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I saw this recipe popped up the other day for me.

Tofurkey Italian Sausage and Rice Recipie (Vegan) | My Mind In Bytes.

I had just tried Tofurkey Italian Sausage for the first time a day or so before.  I’ll have to post the full recipe – but I ‘veganized’ an allrecipes.com recipe for stuffed zucchini, and used some Tofurkey Italian Sausage that I had in the fridge in lieu of the ‘traditional’ italian sausage that the recipe called for.  I had also seen it used on a Vegan Zombie episode when he made pizza rolls.  This stuff is really good!  I have to admit – I’m only a partial fan of the Tofurkey brand, at least so far.  And I was really pleasantly surprised at how good this sausage tasted!  The seasoning was right on, just a touch of spice – I would imagine that this sausage and rice recipe would hit the spot!  I’ll be adding it to my “to try” list!

 

I’m going to a friend’s house tomorrow night for a girls night.  Just a plain old girls night – hanging out, eating, talking, drinking, and laughing!  This is the first ‘girls night’ since I’ve decided to become vegan.  So it’s my first ‘party’ experience.  I can’t recall how I got linked to this recipe, I think it was through Twitter, but I thought it would be a great one to try to bring to the party!

Kristina’s Kitchen » Creamy Spinach Artichoke Dip- w/ some modifications 🙂

I even have most of the ingredients that I need to make it!  I probably won’t tell anyone that it’s vegan, unless they ask (although some may read this through my post on Facebook).  We’ll see how it goes!

What’s your favorite vegan ‘party snack’ to make or bring to non-vegan parties?

I stumbled across this recipe on Twitter recently, and it sounded super yummy!  Especially since it’s been so hot, in the 90’s but feels like 100’s, here in Chicago for the last week!

Ice Cold Red Tea Latte :Mosaic Kitchen

I’m a HUGE fan of the So Delicious products, and this sounds so easy and so delicious!  I think I’ll have to give this one a try this week!

I heart Pad Thai!  I was a little disappointed when I thought about it and realized that pad thai isn’t vegan, as there are usually scrambled eggs included.  Although, I think it might be something that can be ordered without, I just haven’t tried yet.  But, I saw this recipe posted by One Green Planet the other day on Facebook, and I had to save it!

Recipe: Street Pad Thai | One Green Planet

I’ve looked up various pad thai recipes in the past, and felt a little overwhelmed by the list of ingredients.  But this one actually seems pretty reasonable.  So, I’ll put it on my ‘to try’ list – and I’ll be sure to post back once I actually get around to trying this one!

image is from the Upton's Naturals site

Upton’s Naturals is one of the first vegan meat replacements that I had come across, a couple of years ago actually.  We went to Green Fest in Chicago in 2010 (unfortunately, we missed it this year – boo!)  All of the food there is vegetarian and vegan.  I found a delightful looking ‘pizza pocket’ from the Upton’s Naturals’ booth.  Sounded delish!  I (used to) love Italian sausage on my pizza, and at the time the only meat the husband wouldn’t eat was pork.  So I was excited to try something that might fill the sausage void and not be a pork product.

Now, this is a ‘must buy’ for me!  I LOVE this stuff!  It has all the nice flavor of Italian sausage (with just the right amount of fennel for my taste) without the pork or turkey! It’s crumbled and sort of mashed up back together.  So, I broke it into sausage pieces on top of a pizza the other night, super good!  (*mental note – post no-rise pizza dough recipe… yum!) Then I had some prepared polenta that I wanted to use, and I had no better ideas.  So I made my own, no recipe required, spaghetti dinner!

This was for 2 adults and 2 kids.

Thin spaghetti, I used a whole-wheat variety

1-2 Tbsp olive oil

1/2 package Upton’s Naturals Italian Seitan (I had used the other half on the pizza).

1/2 jar of organic vegan marinara sauce (it doesn’t have to be organic, but I’ve found that the only vegan ones I can find are organic, and it just tastes better!)

1-2 Tablespoons Nutritional Yeast.

1 ‘tube’ prepared polenta (probably should really be 1/2 a tube, but we liked it, so we ate all of it!)

1) Cook spaghetti per package directions.

2) Drizzle olive oil into a medium sauce pan and heat over medium heat.  Crumble in seitan and break into little crumbles, or leave in big chunks… it’s up to you!  I was going for a ‘meat sauce’ as opposed to spaghetti with Italian sausage. Sautee for a few minutes to heat through and get a little brown on the seitan.

3) Add marinara sauce and nutritional yeast and stir.  Lower to a simmer, cover, and let warm while cooking the polenta and spaghetti.  (On a side note – I had heard that nutritional yeast was a good ‘replacement’ for parmesan cheese in cases like this.  I would most definitely agree!  It made it a little ‘creamy’ and added that salty bite that parmesan would.)

4) Slice polenta into approximately 1/4″ slices.  Lightly oil a large flat skillet.  Cook the polenta slices 3-5 minutes per side, or until slightly brown.

5) Divide spaghetti into your serving bowls, top with seitan sauce, and a few slices of polenta and ENJOY!

I wish I would have taken a picture of the finished product.  It looked quite appealing!

So, as my ‘reviews’ always have a grade – I give Upton’s Naturals Italian-Style Seitan an A+.  Now, if I could just buy it in bulk!

