Friday, November 30, 2012

Mom's Creamy Potato Soup the Vegan Years

It's was my daughter's favorite dish growing up.  It was the one bowl of comfort she could always count on.  It is no surprise to me that Seanna decided to turn this bowl of yumminess into a vegan dish she could get the same comfort out of. 

6 Large Potatoes
2 cups of water
2 TSP Garlic Salt
Pepper to taste
2 Cups Frozen Corn
1 Small Onion Diced
2 cups Soy Milk
2 TBS Earth Balance butter
1 3oz Package extra firm Tofu
2 TBS Flour
1/2 cup cold water

Daiya Vegan Cheese

Cut potatoes (unpeeled) into good bite size chunks.  Rinse well and boil in water with 1/2 of the soy milk, garlic salt and pepper for 5 to seven minutes.  They should be slightly tender but not soft.  Add Frozen Corn, Diced Onion, butter, remaining Soy milk and diced Tofu to potatoes.  Continue to boil for an additional fifteen minutes on medium heat.  Potatoes should be nice and soft.  Mix flour and water in a bowl and whip together until smooth.  Add to potatoes stirring briskly to avoid lumps.  Top with cheese and enjoy.


This is such a great way to start a morning.  Sometime I think I come up with the most bizarre ideas but than my husband trows in a little twist it turns everything around.

I used some left over brisket that my husband had smoked.  Smoked summer sausage will make this just as tasty.  Either way you'll definitely be surprised at the great flavor.

Serves 4

3 Large Potatoes Diced
3 TBS oil (I prefer bacon grease for the flavor)
1 Small Onion Diced
1 Small Red Pepper Diced
3 Cloves Garlic Diced
1 Tsp Salt
1 Tsp Pepper
1/2 Tsp Red Pepper
2 Cups Chopped Brisket
2 Slices White or Wheat bread lightly toasted
2 Eggs
2 Tbs Oil
Shredded Colby Jack Cheese

In a large skilled heat grease.  Add potatoes and cook for 10 to 15 minutes or until golden brown.  Add remaining vegetables and toss in skillet until well blended.  Allow to cook for an additional five minutes until onions, peppers and garlic are tender but not too soft.  Add chopped brisket, turn heat to low and cook until meat is soft.

 Remove potatoes from skillet and add 2 tablespoons of oil.  Gently crack eggs in skillet before oil is heated.  Cook eggs until top is left slightly runny and turn.  Cook for 2 minutes. Place one spoonful of
potato and brisket over lightly toast bread.  Top with a sprinkle of shredded cheese and cooked egg.


Sunday, November 11, 2012

Completely Vegan Chicken Vermicelli

Whether you are looking for a quick lunch, or something special to spruce up a meal this is one tasty dish that never disapoints! 

2 cloves crushed garlic
1 cup minced onion
1 small (8oz) pkg vermicelli noodles
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 can Imagineary Foods no chicken broth
1 tsp lemon pepper
1 tsp salt

Saute onion and garlic in skillet with olive oil until tender.  Stir in vermicelli and cook until noodles become transulent.  Add chicken broth, salt and peper cooking until noodles are done.

Vegan Dumpling Stew

Would you look at how good this is.  Talk about the best thing for a cold, rainy fall evening!  And it's so darn easy to make too.  It's a great dish to make a Sunday Afternoon even more relaxing.
The Broth
2 Cans Imagine's Organic Chicken Broth
2 Carrots sliced
2 Celery Stocks sliced
1/2 Green Pepper diced
1/2 Medium Onion diced
2 Garlic Cloves minced
Add all ingredients into a crock pot and cook on high for two hours, or until carrots are tender.
The Dumplings
1 cup flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbs Cream of Wheat ceral (uncooked)
1/2 cup Soy Milk
Mix all ingredients in a bowl.  Drop small portions by spoon into broth.  Cover and cook for another hour.  Do not stir so that dumplings will not fall apart. After one hour finish broth with 1/4 cup flour and 1/2 cup cold water blended until smooth.  Stir into broth and cook uncovered until broth has thickened.

Texas Smokey Chicken and Dumplings

It's true.  Texan's do love their BBQ.  It's not just a weekend tribute to the back yard.  It doesn't wait for Spring weather.  My husband is right up there with the best of them.  But, as he says "If I had to do it for a living it wouldn't be as much fun"!  So, he keeps his talents to family and close friends.  I enjoy utilizing the leftovers to create new dishes.  After he smoked a chicken (see South Texas Beer Can Chicken) I tried a new take on Chicken and Dumplings. 
Beer Can Chicken (Leftovers)
2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1/2 small onion diced
2 crushed garlic cloves
2 tsp celery seasoning
1 can low sodium, fat free chicken broth
Place remains of Beer Can Chicken (bones, meat and skin), onion, broth and seasonings in a crockpot and cook on high for two hours.  Any leftover chicken will do, but the hint of smoke and spice from this chicken adds amazing flavor.   Remove the chicken and remove remaining meat returning it to the crockpot with broth.  Turn heat to low and continuing cooking for another hour. 
1 cup flour
2 tsp baking soda
1 egg
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbs cream of wheat ceral (uncooked)
3/4 cut milk
Mix all ingredients together in a mixing bowl including cream of wheat to give dumplings the perfect texture.  Drop small portions of batter by spoon into crockpot with chicken and broth.  Return lid and let cook for another hour.  Do not stir to prevent dumplings from falling apart. Whip 1/4 cup flour and 1/2 cup cold water until smooth and free of lumps.  Stir into chicken and cook an aditional thirty minutes with lid off to thicken the broth.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Fiesty Fiesta Tamales

Chicken Tamales
Weather you enjoy them spicy of just warm and full of flavor Tamales are fun.  Widely popular during the colder season for their "comfort tendencies" these things are good any time of the year.  There are two basic secrets to getting a tamale just right.  Taste, and texture.  It's not a difficult process but it does take patience and time. 

I have seen everything from basic beans to sweet pineapple used in tamales.  Once you get the masa down just use your imigination.  This recipe will make two dozen so if you really want to bump it up just throw in some extra filling.

2LBS Meat (chicken/pork/beef) of your choice
5 Cloves Garlic
3 Medium Jalapeno Peppers
1 Small Onion
1/4 Cup Mesquite Seasoning
1/4 Cup Chili Powder

Crush garlic and peppers together and chop onion.  Place meat in crock pot.  Add seasonings, garlic, peppers and onion.  Cook on slow temperature for six to eight hours.  Meat should be very tender and fall apart easily.

1/4 Cup Chili Powder
1Tbs Paprika
2 Tsp Cumin
1/2 Tsp Onion Powder
1/2 Tsp Garlic Powder
1/2 Tsp red pepper

Remove meat and save broth for later use.  Shred meat with two forks on a baking pan. Once meat is shredded add enough broth to moisten and flavor the filling.  Add dry spices and spread evenly through out the mixture. Set meat aside and let sit while corn husks are prepared.

Step1:  Spread prepared masa over softened corn husk
24 corn husks
2 cups masa harina
2 Tbs bacon grease
2 cups broth left from slow cooked meat (this is where you get the best flavor)

Step 2: Place a good layer of shredded meat on left side of masa
Soak corn husks in a sink of hot water to soften the shell. Add bacon grease to masa.  Using fork blend until mixture is course.  Slowly add broth until masa is moist enough to form a soft ball.  Place corn husk side up on surface.  Keep a glass of very hot water and soup spoon near by.  Drop a glob of masa on husk.  Dip spoon in hot water and use it to smooth the dough across the surface of the corn husk in an even layer that is not too thick.  It should be thin enough to cover the meat.  Leave 2 inches of the right side empty and do not fill the v shape bottom..  Place the filling on the left side of the shell.  Fold the shell over to the open right side and roll.  Tuck up the open bottom of the shell and tie off with a thin strip of husk that can easily be torn from the shell.  Continue process until masa and meat are used.  Layer tamales in pan and cook.

Step 4: Tuck up bottom of husk and tie off
Step 3: Fold husk over masa and tightly roll
You can purchase a tamale pot fairly reasonably at many stores.  They come with an insert that allow the tamales to be lifted off of the water while the rising steam slowly cooks the masa.  With lid on be sure to check often so that pot doesn't boil dry.  Another alternative that works well is a crock pot.  I used a round cookie rack set in the bottom of the dish to rise the layered tamales up from the water.This method takes longer but I found the tamale to be even more moist than usual.  Cook for six hours on high in crock pot.