Posts Tagged ‘cookbook’

I think we got more rain after Hermine passed than the initial blast.  That made riding the bike around just impossible.

Well, when it rains and is crappy out, you have to find shelter.  Where else better than a kitchen with a gallon of good beer?  Oh yeah, and food.

I was going for Eggplant Parmesan, but I decided to get creative and make it into a chili too.

Start with skinning & dicing two small eggplants.  Throw some salt on it & get it to “sweat” the bitterness out.  You can put it in a colander so that the liquid drains easily.  Let that sit for about twenty minutes and saute it in a pan with a little bit of oil until it’s browned.

In a large pot, take a diced yellow onion, four chopped tomatoes, a minced clove of garlic,1t salt, 2T of oil and set the pot on medium, mixing occasionally.  It will eventually be a base marinara(stop there if you want marinara).

This stuff is going to be marinara soon.  Then chili after.

This stuff is going to be marinara soon. Then chili after.

Mince up a couple of your favorite peppers(I used a Hungarian wax & a datil), grab 2T of Italian spices(oregano, basil, thyme, sage, etc.) and throw those in the pot with the marinara.

Fresh from the garden.  Doesn't get much better.

Fresh from the garden. Doesn’t get much better.

We're getting there.

We’re getting there.

Once everything is incorporated nicely, add 4C water, 3C cooked pinto beans, & 3T chili powder.  Cover it up and let it cook for a long time.

The water will reduce some.

The water will reduce some.

From there, you’ve got a bit of time…probably an hour or so, so just grab a beer and watch the storm roll in on a preferably enclosed porch.  Maybe even look down to see a friend with you in the kitchen.

I looked down.  He looked up.  He also had onion paper on his nose.

I looked down. He looked up. He also had onion paper on his nose.

After you’re finished spending an hour however you’d like, add the sautéed eggplant from before to the mix.  It should be noticeably chunkier now.

This is noticeably chunkier than before.

This is noticeably chunkier than before.

Let that simmer for another ten minutes while you cook some noodles or rice or whatever you like with Eggplant Parmesan Chili, not that you’ve had it before, but get creative….that’s what a kitchen’s all about.

Put the mix on top of whatever you’ve decided on & follow-up with some almond Parmesan or just plain ol’ nutritional yeast to get a little veg cheese action going.  It might look like this:

Now that's some storm comfort food there.

Now that’s some storm comfort food there.

Once the storm is over, hug your fur babies and get some incriminating pictures of them.

Okay, it's not incriminating, but it's pretty cute what Cinder's doing here.

Okay, it’s not incriminating, but it’s pretty cute what Cinder’s doing here.

….aaaaand that’s how you enjoy some time in a tropical depression.  Or in this case, a humid sadness.

Just kidding.  Hope everyone’s okay & has electric back and such.  I’m glad it didn’t hit as bad as what a lot of the meteorologists were freaking out about Hermine, but they’re all out there for the big scoop and the exaggeration.  Now, enjoy some Chili.  Or Eggplant Parmesan.  Or whatever you want to call it.

Advertisements

It might not be a mystery that I am a fan of dogs.

My dogs, your dogs, strange people’s dogs.

Pretty much all dogs.

It’s actually a good chance that if I see you on the street with your dog, I’ll greet the dog first.

It’s nothing against you, it’s just that I’ve lived with dogs growing up, and I’ve also had a couple in the past several years.  I’m a giant fan.  They’re just the best in all aspects, even when they get done eating crap in the yard and you don’t know it until they try to lick you with their horrible crap-breath.

So now that you’re thoroughly grossed out, let’s talk about carrot dogs.

These little guys are the tenth wonder of the world with how delicious they are and how easy they are to prepare.  You just boil some peeled carrots for about ten minutes or until fork-tender, drain & fast-cool them with some cold water, and then throw them in a marinade for a day or so.  After that, you can pan fry them, outdoor grill them, even eat them right from the marinade.

The marinade even works if you want to make faux-bacon with thin-sliced carrots, eggplant, tofu, or tempeh.  Just pan fry it after the above process & you have a delicious vegan dish!

The magical marinade you ask?

Mix 1/4C soy sauce(or Bragg’s Aminos), 1/4C water, 1T oil, 1T apple cider vinegar, a dash of liquid smoke, a minced clove of garlic, a pinch of minced ginger, 1/4t pepper, & 1/8t onion powder in a container.  That’s it, just make sure everything is mixed well.

The marinade itself will stay good for a couple of weeks & I’ve reused it for recipes after the initial cooking too.

That will net you this:

There were a couple of modifications like the sauteed peppers & onions, the sauerkraut, some cashew cheese & a homemade roll.

There were a couple of modifications like the sautéed peppers & onions, the sauerkraut, some cashew cheese & a homemade roll.

You can find the recipe for the roll here.  I just did the pizza dough recipe & made it into little bun shapes, which works wonderfully; especially when you top it with a little oil so it will brown a bit.

That’s a fun one to do, enjoy!

This post wouldn’t be a post of mine without a couple of pup pictures and I do suppose that is kind of the theme, so here you go:

 

It's a Baldwinosaurus Rex on the attack.

It’s a Baldwinosaurus Rex on the attack.

Don't ever drop food accidentally or there will be a feeding frenzy.

Don’t ever drop food accidentally or there will be a feeding frenzy.

 

IMG_20160301_002216

Did you ever have that feeling that someone close to you was guilty of chewing up one of your markers?

Pup prison(see above picture).   Not really...he just got under the house while I was gardening in the front yard.

Pup prison(see above picture).
Not really…he just got under the house while I was gardening in the front yard.

The innocent look that you get when you go to work, only to come home to a dual hurricane/typhoon/house on fire.

The innocent look that you get when you go to work, only to come home to a dual hurricane/typhoon/house on fire.

Someone knows how to pose when he's all dressed up.  Two minutes later, he was running around in circles trying to catch the long end of the bandana.

Someone knows how to pose when he’s all dressed up. Two minutes later, he was running around in circles trying to catch the long end of the bandana.

As much Hell as they can raise, you just have to love pups.  Unless you’re a heartless, cold, bitter person that thrives on the pain and suffering in the world.

Totally kidding.  There’s cat people out there too.

🙂

 

I’ve been a bit busy.

Lots of work from the day job & lots of work from the kitchen.  I’ve been playing with recipes for vegan cheeses & have started working more and more toward a new project called Counter Culture Foods.  The way that I see it, I’m pretty good at this whole slow-foods, fermentation & culturing of foods thing, so why not?  There’s going to be cheeses, pickled veggies & I’m playing with….shhh…. bread.  Take a look at the link which will take you to the Facebook page & give it a like to follow along in the adventures.  I’m currently working on numbers for it right now & giving out samples to friends to try(sorry, no shipping…..yet.).  I’ve got a decent plan in place & that should be up pretty quick.

Peppered gruyere.  That stuff is nuts.  he he.

Peppered gruyere. That stuff is nuts. he he.

On the cookbook status, I’ve started working on the format & I think the best thing is to do a pay-what-you-want e-book or find a good recycled paper publisher.  It seems that there are so many books out there and I’d like to stay a bit different while remaining true to the environmental animal I am.  It is well underway though.

I got a little tired of those banana cookies that I had posted about a few months back & had a couple of bananas that were getting to that super-nutritious browning stage.

This presents a conundrum, primarily because I have several small tubs of frozen bananas in the freezer, either in chocolate iced cream form or in whole banana form for treats.  So freezing more bananas was out.

Cookies are good, but those easy cookies just didn’t get the craving from me.

Muffins ended up being the way to go.  I whipped these guys up in about ten minutes.  Then I ate most of them in half of that time.

You say half empty, I say I'm half full.

You say half empty, I say I’m half full.

I mashed two bananas in a bowl, added a flax egg(3T warm water & 1T ground flax, let sit for a few minutes), & then mixed in two tablespoons of coconut oil, a teaspoon of sea salt, two tablespoons of agave, a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar, half a teaspoon of cinnamon & allspice, half a teaspoon of vanilla, a teaspoon of baking soda, & 3/4C of whole wheat flour & 1/4C of rolled oats.

I scooped the mix into a greased muffin pan & then tossed it in the 350F oven for twenty minutes.  A toothpick came out of one of the muffins clean, so that was my indication that they were done.

And so was I after I ate four of the eight muffins it makes immediately after they came out of the oven.

Well, not immediately.  That would be the actions of an insane person hellbent on burning the top of his mouth.

Which I have learned from.

Easy though, right?  I suggest making a glaze with a tablespoon of almond milk & 1/4C powdered sugar for the top, but that’s not necessary if you want to skip the sugar, which I’ve been working on as well.

