Tag Archives: paprika

Vegan Smoked Salmon

Sophie’s Kitchen has been making assorted vegan versions of beloved seafood for a while now when I noticed their vegan smoked salmon.

We tried it with Tofutti cream cheese and some home-made teff bread (a new house favorite; the recipe is a work in progress) and the flavor was there. It isn’t smoked salmon but it was smoky, salty, oily and fishy. The texture wasn’t what I expected; the konjac fiber dominated but wasn’t offensive. The ingredients were unobjectionable but highly processed. As far as vegan comfort food goes, it didn’t wow me, but I think it’s worth a try for the rest of you out there.

I don’t think it will convince most carnists, but was a welcome change from regular Tofutti cream cheese on toast. Let me know what you think.

This is Christie, signing off!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Buffalo Cauliflower!

It was a holiday weekend and something decadent and reminiscent of junk food was an order. Most people are BBQ and Buffalo wings. We had Buffalo cauliflower. You’ll need the following:
1 head of cauliflower, chopped into bite sized pieces
1 cup of flour (we used garbanzo bean flour)
4 tbsp onion powder
1 pinch paprika
1 pinch garlic salt
1 cup of almond milk (you can use soy if you’ve got a nut allergy)
1 1/2 cups of your favorite vegan Buffalo sauce
corn oil spray
IMG_2580
For the batter, combine the flour, milk, garlic salt, paprika and onion powder and mix well. Coat all the cauliflower with batter and place it into a lightly oiled glass baking dish. Cover it with a baking sheet so the cauliflower won’t touch the cover.

IMG_2573

Bake at 450F/230C for 20 minutes. Remove the lid, toss the cauliflower, spraying lightly with corn oil and bake for 5 more minutes. Now toss to coat it with Buffalo sauce and bake for 10 more minutes. Watch it closely in case it starts to blacken around the edges.

IMG_2574

This is a much lower calorie alternative to Buffalo wings and it’s great with vegan sour cream (or the creamy cilantro lime sauce we make) and celery. If you get to try it, let me know what you think!

This is Christie, signing off!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Cajun Blackened Tempeh

We found some easy prep red beans and rice and decided to make a Cajun meal (or our version of it) using that, some steamed green beans that we topped with BacUn from Pure Market Express and some spiced tempeh that we coated in our home-made rub and blackened under our broiler.
1 tbsp dried oregano
1 tsp paprika
2 tbsp onion powder
1 tbsp garlic powder
1/2 tbsp cracked black pepper (feel free to grind the whole peppercorns with the mortar and pestle)
1/4 tsp cayenne
1/2 tsp salt

IMG_2423

After mixing these spices in a bowl I rolled each piece of tempeh (I recommend marinating it in some veggie bouillon or your favorite marinade for 1-2 hours, some tempeh can be dry) in the mixture. I placed the tempeh in a dish and covered it lightly with a paper towel. I then microwaved the tempeh for 2 minutes total for 30 seconds at a time, turning it over between sessions.

IMG_2425

Then I put it on tin foil and placed it near our broiler on each side for 2-3 minutes or until it started to toast.

IMG_2427
The result… happy Brent and happy Christie.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Potato Wedges with Aioli

Friends and family should be arriving soon so here’s a local and personal favorite for entertaining. We’ve got a lot of Spanish influence in Miami and something that they’ve created that’s right up my alley is Catalan Allioli or aioli. It’s a mixture of olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, water and sometimes egg yolks. There won’t be anymore talk of eggs today.

I chopped some sweet potato (because it’s that time of year), yam and russet potato into wedges ranging from finger to thumb thickness and length. I tossed them in a mixture of the following:

2 tbsp corn oil (corn oil is important because it has a high flash point and won’t form carcinogenic substances as easily when baking at high temperatures)

1/2 tbsp onion powder

1 tsp garlic powder

1 generous pinch of paprika

1 pinch of nutmeg

garlic salt to taste

I tossed the potatoes until they were coated with the spice and oil mix and them laid them out on a metal baking sheet lined with waxed paper. I baked them at 375F/190C for one hour.

While you’re waiting on your potatoes, it’s time to make some dipping sauce. I made 2 sauces.

One was my chipotle lime sauce and the other is the aioli. Combine the following:

1/2 cup of vegenaise

1/2 tsp Dijon mustard

3-4 cloves of garlic, finely minced

2 tbsp water

1 tbsp olive oil

It is possible to mix this in a food processor or blender but I don’t recommend it: it can be very thick and you’ll forever be scraping sauce off the walls of your blending device. Mix these well using a fork in a shallow dish, prepare for dipping satisfaction!

This is Christie, signing off!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Piccata revisited

Melissa is the author of the best piccata vegan or not. We decided we wanted some so we changed up a couple of the elements and were pleasantly surprised. We started by preparing some tempeh according to Melissa’s recipe and setting it on low to simmer.

We sauteed some spinach with garlic and flake red pepper.

Next we sauteed some polenta.

I served it all up hot with extra lemon caper awesomeness poured over the top and a sprinkle of paprika.

