Saturday, September 4, 2010

Catching Up

Hello again! I had to post a new entry in celebration of all the great new dishes I've been cooking (and eating) lately. There hasn't been a lot of adventurous cooking, as I haven't been in the mood to make homemade pasta noodles or elaborate desserts. But easy-to-prepare food doesn't have to mean boring food.

I continue to be amazed with 500 Vegan Recipes. I've tried half a dozen recipes already, and not one of them has disappointed me. The lemon thyme quickbread recipe is worth the price of the cookbook alone. So, needless to say, I had very high expectations for the Red Jambalaya.

I haven't had jambalaya since becoming a vegan, and I was a little concerned about the lack of sausage or shrimp. I considered adding a link or two of fauxsage, but it turned out that this dish didn't need it. It was perfect all alone, with okra as the shining star ingredient. To make the jambalaya a bit healthier, I used brown rice instead of the suggested long white rice. It was very, very spicy the first day, a little less so the next. This is definitely something I'll make again!

I love white beans. Cannellinis, navy beans, it doesn't matter. I try to make something with white beans at least once a week. This time I tried the White Bean Aioli from Veganomicon. Here's a picture of it spread on French bread.

This dip was very strong, so a little went a long way. It was maybe even (dare I say) a little too strong for my taste, but J loved it.

I celebrated my birthday last week, which meant receving several great presents, including my very own copy of The Urban Vegan. Thank you, Reg!! The funny thing is, I bought this cookbook just the week before for Nina's bridal shower present. I was kind of sad at the time that I didn't have my own copy ... and now I do!

I had to make something from this cookbook right away. I chose Modular Pakistani Kima, which sounds quite exotic but is basically a curry. And wow, what a curry!!! Dynise gives you a few options when making this dish: I chose to add mustard greens for the green vegetable, and a can of garbanzo beans for the protein.There was also a few potatoes, carrots, peas, and an ungodly amount of curry powder. 

I can always tell when J loves a dish, because he exclaims, "Mmm!" This kima rated several "Mmm"s. I agree wholeheartedly.    

My mother and brother came to Pittsburgh for my birthday weekend, and Mom tried her hand at vegan baking with the Peanut Butter Pie recipe from The Kind Diet. I love peanut butter pies, and this one was exceptionally sweet with a melted chocolate base. Unfortunately, the pie had been prepared the night before and then refrigerated, solidifying the chocolate into a hefty chunk. This made it pretty hard to cut the pie into slices. It was still very good, though.

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