Saturday, June 30, 2007

Cold Udon Noodles with Peanut Sauce

I haven't had peanut sauce in years and hated it when I did have it. So, I didn't want to go through all the trouble of the recipe in VWAV. While at Cost Plus I saw Thai Kitchen's peanut sauce was 50% off. I figured I would give it a try.

I really liked it! I'm looking forward to trying Isa's recipe. As always, broccoli is good in anything.

Thursday, June 28, 2007


I made seitan for the first time using the Seitan O'Greatness recipe from the PPK forums. It was so much easier then I thought it would be. This is a baked recipe, not boiled. The seasonings are really not what I would choose next time but this was a great jumping off point. The kids booth liked it, although Ramsey did say that it was a little bit spicy.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

San Diego County Fair

So, that's pretty freaky, right? I've never seen that before. I hope that it made people squirm.
That's it.

We had a nice time. Fresh potato chips, yum. Apple fries, yum. Snow cone, to chunky.

Crispy Peanut Butter Cookies

Well, this recipe is from Vegan with a Vengeance by Isa Moskowitz. I've read a pretty even split of this recipe being just fine or it not being right. So, I followed some of the tips that I read. Such as making sure to let them cool on the cookie sheet before moving so that they don't crumble and when mixing the dough let it keep going for awhile.

They taste......alright. Not amazing, not awful. I let the first batch sit for the recommended 3 minutes on the baking pan before trying to transfer to the cooling rack. 1/3 of them broke and didn't make it. The second batch I let cool on the rack for 10 minutes. 2 of the 11 still broke.

So if by crispy she means crumbly and dry, then yah they're crispy. I melted some chocolate to spread on top and that's the only thing not sucking all of the moisture out of my mouth. Will I make this recipe again? Probably not. Will I finish eating this batch? You can count on it.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Celebrity Adzuki Bean and Rice Cakes

Tonight for dinner I made the Celebrity Adzuki Bean and Rice Cakes from Dreena Burton's Vive le Vegan! The recipe calls for adzuki or another small bean. We used black beans.

These were AMAZING. Everyone loved them, kids and all. We ended up with about double the amount we could eat for dinner. That excites me even more. I'm already dreaming of lunch tomorrow.

I would definitely put these in our top 20 list of favorites. This recipe is going to get a lot of use. I think I would even sub these as veggie burgers. They have a lovely crispy outside and a great inner texture. I think I might even freeze one to see how well it holds up. If every thing goes well, in the future I'll double the recipe and have them on hand in the freezer.

Yea Dreena Burton!

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Mini Donuts

We had a very healthy breakfast this morning! I made mini donuts. They are baked, so that's a little bit better. I used the recipe from VeganYumYum

I don't have a donut pan, yet. So, I used my mini muffin pan and made donut holes. They turned out great. The kids loved them, but I'm pretty sure they'll eat anything with sprinkles.

Next time I want to try chocolate. Yum.

Lentil Barley Soup

I came across this Lentil & Barley Soup recipe somewhere online. We decided to try it out since we like lentil soup so much. I, of course, can't remember where I got it.

It was very good. It takes a bit longer then my other recipe, but there are more flavors. It's more soupy and less like a stew. This will probably replace my other lentil soup as our favorite. It helps that I love barley.

Lentil & Barley Soup

1/2 cup lentils
1/2 cup barley
2 cloves of garlic
2 diced potatoes
2 sliced carrots
2 stalks of celery, sliced
1 onion, diced
6-8 cups veggie stock
1/2 tsp. sage
1/2 tsp. basil
salt & pepper to taste

I used my pressure cooker but it would take 30-40 minutes in a regular stock pot.

Saute the onion, celery and carrots until tender.
Add the remaining ingredients.
Bring up to high pressure for 18 minutes.
You can use natural release or quick release.

Some crusty bread or toast with Earth Balance is great with this.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Aloo Mutter Gobi

Spicy Cauliflower, Peas and Potatoes. I got this recipe off of someone elses blog but can't for the life of me remember who. I apologize in advance.

I served this tonight over rice. It was very good but a little to spicy for us. Next time I'm going to tone down the cayenne pepper. It has a good amount of sauce so that you can drown your rice.

1/2 medium-large head of cauliflower, broken into bite-size florets

1 medium potato, cubed

1 small onion, sliced

2 Tlb. minced or grated fresh ginger

1 cup water

2 Tlb. oil

1 tsp. cumin seeds

2 tsp. mustard seeds

1 tsp. fenugreek seeds (can be made without)

1/2 tsp. turmeric powder

1/2 tsp. red cayenne pepper

1/2 tsp. cumin powder

1 tsp. fresh pressed garlic

2 tsp. curry powder

1 tsp. garam masala

1 tsp. salt (or to taste)

1 cup frozen or fresh peas

Aprox. 1 cup or 1-8oz can crushed tomatoes

1 cup coconut milk

Heat oil in a deep skillet on medium heat. Add the seeds and stir until the sizzle and "pop". This releases the spices flavor and infuses the oil with it.

Add the onion and ginger, stir-fry for a few minutes until the onion is starting to brown at the edges.

Lower the heat and add in the spices from turmeric powder to curry powder. Stir only a few seconds to get the spices coated with oil and just starting to heat.

Add the potato and cauliflower and stir well to mix in the spices.

Add the salt and garam masala along with the water and let the vegetables cook until tender. Cover the pan so that the vegetables can cook in the juice. Stir every 5 minutes to evenly cook.

When the water has evaporated or vegetables are cooked, add green peas, tomatoes and coconut milk. Simmer for another 10 minutes.

Turn off the heat and allow to sit for a few minutes. This really blends the flavors. Serve with rice.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Italian Feast

Tonight we had my mom and some friends over for dinner. I made my own version of the torpasta. I hollowed out a torpedo and spread garlic and olive oil inside. I baked that until it was hot and crusty. Then stuffed inside is penne pasta with marina, summer squash, tomato, and red bell pepper simmered with marsala wine.

We had a tomato salad, not shown. Just chopped up tomato with some black pepper and Liquid Gold Dressing. I made my favorite fruit salad, learned from Angela at Le Leche League. The fruit salad has papaya, banana, and pineapple drizzled with agave nectar and sprinkled with toasted walnuts.

Last and certainly not least were cannoli's from a vegweb. They turned very well. Next time I will roll the dough a bit thinner. I would like them a touch crispier. The chocolate coating is a great idea if you aren't serving right away, that way they don't get soggy. If I'm able to make them on the spot, then next time I will just put chopped chocolate in the filling and not coat the shells. These really were excellent and no dairy stomach ache.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Chana Masala

Yum! This was really good. I adapted this recipe based on the comments from a popular one over at vegweb.

I served it with basmati rice and some watermelon. Honestly chick peas, garbonzo beans, don't really do it for me. They're kind of a tough bean, in my opinion. I still really liked this recipe. Next time I might use kidney beans and see how that turns.

Chana Masala

2 Tlb. canola oil
1 medium onion, chopped
4 large cloves of garlic, minced
1 1/2 tsp. curry powder
1 1/2 tsp. garam masala
2 Tlb. tomato paste
15 oz can of chick peas, drained
1/2 a can of coconut milk
1 Tlb. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. salt
fresh black pepper
red chili pepper flakes
1 Tlb. margarine
1/2 cup frozen peas

Heat the oil on medium high heat. Fry the onions until they are slightly browned.

Reduce the heat to medium and add garlic, curry, garam masala, and tomato paste. Stir and simmer about 2 minutes.

Add the chick peas, coconut milk, lemon juice, salt, and black pepper. Simmer 5-6 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add red chili pepper to taste.

Add margarine and frozen peas, stirring to melt the margarine. Simmer for 5 more minutes or until peas are softened and dish is hot.

Serve over rice.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Brown Rice Mochi

This is one of our favorite breakfasts. Brown rice mochi made by Grainaissance It comes in a big square and you cut it up into little squares. You bake it for about 10 minutes and it puffs up and gets all crunchy on the outside and sticky inside.

We split them open and put a little bit of Earth Balance inside along with a tiny bit of raspberry jam. (Trader Joe's organic raspberry jam is our favorite.) They have savory flavors and sweet flavors.

The only places that I've seen where you can purchase this mochi is OB People's Co-op, Jimbos and Whole Foods. I'm hoping that with a little begging our Henry's might start to carry it.

Try it out, it's a quick and easy breakfast.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Lentil Soup

This is one of our favorite lentil soup recipes. I picked a bad day to make it because it was so hot out. We still sucked it down. I use my pressure cooker to make this. I'm not sure of what the timing would be without it. My guess would be around 45 minutes on a simmer.

Lentil Soup
1 tbl. olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium carrot, sliced (sometimes I use more)
4 cups broth
1 cup lentils
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/4 tsp. thyme
2 bay leaves
salt to taste

Heat the oil in your pressure cooker over medium heat. Add the onions and carrots and saute for five minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and bring up to high pressure for 14 minutes. You can quick release or slow release.

That's it. Dinner ready in under 30 minutes. Serve it with a nice salad and whole grain bread.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Sweet Tooth

I have a sweet tooth, obviously. Let's just say it's the chocolate time of month and I had a craving for a peanut butter cup. So I made some.

I didn't have a recipe. I just melted some chocolate and used a butter knife to spread it around the bottom and sides of the mini-muffin cups. I mixed some peanut butter with enough powdered sugar that I could form a little patty. I put the patty in the cup and poured more chocolate on top.

That was it. I let them sit in my mini-muffin pan, so they would keep their shape, and popped them into the fridge to cool. They hit the chocolate spot very well and I only made 6 so we won't be going overboard.

I wonder how you do mint?

Couscous Breakfast Squares

I came across this recipe on the Whole Foods website.

They were very quick to throw together this morning and have been cooling in the fridge. I just tried one and they are very good. They taste like a mildly sweet, cold oatmeal. The are moist but stick together. They have an excellent flavor and I'm not normally a raisin fan. I'll have to experiment with cranberries. The almonds add a nice flavor and crunch.

I don't think I would like applesauce on top, like the recipe says, but I can see how almond butter or peanut butter would be good. This will make an awesome quick breakfast.

Scrambled Tofu

I had half an onion and a half pound of tofu left over in my fridge. So, for lunch today I made the Scrambled Tofu recipe from VWAV. (Vegan with a Vengeance by Isa Chandra Moskowitz)

I divided the recipe in half and I left out the mushrooms because I hate them. This is the first time that I've made my own scrambled tofu. This recipe had a bit to much of a salty flavor for me. Next time I'll add some tomato and/or bell pepper to give some more tang. Or I'll cut back on the nutritional yeast. Perhaps both.

All and all it is a workable recipe. I'll be trying it out again.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Strawberry-Chocolate Cobbler

I'm not sure where I got this recipe to start with but I veganized it. It's pretty sweet and vanilla ice cream, or maybe yogurt, is good to cut the sweetness.

Strawberry-Chocolate Cobbler

1/2 cup Earth Balance
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup sugar
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup white flour (or use all pasty flour)
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 cup soy milk (or other alternative)
1 pint strawberries, hulled & sliced

Preheat your oven to 350'.

Put the Earth Balance, cocoa and 1/4 cup of the sugar in a 9x9" glass baking dish. Put the baking dish in the oven for 3-5 minutes to melt the Earth Balance. Remove the pan and stir until blended.

In a medium bowl mix the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and the remaining 3/4 cup of sugar. Add the soy milk and stir until smooth.

Spoon the batter onto the melted chocolate mix. DON'T stir. Sprinkle the strawberries on top and press the down just a bit.

Bake for 45-55 minutes, or until a toothpick in the center comes out clean. Let stand for 15 minutes before serving.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Earth Shoes

Aren't they beautiful! (Obviously not a food post. We had Indian Lentils with Rice again.)
We went to All Vegan today. It's a vegan shop over by Hillcrest on Park Blvd. (Great shop but I wish that they had more books.) I have really needed some new sandals and my mom bought me these.

They are so comfortable. I have a feeling that these type of shoes are the kind that once you have a pair you only want to wear this kind of shoe. They have this special negative heel thing that is supposed to be really good for your back.

Anyway, yea for me.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Tofutti Cuties

Up until recently I have only seen Chocolate and Vanilla Tofutti Cuties. I've never bought the chocolate because we like vanilla so much. A few months ago I saw Wild Berry Cuties at Trader Joe's. I had no idea that they made other flavors.

Since then we have tried Mint Chocolate Chip, I LOVED these. We are currently working our way through a box of Peanut Butter. A discussion I read about Key Lime Cuties that had a vanilla wafer, instead of chocolate, prompted me to go to the Tofutti website.

There is an incredible amount of variety.
Cookies N Cream
Totally Vanilla
Strawberry Wave
Chocolate Wave
Peanut Butter
Mint Chocolate Chip
Coffee Break
Wild Berry
Blueberry Wave
Key Lime

While not all of these sound good to me, I now consider it my mission to track all of these down and try each one. I want to start with Coffee Break, no Key Lime, well maybe Cookie N Cream..... I guess I should just wait and see what I can find.

Friday, June 8, 2007

Pad Thai

Well, I know that traditional Pad Thai doesn't have broccoli in it but we really like broccoli. I used a box of Thai Kitchen's Original Pad Thai. We've had it sitting in the cupboard for when the next lazy night came up.

It's a quick thing to fix up. We threw in broccoli and tofu. I didn't cook my noodles long enough but it was still good. I want to see if Thai Kitchen sells the sauce by it's self. It has a great flavor. I can do the rest myself.

So, it was a great lazy meal.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Super Easy Bread

The recipe Outrageously Easy BIG Bread from vegweb was so talked about over at the Vegan Freak forums that I just had to try it.

This recipe was so easy it made me regret buying my bread machine. You stir everything together briefly, no kneading. It it sits for 45 minutes. You divide it in half and shape it. Then let it sit for 45 minutes again. Preheat your oven and you bake it for 20 something minutes. How fast is that!

I used 4 cups of whole wheat pastry flour and 2 cups of unbleached white flour. I made one loaf in a bread pan and 6 rolls on a cookie sheet. About every 7 minutes I used a spray bottle to spritz water in the oven to give it a nice golden crust.

This is such an easy recipe to fool around with. Nuts and seeds. Cinnamon and raisins. Cinnamon rolls. Bread Sticks...... yum

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Trail Mix Cookies

I've been trying to get a good trail mix cookie recipe together. My family really likes the Trader Joe's Vegan Trail Mix cookie. I think they are great but believe that all cookies should have chocolate. So, I've twisted around Dreena Burton's chocolate chip cookie recipe.

Here is what I've come up with.

1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup white flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp. sea salt
1/4 cup chocolate chips
1/3 cup peanuts
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
1/3 cup raisins

1/3 cup maple syrup
1/4 tsp. blackstrap molasses
2 tsp. vanilla
1/4 cup canola oil

Preheat your oven to 350'.

Mix together the set of dry ingredients in a medium bowl. You may wish to lightly chop your peanuts and chocolate.

Measure out your maple syrup and add the vanilla and blackstrap molasses. Mix it together and then add in the canola oil.

Make a well in the center of your dry ingredients and pour in the wet. Stir everything together, but don't over stir. It will be a very thick dough. Form the dough with your hands into cookie shape. It should make around 12 cookies. (If your dough is to dry add 1 tsp canola oil and 1 tsp maple syrup, if to wet add 1 tsp flour at a time)

Put on cookie sheet and bake for 11 minutes. Let the cookies cool on the cookie sheet for 1 minute then remove from cookie sheet to cooling rack so they don't dry out.

Ugly but yummy

I know that this lunch doesn't look like much but it was very tasty. Henry's has raspberries and avocados on sale. So for lunch we had guacamole with blue corn tortilla chips. Carrots, raspberries, sprouted wheat bread with Earth Balance and baked beans. I was very full after. It doesn't sound like much but it was great.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Gone Camping

Well, we've been camping since Friday. We got back yesterday and haven't really had anything interesting to eat. Oh, that's a lie. I made the chocolate cupcakes out of Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World with the chocolate butter cream frosting. This really is the most amazing chocolate cake recipe. I've also made lemon cupcakes out of that book. They were also wonderful.

Anyway, back to camping. We went to the La Jolla Indian Reserve. Everyone had a great time. Day one we had bagel sandwiches for lunch. For dinner we had veggie hot dogs roasted over the fire. To be frank, hee hee get it, they really sucked. Joe and I worked out to take a bite of broccoli at the same time to avoid the bad hot dog taste but not be hungry.

Day two we had soy yogurt for breakfast with granola. For lunch we had canned vegan chili and toast. For dinner we had pasta with sauce. Bless the camp stove.

Day three we had bagels and faux cream cheese for breakfast. For snacks we kept around fruit, veggies, fruit leather, granola bars, cookies, pb&j, apple sauce, and I our favorite Trader Joe's Spicy Thai Peanuts.

Aside from my sleeping bag still sucking and me being cold, everything went smoothly. We're already planning or next trip. The bike pictured is Isaac's big cousin's, Daylon. Joe showed him how to stand on the back. Yes, I know, no helmet. The ride wasn't repeated. The kids loved being right by the water.

There was a lot of poison oak around but we managed to avoid it. There was also a baby rattle snake. We steered very clear of his hole. Joe scratched himself up pretty good tubing down the river. Those were all our mishaps.

All in all, a successful trip. It's good to be back.