Tag Archives: vegan food

Guest Blogger: It’s Got Vegan In It – A Round-Up of Vegan Cooking Shows! (Updated)

20 Feb

Our newest vegan guest blogger is Melissa from It’s Got Vegan In It. Her post below is an fantastic round up of vegan cooking shows. I wholeheartedly agree with her and I’m glad someone had the smarts to make such a list. Vegan shows are growing in popularity and yay for that. Go vegans!

Melissa went vegan in August of 2011. Through her blog, she hopes to inspire others around her to do the same, as well as educate people on the plight of animals. A long time lover of all things chocolate, Melissa believes delicious vegan chocolate and accessible knowledge about how easy vegan living is is the key to changing the people around her.

Check out Melissa on Twitter and Facebook. Welcome Melissa!

I’m hoping I live to see the day when a vegan cooking show becomes the norm. I know there are vegan cooking shows on tv such as Jason Wrobel’s “How to Live to 100″ on The Cooking Channel, Vegan Mash-up, and The Jazzy Vegetarian. However, these shows are usually on special cable networks or on stations that don’t reach the masses. My hope is that one day you can turn on basic tv channels and tune in to your favorite vegan cooking show. In the meantime, we can enjoy the plethora of vegan cooking shows on YouTube!

I’ve tried to gather up some of the most fun and favorite YouTube vegan cooking show in the vegan world. If I missed one you think deserves a nod, be sure to mention it in the comments below!

(Note, for all of you who chimed in with your suggestions – thank you! I added some of the shows you’ve suggested. Whatever gets veganism front and center is better for the cause!)

Jaime K of “Save the Kales” was one of the first vegan cooking shows I ever discovered. Her meals are made with simple ingredients and directions, they look delicious, and both Jaime and the show are so charming!

Lindsay Nixon of The Happy Herbivore has had a successful plant-based and healthy living blog for some time now and has several plant-based cookbooks out on the market. She recently launched a series of cooking shows for us to enjoy!

If you don’t know The Vegan Zombie, now’s the time to catch up before the zombie apocalypse.

Christy Morgan of The Blissful Chef not only shares her cooking tips and recipes, but her YouTube channel is chock-full of healthy living advice and lots of “ask a vegan chef” FAQ videos.

JL Fields of “JL Goes Vegan” was a huge influence during my early vegan years. I had communicated with her via email, then met her in person at The Seed in NYC, and have followed her vegan food/vegan lifestyle blog for some time now. I am delighted to share that she, too, has several cooking demos on her YouTube page. JL is also queen of the pressure cooker, so check out her Pressure Cooking Community on Google Plus!

Oh, Brian L. Patton…he’ll make you giggle and salivate with his comic flair and easy recipes.

For those of you that are looking to find raw vegan recipes, look no further than FullyRawKristina! She’s so bubbly and sweet; it must be all the fruit she eats ;-)

If you’re like me and you have a sweet tooth, don’t miss Tasha Edwards of The Sweetest Vegan!

Don’t be scared of the Vegan Black Metal Chef! He’s actually pretty cool!

The Vegan Cooking With Love videos are so professionally-done, they’re only eclipsed by how yummy the recipes are!

Thanks to you guys, the readers, I was sure to add this one to the list. See, I’m learning about vegan cooking shows, too! (Thank you!)

I follow The Edgy Veg on Facebook. I love her style – her edge! How appropriate ;-) But don’t fear the cooking; there’s nothing complicated about the recipes. You’ll absolutely love ‘em.

Who doesn’t love Isa Chandra Moskowitz or her cookbooks?! Back in the day, The Post Punk Kitchen creator used to do a regular video series. Recently, Breville has teamed up with the famous vegan cook to create a series of videos, which we will happily watch instead. Long Live Isa!

There are several vegan cooking shows that have picked up syndication in a few areas. You’ll have to check your local tv provider, of course, but if you’re one of the lucky ones that has access to these channels, don’t miss Laura Theodore of The Jazzy Vegetarian (who also has a wonderfully jazzy podcast!), Christina Pirello’s new show “Christina“, and the vegan star-studded Vegan Mashup on Delicious TV!

Hilarious, a tad naughty, and rockin’ the kitchen glam-style, vegan drag queen Honey LaBronx will entertain you and your taste buds!

I’m not sure how anyone can top a vegan drag queen cooking show, so I’m going to leave it at that. Remember, if I missed any shows, share them below so we can all tune in and continue spreading the word that vegan cooking is easy, accessible, and everywhere! :-)

Virtual Vegan Potluck – REMINDER November 2013

6 Nov

The Virtual Vegan Potluck is Only 10 Days Away! Reminders for Participants

Finger with string tied on it.In just three days I’ll be closing down the sign-up form for the November 16 Virtual Vegan Potluck. If you haven’t signed up yet – and you keep meaning to – time is running out! It only takes a minute to fill out the form and join the ranks of food bloggers from around the world.

For those of you who have already signed up, a few reminders:

  • First of all, THANKS to all of you who have already sent in your permalinks! Receiving this info early has already made a huge difference in the organization of this Potluck.
  • If you haven’t sent me your permalinks: They must be received by midnight U.S. ET on November 9. Bloggers who do not send me their permalinks will not be included in the Potluck. (FYI permalinks will not be active until posts go live on the day of the Potluck – Nov. 15 or 16 depending on where one is in the world).
  • You can find VVP buttons (GoBack! and GoForward!) on the Resources page of this blog. You can add these buttons to your blog post and use them to link to the blog ahead of yours and after yours. (For instructions on how to link images to websites, see the How It Works page).
  • Potluck participants will be receiving the permalinks that are relevant to them (i.e., the blog before and the blog after theirs) several days prior to the Potluck. Bloggers are responsible for updating these links in their blog post with these links. Please do so prior to the event.
  • Please make sure you schedule your Potluck posts correctly so that all of our posts publish at the same time. Get the correct time for your location from the How It Works page. If you don’t know how to schedule your post, you can also find that information on the How It Works page.
  • Finally, please take a good, hard look at the November 2013 page. Find your blog and confirm that all of the info is correct – including that you are listed in the correct course. If there is an error, please email your mentor or me immediately.

If you have questions or need help setting up your posts, please email your mentor. You received their name/email addresses in the email I sent out when you signed up for the Potluck.

Appetizers: Rachael
Beverages: Keely
Breads: Kamila
Soups: Annie
Salads: Keely
Sides: Lielz
Mains: Barb
Dessert: Angela

The final list of participants will be available on the Potlucks/November 2013 page on the website late November 10 or early November 11. Until then, the list is a draft list only!

Guest Blogger: Gormandize with A-dizzle and K-bobo – Nepalese Curry Vegetable Momo with Chilli Sesame Dipping Sauce

1 Nov

Always a pleasure to welcome back a returning contributor to VBU! Please raise a fork to Keely, author of Gormandize with A-dizzle and K-bobo. Her previous recipes have been lovely, please do check them out: Turnovers (Paifala), Vegan Bean and Mushroom Jambalaya, and Chai Banana Loaf,

Connect with her on: FacebookTwitterPinterest and of course her blog Gormandize with A-dizzle & K-bobo. Welcome back Keely!

Nepalese Curry Vegetable Momo with Chilli Sesame Dipping Sauce

Nepalese Food Month has been a bit sporadic this month, but I’ve still got plenty of recipes to share with you – so you might be seeing quite a few go up between now and the end of the month. The good news is that the dreadful weather they were predicting for the fires has been milder than they expected. The temperatures have been moderate and today there is no wind at all. It’s a relief, even though the fires are still burning and the fire fighters are working hard!

It leaves me a little more time for posting, though, so I’m bringing you a special recipe today. People who have spent time in South China or Tibet may have heard of Momo – steamed buns/dumplings filled with vegetables or meat. This recipe is a great example of Nepalese food – it’s that mixture of Chinese and Indian influences. These very Chinese style steamed dumplings are filled with a very non Chinese filling of curried vegetables and then dipped in a delicious Sichuan style chilli sesame sauce. It’s fantastic fusion, and honestly I’ve never eaten anything like it before. It’s like a dumpling meets a samosa and they fall in love and have babies – momo babies.

