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Isa Does It: Vegan Cookbook Review

Published January 22, 2014 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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My copy of Isa Does it came right in the middle of our last move in mid-October, so it got flipped through and filed away for a good long time before I actually took it for a test drive in my kitchen last week.

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I had originally pre-ordered a kindle edition, but then I was on the PPK one day, and saw they were having a promotion for these cute little reusable bags with proof of pre-order. So I went on amazon, to screen shot my purchase, but it sort of looked like the kindle edition wasn’t happening. Not only that, after hearing Isa talk about how nice the hardcover was going to be, I was having second thoughts. (Coming from the girl who owned Appetite for Reduction in BOTH editions, this shouldn’t be a surprise though.) So I cancelled my kindle order and put in for the hardcover. Looks like that’s the only thing currently available on amazon anyway, but I’m so glad I did! It is a really nice big book with great pictures, that does a great job of staying open to the recipe you’re cooking from. (The ultimate cookbook feat!)

And I’ll just tell you right upfront. This book is GREAT. Easy, fast, cheap. She’s totally got the amazing taste on a weekday timeline thing down. No crazy hard to find ingredients. It’s really made me want to cook at home all the time again. Something that’s been really lost for me for the last 2 years, ie. ever since I moved out of my giant kitchen.

Here’s what I’ve tried so far…

Dragon Noodle Salad and Sesame Tofu

Dragon Noodle Salad and Sesame Tofu

This was awesome. I traded grated carrots for sliced cucumbers (Thomas doesn’t like cucumbers, but loves pickles!) and skipped the sesame seed garnish. I chopped some cilantro right into the kale I used for the greens. The Sesame Tofu is broiled with some tamari & sesame oil. Easy peasy, and super delicious.

Did my prep in the food processor to make this super fast.

Did my prep in the food processor to make this super fast.

Instead of dredging, I let it marinate for an hour

Instead of dredging, I let it marinate for an hour

and broiled it in the same pan.

and broiled it in the same pan.

Sunflower Mac

Sunflower Mac

Next up was the Sunflower Mac. A lot of the recipes in this book call for soaked cashews (which Thomas may or may not be sensitive too, the jury’s still out), but Isa gives you the option to use soaked sunflower seeds instead. This particular recipe is made with just that, in honor of Ms. Jess Scone of Get Sconed(/the PPK/VidaVeganCon), who is allergic to tree nuts. Now I already knew from the past that Isa tends to give you extra sauce (and she mentions it in this recipe) so I used 12 ounces of pasta instead of 8, and threw half a bunch of kale in with the pasta for the last 2 minutes. Still PLENTY of sauce to go around. I also added an extra 1/2 cup of nooch (nutritional yeast) and used smoky sweet paprika all over it instead of just sweet, because YUM.

Kale Salad with Butternut Squash & Lentils pg. 77

Kale Salad with Butternut Squash & Lentils pg. 77

I have no idea what size my butternut squash was, but it was of a small to medium size and I chopped it up and roasted all of it for this recipe. I also used one bunch of kale (called for 8 ounces/cups), and extra garlic and ginger in the sauce. This came out GREAT.

Got the lentils and greens nicely tossed in there

Got the lentils and greens nicely tossed in there

and then added the lovely roasted squash after it cooled slightly.

and then added the lovely roasted squash after it cooled slightly.

Jerk Sloppy Joes with Coconut Creamed Spinach pg. 94

Jerk Sloppy Joes with Coconut Creamed Spinach pg. 94

Next up was the Jerk Sloppy Joes. The other alleged culprit in Thomas’ mystery allergy is now gluten, so we weren’t able to find any gluten free AND vegan buns, so we made this two ways. With tiny gluten free bread, and also as a bowl with brown rice. The recipe calls for gluten filled seitan, but offers up 2 gluten free suggestions: 2 c. of lentils or 1 package of crumbled tofu. We took the road less traveled by… I used the soy curls I had picked up two weeks ago at Food Fight! in Portland.

I put 2 cups of soy curls in warm water for 10 minutes to rehydrate.

I put 2 cups of soy curls in warm water for 10 minutes to rehydrate.

Then chopped it up as called for in the recipe.

Then chopped it up as called for in the recipe.

It worked beautifully!

It worked beautifully!

And here it was as a bowl!

And here it was as a bowl!

Pureed Split Pea & Rutabaga Soup pg. 31

Pureed Split Pea & Rutabaga Soup pg. 31

And for last, here’s the split pea and rutabaga soup. I had never had rutabaga before, so I was curious about this one. It also called for star anise, but I totally forgot to put them in 15 minutes after the boil, and threw them in at the end, so the taste wasn’t as pronounced. I had to blend the soup in two batches in the Vitamix, and I left just a teensy bit unblended which gave it a nice surprise pea here and there, which I didn’t mind. This was really good, comforting, and creamy. The leftovers were yum, and had more of an anise flavor too.

Final Impression:

YAY! A new Isa book that is everything I needed it to be! I can’t believe that I can get food that tastes this good, this easily on a weeknight. Thanks for breathing life back into my kitchen, Isa. Oh, and for those of you who care, all of the above dishes were made GLUTEN FREE.

Because once wasn't enough for you to look at this adorable picture of Isa and I at Vida Vegan Con II.

Because once wasn’t enough for you to look at this adorable picture of Isa and I at Vida Vegan Con II.

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Vegan MoFo 2013:12 Maple Dijon Tofu Chops (w/ Trader Joe’s sprouted tofu) & Roasted Brussel Sprouts

Published September 23, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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So here’s a dinner that was going SO WELL, until I made a terrible mistake, and ruined the whole pot of beans. I thought it was a perfect meal for the new cooler weather: Apple Baked Beans, Maple Dijon Tofu Chops & Roasted Brussel Sprouts. Thankfully I was also trying out a delicious recipe from More Peas and Thank you for the tofu, and using my favorite way to cook the brussel sprouts, this baking method, so we still had a really nice dinner. But even after going so long without a kitchen mishap, it happened to me. We ate dinner whilst attempting to air out burned bean smell from the apartment.

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These were the super promising beans from The Great Vegan Bean Book in the works. They were full of all kinds of yummy things, and smelled great.

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Then came the fatal mistake… they were supposed to simmer for 1.5 hours, and I forgot to drop the heat. Yah… I was interrupted by a phone call, and simply glossed over the lowering. I think they made it a good 50 minutes before we smelled something burning. At this point I thought it was the brussel sprouts, which were already in the oven, but they looked good. Then I happened to check the beans, just to see how they were doing…

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F A I L !

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After the beans were put on to “simmer” I got the tofu ready so it could marinate for a while. I used two packages of Trader Joe’s sprouted tofu. The texture on the tofu was fantastic! I love sprouted tofu because it’s extra firm, and you don’t have to press it. It can be a bit spendy at Whole Foods (like what isn’t?) but it’s very reasonably priced at TJ’s (like everything else!). I cut each package in half widthwise & lengthwise to make 4 nice sized “chops”.

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I decided to use my baking method for tofu rather than the broiling method in the original recipe, since I made my chops so thick.

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These came out perfectly!

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I used about 2 cups of whole brussel sprouts, but 3 would’ve been better!

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Prepped them by cutting them in half, placing them face down, and misting with olive oil, and a sprinkle of salt & pepper.

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Still a stellar dinner, despite the beans set back. I served the chops with applesauce, as directed by the recipe, and it was a lovely symphony of flavors. The sweet applesauce contrasted nicely with the smoky, [purposefully] singed brussel sprouts, and the tofu had wonderful flavor and texture. There were NO LEFTOVERS. At the end, Thomas was just standing over the sink, holding the last of the tofu chops in hand! (This is why I double the tofu for ANY recipe. There is always more than enough marinade, and Thomas is a Tofu Monster.)

So that’s another win for More Peas and Thank You. Great book. And it’s another non-win for the bean book. Though this one was totally my fault! The last recipe from it was under seasoned, so I was hoping for a win this time, but sadly, I think I will just buy a can of baked beans in the future like I originally told myself. We’ll see. The fate of that pot is still questionable.

