Friday, February 8, 2013

Cookbook Giveaway!

Hey guys!

Try to win:

Saturday, November 3, 2012

So glad it's after 5:00pm

...because girlfriend is already two glasses into a bottle of wine. Why? Because I made another batch of cheese from Miyoko Schinner's book, "Artisan Vegan Cheese," and I want to smear some on a fancy cracker (got some!), and have it with a glass of red. Judge away.

Vegan Lemon Herb Chevre

What with the election craziness, the stress of Vegan MoFo, and a shit work schedule, all I want lately is a glass of wine (or a bottle). Maybe in a week, everything will be better. Maybe even this cheese...if I can stop eating it for five minutes. It's the Lemon Peppercorn Chevre recipe, but I added in about a tablespoon of dried rosemary, and a teaspoon of thyme. Oh, and garlic powder. It's pretty damned delicious.

So delicious, in fact, that I just ordered these:


Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Alla Helgons Dag

Swedish meatballs are something my mother never made from scratch, but we ate a lot of it, thanks to Stouffer's. I sure did love that crap, and didn't realize how much I missed that flavor until I started thinking about recipes for this week.

Swedish Meatballs have a LOT of ingredients going on, but with some shortcuts and Trader Joe's, I was able to pare it down. Lingonberry preserves are missing from this; you are welcome to add them if you'd like, but the only jar I could find was at The Wedge, and that shit cost more than I had in my account. Also, since the meatless meatballs from TJ's are already chock full of bread crumbs, we can skip the whole soaking bread in milk and adding it to the meat part. Blech. So glad I'm vegan. I don't miss that kind of prep work AT ALL.

Vegan Swedish Meatballs
This wasn't my favorite shot, but I'm using it because if you squint, you can see some cuddlin' felines in the upper left.

Swedish Meatlessballs
makes 5 servings

1 large onion, finely chopped
8 oz sliced crimini mushrooms
2 1/2-3 cups hot vegan beef broth (I used 2 Edward & Sons Not-Beef cubes dissolved in boiling water), mixed with a tsp of gravy browner (I picked up some Kitchen Bouquet gravy browner at the supermarket, and it has helped my beef-y recipes out a TON. Totally optional, though)
1 1/2 tbsp cornstarch
1 16-oz package meatless meatballs (if you don't have a Trader Joe's, I've seen other brands at the co-op, as well as Whole Foods)
splash wine
2 tbsp pickle juice
6 oz (about half a tub) vegan sour cream
2-3 tbsp fresh minced parsley
mashed potatoes or noodles to serve, if desired

Spray a large, deep skillet with cooking spray or heat a tbsp olive oil. Add onions and mushrooms, and cook until soft. Add a splash of wine to deglaze. Whisk cornstarch into 2 cups broth until dissolved, and add to the pan. Stir, bring to a boil, and then reduce heat and cook until gravy thickens. Throw in the meatballs.  Stir, turning the meatballs over until they are heated through. Add more broth if needed. Push the meatballs over to one side of the pan, and stir the sour cream and pickle juice into the gravy. Mix well, and then incorporate the meatballs and remainder of the gravy. Throw in parsley, combine, and serve over mashed potatoes, noodles, or by themselves. 

Don't forget Swedish Fish for dessert!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

First, get a bag of hashbrowns.

I was at Trader Joe's yesterday, looking around at everything, and trying to find ideas. Even with bags of fire roasted peppers and onions, I was still over five ingredients when I came up with stuff. Then I found the answer to all my prayers:


There's a reason this stuff shows up in more than one dish at church potlucks. You can do so much with it! Maybe it's the Minnesota in me, but I suddenly had ideas for all kinds of hot dishes.

Southwestern hashbrown bake

 Southwestern Hashbrown Hotdish
makes 6-8 servings
1 20-oz bag hash brown potatoes
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups salsa
8 oz frozen peppers and onions
1 cup Daiya cheddar shreds, or pepperjack shreds

Preheat oven to 400°

Spray a large cast iron skillet or 9x9 roasting pan with cooking spray. Pour half the bag of hashbrowns in there, and spread them around. Mix the black beans and salsa.  Spread half the bean mixture over the potatoes. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup cheese. Spread the rest of the bean mixture over that, another layer of potatoes, and top with cheese. Bake for 45 minutes, then put under a broiler for ten minutes if the potatoes aren't fully browned.

Italian style:
Instead of black beans and salsa, use seitan or tempeh sausage crumbles and marinara sauce. Use vegan mozzarella cheese.

Breakfast casserole:
Scramble up some tofu with the veggies and layer it in with cheeze and tempeh bacon.

Indian style:
For the veggie layer, use frozen peas and carrots. Throw in some chicken seitan and coconut milk and season with curry powder.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Sheri, Sandy, and Sausage.

