Sunday, October 27, 2013

Spinach Pesto

I wanted an inexpensive vegan pesto I could make with ingredients I had on hand. That meant I didn't want to use basil or pine nuts. I would use basil if I had some in my garden but it's too expensive to buy otherwise. I don't have pine nuts in my kitchen but I do have walnuts. This is what I came up with. 

1/2 cup walnut pieces
5 large cloves garlic
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/3 cup yeast flakes
1/2 tsp. salt
6 Tbsp. olive oil
2 Tbsp. water
4 cups spinach leaves, packed

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and process until all ingredients are finely ground and well mixed. Toss with hot cooked pasta or freeze for later use. 

Variation: Replace half the walnuts with hemp seeds.

Vegan Parmesan Cheese

Toast over medium heat in a dry frying pan:
cups sesame seeds

Stir constantly until the seeds turn a light golden brown color, look oily, and smell very good. This takes 5-10 minutes. Then grind in a food processor with the following:
cup yeast flakes
½ tsp. onion powder
¼ tsp. garlic powder

½ tsp. salt

Store in an airtight container in the fridge. Keeps indefinitely. I usually make a double batch so I always have some on hand.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Greek Lemon Potatoes

This is my new favorite way to eat potatoes. I always like something to put on my potatoes (usually vegan sour cream)--I don't like to eat a plain cooked potato. As a vegan this is can be inconvenient because I have to take time to make the sour cream (store-bought costs too much for me). These potatoes are one of my favorites now because they taste really good without anything else on them. I was a little afraid to try the concept of lemon potatoes when I first saw it, but I like lemon on almost everything, so I gave it a try and I'm glad I did! Now I make them almost every week (and confess to attempting to devour the whole pan by myself if no one else is home, though I never have quite succeeded!).

4 large russet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
1/4 cup olive oil
½ cup lemon juice
½ cup water
1 tablespoon dried oregano 
½ tablespoon salt

Preheat oven to 450°. Place potatoes in single layer in large roasting pan. Mix oil, lemon juice, water, oregano, and salt. Pour into pan. Stir. Bake until potatoes are tender, some are browned, and most of the liquid is absorbed, about an hour. You will need to stir them a couple times in the last half hour to promote even browning. Serve with Greek Salad.

Beef Style Seasoning

1 cup yeast flakes
3 Tbsp. parsley
1 Tbsp. thyme
1 Tbsp. salt
tsp. onion powder
1 Tbsp. basil
tsp. rosemary

Store in an airtight container. Keeps indefinitely.

Chicken style seasoning

2 ⅔ cups yeast flakes
3 Tbsp. onion powder
2 Tbsp. salt
1 tsp. celery seed
Tbsp. Italian Seasoning
2 Tbsp. parsley

Store in an airtight container. Keeps indefinitely.