How is your MoFo going? My parents get here tomorrow, YAY!!!!!!!!!!!! But I will try to get a couple of posts up this week. It’s their first time visiting the Pacific Northwest and we’re all very excited about their visit!

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More Peas, Thank You’s Tempeh Stroganoff

Published April 6, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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I’ve been doing the amazon vine program for several years now, but have kind of been slacking for some time. It’s a program where they give their top reviewers (All of those reviews I wrote about kitchen utensils and cookbooks eventually paid off!) the chance to try products for free, as trade for reviewing them. It’s actually a big part of the reason I went vegan, if you want to know the truth. Some of the first selections I made were Alicia Silverstone’s The Kind Diet and Why We Love Dogs, Eat Pigs, and Wear Cows (which btw, was so graphic, I couldn’t even finish, and am still haunted by) back when I was thinking about going vegetarian again. I ended up going vegan instead, and staying vegan as a result!

The offerings are usually very book heavy, but I hadn’t seen a cookbook I was interested in for a long time. When I saw a vegetarian book, I got excited and figured I could veganize the recipes easily, and could use a kick in the butt to get cooking again.

Since I left my giant kitchen a year ago, and moved into smaller apartments in Fort Lauderdale and Seattle, my previous zest for cooking had diminished proportionately with my diminished counter space. Sure it’s not as bad as cooking in that tiny studio in Brooklyn, but it’s less than ideal. Unfortunately, that’s just city life, no matter what city you’re in, or at least it is in my price range!

Now onto the book…

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Turns out more peas, thank you is already a vegan cookbook, with no help from me. Sure she does offer the organic, ovo-lacto vegetarian option as well, but they’re written vegan first. I was so excited about my good luck! It also turns out that this book is a sequel to her peas, and thank you volume, and that she writes a blog over at peasandthankyou.com, if you want to check out some of her recipes and writing style.

I started out by reading the entire book back to front (I also read magazines in this fashion) and dog earring all of the things that sounded good, whilst reading out titles to Thomas. Happily, I dog eared most of the book. The recipes sounded good, and were generally not too fussy, which I appreciate these days. I attribute that to her whole mother of two craziness thing that she writes about so often in her intros. I will also say this, I’m so used to anecdotes from the friends that I have that now have kids, that even this was okay. It’s most of the book, but at least it’s usually humorous, and sometimes even a little snarky!

The Tempeh Stroganoff was the first recipe I made, by Thomas’ request…

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I chose to chop the onions in the food processor, because for some reason I really can’t stand chopping onions anymore. I end up burning and crying so much that I have to leave the kitchen and flush my eyes out with water repeatedly. (Though I think these bagged onions I bought from WF twice now are especially bad!) That being said, I chose to pulse the tempeh into crumbles in there as well instead of grating it as called for in the recipe. I highly recommend doing both of these things for convenience & as a time saver. Besides that, I followed the recipe exactly.

Results:

Easy, filling, delicious! I had never had Beef Stroganoff before, so I didn’t have much to compare to, but Thomas said it was pretty similar. I thought it was great, and had the pleasure of eating the leftovers for lunch the next day. The depth of flavor she achieved in this fairly simple meal left me excited and motivated to keep on cooking from her book. Expect to see more reviews of her recipes in the coming days. 🙂

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Blissful Bites Mac N Kale Salad!

Published March 30, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

It’s hard to believe I hadn’t written a review of this salad yet! Months ago I saw Dawn over at Vegan Moxie post a picture of this salad and knew I must try it right away. I bought a kindle copy of Blissful Bites before we moved, but hadn’t really gotten to explore it due to my extreme decrease in cooking at home since then.

This should really be called Pizza Kale salad b/c it’s much more reminiscent of that comfort food, over mac n cheese due to its sun dried tomatoes and nooch.

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Ingredients aren’t too complicated, and the only mixing you do is in the bowl, with your hands. (Easy!) This was the 1st time I used an avocado that wasn’t way overripe, so I even retained some pieces of it this time after massaging everything together!

Sorry, it's a little blurry! I was in a big hurry to eat my delicious salad!

Sorry, it’s a little blurry! I was in a big hurry to eat my delicious salad!

I’ve made this a number of times now due to its addictive nature. Initially, I couldn’t find plain, dry sun dried tomatoes, so I used the ones in olive oil and omitted the extra oil. Now that I found some at Trader Joe’s (our WF doesn’t carry them), I use a tsp. of the leftover [now] tomato infused oil for the recipe. In fact, the last time I made it, I was out of the tomatoes and just used the infused oil, and it was still good. (So much so that I ate the whole giant bowl in one sitting!)

You can find out more about macrobiotic chef Christy Morgan, her book, and her recipes over at her website, TheBlissfulChef.com. I’ll be meeting her for the 1st time/karaokeing with/seeing her in a couple months in Portland for Vida Vegan Con! 🙂

Oh! And Spring has finally begun over here in Seattle! Here’s what greeted me when I left the parking garage on aptly named Cherry Street today!

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Tomorrow’s going to be 68, and Thomas is actually OFF! I may get to stroll around town in a halter dress instead of a 3/4 length coat! 🙂

Quick and Easy Low-Cal Vegan Comfort Food’s Basic Tofu Recipe

Published February 18, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

This post is actually from way back in October, and was supposed to be one of my blog posts for Vegan MoFo! Not too surprising, since life has been kind of crazy and chaotic since then with all the traveling and moving we’ve done since.

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This is Quick and Easy Low-Cal Vegan Comfort Food’s yummy basic tofu recipe, only with a package of tempeh thrown it too. I find most cookbooks make enough marinade for two packages of tofu, but in this case, I had only one package, so I made it with tempeh too.

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Result: Turned out to be a GREAT idea! I think the tempeh was even better than the tofu, in fact! These were great eaten on their own, and mixed in to other dishes. Very tasty! I need to cook/review some more of the recipes in this book for you. It’s definitely a keeper.

Quick and Easy Low-Cal Vegan Comfort Food’s Slim Alfredo, CPV Garlic Bread, & Ganon

Published September 14, 2012 by Vegan Derby Cat Party


So I’ve been meaning to tell you about Alicia Simpson’s new cookbook, Quick and Easy Low-Cal Vegan Comfort Food. I had pre-ordered it for my kindle as soon as I could, and based on the couple of recipes I’ve already tried, I think it’s going to be a new fave. In this case, she slimmed down her Alfredo recipes from her 1st book, Quick and Easy Vegan Comfort Food, which I had actually always meant to try, but never gotten around to. Here she admits that part of her original recipes’ charm was the copious amount of oil. In this case the base is soft, silken tofu, which funny enough, I almost forgot to add in at all. And then I added to much of… hahaha!

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Since I was going all out indulgent for our first meal home together as a family [with Ganon’s arrival] I decided to make a nice loaf of garlic bread to go along with dinner. Now don’t think I went crazy here and baked the bread too, I mean, I had a new kitten at home! I picked up a nice multigrain loaf at the grocery store and slathered it with garlic-y goodness.

Cameraphonevegan Garlic Bread

1 loaf of italian or french bread
or
2 smaller loaves

2-3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried parsley, or 1 tbsp fresh
1 tsp olive oil
1/3 c. non-hydrogenated vegan buttery spread, softened
3 tbsp vegan parmesan

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine spread, garlic, oregano, parsley, olive oil and parm.

2. Either cut loaves in half lengthwise, or make 1″ slits vertically, but not all the way through bread. Spread mixture on both sides of cuts. Wrap in foil and bake for 12 minutes in oven.

If you have any leftover garlic parm butter, you can store it in the fridge for a couple of days in a ramekin covered with plastic wrap. Spread it on toast, bagels, pizza crust, etc.

Here’s a picture of Thomas & Ganon getting to know each other while I was cooking dinner! More at the end!

So back to dinner. It’s a really easy recipe to follow. You boil the pasta. Throw all the sauce ingredients in the blender to combine. She recommends steaming some broccoli to add in to the finished result, but I decided to just throw it in with the pasta for the last 2-3 minutes. It’s way easier, and I’d just come off of eating high raw, so I wanted my broccoli to retain much of its fresh texture as possible.

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After putting all the ingredients in the blender and whizzing away, I kept saying, “It just doesn’t look like enough sauce for all of this!”

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Then I remembered I had totally forgotten to add the main ingredient… 2 packages of soft, silken tofu! Oh yah!

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Then there was a TON of sauce. Way more than you need in fact.

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Which was kind of hard to tell by looking at the two separate entities.

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But became extraordinarily evident when combined!

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The next day I added a whole bag of frozen spinach (that I rinsed in a colander with hot water) to the leftovers, and still had more than enough sauce!

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The garlic bread was AMAZING!!! 🙂

Results:

Even though the sauce was way too much, the flavor was really good. I ended up adding a bunch more nutritional yeast to it though. EDIT : Alicia Simpson contacted me asking if I used the big 14oz tubs of silken tofu or the 12oz tetra packs! I forgot, I USED THE TUBS! I only went on the quickest of shopping trips to the nearby grocer and couldn’t find the tetrapacks I would normally use. There was some moment that I briefly remembered, and meant to check the recipe to see which it called for, but then I completely forgot until I got her message. Yes, with the smaller packs of tofu, I would obviously not have had as much extra sauce. Still might add in 1 pack first, and then a little at a time. A good excuse to make this recipe again! The garlic bread did a good job of using up that extra sauce though!

I also can’t wait to try out numerous other amazing sounding recipes from this book! You should check it out.

And now more pictures of Ganon for you. Ganon is a Devon Rex. We got him from a breeder because it’s a fairly rare cat, and we couldn’t find any rescue devons nearby. A friend of ours has two, and we made sure Thomas spent lots of time visiting with them and not reacting to them, since he was SO allergic to my previous kitties. Devon Rex cats are the closest thing to hypoallergenic I could find, and he has had no problems with the breed in general. They’re not actually hairless, like the Sphynx cat, but Ganon had recently molted his coat when we picked him up. The breeder did say that his particular coat was thinner than some of the other kittens, so he was a good choice for us, given the reason that we were looking for a cat. So he may never have a full coat, but it is starting to come in a bit now, and it should be well filled in by 6 months.

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Appetite for Reduction’s Chili-Lime-Rubbed Tofu, Mashed Yuca & Kale Salad

Published April 24, 2012 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

Well, by the end of this past weekend I finally had unpacked and organized all of my remaining kitchen items. (A few things had to be returned to their owners or donated.) I made out a meal plan for the week, for what seemed like the first time in ages, and headed to the store. I’ve been favoring AFR lately in an attempt to make my cooking life a little simpler and leaner. And I even managed to make a couple of dishes from it in the midst of being half unpacked the last few weeks.

This ended up being 3 courses of mixed latin fusion inspired goodness.

The Kale salad was of my own invention to use up some ripe mango and avocado I got from my mother. I used kale because I’m addicted to it and crave it all the time, but I snuck in a little chiffonade of basil since I had just bought it and it smelled so good. It made for a very nice, fresh contrast. I added black beans and some super fresh corn to give it a sort of mexi vibe, and dressed it very lightly with lime juice, a tiny mist of olive oil, a pinch of salt, and some fresh ground smoked black pepper.

Mango, Avocado, Kale salad

1 bunch of kale, stems removed, ripped or chopped into tiny pieces
10 basil leaves, cut into chiffonade or chopped finely, optional
1 mango, small dice
1 avocado, small dice
1 can of black beans, well rinsed
1 tbsp. of red onion, chopped finely
fresh corn cut from one ear
lime juice, to taste
olive oil, optional
salt & pepper

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I was going to try Isa’s suggested Mashed Yuca with Cilantro & Lime, but both stores I went to were curiously out of cilantro. I was already planning on buying the Goya frozen yuca instead of buying fresh, since that’s all I’ve ever seen my family use, and it was easier. That’s what’s in that pot there below on the right, 2 small bags worth. I had a little red onion left from the salad, so that’s the pink you’ll surely notice in my final result. I used this and 2 big cloves of garlic to make a quickie mojo, because I just can’t imagine eating yuca without it. So I’ll put my little version here as well. It sure tasted good. But honestly, just the yuca straight out of the salted water tasted amazing. I love yuca. I had never made it before. I did use Isa’s suggestion for reserving a cup of the cooking water to mash with.

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So I made a double batch of the tofu, because Thomas is a tofu eating machine, and I wanted some leftovers to eat with the leftover salad for lunch the next day. (PS- I did, and they were extremely delicious together!) So that’s me putting fork holes in two bricks of sprouted, prepressed tofu. The only thing I didn’t double in the marinade was the oil. I stuck with just the 1 tsp. and I used less salt in the rub, and not quite double the chili powder.

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In the marinade…

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With their rub on…

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Baked, flipped, baked some more & outta the oven…

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Ty’s Mojo Infused Mashed Yuca

2 lbs of frozen yuca chunks (I used the Goya Brand), cooked according to package directions/taste. I like mine a bit “al dente” for lack of a better term. Yuca will get mushy, but for me the perfect texture is still firm on the inside.
1 c. of reserved cooking water
1 tbsp. finely chopped onion
2 large cloves of garlic, very thinly sliced
mist of olive oil
2 tbsp. lime juice, split

Directions:

1. In the last 5-10 minutes of yuca cooking, spray a small skillet with a little olive oil and lightly fry up onion and garlic. As it gets dryer, splash in 1 tbsp. of lime juice, and cook down.

2. Drain yuca and return to pot or to a large bowl you can mash it in. Remove the fibrous little strings in the centers of the chunks, preferably with a fork so you don’t burn your fingers. Add “mojo” mixture, additional lime juice and enough cooking water to get to your desired consistency. Mmm! This made a wonderful bed for the tofu.

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Final Thoughts…

So if you’re really cool, you could knock this out in 30 minutes flat. If you make the salad while the other 2 cook. I’m not that cool, so it took me somewhere between 45-60 minutes so that I could include dancing and beer drinking too. If you haven’t checked out Appetite for Reduction, it’s worth checking out. The recipes are a lot simpler than let’s say the Veganomicon, but still packed with plenty of flavor and guiltier items too like corn bread and onion rings, etc. I like it so much I even bought the kindle edition with the intent of selling back or giving away my hard copy, but don’t think I will after all. 🙂

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Angelica Home Kitchen custom sammies

Published February 7, 2012 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

When I asked Thomas yesterday what he’d like to eat in the next few days, he asked me to make the yummy sandwiches I accidentally came up with a while back trying to recreate the Sam or I sandwich from Angelica Kitchen in New York. Instead of the kraut and seaweed that appear on said sandwich, I use oven roasted carrots and onions, and some steamed greens. For variety, any of their sandwiches can easily be made into a bowl, by serving over a grain instead of bread. All of the recipes come from their cookbook, Angelica Home Kitchen (available cheapest on their website). I was happy that at least if we were eating cooked food, we’re eating some quality macrobiotic deliciousness! Regardless, after eating some of the leftovers for lunch today, I couldn’t help but notice the difference in how I felt eating cooked food again. I missed the lighter feeling of eating raw, and am thinking lunch is probably a great time to continue to do so.

The recipe for Soba Sensation sauce makes a lot (a whole spaghetti jar’s worth) but I’m going to use the rest of it over a package of soba noodles later in the week as a bed for some [made from their cookbook] Candle 79 crusted seitan. Oh and P.S., Thomas is making seitan this week, the long way, from actual bread flour using Candle’s recipe. So wish him luck! ; )

Baked Tofu with Lemon-Rosemary Marinade, pg. 105

I made a double batch because there is a tofu eating monster that lives in my house, and also because the other recipes make so much!

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Oven-Roasted Onions and Carrots, pg. 168

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Steamed Greens, pg. 99 (Just steam them for 5 minutes. That’s it.)

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Soba Sensation Sauce, pg. 209

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That’s a tasty sandwich! Served on sprouted grain bread.

