Air Fryer Experiments

Hi!

As I mentioned in my last post, I bought an air fryer on sale. What is an air fryer, you ask? Well, it’s basically a healthier version of a deep fryer. It fries food with hot air instead of oil.

Personally, I am still figuring out what works and doesn’t work with it and trying to perfect temperatures and cooking times. I have found that using a lot of liquid batter without any kind of dry coating over it does not work so well. It says you can make donuts in it, but I have no clue how that’d work. I have not tried cooking french fries yet, but I really want to, just haven’t yet.

So far I have fried some soy curls using this recipe here. Those came out excellent, I think I cooked them at 350 for about 10 minutes. I also tried defrosting some Gardein chicken scallopini, coating it in watered down Neat egg substitute coated with vegan/gluten free rice crispy-esque cereal. That was okay, but not that exciting even though I had high hopes.

Then, when I botched a bunch of battered cauliflower, I came up with a splendid idea. But I didn’t have any more cauliflower, so I tried it with tofu. It’s supposed to be like coconut coated fried shrimp, but is made with tofu (and someday I need to try it with cauliflower, too!)

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Here is the recipe for it:

Coconut Crusted Air Fried Tofu

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup chickpea flour
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup vodka or unflavored soda water/seltzer
  • 2 tbsp peanut or vegetable oil
  • one bag sweetened shredded coconut flakes
  • sweet chili sauce for dipping
  • 1 block tofu, preferably frozen, thawed, then pressed for 20 minutes

Directions:

  1. Combine flour, cornstarch, baking powder, and salt in a medium-sized mixing bowl.
  2. Whisk in the water, vodka/soda water until a liquid, medium thickness batter forms. Water it down if necessary to be the desired thickness, but it should stay fairly thick.
  3. Cut tofu into smallish rectangles.
  4. Place some of the sweetened coconut into a dish.
  5. Dip the tofu in the batter, then into the coconut.
  6. Delicately place in the air fryer tray.
  7. Air fry for 10 minutes, 350 degrees F or slightly lower if you don’t want it as browned as I did. May take some experimentation as I believe air fryers can vary quite a bit.
  8. Use sweet chili sauce to dip in, and serve with a generous helping of veggies!

I’m sure I’ll discover some new tips and tricks about air fryers soon!

So check back here for those.

Until then, or until another recipe creation strikes!

Take care! xo

 

Gluten Free Shiitake “bacon” vegan quiche recipe

Gluten free Shiitake “Bacon” Vegan Quiche

Well, I am finally back with a new recipe. My previous few recipes received a lot of attention, and I felt a little frozen to try and top them! This may not top the rainbow cookies, but I am excited that I made it. This recipe is adapted from my jalapeño popper quiche I made awhile ago here.

This recipe is quite nutritious. 1/6 serving has about 15g of protein, 325g potassium. It also contains 19% zinc (which I have a hard time getting in my diet), 14% iron, 122% b-12, 20% calcium (depending on the vegan milk you use), and is also a good source of folate, B-6, Riboflavin and Thiamin because of the nutritional yeast.

The Shiitake bacon:

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I am now quite smitten! In fact, I think it is the closest us vegans have come to replicating the texture of actual bacon. I have adapted my recipe from Chloe Coscarelli…her recipe requires a pound of shiitake (which would cost me at least $10, probably more) and I can only seem to find 3.5 oz containers of sliced shiitake near me. It is so good though. And it is not even fried! I like it by itself, in her Carbonara recipe (http://chefchloe.com/entrees/pasta-carbonara-with-shiitake-bacon.html), and now in this quiche, which is the perfect place for it!

Ingredients:

  • 3.5-4 oz sliced shiitake mushrooms
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 1/8 tsp ground black pepper

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Place mushrooms in a ziplock bag. Add in the oil and salt and pepper.
  3. Seal bag and shake until mushrooms are coated.
  4. Place on a cookie sheet and bake for 10 minutes.
  5. Flip over.
  6. Bake for another 10 minutes.
  7. Voila! They should be simultaneously crispy and chewy (the smaller, thinner pieces will be more crispy, and the thicker bigger pieces chewier)
  8. Use for whatever reason or in the quiche recipe below.

