Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Roasted Red Pepper, Avocado, Chili Enchiladas

So this recipe is a Tex-Mex inspiration. Enchiladas used to be my favorite thing to make before I became a vegetarian. I perfected a recipe and made them all the time, Everyone loved them and every-time I made them it seemed that the huge pan was empty after 5 minutes. Since becoming a veg head I have yet to feel that same excitement over my enchiladas...Until last night. Now saying that  I have long since stopped missing the taste of meat, but it seemed I could never match the deliciousness of my non veg enchiladas with my many veggie/vegan attempts. I promise that even a carnivore wouldn't miss there meat after one bite of these. I contemplated keeping this recipe to myself, (All good cooks should have a few secrets right?) but I have a hard time not sharing, whenever I try to keep a secret recipe it always gets out eventually so I might as well blog about it now. I do hope you give these a try, you won't be sorry.


10 whole wheat flour tortillas (To make this recipe gluten free all you need to do is use gluten free tortillas)
1 Lg can Green Enchilada sauce
1 can Amy's chili (or you can use homemade if you prefer)
1 onion, chopped
1 tbs oil
3/4 cup roasted red pepper, skin removed and sliced. (you can use jarred to save time)
1 cup baby bella mushrooms, sliced
1/2 cup fresh cilantro, roughly chopped, Extra for garnish if desired
2 tbs fresh lime juice
2 ripe avocados
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup nutritional yeast.
about  1 1/2 cups diaya cheese, I used half cheddar and half mozzarella

Directions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Heat oil in a skillet and saute onions until translucent. Then add roasted red peppers, mushrooms, and lime juice. Let simmer until most of the liquid has been absorbed. Then add your cilantro and can of chili. continue to simmer for 3-5 minutes. In a bowl mash the avocados with salt and nutritional yeast. A chunky texture is fine. In a large 9x13 glass casserole dish pour in enough enchilada sauce to cover the bottom. On your tortilla spread a spoonful of the mashed avocado and then top  with a spoonful of the mix and spread evenly in the center.

  Roll up and place in pan with the seam on the bottom. Continue until the pan is full.

Then top with the rest of the Enchilada sauce and sprinkle the top with cheese. Cover the pan with foil and cook for 16-18 minutes. Remove foil and cook for an additional 4-6 minutes. Garnish with cilantro, salsa, sour cream, whatever you like.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Teriyaki Stir-Fry

This is such a great thing to throw together for dinner, you can make it as simple or as elaborate as you want and it will still taste amazing. If you want a quick dinner you can always get the pre-made sauce from the store, but I recommend making your own. As I am always trying to make my own sauce now, Everything tastes better home made. So give this a try, its very good.

Teriyaki Sauce

1/3 cup tamari
1/4 cup water 
3 tbs agave nectar
2 tbs lemon juice
1 tbs toasted sesame oil
1 tbs molasses
6 cloves garlic, minced
1-2 tbs ginger, minced
1 1/2 tbs arrowroot powder


1 tbs oil
Vegetables of your choice, I used a bag of frozen mixed veggies
tofu, drained, pressed, cubed, and cooked. I fried mine
cashews, sesame seeds, bean sprouts, etc.
Cooked rice or Soba noodles.  

Prepare your sauce, add ingredients into a bowl and mix well. In a skillet heat oil and add your veggies, cook until tender, add your prepared tofu and cashews heat thoroughly. Add the sauce and the cooked noodles (if using noodles) and stir-fry using thongs or chopsticks. Toss with bean sprouts and sesame seeds. If using rice serve over cooked rice. This recipe if very versatile, this is my favorite way of making it.  


Saturday, March 19, 2011

Orange Cashew Biscotti

You will Need:

1/3 cup Fresh Orange juice
2 tbs flaxmeal
3/4 cup organic raw sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 tbs arrowroot powder
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbs packed orange zest (zest your oranges first and then squeeze for juice)
1/2 cup lightly crushed cashews.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl whisk together the orange juice and flax meal. Add the sugar, oil, extract and mix well. Sift in the flour, arrowroot, baking powder, salt and orange zest. When the dough starts to form kneed in the cashews. The dough will be a bit sticky, Grease a baking sheet and form your dough into a log shape about 12 inches long. Place on your baking sheet and press down to flatten the dough to about 4 inches wide. Bake for 28 minutes or until lightly puffed. Remove and allow to cool for about 30 minutes.  Turn the oven to 375 degrees. Once cooled transfer to the cutting board and with a shape knife cut into slices pressing down in one motion. You don't want to use a serrated knife or saw the slices, because this will cause them to crumble into pieces. Place back onto the baking sheet cut side down and bake for 12-15 minutes.  Allow to cool and store in an airtight container.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Sushi Lovers

So Last night I made sushi for the first time! It was a lot of fun and pretty easy too. I thought it was so delicious. Jesse said it was the best sushi he has ever tasted, Although I find that hard to believe, I guess it was pretty darn good. However I can't really take any credit for this I all goes to my girl Isa. Having never made sushi before I decide to use the Spicy Tempeh Nori rolls from the Veganomicon. You can't go wrong with any of Isa recipes. If you don't have the veganomicon you should pick up a copy, I think it is a cookbook every vegan and non vegan alike should have in there kitchen. For non vegans this cookbook will prove that we don't sacrifice taste or nutrition for compassion. I will for sure be making sushi all summer, since it requires very little cooking it is perfect for hot summer nights! Now that I have down the method of making sushi I will be experimenting with my own Ideas from now on. I will be sure to post what I come up with. In the mean time I will leave you with Isa recipe It is a great place to start if you have never made sushi before.

Spicy Tempeh Nori Rolls (makes 4 rolls)

For the Sushi rice:

1 cup sushi rice
2 tbsp rice vinegar (do not use regular white vinegar)
1 tsp sugar

(Jenni's Notes: I actually didn't realize I was out of rice vinegar when I started making this. It's something I always have so I forgot to check when I was making my shopping list. I ended up using Mirin, it is sweet rice seasoning, It worked fine but next time I will be sure to use rice vinegar.)

Spicy tempeh filling:

1/2 (4 oz) package tempeh
2 tbsp vegenaise
1/2-1 tsp hot chile-sesame oil
4 sheets nori seaweed
1 scallion, white part discarded, sliced lengthwise into narrow strips
1 ripe avocado, peeled, seeded, and sliced into 1/4 inch-wide strips
1 tbs toasted or black sesame seeds (more if using them to coat inside out rolls)

(Jenni's Notes: I could not find Chile-sesame oil so what I did was mix together Asian chili hot sauce and some sesame oil. I ended up using about 4 times the amount the recipe called for because it was not spicy enough for me, so adjust to taste.)

In a heavy-bottomed, 2 quart pot or saucepan with a cover, combine the rice plus 1 1/4 cups cold water. Turn the heat to high, bring the water to a boil, and stir the rice just once. Lower the heat to low, cover the pot, and steam the rice for 20-22 minutes, until it is tender and the excess liquid has been absorbed. Or, prepare the rice according to the package instructions. Remove from heat.
     Empty the hot rice into a large glass or plastic bowl. sprinkle with the rice vinegar and sugar, folding in the rice gently with a large spoon or rice paddle to mix thoroughly. The rice should be moist and have a very mild vinegar flavor. Cover with plastic wrap and let cool for 10-15 minutes. When the rice is slightly warmer than room temperature (but not completely cold), it's ready to work with.
     While the rice is cooling, prepare the filling by steaming the tempeh. Allow the tempeh to cool for 10 minutes, chop into small cubes, and place in a medium-size bowl. Add the vegenasie and chile-sesame oil and mash until chunky; taste and add more chile-sesame oil if desired.
To assemble:

   Fill a hallow cup with about 1/3 cup of water and a ablespoon of rice vinegar, and keep near your sushi workstation. Follow these steps to the perfect nori roll:

1. Place the nori sheet on the bamboo mat. With wet hands, take a snowball-shaped handful of rice, about a cup's worth, gently pat onto the bottom two-thirds or so of your nori sheet. The layer of rice should be less thank 1/3 inch think.

2. Place a small amount of the fillings across the center of your rice. Lay or spread them horizontally to each side of the nori to create a straight line of filling- the less filling, the easier the sushi will be to roll. Aim for about 1 1/2 tbs of spicy tempeh, three strips of avocado, and some scallion strips. You'll figure it out.

3. Using the mat, gently roll up that sushi starting from the rice-topped end; try to keep our grip relatively tight, for a firm roll.

4. Slice your roll into 1-inch pieces with a shar, serrated knife. That's it!

     Pear and Tempeh Roll: Substitute 1/2 recipe (about 1 1/2 cups) of creamy Asian Pear and Tempeh Salad, for the spicy tempeh filling.

Creamy Asian Pear and Tempeh Salad with Wasabi Dressing

1 8 oz package tempeh, diced
1/2 cup small, sweet fresh or frozen green peas
2 tsp soy sauce
1 scallion, sliced very thinly
1 Asian pear or other firm, crisp pear, pitted and cut into 1/2 inch chunks
1 cup vegenaise
1 1/2-2 tsp wasabi powder
2 tsp lime juice

In a steamer basket, steam the tempeh for 10 minutes, Add the peas and steam for another 3-4 minutes untill the peas are bright green and tendar. Remove from the steamer, sprinkle with soy sauce, and toss into a large bowl with the scallion. Allow to cool for a few minutes. Crush the cupes of tempeh a little with your hands. and toss in the diced pear.
    In a small bowl , whisk together the vegenaise, wasabi powder, and lime juice. Taste and adjust the spice level with more wasabi if necessary. pour dressing over tempeh mixture, stir to combine everything, and place in an airtight container. Chill for at least 30 minutes or overnight, to allow the flavors to blend.

(Jenni's Notes: I was in a hurry when I was at the store and did not read the ingredients of the wasabi powder I picked up. So when I stated making this and opened the container the powder with white which was weird because wasabi is green. So I looked that the ingredients and noticed that there was actually absolutely no wasabi in it at all. I was so upset, because I actually really love wasabi and felt like the container is basically a fraud. What you are actually getting is ground horseradish. But it is not the same there is actually a big difference. It doesn't look, smell, or remotely taste the same. So I was really disappointed, I usually read all the labels but I was in a hurry and by the looks of the container I thought I was getting exactly what it said. So be care if you go to pick out wasabi powder and don't be fooled like I was.)

Inside Out Rolls

     Maybe you've been rolling your own for a while, or you just need to look like a master sushi chef right now! Then inside-out rolled nori rolls will get you the attention you so deserve, and with way less stress than you might expect.
     Simply prepare your nori roll as directed, spreading the rice onto about 2/3 of the nori sheet. Place a sheet of plastic wrap on top, gently slide your hand underneath the bamboo mat and rest your other hand on top of the plastic wrap. Then in one quick motion....flip everything upside down. Remove the bamboo mat from underneath and place on the countertop. Place the nori and rice-plastic wrap side down on the mat. Place the fillings as usual on the edge without the rice underneath it. Then, carefully roll everything up, using the bamboo mat to firmly push everything together and being careful to peel away the plastic wrap as you go.
     For best results, roll your spiffy inside-out rolls in fun things like toasted sesame seed, black sesame seeds, toasted nori flakes or Japanese ground up red pepper.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Cinnamon and Sage Crusted Tempeh in a Piccata Sauce

Cooked this up for dinner last night and the flavors were excellent. The Cinnamon cuts the citrus of the sauce so perfectly and then the sage brings an earthy and pungent flavor to the dish. This is an easy dish to prepare and also a budget friendly meal. If you are looking for something new to try I highly recommend trying this out. If you do please leave your comments below, I would love the hear with you think. I based this recipe from one I found in Vegetarian times, but I  made some adjustments and decided to add cinnamon.

Piccata Sauce

1 tsp olive oil
1 tbs minced garlic
1 cup  white cooking wine
1/4  cup lemon juice
1 tbs capers, drained
salt and pepper to taste
1 1/2 teaspoons corn starch dissolved in 1 /12 tablespoons of water

Cinnamon and Sage Crusted Tempeh

1 8oz package of tempeh cut into 6 equal triagles
1/2 cup almond milk
1/2 cup cornmeal
1 tbs chopped fresh sage
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
oil for cooking

To prepare the sauce, heat the oil over medium high  in a sauce pot and add the garlic, cook for 30 to 40 seconds. Add the wine, lemon juice, capers, salt and pepper. Cook for about 10 minutes on a soft simmer.
Stir in the corn starch mixture and continue to cook for 3 to 5 minutes. Turn off heat and set aside.

Heat about 1/8 inch oil in a skillet on medium high. Add the milk in a small bowl and then in a separate bowl add the cornmeal, sage, and cinnamon, mix well. soak the tempeh in the milk and then coat in the cornmeal mixture. Cook in the skillet until golden on both sides.

I served this with some fettuccine that I tossed in a dab of oil, salt, garlic powder and sage. Drizzle sauce over the tempeh and fettuccine.