Tuesday, September 2, 2014

VeganMoFo VIII: Aw, Kale Naw!

Timeline Tuesday is here!  When I first went vegan, I knew jack about cooking.  My meals predominantly consisted of ramen, salad, fries, and this tofu scampi dish I made pretty regularly.  However, my mom hooked me up with How It All Vegan.  That was the first cookbook I ever owned and I remember making so much from it.

The one recipe I use regularly until this day is Barnard's Brown Rice Breakfast.  Truth be told, I was really hesitant to try the recipe initially.  It was this weird breakfast concoction involving toast, vegan mayo, ketchup, and a brown rice stirfry.  It made no sense to me...until I tasted it!  It's delightful really.  The key is to keep things simple.

I've been making this so long that I've made it into my own.  I upped the health factor a bit by adding tons of kale and using a good grainy toast.  This is easily made soy free (sub beans for tofu and use soy free mayo) and gluten free (use gf bread).  The recipe doesn't call for aromatics or seasonings but you can tweak it to your likes.  I like it just the way it is, though.

Word up!  Hey!

Mo's Brown Rice Breakfast

(a very loose adaptation from How It All Vegan)
Serves 4

2 Tbsp olive oil
14-16 oz extra firm tofu, squeezed of liquid and cubed
2 cups cooked brown rice
5 leaves of kale, de-stemmed and shredded
4 slices bread
4 Tbsp vegan mayo
Bragg's Liquid Aminos (to taste)
4 tsp flax oil, optional

In a large skillet heat the olive oil on medium high heat.  Add the tofu and cook until slightly golden.  Add the brown rice and cook for about 3 minutes, until the tofu/rice mixture loses some moisture.  Stir in the kale and cook until wilted.  Remove from the heat.

Toast the bread.  Spread mayo on each slice of bread.  Load each serving with a quarter of the brown rice mixture.  Add liquid aminos to taste, 1 tsp of flax oil, and a drizzle of ketchup.  Devour.

Eureka! grainiac bread...super delicious
This meal is perfect for after an epic workout or if you need a breakfast to sustain you for hours.  Plus, the simplicity makes it super easy for variation.  Examples:

Want Mexican?  Sub chipotle mayo, black beans instead of tofu, avocado instead of flax, and salsa for ketchup.

Italian: Pesto mayo, broccoli rabe instead of kale, and arrabiata instead of ketchup.

Mediterranean: roasted garlic mayo, chickpeas instead of tofu, olives for flax, romesco.

Asian: adzuki beans for tofu, savoy cabbage, toasted sesame oil for flax, and sriracha for ketchup.

Monday, September 1, 2014

VeganMoFo VIII: Ginger or Death!

Welcome to Mo Betta Mondays!  I thought I'd kick off MoFo by sharing my favorite ingredient with you...ginger.  For realsies.  Anybody who knows me, knows that I have an obsession with ginger.  If I read that anything has ginger as an ingredient, I'm trying it.  I regularly keep ginger candies in the house for the occasional bout of nausea caused by my chronic pain medication.

Not only is ginger an amazing flavor, it also happens to be an ancient homeopathic remedy.  It's perfect for nausea, helps with vertigo, soothes digestion, boosts immunity, and battles inflammation.  If I feel a cold starting up, I always load some soup with tons of garlic, ginger, and crushed red pepper.  It really does make the difference.

Ginger ice cream and ginger candy all day, son!
Last night, I had a hankering for something super gingery, so I flipped through Isa Does It and became enamored with the Omaha Yakisoba.  Sho nuff...that ish is legit!  I love the pops of sweet corn.  You need to try it, like, NOW!

This picture does not do it justice.  Seriously...make this now.
Dudes.  I am so obsessed with ginger that I plan to get it tattooed on my person (and my mother will dislike my decision for the rest of my life).  Haha.  But there is no other ingredient that I enjoy more.  No other ingredient takes me to a happy place with a mere hint of its awesomeness.  No other ingredient can feel fiery and sweet, warming and exciting..all at the same time.  All hail ginger!

VeganMoFo VIII: MoFo Intro

Awww yeah.  Just like a 90s r&b mixtape, I've decided to do a little intro to this year's MoFo!  I am officially feeling better than ever, so I figured I'd do something I enjoy and do daily themes.  So, here it is, my lovelies!  Vegan Month of Food 2014:

Mo Betta Mondays: I showcase things I absolutely adore.  These days will range from products to ingredients...even things that inspire me.

Timeline Tuesdays: This will be a walk through my vegan journey through food.  This will be a nostalgic trip for me.

Redemption Wednesdays: Not gonna lie.  I look most forward to these days.  With ambition, comes failure at times.  Plus, last year my spinal injury basically killed my drive to finish.  Wednesdays will be my day for sweet, sweet justice!

Thirsty Thursdays: Booze.  In all forms.

Cookbook Fridays: A couple years ago I vowed not to buy anymore cookbooks.  So, Fridays will be about using cookbooks that I've made less than 5 recipes from.  YAY!

Celebration Saturdays: About three years ago, I planned to do a MoFo theme that centered on party planning, but it was too ambitious at the time.  But now I feel pretty good about the themes I made.  

Sunday Brunch: C'mon, son!  You know I'm not doing MoFo without a little brunch action.

That's all for now.  Stay tuned because I'm about to drop my first post.

Photocredit: PSYCHGIFS