Saturday, April 11, 2015

Dried Chickpeas to Falafel

Soaking beans is easy and economical but requires advance planning. I usually start with dried beans, rinse them well and boil them (1 cup beans to about 3-4 cups water), then leave them sitting overnight.
At this point, the 'skins' on the garbanzo beans/chickpeas will become loose. You can rub them around and get most of the skins off pretty easily. I like to do this before I use the beans in a meal.

It's always good to rinse the beans after you soak them and discard the water. Then use a food processor to chop the beans up. Add the other ingredients:

3 cloves of garlic
1 shallot, diced - can sub chopped onion or dried onion
1 tsp coriander
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp fenugreek if available or dash of celery salt
2 tblsp lemon juice
1 tblsp cornstarch or flour
1/2 cup fresh parsley or 2 tblsp dried
salt and pepper to taste

Form the mixture into balls, and fry the balls after heating about 2 inches of oil or a deep fryer to 350ºF . Don't crowd the balls and fry in batches if necessary. Cooking time is a few minutes, so watch carefully and turn if necessary but don't agitate too much.

Serve over salad with lettuce, tomato and cucumber or on pita or french bread with your favorite toppings like shredded carrot or sliced tomatoes and feta cheese. Falafel also tastes good with plain or minty yogurt and tahini.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Boston Cream Cake Pie from “Vegan Pie in the Sky” by Terry Hope Romero and Isa Chandra Moskowitz

This was a complicated bake, but I thought it was totally worth it. These are my results. I thought the pie looked and tasted delicious. Recipe can be found in their cookbook or at the end of the article here:
NY Daily News with Terry Hope Romero

Ultimately, I liked their Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World book the most in their baking series. I think Pie in the Sky was my second favorite, as I found the recipes to not be quite as consistent as the ones in Cupcakes. All said, they are all worthy additions to any vegan's cookbook set.

Chocolate Cupcakes

I love these easy cupcakes. The recipe makes about a dozen. After you make the batter and pour it into the pan, you can top the cupcakes with a dollop of jelly or some chocolate chips. That's a nice alternative to having to deal with making icing, and these cupcakes are usually pretty moist.

In a small bowl or measuring cup mix:

3/4 cup of soy milk
1/4 cup water (you can also use all water)
1 tsp vinegar ( I like balsamic with the chocolate but you can also use apple cider or white)

and let that sit a moment

while you use a larger mixing bowl to mix:

3/4 cup of sugar
1/4 cup of oil

stir the sugar and oil vigorously or use an electric mixer and add

1 tsp of vanilla

then combine in a small bowl or measuring cup

1/3 c of cocoa
1 cup of flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda

add the water/milk/vinegar mixture from above to the sugar/oil
and sift in the flour/cocoa mixture

mix until combined
pour into cupcake liners (I like silicon)
bake at 350ºF for 19-21 minutes - use a cake tester