Thursday, November 22, 2012


Thanksgiving Turkey Fruit Centerpiece

 I'm in New Jersey visiting family and friends and having fun prepping for Thanksgiving festivities.  I decided to take on as many traditional dishes as I can, and try my hand at transforming them into 100% plant-based deliciousness.  Thanksgiving is not just for omnivores, although I think this spread will please everyone!  Here is what's on my menu:

Stuffed Wild Mushroom Balls
Seasoned Seitan Roast
Wild Mushroom Gravy
Forbidden Apple Walnut Cranberry Stuffing
Roasted Root Vegetables
Coconut Pumpkin Bread

Stuffed Wild Mushroom Balls
makes 25-30 balls

1 1/2 cups or 1 (15.5oz) can of chickpeas
1 cup chopped crimini mushrooms
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbsp fresh parsley
2 tbsp ketchup
2 tbsp liquid aminos
1 tbsp water
1 1/2 tbsp olive oil, plus more for cooking
1/2 cup dry breadcrumbs
1/2 cup vital wheat gluten flour
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/2 cup Daiya (vegan cheese) pepperjack

In a food processor, pulse chick peas, mushrooms, garlic, & parsley until coarsely ground but not pureed.  Add remaining ingredients except Daiya.  Pulse to combine

Scrape mixture into a large bowl and knead until well blended.

Pinch off a small piece of the mixture and press into your hand to make a flat disc.  Put a small ball of Daiya in the center and roll the dough into a ball around the Daiya.  Repeat with remaining mixture.

Preheat to 375º.   Oil a baking sheet and add balls to sheet.  Bake 11 minutes.  Remove and turn balls.  Bake another 11 minutes.  Serve hot.

Seasoned Seitan Roast

1/2 cup cooked or canned cannelini beans
1/4 cup liquid aminos
1 tbsp olive oil
1 cup water
1/4 cup red wine
2 cups vital wheat gluten flour
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
2 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp tyme
1/2 tsp sage
1/2 tsp parsley
1/2 tsp black pepper

Preheat oven 350º.  In a food processor, process beans, liquid aminos, oil, water, and wine until smooth.

In a large bowl combine flour, nutritional yeast, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, thyme, sage, parsley, and black pepper.

Stir wet mixture into dry mixture to make a soft dough.  Knead for 3-5 minutes and shape into an oval loaf.  Place loaf on a n oiled sheet of foil, and enclose it in the foil.  Place enclosed loaf in a 10" baking pan.  Add 1" of water to the pan and tightly cover entire pan in foil.  Bake for 1 hour and 45 min.  Let cool completely before slicing.

Wild Mushroom Gravy

8 oz Crimini mushrooms, diced
2 yukon gold potatoes, peeled and diced
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1 large yellow onion, diced
4 stalks of celery, diced
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup liquid aminos or soy sauce
1/2 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp sage
1/2 tsp rosemary
10 cups water
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1 tsp salt
1 cup each balance buttery spread
2/3 cup All purpose flour

In a large pot, over medium heat, sauté  mushrooms, potatoes, carrot, onion, and olive oil about 5 minutes.  Stir in liquid aminos and herbs.  Add water, salt , and pepper.  Cook over med heat about an hour.

While keeping the broth, strain veggies from the broth and process them in a food processor until smooth.  Stir processed veggies back into the broth.

In a frying pan on high heat, melt buttery spread and stir in flour.  Stir continuously and ladle in about 3 scoops of broth/veggie mixture.  Cook on high, stirring, until thick and smooth.  Stir this mixture into the pot of broth and cook on medium about 20 more minutes.

Forbidden Apple Walnut Cranberry Stuffing

1 tsp minced garlic
1 tbsp olive oil
1 bay leaf
2 cups water
1 cup forbidden rice
1 tsp salt
1 10 oz bag of stuffing or cubed loaf of white bread, dried and baked until toasted
1/2 cup earth balance natural buttery spread
1 large red onion, diced
6 stalks of celery, diced
2 apples, peeled and diced
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 tsp sage
1/2 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp rosemary
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 cup vegetable broth

In a pot over medium heat add oil, forbidden rice, bay leaf, and minced garlic.  Sauté about 4 minutes.
Add water and reduce heat to low.  Cook rice for about 35 minutes until water is absorbed and rice tastes tender.  Remove from heat.  Let cool.

In a nonstick skillet, over med heat, cook earth balance butter, onion and celery about 8 minutes.  Add apples and cook another 5 minutes.  Stir in herbs, salt, and pepper.  Cook 2 minutes.  Transfer to a large bowl and toss with rice, bread, cranberries, and walnuts.

Preheat oven to 450º.  Spread stuffing in a baking dish and drizzle with vegetable broth and olive oil.  Cover with foil and bake about 20 min.  Remove foil and bake another few minutes,  until top is golden brown.

Roasted Root Vegetables

3 carrots, peeled
3 golden beets, peeled
1 large turnip, peeled
1 large sweet potato, peeled
2 butternut squash, peeled and seeded
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp sage
1/2 tsp thyme
2 tbsp fresh parsley
1/4 cup olive oil

Preheat oven to 400º.  Cut vegetables into approximately 1" cubes.  In a large boil stir in the rest of the ingredients.  Stir well to combine.  Spread mixture in a baking sheet.  Bake uncovered in oven for an hour.   Change oven setting to broil.  Broil veggies on high for about 3 minutes.  Serve hot.

Coconut Pumpkin Bread

1 cup chopped walnuts
3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
2 1/3 cups coconut sugar (or regular sugar)
2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice blend
1 1/2  tsp cinnamon
2 cups pumpkin puree
1 cup vegetable oil
2/3 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup sliced dried apricots or dates
2/3 cup shredded coconut

Preheat oven to 350º.  Grease a 9x12" baking dish.

In a large bowl, stir to combine the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, pumpkin pie spice, and cinnamon.  Add pumpkin, oil, coconut milk, apricots.  Stir to mix well.  Fold in most of the coconut saving some to sprinkle on the top.  Stir in most of the walnuts leaving some to sprinkle on the top.

Spread batter in baking dish, and sprinkle with remaining coconut and walnuts.  Bake approximately 60  minutes, or unil toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.  Allow to cool completely before serving.

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