 

Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Pie Crust

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I am back to eating gluten free after majorly slipping up during the holidays. I have been using this packaged pie crust dry blend for awhile, and I have adapted the rest of the ingredients and directions more to my liking. I do love this product and it makes gluten free pies much easier but the method for using it could use some improvement. In the past when I followed their directions, I often found myself working with a very crumbly crust that was almost impossible to roll out and use without it cracking or worse. I have been thinking of ways to make it better and more like an actual pastry pie crust, and this seems to have worked.

Ingredients:

  • A bag of Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Pie Crust Dry Mix
  • 12 tbsp Earth Balance Sticks (1.5 sticks total)
  • 8 tbsp coconut oil
  • 6 tbsp water

Directions:

  1. Pour the dry mix into a food processor.
  2. Cut up the Earth Balance into small pieces and place into the food processor. Do not process yet!
  3. Place the coconut oil into the processor by each tablespoon at a time.
  4. Process until a smooth somewhat cohesive mixture is formed.
  5. Take out and place in a large bowl.
  6. Sprinkle the water over it.
  7. Use your hands to combine everything together and make it moldable.
  8. Separate in half. If making the quiche, keep one half out and wrap the other in a disk shape in plastic wrap and keep in the freezer, defrosting before ready to use for another quiche or pie of some type later. If making a double crust pie instead, place the disk in the fridge for 30 minutes before using.

BEHOLD! THE QUICHE!!

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Ingredients:

  • ½ recipe Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Pie Crust as prepared above
  • 1 lb firm tofu
  • 1 tbsp Ener-g Egg Replacer (do not add water to it!)
  • ½ cup nutritional yeast
  • ¼ cup plain almond milk or another favorite vegan milk substitute
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • ¼ tsp Indian Black Salt (optional, it makes it have an eggier flavor. When searching for this, please note it is actually a pink color and not black) If you can’t find it, place ¼ tsp of your favorite salt instead
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • ½ Daiya cheddar shreds
  • 1 3.5 oz batch of shiitake bacon as provided above

Directions:

  1. Spread half the prepared pie crust into a deep dish pie pan with your fingers. Try your best to make it even across the pan and up the sides.
  2. Let sit in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
  3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  4. Place pie crust with several fork stabs to the bottom in the oven for 10 minutes.
  5. Prepare the filling by placing the tofu, egg replacer, nutritional yeast, and plain vegan milk in a food processor. Blend together until smooth.
  6. Add the onion powder, turmeric, and black salt, and process until combined, scraping down the sides with a rubber spatula a few times to really incorporate everything.
  7. Scoop out into a large bowl and fold in the Daiya cheese and shiitake bacon until they are evenly dispersed throughout.
  8. Spread into the prepared pan with the pie crust in it.
  9. Bake for 30 minutes.
  10. Take out of the oven and allow to cool for a bit (10-15 minutes…although it is easier to cut when you wait longer) before digging in! Enjoy!

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Mango Cashew Thai Yellow Curry

Tonight I made this really good dinner for my brother and I! He said it tasted like it was from a restaurant. It was surprisingly easy though. I had bought this curry paste, pictured below, at Market Basket:

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Which eventually became this:

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Note: the curry paste is not mild in spiciness. 

Ingredients:

  • 1 can organic full fat coconut milk
  • 1 package Kanokwan yellow curry paste
  • 1 lb extra firm tofu, cubed
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 14 oz chopped stir fry veggies of choice
  • 1 champagne mango, cut into chunks
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews
  • Cooked rice, for serving

Directions:

  1. Mix together the full can of coconut milk and curry paste. Heat on medium low heat and stir until oily on top.
  2. Add in cubed tofu. Stir and allow to cook for a few minutes.
  3. Pour in vegetable broth and stir. Increase heat to medium, and add veggies, mango, and cashews.
  4. Heat until veggies are cooked.
  5. Serve over rice.
  6. Deliciously simple!

Tomorrow is the Summer Solstice and Father’s Day! I wish it wasn’t supposed to rain…:(

Jalapeno Popper Vegan Quiche

Hi! Didn’t realize I’d be back so soon.

