Blog Archives

Vegan Southern Fried “Chicken”

Greetings Everyone!

I was surfing YouTube, watching some videos about cooking Seitan and I came across this one for Vegan Southern Fried “Chicken”.

It was so unique that I thought to myself, “This is something I must share with all my friends that follow me on Word Press!”

So sit back and enjoy this unique way of preparing and serving Seitan.

Advertisements

Field Roast Chao Cheese and New Hand Formed Burger Review

Chao Cheese-085120

I am excited about this new year because there are some new products out and these two are two of the best I have seen.

I must say, right off, that I have not been a big fan of the Seattle based Field Roast products, their products in the past have just not wowed me until now. I would say that they where just OK.

In my opinion Field Roast has taken the proverbial vegan football to the Superbowl two times in a row now with these two new products being introduced, one after the other, kinda like the Seattle Seahawks. Go Hawks!!! Sorry, but it is Superbowl Sunday…

Anyway, the Chao “Cheese” comes in three flavors, Coconut Herb with Black Pepper, Creamy Original with Chao Tofu and Tomato Cayenne. I have only tried the Coconut Herb and the Creamy Original, both are outstanding! This is my new go to cheese for burgers and grilled cheese sandwiches. (I will be trying it on pizza soon)

It looks like cheese, it feels like deli cheese, its non-dairy, non-GMO, Vegan and it peels apart and melts like cheese.

Here is the Chao Cheese product sheet in PDF

I made a grilled cheese sandwich with it, one slice of the Coconut Herb and one slice of the Creamy Original and it melted and got creamy and real cheesy, best grilled cheese I have had since being a Vegan.

I have also ate it on crackers straight up, its that good. I had a slice on the new Field Roast Hand Formed Burger, again it was wonderful. Watch the below video to see the cheese in action.

That brings us to the new Hand Formed Burger. I must say I was a bit apprehensive at first but now it is my favorite Vegan burger.

Field-roast-burger-package

 First I thawed the burgers then slapped them on a indoor grill with a little oil. I grilled them long enough to get those fantastic looking grill marks on both sides then added a slice of room temp Chao cheese (it melts easier if they start out at room temp. just like any deli cheese does.)

I then dressed it original with a slice of dill pickle, ketchup and yellow mustard.

Check out the Field Roast video below for a bit of Vegan Meat humor.

 Here is the Hand Formed Burger Product Sheet in PDF

These two new products came out just in time for all those BBQs this summer.

Both Field Roast’s new Hand Formed Burger and Chao cheese are a great addition to my BBQ arsenal.

When I put these two new product together I will create shock and awe at any meat lovers BBQ I attend.

Chao! Oh, I mean Ciao!

 

Vegan “Chick’n” Piccata

5N5A2306

Here is a classic Italian entree that is made with Gardein chick’n and is outstanding.

4 4oz Gardein “Chicken” style breasts
2 cups all-purpose flour
8 tablespoons vegan butter I use Earth Balance
5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 cup vegetable stock
1/2 cup dry white wine I use Chardonnay
1/4 cup capers rinsed and drained
3/4 teaspoon minced garlic
3/4 teaspoon chopped shallot
1/8 cup sugar, if needed

1. Defrost and season the Gardein breasts with salt and pepper. Dredge them in flour and shake off any extra being very careful because the breasts can crack and break very easily.

2. In a large skillet melt 3 tablespoons of the vegan butter with two tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat.

3. When you see the pan start to bubble, add the floured breast to the pan carefully, cook them until brown on both sides. Remove the breast onto a paper towel.

4. Lower the heat to low and add the lemon juice, stock,wine, capers, garlic, and shallots.

5. Bring heat up to med and bring sauce to a boil, be sure to scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.

6. Check the flavor of the sauce and add some salt or pepper if needed. If the sauce is too lemony or bitter add some sugar to mellow it.

7. Continue to cook the sauce and let it reduce and thicken a bit, about 3-4 minutes till garlic and shallots soften a bit.

8. When your ready to serve, add the breast back into the pan with the sauce and heat them back up.

9. Plate the breasts then spoon the sauce over the breasts and serve.

5N5A2311

Thai Black Pepper and Garlic Tofu

This recipes was created by Susan Voisin at Fat Free Vegan.com This site has hundreds of healthy vegan recipes. It’s a great resource. She also has a blog. I hope you enjoy this great recipe!

Black pepper provides a different kind of heat than chile peppers, but people who are sensitive to spices may still find this too hot. So start with the lesser amount of black pepper and add more to taste. Those of you who like fiery dishes may want to increase the chile sauce, but try not to overpower the black pepper.

TOFU AND SEASONING
1 14 oz package extra-firm tofu
1 Tbs soy sauce (or gluten-free tamari)
2 Tbs water
2 large cloves garlic, pressed
1 tsp black pepper, freshly ground
1 tsp rice vinegar
VEGETABLES
1 small onion, halved and sliced into thin wedges
1 large bell pepper, sliced
6 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
3 oz shiitake mushrooms, sliced
8 oz kale (about 1 bunch), stems removed and leaves thinly sliced
1 bunch asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1 inch pieces
additional broth or water, as needed
SAUCE
1 1/2 Tbs soy sauce (or gluten-free tamari)
1/2 cup vegetable broth
1 tsp sriracha or other chile sauce (or to taste)
1/2 to 1 tsp black pepper, freshly ground
2 tsp cornstarch

1. Cut the tofu into 1/2-inch slices. Gently press each slice between paper towels to remove some of the moisture. Then cut each slice into rectangles. Place into a ziplock bag. Combine tofu seasoning in a small bowl and pour over tofu. Seal bag and gently turn it over until tofu is completely covered in seasoning. (You can do this ahead of time and allow the tofu to marinate for a stronger flavor, but it’s not mandatory.)

2. Preheat oven to 400F. Line a baking sheet or dish with parchment paper. (A silicon mat will also work, but parchment on a rimmed metal baking sheet yields the crispiest tofu with no sticking.) Place the tofu on the parchment in a single layer along with the marinade. Bake for 15 minutes. Turn gently and bake for another 15 minutes. Remove from oven.

3. While the tofu is cooking, chop all the vegetables and combine the sauce ingredients in a small bowl. About 10 minutes before tofu is done, preheat a large, deep non-stick skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Spray or rub it with oil if you wish, but this is optional. Have about a half cup of water or broth standing by. Add the onion and cook for a couple of minutes until it begins to become translucent. Add a tablespoon of water or broth if it starts to stick. Add the bell pepper and stir-fry for another minute. Then add the garlic and mushrooms and cook another two minutes, adding liquid by the tablespoon if needed.

4. Stir in the kale, add about 2 tablespoons of liquid, and cover quickly. After a minute, stir and add liquid if necessary. Cook covered for another minute and then add the asparagus and a little more liquid. Cover and cook until asparagus is tender-crisp, about 2 minutes. Add the sauce and cook until it is heated through. Serve the vegetables with tofu on top, or stir the tofu into the vegetables and serve over rice or pasta.

Note: Use whatever green vegetables you like instead of the kale and asparagus. Bok choy and broccoli or green beans are a delicious combination.

Servings: 4

Fully Raw Cherry Cheesecake Recipe

With cherries in season, I saw this video online and just had to share it with you.

Fully Raw Kristina has really hit a home run with this one.

It looks soooo good!

Enjoy the video.

 

Vegan Gourmand’s Lasagna Recipe

This is my go-to lasagna recipe, I just love it.

I brought this once to a friends house that had three teenage children, one a 15-year-old boy.

None of them where Vegetarian, let alone Vegan.

After the second huge piece I heard him say “This is the best lasagna I have ever had.” in which I replied “You know its vegan there is no meat or cheese in it at all” which he bantered back, taking the last bite of that second piece ” I don’t care, it tastes great!” He then continued on to eat another huge piece. All three teens had at least seconds & the family said that they really enjoyed it!

I hold this story up as a badge of honor, that a picky 15-year-old teen had no problem eating three huge pieces of this lasagna. I think that says something for this recipe.

I hope you enjoy it as much as they did.

Bon apoteto!

Ingredients for Lasagna

2 ea    24 oz Jars of your favorite pasta sauce. (I use Francesco Rinaldi Tomato, Garlic & Onion)

1 ea   Large box of dried lasagna noodles (18 dried noodles) (I use Barilla Brand Dry Lasagna)

1 bunch   4 oz of fresh basil

1 bag       14 or 16 oz of your favorite vegan crumbles

1 ea         small sweet onion diced

12 ea      garlic cloves

Ingredients for Vegan Basil Ricotta “Cheese”

1 lbs firm organic tofu, excess water pressed out
4 tsp lemon juice
2 garlic clove, Garlic pressed
1/2 tsp Sea salt
2 dashes fresh ground black pepper
20 fresh basil leaves, Chiffonade
4 tsp olive oil
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/2 cup Daiya Mozzarella Style Vegan Cheese

To make Ricotta “Cheese”

1. In a large bowl, crush tofu with hands until crumbly.

2. Add lemon juice, garlic, salt, pepper.

3. Mash with hands or potato masher until mixture reaches the consistency of ricotta cheese.

4. Add olive oil; stir with a fork.

5. Add nutritional yeast and mix all ingredients well with a fork.

6. Stir in Daiya Cheese and basil.

7. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

To build the lasagna

 Make the Ricotta, cover with plastic wrap and put it aside in the refrigerator.

