Vegan Sweet Chipotle Tofu Fingers

entrees, snacks | October 27, 2016 | By

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When I was a kid, my dad would experiment with different chicken wings. He would make up a bunch of different sauce combinations, and toss a few wings into each and give them a try. My dad loves to cook, and experiment, and from a very young age, he inspired me greatly. He instilled in me how amazing it is to eat whole foods, non processed junk and to eat all my veggies! In the 80’s and 90’s, everyone was always so impressed that my dad loved to cook, was raising kids by himself, had a full time job and still managed to make most of our meals from scratch. My dad is a hardworking bad ass, who is madly in love with chicken wings, and this recipe is dedicated to him.

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One of the best sauces my dad made, was his sweet and spicy sauce. However, from what I remember, he used ketchup and sugar. So, probably not the healthiest choice, and then there is the matter of the chicken. I thought about what I could get to be crispy and firm without frying, and tofu was my answer. Yes, these babies are baked not fried, with a refined sugar free sauce. I felt pretty guilt free downing a couple of these tofu fingers.

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I dried and pressed the tofu for a good amount of time first, also pro-vegan tip, salt the tofu before you press it, it will draw out even more moisture! Then I baked the tofu sticks at a high temperature for a while, and bam! Super crispy, crunchy, so amazing, no one will know it isn’t fried tofu fingers! Then I tossed it in the best damn sauce you have every tasted, dunked it in some vegan ranch and holy crap! You will never look at tofu the same way again. Boring old tofu, hell no!

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So, to make these tofu fingers so crispy and dreamy, besides the baking at a high temperature, the dredging process is key. Three bowls, three steps, vegan buttermilk, flour with salt and pepper and panko bread crumbs. My pro tip for this process, and to keep your sanity, use one hand for the wet and the other hand for dry ones! Makes life so much easier. I promise this is not a complicated process, easy peasy, and you are on your way to one of the greatest things ever.

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Yum, yum. In the oven they go. The sauce is a quick process done in a small sauce pan heated for a few minutes until thickened and you are ready to go! Hope you enjoy!

Vegan Sweet Chipotle Tofu Fingers

  • Prep Time: 1h 30m
  • Cook Time: 45m
  • Total Time: 2h 15m
  • Serves: 6
  • Yield: About 20 tofu fingers
  • Category:

Ingredients

Tofu Fingers

  • 1 Block Extra firm tofu
  • 1 c All purpose flour
  • Dash of salt and pepper
  • 2 c Panko bread crumbs
  • 1 c Almond milk
  • 1 tsp. Lemon juice
  • 1/4 c Coconut oil

Sweet Chipotle Sauce

  • 1/2 c Tomato sauce
  • 1/2 c Agave nectar
  • 1 tbsp. Hot sauce
  • 1 tbsp. Apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp. Garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Salt
  • 1/2 tsp. Chipotle powder
  • 1/3 c Cold water
  • 2 tbsp. Cornstarch

Instructions

  1. Cut tofu into sticks, salt and press in between paper towels for at least an hour.
  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. With three large bowls, put flour and salt and pepper in one bowl, panko in another and almond milk with lemon juice in the last one.
  3. Line a baking sheet with foil and spread coconut oil or oil of choice on the bottom of the pan.
  4. Dip each tofu stick into flour,then almond milk mixture and then into panko. Make sure they are fully coated. Place each stick onto the baking sheet and repeat until all are breaded. Bake at 400 for 35-40 minutes. Flipping over each tofu stick half way through the cooking process so they brown on both sides. They are finished when brown and crispy.
  5. While the tofu is baking, in a small sauce pan, whisk all the sauce ingredients together, except the cold water and cornstarch. Bring the sauce to a simmer, and in a small bowl, mix together the cold water and corn starch. Add the cornstarch slurry to the sauce pan and whisk. Simmer for about five minutes until the sauce has thickened. Taste and adjust seasonings.
  6. Once the tofu is done, toss in the sauce and serve! I recommend a vegan ranch dressing to dip in, but plain ones are mighty fine as well!

