December 24, 2013

Veganize your Christmas Favorites: Earth Eats Podcast

Merry Christmas! How will you be celebrating during this very festive season? I was honored to be featured in the Earth Eats podcast last week where I rambled on and on about the deliciousness of vegan baked goods, dissed on the egg (even if it doesn't sound like it), and threw out a few tips on veganizing family classics. Try this Cinnamon Bun Recipe if you're looking to impress the in-laws and kiddos tomorrow morning!

Wishing you all a very merry and bright Christmas full of cheer! I hope you enjoy the podcast!

From snowy Michigan,

December 18, 2013

Vegan Taco Salad

To make a vegan taco salad simply make taco ingredients and assemble loosely on a plate. Start with romaine lettuce. I like to slice it into really thin strips. Next make perfect beans using an onion, green pepper, black beans, jalapeno, cumin, and a bay leaf. You might choose to make a thick chili instead, like we did here. Next top with chopped tomatoes, scallions, fresh cilantro, avocado slices, salsa and tofu sour cream. Crunch a handful of tortilla chips over the top and enjoy! Olé! Here is a picture of us enjoying taco salad with tall glasses of wine.


Blueberry Oat Waffles

Two Fridays past, exhausted from a long week of end-of-year work, my Brooklyn family piled in two cars and forged a trail north through piling snow. After a few treacherous slip and slide moments we made it to our wood stove-clad rented cabin upstate. What a delight to hunker down in a quiet place near moving water. The snow was magical, a deep pad of silence to absorb our buzzing city jumble of poems and Lou Reed.

This recipe is wonderful, an adaptation of Isa's PPK recipe modified to reflect the ingredients that I gathered between a Korean grocery store in Jersey and the cabin's staples. The oatmeal provides a delightfully crisp exterior that, when sliced into, reveals the soft burst of juicy blueberries. This is pure winter comfort!  I had forgotten how perfect waffles are with their crunchy rims and little caves for pooling syrup. Now, someone please mail me a waffle maker for Christmas! Served here with a sprinkling of toasted coconut and sliced bananas. This recipe feeds 8 hungry folks and the waffles freeze perfectly if you are filling fewer plates.

1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
2 cups quick oats
2/3 cup applesauce
3 cups almond milk
1/3 cup maple syrup
3 Tbs. oil
2 tsp. vanilla
zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 bag frozen blueberries

In a large bowl, mix together the dry ingredients, flours, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and quick oats. Make a well in the center of the bowl and add the applesauce, milk, maple syrup, oil, vanilla, lemon zest, and lemon juice. whisk to combine but do not over-mix! A few lumps are fine. Heat the waffle iron and let the batter sit for a few minutes while the oats absorb liquid. Pour into oiled iron and serve hot!


November 27, 2013

Vegan Thanksgiving Guide 2013

Planning a feast for Thanksgiving? Here are a few of my favorite recipes to get you started so you can spend less hours scanning the internet for recipes and more hours hiking in mossy hills surrounded by your beloveds. As is tradition, we made a big vegan Thanksgiving in my wee apartment last weekend with many clanging glasses and filled plates. It was lovely! Full of surprises and glee. Below you'll find links to some of the recipes we made as well as some of my favorite festive recipes of the year.

Pumpkin Challah
Green Bean Casserole (if you are having trouble finding vegan mushroom soup like I did, substitute with a runny version of the Mushroom Gravy)
Roasted Romanesco Cauliflower with Pecans (page 72)
Roasted Acorn Squash stuffed with Cornbread and Pears
Market Kale Salad (sub honey for sugar)
Mashed Potatoes with Chives (you know how)
Orange Cranberry Sauce
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Apples and Red Onion
Pumpkin Pie Brownies (try without the pumpkin pie layer for a light and cakey brownie)

Have a very happy Thanksgiving, and by all means, hold the turkey!

