I had totally posted a blog on Wednesday evening, to find today, that it had never posted. Aww!
Try this again!
First and foremost... I have to update that unfortunately I was unable to continue at a 100% raw diet. There are many personal reasons that I don't quite feel like discussing at the moment, but rest assured that I still intend on trying to do it again someday, when I am in a better place in my life. At the moment, however, I am working at still keeping raw food a big part of my diet since I still fully believe in the liftestyle... I simply just am not capable of doing it the correct way at this point.
With that said, you'll be seeing lots of cooked vegan foods in my blog from now on! So onto the goodies!
Now onto other things :)
Still in the spirit of raw, I picked up some raw coconut kefir yogurt "sour cream" at Slow Pokes Local Foods in Grafton, WI. It was SO good. BETTER than real sour cream... I dollopped it on my utmost favorite raw dish which is a simple zucchini pasta adorned with salsa, avocado, corn, mushrooms, carrots... I may have thrown some nutritional yeast in there too...
Now, you'll have to excuse me... As much as I LOVE to cook (and un-cook) and as much as I can make things taste pretty awesome if I do say so myself... I don't know a THING about plating, or photography (and my camera is a crappy Samsung... sucks!) so these photos aren't even 1/10th as beautiful as many of the photos you see on vegan bloggers' entries...
At any rate, also in the spirit of raw, I made some delicious "Tahini Cheez Sauce" that I came across on Heathy's blog.
Make sure that if you're even slightly interested in raw foods, to give that recipe a go! It's simply delcious!
It reminded me lots of red pepper hummus, but "cheezier". I loved it, and ate it on everything for a few days. It was especially good on raw jalapeno-walnut burgers... Mmm! and the avocado fries that I made with them, were also delicious dipped in this wonderful sauce!!
(Un)cooking has taught me so much about actual cooking. When you don't have the stove or oven to help you out, or convenient flours, etc. you learn a lot about proper spice blending and such. There's no denying that a Raw Lifestyle is definitely a restrictive one, at least, in comparison to what's available to us in our modern world. So, when you go from having almost infinite options of ingredients to work with down to just a select few whole foods, your food preparation skills are really put to the test.
It seems that when I went back to eating cooked foods, my cooking skills had drastically improved even though I hadn't really cooked a meal in 4 months or so. I find myself understanding recipes a lot more, and how I can modify them to better suit my tastes... like I said, spice blending is so important when you're RAW, and I feel like I have a much better understanding of each spice's place in the world of food now because of it.
At any rate...
Upon making the decision to stray a bit from raw, I had really went to town on eating some old cooked favorites like vegan pancakes, garbanzo hummus, etc.
Then, I made this wonderful dish I stumbled upon on VegWeb.com. "Sweet and Sour Seitan". I had been craving Chinese food for the longest time, and I had only had Seitan one or two times in the past and LOVED it, so I wanted to try working with it.
Oh it was so good!
Now, I made my own sweet and sour sauce from a recipe I found on VegWeb as well, but I didn't care too much for it. It was beyond salty for one thing... and it wasn't much like sweet and sour sauce at all. None the less, it paired up just fine with the dish I made... but I doubt I'll be using it again, or if I do, I'm going to be making some severe modifications to it. For one thing, I will cut down the amount of soy sauce DRASTICALLY, use maple syrup for half of the sugar portion of the recipe and probably add some corn starch to thicken it... there are other things that could be tweaked too...
I was thinking of leaving the recipe under the photo, anyway, but I honestly don't recommend it, so I decided against it. Sorry. If you are interested in it, however, just feel free to ask me for it.
Onto the seitan!
NOM NOM. I served it with brown rice and little vegetable spring roll snacks that I found at Outpost Natural foods. They were so cute!
Sweet and Sour Seitan
1-2 packages of seitan (or your favorite recipe)
3/4 cup flour
2 tablespoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup water
1 green pepper cut in chunks
1 red pepper cut in chunks
1 onion cut in chunks
1 can pineapple chunks
jar of sweet and sour sauce(or your own recipe)
Mix together flour, water, cornstarch, salt and baking soda in medium bowl.
Stir seitan into batter until well coated.
Fry coated seitan in 2 inches of hot oil for 3 minutes or until golden brown.
Drain Seitan, keep it hot.
Combine green pepper and onion and sauté for 5 min. Add pineapple and sweet and sour sauce, let simmer for 15 minutes. Pour over seitan and serve with rice.
Preparation time: 30 minutes
This was SO good. YOU HAVE TO TRY IT.
My boyfriend and his friend ate it up and raved about it. Yum!
What else has been cookin'?
Oh, I made the boy some of my Sloppy Tweedle's. The recipe was adapted from my mom's Sloppy Joe recipe from when I was a kid, and I veganized it :)
So here, I hope you all try this and enjoy it as much as I have since I was a tot!
1 bag vegan Boca crumbles
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
1 tablespoon white vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar or sweetener of choice (I actually use stevia or agave)
1/4 cup ketchup
about 12 ounces tomato sauce
1 tablespoon vegan Worcestershire sauce (I use Annie's Naturals)
1 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper, or to taste
Dash of cayenne or Frank's Red Hot (sometimes we do both)
1 chopped jalapeno
8 vegan hamburger buns
This recipe originally calls for 1 - 8 ounce can of tomato sauce, but I find that it never seems like enough so I use a bit more than half, about 3/4 of a 15 ounce can instead. However, you can measure this to your liking.
1) Cook the onion, green pepper, and "beef" crumbles in a large skillet until the veggies are tender and the crumbles are thoroughly cooked through. I cooked mine in a bit of oil, but you could probably cook it in a bit of water instead.
2) Add all the rest of the ingredients to the skillet. Mix together very well. Cover and let simmer for 10 to 20 minutes.
3) Serve on hamburger buns and enjoy!
Makes: 6 to 8 sandwiches, Preparation time: 5 minutes, Cooking time: 20 to 30 minutes
On the agenda for the weekend?
Sweet potato biscuits, more hummus, and vegan "pigs in a blanket"...
Next week: Raw Indian Samosas and Baha Tofu Tacos with Cilantro Cole Slaw!
One more thing! A special THANKS!! and BIG HUG! To Hungry Vegan for granting me a free bag of Sweet and Sara's Vegan Marshmallows! Go check out the blog!!!