Jelly Donut Cupcakes

My friend asked me to bake something for her church bake sale and I thought Isa’s Jelly Donut Cupcakes would be a perfect treat. I had never made them before, so there’s always a risk in how they’ll turn out. Isa’s recipe recommends they sit out for at least 24 hours. Well, I made it about 24 minutes before sampling one. That’s not too bad, right? The only thing I could’ve done better is add more filling. Other than that, these are great. I suggest you go out and buy a copy of Veganomicon so you can get this recipe, along with hundreds of other must try eats.

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Filled half way then dolloped with some strawberry jam

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Morning after, dusted with some powdered sugar

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heaven!

Isa’s Chai Spice Cookies

Who doesn’t love a good chai tea latte? If you’re raising your hand, then you may want to bypass this recipe. The warm chai flavors of cardamom, cinnamon and ginger really pop in this cookie; especially after giving it an extra coating of the sugary topping. This is a perfect cookie for a holiday party or simply putting a smile on someone’s face.

Ingredients

Topping

  • 1/4 c sugar
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 3/4 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon pinch cloves

Cookies:

  • 1/2 c canola oil
  • 1 c sugar
  • 1/4 c pure maple syrup (I used agave)
  • 3 Tbls non-dairy milk
  • 2 tss pure vanilla extract
  • 2 c flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  1. Mix topping, set aside
  2. Heat oven to 350 F
  3. Combine wet ingredients. Combine dry ingredients. Sift dry into wet
  4. Roll into small balls and flatten the cookie in the topping mix, coating one side
  5. Bake for 10-12 minutes. Let cool for 5. Add extra topping

Baja Style Tacos

I am venturing more into the vegan holy grail, otherwise known as Veganomicon. I got this book last year for Christmas, from my wonderful father. I spent that morning flagging certain recipes I wished to try out. Baja Style Tacos was one of them. This by far makes my list for top five recipes ever made. As much as I wish to share this with you all, I’d rather encourage you to buy the book. You can get it on Amazon for super cheap and will be one of the best investments ever made!

 Marinade tempeh over night in Isa’s baja marinade

Fry it up in a pan

Admire the spicy slaw

Warm the tortilla (add Daiya pepper jack shreds and cover to melt)

 Get your camera hijacked by your roommate

Random! 4th roommate Cooper

Silly

 Back to business! Layer of cheese, tempeh, slaw, and more tempeh!

Drew’s Smoked Tomato Dressing was a perfect topper!

Summery “Meat” and Potatoes

Tonight I made Isa’s Avocado Potato Salad along with her Chickpea Cutlets. The potato salad turned out nice and creamy, but was missing something. Adding cumin, minced garlic and/or more cayenne (I only used 1/8 tsp) might do the trick. And the cutlets were good too, but I used a 15 oz can of chickpeas rather than 16 oz. They seemed a bit doughy and bready for my liking. I think they have potential though. Maybe next time I’ll mix up the breadcrumbs/wheat gluten/chickpea ratio.

I would try the recipes again, especially the potato salad!

Here are the cutlets close up:

And for dessert, Julie made a phenomenal strawberry rhubarb pie…which is now the third time in my life that I’ve eaten rhubarb. So good!

Multi Mushroom Stew

I’ve been visiting northern Minnesota this weekend and it has been a cold few days. I wanted to make a hearty, comforting meal and thought a stew would be perfect. I opted for fresh ingredients, settling on a variety of dried mushrooms, portobello caps, carrots, potatoes, onions and herbs. My parents, who grew up with Dinty Moore’s Beef Stew in a can were delighted by this dish. I encourage you to try this out tonight for meatless Monday! Enjoy!

(source: mesh of Isa’s seitan porcini stew and Rachael Ray’s sliced steak and mushroom barley soup)

  • oil
  • onion
  • 4 large portobello caps
  • dried mushrooms
  • 1 c boiling water
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 3 carrots – cut into slices
  • 5 potatoes – cut into 1″ cubes
  • 1 c red wine
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp salt
  • pepper
  • 3 c veg broth
  • 1/4 c flour
  • 1/2 c water
  • 2 tbls tomato paste
  1. Bring 1 cup of water to a boil, when this comes to a boil, add to dried mushrooms and cover for about 30 min
  2. Saute onion in oil, when soft add sliced portobellos (about 4 large caps)
  3. Once the mushrooms are soft, add carrots, herbs and spices, and wine, boil for several minutes until liquid reduces
  4. Next add the potatoes and broth to the stew mixture
  5. By this time the dried mushrooms should be rehydrated, put these into a food processor and add the cloves of garlic. Process until smooth (you may need to add a little water/veg broth)
  6. Add the processed mushroom mixture to the stew pot, bring to a simmer, cover and cook until potatoes are easy to pierce with a fork
  7. Whisk the flour with water, add to stew mixture along with tomato paste
  8. Let sit for a few minutes before serving

Resolutions are Overrated. More Pie Please!

Seriously, Isa Chandra Moskowitz knows what she’s doing. I came across Isa’s Chocolate Pudding Pie recipe when the New York Times wrote about the release of her book Vegan Pie in the Sky. I am not a big pie baker, I find them intimidating and time-consuming. However, the Chocolate Pudding Pie recipe couldn’t have been any easier than driving to the store and buying a ready-made pie. Plus, this tastes a bajillion times better and is dairy/egg free 🙂

Make this ASAP!

  • 1 prepared 9 inch cookie crust, store-bought or homemade
  • 3 cups almond milk, divided (*my note: I used plain soy)
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • Pinch salt
  • 3 tablespoons semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 F. Bake the crust for 10 minutes, remove from oven and let cool. (*my note: my store bought crust said to brush the crust with an egg wash. I was worried how it would turn out per Isa’s instructions, but it worked just fine without the egg wash!)

In a small (2 quart) sauce pan, combine 1 cup of almond milk and the cornstarch. Use a fork to whisk until the cornstarch is good and dissolved. Whisk in the remaining milk, the sugar, cocoa powder and salt. It’s okay if the cocoa is a bit clumpy at first, it will dissolve eventually.

Bring mixture to a boil, whisking occasionally. Keep a close eye because once boiling, you want to lower the heat and bring to a slow rolling boil. Whisk consistently until mixture is thickened, which should be about 7 minutes. (*my note: it took me a bit longer, at least 10 minutes before it started to thicken).

Add chocolate chips and mix to melt. Stir in vanilla. Pour the pudding into the prepared pie shell and let cool for about 15 minutes on the counter, just until it stops steaming like mad. To keep a skin from forming, place a circle of parchment paper over the filling. Refrigerate and let set for at least 3 hours. (*my note: my crust barely had enough time to cool. While it worked out okay in the end, I would still try to let the crust cool next time).

Blue Ribbon Pound Cake

Pound cake used to be one of my favorite desserts. Influential people like my grandmother and my 5th grade teacher had killer pound cake recipes. In fact, my grandmother won multiple blue ribbons at the Minnesota State Fair.

After receiving Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s Veganomicon for Christmas I was pleased to see a recipe for Vanilla Yogurt Pound Cake. I could hardly wait for it to come out of the oven! It tastes amazing. Although, I am not sure if I can say it tops my grandma’s, but certainly a close second 🙂

I slightly modified a few things from Isa’s recipe…

  • 1/2 c Amande plain yogurt
  • 1/2 c silken tofu, blended
  • 3/4 c vanilla flax milk
  • 1 1/4 c sugar
  • 1/2 c canola
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp orange zest
  • 2 c flour
  • 3 tbls arrowroot
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Mix wet, sift dry into wet. Stir together. Then mix with a mixer until the lumps are gone (about a minute). Pour into a greased 8×4 pan. Bake at 325 for 70 minutes.

Topped with my homemade strawberry jam, but it’s absolutely perfect plain, too!

350 Degrees of Holiday Fun

As a participant of Christmas, it’s hard to believe the holiday is only four days away. Yeesh. Luckily I finished the majority of my holiday shopping weeks before Thanksgiving. I don’t have anything left, unless it’s random ideas (which I’d name, but my dad is a reader of my blog and I can’t give any hints away yet!)

I have a work holiday party tonight and wanted to make some festive treats. Since I work at a coffee shop, I chose to make Isa’s Chai Latte cupcakes. I also made Isa’s Chocolate Crinkles, but renamed them Mint Mocha Crinkles to fit the theme.

Enjoy!

I got creative for the cupcakes and cut out stencils. I used a 4×4 piece of paper, traced an oversized outline of the cupcake and cut this out…

Then with the circle, I drew a shape and cut the shape out…

After sprinkling with powdered sugar, here is what I got:

I also did Christmas tree shapes

And now, to clean up…bleh

Tempeh and Greens

It’s always fun exposing people to new foods. Even while I was at the store buying the ingredients for the tempeh and greens stew, it stirred up quite the conversation. The cashier asked why I was buying rhubarb in December. I explained to him that it’s not rhubarb, that it’s actually red chard. His response was a blank stare. I told him that red chard is a dark leafy green, like kale or collards. This was followed by, “Oh yeah, collards. We do need some good soul food here in St. Cloud.” Then when the tempeh was scanned through, I caught him wincing. I agreed with him that tempeh looks pretty weird, but it tastes really great. Both him and the bagger had reached a point of perplexity. I had definitely been labeled as a weird customer, and judging by their looks it wouldn’t be far-fetched to assume they thought I was from another planet.

I understand that there are some foods that are totally weird, I too am still learning about new foods and testing my palate. I think we could all stand to browse through the produce aisle a bit more and pick something up we aren’t familiar with.

The tempeh and greens I married together resulted in a thick stew. The recipe is from Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s Appetite for Reduction. BUY the book! 🙂

My Thanksgiving Feast

It’s a good thing I took Wednesday off of work and school. It took me a day and a half to make the following menu: sweet potato biscuits, green bean casserole, cauliflower mashed potatoes, savory onion gravy, stuffing/stuffed portobellos, pumpkin pie and baked apples.

The biscuits and potatoes can be found in Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s Appetite for Reduction. The biscuits were just, meh, okay, but the potatoes were awesome. The savory gravy was great, kind of sweet, but not overpowering. And green beans needed more liquid and salt (I am horrible with salting things, I never salt anything!) I am not sure what went wrong with the stuffed portobellos, my caps collapsed on me and all of the stuffing fell out 😦 And the two desserts were excellent, that pumpkin pie was the best pumpkin pie EVERRRR!

WEDS PREP

Onto the pumpkin pie…

Viola!

Stuffing prep…

Sweet potato biscuits…

Around this time I got lazy and ended up focusing on cooking and less on photographing.

Thursday – GAME day!!