Sunday, January 31, 2010

Corn Chowder

It is one of the coldest winters I have ever experienced. It's a great excuse to make delicious chowders soups and stews! And I love love love a good corn chowder. What makes this a chowder is that it is a thick soup with a lot of veggies. A traditional chowder would have milk and bacon but this is as always a Vegan version!
• 2 1/2 cups corn ( have blanched and frozen some from our garden, but if you don't have that luxury frozen is fine just make sure its no salt added)
• 3 medium to large carrots cut in about 1/2'' rounds
• 3 stalks celery
• 1 pepper (I used green but red is fun too)
• 1 medium onion diced
• 3 cloves garlic minced
• 6 cups vegetable stock
• 3/4 cup flour, used as thickener, you might need more or less depending on the water content of your veg
• 2 tbsp olive oil
• 2 bay leaves
• 1 tsp sage
• 1 tsp black pepper
• 1 tsp salt
Saute the onion and garlic in the olive oil in a dutch oven or large stock pot, until the onion is translucent, add the other vegetables except corn and saute for about five minutes, carrots should be tender. As seen below.
yum tender carrots!
Then add the stock and corn and bring to boil.
the ingredients boiling
Then add your spices and whisk. Simmer for about an hour.
spices added
After an hour of simmering add the flour 1/4 cup at a time stir well, it should offer up some resistance every time more flour is added, if you want a thicker chowder add a bit more a thinner a bit less, just make sure you do not have any flour clumps they are no fun to eat!
Thickened and ready to enjoy

Yum and yum!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Cinnamon Sugar Nuts

This is a winter favorite great around the holidays and is perfect for any party snack. I enjoy making a large batch and eating them as a sweet and protein filled snack. If you do the same make sure to store them in an air tight container, but in all honesty they most likely won't last that long!
• 4 1/2 cups mixed nuts
• 2 1/2 cups sugar
• 3/4 cup water
• 2 tbsp cinnamon
• 1 tbsp vanilla
• 1 tsp salt
Preheat oven to 325. Place sugar water cinnamon and salt into a stock pot over medium heat, when sugar liquifies at a boil, add the vanilla, and cook for another three minutes stirring regularly.
ready for nuts!

Incorporate nuts and make sure all nuts are covered well, then spread on a foil lined cookie sheet,
nuts about to be mixed

bake at 325 for 20 to 25 minutes, they will be done when the liquid has dissipated. Cool and enjoy!

ready for the oven!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Vegan Bar-B-Que Sandwich

2010 is the year of vegan Bar-B-Que, bet you didn't know that. I really want to start experimenting with different types and sauces. This is my first attempt at Bar-B-Que sauce from scratch and I have to say I am truly happy with it, its an amalgamation of a bunch of different recipes. This particular mixture has a kick to it for sure, if you want it to be more mild cut down on the cayenne pepper.
Bar-B-Que sauce
• 2 tbsp olive oil
• 1 small onion finely chopped
• 1 garlic clove minced
• 12 ounces ketchup
• 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
• 1/4 cup white cooking wine
• 2 tbsp liquid aminos
• 1 tbsp dry mustard
• 1 tbsp sugar
• 1 tsp cayenne pepper
• 1/2 tsp cumin
• 1/2 coriander seeds
• 1 tsp liquid smoke

• 1 brick of tofu
• 1 seven grain roll for each sandwich
• pickle for garnish

cold slaw
• 1 medium carrot shredded
• 1/2 small cabbage shredded
• 1/2 cup vegan mayo
• 1 tbsp vinegar
• dash of sugar
• 1 tsp yellow mustard
For the sauce: Take the oil heat in a sauce pan and add the onion and garlic cook until the onion becomes transparent about 4 to 5 minutes. Then add all the other ingredients and cook for 20 minutes. The sauce can be prepared early and you can keep it in the fridge for up to a week.

the ingredients added before stir
Cold slaw: mix cabbage and carrots with the mayo stir well add the other ingredients and mix, add salt and pepper to taste, if you like a more liquid slaw add more mayo or sweeter add a bit more sugar.
cabbage and carrots shredded

I prepared the tofu as baked tofu nibbles, as previously explained in my blog. I then take the baked nibbles put them in a medium heat skillet with about 2/3 of a cup of the sauce combine well and stir regularly if you don't stir the sauce will start to stick to the pan.
tofu nibbles and sauce

Cut roll and toast if desired, add some tofu nibbles, cold slaw, and pickle for garnish. Sadly I did not make the onion rings but they were a tasty addition to the meal!
finished and yum!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

It's 2010 and this is what I am going to do about it!

So a new year and a new dedication to to cooking. I have finally accepted what I have known for a long time, I am the happiest when I am cooking. There is something that makes me so complete when I am in the kitchen; now that might have something to do with eating after I cook :)
I have decided after a lot of deliberation that I will be trying new and different recipes from many different sources as well as doing my personal modifications on recipes I find to make the vegan. I cannot promise that they will all be good, and I cannot promise that I will post everything I am doing, but I can promise this, in 2010 I will be experimenting more, honing my skills and taking more risks in my cooking and baking, which is a little scary, but at the tail end of 2010 I will be a better vegan chef!