Tag Archives: breakfast

Lemme See Yr Muffin Top

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Oh you didn’t want me to put on my really tight pants?  Because I can do that too … oh.  Ok.

I made these Blueberry Oat Muffins last week for breakfast and LOST IT because they’re the best I’ve ever had.  I really wanted some muffin tops, which is a feat rarely achieved in vegan baking … why I do not know.  It seems like the baking powder and baking soda should aid in the leavening, but vegan muffins are (usually) reluctant to rise.  The magic secret (omg) is to overfill the cups.  Did I just blow your mind?  Whoa.

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Check out the Recipe:

(Makes 12 normal sized muffins and 8 jumbo muffins with tops)

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 Cup AP Flour
  • 1/2 C Oats
  • 1 tsp Baking Soda
  • 2 tsp Baking Powder
  • Pinch salt
  • 1 Cup Sugar
  • 1/2 Cup Vegetable Oil
  • 2 Flax Eggs (2 T ground Flax seed + 6 T water)
  • 1 Cup Soy Yogurt
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1 C Blueberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1/2 C Chopped Walnuts

Directions

  • Preheat your oven for 400 degrees and grease your muffin tin with vegetable oil or vegan margarine.
  • In a small bowl, create your flax eggs by whisking together the ground flax seed and water.  Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, combine all the dry ingredients.
  • In a separate bowl, combine all the wet ingredients, including your flax eggs.
  • Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and top with the blueberries and walnuts.  Stir only until everything is just incorporated – be sure not to over-mix!
  • Scoop your batter evenly into the muffin tins, filling them all the way to the top.  Don’t be afraid!  These muffins don’t rise very much!
  • Place the muffin tin on a middle rack in your oven and bake for 20 minutes, or until the edges just start to look caramel brown.
  • Cool on a rack and enjoy!

All this talk of muffin tops and racks, I can only imagine what the search engines turn out this week.

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Whole Wheat Chocolate Chip Scones For Your Mom

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Ok, so they’re for my mom.  Your mom can have some too if she’s pleasant.  Moms deserve a little treat every now and then – they’re such sweet ladies.  The mom I have is a health-nut with a dark chocolate addiction (is it ok that I air these things out in public?)  There is a “museum” of dark chocolate in one of the drawers in my parents’ kitchen.  It’s really a stunning display.  AND my mom has this classic Chocolate Chip Scone recipe from an old Mary Englebright magazine that has been a favorite for years.  However, that recipe calls for dreadful items like white flour, eggs, milk, and butter.  Luckily, I managed to save my mom from the blight of unhealthy scones and created a safe haven for those normally-healthy-folk who have a predisposition to chocoholism.  Look at those monster chocolate chips!  They’re taking over the world!

Recipe

Ingredients

  • 3/4 C White Whole Wheat Flour
  • 1/4 C Oat Bran
  • 1 1/2 t baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 t cinnamon
  • 1 Tablespoon agave nectar
  • 1/4 C chocolate chips
  • 2 T cup margarine, softened
  • 1/2 t apple cider vinegar
  • 1/3 C soy milk

Directions

  • Preheat the oven for 400 degrees
  • Measure the soy milk in a measuring cup and add the apple cider vinegar, set aside to let curdle.
  • Sift the dry ingredients (flour, oat bran, baking powder, salt, cinnamon) in a large mixing bowl.
  • Add the margarine in small slivers and cut into the dry ingredients using two knives (This is to incorporate the margarine while allowing it to stay in small chunks. You just don’t want it to melt at all – creates little buttery pockets in the scones)
  • Add the agave nectar and soy milk mixture – combine until there are no more dry parts. Be sure not to overmix.
  • Add the chocolate chips and stir until incorporated.
  • Press the dough into a circle about 3/4 in tall, cut into triangle shapes (can make 4 big scones, or 8 small)
  • Arrange scones on greased baking sheet.
  • Brush tops of scones with soy milk and sprinkle with rock salt.
  • Put scones in your preheated oven and bake for 10-15 minutes or until a deep golden brown on the edges.

Pretty easy, huh?  You could probably double this recipe pretty easily for a crowd, but I didn’t want too many of these sitting around because there were only three of us to feed.  This is a great (relatively healthy) scone recipe to keep around for tea time or breakfast or a snack or putting on your pants time or stay in bed all morning time or going to a roller derby time or calling up your Aunt Ida or changing the water filters or pre- or post-bike-ride or…

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P.S. Look India!  I updated!

Los Bruncheles: New York Edition

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Naked cinnamon rolls.  Food porn.

