We've been having some pretty chilly weather around here lately... with temperatures getting down below freezing at night, and pretty cold during the day too. I know that sounds silly to most of you, but for us Californians, that's a big deal!
So, when we decided to have our next potluck outside at the park, it was a bit of a daring move. Lucky for us, though - Mother Nature came through just in time. This weekend was sunny, warm, and beautiful. Flip flops and t-shirts! The theme of our potluck was to make something from a cookbook/magazine/website you haven't used before...
And here's what we made:
from Ayurvedic Vegan Kitchen by Talya Lutzker
For starters, I made this really delicious spin on hummus, with some fresh veggies for munching. This recipe is a great contribution to the world of hummus - it's got pumpkin seeds and avocado and fresh herbs and various other things (plus chickpeas, of course!!). It was really fantastic. I tweaked the recipe a bit, I halved the salt, left out the olive oil entirely (and truly didn't miss it one bit), and also left out the agave. You can't really tell from the pic, but this made a TON ~ maybe 5 cups?? I'll definitely make it again, but next time I'll probably make a half batch.
Vegan Cob Salad
Chinese Pork Buns
from Authentic Chinese Cuisine (by Bryanna Clark Grogan)Oh Lordy, these babies were So. Damned. Good. We were pretty much all having heart palpitations and fighting over the (very few) leftovers. Nikki made these, and they were absolutely great. Instead of seitan, she used dry-fried tofu bits in the filling, which worked out just fine as far as I could tell. The filling is pungent and rich and toothsome and the dough was as pillowy and tender as could ever be possible. They were little miracle creations!
Carrot & Parsley Salad
This was a super garlicky and yummy shredded carrot & parsley salad that Rose brought. So fresh and bright! She said it had a whole entire bunch of parsley in it, which is great for me because I am a true lover of parsley.
While we're on the subject of parsley, this is the amazing juice that Kendra brought: Pineapple & Parsley. It deserves to be mentioned that Kendra came to the potluck on her bike, with a giant pitcher of juice (and plastic cups) in her backpack. Well done! I think she said that the recipe was from a vegetarian cookbook she got in Mexico. It was really delicious and refreshing ~ and perfect for our sunny potluck. It turns out that pineapple and parsley are a great pair!
Here's my whole plate, brimming with healthy and delicious goodness. All in all, we were really pleased with how successful all our recipes were - given that every thing was from a previously un-tested resource. We really ate well!!
Peanut Butter "Crispy" Bars
from Happy Healthy Life
I put "crispy" in quotes because although these contained crisped kamut, they weren't very crispy after all*. Alana, who brought these, seemed to think that meant the recipe was a failure. Clearly, she needs to change her definition of "failure" to include "resounding success," because - crispy or not - these bad boys were SUPER YUM. They got a bit melty in the sun, but no one was complaining. Sweet, naughty, glorious decadence.
(*plus, if you read the recipe, she warns you that the bars will be more "tender" than "crispy," unless you actually use rice crispies. Just so you know!)
Giant Hungarian Poppyseed Spiral Bread
from World Vegan Feast by Bryanna Clark GroganAlthough I've read through World Vegan Feast many times, I'd never buckled down and made something from it before. But with a name like "Giant Hungarian Poppyseed Spiral Bread," it was pretty obvious to me which recipe I should start with. The dough rose overnight in the fridge, and then was filled with an amazing prune-poppyseed-walnut-lemon zest filling, rolled up in a giant spiral (as promised) and baked! It was really delicious, and we all agreed that we hadn't really ever had anything quite like it before.
of making King Cakes with Kittee... except that instead of rolling the tube into a ring-shaped cake, you roll it into a big spiral. However, the very inside of the loaf was still a bit doughy, so next time I make this glorious beast of goodness, I think I'll make it a ring shape for more even cooking. That said, the spiral sure is pretty, isn't it?
I hope you're staying warm, wherever you are!