Monday, June 30, 2008

Breaded and Smoked Tofu over Spaghetti with Broccoli and Grilled Corn

Dinner 6/30

Breaded and Smoked Tofu over Spaghetti with Broccoli and Grilled Corn

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Wilted Chard, Cremini Mushrooms, Chickpeas and Scapes, Seitan Stew

Dinner 6/29

Wilted Chard, Cremini Mushrooms, Chickpeas and Scapes, Seitan Stew

Wilted Chard and Cremini Mushrooms

Chickpeas and Scapes

Seitan Stew
(seitan, red bell pepper, onion, garlic, carrot, tamari, black pepper and sherry)

Cremini Mushroom Close-up

Seitan Stew Close-up

Wilted Chard Close-up

Chickpea and Scape Close-up

Friday, June 27, 2008

Fig and Blue Sheese Pizza

Dinner 6/28

Grilled Fig and Blue Sheese Pizza

I think the pizza crust looks like Mojo Jojo from Powerpuff Girls

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Mushroom Barley Soup, Vollkornbrot

Dinner 6/26

Mushroom Barley Soup


Liz had a bread class with Peter Reinhart yesterday. This was one of the loaves she made. You'll see more, soon.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Seitan, Tomato and Zucchini over Spaghetti and Lettuce

Dinner 6/25

Seitan, Tomato and Zucchini over Spaghetti and Lettuce

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Sloppy Joes, Oven Fries

Dinner 6/24

Sloppy Joes

Oven Fries
(with paprika and vegeneaise)

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Gobi Manchurian, Jasmine Rice

Dinner 6/22

Gobi Manchurian
(recipe from Saveur)

Jasmine Rice

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Braised Carrots, Braised Leeks, Ratatouille, and Arugula with Bechamel Sauce and Breadcrumbs, Pom Pom Mushrooms and Beet Salad, Brownies

Dinner 6/21

Smoked Tofu with Braised Carrots, Leeks, Ratatouille, and Arugula with Bechamel Sauce and Breadcrumbs

Braised Carrots, Leeks, Ratatouille, and Arugula with Bechamel Sauce and Breadcrumbs

Braised Carrots

Braised Leeks

(adapted from Escoffier)

Pom Pom Mushrooms and Beet Salad

Brownies with Vanilla Soy Ice Cream, Peanut Butter Sauce, Caramel Sauce and Chocolate Sauce
(brownies from Millennium)

Friday, June 20, 2008

Croutes Aux Champignons, English Pea Soup

Dinner 6/20

English Pea Soup
(adapted from Jean-George)

Croutes Aux Champignons

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Zucchini Noodles with Pesto, Grape and Tarragon Salad

Raw Food Wednesday 6/18

Zucchini Noodles with Pesto

Grape and Tarragon Salad

Monday, June 16, 2008

Ancho and Cocoa Crusted Seitan, Sofrito, Sweet Potato Puree, Shiitake Mushrooms

Dinner 6/16

Ancho and Cocoa Crusted Seitan


Sweet Potato Puree

Shiitake Mushrooms

For the Ancho and Cocoa Seitan -- the seitan medallions were dredged in a mixture of 1 tbs. dried ancho powder and 1 tbs. cocoa powder plus a pinch each of salt and cayenne.

The seitan were pan-fried on medium heat with canola oil for about 2-3 minutes per side for a nice crust, and then finished in a 350F oven for 15 minutes.

The sweet potato puree is pretty standard -- boil 1" (peeled) chunks of the sweet potato for 12 minutes, add to the vita-mix along with salt, pepper, soy margarine and a wee bit soy milk to make it creamy.

The sofrito is something Liz has been making the last couple of weeks as a nice change of pace from bottled hot sauces - and it's raw to boot! Cubanelle peppers, cilantro, lime juice, etc...

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Tofu with Mushroom Gravy, Fava Beans

Dinner 6/15

Tofu with Mushroom Gravy

Fava Beans

Our daughter has been lending a hand in the dinner making process lately, and tonight we showed her the three-step method for breading tofu. An important lesson: the "wet hand / dry hand" concept ;)

Both of the kids helped in shucking the fava beans, which really cuts down on the time-consuming prep (there's a reason why fava beans don't show up on too many restaurant menus).

For the tofu, the first pan is filled with 3/4 cup of all-purpose flour and seasoned with 1 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. pepper and 1 tsp. smoked paprika. The second pan has a 1:1 ratio of cornstarch to water, whisked together. The third pan is about a 4:1 ratio of breadcrumbs to nutritional yeast with a little extra pepper thrown in.