Vegan Apple Crisp Shortbread Tart

desserts | October 25, 2016 | By

 

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Tis the season for apple crisps, right? I have seen so many apple crisp recipes flying around the past few weeks, I thought I would take a crack at it. Lauren style.  I love a good apple crisp, I just wanted to make it as easy and delicious as possible, while of course making it all plant based. This literally tastes like Fall became a food, and it really wants you to eat it! I also really love apples, they are one of the only foods  on the planet that I can always eat. There are so many different varieties, sweet, crisp, tart and all are oh so beautiful! You can use any kind of apple for this recipe, I just went with the tart Granny Smith flavor because I thought it would pair well with the sweetness of this incredible shortbread crust.

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I started with a moist, yet crisp and flaky shortbread crust, first because it is easier than any other crust to pull of. It gets crumbly and then you can just press it into the pan of your choice. Secondly, because it is my favorite. So, buttery and sweet. The perfect accent to any dessert. You can use this basic vegan shortbread crust for any recipe you want! I then put not only one layer of brown sugar crumble, but two. First, I put it on top of the crust, a layer of apples, and then, you guessed it, more crumble. The apples are tossed in a really simple flour mixture to flavor them and keep them from getting too liquidy.

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All of this comes together to create the perfect treat. It did not make it through the night in my house, and I bet the same would happen to you. I brought this over for a family gathering, and there is literally nothing better than sitting outside on a crisp Fall evening enjoying vegan apple crisp with my loved ones. Some people added some vanilla ice cream to it, I just ate a slice out of my hand and loved every single minute of it!

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Crispy, sweet and tart. Go pick some apples and get started on this incredible vegan dessert immediately. Fall will be over before you know it. I wait all year to work on pumpkin and apple recipes, it makes my heart so happy. I really throw myself into this season, it is my very favorite. We still have so many exciting Fall things to look forward to, but this should definitely be on your to do list!

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I hope you enjoy!

Tools I used:
OXO Good Grips Adjustable HandHeld Mandoline Slicer
Fox Run Preferred Non-stick Rectangular Quiche Pan w/ Removeable Bottom, 14″ X 5″
Stainless Steel Mixing Bowls by Finedine (Set of 6) Polished Mirror Finish Nesting Bowls ¾, 1.5,3,4,5 and 8 Quart – Cooking Supplies

 

Vegan Apple Crisp Shortbread Tart

  • Prep Time: 20m
  • Cook Time: 50m
  • Total Time: 1h 15m
  • Serves: 6
  • Yield: 1 Tart
  • Category:

Ingredients

Shortbread Crust

  • 1/2 c Vegan butter( I use Earth Balance)
  • 1/4 c Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 1 c All purpose flour

Apple Filling

  • 3 Apples, sliced really thin
  • 3 tbsp. Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. Nutmeg
  • 3 tbsp. All purpose flour

Brown sugar crumble

  • 1/2 c All purpose flour
  • 3/4 c Brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. Cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. Nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. All spice
  • 1/4 tsp. Cloves
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 1/4 c Vegan butter, melted

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Make the crust. In a medium mixing bowl, cream together the vegan butter, sugar and vanilla. Add the salt and flour. Mix together until fully combined. Press into a prepared tart pan. You can use a long rectangle, a square or a circle. It’s up to you!
  3. Poke holes in the crust with a fork and bake by itself for 10-15 minutes while you prepared the filling and crumble.
  4. Prepare filling, slice apples really thin, if you have a mandoline, that works best! Toss apples with remaining filling ingredients, and fully coat all the apples. Set aside.
  5. Prepare crumble, Mix all the dry ingredients together and pour melted vegan butter over and stir. Then crumble with your fingers.
  6. When crust is mostly baked, it won’t be completely done, take out of the oven. Put a layer of crumble on top of the crust, then layer the apples in a whatever pattern you would like, I just laid them slightly on top of each other. Then more crumble on top of that.
  7. Put back in the oven and bake at 350 for another 30-35 minutes. Enjoy with some vegan vanilla ice cream, or vegan whipped cream or just plain, you won’t be sorry!