Today I invented an awesome new recipe. This one will not be in my zine, haha.

It’s a jalapeno popper flavored vegan quiche!

I used a pre-made pie crust bottom–gasp. Surprisingly a lot of store bought pie crusts are indeed vegan! I wanted to make it quickly so I chose that, but if you want to make your own, here is my recipe for a pie with a crust recipe (you’d only have to make half of it).

popper quiche!

popper quiche!

Jalapeno Popper Vegan Quiche

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb extra firmed tofu (I used sprouted tofu)
  • 1 tbsp Ener-g egg replacer without water added
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast flakes
  • 2 tbsp Earth Balance
  • 1/4 cup plain almond milk or other non dairy milk of choice
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp Indian black salt (the kind that smells like eggs)
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup daiya cheese shredded mozzarella
  • 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs (I used whole wheat)
  • 3 jalapenos, chopped into thick rounds, seeds and veins removed
  • 1 9 inch prepared pie crust, or homemade from the recipe linked above

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Place tofu, egg replacer, nutritional yeast, Earth Balance, non dairy milk, onion powder, black salt, and black pepper into a food processor and blend until smooth, scraping down the sides with a rubber spatula and then blending a bit more.
  3. Transfer to a large bowl and fold in the daiya cheese, bread crumbs, and jalapenos.
  4. Place into pie crust, smooth down with a spatula.
  5. Bake in oven for 35-40 minutes.
  6. Allow to cool slightly, then dig in!

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Foodie (Photo) Friday! I made a lot! Especially from the cookbook Isa Does It!

This week was a big week for my cooking. Not only did I create my own original recipe for a favorite, typically very non vegan appetizer, but I also tested tons of other people’s recipes.

I mostly tried a bunch of recipes from the Isa Does It cookbook though, which I have not found a single recipe that wasn’t amazing or really yummy yet. My only complaint is that the recipe names are not easy to remember because they are usually named after the ingredients and not that creative/specific so I feel like I sometimes write about them and name them different than what is in the cookbook. So apologies if I am not using the actual recipe names to a T, I am currently too tired and somewhat lazy to go get the book and double check! Woops. How unprofessional of me…

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Sweet Potato Gnocchi w/ Brussels Sprouts and Tarragon Cashew Cream Sauce

The most impressive recipe  I have tried  so far was definitely the Sweet Potato Gnocchi with Tarragon Cashew Cream and Brussels Sprouts. I have made my own gnocchi from recipes before, but it seemed so difficult and was such a long process. Maybe my cooking skills have drastically improved over time and I just do things faster and in a more organized time saving manner, but I still think this recipe is by far an easier and simple way of making you own vegan gnocchi from scratch than the previous recipe I tried. It only really takes awhile because you have to bake the sweet potato (or potatoes…but I found a 1 lb sweet potato that worked out very well). The sauce is also simplistic yet has a very fancy flavor/touch to it with the tarragon. And a cashew based sauce makes almost any pasta recipe rich and luxurious. The Brussels Sprouts were the perfect finishing touch, and add to the dish to make it a complete healthful meal.

I love the bowls so far in this cookbook. I think I forgot to post about the cucumber ranch tofu bowl I made New Year’s Eve? Well that was pretty good. Even better was the pizza bowl, though.

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Not the prettiest looking pizza bowls

I used tofurky italian sausages (Which, to my delight, do not contain soy protein isolate in them which I am really trying to avoid as much as possible now.  My nutritionist said she believes that it is that form of soy that causes the most problems for our hormone balance, and it is very highly processed (and typically g.m.o I think?) so it is good to avoid or eat irregularly. Tofu is fine unless you have digestive/other sensitivities to it, whIch I do not.

Anyways, this was absolutely delicious and comforting. The sauce is really, really good. It reminds me of pink (or vodka cream) sauce, which was one of my favorite sauces before I went vegan and I have found difficult to replicate as a vegan despite trying . Actually now this gives me an idea to try and make an even more authentic version of it! Yay!

Paired with the kale (which I actually seemed to cook right for the first time ever…I typically only eat it raw), rice, sausage, garlic, red onions, olives, etc it is just so wonderfully filling and tasty!

My pictures of it are not the prettiest, but believe me, it is so yummy!

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edamame hummus tofu wraps…before I wrapped them 🙂

I also made the tofu wraps with edamame hummus. It somehow tastes kind of like a Japanese-inspired egg salad wrap to me which I thought was pretty cool. I will definitely be making the edamame based (instead of chickpea) hummus on it’s own again multiple times. The tofu was really good too though! I love anything with sesame oil in it, and it crisps the tofu perfectly. Isa Chandra Moscowitz doesa really good job through writing her recipes teaching people the proper methods of cooking her dishes without having them fail horribly. Hopefully I can get there myself too!

I did not use sprouts because when I buy them they seem to go bad too fast, instead I used greens. When I use up the leftovers tomorrow though, I am probably going to use baby arugula. Yum!

Aside from cooking from Isa Does It, I found this recipe on a facebook group I belong to and was intrigued so I gave it a try. Behold, Green Pancakes!

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not the prettiest again but behold green pancakes!

They look kinda gross, but I felt really good about eating them for my breakfast and do not taste too different from unhealthy versions of pancakes…especially when you add some maple syrup, ha, ha. I kept thinking of Dr. Seuss’ Green Eggs and Ham and thinking this would make a good vegan story like that, especially for kids while eating these. So it was fun, healthy, and fed my belly all at once.

Finally, I made a really delicious salad today.

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my delicious salad with chickpea “bacon”

The centerpiece of the salad was the Chickpea Bacon recipe from Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day! Gosh do I love that book!

I put 2 cups chopped romaine, 1/2 cup baby arugula, 1/3 cup sliced cucumber, 1/3 cup chopped hearts of palm, 1/4 of the chickpea recipe, a slice of red onion that I chopped into smaller bits, 1/2 tbsp nutritional yeast, and 2 tbsp Organicville Non Dairy Ranch! I made a similar version for my dad and he really liked it too! He was trying to refuse eating it because of the non-dairy ranch, but now he says I have to make him a salad every day! (Though fat chance…but I will make an extra for him when I have one from now on!)

Ta da! And now you know what I cooked up this week!

PS: If you haven’t yet, you can follow me on these social media outlets where I post related (and unrelated) things to my blog.

Banana Curl, Vegan Girl’s Facebook Page

Follow me on Pinterest (the blog has it’s own board if you just want to follow that)

Twitter

And I think that’s everything for now! I will be adding these to the end of my blog every so often for new people to click on and explore. Also, I love comments and feedback and love it when people spread and share my work I am doing here, so do not be shy about that!

Foodie (Photo) Friday! Aloha salad, holiday pie, green smoothies, galore!

Hello!

I was sick this week with a pretty exhausting cold. I’m feeling much better now, though. Since my exhaustion and my lung congestion made it difficult for me to work out, I decided I was going to try and eat much better than usual and eat more fruits and veggies than normally (even though on average I get at least 10 servings a day or so) and so I finally gave in and tried some green smoothies. I think I’m going to be better about eating more fruits and veggies (Including green smoothies) from now on even though I’m not sick, because… duh. I also ate a lot of Amy’s No Chicken Noodle soup, which was awesome.

The first one was a banana-less kale based “Green monster” one here

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I had to add a lot of extra water because it came out way too thick. Also, I gagged several times still, and it sort of tasted like a salad dressing or something to me, oops. But I thought it was decent at first, since I had never had one before, that is, until I tried the Caramel Apple Green Smoothie from the recipes here. That one is by far much tastier. I used almond butter instead of sunbutter though. I don’t have a picture of that one, though.

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Next was the Holiday Pie from The Vegan Stoner Cookbook. It’s basically tofu and non dairy milk blended together, mushrooms and garlic cooked in soy sauce, prepared stuffing, and I decided to use the optional tofu hot dogs on top. I also dipped it in cranberry sauce. It was quite delicious.

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I rate this recipe 4 good bananas, one bad! (It just didn’t have the total wow! factor of 5 good ones, but I like it)

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Then there is this salad I made tonight!

Aloha Salad with Tiki Tempeh.