It was delicious and did not last long. I ended up having to make another batch immediately after this one disappeared. What this really translates to is a recipe that’s robust and reproducible. A huge “THANKS!” goes out to co-author Melissa. She’s pretty rad.

This is Brent and Christie, signing off!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Spinach Artichoke Dip 2

I made a spinach artichoke dip a while ago that’s based on soy which is my favorite source of creaminess. In this particular recipe I’m using white beans for the people that I love who cannot eat soy. The nutritional profile is similar: iron, fiber, no cholesterol, low fat, rich in protein, vitamins and minerals and the flavor is just as awesome. We started with the following:

1 tin of white beans, drained OR 1 cup of white beans, soaked and [pressure] cooked

1 tin or jar of artichoke hearts, drained and chopped

1 10 ounce package of frozen spinach

1 small onion, diced

6 cloves of garlic, minced (more if you love garlic as much as I do)

1 tbsp onion powder

1 tbsp garlic powder

2 tbsp nutritional yeast

2 tbsp vegan parmesan (optional)

1 cube of veggie bouillon (we used Rapunzel)

1 tsp of flaked red pepper

1 dash of cayenne

1/2 tsp of paprika

juice from 1/4 of a lemon

2 tbsp vegan mayonnaise

1/4 cup of Daiya (optional)

Okay, so that seems like a lot of ingredients. It was really simple to make. Preheat your oven to 350F/175C… this won’t take long.

I put all of the ingredients into a bowl while my expert moosher went to work mooshing everything into oblivion. If you’re interested in something that’s creamier, I’d recommend putting the white beans into your blender or food processer first and blending until smooth but I like a little texture and Brent’s muscles are a sight to see mooshing  those beans. We had to microwave it a few times to thaw the spinach.

Once it was all mixed I put everything into a loaf shaped baking tin and put it into my oven for 25 minutes. It came out smelling divine and tasting even better. I burned my mouth being so enthused about getting some of our creation into our mouths.

The Daiya and parmesan do make this richer but it wasn’t missing anything when we made it with one or the other or neither. It was still creamy, rich, delightful spinach artichoke dip, perfect for parties or snacking.

This is Brent and Christie, signing off.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Raw Vegan Crackers 2.0

Brent and I manage to juice more often and that’s fine with me. I’m writing this because our cracker recipe has gotten more complicated and more delicious! Our juice varies but usually involves some combination of spinach, kale, parsley, mint, basil, apples, oranges, lemon, ginger root, carrots, celery, mango, beets and cucumber. When we don’t have time to make crackers, we just throw the pulp into a baggie and freeze it.

The ratios don’t matter much, but you’ll find the stronger flavors will come out (celery in particular) in the crackers and will complement the spices well. If you’re not using any sweet fruits or vegetables, you might consider adding a little molasses. Typically we juice everything that we can make into crackers (which is just about everything except for cucumber) and then empty the pulp into our blender. If you’ve made enough juice for one person you’ll add the following (and this doubles nicely)
1/3 cup of flax meal
2-4 teaspoons of soy sauce or suitable substitute
2-3 tbsp tahini
1 tbsp onion powder
2 tsp garlic powder
1 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp flake red pepper
water as needed
We blend this up until the consistency is uniform and somewhere between a batter and a dough. Taste it and adjust the seasonings. It took me a while to get used to the idea of eating this raw or dehydrated so I understand if you’re wary. We use a spatula to spread it into the non-stick trays that go with our dehydrator and let it go overnight.

Sometimes I sprinkle sesame seeds on top but this isn’t necessary. You’ll have to put some pressure on each seed to make sure they don’t fall off once the crackers are dry. It’ll take some time adjusting the thickness of the dough when you spread it out in your dehydrator but you’ll end up with light crispy crackers that are great for you and awesome with hummus, bean dip or spinach artichoke dip. We store them in a giant plastic bag to keep the Miami humidity from softening them.

This is Brent and Christie, signing off!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

I Love Freeze-For-Whenever Olive Black-eyed Pea Burgers!

I’ve been battling mooshy burgers since I started making vegan burgers. I’ve found that if they’re firm enough, they’re often too dry. If they’re moist enough, they moosh out the side of your bun. What is a girl to do?

I decided to experiment with making frozen patties because it seems to work so well for all those store bought brands. I assembled the following:

1 cup of black-eyed peas, soaked OR 1 can of black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed

1/4 cup of sliced olives

1/4 cup of mushrooms, chopped (optional)

1/4 onion, chopped

1/4 cup bread crumbs (I chopped some gluten-free bread in my food processor)

1 tbsp onion salt

1 tsp garlic salt

2 tbsp cumin

1 tbsp coriander

2 tbsp corn oil

red pepper flakes and salt to taste

If you’re using dried beans, take a moment to microwave them in water 3-4 times at 2 minute intervals to soften them slightly. We put all the ingredients into a bowl and I set my expert moosher (that’s Brent) to power moosh. It wasn’t long before it was looking and smelling like burger material so I started scooping the mixture into some plastic freezer safe containers.

