Thursday, March 27, 2014

Les Bouchées Quotidiennes

When I made fajitas a week or so ago, Mike claimed that we don't eat Mexican food enough, and I must agree. So now I'm trying to incorporate it into our weekly meal plan a little more often. Last week we made these sriracha sweet potato black bean tacos with homemade guacamole. Mike had never had sweet potatoes with black beans, which is always amazing! The sriracha marinade is a little sweet, which gives the sweet potatoes a great flavor. These were definitely a favorite for both of us!

Mike was away this weekend, which almost always equals mac and cheeze. This weekend I was out of cashews however, so I had to do some quick searching for a vegan recipe without cashews. I stumbled upon this baked mac with peas that is made with coconut milk, GF flour, and other delicious things. I put them in individual baking dishes topped with GF panko, which made them even tastier! The crazy part is Mike actually ate this, even though it had nutritional yeast in it (note: this is unheard of for him). 

I've been falling behind on making us salads lately, so I made us gigantic bowls with Cajun roasted broccoli, carrots, cucumber, chickpeas, iceberg lettuce (underneath everything), fried polenta rounds and vegan ranch hummus. I was going to follow the original recipe, but it was a little too involved/salt-heavy for me. The hummus is a great topping for this or any other salad, and it really does taste like ranch! It also makes a great dip for carrots, cucumber, and chips. 

I felt guilty about not making us a St.Patricks day meal, so we celebrated (more than a week late). We had garlic roasted cabbage, garlicky pepper tofu and salt n vinegar kale mashed potatoes. This is a little more involved than most of my weeknight meals, but I guess the craving really hit! This tofu recipe is awesome because it requires no marinading and it has a lot of flavor (especially with hot sauce!). The roasted cabbage was amazing and had to be put up before we both ate all of it. Oh and the mashed potatoes were obviously my favorite. They weren't hard to make and the flavor is awesome. Next time I will definitely put them under the broiler, as the recipe says. 

For roasted cabbage: preheat oven to 400. Slice cabbage into 1/2" "steaks" or wedges (good luck because mine didn't stay intact). Spray a large baking tray or two with non-stick oil. Place cabbage pieces on top. Smash 3 garlic cloves and rub each cabbage piece with garlic (I kept the garlic in the pan to roast with the cabbage). Brush each piece of cabbage with olive oil. Roast 30 minutes, flip, brush with a little more oil, and roast 30 minutes more until starting to brown. Smaller pieces may brown more quickly, so be sure to remove them first. Roasted cabbage is also incredible with hot sauce (like everything else).

Sometimes cooking in the middle of being really busy is actually very rewarding. It lets me shut my brain off and not think about the 500 things I need to do. Last night's distraction consisted of this lovely French lentil soup with fresh fennel, kale and chipotle "yogurt" (I used vegan mayo instead). This soup was super easy to make and you definitely can't skip the mayo because it gives it a lot of flavor. I love French (de puy) lentils because of their shape and when they cook, it smells like tea!...okay, am I the only person who thinks this? Maybe I'm nuts. Anyways, this is a great easy soup for any weeknight!

Friday, March 21, 2014

Friday Links

1. Maybe it's because I want warmer weather, or because Molly is my favorite, but these marzipan peach hand pies are SO cute. And anything almond is automatically my favorite.

2. These photos of low-cost cosplay made me chuckle. They certainly saved the best for last.

3. I'm not gonna lie, it was hard for me to read about cricket flour bars without gagging, but I'm curious: would you try it? I'm an adventurous cook in my own kitchen, but I don't think I could eat milled crickets. Blech.

4. This mash-up of True Detective and King of the Hill is almost too perfect!

5. The set for American Horror Story's fourth season has been released! So excited! I still have some catching up to do from Season 3. 

6. The cutest thing I found on the Internet this week: this video of a baby bulldog who loves rolling down hills!

7. Have you seen the trailer for the new FX show, Fargo? It looks amazing! Can't wait!

8. This isn't brand new, but I finally looked into Turntable Kitchen and realized its a monthly box with food goodies, recipes and a vinyl! WHAT?? I don't think all of the recipes are vegetarian and I'm not sure it's customizable, but this is such an awesome idea!

9. I've been making kimchi soba or miso soup a lot lately, so this sweet potato sriracha noodle soup sounds incredible right now! (PS: so does this sriracha lime spiked miso ramen)

10. I can't wait for The Grand Budapest Hotel to get here! In the mean time, watch this supercut of centered shots from Wes Anderson's films. 

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Les Bouchées Quotidiennes

I finally tried the wonderpot pasta that has been all over Pinterest! Because you cook everything together, the natural starch from the pasta creates a wonderfully thickened and flavorful sauce. It takes less than 5 minutes to prep and it's only on the stove for a total of 15 mins. No draining and only one pan! How crazy is that? I left the spinach out because Mike cannot eat it, but it was still delicious. Here is a spinach artichoke variation and here is a vegan eggplant + mushroom version.

I used to LOVE ordering fajitas at Mexican restaurants, so I'm not sure how it's taken me til' now to make a vegan version! These roasted chickpea, onion, pepper fajitas were so easy to make and they taste authentic! I made my own fajita mix because all the store bought varieties had horrible ingredients, so I used this simple recipe. Also, don't skip the cashew cilantro crema. It makes the dish even more delicious and is a good replacement for avocado, if you don't have any. And if you're anything like me, you'll want to serve these with strawberry daquiris.

Usually when I roast vegetables for soup, I just puree everything together and that's it. This is a normal tomato soup with the usual stuff, but with the addition of roasted cauliflower. The result is a lovely tomato soup with lots of swiss chard and delicious roasted bites of cauliflower. Next time I think I'll roast a whole head of garlic and add it for more roasty flavor. This soup is perfect for a cold winter night, for those of you with normal weather!

The perfect ice storm lunch: soba noodle miso soup with tons of kimchi + sriracha. Just cook some soba noodles (one bundle), then make miso broth. Pour broth over noodles and add lots of kimchi, then sriracha. Add any greens or vegetables you have on hand!

It's been quite a long time since I've made chili. I think I can blame being on a meal plan for this since there was a chili recipe almost every week, and none of them were very good. I decided to try again with this slow-cooker potato curry chili, since it's not a "standard" chili. The result was great, especially with lots of lime juice and hot sauce! This chili doesn't take long to pull together and is great for a cold night!

I made something a little different for dinner one night: vegan chickpea pancakes with soy gourt, cilantro and spiced roasted rainbow carrots. I also made some garlicky sauteed Swiss chard. These pancakes were SO easy to make and a nice change in pace from our usual dinner. The carrots were also delicious, and colorful! I like to think that maybe this will force Spring to come around soon because I am SO sick of snow/ice.

Recently, my wonderful mom gave me a jar of miso horseradish kimchi so I made some kimchi fried rice for dinner tonight. It was one of the quickest, easiest meals I've made in a while. We were out of green onions, so I just made plan kimchi rice with the other ingredients, plus eggs over easy, sriracha and cilantro. I think it would be easy to add any other vegetables you have in the fridge as well! To make vegan, just scramble some tofu where the recipe says pork/seafood (which I obviously left out). 

Friday, March 14, 2014

Friday Links

1. A brussels sprouts Caesar salad sounds like a great idea! Except I would probably make it vegan by using this dressing and no cheese.

2. This raw mint chocolate chip cashew cheese cake sounds amazing! I am starting to enjoy raw desserts more and more these days.

3. And because I'm obsessed with chocolate and mint: oreo thin mints (!!!)

4. I'm really bummed that True Detective is over now, but it was a perfect show. I'm anxious to see what next season will be like! For now, we are starting The Returned in addition to our other shows.

5. But this interview with True Detective's producer Nic Pizzoletto is so interesting. 

6. I've never had potstickers, but these GF vegan tempeh potstickers look incredibly easy!

7. I think my next baking project may be these vegan bacon maple donuts! I love Shelly's photography so much.

8. I LOVE these old photos of Vivian Kubrick on the sets of Stanley's films.

9. In case you were wondering, a cookbook is being released in April that is all brassica vegetables (aka kale, cauliflower, brussels sprouts, cabbage, broccoli, etc). So yeah, there goes me trying not to buy anymore cookbooks...

10.  Are you celebrating St. Patrick's Day? If so, here are some ideas for you: boozy lucky charms shakesIrish soda bread scones with salty whiskey buttervegan green goddess gouda grilled cheese; or maybe a vegan colcannon casserole with Irish whisky tofu and mushroom gravy? Well in any case, you should at least watch this movie.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Les Bouchées Quotidiennes

We were iced in last week, so I had to use only pantry ingredients for breakfast. Luckily, we always keep a few packages of tofu on hand, so I made some kimchi tofu scramble. I just sauteed some shallots and green onions, then added a package of extra-firm tofu, which I crumbled with the spatula. Then I added garlic powder, onion powder, salt, heavy dose of turmeric, and some coriander. Then I added the liquid from my kimchi jar. After this, I added about 1-2 cups of chopped kimchi. SO GOOD!

I FINALLY made Isa's brussels sprouts fried rice and I was not disappointed. I'm not sure how it has taken me so long to make fried rice with basil, but oh my gosh. The basil, lime and cilantro here are essential and amazing. I will certainly be making this again and again. In case you were wondering, they also make a great breakfast!

Mike has been cooking for me this week (see below for the reason why) and he's been doing a great job! I cooked the black-eyed peas a day ahead, pre-injury, and he did the rest for the black-eyed pea masala. I loved the peas in a masala dish, especially when paired with jasmine rice, cilantro and steamed collards! The masala recipe is easy, satisfying, and perfect for those who are still having winter weather!

After having two and a half wonderful days of spring break, great food, and hanging with friends, this happened: I stupidly dropped a couch on my toe. This couch is the one Mike bought for the theatre and it was only $50 (?!!) and it's in great condition/real leather. So I have been hobbling around all week, resting, and trying to heal before classes are back on Monday. I also tried this new "GF" beer I found at Deep Roots. It was alright, not my favorite GF beer, but pretty decent.

I have to admit, I have a slight weakness for childhood favorites made GF/vegan: vegan BLTs, pretzels...and sour cream and onion chips. I can't explain my excitement when I saw these! They're also low in fat, sodium, and non-GMO. These and the cheddar ones are both incredible. Mike was actually convinced that the cheddar ones had dairy but they're vegan! If you're in GSO, I found them at Whole Foods. I discovered these chips because of this recipe for sour cream + onion buttermilk crusted tofu (?!!!)...which I will obviously be making soon!

Now that I'm limping a little better, Mike and I tried cooking together tonight, which turned out great! I've been avoiding going to the store since I don't trust people to not step on my feet, so we pulled this out our pantry items: sweet chili lime tofu with quinoa and wok-steamed collards. It sounds complicated, but it was actually super easy and SO good. The sauce has lime zest, juice, mint, and other usual Asian sauce ingredients that make an incredibly flavorful sauce. I may have to cave in and get her cookbook now!

Friday, March 7, 2014

Friday Links

1. Some of the most overlooked Wes Anderson costumes are some of the greatest.

2. Someone (awesome) turned Jeff Goldblum's laugh from 'Jurassic Park' into a song. Definitely the highlight of my week.

3. This king cake is so beautiful! I love the marzipan topping instead of sanding sugar.

4. This is definitely the coolest thing I found this week: what a tree ring sounds like on a record player. 

5. Homemade vegan GF doritos sound SO GOOD. I have to admit, I envy anyone who eats the cool ranch ones because they were so good (although I know they're bad!). 

6. I LOVE this list of books you should read based on childhood favorites! 'James at the Giant Peach'/'Kafka on the Shore' is a pretty accurate pairing since they are two of my favorite books!

7. Apparently a box set of all Wes Anderson soundtracks is being released this year.  If it comes out on vinyl, I will be SO happy.

8. Using vinyl covers to match parts of the body. This was so awesome.

9. This GF/dairy-free German chocolate cake looks DIVINE!

10. Wondering what the cocktail above is? It's the burly Temple (grenandine, ginger ale, bourbon). If you haven't checked out Make for 365 you must! It's one of my favorite cocktail sites. This lady vowed to make a new cocktail every day for an entire year!

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Les Bouchées Quotidiennes

Things have been crazy around here, hence the lack of recipes, and I haven't been cooking every night. But spring break starts after class tomorrow (!!!) so hopefully I will get back on track with school and cooking!

I've been eyeing this mujaddara for years now. It's quick, easy, and the only thing I had to buy was vegan yogurt. It seems like such a simple dish, but the flavors go together so well. I also love caramelized onions, which is one of the main components of this dish. There are many variations on this dish, but this is the one I made. Highly recommended for a busy night when you just want something simple!

I'm not sure if I mentioned it, but I got a breadmaker for Christmas (thanks Mama Gulick!). This weekend, she showed me how easy it is to make bread in a breadmaker using this mix. The result was wonderful! A light, airy not dense or mouth-scraping GF bread! I will definitely be making more bread soon. It's hard to eat Udi's bread after having fresh GF bread!

Some delicious cranberry cider I bought for the ice storm on Monday.

I'm definitely putting this in my easy weeknight meal rotation! I used this easy ginger shallot broccoli recipe, cooked brown rice and this spicy tofu recipe for an easy dinner. I doubled the tofu sauce, which I poured over the tofu after pan-frying so that it would glaze it better. The result was an amazingly easy Asian dinner! If you're interested in me doing a post of easy weeknight meals, please leave a comment below!

I've had this blood orange olive oil cake for YEARS now, and I finally made it! It was one of the first recipes I converted to GF when I first started baking. The result was a tender, orange-flecked cake with a great crust. I think the blood orange compote on top would make it even better, but I only had three blood oranges. For conversions, I used: scant 1/2 C vegan unsweetened yogurt, 1 C millet flour, 1/2 C sorghum flour, 1/4 C tapioca starch and 1 tsp xanthan gum. 

Confession: I have never had a real Reuben before. But like many things, I have now had the vegan version! We used GF bread, sauerkraut, this tempeh recipe, and this Russian dressing recipe. This made a very easy and delicious sandwich! Also, it's likely that you have most of these things on hand to make them all the time (which is great)! We served ours with homemade Cajun fries