Posts Tagged With: coconut

2015, a Recipe Odyssey: March Edition

So I mentioned in this post that I was going to try a monthly meal plan for March, sticking within my budget of $25/week for food. How did it go?

  • Week 1: I spent $19.47 on groceries.
  • Week 2: I spent $24.09 on groceries. Cutting it close! All necessites for my week’s plan.
  • Week 3: I spent $20.30 on groceries. Roughly $10 0f that was absolute necessities for my planned menu, and I got some extra goodies! (okay, it was mostly bell peppers and avocados.) I ended up not doing all the planned meals because I had lots more leftovers than previous weeks, plus I was sick.
  • Week 4: I spent $26.60 on groceries. This included what I needed for the little bit of overlap for the last couple days of March.
  • But I did end up using the rest of my money buying a couple staple/pantry items that I’ll use next month too.

Keep in mind, we do have loads of bulk stuff stored in buckets from More Prosperous (or simply more reckless?) Times of the Past, and we have a separate line item for bulk food (and I spent all but pennies of that $50 this month aside from the above), so the above is strictly fresh veggies and staples like oil and sugar.

Speaking of oil and sugar, I bought a regular bottle of veggie oil and a 4lb bag of sugar for Week 1. As of the end of week 3, the oil had been long gone and another bottle half-used, and the sugar is all but gone. I find this disturbing.

Here’s what I made! Grouped by source.

From More Peas, Thank You:

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1. Corn Chowda with Cornbread Croutons – GooGoo has been pestering me to make a potato soup for weeks now. I finally make one, and will she eat it? No. Sigh. She did like the cornbread croutons and the side of broccoli, though.

 From The Veg Feasting Cookbook:

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2. Carrots in the Raw – This salad was very easy, requiring few ingredients, and went great with the burgers we had for lunch. I left out the raisins and just added some extra pumpkin seeds instead, because fruit in a vegetable salad is just weird to me. The following day we had the leftovers on top of lettuce. Yum.

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3. Cumin Carrot Soup – This became steadily more disgusting the more of it that I ate. Mr Pine Nut thought it was good, but I heartily disagreed. I couldn’t taste cumin at all; even though I reduced the pepper it was way too peppery; worst of all the texture was just gross. Will never make again.

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4. Turkish Lentil Soup – SO good. I was a little concerned, because the cinnamon smelled really strong while it was cooking, but as far as taste went, I didn’t even notice it. The flavours were all blended perfectly with nothing overpowering anything else. I was pleased, and would definitely make this again. Way better than the vomitous carrot sludge.

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5. Spicy Yellow Dal – I didn’t have toor dal, but the book suggested subbing yellow split peas, so I used green split peas. It took a lot more than 2 cups of water to cook the peas, but this was overall quite a simple dish to assemble and it was very tasty. It was at the edge of my heat tolerance level, but very good. We ate it with rice and steamed broccoli.

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6. Mexican Black Bean Salad – This was fairly simple to throw together, and it was a meal for Mr Pine Nut and I (with the addition of lettuce, and some bread on the side). It had a good flavour, but the recipe called for no salt. I added a tiny bit, but more wouldn’t have hurt. I’m not sure I’ll make it again, but it was fine.

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7. Cabbage Curry – This was SO easy, and very tasty! I added the garbanzo beans to make it a meal, but the flavour was great and the heat level perfect (that is, not very hot. :-)) It’s a dry curry, and you could really use any veggie (or combination thereof) instead of the cabbage – cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, &c.

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8. Cream of Veg Soup – This was just okay. Mr Pine Nut and Lou Who loved it; GooGoo wouldn’t touch it, and I didn’t finish mine. It was better than cumin-carrot soup, but I found it just too salty even though I’d diluted it considerably.

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9. Chickpea Mash Stew – I really liked this, despite it being totally different from how I envisioned it would be. Lou Who loved it too!

