Monday, August 25, 2014

Zucchine Bread Takes Over the Freezer

It's that time of the year. The invasion of the giant zucchini. They seem to be very good at hiding when they are little. Turn your back on one for a day, and it has reached giganitc proportions. Eat them before they eat you!

What's a great way to do that? Why, zucchini bread of course.

I use a recipe from the Joy of Vegan Baking. No egg, no dairy. Instead of egg, you whip flax seed and water. It really does end up with an eggy consistency. The recipe calls for a lot of oil. But also says you can substitute applesauce for half the oil. I do that, actually using more than half applesauce.

This bread contains many of good things: home grown zucchini, organic flour and sugar, cinnamon, walnuts, organic raising, flaxseed, and organic applesauce.  I have been doubling the recipe to make four loaves at a time.

It will make a nice reminder of summer when winter gets here.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Black and White Cookies

This is not the first time I have made these, it is not even the best job I have done making them, but I made a batch today and managed to remember to take a picture.

The recipe comes from Vegan Cookies Invade your Cookie Jar by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero. Great little cookbook.

The cookies are lemony and good just as they are. But then they are iced with a white glaze, slightly flavored of almonds and a chocolate icing on top of that. Yum.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Who says Pizza isn't Healthy?

I have been wanting a spinach pizza for a while. I decided that since fresh organic spinach was a bit hard to come by right now, that I would try using frozen spinach. It worked great. So here is my recipe for a spinach pie, more of a guide than a recipe as I did not precisely measure anything once the dough was made, but it was the best pizza I have made in a long time.

The idea here is a layered  pizza. Make each layer taste good and the whole thing will be great! One layer consists of spinach sauteed with onion and nutmeg. One layer is seasoned mushrooms and onion, Then there is a bit of cheese and some additional toppings.

I began by making my favorite pizza dough.

Usually I form the pizza crust on a paddle and slide it into the oven so it is in direct contact with the heated pizza stone. But this is a pan pizza, so I formed the dough to fill a sheet pan.

I made this pie to suit two different tastes, one side is vegetarian and one is not. The non-vegetarian side has tomato sauce Turkey Bacon and black olives. The veg side goes heavy on the spinach does not have any tomato sauce and instead of Bacon, it has smoky tempeh. So really, suit yourself with the toppings. If you eat ham or bacon, they could be used instead of the tempeh or turkey bacon. If you hate olives, leave them off. If you love garlic, saute it with the spinach or 'shrooms.

The other ingredients are at the ready:

tomato sauce (optional)
one or two 10 oz packages of frozen spinach, thawed or partially thawed
8 oz of  fresh mushrooms, sliced

One onion finely chopped
1/2 onion thinly sliced
3 slices of Smoky Tempeh fried until slightly crisp and chopped
3 slices of Turkey Bacon, fried and chopped
organic cheddar cheese
black olives 
salt & pepper
Italian seasoning
Olive oil

First I prepared the tempeh by frying it up in some olive oil and then chopping it after it came from the pan.
Next I sauteed the sliced mushrooms with half of the chopped onions, adding a little black pepper to them. Reserve the cooked mushrooms.

Half of the pizza gets tomato sauce. I used some organic tomato sauce that happened to be open in the fridge. The other half of the pie can be lightly brushed with olive oil, or not. Sprinkle the entire pie with Italian Seasoning. 
Saute the sliced onion in a little olive oil. When it is done, distribute the onion slices over the entire crust.
Next, saute the thawed spinach in a bit more olive oil along with the rest of the chopped onion. The goal here is to evaporate most of the moisture left in the spinach while cooking it lightly. Add salt and a light sprinkle of fresh nutmeg. When the spinach no longer seems wet or juicy distribute it over the pie. I went heavier on the spinach on the veg side, lighter on the tomato side.

Add grated cheese lightly over the whole pie. Use your favorite flavorful cheese. I used organic cheddar. Distribute the reserved mushrooms over the spinach. Distribute the other toppings over the pie as you like. I put organic turkey bacon and black olives on the tomato side, and organic smoked tempeh on the spinach only side.

Pop the whole thing in the oven for about 20 minutes, slice and enjoy!

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Happy Huffle-muffin Day!

Today is international Huffle-Muffin Day. Although Hufflepuffs are known for their love of muffins, today we have staged a mass bake-in. Members of the House of Hufflepuff bake muffins, then, before they are all gone, take and post a few pictures of their muffins.


I adapted a recipe from The Joy of Vegan Baking to make Banana Nut Muffins. The recipe is actually for Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins. I like chocolate chips as much as the next guy, but I don't think they have a place in breakfast foods. So I left them out. I replaced some of the oil with applesauce and flax oil, and replaced the water with soy milk. I also added about a teaspoon and a half of cinnamon, because I like cinnamon.

I have discovered that some process photos are required, so here goes:
Prepping the muffin tins:
I like to use paper liners in my tins (because my dishwasher gets grumpy when I don't) but when making banana muffins, the muffin will stick to a paper liner. The solution is to either use foil muffin liners, with paper removed, or to try to oil the paper. My first attempt at oiling the paper with a spray like PAM failed, because the spray came out gloppy and ended up as pools of oil. This may be beacuase the product was old. I don't use it very much.
This time I greased the papers with some margarine. Results are OK.

Getting ingredients together:
 Bananas. Sugar in a  large bowl. Applesauce, flax seed oil and sunflower oil in a measuring cup. Dry ingredients in the yellow bowl. Below, some walnuts ready to be chopped.

I roughly chopped the bananas, too. Then I added them to the sugar, oil/applesauce mixture, mashing them up with the whisk as I added them. This incomplete mashing lets me keep some banana chunk in the muffins, but still lets the mashed portions work as an egg replacer.

The dough gets mixed:
 And placed into the muffin cups:

Resulting in yummy muffins. And as we all know, yumminess is why Hufflepuffs like Muffins.

My Adapted Recipe:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare your muffin pans. Foil pan liners work if you remove the paper. Paper liners will stick unless you spay with oil or PAM

Mix together:
2 c unbleached flour
1-1/2 t. baking soda
1/2 t. baking powder
1 t cinnamon
1/4 t. salt

In a measuring cup place

1/4 c. applesauce
and 1 T flax oil
add enough vegetable oil to make 1/3 cup

In a large bowl whisk together:
The measuring cup ingredients of oil and applesauce
1 cup sugar (raw organic)

4 chopped, then lightly mashed bananas
1/4-1/3 cup soy milk
1-1/2 t vanilla
1 cup of chopped walnuts

Add the dry ingredients to the large bowl and mix everything together.
Divide the batter into muffin cups and cook for 20-25 minutes for small muffins or 25-30 minutes for large ones.

And just because I need one, here is a process collage: