Friday, September 30, 2011

Cinnamon Bread

Cinnamon bread! Not to be confused with cinnamon buns, this bread is perfect for toasting and serving with a little Earth Balance or go the extra mile and make some French Toast with this stuff. So much better than using plain white or whole wheat bread. This recipe requires very little work but a lot of time, due to it needing to be proofed twice. But trust me, it is definitively worth all that extra time because you cannot even compare how this tastes to that store bought stuff.

Makes 1 loaf

* 1 cup non-dairy milk
* 6 Tb vegan margarine ( I used Earth Balance )
* 1 packet dry active yeast or 2 1/2 tsp
* 2 Tb grounded flax seeds, dissolved in 6 Tb water
* 1/3 cup sugar
* 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
* 1 tsp salt
* 1/3 cup sugar
* 2 Tb cinnamon
* 1 Tb vegan margarine, for brushing
* about 2 Tb vegan margarine, for greasing the loaf pan

1. In a small saucepan, melt the margarine with the milk until warm but not boiling. It should be at about 115 F. Sprinkle yeast over the top, gently stir and allow to sit for about 10 minutes.

2. In a small bowl, sift together the flour and salt.

3. In the bowl of an electric mixer, using the paddle attachment, mix together the sugar with the flax seeds until well combined. Pour the milk/margarine/yeast mixture and stir to combine. Add half the flour mixture and beat until combined. Add the rest of the flour and beat to combine.

4. Switch to the dough hook and allow it to knead for about 10 minutes. If the dough is still too sticky, add another 1/4 cup of flour and knead for another 5 minutes.

5. Drizzle a little canola oil in a medium sized mixing bowl, then toss the dough in the oil to coat. Cover the bowl with a damp towel and set in a warm place for at least 2 hours.

6. Turn the dough onto a work surface and roll it out to a rectangle no wider than the loaf pan and about 18 inches long. Smear 2 Tb of melted margarine. Mix the cinnamon and sugar together, then sprinkle evenly over the buttered dough.

7. Starting at one end, roll the dough toward you, keeping it neat and tight. Pinch the seam to seal.

8. Smear your loaf pan with butter. Place dough, seam side down, in the pan. Cover with a damp towel and allow it to rise for another 2 hours in a warm place.

9. Preheat oven to 350F. Brush the top of the loaf with 1 Tb of melted margarine and bake for 40 minutes.

10. Remove from oven and allow to cool. Slice and serve!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Pumpkin Pie with Vegan Condensed Milk

I know we still have awhile until Thanksgiving but I just love pumpkin pie and I enjoy baking it year round. I usually make mine with tofu, which comes out okay but doesn't taste exactly like how I remember pumpkin pie to be. I decided to convert a regular dairy pumpkin pie recipe to a vegan one. The only challenge was making a vegan version of sweetened condensed milk. The secret to this is soy milk powder, which I found at Whole Foods. The condensed milk makes a world of difference and now I can't even tell that this pie is vegan!

Sweetened Condensed Milk
* 3/4 cup water
* 3/4 cup dry soy milk powder ( Try Better than Milk brand )
* 6 Tb non-dairy margarine
* 1 1/2 cups vegan sugar

Pumpkin Pie Mix
* 1 ( 15 ounce ) can of pumpkin puree ( not pumpkin pie mix )
* 1 recipe of vegan sweetened condensed milk ( equal to 14 ounces )
* 2 Tb cornstarch
* 1 tsp cinnamon
* 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
* 1/2 tsp ground ginger
* 1/2 tsp salt
* 1 9" unbaked pie crust or 12 mini pie crusts

First make the condensed milk...

1. In a small saucepan, mix together the water and soy milk powder under medium heat until boiling. Turn off heat and set aside.

2. In another small saucepan, melt the butter under medium heat. Slowly whisk in the sugar until its all incorporated.

3. Add the hot milk and simmer for 5 minutes. Turn off heat and set aside.

Preheat oven to 425 F...

4. Whisk together the pumpkin puree, sweetened condensed milk, cornstarch, spices and salt in a medium bowl until smooth.

5. Pour into crust and bake for 15 minutes. Lower temperature to 350 F and bake for another hour or until a knife inserted one inch from the crust comes out clean. Cool and store in the refrigerator.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Chocolate Chip Brownies

Brownies, who doesn't love them. I thought I'd make these for my boyfriend as a nice surprise, since brownies are his absolute favorite. I added 1/2 cup of chocolate chips for an extra something. This batter is really easy to make and there is hardly any work needed. Eat these alone or with a big scoop of vegan vanilla ice cream as the ultimate dessert.

* 1 cup semisweet vegan chocolate chips, divided
* 1/4 cup non dairy milk
* 3/4 cup sugar
* 1/2 cup canola oil
* 2 tsp vanilla extract
* 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
* 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
* 1/4 tsp baking powder
* 1/2 tsp baking soda
* 1/4 tsp salt

1. Preheat the oven to 325 F. Lightly grease a 9x13 inch baking pan.

2. Melt 2/3 cup of the chocolate chips, either using a double broiler or by placing them on high in a microwave safe bowl for 30 seconds. Stir the partially melted chocolate chips and microwave again for 30 seconds.

3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the non daily milk, sugar, canola oil and vanilla extract. Mix on high speed for 1 minute.

4. Sift in the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Stir until well mixed. Then mix in the melted chocolate chips.

5. Fold in the remaining 1/2 cup of chocolate chips. Spread the batter in the baking pan. Bake for 25 minutes.

6. Remove from the oven and let cool. To serve warm, allow to cool for about 30 minutes. Slice and serve.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Peanut Butter Cups

This was my third time making these bad boys and by far the easiest. In the past I've followed what others had said and made them using cupcake wrappers as my mold. But today I took a little trip to Michaels ( a large craft store here in the US ) and saw that they sold candy molds for under $2. I found the same molds here, if anyone is interested in purchasing. So much easier and the result was far better than using the cupcake wrappers.

As for the recipe, I've seen some people use confectioners' sugar, shortening and even butter. I like to keep it super simply with only chocolate chips and peanut butter as my ingredients. No need for the extra sugar or fat, these taste just as great. I didn't plan on blogging these but was so impressed by the results of the molds that I just had to. I plan on making more of these very soon, so I promise to post step by step pictures within the next few days.

Makes about 30 peanut butter cups

* 2 cups semi-sweet vegan chocolate chips
* 1/2 cup softened peanut butter

1. Melt chocolate chips using a double broiler. If you do not have a double broiler, I like to fill a small saucepan with water, bring it to a boil and then place a glass bowl over the saucepan so that the water barely touches the bottom of the glass bowl. Lower the heat to the lowest setting and slowly stir the chocolate chips until all are melted.

2. Once all the chocolate chips are melted, fill each candy mold about 1/3 of the way full and then using a small paint brush, spread the melted chocolate all the way up the mold's sides. It should be a coating about 1/8 of an inch thick.

3. Place the chocolate covered molds in the freezer until it has hardened, about 5 minutes.

4. Place about 1/2 tsp of peanut butter in each mold. Lastly, cover the peanut butter layer with about 1/2 tsp of melted chocolate. Spread to make sure its covered completely. Freeze until firm, about 10-15 minutes.

5. Carefully flip over and gently press each peanut butter cup out of the candy molds. Store refrigerated.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Southern Beef-Less Stew

I thought I'd make my favorite stew one last time before summer arrived. I love this stew because it is packed with veggies and is a little different from the stews I normally make. I've been using these Gardein Beef-Less Tips in so many recipes. They are so yummy and work wonderfully in recipes such as this. If you aren't a fan, 1 1/2 cups of chickpeas would be a great substitute.

Printer Friendly Recipe Here


* 1 Tb all-purpose flour
* 1 package Gardein Beef-less Tips
* 1 Tb extra virgin olive oil
* 1 medium yellow onion, cut into medium dice
* 2 stalks celery, cut into medium dice
* 1/4 tsp salt
* 1/4 tsp pepper
* 8 ounces button mushrooms, quartered
* 1 Tb minced garlic
* 1 bay leaf
* 1 tsp chopped fresh or dried thyme
* 1 tsp chopped fresh or dried rosemary
* 1 cup dry red wine
* 2 1/2 cups vegan "beef" broth ( try Better than Bouillon brand ) or vegetable broth
* 2 turnips, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
* 2 parsnips, peeled and cubed
* 2 cups chopped collard greens
* Brown rice, for serving

1. Add the olive oil to a large pot and heat over medium high. Add the beef-less tips and cook, stirring occasionally for 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a plate and set aside.

2. Add the onion, celery, mushroom, salt and pepper, stirring, until vegetables are softened, about 3 minutes. Add the flour, stir to well and cook an additional minute.

3. Add the garlic, bay leaf, thyme, rosemary, red wine, "beef" broth. Bring to a slow boil, reduce heat to low and simmer covered for 40 minutes.

4. Add the parsnips, turnips and collard greens, stir well, and cover once again. Simmer an additional 30 minutes or until turnips and parsnips are softened. During the last 10 minutes stir in the beef-less tips.

5. Remove bay leaf and serve over brown rice.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Vegan Mounds

When I went vegan, I knew not being able to have Mounds or Almond Joys anymore was going to be hard. I don't know why I haven't thought about making them for myself until now. The process was really easy, although you do need a little muscle to scoop out the frozen coconut mixture and form them into rectangles. By the end of the batch my arms were a little tired.

If you do not have coconut oil, I know it can be a little pricey, canola oil will work as well. And if you want to save time on melting the chocolate chips, you can place them in the microwave for 30 seconds on high. Remove and stir well until melted.

To make these into Almond Joys, place one almond on top of each coconut rectangle and press down firmly before placing them in the freezer for the second time.

Printer Friendly Recipe Here

Makes 24


* 2 1/2 cups sifted powdered sugar
* 1 Tb plus 1 1/2 tsp light agave nectar
* 2 Tb soy milk
* 1 Tb melted coconut oil
* 1 tsp salt
* 1 tsp vanilla extract
* 1 3/4 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
* 2 cups vegan chocolate chips

1. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

2. In a large bowl, combine 2 1/4 cups of the powdered sugar, the agave nectar, soy milk, coconut oil, salt and vanilla and stir with a rubber spatula until incorporated.

3. Add the shredded coconut and stir until fully combined.

4. Dust a work surface with the remaining 1/4 cup of powdered sugar. Place the coconut mixture on the sugar and roll it around to coat it.

5. Transfer the mixture to one of the baking sheets and, using the palms of your hands, press down until the mixture is about 1 inch thick. Chill in the freezer for 20 minutes.

6. Using a melon baller, scoop the coconut mixture into your palm one scoop at a time. Form the mixture into a small rectangle and arrange it on the second baking sheet. Repeat until all the coconut mixture is used. Return the coconut squares to the freezer for 20 minutes more.

7. Meanwhile, put the chocolate chips in a double broiler and melt over low heat. Using two forks or chopsticks, roll each coconut rectangle around in the chocolate to coat. Put the mound back on the baking sheet and repeat with the remaining coconut and chocolate. Refrigerate for 30 minutes and serve.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Lace Cookies

I got an ice cream maker for my birthday a month ago and haven't been able to use it because the weather has been so darn cold. Finally the temperature warmed up this weekend and I was able to make some delicious vanilla cardamom ice cream.

It needed something extra, so I decided to bake some crunchy lace cookies to go with my dessert. This recipe makes a whole lot, so you might want to divide the ingredients by half if you don't plan on sharing them with a large group. Make sure to space the cookie dough out by at least one inch because they will expand considerably while in the oven. I made the mistake of placing them to closely during my first batch and I was left with one giant cookie. Enjoy these cookies alone or with a giant scoop of vegan ice cream.

Printer Friendly Recipe Here

* Recipe modified from Babycakes Covers the Classics

Makes about 35 cookies


* 1 3/4 cups all-purpose baking flour
* 1 1/2 cups vegan sugar
* 1/4 cup arrowroot
* 1 tsp baking soda
* 1 tsp salt
* 1 cup canola oil
* 1/2 cup applesauce
* 2 Tb vanilla extract

1. Preheat oven to 325 F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, arrowroot, baking soda and salt.

3. Mix in the canola oil, applesauce and vanilla and stir with a rubber spatula until fully incorporated.

4. Drop the dough by the teaspoon onto the prepared baking sheets, about 1 inch apart.

5. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the edges are browned and the center is cooked through.

6. Let stand on the baking sheets for 15 minutes before serving.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Sugar Cookies and Icing

Aren't these the cutest?! I haven't made sugar cookies in a long time but when given these cute Hello Kitty cookie cutters yesterday, I stayed up and baked for most of the night. To my surprise, most of the cookies were gone by the time I woke up this morning.

The sugar cookie dough is not too sweet, so if you don't plan on icing them, you might want to add another half cup of sugar to the recipe. While making the icing, it did appear to have more of a grey-ish color but when allowed to dry, it did turn white. To get the pink color, I added one drop of red food color to half of the icing recipe.

Makes about 20 cookies

Sugar Cookies
* 1 cup vegan margarine
* 1 cup sugar
* 1 tsp vanilla extra
* Egg replacer equivalent of 2 eggs, I like using Ener-G Egg Replacer
* 2 tsp baking powder
* 3 cups flour

* 2 cups confectioners' sugar
* 6-8 tsp soy milk
* 4 tsp light agave nectar
* assorted food coloring, if desired

1. Preheat the oven to 400 F.

2. In a large bowl, cream margarine and sugar with an electric mixer.

3. Beat in the egg replacer and vanilla.

4. In a separate medium sized bowl, sift together the baking powder and flour. Add one cup at a time, mixing after each addition, to the sugar and margarine mixture.

5. Divide the dough into two balls. On a floured surface, roll each ball into circles, approximately 12 inches in diameter and 1/8 inch thick.

6. Dip your cookie cutters in flour before use. Cut out and place about 1 inch apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.

7. Bake for 6-7 minutes, or until cookies are lightly browned.

To make the icing...

8. In a medium bowl, mix together the confectioners' sugar and soy milk until smooth. Beat in agave nectar until icing is smooth and glossy. If icing is too thick, add more agave.

9. Add food coloring if desired. Dip cookies in icing and allow to dry overnight.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Fried Chick'N

I've noticed that a few vegan restaurants out here in Los Angeles serve fried chick'n. I was curious on how they were able to imitate the texture, so I started looking up recipes and I came up on one from Art Smith. I love Gardein so I figured I'd give this recipe a try. It was so easy to make the fried chick'n and the end result was really delicious. My only suggestion is to make sure your chick'n cutlets are frozen. I left mine out to long and they defrosted a little. When that happened, they became extra fragile and began to break really easily. Please do try this recipe, you won't be disappointed : ]

Fried Chick-N
Serves 4

* 1 package Gardein Chick-N Scallopini
* 2 cups soy milk
* 1 Tb tabasco
* 1 cup all-purpose flour
* 1 tsp baking powder
* 1 tsp garlic powder
* 1 tsp old bay seasoning
* 2 tsp cayenne pepper
* 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
* Olive oil or vegetable oil for deep frying

1. Place the chick-n in a medium bowl and add the soy milk and tabasco. Stir well to coat.

2. In a separate shallow bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, garlic powder, old bay, cayenne and black pepper.

3. Shake the extra marinade off the chick-n and then dredge in flour.

4. Shake off extra flour and then dredge again in the marinade and coat again in flour.

5. Add enough oil in a deep large skillet to create a depth of 1 inch. Heat over medium high heat until oil reaches 350 F.

6. Fry the chicken in batches until golden and cooked through, about 5 minutes per side.

7. Drain on paper towels and serve.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Beef-Less Bourguignon

Here's is my take on a classic Julia Child recipe. Beef Bourguignon redone using Gardein's Beef-Less Tips and Lightlife's Smart Bacon. This is something that I totally thought I would never be able to veganise so well. I am absolutely loving Gardein's new Beef-Less Tips. It was my second time cooking with them and they really do make dishes like this possible again. Serve this dish alone or with a side of pasta noodles or rice.

Serves 4

* 2 Tb extra virgin olive oil
* 5 ounces vegan bacon
* 1 package of Gardein Beefless Tips
* 5 carrots, sliced diagonally into 1 inch chunks
* 1 yellow onion, sliced
* 2 garlic cloves, minced
* salt and pepper
* 1 Tb all-purpose flour
* 1/2 cups red wine
* 1 cup "beef" stock, such as Better than Bouillon
* 1 Tb tomato paste
* 18 small white pearl onions
* 4 Tb vegan margarine, try Earth Balance
* 1 tsp fresh thyme or 1/2 tsp dried thyme
* 1 bay leaf
* 2 cups button mushrooms, quartered

1. In a large pot, saute the "bacon" in 1 Tb extra virgin olive oil for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from pan and set aside.

2. Add another 1 Tb of olive oil to the pan and the "beef" and cook 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove and set aside.

3. Add the carrots and onions to the pan, add 1 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp pepper and cook for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are lightly browned. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute.

4. Return the "bacon" and "beef" back to the pot. Add the red wine and enough "beef" broth.

5. Add the tomato paste, thyme and bay leaf. Bring to a simmer, cover and simmer on low heat for 30 minutes.

6. Combine 2 Tb of margarine and the flour and stir into the stew and add the pearl onions.

7. Saute the mushrooms in 2 tablespoons of margarine for 10 minutes or until lightly browned and then add to the stew.

8. Bring the stew to a boil and the lower the heat and allow to simmer for 15 minutes. Remove bay leaf and season to taste.