Monday, March 14, 2011

A Recipe Sure to Clear your Sinus'

A and I don't really experiment very often with "meat alternatives"...don't get me wrong, I love a good veggie burger or some Boca crumbles but other than that we don't really venture out. Well, I decided this week to break out of that box, one can not live off beans and salad alone! A is a spicy food fanatic and when I saw the recipe for Buffalo Tempeh in Appetite for Reduction, I knew we had a winner. What could satisfy a hungry-mans craving for Buffalo Chicken Wings better?
The tempeh filled me up for hours without weighing me down. It was full of flavor and A even asked if there was going to be leftovers for his lunch the next day. I love when that happens!

If anyone has had any reservations about tempeh or any other meat alternatives, I highly recommend you try this recipe. Its simple, quick and delicious! 

Buffalo Tempeh
8 ounces tempeh, cut into wedges

1/2 cup vegetable broth
1/2 cup Cayenne hot sauce
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons dried oregano

To create tempeh wedges: Slice the tmpheh in half across the waist. Slice the rectangles in half. You'll have four rectangles. Slice each rectangle corner to corner. The resulting triangular wedges are great for baking, grilling or sauteing. 
Steam the tempeh for 5 minutes, this will loosen the tempeh up and get it ready to absorb the marinade flavors.
Mix together the marinade ingredients in a medium-size mixing bowl. When the tempeh is done steaming, immediately transfer it to the marinade. Let it marinate for at least 10 minutes, up to an hour. 
Preheat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Spray the pan with a bit of nonstick cooking spray. Add the tempeh slices and reserve the marinade. Cook the tempeh for 10 minutes, flipping it often, until it has browned a bit. Add the remaining sauce and turn up the heat to high. Let the liquid boil and cook down for about 5 minutes. That's all!! 

While the tempeh was marinading I also whipped up a batch of Cool Slaw. The creamy cashews made this dish the perfect companion to Buffalo Tempeh.

Being from the Georgia-Carolina area I love a nice vinegar-mustard flavor with my BBQ...the Cool Slaw had just the right amount of each and a touch of agave nectar really enhanced the flavor. 

The best part of this meal are the nutritional facts:

Cool Slaw Buffalo Tempeh
Calories 60 130
Calories from Fat 25 20
Total Fat 2.5 g 2.5 g
Total Carb 7 g 18 g
Fiber 2 g 5 g
Sugars 3 g 1 g
Protein 2 g 9 g

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Veganomicon Review

  • Is the layout clear? I found the layout in Veganomicon to be very clear. Each recipe was introduced with an authors note that included serving suggestions or a special tip.
  • Are you able to easily tell the ingredients apart for the instructions and the notes? The ingredients are in a bold print, which makes them stand out from the actual recipe and notes. 
  • Are the instructions easy to follow? The instructions are easy to follow for the most part. Many recipes had the "tip" box with with special instructions.
  • Are the recipes numbered or is the section labeled? The recipes are divided up by category. There is even a section at the end of the book called Menus for the Masses. Easy menu planning for dinner categories like, Mediterranean Comfort Menu or a Smash Your TV Dinner Menu. 
  • Does the cookbook feature photos? There is a section that features photos for about 23 of the recipes.
  • If yes, is there a photo for every recipe? Nope
  • Do the photos of the recipes look like the actual results? I made two of the recipes that were photographed, Pineapple Cashew Quinoa and Portobello Salad with Spicy Mustard Dressing, both turned out looking very similar to the pictures. 
  • What kind of paper is the book printed on? The book is printed on standard book paper...not really sure what you would call it. It is a good quality paper and really takes in a splashes and splatters without seeping through and ruining page. 
  • How is the quality of the photos? I thought the photos were of good quality. The lighting was just right and the background colors and dishes complimented each dish. 
  • How many recipes are in the cookbook? A lot, to many count! There are about 263 pages of recipes. 
  • What kinds of recipes will you find in this cookbook? Veganomicon has a very nice variety of recipes. From soups, to sides, main dishes and desserts. There is even a section for Brunch recipes!! You will find Indian inspired, Jamaican inspired and Good old home cooking inspired recipes in Veganomicon. 
  • Is there a theme to the recipes? No real theme, just Vegan! and Delicious! A wide variety of recipes sure to cure any craving. 
  • Are the recipes complex or simple? Would they be good for seasoned cooks and/or beginners? I think Veganonmicon has a diverse selection of recipes suitable for seasoned cooks and beginners. I know that I will reference this cookbook for years to come! 
Ingredients and supplies
  • Are the recipe ingredients easy to find?A For the most part all of the ingredients are very easy to find. I think I even bought the majority what I used in each recipe at Trader Joes. (Gotta love that TJ!)
  • Are there any items that stand out as being expensive or specialty? Nope, maybe just some specialty spices in a few of the Indian dishes. But you can find most of these at markets these days and they store well. 
  • Are there particular appliances that will be required such as blenders, juicers, dehydrators, ect? The only "major" applicance I notices was an Immersion blender for some soup and perhaps a KitchenAid for baking, but you get by without them! 
  • Does this cookbook provide additional useful information? Yes, this book provides a lot of additional information. Each recipe is labeled with Icons to let you know if the recipe is Soy Free, Low/Reduced Fat, Gluten Free, or can be ready in less than 45 minutes. Pretty good info, if you ask me! Also you will find additional tips among the recipes, like how to roast garlic and how long it will keep. Time saving tips and tips on what you can use in place of some items you might not have on hand. 
  • What additional information beyond recipes does this cookbook include? Is it easy to follow? Veganomicon also has a great introductory sections like: Stocking the Veganomicon Pantry, Kitchen Equipment, & Cooking and Prepping Terminology. You will also find tons of helpful and important tips in the How to Cook a Vegetable and How to Cook a Grain section. I love reading my cookbooks, as if they are a novel, so I truly appreciate when authors go to the extra trouble of including these special notes in Cookbooks. You are bound to learn something and it always leaves me itching to get in the kitchen. 


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