20140622_161613-2

Pour both pasta sauces into a sauce pan, turn on low heat.

Add two or 3 pressed cloves of garlic to sauce then add a hand full of whole or cut in half cloves of garlic to sauce and stir.

20140622_164519-2

Chiffonade 10 or so fresh basil leaves and add them to the sauce continue to simmer.

20140622_161205-2

In a separate fry pan add some olive oil, get pan warm and add 2 minced garlic cloves and cook for 15 seconds then add the diced onion, cook on med heat. Add fresh ground pepper and some salt to pan and cook until onion has sweated.

20140622_162632-2

Add Veggie meat to pan stirring until browned

20140622_162738-2

Add browned veggie meat to sauce

20140622_164654-2

 Lightly Olive oil a large 10″ x 15″ baking pan and then add a bit of the sauce on the bottom and thinly cover the bottom of the pan with it.

20140622_165704-2

Take a dry lasagna noodle and spread a thin layer of the prepared Ricotta “cheese” onto the dry noodle being careful not to break the noodle. Place the noodle in the pan.

20140622_165934-2

20140622_170923-2

Continue this until the bottom of the pan has a layer of Ricotta spread noodles covering it. Then add a layer of sauce.

20140622_170348-2

At this point, I like to add a layer of fresh basil leaves on top of this layer. Then I start another layer just like the first until I have built three layers.

20140622_172254-2

Finish with the remaining Daiya Cheese.

20140622_172447-2

 Bake in a 350 deg oven for 1 hour uncovered.

Finished

Enjoy!

This freezes well and I think it is even better the next day.

Endangered Species Chocolate

 endangered  Owl

Do you enjoy good chocolate? I know I do and I must admit that I am a bit of a chocolate snob. I guess that goes along with the title of “Vegan Gourmand” now doesn’t it?

Well I had some of this Endangered Species Chocolate the other day. Ok I had quite a bit of this chocolate the other day and I have been so impressed with the flavor and high quality that I just had to share it with all of you.

They offer many different chocolate bar flavors / ingredient combinations here are their 3oz natural Vegan dark chocolate combinations.

72% with Sea Salt & Almonds (This is my personal favorite) 

72% with Mint

72% with Cranberries & Almonds

72% with Blueberries & Almonds

72% with Raspberries

72% with Cherries

72% with Espresso Beans

72% with Cacao Nibs

They also have the plain 72% & 88% dark for those chocolate purest out there.

And during the holidays they come out with some special flavors like 72% with vanilla chai, peppermint and pumpkin spice with almonds.

Although this chocolate is outstanding in quality and taste it is also much much more, let me explain. Its not everyday that you find a product that is outstanding and a company who is just as outstanding behind it.

Endangered Species Chocolate Company has taken action and money put it where their mouth is.

Most all of their dark chocolate selections are Certified Vegan by Vegan Action. This certification provides vegans an easy-to-recognize symbol signifying that an item contains no animal products and is not tested on animals.

The company gives 10% of net profits to organizations that support species conservation, habitat preservation and humanitarian efforts.

Here is a list of some of the organizations they give or have given too.

The African Wildlife Foundation

The Xerces Society

SEE Turtles

Chimp Haven

The Ocean Conservancy

The National Wildlife Federation

Their selection process happens every three years. Here is how they select their 10% GiveBack partners. this is a quote from their website.

“Endangered Species Chocolate commits to a three year partnership with each 10% GiveBack Partner. At the end of each three year period, we begin a search for new conservation nonprofits to support. Applications are accepted from June – August during each search year. Our Marketing team carefully reviews all applications and determines the top 8- 10 that best fit our mission. The entire staff of Endangered Species Chocolate then gets involved! The top 8-10 applications are passed along to our staff for extensive review, evaluation, and discussion. A company-wide vote is then held to determine the next 10% GiveBack Partners. New partnerships are usually announced in October of each search year.”

ingre

Wow, if that is not enough they have gotten their products certified on many levels.

