Sunday, August 30, 2009

Curried Chickpea Burgers

This is another "revamp" recipe where I take a dish that I made a day or two before and turn the leftovers into a brand new dish. You remember the chickpea korma I made on Thursday? Well, it made a lot and after a few days I wanted it to be something else already. So after some thought, I decided to make curried chickpea burgers with the leftovers. The curry had a lot of sauce so I drained all that off and mashed up the chickpeas/carrots/cauliflower mixture that was left, added a few handfuls of breadcrumbs, a few tablespoons of whole wheat flour, a sprinkle of cayenne, dried parsley and 1/4 of a chopped onion. I put the mashed mixture in the fridge for a half hour for it to firm up a bit before I shaped them into patties. They were baked for 30 min. (flipped over halfway) in a 400 degree oven.

Oh my god, wow. These were perfect. Crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. I served them in a hot pita with lettuce and a garlicky cucumber sauce (cucumber, garlic, vegenaise, lemon juice, red wine vinegar, salt, pepper, parsley). It was so freaking delicious! Kind of like falafel with a kick of curry flavors.

Kind of blurry but here is my sandwich mid-bite. So yummy.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Marble Loaf Cake + Ku Chai Dumplings!

Last night my husband and I went to Baja Fresh for dinner. After dinner which was really good and filling by the way (I had a burrito mexicano bowl), my husband wanted to go to Best Buy which was next door. I hate Best Buy so I ducked into nearby Ralph's supermarket while he shopped. I wandered the bakery section drooling over the cookies, cakes, turnovers and pies. I was mad that I couldn't have any as they all contained dairy and eggs. One that caught my eye especially was a marble loaf cake. I used to make marble cakes as a kid with prepared cake mixes. They were lovely. I was determined to make one this weekend, vegan style. I used kittee's vanilla cake recipe again (I used rice milk for the liquid), portioned out 1/4 of the batter and mixed in some cocoa powder to get the chocolate part of the cake. I poured the vanilla batter into the loaf tin and poured big dollops of chocolate batter in random areas on top of the vanilla batter, then took a butter knife and swirled it through cake a couple of times. About 50 minutes later, I had my very own marble loaf cake!

Moist and delicious. And you can bet that I'll be having this with tea later on. Next time I will use a higher proportion of chocolate to vanilla in the batter.

Went to Bangkok Market in Hollywood yesterday and picked up these babies. They are located in the freezers. You only need to defrost them and either pan fry or steam them. Ingredients: Chinese leek leaf, tapioca flour, salt, sugar, palm oil.

Served with low sodium soy sauce mixed with Sriracha hot sauce.

All together with tea and dessert!

Edited to add: Just found this recipe online to make these dumplings at home:

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Chickpea and Vegetable Korma

As some of my readers already know, I love a good curry. Thai, Indian, whatever, I'm all over it. It's one of the easiest things to make. I like plopping everything in a pot and letting it simmer away while my rice cooker cooks the rice for me. All I had to do was sit back in front of the fan with the ball game on. Super easy, no fuss! You'll find the recipe here. I added a few things to my curry: 1 TB tomato paste, 2 tsp. unrefined sugar and low sodium soy sauce to taste. I also used 1 can coconut milk instead of the creamed coconut/water mixture. I've never had korma before, vegetarian or not so I can't say how authentic it is. But one thing I can say, this is delicious.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Dinner in Bed.

After having breakfast in bed, then lunch I thought, why not dinner? So here it is. After a nice productive day at work I came home to this. Baked mac n "cheese", cucumber salad and a side of sweet melon. It was perfect.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Lunch in Bed.

I made "lunch in bed" today instead of breakfast. I kept it simple with a toasted pita spread with walnut paté, salad (cucumbers, onions, greek olives, tomato, sumac, lemon juice, olive oil) with a dollop of Vegenaise and half a banana. All with a cup of tea. I really like eating meals in bed. There's something very relaxing and leisurely about it. It makes me slow down and enjoy my food rather than wolf it all down before I head out the door. It also makes me more mindful about my food. So here's to more meals in bed! I'm not planning on anything fancy for dinner tonight. I've got homemade broth bubbling away right now for the ramen noodles that I will have when I get home from work. Noodles have just been hitting the spot lately. This is a short work week for me (I've got Thurs. and Fri. off) so on Thursday I'll go grocery shopping and make something nice. I've been leafing through my Iraqi cookbook and want to make so many things out of it. So we'll see...