 

Vegan Molten Chocolate Mug Cake

desserts | October 21, 2016 | By

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One of the biggest complaints I hear from people trying to permanently adopt a vegan diet, is that they can’t cook or bake, and there are no ready made options for them. So they fall of the wagon because they crave something and can’t make it themselves. Well, I want to change that. As well as my more advanced recipes, I really want to start working on lots of options for those who either don’t know how to cook or bake, or just don’t have the time. This is one of those recipes. I have been brainstorming about things anyone can make, even with a tiny kitchen or a college kid trying to stick to a vegan life living in a dorm room. This takes five minutes, anyone can do it, and all you need is a microwave.

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Chocolate is my weakness, my kryptonite. I have to set myself up for success, and that is knowing, I need something a little sweet after dinner. That can be fruit or something really healthy, but sometimes I just need some chocolate cake. I need a quick healthy option, so I don’t have a serious craving and go really crazy and eat something that will make me feel sick and regret all of my decisions! I know myself and my body and brain, and how they work together, and sometimes the best idea for me is to have plan. A plan for the times that I really, really need chocolate!

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Not only is this a super moist and fluffy cake, I took it up a notch by adding some dark chocolate to the center, and when your spoon dives into the middle of this amazing cake, you get an extra special treat, with a beautiful lava flow of dark sweet goodness. I can’t tell you what a dream come true this is for me, I have been dying for a quick luscious dessert that will satisfy any craving. Plant based and refined sugar free, this is something to enjoy and not feel guilty about. I threw some vegan vanilla ice cream on top, and holy crap, your taste buds will never know this was a five minute vegan dessert! You literally mix everything in a mug, throw it into the microwave for a couple of minutes, and out pops magic, I swear, it must be magic!

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I dare you to find an easier dessert! I would like to also suggest that it is one of the best chocolate cakes as well. I was just glad I decided to make this a single serving, because I would have eaten more! This also takes me back to my single days living by myself and trying to figure out how to make fantastic meals for one. Here is a good way to take care of yourself, have your cake!!! I hope you enjoy! Adapted from The Food Network.

Vegan Molten Chocolate Mug Cake

  • Prep Time: 3m
  • Cook Time: 2m
  • Total Time: 5m
  • Serves: 1 perspn
  • Yield: 1 mug cake
  • Category:

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp. Vegan butter( I use Earth Balance)
  • 3 tbsp. Coconut cream ( I use Trader Joe’s)
  • 1 Flax egg ( 2Tbsp. Flax meal+3 Tbsp. water=1 egg)
  • 3 tbsp. All purpose flour
  • 4 tbsp. Coconut sugar or other sweetener of choice
  • 2 tbsp. Cocoa powder
  • 1/4 tsp. Vanilla
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 1 oz Dark chocolate

Instructions

  1. Make your flax egg and set aside.
  2. In a large mug, melt the vegan butter in the microwave for about 15-20 seconds. Let cool just a bit and stir in the coconut cream and flax egg. Make sure it is combined well.
  3. Stir in the flour and sweetener. Then stir in the cocoa, salt and vanilla.
  4. In the center of the batter, place a 1 oz. chunk of dark chocolate(or more if you want)
  5. Microwave for 2-2 1/2 minutes. I ended up doing about 2 minutes and 15 seconds. Throw some vegan ice cream or vegan whipped cream on top and enjoy!

 

Vegan Apple Cider Pecan Cookie Cake

desserts | October 19, 2016 | By

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Apples and pecans are a super legit combo. I feel like most things that are in season at the same time go pretty well together. However, I think I found one of the most legit combinations of flavors. This mix of spiced apple cider and pecans in cookie cake form is amazing. I made it even more delicious with the edition of the vanilla frosting, but just the wonderful marriage of apples and pecans is to die for.

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My husband and my anniversary is next week, we have been married for five totally awesome years. Where am I going with this? One of my husband’s all time favorite desserts is any type of cookie cake. So in honor of our upcoming fifth anniversary, I got to thinking about how much I have learned about him and what it takes to have a successful happy relationship. I also began to think about the things my husband loves. So, cookie cakes were on my mind, as well as of course FALL!!!!!!

