Sunday, April 19, 2009

glutenless (almost), zuke-filled and springish

So I've been busy!  I have photos going back so far I don't even remember the niceties of what went into the food!  Could be better this way, though... do a nice skim over with some sexy photoage and then I get to go RUN OUTSIDE AND PLAY!!!!  Because it's so nice out.  It's been hard to want to do anything else, besides run around the city on luscious errands ("Ummmm... I need a light bulb.  Let's go on a 3-hour sun-drenched walk!").  The markets nearby have been getting more fragrant by the day.  Mangoes are getting delicious again.  I'm listening to some pastoral Vashti Bunyan I picked up at a thrift store today and I'm having a hard time remembering the kind of cold that prompts lentil loaf, such as the one pictured above, but hey, it was needed at the time, and it WAS nostalgically yummy.  I'm not sure about the whole vegan Loaf Craze, I think it might be my second one ever, but this one turned out remarkably well.  It was even gluten-free, adapted from this recipe with some amaranth and rosemary added and some other changes I really don't remember right now.  And it's an excuse to eat ketchup, as if I wouldn't eat it off a spoon, anyway. :)

I usually feel funny posting about salads, since it's like, well, vegetables.  With oil and salt and things.  But this one was like a bomb of happy went off in my mouth, so here it is.  I think there was berries, daikon, carrot, goji, ume vinegar and mirin involved, maybe some tamari.  Good stuff!!  I think this is when I began to taste spring, a little bit.

And if I wasn't careful, Satchmo was gonna taste my peanut butter banana oat muffins!!  These are soooo perfect if you don't want anything even remotely evil in a baked good, and I really didn't at the time.  It's just every ingredient listed in the title, plus some baking powder, cinnamon, and raisins for sweetness and that's it.  I mean, admittedly I added some salt and allspice, but that's still earnest.  And they made perfect desserts for anything, since I made them mini I could celebrate putting my clothes in the dryer with a muffin if I wanted.  Oh yeah!  And gluten free, too!  Like the loaf, completely subconscious on my part, but neat.  Oh, and recipe is from aTxVegan!

Later I made some split pea soup because it's probably my favourite, this time heavy on red peppers and with quinoa in it as well, which made it a lot lighter and smoother, and better for warmer times.  With my first sundried tomato pesto on rusks beside it.

And I ought to open Vegan Fire & Spice WAY more often, because it's just crammed full of launching-pads for creative dinners.  I was way too lazy to cook up brown rice one night, so I riffed off the Persian Orange Rice with Pistachios, using couscous and walnuts instead.  Really good!!!  Totally orangey and warmly spiced and great with zataar-spiced vegetables to mix into it (especially zucchinis!)


CHOCOLATE !!
The best dark chocolate I've ever had?  Possibly... quite possibly.  My sister got it almost cheap because it broke into two pieces, thus affected the taste irrevocably and rendering it only fit for ruffians such as us to consume.  Ahhhhh broken chocolate... also calorie-free I hear!  And isn't that aztec-y wheel printed on the back gorgeous?  The coffee beans in it are roasted near to a meltaway powder, and there's tons of them, and you should go to the Chocomotive site and order some of this and maybe send some to me, or just definitely pick some up if you ever see it broken in a store near you.

Yay!  I am predictable like this, in that it's a wrap sandwich, but check it out, this one's special.  I had the stroke of genius to mix in a whole buttload of fine-chopped scallion into my usual roti and it worked.  SO.  Well.  The tofu mix wasn't half-bad besides, and maybe I've just been craving dijon really madly lately, but this was really good.  If you haven't tried green beans in a sandwich before, you're missing out, too!  Lightly steamed, rinsed cold, loaded along with zukes, sweet pickled onions, more dijon and grated carrot = win!  I even remember what I did with this one ...

French-ish Tofu Salad 
makes enough for 2 generous sammiches

1/2 lb. firm tofu - herbed is nice
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
3-4 tbsp mayo
1 tsp coarse ground dijon mustard
1 tsp dried parsley
1/2 tsp sweet paprika
1/4 tsp tarragon
salt and fresh black pepper to taste

- in a bowl, mush up the tofu with your hands (squish squish) until it's mushy like ricotta.  Mix in the remaining ingredients, adjusting to your own taste, then stuff into breadish things and nom.

Scallion Flatbread 
makes two 10" breads

1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 all-purpose flour
2 tsp hazelnut oil
a good pinch of salt
1/4 cup fine-chopped scallion
6-8 tbsp warm water (it will really depend)

- In a large bowl mix together the flours, oil, salt, and scallion.  Slowly splash in the water and mix until a dough is formed.  Knead it for a minute or two - it should be a wet dough, but if it gets too wet (and it might due to onion moisture), just add a bit more flour and keep going.  When it's slightly elastic, pop it back into the bowl and cover it with a towel.  Let that sit for a few minutes while you heat up a heavy iron skillet over medium heat.  Take out the dough and divide in two balls, dip them in flour and roll them flat (I usually get a 10" circle), then cook in the dry skillet about 2 minutes each side, until brown spots appear and it smells toasty.  Instant lunch!

12 comments:

Ricki said...

Mmmm that tofu filling sounds amazing. Love the look of the sandwich! And lucky you to get that incredible chocolate "almost" cheap!! ;)

nora said...

the muffins are awesome! i just bookmarked the recipe and will def make them! pb's my fav food, but i'd also like to make them with cashew butter and dried cherries! Mmmmm

Mihl said...

Your meals always look so colourful and very delicious!
I feel the same about the weather. Spent as much time outside as possible. :)

VeggieGirl said...

WELCOME BACK!! I'm all over the gluten-free goodness :-D

shelby said...

Yum Yum Yum Yum Yum!!!

T said...

Ooh, thanks for the recipes! And that strawberry salad looks so spring-like, yum!

And I laughed when I read about mangos tasting good again... why do they even bother any other time of year!?

Jes said...

Scallion flat bread! Only a broken chocolate rapscallion such as yourself would come up with something so delicious! All the eats look great and your fabulous weather sounds wonderful! Hurrah for long sunny walks!

aTxVegn said...

Oh, cool, you made the muffins! I love that they were celebratory.

OMG your food looks amazing as usual. Your Fire & Spice plate looks like sometihng I would have for dinner. And I will definitely try green beans in a scallion wrap.

That dark chocolate bar sounds awesome.

Cyn said...

Everything looks delicious, but that salad looks super good! I need to put strawberries into some of my salads.

shellyfish said...

I don't think you've ever posted anything that I didn't wish I were eating right then and there!
I'm bookmarking for the tofu salad wrapps - shellyfish likey.

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

I can't say I've ever made a loaf! I can't blame Satchmo for wanting those muffins either!

Theresa said...

That is a very beautiful piece of chocolate. And I love the look of your wrap sandwich, too!