Monday, April 28, 2008

A Saucy Sunday Supper (and recipes!)

I love minimally prepared foods. I love the sweetness of homemade beans, broccoli with a splash of lemon and a dash of garlic, lightly seasoned grilled or roasted veggies, and of course, fresh fruits. My son, however, has always been a believer in “the sauce makes the meal.” I think sauce mainly adds unnecessary calories, but occasionally, including a good sauce (or 3 or 4) can be quite a nice enhancement for any dish. So for this meal, and especially for Chase, all food is saucy!

First, you must have toast for all the sauce! (Is this the first picture of plain ol’ toast on a blog?)

Baked Tofu with Pineapple Chipotle Sauce

I sliced a pound of thawed frozen tofu into 4 steaks. After draining I marinated them in the sauce overnight.

Pineapple Chipotle Sauce:
adapted from “The Complete Vegan Kitchen”

Saute half a medium onion and 1 clove minced garlic in 2 teaspoons canola oil. When soft, add in:

1 cup pineapple juice
juice of a lime
¼ cup cider vinegar
1 T. sugar
dash S&P

Bring to a boil, then add in:
1 chopped chipotle pepper
2 t. chipotle paste
slurry of 1 t. arrowroot in 1 T. water

Cook and stir until thickened. Add in ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro if desired.

Pour into a baking dish, add the tofu and marinate. Bake at 375 degrees for 25 minutes, turning halfway through baking time.

This sauce is fabulous! I could eat it by the spoonfuls. Sweet and spicy is always so nice. I couldn’t decide which picture I liked best.

Lentils in Onion Gravy

Since I don’t do tofu, I made myself some tasty lentils. This is from Vegan Fire & Spice, although I did not use Indian spices, and I added in a small bag of fresh spinach. This was also very, very good.

New Potato Salad in Creamy Dill & Green Onion Sauce

I served this as a cold salad. I boiled a pound of quartered new potatoes for about 9 minutes. When they were done and still slightly warm, I stirred in the sauce.

Creamy Dill & Green Onion Sauce

3 T. cream cheese, warmed
2 T. milk
2 chopped green onions, white and green parts
1 T. chopped fresh dill
S&P to taste

We have always preferred a mustard type potato salad and are not big fans of cream cheese, so this version seemed rather decadent and we had trouble eating more than a couple of bites. Potatoes with green onions and fresh dill sprinkled on top would have been just fine for us. But for those who are cream cheese fans, this is a perfect sauce and would win over any omni.

Steamed Veggies Mornay

Okay, “Mornay” is probably a stretch. But I did start with a roux. I adapted a recipe from “The Complete Vegan Kitchen,” which, if you haven’t noticed by now, is a cookbook I have come to love. This sauce is soooo good. I always thought folks who covered their veggies with cheese didn’t really like veggies, but Chase and I both really really loved this sauce. Really really.

Vegan Mornay Sauce

2 T. nutritional yeast
4 T. chickpea flour
1 cup warm almond milk
2 T. ground raw cashews
½ t. garlic powder
½ t. salt
½ t. black pepper
½ t. paprika
2 T. Earth Balance
1 t. Dijon mustard

Put the yeast and flour in a small sauce pan and toast lightly over low heat. Slowly whisk in the milk to form a smooth mixture. Whisk in the cashews and spices, then the EB and mustard.

Makes 1 cup

We put our veggies on toast, then topped with sauce.

My lovely plate:

Chase’s beautiful plate:

Chase was so happy with all the saucy foods, but went completely over the top when I showed him dessert.

Mango Cream Pie with Toasted Coconut Topping and Strawberry Sauce

I have more mangoes than I can eat, so I thought I should put them in a dessert. Again turning to “The Complete Vegan Kitchen,” I found a recipe for Mango Cream Pie, so I used the mango cream portion (which is basically 3 pureed mangoes, a box of silken tofu, and sugar) for my pie. Since this pie is for Chase (again, no tofu for me) and he loves graham cracker crusts, it’s hard not to buy a premade “to go” crust, so that’s what the mango cream is in. It was actually not quite sturdy enough for the filling.

The strawberry sauce is your basic fresh strawberries cooked with sugar and water, then thickened with an arrowroot slurry. It’s such a beautiful color.

Mangoes and strawberries are one of our favorite flavor combinations and this pie with the sauce was perfectly delicious. Strawberry pie with mango sauce may have to be the next dessert I make!

