Thursday, January 28, 2010

Purple Potatoes with Cashew Cream

Purple Potatoes with Cashew Cream

This recipe was taken from my favorite cook book The Vegan Table. I made it recently when we had our friends Miles and Jill over for a dinner as a starter.
As I have mentioned before, if you want to check out a few recipes that are vegan and are afraid that they will suck, this is the book to try. Rest assured that all is great and the flavors and ingredients are accessible. They are very simple and delicious and worthy of homage in my best of collection.(known as this blog)

30 Small Potatoes
Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper
Earth Balance
1 yellow onion
3 cloves garlic - minced
1 teaspoon of brown sugar
4 large Sage leaves
1/2 cup walnuts, toasted
1 cup unsalted raw cashews , toasted
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
1 cup vegetable stock

pre heat oven to 425
place potatoes in an oiled pan and roast until soft, salt and pepper to taste (make sure the potatoes are coated well with olive oil.
While the potatoes roast
cook the onion, Earth Balance and garlic and brown sugar and add a bit of salt and saute for around 5 minutes and then continue to cook until golden brown and sweet.

Now that both of those are cooking in you can toast the sage leaves in oil quickly to crisp them and chop the walnuts or quickly food process them. Combine both and keep on the side.

When the onions are ready add to the blender with the cashews, nutritional yeast and veggie stock.
I added a bit more garlic as i made this , salt (rocked sea salt)  , pepper and a dab more  stock to make sure it was creamy.

Now that the potatoes have cooled cut them and half and hollow out a little bit to allow for the cream.

Then top with the sage , walnut topping (  I added more sage and green onion to the topping)

and then dream about these delicious morsels until you have time to make them again

Coming soon:  Veggie lasagna , and great meals that I recently enjoyed at  The Blue Plate and Incanto.
Even the meatiest of restaurants make amendment for plant people.


Saturday, January 23, 2010

Weird Fish - Mission and 18th

So the weirdest thing about Weird Fish is there isn't a lot of fish and the best thing about Weird Fish  is the vegan ranch dressing and the fried pickles with a gluten free vegan batter. I love fried pickles, I was introduced to them the first time I went to New Orleans with Chad. I was initially horrified, but let's be honest , does it matter what you are putting in the fryer covered in batter? Dill pickles served fish and chip style is amazing.
I heard a lot about  this location  because they are known for their vegan tacos as well as weekend brunch and they concurrently serve fish (farm raised and only work with reputable farms).
I assure you that eating brunch out as a vegan on the weekend is quite a bummer. Everyone's dishes arrive to the table  and everyone has a look of excitement as every dish is covered in hollondaise  and maple syrup and then my oatmeal with soy milk comes and I just end up sad. So with that being said,  I am looking forward to heading back to check out their brunch and tacos.
This restaurant is a good spot for Chad and I , he can have a fish dish and I can ignore his tales of the climbing gym while pouring RANCH  DRESSING on absolutely  everything.

We had their special salad with "ham" brussel sprouts and pecans, it was really good.

They have a version of "fish" and chips that includes battered tofu, a pickle and battered seitan served with sweet potato fries and regular fries.
I will head back to check out some other items for sure since they change the menu so often  (it will change on Monday) and have vegan brunch offerings.


Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Chris B's famous vegan and gluten free Mushroom Basil Pesto Pasta

For those of you who have known Chris B and me for a long time know how strange this must seem.
 (that we are posting recipes and offering health tips)
Thanks for the recipe Chris. I can't wait to make it. 
If any of you get a chance to try it before me I would love to hear about it.

1 Packet of brown rice pasta
2 packets of shitake mushrooms (7 oz)
1 packet of basil (4 oz)
1 packet of spinach (6 oz)
1 packet of raw pine nuts (8 oz)
1 red onion
6 cloves of garlic
1- crown of broccoli
1 sprig of rosemary
1 cup of red wine (add to taste, while tasting)
olive oil
red chili flakes

Using a food processor use half the packets of spinach, basil, pine nuts and add a packet of mushrooms for the pesto puree along with 3 cloves of garlic and 3/4 of the onion and rosemary. Add olive oil and a cup of red wine to the puree along with all of your spices.
In a sauce pan add the remaining ingredients to the pesto at medium  heat. I usually add a little more red wine and bring it to a reduction while cooking the pesto.


chris b...

Sunday, January 17, 2010

And The Golden Globe goes to....

I have been wanting to make Rice Crispy treats for a while and boy am I glad that I did tonight. Originally I was going to call this blog Vegan Junk Food but since I am not trying to promote an unhealthy diet I decided not to.  I try to make the healthiest food possible but have a fierce craving for JUNK!! These were a super hit while watching the Golden Globes tonight with Chad and Beth.

Sorry Drew, your dress was not very cute but I still love you.

1 Tablespoon of Earth Balance
1/2 box of Erewhon Crispy Brown Rice Cereal
1/2 bag of semi sweet vegan chocolate chips

Stir over medium heat until all is melted, scoop in to a tin foil lined baking pan and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Serve with a scoop of Mocha Soy Dream
and everyone involved will be thrilled.


Saturday, January 16, 2010

Cha Ya

Had dinner at Cha YA last night . I had always been curious about this vegan Japanese food location. 
It was great but a little on the pricey side.

The above picture is a signature roll called the "Cha Ya roll"  it includes yam and veggies and then fried with a tempura batter. It was delicious and I will definitely head back to try some other items.  

Cha Ya
762 Valencia St
(between 18th St & 19th St)
San Francisco, CA 94110
(415) 252-7825

Veggie Sushi Combo 

Butternut Squash Soup

Butternut Squash Soup  -From the Vegan Table - I tried a version of my own recently and prefer this simple recipe

1 medium size yellow onion, diced
1 to two tablespoons water or veggie broth , for sauteeing
1 inch piece fresh ginger, minced
3 garlic cloves, minced - ( i use pre chopped)
2 cups peeled, seeded, and cubed butternut squash
2 medium size yellow potatoes, peeled and cubed (I don't bother peeling)
salt and fresh ground pepper

In a medium size sauce pan , cook onion in broth until translucent , about 5 minutes. Add ginger aand garlic and saute for a few more minutes. Add butternut squash, potatoes, and enough water to cover the squash and potatoes
Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 30 minutes or until squash is soft. Add to a blender
season with salt and pepper and enjoy!!


American Pie

Tempeh and Eggplant Pot Pies

Tempeh and Eggplant Pies - from The Vegan Table by Colleen Patrick -Gordreau
This week we had Melissa , David and Joaquin over for dinner.  There was not a vegan in sight (except for myself).
The menu looked like this :
Butternut Squash Soup
Tempeh and Eggplant pot pies
and mashed potatoes

For the pot pies:
2 cups diced eggplant
1 8 oz package Tempeh cut in to 1/2 inch cubes
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small yellow onion chopped
1 celery stock chopped
1 teaspoon fennel seeds ( I grind them in a coffee grinder to get them integrated in to the sauce)
2 tablespoons capers
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 15 oz jar of tomato sauce ( I used a basil sauce)
1/4 teaspoon red peper flakes
salt and pepper to tast

for biscuit dough:
1 & 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup non dairy mil (soy, rice, almond, hazelnut or hemp)
1/3 cup canola oil or Earth Balance

Preheat oven to 425,
coat 6-8 individual ramekins with oil and set aside
or you can use a 9x9 inch pan.
To make the filling, steam eggplant and tempeh for 10 to 15 minutes, until eggplant is soft and translucent .
At the same time , add water or oil to a large size saute pan and cook onion and celery until soft.
Add fennel seeds, capers, and vingar and saute for one minute. Add tomato sauce, red pepper flakes, and cooked tempeh and eggplant. Simmer for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare biscuit dough. Place flour, baking powder and salt in a mixing bowl, and stir together. Pour in non dairy mik and butter or oil, and mix just until dry ingredients are evenly moistened. The dough should be lumpy and sticky, not smooth like cake batter.

add salt and pepper to sauce , scoop out evenly to reamekins and cover each reamekin with biscuit dough (should be enough for each ramekin).

bake for 15 minutes.
This was served with mashed potatoes and it was fantastic!! 

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


Miette in Hayes Valley has so many fabulous confections. I had NO idea there were vegan treats as well. 
The Buccaneer Bar , raspberry licorice, French orange chocolate and many more.
My intention with these posts are simple. I could no longer subscribe to factory farming and made the switch to this lifestyle and it has become a passion.  I meet so many people that are curious about a vegan diet. What does a vegan eat ? How do I manage with a busy schedule? I definitely cook more now than ever as the options at home are far better than the few restaurants that have vegan fare.
I don't feel there is any compromise per se.  The odd thing is that I don't know any vegans. (except Danielle and she lives in LA)

Thank you Joaquin for bringing the great candies to dinner last night. I almost wish you hadn't introduced them to me.
Also,  The Vegan Baker that we adore works at Miette in Hayes Valley , her name is Crystal and her own company is called Violette Sweet Shoppe. If you need a special sweet treat she is your gal.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Swamp Thing I think I love you !!

This is a good picture of how I usually feel in the morning.

