Monday, November 8, 2010

Tuscan White Bean Stew

Soup/Stew season is here and I am loving every minute of it.

Paul made this stew for dinner one night last week. The recipe is from VeganYumYum and you can find the direct link to it here.

The recipe serves two and once it was already cooking we were a little bit nervous, because the pot looked suspiciously empty.

Alarmingly empty.

We were pretty convinced that it wouldn't be enough to satisfy us two gluttons after a long work day and so I made some last minute buttery toast to go with it but the stew ended up being really, really filling. I don't know if it was the beans, or the potatoes, or the copious amounts of seitan (we definitely put in twice as much as it called for).

As an aside, it would be really, really great if someone in the Kitchener-Waterloo region started carrying pre-made seitan. I suck at making it. And it is very time consuming, but not so great when frozen and defrosted. This means that when I do make it we end up eating seitan for several consecutive meals. But let's be honest, nobody needs that much gluten in their system - and my gut is still pissed at me today.

That being said, it went so well in this soup that I have now become obsessed with faking chicken in soups using seitan. Dangerous territory.

So yes, try this recipe. Add extra seitan. And double (actually, we tripled) the kale for more nutritional goodness. And skip the toast because this stew packs a filling punch that you'd never guess it would.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Coconut-Pineapple Noodles and Sweet & Sticky Tofu

Every year I promise myself that I am going to participate in Vegan Mofo (aka "Month of Vegan Food"). Vegan Mofo is a blog project - 30 days of November, 30 posts about the awesomeness that is veganism. This year there are over 200 bloggers participating (you can find the complete list at the above link).

Sadly, I am not one of these brave and inspired bloggers. November is one of the busiest months of my year and while I would love to participate, I'm afraid 2010 is just another year that I can't find the time to commit to the project. I really, really wish Mofo took place in another month (perhaps a quiet and boring winter month?).

Although I'm not participating in the 30 post extravaganza (though I am really excited about the interwebs being flooded with vegan goodness for the next month!), I am going to do my best to post as often as possible, even if it's just a picture and a small blurb about my dinner. While it is Vegan MoFo month, it is also "GO VEGAN" month and I want to be a part of the 2010 vegan revolution (however small a part that may be).

So here's a dinner I recently made on a very busy night. The recipe for the noodles comes from Vegan Express. After years of having a strange aversion to it, these days I salivate at the mere thought of coconut, particularly coconut milk. Especially when it is combined with noodles. Our takeout of choice over the last couple months has been coconut curries from Bangkok Cuisine (a Friday Night Speciality in our house), but I thought I would try making one on my own.

The noodles were really delicious, although I think I will cut down on the pineapple next time. It is great with the full amount of pineapple, but because of my current fixation on coconut milk, I find myself wanting that to be the focus flavour. I also left out the lemon grass, as Paul has a pretty strong aversion to it. I also added some broccoli because we have been eating embarrassingly few greens lately.

I don't know what is with the crappy thai red curry paste I bought, but I put almost a quarter cup of it in the noodles and still the flavour was not strong enough or hot enough. Paul and I are starting to think we are some sort of spice mutants or something - nothing is fiery enough for us these days. I think I need to stop buying these kind of specialty items at my local supermarket and instead had to the Asian grocer downtown for a little more authenticity.

The tofu is pretty standard issue - pan-fried in a bit of Sweet & Sticky barbeque sauce. An awesome quick-fix side dish for any kind of noodles.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Halloween 2010

For Halloween this year I decided to forgo the pumpkin cupcakes I usually make and instead baked up a batch of sugar cookies. I don't really know why I did this because I absolutely despise making cookies. It can be so tedious - the rolling, cutting, rolling again...the baking, the burning, the freaking out and the subsequent throwing out process is entirely too repetitive and entirely too stressful. But, every now and again I do like to mix up the treats I provide my people.

The recipe for these cookies came from Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar and they were pretty good, but I did find them too sugary.

Which, admittedly, is a bit of a ridiculous criticsm to make of a sugar cookie, but I just found the sweetness overwhelming to the point of headache and toothache. I think if I make them again I will skip the icing process (and unfortunately cut the cuteness quotient down a notch). Instead, I'll probably just sprinkle them with some sugar before baking.

I hope you all had a wonderful Halloween and aren't feeling the sugar low today (I know I sure am - damn you Swedish Berries!). We had an awesome time first at our place, and then at Starlight in uptown Waterloo (where the DJ had a crazy old school dance party going on that made us old folks reminiscent of our high school days).

Paul's pumpkin carving stylings - the 2010 additions being Jason and Devil Flanders! (to go along with Jack Skellington and Michael Myers, whom you can't see because he had a strobe light in him that couldn't be picked up by the camera).

The amazing pumpkin punch bowl made by my dear friend Lisa.

Me and Paul, as Princess Peach and Super Mario!

The Queen of Hearts and good old Richard Nixon

Edward Scissorhands and Mr. Peanut, quite the couple

The girls


What an awesome night - thanks to all our great friends for coming out and to Starlight for throwing such a great Halloween party! (And I didn't even have to see a single Lady Gaga dress!)

Can't wait until next year!

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