Sunday, September 23, 2012

Curried Kobucha Peanut Soup

Here is an exotic take on a creamy butternut squash soup. I posted this recipe originally in 2012, and now (in 2015) am going back through and retesting my recipes, since I (think) I have become a better cook over the past couple years. I've made some improvements to this recipe. 

For one, I wanted to have a protein and a green in the soup. I wanted the protein because I like to have a protein at the heart of all my main dishes, and I wanted the green because I wanted the additional nutrition. 

After some thinking, I've decided to entirely omit the greens. It took a lot away from the soup, and really, between the tomatoes and squash this soup is extraordinarily nutritious already. The beans really took a lot away from the soup too. But I still wanted to have protein in this soup, so instead of mixing them in after blending the soup, I've blended them along with the rest of the soup, achieving a creamier and heartier texture and taste (but not one that screams "beans!" in any way at all).

I've used adzuki beans, which look like small black beans, although a bit browner. I have occasionally found these beans in cans, but for this recipe I cooked them fresh, which is easy to do--just combine 1 cup beans and 3 cups water in a saucepan, bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmer, and cook for 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally and adding water if necessary. For this recipe you can then strain the beans and add to the pot when called for. If you cannot find adzuki beans at all, you can substitute red kidney beans. Likewise, if you cannot find any kobucha squash, you can substitute with a pie pumpkin or a large butternut squash.

Curried Kobucha Peanut Soup

Time: 45 minutes

Serves: 6-8


2 tablespoons peanut oil
1 medium yellow onion, diced
1 Kobucha Squash, about 3 1/2 pounds, chopped into 1/2 inch cubes 
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
1 tablespoon grated ginger
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 28oz can diced tomatoes
1 1/2 cups cooked adzuki beans
3 cups veggie broth
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
1/3 cup cilantro, chopped


Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and squash, and saute until softened and the onion is translucent. Add the jalapeno, ginger, and garlic and saute for 30 seconds. Add the curry and garam masala and saute for 30 seconds longer. Add the tomatoes and veggie broth, bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer. Simmer until the squash is tender, about 20 minutes. 

Stir in the beans. At this point, if you have an immersion blender, you can use this to blenderize your soup and make it creamy. If you do not have an immersion blender, you can pour the soup in batches into a regular blender, blending until smooth. Return the stew to the pot and stir in peanut butter and cilantro. Serve with crusty bread.


Monday, September 10, 2012

Hot "Wings" with Roasted Garlic Ranch

I love spicy food, what can I say? Pick your hot sauce according to your tastes. Also note that a lot of hot wing sauces are not actually vegan, as they contain eggs and/or butter flavor. I do not understand this.

Also, some people prefer to steam their tempeh before cooking it. I have not personally found this to be necessary for this particular recipe (although there are other times when I do think it helps with the flavor and texture. My concern is that if the tempeh is steamed it won't be strong enough to be tossed in the bag to coat or to be fried.

For the Hot "Wings"

Serves 4-6
Time: 20 minutes


3 packages tempeh, cut into 1x2 inch rectangles
1/4 cup canola oil, more or less, to coat the bottom of your frying pan
1 cup hot wing sauce, divided
1/2 cup cornstarch
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

To serve:

carrots, julienned
celery, julienned
cauliflower, broken into bite-sized pieces 


Heat oil in a large skillet.

In a medium bowl, lightly toss the tempeh with the 1/2 cup hot sauce. Pour out any excess liquid. In a large ziplock bag, combine the cornstarch, baking soda, and black pepper. Add the tempeh (in batches if necessary), and toss to evenly coat.

Add tempeh to pan and fry on each side until golden brown all around. Once finished, toss in bowl with remaining 1/2 cup hot wing sauce, until well coated. Discard any leftovers. It is now ready to serve with ranch dressing (recipe below) and fresh celery and carrot sticks! Alternatively, you can make this into a salad by serving tempeh hot wings, chopped celery and carrots on top of a bed of spinach tossed with ranch dressing. I tried this with the leftovers and it was delicious!

For the Roasted Garlic Ranch Dressing

Makes: 1 1/2 cups
Time: 10 minutes


1 cup Vegennaise
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil
10 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons oregano
3/4 teaspoon cayenne
Black pepper and salt to taste


In a measuring cup, combine mayo, vinegar, oregano, cayenne, pepper, and salt. To streamline you can prepare the garlic using left over oil from the tempeh. Once you have removed the tempeh from the pan, saute garlic until golden (if making separate from the tempeh, use the 3 tablespoons of olive oil to saute), then add the garlic and remaining oil to the dressing and combine.

Serve the tempeh with the cut vegetables and a side of ranch.


Sunday, September 2, 2012


I know there are already several pancake recipes on here, but they just keep getting better! Even the bird wants to give it a try!! (No, she does not eat off of our plates, she snuck in there before I had a chance to stop her! She gets her own miniature plate of pancakes.)

Serves 2 plus one small bird (about 6 pancakes)

2 tablespoons hot water

1 1/2 teaspoons Ener-G Egg Replacer
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups non-dairy milk
2 tablespoons canola oil
3/4 cup white flour
3/4 cup oat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons sugar
2 bananas, chopped or blueberries

Preheat a griddle or pan to 350ºF.

Mix the hot water and egg replacer in a measuring cup. Add to medium bowl and mix in vanilla extract, soy milk, and canola oil.

In a large bowl combine flours, baking powder, salt, and sugar. 

Add wet ingredients to dry and mix until combined, but there should still be lumps. 

Use a 1/3 cup measure to pour batter into pancakes on griddle. Sprinkle chopped banana or blueberries onto pancakes. Once one side is golden, flip and cook the other side. Once both sides are golden, they're ready to eat!