The tofu was cut into eight cutlets, and marinated in tamari for at least 10 minutes, and seasoned with pepper. Then it went through the three pans and cooked in a hot saute pan until golden brown on both sides (about 3-4 minutes per side) and finished in a 350F oven for 10 minutes.

Seitan and Peach Roll with Balsamic Vinegar

Dinner 6/15

Seitan and Peach Roll with Balsamic Vinegar

This dish starts with a homemade Seitan strip, cut about 1" in width, which is lightly pan-fried (to give it some color on the inside, but not so much as to make the seitan inflexible).

To assemble, lay out the seitan strip, and position the peach at the end of the strip with a single piece of basil on top. Roll the seitan around the peach and secure with a toothpick. The enclosed package is then browned in the pan again with a little splash of tamari at the end of cooking.

To plate, remove the toothpick and drizzle with aged balsamic. Serve Hot.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Pizza Margherita

Dinner 6/14

Pizza Margherita

Teese, Basil and Tomato Sauce about to go into a 450F oven...

... and about to be devoured. ;)

Friday, June 13, 2008

Mac 'n Teese, Grilled Asparagus

Dinner 6/13

Mac 'n Teese

Grilled Asparagus

While the nation eagerly awaits the Cheddar-style Teese to arrive, we decided to try our son's Mac 'n Cheese recipe with the original Mozzarella Teese.

The only change we made to the recipe, was to add an additional tablespoon of nooch (more for the color than anything). Although, I suppose we could have dropped some turmeric in if we really wanted that gold/yellow coloring... but it's irrelevant, because it just tastes so darn good.

To top the dish, we marinated some asparagus in olive oil, pepper and tamari and grilled them while the mac 'n teese baked.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Seitan, Mushroom and Teese Fajita, Grilled Corn

Dinner 6/12

Seitan, Mushroom and Teese Fajita

Grilled Corn

The seitan was sliced thinly, pan-fried until golden brown and finished with a splash of tamari, a tablespoon of lime and a shot of tequila. It was cooked for an additional minute or so to allow the alcohol to burn off.

The mushrooms were sliced, pan-fried until they released their liquid and finished with a splash of tamari at the end. Also included were pan-fried red onion, red bell pepper and wilted collard greens.

The tortillas were loaded up with Teese, then the seitan, mushrooms and the rest of the filling -- the Teese melts first and hold the rest of the ingredients together while the tortilla crisps up on the griddle.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Raw Food Wednesday: Pad Thai

Raw Food Wednesday 6/11

Raw Pad Thai

The ol' standby Charlie Trotter/Roxanne Klein recipe. It's good to go back to basics every once in a while -- especially when you have a bunch of young coconuts ;)

The little balls are zucchini, shaped with a 20mm parisian scoop, still looking for a #10, locally...

Monday, June 09, 2008

Tagliatelle Pasta with Fennel, Orange and Broccoli

Dinner 6/09

Tagliatelle Pasta with Fennel, Orange and Broccoli

Long story short: Our pantry doors weren't installed properly 12 years ago, and had been become so misaligned that the doors never closed properly, causing the hinges to break periodically. Last week, a two-man crew came and fixed them -- finally. They had to remove the pantry "box" (which was screwed into the wall), add a 2" piece of wood as a spacer between the pantry and the fridge and install a new type of hinge. Now it closes perfectly. It was a good time to re-org the items in the pantry as well.

One of the things we found in the pantry was a package of taliatelle pasta from Trader Joe's that was a little bit... old. For the topping we combined a quick saute of red onion, fennel, tofu and orange segments along with some steamed broccoli and coated the whole thing with a sauce of reduced veg stock and nutritional yeast.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Grilled Seitan, Wilted Beet and Radish Greens, Mushrooms, Haricot Verts, Cherry and Strawberry Crumble with Cherry Ice Cream

Dinner 6/08

Grilled Seitan

Wilted Beet and Radish Greens

Cremini Mushrooms

Haricot Verts


Cherry and Strawberry Crumble with Cherry Ice Cream

Yes, grilled seitan again -- we're working on getting the grill marks just right ;)

Tonight the seitan sat on a bed of beet and radish greens -- a wonderful alternate to chard or collard greens -- and hugely underrated. They were cut into a chiffonade and stir-fried with a little olive oil, pepper and a little tamari at the end.

As berry season is underway, the lovely cherries and strawberries made for a great crumble, topped by cherry ice cream. Why yes, I will have another bowl!

