Tag Archives: tomatoes

currypotpie0

Yes, I have gotten quite bad at keeping up with Vegan MOFO, and this will be the last prompt that I will make a post for. I technically will be posting a review of How It All Vegan, which was suppose to be my favorite vegan cookbook. But this post was for the prompt “What was your first vegan meal?” Truthfully I probably had some vegan meals before I went “vegan.” I had spaghetti and tomato sauce plenty of times. But, when I first started my vegan journey in college, I remember making many meals from How It All Vegan and The Garden of Vegan.

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So this dish is from The Garden of Vegan, and it has been altered a lot over the years. My culinary skills have gotten better, and my pantry has gotten larger. But this use to be my impress a person type of dish. Back in the day I use to live on 16th and Webster in Philadelphia. It is funny seeing how much it has changed, at the time we had a rowhome that had no neighboring buildings. It looks like there are now buildings sitting next to it. I was about a mile away from my classes, and even further from a lot of the grocery stores. I needed a bike pretty badly.

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My roommate’s boyfriend was really into biking culture, and had a spare bike to give her. She had no intent of actually biking around, and the bike was much too tall for her. So like any college student, I chimed in if he was interested in giving me the bike…. for free. We struck a deal, he would give me the bike if I made him a vegan dish. He really couldn’t think of anything that didn’t have meat, cheese, or eggs in it. Naturally he loved the meal.

I still have my bike, though it is reaching the end of it’s usefulness. I hate biking in the suburbs because no one treats you properly on the roads. Plus we have a storage issue with the bikes, and I need to fix the wheel, which I am putting off. 

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As mentioned before, there has been lots of alterations with this dish. For starters, the pie cuts best when it has time to sit. In fact, these photos were taken the next day when the pie was really cold. You can also play around with all the veggies you pick for the inside, use whatever you have kicking around in your fridge and adjust cooking times. 

I also have altered the pie crust quite a lot. I remember taking the dough and just squishing it around to fill in any holes in the past. But as I make more pie crusts for desserts, I’ve learned a few tricks. Mostly upping the fat and adding some besan instead of all flour. Sadly, I didn’t chill the dough long enough and didn’t flour the surface enough, so the pie crust is a little… funky looking.

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spaghettilentil0

I may have fallen behind on my posts. I think I will be short one post in the end, which is fine since I didn’t like some of the later prompts. See on Friday I got a call from my Father in law. Turns out he had tickets to go see Houndmouth in New York City. But his wife was sick and couldn’t go. He would of asked Jon but he knew that he was swamped with work. So I figured why the hell not? Surely seeing a concert is much more important than staying at home working on a blog post, which I think most MOFOers would agree. So I went and had fun.

The band was great, though I wasn’t a huge fan of the crowd. I’ve been to a bunch of concerts including D’espairs Ray and Gwar, and I have NEVER seen so much drinking. Like I was on the balcony looking down thinking “I see a lot of beer cans, does this always happen and I just don’t have a birds eye view?” Then while leaving there was just tons of beer soaking on the ground from people dancing with their beer cans. NEVER had that happen before. Well, I guess it could of happened at Gwar, but then got covered by mystery liquids. But it wasn’t like the crowd is obnoxious drunk, they were pretty enthusiastic. I just tend to not like when the crowd is more enthusiast than me about music, probably. Oh and the pot. So much pot being smoked. ANYWAYS…. moving to the prompt…

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I am snowed in and can’t leave the house! What will you do?! I had to think hard about how to interpret this prompt. See I am a pretty good planner. My mother worked weird hours, so she would make a habit of picking out meals for each day of the week, then shopping for all the meals. So if it snowed hard, I would continue to just make what I was planning for dinner. So then I tried to dig deeper into the prompt, what would prevent me from making a dinner? Power outage! I have a gas stove so I could still cook, just couldn’t open the fridge really. So this dish uses all shelf stable ingredients- or fresh… okay technically I used homemade stock, but store bought stock works fine! I also used fresh tomatoes, but canned crushed tomatoes work great too.

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So pretty much the only “fresh” ingredients would the spaghetti squash itself and onion/garlic that is chopped up. I think most seasoned cooks always buy bags of onions and has a bunch of garlic on hand. Spaghetti squash not so much. I am not a big fan of spaghetti squash, but I always get some from the farm. I am always trying to expand my palette so I always force myself to eat the squash that is given to me. It isn’t like I don’t like the taste, it is just such a weird texture that I never know what to do with it. Then I saw online that a spaghetti squash could be used in a soup. I thought this would be more interesting than just subbing pasta for squash, like most recipes. 

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The end result was a thick stew. The red lentils are super cooked, and perhaps slightly “dal-ish.” I loved how the spaghetti squash sort of holds all the parts of the soup together. The active time is pretty low, and there is lots of downtime. But I think this would be a great soup for a snowy day. 

Oh and you know how I mentioned how I don’t really like spaghetti squash? Well almost every year I grab the squash, then somehow get my in-laws squash from their CSA share. So the squash last even LONGER! It kind-of gets pushed aside because it lasts longer than say, ripe tomatoes. So by the time I made this soup, the seeds in the squash started to sprout! It was pretty crazy! At first I thought that here was a worm in my squash, nope just the sprout.

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masalamary0

I might be one of the few people who got stumped by todays prompt to recreate a dish from a restaurant. I don’t eat out often, and I think part of the fun of eating out is that it is something you can’t make. So the desire to recreate is a little low. At first I thought about recreating the heirloom beans with a hazelnut-tomato vinegrette that I had from Charlie was a Sinner. But truthfully they were pretty simple, and I felt weird adapting an already vegan recipe. And then I started thinking of NON-vegan restaurants I’ve been too lately, which is pretty much only Indeblue. And then I thought about the bloody mary.

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Then it occurred to me that their bloody mary might not of been vegan, because I always forget about Worcestershire sauce. Even though the bloody mary tasted awesome, the texture was a little off. It was really thick, and some of the spices, particularly the black pepper, were just in chunks. So I thought I could surely make something better, especially since I had a bunch of delicious tomatoes picked from my CSA farm.

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I am a big bloody mary fan, but I am aware of it’s very un-vegan potential. It is one of the few savory cocktails that are popular, and therefore it is easy to add animal based umami flavors. A lot of cocktails end up using beef consomm√© or bouillon and worcestershire sauce, and that is if they didn’t fancy up the cocktail. Some places will add a slap of bacon or shrimp instead of a celery or pickle garnish. And then there is the Mary’s Canadian cousin Caesar that uses clamato juice. Ugh! And I am not going to get into the whole bloody mary mix. So many disappointments!

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So what’s a vegan suppose to do? Well, make their own, duh! It is easy to make in large batches and serve in a pitcher for Sunday Brunch. And it tastes pretty good without the vodka too! So if you aren’t a drinker or underaged, you are still in luck. I tried to make this drink pretty simple, no fancy appliances. So hopefully most of you guys will have these two things: a blender and a nut milk bag. And your set!

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Of coarse it is in order to point out that this isn’t a normal bloody mary. I got this at an Indian restaurant that was serving brunch, so it uses a curry blend in the drink.

I’ve heard from my sister who has traveled to various parts of Europe, and even lived in France for a year that Bloody Mary’s are a very American cocktail. Since Vegan Mofo has a lot of readers across the globe, I would love to hear if you had any Bloody Mary. When do you drink it? In a bar or brunch like Americans do? You wouldn’t think Bloody Marys would be such a brunch drink because of the vodka. I recently told my father in law how you make it, and he seemed pretty surprised!

Side note- if this is your first bloody mary, there are some standard garnishes. Celery is the classic, but I prefer the pickle (I just didn’t have any for the photo.) But there is still more variation including carrots, olives, and heck, do some facon-bacon!

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sloppyjoe1

Oh man! I am so excited to be back! Our host had too many sites on their server, which is why our page was taking so long to load. So for one week the site was locked, and we couldn’t make any changes, but it was still viewable. Then we had to spend another week with the site being 100% down. It was awful and I was itching all week to work on the site. 

But now the site is back up, and everyone can see our new link buttons on the side, and our big ass blog directory! But first let me share this super easy recipe.

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This recipe I’ve been holding on to for awhile now. It just seemed a little boring. I mean sloppy joes? With lentils? I mean don’t all vegans know about this? Surely?! Well, I gave some leftovers to my husband for work and everyone at his work commented on how clever it was. Sometimes when you are drenched in a subculture, you forget what is or isn’t common.

So even though this dish isn’t something uncommon with vegan blogs, I think it can still reach others to give inspiration. The recipe is also really non-vegan friendly- meaning if you are a non-vegan and you making something for your vegan guests, this is a great option. Quinoa and lentils are pretty frequently used in recipes, and the only “hard” work is reading the buns ingredients to make sure there aren’t any eggs or milk in them (which milk is often added to pre-made breads!) I used sprouted buns, but they taste best with the cheap fluffy white buns.

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