Saturday, March 03, 2007

Thank you, fellow bloggers!

I just wanted to share some quick food photos with you. This past week was interesting, because our meal ideas and recipes came almost exclusively from fellow bloggers. Everything tasted so good- you guys are super impressive! How did I ever live without the recipe clearinghouse that is the blogosphere? With each description, I will link to the orignal recipe so you can all try these for yourselves.

First off is the quinoa jambalaya from Eat Air. I wanted to make something like this last week to celebrate Mardi Gras even though we couldn't have a proper party this year. Ever the New Orleans purist, Daiku was a little skeptical of this untraditional recipe, but when we tasted it, all of that faded away. This is a savory and hearty dish, with layers of warming flavor.

One night, we had a very green dinner chock full of veggie goodness. The entree was this creamy kale soup from VeganYumYum. As soon as I saw this recipe, with its combination of kale, quinoa, lentils, and best of all, tahini, I knew I had to try it. My result wasn't as bright green as the original photo, but it had a deep, comforting, and healthy taste. I used soy yogurt for the drizzle topping instead of the tahini called for in the recipe because my tahini never got quite the right smooth consistency (there was some tahini in the soup itself, though). No matter, this was a serious soup! Next time, I might tinker with the ingredients a little to increase the spiciness and bring out the flavors more.

To go with it, brussels sprouts with toasted breadcrumbs and lemon from Food "Blogga." Words can't begin to describe how good these were- we gobbled them all up, even though I was sure I had made enough for copious leftovers. Susan designed this recipe to give a make-over to the under-appreciated cruciferous wonder veggie that is the brussels sprout. I didn't think this applied to me, since I already love them, but this dish takes things to a whole new level. If you don't like brussels sprouts, or are just on the fence about them, please try this recipe! Something about the combination of lemon, garlic, butter (I used Earth Balance) and breadcrumbs- mmmmm.

Here's a recipe I'm testing for Melody: far east spicy tofu and green beans. Oh my goodness, this dinner was so savory and extra spicy and good! Have you been to Melody's blog lately and seen some of the gorgeous things she's been cooking up? What are you waiting for?

I'm one of those people who loves to bake, but sometimes freaks out when a recipe calls for, say, 3/4 cup of oil, or 1.5 cups of sugar. That's why I get so excited when I find recipes like Diann's oat bran muffins. Made entirely with oat bran (no flour), and sweetened with just a touch of agave nectar, these are healthy and easy to make. I added some frozen blueberries and sunflower seeds to Diann's recipe for even more flavor and nutrients. Oat bran is a baking revelation! I went out and bought 2 more pounds of it from the bulk bins, and can't wait to experiment with these again!

They worked so well for breakfast, topped with some margarine and jam or agave nectar.

Ever since I read Urban Vegan's recipes for "punka" pie (and apple pie), I knew I'd eventually try both. I've tried the apple pie a couple of times, but only recently made the punka pie for the first time. Holy cow! This is the best pumpkin pie I've ever had! This is no exaggeration- before going veg., pumpkin pie was never one of my favorites, but it is now. The filling is so firm yet creamy and custardy. Do yourself a favor and bake up a pie now! Next time, I'd consider adding a bit of molasses or a touch more spice to kick up the flavor even more.

I made the pie late one day, and refrigerated it overnight. The next morning, this slice made the world's perfect breakfast.

My next recipe didn't come from a fellow blogger, but rather my mom. Last night, I was tired, it was getting late, and I just didn't feel like cooking. I called my mom, who suggested an easy simmered eggplant and tomato dish. I kicked it up by adding capers, olives, and hot sauce, and served with with the world's fastest and easiest grain: whole wheat couscous.

There were enough leftovers to have an easy lunch today made up of a baked potato smothered with the eggplant mixture. This was so flavorful- thanks mom! Oh, I want to take this opportunity for an additional shout-out to my mom- she has agreed to go meatless for March, even starting before the month officially did! Yay, veggie mom! (Click here for more information on Meatout March- it's not too late to give this a try and see how you feel in a few short weeks!)

I leave you with a photo of this menacing and gigantic black squirrel who found his way to our porch yesterday. He hung out for a long time, enjoying the thrill of aggravating our cats to death! I swear he was taunting them from behind the security of a tightly locked door! Cute.



Susan said...

Oh, Bazu, this is about the most gracious post I've ever seen! I am so appreciative that you mentioned my brussels sprouts recipe (and enjoyed them) as they need all the love they can get!

And thanks for introducing me to so many other talented bloggers--each and every recipe sounds scrumptious!

Anonymous said...

Ok, that's it! I'm making that punka pie tonight!!! Lots of great ideas here. Sometimes it helps whet my appetite to see them posted a second time.

Melody said...

How cool that your Mom is going Veg!

Melody said...

..... and thanks for testing my recipe.. I'm glad you liked it!

Paulie said...

Just been catching up on everyone elses blog. Some fantastic looking dishes there. I like the sound of zereshk.

Got a few meals that need adding to my oh-so-slack blog..

Anonymous said...

You're welcome ;-) I'm glad you enjoyed the jambalaya - that reminds me I must make it again some time. Everything else looks fabulous too! I like the squirrel picture. When our Violet was a kitten we had a bird feeder that attached to our sliding glass door with suction cups. The squirrels would get in there and taunt her but she had fun watching them.

vko said...

That's a great picture of the black squirrel & the striped cat- how cooperative he was to pose for you like that!

What a great post- trying fellow blogger recipes. It all looks amazing. I love brussel sprouts too and have been craving them- will check out Susan's link for sure.
And mom's recipe- that is definitely on my list, I heart anything eggplant and the leftovers on baked potato- how perfect.

Hurray for mom! Good luck mom! Will get my friends on this one hopefully.

Fairly Odd Tofu Mom said...

All of it looks so ...YUM! {faints}

I must try the brussel sprouts especially! Breadcrumbs and butter (well, yes, EB) and I'm all over it! Sometimes I think I could just eat breadcrumbs and butter by themselves... OK, that sounds like toast I guess... never mind.

At any rate - it all looks So So good! GREAT post!

the veggie paparazzo said...

Ooh, your meals look lovely.

Mikaela said...

"Ever the New Orleans purist, Daiku was a little skeptical of this untraditional recipe, but when we tasted it, all of that faded away. This is a savory and hearty dish, with layers of warming flavor." I love that :)

I also love the first photo and the one of the simmered eggplant and tomato dish.

Yum and yum! :)

Candi said...

What a great post! You've tried out so many blogger recipes!! I took the recipe for the kale soup! YUM! I can't wait to make that. Thanks for posting and even linking to the original recipe! You're so thoughtful.

Oh, the squirrel! :) What an adorable photo!!

You asked about rice protein powder. Yes, I love it! I likemising up my protein sources, and I get lots of soy so I use the rice powder in shakes. They sell it at natural stores out here, but here's a link so you can see the label. My nutritionist suggested it and Britty and I love it!

:) :)

aTxVegn said...

Wow, these foods all look so good! I am glad to see jambalaya without okra, cuz I'm not a fan, and with the quinoa this looks super. I had noticed the kale soup too. I'm thinking of trying it and adding in my farmers market arugula too so it doesn't go to waste. The spicy tofu - lots of bloggers have tried this and it's going on my "must make" list.

Yay, you tried the muffins! I think they taste like a bowl of oatmeal, so whatever you like in your oatmeal should probably make for great add-ins. Can't wait to see what you do with them next. And pumpkin pie - yours looks fantastic! It's definitely a year round favorite.

Your mom is awesome! A great cook and perhaps on her way to veg??? Great post, Bazu!

Emmy said...

Wowza, what an incredible food post! Everything looks wonderful, especially that kale soup.

Kati said...

Pumpkin pie for that's my kind of meal! The Brussels sprouts look fastastic and so do the green beans with tofu. I really need to start eating breakfast before blog-hopping - I'm starving looking at all your pictures!

It's so cool that your mom is going meatless for the month! (I wish MY mother would follow suit.) Who knows - maybe she'll feel so good that it will turn into two months...then three... This veg thing may be addictive, you know. ;)

theONLYtania said...

Let me just say.. I love brussels sprouts.
About the labels, if you click layout when you're at the "dashboard" page then you can click add to layout, and labels is an option. That's all I know!

meesh said...

Whoa! That's one intimidating squirrel! lol

That's quite the list of tasty cooking! Thanks for the useful links. I will have to try the green bean tofu dish. I luv my green beans, Mmmmm...not sure about the brussels sprouts, though. I'll work my way up to those. :)

Have a wonderful (and tasty) week!

Dilona said...

This all looks great. I think I'll have to try the brussel sprouts (I've never been a fan but I'm ready to be converted). That's a scary squirrel, our swedish ones are so cute in comparison.

scottishvegan said...

Bazu, all that food looks awesome! Especially the Brussels sprouts…I love them!

The pic of the squirrel is great! I didn’t even know that black squirrels existed. We have loads of squirrels here and I love watching them run up and down the trees outside my apartment! And I love the cat in that photo too…kind of reminds me of the Cheshire Cat in Alice In Wonderland. Is it a dish or something?

Anonymous said...

that animal is so big!

in to the food:
im drooling here, what a beautiful photos!

SusanV said...

That's the biggest squirrel I've ever seen!

All the food looks delicious. Oh, I bought zereshk yesterday and am planning to do a little cooking with it soon.

zayne said...

your blog is making me so hungry! :)


Urban Vegan said...

You are so sweet, Bazu. I'm glad you liked my Punka pie, and I for one will definitely try adding some molasses next time. All the dishes look so warming and tasty.

The black squirrel is huge--he must have quite a nut stash somewhere.

KathyF said...

I have never, ever, seen a squirrel like that. Are you sure it's...normal?

You need Bailey, the fearless squirrel chasing dog. She will put an end to that taunting.

laura jesser said...

Mmm, so much here looks just delicious! That eggplant dish sounds perfect--quick, simple, and looks so tasty. How did you make it? I have an eggplant sitting around here, waiting for me to figure out how to use it....