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Vegetable Hot Pot, Rice Dumplings, Szechuan Eggplant, Grilled Sesame Asparagus

Dinner 6/07

Vegetable Hot Pot

Rice "Dumplings"

Szechuan Eggplant

Grilled Sesame Asparagus

The Hot Pot is your standard "stir-fried vegetables braised in brown sauce" with garlic, ginger, tamari, water and cornstarch used as a thickener. The veggies were carrot, red bell pepper, baby corn, shiitake mushrooms along with tofu. We made mini-rice balls in the deep fryer as sort of dumplings, floating on top of the sauce.

The eggplant was wicked hot -- tamari, agave, sriracha, rice wine vinegar combined and the sauce poured over the stir-fried eggplant pieces and reduced until thickened.

The asparagus was blanched and marinated with sesame oil/tamari and then grilled.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Ma Po Tofu, Fried Rice, Hot and Sour Soup

Dinner 6/03

Ma Po Tofu
(from Morimoto)

Fried Rice

Hot and Sour Soup
(from Veganomicon)

We tried a different recipe for Ma Po Tofu, this time from the new Morimoto-san book ""Morimoto: The New Art of Japanese Cooking" -- but it's the same basic idea -- hot/spicy tofu!

The basic subs in the recipe are: soyrizo (or soaked/fried tvp) for the pork, and vegetable stock with an added 1 tbs. sherry. other than that, it's good to go...

We haven't made the Hot and Sour Soup from V'con in a while, but it worked well as part of the theme of hot tofu. ;)

Monday, June 02, 2008

Seitan Medallions with Port & Cherry Reduction Sauce

Dinner 6/02

Seitan Medallions with Port & Cherry Sauce

We had made two seitan "sheets" over the weekend, so we cut the second batch into medallion sized pieces using a round cookie cutter. We seared the medallions on both sides and finished them in the oven (350F for 15 minutes). They were topped with a simple cherry and port reduction sauce.

We made the seitan using the same recipe we use for the Hezbollah Tofu recipes. It's the old-skool way of making it where you rinse out the bread flour until the gluten develops -- the only tweak we make to it is to pound out the seitan until it's about 1/2" thick, then boil it in water for 15 minutes, and then pressure cook it in a flavored broth (water, tamari, garlic, ginger) for another 15 minutes.

Cherry/Port Reduction Sauce
(serves 4)

1 tbs. olive oil
1 small shallot, thinly sliced
1 clove of garlic, sliced
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
24 cherries, pitted
1 cup of port (unfiltered/unfined)*
1 cup of vegetable stock
1 tbs. low sodium tamari
salt and pepper to taste

Heat a saute pan to medium-low, add the olive oil and sweat the shallots for 4-5 minutes. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook for one minute further. Add the cherries and cook for 2-3 minutes. Increase the heat to medium. Off heat, add the port. Return to heat and reduce by half. Add the veg stock and tamari and reduce by half.

Remove 12 pieces of cherries for topping, and set aside. Puree the remaining sauce mixture in a high speed blender until smooth. Return the sauce to the pan and reduce over medium low heat for an additional 5 minutes or until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon quite well. Check for seasoning.

Spoon the sauce over the seitan medallions and top with reserved cherry piece.

* thanks to Anonymous for bringing this up in the comments: I failed to point out that we used a 2002 Coturri Freiberg Zinfandel (which is unfiltered/unfined and has some residual sweetness, and very port like) in place of the port. We usually mention it in recipes that use port, but didn't here, so my apologies...

Sunday, June 01, 2008


Dinner 6/01

Baba Ganoush

Okra, Coriander and Tomato


Pomegranate Eggplant

Green Beans and Tomato

Pita Bread

A table full of Mezze (or Meze), little bowls of appetizer-sized bites, served along with pita bread. We made the tabbouleh earlier in the day (Paula Wolfert's recipe from "Mediterranean Grains & Greens"), letting the bulgur soak up the flavors by chilling it for a few hours.

The green beans were a riff on loubieh, slow cooked with onions and tomatoes, which doesn't destroy the green beans as you might think. Instead it infuses them, melding the flavors and make sthem melt in your mouth.

The okra were broken down into thin rings and cooked with onions in olive oil for 20 minutes, then the tomatoes, coriander and a little water were added and cooked for an additional 20 minutes on low.

I peeled and smoked half of the eggplant in cherry and apple wood for 20 minutes, then baked it for 20 minutes longer before putting it in the vita-mix along with tahini and the other spices -- a definite winner -- the smokiness wasn't overwhelming and brought out a rich depth that is sometime lacking in commercial versions.

The other half of the eggplant was cut into half moons, sauteed and with onions, tomatoes, basil and eventually pomegranate syrup to create a silky, lightly perfumed dish that was served at room temp. I could have eaten twice as much of this...