Monday, January 5, 2015

Nopales Gumbo

Living in Southern California for the past 6 years has made me a huge wimp when it comes to the cold.  I remember when cold fronts were a welcomed change from triple digit summers.  Now, I shiver when it's 60 degrees out.  THE SHAME.

As much as I insist that this weather is cuckoo banana pants, I relish it.  The doggy snuggles, the boyfriend heater, and soup. all. day. son.  I first made this gumbo when I was trying to find a good use for leftover nopales.  The end result was fantastic!  My roommate and I made our way through the giant pot o' gumbo in a couple of days.  It's super easy and will definitely warm up those chilling nights.

Nopales Gumbo
(serves 8)

This cactus gumbo meshes two cuisines for the best of both worlds. Find fresh nopales for cheap in the produce section of your local Latin grocer. If you can’t find nopales, I suppose you could go ahead and use okra.

Notes: I use Tofurky andouille sausages because why not. Also, feel free to go halfsies on the bell pepper. I did half red and half green. If you’re feeling super frisky, mix it up with poblano!

3 Tbsp oil
4 large vegan andouille sausages, homemade or storebought, sliced
¼ cup margarine
½ cup all purpose flour
Medium onion, finely diced
Bell pepper, finely diced
3 stalks celery, finely diced
2 medium tomatoes, seeded and finely diced
1 Tbsp tomato paste
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp Mexican oregano
1 tsp cumin
2 Tbsp vegan worcestershire sauce
2 ½ cups fresh nopales
1 ½ cups corn, fresh or fresh frozen
6 cups broth
1 tsp salt, more or less to taste
Pepper to taste
Fresh cilantro or parsley

Cooked white rice
Green onions for garnish

Add the oil in a large stock pot over medium high heat. Stir in the sliced sausages and fry until crisp. Remove sausage from pot and set aside, but do NOT drain the oil. Add margarine and lower the heat to low. Whisk in the flour to make a caramel roux. It should take about 15 minutes to get a golden brown color and toasty aroma.

Add the onion, bell pepper, and celery and cook until tender, about 7 minutes. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste, garlic, Mexican oregano, and cumin. Cook until the tomatoes break down and the mixture starts to resemble a thick gravy, about 5 minutes. Stir in the worcestershire sauce, nopales, corn, broth, salt, and pepper. Raise the heat and bring everything to a boil.

Reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, until the soup is perfectly thickened and has a nice sheen to it. Stir in the fresh cilantro or parsley. Serve over rice and garnish with green onions.

Monday, September 22, 2014

VeganMoFo VIII: Epic Stuffed Mushrooms

Okay okay.  I promise this is my last party post.  I just had to get this recipe up because people were raving about these.  It's kinda a typical recipe.  Normally, I wouldn't use so much processed stuff, but I'll drop some money for parties.  I went with Daiya mozzarella and Trader Joe's cream cheese, but you can do whatever.  You can also substitute the Beyond Beef for well seasoned tempeh.  This recipe is more of a template that can be easily tweaked.

super delicious fungi!
Epic Stuffed Mushrooms
(makes about 30)
soy free option: use soy free cheeses
gluten free option: use gf breadcrumbs

30 cremini mushrooms, stems removed
1 Tbsp oil
2 cups Beyond Beef Feisty Crumbles
1 cup cream cheese
½ cup parsley
½ cup chives
½ cup shredded Daiya (or whatever your jam is)
1 cup panko
2 tsp garlic pepper (recipe follows)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Spray a cookie sheet with oil, and evenly distribute the mushrooms on it. Heat the 1 Tbsp oil in a large skillet. Cook the crumbles until heated. Meanwhile, add the cream cheese, parsley, chives, mozzarella, panko, and garlic pepper to a mixing bowl. Mix in the cooked crumbles until thoroughly combined.

Transfer mixture to a piping (or freezer bag) and pipe into the mushrooms. Place the mushrooms in the oven for about 20 minutes, or until the filling is nice and golden. Allow to cool for 5 minutes.

Garlic Pepper
(makes ½ cup)
gluten free
soy free

¼ cup granulated garlic
2 Tbsp ground pepper
1 Tbsp granulated onion
1 Tbsp parsley flakes
1 tsp fine sea salt

Pour the ingredients into a small plastic or glass container.  Shake thoroughly.  Store in the pantry.

VeganMoFo VIII: Banana Split Gel Shots

As promised in yesterday's party post, I have a fabulous recipe for jello shots.  These are pretty damn tasty and effective.  I was shocked how fast these went down.  For this recipe, I opted for boxed vegan gelatin which is readily available to me.  If you don't have access to that, stay tuned because I've been working on a recipe that involves agar.  Here we go...

another pic taken by Gina.  must remember to photograph everything before the party.  haha.
Banana Split Gel Shots
(makes about 20)

Marashino cherries w/ stems
3 ounce box vegan cherry jel dessert (like Gefen)
1 cup water
½ cup chocolate whipped flavored vodka
½ cup banana liqueur
vegan whipped cream (store bought or homemade)

Take 20 souffle cups and place one cherry in each one.  In a small saucepan, bring water to a boil.  Add alcohol and let come to a simmer.  Remove from heat into a glass measuring cup, and add the vegan gelatin.  Stir until thoroughly combined.  Pour into the souffle cups and let chill until set.

Right before serving, pipe on a small dollop of whipped cream and add sprinkles.  Enjoy responsibly!

All right y'all.  For the remainder of MoFo, I'm challenging myself to post multiple times a day because I missed last week.  Party on!