‘cookbook review’ Category

  1. flapper’s delight

    March 31, 2017 by Angie

    This is the second cocktail recipe I’ve made from the book, How to Drink French Fluently by Drew Lazor and Camille Ralph Vidal, that I got from NetGalley. I can’t just read the cookbooks, I have to make the recipes – for delicious, boozy research purposes.


    I changed it up a little because I forgot to buy limes, I do not like gin, and I wanted to reduce the amount of sugar in the simple syrup. The slightly altered recipe follows.

    Ingredients

    8-10 mint leaves
    3/4 oz simple syrup
    1 1/2 oz vodka (or gin, if you’re 100 years old)
    1/2 oz St-Germain
    3/4 oz lime or lemon juice
    Club soda, to fill
    Ice cubes

    Instructions

      1. If you don’t already have some, you can, and I would argue you should, make your own simple syrup. Boil a cup of water and add a cup of sugar unless you think that sounds like diabetes, then up your water to sugar ratio.
      2. Get a rocks glass. Put half of the mint leaves in there then pour in the simple syrup. Crush it up with a spoon so that the mint releases its mintiness into your drink.
      3. Add the vodka, St-Germain, and juice. Stir.
      4. Add the ice cubes. Pour in club soda until your glass is full.
      5. Garnish with a mint sprig.
      6. That drink looks good on you!

    flapper's delight with vodka


  2. St-Germain cocktail

    March 15, 2017 by Angie

    OMG, you guys. It’s been a minute.

    Life has been crazy nuts. But this week is SPRING BREAK. Therefore, so many drink recipes.

    I received and read a great, new cocktail recipe book from NetGalley, How to Drink French Fluently by Drew Lazor and Camille Ralph Vidal. There are four recipes I’m dying to try and can afford/find the ingredients to make. I made two tonight. The first is the St-Germain Cocktail.

    Ingredients

    1 1/2 oz St-Germain

    4 oz cava (prosecco, champagne, whatever you got just make it brut)

    2 oz club soda

    Instructions

    Easiest recipe ever. Get a champagne flute. Pour the ingredients in. Stir. Boom, you have a delicious champagne cocktail.

    SPRING BREAK 2K17!


  3. spiced tofu

    October 31, 2014 by Angie

    This recipe for spiced tofu is from one of my first cookbooks, The Vegetarian Gourmet’s Easy International Recipes by Bobbie Hinman. I love this cookbook even though it doesn’t include a single photo. My loving it sans photos is testament to what a great cookbook it is. This recipe is a favorite that I’ve been making on and off for over a decade now so it was overdue for its own blog post. The Middle Eastern spices make this dish unique and so yummy.

    two bowls of spiced tofu

    Ingredients

    olive oil spray
    1 small yellow onion, chopped
    2 tsp minced garlic
    3/4 of a container of Pomi chopped tomatoes
    6 ounce can of tomato paste
    1/4 cup water
    1/4 cup chardonay
    2 tbsp lemon juice
    3/4 tsp sugar
    1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
    1/2 tsp ground cloves
    salt and pepper to taste
    1 container of firm tofu, pressed/drained and cut into small cubes

    Directions

    1. After preparing and chopping the onion and tofu, spray a large skillet (with a lid) with olive oil and heat to medium.

    2. Add the onion and garlic and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

    3. Add all of the remaining ingredients except for the tofu. Stir to mix everything together well.

    4. Gently stir in the tofu. Put the lid on the skillet and reduce the heat a little. Cook for 30-40 minutes, stirring occasionally.

    5. This is great over rice. We ate it in bowls with a side of toast and didn’t miss the rice at all.

    spiced tofu


  4. curry roasted sweet potatoes

    September 3, 2014 by Angie

    You know I’m always on the lookout for more side dishes. I semi-recently borrowed the cookbook More Peas, Thank You by Sarah Matheny from the public library and was intrigued by this recipe for curry roasted sweet potatoes. I am a sweet potato fan but have only cooked them a few times. Robbie and I both liked this and would enjoy having it again – the flavors and texture were great. The only downside is that sweet potatoes are really difficult to chop into wedges! We both worked at it for longer than seems reasonable.

    unphotogenic curry roasted sweet potatoes

    We ate this with Thai coconut tofu so the unphotogenic sweet potatoes appear oilier and less appealing than they were in real life.

    Yields way more than Robgeleen could eat.

    Ingredients
    2 tsp curry powder
    3/4 tsp ground ginger
    1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
    1/2 tsp garam masala
    1/2 tsp salt
    2 tbsp unsweetened soy milk
    1 lb sweet potatoes
    olive oil spray

    Instructions
    1. Preheat the oven to 425 and spray a cookie sheet with olive oil.
    2. Cut the sweet potatoes into large wedges.
    3. In a large bowl, combine the spices, then add and combine the soy milk. Add the sweet potato wedges and stir to coat them with the spice mixture.
    4. Place the sweet potato wedges on the baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes, turning at least once while baking.

    on the baking sheet

    The curry roasted sweet potatoes roasting on a baking sheet.


  5. tofu “chorizo” tacos

    June 26, 2014 by Angie

    For dinner last night, I tried out a new recipe from Mark Bittman’s cookbook VB6: Eat Vegan Before 6:00 and Restore Your Health..for Good. We are obviously not going to eat meat before or after 6:00 but I wanted to check out the vegan breakfast and lunch recipes. I made his tofu “chorizo” tacos last night which he has listed as a breakfast food. Nothing is stopping me from eating tacos any time of day or night so I made it for dinner. In case you don’t want to commit to the entire book, he has this particular recipe on his website.

    mmm, avocado addition is the best addition

     Tofu “chorizo” tacos with a delicious avocado addition

    Robbie and I both loved this. We are huge Mexican food fans so a new taco recipe is always welcome. The flavors are great. It created very few pots/dishes to clean up. This will definitely be on the regular rotation at our house. I followed his directions exactly, including the optional red bell pepper. I added a bit of cumin and onion powder when I threw the chili powder in (maybe a 1/2 tsp each?) and we topped our tacos with a little sliced avocado. These tacos were so good that I didn’t miss the cheese or salsa at all.

    Note: I used La Banderita Low Carb Low Fat Tortillas, microwaved for about 40 seconds between two damp paper towels, and they were perfect. Only 5 net carbs per soft taco shell!


  6. herb-roasted cauliflower and bread crumbs

    June 19, 2014 by Angie

    I tried a second new-to-me recipe from Appetite for Reduction this week. I made herb-roasted cauliflower with bread crumbs as our side tonight. Both of the things I made, (Robbie’s favorite) blackened tofu and the cauliflower side, are from Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s fantastic cookbook. I’ve said it before and I’ll probably say it again: you really should get this book because it’s great. If you’re not going to take my advice though, you’re in luck because the recipe is online at the Humane Society of America’s site.

    herb-roasted cauliflower & bread crumbs with blackened tofu

    Robbie loves blackened tofu

    Both halves of Robgeleen endorse this recipe. It’s a very tasty excuse for eating a bunch of cauliflower. Preparation and cleanup were easy as well so it’s definitely a keeper.

    herb-roasted cauliflower & bread crumbs out of the oven

    Herb-roasted cauliflower and bread crumbs right out of the oven


  7. masala baked tofu

    June 19, 2014 by Angie

    For dinner Tuesday night I made a new favorite tofu dish from Isa Sandra Moskowitz’s book Appetite for Reduction. I marked this recipe as one I wanted to try a long, long time ago and finally got around to it this week. You should really buy the whole cookbook but, if you don’t believe me you can find the recipe here, blogged by a kind Internet person.

    Masala Baked Tofu

    Masala Baked Tofu

    Next time, I will cut the tofu differently for thinner triangles and also marinate it longer. I did the minimum one hour of marinating and the flavor was excellent but didn’t quite penetrate all the way to the center of the thick tofu triangles. Even with those lessons learned, the masala baked tofu was reallllllly good. I made cracklin’ cauliflower to go with it for a yummy, low-carb, Indian-ish meal.

    Masala Baked Tofu & Cracklin' Cauliflower

    Masala Baked Tofu with Cracklin’ Cauliflower


  8. Korean BBQ satay

    May 23, 2014 by Angie

    I got a rad e-cookbook called Fusion Food in the Vegan Kitchen by Joni Marie Newman. I immediately needed to make this Korean BBQ satay. I changed things up a little and skipped the kabob situation because I grilled them inside on a pan so it seemed unnecessary. The homemade BBQ sauce is the star of this show. Lucky for me, the recipe makes enough sauce to cook this up twice.

    Korean BBQ satay

    Adapted from Fusion Food in the Vegan Kitchen by Joni Marie Newman

    Ingredients for the Korean BBQ sauce
    Yields 2 1/2 cups of sauce

    3 tbsp soy sauce
    2 tbsp sesame oil
    2 tbsp rice vinegar
    1 1/2 tbsp agave nectar
    1/2 tsp ginger
    1/2 tsp onion powder
    1 tbsp minced garlic (let’s be honest, I probably put closer to 2 tbsps in there)
    1 10 oz jar of roasted red peppers (you will have some left over)
    1 tbsp red pepper flakes
    1 cup of water

    Ingredients for the satay

    1 container of (extra) firm tofu
    1 cup of the Korean BBQ sauce

    Directions

    1. The tofu has to marinate in one cup of the Korean BBQ sauce overnight so the night before you want to eat this spicy, flavorful goodness, follow steps 1-3. Press and drain one block of tofu while you’re making the sauce. (I place the tofu on a plate on top of two paper towels, put two more and another plate on top, then put a heavy glass bowl on top of that. It makes a watery mess but I place it on top of the range so it’s not hard to deal with and doesn’t leak onto the cabinets and floor.)

    2. To make the sauce, combine the ingredients from soy sauce to minced garlic in a blender, food processor, or the measuring cup that comes with an immersion blender. I chose the measuring cup/immersion blender option which is nice because you can see how much sauce you have as you’re making it and it’s the easiest to clean up. I put those ingredients in the measuring cup and blended briefly. I then added pieces of roasted red peppers from the jar in stages – blending, checking the measurement, adding more, blending, checking again – until I had a fully blended 1 1/2 cups of sauce. Then I added the red pepper flakes and stirred with a spoon. I measured out one cup of water in a different measuring cup and poured it into the sauce. Stir or blend a little more so that the water is fully incorporated into the sauce.

    2. Pour all but one cup of the sauce into an airtight container and save it for later. The cookbook author said it will last up to two weeks this way. I used leftover sauce one week later and it was just as good.

    3. Cut the tofu in half and then into thin strips, about 3/4 inch wide. I got 12 strips out of my tofu. Place the tofu in another airtight container and cover in the one cup of reserved Korean BBQ sauce. Store in the refrigerator until dinner tomorrow.

    4. On THE BIG DAY, heat a grill pan on medium heat. Place the tofu strips on the grill. Leave them until they have nice grill marks then flip to the other side and do the same. Mine were thick enough that I could actually stand them on their sides so I ended up grilling them on four sides.

    Korean BBQ satay on the new grill pan

    Cooking up the tofu in my new nonstick grill pan

    5. Serve the tofu with a side of something tasty, like asparagus.

    I’m sure there are other great uses for the extra BBQ sauce but I haven’t used it for anything else yet. It could be a good spicy dipping sauce for something.


  9. slow cooker French onion soup

    May 15, 2014 by Angie

    I love French onion soup but it’s usually made with beef (or chicken or both) stock. I have had excellent vegetarian French onion soup in the past, however, so I know it’s possible. The most heavenly soup of all time was eaten by us at Le Potager du Marais, a vegetarian restaurant in Paris, on our honeymoon.

    Le Potager du Marais

     At Le Potager du Marais. Mmm, I want to live in Paris and eat this everyday.

    The slow cooker version I made today is really good but I am open to trying different recipes and techniques in my quest to make the perfect French onion soup.

    slow cooker French onion soup

    Tonight’s dinner: slow cooker French onion soup

    Slightly adapted from Fresh from the Vegan Slow Cooker by Robin Robertson

    Ingredients

    about 2 tbsp olive oil
    4 medium yellow onions, sliced thinly
    5 cups of vegetable broth
    1/3 cup of red wine (I used Finca Copete Malbec/Tempranillo blend.)

    Finca Copete
    1 tsp vegan Worcestershire sauce
    1/2 tsp thyme
    a healthy sprinkle of garlic powder
    a healthy sprinkle of dried parsley
    1 bay leaf
    salt and pepper to taste
    a fresh loaf of French bread (Thank you, Publix Bakery!)
    shredded Gruyere or (vegan) cheese of your choice

    Directions

    1. Pour some olive oil in the bottom of your slow cooker and turn it to low while you thinly slice four or five onions. Add the onions to the slow cooker. Cook them for about eight hours, stirring occasionally if you’re home and have that luxury.

    2. When the eight hours have passed, the onions will be caramelized and delicious-smelling. Add the vegetable broth, red wine, vegan Worcestershire sauce, thyme, garlic powder, parsley, bay leaf, and some salt and pepper. Continue to cook on low for about 45 minutes.

    3. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Shred some Gruyere and cut enough 3/4 inch slices of bread to cover the tops of the soup for the number of servings you’re preparing. We each fit two in our bowls but could have done three if we were feeling ambitious/gluttonous.

    4. I baked the bread slices for a few minutes alone then took them out, placed the shredded Gruyere on top, and put them back in until the cheese was melted.

    5. Remove the bay leaf. Ladle the soup into bowls and top with cheesy bread slices and some extra shredded Gruyere. Add salt and pepper to taste.

    a bowl of soup


  10. cracklin’ cauliflower

    May 15, 2014 by Angie

    To go with our baked tofu on Tuesday night, I made another great side from More Peas, Thank You by Sarah Matheny. This cracklin’ cauliflower has a very Indian flavor to it with the curry powder and garam masala. Robbie and I both loved it. We ate it all. This will definitely be a regularly occurring side dish in our house.

    cracklin' cauliflower closeup

    Adapted from More Peas, Thank You by Sarah Matheny

    Ingredients

    1 medium sized head cauliflower
    2 tsp olive oil
    1/2 tsp salt
    1 1/2 tsp curry powder
    1/2 tsp garam masala
    1/4 tsp onion powder
    1 to 1 1/2 tsp minced garlic
    1 tsp minced fresh ginger
    1/2 c frozen peas
    salt & pepper to taste

    Directions

    1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

    2. Wash the cauliflower and chop it into florets of a similar size. Place the florets in a biggish bowl.

    3. Drizzle the cauliflower florets with some olive oil. I didn’t actually measure this but you don’t need much to get the job done.

    4. Sprinkle the salt, curry powder, garam masala, and onion powder over the cauliflower and stir it around to coat evenly.

    5. Add the minced garlic and ginger and frozen peas to the bowl. Stir again.

    6. Spray a pan with olive oil. I used a 9 x 9 glass pan I call “the brownie pan” and it was the perfect size. Transfer the entire contents of the biggish bowl to the pan and bake for thirty minutes. Stir every ten minutes to make sure everything is getting proper oven attention and not sticking.

    7. Serve it up, add salt and pepper to your liking, and eat it all!

    baked tofu and cracklin' cauliflower