Wednesday, April 14, 2010

almond milk

Recently Mom bought some almond milk.  She loved it so much she told everyone to try it... and I did.  And it is delicious.  Unfortunately, it is not cheap.
So I found this excellent tutorial on making almond milk.
And I tried making some myself.

The results: homemade almond milk isn't as thick or silky as store bought... but homemade doesn't have all of the emulsifiers, etc.  Maybe if I had an industrial blender (Blendtec or Vitamix) it would be silkier.  It was simple to make.  It was delicious (I sweetened mine with a little agave).

Bottom line:  I'll make it again.  And make it better next time.
Izak is illustrating the title of our blog: VeggieMars!

My friend Anne Bean has some great recipes on her blog, including my favorite whole wheat dinner roll recipe. Here is a link:

Tuesday's Dinner

Tuesday's dinner consisted 0f Italian Wedding Soup and Oatmeal Dinner Rolls. I made up a large batch of soup and rolls a few weeks ago, threw the leftovers in the freezer, and enjoyed the ease of just heating it up.
Vegetable broth (see below)
Spinach (I like using fresh)
Trader Joe's meatballs (Sarah turned me on to this brand)
Acini di Pepe, Ditilani, or other small pasta
Seasonings - salt, pepper, parsley, oregano or italian seasoning, garlic
Regular or Vegan parmesan cheese (optional)
Chop carrots, celery, and onion and saute in small amount of olive oil. Add vegetable broth and simmer. Bake meatballs and add them to soup. (I like to chop them up into small pieces). Season and add pasta and cook till almost done. Add spinach during the last few minutes of cooking. Sprinkle parmesan cheese on top to serve.

Tip: Vegetable broth is pretty expensive to buy and it is easy to make your own. I save all washed vegetable peelings, leaves, stalks, etc. (carrots/onion, skin and all / celery / potatoes / leek stalks / etc.) and throw them in a gallon bag in the freezer. I keep adding vegetable "compost" until the bag is full. Then I simply cover them with water and simmer. Sometimes I roast the "compost" before I simmer it in water. The flavor is a little different. The broth can then be frozen in small batches for later use.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Veggie Tales from Mars

Since most of our family members have been cursed with high cholesterol, many of us are taking steps to eat a healthier diet. I personally love to hear about what my children are cooking up and what tasty new products they discover, because it inspires me and gives me new ideas to try. One of my favorite salad dressings is Creamy Maple Dressing.
1/2 C Canola oil
1/4 C Maple syrup
1/4 C Vegan mayonnaise
3 Tbsp White wine vinegar
2 tsp sugar or agave nectar
salt/pepper to taste
Whisk together all but oil. Gradually whisk in oil to emulsify and stir until it thickens slightly.
Serve over a bed of mixed greens, chopped apples, dried cranberries, and chopped toasted nuts.

Tip: I like my cranberries plumped. It is as easy as putting cranberries in a bowl of water. Microwave for 30-60 seconds. Drain and cool.

GLAZED NUTS are a nice addition to this salad:
Beat 1 egg white until foamy. Add 1/2 C brown sugar, 1 tsp cloves, 1 tsp ginger, 1 Tbsp vanilla, and 1 pound of nuts. Stir to coat and bake on cookie sheet at 300 degrees for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

CINNAMON CROUTONS are also a nice addition:
Cut hearty bread into cubes. Toss with melted Earth Balance Spread. Then toss with cinnamon and sugar. Bake on cookie sheet at 300 degrees until lightly browned. Cool.