Archive for December, 2009

VPS – Calzones – Nate’s Meatballs

December 27, 2009

VPS - Calzones - Nate's Meatballs

We skipped Vegan Pizza Sunday last week – I was entirely sick and my wife was just beginning. But, we’re back at it this week.

I think we’re going to keep going with the calzone theme for now – it uses a lot less Daiya, which is wonderful for our bank account.

My wife went with the some ol’ same ol’ pineapple and tempeh bacon. I wasn’t sure what I was going to do until about 30 seconds before I started making them. I looked around the cupboards, the fridge and finally the freezer, stumbling on a half bag of Nate’s Meatballs. I’ve written about them before – we love them, omnivores love them, everyone loves them – but this was the first time using them in a calzone (or any such stuffed item).

They worked really well. Pizza dough, the meatballs, marinara sauce and Daiya. Because they were still frozen, I let the calzones sit for fifteen minutes before baking.

It was so filling, I could only eat half. I must say, however, that this may have been my favorite calzone/pizza I’ve made yet.

Sorry for the blurry picture – I thought it was a good one, but I was hungry and in a hurry!

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Thanksgiving – Celery Root and Cilantro Mashed Potatoes, Roasted Beets and Brussels Sprouts, Mushroom Gravy

December 26, 2009

Thanksgiving - Celery Root and Cilantro Mashed Potatoes, Roasted Beets and Brussels Sprouts, Mushroom Gravy

Better late than never, eh?

I’m a few weeks behind with this one (amongst others), but I figured it was time to get it up.

My Thanksgiving tradition involves a few essential pieces: 1) a different flavored mashed potato every year and 2) everything is organic – all the way down to the olive oil used to make roux. It certainly does not make it a cheap meal, but it’s once a year, so I go for broke ($5/pound for organic brussels sprouts!).

After the success of the celery root mashed potatoes a few weeks prior, I knew I’d have to give them a shot in primetime. I added some cilantro to them to give them a nice, fresh flavor – along with some roasted garlic.

For the vegetables, I normally make steamed broccoli (which I made, but is not seen here), but I wanted something a bit more. I had what I thought was a great combination – beets and brussels sprouts. I didn’t expect, however, to see that combination on a dozen other blogs. I tossed mine with maple syrup, dijon mustard (homemade), olive oil, salt and pepper and roasted them on 450 until the brussels were crisp on the outer leaves.

For the gravy, I sauteed baby portabella mushrooms, removed them from the pan and sauteed green peppers and onions until they stuck to the pan. Deglazed with some balsamic vinegar and added whole wheat flour to make my roux. A little vegetable Better Than Bouillon (the No Chicken wasn’t organic, so I went with the vegetable) with water and a quick puree using the good ol’ immersion blender. I then added my reserved mushrooms back to the gravy and began to season. You can find Poultry Seasoning all over the place this time of year and that’s what I used.

And there you have it – Thanksgiving dinner.

VPS – Calzone – Pineapple, Tempeh Bacon, Roasted Tomatoes

December 14, 2009

VPS - Calzone - Pineapple, Tempeh Bacon, Roasted Tomatoes

After a recent, ahem, transgression by my newly-pregnant wife landed her a cheese-filled calzone I set out to make my own so when you got the craving, I could be there – and be dairy free. So, we flipped our pizza Sunday nights over and made calzones this week.

She LOVES pineapple calzones (and pizza, too) so I knew what she wanted without even asking. Tempeh bacon gives everything that subtle smoky flavor and nice texture and a few roasted tomatoes for good measure (and moisture).

A MUCH better result this time than the last time I made calzones (I won’t even dignify them with a link), with credit going to Diaya, versus the previously-used Teese. It also uses far less Daiya this way, so it’s likely we’ll continue making calzones in lieu of pizza.

VPS – Salsa, Spinach, Green Peppers, Red Onion, Basil

December 7, 2009

It’s that time again – Vegan Pizza Sunday. Our stash of Daiya is holding strong and are love of pizza seems undiminished.

VPS - Salsa, Spinach, Green Peppers, Red Onion, Basil

The fridge was a bit bare this week – busy at work – so it was pretty easy to make a pizza. We used everything we had! In place of tomato sauce we used a fresh mild salsa (Publix makes one very similar to Garden Fresh) topped with spinach, Daiya, green peppers, red onion and fresh basil (still good after two weeks!).

It was cold in the house so we had some difficulty getting the dough to rise. Until, that is, we put it on the fireplace mantle (with a fire rolling, of course). It rose in no time and we were ready to go. I’m still sticking with half high-gluten white and half whole wheat and it’s been working just fine. Maybe next week I’ll try adding some spelt or kamut into the mix.