Memorial Day Vegan BBQ Jackfruit

There is a newish trend of using Jackfruit for a meat substitute. It’s really rather brilliant. Texturally it is the closest thing I have tried to actual meat, but you get another vegetable into your diet! This is a super easy and delightful way to mix up your Memorial Day BBQ plans. I like this as is or with a little honey mustard coleslaw. It would also be good on a veggie burger or topped with a fried egg if vegan isn’t your thing.

 

Ingredients

  • 1 20oz can green jackfruit, drained, rinsed, and dried (I used a clean kitchen towel to dry it)
  • 1 TBL brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • oil for cooking
  • 1 cup prepared BBQ sauce plus more for serving

Instructions

  1. Drain, rinse, and dry your jackfruit. I used a clean kitchen towel to dry it.
  2. Mix together the brown sugar, garlic, paprika, salt, and pepper in a small bowl and set aside.
  3. a large skillet over medium high heat.
  4. When pan is hot add a few tablespoons of oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the pan.
  5. Add the dried jackfruit, sprinkle with brown sugar and spice mixture and stir to coat the jakefruit.
  6. Cook 5-7 minutes stirring frequently until the jackfruit starts to brown.
  7. Add 1 cup bbq sauce and stir to combine. Continue cooking over medium low heat for 7-10 minutes more until sauce is absorbed and jackfruit is flavorful.
  8. Serve hot on buns topped with mustard slaw and more BBQ sauce as desired.

Vegan Colcannon non-traditional

Vegan Colcannon
Vegan Colcannon

Happy soon to be St. Patrick’s Day! Let’s celebrate with some yumminess. In the past I’ve done green food like these pancakes, and these muffins, and vegan Irish cream. This year we’re focusing on the potato. Oh how I love a potato. I’m going to play up the awesomeness of the Yukon Gold potato in this variation of  Colcannon, or mashed potatoes with green stuff if you aren’t Irish.

Traditionally Colcannon is as Irish dish made from mashed potatoes with kale or cabbage folded in. It is often perked up with scallions or leeks. For this vegan variation I am sautéing leeks and folding them in, and garnishing with kale chips. It’s pretty, yummy, and my girls love to pick the kale chips off the top. Honestly, that’s the only part they eat. I think I have the only kids in the world who won’t eat mashed potatoes.

Kale chips are a huge hit in our house, but they shatter and always leave tiny little pieces at the bottom of the container. This is a perfect way to use them up. And a perfect excuse to try making kale chips if you haven’t yet.

The twist in this recipe is adding the salt and vinegar to the cooking water for the potatoes. When you do this the potatoes are flavored from the inside out and each and every bite becomes a perfectly seasoned flavor bomb.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 lbs yukon gold potatoes cut into 1/4 cubes
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 tsp white vinegar
  • 1 large leek cut lengthwise, and then into 1/4 half moons
  • olive oil for sautéing
  • 1/4 cup vegan butter
  • 1/4 cup nondairy milk (plain unsweetened)
  • 1 TBL nutritional yeast
  • kale chips for garnish

Instructions

  1. Place potatoes in a 3qt pot and cover with cold water to 1″ above the potatoes.
  2. Add salt and vinegar to the pot and bring to a boil.
  3. Continue boiling until potatoes are tender, 10-12 min.
  4. While potatoes are cooking heat a large skillet over medium heat. Once hot add olive oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the pan. Add leeks and sauté until leeks are tender, about 7 minutes.
  5. Remove from heat if potatoes are not yet cooked.
  6. Once potatoes are cooked drain them and return to the cooking pot. Add butter, milk, and nutritional yeast and mash to your desired consistency.
  7. Fold in cooked leeks, taste and adjust seasoning.
  8. Garnish with kale chips and serve immediately.

