Saturday, November 30, 2013

Cauliflower Comfort Bake and Savory Herb Biscuits

This recipe is from the cookbook One-Dish Vegan by Robin Robertson.

Recipe: see pages 162 and 87 of One-Dish Vegan.
That looks like a lot of cheese in there, doesn't it? It looks like it might be cheddar and provolone and maybe some feta. Throughout the entire time I was eating this I was thinking "This looks like cheese!".... but it doesn't taste like it, and it's not cheese.

It is actually some thinly sliced butternut, potato and cauliflower. I bought a mandoline so I could easily slice these to the thinness specified. Mandolines scare me, so this recipe was a big deal. I'm afraid I'm going to slice a finger. That creeped me out just typing that last sentence. That's how much mandolines freak me out.

Anyway, the recipe is thin slices of those vegetables along with two layers of kale. A 'sauce' made of white beans, unsweetened almond milk, lemon juice and garlic powder is poured on top of the casserole, then topped with ground walnuts, salt and thyme.

The recipe called for spinach or kale, and I went with the latter because have a lot of it in my garden. I love kale, but I didn't care for it here. There was one step where it was steamed, and then it cooked in the casserole for another hour. It seems like it was overcooked, which tends to make it bitter, and not smell so good. I don't think that would have been the issue if I went with the spinach instead.

My other note with the dish is that most of the flavor is in the topping of the bean 'sauce' and walnut/thyme mixture. I found myself looking forward to every bite from the top.... and then not so much the bites from the bottom. It could have used some of that flavor layered down into the dish. Or maybe some salt sprinkled down there.

I'll definitely make this again (I also have a lot of butternut from my garden), but I'll go with the spinach and try doing an additional layer of the bean mix.

Also in the photo is vegan Savory Herb Biscuits from the cookbook. It's a standard recipe for quick biscuits, but was a little salty for my tastes.

Ingredients: (Cauliflower Comfort Bake): cauliflower, kale, russet potato, butternut squash, canned white beans, unsweetened almond milk, lemon juice, garlic powder, walnuts, olive oil, dried thyme, salt, black pepper.  (Savory Herb Biscuits): all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt, dried oregano, unsweetened nondairy milk, vegetable oil.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Hoppin John with Kale

This recipe is from the cookbook One-Dish Vegan by Robin Robertson.

 Recipe: see page 60 of One-Dish Vegan.
I know a lot of you readers can't stand kale, but I love it. The traditional version of this recipe is from the southern United States and has pig parts in it. This vegan version replaces that with kale, which lends it chewiness. There is a nice variety of textures here: the chewiness of the kale and brown rice, and the creaminess of the black-eyed peas. There is a smokiness to this dish that comes from liquid smoke. The Tabasco is added at the table rather than during cooking, so you can control the amount of heat if you are sharing with someone who doesn't like spicy food.

There wasn't much prep time involved, but the rice took about a half an hour to cook.

Oh, the recipe calls for vegan sour cream on the side. There is a recipe for that in the book in case you can't find that in a store. I forgot to put that in the photo. Oh well.

Ingredients: black-eyed peas, kale, long-grain brown rice, yellow onion, olive oil, dried thyme, vegetable broth, liquid smoke, Tabasco, black pepper, salt, vegan sour cream.