March 27, 2012

The Veganette for Earth Eats: Chinese Style Dumplings

In the coming months I will be doing a few blog posts for Earth Eats, a program hosted by Indiana Public Media. The show applauds local foodies and encourages self taught farmers, community gardeners, and experimental chefs alike. To no surprise, I'll be cheering on the vegan contingent of such folks by sharing recipes and ideas about cruelty-free cooking for vegans, vegetarians, and omnivores. Tune in!

You can find the recipe for these dumplings here- Perfect paired with Isa & Terry's Hot and Sour Soup from Veganomicon, a favourite of mine on cold March days like this one.


March 26, 2012

Gluten Free Strawberry Shortcake with Raw Cashew Cream

In our parkside apartment, Saturdays are holy. We stumble out of our bright, quiet rooms and share a few words and cups of coffee and often, breakfast. We are glad to have a new roommate, GY, to share this ritual with. She is a bright and creative spirit with hair for miles and some of the best dance moves in South Brooklyn. She also happens to eat gluten-free, posing a new and exciting challenge to our diverse, collective palate. This weekend, I tested my amateur hand at gluten free biscuits. It seems I was missing a rather important component, xanthan gum, to hold everything together, but the biscuits were salvageable and I dressed them up with thick cashew cream and fresh strawberries. The biscuits were a bit savory and the cream not overly sweet, but I am not apologizing for making dessert for breakfast. That did happen.

Cashew Cream
2 cups raw cashews
cold water
2 tsp. agave nectar (optional)
1/2 tsp. vanilla (optional)

Place the whole or halved raw cashews in a blender and fill with just enough cold water to cover the tops of the cashews. Let this soak for a few minutes while you slice strawberries. Blend on high for 3-5 minutes, scraping the sides of the bowl occasionally. Add agave nectar and vanilla if you wish and blend again. Chill and serve!

Stay tuned for an improved gluten free biscuit recipe!


March 19, 2012

Heart of My Heart: Organic Fermented Vegan Nut Cheese

Dr. Cow has my heart. For those of you vegans who find yourself haunted by the memory of brie wheels, parmesan slabs, and goat cheese crumbles, I introduce to your new best friend, Dr. Cow's Aged Cashew and Brazil Nut Cheese. This is by far the best vegan cheese I have ever tasted! Served up with jam on a wedge of Four Peaks Hearth Bread.

Try it!

March 15, 2012

Makizushi with Avocado, Cucumber, and Seasoned Tofu

photo by TB
This week has been all legs in Brooklyn! The warm air has encouraged all of the things I love most about spring: tree blooms, stoop-sitting, bike rides, and clear, planet-filled nights. It always feels good to lighten up our plates with cold, fresh meals. It has been some time since I made sushi and forgot how lovely a process it can be! These were simple rolls with just a few ingredients, but I'm looking forward to making another batch this weekend with sweet potato tempura and marinated shitake mushrooms. I always think of EJ when I eat norri rolls because we have matching chopsticks and her family hosts such lovely maki parties. Looking forward to having a sushi and miso party in the park soon!

To the sounds of Nairobi Beat,

March 6, 2012

Lunch Factory: Peanut Coconut Lime Penne with Smoked Tofu and Broccoli

I've been completely slacking in the lunch department. After briefly surveying of my bank account and after experiencing  mild cardiac arrest over the cost of mediocre midtown lunch, the lunch factory is back in effect. There's no better way to rejoin the brown bag bandwagon than with this favourite dish from Millenium Restaurant in San Francisco. You can find the recipe in The Artful Vegan, an amazing and beautiful cookbook filled with totally fancy and seemingly impossible recipes to try your hand at. 

I'm convinced smoked tofu will make any meal a medal-wearer, and in this dish it certainly does. Baked with maple syrup, sesame oil, tamari, and smoked sea salt, these crispy planks are always the first to get picked out of the bowl! The sauce contributes to the dish's complexity with toasted cumin, lime zest, ginger root, and cilantro. Perfect with a pile of herb-filled greens.

From a small corner with a horizon view,