I made sure that the patties were compacted and of a relatively uniform thickness, about 1/2-3/4 inch. I put a piece of plastic wrap over it and then used the next one to help compact the burger. I put them in the freezer until I was ready to use them.

These were actually some of the best burgers Brent and I have prepared. They were moist and held together and had a pleasing dense texture. They tasted enough like ground beef to be a little disturbing. I have no desire to eat cows!

I am going to take a moment to discuss why ground beef isn’t so great for your body. The obvious stuff aside (cholesterol, saturated fat, hormones and antibiotics) cooking beef or any meat is a tricky business. Preparing meat for food means balancing microbial contaminants with carcinogenic compounds that are formed when meat is cooked. Big agribusiness has made the case that they cannot ‘efficiently’ process large volumes of animals without some inherent contamination by the animals’ feces. This means that if you buy meat, it’s got poop on it and the law says that’s okay. They cover their butts (pardon my language) by saying, “Cook it thoroughly.” Which translates to, “If you get sick it’s your fault for not cooking it thoroughly.” Try telling that to the hundreds of thousands of people that get some form of food poisoning or another every year from eating meat.

So fine, meat is ‘safe’ if you cook it thoroughly but back to the issue of how cooking fundamentally changes the composition of what you’re eating.  Smoked and cured meats have long been the accused culprits of causing colon cancer partly because of how they’re prepared: prolonged exposure to heat. Cancers of the digestive tract are among of the most common and more deadly kinds of cancer, one in 6 will get it and one third of those will die from it within 5 years of being diagnosed.

So you can follow some tips to reduce the risk of introducing carcinogens into your diet or you can skip straight to legumes and other plants (including black-eyed peas!) which have long been associated with a reduced risk of colon cancer. One of the likely reasons for this activity is phytic acid . This is one of those small molecules that makes biochemists like me swoon but it’s properties speak for themselves. In the context of a Western diet the ability of phytic acid to sequester certain minerals that, in excess, can cause the kind of oxidative stress on the lining of the digestive tract that can eventually lead to cancer. Phytic acid when bound to fluoride from your drinking water, for example, will be excreted in your waste. Still, you can easily reduce the amount of phytic acid by soaking legumes them overnight or sprouting if you’re worried.


I think I’ve rambled enough. Time for burgers! Just pop them out of their frozen container, no thawing necessary and cook on medium high heat until they start to brown. Mine are a little charred… probably why they reminded me so much of ground beef, but they were definitely firm on the outside and moist and delightful on the inside. Yay!

This is Christie and Brent, signing off!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Southwest Pumpkin Chili and Corn Soup‏

A good friend found a huge pumpkin growing in her backyard and when she eventually harvested it she found herself with more pumpkin puree than she knew what to do with. This is where I come in as the lucky recipient of 16 ounces of pumpkin puree. It was really sweet and mellow so I decided to make a Southwest pumpkin chili and corn soup. You’ll need the following:
1 lb. of pumpkin puree
1/4 cup of salsa verde or juice from 1 lime if you’re short on time
1 generous pinch of chili powder
1 pinch of paprika
flaked red pepper and garlic salt to taste
1/2 cup of frozen corn
1/4 cup of cilantro leaves

I melted the frozen puree over medium-high heat in a sauce pan adding the dry spices. When the puree was melted and everything was getting steamy I adjusted the seasonings and added the corn and cilantro leaves. I stirred it in and reduced the heat to low until I was ready to serve.

The tartness of the lime will accentuate the sweet corn and mellow pumpkin. Cilantro will make the whole thing fragrant and beautiful.

I garnished mine with some paprika. Sprinkling some tortilla chips over the top might add to the texture but it’s awesome as is!

This is Christie, signing off.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Cucumber and Dill Salad with Cashew Cheese

This was a simple afternoon snack for me and Brent. We’ve tried a lot of commercially available vegan cheeses and our next challenge was to make our own so we did, using a recipe introduced to me by Luminous Vegans and you can find it on the Mighty Vegan’s blog.

We started the ‘cheese’ the evening before and after a visit to the farmers’ market I knew what we had to do. We had the following veggies:

2 cucumbers, chopped into bite sized pieces

1 pint of cherry tomatoes

2-3 sprigs of dill, chopped

1/2 purple onion, chopped into large squares

1 tsp maple syrup

1 pinch of salt

cracked black pepper to taste

juice from 1 lemon

We tossed the ingredients together in a large bowl and set it aside to allow the flavors to blend.

Meanwhile we finished making the cashew cheese. The Mighty Vegan’s recipe is incredible. It’s goat cheese. It’s cheaper than any variety we’ve bought at the store. It’s free of preservatives and you can flavor t however you like. We rolled ours in flake red pepper and sweet paprika. We made the cheese into balls and served it with our cucumber salad.

This salad was a perfect complement to the cheese: creamy and buttery cashews brought out the herbal and vegetal flavors in the salad. I also love when I can identify all of the ingredients, their flavors and their beautiful colors in my meal. Nature makes the most beautiful fruits, herbs and vegetables! Then I eat them.

This is Brent and Christie, signing off!

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 693 other followers

%d bloggers like this: