Today has been a cah-razy Monday. It started as I was leaving for yoga and got a text from my boss to handle a scheduling conference. No biggie. I had to leave yoga 15 minutes early to swing by the office for file materials, but that’s fine (the class was being held in the gym again anyway). Except that it wasn’t a scheduling conference, it was a hearing for a temporary restraining order and I knew barely any facts and had no witnesses! Awesome.
It was a two glass of wine night with a delicious summer succotash from Martha Stewart and a tofurkey and pesto sandwich.
The summer succotash is already vegan, so nothing had to be veganized tonight. It did have to be suburbanized. I’ve never seen cranberry beans at Jewel, but Cook’s Thesaurus told me I could sub pinto beans. I used canned beans, which is not ideal, but it was already 7:30 by the time I was at store and it would just have to do. I also just used haricots verts, not haricots verts and wax beans. The haricots verts came in 8 ounces, so I just bought those.
I made a garlic scape pesto last night, which I used on the sandwiches with Tofurkey turkey deli slices and red iceberg lettuce from the farmers market.
The wine was from the Green Box Boutique. There was a wine tasting last Thursday with some great wines. This Moelleux was my favorite and only $8.00.
H was in the city on Monday, so I
had pie and wine for dinner didn’t cook. Tuesday is Hillstriders with cheese-less Domino’s pizza by the lake. It’s been almost a week since I cooked dinner!
On Monday I downloaded the Martha Stewart Everyday food app, which is a waste of $2.99. It has crashed about 10 times and it takes forever for a page to come up. However, I did manage to get in a search for spinach (to use up the bags I bought at the farmers market on Saturday) and I came across this recipe for Fusilli with Spinach and Walnut Pesto. I had all the ingredients except the pasta, but once again Jewel’s Italian section disappointed me. There was no fusilli, so I bought some brown rice spiral pasta.
To veganize, I obviously left out the cheese, but I also decreased the amount of pasta so I could add cannellini beans and there would still be enough pesto to cover everything.
- 1 bunch spinach (about 1 pound), trimmed and washed
- 3/4 cup walnuts, toasted
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
- Coarse salt and ground pepper
- 12 ounces brown rice spiral pasta
- 2 cups (or 1 can) cannellini beans
- Add spinach and 1 tablespoon water to a large skillet set over medium-high. Cook, stirring constantly, until spinach is wilted, about 3 minutes. In a food processor, combine spinach, walnuts, oil, and lemon zest. Process until mixture forms a smooth paste, scraping down bowl as needed. Season with salt and pepper.
- In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta until al dente. Reserve 2 cups pasta water; drain pasta. Return pasta to pot and add pesto, tossing to combine and adding enough pasta water to create a sauce that coats pasta. Mix in beans and serve.
This dish is so simple, but very flavorful. It’s probably a good thing I didn’t make this Monday night; I might have eaten the whole pot.
It’s back! This week for Martha Stewart Monday I made Spicy Tofu Stir-Fry with Peanuts. It’s a quick and easy weekday dinner. This morning I pressed a block of extra firm tofu, cut it into cubes and marinated it while I was at work. When I came home from work, I pan-fried the tofu in a cast-iron pan until brown. Then I followed the instructions in the recipe. I would suggest omitting the water though. I used one serrano pepper and half of a jalapeno pepper, so it was fairly spicy. I also added red bell pepper because I had some extra from last week’s mango salsa.
Spicy Tofu Stir-Fry
- 1 teaspoon + 1 tablespoon peanut oil
- juice from 1/2 of a lime, divided
- 2-3 tablespoons soy sauce
- Sriracha sauce to taste
- 1 package firm tofuplus
- 5 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 1 to 2 serrano or jalapeno chile, thinly sliced crosswise
- 8 ounces snow peas (about 3 cups), stem ends trimmed
- 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
- 2 tablespoon chopped roasted peanuts
- 1/2 cup basil leaves, torn
- Press tofu for one hour; then cut into cubes.
- For the marinade, mix juice of one lime with soy sauce, 1 tablespoon of peanut oil and Sriracha sauce. Marinate tofu for at least an hour.
- In a cast iron pan, heat oil over medium-high. Add marinated tofu; cook until browned on both sides.
- Add garlic, chile, snow peas, and red bell pepper; cook until veggies are a little soft; stir in lime juice, peanuts, and basil.
- Serve over steamed rice.
For dessert, I made Lemon Cream with Blackberries, which is a light summery dessert with only 200 calories. I used agave nectar rather than honey.
Lemon Cream with Blackberries
- 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 cup agave nectar
- 1 package (12 ounces) silken tofu, firm or extra-firm, drained
- 1 cup fresh blackberries
- Combine 2 1/2 teaspoons of the lemon zest, lemon juice, agave nectar, and tofu in a blender.
- Puree ingredients until smooth, scraping down sides of blender with rubber spatula as necessary.
- Divide lemon cream evenly among four bowls or serving glasses. Garnish each portion with blackberries and reserved lemon zest. Serve immediately or refrigerate.
For tonight’s Martha Stewart Monday I made Tortilla Pie. This was a very successful veganization. Instead of ground beef , I used one package of Upton Natural’s ground beef-style seitan and a can of black beans.
I also used Vegan Gourmet’s Monterey Jack cheese alternative. It melts! (If by “melt” you mean “gets a little soft.”)
The result – yum! Some of the reviewers complained that it was bland. (That’s a ridiculous complaint. You should taste the food you prepare and adjust the spice level accordingly. Recipes are guidelines, not strict rules). I decided to add a little extra cumin and a couple dashes of chipotle chili powder. It was the perfect amount of spice. H said that he hoped I remember what meals he really likes. I don’t; I only remember what I like (VegNews Mac & Cheese!). So, I created a new tag for his favorite dishes to keep track.
There is not much better than a made from scratch veggie burger and these Veggie Burgers with Tahini Vegenaise might be the best ones I’ve ever made. I used the equivalent of 4 eggs worth of egg replacer and substituted vegenaise for the mayo. There were no english muffins without milk, so I used a thin bun. You definitely do not want a thick bun for these burgers.
The Sweet Potato with Kale recipe calls for ricotta. I’ve made tofu ricottas before, which goes well in Italian foods, but I was unsure of the tofu/sweet potato combo. I also didn’t want to go back to the store because I didn’t buy any tofu yesterday. Instead, I used Tofutti Better than Sour Cream and it worked really well with the sweet potato.
As great as Gardein is for veganizing, I promise I won’t use it every week. However, I had to quickly plan Monday and Tuesday’s dinner, so I picked the first thing that looked really good in the Mothers Day Menu slideshow: Almond-Crusted Chick’n & Orzo with Peas and Mint.
I used the equivalent of 3 eggs of egg replacer, but 4 and some extra water would have been better. I used Gardein chick’n scallopini, which is pretty tasty. Of course, margarine for butter.
The orzo dish was my favorite. The mint and lemon are great together. I will definitely be making this again.
Yesterday, H mentioned that his
favorite favourite British food was beef wellington. When I searched for beef wellington on Martha’s website, I found this tart recipe, which could easily be modified with Gardein beefless tips.
Instead of foie gras mousse (Really, Martha? Tortured duck mousse?), I made the Walnut Mushroom Pate from Veganomicon.
I also steamed some green beans and made a Frisee and Green-Apple Salad with Goat-Cheese Toasts, except there is no frissee in Woodstock, so I used mixed greens. For the goat cheese, I made the Peppered Cashew Goat “Cheese” from C’est la Vegan. Yum! I am making this for my next party.
This week’s MSM was much better than last week’s polenta French Toast.
With Top Chef over (Top Chef Masters is so boring, why?), my new weekly series will be cooking or veganizing a Martha Stewart recipe. I tried several of her recipes for Easter, but one thing I didn’t get to do was an Easter brunch. So for Monday’s dinner, we had breakfast. I made Polenta French Toast and served it with raspberries and tempeh bacon.
The recipe was easily veganized by using almond milk. The texture is very different than French Toast. It is very soft. The flavor was good and I’ll eat the leftovers for breakfast in a bowl, as Martha suggests in her “Helpful Hints”.
I was not in the mood for something sweet, so I think that influenced my overall happiness with this recipe. At least the tempeh bacon was savory and delicious.