Homemade vegan creme eggs: Can it be done? »
Liza Eckert attempts to make vegan creme eggs chez elle for Persephone, with mixed results. Mainly because her electric mixer gave out before the ingredients of the creamy centers were fully combined, and then she ran into trouble with apportioning the chocolate shells … but, she says, “Nothing, not even weird consistency or uneven chocolate, will stand between me and my creme eggs.”
Have any of you attempted to make creme eggs? I loved the Cadbury’s original more than life itself as a kid, and had an excellent grown-up version at Timeless the other week—creamier centers with a sort of lemony finish to the vanilla, offset by darker chocolate—but I’ve never felt inclined to do them myself. There’s a recipe on VegWeb, though, for the brave!
[photo by Liza Eckert for Persephone Magazine]
Some spooky pumpkin cupcakes from reader Jessica E.! Well, they are cuter than spooky. But cute things taste better than spooky things. That’s a fact.
Jessica got the recipe for the cupcakes from VegWeb. As for the frosting:
1/4 cup room temperature vegan butter
1/3 cup room temperature vegan cream cheese
2 cups sifted powdered sugar
2 teaspoons of vanilla.
Thoroughly mix all ingredients and voilà, heaven.
She says the fondant was store-bought but she did all the sculpting and coloring! Super-cool.
This year for Vegan MoFo we’re doing some pretty magical shit. Well, not really, but it’s still great because it’s Vegan MoFo and everything is great during Vegan MoFo. It vegan blogger’s Christmas and Hanukkah and Kwanzaa and Festivus all wrapped up into one big crazy package of delicious. If you haven’t seen all the vegan blogs participating yet, check out the definitive list. GODDAMN IS RIGHT.
This year, Vegansaurus is going to share with you a daily quick and easy vegan meal or snack or dessert that one of us recently made. And hopefully a recipe, too! This is good for many reasons, because while one of us is a professional pastry chef, the rest of us are gigantic dumb-dumbs in the kitchen. I kid, we’re all really excellent cooks, I just said that to make you feel more comfortable. I’ve got that holiday spirit!
Without further ado, our inaugural recipe is for Pink Dino Sugar Cookies, the perfect gift for every occasion!* I made these for Tomato Tart’s online bakesale for Japan and they were a major hit, in that I had to make several batches before we could stop eating them and actually put some in the mail. Practice makes perfect!
I used the Just Like Granny B’s Sugar Cookies recipe on VegWeb, with a few slight alterations as follows. The pink sprinkles I got from a local cake-decorating shop (yeah, cake-decorating shops exist! Remember 2005? Everyone was rich and happy and buying big-ass houses and opening specialty shoppes? These sprinkles are from that glorious time!) and the cookie cutters I’ve had forever because dinosaurs are fucking amazing. THEY LIVED ON THE EARTH JUST LIKE US. So crazy.
1/2 cup Earth Balance
2/3 cup organic sugar
3 Tbsp. extra firm silken tofu, mashed
1 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees AMERICAN. Cream E.B. and sugar for about five minutes, until fluffy. Add mashed tofu and vanilla. Mix well.
Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into the mixture.
Roll out the dough and use dino cookie cutters (Important: cookie cutters in shapes other than dinos will RUIN the cookies) to cut adorable dinosaurs. You want the dough to be almost the thickness you want your cookie, because these don’t spread much.
Bake for around 10 minutes.
*Goes perfectly with our SEXY SHIRTS! Dino cookies + dino shirts = THE SEXIEST!
Vegansaurus interview: Lindy Loo of Yeah, That Vegan Shit! »
Lindy Loo wants you to read her funny-as-hell food blog, Yeah, That Vegan Shit. Perhaps you’ve already heard about it. Just maybe you’re already one of her 660+ followers, a list that has steadily swelled since she started her blog in 2006. Her blog was even featured as one of the ten best vegan blogs by Vegansaurus’ Laura at VegNews. Once you’ve had a steady dose of Lindy’s suggestive and delightfully scatological humor, you will doubtless want to read some of her other stuff, too. She blogs regularly at several sites where she talks about, among other things, being vegan in Cleveland, and “Things that Make [Her] Heart Go Squish.” And did I mention she’s hilarious? And an awesome vegan cook? Her posts are sweet and raunchy and full of useful information for an enterprising (and maybe a little slutty) vegan cook. The archives are an especially good source for everything from recipes (Black Bean and Chocolate Chili…WHAT?) to musings on food that looks like poop. Just click the link titled “Recipes to Make You Scream with Unbridled Pleasure—OH OH OH OH YES YES YES!!!!” Lindy Loo agreed to indulge me in an interview, which I submit for your reading pleasure
Vegansaurus: What inspired you to start a food blog?
Lindy Loo: I thought, “Hey, how can I get laid more often? I know! I’ll start a potty-mouthed vegan food blog!” I mean, who DOESN’T want to immediately shag a chick who’s a vegan, a blog nerd, and likes to talk about poop a lot? I also started the blog because I wanted a kind of self-support that would help me keep on track while I transitioned to vegan. I work better and am more motivated when I have a bit more structure and a constructive way to funnel my energies. Posting and testing out recipes regularly made the transition to vegan much more fun. It also does a world of good to regularly have people post comments because it reminds you that there IS a community out there that loves and supports one another, even if they’re not in your immediate area. So yeah: all that. And the getting-laid thing.
How would you describe your blog?
John Waters meets Robin Swoboda meets vegan cooking?
What motivates you to keep blogging?
The community. I appreciate so much the support and comments from people, and I like the constant reminder that there are like-minded folks out there. I also like to know I’m helping explode the stereotype of the uber-serious, stuffy, judgmental, humorless vegan, and that my blog and recipes have helped make the transition to veganism more enjoyable for newbies. Blogging also keeps me motivated to constantly try out new recipes, which is good ‘cause otherwise I’d probably just eat pizza all the time.
What is your favorite food blog?
To be honest, I haven’t been keeping up with vegan food blogs since my editing job ended last year. BUT that being said, I have always loved Don’t Eat off the Sidewalk. Katie is MAD sassy and funny as hell, and she takes gorgeous food pics. She also likes zombies and horror flicks. I guess I mostly just kinda wanna make out with her and then have her cook me dinner. She’s kind of the vegan Betty to my Don Draper.
In the infamous desert-island scenario, what three food items would you bring with you?
Ha ha ha. This seems like the most futile question ever since they’d get eaten immediately and then you’d still have to resort to sucking the juice out of coconuts. But nonetheless…avocado sushi. For sure. Nothing quite makes my heart pitter-pat like a perfectly constructed bite of avocado sushi. Pesto pasta of some sort would be among my survival gear. I can eat LOADS of that stuff. And then something desserty. Hm. Maybe the Vegan with a Vengeance chocolate chip cookies. Definitely one of my go-to dessert recipes.
What do you like best about being vegan?
I like blowing people’s minds with it. It’s so much fun creating delicious meals or desserts and serving them to unsuspecting folks and then being like, BLAM! YOU’VE BEEN VEGANED!!! It also does a world of good in helping make people realize that eating vegan isn’t all iceberg lettuce salads and raw carrots. That it’s also ooey gooey decadent caramel fudge pies and sexy seitan piccata. I also just really like how being vegan has made me a much better cook. It makes me more resourceful and inventive, and I love the challenge of it, especially when it comes to vegan baking.
Do you have a least favorite defensive-omnivore question? If so, what is it?
My least favorite, defensive-omnivore ARGUMENTS are actually just the ones that omnivores leave on my blog all the time, essentially consisting of a completely disorganized, verbal diarrhea of non-factual vegan-slamming where you can tell they have no ACTUAL idea about the statistics and information they’re spouting off about. I don’t even make an effort to respond to these folks because it’s not worth MY while or their while. Those kind of omnivores make my brain short circuit and make me have to get off the internet immediately so that I don’t randomly start shouting things like “Your mom is a omni-whore” and “If I wasn’t vegan, I’d eat your baby’s face off.”
Any advice for aspiring food bloggers?
When I first started blogging, I had a concerned older female blogger send me an email telling me that maybe I should change the name of my blog and not be so foul-mouthed because I was alienating my readers. Obviously I didn’t take her advice, and my blog has since had more than a million hits, has over 650 followers, and got a nod in VegNews as one of their VegWebmistress’s favorite blogs [Ed.: That’s ME! I love Yeah, That Vegan Shit]. So my advice would be: Write in ways that are true to you and your heart. You’ll be surprised as to how many vegans like a good poop joke.
Marla Wick lives in Sebastopol, a small community in Sonoma County, California, where people never change out of their yoga pants. She spends her time cooking, baking, knitting, and raging about politics when she’s not working as a freelance editor and writer. She blogs about food, animal ethics, cultural politics, and horror movies at Vegan-Squared and Bully Pulp. Photos by Lindy Loo.
Another word on Mexican food since I’m an expert. I pretty much will do anything for a taquito. You know how some people still have nightmares about the things they’ve done for a Klondike Bar? I’m like that, but with delicious taquitos!
Do you all remember those big plastic bags of taquitos they (used to?) sell at Costco? They were roughly the size of a 60-gallon Hefty and filled with delicious frozen taquitos? I basically lived off those and microwaved Steak-ums throughout middle school. I would love to meet other people who survived the same culinary upbringing and talk about how we still have the use of our eyes and didn’t die of scurvy and shit.
Anyway, these taquitos are from VegWeb, although I prefer this recipe. There’s also a recipe for potato Soyrizo taquitos that looks to be the bomb. Check out these jackfruit carnitas taquitos! If you’re too lazy to make them, three things. 1) Be my friend, 2) ALWAYS REMEMBER TAQUITO TUESDAY, and 3) you can buy those Starlite ones at Whole Foods and Rainbow Grocery and they taste JUST like the garbage-bag taquitos from Costco. Praise be!
