Saturday, October 19, 2013

More veggie/vegan delights: some hits and a miss- maybe

Even though I am going to be gone this coming late week and into the weekend (HELLLLOOOO ELLA!!)

Did someone say GRAMMA DEBI  IS COMIN?????

 I did a bunch of cooking.  My intention as I went into this Saturday was to not make much at all, as I have a bunch of things in the freezer..... so I could have lunch and dinner quite happily for the next few days- well, week or two.  But, I did have this pile of squashes in the front room, and then I saw a pumpkin recipe this past week, and I had some broccoli that I needed to use up.....  yeah, so there was that.  PLUS I am feeling sort of cruddy- the germ laden children at school managed to pass their joy along to me, and Monday I seriously SUDDENLY lost my voice- just so fast it was astonishing.  I was talking to a colleague and suddenly I had to start clearing my throat and then within an hour it was sketchy, and then it has gone in and out- mostly out  - ever since Monday.  Boo.  HATE that.  Anyway,  earlier today, I had gone for a walk and was so exhausted I could hardly stand it, so Instead of cleaning out a room, which is what I should have done, I began by making this pumpkin chia pudding stuff.  Which was not that great when I tasted it, but it is in the frig and we shall see if a little time makes it better.  Well then I pressed the tofu and began cooking the squash and one thing led to another and soon I have put the oven through it's paces all afternoon.  It is freaking cold out, so that was just a nice thing to do. And I can rest myself in between things, so it worked out fine.

One thing that I really miss from my meat eating day is that ability to grab something like tuna or cold meat and make a sandwich or some such thing - filling and minimal fuss.  So I have been working on perfecting my tofu and tempeh techniques and recipes so I can make some to have in the frig or possibly with the tempeh figure out what to mix it with that is super fast and ready for what I want to do.  In that vein, I made some kick ass tofu today- pressed and marinated and baked.

Lime and cayenne tofu
I did a little looking around, and decided I did not have the energy to make one that was fried or marinated with a complicated sauce (anything more than 4 ingredients that involved a bowl is complicated today) so while reading I found simple directions and in the comment section people were talking about what they marinated with- one person had a GENIUS combination: lime, olive oil, Bragg's aminos (soy sauce) and cayenne.  PERFECT.
Basically I splashed some Bragg's onto some pressed tofu (I wrap the tofu in a tea towel, place it in a flat bowl and put my tequila bottle on top to press it!  :) ) (I need to get a tofu press) that was cut into 1 inch strips and then squeezed a half a lime, sprinkled about a tablespoon of olive oil on it and then sprinkled on cayenne.  Of course the tofu was in a baking dish- and then baked it for about a half hour. REALLY good.  The lime is awesome on it.

Baked Tofu

1 block extra firm tofu
1 - 2 Tablespoons Bragg's aminos, soy sauce or Tamari
1 - 2 Tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 - 2 Tablespoons olive oil
1/4 - 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

I froze the extra firm tofu first, thawed and then squeezed the extra water out of it. by pressing it with a tequila bottle set on top of it!  You could use a heavy fry pan, a brick, whatever.  Then cut it into 1 " strips and put into a shallow dish.  

Dump each ingredient over the tofu and roll it around to coat and let it sit for 15 - 30 min.  Preheat the oven to 450 (make sure the dish can go into a hot oven or else transfer to metal) and bake uncovered for about 30 - 40 min, flipping once.  So good.  This method could be used with any number of marinades- read the comment section here

So after a little rest period of searching the internet for combination of broccoli and butternut squash, I was tired just reading all of it, and decided to roast them separately.  You know, when you are looking for things like this, you just have to skip right past that first google page.  The boring things are there- like the all recipes and the "normal" websites- go past those and find the blogger's recipes.  So much more interesting.

So I precooked the butternut squash a bit in the microwave and then peeled and diced it and roasted it in a little oil with some onion--  that was baking next to the tofu.  Did I mention I made brownies for the M.A.?  And also a pot of chicken and roasted potatoes and carrots?  Yes, I make totally separate meals for him.  Whatevs.

Roasted Butternut squash

1 medium squash
1 - 2 onions
1 tablespoon olive oil
spike seasoning or other seasoned salt

Microwave the squash about 3 minutes to soften.  I let mine sit for about 45 minutes in the microwave because I was doing other stuff, so it was easy to handle. Then peel, cut, and dice into pieces.  Spread out on pan that has a tablespoon of oil in it, then add peeled and chunked up onion.  Sprinkle with seasoning of your choice. Roast about 30 - 45 minutes.

When the squash was almost done, I cleaned up some broccoli and garlic and tossed that with a touch of oil and Spike seasoning and roasted that too.  NOW, I was to say, though they sound like they might be a touch incongruous, the limey tofu, sweet squash and the savory broccoli was so good together!!

Roasted Broccoli

1 big bunch of broccoli
2 cloves garlic, peeled and cut into a few pieces
olive oil
salt and pepper

Cut broccoli up into pieces about the same size.  Spread into another flat pan or dish and add garlic pieces. (crushed garlic would burn) Toss with oil- roast about 10 minutes.

NOW for the pumpkin chia stuff.  In theory it sounds really good.  I am a pumpkin pie fan- love it and the cinnamon/nutmeg/clove/brown sugar goodness.  I have a recipe for a pumpkin pudding that is baked and is basically pumpkin pie without the crust, so that is what I was expecting.  So first problem, when you don't bake the liquid out of it, a lot of flavor is diluted.  Second of all, it is missing some depth, I think the brown sugar richness is missing, too.  This has maple syrup in it, I believe it is supposed to be vegan, but I am thinking honey might be better or else, for heavens sakes, I'll just put in some brown sugar.  I love chia seeds- they make me happy for some reason.  I enjoy their weird little gelatinous selves - in this case beside the nutritional boost, it also serves as an egg substitute.  This recipe will have to be fiddled with, but it has some potential.  I'd love to go taste it right now, but I am just too full.  THAT is so weird- I am almost never full.   I am going to try putting some on my pancakes in the morning, for kicks and giggles!

Pumpkin Pie Chia Pudding

  • 3/4-1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin, chilled if possible
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds
  • 2 tbsp GOOD tasting vanilla protein powder, optional
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon, or more to taste
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • 1-2 tbsp maple syrup, to taste

1. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together all ingredients until combined and no clumpy bits remain.
2. Place bowl in the fridge for 1-2 hours or overnight, to thicken and chill.
3. Serve with raisins, walnuts, or crushed ginger cookies if desired.
Approx nutritional info [per serving (serves 2) with protein powder and with 1 tbsp maple syrup]: 167 cals, 6 grams fat, 23 grams carbs, 10 grams sugar, 5 grams protein, 10 grams fiber.

Read more:

So after 3 trips to the compost pile and 3  sink-fulls of dishes I have a few days of meals and I won't have to thaw anything in the freezer.  I am undecided on whether that is good or not- I should free up a little space.  Oh well, I won't be home to cook next weekend, so I will use it the following week!

Seriously hoping for a voice and a more normal feeling head and throat in the morning!

That will be awesome and could be somewhat joyful as well!

No comments:

Post a Comment