Wednesday, April 28

Strawberry rhubarb crumble

One of the strawberries in the pint I just bought was fuzzy, so I knew it was time to act. I had some gorgeous deep red rhubarb from the farmers' market-- what could be simpler (or more delicious) than a crumble?

Take everything in this recipe as a guideline. You can use different berries (raspberries, blueberries, blackberries), different citrus juice (lime, orange, grapefruit), different amounts of spices and topping. Best of all, only only mixing bowl gets dirty and you get to use your hands-- no wooden spoons required!

Strawberry rhubarb filling

Strawberry rhubarb crumble

vegan, gluten-free


  • 1 pint strawberries, hulled and chopped into largish bite-size pieces, about 1/2"
  • a similar amount of rhubarb, about six long, thinner stalks cut into slightly smaller pieces
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 cups oats
  • 1/4 cup margarine (I use Earth Balance)
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp nutmeg, fresh grated is best
  • a tiny pinch of salt


  • Pre-heat oven to 375 F.
  • Combine filling-- strawberries through cornstarch-- in an 8 or 9" cake pan. Nonstick is nice.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, combine the rest of the ingredients for the topping with your hands to smush the margarine into the oats. It doesn't need to be perfectly mixed.
  • Use your hands to crumble pea-sized bits of topping over the filling in the pan, evenly distributing it on the surface.
  • Bake for half an hour, or until topping is lightly browned and the juice in the filling has thickened.

Wednesday, April 21

Baking, or what I've been up to

It takes more time than I originally thought to set down my original recipes, so in the meantime, here are a few recipes from cookbooks and other folks that I've recently made and highly recommend.

Blueberry corn muffins

Recipe from Gluten Free Goddess. I made these small, for bite-size snacking, and they got some serious raves. Next time I will use a bit less xanthan gum, though. Maybe 1 tsp instead of 1 1/2 tsp. They'd also be delicious with dried cranberries or cherries.

Chocolate chip- pecan blondies

From "Gluten-Free Baking with the Culinary Institute of America," loaned to me by the magnanimous Kielly of Back to Eden bakery.

I added chocolate chips and pecans (instead of walnuts). The one thing this recipe is missing: salt. I would try 1/2 tsp when I make them again, which I definitely will. Substitute EnerG egg replacer (per package instructions) for the eggs and this recipe works beautifully. I also figured out the exact amount of each flour to use with the help of a calculator and my food scale, so that I didn't have to prepare 1 1/5 lbs of two different flour mixtures. The texture of these blondies is spot-on for delicious, chewy brownies with a fantastic golden, crusty edge. Yum!

Samosa baked potatoes

A fantastic idea from the "Veganomicon." I take some shortcuts by microwaving the potatoes and making the mash directly into the curry; and substitute my favorite curry powders and vegetables. Okay, I'm bad at following recipes-- it's the idea that matters!

I usually use tikka masala powder, amchur, a faux meat, peas and carrots in the filling. Sometimes I add more vegetables to make a hardier meal. Last night when I made these, I sprinkled cheddar Daiya on top of half to see if it added anything. It tasted delicious, but don't think it's a good use of the product-- these potatoes are incredibly flavorful on their own.

These are the best of the recipes I've tried in the last week. If you have any substitution suggestions, questions, or recipe recommendations of your own, please put them in the comments. I'd love to hear what you think.

Thursday, April 15

Tangy corn and spinach enchiladas

Enchiladas are more of a method than a recipe. Take a filling-- a stirfry, stew, or collection of ingredients-- wrap it in tortillas, smother in sauce, and bake. The variety is endless, although I usually choose Mexican-inspired fillings and toppings.

I like to cook the fillings beforehand because it gives the flavors a chance to meld, and you can add seasoning or play with textures-- caramelize onions, crisp-fry faux meats, make sure potatoes are cooked all the way through. But you don't have to. In a pinch just toss ingredients together in a bowl (peppers, corn, spinach, a can of beans), squeeze half a lime over it, and add spices (cumin, coriander, chili powder, chipotle, salt, pepper) to taste.

Tangy corn and spinach enchiladas

Tangy corn and spinach enchiladas

vegan, gluten-free


  • 1 package of (8-12) corn tortillas (make sure they're wheat-free and have a short list of pronounceable ingredients!)
  • 1 tbsp canola oil
  • 1/2 an onion, sliced into long strips
  • 3 cloves garlic, put through a garlic press or minced
  • 1 package of 2 Wildwood Southwest tofu veggie burgers, chopped

    You can also use 1 cup of chopped marinated baked tofu, beans, or another protein
  • 1 cup corn (I use frozen, fresh or canned work too)
  • 2 cups raw spinach, chopped
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • about 1 cup, 6oz or 1/2 jar of tomatillo salsa

    I used the rest leftover from Lightning mac & cheez
  • 1 cup of tomato sauce or diced tomatoes whizzed in the blender with 1 tsp each of chipotle, cumin, coriander, and oregano

    You can also use enchilada sauce
  • 1 cup Daiya Italian blend cheese or FYH mozzarella


  • Preheat oven to 375.
  • Heat oil in large frying pan, add onions & saute til just brown, about 5 minutes.
  • Add garlic, saute for 1 minute.
  • Add veggie burger, corn & spinach stir for about 5 minutes til corn is heated through. Set aside off heat, stir in cilantro.
  • Mix salsa & tomato sauce together in a bowl wide enough to dip tortillas into.
  • Spray a 9" x 13" baking pan with non-stick spray or grease it. Pour a salsa into pan to cover bottom in a thin layer. Have pan, salsa, and filling mixture nearby.
  • Heat a non-stick frying pan to medium.
  • For each tortilla, warm 30-60 seconds on each side in frying pan. You want them to be warm & pliable. Dip tortilla in salsa, wetting both sides. Place tortilla in baking pan, put a line of about 1/4 cup filling (use more filling if you have fewer tortillas, to fill the baking pan) down the middle, and roll up so that seam is on the bottom and the weight of the rolled-up tortilla will hold it closed.
  • Once all tortillas are rolled up and fit snugly in the baking pan, pour the remaining salsa over the top, and sprinkle evenly with cheese.
  • Cover with aluminum foil, bake for 15 minutes. Remove foil and bake another 15 minutes.

Wednesday, April 7

Gallo pinto

I was worried that I wouldn't have much vegan food to eat when we visited Costa Rica a few years ago. I couldn't have been more wrong. The national dish, gallo pinto, is a fresh, spicy (as in spices, not heat) take on rice and beans, and is usually made without animal products, meat, dairy, or wheat.

While not necessary, Lizano sauce makes for an authentic tang. If you can't find it, use vegan Worcestershire sauce, any flavor of Tabasco, or your favorite salsa. You can also make your own Worcestershire sauce substitute.

Gallo pinto

Gallo pinto

vegan, gluten-free


  • 2 tbsp peanut oil, divided
  • 2 black, very ripe plantains, sliced
  • 1/2 an onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, run through the garlic press or minced
  • 1/2 cup soyrizo

    You could also make your own or use another brand, but be careful-- Lightlife's has wheat gluten in it.
  • 2 cups cooked rice

    I used a leftover blend of brown and Japanese white short-grain
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1 cup corn, frozen works well
  • 2 cups lacinato or Tuscan kale

    Any green will do-- spinach, or even broccoli, asparagus, etc. Whatever sounds good to you!
  • 1 can of black beans, rinsed
  • 1/2 a red pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp cumin, ground
  • 1/2 tsp coriander, ground
  • 1/4 cup Lizano sauce
  • cilantro, about 2 tbsp fresh, diced
  • oregano, about 1 tsp fresh, diced or 1/2 tsp dried


  • Fry plantains while making the main dish. Heat 1 tbsp oil in frying pan on medium heat. Fry plantains til fully brown, about 10-15 minutes. Flip, fry on other side 5-10 minutes. Set aside off heat when done.
  • Saute onions in 1 tbsp oil on medium heat in a stir fry pan or wok, about 5 minutes.
  • Add garlic, saute 1-2 minutes.
  • Add soyrizo, turn up heat a little, saute til just starting to brown.
  • Add cooked rice, mixing thoroughly.
  • Juice half of the lime into the pan, add the corn and greens, stir fry til green become brightly verdant.
  • Turn heat to low, add the rest of the ingredients except for the fresh herbs and the other half of the lime. Mix and heat through, about 5 minutes.
  • When everything is nice and hot, turn off heat, squeeze the rest of the lime over the dish, stir in cilantro and oregano, and serve with plantains on the side. Tofutti sour cream, guacamole, and fresh-grilled corn tortillas make great accompaniments.

Leftovers and quinoa coffee cake

I've been so excited about cooking, with so many ideas running through my head, that the refrigerator is now full to the brim with leftovers. Last night we needed a quick meal before heading off to a meeting, so I took advantage of the ready-made food. We finished off the last of the tomato bisque from Tal Ronen's The Conscious Cook and I made grilled cheese with FYH cheddar, Papa G's BBQ tofu, and spinach. I used the end of the "new French bread" from the previous night-- sliced like a sub roll for maximum filling surface area-- for Erik's sandwich.