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Thus, I have brought together two of the greatest things of all time, cookie cakes and Fall! This is light and fluffy while maintaining it’s moisture. The contrasting textures between the soft cookie and the crunchy pecans is glorious. Warmed up and served with some vegan vanilla ice cream, forget about it! The apple cider gives it a light apple flavor making the pecans shine and giving it a similar taste to a pecan pie, which I am also totally in love with and will be working on some more pecan pie type recipes very soon!

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Now I know I say most of my recipes are easy to make, even if you aren’t an experienced cook or baker, but I think this one might be the most simple recipe I have made. You can do this very quickly, without much hassle or clean up. I am quite certain, anyone can make this recipe, and look like a super bad ass (which is my goal in life). My husband loved the cookie cake inspired by our five years as a married couple! I hope you enjoy!

Vegan Apple Cider Pecan Cookie Cake

  • Prep Time: 15m
  • Cook Time: 30m
  • Total Time: 45m
  • Serves: 8
  • Yield: 1 large cookie cake
  • Category:

Ingredients

  • 1/2 c Vegan butter( I use Earth Balance)
  • 1/2 c White sugar
  • 1/4 c Brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla
  • 1 Flax egg( 2 Tbsp. flax meal+3 Tbsp. water=1 egg)
  • 2 c All purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. Baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Cornstarch
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 1/2 c Apple cider ( Trader Joe’s has an amazing spiced apple cider)
  • 3/4 c Pecans, chopped

Vanilla Frosting

  • 1/2 c Vegan butter
  • 1/2 c Vegetable shortening
  • 3 c Powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp. Vanilla
  • 1 tsp. Salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, or stand mixer, cream together vegan butter and sugars. Add the flax egg and vanilla.
  3. In a separate bowl, sift all the dry ingredients together.
  4. Start adding the dry mixture and apple cider to the vegan butter and sugar mixture, alternating until everything is combined.
  5. Stir in the pecans, and press into a circular pan prepared with non stick spray.
  6. Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes.
  7. While the cake cools, make the frosting. Beat all the ingredients on high until light and fluffy. Decorate when the cookie cake cools and eat!

Vegan Cheesy Spinach and Artichoke Scones

breakfast, snacks | October 18, 2016 | By

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Spinach and Artichoke is amazing, I feel like we can all agree upon that. This is right here is a way you can have that flavor for breakfast, or I suppose anytime. These babies taste exactly like spinach  and artichoke dip, with all it’s cheesy goodness in a portable package. I toasted one and threw some vegan butter on it, holy crap!

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How my brain works, and what my thought process is, is taking flavors I love that are almost never vegan and turning them into delicious plan based treats! In the 90’s, spinach and artichoke dip became really popular. My mom would make it for every special occasion where we would have people over. She would put it in a bread bowl and use the inside of the bread for dipping purposes, it was glorious! I knew when guests were coming I could count on that happening, and I was always super pumped. It was the first thing she would set out, and I would sneak my fair share before people got there.

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These savory scones are so reminiscent of my childhood favorite it is uncanny. This is a really easy one bowl recipe, that is great for a quick portable breakfast! So cheesy and delicious! If I don’t have something ready to eat in the morning, I will forget to eat. I have very busy mornings and need something to grab quickly. I made these in the evening, and had them ready for everyone in the morning. My husband made an vegan egg sandwich with one, and I was pretty jealous of it! There are many options, great for a snack or anytime. These are light, fluffy, flaky and insanely delicious! I hope you enjoy!

If you have any questions or feedback, I would love to hear from you!

Tools I used:

Winco 5 Blade Pastry Blender, Stainless Steel
OXO Good Grips 4-inch Pizza Wheel and Cutter
Cook N Home Marble Rolling Pin with Wood Base, 18″, White

Vegan Cheesy Spinach and Artichoke Scones

  • Prep Time: 15m
  • Cook Time: 15m
  • Total Time: 30m

Ingredients

  • 3 c All purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp. Baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. Baking soda
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 2 tsp. Garlic powder
  • 1/2 c Vegan butter (I use Earth Balance),cold
  • 1/4 c Nutritional yeast
  • 1 c Frozen spinach, defrosted and drained
  • 3/4 c Artichoke hearts, chopped
  • 1 c Almond milk
  • 1 Flax egg (2 Tbsp. Flax meal+3 Tbsp. water=1 egg)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, sift all the dry ingredients together.
  3. Cut the cold vegan butter into the dry ingredients using a pastry cutter or fork until the vegan butter is in pea sized pieces.
  4. Add the nutritional yeast, artichokes and spinach and stir to start combining.
  5. Whisk together the almond milk and flax egg, then add to the rest of the ingredients and stir to start combining.
  6. Begin to knead with hands until everything is fully combined.
  7. Turn dough out onto a floured surface and form a ball. Pat out or roll with a rolling pin into a disk about two inches thick. Cut into eight triangles, and place onto a prepared baking sheet. Brush tops with melted vegan butter.
  8. Bake at 400 for 15-20. Enjoy with vegan butter, other spreads or just plain!

Vegan Pumpkin Cinnamon Swirl Coffee Cake Muffins

breakfast | October 14, 2016 | By

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Ahhhh, pumpkin everything season! I love you so, however, a lot of what I see in stores are not vegan friendly, and super unhealthy to boot. Muffins, donuts, bread, chocolates, creamer, so many things. So, I have been trying to come up with my own quick snacks and breakfasts to make me feel like I can jump on the Fall flavored bandwagon. Two of my favorite, not-so-healthy breakfast foods are coffee cake and cinnamon rolls. I added a bit of flair to some otherwise boring muffins by incorporating a cinnamon swirl in the center to make a nice ooey gooey middle. Then to top it off, there is a crumble topping all to help make this the greatest muffin of all time!

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Oh me oh my, these made me really feel like vegan food can do anything non vegan food can do. There is no stopping me, I will make everyone a believer. How can you turn down something so gooey, moist, flavorful, crispy and pumkiny? These are a little bit of a process, as there are three steps. So, it makes a bit of a mess(which is the story of my life) but they are really easy. The crumble, is literally just crumbled together, the batter is just throwing things together, and the cinnamon swirl is just a few ingredients whisked together.

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I made the crumble topping and set it aside, made the cinnamon swirl, and set that aside. I then made the totally amazing pumpkin cinnamon batter, and place one scoop of batter, swirled some cinnamon mixture on top, then added another scoop of batter. Smoothed that out a bit and topped that with massive amounts of amazing coffee cake like crumble! The results were totally amazing, they went pretty fast in my house, and are a great on the go Fall breakfast to have ready and to run out the door with! Super amazing with a latte,btw. I hope you enjoy!

 

Vegan Pumpkin Cinnamon Swirl Coffee Cake Muffins

  • Prep Time: 20m
  • Cook Time: 25m
  • Total Time: 45m
  • Serves: 12
  • Yield: 12 Muffins
  • Category:

Ingredients

Streusel Topping

  • 2/3 c All purpose flour
  • 1/2 c Brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. Cinnamon
  • 4 tbsp. Vegan butter( I used Earth Balance), melted

Cinnamon Swirl

  • 1/2 c Brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. Cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp. Salt
  • 3 tbsp. Vegan butter, melted

Muffin Batter

  • 1 1/3 c All purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. Baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. Nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. Cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 6 tbsp. Vegan butter
  • 2/3 c White sugar
  • 1 Flax egg (2Tbsp. flax meal+3 Tbsp. water=1egg)
  • 3/4 c Pumpkin puree
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla
  • 1/2 c Almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp. Apple cider vinegar