Enough chatter – lets get the recipe going!

Nepali Vegetable Momo 



Ingredients



Dough

4 cups plain white flour

1 tsp salt

1 tbsp vegetable oil

Water, as necessary

Filling

2 tbsp vegetable oil

1 onion, chopped finely

3 cloves garlic, minced

1 tbsp freshly grated ginger

1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds

1/2 tsp mustard seeds

1 tbsp garam masala

1/4 tsp turmeric

3 cups vegetables, diced into small squares (I used carrot, celery, peas, potatoes and cabbage)

1 cup water (or more, as necessary)

1 tbsp flour

1/3 cup chopped fresh coriander

To Make

1. Start with the filling – heat the oil in a large frypan and add the onion, garlic and ginger. Once the onions are softened and translucent add the fenugreek seeds and mustard seeds and fry for a further 15 seconds or so until they are golden brown.

2. Add the garam masala and turmeric and fry for another 30 seconds, until the spices are fragrant. Then add the vegetables and water and bring to a simmer. Simmer gently until the vegetables are cooked through. If all the water cooks off before the vegetables are cooked, just add more.

3. Once the vegetables are cooked, add another 1/4 cup water and bring back to a simmer. Add the tbsp flour and the fresh coriander and stir until the mixture is thick and no liquid remains. Set the filling aside to cool.

4. While the filling is cooling make the dumpling dough and the dipping sauce.

5. To make the dough – combine the flour and salt in a large bowl. Add the oil and a bit of water and start to mix with your hands. Add just enough water so that a dough forms, it should be enough water that all the flour sticks together in a ball, but not so much that the ball of dough sticks to your fingers when you knead it. If you’ve added too much water and it’s too sticky, just add a bit more flour until you get the right consistency.

6. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface and knead it for 10 minutes (set the timer on your oven, to make sure you don’t under estimate the time). Return to the bowl and cover, let it stand for at least 20 minutes. While it is resting you can make the dipping sauce (recipe below).

7. Once the filling is completely cool, it’s time to make the dumplings. Flour a work bench and pull off walnut sized pieces of dough. Roll into a ball and then roll out with a rolling pin to form a circle about 3-4 inches in diameter. Place a tablespoon of vegetable filling in the centre of the circle.

8. Grab the four “sides” of the circle and bring them together in the middle, pinch together so they hold. You’ll now have four “loops” of dough sticking out each side, fold the each of these loops in on themselves towards the centre to form a pleat. Pinch the top together well so that they don’t split open during steaming. (NOTE – this is how I did it, but use any method you like to make little pleats in the dumplings as you fold them up).

9. Once each dumpling is made, place it straight into a lightly oiled bamboo steamer (I placed mine straight onto the lightly oiled serving plate and then steamed them in my wok). Repeat with the remaining dough and filling (makes 23-25 dumplings).

10. Just before serving, steam the dumplings for 10 minutes and serve hot with the chilli sesame dipping sauce.

Chilli Sesame Momo Dipping Sauce



Ingredients

4 tbsp sesame seeds

6 dried red chillis

2 tomatoes

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 tbsp fresh coriander

1/4 cup water

To Make

1. Heat a dry non stick frypan or wok over a medium heat. Add the sesame seeds and toast for about 1 minute, stirring often, until lightly browned. Remove from pan and set aside.

2. In the same dry pan, place the dried red chillis and the whole tomatoes and heat for about 2-3 minutes, turning ever so often to ensure even roasting. Remove from the pan and set aside with the sesame seeds.

3. Combine the sesame seeds, chillis, tomatoes, crushed garlic, coriander and water in a food processor and blend for a minute into a sauce.

This
month I’m featuring lots of recipes from Nepal!
Check
out my other Nepali/Nepalese recipe posts:

Guest Blogger: Poppy’s Patisserie – Moroccan Harissa and Sesame Quinoa Balls on Griddled Asparagus Salad with a Creamy Harissa Dressing

27 May

Please welcome back Poppy, the lovely University student studying Animal Management based in Kent, UK. Read about Poppy’s first VBU! contribution – Smoked Tofu Carbonara Pasta. Follow Poppy on Twitter – welcome back Poppy!

