Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

I am not a vegan, but I am lactose intolerant and I wouldn't miss meat if I could never eat it again. Since I am lactose intolerant and my daughter has a dairy allergy, I am fascinated by vegan recipes and have been incorporating them into our meals and desserts...not because I want to "save the animals", but out of necessity and the recipes are much healthier. That being said vegan or not--this recipe is amazing! The original recipe is from Happy Vegan. I make these all the time and they are definitely best fresh, so I usually bake one batch and freeze the remaining portion of dough so we can have fresh baked cookies another night. This recipe is fabulous as written, but I have noted the way that I prepare them below. Enjoy!

Happy Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies
2 c. unbleached flour (I use 1 c. AP flour/ 1 c. Whole wheat flour)
2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp.salt
**I also add 1/2 c. unsweetened, shredded coconut
cinnamon to taste (I skip this)
vegan chocolate or carob chips - put in as many as you like (I use mini-chips)
1 c. sugar
1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil (I use smart balance oil)
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 cup water (I use rice milk, but have used skim successfully as well)

In large bowl mix flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon (if you choose) and chips. Make a well in the center and set aside.

In medium bowl mix sugar and oil. Add the vanilla and then add the water (or milk). Mix well. Add the wet to the well in the dry. Mix well but be careful not to overwork it. Spoon onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake for 8-9 minutes. Take them out before you normally would. If you do not, they will dry out very easily. Cool for 2 minutes on sheets before transferring to cooling racks.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Velvet Chicken

Ok, I really struggled with a title fcor this recipe... I was originally thinking earth chicken, but that kind of makes me think of chicken with dirt all over it. Anyway, I wanted to make this recipe for dinner tonight. When I started getting the ingredients out to make it, I realized that I did not have most of the ingredients. What we ended up with was a really amazing meal that everyone enjoyed. I'm just not sure what it should be called because there is not one flavor that stands out above the others. I guess velvet chicken will have to do.


Velvet Chicken

3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into chunks

Salt and Pepper

2 T. olive oil

2 T. butter

3/4 c. chopped onion

8 oz. bella mushrooms, sliced

2-4 garlic cloves, minced (I use 4)

1 c. chicken stock

1 pkg. reduced fat cream cheese

3 T. spicy peanut sauce (store bought)

3 T. fresh basil, chopped

1lb. box penne pasta (or your favorite pasta)

Salt and pepper chicken and brown in oil over high heat. Remove from pan. Set aside. In same skillet, melt 2 T. butter and add onion. Saute until tender. Add mushrooms and garlic. Saute until mushrooms are tender. Add stock and simmer about 5 minutes. Add cream cheese and peanut sauce. Add chicken and basil to sauce.

Meanwhile, cook pasta according to package directions.

Season sauce with salt and pepper to taste and serve over pasta.

Greta's rating: She loved this and our 1 year old loved it as well!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Lentil Stew

Wow! It's been awhile since I've posted. I started a new job in November and have not had near as much time to try new recipes. This meal has become a regular at our house. It is easy, cheap and every one likes it. It's also a great meal to warm you up in the dead of winter.img_2833

Lentil Stew

6 c. water

3 vegetable bullion cubes

1 lb. lentils

1 1/2 lb. stew meat (optional)

10 sun dried tomatoes, chopped

4 large carrots, chopped

1 onion, chopped

4 garlic cloves, crushed

1 T. dried basil

Combine all ingredients in crock pot and cook on low all day (5-6 hours) or until meat is done. Season with salt and pepper as desired.