And finally, I had to make Anna’s Vegan Chocolate Pepper Cookies. Anna has a fabulous cookie blog and quite often posts vegan, vegan option, and/or healthy cookie recipes. (Remember Oreo Cookie Cookies?!?!) Of course spicy chocolates are all the rage now, but these cookies are not made with chili peppers; these are made with your basic black pepper. The cookies are wonderful! Chase stopped himself after eating 4. They are super chocolatey, crispy on the outside, chewy on the inside, and have just a hint of heat. If you’ve been curious but tentative about baking with heat, these cookies would be the perfect starter for you. I highly recommend you put these cookies on your “must make” list. You won’t be disappointed. Thanks, Anna, for another outstanding cookie recipe!

I’ve been away from the computer all weekend and it’s late now. Tomorrow evening I see my trainer, so after my workout I will be ready to come home and just sit at my desk and visit as many of your blogs as I can.


pleasantly plump vegan said...

i could eat a whole bowl of that potato salad!!!

Anna said...

The cookies look great! I think they're especially good the first day. I noticed they hardened up a little on Day 2, but they still tasted good.

The pineapple chipotle tofu and all the other vegetables in the photo made me suddenly want to go vegan!

Vegetation said...

Mmmmm lentils and cookies (not together of course :P)

VeggieGirl said...

I too love minimally-prepared foods; but mine never look as delicious as yours, haha.

That Mango pie is absolutely stunning!! Oh and I too saw that cookie recipe on Anna's site - so intriguing!!

Saw your comment on my blog - I WILL be off for summer :0)

romina said...

That chipotle sauce looks delicious!

Vegan_Noodle said...

Saucy indeed! That pineapple chipotle sauce looks awesome, I would have had a hard time picking between those pics as well! But I can't stop thinking about that mango pie with strawberry sauce.... I will be dreaming about it the rest of the day!

erica said...

The potato salad reminds me of a wonderful dish called Kartoffeln mit Gruene Sosse I had in germany before I became vegan. It was pretty much a HUGE bunch of fresh herbs blended with quark and sour cream, put cold onto warm boiled potatos.

You are making me hungry!

(all better now, I'm so sorry about sunday!!!!)

Anonymous said...

everything looks wonderful as always! i would love to make your pineapple chipotle sauce - that tofu looks just so amazing and now i must taste it!

ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

Honestly, does your son know how lucky he is???!!!

I am so going to try that moray sauce. Sauce makes the world go round...

bazu said...

Ooooh, everything looks so good, including the tofu the potato salad and the cookies! I didn't realize you didn't eat tofu! Oh, and yes, that pie would have made me go insane, too. I can practically taste it from here. I know what you mean about simply prepared foods. One of my all-time favorites is lentils, cooked with just a pinch of salt and water. I like these plain, or with some plain brown rice. Yay for simple foods!

vegan addict said...

what an awesome mom you are! all those lovely foods and desserts...yum!

Melody Polakow said...

Everything looks amazing, but I am especially drooling over the tofu dish...

Erin said...

You make the most amazing six course meals. And yes, toast counts as a course.

Wheeler's Frozen Dessert said...

Wow everything looks great! Delicious.

Veg-a-Nut said...

Ok, I really need to come to your house for dinner. I am so hungry right now for some good cooking! Your post hit the spot. I will ahve to try DH on those cookies.

Liz² said...

eek, how on earth did you pull off so many sauces? I always tend to regard sauces as a whole separate dish, making this dinner, like, one million dishes! very cool, and also that PIE! :O yes please, I'll be at your door tomorrow morning! (it's plated beautifully, too)

Anonymous said...

Pineapple Chipotle Sauce-MMMM! That 'fu looks succulent! Thanks for the ETL ideas ;}

funwithyourfood said...

Summer time and potato salad go hand and hand for me... there's been a heat wave here- up in the 100's last weekend!- and I need me some of that!


edamame said...

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Happy Herbivore! said...

I love star fruit! yay

I'm not a tofu eater at all and your looks so good. I actually want it!

Happy Herbivore! said...

I love star fruit! yay

I'm not a tofu eater at all and your looks so good. I actually want it!

Chef Erik said...

Your tofu looks great. I've been workingout for 6 months. Been eating a lot more tofu and veggies and feel so super healthy. You recipe looks delish!

Urban Vegan said...

Those all look lovely.

You are now St. Tex'n Vegan, to me.

sakura said...


Please link to this site

Ricki said...

Everything looks amazing! I've got to try that potato salad, and the marinated tofu steaks. Oh, and I loved the toast, of course ;) !

I've also tagged you for a meme (but please feel free to ignore if you're swamped with other things!).

Carrie™ said...

Wow! I'm not usually a saucy person either, but you may have convinced me otherwise. I'm especially interested in the pineapple tofu. Sounds divine! And that pie!!

Kristen's Raw said...

Hear Ye Hear Ye to minimally processed foods!