What is seitan? Well, technically it’s made from flour (just the gluten part), so I guess it’s a type of bread or noodle, but mentally it fits into the meat category for me. I have been a vegan now for about 13 years, I don’t crave meat or anything, but I do crave the textures, the sauces and the spices used to flavor meats. That is where seitan comes in for me. It’s a good substitute for chicken or I guess even pork.
The only way to really get the most out of seitan is to make it yourself from scratch. Most store bought seitan, just plain sucks. It’s tasteless, shaped badly, has a rubber texture and just doesn’t look good. In 13 years, I have only seen a freshly made version once and it was sold at Whole Foods in the Venice / Santa Monica areal. So, if your going to make a seitan dish, please try this recipe out and make your own fresh seitan.
This recipe is so simple to make, even a monkie can do it. Plus it only takes about two hours to complete. I know, your saying, only two hours, that is a lot of time. Yes, it would be a chunk of time, if you only make one batch, that is why I make 2 to 3 batches at a time and save the steaks in the refrigerator to use throughout the week. Also, this recipe requires making your vegetable stock to simmer the seitan in, which gives the seitan it’s flavor. I normally save the stock and make a quick soup with it. So don’t toss it. After I made my seitan this week, I made a black bean vegetable soup with miso and soy sauce. It was great.
Here is what I love about this recipe. The final seitan steaks are juicy, warm, have a slightly crispy skin and are packed with flavor. The trick is after you simmer the seitan in the vegetable stock, you re-coat them in a olive oil and teriyaki sauce, salt, pepper and then grill them. This seals in the flavors and takes the steaks to a whole new level. Try it, I bet you like them. A word of warning, seitan isn’t the healthiest food option and since it’s pure gluten, some people might have issues with it. I am not one of those people :)
My Green Diva Yogini Stephanie Bernstein, the founder of To-go Ware, and I created this recipe years ago when our days were filled with nothing but yoga and cooking in the kitchen. It has evolved through the years but the core remains the same. This is a wonderfully nourishing breakfast to keep your inner spirt warm and cozy through these cold winter months!
Yummy yummy elegant goodness is abundantly found in this soup. The sweetness from the squash and the smoky nuttiness from the chestnuts are a decadently delicious combination — a perfect compliment to any holiday dinner party or lunch. You’ll be amazed at how easy this is to make and how easy you will WOW your guests…
This is one of those, I need a delicious beautiful dessert now recipes. Tapioca is a quick dessert that will definitely delight you and your guests! You can even make the tapioca part the night before for simple assembly the next day. Just be sure to marinate the berry topping the day you are gonna eat this yummy dessert.
A little about the berry topping. You can make it with or without the Brandy and/or Cognac. I like the flavor and the little warmth the Brandy brings to the berries. If your serving this to young ones, its just as good with the pure sweetness of the berries.
I am a huge fan of making homemade dressings. They are extremely easy to make, cost effective and much more delicious, not to mention healthier than the bottled stuff. Think about it.
Now I am a true blood New Yorker at heart which means, I must hit the town and dine out a few times a week. This gives me plenty of tasting opportunities and when I run across a yummy dressing…I make sure to ask for the recipe. Most of the time, I get some vague answer, but that isn’t a problem, that is a challenge. With my new flavor discovery, I go into my kitchen, and like a mad scientist, I try my hand at re-creating it. This was one of those inspired moments….
I have to admit, as a natural food enthusiast, Halloween and the entire holiday season ( Thanksgiving, Christmas ) really puts me in quite a quandary. On one hand, I love the mild madness that ensues around this time of year. The costumes, the parties, the creativity, the (idea of) candyland-come-true . . . clearly there’s some serious residual little-kid excitement in full force here. The irony is that much of what Holidays is about (conventional candy . . . and lots of it) is basically my nemesis. It’s not a matter of fun-size package denial, it’s a matter of reality: hydrogenated oils, high fructose corn syrup, red #5, or any ingredient made in a labcoat for that matter, generally equates to things humans should not consume.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not here to pull a scrooge moment. I understand this isn’t the time of year to tout the benefits of things like toothbrushes, raisins, or a nice apple. But don’t you worry; I’ve got plans for us. Better plans. Plans like, ahem, chocolate hazelnut plans. And while these chocolate hazelnut plans may still totally reside in the treat category (aka – don’t eat the whole recipe in one serving . . . everyday), this dessert is billions of times more beneficial than traditional holiday candy fare. Aside from using clean natural ingredients, it’s full of superfoods too. Raw cacao powder lends its copious antioxidant content and abundant minerals, and the chocolate coating utilizes the natural sweetness of mesquite powder (the milled mesquite pods from a low-lying South American shrub) making the exterior especially low in sugars. I’ve even snuck a little bit of optional adrenal-supporting maca powder into the filling of these candies, perhaps as a preemptive healthy strike against any conventional sugary “incidents.”
This dessert is billions of times more beneficial than traditional holiday candy fare.
Needless to say, these candies are an all-around “yes.” The exterior chocolate coating will remain solid at room temperature, and the inside pocket is a soft, sweet blend of cacao and hazelnuts. You can use ice cube trays for as molds for these, or get fancified and use real-deal candy molds with deep vessels to properly contain the filling. If using candy molds, double the amount of chocolate coating that the recipe calls for (the filling will remain the same). Short on time? Simply melt down a dark chocolate bar and use as the exterior coating instead of the raw chocolate recipe below.
I have two passions in life: Health and Art (in the sense of being creative and working with my hands). My goal: To eventually figure out how to merge the two together. How the hell I do that, still to be decided. I could write about all the options I’ve considered in my head, but then you’d just see me as a bipolar mess of a child. Literally, it expands from culinary school in France (to learn and embrace the emotional aspect of dinning/eating – which I think is SO important in our over-all health) to furthering my education in Natural Health – Like I said, two opposite ends of the spectrum. Pretty much, if you could jump inside my head, you’d beg to get out – as everyday it’s seems to become more and more a cluster f**k of ideas. Creativity truly is a blessing and a curse
In the meantime though, I’ll stick to the undecided route – i.e. cooking (or, playing) with healthy food!
Yesterday’s playtime included squash (told ya you’d be seeing a lot of this) and cookie cutters… Which I heart, because cookie cutters equal perfect shapes and perfect shapes make this perfectionist, perfectly happy.
At first I thought, “ravioli!” Which was then immediately followed by, “boring!” So instead, I went for a mix between lasagna and ravioli – A ravioli stack. Easy, but elegant. What more could a girl want!?
Vegans and carnivores will both be happy with this amazingly rich soup. A perfect starter for a Christmas meal. The special somethin’ somethin’ comes from the use of unpasteurized dark miso. I use south river miso. They make their miso using a variety of grains, beans and sea vegetables. They are all wonderful. Miso not only adds extra depth to any soup but has exceptional nutritional values. Unpasteurized miso is a ‘living food’ and contains natural digestive enzymes that aid in digestion, so it’s a great way to get your tummy ready for all the other food comin’ it’s way from your holiday feast!
If you like egg nog… you are gonna love this. Frozen vegan nog! YUM! It’s incredibly delicious on it’s own or scooped on top of warm apple crisps, pecan or pumpkin pies. If you don’t want the alcohol you can leave it out but…it’s extra tasty with a little kick!
Here’s a light and refreshing way to cleanse your palate so you can make room for some more holiday dessert! Yes, you can definitely serve this sorbet on it’s own or scoop it over fresh organic berries or pie or crumbles….heck you could even put a scoop in a glass of champagne for a blood orange style chilled mimosa!
*Note: if you can’t find blood oranges you can use the juice of six regular oranges and 1/4 cup pomegranate juice