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High Raw, Week Two: Kale Salad & Thai Wraps

Published January 22, 2012 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

So this week we continued on our raw journey, though it wasn’t full raw; we added in some grains. Thomas had some grits for breakfast a few days this week, and we had that brown rice. We also ate a whole loaf of sprouted grain bread, most often toasted.

After I made the brown rice to go with the beet burgers on Monday, I ate the leftovers for lunch Tuesday with some sunflower seeds, nutritional yeast, and dijon mixed in. It was tasty and filling, but it felt heavy after all my raw food eating, and all I craved for the rest of the day was a kale salad, in the worst way! So for dinner I came home and made a BIG kale salad adapted from The 30 Minute Vegan‘s Rainbow Kale Salad, pg. 138 (amongst other things, I added a pear for some sweetness),  and a whole lot of Thai Wraps adapted from RAW FOOD real world. This made so much that we were able to eat this yumminess for days (the latter is actually an appetizer recipe for 12), a major plus.

Kale Salad

1 bunch of kale, stems removed and chopped into tiny pieces
1 half green cabbage, shredded and chopped
1 grated carrot
1/2 red bell pepper, chopped finely
1/2 yellow bell pepper, chopped finely
1 green pear, finely chopped

Dressing:

1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp. evoo
1 garlic clove, grated
1 tsp. maple syrup
1 tsp. braggs
pinch of cayenne

Directions: Combine salad ingredients in a very large bowl. Whisk dressing ingredients and massage dressing into salad with clean hands. Let it sit in the fridge or out for a little while to let the flavors absorb, and the kale soften slightly.

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I made a lot of adjustments to the  Spicy Thai Vegetable Wraps, RFRW pg. 143. I cut the oil in half for the chopped raw cashew mixture, which worked just fine. I used green instead of savoy cabbage, and for the almond butter sauce, I halved the recipe, and had more than enough sauce to coat it completely. I also used a combination of lemon and lime juice, and instead of a red chile,  a little cayenne and red pepper flakes. My bean sprouts went bad, so sadly they were also left out. Also, I ran out of basil, so I just used a little more cilantro and mint. I didn’t bother at all with the tamarind dipping sauce, since they were plenty tasty on their own. So I ended up with…

Thai Wraps

1/2 c. raw cashews, chopped
1/2 tbsp. sesame oil
couple pinches of sea salt

1/2 green cabbage, shredded

2 tbsp. maple syrup
2 tbsp. lemon juice
2 tbps. lime juice
2″ piece of ginger, chopped
pinch of cayenne
pinch of red pepper flakes
3/4 tbsp. braggs
1/2 c. almond butter

1 bunch of collard greens, stems removed and cut down the middle into two halves
2 small carrrots, cut into matchsticks
1 ripe mango, cut into thin strips
large handful of cilantro, finely chopped
large handful of mint, finely chopped

raw cashews, sesame oil, sea salt, mixed in a small bowl

maple syrup, lemon juice, chopped ginger, cayenne, crushed red pepper flakes, braggs, and almond butter blended in blender and tossed into green cabbage

ready to assemble

take the stem out of the collard leaf and use half for each wrap

fill and roll

I ended up with 10 beautiful wraps. 12 if you don't have any halves you don't like.

Results:

The leaves were really sturdy and thus, made these keep really well. So we were able to eat these delicious and fresh tasting wraps for days. The flavors complemented each other well, all the different textures were nice together, and provided a lot of crunch. Once they were all assembled, I thought they would’ve looked like pretty little Thai enchiladas if I had drizzled them with some tamarind dipping sauce, but I was already ready to be out of the kitchen and eating at that point, so I didn’t bother! ; )

More Veganomicon Shepherdess Pie!

Published October 25, 2011 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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I was just finishing up my lunch of leftovers and had to share! I made the awesome Veganomicon Shepherdess Pie last night, with the same tweaks as last time (1 tbsp. liquid smoke in the tempeh) and (nutritional yeast in the smashed potatoes), PLUS I threw a finely chopped, medium carrot in there too, and it was super yum! If you don’t own the Veganomicon, or lack someone nice enough to let you borrow it, you should probably add it to your wishlist or shopping cart, and stat! : )

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