Category Archives: Vegan

Brought to Life

Vegan Sugar Cookies 

vegan_sugar_cookies

Many moons ago, or about 5yrs ago, I found an incredible vegan sugar recipe.  This past year I went to look for it again and could not locate it!  So I decided to come up with my own recipe based on a “normal” sugar cookie recipe and what I know about vegan cookie.  One of the biggest issues I’ve had with vegan baking is the missing butter taste as well as the not always awesome aftertaste some vegan “butters” offer.  With that I decided to add a bit of cinnamon, not enough to cross into snickerdoodles territory but enough to add a bit of something to the recipe.  I also added a touch of cream of tartar in order to counter the melting point of vegan “butter” and keep the cookies from spreading too much – another problem I commonly have.  I wasn’t going for a super fluffy cookie but I didn’t want them to be as crispy as a rolled cookie.

Brought to Life

Serves: makes 48 cookies

Ingredients

1 cup vegan "butter", softened

1 1/2 cups white sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 tbsp cinnamon

1/2 cup applesauce (no sugar added)

1 1/2 tsp vanilla extra

1/2 tsp salt

2 1/2 cups flour

1 tsp baking soda

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375
  2. Cream together the sugar, cinnamon, and butter for 10 minutes until nice and fluffy. Add in the applesauce, vanilla extract, and salt and blend for another 3 minutes.
  3. Stir together the flour and baking soda and slowly mix in with the wet ingredients until just mixed.
  4. (Optional: place in fridge for one hour)
  5. Form dough into walnut size balls and drop onto cookie sheet leaving space for the cookies to spread.
  6. Bake for 11 minutes, allow to cool for 5 minutes on the cookie sheet and then move to a cooling rack.
http://dancingveggies.com/2016/01/brought-to-life.html

These cookies were a huge holiday hit!  Husband enjoyed them so much he had a hard time believing they were vegan, which is the ultimate compliment in his case.  For a real treat, form the dough and then freeze in a plastic cookie “tin” and bake when you’re getting a craving for something sweet.

Here I Sit

Early Fall Tagine

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Amazed and slightly shocked that so far the best part of my pregnancy has been the third trimester.  The HG is mostly under control and while my back is sore, it’s amazing the energy boost that comes with not getting sick multiple times a day.   I’m still sticking with quick and easy meals, as I have no desire to tempt fate, and have also been bringing out my cookbooks more with the plan of finding easy to freeze recipes.  This recipe is not one of those, but it is one that I had marked at the start of summer.  It’s inspired by a recipe in Vegetarian Tagines & Couscous which is a fantastic book for people who don’t have a citrus allergy.  However the basic ingredients are just that, so I can adjust and mess with as necessary – resulting in citrus (and nut) free treats for my household!

Early Fall Tagine

Serves 4

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp unsalted butter (dairy or nondairy)

1 tsp cumin seeds

1 tsp cinnamon

3 garlic cloves, minced

2 large tomatoes

1 large eggplant, roll cut and then quartered

2 carrots, peeled and cut in to 1inch pieces

2 cups chickpeas, presoaked and rinsed

1 tsp sugar

1 tbsp fresh thym

Instructions

  1. Heat the oil/butter in the bottom of the tagine over medium heat. Stir in the cumin, cinnamon, and garlic - saute for 2 minutes.
  2. Add the eggplant and continue cooking for 10 minutes, stirring on occasion to prevent sticking, then add in the carrots and chickpeas along with the sugar. Cover and cook for a final 15 minutes, stirring halfway to prevent sticking and burning. If getting too dry add a bit of water or vegetable stock, a tbsp at a time.
  3. Once carrots are soft, Serve and enjoy!
http://dancingveggies.com/2015/10/here-i-sit.html

I served this with some leftovers lentils, but couscous would be the more traditional option – tho flatbread or rice would also work.  I topped mine with a bit of Greek Yogurt (So Delicious Coconut) while Joe went the naked route this time.  It was shortly after this that my tagine decided it was time to quit – lesson learned regarding gas burners and the importance of a good diffuser.  Thankfully a new one just arrived (late birthday present) and I can’t wait to give it a whirl!

Fly to the Sky

Blueberry Dreamsicles 

creamsicle

Welcome back to #HotSummerEats – an awesome blog link-up thought up by the amazing Cam.   So far I’ve done two savory treats but let’s be honest, summer is really all about cooling down with sweet treats.  Today’s sweet tonight is on the healthier side and as a bonus: gluten free AND vegan!   When I saw the teaser list of recipes go up for BenBella Vegan I knew that I had to do one of their recipes, and on the front page they had a refreshing picture of blueberry popsicles.   A quick stop at the store to get some (more) blueberries and I was in business – until I remembered that I don’t own any popsicle molds.  So a quick run to Target (bust) and Home Goods (success!) before returning back home and actually getting down to business.   I made a slight tweak, the original recipe calls for fresh lemon juice but due to my allergy I subbed with a bit of amchur powder to give it a bit of a tart taste.

Fly to the Sky

Serves: 6 popsicles

Ingredients

1 c. blueberries

2 tbsp. sweetener of your choice (optional)

11?2 c. coconut cream

Instructions

  1. Stir together the blueberries and the sweetener (honey in my case) in a small bowl and pour the coconut cream in to a medium bowl.
  2. Add the blueberries to the coconut cream a spoonful at a time and whisk in, allowing some of the blueberries to break open. Continue whisking until mixture thickens
  3. Pour in to molds and freeze for 2-5 hrs. Release from mold by running warm water along the outside for a few seconds.
  4. Serve and enjoy!
http://dancingveggies.com/2015/06/fly-to-the-sky.html

Whisking the coconut cream made a bit of a mess but otherwise this recipe was quick and easy!  They were perfect with the Indian food we had for dinner and there are still two left for an after (or before) work treat.  This has been such a fantastic experience – I’m oh so thankful that I was healthy enough to join in and enjoy all these fantastic recipes.  A HUGE thank you to all the fantastic sponsors and don’t forget to enter the contest to win some of these goodies for yourself!!!

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Disclaimer – Thank you to #HotSummerEats sponsors BenBella Vegan, Caribeque, Casabella, Gourmet Garden,
Intensity Academy, Not Ketchup, Out of the Weeds. Pirate Jonny’s, Quirk Books,
Spicely Organics, T.Lish , and Voodoo Cheffor providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for
#HotSummerEats without additional compensation.All opinions are my own.

Manic Monday

 Chana Dal with Spinach

Welcome to April Group A edition of the Secret Recipe Club!  This month I got to go Down Under, as I was partnered with the incredible Claire of My Hobbie Lobbie.   Seems rather fitting to get an Australian blog when just a week ago my littlest sister moved to Australia, tho she is currently in Melbourne while Claire is in Sydney.  Claire’s blog is stuffed with delicious Indian treats along with more traditional fare, but my stomach only had eyes for the Indian goodies.   Palak Paneer, Aloo Bhaji, Chana Dal with Spinach, the list just goes on and on and on!  In the end it was the story that went with the Chana Dal, as I loved the idea of taking a bland mash and turning it back in to the incredible dish that her husband remembered his mom making.    I wasn’t able to find ghee, so instead I used some brown butter – otherwise recipe is actually as Claire wrote it (converted to US measurements).

Manic Monday

Serves 4

Ingredients

1 cup Chana dal

3 cups water

1 tsp salt

1 tsp freshly grated ginger

2 green chillies, finely chopped

1/2 tsp turmeric powder

1 tomato, chopped

1 tbsp brown butter (or ghee)

1 tsp cumin seeds

6 fresh curry leaves

3 garlic cloves, finely sliced

2 cups baby spinach, torn

Salt, to taste

Instructions

  1. Wash the chana dal a couple of times in water and drain then soak the chana dal for about an hour and drain.
  2. Boil the chana dal in 3 cups of water and a tsp of salt. After it comes to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer for about 30 minutes. Cook the dal until al dente - you DO NOT want a mush!
  3. Drain and reserve some of the liquids.
  4. Heat the butter in a large pan over medium high heat and add the curry leaves, garlic and cumin.
  5. Once the cumin sputters, add the ginger, chilli and turmeric and stir to mix well, cook for one minute then add the chopped tomato and stir. Cook for a 3-5 minutes or until the tomato has broken down a bit.
  6. Add the baby spinach and stir until just wilted.
  7. Add the drained chana dal and stir through, adding a tbsp or two of the reserved liquid, if you think it is too dry. Slowly add the liquid as the dish is meant to be dry and not soupy.
  8. Check the seasoning and Serve hot!

Notes

Chana Dal might also be advertised as split chickpeas if you are shopping in the bulk section.

http://dancingveggies.com/2015/04/manic-monday.html

This dish was fantastic!  I have a feeling it could also be converted to a slow cooker or done in parts in order to speed up the beginning with the chana dal.  Regardless, the taste was incredible and was very well received!  Another SRC success that leaves me counting down the days til the May reveal.


On the Shore

Waldorf Salad

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Welcome to Part 2 of my #partylikeamadman – again with a huge thanks to my in-laws for allowing me to use their kitchen since ours is still in construction mode!   In going through the Unofficial Mad Men Cookbook, one of my favorite parts was how each recipe included not only information about the episode the dish was featured in but also facts about the origin of the recipe.  In the case of the Waldorf Salad, the cookbook also included information about the evolution of the salad – as well as two versions of the dish.  I went with the classic dish, adding some grapes for an extra POP of color.     I served this for a large group of people but due to taste preference not all ingredients were increased the same way.  The first recipe is how I served it, while the second one is the original recipe plus grapes.

 

Waldorf Salad

Serves: Serves 8 as a side

Original Recipe: 2 apples 1/2 cup grapes 1 cup iced hearts of celery 5 tbsp seasoned mayo Lettuce for serving

Ingredients

8 apples, peeled

2 cups diced heart of celery

2 cups grapes

1/3 cup mayo

Lettuce, for serving

Salt and Pepper for seasoning

Instructions

  1. Peel and core the apples, divided in half and then cut in to slices. Reserve 12 slices, and cut the remainder into thin julienne strips.
  2. Combine the apple strips with the celery and toss with half of the mayo. Fold in the grapes
  3. Season to taste then place the mixture in the middle of a salad bowl and spread with the mayo. Garnish with the lettuce and the reserved apple slices.
  4. Serve and Enjoy!

Notes

Since this was part of a Seder dinner, the mayo was limited to Kosher for Passover and with that unseasoned.

http://dancingveggies.com/2015/04/on-the-shore.html

I wound up making this dish twice – the first version wound up with a technical problem in that I was the one taking the picture.  The second time around I served this up as part of our Seder dinner and it was the perfect fit (and quite the hit!).   I am so glad I was able to participate in this Mad Men Party,  and look forward to having a finished kitchen so that I can try out some of the more elaborate dishes in the book!