Here's the menu:
Tortilla Soup garnished with baked torilla strips
Baked Tofu with Ranchero Sauce
Giant Chalupas with:
Mashed Anasazi Beans
Pico de Gallo
Brown Rice with Sweet Peppers and Cilantro
Chocolate Chip Coconut Cake
Cinnamon Almond Soy Ice Cream
The Tortilla Soup and Ranchero Sauce recipes are from Real Food Daily. I'm sad the author is no longer vegan, but I guess it's okay to use her recipes created while she was vegan. I love the soup because it's thickened with chopped tortillas that get mushy and creamy in the broth. But mostly I love those tortilla strips! They are seasoned with chili powder and maple sugar, and they are smoky sweet, and I could eat them all day. In fact, I'm going to make tostadas with that recipe and use them for nachos. My soup turned out a little redder than it should be because I added a couple of tablespoons of chili powder to the original recipe.
The Ranchero Sauce headnote says you could also use this recipe in place of Italian style tomato sauces, so that was my clue that I would need to make it a little more "ranchero." After tasting, I added 3 tablespoons of chili powder and a serano pepper. It makes 5 cups. I marinaded the tofu in the sauce and had plenty left over to serve on the side.
The guacamole recipe is from Alton Brown. You can find it on Foodtv.com. It is my absolute favorite, hands down. It is the perfect combination of avocado, tomato, onion, lime, garlic, cumin, cayenne, and cilantro. No sour cream and naturally vegan.
The cheeze recipe is from The Saucy Vegetarian. I've never really been a cheese fan, but I used "I Can't Believe it's Not Cheese" and it seemed to go well with the chalupas.
The Pico de Gallo was your basic tomatoes, onions, jalepenos, and cilantro. Again, the fresh ingredients are just bursting with flavor.
Although nothing will ever compare, in my opinion, to the magnificent Eat Peace Please bule corn tacos, our giant chalupas were quite beautiful and flavorful. I offered bowl-sized plain corn toritillas and sturdy red corn tortillas for the base. Then we piled on beans, lettuce, guacamole, pico, ranchero sauce, and cheeze. I wanted to eat 3 chalupas but stopped myself at 2. The fresh ingredients take the food to the next level. I would like to make my own tortillas some day, but my grocery store makes them fresh everyday and they only cost a dollar for 3 dozen, so.......
Now for the recipes.
Mashed Anasazi Beans:
4 cups cooked beans (I cooked my beans with one chopped onion; otherwise, add some chopped onion to this recipe)
1/4 cup red bell pepper
3 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1 cup vegetable broth
1/2 cup tomato sauce
1/2 teaspoon cumin
2 teaspoons Tabasco
1 teaspoon chili powder
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
Saute the bell pepper and garlic in a little broth until soft. Add in all remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer about 10 minutes. Remove from heat. Mash the beans with a potato masher until thickened.
Brown Rice with Sweet Peppers and Cilantro:
2 cups prepared brown rice
1 cup chopped bell peppers, mixed colors are nice
1 medium chopped tomato
1/2 cup red onion
3 scallions, white and green parts
Mix all together and serve hot!
Chocolate Chip Coconut Cake:
1/2 cup quick cooking oats
2/3 cup boiling water
1/2 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
a few grates of fresh nutmeg
dash of salt
1/3 cup chocolate chips
1/3 cup sweetened shredded coconut
1/4 cup margarine, softened
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 egg equivalent egg replacer
Spray an 8-inch cake pan with nonstick spray and then line the bottom with parchment paper. Spray the parchment paper. Heat the oven to 375 degrees.
Put oats in a small bowl and cover with boiling water. Stir, then set aside until cool, about 15 minutes.
In a small bowl, mix together the flour, baking soda, and spices. Add in the chocolate chips and coconut and mix well. (This helps keep the chips and coconut from clumping together and settling at the bottom of the pan.)
When oats are cool, put them into a mixer. Add in the margarine and brown sugar and mix well. Add in the egg replacer. Stir in by hand the flour mixture and blend well. Pour into pan. Bake for 25 minutes.
We didn't actually get to have the soy ice cream that night. And I couldn't really send it home with my son, so I ate the entire quart all by myself. It did however take me two weeks to finish.
Cinnamon Almond Soy Ice Cream:
1 box firm silken tofu
1-1/2 cups plain soy milk
1/3 cup brown rice syrup
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 cup toasted almonds
Combine tofu, soy milk, syrup, sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon in a blender and puree until smooth. Refrigerate overnight (or several hours). Pour chilled mixture into ice cream maker and freeze according to your machine's instructions. Add in almonds about 2 minutes before ice cream is ready.