Thursday, May 31, 2012

Easy Breezy Summer Afternoons (are perfect for mac salad!)

Man, do I love a warm sunny day.  It begs for you to come outside and enjoy yourself instead of cooping yourself up inside and staring at a computer screen.  And when I spend the day outside, the last thing I want to do is go back inside to cook!

Whether barbecuing, or just having a sandwich, I always make a tasty side salad to add in to the mix.  Potato, pasta, or even a simple green salad, it doesn't much matter, as long as it is full of flavor and isn't BORING!

Here is a recipe for one of my favorite things:  Macaroni Salad.   I make macaroni salad, probably once a week.  I love it.  I can eat bowls of it for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  Or in the case of a warm sunny day, I can snuggle up in a hammock and enjoy a bowl of mac salad.  Ha.  I am not lying.

Buffalo Mac Salad
It can be found on page 100 of The Complete Guide to Vegan Food Substitutions. 


Spicy Red Buffalo Macaroni Salad

For the Creamy Spicy Buffalo Dressing
14 ounces (396 g) soft silken tofu, drained
1 stick (1/2 cup, 112 g) nondairy butter, melted
1/4 cup (60 ml) vegetable oil
2 to 4 tablespoons (30 to 60 ml) hot sauce, like Tobasco, depending on how spicy you like it
1 tablespoon (8 g) garlic powder
Salt and pepper to taste

For the Salad 
1 pound (454 g) elbow macaroni, prepared according to package instructions
1 ounce (28 g) fresh baby spinach leaves
1 cup (6 ounces) chopped roasted red peppers
1/2 cup (80 g) diced red onion
1 cup (100 g) chopped celery
1 tablespoon (8 g) red pepper flakes

To make the dressing, add all ingredients to a blender and puree until smooth.
To make the salad, rinse and drain cooked pasta and return it to the pot.
Add dressing, spinach, red peppers, onion, celery and red pepper flakes.
Toss to coat.

Yield: 8 servings


Saturday, May 19, 2012

And the winners are...

#30 and #40!

#30

#40

Congratulations Charj and Melinda!  Please send me an email (to joni AT justthefood DOT com) with your mailing address so that I can send you your book!

My nephew, Dominic, is spending the weekend with us, and he randomly chose the numbers.

This is Dominic.



Saturday, May 12, 2012

Dust off those BBQ grills! (and a giveaway!)

We are dangerously close to summer, and nothing says summer like cooking outdoors on the grill.  And what better to cook on the grill then....you guessed it....veggie burgers!   While companies like Gardein and Wildwood have taken amazing strides forward in making a great premade veggie patties that taste good unlike their former hockey-puck-like predecessors, there's still nothing quite like a home made veggie burger.

I thought I'd kick off this grillin' season with a veggie burger that celebrates veggies in all of their glory!  You know, contrary to the belief of some of the reviewers over on Amazon, my book, The Best Veggie Burgers on the Planet includes many burgers that are soy free, wheat free, and some that are even wheat and soy free.  The recipe below is soy free.  And in addition to the recipe below, I am giving away 2 signed copies of The Best Veggie Burgers on the Planet.  Just leave a comment in the blog comments telling me your favorite meal to prepare on the grill and I will choose 2 random winners on Friday, May 18 at 6 pm PST.  (Yes, I will ship internationally!)   THIS CONTEST IS NOW OVER THE WINNERS ARE #30 CHARJ AND #40 MALINDA.  STAY TUNED FOR ANOTHER GIVEAWAY SOON.

Mushroom, Asparagus and Spinach Burger on a whole wheat bun with spinach, avocado and Vegenaise.

Mushroom, Asparagus, and Spinach Burger
This recipe is a good one to make ahead of time and follow the directions all the way through the baking step.  Then freeze them in between layers of parchment.  Whenever you want a burger, pop one out of the freezer and pan fry or grill until heated all the way through.

Serving Suggestion: Chock-full of veggies, this one doesn’t need much. Place on a nice wheat bun with some crispy greens, some slices of ripe avocado, maybe a schmear of vegan mayo, and you’re good to go.

3 cups (705 ml) vegetable broth
8 ounces (227 g) mushrooms, sliced or chopped
1 onion, diced
1 cup (108 g) shredded carrots
2 teaspoons (10 g) minced garlic
1 cup (190 g) uncooked brown rice
1 cup (134 g) 1/2-inch (1.3 cm) pieces asparagus spears
2 cups (60 g) chiffonaded spinach leaves
2 tablespoons (8 g) chopped fresh dill
1 cup (80 g) uncooked oats
1/2 cup (65 g) ground cashews
1 cup (120 g) whole wheat flour
1/2 cup (72 g) vital wheat gluten flour
Salt and pepper
Oil, for frying (optional)

To a large pot, add the vegetable broth, mushrooms, onion, carrots, and garlic. Bring to a boil. Lower the heat to a simmer and stir in the rice. Cover and simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the rice is fully cooked.
            Uncover and stir in the asparagus, spinach, and dill. Continue to cook, uncovered, until most of the moisture has been absorbed.
            Remove from the heat, stir in the oats, cover, and let sit for 10 minutes.
            Mix in the cashews, whole wheat flour, gluten flour, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix very well until all ingredients are well incorporated. Use your hands if necessary. Cover and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes to thicken up a bit.
            Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C, or gas mark 4). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
            Form into 10 patties, place on the prepared baking sheet, and bake for 20 minutes, until firm and warmed all the way through. If desired, you can fry or grill these after baking, to give them a nice crispy crust.

Yield: 10 patties
(Nutritional info does not include the optional oil for frying.)




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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