Saturday, February 25, 2012

Zombie Munch

I made this sweet little number for the Walking Dead mid-season premier. I wanted something festive and something I imagine a zombie would like at least in texture. So I came up with Zombie Munch, and I think I am going to make a couple variations to be published later, but this first try was tasty, and much better than brains!!!!!!!!!
• 8 to 10 pretzel rods broken up into small pieces
• 1 cup vegan marshmallows (non-vegan are fine if you have non-vegan or vegetarian zombies, I mean humans in the house)
• 1/2 cup peanut butter, I used smooth but crunchy would be great
• 1 cup dark chocolate chips
Line an 8 by 8 or 9 by 9 pan with wax paper, if you slit each corner it will fit better in the pan (thanks for that hint Alton Brown). Spread the broken pretzels evenly in the pan.

Here are the pretzels!
Next smash the marshmallows so they are somewhat flat and place evenly on top of the pretzels, as seen below.

Here are the marshmallows ready to go
Then melt the peanut butter in the microwave, be careful not to burn it, I would say 30 to 45 seconds will do. Natural peanut butter will melt faster than processed. After it is melted use a spatula and spread over the marshmallows.

Here is the peanut butter melted and yummy!
Next melt the chocolate, you can use a double boiler if you like, but I used the microwave. After melted spread on top of the peanut butter evenly. Make sure to get the sides and corners.

Here is the chocolate freshly spread on top!
Let cool completely, don't put it in the refrigerator as it will not temper correctly. Let cool for at least an hour and longer if desired. After 60 to 90 minutes it is safe to put in the refrigerator. This is a very sweet rich dessert, so cut in small pieces and serve. It is so tasty it could possibly make even a Zombie go vegan!

Yum and done!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Bread Project: Split Tin Loaf

This is the next installment in my voyage into bread making from the book The Bread Bible, authored by Christine Ingram and Jennie Shapter and I plan to bake my way through it this year. This is another English bread called Split Tin which is another English bread. I feel that my shaping needs a little work to get rid of some of the ridges in the dough and I have not mastered the kneeing times yet but all in all this was a tasty bread! This was the first bread that I have baked in a tin from this book. I like the tin cooking because it controls the shape more and I feel it makes the bread go more vertical

Just out of the oven

Cooled and ready to eat!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Oatmeal Strawberry Blueberry Banana Chocolate Bake

This recipe was adapted from the cookbook, Super Natural Every Day, written by Heidi Swanson, this is perfect when serving a crowd for breakfast, but also warms up well for leftovers. In the original recipe she used an egg as a binding agent, but I feel it is not necessary, plus I wanted to make it vegan so no egg required. Replace strawberries and blueberries with any other berry. If you do not have Chinese five spice, you can simply substitute with 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon, the flavor will be slightly different, but still delicious.
  • • 2 cups old fashioned rolled oats
  • •1/3 cup light brown sugar
  • • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
  • • 1 teaspoon Chinese five spice
  • •1/2 teaspoon salt
  • • 1/2 cup walnut pieces, chopped
  • • 1 cup sliced strawberries
  • • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries
  • • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • • 2 cups soy or rice milk
  • • 3 tablespoons vegan butter, melted
  • • 1 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • • 1 ripe banana, peeled, 1/2-inch slices
Preheat the oven to 375, and prep a 9 by 9 baking dish by spraying with cooking spray. Set aside a small amount of the fruit, chocolate chips and brown sugar aside to garnish the top. Then mix the dry ingredients together. Then add the fruit and chocolate chips, mix well by hand.
Next add the melted butter to the soy milk, then add to the mixture. Mix well.
Pour into the dish and garnish with the remaining ingredients, except the brown sugar, that will be added at the very end to caramelize on the top!
ready for the oven!
Bake for 35 to 40 minutes five minutes before sprinkle with the rest of the brown sugar, and allow to brown. Serve hot!

Yum and Done!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Three Bean Chili

This is a crock-pot recipe. It is wonderful to mix and forget. The cooking time might be different than mine depending on you crock-pot. On average I let this cook on low for 4 to 5 hours. I really enjoy the different beans it makes the chili great to look at but also adds different textures and flavors. It also freezes great, so if you don't eat all of it put it in the freezer and have a home cooked treat on a busy night!
• 2 cups black beans
• 2 cups red beans
• 2 cups pinto beans
• 2 cups textured vegetable protein soaked in 2 cups water to rehydrate
• 1 head of garlic peeled and minced
• 36 ounces of stewed tomatoes, I either use ones that I have canned or the ones store bought with the chili peppers in them. This time I used the store bought
• 1 jalapeno diced (optional)
• 1 large onion minced
• 1/4 tsp powdered mustard
• 1/2 tsp liquid smoke
• 1/4 tsp cumin
• 3/4 tsp black pepper
• 1/2 tsp salt
• 1 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)

here it is cooking in the crock-pot

Add all the ingredients to your crock-pot and put on low. Stir about every 30 to 45 minutes. After about three hours taste, if it is not hot enough add more cayenne pepper. Feel free to garnish with jalapenos and non-dairy sour cream, or whatever you like!

yum and done!