Today can suck it.

I just found out less than an hour ago that a friend of mine that has been fighting cancer for the last three years is now bracing for what could possibly be the final battle. She is a beautiful, fiery, redheaded vegan with a loving husband and three beautiful children. It's not fair that she has to go through this. You can read her cancer updates here, and please, show her some support!

Sheri loves turtles, so this little guy is here for hugs. Little, gentle hugs.

I'm also stressed out over what's happening out east with the hurricane. My thoughts are with all of my friends that live in the affected areas. I wish I could beam you here right now! Nothing happens here on the prairie.

Because today sucks, I'm glad that I made this last night, so I don't have to bother cooking tonight. I just want to read, drink wine, and check updates. Also, they turned on the heat in my building tonight, and it feels like friggin' Phoenix in here.

Sausage & Pepper Pasta

Spicy Sausage & Pepper Pasta
serves 4

8 oz whole wheat pasta of choice
2 tsp olive oil
1/2 tube Gimme Lean sausage (or a package of Upton's Naturals Italian sausage seitan, or a cup of whatever vegan sausage you like)
8 oz frozen mixed peppers and onions
splash red wine
2 handfuls fresh baby spinach
1/2 cup shredded Daiya mozzarella (or other vegan mozzarella)
dash chile pepper flakes

Start cooking the pasta.
In a hot skillet, heat the oil. Tear up the sausage into bite sized chunks, and add to the pan. Cook and stir for about three minutes, using  your spoon to break up the pieces. When it starts to brown, add the frozen veggies. Cook until the veggies start to get crispy around the edges, and the sausage has turned golden brown. Add the wine, and scrape up any browned bits. Cook until the wine has evaporated, and turn off the heat. Stir in spinach and cheeze. Season with chile pepper flakes (I used about a tsp). When the spinach is wilty and the cheeze is melty, toss the whole thing with the hot, cooked pasta.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Winding down...

I figured that for the last four days of MoFo, I'd fulfill a request for some quick and easy recipes, since I apparently intimidate with the number of ingredients I use (obviously these people have never seen any of Isa's books). Also, I'm ready for this month to be over so I can go back to Engine 2 and get rid of my MoFo pounds, which I'm sure have accumulated.

I'll try to stick to a rule of five ingredients for these, with the exception of water, oil, broth, and simple condiments. This one, I just whipped up in almost no time at all. Tip: Trader Joe's is AWESOME for quick and easy recipes.

Mock Duck Noodle Bowl

Mock Duck Noodle Bowl
makes 4 servings

8 oz rice noodles
1 tsp oil (I used sesame, but vegetable will do)
10 oz canned mock duck, drained and chopped
8 oz frozen bell pepper mix (half a package of the Melange from Trader Joe's)
1 onion, chopped
3 tbsp bottled peanut sauce (San-J makes a good one, if not, check labels)
hot sauce, to taste
cilantro, chopped green onions, and chopped peanuts for garnish, if desired

Cook the noodles according to the package directions. Drain, rinse in cold water. Set aside.
In a wok or skillet, heat the oil over high heat. Throw in the veggies and mock duck. Stir fry until most of the water has evaporated (those frozen veggies carry a lot of it), yet everything is still somewhat crisp. Remove from heat. Add peanut sauce, and a little hot sauce. Taste for heat. Toss with noodles and serve garnished with cilantro, green onions, and peanuts.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Cheezy Apple Roll-ups

This is a recipe that you'd find in one of those housewife magazines. I have friends that feel they need to confess because they occasionally buy Real Simple. Seriously? I'll see your Real Simple, and raise you a Taste of Home, Southern Living, and Woman's goddamn Day. I love those things. Maybe it's the Minnesotan in me that was fascinated with Grandma's baking off the back of the box, but those rags are great for fun ideas. This is a good one for kids, a football appetizer, or to have on the side with a bowl of one of the soups I made this month.

This reminds me of apple pie with a slice of cheese on it, which is SO GOOD. 

Apple & cheeze roll-ups

Cheezy Apple Roll-ups
makes 8

1 tube Pillsbury Crescent dough (it's vegan!)
1/4 recipe sharp cheddar from Artisan Vegan Cheese, before it's firmed up, or 3/4 cup Daiya cheddar shreds, or whatever vegan cheddar cheese you like
1 apple, cored and finely diced
1 tbsp margarine
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350°.

In a heavy saucepan, heat the margarine. Sprinkle the diced apple with cinnamon, and cook over medium heat until golden. Set aside.
Roll out the Crescent dough, and separate. Spread cheeze on each triangle, and dot with apple bits. Roll up from the wide end, as shown.


This picture blows, but you get the idea.

 Bake on a cookie sheet for 10-12 minutes, or until golden brown. Cool for a few minutes, and serve.