Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Vegan Week - Day 2

Ramen with carrots, mushrooms, pea pods, broccoli, red and green onions, some chile garlic sauce, and toasted peanuts and sesame seeds.

Well, another day as a vegan!

I still don't like the almond milk coffee creamer, though it was a bit more tolerable this morning. So, while I was at the grocery store to get supplies for tomorrow's photo shoot (for next Tuesday's lead story on the Food page), I looked for coconut milk creamer but couldn't find it; I settled for a soy milk creamer, which I don't have a lot of hope for. But it's not good to start the day with bad coffee ... bleah! This is a work in progress ... or an opportunity for an entrepreneur.

Applesauce muffins and a banana.

For breakfast, I had a banana and an applesauce muffin. Craig had tried one of the muffins yesterday, before leaving, and even said he liked it ... wow! Instead of an egg for protein and structure, I used 1/4 cup silken tofu. The muffins baked up beautifully ... :)

Now, tofu, to my mind, is not food. I've tried marinating it, searing it, chopping it, tasting it in various Asian restaurants, and virtually every other means of dealing with it. And you know what it tastes like? Vomit. Truly. No matter what, unless I simply bury it under chocolate or peanut butter or cinnamon or some other strong flavor. But tofu works perfectly as an egg replacement in baked goods - let's celebrate that, and not employ it for any of its lesser uses. (Your amusement du jour: Craig actually likes tofu! What is it with his taste buds?!?!?)

Fennel Slaw and French fries.

Like yesterday, lunch included a salad: Fennel Slaw, which is one of my very favorites. Lots of crispness and crunchiness, with just a hint of that famous (infamous?) licorice/anise flavor. Because I had prep work to do for tomorrow's photos, I didn't feel like chopping or stirring or sautéing or anything that required much involvement on my part. So I just made a very simple accompaniment for the slaw: a handful of extra-crispy french fries, sprinkled with a touch of salt and an equal touch of Old Bay seasoning.

(Aside: I want some credit for doing a non-vegan photo shoot tomorrow! I could've given y'all tofu, wheatgrass, and other such fare, rather than the omnivore fest that will be of greater interest. As Spock says, "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one." Even if the one is the one who has to prepare the food.)

Then, after eating the fennel and cabbage and onions, I did my breath - and, thus, the pussycats - a favor and ate a few of the generic mint faux-reos which may be my new favorite junk food. (They're double-stuffed, which is gross and excessive in traditional Oreos, but is perfect for the ones with the minty filling!)

On a chilly, dreary, rainy, snowy, icy "March comes in like a lion" evening, a nice hot dinner was the perfect comfort. Ramen. A huge bowl of it, loaded with carrots, mushrooms, pea pods, broccoli, red and green onions, some chile garlic sauce, and toasted peanuts and sesame seeds.

And there will likely be more faux-reos in my future, this evening ... :)

Applesauce Muffins

1 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/8 cup silken tofu
1/2 cup vanilla almond milk
3/4 cup flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
Pinch of kosher salt
1/8 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon + 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
1 tablespoon ground flax seed
1/3 cup chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons sugar

Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together applesauce, tofu, and almond milk until smooth. Add flours, salt, brown sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, nutmeg, baking powder, flax seed, and walnuts. Stir until combined.

Divide batter among the lined muffin cups. Stir together sugar and remaining 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon; sprinkle over muffins, then bake for 20 to 25 minutes until muffins feel set when lightly pressed and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Yield: 12 muffins
Source: Mary Bilyeu

Fennel Slaw

1 small fennel bulb
4 cups shredded green cabbage
1/2 small red onion, halved, sliced thin
1 teaspoon sugar
4 teaspoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons oil
Pinch of kosher salt
Generous pinch of freshly ground black pepper

Trim stalks, fronds, and root end from the fennel. Slice remaining bulb in half, then slice thin; place into a large mixing bowl along with the cabbage and onion.

Combine sugar, vinegar, oil, salt, and pepper; pour over vegetables and mix. Let rest for 30 minutes or, preferably, several hours for the flavors to blend.

Yield: 8 servings
Source: Mary Bilyeu

Vegetable and Peanut Ramen

1 teaspoon sesame oil
Few mushrooms, sliced
Few pea pods
1 thin slice red onion, halved
Few broccoli florets
1 small carrot, peeled, sliced thin
1 small stalk of celery, sliced thin
1 large scallion, root end trimmed, sliced thin
Vegetable broth
2 tablespoons peanut sauce
1/2 teaspoon chile garlic sauce
1/2 tablespoon soy sauce
1 package ramen noodles, seasoning packet discarded
1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
Handful of chopped peanuts, toasted

In a medium saucepan, heat the oil over medium-high heat; add mushrooms and sauté briefly. Add pea pods, red onion, broccoli, carrot, celery, and white part of scallion; cook for 1 minute. Pour in broth to cover vegetables by 1 inch. Stir in sauces and add noodles. Bring to a boil and cook 3 minutes, until noodles are just done.

Pour everything into a deep bowl and sprinkle with sesame seeds, peanuts, and green parts of the scallion.

Yield: 1 generous serving.
Source: Mary Bilyeu.

1 comment:

Rachel (Diary of a Recovering Chocoholic) said...

I'm so glad you're back. I love reading your posts. I always laugh, bookmark a recipe or both! I don't have the determination to go vegan. I love my bacon and cheese. I have been trying to eat less highly processed foods lately though. Anyway, I hate tofu too. Living in Korea was made a tad tougher by that! I lost a bet to Mike once and my penalty was to hit a chunk of tofu that comes in the soup. I couldn't get it down and begged to take a double dosage of another penalty! Your Elvis Oatmeal from Day 1 looks great too! I'm always a fan of that combo.

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