Last year I read about Tomato Sushi and attempted my own version over the summer. I read online that it was simply skinned tomatoes in a marinade, cooked sous vide. My attempt was ok, but the flavor was mostly soy sauce and nori.
A few weeks ago I purchased Earth Balance with added omega 3. I was put off by the strong fish smell from the algal oil, but I was determined to find a good use for it, as I hate food waste. I saw a post on Instagram that was of the real tomato sushi and thought, “well, there’s a use for that stinky fish butter.
Long before the ages of the new vegan cheeses, there was Follow Your Heart. Their vegan cheeses were some of the first I tried when my husband had gone vegan and I was vegetarian. I’ll be honest, as a vegetarian, I wasn’t impressed.
And then they went and revamped their cheeses. Holy cow…Have you tried them yet? They are my new favorite cheese on the market. Seriously, put down your phone/computer/tablet and go buy some or order it online.
So naturally when I heard Follow Your Heart was coming out with a Vegan egg, I was intrigued. Anyone who has been vegan for a certain period of time has tried the tofu scramble or chickpea flour omelettes, but there’s just something intrinsically different about scrambled eggs that neither can emulate.
And that’s where VeganEgg comes in.
When I was in 6th grade my teacher, Mrs. Dagle, gave the class a get-to-know-you survey. She asked for everyone’s favorite color, book, food, etc. I remember answering my favorite food as “anything except tofu.” I hated the texture of tofu for years-I would often buy it and leave it in the fridge for weeks until I finally cooked it, only to throw half away. Salt and pepper tofu was the first recipe I tried where I really enjoyed the texture and the taste. Something about frying tofu to give it a crunchy texture made it more palatable to me.
I bookmarked this recipe years ago and it’s become a favorite for busy weeknights. I’ve also experimented with cooking the tofu in sauce afterwards, but I prefer to leave it crunchy just the way it is. Feel free to use it in other dishes or as a beginning step to making barbeque tofu.
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.
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.
Mapo tofu is still one of our favorite meals here – it’s one of my go to dishes when I’m low on time, because it doesn’t require a huge prep time. I’ve improved on my original recipe a lot, specifically by adding the broad bean paste and szechuan pepper. The szechuan pepper adds an almost – citrus flavor that’s perfect for this spicy dish.
This could easily be called sichuan eggplant, but I prefer to think of it as mapo eggplant, as that’s what inspired the recipe. I’ve expressed how much I love mapo tofu in my previous post and this dish runs a close second. I came up with this to use up our abundance of eggplant in our garden this year; my desire for spicy foods prevailed over traditional dishes like moussaka.
The eggplant gets a perfect soft and chewy texture when fried, and soaks up the sauce perfectly. I use mushrooms and seitan to mimic the pork in traditional mapo tofu and add some green onions for color. I usually grind my own sichuan peppercorns and make my own chili oil, but you don’t have to go through all that effort if you can buy them both. The fermented black beans and chili bean paste are key in this recipe; you can make it without them, but they add a depth you can’t get without them.
I’m a huge proponent of cheap and fast lunches. Especially right now, when we’ve been away and our pantry is the only stocked area of the kitchen. (I currently only have fruit, juice, and a giant jar of pickles in my refrigerator.) Fortunately, I do have plenty of pasta and peanut butter.
This only took me about 10 minutes to make, but apparently the noodles soak up the sauce, making any leftovers very dry. I will just save the sauce and noodles separately next time I make it.
After a full weekend of indulging at Thanksgiving, all I wanted was something light and brothy last night. I have two cans of no-chicken noodle soup around, but miso soup sounded so much more delicious.
Sometimes when I get a stomach ache I like to make a quick version with just vegetable broth and miso, but since I had time, I simmered the kombu to make a vegan dashi stock, which adds more flavor and depth to the soup. I also used some thinly slice nori, since I didn’t have wakame to add to the soup. I prefer wakame, because it unfurls and is softer, so if you can find it, definitely use it. I also added shiitake mushrooms back into the soup after making the stock, but they are completely optional. Button mushrooms would be nice too.
I had quite a bit of chili sauce leftover from making Thai summer rolls yesterday, so I wanted a recipe that would use most of it. I found the recipe for the sauce here.
- 2/3 cup water
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
- 3 tbsp sambal oelek
- 2 tsp minced garlic
- 4 tsp cornstarch
- Combine all ingredients in a small sauce pan. Heat to a boil then lower to simmer until thickened.
There’s a period of time every week where I get a craving for Thai food. However, most Thai restaurants cook with oyster sauce and fish sauce, which makes trying to order vegan complicated. I realize it’s hard on the wait staff and sometimes they don’t know if the sauces are premixed or added during cooking, so it’s easier to cook it myself. It’s also much cheaper!
I’ve found an Asian grocery store in Springfield that orders all the fresh noodles for the Thai restaurants in the area. However, if I don’t go on Friday, they’re usually already gone. I like to use these for Pad Thai and Drunken Noodles (Pad Kee Mao) as well. If you can’t find them, extra large rice noodles will work just as well.