Archive | June, 2011

Absurdly Easy Tempeh “Tuna” Salad

29 Jun

As promised, here’s another salad sandwich recipe just in time for beach season here in New England or for lunch wherever you are. This recipe is so simple and easy, it only has two directions! I was going to use tofu or mashed chickpeas instead of tempeh, which seems to be a more traditional way of making vegan tuna, but tempeh once crumbled really does seem to have a similar texture to canned tuna. It is also a wonderful source of protein — the highest in a vegan diet per serving — and an invaluable resource to vegan cuisine because like tofu, it is a versatile “stand in” and it takes up flavor phenomenally!

In any case, if you prefer to use mashed chickpeas or tofu, you can. I am seriously in love with how easy and delicious this recipe is. Tuna sandwiches were my favorite when I was growing up, but this just hits the spot better than any fish could. I honestly feel like I just want a child to feed this to. So if you have kids who’ll like this, please feed it to them and tell me about their smiles because I need to live vicariously through you. I hope you’ll enjoy it too!

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Tempeh Spinach Potato Pie

25 Jun

When I was 19 I started cooking for myself and thus grocery shopping for myself. I don’t know what happened, but on that first day I went to the store by myself to do an entire shopping trip, I fell in love. Yeah. Love. I’m one of those people who loves grocery shopping. I mean, it’s literally one of my favorite things to do. Oh, you want to go to a movie tonight? Can we go to the grocery store instead? Maybe make some cookies, yeah? That’s me. Okay, maybe I’m not that hardcore, but I do really like going and whenever a new vegan comes my way I often suggest doing a shopping trip together. I’m excited just thinking about it. I think it has a lot to do with finally taking charge of what I put into my body and really appreciating food and variety. After all, these things are important. So, that being said, it’s been about two weeks since I’ve been to the store. I’m very grateful that I live in a country, and more specifically, in a situation where shopping once a week is something I can do easily. But…two weeks is hell for me and I keep missing the farmer’s markets, dammit.

In any case, I decided to walk on the coals and use what I had in house to come up with this delicious one dish wonder. The tempeh in this recipe is reminiscent of ground turkey. And the crust should really be cooked until a nice light, golden brown. It’s okay if the edges get a little burned and crunchy. This is a light dish so, it wouldn’t satisfy a large crowd. If you’re making this for a small dinner party, say, of four, I’d recommend serving soup and/or salad ahead. Enjoy! Continue reading

Easy Eggless Egg Salad

20 Jun

It’s summer and it’s hot. Too hot to constantly be in front of the stove or running the oven. I know, I’m sad too. But, be not melancholy friends! Summer means beaches, picnic potlucks, hiking, camping, super expensive (and horrible) amusement park food and so, brown bag lunches! Which also means…wait for it…wait for it…SANDWICHES! Hooray!

Who doesn’t love a good sandwich? I must admit, I’ve neglected the awesome power ingrained in all of us to make something out of nothing. So much so, that my brain has been working in over drive on how to best cook this or that, rather than just eating it. For example, the other day I bought a bunch of fresh strawberries and I immediately thought to myself, “what can I make with this?” That’s when I knew I had a problem. That’s when I knew I needed to get back to a simpler time when you could just eat the strawberry right then and there and be happy. And as if by fate, in comes my friend Peter who reminds me that when all you have is a few veggies, some bread, and hummus, you can still have yourself a nice little feast. And I sure have been feasting!

I’ve decided to take up quick and easy sandwich making. I will be experimenting with sandwich dressings and spreads and probably also making things that are so simple and overdone by the vegan foodies that if you’ve been vegan for a while you’re probably going to say, “Oh. Great. Another TLT recipe.” Bear with me, I have quite a few non-vegan readers and I’m trying to keep it easy, tasty, enticing, and traditional, for their sakes. And let’s be honest, who of us doesn’t want to see how someone else makes the “regular” stuff? So, since we all know by now that the only peeps who need eggs are those little peep-peep-peepers themselves: the birds, I’m starting with this recipe for a basic, naturally high in protein, delicious tofu-egg salad. I hope you like it!

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Pasta with Garlic Olive Oil and White Wine Mushrooms

12 Jun

I’ve been having a really nostalgic weekend. It seems, that even my dreams are just old memories. So, it’s stranger still when I’m in the grocery store, having no clue what to make for dinner, and I end up with a basket full of foods to make a meal that I once shared with someone five years ago when I hated (and was terrible at) cooking. Back then, someone else always cooked, and I always just ate. Sure, it sounds lovely, but it really isn’t that great. I like to have a say in what goes into my food.