Vegan Potato Pierogi

Pierogi! Pierogi! Pierogi! There is this funny little produce store on Fulton that I visit often for their juices and cheap veggies. It's a bit like glorified dumpster diving- every day a new super-sale special in the front bins, 3 peppers for $1, Lettuces, $1, etc. A few weeks ago I stopped in to buy a too-good-to-pass-up $1 bag of yukon gold potatoes and tried my hand at these delicious pierogi. Don't be intimidated if you've never tried making Polish dumplings! They are very easy to prepare. I used a food processor to make the dough but it could easily be kneaded by hand. These pierogi are stuffed with potatoes and kale (they could be filled with anything!) and are served alongside a pile of sauerkraut, homemade applesauce, and tofu sour cream. Smacznego!


3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
1- 1/2 cups warm water
4 Tbs. olive oil

Place the flour and salt in a food processor equipped with a knife blade. Pulse to mix. While mixing, add the warm water and olive oil slowly. Add flour or water to reach desired consistency and knead until very smooth and elastic.


2 pounds yukon gold potatoes (cubed)
4 Tbs. earth balance
1 medium sized yellow onion (diced)
1 bunch kale (de-stemmed and chopped)
3 cups water
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
black pepper

In a large pot, heat the earth balance over medium heat. Saute the onion until translucent. Add the potatoes, kale, salt, and water. Stir to combine. Cover and cook until potatoes are soft, adding water as necessary. Remove from heat and mash. Add the vinegar and a few dashes of black pepper.

Roll the dough out until it is about 1/4 inch in thickness. Use a lid or cookie cutter to cut circles. Fill with a spoonful of filling and use a bit of water along the edges to seal the dumpling as you squeeze it closed.They don't have to look perfect! Line a tray with flour and place your prepared pierogi to rest. While you are making the dumplings, heat a large pot of water on the burner until boiling. Once boiling, lower the pierogi one by one into the hot water using a slotted spoon. My pot accommodated 6 at a time. The pieroigi will sink immediately and then rise once they are finished. Use the spoon to fish the dumplings out and place on a plate. Continue this process until all pierogi are boiled. Next, heat a large pan over medium heat. Add a few tablespoons of olive oil and fry the boiled pierogi lightly, flipping once.

Serve hot!


November 22, 2013

Kale and Tofu Brunch with Mushroom Gravy and Baked Oatmeal Apples

It's Thanksgiving time! The wonderful season of the year where a warm blanket of savory gravy covers every teeny morsel and the root-roasting oven keeps the apartment toasty. Try this heartening brunch as a plate or layer the ingredients on two slabs of seedy toasted bread. What's not to love about crispy baked tofu slabs on a bed of wilty sauteed kale with a smothering of Isa's Mushroom Gravy?

These baked apples were a bit of an experiment, but I'll perfect a recipe and post it soon! Halved and cored apples stuffed with a combination of oats, cinnamon, brown sugar, almond slices, earth balance, water and baked at 400 degrees until soft. Delicious!

Yours in the sun,

November 12, 2013

New York, New York: 20 Favorite Meals by Neighborhood

Three years spent perched in this challenging, sharp, singular, gem of a city. Here are twenty of my favorite vegan meals that are available on any given day at (almost) every hour, sorted by 'hood. As much as I like trying new things, I have been known to have "an order" meaning- I have some serious favorites. This list is by no means comprehensive! Restaurants that are exclusively vegan are marked with a (V) but know that all of these places have many vegetarian and vegan items available.


Williamsburg & Greenpoint

Vegetarian Shanghai-style Lo Mein (spicy with extra spinach)- $8.50 M Shanghai 
Leek Jardinera Arepa (sub tofu for cheese + avocado)- $7.00 Caracas Arepa Bar
Buenos Dias or Raw Kale Salad- $12 Champs! (V)
Seitan Chili Cheese Fries- $5.50 Foodswings (V)
Multigrain Everything Bagel with Tofu Jalapeno Cream Cheese- $4 The Bagel Store
In Ricotta Da Vegan Pizza- $18 Paulie Gee's

Clinton Hill & Bed Stuy

Autumnal Sandwich and G/F Raspberry Chip Cookie- $10 Clementine Bakery (V)
Pumpkin and Okra Roti with Doubles (extra hot sauce)- $7 Trini-Gul Roti Shop
Red Velvet Cake and La Columbe Coffee-$5 Cinnamon Girl (V)
(Delivery) Daily Special- Vegetable Samosas and Bharta (extra spicy)- $14  Bombay Heights

