Trio of Vegan Valentine’s Treats: 1 Savory and 2 Sweets

Since Valentine’s Day is tomorrow(!), I wanted to direct you to three oldies-but-goodies that I created in years past to celebrate the national day of love.  Just click on the title to be taken right to the post with that recipe.  Happy Valentine’s Day from the Blooming Platter!

Savory Vegan Sausage and Red Bell Pepper Heart Tarts









Vegan Chocolate Truffles










Vegan Peppermint and Chocolate Patties


Print Friendly, PDF & Email

FARM Publishes Vegan Kale and White Bean Stew (with Fennel and Vegan Sausage) from The Blooming Platter Cookbook in Today’s Meatout Monday eNewsletter

Thanks to FARM for not only publishing my vegan White Bean and Kale Stew recipe from The Blooming Platter Cookbook, but for also including nutritional information, Gimme Lean product information, and an article on the fast food-obesity connection.  Just click HERE to access the newsletter, including recipe.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

VegKitchen Features The Blooming Platter Cookbook’s Vegan “White Bean and Kale Stew” with Fennel and Vegan Sausage

Has it turned chilly where you are?  If so, I thought you might appreciate a sneak preview of a nutritious and delicious winter soup that my omnivorous husband asks for by name.  If so, just click on the soup name below.

This beautiful “White Bean and Kale Stew” hails from The Blooming Platter Cookbook and was featured this week as the Veg Kitchen’s “Recipe of the Week.”  (Thanks, Nava Atlas!)  Not the ubiquitous white bean and kale stew that we all know and love, my recipe is extra special with the addition of fennel and vegan sausage.

Fragrant with that faintly anise scent so appealing and particular to fennel, and “kicked-up” with the addition of winter spices, this stew is like aromatherapy in a bowl.  And it’s very quick to make.

Our family started a tradition of making a special soup on Christmas Day because none of us wanted to repeat the (healthy) excesses of Thanksgiving less than a month before.  Plus we had come not to relish opening presents and then leaping up to hit the kitchen for hours of work–pleasant enough, but work all the same.  Our soup tradition takes any residual stress out of the day and has been enjoyed for several years.  If you have the same inclinations, this soup would make a lovely choice.

Please, everyone, have yourselves a wonderful holiday.  And stay-tuned for my extra special post for New Year’s Eve.  It may be the simplest, quickest and most beautiful “recipe”–if you can call it that–that I’ve posted in Blooming Platter history!

And, quickly, if you are in need of a last minute gift, I would like to suggest running out to your local bookseller and snagging a copy of The Blooming Platter Cookbook: A Harvest of Seasonal Vegan Recipes.  (You can purchase it for 25% off its regular retail price through December 31!)  If you already have purchased one for yourself or others, my sincere thanks!  People’s generous support of TBPC has been extraordinary.




Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Vegan Chorizo and Sweet Potato Hash with Black Salt Cashew Cream

Yikes, today almost came and went with no MoFo!

But never fear, I’ve got the perfect fall recipe for when you need to dish up a little comfort, and who doesn’t need that these days?

Since hash is traditionally served with an egg, and I had a little savory cashew cream in my fridge, I wondered if I could flavor it with black salt, whose distinctly sulpher-y taste is uncannily reminiscent of an egg, and use it as a topping.  Indeed!  It was perfect.

Thank you, Isa, for turning me on to the wonders of Indian black salt, which is actually a beautiful gray color.  Pick up a bottle at Indian markets or specialty food stores.  I snagged mine at Napa Style (and probably paid a lot more) while on vacation in San Francisco this past summer.

Begin making the Cashew Cream the day before you plan to use it:

Cashew Cream

You will have lots of leftover, but you’ll be glad you do!

2 cups raw cashews, divided in half

2 cups water, divided in half

Sea salt to taste

In a covered bowl, soak 1 cup cashews in 1 cup water overnight in the refrigerator.  Rinse and drain.  Process the cup of soaked cashews with the additional cup of raw unsoaked cashews and the remaining cup of water in a food processor for several minutes, or until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.  Add salt to taste, process just to combine, and store covered in the refrigerator.

