Tag Archives: recipes

2nd try: Chickpea crêpe fail, too much computer time, Wichita and modern book editing

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I tried to make another chickpea crêpe this morning, using this recipe. Epic fail. It was way too thick, stuck to the pan, and I had to cook it forever to get it past gooey stage. I didn’t have asafoetida, garlic paste, or ginger paste, so I guess I subbed too many things? Or maybe I just needed to make sure the batter was a lot thinner. Next time I’ll start again with the VegNews recipe and try my variations from there.

Unfortunately, I spent most of this beautiful late summer day in front of the computer, working on the show (at home and at the studio). This evening, though, I was able to hang out with the hubs for some much-needed time together—sans kids.

I’ve also had a chance to read a novel over the last few days, something I’ve been going without for a few weeks. I’m working on Wichita by Thad Ziolkowski. It took me a few tries to get into it, but now I’m flying and am halfway through. Problem is, the egregious amount of typos and errors is distracting and sometimes confusing. We’re talking whole words omitted or repeated in the wrong place, in multiple areas of the book. I don’t understand why this is happening more and more in the books I’m reading lately. Why aren’t modern books being properly edited?! Or am I losing my mind? {Don’t answer that.}

Trying out the Chickpea Crêpe

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I tried a new Robin Robertson recipe tonight {from VegNews Magazine}. Although I’ve used chickpea {garbanzo} flour before for batter in french toast, etc., it’s never occurred to me to try a crêpe. And a quick internet search brings up all kinds of tasty-sounding variations.

Chickpea Crepe

Chickpea Crepe

Crispy Chickpea Crêpe ingredients: chickpea flour, salt, pepper, minced fresh rosemary or basil, water, minced red onion, pitted kalamata olives.

I used basil and capers {instead of olives}. And I forgot about the onions, even though I had plenty available. The verdict: not bad. Hubby happened to come home just as I was trying it—he had a piece and liked it {before he knew it was made out of chickpeas, which he doesn’t usually care for}.

Even though I really like chickpeas, I think things made with chickpea flour have a slight aftertaste. The flour has a really strong taste before cooking, but even after there is still a slight hint of something that you have to get used to. Nevertheless, I’ll try this again. It’s a quick and easy way to put together something filling that’s not made of wheat. {We bake our own bread, and there’s always plenty of dough or baked slices around, and I get tired of it.} It also might work for a breakfast dish.

Taste Test: Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Vegan Bon Bons

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Today I happened upon this idea. I thought it might be fun for the girls to make these at my step-daughter’s birthday party coming up on Monday. Of course, we had to do a test first. {We just happened to have the sprinkles, so we thought, “Why not?!”} 

We didn’t even last an hour before pulling them out of the freezer and having a couple. The bananas were still a little soft, which made them taste kind of like a creamy banana peanut butter cup—delicious! I’m sure they will be good frozen solid as well.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Vegan Bon Bons, with Sprinkles

Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Vegan Bon Bons, with Sprinkles

Our vegan pizza day

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Vegan Pizza Day 2012

Vegan Pizza Day 2012

We had some omnivore friends over for dinner, and it happened to be Vegan Pizza Day. I made two pizzas: one was brushed with herb oil (see below) and then had artichoke hearts, kalamata olives, capers, and white Daiya. The other had a red sauce, pineapple, tomatoes, capers, and white Daiya. The first one was my favorite.

{Both were better than the pizzas I threw together last night. Those had crusts that were way too thick and doughy for my taste.}

I experimented with two ways to make thin crispy crust this time:

For the first one, on the advice of Roberto Martin in Vegan Cooking for Carnivores, I bought a cheap pizza screen. (I thought a pizza screen was a pizza pan with holes in the bottom. I now realize that he probably meant the actual “screen” kind—mine might be more accurately called a “crisper”). I made sure to roll the dough out very thin, about the size of the pan, and then placed it in the pan.

For the second one, I also rolled the dough out super thin, this time slightly larger than my pizza paddle. I then pre-baked the dough on the baking stone for about 10 minutes. After that, I removed it, put the toppings on, and baked it the rest of the way fully dressed.

Both crusts came out pretty crispy. The pizza screen one might have been a little bit crispier, but it was also on the bottom rack. The one on the baking stone took longer to bake, but I think this was mostly due to the thick layer of toppings. So, as it turns out, I didn’t necessarily need to buy the pizza screen/crisper, but it was a little easier to deal with and would be pretty easy to use in the BBQ once the weather gets super hot here.

Herb OilThis was the first day that I’ve spent a little time flipping through Vegan Cooking for Carnivoreswhich I have out from the library. It’s where I got the recipe for herb oil. Fresh rosemary {Trader Joe’s}, basil {farmer’s market}, thyme {lemon thyme from our herb garden}, olive oil, garlic {fresh, from farmer’s market}, salt, and pepper in the Vitamix = yum! Isn’t is a pretty green? There is a ton left-over (another larger jar plus this one), and I’m sure I will be putting it in/on a lot of things over the next few weeks. In general, I’ve cut back on cooking with oils, but I will use the herb oil sparingly for that little extra something in a variety of dishes. I’m already thinking of pasta, sauteed kale…

Vegan crepes buffet

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Crepes Buffet

A few days ago when I was in tax haze, I woke up craving weekend pancakes, wondering if I could take the time to make them. Smells must have wafted up to my room, because when I went downstairs, my older step-daughter was well into making vegan crepes! They were beautifully thin, and very tasty. {I’ll have to ask her which crepe recipe she found, and report back.} Here’s a pic of our little crepe buffet. I’d like to try them again, on a slower weekend day.

Toppings: melted vegan chocolate chips, coconut flakes, raspberries, grapefruit glaze {we had grapefruits to use up}.

Ramping up for the week: An afternoon of cooking and baking

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I spent most of the afternoon and evening cooking again. {This involved using and cleaning the Vitamix 3 to 4 times, but was totally worth it.} Probably I was procrastinating finishing those taxes, but I also had news research to do and just didn’t feel like spending time in front of the computer. Plus, I really wanted to get a bunch of stuff made so that we could start the week off with prepared food. I think this is everything:

  • My typical weekend Breakfast Scramble
  • Hummus
  • Seitan {Basic Seitan recipe from The Sexy Vegan Cookbook. What’s different about this recipe is the addition of russet potatoes. I never have very much luck with seitan. This one turned out a little better than usual—not terribly puffy and the taste is pretty good. I think it will make good sandwiches.}
  • Egg-less Egg Salad
  • Two loaves of bread
  • Double-Apple Muffins {I made this name up. The Basic Vegan Muffins with Fruity Variations recipe is from Vegan Holiday Kitchen. We were out of yogurt and applesauce, so I made some quick applesauce in the Vitamix with two red Pink Lady apples and 1 green Granny Smith, skins on. I added just a bit of water. It was fantastic just like that—somehow tasted like it had sweetener and cinnamon in it. So I used the homemade applesauce in the recipe, and ate the leftovers. Then I diced up a couple more red apples to mix into the batter at the end (the recipe called for peeling, but why lose those nutrients and fiber?—I left them on). I also added the few raisins we had left and some cinnamon. I baked them in the mini muffin tin. They are tasty, but not too sweet, and will make good snacks this week. Although I should have tripled the batch, because with 5 people they won’t go far.}
  • Tahini Garlic Dressing {this was yesterday, but I forgot to mention it}

We ate the split-pea soup for dinner. It was a little thinner than I’d planned on, even though I used 3 cups of split-peas, but still tasty. Tomorrow, when some of the water evaporates, it’s going to be just right.