Tag Archives: Quick Meals

Tequila Sausage & Cornmeal Crusted Plantain Tacos

I made some tequila sausages based on Isa’s recipe. They came out really good, I love making these sauages, I have been trying to eat less soy so I keep falling back on thinking I need to make seitan even though what I really need to do is eat more vegetables! The problem is that I love making seitan, it is like a science experiment where you get to taste the results. It always leads me to think, next time I will make this or that but really I need to chill out, eat my greens and stop frying everything. I guess that is the problem with being a good cook, you eat all the time!

Despite my complaining I really liked these tacos. We got a fall harvest of tomatoes (take that North!) and I made a simple tomato salsa with them that was really spicy but perfectly complemented the tacos. I also had a plantain that I covered in cornmeal and pan fried. In another pan I sauteed the sausages with a red onion and then, just for good measure, I threw in some broccoli. Broccoli is really becoming one of my favorite things to add to tacos. It is hard to overcook and it really soaks up whatever you are cooking with in a lovely way while still holding up, unlike most of its leafy green friends.

If you already had the sausage made and the salsa ready to go you could easily make this meal in 10 minutes, just chop the onion, sautee it with the sausage & then the broccoli and meanwhile make the plantains.

Tequila Sausage

1/2 Cup Refried Pinto Beans (or cooked pintos mashed)
2/3 Cup Broth
1/3 Cup Tequila
1 TBSP olive oil
7 cloves of garlic
2 tsp fresh sage
1 heaping tsp fennel seeds, crushed
1/4 tsp cayenne
1 heaping tsp salt
1 1/4 Cup Vital Wheat Gluetan
1/4 cup almond meal
1 tsp red pepper flakes

Prepare steaming apparatus, I use a pot of water with a bamboo steamer sitting on top. Mix the dry ingredients together and the wet ingredients together. After everything is incorporated well add the wet to the dry and knead for a minute or two. Lay a piece of foil on the work area. Place 1/2 cup of the mix in the bottom third in the middle of the foil. Roll up into link and then tie off like a tootsie roll. Place the links in the steamer for 30 minutes and then refridgerate.

Makes 4 links

Lard Na (formally Larb Na)

*Note I originally posted this as Larb Na do to some confusion with different cookbooks. Thai girl was nice enough to finally put the matter to rest and tell me what was what.

Over the weekend we went to see Synecdoche, New York at a movie theater in far north Austin. Since we were already up there we also stopped at the giant Asian Grocery Store. They have a ton of vegan stuff, not to mention tons of different kinds of noodles, sauces, rice, produce, and random things. I could spend all day there but we were in a hurry to get to the (very good) movie so I was rushing around throwing canned fake duck and trying to find annetto seeds. It was an intense trip.

The next day I thought about making soup but I was really hungry so I made the old Thai standby, Lard Na. Like Pad See Eww this is a recipe that I can make with nearly any ingredients in about 10 minutes. It is a great recipe that works with any greens that you have on hand, even broccoli. Here is how I made it this time:

1 lbs Rice Noodles
3 TBSP peanut oil
1 lbs tofu, drained and pressed
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 bunch of greens (I used Kale and cabbage it was great)
1 TBSP sugar
2 TBSP vegetarian fish sauce (or more soy sauce)
1 TBSP Nama Shoyu (or soy sauce)
1 TBSP miso (or Thai fermented soy bean paste if you have it)
1 TBSP cornstarch mixed with 1 cup of broth (or water)
pepper

First cook the noodles according to the package directions until soft but not over done. Rice Noodles are cooked different depending on how thick the noodle is. Often you can bring water to a boil, take it off the burner, and just soak the noodles until they are soft. The key is to drain them as soon as they are done or they will turn to mush. Make sure all of your ingrdiants are ready to go before you start stir-frying and have plates ready as well.

Start a wok or large saute pan on high heat with 1 TBSP of oil. Stir-fry the cooked noodles for a couple of minutes until they are golden. Be careful to toss the noodles and turn them rather than stirring because you don’t want to break them up. Spread the noodles among the dinner plates. Add the remaining 2 TBSP of oil and garlic and saute for a minute or less. Add the tofu and sear against the side of the pan. Cook for about 2 minutes. Add the greens, the sugar, the fish sauce, the shoyu, and the miso and cook until the greens are just starting to wilt. Stir in the cornstarch mixture and cover for about 30 seconds. Uncover and stir and cook a couple more minutes to let the gravy thicken if you desire. If you can’t wait then scoop it out, toss on top of the noodles, mix together and Enjoy!

VeganMoFo- Escondido Tacos

Last night I went for a two hour walk through a nicer neighborhood with the dogs and looked at Halloween decorations. I saw only one McCain sign which made me really very happy, well not the McCain sign, but the overwhelming amount of Obama signs. I have been really afraid about the election and especially Sarah Palin. Anyway, I got home and was totally exhausted and I wanted to make something really fast. I took out Dreena’s Eat Drink and Be Vegan because it usually has some really fast recipes. I saw one for “Garlicky Broccoli Burritos” or something to that effect and decided I would use the basic concepts in a taco. I remembered from the Pasta De La California a few weeks ago that garlicky broccoli is so fantastic with guacamole and I had two avocados sitting on the windowsill that were just perfectly ripe.

