Thursday, January 15, 2009

Winter vacation

Hi everybody - just doing a short post to say I'm getting away from an especially challenging winter in North Dakota for a couple weeks, so the blog is going on break too. I'll be back in February, and may subject you all to some trip photos - be warned :) Thanks so much to everyone for the comments - I don't mention it often, but I really appreciate all of the positive feedback, and I always enjoy all of your lovely food creations and thoughts on vegan life, and life in general. See you all in a couple of weeks!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Portabella Pizza

This blog is going through a portabella mushroom phase for a moment, which gives me a good excuse to extoll the virtues of vegan pizzas with a quick pic. Vegan pizza can be just as good, and usually better (I'm looking in your direction, Dominos) than the standard excesses of the chain restaurant pie. It seems especially weird because traditional old-school Italian pizzas, at least according to cooking shows and travel docs, are often these spare little flatbreads with no more than quality tomato sauce and some basil leaves.

Anyway, I made a pizza yesterday with more of those portabella mushrooms. The "cheese" is that great tofu ricotta recipe from Veganomicon. The tomato sauce is the last of my tomato-eggplant sauce I made this fall, which accidentally ended up with the perfect consistency to use as pizzza sauce.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Roasted Portabellas with White Wine Stuffing

This white wine stuffing is another nummy recipe test for Farm Sanctuary. My local grocery must have received an extra shipment of portabella mushrooms, because they're selling 6 oz. packs, usually $3.50 or so, for 99 cents. I love portabellas but don't often buy the big caps because of the price, so I'll be eating lots of mushrooms the next few days. Here the portabellas are brimming with stuffing and mushroom gravy.
Sometimes stuffing doesn't really stand out, but this is full of nice texture from celery, onions, and walnuts. With more mushrooms, of course. I used chardonnay, adding the wine to a hot pan of frying vegetables and bread cubes. Pouring wine into a hot cast iron pan is fun, with a sizzling burst and the smell of the alcohol burning off. I don't make stuffing very often at all, but this will probably become my standby. Cooking with wine (chardonnay even!) always makes me feel uncharacteristically sophisticated, so this was a fun recipe.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Happy New Year

I know I'm almost a week late, but I hope everybody had a great New Year's eve. I caught some kind of nasty bug last week, so have been out of commission. I tried to make the best of things, with lots of ginger tea and HBO series DVDs.
Any decent cooking was limited to New Year's Day, since I was determined to make some Hoppin' John. Growing up here in the frozen north, I didn't know about the southern tradition of eating black-eyed peas on Jan. 1. I'll let real southerners, or wikipedia, explain the reasons for this. I'm happy letting the calendar tell me to eat some black-eyed peas. Served here with quinoa and fried red kale and yellow sweet pepper.