Tag Archives: tempeh

Vcon or die!

Not really, but you know what I mean.

First things first, congratulations to my 8th grader who graduated this past Monday. Woot! I made these cupcakes. They and the frosting were vegan but of course the Ghirardelli caramel squares, mini Reese’s peanut butter cups, mini M&Ms, and fruit by the foot were not.

Back to Vcon. I love this book. I decided to go back and read some of the reviews on Amazon for Veganomicon and I gotta tell ya, most of them are spot on. Great recipes, easy to read, FUN to read, etc. Of course there were a couple who didn’t care for it, one lady saying all the recipes she tried turned out terrible (to which I personally would say, “news flash! you suck at cooking!”) and one guy who said everything was too complicated and the recipes weren’t healthy, calling most vegans chubby. Really? Are you sure? And here I figured a diet of fruits, vegetables, and grains would be good for you. What on earth was I thinking? Douchebag.

Oh, one other person pointed out some misprints and typos and I did actually find a couple of my own, but we can’t all be perfect. And honestly, if you don’t know your way around a kitchen enough to figure out what might be missing, you should probably just stick to eating at IHOP.

Today’s dinner consisted of the ‘braised seitan with sun dried tomatoes and kale’ (p182) recipe. I scrapped the sietan since I have a gluten sensitivity (more on that later) and instead, used my favorite alterna-protein, tempeh. It was pretty easy to make. I happen to really like the one pot dishes, being that I am a lazy piece of crap. Hey man, until my dishwasher gets put in and hooked up, I’m not doing any more dishes than I frigging well have to.

I also made the ‘polenta with broccoli’ (p114) recipe but instead of broccoli, I used a bag of frozen mixed ‘california vegetables’ and i used my

muffin tin (no shortage of those around here!) to mold them into individual servings. I then broiled them to reheat them.

Oh, and I also made the ‘parsnip chips’ (p183) recipe. Yum! They were great! I’ve never had a parsnip before so I was leary (sp?) at first, but they smelled wonderful, so I came around, of course.

So, this gluten sensitivity…it started when I was pregnant. It didn’t stop after I gave birth. Now, when I have one or two cupcakes, it’s not THAT bad, because let’s face it- one cup of flour divided by twelve does not make for too horrible a tummy ache. However, seitan…I’m just asking for trouble. Bathroom trouble, that is. So no more sietan for me. Too bad, because there’s a shirt I want with an inverted pentagram that says ‘praise seitan.’ Oh well.

Speaking of shirts, I did some t-shirt shopping recently. I have decided to give my money to people who will use it for greater good. I already know that Target does this, as they constantly pat their own backs about it. This one to your left I bought for my husband because when he saw that I bought it for my daughter, he gave it such a…longing look. It was only $12.99 and it is AWESOME, isn’t it? Who doesn’t love Rock Band? It even has a bunch of hands throwing up the devil horns! You gotta love that stuff. I know I do. Plus, Target now has a whole line of organic cotton stuff. Yips all around.

Lately, I’m really into Herbivore clothing. I bought two shirts from them along with a lot of buttons and stickers. I’m not huge fan of American Apparel shirts, which is what they use, but I do like that the reason they aren’t using anything else is because America is too fat. “Most T-shirt manufacturers are increasing the size of their sizes to fit an ever expanding public. Our manufacturer is sticking to the sizing styles from the 70’s and 80’s. So if you’re used to jumbo Fruit of the Loom or Hanes T-shirts, know that ours are a bit smaller.”And that’s a direct quote from the website.

Next, I will buy something from the Peta website, even though sometimes I think they can be a bit scary in their tactics. Do what you gotta do, I always say. I kinda like the really gross one that says ‘would you like fries with that?‘ but they only make it in dude style and I need boob room. I’m definitely getting their little green V for vegan pin. Just because.

Before I stopped shopping at Wal-mart (see ‘Wal-mart:The High Cost of Low Price) I bought a couple of shirts that were allegedly organic transitional cotton. I’m trying-against Stacy and Clinton’s wishes- to have an entire lot of shirts that say stuff on them. You know, environmental stuff. Vegan stuff. Ecological stuff. And etcetera. I don’t have a ‘real job’ or any reason to go get what my friend Natalie calls ‘big girl clothes,’ but when I do, I can always give these to my kids who will probably be blessed with the same giant boobs I have been ‘blessed’ with.

Until next time, with a vengeance!

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Lack of Protein? No Way, Jose!

So , it drives me up a wall, but I constantly get people asking me what i do for protein. Are they serious? I get so much protein i think my kidneys are mad at me. Let me just set the record straight real quick.

First of all…beans! Yes, they are the magical fruit that make you go toot but they are also packed with protein. If you take enough Beano, you don’t have to worry about gas. Or bloating. Or that weird meowing noise your stomach does when garbanzos decides to tear it a new one.

Second…pasta! If you look at those new-agey type pastas they all say “excellent source of protein” and upon further digging, i have found out that apparently whatever your age is, you multiply it by two and there you have how much protein you should be taking in per day. If there are any nutritionists out there who’d like to do battle over this stat- bring it. I’m unarmed. That’s just something I pulled from the net. You would totally win.

The box of angel hair I just looked at says 7 grams of protein per 1 ounce serving. I looked at my cans of beans, too. Garbanzo beans, 6, red kidney beans, 7, cannellini beans, 8 grams, all per 1/2 cup serving.

Let’s not forget my favorite protein alternative- tempeh. This monster has 19 grams of protein in one four ounce serving. Wow. Tofu, while not the best of them, is still holding steady at about 4.5 grams per ounce. Let’s not forget soy milk, please. I ingest tons of it because I freaking love granola (yes, honey free, my darlings) and one cup of it has 7 grams.

And let’s go there please. Soy milk. It was never my favorite back in the day, but this ugly duckling has really sprouted beautiful feathers recently. I don’t know what they’re doing to the stuff, but it tastes so much better these days. And calcium? It has 30% of what i need in that little cup.

I’m not going to go through and list all the things i eat in a day that have protein and calcium so a clan of carnivores can still find something wrong with the vegan philosophy. Either you feel it or you don’t, and I do. So nyah! Bring on the food!!

This was my lunch yesterday and today. I boiled the aforementioned pasta while sauteeing some cherry tomatoes. I pushed down on the tomatoes to get them to squirt out a bit of juice and then tossed in a lot of zucchini and yellow squash. When it was pretty well caramelized, I tossed in the cannellini beans, a handful of dried parsley, a handful of dried oregano, a crapload of chopped garlic, and some crushed red pepper because I like my shit hot. Oh, and of course, kosher salt ad pepper. This was quite delicious and I’m going to pat myself on the back for this one.

I’m not going to pat myself on the back for this one, however. I sucked hard at making this recipe that I know would have been fabulous if I’d had over a couple of Yentas, but I don’t know any. It’s the Matzo Ball Soup from Vegan With A Vengeance by Isa Chandra. It started out great- I got the mix together and I refrigerated it overnight, as suggested.

I took it out and made my Matzo balls. I was so excited I almost started speaking in tongues, Yiddish being one of them. I had my water boiling and I carefully placed them inside the pot. I put the lid on and left it alone like she says to in the book. I mean, she used all caps to drive home the point, so i figured I’d better do it or I may get some kind of bad Kabbalic Karma sent my way. Then this happened.

It boiled over. So i had to remove the lid. I was looking over my shoulder the whole time, I swear. What a bummer because I’m sure that had something to do with what happened to my balls. Ahem, Matzo balls.

They looked nice in the pot but when my 40 minutes were up and i went to remove them, well, there was a lot of Matzo meal floating about the pot and a good portion of the balls were falling apart. Very sad, really. I was so looking forward to trying this stuff. ThisĀ  is the finished product. I managed to find few good balls and i ladled the broth over them. It was still heavenly, I’m not going to lie, but until I perfect this soup, I’m not serving it at my next Passover Seder.

You know what? I’m going to have some right now. see you tomorrow!

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Adventures in Vegan Cooking! And other stuff!

So much to post about today and i think i will start with this hilarious cross-stitch i got from a gal named City in New Zealand. Yes, that’s me in the picture. Ain’t i cute? Her site is on my blogroll where it says ‘city the nz cupcake queen.’ I think it should also say “city the nz cross-stitch queen’ cuz this thing is awesome. I have already pissed off my husband by not just owning it, but proudly displaying it in my kitchen where his uber-religious family members can see it. His brother-who is in a locally popular screaming hardcore band- says to me, “What kind of crowd are you running with these days? Geez…” I reply with “the usual. But it’s funny right? Cuz I’m a suburban housefrau but i worship satan. Come on, that’s funny, dammit!” Well, i think so.

City also features knuckle tattoo cross-stitches that read ‘cupcake’ and star wars.’ Cupcakes rule! Star wars, well, i guess thats an acquired taste but anyway. She sells her stuff on Etsy, which is where i picked mine up. you can go here to look at her shit.

Next, as i have said in my previous post, i am going mostly vegan. Why not all the way? Because I have to taste frostings and stuff, made with butter and a tiny bit of cream, to make sure they don’t taste like poo before someone pays money to eat them. When my hubby is home, he is usually my guinea pig but since he works nights, and a lot of my baking gets done at night, what do i do? I call myself vegetarian with a serious bend towards the darker side.

I went to our local health food store and holy mother of god are they expensive. But i want to support local business so i do it anyway. Plus, the place is owned by two of the coolest broads ever, and quite militant about eating vegan. Usually that turns me the hell away from vegans (and another reason why i hesitate to call myself that) but she says it with a smile and that just makes it all better.

I stocked up on some of the stuff i need to get a good start (oh, how i wish the whole foods wasn’t an hour away, sniff) but i have to go back for other stuff. My pal Kristen wants me to experiment with gluten-free crap so i’m going to buy about four different kinds of flour, probably to the tune of about $30. That’s okay though. When i open Joliet’s first cupcake shop/bulk spice store, i want to know what the hell i’m doing, you know?

Forgot to mention- this was my lunch for the past few days. I roasted some asparagus by rolling it in about a tablespoon of olive oil, salt and pepper and throwing it in the over at 400 for 15 minutes. When those tips turn black, you’re done. then i did about the same thing to the cauliflower, only i added garlic and oregano. It took about half an hour. Again, when some of the tips turned black, i took it out. i let it cool and then tossed it into the food processor until it was a coarse meal. Frigging awesome! Heaven (if i believed in it) on a platter!!! This is actually quite economical, too. All you need is a head of cauliflower and a bundle of asparagus. Next, i made some delicious pan fried tempeh to go with it. Just slice into strips, put it in a pan with veggie broth, cook until the broth goes away and it starts to get more browned, then put in some tamari(or soy sauce, whatever, really) and liquid smoke. i ate this for lunch for four days!

A super healthy meal and completely cruelty free. Unless you count the smell that’s all up in my house and my husband saying stuff like “making me smell that crap is mean.” He doesn’t count though, right? I’m only supposed to be nice to animals? ok, cool.

So my next experiment was with Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World. the babes who wrote this book have an amazing blog that you can view here. I made the chocolate ones and i didn’t even bother making frosting. Seriously- they did not last that long in my house. they were loved by all. I think i may use this recipe for all my chocolate cupcakes in the future. the were the most moist, most flavorful, and garnered me the most compliments, which is really what i’m after.

As you can see i used my silicon baking cups for these. When I’m baking for my family, why waste paper? They are a pain in the arse to clean up, so spray a little no-stick in there to help you out. Although they will still be hard to clean. So whats worse? Wasting paper or wasting water? I have no idea anymore. Sigh…

I also made these fabulous vanilla cupcakes with vanilla frosting, vegan of course. you know, it’s times like this when i think that vanilla might be the new chocolate.

Yes, i did use a bunch of different liners for these, i know. I had a few of each different ones left over. A couple from easter, a couple from valentines day. What’s a girl to do? Who cares, just use the damn things. All people really want is what’s on the inside.

I brought these to my usual sunday night hang out when i don’t have to go bring jerkoffs food at the restaurant i work at. I wait anxiously until the baby is in bed and the teenagers are out of the shower and ready for bed. Then i get the hell outta there for some much needed adult time. The gang and i usually hang out at Britt’s house and watch Family Guy reruns.( ps- i hate the everloving crap outta that show but because i want out of my house so bad, i watch it, pretend to get it, then fake laugh.) Anyways, my friends wolfed these suckers down like they were never going to eat again. When i said, “They’re vegan!” only one person knew what that meant. Wow. Why do i hang out with these people again? They don’t even like chocolate. I know! I think it’s mostly for geographical convenience. Just kidding.

<—-Anyways, buy this book, you will NOT regret it. I’m still working on my Veganomicon, picking out recipes, buying ingredients. Oh hey, no one told me this, but seitan is apparently made from the very stuff that makes my insides feel like a mosh pit. Gluten! Argh! (ha! i went all pirate on ya!) I do indeed still eat the cupcakes that i make with flour, yes. I will pay for it all night with frequent trips to bathroom and a can of Febreze air effects close by, but sometimes, it’s worth it.

YOU try being a vegan with a wheat intolerance! It blows big time! Luckily, i love love love tempeh. Still trying to figure out baking tofu, also. Wish me luck! More to come kids, enjoy!!

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