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30/09/2008

Spanish Stew

I veganised this recipe a few years ago before I was vegan and it has been a firm favourite in my household ever since. I made a HUGE pot of this tonight so I will have leftovers for my lunch for the next few days as well but THAT'S GREAT - it is impossible to get fed up with this rich tomato-ey protein packed stew.
Serve with warm crusty bread and a glass of Rioja and try not to notice it's raining outside your window in Grimsby!
Spanish Stew serves 8 Ingredients Olive Oil for frying ( I have some homemade Chili oil that I use ) 3 jars/tins of drained Beans ( I used Butterbeans, Pinto and Red Kidney ) Half a large Onion, diced 3 cloves Garlic, chopped 2 tins Red Peppers 10 pitted Black Olives, chopped in half 2 tins Tomatoes 1 teaspoon Tomato Puree Half a teaspoon salt Dash of Soy sauce 10 Slices of Pepperami Style Sausage Black Pepper Fresh Basil 1 Bay Leaf All the weights and measurements are guessed so don’t be afraid to add more or less as you see fit. And of course, if you have the time, you can soak and pre-cook the Beans instead and use fresh Red Pepper that you peel yourself using the flame trick. Method In a large saucepan add the Olive Oil and fry the Onion and Peppers for 5-8 mins stirring regularly. Add the Garlic and Olives and continue cooking for a few more mins. Then add all of the Beans. Cook for a further 10 mins stirring now and again to make sure the Beans don’t stick to the bottom of the pan. Add both tins of Tomatoes, the Tomato Puree, Salt, Soy Sauce and Bay Leaf and place a lid over the saucepan. Simmer on a low heat for an hour to an hour and a half, stirring every 10 mins or so. 10 mins before cooking time is finished add some sliced Pepperami Style Sausage and chopped fresh Basil. YUM!
27/09/2008

Stuffed Seitan Roast

Was totally inspired by this recipe here - I changed it a little bit (as you do) and also adjusted the cooking times. It makes a HUGE Roast so I would lessen the ingredients next time - probably by half - but it was really delicious and I've put the rest in the freezer for lazier days. I sliced it thinly and fried what I was using for dinner in some Olive Oil for 2 mins on each side and served with all the usual Roast Dinner trimmings. YUM! Seitan Roast serves a small continent Wet Ingredients 1 1/4 cups Thick Vegan Beefy Broth (Bisto) 1 box Silken Tofu (about 8 oz) 3 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast 2 Tbsp Soya Sauce 2 Tbsp Olive Oil 1/2 tsp Black Pepper 1 tsp Garlic Salt 1 tsp Onion Powder 1 1/2 tsp Italian Herbs Dry Ingredients 2/3 cup Soy Flour 3 cups Vital Wheat Gluten Stuffing Ingredients 4oz White Breadcrumbs (3 large slices) 3 Tbsp Suet (Atora) 2 Slices Med Onion, diced small 2 tsp Mixed Herbs 1 tsp Sage Grated rind of half a Lemon Salt and Pepper Milk to bind 1 Flax Seed Egg Replacer Broth Ingredients 2 1/3 cups Beefy Vegan Broth (Bisto) 1 Tbsp Soya Sauce 1/2 tsp Pepper 1/2 tsp Oregano Method First make the Stuffing. Mix the Breadcrumbs, Suet, Herbs, Lemon Rind, Salt and Pepper in a bowl. Add the Onion and mix well. Add the Flax Seed Egg Replacer and enough Soya Milk to bind everything together. Set to one side. Now to make the Roast. Place all the Wet Ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. In a big bowl add the Soy Flour and Vital Wheat Gluten. Mix wet ingredients into dry. Knead for a few minutes, cover and let sit for one hour. Roll out until thin (this takes a lot of muscle) Add filling, being careful not to go near the edges. Roll into a log shape. Wet edges and press edges down firmly to seal. Pinch ends, and press roll down firmly. Squeeze slightly on ends to fit into pan. Place in 9 x 13 brownie pan. Mix all the Broth ingredients together and pour over the log. Cover log with foil. Preheat over to 180 add log and cook one and a half hours. Turn log and baste with the broth. Cover and cook for another 40 minutes. Remove log from broth; reserve broth for gravy. Wrap tightly in foil and bake for another 40 minutes more. Let cool slightly before unwrapping. Cut into thin slices and serve. If you are preparing this in advance then heat some Olive Oil in a pan and fry the slices for two minutes on each side prior to serving.
Stuffing Rolled out and Stuffing spread across Roll Up! Roll Up! Cooked and sliced It's what Sundays were made for!
26/09/2008