Vegan Chorizo and Sweet Potato Hash with Black Salt Cashew Cream

Yield: 4 servings

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium red onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice

1 large clove garlic

1 medium red bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch dice

2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch dice (it is very important to patiently cut the dice this small

1-12 ounce package vegan Chorizo, casing removed (I use Trader Joe’s brand)

2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves


4 or so tablespoons of plain Cashew Cream, seasoned to taste with a pinch or more of black salt (recipe above)

4 sprigs of fresh thyme (it’s especially pretty when in bloom)

In a large cast iron skillet over medium-high, heat olive oil to shimmering.  Add onion and saute, stirring frequently, until softened and a little bit of color starts to develop, about 3 to 5 minutes.  Add garlic, bell pepper, and sweet potato, and saute, stirring frequently about 5 minutes or slightly longer until the bell pepper is quite soft and the sweet potato is beginning to become tender. Crumble chorizo into the pan and saute, still stirring very frequently, for an additional 5 minutes or slightly longer until sweet potato is very tender.  At any point, if the mixture appears to be drying out, you may add another tablespoon of olive oil or water, and/or slightly reduce the heat.  Sprinkle with fresh thyme leaves and heat through for another 30 seconds to a minute.  Serve hot with dollops of the Cashew Cream mixture and a sprig of fresh thyme.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Vegan Chorizo, Chickpeas & Kale in a Creamy Coconut Milk-Pumpkin Sauce with Pepita and Sage Pesto Drizzle

This is one of my dream dinners: super healthy, lusciously creamy, beautiful to look at, and a “twofer” in that both the chickpea mixture and the pepita pesto can easily stand alone. Plus, it’s an anti-oxidant powerhouse of a one-dish meal.

I first made the pesto to drizzle over my Roasted Turks’ Turban Squash.  It was addicting!  So I knew I had to create other dishes with which to enjoy it lest I spend the fall eating nothing but Turks’ Turban squash.  Stay tuned for more to follow.

You can serve up a nice bowl of this thick spicy melange and serve the grilled bread on the side, or you can serve it as a crostini, like you see in the photo.  Either way, you’ll be licking your lips.

Yield: 4 servings

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 of a medium-large yellow onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice

1/2 of a large orange bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and cut into 1/4-inch dice

Sea salt to taste

2 large cloves garlic, minced

2 cups of very finely chopped kale (I used a food processor for this task)

1-15.5 ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained

6 ounces of vegan chorizo (I purchase Trader Joe’s brand)

1-15 ounce can coconut milk (I use the lite variety)

1/2 cup pumpkin puree

Optional: 2 tablespoons apple juice (this sounds like an odd addition, but adds a little hint of something delicious but unidentifiable)

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

1 teaspoon rubbed sage

Freshly ground black pepper to taste

1 tablespoon Pomegranate Molasses

Zest of 1/2 of a lemon

Vegan Pepita and Sage Pesto (recipe follows)

Optional Garnish: a few lightly salted and roasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds) and sprigs of fresh sage

Accompaniment: grilled slices of bread (about 3/4-inch thick)

In a large cast iron skillet, heat the tablespoon of olive oil to sizzling over medium-high.  Add onion, bell pepper, and a generous pinch of salt, and saute, stirring frequently, for about 3 minutes or until softened. Add garlic and kale and saute, still stirring frequently, for another 3 minutes. Add chick peas and chorizo, stirring just to combine after each.  Stir in remaining ingredients, except lemon zest and pesto, and heat, stirring occasionally, for another 3-5 minutes.  Stir in lemon zest and serve hot drizzled with Pepita and Sage Pesto or pass the pesto in a small bowl with a serving spoon.  Garnish with pepitas if desired.  And serve with or on top of grilled bread.


Vegan Pepita and Sage Pesto

1/2 cup roasted and lightly salted Pepitas (I buy Trader Joe’s brand)

1 medium clove of garlic, peeled

8 fresh sage leaves (or pineapple sage leaves)

1/8 teaspoon of ground nutmeg (freshly grated is especially nice)

1/8 teaspoon of chipotle chile powder

1/2 cup olive oil

1 teaspoon maple syrup

Juice of 1/2 of a small lime

Optional: 1 1/2 teaspoons nutritional yeast

Sea salt to taste (I like a “goodly” amount in this)

Place Pepitas, garlic, sage, nutmeg and chili powder in the bowl of a food processor.  Process until a coarse paste forms.  With the motor running, add olive oil in a steady stream until the mixture is pulpy-smooth.  Turn off the motor.  Add maple syrup, lime, optional nutritional yeast, and salt to taste, and pulse just two or three times to combine.  Adjust seasoning if desired, and use immediately or store, covered, in the refrigerator.  Allow to come to room temperature or heat slightly before serving.

For 150+ other fresh seasonal recipes, I hope you might check out The Blooming Platter Cookook: A Harvest of Seasonal Vegan Recipes!

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Blooming Platter Cookbook Giveaway Reminder PLUS Vegan Chickpea Sausages with Roasted Apples, Onions, and Jalapenos with Cashew Cream & Pomegranate Molasses Drizzle

This Mediterranean riff on sausage and sauerkraut is perfect for Oktoberfest.  A fresh take on its forebear, my version will perfume your kitchen with warm North African spices when its cool outside.  And the presentation is so special, yet simple, that you can turn dinner into a dinner party.

Yield: 4 servings

Note: you will need to make the Cashew Cream a day in advance.

Cashew Cream

You will have lots of leftover, but you’ll be glad you do!

2 cups raw cashews, divided in half

2 cups water, divided in half

Sea salt to taste.

In a covered bowl, soak 1 cup cashews in 1 cup water overnight in the refrigerator.  Rinse and drain.  Process the cup of soaked cashews with the additional cup of raw unsoaked cashews and the remaining cup of water in a food processor for several minutes, or until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary.  Add salt to taste, process just to combine, and store covered in the refrigerator.

Vegan Chickpea Sausages

1 1/2 cups chickpeas, rinsed and drained (1-15.5 ounce can)

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 cup vegetable broth

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 teaspoon vegan Worcestershire sauce or Bragg Liquid Aminos

1 1/2 cups vital wheat gluten

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

Pinch of sea salt

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

Freshly ground black pepper or white pepper to taste

Roasted Apples, Onions, and Jalapenos (recipe follows)

Accompaniment: 8 cups of very lightly packed fresh baby spinach lightly barely sauteed in about 4 teaspoons of olive oil over medium high heat for about 30 seconds to 1 minute

Optional Garnish:

Cashew Cream (recipe is above)

A drizzle of Pomegranate Molasses (available at Mediterranean and Middle Eastern Markets)

Tear off 4 sheets of foil about 6 inches wide. Place a steamer basket in a 4-quart saucepan and fill with water just to the bottom of the steamer. Cover the pan and bring the water to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to a simmer.

In a medium bowl, mash the chickpeas and garlic until creamy. A few small pieces of beans may remain. Stir in the vegetable broth, olive oil, and Worcestershire sauce, and set aside. In another medium bowl, whisk together vital wheat gluten, salt, coriander, cumin, paprika, and pepper.  Pour the bean mixture into a well in the center of the dry ingredients and, using a fork, stir the dry ingredients around the edge of the bowl into the wet center until all of the ingredients are completely combined.

Divide the dough into four equal parts. Place each part on a sheet of foil and shape into 5 to 6-inch long logs about 1 1/2 inches in diameter, pressing mixture together fairly firmly. Lay each log along one long edge of the foil and roll snugly, bending up the foil at the ends. Place the logs into the steamer–either  vertically or horizontally, two on the bottom and two on top of them–and steam for 40  minutes, adding more hot water to the saucepan
if necessary to prevent it from evaporating completely.

Remove the sausages from the steamer and unroll them when cool enough to handle. Be careful that you don’t burn yourself with escaping steam. At this point, I like to split the sausages lengthwise and grill for 2-3 minutes on each side on my stovetop grill pan.  Serve the sausages on a bed of the lightly sauteed spinach topped with the roasted apples and garnished with a dollop of cashew cream and a drizzle of pomegranate syrup.  While the sausages steam, make roasted apples.

Roasted Apples, Onions, and Jalapenos

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 gala apples (or your favorite sweet-tart variety), stemmed, cored, and cut into 8 wedges each

1/2 of a large Vidallia or other yellow onion, cut into 1/4-inch slivers

1 jalapeno, stemmed, cored, seeded, and cut into 1/8-inch slivers (you can use two if you choose, but that makes for a really spicy dish!)

Sea salt

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Pour olive oil into a large metal roasting pan.  (If the ingredients are crowded, they will steam instead of roast.)  Add remaining ingredients and toss to coat with the oil.  Roast for 20 minutes, stirring after 10.  Remove the pan from the oven and serve as described above.


Blooming Platter Cookbook Giveaway

For more than 150 additional mouthwatering recipes to celebrate all year long, I invite you to check out The Blooming Platter Cookbook: A Harvest of Seasonal Vegan Recipes.

Enter to win you very own copy by clicking here.  Deadline is Saturday, October 8 at midnight!

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Vegan Spanish Chorizo Pizza with Green Olives, Creamy Macadamia “Cheese” and Marconi Almonds

Yield: 4 pizzas

A couple of weekends ago, Hurricane Irene battered our coast, fortunately with much less ferocity than was anticipated.

When a major storm like Irene threatens, everyone’s minds turn to food and drink.  Water for some, wine for us–ha!  Seriously, we joined our neighbors who cleared the grocery store shelves of bottled water–also recycling bottles and filling them with tap water–but we had plenty of wine on hand too.  For this dish, I recommend something like an Albarino.

Around lunch time, we still had power, and I got the inspiration for this quickie pizza which I figured would just require 3-5 minutes under the broiler.  Surely the power would stay on that long.  And it did; in fact, it never went out.  We were so lucky!  However, the light quality on that stormy day wasn’t optimal for photography, so I apologize for this photo.

At any rate,  when you need a quick fix, regardless of the reason, this one is a keeper.

4-6 inch corn tortillas

1 cup vegan chorizo filling (This delicious filling comes from a new crostini recipe of which I had leftovers; just click the link.  Note, you only need the chorizo, not the white bean, filling.)

8 green olives stuffed with pimentos, sliced in half lenghwise (if you want more, use more!)

approximately 1/2 cup  vegan Creamy Macadamia “Cheese” Spread (this recipe was published on One Green Planet; again, just click the link.)

16 Marconi almonds (these are especially good, but any roasted and lightly salted almond will work)

Preheat broiler to high.  Place the tortillas on a baking sheet; I like to line my baking sheet with Silpat.  Spread each tortilla with about 1/4 cup of the chorizo mixture.  Top each with a pinwheel of 4 olive halves(or more if you choose), cut side up, dollop with approximately 2 tablespoons of cheese, and dot with 4 or so almonds.  Broil on top oven rack for 3 to 5 minutes or until heated through with toasty edges.  Serve immediately with a knife and fork.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Vegan Chorizo, White Beans and Spinach Valencian

Yield: 4-6 servings

My good friend and dance teacher, Brent Dunn, has been gradually learning the “Vegan-ese Waltz.”  Recently, he turned me on to Trader Joe’s vegan chorizo.  ¡Delicioso!  It’s rich red spicy goodness doesn’t cry out for much to become a meal.  But I was obsessed with combining it with the flavor of orange, having been at a party Friday night hosted by my friend who went to college in Spain and was regaling us with a tale of a trip to Valencia.  Here’s my spicy Valencian ode (almost as spicy as the story she told!):

1 tablespoon hazelnut or walnut oil (olive oil or canola oil would work fine)

1 medium yellow onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice

pinch kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

3 large cloves, garlic, minced

1 large yellow bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch slices and then cut in half

12 ounces vegan chorizo, casing removed

1 teaspoon smoked paprika (be sure it’s smoked)

1-15.5 ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained

1/2 cup vegetable stock

1-15 ounce can petite diced tomatoes

4 cups lightly packed fresh baby spinach

1/2 cup cream sherry (contains no cream; refers to a slight sweetness)

Zest of one medium-large naval orange

1/4 cup minced parsley or 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon dried

2 tablespoons plain soy creamer

1/2 to 3/4 cup sliced black olives (choose a meaty variety; brine-cured preferred)

Optional accompaniment: sliced bread, brushed with hazelnut oil (or olive oil) and grilled

Optional garnish: finely chopped hazelnuts

Heat oil to shimmering in a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat.  Add onion, and saute, stirring, for one minute.  Season with salt and pepper, and add garlic and continue to saute, stirring, for 2 more minutes.   Add bell pepper, and continue sauteeing for about 3 minutes.  Crumble chorizo into the pan and sprinkle with paprika.  Continue sauteeing for about 2 minutes or until heated through.  Add the beans and do the same.  Add stock, tomatoes and sherry and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes.  Stir in spinach just until uniformly wilted, but still bright green.  Stir in zest, parsley and soy creamer and cook, stirring occasionally, until heated through.  Remove from heat, stir in olives, garnish if desired, and serve hot.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Vegan Sausages with Braised Onions, Cabbage, Apples and Potatoes Topped with Vegan Sour Cream-Horseradish Sauce and Red Apple Sauerkraut

Yield 6-8 servings

A vegan Oktoberfest may sound like an oxymoron. And it’s true, wienerschintzel and bratwurst aren’t typically meat-free fare. But this autumn, thanks to a simple vegan sausage recipe (for those who love to cook)—or prepared vegan brats (for those who don’t)—everyone, regardless of their dietary preferences, can take part in the merrymaking.

If an Oktoberfest celebration is not your style, this meal nonetheless makes a tasty, healthy and hearty—but not heavy—cool weather supper. Spicy white bean-based sausages are nestled into a braise of onions, cabbage, potatoes and apples before being topped with a dollop of sour “cream”-horseradish sauce and a tangle of red apple sauerkraut, my twist on the traditional red cabbage variety.

There is nothing purist about my take on traditional German fare, yet I pay homage to the cuisine through my combinations of ingredients. Take the sausages for instance. They are vegan cookbook author Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s recipe made with my own spice mixture inspired by bratwurst and thüringer rostbratwurst.

By repeating some of the customary spices and ingredients, like coriander seeds and apples, from one component of the dish to another, I tie the flavors together while still offering plenty of harmonious contrast between tastes and textures.

Follow each recipe as-is for a satisfying four-part, one-dish Deutsch-inspired meal, or take some creative liberties of your own.


For this recipe and some 170+ more,
I invite you to purchase my first cookbook:

The Blooming Platter:
A Harvest of Seasonal Vegan Recipes

Vegan Heritage Press
Spring 2011

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Site developed by IYPS

Featuring Recent Posts WordPress Widget development by YD