Vegan/Vegetarianism


Super Bowl Sunday is this weekend and everyone is waiting in anticipation for the food…er…I mean game. Besides the game, halftime show, and commercials, everyone is looking forward to the Super Bowl snacks. Unfortunately, for us vegans out there, this means lots of meat and cheese. But never fear, we have a tasty traditional Super Bowl Sunday vegan treat for you! Try out our tasty Vegan Tofu Buffalo Wings and Ranch Dressing. It is sure to be a delight for your party or just for an anytime treat.


Vegan Ranch Dressing

1 1/2 Cup Organic Vegenaise
1/4 Cup Organic Soy Milk
1 Tsp Organic Garlic Powder
1 Tsp Onion Powder
1 Tsp Apple Cider Vinegar
1/4 Tsp Organic Dill
1/4 Tsp Black Pepper
1/4 Tsp Salt

In a food processor or blender, blend all ingredients together until smooth and refrigerate.

Vegan Tofu Buffalo Wings

12 oz package of Organic Extra Firm Pressed Tofu
1/4 Cup Organic Earth Balance
1/4 Cup Organic Hot Sauce or your favorite
1/4 tsp Organic Cayenne Pepper
1/4 tsp Organic Paprika
1/4 tsp Sea Salt
1/4 tsp Organic Garlic
1/4 tsp Organic Black Pepper

Olive Oil for Cooking

Cut the tofu into strips and set aside. In a large frying pan, add in the olive and begin warming on the stovetop. In a large bowl, mix together melted butter, hot sauce, all spices and set aside. Fry the tofu strips until golden brown on each side. Mix the tofu with the buffalo sauce. Serve with cut organic carrots and celery and vegan ranch dressing.

No matter where you live, winter is in full swing! For some that means icy sidewalks and snow days while others it means rain drenched streets and chilly temperatures. The best way to combat the winter chills is to make some delicious comfort food. One of my favorite wintertime treats is Black Bean Soup. Today we have a great and simple recipe which is sure to warm you to your toes as well as provide a healthy nourishing vegan dish.

Organic Black Bean Soup

Prep Time: 10 Minutes    Cook Time: 30-50 Minutes

4 Cups Organic Black Beans
4 Cups Organic Vegetable Stock
2 1/2 Cups Water
1 Cup Diced Organic Yellow Onion
1 Cup Diced Organic Carrots
1 Cup Diced Organic Celery
4 Gloves of Organic Garlic
1 Tbsp Organic Chili Powder
2 Tsp Organic Cumin
1 Tsp Organic Cayenne or Paprika (depending on how spicy you want)
1 Tsp Sea Salt
1 Tsp Organic Black Pepper
Organic Green Onion and Cilantro for garnish (optional)

Dollop of Vegan Organic Sour Cream (optional)

Soak black beans overnight if you are using dried bean, but canned will work. Dice the carrots, onions, celery, and garlic. Place the beans, vegetable stock, and water in a large pot. Bring this mixture to a boil until beans are nice and soft. Add in the salt, pepper, cumin, garlic, chili powder, and cayenne or paprika. Mix this up and turn the heat down to medium. Add in the onion, carrots, and celery and simmer for about twenty minutes or until vegetables are tender. Garnish with chopped green onion and cilantro. Add a dollop of organic vegan sour cream for an extra treat and serve!

Sufganiyot, the Hebrew name for jelly donuts eaten during the Jewish holiday of  Hanukkah. These tasty treats are extremely popular in Israel, but are eaten around the world in many a Jewish home.  Traditionally these jelly donuts, along with many other fried foods, are eaten to symbolize the oil which miraculously burned in Jerusalem. They are delightful treat to enjoy during the Festival of Lights or throughout the year. The best part, is these donuts are animal free and can be served to you health conscious and vegan guests.  Happy Hanukkah!

