Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Well, Hello!

Just a quick check in now that we've all had a chance to breathe after MoFo.  Oh my, wasn't is an epic year?  So many blogs, so much good stuff.  I am still reading through posts that I missed during the month.

A few updates on what's happening in the world of JustTheFood and Joni Marie in general:

If you didn't know already, I have moved back to the city.  I had a great time in Trabuco Canyon for the past 6 years, but it was time for Dan and I to be amongst people again. So we are back home in Long Beach, right where we belong. And, oh man, do I love it.  I am close to everybody and everything...except work...but that's okay, I was used to a long commute before we moved, so no big deal.  Best thing about the new house (besides that it's ours) is that it has gas.  I know that sounds silly, but for someone who loves to cook, having to cook on an electric stove at home for the last 6 years has been awful.  Now, I have a brand new stove with gas burners.  So. Very. Stoked.

Going Vegan.  Man, this is such an important book.  Probably the most heartfelt book I have had the pleasure of writing to date.  I was super lucky to partner with Gerrie Lynn Adams on this project, and we hope to do some signings and events around southern, central, and possibly as far north as San Francisco in the upcoming months.

A podcast.  Yep, I am in the process of producing a podcast.  Vegan Road Rants is my addition to the evergrowing world of vegan podcasts.  The entire thing is recorded while I am driving.  Short rants and raves about whatever topic comes to mind as I am driving to and from work, or wherever else my vegan life takes me.  I even have a few interviews (also recorded while driving) that I can't wait to share. I have been recording segments since 2013, and finally have enough to put together a few episodes to kick it all off.  My goal is to have the first episode out by the Thanksgiving holiday.  Shout outs to Scott McClymonds for creating the awesome logos and Cha Meeno for writing, performing, and recording all of the sound bites, including the intro song.  It's so f'ing amazing.  Here's a sneak peak...

Monday, September 29, 2014

Vegan MoFo VIII, Day 29: Falafelogs with Cucumber Relish

Falafelogs with Cucumber Relish from Going Vegan (page 108)

Am I the only one who thinks falafels are the WRONG shape to put in a pita?  Screw tradition and make your falafels into wieners.  I mean, Oktoberfest, am I right?  This recipe is packed full of flavor, is soy free, nut free, and has no added oil or sugar.  If that's your jam, cool!  If not, trust me, this recipe is still yummers.  Come on guys, you think this girl was going to write an oil free, sugar free recipe that didn't pass the Joni-loves-to-add-Earth-Balance-or-Vegenaise-to-everything test?

Today's recipe is from the brand spankin' new Going Vegan: The Complete Guide to Making a Healthy Transition to a Plant-Based Lifestyle.  This book just came out in August, so I really should be pushing it harder than I have been. So, try this recipe, and any of the others that have been posted here on the blog, then head on over to your favorite bookseller and pick one up for a friend who has been thinking about making the switch. Or give one to your family member that always asks you where you get your protein. Or to you best friend's brother who always makes jokes about how your tofu sandwich would be better with a few slices of bacon added to it. (If he reads the story of Sophie the pig who lives at farm sanctuary and still wants bacon, then he really is heartless!) Answers to all of those questions and more, plus recipes for those who want to cure what ails them through food, and those who just want to stop killing and torturing other living beings all for the sake of a tasty meal.  Thanks.  I owe ya one.

Falafelogs with Cucumber Relish
• Soy free
• Nut free
• No added oil
• No added sugar
This dish is like a falafel hot dog! These logs are fun to make, and they’re easy, too. The parsley and cilantro add a bright, fresh flavor.

For Falafelogs:
1 can (15 ounces, or 425 g) chickpeas, drained and rinsed, or 1 3/4 cups (TK) cooked chickpeas
1 cup (160 g) diced yellow onion (about 1/2 large onion)
1 Roma tomato, roughly chopped (about 1/3 cup)
1 ounce (28 g) fresh parsley (about 1 cup fresh leaves)
1/2 ounce (14 g) fresh cilantro (about 1/3 cup fresh leaves)
2 to 4 large garlic cloves, to taste
1/2 cup (60 g) chickpea flour
1/2 cup (72 g) vital wheat gluten flour
1 tablespoon (15 ml) lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

For Cucumber Relish:
1/2 cup (128 g) tahini (See “Veggie Bite” below.)
1/4 cup (60 ml) lemon juice
3 to 4 large cloves garlic, to taste
2 teaspoons dried dill or 2 tablespoons (7 g) fresh dill
1 medium cucumber, seeded and diced (about 1 1/2 cups)
2 Roma tomatoes, seeded and diced (about 2/3 cup)
1 tablespoon (1 g) fresh chopped cilantro
1 tablespoon (1 g) fresh chopped parsley
Salt, to taste
Ground black pepper, to taste
6 to 8 pitas

To make the falafelogs: Add log ingredients to a food processor and process until a loose dough forms. (It should be the consistency of peanut butter.)
Transfer mixture to a bowl, cover, and chill 20 to 30 minutes in the refrigerator. (This step allows the gluten to develop.)
Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C, or gas mark 4). Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment or reusable silicone baking mat.
Scoop about 1/3 cup (3 1/2 ounces, or 100 g) dough and form into a log shape about 6- to 7-inches long by 1 1/2-inches wide (15 to 17-cm long x 4-cm wide). (The dough is very soft, and you may need to form the log right on the baking sheet. Don't worry, they will firm up when baked.)
Repeat until all of the dough is used. Bake 20 minutes, flip, and bake 20 minutes, or until exterior is firm and browned. (They might look dry, but the inside will be nice and soft.)
Meanwhile, prepare the Cucumber Relish.
To make the relish: Into a blender, pour tahini, lemon juice, and garlic. Purée until smooth. (The lemon juice will curdle the tahini (similar to buttermilk), resulting in an airy, fluffy-like mixture.)
Remove mixture from the blender and place in a mixing bowl. Fold in dill, cucumber, tomatoes, cilantro, and parsley. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Chill until ready to serve.
Assemble the pitas by placing the Falafelog in the center and topping with a liberal amount of relish.

Yield: 6 to 8 servings

Veggie Bite
Tahinis vary in texture and thickness, from very liquidy to very thick. This measure assumes you’re using a more liquid tahini. If yours is very thick, you may need to thin it out with water or vegetable broth to reach the consistency of a pourable milkshake. You want a total of 1/2 cup (120 ml), so adjust tahini amount as needed. You can make the logs gluten free by substituting chickpea flour for the vital wheat gluten flour. The logs may be a little more fragile, but they will still taste great!

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Vegan MoFo VIII, Day 25: Garlic Orange Brussels Sprouts (and a giveaway!)

Garlic Orange Brussells Sprouts from Fusion Food in the Vegan Kitchen (page 125)
Tonight you get two recipes (from Fusion Food in the Vegan Kitchen: 125 Comfort Food Classics, Reinvented with an Ethnic Twist!) for the price of one.  A wonderfully delicious recipe for brussells sprouts that makes a great side dish, plus a kick-ass recipe for Garlic Orange Sauce that tastes great on just about anything...tofu, seitan, brussells sprouts (duh) and works great as a dipping sauce for egg rolls and other finger foods.

In addition, I am also giving away a copy of this book to one lucky reader.  Open for anyone to enter, and I will ship internationally.  Just follow the prompts in the widget below.  And if you already have this book...would you mind doing me a solid and leaving a review over on Amazon?  I'd love ya for it.

Garlic Orange Brussels Sprouts
*Quick and Easy
*Nut Free
Don't like brussells sprouts? Please try these ones. They might just make you a believer.

2 tablespoons (30 ml) olive oil
1 shallot, thinly sliced
1 pound (454 g) fresh brussels sprouts, cut in half
1 cup (235 ml) Garlic Orange Sauce (below)

In a large frying pan, heat olive oil over medium heat.
Add shallots brussels sprouts cut side down in a single layer and saute, about 5 minutes, until fragrant and tender and edges of sprouts begin to brown.
Flip and cook another five minutes.
Add in sauce and toss to coat.

Yield: 4 servings

Garlic Orange Sauce
*Quick and Easy
*Low Fat
*Nut Free
Rich with orange goodness, and as spicy as you like it by adjusting the amount of red chilies, this sauce works well as a dipping sauce, as a glaze for any of your favorite proteins, or over rice and vegetables.

1 cup (235 ml) water
1 cup (235 ml) orange juice
1/4 cup (60 ml) lemon juice
1/4 cup (60 ml) rice vinegar
3 tablespoons (45 ml) soy sauce
2 tablespoons (12 g) orange zest
1/2 cup (55 g) tightly packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon (15 g) minced garlic
1/4 to 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes, more or less to taste
1/4 cup (32 g) cornstarch mixed with 1/2 cup (235 ml) cold water to make a slurry.

In a pot, stir together all ingredients except cornstarch slurry, and bring to a boil.
Reduce to a simmer and simmer 10 minutes.
Stir in slurry and remove from heat. Stir to thicken.
Keep warm until ready to use, or pour in to an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to two weeks until ready to use.

Yield: 3 cups (705 ml)

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2012 Copyright/Permissions/Disclaimers

All recipes written by me, Joni Marie Newman, unless otherwise noted. Please feel free to refer to or link back to any of my recipes, but please ask for permission, or remember to give credit when reprinting recipes in their entirety. I do provide links to affiliate programs (such as Amazon) in which I receive a small commission for items purchased. I do not provide paid reviews. All reviews done on products or books are of my own unsolicited opinion. On occasion I may receive a book or product to review. I will note when this is the case, but rest assured, it will not affect the authenticity of my review. Thanks!--Joni