Sunday, October 24, 2010

My brains have turned into pink goo...

For those who don't know me, then you don't know that I've been cramming for the last 2 weeks in prep for my CCNP Switch Exam... My brains are are feeling like the base for a nice berry sorbet, so I'll be lazy and post pics and a recipe for something I made 4-5 weeks ago, since I've been boring in the kitchen lately.

Pretty simple recipe, requires an ice cream maker of course (we all have one of those right??).

  • Simple Syrup
    • 3/4c Water
    • 3/4c Sugar
  • 1lbs Strawberries, cleaned. 
  • Red Wine of Choice, about 1c (I used a dry syrah with a good berry note)

So, if you don't keep simple syrup around to placate your alcoholic thirsty friends, don't fret, you can make it in about 1 minute in the microwave.  Mix the water and sugar together in a microwave proof dish, nuke for a minute, stir, if it doesn't dissolve, repeat.  Once the sugar dissolves into the water, you'll want to let this chill. So pop it in the fridge and twiddle your thumbs for 30min to an hour.

Once the syrup is cooled, puree your strawberries in a blender with the syrup.  When I did this it yielded about 3 or so cups of liquid, top it off with wine to get to 4c, and let the mixture chill again in the fridge.  You should now have a quart of sorbet base.

Once the base is cold, churn it as you would any other sorbet or ice cream according to the directions on your maker.  Mine takes about 20 minutes to do the job.  It didn't really double in volume until the last 5 minutes or so, don't be worried if your sorbet is a late bloomer.

In the beginning

Once its roughly doubled in volume go ahead and scrap it out into a container, and stick it into the freezer.

You'll have to let it set up for another hour or so, unless you like it to be slushy.  The wine makes it slow to set up, but we still love it, even if it is slow.  Also note that this still has all its alcohol in it, though it makes several servings, so the dose is small.  It will make minors breath smell like wine...

Serve in a pointlessly ornate Margarita glass...

Also I just signed up for the Vegan MOFO, so expect me to go blog crazy for the month of November.  My exam is Thursday, so wish me luck :-)

Vegan Month of Food


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Black Bean and TVP Patties, v0.1

So I've made a fair amount of vegan food from recipes that I'm getting adventourus.  So here is my first 100% random pantry grab recipe.This was an experiment that turned out pretty tasty, so I thought I'd share and ask for input and or tips.

I layered it on a warm pita with a little veganaise, sliced tomato, and baby mixed greens, sprinkled with some Nutr yeast flakes. Ate it folded like a soft taco

  • 1c Water
  • 1tsp Better Than Bouillon no beef
  • 2tbsp Brags Liquid Aminos, or Soy Sauce
  • 1c TVP (dry volume)
  • 1can Black Beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1tsp Cumin
  • 1tsp Onion Powder
  • 1tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1tsp Paprika
  • 1/2tsp Cayenne Pepper
  • Sea Salt and Fresh Ground Pepper
  • 1/4c Ground Flax Seed
  • 1/4c Nutritional Yeast
  • 1/4c Vital Wheat Gluten

  1. Bring water to a boil, (I used the microwave and did this step all in a 2c measuring cup) then add in the bouillon and stir to dissolve. Add the Brags or soy sauce, and then add your cup of TVP and mix. Let this sit 5 minutes to rehydrate.
  2. Mash up your rinsed black beans in a mixing bowl (or stand mixer as I did), add in the TVP and spices, mix till well combined. Mix in the Flax Seed and Nutritional Yeast, finally add the Vital Wheat gluten and mix till well combined.
  3. Makes about 6 patties, cook on a stick resistant pan or griddle with a little olive oil. I did mine on my grill press using the griddle plates, so took about 4-5 minutes to cook. I would guestimate about 4 min per side otherwise. I froze the extra patties to use for a quick meal later, just like you would one of those store bought patties with the crazy ingredients list.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Fall Chimera Cupcakes

Look so Happy
So the lovely vegan peoples over at reddit posted a link to cupcakes with a mini pumpkin pie heart.  They cried out to veganize the recipe.  Well the sympathetic yet evil mad scientist in me couldn't resist the urge to Frankenstein some pastry, so I took my vegan stab at it and put on my own twist.  I decided to go with a Chai Latte Cupcake from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World (Pardon my shameless advertising). Its a cheap cookbook, its an awesome cookbook, you should already have it.

It was fairly straight forward, start off with a batch of "Basic Single Pastry (page 262)" in the Veganomicon.  Roll it out, cut out small circles (I used a small glass) and press them into a mini muffin pan.  Preserve the extra pastry, and use it to make some ramekin pumpkin pies.  Mix up a batch of your fav vegan pumpkin pie base, I like this one here.  I baked the mini pies for 30 minutes at 350, and left my 4 ramekin pies in the oven for a total of 55.  Let the little pies cool, and move on to your cupcakes.

I just followed the recipe from VCTOtW for the Chai Latte Cupcakes.  I thought this would accent the flavor of the pumpkin pie nicely and add a nice spice.  Personally I think I was right.  I put a heaping tablespoon (I used a .75oz Disher if I recall), filled the bottom of the cupcake liners, and then set in my little pumpkin pie tarts. Then I topped them off so that overall it was about 5/6's full (They don't rise as much due to the heavier cake batter and the pumpkin core)  Baked 24 min at the recommended temp, which is just a few longer than the recipe calls for, trust me they are plenty moist.

Let them cool down, and then top with a Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting. I made mine:

  • 8oz Vegan Cream Cheese
  • 1/4c Vegan Butter
  • 1tsp Vanilla
  • 1.5tsp Cinnamon
  • 2c Powder Sugar

  1. With a mixer, combine the Cream Cheese and Butter. 
  2. Add the Vanilla and Cinnamon and mix till combined.  
  3. In 3-4 batches, sift in the Powder Sugar, and mix.  

I put the Frosting in a pastry bag, and let it chill with the cupcakes in the fridge overnight.

Once everything is nice and cold, top the suckers off and enjoy.