Edited to add a picture of my ramen:

This was sooooo filling! That red stuff is Sriracha hot chili sauce.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Breakfast in Bed + Ready Made Curry

This was my breakfast this morning, in bed while reading my Agatha Christie. I had a whole grain english muffin spread with Earth Balance margarine, a piece of orange blossom cake and hot ceylon tea (with a dash of soymilk and agave). I enjoyed this very very much. Only thing missing was fresh fruit which I didn't have today.

A close up of the cake. It was supposed to be sour cherry/orange blossom but the sour cherry flavor never came through. I used a half recipe of kittee's vanilla cake and used a mixture of water/sour cherry syrup for the liquid portion but I think I should have added more sour cherry, less water. Oh well. I will try to tweak it next time. But even so, this cake was delicious. Orange blossom is wonderful in desserts.

Sorry about the bad lighting but by the time I got around to eating this, it was late and the light was terrible. This is Trader Joe's Choley curry with toasted and "buttered" rolls. I served it with a side of cucumber salad. Yummy.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Stuffed Peppers with Lima Beans, Rice and Dill

This recipe was pretty much thrown together with what I had in the fridge that needed to be used up. I had two red peppers, a cup of frozen lima beans, half a zucchini, a handful of grape tomatoes, cold jasmine rice from the day before and some fresh dill. I sauteed some garlic and onions in olive oil and threw in the defrosted lima beans, chopped zucchini, halved grape tomatoes and dill and seasoned with salt and pepper and cooked everything until the tomatoes and zucchini were soft. I added this mixture to a few cups of rice and seasoned it with more salt and pepper and a pinch of cinnamon. I then cut the peppers in half, stuffed them with the rice mixture and put them in a baking dish with a little water at the bottom. I drizzled a little watered down ketchup and soy sauce over the tops of the peppers, covered them with foil and baked for 30 minutes at about 350 degrees F. I removed the foil and baked for another 10 minutes. They look and smell really good. This is dinner tonight after I get home. I like to cook my dinners in the morning and reheat them later to save myself time. The last thing I want to do at 6pm is cook a meal. Tonight all I have to do is reheat the peppers and serve them with a side of the Uzbek potato salad that I made yesterday. Can't wait!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Uzbek Potato Salad

I have this beautiful new cookbook called Silk Road Cooking and it's full of gorgeous photos and recipes that are inspired by cuisine found along the Silk Road, the exotic spice and trade route from China, through the Middle East to Italy . I veganized this Uzbek potato salad by using vegan mayo and omitting the hard boiled egg that the recipe called for. It's got potatoes, carrots, peas, apples, raisins, scallions, celery and flavored with a curry infused sauce. It's really yummy. Can't wait to try more recipes from this book.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Tofu Noodle Soup

Mmm, noodles! I sometimes get major cravings for a bowl of Thai noodle soup, especially when I see my omni family enjoying theirs with the traditional beef broth. Today my mom made this special for me. It hit the spot and was very easy to prepare. There really is no recipe involved. You just need a small pot filled with water where you will add a quartered onion, a clove or two of smashed garlic, a few baby carrots, a celery stalk cut into pieces, a 1/2" piece of peeled ginger and a tomato cut into wedges. Bring to a boil and add mushroom soy sauce, a teaspoon of sugar, salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for about half an hour. Add tofu cubes at the end before you serve. You may also prepare some boiled or steamed broccoli to add to your noodle bowl. Prepare your noodles of choice according to package directions (today we had flat rice noodles), put them into a large bowl, pour broth over noodles making sure to include a nice selection of veggies, add a tiny spoonful of chili paste or Sriracha hot sauce and stir it up. Then grab your chopsticks and slurp it all up!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Salad with Walnut-Cashew Pâté.

I felt like being healthier at dinnertime because for lunch I went out with my husband and had a veggie burger and fries at Johnny Rockets. All that junky diner stuff made me crave something fresh, like a salad. I like to prep my salads in a big tupperware that I can serve myself from during the week. My salad today consisted of romaine, green leaf, red bell peppers, cucumber and celery. I add the tomato before serving. I also made the "Ricotta Cheeze" recipe from Ani's Raw Food Kitchen to put on top. It's not really a cheese, more like a pâté I think. Her recipe requires walnuts and pine nuts. I didn't have pine nuts today so I subbed cashews. It was really good with the salad, especially eaten with the tomatoes because I hate raw tomatoes on their own.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

My Old Standby: Quinoa Bean Burritos

You know, I've made these burritos quite a lot in the past few months! I've posted about them here and here and I know I've made them plenty other times without bothering to post. I'd like to call it my old standby. It makes a lot and keeps well for meals throughout the week, or in this case, weekend. I've posted the recipe here. Feel free to change up the beans or veggies. I used red and green bell peppers, zucchini and spinach today because that's what I had in the fridge. I also switched the beans to kidney instead of black. I like to make them "enchilada" style by covering them in a chipotle tomato sauce with vegenaise drizzle. They would also be great with melted vegan cheese on top along with guacamole and dairy free sour cream.

For info about quinoa:

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Apple-Plum-Strawberry Crumble

Summertime is the perfect time to make a fruit crumble. I went to Real Food Daily with my husband and in-laws this afternoon and for dessert we had their peach-blueberry cobbler. It was quite good and it inspired me to make a fruit dessert. I've made this before using mango and strawberries and I can imagine using any fruits that you have available. I had a ton of red delicious apples plus a few juicy plums that were very ripe. I didn't have fresh strawberries so I used some frozen ones I had in the freezer. It was delicious! I based the recipe off of the one here and substituted Earth Balance margarine for the butter, agave for the sugar and cut the brown sugar in the topping in half. Still sweet and scrumptious.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Pineapple Fried Rice

I had leftover white rice chilling out in the fridge so I was happy to use it for this pineapple fried rice. It came out great. It also has onions, garlic, celery, mushrooms and tomatoes.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Cauliflower Spinach and Mushroom Quiche

I remember the last time I had a quiche made with eggs. It was probably about 4 years ago at Marie Callenders. It had broccoli and peppers in it and it was awful. I think they reheated it the microwave so it was watery and very soggy and just plain gross. Well, who needs a quiche made with eggs anyway? This vegan version is gorgeous. It looks beautiful all baked and browned and tastes deliciously creamy. No one would know that it's got a tofu and cashew base. I've made this one a few times before using the 'Classic Broccoli Quiche' recipe from the Vegan Brunch cookbook and it always came out perfect. I had different veggies on hand today and couldn't see why it wouldn't work using them instead of broccoli. I was very happy with the smells coming out of the oven and even happier when I took it out, all golden and beautiful. This will be supper tonight paired with a salad after a hard day at work.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Coconut Curry Noodles

Yummy yummy. This Thai inspired dish came out really nice. You can use any pasta you prefer. I tried brown rice pasta tonight but I can imagine anything from fettucine to macaroni would be good with this.

Coconut Curry Noodles

1 lb. brown rice spaghetti or any pasta you prefer
2 TB olive oil
1 TB ginger, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. red curry paste (or more if you like it spicy!)
1/2 cup julienned carrots
1/2 cup sliced red bell peppers
1 1/2-2 cans coconut milk
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1 cup xtra firm tofu, cut into small cubes
1/4 tsp lime zest
juice of 1/2 lime
1 TB agave syrup or 1 tsp. sugar
1-2 TB mushroom soy sauce
black pepper
1 tsp cornstarch mixed with a little water
chopped cashews as garnish
sliced cucumbers

Prepare pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile heat oil in a large saucepan over medium high heat. Saute garlic and ginger for a few minutes. Add the red curry, carrots and red bell pepper. Saute for 3 minutes. Add coconut milk, mushrooms and tofu. Bring to a boil and then lower heat and let simmer for about 5 minutes. Add lime zest, and lime juice and agave. Then add the cornstarch/water mixture and let simmer for another 5-8 minutes. It will thicken up. Season with mushroom soy sauce and black pepper. When pasta is cooked, drain and add to the coconut curry sauce and toss well to combine. Garnish with chopped cashews and sliced cucumber.