I be MoFoin’

October 30, 2010 | 2 Comments »


Vegan MoFo

I’ve decided to participate in Vegan MoFo after all. I didn’t think I would this year. For many reasons. The main reason being my ‘illness’. For those of you who haven’t heard me rant about this, today is your lucky day. About two years ago I choked on an evil mushroom. I haven’t been the same ever since. Now whenever I eat my entire body tenses up and I end up choking. Long story short, doctors have tested and tested and can’t find anything medically wrong. I along with tons of other people suffer from something known as dysphagia. I’m stuck with it and have to learn to live with it. I know I participated in Vegan MoFo last year WHILE suffering from this illness, but the problem wasn’t as bad then. Now? It’s gotten much worse. Back then I only choked on solids. Now I find myself choking on liquids as well as my own saliva. I know. Awesome.

Some foods are harder to eat than others. Foods that contain some sort of skin (yep, everything a vegan eats) usually have to be sliced VERY thin or peeled. Otherwise I’ll have a very hard time getting it down. I don’t always have a problem with beans though. Although sometimes a piece of skin will get stuck in my throat and I’ll fall over and start twitching until I realize a big gulp of water will fix me. Ok, so I’m kidding about the twitching. But it really is a project to sit at the table and enjoy a meal. It was something I always took for granted. It came so easy to me. My how things have changed.

There are a few other things that stood in my way. I’ve since moved to the middle of nowhere. I literally have to cook every single thing I consume. St. Louis is about 45-60 minutes away and I can always find some delicious vegan grub there, but the commute isn’t always possible. I don’t always have 3 or 4 hours to spare. It’s not like back in Jersey where I can hop on a bus and be in New York City in 15 minutes and make it back home before sunset. I sure do miss those days. Anyway, I might love to cook, but there are times that I want to be pampered and cooked for. My husband doesn’t cook much of his own food let alone preparing me a vegan meal. So there are times that I’ll eat nothing more than a bowl of Cream of Wheat or oatmeal or sometimes nothing at all. Doesn’t make for an interesting blog post, does it?

There’s also the fact that I’m now working and Ethan is in school now so I help him with his homework and studies. I’m much busier this time around. But last year I was preparing for a move halfway across the country while participating so that kind of evens things out. In the end I decided to suck it up and stop being a baby and have some fun. I think having a reason to cook will motivate me to try harder. Yes, things have changed… a lot. But sitting at the table sulking over some Cream of Wheat is no way to live.

I think I mentioned this last year too, but I figured I’d warn you all again. I’m not much of a recipe creator as I am a recipe follower. I do experiment a little here and there and sometimes end up with something that works for me. When that happens I’ll gladly share my ‘recipe’ with you. I’ll try to bring you something a little different. I don’t have a theme or anything, but I’ll focus on work-arounds for my illness and living situation. I will overcome this. This might just be the month that happens.

Tempeh BBQ wings

October 18, 2010 | 9 Comments »


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A few days ago I came across this recipe for tempeh hot wings while searching for tempeh recipes. They look amazing, don’t they? I was dying to try it out, but I wasn’t in the mood for anything spicy. So I decided to whip up a batch of my favorite BBQ sauce. I still say that sauce is the best I’ve ever tried. It should be bottled and sold in stores all over the world. It’s that good! I only make one teeny tiny little change which is an added teaspoon of liquid smoke. Perfection!

So I sliced up the tempeh, steamed it until it was tender, dredged it in flour, dipped it in non-dairy milk and then dredged it in panko breadcrumbs. Then I fried the tempeh in a little oil until golden brown and then dipped the ‘wings’ in the BBQ sauce. I probably should have baked the tempeh, but I wanted to be a little naughty so I fried them instead.

These ‘wings’ were AWESOME! Even Juan grabbed some and started munching on them. It’s been a while since he’s eaten anything I’ve made. These really caught his attention. I totally get it though. Seriously, look at them! I’ll definitely be making these on a regular basis. Well, not the fried version of course.

Tempeh chicken salad

October 13, 2010 | 4 Comments »


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I’ve been vegan for a little over 2 1/2 years now. Would you believe that I’ve never experimented with tempeh? I thought I didn’t like it. You see, a while back I purchased premade tempeh at the market. One had a cherry glaze which was very yummy. However, the tempeh itself was hard and dry. The other was just downright awful. It was also hard and dry, but the taste was even worse. I guess it just turned me off of tempeh all together. Of course I still eat tempeh bacon. That stuff is amazing. But that’s about as far as I’d go. It never occurred to me to buy a package of tempeh to experiment with it myself. That is until last week when I reached for Veganomicon and decided on the Baja Style Tempeh Tacos.

To tell you the truth I’m not even sure why I opted for the tempeh tacos. I guess I wanted to give tempeh another shot? I also wanted to try out a new recipe from the book. There are a ton I haven’t even gotten to yet. That’s probably because I keep making the same ones over and over again. Anyway, the tacos were FANTASTIC! I was seriously impressed. The texture was so much different than the other tempeh dishes I had previously tried. This tempeh was tender (but not too tender) and moist. It was so full of flavor. I was in love.

As I was sitting there eating my delicious tempeh tacos I was thinking of all of the possibilities. What else could I do with this stuff? Grilled tempeh, BBQ tempeh, tempeh hot ‘wings’, shepherd’s pie (a wonderful fall favorite)… chicken salad! I was thinking about that chicken salad all week. Today I got to work. I’m sure there are a ton of tempeh chicken salad recipes out there, but this is what I went with.

Ingredients

  • 1 8 oz package of tempeh
  • 2 1/2 – 3 cups water
  • 1 Not-Chick’n Bouillon cube
  • 1/4 cup celery, diced
  • 1/4 cup sweet onion, diced
  • 1/4 cup bread and butter pickles, diced
  • 1 cup lettuce, chopped
  • 1/2 cup Vegenaise
  • 2 tsp tarragon leaves
  • salt and pepper to taste

First boil the water and whisk in the bouillon cube until completely dissolved. Turn the heat down to a simmer. Slice the tempeh in 6 equal strips and place it in the pot of water and simmer for about 15 minutes or until tender. Remove tempeh from the water and allow to cool. Cut tempeh into small chunks and toss in a mixing bowl with the other ingredients. Refrigerate for an hour or so before eating. It tastes SO much better cold. I also like to add in a little dijon. It depends on my mood though. If I want a lighter tasting salad I’ll eat it as is. But if I want a little extra zing the dijon really does kick it up a couple of notches.

And now a question for you fine people. What are your favorite tempeh recipes? I’ll definitely be experimenting more in the future and would love to try out some of your favorites if you have any.

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