everything here is eatable

Mostly-vegan low-fat whole foods recipes

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

2 Hummuses (Hummusi?) and some baby food!

What is the plural of hummus anyway?

Two tasty hummus recipes: One is a slight variation on SusanV's Shiny Happy Hummus, made with carrots and (in my version) lots of ginger. This is a lovely, light-tasting hummus, with a little bit of a bite and a really "shiny happy" flavor...tastes like spring so it was very seasonally appropriate. The only real change I made to the recipe was to double the ginger and add a tad bit more heat.

The other, a tomato basil hummus, looking a bit salmon-esque in the picture:

2 cups cooked chickpeas
3 tbsp tomato paste
2 tbsp tahini
1/2 tsp cumin
2 tsp dried basil or a small handful of fresh basil, minced
pinch of cayenne
1 tbsp lemon juice
a bit of water to aid in blending
salt and black pepper to taste.

Blend everything together. Eat.

The tomato one was okay, but the Shiny Happy Hummus? Susan, awesome, as always!

Oh yes, and baby food? No, not food for babies, but food in its infant state. We have lots of baby plants! Baby pictures are always cute, even when they are plants (AAAWWWHH! Baby plants!)

Fairy Tale eggplant seedlings:

And about 1 month later (the leaves are about 3 inches long and 1 1/2-2 inches across):

Kale seedlings:

And 1 month later (these are going outside today):

Jubilee Tomato:


Black Seeded Simpson (lettuce):


Blueberries...or will be in a few years:

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Spiced Apricot Granola

I have been on a granola kick lately...mostly involving the wonderfully delicious varieties available in the Wegman's bulk section. And, although packed full of fiber and other goodness, I am quite glad that the nutrition information isn't available on the tubs...not only because I have sworn off reading nutrition labels (other than the ingredients panel) but because I'm sure that reading the nutrition information would result in the shattering of all my illusions about the healthy nature of packaged granola. It also seems kind of pointless to continue to buy premade granola when I know its easy to make at home, not to mention cheaper and healthier, since I can control whats in it. I looked at a bunch of recipes for low fat and fat free granola and then sort of threw things together until it looked good (honestly, when was the last time I followed a recipe exactly?). And it came out pretty well, if I do say so myself. This recipe is wheat-free and could easily be made gluten-free if one used GF-certified oats or another kind of oat-like rolled cereal and could be made fat free if you leave out the nuts and seeds...but, really, please don't.

Low-Fat Spiced Apricot Granola

2 cups rolled oats
2 tbsp white sorghum flour or other flour
1 tsp Ener-G egg replacer
6-7 dried apricots, cut into thin slices
2 tbsp golden raisins
1 tbsp sesame seeds (I used black for some color variation)
1-2 tbsp ground flax seed
2 tbsp green pumpkin seeds
1/2 c crisp rice cereal or other crunchy cereal (I used "Nutty Rice")
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp "Cake Spice" or:
-pinch nutmeg
-pinch allspice
-pinch ginger
-pinch cardamon
-tiny pinch ground cloves
1/2 tbsp vanilla extract
3/4 c white grape juice, apple juice or orange juice
1/2-1 tsp agave nectar (optional, I just wanted it a tiny bit sweeter)

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees and spray a large cookie sheet with cooking spray. Mix all the dry ingreidents and spices together until well blended. Add the vanilla, juice and agave nectar, if using and blend well until the whole mass is sticky. Spread in an even, thin layer over the cookie sheet and press down on some clumps to make it stick together (if you don't like chunky granola, the skip this step). Bake for 25-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until dry and starting to brown (watch the edges, this may burn quickly. Really, see the pictures.). Let cool then transfer to a jar or bag and store in the freezer.

This is not very sweet but has a nice flavor. Its awesome with unsweetened vanilla almond milk and fresh or frozen fruit.

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Tuesday, April 08, 2008


I have been a bad, bad blogger. Sorry. Hopefully there is anyone out there still reading this occasionally, seeing if I'm still alive or whatever. But anyway, here are some awesome pictures to make up for it...

Last week, Katie cooked up a massive amount of food for a sort-of surprise birthday party for me. Sort of because I knew there was a party and I knew when it was and I knew some of the people coming, but I didn't know about a few really good friends from college who I hadn't seen in ages and I didn't know about a lot of the food.

I, however, knew I was having carrot cake because I had been craving the perfect carrot cake for a long time. The PERFECT carrot cake...it needed to be dense, moist, full of "stuff", spicy, with cream cheese icing and those ubiquitous bright orange piped carrots on top. Two test batches later (without icing), I found it. I had high hopes for the carrot macadamia ginger coconut cake in VWAV, but, as tasty as it is, its just not right...its a lovely spice cake, but its not a carrot cake...just a spice cake with carrots...and the crystalized ginger is very distracting. So I settled on veganizing and de-wheating Sam's Famous Carrot Cake moist but not gummy or heavy, nicely spiced and crunchy-chewy with all the good stuff (walnuts, pineapple, coconut AND carrots!) jammed into this cake. I then made a basic cream cheese icing using earth balance, tofutti cream cheese and organic powdered sugar (just enough to make it sweet but still taste like cheesecake)...add a dash of vanilla and a bunch o recipe from allrecipes.com. 252 4-or-5-star reviews, I figured it was worth it...and omg, yes! I replaced the wheat flour with spelt and a pinch of xanthan gum, Ener-G for the eggs, applesauce for the oil, and almond milk w/ lemon juice for the buttermilk and then added a little ground ginger and a little nutmeg, plus some more carrot as a lot of the reviews recommended. Perfect, perfect, perfect. Dense andf shredded coconut and we had an amazingly tasty icing that quickly negated any health benefits gained by leaving the oil out of the cake, lol! I baked and iced, then was promptly kicked out the kitchen so Katie could decorate. Here are the results:

How professional does that look! My aunt thought the cake was from wegmans and that we were kidding about having baked/decorated it ourselves.

And then Katie whipped out the cupcakes: gluten-free versions of the Mucho Margarita and Mexican Hot Chocolate cupcakes (a hot version and a not-so-hot version) from VCTOTW. They were both amazing but the icing on the margarita ones was out of this world...everyone was raving about them and I ate far too many.

One issue, what is with the gluten-freedom cupcake recipes and their lack of gluten-replacement? No xanthan gum, no egg replacer, no whipped-up silken tofu...Katie made the first batch and they, no surprise, didn't rise at all and were rubbery-dense. Second batch, added some xanthan gum and they were perfect. We both were kind of disappointed in that shortcoming in an otherwise amazing cookbook.

Unfortunately, we were having too much fun catching up with old friends and eating to take pictures of any more food, but there was a taco/burrito bar with mock-a-mole (guac made with half peas, half avocado), homemade mole sauce, roasted veggies, fresh veggies, vegan salsa-cheese dip, spanish rice, jicama salad, tropical chex mix, various salsas and chips, strawberry and blueberry margaritas...way too much really awesome food (and I think we still have some olives left in the fridge). I'm so happy that everyone came and that Katie managed to put everything together with me only knowing a little bit about it (along with my mom, who helped out in the sneakiness).

I'm gonna try to update this at least every couple weeks....its harder now that the weather is getting nicer and we are working hard to get the yard/garden in shape, there are more chances to hike, and I really don't want to stay inside at the computer any more than necessary, but I will make an effort! Hope everyone is having a happy spring!

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