‘vegan’ Category

  1. best favorite banana bread

    April 25, 2017 by Angie

    I have tried several banana bread recipes over the years. This is my go to. My all-time “best favorite”. I originally found it on the blog Hell Yeah It’s Vegan! The blogger totally revamped the site and did away with some of the recipes. The banana bread recipe featured there now is quite different. I found the old one here, but can’t tell if all of the text is from the original blog. Either way, it’s the same recipe I’ve known and loved. Because it’s such a favorite, I’m blogging it myself to keep it forever.

    I’ve made this banana bread with chocolate chips many times. Below is my slightly altered version to reflect the ingredients I always use and my actual method for baking the bread.

    This banana bread is always a huge hit. Last night I made it to bring to my library’s volunteer appreciation breakfast. I was told it went fast.

    This recipe is vegan if you hunt down vegan chocolate chips – which is much more difficult now that Ghiradelli Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips have milk in them. R.I.P. Ghirardelli vegan chocolate chips.

    Ingredients
    5 medium to large, very ripe bananas, mashed
    1/4 cup vegetable oil (I use Smart Balance oil and measure out a scant 1/4 cup.)
    3/4 cup sugar (I go slightly scant on this as well.)
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 cup unbleached flour
    1/2 cup whole wheat flour
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
    a pinch of ground cloves
    1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

    Directions
    1. Preheat oven to 350°.
    2. Grease a loaf pan.
    3. You need really ripe bananas for this. If you’re like me, you froze some bananas a while back and they’re still in your freezer because you didn’t take them out to thaw on the counter earlier. Procrastinators: place the bananas in a microwave safe bowl and defrost them until you can peel them. Place the peeled, freezy banana goodness in a new bowl and continue defrosting for 2-3 minutes. Now you’re ready to mash the bananas with a fork.
    4. In a large bowl, mix bananas, oil, sugar, and vanilla extract together by hand.
    5. In a separate bowl, combine flours, spices, salt, and baking soda.
    6. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients; stir by hand until there are no chunks of flour visible. Do not overdo it or use a mixer. You want to stir it just enough to mix the wet and dry, but not so much that it gets gummy. Lumps are to be expected!
    7. Fold in the chocolate chips.
    8. Pour into the greased pan. I like to tap the pan around a bit on the counter to get the batter settled in there nicely.
    9. Bake for approximately 30 minutes and then start checking it. It takes anywhere from 30 to 60 minutes to bake fully. I look for a golden top and test with a toothpick. When a toothpick inserted into the middle of the loaf comes out relatively clean, you’re good to go.
    10. Cool on a cooling rack.
    11. Enjoy as soon as it’s cooled off enough or wrap aluminum foil over the whole pan and bring it to brunch, your potluck, your library volunteer appreciation breakfast – feed somebody delicious banana bread!


  2. elderflower champagne cocktail

    December 31, 2016 by Angie

    Happy New Year! Bye bye, 2016!

    Robbie, Sookie, and I are ringing in the new year at home where we can bark at the fireworks. I fell in love with St. Germain and champagne cocktails on our vacation to California in 2014. Today I got a bottle of St. Germain and whipped up a single serving of this elderflower champagne cocktail from the Kitchn.

    elderflower champagne cocktail

    Here is the single serving recipe, in case your significant other won’t drink champagne cocktails either 🙂

    1. In a wine glass, add ice cubes.
    2. Add 100 mL of champagne, prosecco, cava, whatever you got. I used a new to me prosecco called Bolla.
    3. Add just shy of an ounce of elderflower liqueur, like St. Germain.
    4. Add 1.5 ounces of club soda.
    5. Stir to mix.
    6. Throw in small slices of strawberry. Garnish with a strawberry if you’re feeling festive.

    Happy New Year!


  3. vegan zucchini meatballs

    December 19, 2016 by Angie

    I love a fake meatball. Ever since Nate’s Meatless Meatballs became impossible to purchase without insane shipping costs, I’ve been searching for a suitable alternative. I’ve previously made some pretty great TVP-based “meatballs”. Alas, TVP is also nearly impossible to buy where I live now. I found this recipe for vegan zucchini “meatballs” on Pinterest from the blog Making Thyme for Health.

    Vegan Zucchini ‘Meatballs’

    They were pretty easy to make – easier than the TVP version. They did not bake all the way through in the middle, but I adjusted the recipe below with suggestions I think will correct that problem. I added more spices than called for in the original recipe. The taste and texture were really good. The only downside to this recipe is the cleanup. It was so heinous that Robbie asked me to never make it again 🙁 I suppose I will have to save this recipe for a day when I have the time to cook and do the dishes so, like never, basically. Huge shout out to my dish doing husband who makes cooking possible.

    a saucy "meatball"

    Ingredients

    1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
    2 tbsp minced garlic
    1/2 c rolled oats
    1/2 tbsp dried basil
    1/2 tbsp dried oregano
    1 tsp garlic powder
    1/2 tsp salt
    2 tbsp nutritional yeast
    juice of 1/2 lemon
    1 1/4 c shredded zucchini
    one jar of spaghetti sauce
    pasta of your choice, cooked as directed on the package (Robbie had fettuccine and I had zucchini noodles.)

    vegan zucchini meatballs with zucchini noodles

    Instructions

    1. Use a food processor with the shredding blade attached to shred the zucchini. I used almost two large-ish zucchini. Measure it out to be sure you have at least 1 and a 1/4 cups of shredded zucchini. Set aside.
    2. Remove the shredding blade and use the food processor to blend the drained and rinsed chickpeas, minced garlic and oats. I used pulse for 5 seconds three of four times to get everything finely chopped. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl.
    3. Add the basil, oregano, garlic powder, salt, and nutritional yeast to the chickpea mixture. Stir to combine with a spoon.
    4. Add the shredded zucchini and lemon juice. Stir to combine again.
    5. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
    6. Form the mixture into balls and place them, spaced apart, on the lined cookie sheet. I believe I had enough for 15 balls at about a rounded tablespoon each. Bake for 15 minutes then turn them over and bake for another 15 minutes.
    7. While the “meatballs” are baking, prepare the pasta and heat the spaghetti sauce.

  4. vegan mashed potatoes

    November 27, 2016 by Angie

    I am really bad at making mashed potatoes. I get horrified by the ingredients in the internet’s favorite recipes: bucket of sour cream, 19 sticks of butter, multiple cups of heavy cream, gallons of whole milk. I feel guilty enough about the potatoes. I have tried several healthier versions over the years and they have all sucked.

    This year I based my attempt on a vegan recipe that pledges to be “the creamiest vegan mashed potatoes” from the blog My California Roots. They were cold by the time I got to eat them on Thanksgiving Day, but Robbie and I loved the leftovers. I would make and eat these again and again. I think next year I need to explore a vegan gravy to go on top.

    Thanksgiving 2016

    There they are with apple and onion stuffing, cranberry sauce (I used brown sugar this year – yum), tofu vegetable pot pie, and cheddar bay biscuits. Mom’s sweet potato casserole and Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s vegan pumpkin chocolate chip cupcakes were dessert.

    I changed things around a little so here is what I did.

    Ingredients

    1 cup water
    1/2 cup raw cashews
    2.5 lbs gold potatoes
    4 tablespoons Earth Balance margarine
    2 tablespoons (probably more like 5, but who’s counting?) minced garlic
    salt and pepper to taste

    Instructions

    1. Wash, peel, and chop the potatoes.
    2. Submerge the potatoes in water in a large pot.
    3. Microwave a cup of water in a bowl.
    4. Add the half cup of cashews to the boiling water. Set aside for at least half an hour.
    5. When it’s getting closer to meal time, boil the potatoes in the pot for about thirty minutes or until the potato chunks are tender when poked with a fork.
    6. While the potatoes are cooking, make the cashew cream by blending the water and cashews together. I used my crappy food processor and it worked out fine.
    7. Drain the potatoes.
    8. Mash the potatoes with a potato masher. Add the cashew cream, Earth Balance, garlic, salt, and pepper.
    9. Using a hand mixer, blend everything together for as little time as you can while still getting the lumpy to smooth ratio you like for your mashed potato consistency.
    10. Eat them right now! They get cold in a hurry.

  5. strawberry mojito

    August 23, 2016 by Angie

    Life gave me mint so I made mojitos. Robbie got me an AeroGarden for my birthday. We finally set it up in June and in a few weeks I had so much mint growing in my kitchen! I love fancy drinks with muddled fruit in them, particularly strawberries, so I made a strawberry mojito in addition to a standard one.

    strawberry mojito

    Strawberry Mojito

    Ingredients

    white rum (I used Bacardi Superior.)
    fresh mint leaves
    strawberries
    fresh lime juice
    simple syrup (Make your own! There’s a recipe below.)
    club soda
    ice cubes

    Instructions

    I don’t own a shaker, strainer, or muddling gear. This is how I made a mojito in my kitchen without real barware.

    1. Make the simple syrup by boiling 1 cup of water and 1 cup sugar in a small pot. Stir and cook until the sugar is no longer visible. Set aside to cool. Once it’s cooled down a bit, put it in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
    2. Wash and chop a handful of strawberries.
    3. Wash mint sprigs. You’ll want some individual mint leaves for muddling and one giant, intact sprig for garnishing.
    4. Muddle the strawberries and the individual mint leaves together. I did this in a rocks glass with a spoon.
    5. Fill a glass about 3/4 with ice cubes. Add a generous shot of rum, a half shot of simple syrup, a half shot of club soda, and the juice of half of a lime. Stir.
    6. Add in the muddled strawberries and mint. Stir to combine.
    7. Garnish with the big mint sprig (and a lime wedge).

     

    traditional mojito

    Standard Mojito

    For the standard mojito, I did everything the same except for leaving out the strawberries. Pretty straight forward!

    I kept the simple syrup in a travel coffee mug with a tight lid for about two weeks in the refrigerator. I was able to make a lot of Old Fashioneds for Robbie and our guests using that. I definitely recommend taking the time to make simple syrup if you’re going to be making several mojitos or other drinks that call for it.


  6. crunchy tofu tacos

    July 28, 2016 by Angie

    I feel like a fancy chef, y’all! This recipe is easy and so delicious but it looks like something from a cooking show. At least it did in person – I hope the photos do the tacos justice. It’s a flour tortilla topped with a sweetened carrot slaw, pan-fried tofu, toasted cashews, vegan sriracha mayo, and green onions.

    crunchy tofu taco!

    Mmm, sriracha mayo.

    I was looking through the Cooking Light website for new recipes and found this one for supercrunch tacos. I followed it pretty closely except for cheating a bit with the carrot slaw. I used a bag of pre-cut julienned carrots, broccoli stalks, and cabbage instead. I also used flour tortillas and skipped heating them. I will do the two damp paper towels in the microwave trick the next time I make this because warm tortillas would make everything nicer.

    an aerial view

    Two thumbs up from both halves of Robgeleen!


  7. no sugar added sangria

    May 21, 2016 by Angie

    I wanted to drink sangria so I made some. I perused a lot of recipes first. All of them called for sugar, artificial sweetener, soda with high fructose corn syrup or artificial sweetener, or simple syrup. I think that’s overkill. It’s wine with fruit and fruit juice in it. Isn’t that sweet enough? So here it is: my no sugar added sangria. I didn’t miss the sugar at all.

    cold and tasty sangria

    A glass of cold sangria

    Ingredients:

    750 mL Cabernet Sauvignon
    1/2 cup brandy
    1/3 cup orange liqueur
    1 cup club soda
    juice of 1 lime
    1 navel orange, halved and sliced
    1 green apple, cut into wedges
    1 red apple, cut into wedges
    1/2 lemon, cut into rounds
    Ice

    sangria ingredients

    Directions:

    Combine the wine, brandy, orange liqueur, and club soda in a large pitcher. Squeeze in the juice of one lime. Squeeze in the juice of half of the orange. Stir well. Add the other half of the orange slices, the green and red apple wedges, and lemon rounds. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour. Pour over ice and enjoy!


  8. spaghetti squash black bean mexican bowl

    March 12, 2016 by Angie

    I made this Mexican-style dish from Kalyn’s Kitchen recently. It’s a hot black bean mixture with avocado salsa served over roasted spaghetti squash strands. Robbie and I both loved it. We ate it all.

    avocadoy beany goodness

    My spaghetti squash wasn’t very large so the ratio of black beans/salsa to spaghetti squash is a little off. The deliciousness was unaffected.

    spaghetti squash underneath

    There it is! Spaghetti squash peeking out from underneath all the beans and veggies.

    I followed her recipe pretty closely. The changes I made were I only halved the spaghetti squash instead of quartering it. It wasn’t big enough to require quartering and I really struggle to cut through them. I don’t have Vege-Sal so I used salt, as suggested. I skipped the green chiles and the green tabasco sauce. I don’t keep those things on hand and we don’t really like them anyway. The dish is very flavorful. I didn’t miss the things I omitted. Kalyn’s Kitchen did it again with a great, healthy recipe!

    bowl!
    Mmm, limey avocado.


  9. stuffed zucchini

    March 6, 2016 by Angie

    I’m always looking for new sides. Somehow (maybe MyFitnessPal emails?), I came across this post for Summer Veggie Stuffed Zucchini from the Mountain Mama Cooks blog. I can rarely leave a recipe alone so I changed it up a little.

    eat zucchini filled with zucchini!

    Ingredients

    olive oil spray
    2 zucchini per serving, depending on the size of the zucchini. I used 6 small zucchini. Larger zucchini will work out better.
    1 small red bell pepper, diced
    1 bunch of green onion, diced
    tablespoon of minced garlic
    about 1 cup of cherry tomatoes, quartered
    1/2 cup to 1 cup fresh spinach, stems removed
    1/2 cup shredded parmesan cheese
    1/2 cup breadcrumbs
    salt and pepper, to taste

    stuffed zucchini in a row

    Instructions

    1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and spray it with olive oil.

    2. Wash the zucchini and trim off the ends. Slice all the zucchini in half lengthwise. Use a spoon to gently scoop out the insides of the zucchini halves. Save the insides in a bowl.

    3. Arrange the zucchini “boats” on the prepared cookie sheet.

    4. Prepare the red bell pepper, green onion, cherry tomatoes, and spinach. Cut up the zucchini pulp.

    5. Spray a pan with olive oil and cook the bell pepper, white parts of the green onion, and the zucchini insides with a tablespoon of minced garlic over medium heat for about ten minutes.

    6. Add the rest of the green onion, quartered cherry tomatoes, and spinach. Cook until the spinach is wilted and everything is heated through.

    7. Pour the vegetable mixture into a bowl. Add in the shredded parmesan and breadcrumbs and stir. Start filling the zucchini “boats” with the vegetable/cheese/breadcrumbs mixture. Sprinkle more breadcrumbs and parmesan on top of each stuffed zucchini if desired.

    8. Bake the stuffed zucchini for about 25 minutes.

    stuffed zucchini with baked tofu


  10. cauliflower fried rice with tempeh and vegetables

    December 31, 2015 by Angie

    I saw a very intriguing recipe on a blog called Healthy Nibbles and Bits, via one of my favorite blogs, Kalyn’s Kitchen. It’s cauliflower fried rice with baby bok choy. Robbie loves fried rice and I love cauliflower. I tried my own version adding tempeh and some different vegetables. It’s really quite delectable. I will be making this one again!

    caulifower "fried rice"

    Ingredients:

    1 large head of cauliflower
    1 package of tempeh
    teriyaki sauce
    peanut oil
    1/2 of a red bell pepper, diced
    2 zucchini, chopped
    a handful of snow peas
    2 handfuls of bean sprouts
    2 handfuls of spinach
    1 and a half bunches of green onion
    about a tablespoon of minced garlic
    sesame oil, to taste
    soy sauce, to taste

    Instructions:

    1. Cut tempeh into small squares and marinate in about 3 tablespoons of teriyaki sauce in a small bowl.

    2. Heat a large pan for the vegetables and a small pan for the tempeh. Add a small amount of peanut oil to the small pan and a small amount of sesame oil to the large pan.

    3. Wash the large head of cauliflower and chop it into smaller pieces. Place the pieces in a food processor and process briefly to achieve a rice-like size and shape. It didn’t take long at all and my food processor is not very good.

    4. Start browning the tempeh in the small pan, turning to brown each side of each cube.

    5. While the tempeh is cooking, wash and chop/prepare all of the vegetables. Throw them in the large pot in the following order, stirring and waiting a minute or two for each to cook: red bell pepper, zucchini, white parts of the green onion, snow peas, bean sprouts, spinach, green parts of the green onion.

    6. Once the vegetables are cooked, add the cauliflower “rice” to the vegetables pan and stir. Add in about a tablespoon of minced garlic. Add soy sauce and sesame oil to taste.

    7. Once the cauliflower has warmed up and the tempeh has browned, add the tempeh to the large pan. Add soy sauce and sesame oil as needed.

    veggies!