Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Blog is moving

I am moving to my permanent home over at Fraser Valley Vegan! Join me there and over at my very fun Fraser Valley Vegan Instagram for photos, blogs, vlogs, recipes, and more!



Monday, December 31, 2012

Vegan Spaghetti-O's With Franks

When I was a kid, I was obsessed with canned spaghetti (I'm sure to the chagrin of my Italian father, and superb cook mother).  I considered the "gourmet" version of this Franco-American experience to be the franks flavour, full of smoky goodness.

I've been a vegan eater and chef off and on since I was in my early 20s, but only ever attempted the canned spaghetti (which I call ghetto spaghetti) and plain spaghetti-o's varieties.

Last night I announced a craving for the franks version to my Canadian wife (who I am sure did not grow up with such a salty, processed mess of artificial yumminess).

It's New Year's Eve, meaning I am not about to go to the Italian specialty store for round pasta shapes.  Instead, I have stars on hand meant for a sick-time no-chickin' soup.

I'm sick in the head for this dish today.  Good enough, eh?

The key, I have found, to this flavour is the smoked paprika, and butter combination.  Also, I don't think it's possible to make that canned spaghetti bouquet without ketchup.

Here is my list of ingredients:

400 grams of tiny Italian pasta of any style you prefer (stars, alphabets, ditalini, etc...)
3 non-GMO vegan franks, sliced thinly
1 t Spanish smoked paprika
1 T vegan butter
1/2 t garlic powder (not salt!)
1/4 t onion powder (not salt)
2 1/2 T ketchup (the "cheap" flavour works best with a sweetened and salted variety)
1 can tomato paste
1/2 t salt (optional)
1 cup water
3 T nutritional yeast flakes
*prepare the pasta according to the directions, and shock it with cold water while draining, then set aside
*heat the butter in a skillet, adding the franks once the butter has melted (medium heat is good)
*once the franks begin to brown, add half of the smoked paprika, the ketchup, the garlic powder, and the onion powder
*fry franks until most of the liquid has absorbed, but avoid any burning
*add tomato paste, water, nutritional yeast,  and the rest of the smoked paprika, and bring to a boil before pulling from the heat
*add pasta to the pan, and stir well
*return the pan to the heat, and reduce the sauce to desired consistency, adding extra salt and/or spices for desired flavour

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Vegan Muenster Cheese -- It Can Be Done!

One of my favourite cheeses as a little burgeoning rat of a child cheese-lover was muenster.  I loved it especially on sandwiches, slightly melted, or creamed into the rest of the ingredients.  That zippy, paprika taste was tangy and alive.

I have never seen a vegan version in a store (and I've been to some of the most fringe vegan-foods-from-all-over-the-world ones).  My internet search shows there are a couple of varieties nowadays (I've been eating vegan off and on since 1993).  I wanted to make my own.

I have not yet purchased the somewhat famous vegan cheese cookbook as of yet.  I wanted to try a few recipes first, determine if it was worth the bother (after having eaten friends' versions of tofu-based vegan cheeses a decade ago, and hated them), then take the plunge.

Enter the internet.

As I said with my gouda post, please visit the blog where I located this recipe (despite the fact that I believe it is lifted 100% from the book), and take a look.  I don't post recipes unless they are my own.  I do, however, love finding recipes from books I've not obtained, from the internet, giving me a test drive.

Here is the blog that birthed my muenster mash. http://healthykitschyvegan.wordpress.com/tag/muenster-cheese/ .

I made it with all the optional ingredients, agar powder, and coriander.

The photos below will show you the results.  Yummy and very sexy looking cheese!  It's easy on the eyes for sure!

I think I could do without the silken tofu, as it makes it less creamy (the Gouda was amazingly creamy to spread from the knife, and melt without much difficulty).  I also would like to try it without the lemon juice, and add perhaps a tiny amount of horseradish or cocktail sauce.  It needs something slightly more tangy, but not lemony.

I could see myself leaving in the silken tofu to make a really yummy pepper jack that could stand up to salads (brainchild for using the leftover silken tofu!).

Monday, May 28, 2012

Vegan Gouda lower fat hard cheese that actually melts, and tastes great cold!

Ok, now that you've seen the beauty of a canola oil-based vegan cheese, run over to Julia's Vegan Kitchen to view the recipe I relied upon:

My modifications were the ones she suggested.  I took out 2 tablespoons of almond milk, and replaced them with 2 tablespoons of canola oil.  I also added 1/8th teaspoon of turmeric (also at Julia's suggestion).

My mould was much shallower, as I was unsure what size receptacle to use for hardening.  Next time, I will likely choose one that is deeper.

Below are some shots of my first slice, and first eats with it!

 I'm not sure why the photos are so badly rotated.  Blogger edited them that way, and I cannot fix it.

Look how melty this cheese is on the Gouda-Style Texas cheese toast!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Deli option

I wish I had taken a photo before I gulped it all down, but SavOn Foods, at least the Aldergrove store, has consistently sold a vegan potato salad and a vegan "Vienna Coleslaw" for the past 4 months.

Check it out! I promise to buy more soon and post photos!


Saturday, September 24, 2011

Corned Bean Hash

I will first post the original recipe that inspired this amazingly yummy vegan meal.
I added chopped garlic since we are a garlic house, turmeric (hippie spice!), and used Bragg's Liquid Aminos instead of soy sauce. SO yummy!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

An "omelet" Hannibal Lector would love! If he was vegan.


Today I had a riding lesson at 10 a.m. That meant I needed a meal that would "stick to my ribs" and not feel heavy. As a vegan eater, this can sometimes be challenging. My wife's pantry carried the answer: fava/garbanzo flour!

I've made besan "omelets" before with great and yummy success. Hmm. Fava flour blend?

As you can see from the photos (mine was the tomato and Joy's was the mushroom) we had a very scrumptious breakfast!

(Recipe below the photos)

Recipe:Yield: 1 Omelet (double, triple, etc... for desired omelets if making more than one in one sitting).

1/3 cup Fava/Garbanzo flour

2/3 cup warm water from tap (add a tablespoon more at a time to make that slightly thick "pancakey" batter consistency)

Cholula sauce to taste in batter (I like a good teaspoon!) if desired

Desired fillings such as sliced tomatoes, mushrooms, peppers, onions, dill, cilantro, spinach, Daiya cheese, etc...)

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil or canola oil

A non-stick skillet that is rounded and had a lid


Whisk the flour and water in a cereal bowl, adding warm water as needed from the tap to release that last bit of "tacky" feeling from the batter on the whisk.

Add Cholula if desired, nothing, or any flavouring agent such as lime juice.

Whisk again

In the skillet, heat the oil on medium/high setting for 1 minute.

Add all your batter and let it cook with an open skillet until you see what looks like a fat but not brown "tortilla" shape.

Flip with your spatula and turn down the heat to medium.

As soon as the batter has solidified (but not browned) on the fresher side, take skillet to trash and pour off excess oil (be sure to wipe off the oil from the pan as you will be placing it back on the burner!)

Add filling to one side of the omelet and place the lid on the skillet, allowing the rest of the fresher side of the batter and your ingredients to cook.

Flip the plain half over onto the filling like an egg omelet and replace the lid for a minute to let it all cook/set.

Dress with salsa, pico de gallo, guacamole, etc...

I LOVED Pepperjack Daiya in this one!

I want one right now even!