 

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The first time I ate quinoa was one of the greatest ingredient discoveries of my life. It’s been said that the most delicious foods are often the worst for us or at least to be eaten in moderation. In many cases I have to agree, wouldn’t it be great if eating chocolate all day, peanut butter and jam sandwiches and freely adding vegan butter to mashed potatoes was good for us?

It’s not always the case though of course, I happen to love my vegetables, not just because they’re so good for me but because they are flavourful, colourful, versatile things that always cheer a plate of food up. Can you imagine a plate of plain white rice with no flash of green or orange? Food would be dull and lifeless without vegetables. Some vegetables are even on par on the excitement scale with treats like chocolate – offer me a bowl of nutmeg wilted spinach and golden mushrooms in one hand and a bar of chocolate in the other – it’ll take some deciding.

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Quinoa, for me, is also one of those foods. A superfood and delightful to eat. I love how the miniature pearly beads soak up so much flavour and add a wonderful texture to any meal, plus the ultimate quality of versatility. This amazing seed can be cooked like a grain, made into croquettes and crispy baked balls, made into a breakfast or dessert porridge, added cooked or raw to baking recipes and even ground into a flour. What’s more is its incredible nutrient rich composition offering a source of complete protein, omega-3, calcium and antioxidants (to name a few).

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To celebrate this fabulous food, here’s a recipe to mark the International Year of Quinoa IYQ – 2013.

Ingredients: Serves 2

For the Quinoa Balls:

  • 40g raw quinoa (please make sure your quinoa is from an ethical source)
  • 200ml low sodium vegetable stock (made up according to package instructions)
  • 1 dry egg replacer (e.g Ener-G or Orgran or other cornstarch without the added water)
  • 1/2 tbsp harissa paste
  • 1 small leek, finely chopped
  • 1 small carrot, finely chopped
  • 30g fresh coriander
  • 20g sesame seeds

For the Dressing:

  • 10g vegan mayonnaise (you could use soya yoghurt or ‘sour cream’)
  • 1/2 tsp harissa
  • 1tsp soy sauce

For the Salad:

  • 90g salad leaves
  • 200g asparagus
  • 100g cherry tomatoes

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Method:

  • For the quinoa balls, saute the leek and carrot in a little of the stock or cooking spray over a low-medium heat for about 5 minutes then add the quinoa and the remaining stock. Add the chopped coriander stalks.
  • Cook for about 20 minutes, adding a touch more water if it simmers dry, until the quinoa is soft and all the water is absorbed.
  • Leave to cool slightly and preheat the oven to 200′C/400′F. Stir in the harissa, egg replacer and chopped coriander leaves.
  • Shape a heaped tablespoon of the mixture into balls and coat in the sesame seeds, place on the lined tray and bake for 20 minutes until lightly golden.

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  • Meanwhile mix together the dressing ingredients, taste and adjust to your liking.
  • Heat a griddle pan over a high heat and add the asparagus, cook, turning regularly until tender and charred in places.
  • Add the tomatoes to the griddle pan for a few minutes to blister the skin and warm them through.
  • Divide the salad leaves, tomatoes and asparagus onto serving plates then top with the quinoa balls and drizzle with the dressing.

Calorie Count :: New Recipe

Nutritional Analysis

Low in saturated fat
Very low in cholesterol
High in dietary fiber
High in iron
High in manganese
High in magnesium
High in phosphorus
Very high in vitamin A
Very high in vitamin B6
Very high in vitamin C

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Guest Blogger: Ordinary Vegan – The Root Cause of Chronic Disease & What Your Doctor Isn’t Telling You & Ordinary Vegan’s Asian Rice Noodle Salad with Tofu

21 May

What a wonderful long weekend in Canada!  What’s better than coming from a holiday to a lovely post about tofu? Please meet Nancy, author of Ordinary Vegan. “I’m Nancy M – A free-spirited music loving girl who just wants everyone to get along. The movie, “Forks Over Knives” inspired me to live a vegan life. My hope is to inspire others by sharing my experiences, tips and recipes to make it as easy as possible for you to choose a a plant-based diet. Be forewarned – becoming vegan will change your life forever! Welcome to Ordinary Vegan.” Follow Ordinary Vegan‘s journey on Facebook, and Twitter. Welcome Nancy!

