Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Rosemary Lavender Galette Filled with Pears, Walnuts and Herbed Vegan Cheese

This galette is both savory and sweet. A flaky rosemary and lavender crust. The sweet pears compliment the salty herbed vegan cheese. The walnuts add a nice crunch. A drizzle of vegan BeeFree Honey is the perfect finishing touch.

For the crust:

3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon chopped rosemary
1 teaspoon chopped lavender leaves
1 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cracked pepper
16 tablespoons vegan butter, cubed and chilled well
1/2 cup ice water

Combine flour, rosemary, lavender, salt, and pepper in a food processor. Add in the cold cubed vegan butter. Pulse about 15 to 20 times till butter is cut in and mixture is crumbly. Slowly add in the ice cold water while pulsing till dough forms. Wrap in plastic wrap and let chill for at least 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. 

For the filling:

1/4 to 1/2 cup vegan cream cheese
1/4 cup crushed walnuts
2 pears, thinly sliced with skins left on
2 tablespoons vegan herb cheese (I used TreeLine and KiteHill which I get at WholeFoods)
1/2 teaspoon chopped rosemary
1/2 teaspoons chopped lavender leaves
salt and pepper

Roll out the chilled dough into a large 1/4 inch thick circle. Spread vegan cream cheese in the center of the dough, leaving about a 1-inch ring around the edge free of cream cheese. My favorite vegan cream cheese either the Trader Joes brand or the KiteHill brand. Sprinkle half of the crushed walnuts over the cream cheese. Arrange thin pear slices over the cream cheese starting in the middle. Sprinkle the rest of the crushed walnuts along with the chopped herbs over the top of the pears. 

Drop small little spoonfuls of the vegan herb cheese over the tart. Begin to fold up the edges of the tart, slightly overlapping itself. Leave about a 4 to 5 inch circle open in the middle so you can see the pears.]

Vegan pie crust tends to not brown that much so my vegan egg wash really helps with that! I use equal parts of The Vegg vegan egg yolk replacer powder, soy milk, melted vegan butter, and sugar. I whisk them together and brush over the crust before baking.  Finish off with some more fresh cracked pepper over the whole tart. 

Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes till browned. Let cool slightly before serving. Drizzle with vegan BeeFree Honee made from apples. 

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Sautéed Kale and Vegan Apple Sage Sausage over Creamy Polenta

Garlic and white wine, sautéed kale, broccolini, tomatoes, and Field Roast vegan apple sage sausage on top of creamy polenta, finished with a drizzle of basil lemon olive oil. Vegan cream cheese makes the polenta creamy without watering it down. The vegan apple sage sausage adds a nice heartiness to the dish. And a drizzle of citrusy basil oil helps to brighten up this warming dish.

For the polenta:

3 cups vegetable broth or water
1 cup organic cornmeal
2 tablespoons vegan cream cheese (I prefer Trader Joes brand)
1 tablespoon vegan butter (preferably palm oil free)
Salt and pepper to taste

Bring vegetable broth or water to a boil. Slowly whisk in organic cornmeal. Reduce heat to low and cook for about 15 minutes, stirring often. Turn off heat. Add in vegan cream cheese, vegan butter, salt and pepper to taste. 

For the topping:

Heat a couple of tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat in a saucepan. Add in about 1 cup of chopped kale, a few bunches of brocollini (thicker stems removed), 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes (whole), and 2 to 3 roughly chopped Field Roast apple sage sausages (I used to mini ones). Sauté for a couple of minutes till the tomatoes start to blister slightly and the sausage starts to brown. With the back of a wooden spoon, gently squish each tomato. Add in 3 cloves of chopped garlic. Cook for a minute or so. Add in 1/2 to 3/4 cup vegan white wine. Continue to cook till the wine is reduced a bit. Season with salt and red pepper flakes if you like a little heat. 

Spoon polenta onto a dish and top with the sautéed mixture. Spoon the sauce over the top. And finish with a drizzle of basil lemon olive oil. (Simply the juice of 1/2 a lemon mixed with a few tablespoons of olive oil and some chopped basil).

Miso Tofu and Vegetable Brown Rice Bowl

White miso, tamari, and coconut sugar glazed tofu, sautéed baby bok choy, red cabbage, and sugar snap peas serve with brown rice, topped with chili lime cashews! This recipe makes about enough for 1 person but adjust according to how many you want to feed! 

For the tofu:

1 tablespoon white miso paste
2 tablespoons soy sauce or tamari
1 teaspoon coconut sugar. 
4 ounces organic non-GMO extra firm tofu

Whisk together the miso paste, soy sauce (or tamari), and coconut sugar to combine. Cut tofu into 1-inch thick slices. Place tofu into the miso mixture and let sit for about 5 minutes. Remove from mixture and using side of bowl, scrape off most of the miso mixture from the tofu pieces. Heat a small amount of oil in a non-stick skillet and brown the tofu on each side. 

For the veggies:

1/4 cup roughly chopped baby bok choy
1/4 cup thinly sliced red cabbage
1/4 cup sugar snap peas
1 tablespoon white miso paste
1 to 3 teaspoons soy sauce or tamari (depending on how salty you want it)
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil

For the veggies, heat a small amount of oil in a pan. Add in baby bok choy, red cabbage, and sugar snap peas. Add in the white miso paste, soy sauce or tamari, and sesame oil. Cook the veggies over medium heat until cooked through and lightly browned. 

For the cashews:

1/4 cup raw unsalted cashews
1 teaspoon chili paste
1/2 teaspoon fresh lime zest

 Toss raw cashews with the chili paste and lime zest. 

For the brown rice, cook according to package directions.

Place rice and veggies in a bowl. Top with the tofu, chili lime cashews and some sesame seeds. 

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Vegan French Toast with Blueberry Maple Syrup

This french toast is not only vegan, but free of refined sugars. The batter is made from coconut milk, The Vegg egg yolk replacer, coconut sugar, and vanilla extract. I like the texture of fresh and cooked blueberries so I combine the two with maple syrup and coconut sugar to make the topping for the french toast. You can use any bread that you want. I used a homemade french baguette for this but any bread will do as long as it isn't too soft. 

1 can coconut milk (Both full and low fat works)
2 teaspoons coconut sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon of The Vegg egg yolk replacer (can be purchased here)
1 to 2 tablespoons water (if needed)

Combine the coconut milk, coconut sugar, and vanilla in a blender. With the blender running on low, slowly drizzle in The Vegg. Adding The Vegg in with the mixer running ensures you don't get any clumps and it mixes in evenly. Let this mixture blend for about 30 seconds. Check the consistency. If it seems too thick you can add in some water. You just want it thin enough to it will soak into the bread. 

Slice your bread of choice. You can do thicker slices like I did or thiner slices. 

Pour the mixture into a shallow dish and soak the bread slices for a few minutes. This all depends on the thickness and type of bread you use. I used a thicker cut french baguette so I let them sit in this mixture for a good 3 to 5 minutes. 

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. 

Heat a skillet over medium high heat. Add a small amount of oil. You can even use a paper towel to get out most of the oil to leave a thin layer. Cook your french toast on each side till browned, about 4 minutes each side. Place brown french toasts on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake in preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes. This part is especially important if you have used thick slices. This ensures that the insides are fully cooked through. This makes for a crunchy outside and soft inside. If you used really thin slices you may be able to skip this step entirely. 

For the blueberry maple:

I take 1/4 cup of blueberries and 1/4 cup maple syrup and cook them in a small skillet over medium heat until soft and like a compote. Remove from heat. Stir in 1/4 cup fresh blueberries and 1 teaspoon of coconut sugar.

To serve, place french toast on a plate. Top with vegan butter and your blueberry maple sauce. You can dust with powdered sugar if you aren't avoiding refined sugars. 

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Blackberry Mint Infused Water

A simple way to feel refreshed and energized. It is so easy to create rejuvenating fruit waters. Just blend a few blackberries and mint leaves with fresh alkaline water. Strain through a mesh sieve and pour over ice. Garnish with some more mint leaves.

Vegan Nachos

For the nacho cheese:

1 cup raw cashews
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 tablespoon paprika
1/4 cup roasted red bell pepper
1 whole roasted green chili
1 lemon, juiced

Pour about 2 cups of very hot water over the cashews. Let sit for about 15 to 20 minutes. Remove cashews from water. Place the soaked cashews, 1 cup of fresh water, and remaining ingredients in a blender. Blend on high till very smooth. Check for consistency. If too thick, add more water. If too thin, add more cashews. 

To assemble, layer warm tortilla chips with Beyond Meat crumbles, white beans, chopped tomato and avocado. Drizzle the nacho cheese between the different layers and top with some fresh chopped cilantro and more nacho cheese. 

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Sweet Potato Dumplings in Green Thai Coconut Curry

Sweet Potato Dumplings in Green Thai Coconut Curry with Shitake Mushrooms, Red Pepper, Peas, and Crispy Tofu. A blend of cilantro, basil, spinach, jalapeño, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, lime, and cumin make for the base of the curry. 

For the green thai curry:

In the bowl of a food processor, combine 2 teaspoons ground cumin, 1/4 cup basil leaves, 1/4 cup cilantro leaves, 1/4 cup fresh spinach, a 1-inch piece of fresh ginger (peeled), 3 inches of lemon grass (tough outer layer removed), 3 cloves of garlic, 1/4 to 1/2 of a jalapeño (depending on the spice level you like), the juice and zest of 1 lime, 1/4 to 1/2 cup olive oil and 1/4 cup water. Blend till very smooth, adding more oil or water to get a nice smooth paste.

Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a medium pan. Slice 2 shiitake mushrooms into 1/2-inch pieces. Sauté till nicely browned. Add in 1 red pepper, sliced. Cook another couple of minutes. Turn heat to low. Add in the green curry sauce and cook for about 3 minutes on low. Add in 1 can of full fat coconut milk. Stir and taste to adjust seasoning. Season with soy sauce, more cumin, more jalapeño if you want it spicier, etc. 

Add in 1 cup of frozen peas and keep over low heat until ready to serve.

For the dumplings:

2-3 medium sized sweet potatoes (You need roughly 2 cups mashed)
1 tablespoon ground flax seed
2 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 cup all-purpose flour (Plus extra for rolling)

Steam, microwave, boil or roast your potatoes. Remove skins. Put through a ricer if you have one, otherwise just mash well. 

Combine flax seed and water. Let sit for 5 minutes. Stir the flax mixture, salt and pepper into the sweet potato. Using your hands, incorporate the flour into the sweet potato. You are looking for a very soft dough. It is going to be sticky, but you can add more small amounts of flour if you feel it is too soft to handle. Dust your surface with flour. Taking small amounts at a time (about 1/2 cup), roll the dough into 1-inch thick ropes. Using a sharp knife, cut the ropes into 1.5 inch dumplings. 

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add in the dumplings are cook for about 1 minute and a half, till the dumplings begin to float. Remove from water, toss with a little olive oil and chopped cilantro. 

For the tofu:

Cut into 1 inch cubes and press between paper towel to remove as much liquid as possible. Heat some olive oil in a skillet and sear the tofu on both sides. Medium low for about 7 minutes on each side. 

To serve, spoon curry into a bowl. Top with some sweet potato dumplings, crispy tofu, fresh cilantro, basil, and a drizzle of coconut milk.