Sunday!!  It was snowy and windy and my favorite people were in town, making a New York stop before heading to D.C. for the most exciting day evar!

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What a perfect time for a brunch, amiright?  Presidents love brunch!  I think President Obama would approve of this Apple Cider Cinnamon Roll recipe that I adapted from a recipe on veganrepresent.com.

Ingredients

Rolls

2 1/2 tsp active dry yeast

1/2 C unbleached sugar

1 C apple cider, warmed

2 eggs worth of egg replacer OR 2 tbsp ground flaxseeds whisked together with 6 tbsp hot water

1/3 C vegan margarine, melted

4 1/2 C unbleached flour

1 tsp salt

1 C brown sugar, packed

2 1/2 tbsp ground cinnamon

1/3 C vegan margarine, softened

Frosting

1/2 C soymilk

1/4 C vegan margarine, softened

1 1/2 C powdered sugar

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1/8 t salt

Directions

Mix yeast, sugar, and heated apple cider in a large mixing bowl and let stand until foamy.

Add egg replacer, melted margarine, flour, and salt. Mix well and knead for 5-10 minutes. The dough should be firm and smooth, not sticky. Set the dough aside in a covered bowl and let double in size.

After the dough has doubled, turn it out onto a floured work surface, cover, and let rest for 10 more minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine brown sugar and cinnamon.

Roll dough into a 16×21 inch rectangle. Spread dough with margarine and sprinkle evenly with sugar/cinnamon mixture. Roll up dough and cut into 12 sections with a sharp knife.

Place rolls in a lightly greased 9×13 inch baking pan. (A cookie sheet also works fine.) Cover and let rise until nearly doubled, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Bake rolls in preheated oven until golden brown, about 15 minutes. While rolls are baking, beat together soymilk, margarine, powdered sugar, vanilla, and salt. Spread frosting on warm rolls before serving.

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I may have accidentally bought crack rather than powdered sugar.  Following the consumption of one of these little fellas, I had heart palpatations and the overwhelming urge to dance like Jennifer Beals.

It is always best to exercise restraint.

I’ve tried a few different recipes for cinnamon rolls and I think the search is over.  I’ve already sent the recipe out to two people who begged at my feet – their faces smeared with icing and tears of joy.  This post is getting gross.

Oh yeah and I made this stunner as well:

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Mmkay maybe not so pretty?  This is a Tofu Frittata!  I found the recipe at Kaji’s Mom’s blog. I changed up some of the veggies because I am in love with sun-dried tomatoes.  Here it is:

1 block extra firm silken tofu (I used mori-nu aseptically sealed), drained
1 clove garlic pressed
2Tb nutritional yeast
3-4Tb unsweetened soy milk (may need more if it doesn’t blend smoothly)
1/4tsp turmeric (optional, for color)

1/4 C chopped (yes!)sun-dried tomatoes
1 small onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic diced into large pieces
1C chopped spinach
1Tb olive oil

-Heat
olive oil in a small cast iron skillet over medium heat, add the onion and
garlic, cook until onion is translucent.  Add sun-dried tomatoes and heat over a low flame until spinach wilts.

-While the vegetables are
cooking add the tofu to your food processor and puree until the tofu
looks a little like cottage cheese. Add the garlic, nutritional yeast,
soy milk, and turmeric. Puree until the mixture is completely smooth
and resembles a thick yogurt.

-Preheat oven to 350.

-When

veggies are cooked and tofu is smooth remove the skillet from the stove, and stir in the tofu mixture and smooth
over the top, making sure the middle is a little shallower than the
sides so that it cooks through.

-Bake for 20-25 minutes, until
the top is a light gold. Then turn off oven and leave in the oven for
another 10-15 minutes to give it time to set up and finish cooking
without burning.

-Serve hot

After all that cooking, you’re going to need a nap.  You deserve it!

Oof!

Oh, internetz.  I’ve been neglectful.  Since I’ve been in New York I have cooked perhaps two meals.  I was in a sublet with a miniscule kitchen and walls that shook every time the subway went past.  I feel like September was one drawn out Seinfeld episode and I was George Costanza.  Work has been great and I’ve been keeping busy but it’s been really stressful and all these bills keep appearing out of nowhere – not to mention my check fraud debacle!  Thanks Craigslist!

Well, it’s a new month and I’m in a new (wonderfulwonderfulwonderful) apartment so I’m ready to come back … with camera phone pictures of things other people made.

Atlas Cafe

I can’t even remember what this was called – some kind of Mediterranean ‘chicken’ platter.  It was really good – soy meat with roasted zucchini and squash and spinach.  I sat in front of the huge display of desserts and didn’t go for any (so wrong) but opted to try the vegan soft serve.

While a bit grainy, the soft serve was gooood with their vegan chocolate sauce.  Yessss.

Gobo

Gobo was the first vegan restaurant I went to in New York and it’s still my favorite.  My all time favorite dish there is the Soy Protein and Spinach Roll with Jade Mushrooms:

Really not a good picture, and I cannot accurately describe the comforting goodness of this dish but just go with me on this one.  It’s stellar.  The title pretty much sums everything up, but the sides are mashed potatoes with musroom gravy and sauteed veggies with tofu. Everything is SO good.  One bit of advice – don’t order the chocolate cake at Gobo.  It will lead you into the land of what everyone assumes vegan food is – dry and bland.  Don’t do it!  No!

I promise to be better about taking pictures and cooking from now on – here’s a picture of one of my many zucchini muffins that were created this summer.  There was a huge crop of zucchini in my bf’s mom’s (aunt’s nanny’s son’s cousin’s best friend’s dog walker’s dad’s) garden and I took full advantage of the bounty!

Mama Mia, That’s A Spicy Sausage

I finally broke down and made Julie Hasson’s Spicy Italian Vegetarian Sausages.  They were so ridiculously easy and delicious that they’re likely to become a staple ’round these parts.  I didn’t have all the spices she used so I improvised with my cabinet supplies and ended up putting quite a bit of cayenne pepper in there – resulting in fire-breathing dragons around the kitchen table.  I personally enjoy imparting super powers upon my guests – it adds a little more excitement to life – so I really really love the spice.

Recipe

Spicy Italian Vegetarian Sausages
Makes 8 links

2 1/4 cups vital wheat gluten
1/2 cup nutritional yeast flakes
1/4 cup chickpea flour
2 tbsp Bills Best Chik’Nish Seasoning (if using another brand which is salty, or saltier than Bill’s Best, you’ll want to greatly reduce the amount you use)
2 tbsp granulated onion
1 to 2 tbsp fennel seed, optional
2 tsp coarsely ground pepper, preferably freshly ground
2 tsp ground paprika
1 tsp dried chili flakes, optional
1 tsp ground smoked paprika
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground allspice
2 1/4 cups cool water*
6 to 8 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp soy sauce

1. In a large bowl, mix together all of the dry ingredients. Whisk together the water, garlic, olive oil and soy sauce and using a fork, gently stir into the dry ingredients. Stir just until ingredients are mixed. If dough mixture is too dry, you can add another tablespoon of water or as needed.
2. Scoop 1/2 cup dough mixture at a time and shape into logs. Place logs on piece of aluminum foil and roll up, twisting ends. Place sausages in steamer and steam for 30 minutes. Once sausages have cooled, remove from foil and refrigerate until ready to eat. After cooling, the sausages may feel a bit dry on the outside. Don’t worry, as they will soften and firm up considerably after chilling.

Variation: You can shape the dough into little patties instead of links. If you don’t want to use aluminum foil, you can wrap the links in damp muslin or tea towel and tie ends with cotton twine.

Copyright © 2008 Julie Hasson

Little steamy babies, all snuggly and warm! Make these!  You can watch the step-by-step instructional video on EverydayDish.tv.  Or just enjoy this non-vegan friendly video:

Kitchen Sink Muffins

It was early in the morning on a Tuesday.  The bananas weren’t feeling well.  They were sick and tired of hanging out on the kitchen counter, and they weren’t getting any younger.  Quite frankly, they were lookin’ bad.  The bleary eyed stranger who wandered into the kitchen on that fateful morning took one glance at the bananas.  She had once known them as green, naive, unspoiled by the harsh reality of life outside the grocer store.  Now, well past the prime of their lives, the bananas called out for mercy.

What?

So I have about two more months in this apartment before I roll out and let my lease cruise – peacing out to the east coast that big New York place.  I’m trying to use up everything I have in my cupboard that I can’t easily donate to a shelter.  Here come the muffins.

I made up the recipe and considering there’s no sugar or Earth Balance I wasn’t sure how they’d come out – therefore I titled them:

Ye of Little Faith Banana Kitchen Sink Muffins

2 bananas
1/4 C apple sauce
1/3 C unsweetened soy milk
1/4 C brown rice syrup
2 T maple syrup
1 t almond extract
1 C whole wheat flour
1/2 C white flour
1/2 t baking soda
handful of currants and raisins

I just really mashed up the wet ingredients and then mixed everything into the dry ingredients, poured them into a muffin tin, and called it a day.  Well, beside baking them for 20 minutes at 350 degrees.  I only made 8 because I didn’t trust them to rise very much.  The did actually rise beautifully, so it was a treat to have a real muffin top (without giving anyone the less preferred sort of muffin top – get it?  heaaallthyyy).