Valentine’s Day Vegan Date Caramel Sticky Buns -refined sugar free

Date Caramel Sticky Bun
Date Caramel Sticky Bun

If you love someone you make them sticky buns. If they are your one and only you make them healthier sticky buns because you want them to *stick* around longer.  These take my already delicious cinnamon roll recipe and turn it into a sticky mess of a bun. I took out all the refined sugar, replaced some of the butter with pumpkin, and covered it all with date caramel. These are still sweet, and sticky, and fragrant, and soft, and shout love. They are also great to make the night before and throw in the oven while you sit around sipping coffee. Or rush around getting ready for work and then sit together at the table for a few minutes eating a special breakfast showing your partner you love them because you took extra time to just be with them. Oh, love.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Vegan Date Caramel Sticky Buns

Ingredients

  • For the date caramel
  • 12 oz medjool dates
  • 1 3/4 cup boiling water
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp (4grams) fine sea salt
  • For the sticky buns
  • 4 1/2 tsp.(14 grams) Ener-G Egg Replacer powder (equivalent of 3 eggs)
  • 6 TBL water
  • 600 grams (4 1/2-5 cups) unbleached all-purpose flour- divided
  • 2 1/4 tsp. (8 grams) active dry yeast (one packet)
  • 1 cup non-dairy milk
  • 1/4 lb (1/2 cup) Earth Balance Buttery spread or sticks
  • 1/4 pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • Filling
  • 1/2 cup (144 grams) date caramel
  • 1 1/2 TBL (15 grams) cinnamon
  • 1/4 lb (1/2 cup) Earth Balance Buttery Spread or sticks
  • 1/4 cup ( 68 grams) pumpkin puree (or more butter)
  • Topping
  • The rest of the date caramel
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup Earth Balance buttery spread or sticks softened to room temperature
  • 2 tsp bourbon (optional)
  • 1/4 cup nondairy milk

Instructions

  1. In the bowl of your stand mixer whisk the egg replacer and water until smooth- set aside
  2. In a small saucepan heat together the milk, Earth Balance, sugar and salt until the butter is almost melted.
  3. Remove from heat and stir until butter is melted. Make sure this mixture is warm, not hot or it will kill the yeast.
  4. Add 260 grams (3 cups) of the flour and yeast to the egg replacer/water mixture.
  5. Add the warm milk mixture and mix with the paddle attachment for 2 minutes. If you don’t have a stand mixer you can do this by hand.
  6. Switch to the dough hook add the rest of the flour and mix until the dough forms a ball and no longer sticks to the sides of the bowl. If you are measuring by cups instead of weight add the flour a half cup at a time and mix until the flour is incorporated before adding more. The dough should be firm with slight resistance when you push on it and should just stick to the sides of the bowl, but not your fingers.
  7. Remove the dough hook and drizzle olive oil over the ball of dough, cover with a damp towel and set aside to rise for 1-2 hours.
  8. White your dough is rising make the date caramel and filling.
  9. For the date caramel place pitted dates in a heatproof bowl and cover with boiling water. Let them sit for about 10 minutes to soften.
  10. Drain dates reserving the liquid.
  11. Place dates, vanilla, sea salt, and 1/2 cup of the reserved date water in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. If you are finishing the rolls in the morning cover and refrigerate the unused date caramel until the morning.
  12. To make the filling cream together 1/2 cup of the date caramel, 1/2 cup Earth Balance, and cinnamon until uniformly brown. Set aside.
  13. Once dough has doubled in size, punch it down then allow it to rest for 10 minutes.
  14. While dough is resting combine the filling ingredients and set aside.
  15. Place dough on a lightly floured surface and roll dough into a rectangle about 18″ by 15″.
  16. Spread the filling mixture evenly over the dough, all the way to the edges.
  17. Roll dough into a log and slice into buns, as large as you like. I like mine to be about 1 1/2″ thick and I usually cut between 10-12 rolls.
  18. Place buns on a rimmed baking sheet or pan close enough to touch each other. I use my 9×13 pan. I like to line the baking sheet with parchment paper (for easier cleanup).
  19. If baking right away: Let the the rolls rise until almost doubled in size, about and hour.
  20. If baking the next morning: cover the rolls tightly and let them rise in the refrigerator overnight. In the morning set the on the counter as your oven preheats and proceed as usual.
  21. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  22. Bake rolls for 25-30 minutes depending on their size, until golden brown.
  23. While the rolls are cooking combine the topping ingredients except for the walnuts, and just heat through on the stove.
  24. When rolls are done pour the topping over the hot rolls, and sprinkle with the nuts.
  25. Serve warm.

