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Archive | September, 2015

Peanut Butter Cookies

30 Sep

Cookies are delicious. This is a known fact of the universe.

Peanut butter is delicious. This is another known fact. (Unless you’re allergic, in which case, avoid this recipe at all costs.)

Peanut butter cookies?
Peanut Butter Cookies

Let’s just say these are best for a day when you are leaving the house, otherwise you will eat the entire container. Or bring them with you and share with your coworkers, because shared calories don’t count. That is another known fact.

Aquafaba is a great binder in these cookies. In fact, these are better than any other vegan peanut butter cookie I have tried. They are crunchy with a bit of give, like a perfect cookie should be. But don’t just listen to me, try them yourself!
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P.S. Check our the Vegan Meringue Facebook group for more great aquafaba recipes!

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Almond Birthday Cake Dacquoise

29 Sep

What does one do when one has leftover cake?

Well, if you’re me, you bake it into an entirely new cake! I have gotten such a positive response on my birthday cake macarons, I wanted to make a birthday cake flavored dacquoise. I didn’t feel that hazelnut would go well with this flavor, so I chose to only use almonds to keep the flavor mild.
Almond Birthday Cake Dacquoise

Be sure to check out my other dacquoise recipes!
Birthday Dacquoise
Hazelnut Almond Dacquoise with Espresso Buttercream and Chocolate Ganache
Strawberry Buttercream and Lemon Curd Dacquoise

Almond Birthday Cake Dacquoise

Be sure to also check out the vegan meringue Facebook group for more amazing aquafaba recipes and Aquafaba.com for frequently asked questions.

Almond Birthday Cake Dacquoise

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Eggplant and Spicy Tofu Spring Rolls

28 Sep

I love spring rolls. I love eggplant. And I love tofu. The combination of all three is pretty much the perfect meal for me.

This recipe is definitely a fusion of many different cuisines so don’t take it as anything authentic. It was basically born out of my attempt to use up a bunch of different bottles in my fridge. I used the same marinade I use in my baked tofu on the eggplant, and I still LOVE the flavor. Black vinegar is just something else!

You can definitely change any of the fillings in this recipe. I would highly recommend adding rice noodles as well, because we can all use more carbs. Carrots would be really tasty too, but only the good carrots, not those ones that taste weird. Does anyone else ever get weird tasting carrots?
Now I’m rambling. Here’s the recipe!

Eggplant and Spicy Tofu Spring Rolls

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Facebook Page?

26 Sep

I recently started this Facebook page for my blog and I would love it if you took the time to give it a like!

Here’s a photo of some giant pumpkin spice macarons to help convince you!

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Galaxy Cake

24 Sep

On a similar theme as my galaxy macarons, I wanted to create a galaxy cake. The cake portion is simply a no egg, no dairy chocolate cake. The recipe is available in the Vegan Meringue Facebook group recipe files: it’s the chocolate midnight cake by Rebecca August.

The frosting is a vegan buttercream. I originally made about 2.5 cups, but realized with the petal technique I was going to need quite a bit more. I made another 1.5 cups of icing and it ended up being just enough. I highly recommend using Earth Balance butter for frosting recipes. We normally wouldn’t eat a lot of artificial color like this; I usually pawn most of my baking off on coworkers and friends!

 

Galaxy Cake

 

I topped the cake with these galaxy meringues, which were made with 1/3 cup reduced aquafaba and 1/2 cup sugar. I dripped gel color down the inside of the piping bag to achieve the galaxy effect. I also crumbled one of the meringues, sprinkled on a little powdered sugar, and used pearl sprinkles for the stars and moons.Galaxy Cake

The petal technique is extremely easy. Pipe a blob of frosting with a piping bag fitted with a round tip, and spread it to the right with a spoon or spatula. Continue piping and spreading all the way around.

Galaxy Cake

 

Galaxy Cake

The cake itself is moist and delicious and we’ve been slowly enjoying it over the past few days.

Hope you enjoyed the photos!

Sweetfire Seitan

14 Sep Sweetfire Seitan

Most people who know me know I worked in a famous Asian restaurant for well over a year. I was very limited in my meal options there; I pretty much exclusively ate white rice and vegetable spring rolls. Every once in a while I would cook my own meals using the ingredients available to me. One meal I ate regularly was vegetables cooked in their sweet chili sauce (which they called sweetfire.) I was never able to add a vegan protein to it there, but recreating it at home gave me that option.

Sweetfire Seitan

I used seitan I had dipped in a soy/flour mixture and fried, because the recipe from my work used deep-fried chicken bites. You could easily sub tofu or unbreaded seitan as well. This recipe is extremely quick and easy, especially if you use premade sauce and seitan. Perfect for busy work nights or long days with a teething toddler.

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Soy Yogurt

10 Sep

So you want to make your own yogurt? I said the same thing a couple years ago and have tried many different methods, milks, cultures, etc. The great thing about yogurt is that once you have a culture going, you can keep culturing multiple batches. It’s kind of like friendship bread in that way. The first method I tried was using a slow cooker to heat the milk to just under scalding, then letting it come back down to culturing temperature and culturing in the pot in an oven. It worked quite well, but never got extremely thick. If you don’t have an Instant Pot or yogurt maker, I would highly recommend this method.

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Culturing needs to be done at 110°F, which is why an Instant Pot or yogurt maker will work best. I always sterilize all of my tools and yogurt containers before starting this. You can either use a dishwasher to sterilize or boiling water, whatever works best for you.

There are several different brands of yogurt culture available. I tend to use Belle + Bella, but Cultures for Health and any other non dairy yogurt can be used. If using non dairy yogurt, use somewhere 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup to start your culture.

I use either Westsoy Organic Unsweetened or Silk Unsweetened Soy Milk to make my yogurt, but try to use it upon first opening it. If you use it after it has already been open, there’s a chance that other bacteria can contaminate the batch and grow during the culturing.
You can also use homemade soy milk, if you want to go to that much effort. Other plant milks won’t thicken well because of the lack of protein, but the cornstarch can help them come close to the thickness of dairy yogurt.

If you don’t mind a little sweetness, you can add a little sugar which will help the yogurt culture quickly. You can also use a premade vanilla soymilk with added sugar if you want a sugary yogurt (it will still have less sugar than the store-bought kind.) The bacteria in yogurt use sugar as food, so the more sugar in the milk the quicker it will culture.

This yogurt can also me made without the cornstarch, but it won’t be as thick as pictured. I’ve found I prefer the texture of the thicker yogurt and straining with a cheesecloth has never helped me much.

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If your cornstarch clumps on you, and immersion blender can be used in the pot to break up the clumps. Cornstarch does tend to cause a skin to form, so be sure to give it regular stirs in the pot to avoid this. I use a regular instant read thermometer to check the temperature, but if you miss the 108-112°F window, you can easily heat it up a bit to get it to the right temperature.

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Healthier Banana Bread

8 Sep

I’ve been making the same banana bread for well over a year now. It’s a solid recipe, but sometimes I feel guilty for the high amount of sugar (especially after adding chocolate chips.)

I’ve also been making these lactation cookies regularly. I wanted to combine the idea of oats and extra nutrition from flax seeds and nutritional yeast with my normal banana bread recipe.

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I was really worried these loaves would be too soft to hold together, but they are tender and delicious. I ate at least three slices with zero guilt last night and couldn’t get over how delicious it was.

I hope you try it too!

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Fruit Snacks

7 Sep

These are super easy and fun, and a great way to use up excess juice without wasting it. Pineapple juice was my fruit juice of choice, but I’m going to use cranberry and apple next! I made these using a silicon mold from Amazon, which made the fruit snacks very easy to remove.

Fruit Snacks

The only note I have for these is to make sure your mixture comes to a thorough boil so the agar activates. If you have to use flakes instead of powder, increase the agar to 3 tablespoons.

Fruit Snacks

 

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Eggplant Stacks

6 Sep

Our local farmers market runs on Wednesdays and Saturdays and I like to take my daughter with and pick out a few vegetables for meals during the week. Last week we found this pretty purple and white striped eggplants.
Eggplant Stacks

Tonight I wanted to combine the remaining eggplant and my favorite cheese recipe, from here.
It’s not quite eggplant parmesan, but you could easily fry these during the saute step! I served them with fettucine, but angel hair or capellini would be equally as beautiful here.
Eggplant Stacks

Our garden is still producing massive amounts of cherry tomatoes, so they’re making another appearance here. Substitute regular tomatoes if you don’t have cherry tomatoes.
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