Sunday, October 31, 2010

$75 Worth of Thanksgiving Trimmings for $35! TODAY ONLY!

Portlanders!  These trimmings serve 6-8 people and will save you a bunch of time in the kitchen!  Hurry before today's GROUPON deal is gone!!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Crock Pot Vegan Refried Beans

I use Refried Beans for a lot of meals.  Sometimes, I don't actually mush them after they've been cooked, so they're just lovely little pinto beans sharing their space with a few lone onion slices. 
This recipe is a must have, ESPECIALLY if you are being gluten-free, vegan and FRUGAL!  Don't be paying a buck a can for beans when you can buy in bulk and save a ton of money.  And with this recipe, you won't be sweating over a hot stove for hours like a little Mexican senorita, either.  Crock pot, baby!  Oh yeah.  Take that Rosarito refried rip off!

Crock Pot Vegan Refried Beans
Serves: a bunch
  • 3 cups pinto beans
  • 6-8 cups water
  • 3 teaspoons salt
  • 1 medium onion, cut into quarters
  • 5 crushed cloves garlic
  • 1-2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • cracked pepper
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
 Rinse the beans in a collander in the sink.  Then soak the beans overnight.  This breaks down the starches and helps them digest in your tummy better.  If you'd like, you can do a quick soak.  The directions for that should be on the package, but basically, you place the beans in a giant pot, with about 6-8 cups water, bring it to a boil and let it boil for 2 minutes.  Then take the pot off the heat and leave it covered for about an hour to an hour and a half

Put the soaked beans in the crock pot and add the water, onion, salt, garlic, paprika, oregano, pepper, turmeric and vinegar.  (I read somewhere to save the vinegar until the last hour of cooking, but I can't tell the difference, and I've done it both ways.)  Mix it up and set it at low for 8 hours or so.  When the beans are finished, you can serve them as is, or place them in a pan, a little at a time, with a little of the liquid they've been simmering in, and mash them with a potato masher.  Serve with chips, on tacos, with gluten-free tortillas to make name it.  You can freeze a bunch and keep it on hand for a quick meal.  It's cheap, easy and very healthy.  You control the sodium, there's no fat, and no aluminum leeching into your food from cans.

Vegan Gluten-Free Corn Chowder

This is a pretty surprising recipe.  I've never been a big corn chowder, cream of corn kind of gal, nut my husband loves it, so I got creative and came up with something pretty dang good.  I made a f aux roux, (if that's too many silent x's for you already, hang in there, this recipe is wicked simple,) and thickened the chowder with roasted acorn squash mixed in. 

(A quick trick, buy a bunch of Acorn squash when they go on sale, cut them in half, scoop out the seeds and roast them face down in a baking sheet with a thin layer of water, and bake at 350 degrees in the oven for about 45 minutes.  When they cool, scoop out the filling and store in baggies and freeze.  You can use the filling for anything, cakes, soups, thickeners in sauces, and it adds vitamins and fiber to your meal.)

Vegan GF Corn Chowder
Serves 4
  • 1 medium white onion, diced
  • 1tablespoon oil
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1-2 cups rice milk
  • 5-6 tablespoons roasted acorn squash
  • 3-4 cloves crushed garlic
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • approximately 1 1/2 cups of corn
Warm up the oil in a nice sized skillet and saute the onion until soft.  Add the cornstarch in and blend until mixed in.  Add 1 cup rice milk.  Add in the garlic and squash.  Keep mixing and add in more rice milk as needed, depending on the amount of thickness you desire.  Add in the salt and pepper and corn at the last.  Serve hot and with spicy sauce, if you're like me.

If you like your corn chowder slightly sweeter, add honey until you get the taste you're after.

Daily Food Journal Day 8: Oct 29, 2010

Is October really almost over??
Ay yi yi.  We have a little friend staying over this weekend, so I ventured out of the safe vegan box and got a bag of Reese's Pieces for the girls.  Yeah, right.  For them.

Breakfast this morning:
Jeff and the kids had Pumpkin Pancakes while I ate Homemade Applesauce and roasted Delecata squash.
I made a Gluten-Free Vegan Corn Chowder that I threw over thin rice noodles, which are very inexpensive as long as they have Chinese writing on the outside of the package.
Vegan Corn Chowder
Rice Noodles with Chinese Writing
(ahem)  I'd like to say I ate this:
But that would be only half true.  Since I also ate a ton of these:
And yes I am both very ashamed and very sick...and still nibbling on them.  Help.

Daily Food Journal Day 7: Oct 28, 2010

I spent all day baking and making the rest of my homemade applesauce.  The second batch turned out way better than the first, by the way.  I cooked it longer on a lower temperature since my ancient electric stove only has LOW MED and joke.  But it's a fun challenge to work with her.  Besides, as my friend, Caroline says, she has sexy curvy legs.
So here's what an exciting culinary day looked like in the Stewart household.

Breakfast:  Leftover Pumpkin Pancakes
(If you can't tell already, I live and die by leftovers.)

I love these days.  It's like leftover heaven, (or hell) where we each get our favorite leftover pile of mush for lunch.  Basically it's eat it before it goes bad day.
I had the Creamy Vegan Potato Soup, the kids and Jeff had brown rice penne noodles, white rice and chips with yellow tail and homemade Vegan Crock Pot Refried Beans for dip. 

Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches.
I know what you're thinking.  "P B & J, huh?  Wow, fancy."

Whatever.  This is absolutely a gourmet treat in my family.  This is no i-ran-out-of-time-so-here's-something-slopped-together-for-dinner.  No.  This bread was handcrafted and lovingly prepared by me.  It rose for forty minutes before it baked for twenty.  I kneaded it together before it was in the womb of the oven.

I get sentimental over my breads.

So this bread I used, I want to tell you about.  I was very impressed with the texture.  It's called Gluten Free Pantry French Bread.  If you're vegan, beware of the sandwich bread type.  It has milk in it. 

So, let me show you what this bread does...
Huh?  Huh?  What'd I tell ya?
And check out the sponge-o-meter factor...
So, I let the kids judge first...
I think we found a winner.  Now I have to find out a way to duplicate the mix so I can save cash....
I love a challenge.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Creamy Vegan Potato Soup

I whipped this up and it turned out fantastic.  Best part of it is, I cooked it in the crock pot.

Creamy Vegan Potato Soup

1/2 chopped white onion
2 teaspoons oil
4-5 potatoes diced and peeled
4-5 crushed cloves of garlic
1 tablespoon crushed up raw cashews
3 cups rice milk
salt to taste
2 sprigs rosemary

Saute the onion in a pan with the oil until slightly soft.  Place the onion in the bottom of the crock pot.  Add the garlic, potatoes, cashews, rosemary and rice milk.  The rice milk should come up to about halfway up the potato mixture.  Add a couple teaspoons of kosher salt.  Cook on Low for about 6-8 hours, or until most the potatoes are soft.  Add more rice milk if needed, and salt to taste.  Serve with your favorite gluten-free french bread.
Potato on FoodistaPotato

Daily Food Journal Day 6: Oct 27, 2010

Kasha Hot Cereal  It's sort of like Grape Nuts, but warm and nothing like Grape Nuts.
Creamy Vegan Potato Soup
A leftover mash with rice, corn, delecata squash, sauteed veggies and Yellow Tail

More Yummy Vegan Gluten-Free Chocolate Pumpkin Muffins

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Gluten Free/Vegan Chocolate Pumpkin Muffins

These things are, as Jeff said, the prettiest muffins I've ever made.  And they're good too.  You won't believe how well the chocolate and the pumpkin meld together in a lovely dance across your tongue.  They make one beautiful baby.  At only 140 Calories per muffin, less than a gram of fat and 2 grams of fiber each, you can use these babies to get you in summer shape as the winter months creep by. 

Gluten-Free/Vegan Chocolate Pumpkin Muffins

Makes 12
  • 1 1/2 cup arrowhead gluten free flour (you can use 1/2 cornstarch and 1/2 buckwheat flour if you'd like,)
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened baking cocoa
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons flaxseed meal
  • 6 tablespoons water
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 1/2 cup honey
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Mix all the dry ingredients together in large bowl, then mix in the wet.  Pour into a greased cupcake pan, until all the batter is evenly divided.  Bake for 18 minutes.  Serve with a wink and a smile.  Bring to Thanksgiving Dinner and daringly put it on the dessert table.
Pumpkin on FoodistaPumpkin

Daily Food Journal Day 5: Oct 26, 2010

Leftover Pumpkin Pancakes

White rice with pan seared Yellow Tail.  Yes, it was super yummy.  Always great to have the spicy garlic chili sauce on mixed in.  Feel the burn.  And clear the sinuses.
dive in
White rice with more yellow tail and sauteed stir fry vegetables from Costco.  So exotic.

I made Gluten-Free Vegan Chocolate Pumpkin Muffins today that were ridiculous.  Only 140 calories each and melt in your mouth texture.
Jeff makes purdy pictures.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Homemade Applesauce in 5 Easy steps

I made applesauce today with a bunch of fresh picked organic apples.  It was my first try and I did alright.  It's pretty simple.

  1. Take a bunch of apples.
  2. Peel, core and slice them.
  3. Put them in a giant pot with an inch of water on the bottom.
  4. Heat on high, then down to medium high until apples are very soft and mushy.
  5. Add cinnamon.

 This is a heck of a lot easier than I thought it would be.  I'd always been very intimidated by the process.  Probably because of the boiling hot lava apple blobs popping out of the pot like a terrible bog of doom.  But I did it and survived.  Yes, a lid helped.


Daily Food Journal Day 4: Oct 25, 2010

Breakfast:  Pumpkin Pancakes
I didn't eat the whole stack

Lunch:  Brown rice penne with sauteed veggies and kippered snacks
Didn't get to the acorn squash

Dinner:  Acorn squash over white rice
Don't forget the Garlic chili sauce

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Thai Vegetable Yellow Curry over Golden Rice

So yummy, and spicy.

I love color in my food.  So when I saw the gleaming container of yellow curry staring at me from across the aisle at my local Cash and Carry, (Smart and Final), I was tempted and succumbed to the curry.  This had a bit of a bite, so the kids skipped this and ate rice tacos and beans instead.  It didn't have enough bite for Jeff or I, so we added chili garlic sauce and spiced up the evening.  Cook the rice in your rice cooker while you're preparing the curry to save time.

Golden Rice

2 1/2 cups white rice
3 cups water (or what's needed according to your rice cooker directions)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 tablespoon white vinegar
2 teaspoons olive oil
3 cloves crushed garlic

Place all of the ingredients in the rice cooker.  Mix.  And turn on cook until done.

Thai Vegetable Curry

Servings approx 8

3 1/2 tablespoons yellow curry
1 tablespoon oil
1 1/2 cup coconut milk
4 med potatoes peeled and diced
1/2 large white onion diced
2 stalks celery diced
2 carrots peeled and diced
2 crushed garlic cloves
1/4 head cabbage diced
1/2 cup water

Saute 3 1/2 tablespoons yellow curry with the oil.  Add 1 1/2 cup coconut milk and heat until boiling.  Add vegetables and water.  Cook until vegetables soften.  Serve over golden rice.