Monday, January 29, 2018

Spicy Tofu Bowl

We’ve been ordering some fantastic Bowls at our favorite restaurant and I tried to
Replicate the Bowl that Kevin prefers.  When plating, I like to start with a layer of
Rice, then form rows with the other ingredients.   Finish by added a couple dollops of dressing on each side of Bowl.

Our Bowl contained the following but you can add or delete anything you’d like.
Smoky Black Beans,  Spicy Tofu,  Guacamole, Brown Rice, Romaine lettuce, Vegan Blue Cheese Dressing.

Spicy Tofu Bowl

Smoky Black Beans
Cooking Light Site

2            tablespoons olive oil
1            tablespoon minced garlic
1/2            teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2            teaspoon ground cumin
2            (15.5 oz) cans reduced-sodium black beans, rinsed and drained
1/4            cup water
1/2            teaspoon kosher salt
3            tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/4            cup chopped fresh cilantro (I didn’t have fresh so used cilantro paste)
            I added a dash of vegan liquid smoke and 1 green onion

Heat oil in medium saucepan over medium-low.  Add garlic, paprika, and cumin; cook, stirring often, until fragrant, about 1 minute.  Add beans, 1/4 cup water, and salt; cook until warmed through, 3-4 minutes.  Remove from heat; cover to keep warm.  Just before serving, stir in juice and cilantro.

Spicy Tofu

1 x 16 oz.            firm tofu, well-pressed
1/4            cup corn starch
1/2            teaspoon garlic salt or powder
1/2            teaspoon mustard powder
1/4            teaspoon black pepper
1-2            tablespoons oil for pan-frying
1/4            cup vegan butter
1/3            cup hot wing sauce or hot sauce (I used a hot/sweet sauce)

Press as much liquid out of the tofu as possible and pat dry with paper towel.  Dice into small cubes. 

In shallow pan or plastic bag, combine the corn starch, garlic salt, mustard powder and black pepper.  Carefully add the tofu, gently tossing to make sure that all sides of tofu are well coated with the corn starch mixture. 

Heat the oil in a sauté pan or skillet over medium heat, using a non-stick pan if you have it to reduce the amount of oil needed.  Add tofu and pan-fry on all sides just until it is just lightly golden brown. Once the tofu has cooked, remove it from the pan and set aside.

Using the same pan, heat the vegan butter over very low hat.  Once it is melted, ad the wing sauce, stirring just until combined well.  Add the cooked tofu, gently turning to coast well on all sides with the wing sauce mixture.

Whole Foods carries Vegan Blue Cheese Dressing but I made my own from the following recipe.  There are many versions on-line.

Vegan Blue Cheez Dressing

2            tablespoons raw cashews ( I had some soaking in fridge)
4            ounces extra-firm tofu
1            garlic clove, peeled
3            tablespoons lemon juice
3            tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2            tablespoons tahini
1            tablespoon water
2            teaspoon agave nectar or maple syrup
1 and 1/2   teaspoons Dijon mustard
3/4            teaspoon white vinegar
1/2            teaspoon sea salt
            You may crumble some tofu and all at very end if you like a chunkier

***After this sat in the fridge for a few hours, it became very thick so I just added water.

Combine all dressing ingredients in a high-powered blender.  Blend until smooth and creamy.  Store in airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Maple-Roasted Tofu

Since the Farmer's Market is nearing the end of its Butternut Squash bounty, I've been trying to incorporate it in a variety of dishes.  Love the sweetness of this one!  I topped it off with Franklin Five Pointe Spice that I purchased in Nashville -- it is a mix of bourbon barrel sugar, coffee, cocoa powder, cinnamon, coriander and ginger.  It is the crown jewel of spices!

Maple-Roasted Tofu
Melissa Clark CB

1            pkg. extra-firm tofu, drained and patted dry
1/4         cup maple syrup
2            teaspoons grated peeled fresh ginger
1/4         teaspoon good chile powder  (I used 1/2 teaspoon)
3            tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1            medium butternut squash, peeled, trimmed, seeded and cut into 1” cubes
              salt as needed
              ground pepper, as needed
1            tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves
2            teaspoon soy sauce
1/2         teaspoon sherry vinegar, plus more for drizzling
1/2         cup fresh cilantro leaves or chopped fresh basil leaves
              sliced scallions (white and green parts) for garnish

Heat oven to 425 degrees.

Slice the tofu into 1” slabs.  Pat them very dry with paper towels and arrange them in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet.  Cover the tofu slabs with more paper towels and let them sit while you make the sauce.

Combine the maple syrup, ginger, and chile powder in a small saucepan, and simmer until the syrup thickens and reduces by a third, about 3 minutes.  Stir in the olive oil.

Place the squash on a rimmed baking sheet and toss it with a generous pinch each of salt and pepper, the sage, and half of the maple syrup mixture.  Spread the squash cubes out into an even layer, place the baking sheet in the oven, and roast, tossing the squash occasionally, until golden brown, about 45 minutes. 

Once the squash is in the oven, add the say sauce and sherry vinegar to the remaining maple syrup mixture.  Remove the paper towels from under and over the tofu, and sprinkle the top of the tofu slabs with salt.  Brush half of the soy-maple mixture over the tofu.  Add the baking sheet of tofu to the oven and roast it for 20 minutes.  Then turn the pieces over, brush the tops with the remaining soy-maple mixture, and cook for 15-20 minutes longer.

Toss the squash with the cilantro.  Transfer it to a plate and top it with the tofu.  Garnish with sliced scallions and drizzle with more sherry vinegar.

Monday, January 22, 2018

Banana Cake

You can enjoy this as a Banana Bread without the icing, but i was looking for something a bit sweeter.  The icing I used didn't firm up so it was on the thinner side, but still added the touch of sweetness I was looking for.  I had to add nuts to the cake so I chose walnuts which gave it some nice texture.  Next time I might add coconut to the frosting for even more texture.

Banana Cake
Genius Kitchen by annh53182
2            cups flour
1 and 1/2     teaspoons baking soda
1/2         teaspoon salt
1            cup sugar  (I used a bit less)
1/4         cup oil
4            ripe bananas, mashed
1/4         cup water
1            teaspoon vanilla
            ** I added 3/4 cup chopped walnuts
            ** I added vegan cream cheese frosting

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly grease a 9-inch square baking pan.

In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking soda and salt.  In a separate large bowl, whisk together the sugar and oil, then add bananas.  Add water and vanilla, stirring to combine.

Add the flour mixture, stirring just until wet. 

Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Frost cake when cooled.  This frosting stays creamy.

Frosting – if using.

8            ounces non-dairy cream cheese (Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods)
2            teaspoons vanilla extract
1            cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted

Combine the vegan cream cheese, vanilla and confectioners sugar in a food processor and pulse all the ingredients until smooth and creamy.  Or use a hand held mixer.

Monday, January 1, 2018

Kale Salad with Kabocha Squash, Toasted Nuts and Pomegranate Seeds

We found the Kabocha Squash at the Farmer’s Market and thought this was the perfect recipe to use it in.  The squash was on the small side, which was perfect for two servings of salad.

Kale Salad with Kabocha Squash, Toasted Nuts, and Pomegranate Seeds
Food 52 Vegan cookbook

1            small kabocha squash, about 1 pound (or butternut), cut into 1.5” pieces
4            tablespoons olive oil
              salt and pepper
1/2         cup hazelnuts ( I used Macadamia nuts)
2            tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1            teaspoon Dijon mustard
1            teaspoon maple syrup
1            large bunch curly kale, stemmed and torn into bite-size pieces
3/4         cup pomegranate seeds (I used dried cranberry/orange pieces)

Preheat oven to 375

Toss the squash with 1 tablespoon olive oil, then spread on a rimmed baking sheet.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Bake for 15 minutes, then stir well.  Bake for 15-20 minutes longer, until tender.  Let cool to room temp.  (I peeled my squash but
Recipe doesn’t call for it to be peeled).

Meanwhile, spread the hazelnuts in a small baking pan and toast in the oven for 4-6 minutes, until golden.  Check them frequently and remove them the moment they start to get brown.  Let cool slightly, the rub the nuts between paper towels to help remove the skins  Coarsely chop the nuts.

Put the remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a small bowl or cup.  Add the lemon juice, mustard, maple syrup, and 1/4 teaspoon of salt and whisk until well blended.  Season with pepper.

Put the kale in a large bowl and drizzle with 3 tablespoons of the dressing.  Massage the dressing into the kale with your hands until the kale has a soft, almost wilted texture.  Add the squash, hazelnuts, and pomegranate seeds and toss gently until all the ingredients are evenly coated.  Taste and mix in more dressing if desired.