Zel's Vegan NutGourmet

Zel Allen Goes Nuts for Good Health

Posts Tagged ‘Vegan Holiday Cooking’

HEAD FOR THE COOKIES AND YOU’LL REVEL IN CHOCOLATE AND NUTS

Posted by Zel Allen's nutgourmet on January 30, 2012

One of my favorite cookbook authors, the well-seasoned Nava Atlas, has created Vegan Holiday Kitchen, a stunning new book with an impressive 200 well-crafted recipes to bring vegan joy and dining pleasure to holiday meals throughout the year.

Nava has graciously allowed me to reprint one of her recipes from the Christmas section. These are so gooooood, you’ll want to make these in January, May, or September, or any time, just because they’re, well, addictively delicious.

They’re easy and WOW! they make the kitchen smell so good before, during, and after baking! Once I opened those little jars of spices and started measuring, I knew their aromas would drift up and out in all directions and send pleasing scents throughout the house and even out the window. My lucky next-door neighbor had the pleasure of a delightful, spice-scented afternoon.

A visit to Nava’s wonderful website VegKitchen.com is a must. Once there, explore her generous array of recipes, kitchen tips, articles, and discover her many other books.

CHOCOLATE NUT COOKIES

These have a nice cookie top highlighted by the use of sugar. If you need a big batch of easy little cookies, these are a good choice.

Makes about 4 dozen

1/2 cup Earth Balance or other hon-hydrogenated margarine
1/2 cup dry unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup rice milk
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg or allspice
1/2 cup very finely chopped walnuts
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
Powdered or granulated sugar for topping

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Melt the margarine in a small saucepan. Add the cocoa powder, sugar, and rice milk. Whisk together until the mixture is a smooth syrup. Remove from heat.

3. Combine the flour with the baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Make a well in the center and pour in the chocolate syrup. Work together, first with a spoon, then with clean hands, to make a stiff batter. Work in the walnuts and chocolate chips.

4. Form into balls no larger than 1 inch in diameter. Arrange on two parchment-lined baking sheets, flattening each ball lightly with your palm (or bake one batch at a time). Bake for 10 minutes, or until the bottoms are just starting to turn golden. Don’t overbake, as these crisp up as they cool.

5. Sprinkle the cookies with powdered sugar. Allow to stand for 10 minutes on the baking sheet. With a spatula, carefully transfer the cookies to plates until cool.

Posted in Vegan Desserts, Vegan Websites, walnuts | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

CHESTNUTS ROCK & ROLL OUT OF THE SKILLET!

Posted by Zel Allen's nutgourmet on December 13, 2011

In case you’re wondering if I’ll ever get off this chestnut kick, I can assure you I will– almost immediately because I’ll be leaving on vacation until the end of the year. So, although it saddens me to abandon these tasty little wonders, I must leave the chestnuts behind. But—just one more recipe before I leave—just one more.

I concocted this very tasty side dish to use up the batch of fresh chestnuts I had left in the fridge. It turned out so well, I felt compelled to share the recipe. I hope you’ll come up with a better name for this dish than I did. As a matter of fact, please do—I would be in your debt.

At this time of year I often see recipes pairing chestnuts and Brussels sprouts. And I’ve even added my own version of the duo. But this little side dish, this wondrous infusion of chestnut and mushroom flavors, is soooo much tastier, yet the seasonings are relatively uncomplicated. If you can find Bunapi or Beech mushrooms (usually Asian markets have them), add an 8-ounce package to the mélange. It’s pure mushroom bliss!

A BEVY OF CHESTNUTS AND MUSHROOMS

Yield: about 6 servings

1 medium onion, chopped
3 to 4 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup water

8 to 10 ounces king oyster mushrooms, sliced
8 ounces fresh shiitake mushrooms, sliced
4 ounces cremini mushrooms, sliced

1 1/2 cups cooked and peeled chestnuts
1/2 cup finely diced red bell pepper
1 green onion, sliced
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon salt

1. Combine the onion, garlic, and water in a large, deep skillet. Cook and stir over high heat for about 3 to 4 minutes, or until the onions are soft and transparent. Add small amounts of water if needed to prevent burning.

2. Add the mushrooms along with 3 to 4 tablespoons of water and cook, stirring constantly for 1 to 2 minutes.

3. Add the remaining ingredients and cook 1 minute longer. Transfer to an attractive serving dish and serve immediately.

Posted in chestnuts, Nut Recipes, Side Dishes | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

THE NUT GOURMET IS BRANCHING OUT!

Posted by Zel Allen's nutgourmet on December 11, 2011

I’ve got exciting news and want to share what I’ve been working on.

While I’m still dedicated to all things nutty, during the past five years I’ve written a new cookbook focused on vegan holiday recipes. Because of my passion for nuts, I’ve included nut-focused recipes, but I’ve also created many non-nutty dishes.

The working title of the new book is GONE VEGAN FOR THE HOLIDAYS, but that could possibly change as the book progresses through the editing process. The book features recipes for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and New Years and aims to bring a touch of nostalgia to the holiday table with attractive presentations and foods that are typically connected to the autumn and winter season.

Today I send my final manuscript to the publisher (Book Publishing Company) and next month I start working with an editor. I have a hunch Gone Vegan for the Holidays will be published about middle of 2012—so, not too far away. I’m very excited and will be sharing recipes on the blog.

In two days, I leave for a two-week vacation with my sweetie. We’ll be flying to the Philippines to spend an exciting time with our son and future daughter-in-law and help to plan their wedding. Our house will be in good hands, but our cat, Fuzzy, will be missing us greatly.

I hope to bring back tons of photos and some delicious Philippine recipes to share–veganized, of course.

For now my wish is for all to enjoy and warm, loving, and fulfilling Holiday Season!

Until next year – – –

Posted in Vegan for the Holidays | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »

 
%d bloggers like this: