Tag Archives: dinner

Review: Gardein Fishless Filets

4 Nov Review: Gardein Fishless Filets

Once upon a time, a long time ago (read: before I had a baby) Gardein sent me a few coupons so I could review their products. Well, those coupons came and went, and I never posted a review.  At the time, I intended to do a review of the new Fish Filets, but they’re old news now. With the new Crabless Cakes and Sweet and Sour Porkless Bites, they have plenty of new offerings that there aren’t hundreds of reviews on already. (Or maybe there are, I haven’t read them!)

But, the fishless filets hold a special place in my heart and my freezer.  I grew up eating fish filets on Fridays during Lent and I loved seafood before I discovered how awful the seafood industry really is.Review: Gardein Fishless Filets

One thing I really appreciate about Gardein is that they don’t cut corners when it comes to “short on time” options. We all know that’s code for “too dang busy chasing a toddler to cook.” I usually bake these if I get a chance to, but there’s been many a day where nap time happens and I use the microwave method. True story-you can microwave them for 2 minutes and get away with eating it floppy.

Review: Gardein Fishless Filets

 

I obviously had to showcase my new cheddar cheese recipe and the classic veganized McDonald’s filet-o-fish was an imperative. Have I told you guys we have a view of McDonald’s from our living room window? It’s pretty classy and definitely adds to our real estate value.

Review: Gardein Fishless Filets

The filets themselves are extremely reminiscent to their omnivore counterpart. There’s a vaguely fish-y flavor to them that isn’t strong as nori, but definitely makes you think “I’m eating fish.” I’ve had a few “tofu fish” sandwiches and there’s just some things that aren’t perfectly replicated with nori and deep frying. I believe it’s the algal oil that contributes to the fish-flavor, but they probably have some other awesome secrets to the taste. The breading and texture are spot on, they even “flake” apart while you’re biting into them (assuming you don’t swallow them whole.)

I made a simple tartar sauce for the sandwich with vegan mayo (I like Just Mayo, but you can also make your own), pickle relish, dill, parsley, and a splash of vinegar.

 

Review: Gardein Fishless Filets

 

If I had a rating system, I’d give these a 9/10. The only reason they aren’t a 10/10 is due to the lack of a family-size package. We can easily polish off a bag of these in one meal and I’d love to have a package that lasts two meals instead of just one.

Aquafaba Cheddar

3 Nov Aquafaba Cheddar

“But how do you live without cheese!”

If you’re vegan (or lactose intolerant) you’ve probably heard that at least once, or a thousand times. Thankfully, there’s been some really amazing vegan chefs who have made our cheeseless existence quite tolerable. Miyoko Schinner, Jay Astafa, Somer McGowan, and Skye Michael Conroy, have all taught me some valuable tips on vegan-cheese making. I actually took the inspiration from this from Richa Hingle at Vegan Richa.  Her vegan cheddar cheese ball came across my feed around Halloween and I knew the flavors would be perfect for an adaptation of my mozzerella aquafaba cheese. The original recipe that I drew inspiration from for the cashew mozzarella was developed by Jay Astafa. You can watch the YouTube video here. I noticed he uses soy lecithin as an emulsifier, which aquafaba has been shown to do in recipes like Nina’s butter and Peanut Butter and Vegan’s mayo. This inspired me to make the cashew mozzarella using aquafaba as the emulsifier.
Aquafaba Cheddar

Vegan cheese doesn’t create casein protein strands like dairy cheeses do, which is why we use tapioca starch to create that stretchy texture. Some places may have it labeled at tapioca flour, but they should be interchangeable. I find mine at an international market for a cheaper price. I use vegan lactic acid powder to create that dairy-like tang in this recipe. It’s definitely worth the purchase, but if you cannot buy it, substitute a tablespoon of lemon juice instead. Since cheddar has a significant tang to it, I include apple cider vinegar as well as miso paste. Nutritional yeast also adds to the cheesy flavor. Refined coconut oil helps with firmness upon refrigeration and improves the mouthfeel and melt.

Most vegan cheeses use either agar or kappa carrageenan as a binder to be sliceable and shreddable. I choose to use kappa carrageenan, as I prefer the melt and mouthfeel it imparts. I am well aware that many people choose not to consume it and I completely respect that; this recipe may be possible with agar powder, but I have not tested it. If you do test it, please contact me with your results!

Aquafaba Cheddar

If you like this recipe, be sure to check out these other vegan cheese recipes:
Cheddar Cheese Ball
Another Cheddar Cheese Ball
Sharp Cheddar Cheese
Cultured Cheddar

The Vegan Meringue group on is a great place for more aquafaba recipes as well.

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Aquafaba Buns

19 Oct

Last week we celebrated my husband’s birthday. He’s a pretty neat guy, but one of his few flaws is his favorite foods-burgers. I have a particular dislike for most vegan burgers on the market these days. I’d take a black bean burger over a Boca Burger any day.

But, being the wonderful wife I am, I indulge his burger cravings occasionally, especially on his birthday. These homemade buns were perfect for burgers and actually made them palatable for me. We’ve been enjoying these buns for other sandwiches recently too!

Aquafaba Buns

Aquafaba works great as a binder in this recipe. Be sure to check out the Facebook page for more aquafaba recipes!

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Cheesy Ham and Quinoa Skillet

14 Oct

I’m often inspired by the ingredients in my fridge or freezer to make easy weeknight dinners like this. To be more accurate, I’m more often inspired by the LACK of ingredients, so I throw something together like this.

 

ham

Casseroles are not common in our weekly menu, but I really enjoy recipes like this that are one pan-dishes. The less dishes I have to do the more time I get to spend with my family, and that’s always a win.

You can use any vegan cheese sauce you prefer for this recipe. I am particularly partial to the carrot-potato cheese sauce, but hey, that’s just me. You could also sub the quinoa for rice or noodles. For some reason I always forget about quinoa in the back of my pantry, but it’s delicious and good for you, so I probably should remember it more often.

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Salt and Pepper Tofu

5 Oct

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.

Salt and Pepper Tofu

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Spicy Thai Noodles 2

3 Oct

This recipe for spicy Thai noodles has been one of my most pinned and viewed recipes. I still make this regularly, but my cilantro hating husband requested I change that part of the sauce.
Spicy Thai Noodles

I usually have basil around from my herb pot, and when it’s not being made into pesto, it goes great with this recipe.

Try Thai basil if you can find it. If you can’t, that’s fine, but it’s definitely more authentic. Spicy Thai Noodles

Another note; dark soy sauce can be subbed for a tablespoon or two of the regular sauce sauce if you want a darker color.

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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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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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Ham and Cheese Quiche

2 Sep

To tell the truth, I’ve only ever eaten quiche once in my life. I remember it’s silken fluffy texture well, but I haven’t thought about it in years. I saw this recipe from Minimalist Baker and I thought, “well, I have an hour before work, might as well.”

Ham and Cheese Quiche

I changed my filling a bit and decided to make the entire thing in a cast iron skillet, because I often think I should cook in cast iron more. Thinking back on it, I should have doubled the filling because of the increase in size. I bet this would work really well in a pie pan as well; it would come out quite a bit thicker. I’d also like to petition that all quiches be made with a hash brown crust, because that stuff is delicious. Pastry crust would work to, but the only downfall is it’s not potatoes.

Ham and Cheese Quiche

This makes a perfect meal for demolishing before work or when you baby wakes you up at 4 a.m. or breakfast, lunch, and dinner for an entire day.

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Yuba Ribs

31 Aug Yuba Ribs

I saw this recipe for vegan ribs and knew I was going to have to try it. We’ve had it twice since, because I purchased a massive package of yuba sheets from my local International store. Miyoko calls for dried bean curd sticks in her recipe, but yuba sheets are an easy substitute and you can control the size of your ribs.
Yuba Ribs

I subbed a barbecue sauce a client of mine gave me. She finally got back to me with the recipe, so I’m able to share it here! There’s a bit of spice and Asian flavor which make this recipe awesome with a good IPA. However, if you’re lazy, use your favorite bottled sauce.

Yuba Ribs

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