Vegan Jelly Donuts (Sufganiyot)

1 25 gram (1 ounce) package of Active Dry Yeast
3 Cups & 1 Tbsp Organic Flour
1/4 Cup of Organic Earth Balance
1/4 Cup & 1 Tbsp of Organic Evaporated Cane Juice
1 1/4 Cups Water
1 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 Cup Organic Seedless Raspberry Jam
2 Cups of Frying Oil (Canola recommended)

Organic Powdered Sugar for dusting

Mix the active dry yeast, 1 tsp of evaporated cane juice, and 1 cup of warm water in a small bowl. Let this stand for at least 5 minutes, it will begin to foam and smell yeasty. Mix the remaining dry ingredients together in a large mixing bowl. Slowly stir the yeast mixture into the dry ingredients. Add in the remaining 1/4 Cup of water and stir until dough-like. Melt the Earth Balance and add to this mixture. Knead the mixture together, adding flour or water as needed. Cover bowl and let the dough rise for about 1.5 hours.

Roll out the dough and cut round circles. Depending on how large you want the donuts, you can use a 2 inch cookie cutter or just a glass. Set aside the rounds and hit a skillet with the canola oil on medium-high. Fry each round for about 3 to 5 minutes or until golden brown on each side. You will want to turn them occasionally. Once you remove them from the skillet, dust or roll them with powdered sugar on each side. Set aside to cool on a backing rack or plate. Once cooled, poke a small hole (a toothpick or skewer will help) in each donut. Inject raspberry jam with a pastry bag with the smallest tip. Warm them in the oven before serving.

There is nothing more comforting than Shepherd’s Pie during those cold Fall days. We thought the twist of sweet potato would add the extra autumn twist. With Thanksgiving just around the corner, this recipe works as a side dish or the main course for your meatless feast. The best part about this recipe is it’s gluten free! It is perfect for a main Thanksgiving dish to serve to your gluten-free guests!  It’s hard to please every palate at your holiday feast, but trust us, you can’t go wrong with this one!

Gluten-Free Sweet Potato Shepherd’s Pie

2 Med-Large Sweet Potatoes
1/2 lb of Lentils, cooked and drained
1/2 Cup Vegetable Broth
1/2 Cup Soy milk
1 Onion
1 Carrot
1 Stalk of Celery
1 Glove of Garlic
1/2 tsp Sage
1/2 tsp Oregano
Salt and Pepper to taste

Earth Balance to taste

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Chop the potatoes, onion, carrots, and celery and set aside. In a pot boil the sweet potatoes until soft enough to mash. In another pot boil the carrots and celery for a few minutes until a little soft, about 6 minutes. Strain both and set aside. In a mixing bowl, combine the lentils, vegetable broth, boiled carrots and celery, garlic, and spices. Lay out this mixture in a casserole dish. In another mixing bowl, mash the sweet potatoes with soy milk, Earth Balance, salt and pepper. Layer the mashed sweet potatoes over the lentil mixture. Place in oven and bake for about 20 minutes or until the potatoes are a little dry on top.

So you are skipping the turkey this Thanksgiving. To most Americans this seems almost sacrilegious to serve Thanksgiving dinner without a turkey. Likening the bird to the first Thanksgiving, however, many people including vegetarians, vegans, health conscious folks, and just people looking for a change opt out of meat for the holiday. So if you are looking to lose the meat, try out a few of our suggestions below. If you want a rating of them, check out this comparison on Slate.  Have a happy meatless Thanksgiving!

Tofurkey: Aww the Tofurkey, it’s very name fills the air with the scent of Thanksgiving.  It has been a staple of vegetarian Thanksgivings for over a decade.  It is fairly inexpensive, around $9.99 and comes with stuffing and gravy. The brand does an excellent job of tasting turkey-esque and definitely completes your holiday meal. The Slate comparison gave it a 19 out of 25 rating.

Field Roast Celebration Roast: Although the Field Roast,  looks much more like a holiday ham, it definitely will fit in on the Thanksgiving table.  It’s texture and spices have a turkey taste, but the stuffing is a little more mushy than the Tofurkey. You can’t beat the sweet potatoes and apples in the stuffing. Slate gave this centerpiece a rating of 12 out of 25.

Gardein Stuffed Turk’y:  Gardein, although new on the market, has made a huge splash. They have come out with all sorts of delicious meatless options including crispy “chicken” and beefless tips. Their biggest contribution is their Stuffed Turk’y. Even though, these are a lot smaller than the above roasts, they win out in flavor. This is hands down one of your best options for fake meat. Slate gave it a winning 22 out of 25!

Homemade: Instead of buying your main dish this year, consider making your roast from scratch. We posted a great recipe last week on homemade gluten roast. It’s very easy and will make your whole feast a more homemade feel and taste. You can also try these recipes for ideas.

 

It’s almost Thanksgiving and as you are compiling your shopping list, why not skip the processed Tofurkey this year. We have a great recipe to create your own “turkey” roast in time for the holidays.  It will give your meal a real homemade feel, not that we don’t love Tofurkey, but making a roast from scratch is always so satisfying. This recipe is a tried and true friend’s family recipe that has been dished out at Vegan Thanksgiving for many years!

Homemade Vegan Roast

Gluten:
3 Cups Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Flour
3 Tbsp All Purpose Flour
1 3/4 Cup Water
1 Cup Soy Sauce or Bragg’s Amino Acids
1 tsp Garlic Powder
2 Carrots
3 Red Potatoes
1 Medium Onion

Breading:

1 Cup Bread Crumbs
1/3 Cup Nutritional Yeast
2 Tbsp Bragg’s Amino Acid
1 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
1 tsp Garlic Powder
1/2 tsp Cumin
1/2 tsp Oregano
1/4 tsp Black Pepper

In a mixing bowl combine all dry spices and ingredients for the breading and set aside. In a large saucepan, boil water, soy sauce, and garlic. While the water is boiling, combine Gluten flour and regular flour. Add in 1 3/4 cup water slowly, while kneading the dough. Slice dough into strips and drop each slice into the boiling water/soy sauce. After a minute each slice will float to the top. Let them float for a few minutes and then lift out of the water and set aside.

Cut the carrots, onion, and potato in large chunks. Boil these until soft and set aside. In a small sauce bowl add the Bragg’s Amino acid and a little vegetable oil. Warm up a skillet on medium high and add the rest of the vegetable oil. Dip each strip in the amino acid and roll in the dry breading boil. Fry each strip until crispy on both sides (about 5 minutes).

Preheat the oven to 275 degrees. In a casserole dish, cover the bottom with a little oil or margarine. Layer the strips similar to lasagna and surround them with the boiled veggies. For an added treat, separate gluten strips with stuffing. Cook for fifteen/twenty minutes. Serve with all the fixin’s: mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing, and cranberry sauce.

Since I am still working and volunteering deep in the Gulf of Mexico, this we are featuring a vegan Gumbo recipe. Gumbo is a traditional dish that has French and Louisiana routes. You can find it anywhere you go and every local has a different  secret ingredient or method to share. They also really love the spice down here! We’ve figured out it is either spicy or sweet down here, nothing is bland. So enjoy some good ol’ fashioned Cajun Gumbo from bayou country!

Vegan Cajun Gumbo 

3 Quarts of Vegetable Stock
1 Cup Cooked Rice
3 Cups Cubed Firm Tofu
1 Cup Chopped Tomatoes
1 Cup Olive Oil
1 Cup Organic Flour
1 Cup Chopped Onions
1 Cup Chopped Celery
1 Cup Chopped Red Bell Pepper
1/4 Cup Chopped Garlic
3 Cups Cooked Red Kidney Beans
2 Cups Sliced Okra
1 tsp Chopped Fresh Thyme
1 tsp Chopped Fresh Basil
Salt and black pepper to taste

Louisiana Hot Sauce

Cook rice and set aside. In a 5 quart Dutch oven, heat oil over medium heat and add flour to make the rue. Using a wire whisk, stir constantly until dark brown. Do not overcook, as it will turn black. Add olive oil onions, celery, bell pepper, okra, and tofu. Saute until the vegetables are a little wilted and the tofu is golden brown.  Ladle in vegetable stock, one scop at a tim. Add the beans and boil for 30 minutes. Add tomatoes, thyme, basil, salt, pepper, and hot sauce. Add rice and serve with hot sauce.

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