Also, how precious is this little guy?

Daring Bakers June Challenge

The “Danish Braid”

Hooray!  While staying with some family friends I was able to finagle my way into the kitchen and complete this challenge!  We were at the beach for my mom’s best friend’s daughter’s wedding (that’s a mouthful) and stayed with the bride’s family in their beach house for a week of vacation.  It was so relaxing – I would sit on the back porch every morning with a cup of coffee and watch all kinds of wildlife take over the marsh.  Every now and then I’d also catch a dunking contest held in the pool basketball court:

Not the best picture (macbook photobooth) but you get the idea.  And check out that pedicure sunset!

I digress.  Back to business.

Much thanks to Kelly of Sass & Veracity and Ben of What’s Cookin’? for hosting this month’s challenge.  And a challenge it was!  Not to say that the process was painful, but it took me a good two days to get through the entire process.  When you read the recipe, you’ll see why:

Original Recipe from Sherry Yard’s “The Secrets of Baking”

(Please not that this recipe does not include my alterations – I’ll discuss those further on.)

DANISH DOUGH

Makes 2-1/2 pounds dough

Ingredients
For the dough (Detrempe)
1 ounce fresh yeast or 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
1/2 cup whole milk
1/3 cup sugar
Zest of 1 orange, finely grated
3/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 vanilla bean, split and scraped
2 large eggs, chilled
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
3-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt

For the butter block (Beurrage)
1/2 pound (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour

DOUGH
Combine yeast and milk in the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and mix on low speed.  Slowly add sugar, orange zest, cardamom, vanilla extract, vanilla seeds, eggs, and orange juice.  Mix well.  Change to the dough hook and add the salt with the flour, 1 cup at a time, increasing speed to medium as the flour is incorporated.  Knead the dough for about 5 minutes, or until smooth.  You may need to add a little more flour if it is sticky.  Transfer dough to a lightly floured baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Without a standing mixer:  Combine yeast and milk in a bowl with a hand mixer on low speed or a whisk.  Add sugar, orange zest, cardamom, vanilla extract, vanilla seeds, eggs, and orange juice and mix well.  Sift flour and salt on your working surface and make a fountain.  Make sure that the “walls” of your fountain are thick and even.  Pour the liquid in the middle of the fountain.  With your fingertips, mix the liquid and the flour starting from the middle of the fountain, slowly working towards the edges.  When the ingredients have been incorporated start kneading the dough with the heel of your hands until it becomes smooth and easy to work with, around 5 to 7 minutes.  You might need to add more flour if the dough is sticky.

BUTTER BLOCK
1.    Combine butter and flour in the bowl of a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and beat on medium speed for 1 minute.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl and the paddle and then beat for 1 minute more, or until smooth and lump free.  Set aside at room temperature.
2.    After the detrempe has chilled 30 minutes, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface.  Roll the dough into a rectangle approximately 18 x 13 inches and ¼ inch thick.  The dough may be sticky, so keep dusting it lightly with flour.  Spread the butter evenly over the center and right thirds of the dough.  Fold the left edge of the detrempe to the right, covering half of the butter.  Fold the right third of the rectangle over the center third.  The first turn has now been completed.  Mark the dough by poking it with your finger to keep track of your turns, or use a sticky and keep a tally.  Place the dough on a baking sheet, wrap it in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
3.    Place the dough lengthwise on a floured work surface.  The open ends should be to your right and left.  Roll the dough into another approximately 13 x 18 inch, ¼-inch-thick rectangle.  Again, fold the left third of the rectangle over the center third and the right third over the center third.  No additional butter will be added as it is already in the dough. The second turn has now been completed.  Refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes.
4.    Roll out, turn, and refrigerate the dough two more times, for a total of four single turns.  Make sure you are keeping track of your turns.  Refrigerate the dough after the final turn for at least 5 hours or overnight.  The Danish dough is now ready to be used.  If you will not be using the dough within 24 hours, freeze it.  To do this, roll the dough out to about 1 inch in thickness, wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and freeze.  Defrost the dough slowly in the refrigerator for easiest handling.  Danish dough will keep in the freezer for up to 1 month.