Vegan Frendsgiving/Thanksgiving Spice Cake

Vegan Spice Cake
Vegan Spice Cake

The recipe for this delightful morsel of a cake has been passed down from my great-grandmother. It was one of the first recipes I posted when I started my blog several years ago. I didn’t have a picture of it, and I never uploaded one, until today. Just in time to celebrate the start of the holiday season. This cake is ultra moist, full of warming spices, and somehow never too sweet. It is perfect for dessert, breakfast, or as an addition to a holiday brunch. It also takes about 5 minutes to make and makes a big impression with its amazing fall flavors. This is the cake to bake when you have company as the whole house smells like you’ve spent hours in the kitchen as the warm fragrance of fall baking spices waft through the air.

Makes 1 9×9 cake

Ingredients

  • 1 cup non-dairy milk, or dairy milk
  • 1 tsp. vinegar (apple cider or white, but I’ve also used rice in a pinch)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 TBL vegetable shortening
  • 1 TBL chia seeds mixed with 2 TBL water, or 1 egg, or equivalent of 1 egg in whatever form you like
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp. cloves
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 370F.
  2. Add vinegar to milk and set aside.
  3. Cream together sugar and shortening until smooth.
  4. Add the chia seed/water mixture to sugar and mix together.
  5. In a separate bowl mix together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and salt.
  6. Alternate between adding flour mixture and soy milk to the shortening, mixing thoroughly between additions.
  7. Pour batter into a greased 9×9 cake pan and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until cake pulls away from the edges of the pan and a cake tester comes out mostly clean.
  8. Allow to cool for at least 20 minutes if you can.

Vegan Nacho Cheese Sauce

Vegan Nacho Cheese Sauce
Vegan Nacho Cheese Sauce

My new obsession is nachos. Well, it isn’t that new, I think it was spring when I started to make these. It is all the fault of my friend; we were talking about lunch one day and she said she had been on a nacho kick. It was all over at that point. I came home that very day and started making nachos. It switched to taco salad for the summer, but as soon as it started to cool down again I’ve been back to nachos. I think the ingenious thing she said that made me “have” to try nachos that day was she was putting refried beans in the BOTTOM of the pan, then the chips on top. This, of course, makes the most sense ever as the chips get all crispy and warm, the beans warm up, and they don’t make everything soggy.

This recipe is just for the cheese sauce, but I’ll give you a quick run down of the rest. I heat my cast iron on the stove, saute a few cups of sliced veggies with a little salt and pepper, then dump them in a bowl. In the still hot pan I swirl a tablespoon of oil, then spread refried beans on the bottom. Top the beans with chips and pop it under the broiler for a few minutes until the chips are toasty brown and perfect. I then dump it on a plate, and pile on the veggies, nacho cheese sauce, and salsa. I then eat it all for lunch while watching my husband work out.

The cheese sauce. It is a variation of my cheese sauce from my cashew mac n cheese with some spice added. I made a nice big batch and freeze any I don’t use within a few days.

 Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup peeled and cubed russet potato (1 small)
  • 2 TBL sliced carrot (1 very small)
  • 1 tsp white vinegar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup raw cashews
  • 3/4-1 cup reserved cooking water
  • 3 TBL nutritional yeast
  • 2 TBL tahini
  • 2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1 1/2 tsp tomato paste
  • additional salt to taste
  • 1 small can diced green chilis
  • 1/2 tsp ground chipotle powder or one chipotle in adobo sauce

Instructions

  1. Place potato and carrot in a small saucepan and cover with cold water.
  2. Add the vinegar and 1 tsp salt to water, bring everything to a boil partially covered, and boil for about 10 minutes.
  3. Add the cashews and continue to cook until the potatoes and carrots are completely tender, about 5 minutes more. They are done when they slide off a fork that is inserted into a piece of potato or carrot.
  4. Drain potatoes and carrots reserving at least 1 cup of the cooking water.
  5. Transfer potatoes, carrots, cashew, and 3/4 cup cooking water to a blender.
  6. Add nutritional yeast, tahini, mustard, and tomato paste and blend until smooth.
  7. Add more cooking water if you want the sauce to thin out a bit.
  8. Add green chilis and chipotle and pulse to combine.
  9. Taste, and adjust salt as needed.

Pickled Red Onions

Pickled Red Onions
Pickled Red Onions

As I’ve been exploring balancing flavors, and trying new food combinations I have truly come to love pickled red onions. Pickled everything really, but these are one of my favorites. It is not one of those ingredients that brings and item into focus when I see it on a menu. I feel it pairs particularly well with things that are sweet. Think sandwiches with roasted vegetables and their inherent sweetness that needs a bit of acidity for balance. Yummy. I made this particular batch to go with harissa roasted sweet potatoes. I also threw on some roasted salted pecans, and some candied pine nuts. It was yummy.  This recipe is adapted from Bobby Flay, one if his 3000 recipes for pickled red onions.

 Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 TBL granulated sugar
  • 1 TBL kosher salt
  • 1 large red onion, thinly sliced

Instructions

  1. Combine vinegar, water, sugar, and salt in a small saucepan and bring to a boil.
  2. Remove from heat, stir, and allow to cool for about 10 minutes.
  3. Place the onion in a heat safe container with a lid, then poor the hot vinegar mixture over the onions.
  4. Cover and allow onions to sit for at least an hour, up to 4 days
  5. Remove from liquid and use to top everything from sandwiches to sweet potatoes.

Even Better Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

I posted a recipe for chocolate chip cookies a long time ago; I have been using the same recipe for ages, and it is delicious! However, in the last year I learned a few things about chocolate chip cookies thanks to Food Lab and my BFF Kenji (yes this friendship is all in my head). The two things that I have incorporated into my recipe are the refrigerate the dough overnight, and to finish the cookies with salt. These two simple steps are a game changer. The texture of the cookies is a bit softer, and they develop a deeper flavor. Yummy. The salt, I feel is just the perfect addition to bring out the flavor of the cookie, and as a counter point to the sweetness.

If you are in a rush you can bake these right away, but I would only bake as many as you need and save the rest of the dough for the next day.

 Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup neutral flavored oil (I use refined coconut oil)
  • 1/2 cup Earth Balance buttery sticks
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 3 TBL water
  • 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 – 2 cups chocolate chips
  • kosher salt, or other coarse salt for finishing

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl cream together oil, Earth Balance, brown and white sugar, vanilla extract, and water mixing until smooth and creamy.
  2. Add flour, baking soda, and salt giving dry ingredients a stir before combining with the creamed mixture. Mix dry and creamed mixture just until combined.
  3. Add chocolate chips and stir to incorporate.
  4. Place covered mixture in an airtight container and refrigerate overnight.
  5. The next day remove the cookie dough from the refrigerator and allow to sit for about 20 minutes so you can scoop into it.
  6. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  7. Drop cookie dough by the spoonful onto ungreased cookie sheets leaving 2″ between each cookie.
  8. Bake for 8-10 minutes until golden brown.
  9. Sprinkle cookies with salt, just a few grains per cookie, then transfer from cookie sheet onto cooling rack immediately.
  10. Wait a few minutes before eating to prevent burning your mouth on hot chocolate chips.
  11. Enjoy responsibly.