Not-Quite-Vichyssoise with Oven-Roasted Potatoes

Monday, December 19th, 2016

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It’s been a while since I shared a shiny new recipe, or even just a photo or two or twenty of my latest donut haul from Ronald’s. (I am currently up to my elbows in fritters and bear claws, let me tell you!) With everything going on in the world/with my family, I just haven’t been feeling it. But I’m coming out of hiatus long enough to tell you all about this awesome, carbalicious soup I came up with.

So I’ve wanted to try a potato soup with roasted potatoes for quite some time now; I think the Loaded Baked Potato Soup from American Vegan Kitchen first gave me the idea, and I blogged about that four years ago!

Roasted potatoes are one of my favorites; I enjoy them with everything from Beast Burgers to tofu scrambles. Plus they’re so darned easy to make, just pop ’em in the oven and rotate, flip, rotate. I’ll never fry them on the stove top again!

Anyway, for this recipe, I used the Fancy Schmancy Vichyssoise from The Cheesy Vegan as a starting point. According to Wikipedia, Vichyssoise “is a thick soup made of puréed leeks, onions, potatoes, cream, and chicken stock. It is traditionally served cold but can be eaten hot.” For his version, Schlimm replaces the cream with tofu and swaps out chicken stock for the vegan version. I call mine “Not-Quite-Vichyssoise” because I skipped the leaks and added some chunky goodness in the form of roasted potatoes.

It’s actually pretty easy to make, especially if you have an immersion blender and can puree the soup right there in the pot. While the soup is cooking, roast the potatoes. The cook times are pretty similar and they should finish up about the same time. When serving, you can either dump the roasted potatoes right into the soup pot and mix, or sprinkle them on top of the soup like croutons or some other garnish. Mixing the potatoes right in with the soup will soften them up, especially with time, while sprinkle them on top will preserve their crispy goodness. I’m all for option b, personally.

As for the leftovers, you can throw any extra roasted potatoes in the pot and make a fresh batch to serve with the leftovers. You can never have too many potatoes, you know?

Pro tip: We had a little leftover Thanksgiving gravy hanging out in the fridge, the first time I made this. Not really even enough to serve with a plate of fries, but enough that I felt bad just tossing it (or eating it by the spoonful). So I had the genius idea to serve it with the soup: I heated it up, spooned the gravy into the bottom of my bowl, poured a heaping serving of soup on top, and then garnished with roasted potatoes. The gravy really took this dish to the next level. Definitely give this a try when you’re in desperate need of comfort food, okay?

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Creamy Lemon-Dill Roasted Potato Salad

Tuesday, September 29th, 2015

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An exaggerated hat tip to whoever shared this recipe on Facebook. (I think it was Mylène, but I can’t be sure.)

I was a little skeptical of a potato salad absent both vegan mayo and dill pickles – both of which are potato salad staples, imho – but I gave it a shot, and you know what? IT WAS AMAZING. I love the idea of roasting potatoes instead of boiling them; not only is it easier (no more standing over a steaming pot, splashing hot water all over the place), but you get much more consistent results, without any potato loss.

I didn’t have any baby potatoes, so I used four baking potatoes – a little more than the recommended two pounds – but the dressing seemed to be *just enough* for this amount. I also didn’t bother adding water to the dressing, but other than that I think I followed the recipe to a t.

I usually prefer cold potato salad, but I’m with Janet – this tastes so much better when enjoyed warm.

Scramble at Sea

Friday, July 17th, 2015

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I’ve been so lax with the cookbook reviews, you guys! I haven’t been cooking much these days, and when I do it’s so flipping hot that I just wanna make (and eat, and rub my naked body all over) ice cream. (Sorry for the visuals.) Luckily I only have a few more recipes I’d like to try before reviewing Laura Dakin’s Cookin’ Up a Storm – so the finish line (the land?) is at least in sight.