I have family in Escondido California and they are lucky enough to have an avocado tree in their backyard so I decided to name these tacos after that part of California. I think an avocado tree would probably be the tree I want most to have in my backyard. Or an olive tree! Or a mango tree….

Here is what I used for the tacos, I am also going to give instructions for prep as you go:

1 can Spicy Refried Beans (you could also smash together beans from a can of black or pinto and a chopped jalapeno)
1 TBSP of oil
4 cloves of garlic, chopped
3 broccoli crowns, chopped
1 TBSP of Nama Shoyu (or soy sauce)
1 TBSP of Worchestershire
1/2 Cup of frozen corn
4 tortialls

Guacamole con Alga Marina (based on Dreena recipe)
2 ripe medium avocados
Juice of 1 large lime
salt to taste
1 tsp of kelp powder (optional)

First, turn on the oven to 300. Seal your tortiallas in foil and put them in the oven to warm up. Empty the contents of the refried beans can into a pot and put on low. Stir occaionally throughout the process. Put oil in a seperate pan and warm it to medium heat. Meanwhile, chop the garlic and then add it to the pan. While the garlic is cooking chop the broccoli into florets. Add them to the pan along with the nama shoyu and worchestershire and frozen corn. Cover the whole lot and let cook for 3 minutes stirring occasionally. If broccoli is sticking or garlic is burning turn down the heat or add water to the bottom of the pan. Meanwhile, chop the avocados and put them in a bowl. Squeeze in the juice from half the lime. Add in a little bit of sea salt and the kelp powder if you are so inclined. By the time you have whipped the guac up (use either a fork, a potato masher, or an immersion blender) everything else will be done. Get your tortialls out and spread refried beans on the bottom. Top with the broccoli mixture and the Guacamole and ROCK OUT WITH YOUR GUAC OUT and enjoy!

VeganMoFo- Mexican Pizza & Olive Chips

Last week I made an Italian Taco and it got me thinking about what other cultural mash-ups I could do. Although the Mexican Pizza is somewhat common most places just throw taco ingredients on a typical pizza crust. In Olympia Washington I used to love a place called El Sarape; they made the Mexican pizza the way I like it, with crispy tortillas instead of a pizza crust and lots of olives. Of course, it was covered in meat and cheese as well and now I live in Austin Texas, so I thought I could try my own version. I have had some Teese kickin’ around the back of the fridge for a while now along with some cheddar Follow Your Heart so I knew I could keep up the cheesy element and I also had some olives. Two cups of black beans in the freezer would make a great base re-fried and some salsa, which is just Spanish for sauce, right? It ended up being, by far, the best Mexican Pizza I have ever had. If it sounds appealing you should try it out, I think kids would love this recipe and it came together really quickly and was very filling for two people. You could bake the tortillas instead of frying them and not add the cheese and it it would be a fairly healthy meal as well. I didn’t measure anything out and the quantities will depend on how big your tortillas are so I will approximate.

Ingrediants:
2 Large Tortillas
2 Cups of Black Beans
1/2 Cup of Onions, chopped
2 cloves of Garlic, chopped
1/4 Cup of Mozzarella and/or Cheddar style vegan cheese
1 tsp Cumin
1 tsp Chili Powder
1/2 cup Vegetable Broth
1/3 cup Salsa
1/4 cup Olives

you can also add green onions, chives, mushrooms, spinach, corn, whatever you like

Saute a half a cup of chopped onions and a couple cloves of chopped garlic for 5 minutes

Add a teaspoon of cumin and a teaspoon of chili powder

Add black or pinto beans and saute another 5 minutes

Add about a half cup or so of vegetable broth and cook another minute

Mash the whole mixture with a potato masher and set burner to low

Meanwhile heat canola oil, one inch deep, in a pan that is the same size or a little bigger than your tortillas

Test to see if the oil is ready by dropping in a tiny bit of the tortilla. If it sizzles on contact you are ready to go.

Fry the tortillas on each side until golden, about two minutes and then set on paper towels to drain

Preheat the broiler

Spread three quarters of the bean mixture on the tortilla and top with the second tortilla and lightly press together

Mix the remaining beans with the salsa and top the tortilla

Cover with shredded teese or other vegan cheese, olives, and any other toppings

Place pizza under broiler until cheese is melted

Slice and enjoy!

I also discovered the greatest chips at the store. The brand is “Food Should Taste Good”. I saw that on the bag as I was marching through the aisle, it stopped me in my tracks. Food shouldtaste good I thought to myself and then laughed and saw that they were olive chips, had natural ingrediants and appeared vegan. They were terrific! Olive Chips Link