and pan-fried in olive oil with salt and pepper until they released most of their liquid (8 minutes) and set aside.

For the sauce, a shallot was sauteed in olive oil for 2-3 minutes, with a pinch of salt and pepper, then 2 tsp. of minced garlic, 1 tsp. of tomato paste and 1 tsp. of herbes de provence were added and cooked for 1 additional minute.

Next 2 cups of red wine and 1 cup of veg stock were added, brought to a boil, then simmered until the sauce was reduced down to roughly 1/2 cup.

1 tbs. of Earth Balance was whisked in at the end of cooking and the sauce was adjusted for seasoning.

The mushrooms were added to the sauce, then spooned over the tofu on the plate.

The fingerlings were split in half, tossed with olive oil, smoked salt and pepper and were roasted at 450°F for 40 minutes, tossing halfway through.

The asparagus was marinated in olive oil, tamari and pepper for 20 minutes, then grilled.