Chopped Cabbage and Miso Salad with Marinated Tofu

My sister made this salad for me a while ago, and it’s really yummy. The recipe comes from 101 Cookbooks by Heidi Swanson. This is a really yummy but still pretty light and healthy meal. The crispy shallots alone are amazing, but with the crunchy cabbage, chives, toasted almonds, and miso dressing, it’s really a perfect flavor combination. My sister makes marinated tofu to go with the salad that adds some protein and goes well with the crunchiness of the cabbage.

I didn’t change anything about Heidi’s recipe other than using a combination of red and green cabbage and a larger quantity of cabbage. You can find the recipe for the salad here, and I’ll include the recipe for the marinated tofu I put on top of the salad. Heidi Swanson has a Recipe Journal which some great recipes on it, so browse around her blog while you’re there!

And, to follow up on my New Year’s Resolution, the new (to me) ingredients in the salad are …miso and powdered mustard! I’ve of course eaten miso many times before in miso soup, but for some reason I’ve never cooked with it. Now I have a whole tub, so if you have any other yummy miso recipes, please share them in the comments!

Marinated Tofu Ingredients:

1 block of firm or extra firm tofu
1 – 2 shallots
3 – 4 cloves of garlic
small knob of ginger
1/2 cup of soy sauce
1/4 cup of rice vinegar
1/4 cup water
black pepper
sesame oil

Marinated Tofu Directions:

  • Drain the tofu and press the water out with a paper towel. Slice your tofu into 1/4 inch thick slabs. Spread the tofu out in a baking dish to marinate.
  • Thinly slice the shallots, press or mince the garlic, and grate the ginger. In a bowl, mix together the soy sauce, rice vinegar, water, shallots, garlic, and ginger. Whisk together.
  • Pour the marinade over the tofu so it’s evenly coated. Sprinkle some black pepper on top of the tofu. Allow the tofu to marinade for an hour or two (or longer).
  • A lot of the liquid will probably be soaked up into the tofu, but drain off some of the excess liquid. Reserve the shallots, ginger, and garlic by straining the liquid. Pan fry the tofu, shallots, ginger, and garlic in a little sesame oil until the edges are golden and crispy.
  • Top the Cabbage and Miso Salad with the marinated tofu and enjoy!
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Virtual Vegan Potluck! Curry Noodles with Broccoli and Tofu

Welcome to the second Virtual Vegan Potluck! If you just happened to come to my site and don’t already know about the Virtual Vegan Potluck, here’s how it works. Since we can’t all get together for a real vegan potluck (participating bloggers are from all over the world!), Annie from the blog An Unrefined Vegan came up with the idea to have one virtually. This means that a lot of different blogs post vegan recipes on the same day for a variety of courses…appetizers, salads, main dishes, soups, desserts, etc.

You can work your way through the whole potluck by starting at Vegan Bloggers Unite! and following the links. The blog before mine in the potluck is 40 Fit In The Mitt. The blog after mine in the potluck is VegHotPot.

My plans for the potluck were a bit thrown off by Hurricane Sandy. I signed up to make an appetizer, but I wasn’t able to make the recipe I wanted to this past weekend because Hurricane Sandy kept me from the grocery store. I didn’t have the ingredients I needed, so instead, I’m sharing a different recipe, which is also quite tasty. It could still fall under the appetizer category, or it could be a side or a main dish too. It’s got a yummy flavor combo, and it’s quick to make.

This recipe originally came from Vegetarian Times in the April/May 2011 edition. I changed a couple small things, but it’s mostly the same as the Vegetarian Times Recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 2 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 2 large shallots
  • 3-4 cloves of garlic
  • 1/4 of a yellow onion
  • 1/2 cup cilantro (save 1/4 cup for garnish)
  • 2 Tablespoons Thai  red curry paste
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 15-ounce can light coconut milk
  • ¾ cup vegetable broth
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1 12-ounce package of firm tofu
  • 1 package of Asian noodles (I used flat Somen noodles)
  • 5 cups broccoli florets
  • 1 lime

Directions:

  • Chop the onion and shallots, and press or mince the garlic. Roughly chop the cilantro. It’s okay to leave some of the upper stems in with the leaves when you chop it. Set aside 1/4 cup of the cilantro for garnish.
  • Heat the oil in large pot over medium-high heat. Sauté the shallots, garlic, and onions in the oil for a couple minutes. Add 1/4 cup of cilantro, curry paste, curry powder, and turmeric. Stir and let cook for a minute. (I was worried it would be too spicy with the Thai red curry paste, but it turned out not to be spicy at all. I think this probably varies by brand, but I would consider increasing the amount of curry paste next time I make this.)
  • Add in the coconut milk, broth, and brown sugar. Stir and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to medium and cook for 5 minutes.
  • Drain the tofu and cut it into 1 inch cubes. If you want it to be a little crispy on the edges, you can saute it in a little oil in a separate pan before adding it to the pot. Add the tofu to the pot with the other ingredients, and simmer another 10 minutes.
  • In a separate pot, cook the noodles according to the directions on the package. You could also substitute rice instead of noodles, if you prefer. Add the broccoli florets to pot of noodles for the last 2 minutes of cooking time. Drain the noodles and broccoli and add them to tofu-curry mixture. Mix well, so the noodles and broccoli are coated.
  • Serve the curry noodles with the chopped cilantro sprinkled on top and a lime wedge on the side. Don’t skip the lime! Squeezing the lime juice over the noodles really completes the flavor of this dish.

You can work your way through the whole potluck by starting at Vegan Bloggers Unite! and following the links. The blog before mine in the potluck is 40 Fit In The Mitt. The blog after mine in the potluck is VegHotPot.

Vegan Spanakopita and Raspberry Chocolate Walnut Phyllo Pies

After having one of the spinach phyllo pies from the Cinnamon Snail, I was inspired to try making a vegan version of spanakopita. I’d never worked with phyllo dough before so it was a learning experience. The filling made enough for one large pan plus a smaller pan. I made a large pan first and the smaller pan the next day so that I could learn from any mistakes in my first attempt.

I did learn a few things, such as not to skimp on vegan butter or olive oil between the layers of phyllo. For my first attempt, I tried to go really light on the olive oil in an effort to make it healthier. I sprayed it on and didn’t get the layer very even. Unfortunately the oil seems to be what holds the phyllo dough together, so it turned out very, very flaky. It was still tasty though.

On the second attempt, I used vegan butter. I put more between the layers and made sure there was an even coat across the phyllo. This seemed to work a lot better. The phyllo held together more and turned out how I expected it to. Looks like this is one dish I’ll have to accept isn’t so healthy, but is very yummy! I’m including photos of both, so you can see the difference in how they turned out. The first attempt that turned out flaky is actually more photogenic than the second, but the texture on the second is much better.

I had a little leftover phyllo, so I decided to try experimenting with a dessert pastry just to see how it turned out. I didn’t even measure, but mixed together some raspberry jam, chopped walnuts, vanilla, cinnamon, a dash of ginger, a dash of nutmeg, and some chocolate chunks. I layered the phyllo with butter the same way I did for the spanakopita and spread the filling in the middle. It was a tasty way to use up the leftover phyllo!

Ingredients:

1 pound pack of vegan phyllo dough (I used Fillo Factory)
20 oz. frozen spinach (thawed)
1 onion
1 shallot
3 green onion stalks
4 cloves of garlic
1/4 to 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill leaves
olive oil or vegan butter
1/2 lb of firm tofu (about 1/2 a block)
salt and pepper
paprika
nutmeg
3 Tbsp nutritional yeast

Directions:

  • Follow the directions on the phyllo dough package for thawing. The kind I used was frozen. (The Fillo Factory has some tips and recipes.) I moved it from the freezer to the fridge overnight and then took it out 2 hours before using it so it could warm to room temperature. Once it’s out of the packaging, you need to keep a damp towel or paper towel on top to keep it from drying out. Leave your spinach in the fridge to thaw overnight.
  • Chop the onion, shallot, green onion, and the parsley and dill leaves. Press or finely mince the garlic. Saute all of the these in olive oil or vegan butter for a few minutes over medium high heat.
  • Drain and crumble the tofu. Thoroughly drain the spinach. Add the spinach and tofu to the pan and continue sauteing for a few more minutes. Add a dash of paprika and nutmeg and the nutritional yeast. Add salt and pepper to taste and mix well.
  • Preheat your oven to 350° F.
  • Lightly grease the bottom of a baking dish. Cut the phyllo in half (or whatever size will fit your baking dish). Layer the phyllo dough one sheet at a time. In between each sheet, use a pastry brush to coat the dough with olive oil or vegan butter. It should be a thin, but even coating. Continue layering phyllo and melted vegan butter until you’ve layered 10 sheets of dough.
  • Spread your spinach filling on top of the phyllo dough in an even layer.
  • Layer 10 more sheets of phyllo dough on top of the spinach, spreading melted vegan butter in between each layer. Put a light coating of melted vegan butter on top of the last layer and sprinkle paprika on top.
  • Bake the spanakopita for about 20-25 minutes until golden brown on top. Let it cool a few minutes, slice it into squares, and enjoy!

Feisty Green Beans from Heidi Swanson

This is a recipe that my sister made for us over the holidays (yes I know it was four months ago!). I’m a little late in posting this, but I wanted to share. The recipe is called Feisty Green Beans and you can find it on Heidi Swanson’s blog 101 Cookbooks. These were really tasty and with the inclusion of tofu, it packs some protein into your veggie side dish! Thanks to my sister for making these for us!

Ingredients:

1 pound green beans, thinly sliced
1/2 cup golden raisins
1 tbsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/2 medium yellow onion, diced
3 bay leaves
1/3 cup white wine
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2  tsp or less of crushed red pepper flakes
6 ounces extra firm tofu, cut in 1/2 inch cubes
2 tbsp vegan butter
1/3 cup vegan sour cream
1/4 cup toasted sliced almonds
1/3 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
salt and pepper

Directions:

  • Bring a pot of salted water to a boil, and cook the green beans for about a minute. Then dunk the green beans in cold water to stop the cooking, drain, and set them aside.
  • Place the raisins in a small bowl and pour scalding hot water over them. Let them sit for five minutes, drain, and set them aside.
  • Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Then add the oil, garlic, onion, and bay leaves. Cook for 5 minutes until the onions and garlic start to brown slightly. Then add the wine and cook until the liquid has mostly evaporated.
  • Remove the bay leaves and stir in the spices – paprika, cumin, coriander, curry powder, salt, and crushed red pepper flakes.
  •  Stir in the tofu cubes and the raisins and cook for another minute. Then add the vegan butter and green beans, stirring until the vegan butter melts.
  • Remove the skillet from heat and stir in the vegan sour cream. Add most of the almonds and most of the cilantro, setting some aside. Add salt and pepper to taste. Before serving, top the dish with the remaining cilantro and almonds.

Sticky Rice with Seitan and Tofu

My brother-in-law made this Sticky Rice with Seitan and Tofu over the holidays. It’s another recipe from the hsa*ba Burmese cookbook by Tin Cho Chaw. Hsa*ba means “please eat” in Burmese.

Like the previous recipe, this one also called for chicken. He substituted tofu and seitan, and it came out really well. I haven’t tried making this one myself yet, but I think it will work it’s way into my repertoire. It was very tasty!

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups sticky/glutinous rice
1 package of seitan
1 package of firm or extra firm tofu
2 Tbsp peanut oil
3 Tbsp fresh ginger thinly sliced or grated
4 cloves of garlic – pressed or minced
1 Tbsp dark soy sauce
2 Tbsp light soy sauce
3/4 cup Chinese rice wine
2 Tbsp black sesame oil
1 1/4 cups water

Directions:

  • Soak the rice in plenty of hot water for an hour. Then rinse it well and drain the water off using a sieve.
  • Drain the tofu and cut into cubes. Drain the seitan and if it’s not already in bite size pieces, cut into smaller chunks.
  • Heat the peanut oil in a saucepan and fry the ginger and garlic for about 30 seconds until it smells fragrant.
  • Saute the tofu and seitan until lightly browned. Mix in both soy sauces and cook for a few more minutes.
  • Add the rice, Chinese rice wine, black sesame oil, and water. Stir well, cover with a lid, and bring it to a boil. Then reduce the heat to a lower setting and let it simmer gently for 20 minutes until the rice has absorbed all the liquid.
  • Taste and add more seasoning if desired.

Vegan Lasagna Recipe

My mom is a great cook and there are a lot of recipes of hers that I love. Growing up, one of my very favorites was her lasagna. I came to realize that all other lasagna you could get at a restaurant, in a store, really anywhere else, did not live up to her lasagna. When I became vegan, I knew this was one of the things I would miss the most. And then I realized, it really wasn’t hard to veganize this recipe at all. So here’s the modified version of her lasagna recipe. Tastes like home!

Just don’t dump your lasagna noodles in the sink like I did! Running out to get new lasagna noodles in the middle of a recipe isn’t very efficient.

Ingredients:

1 13.25 oz box of lasagna noodles
1 8 oz. pack of firm tofu
2 cups of frozen spinach
2 cups of shredded carrots
3/4 oz pack of basil, chopped
1 yellow onion
1 green pepper
4 cloves of garlic
olive oil
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp. salt (or more to taste)
ground pepper to taste
1 jar of tomato sauce

Directions:

  • Boil a large pot of water and cook the lasagna noodles according to the directions on the package. Preheat your oven to 400°.
  • Drain and press the water out of the tofu. Crumble it up into small pieces in a mixing bowl.
  • Defrost frozen spinach and add it to the tofu. Add shredded carrots and chopped basil.
  • Chop yellow onion and green pepper. Finely chop or press cloves of garlic. Saute the onion, pepper, and garlic with a little olive oil and add to the filling mixture.
  • To the mixture add dried oregano, salt, and ground pepper to taste. Feel free to add more of these spices, or to include powdered garlic, dried basil, etc.
  • Stir the filling mixture well so everything is evenly distributed.
  • Once your noodles are finished boiling and your filling mixture is done, you’re ready to layer the lasagna. Use a large casserole dish (about 15 inches x 10 inches x 2 inches deep). Put a thin layer of sauce in the bottom of the dish. Add a layer of noodles, 3 noodles across. Add a layer of filling on top of the noodles. Then another layer of noodles, then sauce, then filling. Keep layering until you use up all your noodles and filling. You’ll probably end up with about 3 layers of filling so use about 1/3 of your filling mixture each time so you don’t run out.
  • The top layer will be 3 lasagna noodles covered with tomato sauce. If you want your lasagna to be “cheesy” you can put some daiya cheese on top, but I prefer it without any cheese substitute. You can also sprinkle some bread crumbs on top if you want it to be crispier.
  • Bake the lasagna at 400° for about 40-45 minutes, until the sides look a bit bubbly and the top edges are getting a little crispy. Enjoy!