10. Super Noodle Soup – Very basic. The special thing about it seemed to me just that all the veggies get cut up very tiny (1/8″ dice), and I had to add a lot of extra salt and some garlic powder because it just didn’t have much flavour without. It was good, but I don’t think I’ll rush to make it again.

11. Pulao Rice – This was pretty easy. I used brown rice so I changed the water proportion and cooking time, but it came out very nice and I liked it. I wasn’t super fond of the whole idea of having to pick out all the whole cloves, cardamom pods, and other such things though.

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12. Chickpea Curry – I was prepping my ingredients for this and it calls for a 4-oz piece of ginger, thinly sliced. I only have (frozen) grated ginger, so I got it out and the frozen glob I had weighed exactly four ounces. The problem is that four ounces of grated ginger is like… a CUP’S worth. So I called out into the twitterverse and got confirmation that for the amount of curry, that seemed like an awful lot. So I decided to do 2 ounces instead. The end result was a curry with a good flavour… under an intense heat. I burned my entire digestive tract raw and had steam coming out my ears from eating it. So yeah, I doubt I’ll be making this again.

13. Saffron Rice – I made this to go with the abovementioned curry as per the book’s suggestion. It was okay. I wasn’t overly thrilled with it.

From the interwebs:

14. Parmesan Muffins – A friend made these and raved about them, so I decided to try them, because I need to get more savoury muffins into my culinary repertoire. They were excellent! I used flax instead of eggs (so 2T ground flax and 6T warm water), and I was too tired/lazy to make my favourite almond parmesan so I just used some Daiya mozzarella shreds I had in my freezer. And I left out the sugar.

15. Brownie Coco-Nut-Butter Cups – !!!!!!! YUM !!!!!! So, I made these for a potluck and forgot to take them with me. Oops. What a tragedy. 😉

From Vegan Simplicity:

16. Vegan Red Beans and Rice – This was good, but not great, which seems to be (so far) my reaction to most of Mark Anthony’s recipes. I bought this cookbook when he came and did a presentation/cooking class at our church and really haven’t used it much yet, so I definitely want to give it more of a chance before passing judgement. At any rate, this called for 3/4 cup of vegan margarine. O_O It also didn’t *look* super appetising.

17. Sri Lankan Style Mixed-Bean Soup – No picture; it looked sludgy and not super appealing, kind of pooplike, so like the red beans above the visual appeal was nil. But it tasted pretty good.

From Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day:

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18. Green Monster Bread (made into bagels/rolls) – I used rye flour and caraway seeds in with this and like it a lot! It seems a tad on the sweet side, so I think I’d reduce the sugar next time, but aside from that this was a definite “something I’d make again”. Way to sneak some kale into my girls’ diets (and mine).

Ten Talents (1978 edition):

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19. Carrot Salad – I thought the combo of carrot/pecan/cocoanut seemed a bit odd, but decided to try it anyway, and it was really good! Also very simple. I served it on a bed of lettuce/cabbage just to give it more variety but I would totally make it again.

Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar:

20. Cornmeal Poppyseed Biscotti – I hate lemon poppyseed bread. That being said, these were really good! I was surprised. I don’t know that they’ll be something I’ll make really often, but I brought some home from a potluck and know I’ll eat them. 🙂

21. Rocky Roads – I’ve had these before but haven’t made them before, and my suspicion that I’d like them better without the almond extract was completely correct. They are addictive, amazing, and I think the dough would be the perfect chocolate cookie base for a whole bunch of mix-ins. I’d like to try it plain too.

Everyday Vegan Eats:

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22. Chickpeas and Dumplings – A bit too salty but it was really yummy anyway!

23. Black Bean Feijoada – Really, really good!

[ETA: 24. Macaroni Salad – I made this on a whim the last day of March, and it was GOOD]

Cookbooks [or other sources] represented in March: 8

Did I meet my goal? Barely! I was worried the last week or so that I wouldn’t hit 20, but I did.

See you next month, with April’s recipe report!

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Categories: bread, challenges, cookies, dairy-free, dessert, lunch, salads, side dish, soup, vegan | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Piña Colada Muffins!! or, Another Recipe Unearthed from the Bottomless Pit That Is My Drafts Folder

I had the better part of a can of pineapple slices in my fridge. I also had cocoanut milk. This means piña colada muffins NEEDED to happen. (You could also make doughnuts out of these, if you have a doughnut pan.)

I actually wrote this up aeons ago, and it’s been sitting in my drafts folder ever since. I’m pretty sure that these were awesome.

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1 1/4 c whole wheat flour
3/4 c all-purpose flour
1 T baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 c pineapple juice (from the canned pineapple
1/3 c sugar
1/2 c pineapple (chunks or tidbits, your call)
1/2 c cocoanut milk
1/2 tsp vanilla
2 T cocoanut oil, melted

Option: Top with 1/2 c cocoanut (I used 1/4 c each of sweetened baker’s cocoanut and unsweetened flaked)

Combine all dry ingredients in one bowl, and wet ingredients, including melted oil, in another bowl. Combine them together just until mixed. Drop into greased or papered muffin tin, top with topping if using, and bake at 350 for… I have “X MINUTES” written down, so that means I either forgot to pay attention to my baking time or… or something. Start with 18 minutes and go from there. That’s usually safe for muffins. Toothpick test will tell you when they’re done!

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Categories: breakfast, brunch, recipes, soy-free, vegan | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

German Chocolate Rolls

Two years ago on the 25th of October, I began this blog. I had really only one reason for this. I had a recipe I was burning to share with the world.

Thing was, I hadn’t perfected it yet. I just couldn’t afford to keep buying pecans and cocoanut milk to test it with! Finally I splurged on the ingredients needed, and here it is: German Chocolate Rolls. I am honoured to present these to you at this Virtual Vegan Potluck!

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Proof in measuring cup:
1.5 T yeast
1/4 c warm water

Cream together in bowl until smooth:
3/4 c sugar
1/2 c cocoa powder
1/3 c vegan margarine
1 tsp salt
3 flax eggs (9T hot water+3T ground flax)
1 c cocoanut milk (the canned stuff, NOT the beverage! Either lite or full fat will work, but I recommend full fat)
1 tsp vanilla

Add yeast mixture and stir together well.

Add, 1 cup at a time:
5-6 c white flour

Knead 5 minutes.

Let rise in bowl 35 minutes, punch down and let rise 30 more minutes.

Form into rolls just like a cinnamon roll: roll the dough into a rectangle and then spread the filling on the rectangle.

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Fill with:
liberal spreading of vegan margarine
3 T brown sugar
1/2 c pecans (or walnuts if you’re broke)
2/3 c cocoanut (a blend of fine shred and large shred is fun)
1/4 c chocolate chips (optional)
Enough agave / dilute molasses to make it stick together
1 tsp vanilla
pinch salt

Roll up the rectangle, pinch it closed, and slice it into 12 rolls. Place in a lightly oiled or sprayed 13×9 pan.

Bake at 350 20-30 minutes.

Right before the rolls come out of the oven, make the glaze:
1c powdered sugar
2.5 T cocoanut milk (or as needed to make a very thick glaze – the heat of the rolls will melt it!)

Drizzle the glaze (or glop it on) over the hot rolls. And then eat them. Yum.

***

To sample another fantastic vegan dessert, keep going down the potluck line to In Vegetables We Trust!

To go back for more of what you already had, step back to Fitting Into Vegan!

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Categories: dessert, holiday, recipes, vegan, virtual vegan potluck | Tags: , , , , , , , | 32 Comments

Vegan Month of Food, Day 20: Neapolitan Dessert Dip

I wanted to do a dessert dip, but I wasn’t sure what to dip in it, let alone what the flavours should be. So I brainstormed with my friend and she said s’mores flavour, to dip graham crackers in. I also thought “banana split”, but I have zero banana tolerance. Take that idea and fly with it, if you’re not a bananaphobe like I.

So, revert to the pudding recipe I’ve only used 10384343 times this month. Prep that the night before you need it. Right before you assemble your dip, take a handmixer to it as we did for the layered fruit salad, adding the teaspoon of lemon juice and a dash of milk as needed.

Next, make some Chocolate Glazey Stuff:
3 T vegan margarine
3 T cocoa powder
1 c powdered sugar
3/4 tsp vanilla
Enough non-dairy milk to make it soft

Mix the margarine, cocoa powder, and powdered sugar with a handmixer until crumbly. Add vanilla, then the milk. It should be runnier than icing but thicker than sauce.

dessertdip1

Then layer the following in a 9×9″ pan:

The pudding
1 c mashed strawberries
the glaze
1/2 c graham cracker crumbs

dessertdip2I made a 9×9 pan of this for our Friday night small group. We had it with graham crackers. It was amazing. I ate way too much of it.

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Categories: challenges, dessert, recipes, vegan, vegan mofo, vegan mofo 2013 | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Vegan Month of Food, Day 15: Cherry Delight

Cherry Delight was another staple of childhood. There were so many different ways to make it that we managed to not get totally sick of it like we did with some other desserts we were intensely fond of.

Take, for instance, the dessert we simply called “strawberry stuff”. I don’t remember exactly all that was in it except that involved strawberries, whipped cream, graham crackers, and walnuts, and you kept it in the freezer. It was so good that we made it all the time until I got to the point where TO THIS DAY the thought of eating it makes me say “blegh”. And it’s been at least 15 years since I last had it.

Take One of vegan Cherry Delight

Take One of vegan Cherry Delight

Anyway, Cherry Delight was variable enough that it never went the way of the Strawberry Stuff. I never really gave much thought to veganising it, actually, until I became stumped for layered desserts that weren’t pie or crisp. In all honesty, this recipe isn’t quite right. I tested it a while ago and I had grand and glorious plans to perfect it, but I lack time to so do. So I’m going to share what I did anyway (it was good, just not quite the right texture) and later on I hope to update with a more authentic version.

This will make 2 pies if you use prepared graham cracker crusts, or a 13×9 pan with your own homemade graham cracker or cookie crust. If you want a single pie, refer to the amounts in red.

Start with your whipped cream. You’ll want 3 cups total, so if you use a prepared whip, that’s the amount you need. If you want to make your own whip, here’s what I did.

I went to this pudding recipe for ideas.
Here’s what I did.
2 (1) cups lite coconut milk (one can, plus enough water to make 2 cups)
1 (1/2) c soy milk
2/3 (1/3) cup corn starch
1 (1/2) tsp cocoanut extract
Put cornstarch in a saucepan and stir in liquid ingredients a tiny bit at a time to avoid lumpage. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until just thickened and smooth. Put into a container in the fridge and chill for around an hour. It should be partially set, but not totally gelatinous.

Take it out, put it in a food processor and process until smooth. A Vitamix would probably also work here. After I broke it up with the food processor I used my hand mixer in a bowl to whip more air into it, but using a Vitamix would probably negate that step.

In a separate bowl, beat together:
8 (4) oz softened cream cheese (I used Tofutti)
1/2 (1/4) c sugar

Beat together until smooth. I used organic sugar, so it took a little more to get the sugar dissolved than regular granulated sugar. When it’s smooth and no longer grainy, add it to the “whipped cream” mixture and beat until combine.

Divide filling evenly between 2 prepared graham cracker crusts, or your own crust in a 13×9 pan.

Topping:
1 can tart pitted cherries (including juice)
1 1/2 T cornstarch
1 T sugar

Spread on top of pie. Put in the fridge and chill, preferably 8 hours or overnight.

Variations:
2 cups frozen or fresh mixed or solo berries instead of cherries

If you use a chocolate graham cracker crust, you can spread a layer of chocolate pudding on the top instead of fruit for a chocolate delight. Top with whipped cream when serving.

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Categories: challenges, dessert, recipes, vegan, vegan mofo, vegan mofo 2013 | Tags: , , , , , | 6 Comments

Vegan Month of Food, Day 5: Almond Joy Cake

This cake came about kind of by accident. The cake I made for Lou Who’s birthday – well, one of my friends there suggested that it would make an excellent trifle due to its breaking apart qualities and what about CHOCOLATE, because ALMOND JOY.

For the cake, I used Chloe’s cocoanut cake, in a 13×9 pan instead of 2 rounds. For the milk I used lite cocoanut milk.

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For the mousse:
1 packet of silken tofu, around 12 oz.
2 T non-dairy milk (i used oat)
2 T sugar
1 tsp of vanilla
pinch salt
8-10 oz. chocolate, melted (i used chips)
1 tsp cocoanut oil

Put tofu, milk, sugar, and vanilla in a food processor and process. Melt chocolate and cocoanut oil in a pan, double boiler, or microwave and then scrape into food processor. Process until smooth and then layer on top of the cooled cake.

Sprinkle with sliced almonds and store cake in refrigerator.

Variation: This would make an awesome trifle, too. In fact, that was my original plan, but because the thrift store failed to provide me with a suitable trifle dish right when I needed it, I went with the cake route. You would just do multiple layers of crumbled cake and mousse, and almonds on top.

Tomorrow: Caturday #1.

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Categories: challenges, dessert, recipes, vegan, vegan mofo, vegan mofo 2013 | Tags: , , , , , | 6 Comments

Vegan Month of Food, Day 1: Breakfast Bars

Growing up, one of my favourite treats was something our friend Ruth often made: raspberry bars. You press in half the dough to make a crust on the bottom, spread jam over it, and then crumble the rest of the dough over the jam. It was sickeningly, deliciously sweet – so much so that I recall my mom only making them maybe twice. I still use that recipe, and sometime I plan to post it, but here I’ve made some adaptations to it to make it healthier and suitable for a breakfast item.

brekkerbars

Crust/topping:
1 c pumpkin puree
1/2 c brown sugar
1 c whole wheat flour
1/2 c white flour
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/4 c oatmeal
1/4 c unsweetened cocoanut flakes
1/2 c chopped walnuts (reserve for topping)

Filling:
2 cups mashed fresh fruit (such as blackberries, peaches, raspberries, strawberries)
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Cream pumpkin and sugar. In a separate bowl, combine dry ingredients, then add to pumpkin mixture. Mix well.

Press roughly half of the crumb mixture into greased 13×9 pan, using a spoon or your hands. It will be somewhere in the neighbourhood of 1/4 or 1/2″ thick.

Spread fruit filling. It may appear runny, but that’s okay.

Sprinkle with remaining crumb mixture and walnuts. Bake at 400 for 20-25 minutes.

Cool. Cut into bars.

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Yes, she’s 3 and a half and still sitting in a booster on the floor for meals.

Or don’t cool and cut into bars anyway, which is what we did. GooGoo ate two ample pieces. Mr Pine Nut said they were good. I wasn’t sure about them at first bite, but as I kept eating them, they grew on me. They have a nice earthy pumpkin undertone. I used blackberries and I think they lent themselves well to the pumpkin flavour. Betcha cranberries would be really yummy too! But you’d probably want to sugar them up and cook them a bit first to soften them into spreadable goo.

See you tomorrow with a sandwich recipe. Or should I call it a wafflewich?

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Categories: breakfast, brunch, challenges, oil-free, recipes, snacks, soy-free, vegan mofo, vegan mofo 2013, vegetables | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

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