Saturday, August 13, 2016

Dutch Baby Style Pancakes for the plant based diet

Puff Pancake. Take out of the oven at 35 minutes and dust with powdered sugar and lemon zest.
Dutch Babies are a unique pancake that celebrates the egg and what it can do under the right circumstances.  Normally it puffs up to several times the size of the batter in a hot oven.
We used to make them a lot when our daughter was young and loved the taste and the show of them. After we stopped eating things with a face or a mother I never even tried to make one but it is one of the breakfast items I have missed.  The new egg replace product, "VeganEgg" is so different that I just had to try and make Dutch Babies again—but I was skeptical that it would work.
Fortunately, it turned out surprisingly well.

Place 4 individual ramekins (4 inch diameter each) in oven and set temperature to 425 degrees fahrenheit

Wet ingredients to be placed in Vitamix or other really good blender:

2 cups non-dairy milk (I used cold coconut milk or almond milk from a carton—not the canned variety)  Why? less fat
2 ounces soft silken tofu (or regular tofu blended with some of the non-dairy milk from this recipe in a microblender such as a Magic Bullet)
1 teaspoon almond extract--don't skip, important flavor
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Then sprinkle in the dry ingredients and blend immediately:

1/4 cup VeganEgg powder
1/2 cup flour such as Bob's 10 grain or coconut flour, or your favorite type
2 tablespoons Low Fat Bisquik
3/4 teaspoon salt

After batter is ready, remove ramekins or pull out oven rack to where you can pour the batter into them. Place 1 tablespoon vegan butter in each ramekin right before pouring in the batter along with a quick spray from your can of spray canola or other oil to coat the inside of each ramekin. Let melt--it should only take seconds.
Pour 1/4 of the batter into each hot ramekin as quick as you can after placing the vegan butter and a bit of spray oil in each.  Bake for 20 minutes and then turn the heat down to 375 and continue baking for another 15 to 20 minutes.

Remove from oven. Dust with powdered sugar and a squirt of lemon juice.

Alternate Recipe without Bisquik:

Dutch Baby Pancake for One 

1/2 cup non-dairy milk
1 tablespoon soft tofu
1/4 teaspoon each—vanilla and almond extract

Blend in Magic Bullet (mini blender), then add dry ingredients all at once and blend again:

1 tablespoon VeganEgg dry powder
3 tablespoons whole wheat pastry flour, or your favorite flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
pinch salt.

Cook same as above.

Batter will be thick like cake batter.

After cooking for 12 minutes
This is as tall as it ever achieved, but taking it out of the oven too soon results in a raw and doughy center.  It will deflate a little as it continues cooking.  Too bad.

20 minutes

Plant based Dutch Baby—I should have photographed them right when they came out of the oven.  This is about 10 minutes later.

Serve with real maple syrup, or your favorite.

Vegan Almond Chicken

Soy curls made to taste like Almond Chicken on a bed of steamed kale

 We used to like to go to this very typical American-Chinese restaurant in Spokane that served Chinese food the way we liked it, the tackier the better.  Sticky, bright red sweet and sour sauce, bright yellow lemon chicken, you get the idea.  My favorite item on their menu was Almond Chicken.  It was something I never figured out how to make at home (and probably would have cringed at how unhealthy it was anyway).  I found myself wondering how to re-create the essence of what I liked about this dish without re-creating the bad stuff—the animal protein and the greasy gravy.

God Bless Soy Curls.  

A plant based version of the standard American Chinese Restaurant "Almond Chicken"