APPLE FILLING
Makes enough for two braids

Ingredients
4 Fuji or other apples, peeled, cored, and cut into ¼-inch pieces
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 vanilla bean, split and scraped
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
4 tablespoons unsalted butter

Toss all ingredients except butter in a large bowl.  Melt the butter in a sauté pan over medium heat until slightly nutty in color, about 6 – 8 minutes.  Then add the apple mixture and sauté until apples are softened and caramelized, 10 to 15 minutes.  If you’ve chosen Fujis, the apples will be caramelized, but have still retained their shape. Pour the cooked apples onto a baking sheet to cool completely before forming the braid.  (If making ahead, cool to room temperature, seal, and refrigerate.) They will cool faster when spread in a thin layer over the surface of the sheet.  After they have cooled, the filling can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.  Left over filling can be used as an ice cream topping, for muffins, cheesecake, or other pastries.

DANISH BRAID
Makes enough for 2 large braids

Ingredients
1 recipe Danish Dough (see below)
2 cups apple filling, jam, or preserves (see below)

For the egg wash:  1 large egg, plus 1 large egg yolk

1.    Line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper.  On a lightly floured  surface, roll the Danish Dough into a 15 x 20-inch rectangle, ¼ inch thick.  If the dough seems elastic and shrinks back when rolled, let it rest for a few minutes, then roll again.  Place the dough on the baking sheet.
2.    Along one long side of the pastry make parallel, 5-inch-long cuts with a knife or rolling pastry wheel, each about 1 inch apart.  Repeat on the opposite side, making sure to line up the cuts with those you’ve already made.
3.    Spoon the filling you’ve chosen to fill your braid down the center of the rectangle.  Starting with the top and bottom “flaps”, fold the top flap down over the filling to cover.  Next, fold the bottom “flap” up to cover filling.  This helps keep the braid neat and helps to hold in the filling. Now begin folding the cut side strips of dough over the filling, alternating first left, then right, left, right, until finished.  Trim any excess dough and tuck in the ends.

Egg Wash
Whisk together the whole egg and yolk in a bowl and with a pastry brush, lightly coat the braid.

Proofing and Baking
1.    Spray cooking oil (Pam…) onto a piece of plastic wrap, and place over the braid.  Proof at room temperature or, if possible, in a controlled 90 degree F environment for about 2 hours, or until doubled in volume and light to the touch.
2.    Near the end of proofing, preheat oven to 400 degrees F.  Position a rack in the center of the oven.
3.    Bake for 10 minutes, then rotate the pan so that the side of the braid previously in the back of the oven is now in the front. Lower the oven temperature to 350 degrees F, and bake about 15-20 minutes more, or until golden brown.  Cool and serve the braid either still warm from the oven or at room temperature.  The cooled braid can be wrapped airtight and stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days, or freeze for 1 month.

My Alterations

For the butter, I substituted Earth Balance vegan spread.  I considered using half margerine and half vegetable shortening to achieve flakiness, but I was too lazy awesome to buy shortening.  I really think it would have improved the texture since the danish was rather bread-y and dense.  For the whole milk I used soy creamer, but I think regular soy milk would have been just fine.  I wasn’t able to use cardamom or vanilla beans because at $15.00 a jar for each I may as well have handed my credit card over to the cashier and asked her to just keep it.  For the eggs I substituted corn starch.  Yeeeah not the most genius move, but I was on an island and the grocery store didn’t even have soy yogurt (which I would have LOVED).  I am curious what would have happened with a flax meal substitute too.  The process involved a lot of hanging around, waiting for things to chill and proof.  It was pretty exciting seeing how much the dough rose during the two hours of proofing – kind of like watching plants grow in hyperspeed.  Oh, and let’s discuss what a squidgy mess the beurrage turned out to be.  There were buttery guts all over the counter throughout my dough-baby’s various turns.  Beside the buttery gore, everything came together pretty painlessly.

For the filling, I used the normal apple recipe with an almond frangipane and. it. was. AMAZING.  I would have just ladled that stuff into my mouth all day without a care for filling anything had I no sense of responsibility.  I have half a sense of responsibility, therefore I only ate half the recipe.  Oops?  I also made a few croissants and pinwheel danishes with the leftover dough and filled some with raspberry jam, frangipane, and some with chocolate.  Nomnom.

My gracious hosts put up with me hoarding their kitchen utensils and banging pots and pans for two days and graciously devoured the danish when the kitchen returned to peace.  So the recipe had a great response!  I can’t wait to check out what my fellow vegan bloggers did with this recipe and how it turned out.