I wasn’t vegan then, but this dish was and it’s just as good now as it was in the old days. I don’t remember all the specific ingredients quite that well, just the ones that stood out and that it was based off a Rachel Ray dish. So, I decided to update it for the present time, adding my own touch, perhaps to signify the coming on of years, the maturity that time bestows with age. It’s only too funny that the person who once made this for me, who I hadn’t seen in a year, called me while I was in the process of cooking this. The world works in mysterious ways, my friends.

This dish is sure to please the garlic lover in anyone. It’s pretty straight forward, there are no fancy spices — just salt, pepper, and oregano. And the combination of fresh herbs and white wine with garlic is just divine. Also, this one’s totally gluten free! But of course, you can use any kind of pasta you want. I just really enjoyed making something a little lighter in content and the green of the spinach pasta was a good combination for the other bright colors of this meal. Oh, and it may look like a lot of work, but this actually only took about 30 minutes. Enjoy! Continue reading

Agave Sweetened Strawberry Banana Bread

12 Jun

It’s rare for me, but it actually happened — I had leftover bananas, too ripe to eat raw. Now, if you already couldn’t tell from all the banana-centric posts, I absolutely love bananas. I especially love it when they stealthily infiltrate traditional treats like chocolate chip cookies or brownies by way of being a replacement for eggs. This time though, I decided to be a little more traditional. And this time, the strawberries decided to foil my plans of tradition. I also decided to use agave instead of sugar. There’s no fancy reason for that other than that I am baking in someone else’s kitchen and so I didn’t have any unrefined (vegan) sugar to work with. I actually really liked it better this way because the bananas are sweet enough as it is. Sugar may have been overkill. So this is it: a sweet and tasty take on a classic — perfect for summer berry picking season.

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Mexican Polenta Pie

6 Jun

Recently at dinner one of my friends remarked that he wishes Boston had an all vegan Mexican restaurant. I thought to myself, “Well that would be wildly popular, no doubt!” Then I thought about what kind of items besides the standard burrito and taco would be on the menu. Then I remembered that Daiya Foods had just released this behemoth of a vegan cheese — pepperjack — and that I had picked some up after having been shocked out of my boots at its appearance at my local natural foods store, in my current town of Middle Of Nowhere, NH. And so, with Daiya pepperjack shreds in hand, a pie dish, and some beans — I got to work. And this delicious, belly filling, comfort food creation is what came of it.

This is a great dish to take to your next potluck or party, or just to make for your next Mexican inspired home cooked dinner. My one word of advice is to go easy on the hot peppers (or omit them) if you can’t take the heat. I originally made this with one full cherry pepper. I don’t recommend it unless you like really, really spicy food. Either way, this dish is delicious and you are bound to impress!

*If you can’t find the Daiya pepperjack near you yet, try the cheddar shreds. Those would work well too. And if you can’t find Daiya near you or in your country, try ordering some online, asking your store to carry it, or when all else fails, use another vegan cheese you like or omit the cheese altogether.

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Lemon Blueberry Bread

2 Jun

I am and have been completely enthralled by lemons and blueberries lately. It seems that I want to put them in everything. Perhaps it’s the brightness of the lemon rind, or the wonderful color a melted blueberry brings to a dish. I know this combination may sound odd to some, but to those who naysay without trying: I beg you to consider the wonders that came of mixing strawberries and rhubarb, lemons and poppy seeds, or bananas and walnuts. Lemons and blueberries were destined for a civil union! Especially with summer coming on.

This bread isn’t really “bread,” in case you were wondering. This is as much “bread” as a muffin is a cupcake. It’s a lot like banana bread, meaning that it’s basically cake. That being said, it’s moist (even days later), sugary, and delicious and yet, I’m sure you can convince yourself, like I have, that because it’s not technically cake, that it’s wholesome enough to eat for breakfast. Three chins later, you’ll still be glad you did it.

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Now on Facebook!

1 Jun

Hi friends,

Just popping in to say you can now find and follow Little House On The Vegan Prairie on Facebook! You can stay up to date with all the latest LHOTVP recipes and soon to come happy vegan restaurant outings.  Please “like” the page and “share” it with your friends.

Here’s the link: https://www.facebook.com/LittleHouseOnTheVeganPrairie

As always, thanks for your support! And stay tuned for a new recipe this week! Here’s a hint: it involves lemons, blueberries, and sugar. Yum!

Your vegan comrade,

Melody

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