Veg*n Cooking and Other Random Musings: Oh, Veganomicon!

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Oh, Veganomicon!

I don't generally spend my entire Saturday in the kitchen, but this weekend is a three day weekend, and I have been really looking forward to trying out Veganomicon, so I made an exception. I made lots and lots of cookies, and will be keeping some of them for us, giving some to friends, and taking the rest in to my coworkers. I love giving meat eaters yummy vegan treats, it helps to illustrate that vegans do eat good food.

As I mentioned in my last post, I also tried out SusanV's Monterey Frittata. It was a bit involved, but not overly so, and it was really good. Mine wasn't as thick and didn't hold together as well as hers, but still tasted wonderful. I think next time I could use a smaller pan for the tofu and that would solve that issue.

Anyways, on to the real goods, the cookies. I think I picked perfect recipes for my first run with V-Con. Brett loved being the taste tester and I love baking cookies. It was a fun day, I listened to some very interesting podcasts, one involving James Howard Kunstler, and baked, and baked, and baked.....

The first batch of cookies I made were a variation of the Chocolate-Chocolate-Chip Walnut Cookies. I did the cherry variation, but stuck with regular vegan chocolate chips rather than using white chocolate chips as neither Brett nor I are fans. I also used whole wheat pastry flour, and didn't have any ground flax seeds, so I left those out, and the recipe still turned out great.

Next, I made the Chewy Chocolate-Raspberry Cookies. I simply followed the recipe as it read and according to Brett, these were really good. I had eaten a couple of the Chocolate-Chocolate-Chip Cherry and didn't really have room to try.

Then I made the Chewy Oatmeal-Raisin Cookies. These were a little bit more for me, as Brett tends to eschew anything that isn't chocolate, but he even liked these as well. The seasoning was just right, they were perfectly chewy and loaded with yummy raisins.

And finally, I departed from Veganomicon a bit to make some plain 'ol vegan chocolate chip cookies. This is yet another recipe I adapted from VegWeb. For some unknown reason the original recipe did not call for brown sugar. I have never heard of a chocolate chip cookie recipe that didn't call for brown sugar, so I altered it before I ever made it the first time. These are simple and a hit with anyone who likes chocolate chip cookies (which is everyone isn't it?).

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
Vegan chocolate chips
1 cup organic sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup canola oil
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/4 cup water

Preheat oven to 350.

In a large bowl mix flour, baking powder, and salt. Add chips.

In a medium size bowl mix sugar and oil and mix. Add the vanilla and then add the water. Add to the dry. Mix well, you may need to add a bit more flour or water to get the consistency correct.

Roll dough into small balls and place an inch and a half apart on an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake them for about 7-10 minutes and check roughly every minute after that until cookies are slightly golden brown.

Remove from oven, let cool for about five minutes before transferring to a wire cooling rack.

After all this baking I wanted something quick and light for dinner, so I opted for sushi. I just got a rice cooker, which can also double as a veggie steamer, so this made the job a whole lot easier. I decided to try the Spicy Tempeh Nori Rolls from V-Con. This was my first experience with tempeh, and I'm still not sure about it. The sushi was pretty good I guess, I'm just still not sure. I think I will have to try it again some other way to really make a judgment.

I also made a variation on something similar to the Post Punk Kitchen's Goin' Back to Cali Roll. This is not where I got the idea from, I actually have had veggie sushi like this on campus at the University of Missouri, but it is very similar to PPK's Cali Roll. The only thing I did differently was to add shredded carrot and pickled ginger to the roll.

I was pretty wiped out at the end of the day, but had a lot of fun. I won't be repeating that today. The only thing I plan on making is dinner. Today is going to be one of the nice fun days of relaxing and doing as few productive things as possible. Yay for the weekend.


Veggie said...

I've never heard of a chocolate chip cookie recipe that didn't call for brown sugar either.
They look great so you must have made the right changes to the recipe. I'll have to try out that one.

I keep meaning to try making my own sushi, I even bought the nori sheets. I'll have to watch that PPK video again to see how it's done.

Anonymous said...

mmmmm...I like the look of that sushi

the pleasantly plump vegan said...

cookies AND sushi = awesomeness

(chandelle) said...

the sushi looks great! don't worry if tempeh didn't work for you this time. it took a long time for me to like it, and i still only like it made a certain way, like if it's crumbled and seasoned a lot. i can't stand it cubed or cohesive in any way...crumbled works well, though.

i love making veg*an sushi because there are so many options! at first i felt like a phony but then i found out that "sushi" actually means "vinegar rice," so not having fish in it, it's still totally authentic! :) you have a great blog and i'll definitely visit again.

Happy Herbivore said...

can I send requests for shipments of that sushi?

Happy Herbivore said...

p.s. the first three times I made seitan and tempeh I was unimpressed and threw it out. I still only like the premade seitan I can buy at the store instead of making it at home from a recipe... tempeh bacon rules.

VeggieGirl said...

isn't Veganomicon fabulous?? looks like you're enjoying it quite a bit!! all those cookies - yum!!

ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

Ooh so many good-looking cookies in one place... it's not fair! Share the cookie love!

Your omlette looks amazing; I've yet to make a vegan omlette, although I've done quite a few quiches... omlettes are on my ever-growing to-do list.

Jennifer said...

Veggie - Glad I wasn't the only one who thought that was weird.

You should definitely make your own sushi, it's not all that hard once you get it down, it seems to be all about how tight you can get it to roll.

Megan - Thanks, I liked it too, it didn't stay all nice looking on a plate for too long, a couple of moves with the chopsticks and it was in 'ma belly.

Pleasantly - You know, it is a good combo. I realized once I had posted this entry that my food theme was a bit all over the place, but what can ya do?

Chandelle - I too was a bit surprised to find out what sushi actually means. I have been in a rut because aside from my new attempt at sushi (the tempeh rolls), the only other things I can think to stuff in the rolls is the not-too-clever cucumber, avocado, carrot combination.

Happy Herbivore - Ha! I saw some Lightlife Tempeh Bacon at the store, I may have to try it out for a vegan BLT or something. Glad to know that we weren't the only ones who are wary of tempeh.

I have never made homemade seitan, but can see what you mean about it, the seasoning and texture are probably tough to get down.

VeggieGirl - Veganomicon does indeed rock, I have so many little post-it notes stuck in there marking recipes I want to try.

Chocolate Covered - Thanks, the cookies were really good. Had to give some away and take some in to work otherwise, I would probably eat them all!

You really should try out a Frittata, it was very good, but be warned, this recipe is a bit involved. I have never made a quiche either, I am interested though.

To be completely honest, I'm not sure I ever had a quiche before I went veg. So I would have no idea how "authentic" it tastes, but who cares about all that noise, eh?

Lizzy said...

Oh my god, now your cookies look amazing. A whole lot hehe. I'm sure your friends were rather delighted about your baking feast =)
The chocolate chip cookies look so crispy, mhh I think I'll have to make these soon.

The PPK cookies would've turned out even better if I had made them thinner. But I see you do that with yours so I'm sure they'll turn out perfect =)

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