Friday, October 2, 2015

Vegan MoFo 2015 Recap

I just finished my 3rd Vegan MoFo and again I'm really proud of myself.  I posted all but one day and I'm going to make many of my recipes again.  I absolutely love the Vegan English Muffins and I will be making them again really soon!



And I also love the Vegan Cheese Queso and that I can make some awesome Vegan Nachos.  These are just three of the many new recipes of the month.




Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 30 - Vegan Asian Cabbage Ramen Noodle Salad

I made this salad for our cast party this summer and it was a huge hit!  Everyone loved it – young and old alike!  It’s so tasty!  I was asked to bring it to a meeting we are having because everyone loved it so much. 




Asian Cabbage Ramen Noodle Salad

Salad Ingredients:
1 head of cabbage shredded or 2 bags of coleslaw mix
1 bunch of green onions, sliced both whites and green tops
8 Tablespoons slivered almonds
4 Tablespoons sunflower seeds
2 packages of oriental ramen noodles


Dressing Ingredients:
¾ cup of sunflower oil
4 Tablespoons rice vinegar
2 Tablespoons sugar
2 packets of the seasoning from the ramen noodles
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon fresh ground pepper

Directions:

Put the cabbage or slaw mix in a big bowl with the green onions, almonds and sunflower seeds. 

Break up the ramen noodles in the package by crushing them in your hands or pounding them with something.  Brown over medium heat in a frying pan.   Be careful not to burn.  Put in the bowl with the cabbage.

Make the dressing by putting all the dressing ingredients in a measuring cup and stir.  Pour over the cabbage mixture and stir the salad well to coat everything.


Refrigerate 2 – 4 hours.  

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 29 - Vegan Butternut Squash and Potato Casserole

Here’s my version of a butternut squash casserole.  The butternut squash makes it sweet and delicious.  I think I will be making this for my Thanksgiving dinner this year!




Vegan Butternut Squash and Potato Casserole

½ a butternut squash peeled
2 medium Yukon gold potatoes peeled
½ small sweet onion finely chopped
1 Tablespoon Earth Balance Margarine
1 Tablespoon flour
1 cup non-dairy milk
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon thyme

Slice the squash and potatoes thinly.  Arrange in an oiled casserole dish.  Layer the squash and potatoes alternately in a layer. Dot with the margarine and sprinkle the onions over top.  Continue with the layers.

Mix the flour with the non-dairy milk and add the salt and thyme.  Pour over the squash and potatoes.

Cover with foil and bake for 1 ½ hours at 400 degrees.

This makes a smaller casserole version.  If you are making it for a family meal, I would double the amounts and use a larger casserole dish.


I used the leftover butternut squash and made my favorite butternut squash soup!  YUM!  Added bonus for me!

Monday, September 28, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 28 - Vegan English Muffins

I know I’ve said this a lot but I’ve been meaning to make these English muffins for a while too.  These English muffins are wonderful.  They aren’t necessarily labor intensive but they take a while to make with the waiting time.  So, worth the effort.  We all love them! 




Vegan English Muffins

Starter
¾ cup of flour
½ cup water
½ teaspoon active dry yeast

Mix all three of these ingredients and stir until smooth.  Cover and let stand for 10-12 hours.

English Muffin Dough
1 cup of non-dairy milk
1 teaspoon active dry yeast
2 Tablespoons sugar
2 Tablespoons Earth Balance margarine melted
1 teaspoon salt
Starter
3 cups of flour
Cornmeal for dusting


Mix the non-dairy milk, yeast, sugar, melted margarine and salt.  Stir in the starter. 
Slowly add the flour.  Stir and knead until dough comes together until smooth.

Cover and refrigerate overnight to rise.

Dust a baking sheet with the cornmeal.  Break off little piece of dough and form into about a four inch circle and kind of flat.  Put on the baking sheet.  Continue with the rest of the dough.  This should make 12 to 16 muffins.


Heat a skillet with a little oil in the pan.  Cook over medium heat for about 6 minutes.  