Of the eighty recipes in Cookin’ Up a Storm, I was most curious to try the Southern Ocean Scramble. Mostly I wanted to see how silken tofu would perform in a tofu scramble. Depending on the add-ins (mushrooms and tomatoes can really get you into trouble), I sometimes have an issue with excess moisture in my scrambles. No one likes soggy faux eggs, okay! Silken tofu seemed like it would present a special challenge on this front.

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While this scramble is a little wetter than I’m used to, overall I was pleasantly surprised with the results. It’s kind of like a cross between an egg salad and a scrambled egg – perfect for spreading on toast. On the downside, it does use a lot of oil (1/3 cup for two pounds tofu), which may be a deal breaker for some people.

I still prefer regular tofu, but this recipe’s a great alternative for when you run out. Silken tofu usually comes in shelf-stable packaging, so it’s much easier to keep some on hand for ye ole rainy days.

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The Hot and Hearty Hash Browns were a little less of a success, I’m afraid. I’m almost never able to fry diced potatoes in a skillet; they always end up dry and mushy and not at all browned or crispy. I know it can be done; I watched my mom do it ~once a week FOR YEARS. I just seem incapable of mastering the skill. Or maybe it’s time to update my cookware? idk. Until then, I’ll stick to the oven (toss with olive oil and bake on cookie sheets lined with parchment paper for 30-40 minutes).

Anyway, I followed the recipe as written even though I knew it was a fool’s errand. The result wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t great either.

Also, the recipe calls for five potatoes; I reduced it to two and still had trouble fitting everything in my largest non-stick skillet. I don’t know how anyone without an industrial-sized stove could fry that many potatoes at once.

Next time I’ll probably bake the potatoes and fry the other goodies (red onions and spices) on the stovetop and combine before serving. More dishes but fewer tears.

Apple and Potato Oven Fries

Monday, June 29th, 2015

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From Cookin’ Up a Storm, natch.

I have to admit, at first I was a little skeptical of the pairing of apples and potatoes in a french fry medium. But it totally works! Sure, so maybe the apples get a little mushy when baked; but thanks to the sugar, the outsides caramelize a tiny bit. Not crunchy, exactly, but kind of french fry-ish.

The recipe calls for five potatoes and two apples, giving it an almost 2:1 potato:apple ratio. Since that serves way more than two people – plus generates more potato and apple wedges than will even fit in my dinky little oven – I halved it, kind of. Two large potatoes, one apple. So a true 2:1 here.

I wasn’t sure what to use for a dipping sauce – Dakin recommends lemon wedges to garnish, but I used concentrated lemon juice – so I put some ketchup on the side and only dunked the potato fries. The apples I ate semi-separately, kind of like a sweet kick in between the tomato-covered potatoes. It sounds weird but worked out really well!

Served with leftover pizza for minimum effort. (Hey, we’d just gotten back from walking the dogs, okay.)

My Current Favorite Fast Food

Saturday, March 14th, 2015

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I go through cycles where I absolutely cannot stuff enough of a particular food into my face, and right now that food is tofu scramble. Bonus points if it’s served with a side of semi-greasy baked potato pieces slathered in ketchup.

A friend on FB asked for tips on eating healthier, which got me thinking. One of my favorites is this: make up a giant batch of a well-loved (but healthy) food so that I can live on the leftovers, if not for a week, then at least a couple of nights. That way I won’t be tempted to eat a quick junkie meal (pizza, you know I love you but…) on those nights when I don’t have the time or desire to cook something from scratch. For those who live in places where vegan takeout is an option (I don’t; it’s both a blessing and a curse), having healthy leftovers in the fridge may discourage you from choosing this path of least (but most delicious) resistance.

I especially love tofu scrambles for this, because they’re so versatile and easy. Just reheat leftovers on the stovetop for five or ten minutes (it doesn’t require a ton of adult supervision, which is all the better!) and dinner is served. Don’t have enough leftovers for a proper meal? Bake a potato, steam some carrots, toss in a cup or two of extra frozen veggies. Anything goes in a scramble; it’s the perfect cleaning out your fridge/freezer meal.