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. In a medium sized bowl, add all the streusel ingredients together, and crumble together with a fork or your hands. Set aside.
  3. In a small bowl add all the cinnamon swirl ingredients together and whisk. Set aside.
  4. In a medium bowl, sift all the dry ingredients for the muffin batter and set aside. Mix together the almond milk and apple cider vinegar to make vegan butter milk and set aside.
  5. In a large bowl, cream together the vegan butter and sugar. Add the flax egg, vanilla, and pumpkin. Whip for a minute until combined and becomes nice and light and fluffy.
  6. Begin adding the dry ingredients and almond milk mixture to the wet mixture alternating until everything is combined.
  7. In a muffin tin, add one small scoop of batter, put the cinnamon swirl into a piping bag or ziploc bag and cut a small hole. Swirl some cinnamon mixture on top, and then, add another small scoop of muffin batter on top of that. Top with streusel topping and bake at 350 for 23-25 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.
  8. Eat as is, or drizzle a little vanilla glaze on top (1 cup powdered sugar, 1/4 tsp vanilla, 1 tsp almond milk)

 

Vegan Lobster(Mushroom) Bisque

entrees | October 7, 2016 | By

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I am always trying to find ways to make it easier to be a vegan, and live a healthier lifestyle, for me and everyone. About six months ago, my husband and I were perusing the Fresh Market, and were looking at dried mushrooms. I had been eyeing the lobster mushrooms for a while, and we got to discussing making a “lobster” bisque with them. We both thought this was pretty genius. So, I set about to concoct the most delicious seafoody bisque ever, and I think I have achieved that. It is perfect, I am pretty proud of myself. It tastes just like I remember a seafood bisque tasting. It has been a while, but I still feel confident that is very close.

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Fun fact, Lobster mushrooms are not actually mushrooms(I just learned this, thanks to an IG friend!) They are a parasitic fungi that grows on mushrooms, but they have good amount of fiber, protein, calcium and iron. Score! They are also delicious. They have a great texture, and are beautiful!

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This recipe has a few steps, making it a little messy, but all in all after the soaking of the cashews it was pretty quick. Also, you are really just blending, and adding things, so I feel like it isn’t very complicated and you don’t need to be a super experienced cook to master it. The cream is just four ingredients blended, and the rest is just a few veggies sauteed and liquids added.

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Aren’t these so beautiful? The first picture is while they are dried and the second is after I soaked them for a while and they became soft. They turn such a beautiful bright color and are an amazing meaty texture that is perfect for the bisque. You can definitely use other mushrooms for this, if you can’t find lobster mushrooms, but I highly recommend getting lobster mushrooms!

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This is creamy, dreamy, warm, and seafoody amazingness! I can’t think of much better than a creamy soup on a cold day, except, a vegan gluten free creamy soup on a cold day! I hope you enjoy!

Have any questions or feedback for me? Leave me a comment, I would love to hear from you!

Tools and things you will need:

Cuisinart Smart Stick CSB-75BC 200 Watt 2 Speed Hand Blender (Brushed Chrome)
Dried Lobster Mushrooms – 4 oz. Life Gourmet Shop
KitchenAid KSB1570SL 5-Speed Blender with 56-Ounce BPA-Free Pitcher – Silver

Vegan Lobster(Mushroom) Bisque

  • Prep Time: 30m
  • Cook Time: 15m
  • Total Time: 45m
  • Serves: 4
  • Yield: 1 Quart of soup
  • Category:

Ingredients

  • 1 c Cashews, raw(soaked for at least 3 hours)
  • 1 c Vegetable broth
  • 1 tbsp. Kelp powder
  • 1 tbsp. Cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp. Olive oil
  • 1 Shallot, minced
  • 1/2 c Carrots, diced
  • 1/2 c Celery, diced
  • 3 Garlic cloves
  • 3 tbsp. Tomato paste
  • 4 c Vegetable broth
  • 1 c White wine
  • 2 c Dried Lobster mushrooms (soaked)
  • 1 tsp. Smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp. Thyme
  • 1/4 tsp. Cayenne
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. After soaking cashews for 3 hours or up to overnight, add them to a blender with 1 C. of veggie broth, kelp powder and cornstarch. Blend until smooth this will take a few minutes. Set aside. Start soaking the lobster mushrooms, soak for a few minutes until they are soft.
  2. In a large soup pot, add olive oil and heat on medium. Add the shallot, garlic, celery and carrot to the pot and cook for about 3 or 4 minutes until they begin to soften.
  3. Add the tomato paste and stir into the veggies. Add the broth, wine, cashew cream mixture, softened mushrooms and all the seasonings. Bring to a soft boil, then reduce to low heat and cook for about 10 minutes to develop flavor and finish cooking everything.
  4. At this point you can puree some of the soup either with an immersion blender, or putting about half the soup in the blender, pureeing, then returning to the pot. You don’t want to puree it all unless you don’t want any texture and want it completely creamy, so I suggest just pureeing half.
  5. Add salt and pepper to taste and adjust flavoring as you need it. Serve immediately!

Vegan Wonton Soup

entrees | October 5, 2016 | By

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Make this, I promise you will thank me later! I have been dreaming about wonton soup recently, like literally, picturing myself slurping up that fragrant broth and biting into the tender dumplings filled with deliciousness! Once upon a time, I lived in Brooklyn, and you can get amazing Chinese food all over the place. There is one place in particular that I miss, and that is an all vegan Chinese restaurant in my brother’s neighborhood in Brooklyn. They deliver to his apartment, and there is literally nothing better on a cold day than getting Chinese delivery and chowing down without having to go anywhere. Well, it just so happens that they have a mighty fine vegan wonton soup. I love it, I dream of it, and now, I think I have made something just as good!

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Amazing fragrant broth with ginger, garlic and shallots, a bit of tang with some rice wine vinegar, and you have something I could just drink by itself. However, adding the meaty, garlicy, gingery tofu in an adorable little package makes it the greatest thing ever. I was able to find vegan wonton wrappers at my local Asian market, however I have been told this is not easy. So, I did a little research and tried out a couple of other things you can use. I found some fresh pasta sheets that were vegan, and I also found some fresh spring roll wrapper that you can use that were also vegan. So, you have a few options if you don’t get as lucky as me. I suppose if you are feeling super ambitious, you can also make your own. Just remember to cut the sheets into square if you use larger sheets.

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So, this is insanely easy. It requires a bit of prep with the chopping and filling and folding and all, but it was pretty quick. Here is an example of how to fold your wontons that is very simple, but you can really fold them however you like. I just like the way this looks, and I didn’t have any bust open.

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Alright, so go to the grocery store right now, pick up all the ingredients to make this and go do it! You will be pretty happy with yourself, at least I was. It is super comforting, light but filling at the same time, and slurping good!

Have any questions or feedback for me? I would love to hear from you!

Vegan Wonton Soup

  • Prep Time: 30m
  • Cook Time: 30m
  • Total Time: 1h
  • Serves: 6
  • Yield: 6 bowls of soup
  • Category:

Ingredients

Broth

  • 1 tbsp. Sesame oil
  • 3 Cloves of garlic
  • 1 Inch of ginger(grated)
  • 1/2 of a Shallot
  • 8 c No chicken broth or veggie broth
  • tbsp. Rice wine vinegar

Filling

  • 2 tbsp. Coconut oil
  • 1 Block of Extra firm tofu
  • 1 tbsp. Liquid smoke
  • 2 tbsp. Soy sauce
  • 3 Cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 of a Shallot
  • 1 inch of ginger(grated)
  • 3 Green onions

For serving

  • Vegan wonton wrappers or vegan fresh pasta sheets or vegan spring roll wrapper(what ever you can find)
  • Green onions

