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Super Update!

11/04/2010

So much going on!

Before anything starts about food, I must say congrats to my sister Ashley and her husband Nate who just had a baby boy today!  😀

As far as cooking and baking goes, I’ve been doing a lot of that lately (as always) and I just wanted to update you on a few recipes:

First, I made the chocolate chip cookies from Vegan Cookies Take Over Your Cookie Jar the other day – and they are amazing.  One of the best cookie recipes I’ve ever tried.

Secondly, I just made the carrot cake cupcake recipe from Happy Herbivore (for my sister, to celebrate the baby!).  They are super healthy – no oil even – and made with whole wheat flour and sugar free applesauce.  The recipe is here.

I also made some delicious (and extraordinarily filling) vegan beef stew on Halloween.  It is really easy and uses very simple ingredients.  I actually adapted it from another recipe I had.

Vegan Beef Stew (Feeds 6 very hungry people or anywhere up to 12 people)

Ingredients:

1 package Gardein beefless tips, defrosted
1.5 pounds red potatoes, skin on, cut into 1.5 inch cubes
300g baby carrots (or large carrots, whatever you have).  Cut into once inch pieces.  (Also the measurement need not be exact here).
1 large red onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1.5 cups frozen peas
1.5 cups frozen corn
4 cups vegetable broth
3 tsp or more canola or olive oil, plus some cooking spray
2 vegetable boullion cubes in 2 cups of boiling water
1 cup unbleached or whole wheat flour, mixed with 1 tbsp onion powder and 1 tbsp garlic powder, plus a sprinkle of poultry seasoning if you have it
1/2 tbsp ground thyme
Sprinkle of Italian Seasoning
Sea salt/pepper
Red wine vinegar
2 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
1 cup water

Heat oil and or cooking spray in the bottom on a large pot.  (This is a one pot meal).  Dredge Gardein pieces in flour mixture and put them in the oil to fry up.  Save the remaining flour for later.  They should end up heated through and slightly browned.  If any begin to stick to the pan, deglaze with a little red wine vinegar or add more oil/spray.  Make sure to move them around.  Add garlic and allow to cook for a few minutes more.  Add vegetable broth, boullion/water mix, potatoes, onions, carrots, and a sprinkle of pepper and Italian seasoning.  Let cook for 35 minutes (potatoes and carrots should be mostly cooked through).  Now, add the frozen peas and corn, thyme, some sea salt and pepper.  Now, add the soy sauce and 1 cup water to the flour mixture.  Add this to the stew in the pot slowly – it is used to thicken the stew.  Stir the mixture in well.  If it gets too thick add a little more water or broth.  Allow to cook for 15 more minutes and serve.  Can also be stored on low in a crock pot for parties/etc.  This goes well with crusty bread and apple cider!  (And leftover Halloween candy).

Speaking of babies… we had my sister’s baby shower in October and here are a few pictures of some of the vegan goodies that I made for it:

 

For the party, I made chocolate cupcakes with buttercream frosting (that I dyed a very light green and put little candy pacifiers on top of – recipes for the cupcakes and the frosting are from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World), pumpkin muffins of various sizes (as seen on my blog), vegan tea sandwiches (recipe to follow), and (the follow are not pictured) garlic white bean dip (recipe to follow), vegan spring rolls (heat and serve from the freezer section), vegetarian ravioli, fruit salad, a veggie tray, a coconut cake (brought by one of my cousins), and mini quiches (heat and serve).

Vegan Tea Sandwiches (Serves Many)

Ingredients:

One loaf of those little rye bread slices that you can get at store bakeries (check ingredients)
One package of vegan cream cheese (8 oz)
Fresh Dill
Super crisp and delicious cucumbers

Directions:

Chop dill up into tiny specks and mix it into vegan cream cheese (use as much dill as you’d like).  Add salt and pepper if you’d like also.  Use two slices of bread for each sandwich.  Spread about 1/2 tbsp of CC on half of the bread slices (CC only on one of the pieces of bread involved in the sandwich).  Slice cucumbers to about 1/4 inch thickness, keep skin on.  Put one slice on each sandwich.  Stack on a tray and you are ready!

Garlic White Bean Dip (Serves Many)

Ingredients:

One can cannelini beans
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
the juice of half a fresh lemon
6 cloves roasted garlic (will explain later)
salt/pepper

To roast garlic:  Peel garlic and cut just the tops and bottoms off the cloves.  Cover a baking pan with olive oil and toss the cloves in it, as well as some salt and pepper.  Roast in the oven on 350 degrees until they brown and are aromatic).

Directions:

Puree the can of beans with olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt and pepper.  Serve with pita chips, vegetables, bread, etc.

 

 

And on a non-food-related note, Z and I are planning a trip to Farm Sanctuary in NY after I graduate in May.  It is an awesome place and I’ve always wanted to visit, so we are finally going!

Thanks for reading, all!  Soon there will be a Thanksgiving post to look forward to!

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