 

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Today is World Kidney Day and awareness events are being held around the globe. They call it the “silent disease” because you don’t usually feel anything until it’s too late. World Kidney Day encourages people to be screened to detect any problems early on. More than 10% of people, or more than 20 million, aged 20 years or older in the USA have chronic kidney failure.

In the United States, the leading cause of kidney failure is Type 2 diabetes. As many of you know, Type 2 diabetes has reached epidemic proportions in the USA and the statistics continue to grow with no change in site. The primary culprits are obesity and elevated levels of cholesterol, both of which are preventable through diet.

Now lets talk about cancer. In 1971, President Nixon and Congress declared a war on cancer. So what’s happened in 42 years? Cancer rates are escalating. Most research is directed towards expensive drugs that target late stages of the disease and enrich drug companies, but do not prevent cancer. One of the leading causes of cancer is a regular consumption of refined sugar and oils, such as soft drinks, chips, store bought cookies and pastries, deep fried foods (french fries, donuts), prepared meats including hot dogs sausages, bacon and ham, fast foods, food additives dairy and red meat. Yes, that’s a mouthful…..a mouthful that shouldn’t be going into your mouth!

Research has increasingly pointed to a link between the nutritional status of Americans and the chronic diseases that plague them, but the medical community still isn’t taking the time to educate their patients on the connection between food and their disease. As a matter of fact, most medical schools still fail to meet the minimum recommended 25 hours of instruction on nutrition. If all this research points to nutrition as the root of all chronic diseases, why isn’t your doctor spending time with you discussing it. In other words, your physician is treating your chronic disease with two hands tied behind his back because he has no training in the link between chronic disease and nutrtion.

Fortunately, because of all the press around the connection between food and disease, Americans are educating themselves and not putting all their trust into doctors. Diet is just as essential as drugs or any other treatment your doctor is prescribing. Follow your doctor’s orders but make sure diet is part of the healing plan.

I thought a lot about my Cousin Tony when I wrote this blog today. He lost both of his parents to chronic diseases, and he worries about dying young just like them. Fortunately, he knows the importance of diet and his health. He wrote a very inspiring song called “Change”. It seems like the perfect song to share with all of you today because we all have to dig deep to make extraordinary changes. You will find a link to the song following today’s recipe.

On to food. Today I made this delightfully light and refreshing rice noodle salad. It only takes about 30 minutes or less to prepare and worth every minute. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did! Happy to have another day… plant strong!

Asian Rice Noodle Salad with Tofu
Recipe Type: Salad
Author: Ordinary Vegan
Serves: 2-4
Light, filling and delicious Ordinary Vegan Asian Rice Noodle Salad with Tofu
Ingredients
  • 5 oz. dried rice noodles
  • 1/2 cup lime juice
  • 3 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
  • 3 1/2 tbs dark brown sugar
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced (1 tbsp)
  • 1 thai chili or jalapeno, seeded and thinly sliced (I used two but I like spicy)
  • 1 1/2 cups thinly sliced purple cabbage or radicchio
  • 1 1/2 cups julienned cucumbers
  • 1 cup chopped fresh basil
  • 6 scallions sliced thin – white part only
  • 1 8 ounce packaged tofu, cut into small cubes
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup additional low-sodium soy to marinate tofu
  • 1/2 cup almond slivers
Instructions
  1. Place tofu cubes in bowl – cover with 1/4 cup soy sauce and let marinate
  2. Whisk together lime juice, brown sugar, soy sauce, garlic and chile in bowl until sugar is dissolved
  3. Toss together cabbage, carrot, cucumbers, tofu, basil and green onion. Toss with some of the lime mixture until evenly coated.
  4. Remove tofu from marinade and toss with cornstarch. Over medium heat saute tofu until browned. Add to cabbage mixture and toss. Add more lime mixture if needed.
  5. Cook noodles according to directions
  6. Divide noodles among serving plates. Place cabbage tofu mixture on top. Serve sprinkled with nuts.
Notes
* I served it with a side of fresh mango and it was the perfect accompaniment

