Thursday, March 29, 2012

Nifty Pizza #8 - Delaware!

Must be time for another pizza!! We've made it through the C's and are now on to our eighth nifty pie -- Delaware! Delaware is known as "The Small Wonder", and while this pizza is pretty wondrous, it's flavor and size are anything but small. Since it's a coastal state, it's famous for its seafood, specifically crab. To some vegans, that might pose a problem. KT herself was wary (she has had many bad seafood experiences, but we'll save those anecdotes for the Massachusetts pizza). But we love a challenge...when the challenge involves PIZZA!!Nifty Pizza #8 -- DELAWARE!
The first step in creating this pie was figuring out how we would feature Delaware's famous crabby taste! We decided on using Isa's Chesapeake Tempeh Cakes and Remoulade.
For the pizza you will need:

Dough for one crust or store bought crust
1/2 cup pizza sauce
1 tomato, thinly sliced
Chesapeake Tempeh Cakes, crumbled
Remoulade Sauce
Vegan Parmesean-style cheese
Chopped Cilantro, for garnish

This pizza, while different from our normal Daiya-laden creations, was absolutely delicious. The crumbled tempeh cakes were slightly crunchy and full of flavor that even a fry-cook at the Krusty Krab would deem worthy. The old bay seasoning truly made us feel as though we were enjoying our slices on the coast. The psychadelic swirl of Remoulade brought the sound of waves crashing and gulls calling straight to our ears. And no shellfish were harmed in the process!!
Peace, Love, and Krabby Patties
Pam and KT

Saturday, March 24, 2012

It's So Easy Being GREEN!

Last week was one of our very favorite holidays -- St. Patrick's Day! The one day of the year where you have an excuse to wear green, drink copious amounts of beer, and sing Irish pub songs at the top of your lungs. In our eyes, everyone is Irish on March 17th. Therefore everyone deserves a very special cupcake.
This year, the lucky dessert turned out to be Black and Tan Cupcakes - Chocolate Stout Cake with a Whiskey Buttercream Frosting.
Black and Tan Cupcakes
Perfect for St. Patty's day, or any other day you want to consume your alcohol in dessert form.

For the Chocolate Stout Cupcakes:

3/4 cup Soymilk
1 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
1 cup plus 2 Tbsp All-Purpose Flour
1/3 cup Dutch Processed Cocoa Powder
1/2 tsp Baking Soda
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1/4 tsp Salt
1/4 cup Chocolate Stout
3/4 cup Sugar
1/3 cup Canola Oil
1 and 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line pan with cupcake liners.
2. Whisk together Soy Milk and Vinegar in a large bowl and let sit for a few minutes.
3. In a separate bowl, sift together the dry ingredients and mix.
4. Add the Chocolate Stout, Sugar, Oil, and Vanilla to the Soy Milk mixture and beat until foamy.
5. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients in two additions and beat for a couple of minutes or until ingredients are well incorporated.
6. Pour batter into liners, filling about 3/4 of the way. Bake for 20 minutes. Transfer cupcakes to cooling rack and allow them to cool completely before frosting.

For the Whiskey Buttercream Frosting:

1/4 cup Nonhydrogenated Shortening
1/4 cup Vegan Margarine
1 and 3/4 cup Confectioner's Sugar
1 tsp Vanilla
2 tsp Irish Whiskey (We used Bushmill's)
2 to 3 Tbsp Soy Milk

1. Beat together the Shortening and Margarine until well combined.
2. Add the Sugar and liquid ingredients alternately and beat until well combined and fluffy. Adjust by adding more Sugar or Soy Milk to get your desired consistency.
For the Caramel Drizzle:
1/2 cup packed Brown Sugar
1/8 cup Vegan Margarine
2 tsp Soy Milk
1. In a small saucepan heat all the ingredients over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the well incorporated. Raise heat to medium high and continue stirring until the mixture begins to boil.
2. Remove from heat and let cool slightly (it will need to be warm to drizzle).
Top these drunken cakes with golden drizzle and magical green shamrocks. Whether you truly hail from the Emerald Isle, or you just happen to like Lucky Charms, we hope you had a marvelous St. Patrick's day and continue to have a fantastic year.
"There is no sincerer love than the love of food." -George Bernard Shaw
Peace, Love, and Leprechauns
Pam and KT

The Superior Vegan Reuben

Everyone gets a hankering every now and then. It happens to the best of us. And while KT only ever craves brownies, this week Pam had a hankering of her own. A completely vegan and completely delicious Reuben Sandwich.She started off by making the Vegan Pastrami Roast. This recipe came from Vegan Diner: Classic Comfort food for the Body & Soul.

2 cups Vital Wheat Gluten
1/2 cup Nutritional Yeast
1/2 cup Chickpea Flour
2 Tbsp Onion Powder
2 Tbsp Garlic Powder
1 Tbsp Paprika
1 Tbsp Fennel Seeds, crushed
1 Tbsp Caraway Seeds, crushed
2 tsp fine Sea Salt
2 cups cool tap water
3 Tbsp Olive Oil
2 Tbsp Red Wine Vinegar
1 Tbsp Ground Black Pepper

1. In a large bowl, mix together the vital wheat gluten, nutritional yeast, chickpea flour, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, fennel seeds, caraway seeds, and salt. In a large measuring cup, whisk together the water, olive oil, and red wine vinegar. Gently stir into the dry ingredients. Stir just until the ingredients are mixed.
2. Shape the dough into a roast, sprinkle with coarsely ground black pepper, and wrap in a 100% cotton tea towel. Heat a steamer pot to boiling and place the roast in the top. Steam for 45 to 50 minutes, or until roast is firm.
3. Carefully remove the roast from the steamer and place on cutting board. Unwrap the roast and let it cool to room temperature. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Now what to do with all this beautiful Vegan Roast?! There was only one thing to do...make the Superior Vegan Reuben!!

What you'll need for 4 delicious sandwiches:
1/2 of the Vegan Pastrami Roast, sliced thinly
1 to 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
8 slices of Marble Rye Bread (any Rye Bread will do, but this stuff just looks SO COOL!)
1 can Bavarian Style Sauerkraut
4 to 6 slices of Vegan Swiss style Cheese
Special Sauce (recipe below)
Vegan Margarine
1. Heat olive oil in skillet or griddle to medium high heat. Warm Vegan Pastrami Roast in the oil until just beginning to brown. Remove to platter and wipe out skillet or griddle.
2. Warm sauerkraut in a small pan over medium heat.
3. Heat skillet or griddle again to medium heat. Assemble sandwiches by spreading special sauce on each slice of bread. Pile on Vegan Pastrami, the sauerkraut, and the vegan cheese. Spread the margarine on the outsides of the sandwiches and grill until toasty and the cheese is melted.

Special Sauce:
1/2 cup Veganaise
2 Tbsp Ketchup
2 Tbsp Chili Sauce
1 rounded Tbsp Pickle Relish
1/4 tsp Onion Powder
Dash of Salt

1. Mix well and use on Reubens, Burgers, or any other "Special" Sandwich!
When we served up these sandwiches with crispy, crinkly french fries dipped in ketchup, they totally hit the spot. Hankering...satisfied.
Peace, Love, and swirly bread
Pam and KT

Friday, March 9, 2012

Nifty Pizza #7 - Connecticut!

We had a lot of ideas when starting out on the Connecticut Pizza. After some intense research (pizza research really is the best kind there is, though), we learned that this New England state is known as "The Nutmeg State", so we knew that had to be encorporated somehow. We ALSO stumbled upon this food map , which told us that Connecticut is famous for hamburger. Most importantly, it is the state where The Gilmore Girls reside. All of these clues led us to Pam's favorite Nifty Pizza to date...Lucky #7!!

Nifty Pizza #7: Connecticut!
First prepare the Burger Sauce:

2 Tbsp Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
1 small Yellow Onion, diced
1 package of Soy Crumbles
1/2 cup diced Tomatoes, fresh or canned (just make sure to drain well)
1/2 cup Pizza Sauce
1/8-1/4 tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flakes

Heat oil in skillet on med-high and saute onion until transluscent. Add soy crumbles and brown slightly. Stir in diced tomatoes, pizza sauce, and red pepper flakes. Simmer for 2-3 minutes to heat through and blend the flavors. Then remove from heat and let cool slightly. Heat oil in skillet to med-high and saute onion until translucent. Add soy crumbles and brown slightly. Stir in diced tomatoes, pizza sauce and crushed red pepper flakes. Simmer for 2 -3 minutes to heat through and blend the flavors. Then remove from heat and let cool a little so as not to shock the pizza dough too much.Next up, the Nutmeg Greens with burger fixins!

2 Tbsp Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 package of Baby Bella Mushrooms (about 6), cleaned and sliced
1/2 bundle of Kale
Handful of Black Olives, sliced
Grated Nutmeg, to taste
Ground Black Pepper, to taste
Heat oil in skillet to med-high and saute mushrooms until darkened. Add kale and toss as it wilts down. Add olives, grates of nutmeg, and black pepper. Heat through.
Now, you're ready to assemble the Connecticut pizza! Along with the burger sauce and nutmeg greens, you will need:
Pizza dough for 1 crust
1/2 package of Daiya Mozzarella "Cheese"
1/2 cup Vegan Parmesean "Cheese"
Ground Black Pepper, for garnish
Stretch dough on pizza pan or stone. Top with burger sauce, followed by the nutmeg greens. Finally, sprinkle with Daiya, Vegan Parm, and a smattering of fresh black pepper. Bake at 425 degrees for 10 minutes on the center rack, followed by 10 minutes on the lower rack.
Wherever this pizza leads, we will follow, and even though this it represents a small state, it is not for the faint of stomach. The hearty slices would definitely be appreciated by some champion eaters at Luke's Diner (or maybe even Al's Pancake World) who are looking for something a little different from their everyday burger and fries. So plate yourself up a few slices, get ready for your drive back to Yale, and continue to ignore the fact that everything we know about Connecticut comes from The Gilmore Girls.
Peace, Love, and Town Troubadours
Pam and KT

Happy Birthday!

IT'S SOMEONE'S BIRTHDAY!! Well it was two days ago, and in this family birthdays are week long celebrations. As you can see, this woman clearly loves her it was natural that her birthday dessert would come in that form!
Someone else had a birthday this week too. The Oreo Cookie! I know I'm not alone in saying that there have been many late night runs to the convenience store where I praise the Vegan powers at be that Oreos are, in fact, animal-product FREE! So to celebrate the birthdays of this awesome vegan woman and this awesome vegan cookie, we made Oreo Cookies n Creme Cupcakes!
These are Isa's basic chocolate cupcakes with vanilla buttercream frosting (you can find the recipe for the cake portion here). We added a cup of crushed up Oreos to the actual batter and about a half a cup of Oreo crumbs to the frosting. They were the perfect birthday treat!
We also whipped up a batch for the Baristas at KT's store. We think they liked them :).
Peace, Love, and (Soy)milk's favorite cookie,
Pam and KT