Monday, January 19, 2009

Miso and Roast Garlic Mashed Potatoes

An amazingly delectable dish with added health benefits of miso, making the classic Mashed Potato a healthier indulgence.

This recipe is extremely simple, you may use whichever miso you have on hand, I used dark.

3 large potatoes (diced into small cubes, leaving the skins on! They are good for you and we're trying to be healthy here)
1/2 red onion minced
1 T olive oil
3 large cloves of roasted garlic
1/2 T miso
1 T soy milk
1/4 Cup EB

Chop you potatoes and boil in salted water until tender. Chop your red onion, preheat a cast iron skillet with Olive Oil and fry onions until crispy. While you wait on the potatoes combine the other ingredients and mash well (to insure there are no garlic chunks). Whip the miso mixture until smooth and combine with the cooked potatoes. Mash together. Top with your onions and enjoy.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Pizza porn

The quick, easy and always a great fall back mid week meal. The pizza. Here in Canada, we are blessed with something called Danny's pizza crusts (now come in WW too!) so our freezer is stocked with pre-made crusts topped with sauce. Now this isn't anything fancy, but it is convenient and cheap. So here we go.

Trying to hold onto my teenage years, my favorite pizza combo is still toffuties vegan slices with yves pepperoni and some herbs. But being as how I haven't bought vegan cheese in a while (and superstore seems to have stopped carrying it {FUCKERS!}) here is a healthier alternative.

Appearing: Green and red bell peppers, carmalised onions (I did this with sugar, because the internet told me too, although good next time I will just cook them), mushrooms, canned pineapple, vegan pepperoni and tomato slices.

Please excuse the lighting, but in these parts dinner is served at 8.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Decadent Double Chocolate Peanutbutter cookies

If there were only one cookie in my life (were a the monogamous cookie kind) this would be it. These rich, chewy, chocolate, creamy delights are more than any cookie lover could hope for.

These are a simple altered version of Isa's Double Chocolate Cookies found here.
The original recipe is great, so be sure to check her out along with her amazing books.

My batter wasn't terribly hard like the recipe describes and I was able to stir it fine with a wooden spoon (to avoid losing punk points!). This batter however is oily, so be prepared to get your hands messy and moisturized! I used a coffee grinder to grind the flax seeds and simply whisked in the soymilk.

So, here is the twist to making these cookies fantastic. Peanut butter. I only added a 1/4 cup, but I will soon be trying these with larger amounts. This gives the cookies a subtle and not overwhelming peanut butter flavour. The other change I made was to use a generously filled table spoon measure to form even balls of dough.
I also ignored the part about pressing down the balls of dough which resulted in smaller, thicker cookies which I liked more. Try it both ways and see which you like more, here is an example of the original method of pressing and next to it the non-press method.

These are omni approved, although be warned the bestowing of these cookies may result in socially awkward exclamations such as"this cookie is so good it's giving me an erection".

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Usefull list of common substitutions

Baking powder 1 t = 1/4 t baking soda+ 1/2 t cream of tartar
Bread crumbs 1 cup = 3/4 c crumbled crackers
Buttermilk 1 cup = 1 cup soy milk with 1 T lemon (let stand 5 minutes)
Cake flour 1 cup = 1 cup sifted all purpose flour minus 2 T
Chocolate 1 square ( 1 ounce) = 3 T cocoa powder and 1T EB
Corn starch (thickening) 1 T = 2 T AP flour
Corn Syrup (not for baking) 1 cup = 1 1/4 sugar plus 1/3 water
Fresh herbs 1 T = 1 t dried or 2/3 t ground
honey 1 cup = 1 1/4 cup sugar and 1/4 water
Ketchup or chili sauce 1/2 cup = 1/2 cup tomato sauce plus 2 T sugar, 1 T vinegar and 1/8 t ground clove
Lemon juice 1 teaspoon = 1/2 teaspoon vinegar
Hot sauce 3 to 4 drops = 1/8 t cayenne pepper
Mustard (wet) 1 T = 1 t dried mustard
Oregano dried 1 t = 1 t dried marjoram
Tomato paste 1 T = 1 T ketchup
Vinegar 1 t = 2 t lemon juice

Quick and Easy Pasta Salad

I have never been a fan of those mayo and macaroni salads. I just haven't. But for some reason while thumbing through Reader's Digest Fast and Thrifty from the 70's I came across a recipe and decided, what the heck.

I cut way back on the required mayo substitute and added lemon juice and some spices, I think the result was quite nice.

Here is the recipe I used, with as many adjustments as I can recall.
This recipe serves two (or one hungry me)
1 cup macaroni (WW)
2 stalks celery diced
1 half small red onion diced
1/4 green and 1/4 red pepper diced
1 tomato diced
1/4 broccoli florets diced
4 teaspoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons spicy mustard
1/4 cup vegan mayo (more if you like that kinda thing, I like liquidy dressing the original recipes ask for 3/4 cups)
salt and pepper to taste
paprika and garlic powder to taste
Optional: Fresh tarragon

Cook noodles as directed, chop vegetables. In the bottom of a large bowl mix remaining ingredients and add vegetables, tossing to coat. Once pasta is done rinse under cold water until cool then add to bowl and toss to coat. Allow to sit for an hour or as long as you can stand.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Let's get Fancy now

Here is a cheap and easy way to impress your dates, friends and family and to make your everyday vegan food look uber fancy. We've all seen the fancy restaurant portions of little food artistically mounted onto a plate for the "ouuus" and "ahhhs" only to leave you still fucking hungry! So my solution, stack your own food.
Stacking food, especially into little towers of alternating flavours looks impressive and isn't very hard. Best of all, you get enough to eat and hey, this might even get you laid. Now, normally I don't give two rats asses about presentation, I want tasty food and I wanted it now damn it. But if you have people to impress or want to try something new here are a few easy tips.
1)Use edibles to create beds, baskets, mounds or cups to present your food on. Because no one wants to pick out paper or plastic from their food when they sit down to eat. Dress up plain plates with drizzles of sauce, a bed of lettuce or get really fancy and cut carrots and other vegetables into cute little shapes to arrange.

2)For some reason humans are fascinated and excited about food in shapes. Molds are an easy way to do this, now this doesn't mean you should go out and buy all kinds of fancy equipment but the next time you make say a grain/noodle/mashed potatoes try experimenting with what you have available. Spray some oil into a mug, tupper ware contain, old EB container etc and try different shapes it may take some practice but once you master it you can create layers by alternating sauce, vegetables (squash etc works nicely). Rissorto work really well for this.

3) finally the easiest of all is food towers. Which is basically stacking your food on the plate, alternating sauces/toppings with your main dish. This works in a variety of ways, you could do tofu rounds, eggplant rounds, polenta rounds and basically make all your food round or you could use different shapes and for an alternating pattern. Sometimes I find using a variety of shapes gives a dish more appeal for example my breakfast:

Tofu triangles stacked onto a bed of sauteed mushrooms with onion and then repeated until finished surrounded by rounded potatoes. This is a very simple dish, but it gets fancier just because of the way it is plated.