Sunday, December 29, 2013

Szechwan Tempeh and Green Beans

This recipe is from the cookbook One-Dish Vegan by Robin Robertson.
Recipe: see page 116 of One-Dish Vegan.
This is another fast and tasty recipe from the cookbook One-Dish Vegan. I use Trader Joe's Organic 3-Grain Tempeh, which consists of soybeans, rice, barley, and millet. Some people can't stand tempeh, but I love it. It is chewy, but with a little crunch, and the taste is kind of nutty.

In this recipe the tempeh gets covered in a sauce made from tamari, chili paste and sugar. It's sweet and spicy. I had never thought of using those ingredients together to make a marinade before, but I will definitely be trying this on some other things like tofu or mashed, fried chickpeas. Very tasty.

There is also an added sweetness that comes from the red onion, and an extra zing from some fresh grated ginger.

Ingredients: tempeh, green beans, red onion, fresh ginger, Asian chili paste, dark sesame oil, dry sherry, garlic, red pepper flakes, sugar, tamari, vegetable oil, rice.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Winter Vegetable and Pasta Bake

This recipe is from the cookbook One-Dish Vegan by Robin Robertson.
Recipe: see pages 191 of One-Dish Vegan.
I think the Brussels sprouts kind of wrecked this for me. I am a huge fan of them, but they seemed a little undercooked here and didn't really fit with the sweetness of the butternut, red onion and tomato.

Ingredients: red onion, butternut squash, Brussels sprouts, penne pasta, white beans, canned fire-roasted diced tomatoes, liquid smoke, fresh sage, smoked paprika, vegetable broth, bread crumbs, salt, black pepper.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Sesame Soba with Tofu and Broccoli

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

Recipe: see pages 148 of One-Dish Vegan.
This is a tasty vegan recipe that can be prepared quickly. The sauce is creamy from the tahini and spicy from the Sriracha. I deviated a little bit from the instructions and cooked the soba noodles separate from the broccoli, which I steamed. The first time I made this the broccoli completely fell apart by the time it made it to the table. I like it a little crunchy, and boiling makes it soft and waterlogged.

Ingredients: extra firm tofu, buckwheat soba noodles, broccoli florets, dark sesame oil, soy sauce, vegetable oil, garlic, ginger, tahini, mellow white miso paste, Sriracha, vegetable broth, sesame seeds.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Tofu Ricotta

This recipe is from the cookbook Veganomicon by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero.

Recipe: see page 206 of Veganomicon.
I've already made this recipe for Tofu Ricotta for this blog before, but couldn't pass up doing it again when I found some vegan manicotti at the Viva la Vegan grocery store in Rancho Cucamonga (southern California). It's a great little store for finding interesting things I never knew existed. They had things like Tofurky pizzas (Tofurky makes pizza?), and the new 'Beyond Meat' which I have been reading about in the news for the last 2 years and is supposed to be a hyper-realistic animal-free faux meat. I keep reading stories about it, but have never seen it, and they had it.

So, they had vegan manicotti, which is something I don't think I've ever seen. It's been difficult for me to find mostly because those big pieces of pasta, like manicotti, lasagna and the big shells, tend to be made with egg. But maybe I wasn't looking hard enough, because this was DaVinci brand pasta, which is fairly common in this area.

I assumed there had to be at least one recipe on my shelf of vegan cookbooks for manicotti, but surprisingly there wasn't. Then I remembered this recipe for vegan ricotta in Veganomicon. It's very fast to put together, especially if you have extra firm tofu with a low water content. Some brands of tofu are firmer than others, even though they may call themselves extra-firm. You have to press it to squeeze out the excess water, and that might take a couple hours, but after that it's a 2-minute recipe.

It's been many years since I've had animal-based ricotta, but it seems to closely imitate that. As I remember it, ricotta never had much of a taste anyway. It got it's flavor from what you put into it, and that is the case here as well. I like this. It's a great general purpose recipe.

For the photo, I topped the manicotti with tomato sauce and a creamy cheese-style sauce made with white beans, lemon juice, nutritional yeast and tahini.

Ingredients: extra firm tofu, lemon juice, garlic, nutritional yeast, olive oil, salt, black pepper, basil.