1 cup              soy curls
1 cup              boiling water
1 teaspoon Better Than Bouillon, No Chicken Base
2 tablespoons Sliced almonds
1/4 cup almond flour
(or grind up your whole almonds with a food processor)
1/4 cup flaxseed meal
1/4 cup bread crumbs (whole grain, dry)
1 cup water
1/2 cup almond flour
1/2 cup almond milk, lowfat
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons garbanzo bean flour
1/2 teaspoon Better Than Bouillon, No Chicken Base
1/8 teaspoon almond extract (optional)
1 tablespoon Miso paste
1 bunch steamed kale 
1.  Dissolve 1 teaspoon of bouillon in 1 cup of boiling water and pour over soy curls to dehydrate.  Let sit for 15 min. or longer while you prepare the other ingredients.
2.  Toast sliced almonds in small skillet until golden brown, set aside to use as topping.
3.  Toast 1/4 cup almond flour (ground almonds), then combine with flaxseed meal and bread crumbs.
4.  Drain broth from soy curls and reserve.  Dredge soy curls in almond flour mixture.
5.  Toast coated soy curls in medium-hot skillet until browned on all sides.  Set aside in warm oven.
6.  Combine sauce ingredients (1 cup water, 1/2 cup almond flour, 1/2 cup almond milk, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, garbanzo bean flour and 1/2 teaspoon bouillon) in blender or Magic Bullet.
7.  Pour sauce ingredients into skillet and bring to simmer, cook until thickened.  Remove from heat and add almond extract and miso paste, stir to combine.
8.  Place 1 cup of steamed kale or brown rice and 1/4 of the soy curls on each plate, cover with the almond sauce and sprinkle toasted sliced almonds over the top.

8.  Remember to close your eyes with each bite, sigh and be happy and grateful to be alive.  Bless the cook.  Don't bother wiping the grin off your face.


Thursday, June 30, 2016

Shells n' Cheese with Peas, PBNAF

Our standard household favorite to eat while the big cheese is away is Mac n' Cheese because he does not share our enthusiasm for the dish.  Did I mention my daughter, my Mac n' Cheese partner, is away at college?  It's just me and the dogs.  It's just me and the dogs and the parakeets.  It's just me and the dogs, the parakeets and the fish. It's quiet anyway.

But now that I don't eat real cheese not having a favorite go-to recipe has become a problem because he is away, a lot.  Okay, not a lot but these occasions demand a little comfort food like Mac n' Cheese so it is about time I found a recipe worth blogging about.  I have tried a couple of the vegan versions but none have seemed truly great without a little tweaking to my tastes.  No onion powder please.  No turmeric either.

Shells n' Cheesy Sauce with peas
This is adapted from "Soy-Free Mac n' Cheese Recipe" by Lindsay Nixon.

1 1/2 cups vegetable pasta shells or whole grain pasta of your choice
1 3/4 cups rice milk, low fat unsweetened
1/2 cup nutritional yeast (or slightly less)
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon Vegan Parmesan
1/2 teaspoon paprika (not smoked)
1/4 teaspoon Bragg 24 Herb Seasoning
1/4 teaspoon Not-Chicken Bouillon
1/4 cup non-dairy cheddar shreds
1/2 cup frozen peas
1 1/2 tablespoons miso paste (most common available is made from soy which works for me)
1/2 teaspoon dry parsley flakes
2 pinches smoked paprika
flaxseed meal for topping

Put the water on to boil for the pasta and add it when the water is at a rolling boil.  Let the pasta simmer while you make the sauce.
Pour milk into a large skillet, add the yeast, cornstarch, garlic powder, vegan parmesan, paprika, herb seasoning, parsley and bouillon.  Simmer until thickened, add cheddar shreds.  Remove sauce from heat and add miso paste, parsley and paprika.  Set aside.
By now the pasta should almost be done.  Add the frozen peas to the boiling water and continue cooking until the peas are hot and bright green and the pasta is done.  Drain or scoop out of the water with a strainer and combine with the sauce.  Top with flaxseed meal.

You are done.  Except for the best part which is eating it.  :)


  • Never rinse your pasta with cold water because then the starches wash away that help the sauce stick to it.  (Probably something I learned watching the chefs on Food Network...who knows?)
  • Never add miso until the end of cooking because the heat destroys the good stuff in it.
  • "Government Cheese" by Keb Mo is the only song I have with the word "Cheese" in the title.  Somehow it is not festive enough for this occasion so "Wouldn't it be Nice" by the Beach Boys is my recommendation tonight.

