Sunday, June 29, 2008

Guacamole




Tacos. Aren't they great? Well, I think so, at least. Every time I make them, my husband and I end up saying, "Why don't we make these more often?" Tonight we had tacos and fruit for dinner. Here's what we put in them tonight:

Morningstar Farms griller burger crumbles (we use refried beans instead sometimes)
halved grape tomatoes
diced cucumber
sweet corn
sliced black olives
enchilada sauce
diced onion
guacamole

Lightly fry a corn tortilla shell (pan spray works great for this) and fill with your favorite toppings. Here's the guacamole recipe:

4 ripe avocados, peeled and mashed
4 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 cup salsa
2 tsp finely minced fresh cilantro
pinch of cumin
The big plate was my husband's. The little plate and dish of rice is what my little girls ate. They don't do so well with tacos-it becomes a mess. It works well to give it all to them separately, though, which is what I did.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Lentil Nut Roast


Lentil Nut Roast:
1 cup walnuts, chopped
1/2 medium onion diced and sauteed in 2 tbsp olive oil until clear
1 clove garlic, crushed and sauteed the last minute with onion
2 cups crisp rice cereal
1/2 cup Grape Nuts cereal
1 tsp savory seasoning
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp dark miso paste, opt.
2 tbsp dry veg beef broth powder
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
4 tbsp ground flaxseeds
1/2 cup water
2 cups cooked lentils
1 1/2 cups cooked lentils

Put all ingredients in mixing bowl except for the 1/2 cup water, miso paste, and 1 1/2 cup lentils. Blend these in the blender until smooth. Mix with all other ingredients. Place into greased loaf pan and bake at 375 for 30 minutes. This yields a crunchy loaf that is excellent in sandwiches with catsup and vegenaise. I intentionally make it a bit dry because I like to mix the vegenaise and catsup with crumbled loaf and make a sandwich spread.

Cinnamon Raisin Cookies


Cinnamon Raisin Cookies:
1/2 cup canola oil
1/2 cup Florida crystals or other vegan sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar,lightly packed
1.5 cups whole wheat pastry flour
0.5 cups white flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
1 egg OR 1 medium mashed banana to be vegan
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Cream oil and sugar, add remaining ingredients. Drop by spoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets and bake 10-12 minutes in 350 degree oven. Cool on cookie sheet for at least ten minutes before moving off pan as they are very soft.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Pan-barbecued tofu


This was from last week when we had again bought some beautiful fresh organic local asparagus. Also, you can see homemade mashed potatoes made with red potatoes, skin on. The gravy on the potatoes is the vegetable gravy from Vegan Lunchbox's pot roast. I added a few raw cashews to thicken it a little more. And, there's the "barbecued" tofu. This recipe is a hit with my kids lately and it takes less than ten minutes start to finish. My two year old goes wild for tofu, absolutely loves it. I think she would eat tofu and pasta every day if given the choice.
One block extra-firm water packed tofu, drained
3 cloves medium fresh garlic, crushed and finely minced
1- 1/4 cup barbecue sauce of choice
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tbsp olive oil
Cut tofu into thin slices and lay in a shallow dish. Whisk all other ingredients together and then pour over tofu, rotating to cover all surfaces well. Place olive oil in a pan and then add tofu, pouring excess sauce over it. Cook on each side until it begins to carmelize in the pan.

The bread adventure continues


I'm still experimenting with Vegan Lunch Box's "Blue Ribbon Bread" recipe. Her recipe is only half whole-wheat and I'm trying to vary the recipe so that it's closer to a completely whole grain bread. These loaves contain cooked quinoa, brown rice, and oats and I've replaced one cup of white flour with whole wheat. It turned out beautifully although I am still sadly lacking in the formation of an attractive loaf. This is only my third time making bread, so I imagine that will come with time. Next time, I am aiming for entirely whole wheat with the addition of a little wheat gluten. I hope that will yield a fairly light whole grain loaf.

Hummus!

I went to make hummus today and found that all I had left in my jar of tahini was about 1 tbsp. Luckily, I had about 1/4 cup of sesame seeds in the freezer. My little girls absolutely loved this hummus. They had it for lunch today with toasted triangles of whole wheat bread, couscous, and a vegetable. My four year old said, "Mommy, this hummus is really good."

1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
2 medium cloves raw garlic, roughly chopped
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup natural-strength lemon juice
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1 tbsp tahini
3 tbsp olive oil

Process in blender until smooth.

I don't use any water and we love garlic. If you find that your blender has difficulty processing this, add a little more lemon juice and use the "pulse" button. This ends up being rather tart and heavy on the garlic. We like it that way!

Chunky monkey bars


I made homemade "ice cream" bars today for the girls with my handy popsicle kit. I had run out of popsicle sticks, so just used some plastic utensils instead, which worked fine. The girls thought they were great. Anything called ice cream around here goes down pretty easy.
3 ripe bananas
2 cups soy or rice milk
2 tbsp of honey, or sweetener of choice
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 tsp vanilla
pinch of salt
Blend in blender and then stir in chocolate sprinkles and/or chocolate chips. Pour into popsicle molds.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Homemade bread


I purchased the book Vegan Lunchbox about a year ago and have made many, many recipes out of it. This bread is from the recipe for "Blue Ribbon Bread" in the book. It turned out a little dark this time as I accidentally set my oven a little too hot. However, still very good. The kids absolutely love this bread. I also made the vegan pot roast from the book this week and it turned out beautifully. I am kicking myself for not taking a picture of the pot roast simmering in the pan surrounded by carrots, mushrooms, celery, onion, and thyme. It was beautiful. My parents came over for dinner and my dad raved about it!

Super-simple pasta salad




Four cups pasta, cooked

1/2 cup vegenaise

1 tsp original Mrs. Dash seasoning

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp garlic powder

1/2 red pepper, diced

1/2 cup black olives, sliced

2 tbsp finely minced onion


We enjoyed this pasta salad for lunch today along with veg chicken patties and a fresh green salad with beautiful organic lettuce from our garden. Soon, we will also have carrots, tomatoes, cucumbers and all the other makings for the salad.