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Chocolate Beet Cake with Maple Cashew Frosting (Vegan)

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You know when you have a lot left over from your farm share, you're due to pick up the next one, and you have a chocolate craving?

What?  It happens to me all the time.

This is what came out of that last combination of circumstances night.  I was not intending to turn this into a blog post, and so I apologize for the paltry poor quality photos.  With modifications, the recipe for the cake recipe was drawn from one on  Yummly, the frosting from a recipe on Nouveau Raw.


Cake:

3-5 small beets (enough to make about 1-1/2 cups when cooked down)

water to cover beets for boilingunsweetened applesauce (if necessary, to fill in for the beets)1/2 cup soy milk (or other nondairy milk), unsweetened
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1/4-1/2 cup agave syrup (or other liquid sugar) to taste (I used only 1/4 in my first try, but I'd add a bit more next time)1 tsp vanilla extract
1-1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour1/2 …

Beet Rangoon with Nut Cheese (Vegan Crab Rangoon)

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For a vegan potluck the other day, I made a Raw Beet Ravioli with Nut Cheese from an Epicurious recipe:


It was delicious, but I used up all my nice big beet slices and had a cup each of the "cheese" and cream sauce leftover.  Soliciting help from my Facebook friends, I came up with this recipe, using the leftover nut cheese, some bits of beet (which had come from my wonderful CSA), and scallions from my garden.  Thanks especially to my childhood friend E, who has grown up to be a chef, and who came up with the idea and suggested using beets as a sweet substitute for the crab.  The wrappers are homemade - a rare attempt on my part to make dough from scratch - drawing from another vegan crab Rangoon recipe on the Purple Carrot blog.

Filling:


Pine Nut "Goat Cheese"
1/2 cup raw pine nuts1/2 cup raw cashews2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil1 small shallot, peeled and diced1/4 teaspoon lemon2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice1 teaspoon nutritional yeastpinch of s…

Camping with Greens

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I spent a few days camping at Savoy Mountain State Forest this week, and on the way out there, I picked up my CSA share.  I found myself with the following haul: two quarts of strawberries, two tomatoes (which could use a couple more days of ripening, imho), a bag of spinach, a bunch of rainbow chard, and a head of green leaf lettuce.  The strawberries were too good for anything but eating straight, as many as I could in three days.  I saved the spinach and tomatoes in the cooler, and they survived quite well the return home.  But I had to use some of the greens, no?  How does one cook greens on a campfire?  I could have cheated and used my camp stove, but instead I had great success steaming them in foil.

Soaking the greens in fresh water in the wash basin, just as I would do at home, removed all the grit and such.  I saved the water for the first rinse of the dirty dishes.
Break up the chard and the lettuce separately by hand.

Mix together the following to make a salad dressing for…

Raw Brownies with Peanut Butter Frosting

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I recently decided that, even as I cut back on calories overall, I need more chocolate in my life. More and more research is coming out about the health benefits of chocolate, with the only caveat I see is that it comes with unhealthy fats and refined sugars we don't want. So let's eat chocolate in forms that are healthier and still enjoy the benefits (including deliciousness)! This recipe gets its sweetness from agave syrup and dates, and the fats come from nuts and legumes.

I adapted this recipe from a few others, and really, you can adjust ingredients and amounts to make this your own.
Brownies: 1 cup raw walnuts 1 cup raw pecans 2 cups pitted dates 1 cup raw cacao powder 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut shreds 1/2 cup agave syrup dash of salt
In food processor, chop walnuts and pecans coarsely.  
Add dates and cacao powder and chop together until a fine crumble; then add coconut, salt, and agave syrup.  
Run food processor until the mixture forms a coarse paste or dough.  Press…

Vegan Spanakopita with Cashew/Tofu Ricotta

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What can I say?  Spinach pie, made with cashew/tofu ricotta and lots of garlic.


Filling:
Half pound of baby spinach
2 Tbsp chopped garlic
1Tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked overnight (or at least 3 hours)
1/8 cup lemon juice
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
1-2 Tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
1 tsp dried basil
1/8-1/3 cup water, to facilitate blending
12 oz (one package) silken tofu


Saute spinach with olive oil and garlic (or have a willing friend do it, as I did).  Blend next nine ingredients (cashews through water) together until smooth.  Crumble silken tofu into mixture and mix by hand.

Stir cashew/tofu mixture into cooked spinach.



 Lay out defrosted phyllo dough (store-bought is all I know how to use) sheets flat.  Take one at a time, and assemble spanakopita as follows:

 Fold phyllo dough in thirds and drop a large spoonful of filling near the top edge.
Fold the top corner down at a diagonal.
Fold the filled piece down along its bottom edge.
Contin…