Park Slope & Gowanus

Vegetarian Curry Ramen (fire hot with extra bok choy)- $10 Naruto Ramen
Quinoi Black Bean Salad (+ tempeh bacon)- $8.75 S'Nice
Vietnamese Tofu Sandwich- $6.50 Hanco's
Breakfast Empanadas and a Ginger Squeeze Juice- $7 each V-Spot (V)


Tofu and Veggie Green Curry and Drunken Noodles (shared)- $14 SriPraPhai


Open Face Tempeh Sandwich with Mashed Potatoes and Ruby Kraut- $11 Angelica Kitchen (V)
(Note- this is currently off the menu but I am fighting to get it back! Try the chili in the mean time!)
Tuscan Lasagna- $18 Candle Cafe East (V)
Skyscraper Burger- $10ish Blossom Du Jour (V)
Veggie Dumplings (12 for $5!) Garlic Bok Choy and Edamame- $3 Spicy Village
(Super Fancy Night) Sweet Corn and Cashew Tamales- $26 Pure Food and Wine (V) (Raw)

Full bellied,

November 8, 2013

Kale and Pepita Breakfast

It's November and Winter is creeping in with it's icy morning fingers and late afternoon sunsets. Last weekend I was fortunate to spend what were surely the final climbable days of the year in Vermont with EA & PH. It was so nice to see these old friends and to pass hours scrambling up mossy, leaf-covered trails. Seasonal transitions are always a little hard for me, with many emotional mountains and valleys to negotiate. What do you do to keep your chin up through the darker, quieter months?

I've recently discovered many gems of the New York Public Library: The Doris & Lewis B. Cullman Center at Lincoln Center that houses thousands of records, scores and circulating sheet music (!) and The Picture Library, which is housed in my work's neighborhood branch, The Mid-Manhattan Library. These wonders have given way to a few personal research projects that are filling my mind and heart. In the towering pile on my table there are Bruch concertos, Berlioz duets, Brahms, Vivaldi, Ives, and Cage, a file full of cross-sectioned lichens, and Roni Horn's WONDERWATER, annotated in two (of four) books- one by Anne Carson and one by Louise Bourgeois, which I am reading simultaneously. How enjoyable it is to fumble through red french words and also to hold one book in each hand while riding the C train.

Another way to keep your cheer during the cold months is to eat a nice, hearty, hot breakfast. Here's a peek at my weekly favorite- sauteed vinegar kale and pepitas with nutritional yeast toast. Kale is resilient and can grow deep into the frost. I've noticed the leaves on the lacinato kale that I love are quite skinny these days, but I'm not sure if that's related to the cooling temperatures. To saute the kale, simply heat a swirl of olive oil on medium heat. Remove the stems (optional) and rip the leaves into big pieces. Add to pan. Add 1-2 Tablespoons of water and a dash of Braggs or soy sauce. Once wilted, turn off the heat and add a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar. Sprinkle with raw pepitas and enjoy with a toasted hunk of bread slathered with earth balance and nutritional yeast!

Chin up folks, it's the weekend!

November 7, 2013

The Veganette for Chickpea Magazine- Winter 2013

Hot off the press! I'm very proud and honored to be included in the Winter 2013 issue of Chickpea Magazine! Rachelle Sartini Garner and I worked together on a little piece devoted to the fine art of vegan creperie. Chickpea is beautifully published and this issue is chock full of delightful recipes, photos, interviews and tips for vegan living. Buy a print or digital copy today at the Chickpea store! There are some amazing cocktail recipes that I'll definitely be looking to as the holiday season rolls around.

Preview the issue here and try out this recipe for savory crepes! Crispy baked tofu and furry fresh sage leaves on a soft pillow of roasted acorn squash puree with a creamy and garlic-y sage aioli sauce. Yum! Guaranteed to have your weekend guests grinning ear to ear! Check out this old post for tips on crepe making.


October 28, 2013

The Veganette for Earth Eats: Vegan Pumpkin Cupcakes

Calling all ghosts, ghouls and goblins! Bring out these sweet cakes at your upcoming Halloween party and celebrate in delicious style! Moist as can be with a sweet maple glaze and dusting of soft cinnamon. Pumpkin is a marvelous egg-relacer, the earth's gift to vegan bakers!

Check out the full recipe on the Earth Eats site and lug home a heavy pumpkin to make your own puree!

Yours in sweetness and spice,

Watermelon Radish and Avocado Salad with Cilantro Shallot Vinaigrette

There is a lovely stand at the Fort Greene Farmers Market that sells radishes of many varieties! I've had fun comparing the many spicy offerings like Green Meat (my favorite) and Black Spanish and trying their wild green leaves. This Watermelon Radish  is mild and sweet, a perfect compliment to an otherwise dense, potato-and-tempeh heavy brunch. Slice the radish extra thin and layer with slices of ripe avocado. Smother with this bright, limey shallot vinaigrette and enjoy!

1 small shallot (minced finely)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
juice of 1/2 lime
3 Tablespoon cilantro (chopped finely)

In a small bowl, smash the minced shallot with salt until combined. Add the sugar, vinegar, oil, lime, and cilantro and whisk until combined. Add salt or sugar to taste!

Yours bright in the sun,

P.S. On an unrelated note I also enjoyed this poem by James Tate this morning that is also titled The Radish. 

October 24, 2013

Donut Party

As promised, we rang in the Veganette's third year with towers of hot donuts enjoyed in the roof's morning sun. Hooray! One pal made some awesome Apple Cider Donuts using a recipe from The Sweet Life, a fabulous vegan blog stuffed with delicious recipes to satisfy your sweetest tooth. I fried up some Pumpkin Spice Donuts from my favorite recipe (originally published last October on Earth Eats) which I'll post again here for your use!  Chilling the dough is quite important, so be sure to allow for at least an hour of resting time.

2 Tbs. ground flaxseed mixed with 6 Tbs. hot water 
1/2 cup almond or soy milk
1/2 tsp. apple cider vinegar
4 cups flour
4 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ginger
1 cup canned pumpkin
1 cup sugar
4 Tbs. canola oil
2 tsp. vanilla

In a small bowl, mix together the flaxseed meal and hot water. In another small bowl, mix together the almond milk and vinegar. Set these aside.
In a large bowl, mix the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices). In another bowl whisk together the pumpkin, sugar, oil, and vanilla. Mix in the almond milk and flaxseed mixtures. Stir the wet ingredients into the dry. Once ingredients are combined, transfer the bowl to the fridge for one hour. 

Roll the dough onto a floured countertop. You want the dough to be about 1/2 inch thick. Using a round cutter or a wide-mouth mason jar lid, cut the dough into circles. Use a bottlecap to punch the centers out. In a large, high-walled pot, heat 5 inches of canola oil to 375 degrees. Use a candy thermometer to monitor the oil's temperature, making sure to keep the oil between 370 and 380 degrees. Prepare a cooling rack by placing a rack over a baking tray. Carefully drop the donuts into the oil and watch them rise to the surface. Flip once, then transfer to the the rack to cool. Coat with cinnamon sugar and serve warm!

For these plain glazed sprinkle donuts, I used a recipe from Vegan Yum Yum and replaced flaxseed meal and hot water for the egg replacer. I had to use a bit more flour as well since I do not have a donut pan and these went in the hot oil. But fried food is good for you, right? Oy! I'll leave that up to you to decide, but trust that this funky plate of confetti joy did not go to waste.

To fall!

October 11, 2013

The Veganette Turns Three!

Oh how quickly the time passes! Today the Veganette turns three. What a wonderful year it has been! I've got a few schemes going for the coming year: a cookbook dream, a site update, and most recently, a collaboration with the very talented Rachelle AM Sartini Garner for Chickpea Magazine (sneak peak above).  

So thankful as always for the kind friends who keep the table filled and kitchen packed and to the readers who have been so faithful over the years. In celebration, I'll be hosting a fall donut party next Saturday morning in my lovely shared Clinton Hill apartment. You are all invited! Email me for directions and details! 

To many more!

October 9, 2013

Tempeh Scramble with Red Pepper and Brussels Sprouts

Behold, the breakfast of champions! Tempeh scramble is a protein powerhouse that can make even the bleariest of days soar! Pair with two slices of crunchy toast, a pile of roasted rosemary potatoes, and a generous dollop of plain almond yogurt topped with raspberry jam for a meal that is sure to please (if not transform your physique into that of a vegan body builder). Oh how I wish I could say this was today's breakfast! Instead, this delicious spread was enjoyed on a drizzly day in Milano with friends KM and SM.

olive oil
2 blocks tempeh (cubed and marinated in 2 Tbs. apple cider vinegar, 2 Tbs. tamari, and dash of sesame oil)
1 onion (diced)
1 jalapeno (minced)
1 red pepper (chopped)
3 cloves garlic (minced)
3 cups brussels sprouts (halved)
1 tsp. dried thyme
1 Tbs. nutritional yeast
lemon juice
black pepper

In a large frying pan, heat a few tablespoons of olive oil. Add the tempeh and fry, stirring occasionally, for five minutes or until lightly browned. Add the onion, jalapeno, and red pepper and saute until vegetables have softened slightly. Add the brussels sprouts and garlic and cover to cook, adding a few tablespoons of water if needed. Once sprouts are cooked through add the thyme, nutritional yeast, and pepper. Finish with a big squeeze of lemon juice and serve immediately!

So nice it is to have partners in the kitchen to help counteract the piles of dishes and also to keep the espresso rolling.

Yours from cloudy New York,

October 4, 2013

A New Lease on Life

My kind boss greeted me in the jolliest tone this morning -"You look fabulous today!" We've been charting the steadily healing cells on my face after a bicycle accident on Monday morning left me achy and swollen with a gnarly little squiggle of stitches up my right eyebrow and a bust to my right lower ribs. I was on my daily commute up first avenue when a cab swerved into the bike lane and a slick of dirty water grabbed my braking tire and flew me off into the street, face first. Red face red hands yellow taxi racing off into the blue sky. I'm so lucky- things could have been much worse. I feel like I am always re-booting in these years, and Monday was another reminder of how brief the hours we have are- lives rising and falling like hot flames licking at the ever ceasing dusk. A (painful) reminder to be very tender in these days, throw old grudges aside, forgive, to be grateful, and to celebrate the successes and wonders of friends. Joe said it's called getting a new lease on life.

If you are ever in a hit and run/ stop and run accident in New York City, it is important that you follow these steps after the accident to insure that you have an opportunity to recover lost wages or hospital charges from the city. I didn't know about any of this, so hopefully these tips are helpful for you if you are ever in a similar accident.

- File a police report within 24 hours. The city has rules in place in an effort to prevent fraudulent cases and this is one of them. If you wait 26 hours, it will be very hard to bring the case to court.

- File a complaint with the 311 against the Taxi and Limousine Commission- Someone will get back to you in 14 days by mail regarding a hearing on your case.

-Find an attorney. Adam White's firm - was very helpful in explaining the process to me and I would recommend his counsel. Flanzig & Flanzig, LLP also handles a number of bike-related (and dooring) cases every year

Finally, wear your helmets, folks!

Full hearted,

September 27, 2013

Leftover Love- Spicy Lentil Gravy in Milano

Too many days of pasta and pizza lead to this delicious leftover lunch with KM, hearty mashed potatoes topped with a spicy brown lentil and red pepper curry with a green salad on the side. Here, leftover lentil curry performs the dual function of adding savory flavor and much-needed protein to an otherwise plain favorite.

Many new photos have made their way onto the tumblr, along with this one of KM in her lovely borrowed kitchen in Milano! Keep your eyes peeled for more in the coming days.


September 26, 2013

A Sandwich at Lake Como

KM and I were lucky to find tempeh in a teeny organic store in Milan. We were overjoyed! The marinated strips made their way into these pocket sandwiches stuffed with spicy arugula and vine-ripe tomatoes. It was the perfect sack lunch to accompany our day of adventuring, making new friends, hiking pilgrimage routes up steep cliffs, and swimming in clear, cold, deep mountain lakes.

This stuffed pocket is a tight contender with my favorite cucumber and sun dried tomato sandwich for best trekking sammy! The added tempeh packs a protein punch necessary for long journeys and Italian arugula is extra spicy and tender.


September 20, 2013

Dutch Pancakes

I've just returned from a whirlwind two week trip across the Atlantic! It can be quite a challenge to eat vegan while traveling abroad (especially if your language skills are limited) so I was glad to have many borrowed kitchens available for use! These pancakes were the delightful product of a bewildering trip to a grocery store in Jordaan, Amsterdam. Applesauce and soya milk made these golden moons a light and spongy addition to a pile of gloriously fresh farmstand produce.

Many more to come!

August 20, 2013

Peaches 'n' Cream Coco-Crunch

It seems August has been an ode to my perpetual summer sweet tooth! Here's one more idea for an effortless seasonal dessert to please your tastebuds. Choose any ice cream or sorbet you like (I've been really digging Ciao Bella's Coconut Sorbet) and top with fresh fruit and toasted coconut! These fuzzy donut peaches are in season and were a delightfully juicy addition. To toast coconut flakes, heat a large frying pan over medium heat for five minutes. Add the sweetened coconut and toast, stirring often, until golden brown. Remove from pan immediately once browned and spoon over ice cream. The crunchy texture of the toasted coconut and sweet tart of the peaches is oh-so-tropical ... it's like an island in your mouth!

Sweetly yours,

August 19, 2013

Lemon Lavender Muffins

A bit of grey sky and dusty windowsill lead me to a quiet Sunday morning spent inside. These are my favorite types of weekend mornings- ones spent robed-and-slippered with a NYT if you have it, a french press, and Jonathan Schwartz on the radio, swinging us through the hours with New York jazz and a voice so smooth and deliberate he'll rope you into listening to any crackly song twice in a row if he thinks you weren't listening. And what goes better with ol' blue eyes than a plateful of baked goods? I was inspired to make these bright, sweet muffins after buying a particularly large bag of lavender in the bulk section of the coop. The herb is new to me and tastes a bit like rosemary in these mild treats. To make the icing, simply squeeze the juice of 1 lemon into 1 cup of confectioners sugar and stir well! Add lemon juice or sugar until consistency is correct.

2 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbs. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 Tbs. lavender (plus 1/2 Tbs. for decorating)
1/2 cup coconut yogurt
1/2 cup almond milk
1/2 cup canola oil
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
zest of 1 lemon
juice of 1 lemon

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and lavender. In another bowl mix the yogurt, milk, oil, vanilla, lemon juice, and lemon zest until combined. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir well. Add a bit more almond milk if the batter seems to thick as it is hard to be exact since vegan yogurts have such varied consistencies. Spoon into a greased muffin tin and bake for 28 minutes or until lightly browned and a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center of a muffin.

Drizzle with lemon glaze and sprinkle with lavender buds.

To eating flowers!

The Veganette for Earth Eats: Strawberry Shortcake with Cashew Cream

Nothing says summer quite like strawberry shortcake. Even the sound of the word brings me poolside — Mix 107.7 blaring through the radio, and me dripping with hot feet in front of the ice cream truck. As a kid I loved strawberry shortcake, and in my family, the dish was usually comprised of angel food cake topped with fresh cream and strawberries. I decided to try my hand at real shortcake biscuits and was pleasantly surprised!

The trick is to use a food processor to cut the cold vegan margarine quickly so that some buttery crumbs remain and to add the almond milk gradually while pulsing. The buttery bits will make the biscuits flaky and light, a perfect compliment to the thick layer of cashew cream. Cashew cream is naturally sweet and so easy to prepare! Just be sure to allow a few hours for the nuts to soak.

Serve these shortcakes as a light finish to a evening of kebabs and corn on the cob. Summer has never been so sweet! Swing over to Earth Eats to see the recipe.


August 9, 2013

Dairy-Free Corn Chowder

It's sweet corn season nationwide, and what better to make with all those ears than corn chowder? Maybe corn on the cob, but that aside, here's a recipe for your weekend! For the first time in weeks I finally had the desire to make a nice three course meal, so I walked to the co-op and loaded up my backpack with all things fresh. A few slow miles of walking and a three hours later it was Friday night and I was serving up corn chowder, a hearty pesto linguine, and darling shortcakes (recipe to come) on my new roof. This soup is true comfort food for a long week gone by. Sweet and spicy with a zing lime finish! Top with whatever veggies you have around and a hefty sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper.Thanks to PPK for all the tips!

olive oil
1 yellow onion (chopped)
3 cloves garlic (minced)
1-2 jalapenos
6 ears of corn
3 carrots (chopped)
4 potatoes (peeled and chopped)
5 cups veggie broth
1 Tbs. arrowroot
1 can coconut milk
1-2 limes

Employ one of your trusty kitchen helpers to shuck the corn and pull those pesky silks out. Use a large chef's knife to remove the kernels from the cob and place in a bowl. Heat the veggie broth in a saucepan. In a large soup pot, heat the oil then saute the onion. Once translucent, add the garlic and jalapeno, stirring often to prevent sticking. Add the carrots and corn and saute for 5 minutes. Next add the potato and four cups of veggie broth. Lower to simmer. Mix the remaining cup of veggie broth with the Tbs. of arrowroot powder (or corn starch) and set aside. Once all vegetables are cooked through, add this mixture and the coconut milk and stir to thicken. Once thickened, add the juice of one or two limes and remove from heat. Use an immersion blender to cream part of the soup, leaving some chunks as desired. Taste for lime, salt, and pepper, and top with cilantro and red pepper.


P.S. This is the view from my new roof! My neighbor has the most lovely green roof with wild onions growing on it! I wonder if he will let me go gather a few for a recipe. Until then, it's so nice to enjoy this view and it's so special that someone has taken such care in our little corner of Brooklyn.

July 29, 2013

New Homes

All of the new homes I have lived in over the past few years have been old homes. I love their weird edges and funky-shaped rooms, too-small hallways, counterless kitchens. I've just left my last old new home with its gorgeous peeling ceilings and slanted rooms for a new tall apartment with its fleur-de-lis fire place and ochre tile bathroom. Lots of dirty corners to clean and dishes to unload, so until then enjoy these sweet, blurry pics of current eats and one of Freddie the cat playing with his alligator toy.

It's nice to have all of my belongings under one roof. I forgot how many kitchen utensils I have! I've learned how to live with much less in these between days and how to cook most things using chopsticks. Home is where your climbing gear and your microplane zester is, and mine are in a closet on Grand Avenue so get ready for a massive dinner party on our porch/ roof! As always, I'm very thankful for my patient and generous friends and family and for this city which (despite it's populous nature) has found a corner for me to squeeze into over and over again. All of our days are gifts and these days I am doing my best to be present and grateful in them. Now enough cheez'n from me! Go bake a pie!


July 15, 2013

Guest Blogger: KM's Blackened Tofu "Fish" Tacos with Chipotle Aioli

As the mercury rises, I'm brought back to some pre-vegan days in hot sticky Florida. In those days, Sunday afternoons were spent learning my way around a kitchen with my parents. Summer meant fish tacos. We three would collaborate, led by my father's culinary vision as blueprint for the meal. After an hour or so of chopping, mixing, grilling, and of course a bit of dancing, we'd sit back in cushioned chairs, in the shadows of palm trees and build stacks of warm tortillas, spicy fish, savory beans, tangy sauces and mountains of cilantro. Despite the heat, we'd sit and chow and chat for hours on end.

I've tried, a few times, to replicate these experiences, but for all my effort, a black bean taco always just seems to fall flat compared the complex flavors of my memory. So a few weeks ago, on a seriously hot and sticky Connecticut Sunday, I made a big effort in memory recollection, culinary improvisation, and a few calls to Florida. It proved worthwhile.

So, for the heights of summer, a cruelty free version of a family classic. It even has my parents stamp of approval, proving that no meal or memory is too precious to veganize!

Blackened Tofu "Fish" Tacos

1 lb extra firm tofu, drained and pressed
2-4 sheets of roasted nori, torn into rough quarters or so.
3 T olive oil 
2 T tamari or soy sauce
1 T brown rice vinegar 
juice from 1/2 lime
3-5 T blackened mix, depending on desired spiciness
(I've been using a cajun mix from Kalustyan's for a while. But you can always improvise  by mixing up your own with onion, garlic, paprika, chili pepper, black pepper, etc.)

While pressing the tofu, mix all the wet ingredients together, reserving about 2T of olive oil for cooking. Add about 3T of the spice mix and taste, add more if you like more of a spice kick. In a food processor chop the 2 sheets of roasted Nori until roughly chopped (again, the exact amount you use depends on how much you'd like your tofu to taste, um,  sea-like. I used 4 sheets). Add the liquids and spices to the nori and mix for a minute. 

Cut tofu into 1/4 inch slabs and place in a shallow bowl or pyrex and cover in nori-spice sauce, coating all sides. Marinade the tofu for 30 minutes (or if you have time, overnight).  Once marinated, fry tofu in 1-2T olive oil in heavy skillet on medium-medium/high until the tofu is blackened and crispy on both sides and firm throughout. 

Chipotle Aioli Sauce

1 C Veganaise 
1 t olive oil 
1 t cumin
3 T Chipotle adobo sauce 
juice of 1/2 lime
3 cloves of garlic, pressed or minced
pinch of salt, to taste

Mix all ingredients together and refrigerate until about 10 minutes before you are ready to serve. 

After warming up a pile of corn tortillas, assembling you tacos is all up to you. In addition to the tofu and aioli, we took advantage of some black beans and sautéed cabbage and green onions that had been leftover from earlier in the weekend. Of course we also piled on the cilantro and fresh lime. We served the tacos with fresh green heaps of guacamole and crispy tostones for a serious feast, but these bad boys hit the spot in their own right. 

Assemble food, pals, and find a shady spot to eat and laze around all afternoon.

¡Buen Provecho! 

Summer in the City

Things have been a bit silent over here as am between a few ventures and homes in these months with no working camera to my name. I hope you all have been enjoying a bounty of summer produce! Yesterday I filled my co-op bag with curly garlic scapes, deep heart purple beans, yellow beans, sungold tomatoes, fingerling potatoes, local shallots, and New York sweet corn! My camera is going back into the shop this week so hopefully I'll have some photos for you soon! In the between time, a few sweet vegan friends will be sharing posts as guest bloggers for the veganette, the first coming today from my sister-from-another-mister, KM, whose "fish" taco recipe will blow your minds!

From between two fans,

June 24, 2013

The Veganette for Earth Eats: Vietnamese Summer Rolls with Spicy Peanut Sauce

I am in love with the summer. In Brooklyn we spend these months successfully bypassing our under-ventilated rooms for windy bike rides through the city and cool evenings spent beer-clad on roofs. My diet during these hot days relies heavily on fresh vegetables and fruits. Raw rules! These Vietnamese summer rolls are fabulously versatile and can be altered to include any fresh veggies of your choice. They are a favorite of mine for a light dinner after a long hot day. Serve alongside a spicy homemade peanut sauce!

If you have never worked with rice paper wrappers, they can be a bit difficult, so be patient! The package comes with tons of wrappers, so don't worry if you tear a few and have to toss the ripped skins aside. The wrappers are brittle and become pliable when you soak them in hot water. Check out this helpful video for a few tips. 

Check out the Earth Eats blog to see the complete recipe!

Stay cool,

June 4, 2013

California Tomatoes

This is a picture of my hand in the sun holding a tomato on the Golden Gate Bridge. Last week I spent some long, bright days hiking and climbing in the sunny hills and long valleys of northern California with sweet old friends. Summer is here and the promise of good produce is upon us. Hooray! Most anticipated is the tomato. These delicious fruits are delights in their season and were rulers of our plates on my visit to golden California. Stuff with chickpea salad or enjoy an unencumbered slice drizzled with balsamic vinegar and olive oil. 

This beefy heirloom variety was plated with a circle of fresh basil leaves and a hefty crank of freshly ground pepper. A vegan caprese of sorts! You won't miss the mozzarella, I promise. It seems my old minolta is having a problem- all of my photos have this big black blur on the bottom- any film people have advice?

Three cheers for summer!