Sunday, May 3, 2009

Chocolate being a subtle theme...

Liz Holding Food Gallery: entry #27 - BROWNIE-STYLE

I tried T'ai Chi today for the first time!  That's got nothing to do with chocolate, sure, but I feel really good right now!  Like a natural chocolate high.  Or a, uh... non-sugar induced high, yes.  Seriously though, I feel like a dancer, I bounced all the way home in my high tops, and then  threw together the roasted vegetables I'd made that morning into some whole wheat penne and home-soaked chickpeas for a really attractive dinner.  It needed something parmesan-y, but I have leftovers to subject to ground almond & lemon zest, there is always tomorrow.

So back to cupcakes!

I made the Brooklyn Brownie cupcakes for a friend's 25th birthday in the park.  We played duck duck goose, Stella Ella Ola, a fun game called Sheep... I love being a nonkid, it's so natural to be.  And the cuppers were a big hit!  These are dense dark weighty cakes with a huge woodsy whiskeyness that probably needs refreshing milk around for maximum enjoyment, but definitely brownie-ish and definitely good.  Super moist, too.  I think I like the regular chocolate VCtotW recipe better, but hey, I got to bake with whiskey, and I've been wanting to do that for, like, ever!  

Then something a little more virtuous... I made the Mole Roasted Cauliflower from the Swell cookzine that involved - of course! - cocoa powder.  REALLY good preparation for cauliflower, I had to resist buying another whole head and roasting it up the exact same way, which says something, that I would repeat a recipe so soon.  Not that it was hard to eat a whole giant head of this, it's pretty addictive like better than popcorn good.  It was the star of the plate next to the mango slices, and some creamy mint & basil polenta I made, but actually the whole combo worked really well and I recommend it - mango with dinner I mean.  (what?  mango with everything!!  of course!)

Oh yes yes, I made some luncheon meat, via Vegan Dad's recipe.  It is a bit dry as he says, but the flavour and texture is eerily spot on and I made some really satisfying sandwiches and I froze most of it into little single-servings for later.  Next time I thaw out a packet I'll be sure to have some cheap yellow mustard around, because it would just work with this stuff, mmmm yeah.

What else?  Tofu nuggets!  I saw the Tofu Skewers with Espresso BBQ Sauce on Vegan Appetite and knew exactly what to do with the half pound of tofu I had in the fridge.  I'd not skewered food before, and you know, it actually does make a difference to the flavour!  The leftover tofu-bobs I cooked sans-impalement were less succulent and fun.  Like, you couldn't gnaw on them at all, boo, I like skewers now.  Oh, and the sauce was great!  I added cayenne cause I can't leave well enough alone and insist on mouth burning when it comes to anything BBQ.

Right, and finally, this is definitely the result of my new love affair with my wonderful freezer.  Never could have concocted something so specific without being able to freeze tiny bits of things throughout my cooking.  The whole door is filled with single cookies, 1/4 cups of icing, cake shavings, and other fun detritous I collect, mwahaha.  For this little cake that I made for a dinner on friday, I started with a disc of leftover Brooklyn Brownie cupcake (the recipe really does make a LOT of extra batter).  Then I made a base cheesecake cream in the blender, divided that into two and stuffed one with melted chocolate and the other with peanut butter.  I layered and baked that at 350 for 45 minutes, then I made a quick chocolate agar-gel for the top and was really really pleased with myself for rocking agar finally.  And then!  Crushed-up peanut butter cookies for the sides.  You know the awesome kind that are essentially just peanut butter and sugar?  Yeah, those kind.  And I almost forgot - star dollops of leftover chocolate cupcake frosting!  PIMPED.  OUT.  

Now I just need to get myself a cheesecake tin that's bigger than 5" across. ^_^;

22 comments:

tahinitoo said...

I am swooning over that wee PB magical cheesecake you concocted. I wish I had some, I do! I am planning a dessert of Dandies dipped in chocolate syrup...

Kiersten said...

Wow, everything looks amazing! I am drooling over the cheesecake! I'm glad you liked Tai Chi, I tried it not too long ago but I just wasn't feeling it.

Kathleen said...

That is a pretty impressive array of vegan delights!! Everything looks yummy and inspiring.

Ruby Red Vegan said...

Yeah, you do need to get a bigger cheesecake tin for next time. But only because next time, you are going to have to mail half of the cheesecake to me! Omg, omg, that looks so good!

And mole roasted cauliflower?! It sounds heavenly and was probably a bunch of fun to eat off the same plate with mango polenta!!! Yum.

nora said...

yeah, wow that cheesecake could do ANYTHING. the little cheesecake that could.

Vegetation said...

Your house is chocolate heaven!! Come and cook for meeeee!

The Voracious Vegan said...

My head is spinning, I don't even know where to start!

Mole cauliflower WOW!

Cupcakes - droool!

Cheesecake - YES!

Kebabs - YUM!

Great pictures.

shelby said...

MMM, chocolate...

Jes said...

That cake is killing me! I need a piece *right* now! Along with the cauliflower & the kebabs & well, everything else :)

Nicole (anotheronebitesthecrust.wordpress.com) said...

Mmmm! I could sure go for some cake!

aTxVegn said...

Chocolate pb cheesecake, in any size, is the best thing ever! You really made it outstanding with the cookie sides and brownie crust.

I agree that skewered barbecue tastes better! Plus it's easy to manage on the grill and holds lots of sauce.

As always, great looking food!

jessy said...

your cheezecake is the most magical and glorious thing ever, Liz! words cannot describe how freak'n awesome that is! i'm drooling onto my keyboard! mmmmmmmmmmmmm!

Theresa said...

I'm in love with all of your chocolate. Also, cool ring!

Celine said...

that cheesecake thing will be the start of my dreams tonight, let me tell you.

Cyn said...

I would like that cake in my mouth now, please. Seriously, you are off the hook and that is ridiculously amazing. I mean, those brownie cupcakes are good, but then with a whole cheesecake layer on top? And crushed peanut butter sides? And chocolate frosting? DAMN GIRL. Your cheesecake brings all the vegans to the yard.

dreaminitvegan said...

That frozen dessert you made! WOW!!! Talk about making an impression.

tofuparty said...

mmmmmmm, I'm drooling over the cheesecake and the cupcakes.

shellyfish said...

That cheese cake is freaking amazing. Like holy freaking crap I think I'm in love amazing.
So is that cauliflower - I've made it twice in the past two weeks it's so darn good. Swell is just the best.

Erin said...

Your cheesecake looks amazing!!! So does everything else, but especially the cake.

Hannah said...

Wow, that cake is the stuff that dreams are made of. Incredible!

Leigh said...

Downright sexy, that little cheesecake is.

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

Everything looks awesome, I want to try that Cauliflower. That cheesecake though?! Yes, PLEASE!