get in the (vegan) kitchen!

tricks and treats for compassionate cooking

Thursday, July 06, 2006

some like it hot

underneath this mound of luscious salsa i give you:
jalapeno black bean burgers!

not the prettiest thing i've made, but it sure was tasty!

i got this recipe awhile back for walnut black bean burgers. i made them, and they were good, but something inside of me (i guess you could call it my "hotness factor") had been urging me to try it again with jalapenos as the companion item instead of tasty-but-totally-not-hot-at-all walnuts.

they turned out great! deb even cooked a fresh jalapeno (although due to the cough-inducing steamy kitchen haze that his process entails, i might just go with a canned jar next time), and we served the burgers with peach-mango salsa and homemade guacamole with red onion and lime.

jalapeno black bean burgers
serves 8
(umm....really? 'cause i halved the recipe, and it served one hungry annie and one hungry deb. oh well)

2 15 oz. cans black beans, rinsed and drained well
2 t ground cumin
3 t chilli powder
1/8 to 1/4 t cayenne pepper
1/2 cup cooked brown rice
diced jalapeno (to desired hotness. we used 1 jalapeno for 1/2 recipe)
1/3 c. chopped red onion
3 T canned corn
salt and pepper to taste
1/3 cup cornmeal
guacamole or salsa to garnish

- puree 2 1/2 c. beans with cumin, chilli powder, and cayenne until smooth
(you might need to add a bit of water to get the blender working)
- scoop into mixing bowl and add rice, jalapenos, onion, corn, and remaining beans
- mix evenly, adding salt and pepper to taste, and a bit of water if necessary
(mixture should be stiff but not dry)
- chill for 30 minutes
(oops. we skipped this step, but they turned out ok)
- roll burger patties with hands, dredge in cornmeal in a flat dish
- coat nonstick pan or grill with cooking spray, cook burgers over medium heat 4 minutes on each side, or until heated through
- garnish with salsa or guacamole, and enjoy!

Thursday, June 29, 2006

pretend like it's the weekend

pancakes make me think of those beautiful two days in between friday and monday, when all your cares dissappear into the morning sunlit-streamed air and the hours pass by all too quickly in their wonderous no-work-or-school-ness.

of course, if you're a working musician like me (9 to 5 job? what's that?), every day is the weekend, practically. and that means that when you find yourself waking up in your childhood bed in your parents' house after a hometown show, you can have pancakes on a thursday morning.

easy pancakes
(4 servings)
2 1/2 C. flour
2 T sugar
2 T baking powder
1 T veg. oil
1 t salt
2 1/2 C. soymilk
(if batter is too thick, add a bit more)
dash cinnamon

- mix dry ingredients
- add wet and lightly mix until combined (don't over stir)
- let stand 2-3 minutes, then fold into itself 2-3 times
- cook on lightly greased skillet on medium to medium high heat until golden

i found this recipe over at vegan represent and i will never go back to another pancake recipe, EVER. these pancakes are so light and fluffy and delicious, and the thing i love most about them is how simple they are. no egg replacer, no flaxseed, no other "weird" vegan ingredients needed. if you're away from home and have got yourself a carton of soymilk and a *semi-proficiently stocked baker's cupboard, you're set...

- for extra awesomeness, add sliced bananas or blueberries or even (gasp!) chocolate chips on top of the pancakes as they're cooking
- for extra, EXTRA awesomeness, top with peanut butter.
(oh yes, you heard me. although, i decided to go "old school" with the vegan margarine and real maple syrup this morning)

(i don't mean *YOU, mom. you're more than a semi-proficient baker, of course.)

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

summa, summa, summa'time

a lovely dinner for the first day of summer! i accidentally put 1/2 teaspoon instead of a pinch of cayenne in this cold carrot curry soup recipe i got from the latest issue of herbivore magazine, so i was pretty much a mad scientist in the kitchen with my blender, a bunch of carrots, and other spices--scheming like mad to get it to make a soup that wasn't as hot as the depths of hell. in the end it worked out pretty well! a nice, cold soup for a nice, hot day.

creamy curried carrot soup (raw)
3 large carrots, chopped
2 cups water
3 T extra virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic
1 bunch fresh cilantro, cleaned and stems chopped off, save
2 T to garnish
1 t curry powder
1 t ground cumin
2 ripe avocados, seeded
2 t fresh ginger, minced
1 t lemon juice
pinch cayenne (um...yeah)
1 t salt
freshly ground pepper to taste

in a blender, place carrots and water and blend until smooth
add other ingredients (and more water if you want the soup to turn out a little less thick), process until creamy and all the spices are incorporated
chill or serve at room temperature, garnish with cilantro

to compliment our slightly spicy (oops) soup, we had a fresh salad

and let's not forget dessert. i know i never do.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

brown baggin' it

so i had another day of (cough-hellish-cough) substitute teaching. everytime i am sent into the firing squad (aka: 6th graders) i come out (barely alive) with a continually deepening respect for the crazy people (teachers) who dedicate thier lives to thankless rearing of other citizens' horribly-raised spawns. it's a tough life! no wonder the teachers i see never have super awesome brown bagged lunches like me. they should have a program: FEED THE TEACHERS! they seriously need better food for these noble public servants. corndogs in the cafeteria, are you kidding me?

anyway, yesterday i brought with me a little "mediterranean inspired" paper sack of lunchtime goodness: a pita filled with tabouli, hummus, and spinach leaves. some niblet carrots from my garden (the little ones that didn't grow long because they were so close together because i had no idea what i was doing and didn't respace them after they started growing. oops. )for dessert: three pitted dates and two juicy plums from the farmer's market (you can even see them glistening in thier ripened glory!)


i saw all the teacher's eyeing my majestic meal of hippie proportions. i wanted to offer them some but was afraid that if i said the word "tabouli" they would think i am a witch, like these people do.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

lazy day lunch

a nice, easy lunch for a lazy sunday.

half a sandwich with whole wheat sprouted grain ezekiel bread, hummus, grated carrots (from my garden), and thinly sliced cucumbers.

those pale yellow little worm-shaped wonders you see on the side are tings, a vegan version of cheetos. i never was a kid who went super ape for those latter-mentioned neon orange fritters, but i've been won over by tings: light, salty, crunchy--everything a snack chip should be. (and good for you, too! or so says the product packaging, which always tells the truth, right?)

rounding out the meal there's a juicy nectarine i got at the hillcrest farmer's market, and some organic apple juice.