I guess that’s about it for the time being, lots of work behind me & lots ahead.  It’s like I’ve got a non-stop chemistry set and it just gets more & more interesting.

"Jesse, we've got to cook....er, I mean ferment.  Culture.  Just make me some cheese."

“Jesse, we’ve got to cook….er, I mean ferment. Culture. Just make me some of that damned delicious cheese.”

So, I’ll leave you with some pup pictures, but have a great week & I’ll keep you updated!

When you're mowing the front yard for fifteen minutes & the pups are like, "Can we help???!!!"

When you’re mowing the front yard for fifteen minutes & the pups are like, “Can we help???!!!”

Making dog food & turning around to this is always entertaining.

Making dog food & turning around to this is always entertaining.

Life is so tough.  So, so tough.

Life is so tough. So, so tough.

Bye all!!

Disclaimer:  I don’t really have writer’s block.

On the contrary, I’ve been writing a lot.  Just not on the interwebs.

I’ve been really busy with work and playing around with vegan cheeses & fermentations as of late.  It seems like I’ve always got a science experiment on my kitchen counter at any given time.

Most recently, I found a cool recipe for smoked gouda & started playing around with variations of it to make it more simple & just have fun.  I never really played with coconut milk as the base for a vegan cheese, but it works really well & there’s so many different things you can do with it.

As cheddar was my all-time favorite flavor, that was my starting point.  Again, SO EASY.

Put a can of full fat coconut milk, 1/4C of water, 1/4C of nutritional yeast, 1T sea salt, 1T miso, 1/4C tapioca starch & 2T agar powder into a blender or food processor & blend that until it is completely mixed.  Throw that into a saucepan & cook on medium for about ten minutes or until the mixture starts to pull away from the sides of the pan.  Put that mix into a glass mold & set it in the refrigerator for a few hours.

Take it out of the mold and eat the entire recipe in one sitting.

EASY, RIGHT??

Well, you can save some for grilled cheeses too.  It just so happens that this is perfect for heating back up so it starts to get all melty.  I love it with some sourdough & roasted onions.  Like this.

So many noms.

So many noms.  That’s with olive sourdough, BTW.

If you really want to have fun, you can play around with the recipe and add all kinds of stuff.  Like noodles.  Or vegan sausage.  Or broccoli.  Or all of the things.

I should put this in between some olive sourdough.

I should put this in between some olive sourdough.

I have been talking about it for some time now, and I have a ton of recipes & pictures.  So I’m going to be working on a cookbook to fund a vegan food cart or a food truck.  Hopefully by the end of this year.  I’ve got to do some more research on publishing & fund-raising for it, but the entire premise of the book is to help people convert into a plant-based diet in a healthy manner.

NOT by eating vegan pizza in front of your dogs on a daily basis.

NOT by eating vegan pizza in front of your dogs on a daily basis.

The issue is that so many people starting on a plant-based diet do so by eating all of the processed junk and nothing else.  Mind, that’s not horrible if you are taking supplements, but if you want to have a smooth, healthy transition, you are going to have to understand what to eat.  And that, sadly makes vegan pizza something you should only have once a week when you first start out on your adventure.

Then you ease yourself into a daily regimen of vegan pizza.

Kidding.  Don’t do that.

So that’s the basis of the book.  I would love for it to be educational, humorous, & full of cool things that are easy for people to try out, even if they aren’t jumping on the veg-wagon.

If anyone has any input on publishing or anything regarding cookbooks, leave me a comment below.  I’d love to learn as much as I can & find out how to do this stuff.

Plus, it will fund a veg-cart/truck/business(these are all long-term goals & aspirations) so hopefully you can go to a ball park here and find some cool vegan food.

I found a salad bar at a stadium recently.  I think they serve peanuts somewhere too.

I found a salad bar at a stadium recently. I think they serve peanuts somewhere too.

So that’s it.  Let me know if you have any input & I’ll keep everyone updated on the status of the cookbook.

And now, a couple of pictures of pups:

It's Soul-Eater...er...I mean Cinder.

It’s Soul-Eater…er…I mean Cinder.

Not sure why he sits so cute, but he does a great job at it.

Not sure why he sits so cute, but he does a great job at it.

Someone has their eyes closed for the family picture.  Someone else looks like they're expecting food immediately.

Someone has their eyes closed for the family picture. Someone else looks like they’re expecting food immediately.

Have a great week & write you later!!