Saturday, May 19, 2007

2 warm-weather meals

School's out for the summer!
School's out- forever!

Well, not really forever. Today was graduation day at Daiku's school- this means the end of lesson plans, teaching, advising, and grading for the year. Now, we can turn our attention to the summer and all the promise it holds. And, now I can come back to blogging regularly.

Here are two fabulous warm-weather meals that we have had recently. I love this time of year, when the produce comes in, the farmer's markets start up, and thoughts turn to barbeques, picnics, the beach, you name it.

seitan ribz coming out of the oven, covered in home-made BBQ sauce and ready for the grill!

First, some Barbequed Seitan Ribz from Fatfree Vegan. As soon as I saw this recipe, I knew we had to try it- and am I glad that we did! Words can not express how fabulous these are- please make some right now!

We grilled them on the stove-top grill, since the little hibachi hasn't come out from hibernation yet. The BBQ sauce was home-made because there were no BBQ sauces available that didn't have high-fructose corn syrup as their first or second ingredient- yuck!

The ribz were served with fresh corn topped with lime juice and chili pepper, some home-made potato salad, some cantaloupe, and a dill pickle. Vegan ribs, y'all! Why aren't you making these yet? Go, go!

The second summery meal was a hummus spread. I had made a huge batch of garbanzo beans, and Daiku used some of them to make a spicy hummus. To serve them, we had a mixed green salad, some olives, some harissa, sprouts, cut-up tomatoes, cucumbers, and onions, white and whole-wheat pitas, and... collard green leaves!

I'd seen some fellow bloggers (Melody and Laura) use raw collard greens for wraps, and I was intrigued by the idea. I want to eat raw for one month this summer, just to become familiarized with the cuisine and see what it's like. The one thing I'm afraid of with raw foods is feeling satiated because I have a ravenous appetite (could you tell?!). These collard green wraps make me optimistic, though- they were very satisfying and filling. (Yes, I know, hummus isn't raw, this is just a start, m'kay?)

Raw collard greens are tender and tasty. Can someone tell me why the traditional American method of cooking them has been to boil the bejeeesus out of them for hours in pork water until they're limp and gray??

Ok, I'm off to catch up on all your fabulous blogs, and I promise to post every day for the next week!



scottishvegan said...

Oh wow! I thought that really was some kind of meat for a second! I am not sure I could bring myself to make something called ribz. I am sure they taste great, but they are freaking me out a bit!! I love the idea of corn topped with lime juice and chilli pepper….yum! I usually just use black pepper and marg…I am so boring! The wraps look so good! I feel the same way about raw food…I just can’t imagine that it could possibly fill me up…I have a pretty huge appetite myself!!

Melody Polakow said...

omg, everything looks delicious!

The corn, lime and chili are sooo delicious as toppers... I wish the weather would warm up, it has only been 40 degrees here the last 3 days!

I have a confession.. when I make collard wraps, I usually steam the collards first.. so they aren't raw..

Emmy said...

Yum! Both of your summery meals sound fantastic. Any meal that includes hummus is an A+ in my book :)

I hear ya about the bottled BBQ sauces...even a lot of the ketchups on the market have high-fructose corn syrup in them too. Ugh. I'm sure your homemade sauce was a million times better than bottled :)

Hope you're having a lovely weekend!!!

Freedom said...

Yay, great to see another person keen to try raw! Trust me, once you start you won't wanna go back and yes you WILL feel satiated. Hummus can easily be made raw - just sprout some chickpeas and make it pretty much the same as you would with cooked ones! Have fun, I'm happy to help if you have any raw questions!

springsandwells said...

oooh, I love hummus spread. It's one of our favorite summer treats too.

I remember when Susan posted that ribs recipe. We have no grill nowadays, so I'm on hold until we get our bbq fixed (or buy a new one).

Good luck with your raw adventures. I hope it treats you well. I'll be curious to learn about it from you.


vko said...

Oh Bazu, let's make a deal- when I move to LIC and I have an apt-warming party and you happen to be in NYC you bring those two delicious summertime meals with you?

Will be a summer barbeque at Gantry State Park!

I love collard greens and you are absolutely right about why the insistence is on cooking them til their d-e-a-d. Were you able to digest the raw collard greens okay? I know in raw cooking it is okay to steam the cruciferous vegs just a little bit.

All looks yummy!

Samantha said...

I am not vegetarian yet but, the food photos on this site are liable to convert me! Yum yum!

Celine said...

that's it, I'll have to try the raw collard idea asap! this looks luscious.

Emmie said...

mmmm... ribzzz. I'll HAVE to try making that sometime when there's a barbecue.

I love hummus. It's one of the few things I can have daily and not get tired of. I'm going to make a beetroot hummus today. Wish me luck!

aTxVegn said...

Okay, I will definitely try the raw collards cuz that wrap looks super! Your barbecue dinner looks really great too. I haven't grilled outdoors yet, but Memorial Day = cookout!

Kate said...

Wow the ribs look so "real", it is amazing. Your make-your-own-hummus-pita feast looks really yummy.

Urban Vegan said...

Oh my my. Omniman would sure love those would I. Love the raw collard bread idea, too. I should eat more raw. *sigh* I should do a lot of things.

maybepigscanfly said...

Everything looks delish. Thanks for reminding me that I need to start having fresh corn this summer. That hummus spread looks great. I think I could eat anything as long as it has hummus on it. I'm going to have to try the raw collards in wraps- I've used raw kale, but haven't tried collards.

Hope you're enjoying freedom from school- I sure am!


Courtney said...

Yum--everything looks amazing! Would you share your homemade BBQ sauce?? I have not had any in a long time for the same reason--high fructose corn syrup...uggg. I tried making it myself once, but it didn't really work out!

I have collards in my fridge...I think a wrap is in order!


Village Vegan said...

Of course it's the week when I'm kitchenless that you go and post that fabulous looking vegan ribs picture. I'm kidding, of course-- I see my self making those for sure next week when I have a kitchen again. I've never made seitan before, so I hope they turn out ok. I've never tried collard greens, either, so perhaps it's time for me to expand my culinary horizons on that front, as well.

School is out for me too, and I'm looking forward to blogging and cooking more in the summer, too. :-)

Theresa said...

I'm never sure about eating certain greens raw, either, but whenever I try it I'm pleasantly surprised. I haven't tried collard greens, but beet greens are really nice raw--slightly tart, juicy and fresh. I have a recipe for raw hummus, and I think it mostly involves soaking the chickpeas for, like, 48 hours.

Brooke said...

Okay, okay, you forced me into making the ribz! I bet my omni hubbie will like them!

Jackie said...

Haven't a clue what collard greens but I do know that the English like the Americans often to boil the hell out of cabbage and many mess up spinach as well. Probably why I hated them as a child but now with cooking them properly or eating them raw they are favorite vegetables.

Kati said...

Happy Summer to you!

Those ribz are a must-make - they look so good. And that corn on the cob! I am so ready for fresh corn.

I tried collard wraps once upon a time and didn't like them much, but I'm thinking of giving them another try. I'm also planning on making some raw hummus today (with almonds), so I'll let you know how it goes.

Mikaela said...

The BBQ plate looks *awesome* - I'm so ready for summer! :D

bazu said...

Hi Courtney,

We don't have an exact recipe for the BBQ sauce, since we threw a bunch of random ingredients together, but the basic ingredients were:

1 small can tomato paste
1/4 cup petite diced tomatoes
1/4 cup blackstrap molasses
1/4 cup ketchup (Trader Joe's natural)
1/4 cup white vinegar
a tiny splash (1-2 drops) liquid smoke
1-3 small chunks celery
1-2 bay leaves
black pepper
tobasco (tiny amount!)
chili powder (tiny amount!)
1 tsp. mustard powder

It came out smoky, tangy, and very spicy. You can probably vary these to your taste. Hope this helps- there are a lot of BBQ sauce recipes floating on the web- pick and choose between them to find what you like.


textual bulldog said...

ooh, this looks amazing. when school's out for me (about 3.5 more weeks!) i am definitely going to celebrate with a similarly summery meal (though i'm sure it won't be quite as nice as yours :)).

Roxy said...

Wow!! Those riblets look amazing! I have to try them. The hummus looks great too. I agree about the over-cooked collards...yuck!