Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Cookouts and Flavor Flav

So yes: like most of you, I cooked out on Memorial Day Weekend. Actually more than once. I forgot to take pictures at the first cookout though, which is a shame because there was some good stuff there, like my mom's vegan taco pizza, for example. But oh well.

My second cookout was at my friend P's and was very laid back and feminist-ic. We sat out on her huge voluptuous porch. I cooked burgers on my ex's little grill. We talked about books we were reading, bands, some really bad movies that we're fond of. One of P's friends quietly knitted while we sat and bullshit. It was a nice nice day.

I whipped up some peanut burgers with satay sauce for everyone and dragged along some of Veganomicon's blinding potato salad. P made a delicious chickpea salad with basil and mint (recipe hopefully forthcoming). And we battled it out upon realizing we'd both baked VwaV chocolate chip cookies.

The peanut burgers were decent--nothing special. Though I must say, coupled with the peanut satay sauce, they were quite scrumptious. (The sauce isn't exactly the epitome of healthiness though.) The potato salad, on the other hand, I found sorely disappointing. My mom's boyfriend liked it a lot when I brought it to my brother's cookout, but I just thought it was bland bland bland. Then again, I'm kind of a traditionalist when it comes to potato salad, so maybe THAT'S why I didn't like it? Who knows. But honest to god, I found it really super-boring on the flavor front.

Nonetheless, I post both recipes here. If you DO go the bean-burger route, definitely try it with the satay sauce. It adds a much-need oomph.

Peanut Burgers with Satay Sauce


  • 1 c. TVP granules

  • 1 scant c. boiling water

  • 1 T. tomato paste or ketchup

  • 1 16-oz can pinto, kidney, or other beans, drained (I used kidney)

  • 1/4 c. whole wheat bread crumbs (I used panko)

  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced

  • 1/2 t. ginger powder

  • 1 T. soy sauce

  • 1 t. sugar

  • 1/4 c. chopped peanuts

  • salt and pepper to taste

  • whole wheat flour for dusting


Pour boiling water over TVP and tomato paste in a bowl. Stir and let rest for 10 minutes.

In food processor, combine TVP mixture and remaining ingredients except for flour and peanuts. Pulse until mixture is almost a puree. During the last pulse, add peanuts. Pulse just enough to mix.

Dust hands with flour and shape mixture into 6 burgers. Dust them lightly in flour. Layer the burgers with sheets of waxed paper and refrigerate for at least one hour.

Cook on a grill covered with foil for about 10 minutes on each side.

Satay Sauce


  • 1 small onion, minced

  • 1 clove garlic, minced

  • 1 small chili pepper, chopped (or alternately, red pepper flakes to taste

  • 1 t. sesame oil

  • 1 c. natural chunky peanut butter (make sure it's natural--I made the mistake of not doing so, and it coagulated very strangely)

  • 1/4 c. teriyaki sauce

  • 2 t. brown sugar (or regular sugar works too)

  • 1/4 c. water

  • 1 t. tomato paste

  • 1 t. sesame tahini

  • salt & pepper to taste


In a heavy saucepan saute the onion, garlic, and chili pepper in the sesame oil.

When translucent, add the peanut butter and stir until melted.

Add the rest of the ingredients. Simmer over medium heat for 10 minutes.

Serve over grilled peanut burgers.
(Posted at Award-Winning Veggie Burger Recipes)

Prospect Park Potato Salad

                                    from Veganomicon


  • 5 lbs. potato, washed and peeled (I used red, I think the original recipe calls for yukon gold maybe?)

  • 1 seedless cucumber, sliced thinly

  • 1 large carrot, peeled and grated

  • 1 c. vegan mayonnaise

  • 1/4 c. Dijon mustard (whole grain)

  • 1/4 c. olive oil

  • 1/3 c. white vinegar

  • 2 T. sugar

  • 1 T. dried dill

  • 1 t. turmeric

  • 1.5 t. salt (to taste)

  • 1 t. fresh ground black pepper


Slice the potatoes between 1/2 and 1/4 inch thick. (If potatoes are large they can be cut into halves or thirds before slicing.)

Place potatoes into large stockpot, and fill with cold water about 4 inches above the top of potatoes.

Bring to a boil for about 15 minutes or until potato can be pierced easily with a fork. (With red potatoes, this took only about 5 minutes.)

While the potatoes boil, prepare the dressing.

If making the whole recipe, you will need the larges mixing bowl you have in order to add the potatoes later on.

Mix the vegan mayo, mustard, olive oil, sugar, vinegar, dill, turmeric, sal and pepper. Wisk together briskly. Add sliced cucumbers and place in the fridge until potatoes are ready.

When potatoes are done, drain and rise them quickly under cold water. Be sure to shake off any excess water. Add potatoes to the dressing and mix well.

Top with grated carrots and mix. Check seasoning and adjust as needed.

Refrigerate until ready to serve.

(from Veganomicon, posted at Recipezaar)

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