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A hearty fall dinner

23 Sep

Time to use up those roasted veggies! Last night we had a big pile o’ veggies along with some quinoa, baked chickpea cutlets from the PPK, and mushroom gravy. We should do this more often because it’s one of Mr. HVC’s favorite meals! This was especially good with the roasted sweet potatoes, because the meal needed a little sweet to counter all the savory.

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The gravy is based off of this non-vegan recipe, with some modifications:

Mushroom Gravy:
-1/4 cup Earth Balance or olive oil
-1 onion, minced
-1 tsp salt
-16 oz diced mushrooms (I just pulse ’em in the food processor)
-4 cloves minced garlic or 2 tsp granulated garlic
-1/4 cup white wine
-1/4 cup all-purpose flour
-1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
-2 cups water
-1 tsp dried thyme
-1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
-1/4 cup plain non-dairy milk

In a medium pot, saute onions in oil with salt over medium heat until they start to brown, about 10-15 min. Add mushrooms and saute 10 min or until they have lost most of their water. Add garlic and cook 30 seconds, until fragrant. Deglaze with the wine or equivalent amount of veggie broth. Sprinkle in flour stir that mix for a few minutes. It will be blobby and will start to brown. Add soy sauce, water, thyme, and pepper. Whisk to combine and bring to a simmer. Keep stirring for a few minutes until the gravy thickens, then mix in the soy milk and taste for salt. If it needs more savoriness, add some more soy sauce or a little bit of Accent (avoid Accent if you’re sensitive to MSG).

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MoFo #12: Almond-quinoa muffins

14 Oct

It’s hard to get my omni partner to eat healthier! One way I do it is by baking muffins for breakfast. I’m pretty good about eating a decent breakfast – usually fruit or yogurt – but left to his own devices my boyfriend often resorts to an egg- & cheese-laden breakfast burrito or a greasy muffin from the coffee cart at work. If there are delicious muffins in the house though, both of us can start our day off properly!

I always forget how many awesome recipes are in Veganomicon.  I can honestly say I’ve never made anything bad out of it!  For some reason, I’ve never tried many of the breakfasty items.  Feeling guilty about my inconsistent MoFo posts, I decided to try a new muffin recipe and my book automatically fell open to this one.  It sounded really interesting – chock full of whole grains, almond meal, very little oil, and used agave nectar and dried fruit for sweetness instead of white sugar.  Plus it used two of my favorite spices.  Score!

I didn’t have almond meal in my pantry, but I figured out I could make my own from whole almonds by pulsing them in a coffee bean grinder.  Sweet!  Just make sure, if you try this, to not grind too long because you will make almond butter!  Sift the flour after grinding since there will still be some small almond pieces in there.

almond meal

The final product was really good, especially with a little agave nectar drizzled on top! They are light and puffy and the almond meal makes them a little more hearty while also lending a nice nutty flavor. Sadly, the boyfriend didn’t like the muffins as much as I did, but that’s because our dried apricots were rather sour. Damn you, Safeway bulk bins, for your inferior dried fruit products!

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If you want to make these yourself, you’ll need:
-soy milk
-ground flax seeds
-oil
agave nectar or maple syrup
-vanilla, cinnamon, and cardamom
-A.P. or whole wheat pastry flour
-almond meal or almond flour
-baking powder
-quinoa
-dried fruit (apricots or currants are suggested)