Instructions

  1. Crumble tofu, and set on a paper towel and place another paper towel over, and press down. While the tofu is drying, add the sesame oil to a large soup pot and heat on medium. Chop garlic and shallot really small and grate the ginger.(you can do this for both the filling and broth at the same time if you want)
  2. Add garlic, ginger and shallot to the soup pot, and stir. Bring down the heat and cook for a few minutes to start softening and flavoring the oil.
  3. Add the 8 cups of broth and bring down to a simmer. Add the rice wine vinegar and let simmer while you prepare the wonton filling.
  4. In a wok or large pan, add the coconut oil and heat on medium. Chop up the garlic and shallot if you haven’t already and grate the ginger. Add to the pan. Stir for a few minutes to get them soft and then add the crumbled tofu(it should all be crumbled so it looks like ground meat)
  5. Cook tofu on medium-high for about 5 minutes stirring pretty consistently as it starts to brown, but you don’t want it to stick(if it starts to stick add more coconut oil.) Once it has browned and cooked a bit, add the liquid smoke and soy sauce.
  6. Cook a few more minutes, then turn the heat off and add the chopped green onion at the end. Stir in and let cool for a few minutes.
  7. Once the broth is seasoned to your liking and the filling is done, take out your wrappers(if you could only find large wrapper that were vegan, cut into squares)
  8. Place a tsp. of filling in the center of each wonton, wet the sides with water and press together in triangle form and then wet the ends of the triangle and fold together. (See pictures for reference) or you can really fold them however you want!
  9. When ready to eat, take the broth off the heat and add the wontons. Let sit for a few minutes, and then serve immediately, they cook fast! Top with green onion!

Vegan Mexican Hot Chocolate Cookie Sandwiches with Cinnamon Cream

desserts, snacks | October 3, 2016 | By

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One of the other moms at my daughter’s school and I were chatting the other day, you know making small talk like you are apparently socially obligated to do, but it actually turned into a serious conversation about how much we hate the heat, and why we live in Florida. There are many reasons it works for both of us right now, but the conversation ended with my relief that is was actually in the 60’s that day. However, it has of coursed warmed back up in the days since then, and I am counting the days until I know we will have a few good months of cool weather.

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On the day we were discussing out hatred of Florida, I decided it would be a good day to make something I crave in the cold weather. Mexican Hot Chocolate, I love the spicy sweetness of it. That is one of my favorite combinations. Generally when I am deciding what I want to create, I think of my favorite things, that are not usually vegan, and make them plant based, but also taking it a step further and turning them into something completely different.

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In this case, I decided a cookie sandwich was in order. My husband immediately consumed several, and my four year old even got in on them, even though I thought they would be too spicy for her. She asked for water a few times, but kept on going! These babies gave me all the warm tingly feels I love when it was cold, and made me feel a little better about our current weather situation!

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Incredibly easy, crispy and creamy, spicy and sweet, they are all you could want in a cookie! I think this would be a great holiday cookie recipe, and would be super impressive. I also challenge anyone to guess that these are vegan, I dare you, it’s not possible! My cream filling is better than any regular cream filling or frosting, I promise!

Have any questions or feedback for me, I would love to here from you!

 

Vegan Mexican Hot Chocolate Cookie Sandwiches with Cinnamon Cream

  • Prep Time: 30m
  • Cook Time: 15m
  • Total Time: 45m

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 c All purpose flour
  • 1/2 c Cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. Baking soda
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 2 tsp. Cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. Cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 c Vegan butter
  • 1 1/2 c White sugar
  • 2 Flax eggs (2 Tbsp. Flax meal+3 Tbsp. water= 1 egg)
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla
  • 1/4 c Almond milk

Cinnamon Cream Filling

  • 2 tsp. Cinnamon
  • 1/2 c Vegan butter, I use Earth Balance
  • 1/2 c Vegetable shortening
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 2 1/2 c Powdered sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350. In a medium mixing bowl, sift together all the dry ingredients.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, cream together the vegan butter and sugar. Add the flax eggs and vanilla.
  3. Begin adding the dry ingredients to the wet, and add almond milk as needed until everything is combined.
  4. Drop cookies 2 inches apart on a prepared baking sheet, bake at 350 for 10-13 minutes.
  5. While cookies are baking, make the filling. Whip together all the ingredients with a hand mixer or stand mixer until light and fluffy. If it isn’t thick enough add more powdered sugar, if it is too thick you can add a splash of almond milk.
  6. Let cookies cool completely, then scoop a little filling on one cookie and top with another. Enjoy!

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