Monday, November 30, 2009


Cooked again for Thanksgiving (I swear November is a vegan food-blogger's wet dream) and had to pause to shout at you the following:


(Click on pic for larger version with stuff labeled)

Seriously, I was intimidated at first by the length of the cooking directions (which actually are short but look overwhelming because she supplies you with several variations), but it was surprisingly easy to put together. Granted, it cooks for about four hours, but GOOD LORD PEEPS! How often do you get to lavish in the delightful thanksgiving smell of roasting for four hours now that you no longer cook turkey? You'll love it, trust me. And if you have a breadmaker, this is as simple as dumping the ingredients in and pressing a button.

Tofurkey-haters take heed in particular: this is by FAR tastier than the tofurkey many of us turn to as a quick turkey-substitute around the holidays.

True story: My brother SPECIFICALLY ASKED that I give him leftovers of the faux-turkey for him to take home. (This, the boy who bitches every year about how crappy tofurkey tastes.) He also raved about making the leftovers into a sandwich.

My sister and mom (despite me telling them I made it myself—they sometimes don't listen well) days after Thanksgiving did a doubletake when they realized that I HAD indeed made it myself and both said they didn't realize it because it tasted so good.

So yeah.

AND it makes TWO loaves. So I'm STILL working through leftovers.

What else: If you make it, $100 billion dollars will spontaneously fall into your lap, it's THAT good. (Okay, THAT part's a lie, but the rest: TRUE AS MOTHERF-ING HELL.)

I'm also including the gravy recipe I used for both Thanksgiving and my vegan potluck as it tastes WONDERFUL with this faux turkey recipe.

And now: a pic of my fam at Thanksgiving in which it looks like my Mom and brother are praying but really they are both genetically deficient and chromosomally alike enough that they both accidentally closed their eyes for the pic.

My table-setting:

And now the recipes:

(I've chosen to include ONLY the directions that I used in making my faux-turkey, so if you'd like to see the variations, go check out the original which is linked at the end. Also: I recommend cooking it the night before and then just throwing it back in the oven with a tiny bit of water and, say, your stuffing or some other delightful numbly that you have to cook for 45 mins or so to reheat.)



    DRY MIX:

  • 2 c. pure gluten powder (instant gluten flour; vital wheat gluten)

  • 1/2 c. full-fat soy flour or chickpea flour

  • 1/2 c. nutritional yeast flakes

  • 2 t. onion powder

  • 1 t. garlic granules

  • 1/4 t. white pepper

  • WET MIX:

  • 12 oz. firm regular (NOT silken) tofu

  • 1 & 1/2 c. water

  • 3 T. soy sauce

  • 1 T. olive oil


  • 2 c. hot water

  • 1/3 c. "chicken-style" vegetarian broth powder (I used 2 "chicken" bouillon cubes)

  • 2 T. olive oil

  • OPTIONAL: 4 cloves garlic, crushed

  • 1/2-1 tsp. poultry herbs (sage, thyme, rosemary), crushed well


Wet Mix: In a blender, blend all the ingredients until very smooth.

Dry Mix: Place ingredients in the bowl of your electric mixer with dough hook attachment, or place them in the bread machine in the order given. Add the Wet Mix and knead for about 10 minutes. (If your bread machine has a dough cycle-two kneads with a long rest in between-use that cycle. Otherwise, just run it through the kneading part and then unplug it and let it rest in the cover container, then plug it in again for another knead, then remove it.) Let rest for about 1 hour, covered. You can make your Cooking Broth at this time and have it ready. Then knead it for 10 more minutes.

(NOTE: You can knead by hand, too, but it's tougher than bread dough. You may want to let the seitan dough sit for a while to soak up the liquid more thoroughly before you starting hand-kneading.)

COOKING METHOD #2.) Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Flatten the dough out into a long piece and cut in half equally to make two rectangles. Form into 2 loaves. Place each loaf in an oiled 8 and1/2" x 4 and 1/2" loaf pan and press down a bit with your hand. Mix the Cooking Broth ingredients in a small bowl and pour 1/2 over each loaf. Cover each loaf pan with foil and place in the oven. Immediately reduce the oven heat to 200 degrees F. Bake for 3 hours. Turn the loaves over, carefully loosening around the edges and from the bottom with a small, thin spatula first. The loaves will have puffed up quite a bit by now, but they will flatten out as they cook further. Turn heat back to 325 degrees F. Cover loaves and bake for 30 minutes. Turn them over again, cover and bake 15 minutes. Turn them over again and bake 15 more minutes, covered. Turn them over one last time and bake 5-10 minutes.

(Recipe from Bryanna's Vegan Feast)



  • 1/2 c. nutritional yeast

  • 1/2 c. whole wheat flour

  • 1/3 c. canola oil

  • 1/2 c. chopped onion

  • 2 t. minced garlic

  • 2 t. chopped fresh thyme, or 1 t. dried

  • 2 t. chopped fresh sage, or 1 t. rubbed dried (or I used 3/4 t. powdered sage)

  • 4 c. water

  • 1/4 c. tamari

  • salt to taste

  • ground black pepper to taste


Stir yeast and flour in heavy skillet over medium heat for five min or until fragrant.

Heat oil in large heavy saucepan over medium heat. Add onion, saute for 10 mins, or until it begins to brown. Add garlic, thyme, sage, and saute for 30 secs, or until fragrant. Whisk in flour mixture thoroughly, then whisk in water, tamari, salt, and pepper. Bring to a simmer, whisking frequently, and continue until reaches desired thickness. Strain into a bowl to serve.

(Recipe snagged from Vegan Favorites where it was reposted from Real Food Daily)

Monday, November 23, 2009

Lurve to Lurve You

There's been lots o' love-cookery going on as of late among me and the folks I spend time with. Lots.

So today I share, just to make you a little bit envious if the people in your life suck and don't ever really spread the vegan love.

P made me and her roommate these lentil burritos drizzled in cilantro-sour cream the other week. They were delish, even though they look a bit baby-vomitesque in my pic below:

This amorphous blob (jk, SS) was a spicy steamy casserole that SS made for me and P when we came out to visit. It featured artichokes and Italian sausage and was invented by SS himself and--despite the blurry camera-phone pic (I'd forgotten my camera)--it was really really good:

I made this vanilla cake with chocolate ganache frosting for Tudor Rosy for her birthday party. I was not all that fond (the cake recipe called for WAY too much almond extract), but other folks seemed to like it well enough. Alas, I failed to take pics of the party-nibbles that Tudor Rosy herself made, the majority of which were vegan (seriously: how sweet is THAT, to make sure your ONE vegan friend can eat the foods at your OWN stinking party? Lurve ya, TR!):

And then finally, this was our little vegan Thanksgiving potluck extravaganza. We had one hell of an amazing spread. Everyone brought a dish of some sort of vegan food, and we seriously GORGED THE SHIT out of everything.

The menu was as follows:

  • Pumpkin ziti w/sage breadcrumbs

  • Halushki

  • Dueling stuffings (one was a sausage-apple one, the other a wild rice-cranberry)

  • Sweet potatoes

  • Biscuits and gravy

  • Baked beans

  • Warm apple cider, with or without whisky

  • Magic choc-pb rice krispy treats (they magicked some folks straight into the next day--hee)

  • Chocolate bread-pudding with rum sauce

The night ended with folks in a food-induced (or, um ahem, magic rice krispy-treat-induced) stupor, playing cards and then scrabble. It was very old-school family holiday-ish and a lot of fun.

So darling dearest friends, oh loves of mine, in this week of thanks, you all are at the top of my list. I appreciate so much the fact that you embrace and support my veganism so completely. It means a lot to me, so thank you all for kicking ass so seriously.


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Lilly Handmade Chocolates: How Sweet It is

So I won a couple gift certificates for Halloween (I won Most Gruesome Costume for my Carrie costume), and one was for Lilly Handmade Chocolates in my neighborhood. So you can only imagine my IMMENSE glee when I found that they actually sell some vegan chocolates.

The shoppe itself is super cute, bedecked with rows of beer and wine and other alcoholic sundries. And in the back are the chocolates, the sweet divine chocolates. You pick them out ($11 for 6 pieces is what I redeemed my gift certificate on), and Lilly herself boxes them up for you, with a cheerful smile and pink hair ablaze.

