Sunday, August 29, 2010

Banana Blueberry Vegan Icecream

When I first read on my friend's facebook page that you could make icecream from one ingredient I doubted it, but at the same time I was curious. The recipe called for freezing sliced bananas then blending them in a food processor until smooth like soft serve icecream. Sounds too easy and simple. Yet it works :)

I decided to add in some blueberries and maple syrup because the bananas I used were not sweet/ripe. The day of, when it was still the texture of soft serve icecream there was a little bit of an after taste. However, for some reason after being in the freezer for 12+ hours the aftertaste went away. Leaving awesome homemade banana blueberry icecream :)

4 bananas, sliced and then frozen
1 cup or so of frozen blueberries
maple syrup (to taste)

Blend bananas and blueberries in food processor. It will take a long time to get a smooth texture, be patient. Last add as much or as little maple syrup as you want. Blend again.

You can eat it immediately (see picture below) or freeze for a firmer icecream texture (see above picture).

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Pineapple Right-Side-Up Vegan Cupcakes

There is an ongoing joke (full of truth) between my husband and I that if you took my list of my favorite vegan cupcakes in order and reversed it you would have his list in the correct order. He tends to prefer less sweet and more spicy cupcakes like the vegan chai latte cupcakes I frequently make. Whereas I prefer really sweet cupcakes with heavy frosting.

I tried out another recipe from the cookbook: Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World..... Pineapple Right Side Up vegan cupcakes (click here for the recipe). The recipe is cool, the only liquid comes from pineapple juice and oil. The "frosting" is more pineapples and juice boiled with sugar and arrowroot powder. You serve these cupcakes chilled.

True to form, I didn't care for them much. However my husband said they might be his new favorite...... ::laughs:: I recommend trying them if you like cupcakes with a fruit essence. Or even just for experiment's sake.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

simple recipes needed

I now have quite a vegan recipe book collection. Every week I flip through the thousands of pages with fancy words and uncommon/expensive ingredients....leading me to own a bag of arrowroot only to use 2 tablespoons once or causing me to Google tons of ingredients because I have no idea what they are. Outside of desserts, I think I have only tried 10 recipes out of the 2,000+ included in my books. And I have not repeated any non-dessert items.

I need some simple, quick and cheap vegan recipes. Nothing too fancy, just something I can incorporate into my weekly lunch and dinner menus. If you have any recommended vegan recipes that fit the criteria let me know.....

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Portuguese Spicy Kale Soup

As a true kale lover I've been looking for more ways to cook this perfect vegetable. So tried this recipe in my new cookbook a family friend gave me for my bridal shower. Vegan Fire & Spice. It's pretty good, I think it's missing a spice but I have yet to figure out what that is. But I like the kale potato mix.

Portuguese Spicy Kale Soup

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large yellow onion, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound red potatoes, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 teaspoon salt
1 pound kale, trimmed and leaves torn into 1-inch pieces
1/2 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
3 cups cooked or 30 ounce can red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion and carrot, cover, and cook until softened, about 7 minutes. Add the garlic, potatoes, salt, and enough water to cover by 1-inch. Simmer for 30 minutes. Add the kale and hot red pepper flakes. Cook for 30 minutes longer. Add the kidney beans and simmer 10 minutes. Taste to adjust seasonings before serving.

Serves 6.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Candle Cake's vegan vanilla cheesecake

It's always are good sign when I'm eating something vegan that's so delicious I have to re-read the ingredients list 5 times staring in disbelief that it is, in fact, vegan.

As I finished off my lunch at work today with a small cup of Candle Cafe's vegan vanilla cheesecake I did just that. Even though my mind knew that Candle Cafe was a vegan restaurant... even though it says vegan on the cover... I still had to re-check a few times while eating.With each delicious bite of perfect creamy texture and slight vanilla bean taste my brain grew confused. But it is truly vegan.

Oh joy of joys :) I love dessert. And like all great vegan desserts this cheesecake doesn't leave an uncomfortable heavy feeling in my stomach like its milk/egg filled counterpart.

Thank you Whole Foods for stocking your dessert section with these treats from Candle Cafe. I look forward to visiting the actual restaurant location at 1307 3rd Avenue (between 74th & 75th St.) New York, NY 10021.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Crystallized sugar covered pecans tart (Vegan Pecan Pie)

Sure the picture of my pie looks like pecan pie perfection. And yes what I cooked tastes hella good and extra sweet. However, my vegan pecan pie shouldn't really be called pecan's more like crystallized sugar covered pecan tart. Granted it's probably be my fault, after purchasing arrowroot and some other more expensive items, I got cheap and tried to substitute sugar for maple syrup. The result is a soupy pie that tasted like sugar covered pecans. But at least it tastes great.... Maybe I just invented another sort of dessert ;)

The real recipe:
1 pre-baked pie crust
2 1/2 to 3 cups of lightly roasted pecans all chopped up (more or less depending on how you like the consistency)
1/3 to almost a 1/2 cup of rice syrup
3/4 to 1 cup of Maple syrup (more less depending on the amount of pecans)
1 tbsp to 1 1/2 tbsp of alcohol free vanilla extract (just prefer the flavor)
Grated ginger to taste 1 tbsp to 2 tbsp (I didn't add this)
salt couple of pinches or so
1 1/2 to not quite 2 tsp of Arrowroot
3 to 3 1/2 tbsp of flax seeds ground up as best you can
1/3 to 1/2 cup of soy milk

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Put the syrups, salt, extract, and ginger into a sauce pan and simmer for about five minutes. put on the counter and let it cool to room temp. mix the soy milk with the flax and arrowroot and then blend that mixture with the syrups in a blender or food processor. put those pecans into a big mixing bowl and mix it up with the liquid. pour the filling into the pie crust and put into the preheated oven. bake for about 30 to 45 minutes the filling should be thick and not very gelatinous. give it a little shake. Let cool for 30 minutes.