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So good, and made me think of fond memories from the Summer. I didn’t think bananas would be so tasty and add such a great texture contrast to this but it was definitely the best part for sure! Everything tastes so good, though! I also majorly splurged on a small amount of macadamia nuts which are so yummy, and added reduced fat dried coconut. The dressing is creamy and super tasty, the tempeh has great flavor, and all the fruits along with the spinach and cole slaw mix are wonderful together.

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I’m hoping this upcoming week I’ll have time to write some more fun entries besides just on Friday, but we’ll see what my life has in store from me. Until then take care and eat yummy foods!

World Peas Wasabi Crusted Tofu with Avocado Ginger Cream Sauce

Okay, so I was eating some Wasabi peas I got from Trader Joe’s and was thinking “hmm, this would make an awesome type of bread crumb!” So after I continued to eat them, I started to become obsessed with the idea of making tofu recipe with them.

I wasn’t sure if I actually liked it at first…the heat of the wasabi wanes considerably when cooked this way. I also didn’t get a chance to try it until it was cool. However, after seeing my adult brother devour the rest of the batch, and tell me he loved it, I figured it was worth sharing.

For the Avocado Ginger cream sauce,  I was inspired by sushi. Avocado sushi is my favorite, and I guess I’m weird but I love to eat the ginger slices along with it in the same mouthful. I also got the idea of using vegan cream cheese because non-vegan sushi uses cream cheese sometimes, and thought it’d be good veganized. The added vegan mayo was mostly to make it a better consistency, but I was also thinking of the spicy mayo I’ve seen on sushi before as well.

I ate it with cooked brown rice, but it might be cool to form into onigiri and place the tofu on top, or put it in a hand roll (the rice, tofu, avocado sauce wrapped in a nori sheet).

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Wasabi Crusted Tofu with Avocado Ginger Cream Sauce

Recipe

Ingredients:

For the tofu:

1/2 cup wasabi peas

2 tbsp cornstarch or arrowroot

1 cup water

1/2 cup unbleached all purpose flour (more as needed)

1 1 lb container of extra firm tofu (I used firm black tofu plus by nasoya and it didn’t hold together all that great, so I think extra firm tofu would work MUCH better) sliced into 8 equally sized slices width wise

canola oil, enough to cover a large frying pan/skillet and a little extra

For the Avocado Ginger Cream Sauce

1/2 an avocado

2 1/2 tbsp vegan cream cheese (I used Trader Joe’s brand)

2 tbsp vegan mayo (I used Nasoya Nayonaise but Vegenaise would be better)

1 tsp lime juice

1 tsp grated fresh ginger root

1/2 tsp vegan sugar

Directions:

To make the tofu:

  1. In a food processor or blender, crush wasabi peas until mostly into a powder but with some pieces of peas still partially in tact.
  2. Place wasabi pea powder in a bowl and mix with 2 tbsp cornstarch or arrowroot.
  3. Place water in a separate bowl, and flour in another.
  4. Drain the the tofu and lightly pat dry. Cut width wise into 8 evenly sized (as close as you can) pieces.
  5. Heat oil in pan at medium heat. You’ll know when it’s ready to put the tofu in it when you place a smidge of the pea mixture in the oil and it sizzles and fries up instantly.
  6. In the meantime, begin to prepare the tofu. Dip each slice in the flour on both sides, then place in water, and then coat into the pea-cornstarch mixture. Place on a plate until oil is ready.
  7. Prepare a plate with a paper towel next to the frying pan to absorb the oil of the tofu once they’re done cooking.
  8. When the oil is heated enough, place each tofu slice in the oil. Cook on each side until golden brown and crispy.
  9. Take out carefully with a spatula or tongs and place on prepared paper towel plate.
  10. Let cool until an edible temperature, and then eat along with the Avocado Ginger Cream Sauce and rice or whatever you like.

To make the Avocado Ginger Cream Sauce:

  1. Place all ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth and creamy but not too thin.

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My results! If you make it, lemme know what you think, yeah?

Thanks for reading as always! Like my facebook page if you are enjoying the blog so you can keep in the loop of new entries, or follow me on twitter! I also have a board on pinterest devoted to the blog if that’s your thing, as well!