Or use the scramble as a filling in a sammie, loose “meat” style. The bread makes an excellent filler, and the mode of delivery magically transforms it into brand new meal.

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Tofu scrambles be banging on sourdough bread slathered in Vegenaise and garnished with spinach and a few tomato slices.

Lately I’ve been making a double-batch of tofu scramble at a time. Sure, it takes about a half hour extra, but I have enough scramble left over for three or more additional meals. Plus I can press both bricks at the same time, and I end up with fewer dishes to wash overall. Win.

Under the jump is my from-memory recipe for this particular scramble – we’ll call it the Vegetable Spectacular – but I’ve made it so often that I’m pretty confident of the formula.

For the potatoes, preheat the oven to 425F. Cover a cookie sheet with parchment paper (one large cookie sheet per potato). Clean the potato and then dice it into bite-sized pieces; uniformity is more important than size here. Place the pieced in a large bowl and add two tablespoons (give or take; again, per potato) of olive oil and some salt and pepper; mix well. Transfer to the prepared baking sheet and bake for 30 to 40 minutes (or until crispy), rotating the sheet(s) and flipping the potatoes halfway through.

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Candle Cafe’s Potato Gratin

Saturday, November 29th, 2014

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I’d say that these Potatoes Gratin from Vegan Holiday Cooking are kickin’ it, but it’s hard to go wrong with potatoes and cheese. Like, next to impossible.

So this is a fairly standard recipe as far as Potato Gratin goes – though I guess it’s been awhile since I made it, so grain of salt. Thinly sliced potatoes are layered with mozzarella Daiya cheese, topped with breadcrumbs, and kept moist with soy milk seasoned with chives, parsley, salt, and pepper. During baking, the cheese melds with the soy milk to create a wonderfully creamy mozzarella sauce.

Since I wasn’t sure how many layers of potatoes I would end up with, it proved difficult to evenly distribute the two cups of cheese throughout the dish. In the end I underestimated and only used about a cup of cheese. Though I still think two full cups is maybe a little excessive (blasphemy!), my potatoes could’ve used more cheese. Maybe next time I’ll shoot for a cup and a half?

The only thing I didn’t like about this recipe were the breadcrumbs. Or rather, the bottom layer of breadcrumbs, which became gummy and adhered to the bottom of the pan during baking. Even Peedee, after an hour of frantic licking, couldn’t dislodge all the chunks. If you’re trying this recipe, definitely throw all the breadcrumbs on the top – and broil the dish before serving for extra golden crispy good measure!

Sweet Potato Latke Fail!

Saturday, November 22nd, 2014

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After a pretty respectable streak in the kitchen, I encountered an epic fail with the most unlikely of suspects: latkes, which don’t usually prove much of a challenge at all. The Sweet Potato Latkes from Vegan Holiday Cooking – a 50/50 blend of shredded sweet and russet potatoes that looks so amazing in the gourmet food photo from the cookbook – came out more like hash browns. These guys could not hold a patty shape to save their lives. Like, not even close. I put a ball of batter in my palm to flatten it out, and it just crumbled everywhere. Not to mention, they didn’t even rival the neon orange color of the latkes pictured in the book.

Not wishing to waste four potatoes (or all the effort spent grating them), I did the obvious thing: made them into baked hash browns! Basically I followed the alt. baking instructions, adding about 15 minutes to the recommended bake time. Since I needed two cookie sheets to hold all the potatoes, I tried a little experiment: the first cookie sheet I lined with parchment paper, while I lightly sprayed the other with Pam. The results? Nearly identical. Go figure.

You’re supposed to top the mini latkes with a dab o’ almond creme fraiche – but, seeing as the recipe is so similar to the one featured in the Roasted Squash Soup – i.e., the one that already didn’t work for me once – I skipped it altogether. Good thing, since there were no latkes in need of garnishing after all!

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For what it’s worth, the leftover potatoes made a wonderful add-in for a tofu scramble. Pictured above is a scramble with mushrooms, onions, red peppers, tomatoes, and about a cup of hash browns (fried separately for maximum crispiness). So good, I’m not even 100% sure I can call this a fail.

Beer-Bathed Seitan Stew and Oven Pommes Frites

Thursday, October 23rd, 2014

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Continuing with our “enough onions to cry a small army to sleep” theme is this Beer-Bathed Seitan Stew from Vegan Eats World. This one’s got 3 yellow onions – a full pound and a half! My eyes were aching for hours after dinner, no lie. Even though I cheated and just used two onions. I KNOW I AM THE WORST.

Also present: carrots, homemade seitan, dark beer (vegan, of course!), mushrooms, and various spices and seasonings including but not limited to thyme (a ten on the savory spectrum), brown sugar, and tomato paste.

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The broth is quite gravy-like, making this stew the perfect topping (or dip!) for oven-baked fries. I don’t know why I don’t make my own fries more often, y’all; do it right, and they are tastier than the frozen stuff by far.

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Shane was nice enough to make the Seitan Coriander Cutlets ahead of time, along with a batch of 5-Spice Seitan for his own snacking needs. (He likes to put them in burritos, along with some rice and beans.) The former are oven-baked while the latter recipe uses a steamer. He was happy with the results, but wasn’t so crazy about the amount of aluminum foil he burned through. Experiments with boiling the cutlets are forthcoming. Stay tuned!

Potato-Zucchini Salad

Saturday, October 18th, 2014

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Okay, so maybe potato salad is SO LAST SEASON – but if you’re anything like me, then you probably still have a few stray zucchinis languishing at the bottom of your produce drawer. And as awesome as Baked Zucchini Sticks may be, a girl can only batter so many slices of zucchini. Enter: the Potato-Zucchini Salad from Simple Recipes for Joy!

I never would have thought to dress zucchinis up with Vegenaise a la potato salad, but it totally works! The mix is approximately half potatoes and half zucchinis, with a few stray green beans thrown in to liven things up. Once you add the mayo and spices, the potatoes and zucchinis are (almost) indistinguishable.

The seasonings are pretty basic – just mayo to taste, plus lemon juice, parsley, salt, and pepper – so I embellished with some of my own potato salad favorites:

6 tablespoons Vegenaise
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon dill
2 teaspoons salt
1/4 red onion, finely diced
a dash of black pepper
a dash of lemon peel

Served with dill pickles on the side, natch.

In addition to the combination of potatoes and zucchini, I also love that all the veggies are steamed, which is way easier than my usual method of boiling potatoes for salad. You just need two baskets and 25 minutes and voilà! – soft, tender potatoes. And the beans – steamed for just a few minutes – add a satisfying crunch to the dish.

Carbs & Rec: Peruvian Deja Food Pie

Monday, September 15th, 2014

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Carbs & Rec - Deja Food (0008)

The latest meal on our Parks & Rec menu is, as you’ve no doubt already surmised, another Tom Haverfood! I’m pretty sure this particular phrase is fan-made as opposed to NBC canon, but that’s okay! If we’ve learned anything this month, it’s that our favorite shows are 1000 times better when enjoyed interactively.

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There’s one recipe in particular that seems like it was made just for this Haverfood: namely, the Peruvian Leftovers Pie from The HappyCow Cookbook. Basically you take your favorite leftovers, sandwich them between two layers of mashed potatoes, top it all off with a tofu cheese garnish, and voilà! – dinner is served. Bonus points for cleaning out the fridge.

(More below the fold…)

Product Review: OXO Good Grips Potato Ricer

Thursday, July 3rd, 2014

Works Magic on Mashed Potatoes!

five out of five stars

I wish I’d invested in a potato ricer years ago. Best $25 I’ve ever spent!

My old method of whipping up mashed potatoes – namely, a hand mixer – was a nightmare. It involved no small amount of crying, cursing, and yelling, and usually ended with chunks of half-mashed potatoes strewn all about the kitchen: stuck to the walls, the microwave, the floor, you name it. The dogs, both terrified by mom’s breakdown and enticed by the crumbs scattered all over the place, were nearly as stressed as I was. Needless to say, mashed potatoes were a rare occurrence relegated to holidays and cookbook reviews.

But no more! On Terry Hope Romero’s strenuous recommendation in Vegan Eats World (or was it Isa and Terry in Veganomicon? Too many cookbooks to keep track of them all!), I finally decided to give a potato ricer a try. With limited storage space, I’m hesitant to buy kitchen utensils that only have a single, narrow use. But this one? So worth it!

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Root Vegetable Latkes

Thursday, May 8th, 2014

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These latkes from Mayim’s Vegan Table (review coming soon!) are reminiscent of the potato pancakes my mom made when I was a kid,* but with extras: Sweet potatoes. Carrots. Zucchini. Red Onions. Dill. So many savory flavors for one lil’ pancake!

Instead of frying, I decided to bake mine for a slightly healthier meal. Twelve minutes on each side at 425F worked okay, but I’m still experimenting with different time/temp combos. 425F burned the edges just a teeny bit.

As with the Quinoa Burgers, I ended up with double the batter I expected. Pro tip: the leftovers make a decent burrito filling. Just fry in skillet (with a teaspoon of oil and any extra veggies your heart desires) for about ten minutes.

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* OMG childhood memory time! My mom made THE BEST potato pancakes. She had this old-style, turn of the century meat grinder that she used exclusively to shred potatoes. (What a mess that was. Wet newspaper everywhere!) It came down from the attic like twice a year, when she’d make an oven full of pancakes for us, our aunt (who lived on one side of us), our great-uncle Floyd and his wife Millie (they lives on the other side), and our great-uncle Howard (who lived next to Floyd). (Family land long since divided. Another story for another day.) She literally spent a good four hours making pile after pile of pancakes. (STACKS LIKE WHOAH!) I’d say that I helped, but idk how much assistance a seven-year-old me might have provided. My brother and I were decent delivery people at best.

I loved the pancakes with maple syrup and just a smidge of margarine. Reminder to self: must get that recipe from mom like yesterday! It should be pretty easy to veganize, if it even contains any animal products. Eggs, maybe?

Potato Hash

Thursday, April 24th, 2014

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Another one from Mayim’s Vegan Table. So this recipe is pretty tasty – you can’t go wrong with fried potatoes, am I right? – with beans (I used Navy in place of the recommended black beans, of which I am still sadly bereft), corn, chorizo (or Lightlife hotdogs, in my case), red peppers, onions, garlic, and some other goodies. (Pro tip: this hash tastes excellent with mushrooms!)

Sadly, my potatoes and hot dogs did not brown. I blame my expensive new(ish) frying pan, which is giant and makes some pretty kickass pasta sauce, but sucks at browning my favorite things. Tofu scramble, vegan meats, potatoes: they all just stick to the bottom of the pan. Usually I break out my 15-year-old cheapo frying pan for these occasions – the Teflon coating browns all the things – but it was way too small for today’s purposes.

Maybe it’s finally time to replace it with a shinier model?

Fusilli with Roasted Lemony Vegetables and Tofu Ricotta

Tuesday, March 25th, 2014

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This is a little something I threw together using scraps of this and that from the fridge: a few miscellaneous Russet potatoes; a just-cut red pepper; the lone surviving green zucchini from a pack o’ three; the last of a bag of frozen corn. If you don’t want to go quite so heavy on the carbs (this dish requires a post-dinner nap, I tell you what), omit the potatoes and double down on the other veggies. Or you can bulk up on the veggies anyway for a greater veggie-to-pasta ratio.

I used the ricotta recipe from The Cheesy Vegan, but there are plenty of tofu-based versions on the web.

 

Fusilli with Roasted Lemony Vegetables

Ingredients

1/2 cup sundried tomatoes (dry, not oil-packed)
1/2 cup lemon juice

1/4 cup olive oil
2 Russet potatoes, diced into 1/2″ pieces
2 carrots, cut into 1/4″ rounds
1 red pepper, diced
1 zucchini, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/4″ slices
1 cup frozen corn, defrosted
1/4 cup minced garlic
1 tablespoon basil
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon salt
pepper to taste
1 teaspoon lemon peel

16 ounces fusilli, or other small, bite-sized pasta
tofu ricotta for serving

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Our Favorite Veggie Burger with a side o’ Lightened-Up Crispy Baked Fries

Thursday, March 6th, 2014

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Two recipes, one oven! Actually that’s not totally true; while the bake times are the same on the Our Favorite Veggie Burger and Lightened-Up Crispy Baked Fries (both from – you guessed it! – The Oh She Glows Cookbook), the temps are slightly different, and so I ended up baking the burgers in the toaster oven. It totally worked though! Perfect if you’re only serving one or two. The veggie burger batter makes eight patties, so you can just store the leftovers in the fridge for another night. Half a week’s dinner in one fell swoop!

So these veggie burgers are seriously good, y’all. They’ve got black beans (but not enough to upset my uber-sensitive tummy – yay!), grated carrots, sunflower seeds, breadcrumbs, rolled oats, onions, garlic, and some other goodies that don’t come immediately to mind. I topped mine with some sliced tomatoes and pan-fried mushrooms and onions (insert hrng! gif here!).

The fries are rockin’ too. There’s this arrowroot/oil coating that gives the outsides an interesting texture. It’s similar to the Roasted Home Fries, only the Crispy Baked Fries get crispier on accounta they’re easier to spread out on a baking sheet. No overlapping mushiness, yo!

Anyway, if the burritos didn’t sell me on the OSG cookbook, this veggie burger sure did. Gonna go collapse into a food coma now, mkay.

(Sunday Morning) Sunrise Scramble with Roasted Home Fries

Sunday, March 2nd, 2014

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I’ll be honest: the tofu scramble recipe from The Oh She Glows Cookbook isn’t my favorite. That said, it’s still a tofu scramble, and tofu scrambles fucking rock.

My main problem? This one’s got both mushrooms and spinach, the excess moisture of which can prove difficult to cook off. As usually happens when I get ballsy and try to put shrooms in my scramble, the tofu ended up a bit wet and mushy.

Plus, this recipe’s a little different from standard scrambles. There’s no tumeric! (I added a dash, hence the yellow eggy color. Couldn’t help myself!) No soy sauce! Only a touch of nutritional yeast! And not a whole lot of spices to speak of!

Still, given the lack of spices this scramble ended up tasty enough. I probably won’t make it again, but I can hardly call it a disaster.

The home fries, on the other hand? Awesome. These are way easier to make than hash browns (I’ve yet to produce a properly crispy batch) and every bit as tasty.

Giant pot pie or legit pizza pie? You decide.

Friday, November 29th, 2013

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I’ve been feeling bummed about the holidays, so Shane volunteered to make Thanksgiving dinner this year. All by his little lonesome! And to sweeten the deal, he made it a Thanksgiving pizza. (Back off vegans, he’s mine!)

This year’s pie was a lot like 2011’s masterpiece, but with one crucial difference: Shane added a top crust, thus doubling the carb count. The result was kind of like a giant pot pie..or an honest-to-goodness pizza “pie.” He also stuffed it with mashed potatoes (I swear the layer was nearly an inch thick!), stuffing, Tofurky (slices AND Kielbasa; a weird choice, but I’m not complaining), and gravy, with extra gravy to garnish. Basically I ate my weight in gravy, is what I’m saying.

We weren’t sure what to expect – would the bottom crust cook all the way through, or simply collapse under the weight of all that deliciousness? would the gravy leak? would our oven implode from the sheer awesomeness of it all? – but the end result was bitchin’. Seriously, this is one good pizza. I might even like it better than the naked, one-crust version – but not if I’m the one making it. That top crust is tricky, yo! You’ll need two pairs of hands and a giant spatula to pick it up.

Shane mostly winged it, but here’s a basic recipe for you to follow, if you’d like to try it for your own bad self. Feel free to swap out any of the “side” recipes (mashed potatoes, stuffing, gravy) for your own favorite version. Each recipe makes a big batch, so you WILL have leftovers. Better to have a little extra than not enough, though, am I right?

Pro tip: You can make some of the items a day beforehand, so pizza assembly goes more quickly. BUT the mashed potatoes and gravy are easiest to spread/drizzle when a little warm, so if you’re using leftovers, you should reheat them a bit first. You don’t want them hot, though, since they can compromise the integrity of the crust. Room temp or slightly warmer is best.

Also, one caveat: I have zero idea how easy this is to cut without a Pizza Press. My guess is, not very. Consider yourself warned!

 

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V is for Vegan Bacon Cheeseburger Potato Pie

Wednesday, September 25th, 2013

V is for Vegan Bacon Cheeseburger Potato Pie [Betty Goes Vegan] (0008)

WOW. Like I’ve seriously been sitting here at my keyboard for five minutes, trying to think of something, anything, to say about this Vegan Bacon Cheeseburger Potato Pie from Betty Goes Vegan, and this is all I can come up with. Just, wow.

I mean, talk about yer vegan comfort foods. This is basically just a giant plate of junk food. And I mean that in the best way possible!

The “crust” is a blend of vegan ground beef (Lightlife, in my case), bread crumbs, A1 steak sauce (A rather common ingredient in Betty Goes Vegan! I bought a bottle just for this cookbook!), red onions, and some other goodies.

V is for Vegan Bacon Cheeseburger Potato Pie [Betty Goes Vegan] (0001)

Press it into a pie plate, bake until golden brown (the directions say five minutes, but I easily tripled that), and then add the potato “filling.”

V is for Vegan Bacon Cheeseburger Potato Pie [Betty Goes Vegan] (0002)

Baked potatoes, mashed into creamy goodness (skins and all!), and seasoned with garlic, nutritional yeast, and veggie broth, then mixed with bacon bits and cheddar cheese.

V is for Vegan Bacon Cheeseburger Potato Pie [Betty Goes Vegan] (0006)

Top with more cheddar, bake until gooey, and dinner is served!

Garnish with tomatoes, pickles, french friend onions, or legit onion rings. (That last is my idea. I tried it with the leftovers and it was hnnng!)

V is for Vegan Bacon Cheeseburger Potato Pie [Betty Goes Vegan] (0021)

Totally worth the twenty dishes it generated. Okay, I’m exaggerating. We’ll call it a baker’s dozen.

And now for the obligatory Dean Winchester gif. BECAUSE PIE!

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Updated to add: Vegan MoFo central is giving away a copy of Betty Goes Vegan to five lucky readers as we speak! Talk about serendipity. Go enter here.

 
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U is for The Ultimate Corn Chowder Experience

Tuesday, September 24th, 2013

U is for The Ultimate Corn Chowder Experience [Betty Goes Vegan] (0005)

I don’t know if the corn chowder found in Betty Goes Vegan can rightly be called THE ULTIMATE EXPERIENCE – mostly because I haven’t tried nearly enough corn chowder recipes to consider myself the arbiter of such titles – but it is pretty damned good. It gives my own recipe a run for the money, anyway. With two kinds of corn and potatoes (creamed and frozen and fresh and hashed, respectively), it’s almost as hearty as it is easy to make. The secret ingredient? Lemon pepper, the presence of which is subtle yet unexpected. (But you can always add more for that extra kick. I did!)

Along these lines, I paired the soup with the Lemon Pepper Garlic Bread, also from Betty Goes Vegan. Sounds a little weird, but lemon on garlic bread? Crazy good. Genius, even. But then I’ve been hooked on the stuff (lemon pepper; though I am addicted to all the breads, too) since I discovered it last summer.

U is for The Ultimate Corn Chowder Experience [Betty Goes Vegan] (0009)

 
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Q is for Quiche (with a Hash Brown Crust!)

Thursday, September 19th, 2013

Q is for Quiche (with a Hash Brown Crust!) (0002-18)

Originally I’d planned on making a quiche from either Vegan Brunch (Classic Broccoli!) or Betty Goes Vegan (Quiche Lorraine!) to represent the letter Q – and then Shane brought home a ginormous, 3-pound bag of hash browns. (I needed one whole cup for another recipe. Yeah.) With freezer space at a premium, I got the idea of making a quiche with a hash brown crust. So I hit the internet and, lo and behold: it’s been done before. Yay!

This recipe is a mashup of the hash brown quiche recipes found online and a Spinach Mushroom Quiche I made for VeganMoFo last year. Because I have a slightly oversized pie plate – 10″ versus the standard 9″ – I increased the amount of hash browns used from three to four cups, and added an extra teaspoon each of margarine and olive oil. If you have a smaller pie plate, just use three cups hash browns and two tablespoons each of margarine and olive oil. The salt is optional, but tasty. I like my potatoes with a little sodium, you know?

For what it’s worth, I don’t think I’ll ever make a quiche with a traditional crust again. The hash browns are the perfect complement to the quiche’s egg-like filling. It’s basically the fanciest means of eating breakfast foods for dinner. Universally recognized as a mature and responsible adult, yo.

Q is for Quiche (with a Hash Brown Crust!) (0001)

Hash Brown Quiche

4 cups hash browns
2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon margarine
2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 onion, diced
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1/2 cup mushrooms, sliced
1 red bell pepper, roasted and diced
1/2 cup frozen spinach, thawed, diced, and pressed to remove excess moisture
1 pound firm tofu
1/2 cup plain nondairy milk
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons chives
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup shredded vegan cheese (optional; I used cheddar Daiya)
1-2 Roma tomatoes, sliced
vegan parmesan cheese to taste (optional; see recipe here)

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 450F.

2. In a medium-sized bowl, combine the hash browns, margarine, olive oil, and salt; mix well. Grease a 10″ pie plate. Transfer the potato mix into the pie plate and press down firmly, on the bottom and sides, until you have an even “crust.” Bake at 450F for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the potatoes start to turn golden.

(Pro tip: if the top of the crust isn’t browning fast enough, set the oven to broil and leave it in for an extra minute or two. Be careful not to burn the sides, though! But if you do, just cover them up with the quiche filling; no one needs to know!)

3. As the crust is baking, prepare the filling. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat and cook the onions until soft and translucent. Add the minced garlic and mushrooms and continue to cook on medium heat until the mushrooms are browned to your liking. Stir frequently. Season with salt and pepper if desired.

4. In a food processor, combine the tofu, nondairy milk, nutritional yeast, mustard, chives, garlic powder, and salt. Process until smooth. Sample the batter and add any extra seasonings to taste.

5. In a large bowl, fold together tofu, mushrooms, spinach, red peppers, and cheese (optional). Pour the mixture into the pie crust; top with the tomato slices and a bit of vegan parmesan cheese if desired.

6. Bake at 375F for about 45 minutes, or until the quiche is firm and lightly browned. Allow to cool slightly before serving.

 
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