All of their products are certified by the following:

Certified USDA Organic

Certified by the NON GMO Project

Certified gluten free from the Gluten-Free Certification Organization

Rain Forest Alliance certified

OTCO Oregon Tilth certified

Certified Kosher by OU Kosher

Did I mention that their office, warehouse and production facility is powered by 100% wind power. The wind energy is purchased through Indianapolis Power & Light’s Green Power Option, which enables them to purchase power harvested from local wind farms.

Another thing they do that I think is outstanding is they use the inside of their outside wrapper of each bar to tell you about the endangered animal on the front of the wrapper.

Inside Wrapper

Endangered Species also runs a blog by the name of “Involved” to promote the discussion on species, habitat, humanity and chocolate.

For the same price as any other premium chocolate bar of the same size you can enjoy great, healthy, ethical chocolate and feel great knowing that 10% of the money you just spent will help another living creature. It’s a win win if you ask me!

Vegan Basil Ricotta Cheese

20140622_161613-2

I remember as a child smelling the freshly made lasagna baking in the oven. As I looked upon my plate I remember cutting into it with my fork to see the white layers of ricotta cheese holding up each noodle like a fluffy cloud on a summer day. As I became a Vegan this was one of the foods I missed.

Well now I can have that same experience again as a vegan using this recipe to help build my vegan lasagna with “meat” sauce. (a recipe I will have to share sometime) Just spread this Ricotta on every noodle then cover with “meat” sauce and build it three or four layers thick switching between “meat” sauce and noodles spread with Ricotta, its that simple. Buon appetito !!

2 lbs firm tofu, pressed
4 tsp lemon juice
2 garlic clove, pressed
1/2 tsp Sea salt
2 dashes fresh black pepper
20 fresh basil leaves, finely chopped
4 tsp olive oil
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/2 cup Daiya Mozzarella Style Vegan Cheese

1. In large bowl, mash tofu with hands until crumbly.

2. Add lemon juice, garlic, salt, pepper, and basil. Mash with hands until mixture reaches the consistency of ricotta cheese.

3. Add olive oil; stir with fork.

4. Add nutritional yeast and mix all ingredients well with fork.

5. Stir in Daiya Cheese

6. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

The Vegan Zombie Tour at Natural Products Expo West 2014

The Vegan Zombie takes you on a tour of the Natural Products Expo West 2014.

He is entertaining, fun and best of all you get a sneak peak of some of the new product from some of my favorite vegan companies. Enjoy the tour!!!

Vegan Gourmand’s Breakfast Muffins

5N5A0292

I am up early for work every weekday (2:45am) and needed something healthy that I could make ahead of time and grab to go with my smoothy or herbal tea as I am running out the door. So I found a recipe online. I experimented with it and changed it to my liking, and so here it is. A hearty dense muffin perfect for breakfast or really anytime. I hope you find it as yummy as I do.

2 cup + 2 Tablespoon non-dairy milk. (I use almond milk)
4 Tbs golden flax meal
2 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 cup chopped pecans ( ¼ inch pieces)
1 cup raisins
2 Tbs finely chopped ginger
1 tbs ground cinnamon
2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
2 cup rolled oats
1 cup chick pea flour
3 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
10 oz of pineapple tidbits
1 cup apple sauce
1/2 cup real grade “B” brown maple syrup
2 Tbs molasses
3 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt

1. Preheat oven to 325 deg F (Convection oven 300 deg) In a medium bowl whisk together the non-dairy milk, golden flax meal and apple cider vinegar. Let it sit for about 10 minutes so the non-dairy milk curdles.

2. Chop the pecans and ginger. Add them, along with the raisins, to a small bowl and set aside.

3. In a large mixing bowl whisk together the whole wheat flour, oats, chick pea flour, Cinnamon, baking powder and baking soda.

4. In another large mixing bowl whisk together the maple syrup, molasses, apple sauce, vanilla extract, pineapple and salt. Now whisk in the non-dairy milk and flax mixture

5. Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl containing the dry ingredients and mix until just incorporated. Stir in the chopped pecans, raisins and ginger.

To make large jumbo muffins

Line a Jumbo muffin pan with cup cake liners. Scoop the batter into the muffin pan (two Ice cream scoops per muffin) making sure the dough is filled up to the top of the pan and domed. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean.

Servings: 12

Yield: 12 Large Muffins

If you want to make smaller, regular size muffins cut recipe in half and use only one ice cream scoop per muffin in a regular size muffin tin.

5N5A0294

%d bloggers like this: