Saturday, February 09, 2008

My Week In Food

Oh yeah!
It's so super fun to be back in the kitchen again! I really missed all my cooking adventures. Look what I've been up to this week:

Okay, so sad. My first "home-cooked" dinner back? Spaghetti with red sauce & veggie meatballs. Pathetic! Ha ha. Still, it's quick and easy and it's one of Musty's most favorite meals of all time. I did do a few moves to make it more nutritious - the noodles are whole wheat, and at least the veggie meatballs give a nice protein blast. Plus can you see the delicious roasted butternut squash & brocolli? YUM!

We didn't have an oven in India, and I REALLY missed baking! Even more than I missed baking, I missed eating yummy baked treats! So, where does a girl turn? "Eat Drink and Be Vegan" of course! I LOVE Dreena's cookie recipes so much. These are the "Jam Dot Cookies" (or something like that). They were great! They were *exactly* what I was hoping for - nutritious and delicious and still a treat - walnuts, hemp seeds, maple syrup, jam... nutty yummy and tasty.

I felt a bit sad about leaving India, but I'll tell you what... going to the Farmer's Market put an end to that! I was just beaming with joy... it was hard not to buy absolutely everything! All the smiling people, the clean air, the beautiful fruits and veggies) - heaven! Here's what I came home with: 5 navel oranges, 2 Cara Cara oranges, 1 Pomelo, brocolli, cabbage, 1 yam, 2 lbs of fresh tofu, parsely, garlics, a big bag of brussel sprouts, and some herbed sourdough pizza dough! YEAH! All organic except for those 2 cara cara oranges. Have you ever had a Cara Cara orange? They are totally delicious and beautiful - I think they are a cross of an orange and a grapefruit, so they had a gorgeous rosy hue. One of the best things about winter is *definitely* citrus fruit! I'm so happy about it. I've been eating 2-3 oranges a day... and I can't wait to bust open that beautiful pomelo.

By the way, how cool is that pizza dough situation!? I was going to head over to Trader Joes and buy some of their pizza dough, and then I saw this at the market - organic, sourdough (mmm!), whole wheat, and locally made. It was $4, which is certainly more expensive than TJ's, but I'll check it out. It's in my freezer now... waiting for the inspiration to strike. I can't wait to try it!

A couple of nights ago, I made us a little taco bar for dinner. Sprouted corn tortillas, fresh salsa, refries (spruced up with salsa, cumin, and garlic), fresh cabbage, cilantro, and veggies. While I was gone in India, Musty filled up the freezer with all sorts of Musty-items like frozen veggies, french bread pizza, and meat lasagna. Sigh! So, I thought I'd cook up some of those frozen veggies for our tacos. I haven't eaten frozen veggies for a long time, but they were just fine. We also had some canned mango from Trader Joes out of our pantry. The mango was a bust. Not much flavor, nothing very mango-y about it at all. Oh well, at least that can isn't taking up space in the pantry shelf any more!

I made a big batch of seitan to have around. I used the "Chicken-style Seitan" recipe from Real Food Daily. I really like this recipe. It's easy and consistently good. One batch makes four pounds, and it's easy to store in the freezer until you need it.

I used some of the seitan to make "King Janaka's Maple Glazed Seitan" from "Vegan World Fusion." I have only used this cookbook a few times but so far I've really liked the things I've made. This recipe was very tasty, but also very rich. I served it with roasted brussel sprouts and a little "salad" of carrots and bell pepper with raw cashews.

Last night I used the "Vegan World Fusion" cookbook again to make a really great dish: "Bogart's Moroccan Tempeh" & "Casbah Couscous Pilaf" I made it for my grandpa. Musty and I went over to his house and had dinner with him. Since my grandmother died, my mom and my two aunts and I are taking turns cooking dinner for him, and hanging out with him for the evening. Last night and tonight were my nights this week. I really, really enjoy these times with him. My grandpa is one of the most special people ever, and it's so wonderful to have dedicated time with him. When I was away in India I really missed him a lot, so it's especially nice to be back home again with him!

Tonight for dinner with my grandpa I made one more recipe from "Vegan Fusion Cuisine" - "That's Amore Tofu Cacciatore". This book has very goofy names for its recipes but the food is delicious. Musty LOVED this, and I have to say, I did too. I'm sorry that this substandard picture doesn't capture the beauty and tastiness of this great dish - it had marinated grilled tofu, marinara sauce, capers, carrots, bell peppers, onion, garlic, spices, and SO much flavor! mmm! If you have this book, I definitely recommend this recipe. Very good, and aside from marinating and grilling the tofu, it's quite quick and easy.

For dessert I made these cookies from "Vive Le Vegan" - "Double Chocolate Almond Explosion Cookies." OH MY GOD! These cookies are SO GOOD. How is it possible that I haven't tried these yet? I am quite sure that these are some of the tastiest cookies I've ever made or tasted. They are perfect!!! I had a hankering for a good chooclate cookie, and when I saw this recipe I knew I'd found a winner. Chocolate cookies with chocolate chips, almond slivers, almond extract, and more chocolate chips and almonds on top = perfection!


  1. Anonymous5:40 AM

    this looks so good!!

    im glad you are back!!

  2. Ok, wow, it all looks amazing! I swear, I can feel your happiness at being back in the kitchen through the post itself.

    I have heard a lot of good things about those jam cookies, so I will have to make some soon. The chocolate ones, on the other hand, I have made a few times and adores. And I love the taco bar idea, I am so craving Mexican food lately. and the cookie

  3. Welcome back to the kitchen! The meals look great, even the easy ones! hehe. I love a good Farmers Market. With this nice weather, we're dying to come to Santa Cruz! Maybe we'll see you soon? :)

  4. Oh how I long to live somewhere that holds a farmers market in Feb. I'm getting really tired of the very well traveled produce from the grocery store, and anxiously awaiting the begining of our Farmers Market and CSA in May!

  5. Wow... you've been doing a LOT of cooking. Everything's making me hungry!

    I need to fetch me a copy of 'Vive Le Vegan'. I hear only great things about it. Those choco choco chip cookies look amazing. Are they more on the soft side or crispy side?

  6. I can't imagine being without an oven for a month! Your cookies look so tasty.
    And I really must get a hold of vegan fusion, everything you're making from it sounds great!

  7. Woah, everything looks so amazing, I don't even know where to start with a comment! So, I'll just say, YUM!

    I have Vegan World Fusion but rarely use it, so I'm loving that you're giving me ideas for recipes to try...


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