Archive for November, 2009

VPS – Red Onion, BBQ Soy Curls, Basil

November 30, 2009

VPS - Red Onion, BBQ Soy Curls, Basil

Another Sunday, another vegan pizza. We went a little more “safe” this time around and only used what we had on hand. I wanted to incorporate some Thanksgiving leftovers, but my wife didn’t seem enthused (I’ve used mashed potatoes for a pizza topping before, to great results).

I had a quarter of red onion in the fridge, an open pack of soy curls and some basil that never made it to my in-laws while we were visiting, so it became pretty clear what we were making.

For the soy curls, you’re supposed to soak them in hot water for ten minutes before using in your recipe. I soaked them in half hot water, half BBQ sauce, drained them and tossed them with more BBQ sauce. A quick julienne of the onion and some whole basil leaves and we were in business.

We have been looking for a good organic, no-HFCS BBQ sauce for what seems like ever. Well, we found one and even though it’s not organic, it is without HFCS and tastes like the BBQ sauce you remember – because it is.

Bull’s Eye BBQ sauce is now (or at least new to me) made without HFCS and made with real, honest to goodness sugar. A novel idea to Kraft Foods, I assure you. Now, if only they made an organic one…

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Red Rice, Yellow Squash, Spinach, Mushrooms

November 23, 2009

Red Rice, Yellow Squash, Spinach, Mushrooms

We’ve been on a uncommon grain kick lately. Trying all sort of cool sounding, and looking, grains that are more than just what, rice and pasta. Queue red rice.

We had been browsing over at Sevananda and saw the package and figured “why not?” so we picked up a pack. Well, we’ve since bought several more packs as it’s been that good. A little less chewy than barley but with a lot more texture than even brown rice and a ton of “earthy” flavor.

It paired very nicely with some yellow squash my wife received from a woman at work. Some garlic-sauteed spinach and baby portabella mushrooms and a complete meal was born.

VPS – Caramelized Onions, Spinach, Yellow Squash, Purple Barley, Oven Dried Grape Tomatoes, Eggplant

November 23, 2009

That sure sounds like a lot more than it seemed! The biggest difference tonight was the 100% whole wheat crust. Whole wheat pizza dough has a tendency of being tough, overly-chewy and sometimes dry. But last week I made a half and half dough and it worked out very well, so I thought I’d give 100% a shot.

VPS - Caramelized Onions, Yellow Squash, Purple Barley, Oven Dried Grape Tomatoes, Eggplant

The verdict? Not bad, but not as good as “regular” pizza dough. I think I’ll stick with the half and half from now on – and my wife agrees.

Most of the toppings were leftovers from the week, which was a great way to get rid of them all at once. The squash, spinach and onions were leftover from a sandwich we made earlier in the week and the purple barley (yes, it sounds weird to have barley on a pizza, but it totally worked!) was leftover from even earlier. For the “sauce” I used some grape tomatoes that I oven dried, packed in oil and froze for just such an occasion (and I still have the flavorful oil left!). No more Teese left, so it was all Daiya which was more than OK with us.

The only downside was the eggplant. It looked really good at the farmer’s market this morning so we picked it up. I sliced it thin, salted it for about a half hour and layered it on top of the Daiya. Unfortunately, it was just a little too chewy/tough which made not only eating it difficult but also cutting it. We ended up just taking it off and eating the rest of the pizza – an experiment not likely to be repeated in the future.

Vegan Pizza Sunday – 11.15 – Pesto, Roma Tomatoes, Spinach, Red Onion, Artichokes

November 16, 2009

VPS - 11.15 - Pesto, Roma Tomatoes, Spinach, Red Onion, Artichokes

A tradition we’ve started when football season got underway is Vegan Pizza Sunday. Every Sunday (that I have off from work) we sit around all day watching football and I make some kind of vegan pizza. I’m going to try and make it a regular feature here as well.

Pizza for us is like the soup of the day at a restaurant – a way to use up the odds and ends we have in the fridge. We have yet to hit a bad combination of toppings and tonight was no exception.

I started with a half whole wheat crust (all whole what just doesn’t work out the same way it does with all high-gluten flour) that had some basil pesto incorporated to give it some more flavor.

I don’t typically use a tomato sauce, opting for some kind of roasted tomatoes, fresh tomatoes or pesto. Tonight I had some oven roasted roma tomatoes that were strategically placed around so that each slice would have one. I brushed pesto around the tomatoes and covered the whole thing with spinach.

I had a little bit of Teese leftover so I used that, but it was mostly Daiya. I grabbed a 5 pound bag from Cosmo’s so I’ll have plenty in my freezer to use.

Some julienne red onion and artichoke hearts finished the whole thing off.

Baked on 500 for 25 minutes it was perfect. Everything was soft tender and flavorful. Another winning combination, but it’s not likely to be duplicated.

Quinoa Burritos

November 13, 2009

Sometimes, no matter how much we plan, something wholly unexpected happens. And sometimes it was better than the original plan. This is one of the those times.

I had been planning on making a quick vegetable stir-fry to put over quinoa for dinner. I already had the quinoa mostly done when my wife arrived home from work and asked what was for dinner. It didn’t really matter what I would have said, because she had a craving for burritos. Thinking on my feet, I switched gears entirely and came up with these.

Quinoa Burritos

As I said, the quinoa was almost done already, but I had time to add some cumin, which is all you really need to make anything taste Mexican. I had one remaining can of refried beans (the last can as I’ll be making them from scratch moving forward), so I got those hot as well.

Some baby spinach which would have been in the stir fry got marinated in a little bit of peach-mango salsa. This was our first time trying it and it was a success – we’ve purchased it many times since.

Then it was time to build the burritos. Whole wheat tortilla, spread a little Tofutti sour cream, refried beans, marinated spinach and the cumin-infused quinoa.

As I said, this wasn’t planned but it worked out way better than I was planning on making. We will certainly be having these again.