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 27 - Beet Soup

I really love beets.  I’ve found that not many people like beets at all.  I think they are so tasty! 

I decided to try to make a quick beet soup.  And I must say it is very tasty.  I like how it’s like a vegetable soup with the beets chopped and the potatoes and onions.  It’s pretty simply but yummy!




Beet Soup
1 can of sliced beets with juice, chopped up
1 big Yukon gold potato peeled and chopped
½ small onion chopped
2 cups water
½ tsp salt
½ tsp dried thyme


Add all the ingredients into a sauce pan and bring to a boil.  Cook until potatoes are tender.    

Friday, September 25, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 25 - Stuffed Mushroom Casserole

I’ve been craving a mushroom casserole/dish for a while.  So, here’s my first version.  I love the flavor! 




Stuffed Mushroom Casserole
8 ounce package of mushrooms
1 Tablespoon Earth Balance margarine
½ small sweet onion, chopped finely
1 stalk of celery, chopped finely
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon thyme
1 piece of bread, crust removed and crumbled finely
1 Tablespoon Earth Balance margarine
1 Tablespoon flour
½ cup non-dairy milk

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Clean the mushrooms and trim the stems.  Pull the stems out of the mushrooms and chop finely.  Melt the margarine in a skillet and add the chopped mushroom stems, onion and celery.  Sauté until soft.  Add the salt and thyme. 

While the mushroom stems, onion and celery are cooking chop up the whole mushrooms.  Put these pieces into a small casserole dish.  In a pot melt the margarine and whisk in the flour.  Slowly add the non-dairy milk and continue to whisk.  Pour mixture over top the chopped up mushrooms in the casserole dish.

Add the crumbled piece of bread into the skillet and stir well.  Sprinkle this mixture over top the mushrooms in the casserole dish.

Cover and bake in a 350 degree oven for 15 minutes.  Take the cover off and continue to bake about 15 minutes until the top is brown.


Serve with crackers or over thin slices of a baguette.  


Thursday, September 24, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 24 - Carrot Ginger Salad Dressing

I’ve been craving a carrot ginger salad dressing for a few days.  So, I finally whipped it up today.  I think it would also be wonderful over some grated carrots.  I may have that tomorrow! 



Carrot Ginger Salad Dressing
3 small carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
2 Tablespoon sweet onion
½ teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon sesame oil
2 teaspoons soy sauce
2 Tablespoons rice vinegar

Put the carrot chunks and onion in a pot and add enough water to cover (about a cup.)  Cook over medium high heat until carrots are tender – about 20 minutes.  Cool.

Put the carrots, onion and cooking water into a blender.  Add the ginger, salt, sugar, sesame oil, soy sauce and rice vinegar.  Blend until smooth.




I had mine over romaine lettuce and sliced grape tomatoes.  It is absolutely delicious.  It has a nice spicy flavor.  If you like a sweeter salad dressing, you might want to add an additional teaspoon of sugar.  

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 23 - Vegan Nachos

After I made the awesome queso cheese I knew I had to put together some nachos.  Wow!  They are amazing! And pretty easy too.  I just heated up the refried beans on the stovetop and heated up the queso in the microwave.  Then we just layered all the ingredients on top of the tortilla chips.  Dave and I loved them!




Vegan Nachos
Tortilla chips
Vegetarian refried beans (no fat refried beans are vegan too)
Vegan sour cream
Salsa
Diced red onion
Black beans
Black olives sliced

Heat the refried beans in a pot on the stove.  Meanwhile, heat up the queso cheese dip in the microwave. 


Put a few handfuls of tortilla chips down as the base layer.  Then put spoonfuls of all the ingredients.  

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 22 - Easy Vegan Spaghetti Sauce

This has to be the easiest and most basic tomato sauce for your pasta.  I absolutely love it.  I use my immersion blender on the tomatoes for a smooth sauce but you can just let the tomatoes break down while cooking.




Easy Vegan Spaghetti Sauce
28 ounces can of whole peeled tomatoes
4 tablespoons Earth Balance margarine
1 medium sweet onion
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper

Put the tomatoes in a sauce pan.  Use your immersion blender to make a smooth sauce.  Peel and cut the onion in half and add to the tomatoes.  Cut the margarine into 4 pieces.  Heat for 5 – 10 minutes on medium heat until the margarine melts.  Stir.  Lower the heat to low and keep the sauce at a slow simmer for at least 45 minutes.  Stir every ten minutes and crush the tomatoes in the pot with a wooden spoon if you didn’t puree the tomatoes first.   

Discard the onion and add the salt and pepper. 

Serve over your prepared pasta of choice.  I love it over angel hair pasta and pasta nuggets. 


It’s a very thin sauce.  If you like a thicker sauce, you may want to add a few tablespoons of tomato paste.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 21 - Vegan Cheese Queso Dip

I had some leftover of my cheese sauce so I thought I’ll try to make queso.  And it’s so awesome!!!  I just took my cheese sauce (recipe here) and added about four tablespoons of Rotel tomatoes and green chilies including the liquid.  



Vegan MoFo Day 20 - Everyday Vegan Items

I can’t believe I didn’t post yesterday.  So, I’m going to post this one for Vegan MoFo Day 20 and I’ll also post for today’s Vegan MoFo later tonight. 

I’ve been thinking a lot about when I started my plant based way of eating three years ago.  I really didn’t know what to eat so I ate a lot of bread.  Yup, just plain bread.  I was out in California helping my parents with some health issues.  My mom and I would go to the Dutch bakery and get two loaves of bread.  Sometimes we would eat about a quarter of it before we even got home.  It was that fresh and yummy.  But whenever I got hungry during the day I would just grab some of that yummy bread. 

I want to put together a list of Everyday Vegan Items.  I’ll be updating my thoughts.

Everyday Vegan Items
o   Bread
o   All vegetables
o   All fruits
o   Peanut butter
o   Jelly
o   Crackers
o   Sorbet
o   Tortilla chips
o   Salsa
o   Pretzels
o   French fries
o   Hummus
o   Pickles


When I’m hungry now, I love peanut butter and jelly on bread or crackers.  

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 19 - Black Bean Burgers, French Fries, and Vegetarian Baked Beans

I’m a little behind in making foods for my Vegan MoFo posts and I don’t have a lot in the archives to pull out.  Here’s a yummy meal that my whole family loves – Black Bean Burgers, French Fries, and Vegetarian Baked Beans.  I really like mine with ketchup, avocado, and diced sweet onions on mine.   Here’s a link to my easy black bean burgers that will sure to be a hit.  They are a great easy meal anytime!  Vegetarian baked beans are awesome too!





Friday, September 18, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 18 - Vegan Apple Cinnamon Loaf

I’ve been planning on making this apple cinnamon loaf for a few weeks.  I wanted to make it when my friend Amy came to visit me.  I haven’t really perfected the recipe at all.  I found a recipe on line and I thought I could make it my own and vegan.  I think I used too much applesauce.  I actually don’t think I needed the applesauce at all since it’s very moist.  Amy is very gracious and said she really liked it but I can’t wait to make a new one that isn’t so mussy.  The flavor was very good and not too sweet.  I’ve provided the recipe but I’ll update it.  You could try it just without the applesauce and I think it work.  I’ll let you know.  Amy and I both think it would be great on vanilla ice cream (vegan for me of course.)



Apple Cinnamon Loaf

¼ cup brown sugar (packed)
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ cup raw sugar
½ cup vegan margarine (Earth Balance)
½ cup applesauce (1 individual serving 4 ounces)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 ½ cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ cup non-dairy milk
1 apple, peeled and chopped very fine

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a loaf pan. Mix brown sugar and cinnamon together in a bowl and set aside.

Beat raw sugar and margarine together in a bowl until smooth and creamy. Mix in the applesauce.  Stir in the vanilla.

Stir the baking powder into the margarine and sugar mixture.  Slowly add the flour.  Then slowly add the non-dairy milk into the batter.  (I used coconut milk creamer).

Put in half the batter into the loaf pan.  Sprinkle with half the chopped apples and half of the brown sugar and cinnamon. 

Put the rest of the batter into the pan.  Top with the rest of the apples and brown sugar and cinnamon mixture. 

Bake in the 350 degree oven for about 35 minutes.  Test by using a toothpick or knife to make sure it comes out clean. 



Thursday, September 17, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 17 - The Subway Veggie Sandwich

When I’m traveling I find that I tend to try to find a Subway especially in airports.  I know I will get a vegetable packed sandwich.  I love getting them at the John Wayne Airport because they use fresh avocados on their sandwiches.  I wish they would waive the extra charge since I don’t get the cheese but I’ve lost that battle.  (Believe me I've tried.)

Here’s a picture of what I usually get: lettuce, spinach, tomatoes, cucumbers, pickles, onions, black olives, avocado slices, and salt and pepper.  Love it! It totally hits the spot and is so filling!



Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 16 - Vegan Cheese Sauce

I’ve been trying different vegan cheese sauces recipes out there and I’ve come up with my own.  I really like the combination of the potatoes and carrots to give it the orange color and the texture.  I think the grapeseed oil helps with the smoothness.  I’m not a huge fan of the nutritional yeast taste so I only put a little in my version. 




Vegan Cheese Sauce
1 potato, diced
2 med carrots, diced  (or 1 large)
2 Tablespoons grapeseed oil or olive oil
1 Tablespoons nutritional yeast flakes
2 Tablespoons water (use the reserve cooking water first)
½ teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon onion powder
1/8 teaspoon celery salt



Instructions:
Boil the potatoes and carrots in salted water until soft.  Drain keeping the liquid on reserve to use for the water.

Add the potatoes, carrots, grapeseed oil, water, and seasonings in a high speed blender.  Blend until very smooth.  Use some of the reserved water if needed to thin out if necessary.

Store in the refrigerator for up to one week.  Heat over medium low heat or in the microwave if you want it warm.  This makes about 1 cup of sauce.


I was craving the broccoli and cheese sauce I used to eat with my family from the frozen food section.  (The one where you could boil the packed or pierce it and microwave it.)  So, I steamed up a bunch of broccoli and I put my vegan cheese sauce on it and coated it well.  Oh my – it totally hit the spot!  It’s as good as it looks!


Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 15 - Soup Base Seasoning

I came up with this soup seasoning because I wanted to have my own soup base seasoning and not always use the “Better than Bouillons’ No Beef Base or the No Chicken Base.”  I’m trying to get away from packaged food items that may have additives to keep them fresh.  This seasoning is really easy to put together and then you have it when you need it.


Soup Base Seasoning
1 cup of nutritional yeast
2 Tablespoons salt
1 ½ Tablespoons onion powder
1 Tablespoon raw sugar
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 Tablespoon basil
1 Tablespoon thyme
1 Tablespoon Italian seasoning
1 Tablespoon paprika
1 Tablespoon celery salt

Put everything into a high speed blender.  I used my Nutri Bullet and it worked great.  You just need to shake it a few times to keep it going.  Store in an container.  (I put mine in a glass jar.)  I add a teaspoon to enrich the flavor of the soups I make.  It is also excellent in your vegan gravies.



Enjoy!




Monday, September 14, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 14 - Vegan Cream Cheese and Jam on Saltines

I’ve been thinking about making these little cracker bites since the day I first tried the “cream cheese” on my bagel last week.  So, I finally made these yummy little snacks today.  They are quite tasty and very quick and easy!  I think I may try them on Ritz crackers next.  I bet it would be good on a piece of toast too!



Cream Cheese Style Spread, Raspberry Jam on Crackers
Ingredients:
kite hill Cream Cheese Style Spread
Raspberry sreadable fruit
Saltine crackers.



Spread a little bit of the “cream cheese” on the saltine and top with a little bit of the jam (spreadable fruit.)


Sunday, September 13, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 13 - Roasted Beets



I absolutely love, love, love beets!  I don’t usually make them from fresh beets though.  Yes, they tend to be a bit messy and get your hands all red.  I peeled these beets with a knife and I used a paper towel to hold the beet to minimize the redness on my fingers.  I only got a little on my left thumb and pointer finger and it didn’t last. 



Roasted beets are so yummy and have such depth of flavor.  But honestly I love them right out of the can too and especially in my salads.  No one else in my family likes them but that’s okay – more for me! 


Other than peeling the beets, roasting them is very easy and quite delicious.  I would definitely encourage anyone who likes beets to try to roast them.

Instructions -
Peel beets
Cut into quarters
sprinkle with tiny bit of olive oil
Salt and pepper
Bake 450 degrees for 45 minutes to an hour until tender.  YUM



Saturday, September 12, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 12 - 7 Layer Dip


I used to make an awesome 9 layer dip before I went Plant Based.  Now I still can make a version of one with the use of vegan sour cream.  I can make it 9 layer by adding vegan cheddar cheese shreds and diced tomatoes too but I don’t think you need them.  So, here’s my 7 Layer Dip.

Vegan 7 Layer Dip
Ingredients in order to put in the serving dish:
1 can fat free refried beans (vegan)
1 container guacamole
1 container vegan sour cream (I used Tofutti)
Salsa
Bunch of green onions sliced (both the white and green parts)
½ can of black olives sliced (I use and egg slicer)
Tortilla chips

It is so easy to assemble this dish.  Spread out the refried beans on the bottom of a baking dish.   I use my Corning Wear French White oval dish.  Spread out the guacamole.  Spread the sour cream over top of the guacamole – I find it easier to let the sour cream come to room temperature to spread it evenly.  Spoon a layer of salsa over top.  Sprinkle the sliced green onions and sliced black olives.

Serve with your favorite tortilla chips as the 7th layer or actually the first and you add the 6 from the serving dish!  Start at one end and work your way across making sure to get every layer on your tortilla chip.




Friday, September 11, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 11 - kite hill Cream Cheese Style Spread




I was so excited to find out about these spreads and that they are soy free and made with almonds.  I bought both the plain and chive.  I spread the plain on my cinnamon raisin bagel this morning.  And it is pretty good.



Pros: it looks and spreads like cream cheese and has the tangy flavor of cream cheese.



Cons: it’s a little grainy and I can taste a nutty hint to it too.

I think I like the Daiya cream cheese better for bagels but I’m looking forward to putting the kite hill on cracker and adding some jelly to it.  It could also be an acquired taste too and it takes me awhile to get used to different tastes.  I also tend to like a bagel with just a little of my Earth Balance margarine spread.  

I also think the kite hill will be good to use in cooking.  Once I try it on and in a few more things I’ll update my review. 

I can’t wait to try their ricotta cheese though.  I didn’t see at my Whole Foods but I hope it will be there soon.  They also have an artisan product line.  

I just love there are more and more vegan cheese options out there and they are very good! 

Here's are pictures of the packaging:




Thursday, September 10, 2015

Vegan MoFo Day 10 - The Best Chex Party Mix

My mom used to make this Chex Party Mix all the time growing up.  She found it on the Chex cereal boxes in the 70’s.  Now my whole family loves it too.  I just made two batches to send in care packages for my kids! 



Chex Party Mix from the 70’s
½ Earth Balance margarine
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1 teaspoon onion salt
1 teaspoon celery salt
2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
4 cups Rice Chex
4 cups Corn Chex
4 cups Cheerios
2 cups pretzel sticks (optional)

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees.  Melt the margarine in a large roasting pan.  Stir in the spices and Worcestershire sauce.  Pour in the cereals and stir until well coated.  Bake in oven for one hour stirring every fifteen minutes.  Add the pretzel sticks.



Enjoy!

This is truly the best Chex Party Mix out there.  And now it can be gluten free if you use the new gluten free Cheerios and gluten free pretzels!