Vegan Ventures (Carrie)

It has been an adventurous week here at Lehigh. We did this vegan diet because I really wanted to see how vegans on campus navigate the dining options. At home, I announced to my husband that I was going vegan for 3 days. His response, “Well, what am I going to eat?”

On Monday, I found that I had to be a scavenger, looking at different stations to build a meal for lunch and dinner at Rathbone, but I did it.

On Tuesday, I made a Blueberry Soy Smoothie for breakfast that was delicious and also very, very blue! Jenna and I also made a trip to a local place in Bethlehem, Full of Crepes for lunch to see what it is like to order as a vegan. I have to say, the counter girl was very knowledgeable about being vegan and knew how each menu item was prepared. For example, the onions are sautéed in butter, so they were out. We created our own, one savory and one sweet.   The vegan crepes that were made with buckwheat flour were amazing! Overall, had a very pleasant experience in there! I think the only downfall there was it was a little pricy. They tack on $2 per crepe to make it vegan, but they make the batter fresh to order.

On Tuesday night, I made a Tofu Corn & Pea Soup & Vegan Pumpkin Muffins that were both surprisingly delicious and easy to make! I would definitely make them again. The husband even tried both dishes and also thought it was good. Hmmm… I might be onto something here. Here’s the recipe:

Tofu, Corn & Pea Soup

Makes 2 serves
2 ears of sweetcorn (or 2 cups frozen kernels)
1 cup peas (fresh or frozen)
Veggie stock to cover (approx. 4 cups)
150g smoked tofu
1 tbsp besan flour/corn flour (optional to thicken)

  • Remove corn from ear
  • Cover with stock and simmer until tender
  • Chop smoked tofu into small cubes
  • Blend well (corn takes a while, don’t be fooled!)
  • Rain in flour to avoid clumping (or make a slurry with some water) and stir well to thicken
  • Add peas and smoked tofu
  • Simmer in a pot until peas are cooked and tofu warmed through
  • Enjoy!
  • Keeps well in the fridge for 3 days

http://www.skinny-vegan-food.com/2013/05/sweetcorn-pea-tofu-soup.html?m=1

Wednesday for lunch at Rathbone was successful. I was able to make a great lunch and enjoyed the vegan soup they made for the day.  Lastly, for dinner I made “Mac & Cheese” for myself from cauliflower, carrots and nutritional yeast flakes. Let’s just say cauliflower is not a favorite vegetable of mine, but it was edible.

This experience has really enlightened me on a new perspective. Also when choosing to eat differently, it can affect how others look at you.I found several people asking why I would want to do this? Why not? It’s always good to try something new…. You never know what you may like!

“Mac & Cheese”

1lb dry macaroni pasta (cooked according to package instructions in salted boiling water)

1 Large cauliflower head (or 2 cups cooked and mashed cauliflower)

2 Large carrots (peeled and cut in 1 in pieces)

1/2 cup nutritional yeast flakes

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/3 cup water

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1 to 1 1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste)

1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs (optional)

Directions

Step 1 – Cook pasta according to package directions in salted boiling water and drain.

Step 2 – In a large pot, bring 6-8 cups of water to boil.

Step 3 – While you’re waiting for your water to boil, cut the florets off of your cauliflower and peel and cut your carrots. Place cauliflower florets and carrots in the pot of boiling water, and allow them to cook for about 15 minutes, or until cauliflower is soft enough to mash with a fork.

Step 4 – Remove vegetables from pot and drain off any excess water.

Step 5 – Mash cauliflower with a fork and place 2 packed cups of mashed cauliflower in a high-speed blender.

Step 6 – Add carrots, oil, water, lemon juice, yeast flakes, and seasonings to your blender. Blend until smooth and creamy.

Step 7 – Pour cooked pasta back into a pot or bowl from your strainer. Pour all of your “cheese” mixture over your pasta and gently fold it together. At this point, you could serve your macaroni and “cheese,” or you could take it a step further.

Step 8 – Spoon macaroni and “cheese” mixture into a 9 X 13 baking dish, and sprinkle Panko bread crumbs over the top. Place your dish under the broiler in the oven for about 1 to 2 minutes, tops. You just want the Panko bread crumbs to get nice and golden brown.

Step 9 – Serve hot.

http://veganyumminess.com/cauliflower-macaroni-and-cheese/

Pumpkin Muffins with Streusel Topping.

Delicious vegan pumpkin muffins with a buttery crumb topping.

Cook Time: 22 mins

Author: The Pretty Bee

Serves: 12

Ingredients

  • 1 cup white spelt flour
  • 1 cup whole spelt flour
  • scant 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • a pinch of cloves
  • ⅓ cup pure pumpkin puree
  • ¾ cup almond milk
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • For the topping:
  • ⅓ cup white spelt flour
  • 3 Tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons cold vegan buttery spread

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a muffin tin with paper liners.
  2. Place the dry ingredients in a large bowl and whisk together.
  3. Add the almond milk, oil, and pumpkin puree. Mix by hand until combined.
  4. In a small bowl, combine the ⅓ cup flour, brown sugar, and cold vegan buttery spread. Use a pastry cutter to mix until the mixture turns into coarse crumbs with some larger butter lumps.
  5. Fill the muffin cups ⅔ full with batter. Sprinkle the streusel on top of each muffin.
  6. Bake at 350 degrees for 18-22 minutes. Makes 12 muffins.

Pumpkin Muffins with Streusel Topping.

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