Saturday, May 23, 2009

What Do Vegans Eat?

Reading the "Passionate Vegetarian" got me in the mood to post some recipes I have been planning to share for a little while. I made this meal last week. It's a favorite in our household and isn't difficult to make. The tempeh recipe comes from the Candle Cafe Cookbook by Joy Pierson and Bart Potenza. The Candle Cafe is an awesome restaurant in New York City that Tim and I were obsessed with while living there. It was small and sometimes required a wait, but it was totally worth it. The seitan chimichurri was our absolute favorite. It's out of this world. If you're ever in NYC, be sure to check it out. The recipe I used from the cookbook is "Cornmeal Crusted Tempeh" and can be found on page 121 of the cookbook. I also made steamed kale and smashed sweet potatoes, which are my own very simple recipes. The recipes for all three are at the bottom of this post. Yes, I ate that much kale. I love kale, but probably not as much as my friend Erin. She rhapsodises about kale on Facebook frequently. She's headed to Tbilisi next month. I hope she'll be able to find plenty of kale while there.

Update on "First Darling of the Morning:" I've read two chapters and it is breaking my heart. I had to make myself put it down.

The etsy challenge is almost to an end, but, alas, there is no reason to worry. I'm starting a new challenge Monday with quite a few of my etsy street team, etsygreetings, members. We will all be posting items every day and keeping our readers updated every day. We will also be featuring items from one another's shops. Here's my item of the day, just posted in my etsy shop.

A Gift

Cornmeal-Crusted Tempeh (Serves 4)

2 8-ounce packages, tempeh, each cut into thirds
1/2 c shoyu or tamari sauce
3 T maple syrup
1 tablespoon minced garlic
3 slices of fresh ginger
1/2 cup medium-to fine-ground cornmeal

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teasoon ground cumin
pinch of sea salt
1/2 cup of extra-virgin olive oil

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees fahrenheit.

2. Place the tempeh in a baking dish. In a small bowl, whisk together the shoyu or tamari sauce, 1/2 cup of water, the maple syrup, garlic, and ginger and pour over the tempeh. Cover and bake for one hour. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool. Drain and cut the tempeh into halves or triangles.

3. In a large shallow bowl, mix together the cornmeal, red pepper flakes, thyme, oregano, cumin and sea salt. Dip the tempeh pieces intot he cornmeal mixture to coat.

4. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat until very hot. Cook the coated tempeh until golden brown, about a minute per side.

5. Remove from the heat and serve at once.

Steamed Kale (Serves 4)

2 bunches of kale, cleaned and chopped
1/4 cup of water
sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
oil and crumbs left at the bottom of the pan the tempeh was fried in

1. Place the kale in a large pot with the water and cover. Steam on medium heat, turning often with tongs. You must watch it carefully so that it doesn't burn.

2. As it begins to wilt, add salt and pepper.

3. Once the kale is fully wilted, drizzle the oil and crumbs over the top of the kale and serve.

Smashed Sweet Potatoes (Serves 4)

4 medium yams or sweet potatoes, quartered
soy margarine to taste

1. Fill a large saucepan with water and add sweet potatoes. Cook over medium-high heat until fork tender.

2. Drain potatoes and smash, using a pastry blender.

3. Add butter and stir until well-combined. Serve.

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