Recipe: Vegan gumbo! Happy Mardi Gras, tramps! »
So Mardi Gras is coming up, and if can’t get to New Orleans to flash your boobs for beads (don’t do that, ladies! you don’t want to end up on Girls with Low Self-Esteem! this joke is dated!), you can still Live the Glory by eating buckets and buckets of gumbo. Riddle me this: Why is gumbo so ridiculously delicious? It cannot be explained! It just is! This recipe is from Jonas’ dad and that man can COOK. We ate this at his house over New Year’s and my year is going really well so far. Coincidence? Probably. Am I going to claim that it’s not? Definitely.
Anyway, make this! It’s labor and time intensive but you end up with so much food that you’re in eating heaven for many days. It’s completely worth it, you will not regret it, and if you do, then you are a lazy, terrible person, I hate you, etc. LET’S DO THIS!
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup olive oil
4 green onions, chopped
7 garlic cloves, minced
1 green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
4 stalks celery, chopped
6 cups vegan chicken broth
1 14-oz. can chopped tomatoes
3 cups fresh or frozen okra, sliced
1 1/2 tsp. cajun seasoning (if you can’t find this, just mix some cayenne, pepper, and garlic powder!)
2 vegan sausages, sliced (I use Field Roast and you can use more, you know?)
2 cups vegan shrimp (I get it at Layonna’s in Oakland, or you can order online)
Filé powder (it’s ground sassafras!)
Hot sauce, to taste
1. In a large saucepan over high heat, blend the flour and oil to create a roux. Stir constantly so that it doesn’t burn. You are striving for a dark brown mahogany color; the darker, the better. If you can achieve a black roux, you are a genius magician. Place the green onions, garlic, bell pepper, and celery into a saucepan and mix to coat. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring regularly.
2. Transfer ingredients to a large stock pot over medium heat. Add broth, tomatoes, okra, and cajun seasoning, and let simmer for 10 minutes.
3. Place sausages and shrimp into stockpot, and turn heat to low. Let simmer for at least two hours so the flavors can meld. Serve over rice and garnish with Filé powder and hot sauce. Stuff your face and pass out. Rinse and repeat!
This recipe was first published in the VegWeb weekly newsletter, which I write and you should receive, just sign up on the front page of VegWeb! I haven’t taken pictures of this gumbo yet because I’m not rich and fancy like you with your digital cameras so this one is from Don’t Lose Your Lunch! It looks like they have a gumbo recipe, too! Perhaps you can combine the two for MEGA GUMBO!
Jenna blames “Top Chef: Just Desserts for [her] recent fascination with whoopie pies,” so she went to VegWeb and made these little beauties. We are totally envious of Jenna’s mom and sister, who got to eat these up for their “annual NOT-HOLIDAY dinner” [caps sic].
[earn some Vegansaurus acclaim: send me your luscious food photos!]
Happy Thanksgiving from reader Jude! He writes that he “Thanksgivinged amongst a gang of meaty types, so I needed to bring something good to show them what time it is. I used Jesse Miner’s Roasted Acorn Squash Stuffed with Wild Rice, Pecan and Cranberry recipe but used butternut squash instead and added fennel instead of celery. It was a hit!”
Congratulations! If this wasn’t the A-plus number-one dish of the night, your meaty types need new watches—these squashes look tremendous. Or you know, maybe look for more appreciative eaters elsewhere (HINT). Happy Thanksgiving, Jude!
Happy Thanksgiving from super-Friends of Vegansaurus Jen Oaks and her husband Will Scovill! Their plate is barely holding FatFree Vegan’s green bean casserole, roasted garlic mashed potatoes, mixed-mushroom and tarragon gravy (halved and veganized) from Bon Appétit, brown sugar, maple, pecan, and coconut sweet potatoes, organic canned cranberry sauce, and granny’s hurry-up dinner rolls from VegWeb!
Jen, for next year can we come to you house? We promise to bring whatever and however many desserts your heart desires! Happy Thanksgiving!
The VegNews Holiday Cookbook is here, y’all! And I’m super excited because I’ve got recipes in it! That’s right, I am now a published recipe author. Now, you all know of my kitchen prowess from such works as Slow Cooker Pumpkin Bread Pudding but I’ve been honing my skillz for awhile now/been too poor to afford delicious takeout and I’m actually pretty okay (thanks in large part to working on VegWeb!). You can stop being terrified because I have no plans to inflict an entire cookbook on you or anything like that but my recipes in this, they are tasty! And if I’m not enough (I’LL MURDER YOU), it’s filled with recipes from talented chefs like Tal Ronnen and Robin Robertson! Oh, and it’s an e-cookbook which you love because you’re a total environmentalist. SO BUY IT! And then make my recipes (and, uh, the other recipes, too) and let me know what you think but only if you like them because frankly, that’s enough out of you! xoxoxo!