I got two of each of the following chocolates (pictured from left to right):

After Midnight--"Bitter chocolate stout mixed with intense dark chocolate for a crazy rich fan favorite!"

The Redhead--"She stands out in a crowd and loves the attention! Intense dark chocolate truffle that is filled with a blueberry vintage port ganache."

In the Pink--This one's not listed out on the website, but it was our favorite of the three and I think it was cranberries in a berry drink of some sort.

We nibbled on them out on my roof on an unseasonably warm night and lavished in their rich flavors. They were rich enough that I was only able to eat two of them in one sitting.

The Chomp Monster was much the same:

Since I had $4 still left after the 6 chocolates, I also got this chocolate bar to round the gift certificate up. The Chomp Monster is "a fan favorite! Dark chocolate with Black Mission Figs, Roasted English Walnuts & just a touch of Sea Salt" and it actually was my favorite of them all as well. The mix of the figs and the salty bite of sea salt mingling with the crunchy sweetness of the walnuts was AMAZING. And even though the bar was $5, it took me a few days to eat it all, it's that rich.

So: my point. If you're in Tremont, swing by Lilly Handmade Chocolates and hug her the hell up for being vegan-friendly. And then DEFINITELY pick up the Chomp Monster. I promise you won't be disappointed.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Spinach & Artichoke Pasta

So the original recipe for this came from The Vegan Cook's Bible (which actually is a really cool cookbook if you haven't yet perused it).

The recipe itself is super easy-peasy, easily adaptable (get inventive and throw in some more seasonings or, as I did, add some shroomies), and it actually tastes like a lot more work was put into it than is actually the case.

And it's one of those recipes where you can really just wing the quantities and go entirely by taste.

It also is REALLY REALLY good, *AND* you could easily adapt it into a spinach-artichoke dip by leaving out the liquid from the artichokes and also leaving out the shrooms.

So: make it.

  • Frozen spinach (about 2 cups if you wanna be anal)

  • 6-oz. jar of marinated artichokes

  • Vegan sour cream (1 to 2 cups, depending)

  • Penne pasta

  • 2-4 cloves garlic, minced

  • White mushrooms, quartered (I used about 2/3 of a large container)

  • Olive oil


Cook penne pasta according to package directions, drain, and set aside.

Reserve the liquid from your artichokes and dice the artichokes up finely.

Heat oil in a pan on low. Add garlic and cook a minute or two until fragrant.

Add mushrooms and cook for a few minutes until they start putting off moisture.

Add spinach, artichokes, and reserved liquid.

Let simmer for maybe 10 minutes or so, however long it takes for the frozen spinach to cook through.

Add vegan sour cream and stir until mixed. Simmer on low until sauce is heated through.

Season with fresh pepper and salt to taste.

Serve over hearty portions of pasta.

(The sauce goes a long way, so you can get at least 6 servings out of it and possibly up to 10)

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Things I Ate Recently That You Did Not, Unless You are an Enzyme in My Stomach Which is Likely No

Vegan brunch to benefit Books 2 Prisoners. These buckwheat pancakes were the effing bomb, esp. drizzled in strawberry sauce; also featured: muffin, tofu scramble, biscuit & gravy:

Casa Nueva's autumnal burrito. Holy hell!! Got this when SS & I roadtripped down to Athens one Sunday to catch the tail-end of fall colors. Was phenomenal. Packed with tofu, black beans, leeks, local apples, and more, and topped with apple salsa. Seriously orgasmic:

QBL's cabbage & noodles. This shit is SO simple and yet SO GOOD. This is the second time she's brought some in for me (thanks, QBL--batting eyelashes), and I'm not sure which I like more: the taste, or the fact that it totally stinks up the office like B.O.:

And last but DEFINITELY not least:

Melt Bar & Grilled's Mom's (Vegan) Meatloaf Melt: Homemade Vegan Meatloaf, Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes, & Spicy Chipotle Ketchup, packed between two pieces of thick-ass bread. This was their Oct. sandwich special, and I seriously have been crying for about 7 days over the fact that I won't be able to taste this again 'til next year. Then again, their sandwich THIS month is a (vegan) turkey sandwich with Mom's Homemade Sage Stuffing, Roasted Butternut Squash, Sweet Cranberry Dipping Sauce, and vegan cheese, so maybe I should stop blubbering: