Monday, September 30, 2013

Spectacular Homemade Applesauce


Whether your an infant or an adult we love applesauce! It's a comforting treat we like to enjoy in the fall, for holidays, and even as a late night snack. But why buy applesauce when it's so easy to make? With a few pantry ingredients and some fresh apples, you are all set for a homey recipe. 

This recipe shows you how to take those few pantry ingredients and some fresh apples and to make 64 ounces of homemade yumminess. Serve it warm or cold and pairs nicely with a meal or eaten as a dessert. Perfect for holidays, special occasions, kids, elderly, or a late night snack. Enjoy all the above and give as a gift for a loving gesture. You can't go wrong with this recipe. 

Spectacular Homemade Applesauce
(Yields 64ounces)

Ingredients 

18 to 20 cups (3 pounds) apples, such as Honey Crisps, Gala, and/or your favorite apple of choice
1/2 cup fresh squeezed orange juice (1 large orange)
1/2 cup apple cider
1 cup water
1 Tablespoon fresh orange zest
3 tablespoons brown sugar (optional, depending on apples sweetness)
1/2 cinnamon stick
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
Pinch salt 

Directions

Peel, core, and chunk apples.





In a large pot, combine apples, juices, seasonings, and water. 




Bring mixture to a boil over high. Once boiling, reduce heat to low to medium low and simmer until apples are very soft and falling apart, 30 to 40 minutes. Stirring as needed. Remove the cinnamon stick and mash the cooked sauce with a potato masher or pulse in a food processor until smooth.


Let cool, then transfer applesauce to airtight containers. Store in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer. Enjoy!



-Amy

Vegan Gluten-Free Beet & Black Bean Burgers

Vegan Gluten-Free Beet & Black Bean Burgers
Veggies burgers now a days come in all shapes, sizes, and flavors. But not all are created equal, some have no real flavor and some have no real nutrients. Its a great thing to have a well made veggie patty and one that will pack all the punches along with it. Full of protein, nutrients, hearty veggies, and beans and perfectly paired seasonings...this patty is a contender for a great Superbowl slider along side your favorite snacks.

This recipe shows you how to take that regular veggie patty and turn it up a notch. This patty composed of vegan, gluten free, and powerful flavors will make you think differently about buying those store made ones ever again. With a little extra time and a little TLC, you can have a hearty and comforting burger for your next meal. Serve along side your favorite toppings and on your favorite bun (vegan and/or gluten free). Don't forget a cold drink and settle in for a night of comfort. Enjoy!

Vegan Gluten-Free Beet & Black Bean Burgers

Ingredients

4 to 5 red beets (1 pound)
1/2 cup cooked organic millet (or brown rice) 
1 medium yellow onion, diced small
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats (gluten-free)
1/2 cup coconut flour (other gluten free flour can be used) 
2 (15.5-ounce) cans black beans, drained & rinsed
1 Tablespoon smoked paprika
1 Tablespoon vegan Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoon cumin
2 teaspoons chili powder
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoons cayenne powder
1 Tablespoon dried parsley
1 Tablespoon chives
1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 Tablespoon ground flax seeds
Salt and pepper, to taste

Toppings
Vegan and/or Gluten Free Bun
Your favorite lettuce, tomatoes, and/or pickles, to serve
Vegan Blue Cheese

Directions

Heat oven to 425 Degree

Lightly grease a roaster. Chunk and season beets with salt & pepper to taste, as well as 1/2 tbsp thyme & parsley. 


Cover the roaster with foil and place in the oven and bake until beets are slightly soft to the touch. It will take 45 minutes to 1 hour depending on their size. Once cooked, cool the beets in and then rub off skins (use a paring knife for tough spots).



Burger Mix


Process the oats in a food processor until they have reduced to a fine flour. Transfer to a small bowl and set aside.

Drain and rinse the cans of beans and transfer the beans to the food processor. Pulse to roughly chop the beans.



Transfer this mixture to a large mixing bowl.



Grate the peeled beets on the largest holes of a box grater. Press and squeeze the grated beets to remove as much liquid as possible from the beets.



Transfer the beets, cooked millet, and seasonings to the bowl with the beans.



Mix all the ingredients until combined. Taste the mixture and add salt, pepper, to taste. Once the mixture is combined, add the oatmeal and coconut flour and mix until you no longer see any dry oatmeal or flour.







Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or transfer the mixture to a refrigerator container, and refrigerate the burger mixture for a couple hours or overnight.

When ready to cook the burgers, scoop out the burger mixture and flatten into desired thickness (1/4inch). You want this to fit on your bun.



Continue and shape until you get all your patties. You should have 15 patties. When the patties are done you can cook to order or freeze and use as needed.

Heat a skillet over high heat. Add a few tablespoons of vegetable oil to completely coat the bottom of the pan. When you see the oil got, add your patties.



Cook the patties for 3 to 4 minutes, then flip them to the other side. You should see a nice crust on the cooked side. Cook for another 3 minutes, then reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook for a few more minutes until the patties are warmed through. Repeat as needed for the number of patties you want. Once cooked, remove from the pan and place on your favorite buns with toppings and serve. Enjoy!

*TIP: You can also bake theses for a healthier option. 

Ready to Serve Burger

-Amy

Vegan Apple Cheddar Cheese Fries


Vegan Apple Cheddar Cheese Fries

When it comes to indulging, cheese fries take the cake. They are luscious, cheesy, filling, and completely comforting. But they can get boring and can be very heavy, so why not change that? First things first, how? Well being fall, I can't think of any better ingredient to add than apples...I know, I know, but stay with me here. If you're from New York State, you know we love our apples and a classic combo with apple products around here is cheese. So why not veganize it and combine the two for a scrumptious side.

This recipe shows you how to combine regional favorites to make a classic cheese fry. This reinvented treat is completely addictive and perfect for any dinner and/or even party. With the creamy yet light sauce, paired with your favorite type of fry, you are in for a scrumptious treat. You will be asking yourself afterwards, "Why haven't I thought of this?!". Store in the fridge or freezer for later use and enjoy it over and over again. Perk up your fall with this perfect side, enjoy!

Vegan Apple Cheddar Cheese Fries

Ingredients


1/2 teaspoon oil or butter
1/4 cup applesauce
1 heaping cup vegan cheese (cheddar or jack)
1/3 cup canned full fat coconut milk
1/8 teaspoon onion powder
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/2 Tablespoon minced parsley
1/2 Tablespoon minced chives
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
2 Tablespoons vegan blue cheese
Freshly Ground Black Pepper, to taste

To Serve
Homemade French Fries
Vegan Coconut Bacon (optional)

Directions
In a small saucepan heat to high. Place oil, applesauce, chives, and parsley.



Sauté the applesauce mixture until combined and fragrant.



Once the mixture is ready, add in coconut milk and bring it to temp.



Once warmed, add in your shredded vegan cheese and whisk to melt until smooth. Once your vegan cheese has combined into the sauce, add in blue cheese and whisk in. Your sauce is ready when everything is combined and the sauce is velvety.



Serve the sauce drizzled over homemade French fries or on the side to dunk. Sprinkle on coconut bacon to serve. Pairs nicely with any fry or other recipes that call for vegan cheese. You will want to make extra after tasting this sauce. Enjoy!

Ready to Serve Fries

-Amy

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Vegan Pumpkin Half Moons Cookies



I get an overwhelmingly response about favorite cookies from people growing up and the one cookie on that top 10 list would have to be Half Moons. They seem to be a comforting item not only for the simply fact that they are delish but also because it sparks that memory for people. Growing up comfort foods are the strongest and I don't think being vegan means giving that up. But why not change it up and adapt it to a fall time menu.

This recipe will show you how to not only make a perfect half moon but also a fall time treat. With all those great flavors we associate with pumpkin pie and the smells of fall. It's completely satisfing and that craving that you have for pumpkin will be covered. It will not only make you and your family happy but possibly that inner child that has one thing on the mind...COOKIES! Enjoy!


Vegan Pumpkin Half Moon Cookies
(Makes 2 Dozen Cookies)

Ingredients


Cookies
-1/4 cup vegan milk
-1 15oz can or fresh pureed pumpkin
-2 teaspoons vinegar
-1/3 cup vegan butter or shortening
-2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
-2 Tablespoon vanilla extract
-3 teaspoons cinnamon
-2 teaspoons ground ginger
-Pinch Allspice
-Pinch ground Clove 
-5 cups all-purpose flour
-1/2 cup cornstarch
-2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
-1 teaspoon baking soda
-1 1/2 teaspoon salt


Vanilla Frosting
-1 cup vegan butter or shortening
-6 cups powdered sugar
-1/3 cup vegan milk
-1 Tablespoon vanilla extract


*Once one side is frosted, add the food coloring to the remainder of the already made frosting to get the other side frosted.
-1/2 to 1 teaspoon orange food coloring 

Directions

Heat oven to 350 Degrees


Lightly grease two baking sheets and set side to use later.

Cookies

In a measuring cup, combine the vegan milk and vinegar and let sit for a minute until the mixture starts to curdle. 

Add the vegan butter (shortening), sugar, and vanilla in the mixer (I used my Kitchen-id), mix well until blended. Once your vegan butter mixture is creamed, add in the pumpkin until blended. 






In another bowl, sift together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda and salt. 


Once sifted to combine, slowly add the flour mixture and pour in the vegan milk and vinegar. Mix lightly to combine until the dough is smooth and a very thick batter forms, it will be very sticky.




With a 1/4-cup measuring cup or a ice cream scoop, scoop the batter onto the baking sheets, leaving 3 inches of space between cookies (about 6 per sheet, depending on sheet size). The cookies will spread out a bit, so leave enough room between them. 



Measured Cookie Dough 

Bake for 11 minutes, until they start to puff. Then with your spatula flatten it down to a cookie level. Bake for another 12 minutes. Once done, remove the cookies from the oven, then carefully remove them from the pan. When completely cool, flip the cookies upside down onto the rounded side, place them on wire rack or foil until ready to use. When your ready, they will be ready to frost them. Prepare you frosting beforehand so everything is ready.



Cooked Cookies out of the Oven











Flipped over and cooled Cookie




















Frosting

Vanilla
In the stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the Vegan butter or shortening on medium-high speed until fluffy, about 2 minutes, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Turn the mixer to low (stir setting), add the sugar and salt, mix until incorporated. Increase the speed to medium high and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl.

With the mixer on low, gradually add the 1/3 cup vegan milk and vanilla. Beat on low until incorporated, then beat on medium high until the frosting is airy and thoroughly mixed, about 1 minute, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl. Once you have made the vanilla use it to decorate and then when you are done you will make the chocolate out of the remaining frosting. 

Orange Side
In the stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment again, beat the already made vanilla frosting and 
add the food coloring. Beat on low until incorporated, then beat on medium high until the frosting is airy and thoroughly mixed, about 1 minute, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl until fully incorporated.

Assembly
Take each cookie and dust off any stray crumbs. With a frosting spatula or butter knife, scoop some icing onto half of the flat side of each cookie, and spread an even layer. Use the edge of the spatula to scrap away any extra icing dripping off the sides. Return cookie to the cooling rack to allow the icing to dry.



While the white icing is drying, return your remaining frosting to the mixer to make the colored frosting. Once made use colored frosting to 
decorate with next. With the frosting spatula, ice the other half of each cookie with the other icing. 



Return to the cooling rack to let the frosting set. The cookies are best served the same day, but they can be stored in an container in a single layer in the fridge for a couple days...if they last that long! Enjoy!

-Amy

Friday, September 20, 2013

Homemade Vegan Chicken Nuggets

Homemade Vegan Chicken Nuggets
Old or young we love to enjoy childhood staples, vegans are no different. Vegan chicken nuggets are the perfect childhood dish. But if you take a gander at the supermarkets in most areas, you won't think that the price you pay for these vegan nuggets are appetizing. With the big price tag and measly amounts of nuggets you get, it can take that comforting meal and turn it into a downer. These vegan chicken nuggets are deliciously dunk-able and all around good fun, plus won't break your wallet or belt.

This recipe shows you how to accomplish a perfect vegan chicken nugget without breaking the bank or your waistline. With the tremendous amount of flavor and that comforting crunch you get along with these nuggets, you will never want to waste your money on store bought again. These nuggets are paired well with yummy dipping sauces of your choice or homemade sauce recipes included below. Serve along side your favorite sides and/or a fresh garden salad and call everyone to the table...you are all going to feel like a kid with this dinner. Enjoy!


Homemade Vegan Chicken Nuggets

Ingredients

1/2 cup vegan chicken broth or water
15 ounces cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup textured vegetable protein (TVP)
1 Tablespoons agave nectar or maple syrup
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
2 teaspoon dried parsley
1 teaspoon dried herbs (thyme, herbs de provable, or rosemary)
1/2 cup vital wheat gluten
1 Tablespoon ground flax seed
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1/4 teaspoon liquid smoke
Salt & Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Breading 
1/4 cup vegan Italian bread crumbs
1/4 cup Panko bread crumbs
1/2 cup vegan milk or The Vegg (prepared)

Additional Options
Season add ins: BBQ seasoning/sauce (BBQ nugget), mustard, and/or cayenne (spicy nugget)

Dipping Sauces 


Directions

Heat oven to 350 Degrees

Liberally grease a cookie sheet and set aside. 

Dough
Mash white beans with a potato masher or food processor until coarse. Don't overly mash them, you don't want them pureed.

Once the beans are mashed, add in the TVP crumbles, vital wheat gluten, seasonings and agave


Add in 1/2 cup water and mix with a spoon. Mix until it starts to resemble dough and water is combined.

Turn this now combined dough onto a clean surface and knead for a couple minutes. You will see the dough forming more and making gluten strands in the dough.

Once you see those strands, roll the mixture into a ball and set aside in the fridge to chill an set for 30-45 minutes.

When the dough has set, remove from the fridge and portion the dough out into 18 to 20 Nuggets. This is a heaping Tbsp sized ball per nugget.

Breading
Pour both bread crumbs onto a plate and season to taste with salt and black pepper. In a small bowl, add the vegan milk (or Vegg).

Assembly
Take each nugget and dunk into the vegan milk (or Vegg) and into the mixed bread crumbs until it's completely coated on both all sides. Repeat until all nuggets are done. Place nugget on the prepared cookie sheet.


Bake nuggets for 15 minutes, flip and bake for another 15 minutes, or until nuggets are firm to the touch, crispy, and golden brown.

Once they are baked completely, remove from the oven and let cool until ready to serve. Serve along favorite sides and enjoy over and over. The nuggets can also be frozen and reheated when desired. Enjoy!
Ready to Serve Nuggets

-Amy