Quinoa coffee cake

The seminar let out early and I still had lots of cooking energy. Since quinoa has been such a success for us, I decided to try the quinoa coffee cake in The Gluten Free Vegan. I had my eye on the recipe when I made quinoa Yumm bowls the other night, but as soon as I read the recipe (trying to do more of that before I start into it!) I saw that it's quinoa flour, not the whole grain. Luckily I am fully stocked on flours.

The recipe was straightforward with minimal steps and quite healthy with quinoa, applesauce, and agave instead of sugar. Except for the topping, which uses brown sugar. I subbed in oats for the nuts, as I love their texture in coffee cake. I also added allspice and freshly grated nutmeg-- always when it's just cinnamon called for.

It was difficult to go to bed without tasting the results, the warm smell of cinnamon wafting up the stairs to taunt us in bed. I even woke up with hunger pangs around 4am. Luckily, the excitement of waking to fresh coffee cake made the morning more welcome, and it was worth the wait. The cake is moist, springy and absolutely delicious. I can't wait to try more recipes from the book.

Monday, April 5

Chicken noodle soup (and French bread!)

First things first-- I made bread today! This was my first attempt at gluten-free bread after many, many trips to various grocery stores for strange items like vegan gelatin, white rice flour (I only had brown), soy milk powder (found after the dough was already mixed), navy bean flour (never found)... the list goes on.

Gluten-free French bread

Partly I was overwhelmed by the desire to try a few different recipes at once, but I finally settled on making "New French Bread" in Bette Hagman's The Gluten-Free Gourmet Bakes Bread (thank you, Ann!). For all of the recipes I've found so far, you first make batches of custom flour mixes. Only then can you follow the recipe. I am so bad at reading ahead and following directions that I had a really hard time with this. Once I buckled down, wrote out a shopping list, and went to two different stores today for last-minute stray ingredients, it really wasn't difficult.

French bread dough rising

Gluten-like strands form in the dough during a three minute session in the stand mixer, thanks to the gelatin. You have to hand-form the dough, which doesn't smooth out at all in baking. I used the trick of placing a container with 2 cups of water in the oven and spraying water onto the hot oven walls every 8 minutes or so. The steam helps to crisp up the crust, and it really worked here. The result was a soft, chewy center and a lovely snappy crust-- delicious dipped in an attempt at making homemade Yumm sauce (more on that later).

On to today's recipe. Erik came home from a long day at work not feeling well. It's been a wet and very windy past few days, which can only mean one thing-- time for soup!

Chicken noodle soup

Chicken noodle soup

vegan, gluten-free


  • 1 tbsp olive oil

  • 1 onion, chopped

  • 2 carrots, chopped small

  • 1 celery stalk, chopped small

  • 2 garlic cloves, run through the garlic press or minced

  • 1 package of vegan, wheat free chicken nuggets, torn into bite-size pieces

    I found Kuan Yin Hsiang Vegetarian Diet Co vegetarian chicken nuggets (see photo here) at my local Asian mega-mart

  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander

  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin

  • 1/2 tsp ground mustard

  • 1/2 tsp celery salt

  • 1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary

  • 1 tsp chopped fresh oregano

  • 1 tbsp miso (could be white or red, something mellow)

  • 1/4 cup cooking sherry, white wine, or mirin

  • 3 cups vegetable stock or broth

  • 1/3 cup frozen green peas

  • 1/2 cup chickpeas, drained and rinsed (optional)

    I only added these because I used half the can in something else, and they were sitting out. You could use any number of other beans here like cannellini, navy or other white beans.

  • 1 package of gluten-free spaghetti, roughly broken into 4" lengths (I like the stuff made with quinoa)


  • Heat oil in a big stock pot, add onions and saute til translucent, about 5 minutes.

  • Add carrots and celery, saute 2 minutes. Add garlic, saute 1 minute.

  • Add faux chicken (or favored protein), turn up the heat, and saute til the bottom of the pot begins to stick and brown a bit.

  • Add all of the spices and miso, mix thoroughly.

  • Add the sherry/wine/mirin to deglaze (scrape off those brown stuck bits).

  • Pour in the stock and add about 3 cups of water. There should be a little more broth-to-chunky ratio than you want in the end product, as the soup will thicken. Mix well.

  • Add peas and beans if using, then cover. While soup is coming to a low boil, make the pasta. Be very careful not to overcook pasta-- if anything, slightly undercook it.

  • Soup should simmer for about 15 minutes, stirred often. When it thickens a bit and the flavors meld, salt to taste and add drained, rinsed pasta. Serve with a sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper.

Photos, original recipes and text © Susan Kelley 2012. All rights reserved. Please credit me and link back to this site, or ask first.

Always read ingredient labels carefully (and re-read periodically) to make sure that products actually are vegan and/or gluten-free.