Monday, January 14, 2008

gotta love comfort food and the Yellow Rose Recipes cookbook

Ever since I got my copy of Yellow Rose Recipes on Saturday I have been non-stop in the kitchen. Joanna's cooking style and ingredient lists are very similar to my own recipes, so I was very excited to get my hands on it. This cookbook is a great example of how I would want my own cookbook done: comfortable, healthy (or at least with health in mind) and beautiful!
The first thing I made was the Baked Mac and Cheese (pg. 136) because I am out to find the perfect vegan mac and cheese. This version started like the rest I've tried- cooking the pasta and making a roux with nutritional yeast but something I had never tried was using vegan cheese in a recipe. I have been pretty disappointed with most of the faux cheeses on the market, but so far my favorite cheddar style faux cheese has been the Vegan Cheddar block from Galaxy Nutritional Foods. It still doesn't taste like cow's milk cheese, but it is a nice alternative, especially in this recipe! I did make a couple changes to the recipe because, well, that's what I do. Instead of rice milk, I used soy milk, used crunched up whole wheat crackers on top and I also added ground mustard and onion powder because salt, pepper and nutmeg just didn't give it enough punch. With my adjustments for our taste buds, it is the best mac and cheese I have had being vegan. I had a little mac and cheese with a big salad that had spring mix, tomatoes, onions, red bell pepper, avocado and a homemade sherry vinaigrette.
I also made the Chicken Style Seitan (pg. 128) despite not clearly understanding the cooking directions. I wasn't exactly sure how long I should have boiled the seitan, so I only boiled them for a few minutes and then let it set for about an hour in the hot broth. Whatever I did, it worked. This whole process took a long time for some reason, all the measuring I think . . . but it was still very tasty. I coated a couple pieces in a little all-purpose flour and garlic salt and sprayed a fry pan with olive oil cooking spray and browned these babies up!
The last thing I made out of Yellow Rose Recipes was the Very Berry Muffins (pg. 24), again with a few adjustments. Instead of egg replacer powder (not a big fan) I used ground flax seed and water slurry. I couldn't find any cheap fresh berries at the farmer's market so I used a strawberry, blueberry and blackberry frozen mix and added a little strawberry extract along with the vanilla extract to up the berry punch. The last adjustment I made was that I added a container of strawberry soy yogurt because I like the taste and texture soy yogurt lends to muffins. They turned out very good and made the house smell like sweet berries.
This last picture was from dinner last night. I found a purple cauliflower at the farmer's market that was just screaming out my name. While I don't cook things that scream I ended up roasting this head of cauliflower with just a bit of olive oil cooking spray and salt. I also made garlic herb mashed potatoes that were made with roasted garlic, fresh chives and fresh parsley. The green beans were blanched and then cooked in large fry pan on very high heat with a bit of canola oil until they were a little charred. I added soy sauce, agave nectar, sesame oil and sesame seeds to the green beans at the last minute. This is just a standard veggie plate special at our house, but because the cauliflower was so beautiful, I had to post about it.


selina said...

the purple cauliflower is beautiful. i still haven't been able to get my hands on some here. :(

That mac & Cheese looks very comforting.

Traci Anne said...

These look delicious! I'm excited to try your suggestions for the mac and cheese, that's one thing I really miss!

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

I've been lovin' on YRR as well! I'm debating the Channa Masala or Tamale Pie for tonight. We've enjoyed the Mustard Crusted Seitan & Sesame Green Beans so far!

Anonymous said...

I've never been able to find purple cauliflower, it looks like so much fun! Something kids would really enjoy.

I once bought the Vegan Block of Cheddar Cheese from Galaxy Foods... I was very disappointed, especially since it doesn't melt, and has the consistency of plastic. It also ended up molding after a few days. =( But that mac and cheese you made looks delicious!

Calimaryn said...

Wow, that cauliflower is amazing! Everything looks super yummy. I really need to get my hands on that Yellow Rose Recipe book.

ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

Isn't purple cauliflower the prettiest veggie ever?! And mac and cheeze sounds like a great recipe to start out with-- I am so intrigued by vegan mac and cheeze recipes, because I have yet to find the perfect one, so I love trying new recipes for the dish!

Jennifer said...

The Mac and "Cheese" looks wonderful.

I have been wary of vegan mac and cheese in general because I'm afraid I'll be disappointed that it doesn't taste like, well, mac and cheese. Maybe I shouldn't be expecting it to taste exactly the same.

I may have to check out the Yellow Rose cookbook. I am fairly new to blogging and vegan cooking and I have seen this cookbook spoken of on a couple of other blogs as well. Now you have me interested in this mac and cheese.

The chicken style seitan and those muffins look amazing as well. I wish I could eat my screen! Though somehow I imagine it wouldn't taste like your food.

I really have to stop lurking around vegan food blogs at work when I'm hungry, eh?

VeggieGirl said...

certainly looks like a lot of bloggers are enjoying YRR - glad to see that you're among them!! everything looks great - oh my goodness I LOVE purple cauliflower!! :0)

Vegan_Noodle said...

Glad you've had success with YRR. I have also made the chicken style seitan (I boiled it for like an hour), turned out pretty good I thought.
That purple cauliflower is so cool looking. Definitely worth posting a photo!!

ohsodelish! said...

WOW---your mac n' cheese looks awesome!! i too <3 mac n' cheese and am always open to new recipes...and am also still on the lookout for the perfect one!

joanna said...

awww i'm so happy to hear that you've been enjoying the cookbook. let me know if you ever have any questions about a recipe.