Category: Recipes

CatHouse Classic Chicken Style Seitan Recipe

Seitan has become a regular visitor to the CatHouse. It’s just so dang yummy we can’t help ourselves. The first time I made it following Honey LaBronx’s seitan recipe on her hilarious and informative vegan cooking show, you should go and watch! But I would love it if you came back and tried my Chicken style Seitan recipe as well. ūüôā

Seitan Sandwich

This recipe comes together pretty fast, but the cooking part is longer and is best as a two step situation!

CatHouse Classic Chicken Style Seitan

Seitan Dough

Dry Ingredients

  • 1 box Hodgson Mill Vital Wheat Gluten (about 1 1/4 cup)
  • 3 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning

 

Wet Ingredients

  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard

Cooking Broth

  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce

In a medium bowl whisk together the dry ingredients, set aside. ¬†In a smaller bowl or 2 cup measuring pitcher mix the liquid ingredients together then pour on top the dry. Using a wooden spoon stir to combine. Once there is no liquid or dry ingredients visible use your hand to punch and knead the gluten dough. Now here is where you need to decide if you want “patties/steaks/tenders” or if you would rather have random “chunks”. For the patty version you want to stop kneading before the gluten strands are fully formed (gluten strands mean the dough will stretch instead of ripping when pulled apart).

To make patties pull apart 1/4 cup (roughly) size balls and knead until gluten strands are formed and flatten as thin as possible, continue making patties finishing the kneading process individually. To make chunks keep kneading the entire gluten dough ball until it is very hard to pull apart, then take a clean pair of kitchen scissors and snip off pieces about 1/2 to 1 inch across, they will swell up during cooking!

The initial cooking method is the same for patties and chunks. Pour cooking broth ingredients into large pot (bigger than a 2 quart sauce pan) bring to a boil, then toss the patties or chunks into the broth cover with a lid and lower the temperature to medium/low cook for 45 minutes. Once done you may have a little cooking broth left over this makes great gravy, or you may not…sometimes I do and sometimes I don’t and I have no idea why! ūüôā Either way the seitan cooks perfectly.

With chunks you can now simply eat them up, toss them in barbecue sauce and eat them on a bun or eat them like chicken nuggets or add them to a casserole its all up to you. With the patties, I like to bake them in my toaster oven at 350 degrees F for 10 minutes per side, this dries out the outside and gives the patties a nice golden crusted exterior, you could bake the chunks as well if you wanted to. The patties make a great “chicken” seitan sandwich topped with tomato and lettuce with a bit of eggless mayo or you can serve them with spaghetti and tomato sauce with some nutritional yeast sprinkled on top for a Seitan “Parmesan”.

I believe this seitan would keep for 5 days or so in the fridge in an airtight container without a problem, but I have yet to test that because it has only made it 3 days in our CatHouse before it was all eaten up! If you are worried I’m betting the patties would freeze well, though I would advice wrapping each one separately. I hope someone will try this quick and simple recipe, if you do please let me know how you liked it!

A Pear of Smoothies!

Yup pear…hehe…Okay, So!

I’m back, I’m not dead, but I have been justifiably and needlessly busy. Buying a house is a giant time suck. We have seen over 20 houses over the last few weekends. I have looked at hundreds online with listingbook, trulia, and zillow. I have lost countless project, crafting, cooking, and hanging out with friends and family hours to looking up houses and learning about mortgages and loans and down payments and closing costs and escrow. We still haven’t found that perfect home yet, but we have 11 more to look at tomorrow so here’s hoping!

As a sign of good faith and because I was hungry I whipped up two lovely green smoothies, I would have totally shared, but the second one was for Mendal, she was hungry too. ūüôā

I love pears, raw, juiced, canned, and apparently in a smoothie! I made a smoothie for two…or a¬†pair of smoothies for us this morning. They were delicious! I think this will be my new go to smoothie for a while, instead of blueberry, banana, kale. Just gaze at that pretty, pretty green color and those pretty fruits and that lovely bagged bag of Trader Joe’s Organic Kale…shoot! I need to buy whole leaf bunches just for photos… ūüôā If you can tear your eyes away from my amazing smart phone picture skills (insert sarcastic tone here) scroll down for the super simple recipe!

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Pear/Kale Smoothies

serves 2

  • 2 Pears (I used Bijou)
  • 1/2 a frozen Banana
  • 2 cups Kale
  • 1 cup Almond milk (I used homemade sweetened with two dates and made using 3/4 cup almonds and 1/4 cup cashews and 8 cups water)

Cut up your pears to get the seeds out, I left the peel on throw everything in the blender then blended and served! I was only able to get a hint of banana, the pears were front and center, and the kale flavor was a no show. Mendal could taste the banana but liked the combo, I might try a bananaless version of this next time. I do typically add a tablespoon of flax seed meal or chica seeds, but this time I wanted a smoother smoothie so I skipped them. In the future, I will be adding flax  for the health benefits.

So go forth and blend up some pears! You won’t be sorry you did. ūüôā

Five Things Fri—Saturday

Ok, so this time my Five Things Friday post really is being posted on Saturday. My clock just hit 12:08 AM…This is what happens when I get so excited house hunting I forget to start my post writing! That’s right we are looking to buy a house. Something quaint and cottage with land and trees surrounding it, not street lights and neighbors separated by only a driveway.

Today the Five Things are Five things I have made this week.

1. Donuts.

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Yes! Finally! I found some donut (or doughnut) pans at HomeGoods and scooped them up at a fantastically low price of $3 each. I bought one regular donut pan and one twist long john pan…I have dreams of getting one more of both! For my first Vegan Baked Donut trial I used Chocolate Covered Katie’s “healthy” Kirspy Kreme Baked Doughnut recipe…I will be posting a more detailed post about these beauties soon!

2. Snack Time.

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I’m all about simple and quick snacks, and when they are healthful and yummy all the better! This came about when I was craving Ants on a Stick (Log? however you want to say it). You remember that snack from our childhood…or at least mine! Typically it involves smothering the channel of a celery stalk with peanut butter then topping with a neat row of raisins. This day, my celery was a little on the small side, very narrow…so I mixed raisins into my peanut butter and used it like a dip! I loved how easy (and less messy) this was and still tasted delicious. I have a feeling I will be making a tray with raisin and peanut butter dip at my next party! Uh, I wonder if I could add raisins to my peanuts the next time I make peanut butter!?!?! New idea…to me anyway! Yes, that is my copy of Whole Grain Vegan Baking sitting next to my snack. I was paging through it while chomping on celery, I can’t wait to start making the amazing foods in this book!

3. My Mom’s Yumzetti.

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This is my childhood. My mom hates cooking, so she loved all in one pot meals. Yumzetti in our house meant egg noodles, one can of tomato soup and one can of cream of mushroom soup and a punch of peas and a pound of hamburger cooked in the microwave then added to the finished dish. I loved this dish growing up. A few years ago I made it vegetarian by using Morning Star crumbles, this time I veganized and healthified (yes this is a word in my house) it! Instead of canned soups I made my own using cashews and portobella mushrooms and a can of tomato sauce and tomato paste and instead of “fake” meat I used steamed crumbled tempeh with a little soy sauce. It was yummy and totally filled the craving I had for my mom’s cooking. This recipe may make it onto the blog…but I didn’t really write things down so who knows!

4. Jewelry.

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I’m finally back at my bead table creating shiny, sparkly, pretty pieces of jewelry. I’m loving it! I made these earrings for myself, then loved them so much a made one more pair to sell…Coming to my etsy shop soon!

5. Mendal’s Knobs.

Drawer/Door Knobs that is. She is awesome, I know I have said that before. But really she is so creative and original! This woman has created some truly cool retro looking Star shaped knobs using ice/candy molds and epoxy and star sprinkles (yes edible sprinkles) I will hopefully remember to come back and post a picture…I can’t believe I didn’t snap one this evening when she unveiled them! She made these for her mom’s kitchen, which is yellow, green, blue and red…and her mom’s favorite shape is a Star. She is such a sweet daughter right?

So that is this weeks 5 things! There were other things made In The CatHouse this week…and maybe some will show up as a post before next weeks 5 things. I really need to start a few more themed posts to increase my blogging…maybe a Wednesday post? We shall see!

Coconut Curry Tempeh

Coconut Curry Tempeh

I have recently been obsessed with Popcorn Fanatic‘s Coconut Curry Popcorn. First let me say this…I hate popcorn, seriously I get nauseated at movie theaters because of the smell of freshly popped popcorn. I also detest the smell of microwave popcorn at home. My three younger sisters and Mendal all love popcorn. I first went to Popcorn Fanatic dragging my heals complaining about the smell. This place is a locally owned shop that specializes in a bazillion flavors of popcorn, they also have fudge, truffles and specialty cakes, but popcorn is their main focus. I remember as a child loving that nasty orange hot cheese popcorn you could only find in gas stations. So, I tried Popcorn Fanatics hot cheese. . .wasn’t as good as I remembered, theirs was much too cheesy, then I tried their buffalo wing and that was it! That hot cheese popcorn I loved as a kid must not have contained much cheese!

Needless to say, I was hooked. Then one day when buying Mendal her Chicago Mix (cheese and caramel popcorn) and my buffalo wing, I saw a new flavor that sounded interesting. Coconut Curry. I tried it and then purchased a bag, it almost didn’t make it home! So, short story longer, I have been hooked on coconut curry and have pinned a recipe for¬†vegan coconut curry¬†from The Kind Life (if you haven’t read it yet Alicia Silverstone’s¬†The Kind Diet¬†is awesome).

Now to the point of this post: While grocery shopping at my local Harris Teeter I stumbled upon¬†Turtle Island Foods¬†Tempeh¬†Coconut Curry flavored. If you have not yet tried this Tempeh, or any of the other flavors, you need to! I baked some at work, since I don’t have access to a stove, and chopped up 3 pieces and threw it on top some brown rice, drizzled with Kimmon Organic Soy Sauce. Then I grabbed two of my cut up carrots I brought as a raw snack sliced them up added some water and microwaved them for 2 minutes, I drained them and threw them in with the rice and tempeh. It was so good and easy for a quick lunch at work. Would be easier to have all the parts prepared at home, but some of the best tasting lunches come together on the fly! I so want to make my own homemade coconut curry tempeh. . .possible future post? Maybe. . .no promises!

Coconut Curry Tempeh 2

Thanksgiving…every day!

We should most definitely give thanks every day! But this title is about a few old fashioned Thanksgiving side dishes. If Mendal had her way we would have these every day…or until she finally gets tired of them, which she professes is impossible!

The dishes I’m talking about is the old school green bean casserole and a southern classic corn casserole (or corn pudding)…Strangely, Mendal is from Illinois, I’m from Virginia, I had never had this casserole and she made it frequently. Then again Illinois is corn country, so it makes sense!

These two dishes are important to Mendal, the flavors are a part of it sure, but I believe it’s mostly about comfort. You know that feeling you get when you eat something from your childhood, the way the flavors just take you back to that happy, innocent, place. Where there are no bills or responsibilities, only yummy food and loving family.

Going plant based was easy for me, even with my professed cheese addiction, I made the decision one day and then stopped eating cheese and milk products immediately. Mendal is supportive of my desire to not have dairy in the house and my desire not to cook with it. She has only eaten sour cream and cheese at our favorite Mexican restuarant, Monterrys and pizza joint, Brixx Wood Fired Pizza. Cheese is a huge comfort food for her, and sadly she didn’t like the vegan cheese that Brixx offers (I like it okay but also love cheeseless pizza). So, needless to say I wanted to cook up some guiltless comfort foods for Mendal!

And behold, I veganized Thanksgiving Side Dishes!

Thanksgiving Food

Vegan Green Bean Casserole

Ingredients

4 cups Organic Green Beans (I used Costco), break the beans into 1-2 inch pieces

1 cup french fried onions

2 cups vegetable or mushroom stock

1/2 cup Thick Cashew Cream see recipe below

1 cup shitake mushrooms, washed and chopped 1-2 inch pieces

1 cup baby bellas or portabellas, washed and chopped 1-2 inch pieces

1 tablespoon Organic Naturally Brewed Soy Sauce

1 teaspoon rubbed Sage

1 teaspoon dried Rosemary, ground with mortar and pestle or finely chopped

Place green bean pieces in glass bowl covered in water microwave for 5 minutes. Please note you can skip this part as Mendal prefers her green beans over cooked.

In medium sauce pan heat the vegetable stock with the herbs and soy sauce on medium high heat until bubbling, turn down to simmer, add mushrooms and cook until you notice the mixture reducing slightly, can take 15 to 20 minutes. Add Thick Cashew Cream and continue to cook 10 more minutes.

Green Bean

¬†Pour mushroom gravy mixture in a 8×8 or 9×9 baking dish, spoon in the beans and add 1/2 cup french fried onions, mix gently (if you find it easier to combine these things in the sauce pan or a bowl go for it!). Bake at 350 for 30 minutes, then top with remaining 1/2 cup french fried onions and bake another 5 to 10 minutes. Allow dish to rest for 10 minutes before serving. Note: I did not add salt to the recipe because the soy sauce may offer enough saltiness for most people, but please salt to taste.

Thick Cashew Cream
Thick Cashew Cream

1 cup Raw Cashews, soaked for 4 hours or for 15 minutes in hot water

1 cup filtered water

Place soaked Cashews and water in blender and blend for about 5 minutes, until you are left with a thick and creamy smooth mixture. Should be about the consistency of sour cream. You will not use this whole recipe in either of these side dishes, I had 1/2 a cup left so added 1 more cup of water and made my go to Cashew Cream which I refrigerated and later used for my yummy Vegan Alfredo sauce.

Look at this thick and creamy goodness!

Thick Cashew Cream 3

 

Mendal’s Vegan Corn Casserole

1 can Creamed Corn

2 cups Frozen Corn

1 cup Thick Cashew Cream (see recipe above)

1 Flax egg = mix 1 tablespoon ground flax seed with 1/4 cup filtered water, combine and refrigerate at least 15 minutes before uses.

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

1/2 cup cornmeal

2 tablespoon – 1/4 cup maple syrup or agave (Note: I’m doing some additional research on the healthfulness of agave syrup)

1 teaspoon sea salt

1 tablespoon baking powder (be sure to use aluminium free)

1/4 cup coconut oil (I like unrefined virgin, but Mendal and Miranda don’t love the slight coconut flavor it can give some dishes so use refined if you are sensitive to coconut flavors!)

To make this yummy dish simply combine all, but the coconut oil, in a bowl. Once combined pour into a 9×9 baking dish and smooth the top of the corn mixture, then push 1/2 teaspoon pieces of room temperature coconut oil scattered evenly over the top.

Corn Casserole 2

Bake for 1 hour at 350 degrees. let sit 5 or 10 minutes before serving.

Recipe Reviews

Thanksgiving

The corn casserole was so much better than the dairy heavy original version. The Green Bean Casserole was good too, but it tastes “healthier” than the old standard version made with canned soup, to me this is fantastic, but to Mendal it wasn’t quite the comfort food she grew up on. I honestly think adding more salt and thick cashew cream would fix that!

Also don’t mind the mashed potatoes, over 5+ years Mendal and I have been together, I have made tons of mashed potatoes. When I first met Mendal she told me she loved gluey mashed potatoes. . .seriously! Gluey! So, being the loving girlfriend, I am, I have TRIED to make GLUEY mashed potatoes ever since. But I could not figure out how! Time after time, I created fluffy (yummy) mashed potatoes. I tried different types of potatoes, different amounts of liquids, different types of liquids (heavy cream yup, skim milk yup, almond milk totally, water? oh yes). What happened on this fateful day finally produced the “perfect” gluey mashed potatoes. Mendal was happy, I wasn’t loving them. . .but this meal was about her comfort food so, yay I succeeded! And it only took 5 years. The trick. . .allow the cooked potatoes to cool to nearly room temp before adding cold almond milk then mash, I’m guessing it has something to do with the too cold temp and the starches? I will know for sure when I try to recreate the disaster/perfection.

Sweet Potato Burger and Whole Wheat Buns = Amazing!

Let me first say that I love bread. I especially love buns, they have a much larger crust to inside ratio then a slice of bread does, and I love that crusty slick browned part so very much. So, yes buns! Now, since going plant based, and focusing on whole foods I haven’t had white bread buns.

In my search for a good vegan recipe for making whole wheat buns I found Holy Cow! A Vegan Recipe Blog where¬†Vaishali gives us an easy to make¬†delicious Vegan Burger Bun recipe. Go here and make it! Note her recipe is not 100% whole wheat, there is 50% all purpose flour, I’m guessing this is to help give it a fluffy texture and it does! My ultimate goal is to only have whole grain flours, but since I can’t justify throwing away the other flours I already have, I plan to use them with whole grain flours until they are used up!

These are the buns Vaishali’s recipe gave me:

Whole Wheat Hamburger Buns

Totally awesome! I did have to shorten the rising time for these buns. My kitchen hovered between 79 and 82 degrees F while I was making these beauties. So, while I followed the recipe exactly every other way, my rising times where cut in half. If you are in a hurry this is great, but from what I remember from basic bread making the rising time allows for flavors to build, the slower the rise the deeper the flavors, please correct me if I’m wrong! Even with the sped up rising times these buns were perfect! I will totally be making them again soon!

Now for the Sweet Potato Burgers. I read over a few recipes including this one from Hayley’s Thoughts¬†then went my own way!

Sweet Potato & Rosemary Burgers

2 small to medium sweet potatoes (mine where each about 6 inches long and 3 inches thick)

1 can white beans, drained and rinsed

2 teaspoons dried rosemary, I ground mine using a mortar and pestle

1/4 teaspoon cumin

1/4 teaspoon rubbed sage

and a dash of garlic powder

Panko crumbs

I “baked” the sweet potatoes in the microwave then peeled and mashed them using a potato masher (novel idea, I know!). Then worked the rinsed white beans into the mixture, then simply tossed in the spices I wanted to use. You can choose any mixture of spices and herbs, the sky is the limit here!

I then used an ice cream scoop and portioned out 6 burgers, flattened them out in a bowl with a layer of Panko crumbs, flipping the burger over to coat both sides. Then I fried them in olive oil until both sides were crispy.

Sweet Potato Burger 3

Sweet Potato Burger 4

Sweet Potato Burger 5

We ate these Sweet Potato Rosemary Burgers on the Whole Wheat Buns above with some Whipped Nayonaise, romaine lettuce, tomato, and pickles. Very tasty! However, I now know, I am not a fan of Whipped Nayonaise. Which is not a¬†surprise, since I also never liked Miracle Whip. Luckily Mendal and Miranda both liked it a lot so the jar won’t go to waste. Don’t worry my sandwiches won’t be dry, I do love mashed up¬†avocado¬†and hummus (flavored and plain) and stone ground mustard. I would also like to try Miso Mayo soon, since it is not a fake mayo (despite the name).

Sweet Potato Burger 2

Take a gander at this awesomeness! Seriously? How can a veggie burger be this pretty?


Sweet Potato Burger

WOW, I just realized that my first real post in a week ended up being a recipe review (the BUNS), an original recipe (the Burgers) and a product review (the Nayonaise)! Awesome!

H is for Hummus

Hummus is a great healthy snack, it is also a fantastic replacement for mayo on sandwiches and other fatty non vegan spreads and dips. I have been experimenting with different recipes lately. I while ago I made one far to garlicky when following a recipe. Then I made a very simple one with only water added which was great on sandwiches, but blah when eating it with carrot sticks. So today I made up a new recipe, but first I tried a new step. Peeling the chickpeas. Yes, I said peeling. It is actually very easy to squeeze the thin skin off, it is simply a bit time consuming. The reason for this madness, is to make a super, silky, smooth hummus.

Now, I learned about this trick from Deb of Smitten Kitchen. She is a master of delicious, hearty, home cooked food that looks like it came from a 5 Star restaurant. She is not vegetarian nor vegan, but she has her fair share of recipes that fit both categories on her lovely blog. She also has a lot of yummy baked goods, that is actually how I found Smitten Kitchen over 3 years ago.

Which it totally did! Look at this mess , I mean amazingness.

Hummus 5

Hummus without Tahini 

Ingredients

1 can chickpeas or 2 cups, drained, rinsed and peeled

1/2 cup water

2 teaspoon lemon juice (used ReaLemon)

1 teaspoon sesame oil (Optional: I added this because I didn’t have Tahini)

1 clove garlic or 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic

Drain, rinse and peel those chickpeas!

Hummus

Then add all ingredients to a food processor. You can also make this in a blender, but may need to add more water.

Hummus 3

If you like thicker hummus use a food processor and only add 1/4 cup water. I like the hummus I use on sandwiches to be a little runnier or looser than the hummus I use for dipping veggies.

If you have found this post, please post your favorite hummus recipes and chickpea cooking methods. This recipe used the last can of chickpeas I plan to buy!