I’ll admit, I didn’t really cook much today.  We were out all day – and I had packed our lunch, so I was just spending some time on the computer looking up recipes to try.  This one was just posted today on OneGreenPlanet.org.  I must admit – it caught my eye and any ingredients I need for this one will be added to my grocery list this week!

Recipe: Vegan Chicken Salad and Chocolate Strawberry Mousse by Liubov Grechen

Image from onegreenplanet.org

Do you have 25 minutes to prepare a delicious beautiful meal for four and don’t feel like cooking?

Well, then this is the recipe for you.

Vegan “Chicken” Salad Ingredients:

  • One package of textured soy protein (Lightlife Smart Strips are delicious)
  • 1 cup of chopped celery
  • ½ cup of chopped onions
  • ½ cup of sliced almonds
  • ¼ cup of flax seeds
  • ¾ cup of Veganese
  • 1 ½ cups of halved red grapes
  • Splash of lemon juice
  • As much pepper as you like
  • Two avocados
  • One head of green leaf lettuce

Vegan “Chicken” Salad Preparation:

  1. Place all of the ingredients, except the avocados and lettuce, into a large bowl and mix.
  2. Take four plates, place desired amount of lettuce on to each, and then add two large spoonfuls of your delicious Vegan “Chicken” Salad.
  3. Slice half of an avocado on to each plate.
  4. Enjoy!

Chocolate Strawberry Mousse Ingredients:

  • One package of extra firm tofu
  • One cup of dark vegan chocolate
  • Two tsp of strawberry agave nectar
  • Three strawberries

Chocolate Raspberry Mousse Preparation:

  1. Blend tofu and strawberries in your food processor.
  2. Melt dark chocolate in a double boiler on your stove. If you do not have a double boiler, place the dark chocolate in a small frying pan over a pot of boiling water, and mix. Be careful not to get any water into the melting chocolate.
  3. Add the chocolate and strawberry agave nectar to the food processor and blend.
  4. Scoop into four dessert dishes and place in the refrigerator for one hour.
  5. Serve with fresh strawberries!

Voilà! A delicious beautiful meal in 25 minutes and you didn’t even have to turn your oven on!!

Enjoy!

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I don’t know about you – but that sounds like a delicious summer meal to me!!

I saw this recipe on another blog – The Post Punk Kitchen and figured I’d give them a try. They’re listed under the “Thanksgiving” recipes, so I thought I’d try them in a ‘chicken parmesan’ style with spaghetti and marinara sauce.

These were really quite easy to make, and pretty economical.  The only ‘special’ ingredient was the vital wheat gluten, which is pretty easily available, but not cheap – so I bet there is probably something that can replace this to make it a pantry recipe.

Doublebatch Chickpea Cutlets from Post Punk Kitchen (with my pictures)

Chickpea Cutlets before cooking

Chickpea Cutlets Cooked

1 – 16 oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 cup vital wheat gluten
1 cup plain breadcrumbs
1/2 cup vegetable broth or water
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon dried sage
Olive oil for pan frying

Optional ingredients:
4 cloves garlic, pressed or grated with a Microplane grater
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

In a mixing bowl, mash the chickpeas together with the oil until no whole chickpeas are left. Use an avocado masher or a strong fork. Alternately, you can pulse the chickpeas in a food processor. Be careful not to purée them, just get them mashed up. You can also sneak the garlic cloves in here instead of grating them, just pulse them up before adding the chickpeas. If using a food processor, transfer to a mixing bowl when done.

Add the remaining ingredients and knead together for about 3 minutes, until strings of gluten have formed.

Preheat a large heavy-bottomed skillet over low-medium heat. Cast iron works best. If you have two pans and want to cook all the cutlets at once then go for it, otherwise you’ll be making them in two batches (it actually took me 3).

Divide the cutlet dough into 2 equal pieces. Then divide each of those pieces into 4 separate pieces (so you’ll have 8 all together). To form cutlets, knead each piece in your hand for a few moments and then flatten and stretch each one into a roughly 6 by 4 inch rectangular cutlet shape. The easiest way to do this is to form a rectangle shape in your hands and then place the cutlets on a clean surface to flatten and stretch them.

Add a moderately thin layer of olive oil to the bottom of the pan. Place the cutlets in the pan and cook on each side for 6 to 7 minutes. Add more oil, if needed, when you flip the cutlets. They’re ready when lightly browned and firm to the touch.

**My notes on this recipe – I used a 15 oz can of garbanzo beans.  My breadcrumbs were NOT vegan 😦 BOO!  Milk, buttermilk, and eggs were 3 of the last 4 ingredients.  But, they were the last few ingredients, so I don’t feel as bad about that!  I also found that I didn’t have any dried thyme, so I used oregano instead.  I used a little garlic and no lemon zest.

I think I may have overcooked them a bit, and possibly made them just a little too thin.  I thought they were good overall though.  I think next time, I’d do a few less minutes in the pan and transfer them to the oven to finish cooking.

They had good texture – a lot like a breaded chicken cutlet actually.  I served it with spaghetti and vegan marinara sauce.  The kids and the husband put parmesan cheese on theirs, I sprinkled a little nutritional yeast on mine.  The boy ate half of his, again – I think they were a little too well done for his liking.  The husband said it was OK.  And, the girl maybe ate one piece and then was ‘saved’ from having to eat her dinner by the tornado sirens that went off and we headed to the basement.

After this run, I’ll rate these a B – but I’ll definitely try them again!


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