Guest Blogger: Luminous Vegans – Eggless-cellent Salad

10 May

As we loom closer to Virtual Vegan Potluck we’re picking up steam here at VBU! and introducing a new blogger to the family. Please meet Ketty! Here she is in her own words, “Hello! I am Ketty from Luminous Vegans. I live in Atlanta with the other luminous vegan, Neal, and our two rescued greyhounds Nikko and Miles. Luminous Vegans was created out of my desire to show non-vegan friends and family that vegan food is delicious! It has since evolved into a vegan mish-mash of DIY projects, adventures, reviews and of course plenty of food! While I work a full time job, I love to blog in my free time because I feel like it’s one small way I can contribute to the movement, by showing people how easy it is to be vegan. We are just two ordinary folks. It doesn’t take a superhuman to show compassion.” Follow her adventures on Facebook. Please welcome Ketty!

I am a diehard fan of all dishes creamy and salady, two things that can be a vegan challenge. Inspired by this recipe from Nava Atlas, I whipped up this tasty eggless “egg” salad and I’ve been nomming on it for the past day. The ingredients are approximations, so adjust the seasonings as your mouth sees fit.

Eggless salad sprinkled with paprika atop a bed of mixed greens and sunflower sprouts.

In a food processor, I blended one 14 oz can of rinsed and drained chickpeas, 1 scant tbs of vegenaise, 1 tbs of nooch (nutritional yeast), 1 1/2 tbs of lemon juice, 2 tbs of sweet relish, 1 tsp of dijon mustard, a dash of turmeric, about 1/2-1 tsp of black salt (Kala Namak) and black pepper to taste.

I transferred the mixture to a mixing bowl and added 1 chopped stalk of green onions and

one package of extra firm silken tofu drained and diced. I slowly folded the onions and tofu into the “eggy” mixture because I didn’t want the tofu to break up too much.

This is what the final product looked like. The chickpeas are the “yolk” and the silken tofu bits are the “boiled egg whites”.

This is an eggless-cellent version of the omni egg salad. The texture and taste is spot on. The “eggy” taste comes from the black salt which is not actually black in color (it is pinkish) and adds a sulfury taste to dishes. I used about 1/2-1 tsp of black salt in this, adding small bits at a time and tasting it as I went b/c this stuff is strong. Thanks to abracapocus, I was able to find black salt for a whopping 99 cents at Taj Mahal Imports.

Eggless salad sandwich mixed with sunflower sprouts with a side of chips and homemade peach pico de gallo.

I loved egg salad pregan and this definitely satisfies that taste for me. I’ve had it atop greens and in a sammich and I still have some left over for another sandwich or salad. N hates creamy-salady stuff, so this one’s all for me!

Are there any dishes/foods that you love that your partner (friend, roommate, sister, brother, etc..) hates (and hence you get to hoard it all to yourself)?

Know of any other ingredients, like black salt, that magically transform a dish?

Guest Blogger: The Food Duo – The Pot(Luck) of the Vegan

11 Apr

New bloggers who blog as a couple! Meet – The Food Duo! Here they are in their own words, “We’re a couple of quirky vegan kids in NYC who play with their food! Just don’t tell our moms! Recipes, reviews, news you can use and fun stuff…all from a vegan point of view! The Food Duo is written by Macaroon (girl) and Artichoke (guy).” Keep in touch with the Food Duo on all their social media links: Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest and Instagram. Welcome Macaroon and Artichoke!

Sunday Potluck! Can we do this every weekend…PLEASE?

Sorry, I’m a few days late with my “Kiss Me, I’m Irish (for 24 hours)” line! Then again, if my mom’s correct, we may have some Irish blood somewhere on her side of the family, but who knows? LOL

St. Patrick’s Day certainly has its religious roots, but I’ve always grown up with it being a celebratory day with friends (old, new and those lasting a single pint). The camaraderie that comes about truly makes the day fun and festive more so than just wearing green (which I did) or watching the parade (this year, the day before). This year was no different, except the parade on Saturday the 16th, rather than Sunday the 17th. Nevertheless, we enjoyed a lovely Sunday evening at a pot luck, meeting new folks, eating good food and sharing a common bond being VEGANISM!Organized through the NYC Vegan EatUp group on Meetup.com, our evening was entitled VEGANPOTLUCKAPALOOZA! So, you know anything ending in “PALOOZA” is certain not to disappoint. The pot luck was held at Harmony Kitchen Cafe in the East Village (NYC), which is a great vegan cafe and art space, which is part of the Yippie Museum, a venue of expression and activism. It was the perfect, cozy setting, and a big thanks to David Hall, the owner, for having us! BTW, Harmony Kitchen has some of the best iced tea I’ve ever had, and Artie is in love with their coffee.

The gathering included some home chefs and professional eaters (some being one in the same…like ME). We shared dishes of hearty comfort goodness. The menu was full of deliciousness: delightful rainbow salad, perfect stuffed mushrooms with daikon, two kinds of yummy mac ‘n cheese (one gluten-free), stuffed shells with a flavorful cashew ricotta and garlic mashed potatoes with green cauliflower. The meal was topped off beautiful raw mint pie for dessert. I think we all did a bang up job!

So, you may be wondering what Artie and I made for the evening. Well, our contributions were the stuffed shells and mashed potatoes. Since we made our dishes without following a set recipe, we’ll need to work them out in written form, and share them soon, but they were pretty simple to make.

A sampling of a shell and skin-on mashed potatoes “aerial” shot
 
There isn’t much more I can say except it was great spending time with our fellow vegans, learning a little something about them and about ourselves. It was a wonderful experience and I hope we get to do this again really soon!
Oh and I’m in total love with the mint pie!
AMAZING! So happy Sarah shared the recipe. Will be making this soon for Momma Mac!

Guest Blogger – Rachel in Veganland: Tahini chickpeas

28 Mar

After her wildly successful first post on VBU!Rachel in Veganland – Not Skinny how could I not have her back? This time Rachel is back to share her take on tahini chickpeas. You can follow Rachel’s posts through email, and find her on Twitter, FacebookInstagram, and Pinterest. Welcome back Rachel!

2013-03-11 13.03.10Living in this house in Carrboro has been a throw back to my first few days at college when I was cooking vegan for the first time in the communal kitchen of my dorm. There were 2 things I always had in my food box in those days: garbanzo beans and tofu. As the garbanzo is my favorite legume, I would eat them quite often, and in a variety of ways.

I would often sauté them up with some fresh onions and garlic, add in a few seasonings to suit my mood, then a sauce to tie it all together. This past week I’ve revisited that dish, as again garbanzos and tofu were readily available. This time, instead of the goddess dressing I would often use to tie all of the ingredients together, I used some tahini.

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The result was caramelized fried-like glory with no breading, mess, or actual frying. What a fantastic and flavorful shortcut! The flavor was similar to fried chicken-like tofu but the garbanzos added a rich nuttiness to the dish that was only amplified by the tahini. Served atop a bed of fresh spinach, and it was heaven on a plate.

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Tahini Fried Chickpeas and Tofu

1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed thoroughly

1/2 block extra firm tofu

1 Tablespoon olive oil

2 Tablespoons soy sauce or tamari

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 cup chopped onions

dash dried basil

1/2 cup tahini

Over medium heat, sauté garlic and onions until the onions begin to brown and get all caramelized. Then pop in your tofu, cut into nice sized chunks and allow it to brown slightly too. Add those chick peas and let it all mesh together for a couple of minutes, then add in your tamari. At the very end, add the tahini and remove from heat, stirring to incorporate thoroughly. Serve immediately over a bed of fresh, raw greens and eat your heart out.

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Now that we’re back in Carrboro, we’ve of course been frequenting our favorite taco truck again, huzzah! This means the world’s most decadent and fantastic sauces. I always get an extra 2 oz. container to keep and smother on EVERYTHING I can. These chick peas were no exception.

Guest Blogger: Fried Dandelions – Pineapple Curry Fried Quinoa

24 Jan

Looking for a quick easy recipe? Sarah from Fried Dandelions has you covered. Have you searched her previous contributions to VBU!? Her first post was a delicious recipe for Spiced Chocolate Pudding. For her second post she shared a recipe for Hot Tamales. Do visit Sarah’s blog, and Facebook page. Welcome back Sarah!

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Here’s a quick dinner that your kids will love, and will be on the table in less time than it takes to pick up take out! This dish is packed with good-for-you foods like pineapple, veggies, and protein rich quinoa in place of rice. You can serve this with Pan Seared Tofu or even do something quick like Gardein Mandarin Orange Nuggets (our choice tonight!)! David (almost 2) ate 2 bowls of this tonight—yum!

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Pineapple Curry Fried Quinoa, inspired by Chef Chloe
2 c dry quinoa
3 ½ c water
1 tsp salt
1 onion, sliced thinly
1 T canola oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
½ tsp curry powder
1 tsp coriander
1 tsp garlic chili sauce (like sriracha)
¾ c raisins
2 c fresh pineapple (about half of a pineapple, or you can use canned)
2 c frozen vegetables (I used a pea/carrot/corn/green bean mix)
¼ c cashews or peanuts to garnish, optional
cilantro to garnish

Rinse quinoa well. Place in pot with 3 ½ c water and bring to a boil. Once boiling, add salt and cover, reducing heat to low. Let cook for about 20 minutes, or until al dente soft. Fluff with fork and set aside.

While the quinoa is cooking slice the pineapple (if using fresh) and onion. When the quinoa is nearly done, heat oil in a wok over high heat. Place onion in wok and stir until starting to brown. Sprinkle with salt and add garlic, coriander, curry powder and garlic chili sauce, stirring quickly.

Add pineapple, raisins, frozen veggies and stir well again. Remove from heat and garnish with nuts and cilantro. Enjoy!

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One more thing before you go—I’m participating in another blog contest—this time for the Top 25 Vegan and Vegetarian Mom Blogs. Please consider voting for me once a day, every day, until February 7th. Voting is simple—there’s no sign up or log in, just find my name and click (I’ll be under the pending approval tab for a day or so)! Every vote counts—this fall I won by a matter of votes! Spread the word to your friends—thanks for your support.

Guest Blogger: Spice Box of Earth – Quesadillas with Mexican Lentil Salad

15 Jan

Always nice to see vegan bloggers from around the world – one such blogger is Jenny, the author of Spice Box of Earth. You can friend Jenny on FB, catch her on Twitter, and Flickr.  Here she is in her own words, “I am Jenny, a vegan baker and blogger from Manchester, UK. I share recipes, reviews, lifestyle & shopping tips and all sorts of vegan goodness. Lots and lots of pie!” Please welcome Jenny!

My vegan friends, it’s a time for resolutions, and I was so torn about whether to eat healthy or not last night, that I ended up creating a half healthy/half naughty dinner. I haven’t had quesadillas in a while and had some luck last time using potatoes in the filling. I suppose it’s healthier than wodges of grated vegan cheese, so it ain’t all bad! This lovely lot should feed about 4 people.

To Make the Salad: Cook the red lentils in water along with the fajita spice. The lentils should be dolloped on top of the salad when cooked. Layer the lettuce, chopped red cabbage and spring onion. Drizzle the lime juice over the top and sprinkle a little salt to taste. Add the drained lentils when serving.

To Make the Quesadillas: Boil the potatoes until soft, then drain completely. In a small food processor, thoroughly blend the soya milk, garlic cloves, nutritional yeast and margarine. Mix this with the potatoes and mash until completely smooth. Mix in the grated cheese.

Place a tortilla in a dry, non stick frying pan. Spoon the potato mixture onto the tortilla, top with the 2nd tortilla and cook for a few minutes over a high heat. Flip the quesadilla over after a few minutes. You want the tortillas to be slightly crispy at the edges!

Serve with salsa and/or guacamole!

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