Then I felt bad.....

For not posting about the Pasta we had! It got over looked in all the Chocolate Pie excitement and that is wrong because it is gorgeous Pasta. The sauce is one that I make in batches of two and each batch is good for serving 4 people either with Pasta or as a Lasagne or Eggplant Rollatini's. I freeze what I don't use in handy sized containers so as I always have Pasta Sauce in my freezer for a quick and delicious meal - like last nights was.
Pasta Sauce serves 8 Ingredients 1 tsp Olive Oil 1 Large Onion, diced 2 Cloves of Garlic, crushed 1 Large Carrot, peeled and diced 2 x 400g Canned Tomatoes 5 fl oz Red Wine or Vegetable Stock 1 Bay Leaf 1 Tbsp Fresh Basil, diced 1 tsp Dried Oregano Salt Freshly Ground Black Pepper
Method In a pan add 1 tsp Olive Oil and fry the Carrot and Onion for 10 mins stirring regularly. Add the Garlic, Tomatoes, Red Wine (or stock), Basil, Oregano and Bay Leaf and cook on a gentle heat for 20 mins. Take out the Bay Leaf and whizz with a hand mixer or in your blender. Easy Peasy! The Sauce can be reduced down by cooking for another 20 mins or so - with the lid off and stirring regularly. Sometimes a thicker sauce is required especially for Lasagne. For this Pasta I then fried half an Onion in a little Olive Oil, then added some button Mushrooms which had been quartered, a Clove of Garlic thinly sliced and a handful of chopped Black Olives. Added one batch of Pasta Sauce and Bob's yer uncle! Boiled some Pasta, added that to the Sauce and served with a sprinkling of Parmesan. It was delicious.
25/09/2008

Chocolate Pie

I really should stop with the Vegan baking experiments. "Why?" I hear you cry. Because someone has to eat them and I share my house with a diabetic so that duty is left solely to me. A tough job I know - but someone's gotta do it. Whilst I always reduce the sugar content in all the recipe's I make - they are still not diabetic friendly. Though friendlier than most admittedly. My partner will treat himself to a slice or two of cake for his mid morning snack but he does have to limit himself. Bless. Anyhooo....I made Chocolate Pie for pudding tonight (I don't usually make puddings - we are a one course household unless it's a special dinner party) and my beloved saved himself from eating a load of pasta which we had for our main course, so as he could have a slice of Chocolate Pie. He was glad he did. The verdict? "That's Chocolate Pie that is."
23/09/2008

Pea and Ham Soup and Caaaake

More Soup Shenanigans in the treehugger household today. I always loved Pea and Ham soup in my pregan days and I've been dreaming about re-creating this recipe and, naturally, veganising it. It didn't disappoint. Pea and Ham Soup serves 4 Ingredients Half a Pint (550ml) of Dried Marrowfat Peas 3 Pints of Water 2 Medium Potatoes, peeled and sliced 1 Leek, trimmed and washed 2 Rashers of your favourite Vegan Bacon, diced 2 Bay Leaves Salt Freshly Ground Black Pepper Method Soak the peas in the water in a big pan for 12 hours. Strain the peas reserving the water and then rinse the peas thoroughly with cold water. Place back in the pan with the strained water, add the 2 Bay Leaves and bring to a boil with the lid on. Boil for one and a half hours - stir regularly. Add the sliced Potato, Leek and half the Bacon. Simmer for another 30 mins with the lid off, stir regularly. Check that the Peas are cooked - they should be soft and squishy but still retain their shape. remove the Bay Leaves and leave to cool. When cool - place the contents in your food blender and blend until smooth. Transfer back to the saucepan.Add the remaining Bacon and season to taste. I found it needs quite a lot of salt but add it gradually as it is easier to add more than it is to take away. This soup will be very thick - it's one of it's characteristics. However, if you want it to be thinner just add some Vegetable Stock until you get the consistency you're after. Heat through and serve. Yum!
Before my vegan days I used to love baking, well...I still love baking it's just that I haven't done enough vegan baking to be confident at the results I will get. There's been a few hits and misses. Tonight I felt brave enough to have a go at veganising a Farmhouse Cake recipe that I used to make frequently in my pre-vegan days. And Oh my Lordy Lord! The success of this has given me a kick up the pants to try and veganise some more of my pregan favourites. This cake is delicious! It is light and fruity and caramelly and just....ahh ...wonderful. Farmhouse Cake Ingredients 1 cup Wholemeal Flour 1 cup Plain Flour 1/2 cup Sultanas 1/2 cup Dried Prunes, chopped up 1 tsp Mixed Spice 1 tsp Cinnamon 1/4 cup Sugar 1/4 cup Gooseberry Jam 1 cup Soya Milk 2 tsp Vanilla Extract 1 Tblsp Maple Syrup (plus more for drizzling) 200ml Canola Oil 1 tsp Bicarbonate of Soda 1/2 tsp salt Golden Granulated Sugar to sprinkle on top Method Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. In a large bowl, toss together the Flour, Bicarb, Fruit, Sugar, Cinnamon, Mixed Spice and Salt. In another large bowl whisk together Soya Milk, Vanilla, Maple Syrup, Jam and Oil. Gradually add the wet ingredients to the dried and mix until combined. Thoroughly grease a cake pan 9 inches in diameter and 2 inches deep (if it's any smaller or deeper you will have to adjust cooking times) and pour in the cake mixture. Bake for 60 minutes in the middle of the oven. My oven's rubbish so I had to put a layer of tin foil over the top after 20 mins otherwise it would have burnt to a crisp! Just keep an eye on yours to make sure this doesn't happen. Take the cake out the tin by placing a flat plate over the top of the tin and inverting the whole thing over - then transfer the cake to a wire cooling rack. I drizzled over some Maple Syrup whilst it was still hot and was then going to sprinkle on some Golden Granulated Sugar - but I'd ran out. DOH! Anyway.....Mmmmmm...caaaaaaaake..........
22/09/2008

Vegan MoFo!!

I can't believe I haven't posted about this already!! It was whilst reading Pick, Cook and Brew that I realised the error of my ways. So yeah...Vegan Mofo...what's that all about then I hear you cry. Basically it means that all participants (and there's blinking lots of us) will spend as much time during the month of October cooking vegan food and then blogging about it (and about veganism in general) as is human(e)ly possible. I'm really excited about this as it will be a perfect opportunity for me to get some quality content on my very new blog so as it won't look all empty and lonely in cyber space.
18/09/2008

Asparagus Soup

A title to make the PPK'ers giggle for sure!
One thing I hate more than anything is waste. One thing I hate possibly more than waste is wasting food. I NEVER throw away food, if I have something that needs using I will use it. One thing I love more than anything is Autumn! And one thing I love more than Autumn is SOUP (OK I'll stop now). I find making soup to be so satisfying. The heathen in me likes the fact that everything is done in one big pot and soup making is kitchen witchery at it's finest. Soup is so good for using up left overs that I rarely make the same soup twice. They are varied and different each time depending on what veggies I have that need to be used. We had Asparagus the other night and I always save the bits of the spears that don't get used and make soup with them. Apparently they are tough and stringy but these characteristics are lost in the process of soup making. I always save the water after I've steamed any veggies as this makes wonderful stocks and gravies. I have lots of plastic tubs that I save for the sole purpose of storing this vegetable stock in the freezer and inevitably my freezer gets rather full up with them so soup making season started at the right time! I also had half an Aubergine (Eggplant) left in the fridge so that got chucked in as well. Some home made croutons and a fresh baked Ciabatta and you have yourself a very fine and filling meal in no time.Asparagus Soup serves 3-4 Ingredients Bunch of leftover Asparagus Stalks 1 Medium Onion, sliced into thin rings 2 Cloves of garlic, diced Half and Aubergine (Eggplant), chopped into cubes - skin and all 1 Litre of Vegetable Stock Bay Leaf 1 teaspoon Italian Mixed Herbs (Thyme, Oregano, Sage, Rosemary) 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil Salt and Pepper Heat the Olive Oil in a big saucepan, add the Onion rings and cook on a medium heat for 5 mins stirring every now and again. When the Onions start to turn translucent, add the Garlic, Asparagus stalks and Aubergine. Fry for another 5 minutes. Add the Vegetable stock and Bay Leaf and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes with the lid on. Remove the Bay Leaf and put the contents of the pan in the blender. Whizz for a few minutes until everything is smooth and there are no lumps. Transfer this back to the pan, add the Herbs and Salt and pepper to taste and heat through. Croutons Slice of Bread 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil 1 Clove of Garlic, diced Squeeze of Lemon Juice Cut the Bread into cubes. In a baking pan place the Olive Oil and Garlic and squeeze Lemon Juice over the top. Add the Croutons and toss so they are all covered in the oil. bake in a hot oven for 15 mins checking regularly and tossing a few times throught the cooking time. Sprinkle on top of the soup.
16/09/2008

Scrummy Seitan Satay

Boy have I got a corker for you tonight! I've made this dish a few times and every time it blows my mind how good it is and I wonder why I've not blogged it before! Seitan Satay Ingredients makes 8 Half small Onion 2 teaspoons of Peanut Oil 2 Cloves of Garlic, chopped 1 Tablespoon Dark Brown Sugar 4 Tablespoons Peanut Butter (crunchy or smooth - I've made it with both and it don't matter) +/- 1 teaspoon of Chili Powder, to taste Half tin of reduced fat Coconut Milk 1 Tablespoon Soy Sauce Squeeze fresh Lemon 100g baked seitan, sliced into long chunks 8 Bamboo Skewers Directions Finely chop the onion and fry it in the peanut oil until soft. Add the garlic and cook for another couple of minutes. Stir in the brown sugar, peanut butter and chili powder in that order. Then add the coconut milk and continue to stir for about five minutes. Finally, stir in the soy sauce and take off the heat. Slice the baked seitan in long strips about half an inch wide and 4 inches long. Carefully push a Bamboo Skewer into one end of each piece of seitan until there's about 2 inches of the skewer visible. Grease a shallow pan with Peanut Oil and place on that each skewer. Heat in a hot oven for 5 mins then turn the seitan over and heat through for another 5 mins. Pour over the Satay Sauce and heat for another 2-3 mins. Take out the oven and give a squeeze of fresh lemon over the whole lot. DELISH! I served mine with Spinnach and "Parmesan" and Mediterranean Roasted Vegetable Cous Cous with Sun Dried Tomatoes - recipe for this to come. Roasted Vegetable Cous Cous with Sun Dried Tomatoes
Ingredients serves 6 1 Red Pepper 1 Yellow Pepper 2 Garlic Cloves, sliced thinly 1 Courgette (zucchini) 8 Cherry Tomatoes 1 Small Aubergine (eggplant) 6 Small Mushrooms, quartered Sprig of fresh Rosemary 1 Red Onion 1 Tbsp Olive Oil 2 cups Cous Cous 2 ½ cups Vegetable Stock (or water) 4 Sun Dried Tomatoes in oil, drained and sliced thinly Salt and freshly ground Black Pepper to taste Directions Preheat the oven to 220°C/425°F/. Cut the red and yellow pepper in half and remove the seeds, then cut all of the vegetables in 2.5cm (1 inch) pieces. EXCEPT the tomatoes - leave these whole. Tip all the veg intoa large roasting tin, add the sliced Garlic and Rosemary sprig and drizzle over the Olive Oil, tossing to coat evenly. Season with Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper and roast for 30-35 minutes or until the vegetables are tender and lightly caramelised, tossing occasionally throughout cooking. Meanwhile, prepare the Cous Cous. Boil the vegetable stock or water. Put a large pinch of salt and a dribble of olive oil in the bottom of a non-stick saucepan. Add the Cous Cous and stock (or water), swirl around a bit, cover and stand for 5 - 10 minutes. Fork through so that the grains separate. Do this a few times whilst waiting. When ready (the cous cous should have a little bit of "bite" to it) add the sliced Sun Dried Tomates toss together then add all that to the pan with the vegetables in and mix round really really well. Return to the oven for 5 more mins. Add more Salt and Pepper if desired - serve and enjoy! Parmesan Spinach Ingredients serves 4 1 Bag Fresh Spinach Leaves 1 Clove of Garlic, diced 1 teaspoon Olive Oil 1 Tablespoon Vegan Parmesan (I use the one out of Vcon - it's divine!) Salt and freshly ground Black Pepper Directions Rinse the Spinach and shake off excess water. Heat the Olive Oil in a skillet, add the Garlic and fry on a low heat for a minute or two. Add the Spinach and cook for 4 minutes. Season. Place in a warm serving dish and sprinkle with Parmesan. Serve!
15/09/2008

Eggplant Rollatini with Spinnach and Toasted Pine Nuts

Man oh man I can hardly move with my belly so stuffed. Made yet another awesome recipe from Vcon - Eggplant Rollatini with Spinnach and Toasted Pine Nuts. This is just soooo freaking awesome I don't know where to begin. You'll just have to make it for yourself - it's the only way. I made a bit of a boo boo whilst making this. Well in actual fact I made two boo boo's. The first one was that I fried the breaded Eggplant and then proceeded to bake them as well!! As I put them in the oven I thought there's no way I'm gonna spray them with more oil - there's plenty (and then some) in them already and there's NO WAY they'll bake for 20 mins what was Isa and Terry thinking!! I decided to bake them for 10 mins instead and whilst they were in the oven I then read the recipe properly. The fact I'd already read the recipe through a good few times (like ten times) obviously hadn't made any difference - the recipe states that you EITHER fry them OR bake them....NOT BOTH YOU FOOL!!! *ahem* The second boo boo wasn't quite as silly - I whizzed up the Pine Nuts in the blender because I thought you added them to the breading mixture and there was no way they were gonna stick to the Aubergine if they were left whole!! THEN I realised as I was assembling everything together for the final stage of the dish that you add the Pine Nuts when you add the Spinnach and roll them up. DOH! But we live and learn as they say and I've learnt to read a recipe and understand it completely BEFORE setting foot in the kitchen. I didn't use riccotta either I finished up the last of the Besto Pesto.
Absolutely delicious dish and one I know I'm gonna make over and over again!
Served with some Fresh Asparagus (possibly last of the seaseon *sniff*)
14/09/2008

Kiwi Adventures

I had recently bought a HUGE tray of Kiwi fruit from the Supermarket because I do like a good kiwi. I had been having one every day as a snack but realised today that the remaining four would need to be used up pronto. So I thought I'd make Kiwi Jelly. Why not? No good reason I could think of. Not even not having a jelly mold wasn't enough to dissuade me. I'm quite pleased with how it turned out. It's not very sweet (you might want to add some sugar if you like sweet jelly) it is clean and fresh tasting and would be superb after any meal - to...ya know...clean the palate and all that.
Ingredients 1.5 Tablespoons Agar Agar Flakes Half Cup Boiling water 4 Kiwis, peeled Tblsp Maple Syrup 1 Cup Bottled Water (or filtered - whatever you have) The easiest way to peel a Kiwi (giggle) is to cut the knobbly end of and using a vegetable peeler peel downwards from the cut off end. Peel all 4 Kiwi's and slice 5 or 6 slices to line your jelly mold with later, set them aside and place the rest of the fruit in the blender. Blitz for 3 or 4 mins until smooth. Scoop out all the pulp and place in a mixing bowl. Take the cup of cold water and put it in the blender - swilling round to get all the last pulpy bits up. Pour that into the mixing bowl with the pulp and stir. Add the Maple Syrup and stir again. Place the Agar Agar in a saucepan, add the boiling water and stir continuously for 3 mins. Add to the mixing bowl with the fruit pulp and stir well. Line a jelly mold (I used a big pudding dish) with the kiwi slices you reserved earlier. One on the flat bottom and the others round the edges. Pour in the jelly mix and refrigerate. I left mine in the fridge for 3 hours. Lunch was some Besto Pesto tossed with some pasta. Simple but delicious. Dinner was pizza with tomato, olive and more Besto Pesto. I tell ya, whilst my taste buds will lament when the Basil has all gone from my garden, my waist line will, at least be grateful. This stuff is addictive.
13/09/2008

And the award for the best kitchen utensil goes to..........

The humble rubber spatula. I never realised this utensil's full potential until it came to getting a gloopy mixture out of the food blender. Having only owned a stand alone blender for a few months I was seriously regretting buying it and wish I had replaced my broken stick blender with a new stick blender. The shapes I was having to contort myself into to get to all the gloopiness was no joke. So as I was pawing my way through the pages of Vegan with a Vegeance I noted with mild interest that one of the kitchen utensils listed was a spatula. "Yeah right" I thought "Like I need another useless utensil to clog up my already clogged up kitchen drawers even more!".
Well the fickle finger of fate played a role in my life the other week as I was aimlessly walking round town and nipped in to a todo todo shop (a bit like a pound/dollar store). There on the shelf was a pack of 3 rubber spatulas of various sizes for the bargain price of 60 cents!! How could I resist? So I made my purchase, went home, unloaded my shopping and placed my new set of spatulas in the utensil drawer with an air or skeptism. Haha! The last laugh is on me. I decided to make some pesto tonight as I had a bit of tofu in the fridge that needed using up and I realised it was the perfect opportunity to try out my new gadget. All I can say is "How did I ever get by without one of these before?!!" I am a complete spatula convert and so I am dedicating this post to all the spatulas of the world. We do love and appreciate you - we really do. So yeah...onto the pesto (sorry spatula - food always takes the limelight).
Besto Pesto 1/8 Cup Pine Nuts 20 Fresh Basil Leaves 80 grams Firm Tofu 2 Cloves Garlic 1/2 Cup Olive Oil Pinch of salt Dry roast the Pine Nuts in a frying pan for a minute, toss the pan and fry for another minute. Place Pine Nuts in blender. Peel and roughly chop Garlic, crumble the Tofu and place both in the blender along with the Basil Leaves. Blitz for a few minutes. Add half the Olive Oil and blitz for another few minutes. With your spatula, scrape the sides. Blitz for a few more minutes then add the remaining oil and a pinch of salt. Blitz the whole lot again until everything is smooth and there are no lumps. And HEY PESTO! Delish
I'm storing mine in the fridge over night and will use it tomorrow with pasta. YUM!

Shop Goodies and Fudgey Brownies

Well my panic buying wasn't too too bad - there were plenty of packs of silken tofu on the shelf and at 2.20€ a pop I limited myself to 4. On my way to the shops though I stopped off at an Asian store I had never been to before and I'm so glad I did. I managed to pick up Nori Sheets for 2.90€!!! That's 4 euros cheaper than my local Health Food Shop charges! Sweeeet! Also scored some Raw Cashews, Mock Abalone (seitan fried gloop - YUM!), Coconut milk Powder (I have no idea what I'm gonna do with this but I'll think of something).
So it was an excellent start to the day! And also an excellent end to the day because I ended it making Brownies. At half past ten. YAY! Lots of people have been raving about this recipe here so I thought I'd give 'em a try and see what all the hype is about. And boy oh boy oh boy. Am I ever glad I did. These really are the most chocolateyest, fudgeyest, gooeyist brownies EVER! I adjusted the recipe, as you do, so I will post my take here for you. And I implore you all to try this - you will be smitten.
Fudgey Brownies 1/2 Cup Sugar 1 Cup All Purpose Flour 1/3 Cup Green and Black's Cocoa Powder (if you can't get this use the BEST quality Cocoa powder you can find - don't scrimp on this, 'kay!) 1 Tblsp Freshly Ground Flax Seed 1/4 tsp Salt 1/2 tsp Baking Powder 1/4 Cup Vegetable Oil 1/3 Cup Water 1 Tblsp Maple Syrup
Turn oven on 180 degrees. Liberally grease a baking pan, I have an oblong one that's 9 inches by 5 and was perfect for this. Place all the liquid ingredients in a bowl and give a good whisk. Place all the dry ingredients in another bowl and stir - DO NOT sift ANYTHING! MOVE AWAY FROM THE SIEVE! Add dry stuff to the wet and stir well. Place the mix in your pan - make sure it's even and pop in the oven for 20-25 mins. Bob's yer uncle and Fanny's yer aunt! I decorated mine with icing sugar, raspberries and mint 'cos I think it looks purrrty - but these babies don't need anything - they are scrummy as is.
12/09/2008

Today I are mostly Panic Buying Tofu

For anyone who has been to Spain you will appreciate my predicament on how hard it is to buy vegan products here, excluding Madrid and Barcelona. For those of you who haven't it is bloody hard and I deserve a medal. To my sheer delight (and the delight of the other thousands of British expats who live on the Costa Blanca) Iceland have opened a store in my town. AND IT IS FREAKING AWESOME! Not that I ever shopped there when I was in the UK, but having lived here for 7 years I do miss certain British foods - you know like Branston Pickle and stuff like that. I visited there for the first time last week and you can imagine my delight when I espied silken tofu on the shelf. I can buy the unsilken type quite easily from my local health food shop (which has been my saving grace) but I have NEVER seen the silken type. So I bought some to try. Now it is vacuum packed which isn't ideal but hey - beggars can't be choosers right, I used it in the Ceaser salad recipe in Vcon which requires silken tofu and OMG!! It is AMAZING!!
Gratuitous shot
If you haven't tried this recipe I implore you to - it is in my top favourite recipes EVER!! And I notice that most desserts require silken tofu so I am quite excited about all the yummy recipes I can now make with my new found supply of the silken stuff. I'm now planning on going to the store today to buy ALL the packs they have on the shelf because I'm frightened that if a product doesn't sell well they will discontinue it - and that would destroy me - so hence why I am panic buying tofu.
08/09/2008

Vegan Cook Books

It seems men (my boyfriend in particular) CAN take hints and act on them. Amazing as it seems, my constant hinting at what I'd like for my birthday was duly noted and bought to fruition. HURRAH! Two cook books I have coveted for months and months are now in my possession. Veganomicon and Vegan with a Vengeance - both by the lovely Isa Chandra Moskowitz - super punk vegan cook who was joined by Terry Hope Romero (I just LOVE her name) in the creation of Veganomicn. I have been dying to get my hands on a vegan cookbook ever since turning vegan - which was seven months ago and these two don't disappoint. Tonight we had the Portobello Salad with Spicy Mustard Dressing from Veganomicon. And WOW!!! This is an AWESOME recipe! I didn't put the shrooms on top of the salad as the recipe suggested cos I think they are a work of art in themselves. I will definitely be making this recipe again and again.