Penne pasta made from brown rice, topping is
raw shelled hemp seeds instead of flax for a wild evening.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

PB2 Granola

Plant based Granola, before baking

This is a lower fat recipe for granola than most I have found published. I am replacing some of the fat and sweetener with applesauce and by golly it works!

I bought a lot of PB2 powder and wanted to use it in an energy snack that didn't have too much sugar or fats.
Preheat oven to 275 degrees fahrenheit

2 cups old fashioned oats
1 cup PB2 powdered peanut butter, I used the cocoa flavored variety
2/3 cup raw pumpkin seeds
1 cup raw sunflower seeds
1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes or shreds
1/3 cup raw almonds, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup dried blueberries or cranberries
3 tablespoons flaxseed meal
2 tablespoons oat bran
1/4 cup wheat bran

Stir dry ingredients together and then add wet ingredients to dry ingredients as a drizzle while you continue stirring.

Wet ingredients:
Combine 1/4 cup honey, 1/4 cup coconut oil, 1/4 cup applesauce and 2 teaspoons vanilla

It works well to heat the liquids together for a few seconds in the microwave to make the mixture more fluid. All ingredients together will seem fairly dry but keep stirring and eventually it will all become sticky.  When you no longer see dry pockets it is ready to bake.

Spread out on cookie sheet that has been lined with lightly oiled parchment.
Bake for 1 hour at 275 degrees fahrenheit. This will make approximately 2 1/2 lbs. of dry granola.
It works great as a breakfast cereal.

PB2 Granola

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Vegan Chickpea Cutlets, PBNAF

Chickpea Cutlets served on a bed of fresh spinach ribbons with oven roasted baby new potatoes and a lima bean, carrot and mushroom gravy.  Who thought plant-based could be so good?
There is a recipe for chickpea cutlets posted at by Emily Souliere that came from "Veganomicon" By Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero.  The original recipe had olive oil as one of the ingredients and then fried.
This is a version of that recipe, but without the oil or frying in my attempt to follow the advice of Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn in his book, "Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease".


1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup vital wheat gluten
1/2 cup plain nonfat whole grain breadcrumbs
1/4 cup non-fat vegetable broth
2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
2 garlic cloves diced fine
1/2 teaspoon vegetarian "Not-Chicken" bouillon
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon hungarian paprika
1/4 teaspoon dry sage

Mash the chickpeas until no whole ones are visible, I use a potato masher. (If you use a food processor, be sure to just pulse and not over mix or you will end up with a texture which is completely wrong.)
Add remaining ingredients and knead for three minutes.

Divide dough into four equal pieces and flatten into a
shape resembling a flattened piece of chicken breast, about 4"x6".

Heat nonstick skillet to medium hot and arrange cutlets to cover
the bottom of the skillet. Flip after they have browned (about
4 minutes).  Set cutlets aside and brown two cups of sliced mushrooms in the same skillet.
Add two cups of mushroom broth. Simmer until thickened and place cutlets back into pan. Heat through.
Note that if you let these sit too long in the mushroom broth while you are waiting for that certain someone to finally get home from work, there won't be any broth left.  The patties will have soaked it all up.  Just saying.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Plant based Recipe: Macaron cookies made without egg whites


Bean juice drained off 3 cans garbanzo beans, boiled and reduced to 1/3 to 1/2 cup.
Set aside to cool, then combine the dry ingredients and set aside:
1 1/4 cup finely ground nuts, mostly almond but pecans work also (I use a coffee grinder)
1/4 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup raw sugar

1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
food coloring

Whip bean juice (cool to room temperature) with electric mixer until it resembles meringue and then add the powdered sugar one tablespoon at a time until incorporated. Add food coloring and almond flavoring.  Fold in remaining dry ingredients, half at a time until incorporated.  Place batter into 1 gallon plastic bag and snip off lower corner to use as a piping bag.  Pipe small cookies onto baking sheets lined with dry parchment. Let sit for 2 hours at room temperature.  Bake in 210 degree oven for 50 minutes.  Cool on wire rack.

I ran out of red food coloring so these look a little weak….