I have to admit that I was skeptical about Chad's Christmas gift request. He had wanted a Vita Mix 4500 blender for a few months. The price of this kitchen appliance is daunting. It retails around $400-$500 .
I repeatedly asked him, "it is a blender right?"
I wouldn't balk at a similarly priced item as long as I could wear it. Not to mention we already had a blender that worked just fine.
I cracked and purchased the blender.  Chad was ecstatic and now, so am I!
This blender has a 2 1/2 horse power motor and you can put virtually anything in it.

Lately I have been using it in the morning.
I throw these items in: 
Kale - approximately 5 large leaves
1/2 of banana
a few stalks of celery
tiny piece of ginger
1/2 cup apple juice + add water to keep the calorie content low
Rice protein powder
and Ice
The Vitamix turns it to liquid.

This shake will wake you up!! I highly recommend the vita mix and have heard that Blendtec   makes a comparable model that retails at a slightly lower price.
We have made butternut squash soup in it. This blender is life changing



Monday, January 11, 2010

Red Miso Veggie Gyoza Soup

This soup is perfect in a hurry! 
It is..
3 Tablespoons of organic red miso paste
Small hand full of Dulce Seaweed. Dulce is a good  source for B6 & B12 and a great supplier of iron
1-2 cups fresh spinach
bring up to boil and toss a package of veggie gyoza into your soup long enough for the gyoza to heat through and voila!
It all can be done very easy and healthy.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Nacho, Nacho, Man...

How can anyone live without nachos? This was one of my main concerns when I made the switch to a plant based diet. Well, thanks to Daiya Cheese, Soyrizo, and Tofutti's sour cream all is right in the world.

1 bag of Casa Sanchez chips
1 cup of Soyrizo
1 can of veggie refried beans (Amy's)
1/2 container of Daiya "cheese" Mozzarella style
1/2 container of Daiya "cheese" Cheddar style
Guacamole - 2 avocados with lemon, salsa, salt and pepper to taste
Bake until cheese melts. (Daiya Melts)

Shared with Stephanie and Chad

the result  ...


Garden Vegetable Noodles with tofu, chili-citrus-sesame sauce

Chow on Church St. has a delicious vegan noodle dish. At the 9th St. location they have vegan pesto as well as vegan pizza crust.
Yay for great restaurants with vegan options!
It was great to see Monique outside of a dark night club. :)

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Cauliflower with Capers in Herbed Vinaigrette

This recipe is form The Mediterranean Vegan Kitchen by Donna Klein
I made this last weekend with cheddar cauliflower, I hadn't seen or tasted cheddar cauliflower before, it has a unique flavor (I don't think cheddar is the best way to describe other than color )

1 large head of cauliflower cut into florets
1/4 cup vegetable broth
1/4 cup of capers drained
2 Tablespoons evoo
2 Tablespoons white wine vinegar
2 Tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil
2 Tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh chives or green onion
2 cloves garlic - finely chopped
salt and pepper to taste

cut cauliflower in to florets and steam in steamer basket for 5-7 minutes
mix in a large bowl with the capers
in a small bowl, whisk the vegetable broth, vinegar, basil , parsley, chives garlic , salt and pepper
add to the cauliflower and capers, mix well . Serve warm or chilled.

This one is worth making!

Gracias Madre

Had dinner at Gracias Madre on Mission and 20th last night. Is organic vegan Mexican food.
I should say had take out rather, it was too busy to get a table.
It was so great. Joaquin and I had roasted butter nut squash, kale, mushrooms , rice and beans and most importantly key lime "cheese" cake.  I look forward to them sorting out the turning of the tables but the staff is gracious and the food is great. 

Tuscan White Beans

TUSCAN WHITE BEANS WITH SUN-DRIED TOMATOES  - From The Vegan Table by Coleen Patrick -Goudreau 
Tonight's recipe was delicious and super easy.

1 cup chopped sun dried tomatoes
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large-size yellow onion
3 zucchini or summer squash  I added yellow crook necks
3 garlic cloves - (I always use the chopped in a jar, so much easier)
3 cups fresh spinach
3 cans small white beans 15 oz
1 cup of water ( I subbed veggie broth)
1/2 teaspoon ground sage
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 teaspoon dried pepper flakes (more was great!)
1/3 cup chopped fresh basil

If the Sun Dried tomatoes are dried, soak in a bowl of warm water while you are preparing other ingredients.
Heat oil in large saute pan add an onion and saute for approximately 5 minutes 
add squash and cook for 5 minutes. Then add garlic, spinach , beans tomatoes , water , sage , salt black pepper and red pepper flakes, salt to taste add basil and serve right away.

This was super easy and was great with garlic olive bread toast and Cafe Gratitude's chocolate nut frozen dessert "ice cream" for dessert.

I have so many vegan cook books and am looking forward to sharing the recipes I try , the variations and the creations.