3.31.2008

monochrome meals

AND WE'RE BACK! I have a shiny new laptop, a mac (yay for apples! now my computer reminds me of produce!), and I will be back to posting twice a week. Thanks for sticking with me!

how do I love parsnips? let me count the ways.
one... two... three.

What you are looking at above is my fondness for bizarre-looking produce. Organic Parsnips. I went to reach for one (they are supposed to look like the little guy on the right; he is my "control" parsnip) in the parsnip basket at whole foods - and there was that strange pants-looking one! And directly underneath him: THE MONSTER. I couldn't just leave them in the basket: the next person to buy parsnips might not appreciate them! so they came home.
That's about a quarter of the monster, there, MAYBE half, pan-fried in a small amount of earth balance, for saturday's brunch:
with a banana wheat germ muffin (from veganomicon), and peanut butter and pineapples. An intentionally monochrome morning.

As you may have guessed from my entirely green entry back there, I love playing with colors and food. I've been on an orange-and-yellow kick lately:
cauliflower pakora (battered and fried cauliflower, with a homemade peanut sauce), recipe from vegan planet.

pumpkin ziti bake with homemade sage breadcrumbs and cashew ricotta from the veganomicon. This was realllly tasty, especiall the cashew ricotta, a lot of which I ate before putting it into the recipe because I wanted to taste it... and couldn't stop tasting. I didn't actually have a can of pumpkin, but I didn't know that until I had put together most of the other ingredients, so I used a can of butternut squash puree (another weirdness... who has a can of squash puree but not pumpkin?! me, apparently).

Roasted butternut squash risotto. With brown rice. I made it up, but I'm not sharing a recipe because I'm not entirely content with it yet.

and a roasted tofu "ham" with carrots, pineapple and corn.

It is round because I bought a tube of tofu (I know, weird, that's why I had to do it) at super 88 market a while ago, Yours won't look exactly like this (I was also a bit short on pineapple because I kept snacking on it while I was cooking), but the recipe bears repeating!

Roasted Tofu Ham
(technically should serve 3-4 people, if you follow a package of tofu's serving size, but who does that? So it serves two.)


1 block extra-firm tofu
2 Tbsp nut butter (NO PEANUT! the taste would be too distinctive. I used macadamia, but cashew, tahini, or almond butter would work)
2 Tbsp tamari (or more to taste. ham is supposed to be salty!)
1/4 cup pineapple juice
4 slices pineapple
3-4 cloves (optional)

chopped carrots or other veggies (optional)

Preheat the oven to 425. Drain and press the tofu to get out all excess water. Cut diagonal lines across the top of the tofu in a criss-cross pattern, cuting at least halfway into the block (but not all the way to the bottom). Place the tofu in a baking dish.

Stir together the nut butter, tamari and pineapple juice. Once well mixed, spoon over the tofu, making SURE to get it into all the crevices from the criss-crossing (you can pretend you're giada and grope your food [almost] inappropriately to make sure you're really getting it into the tofu). There should be some extra liquid in the bottom of the baking dish: if not, add a splash more pineapple juice and tamari.

Overlap pineapple rings on top of the tofu, and stick optional cloves in the center of the pineapple circles. Place optional chopped veggies around the sides of the roast.

COVER with foil/a lid and bake for half an hour. Remove from oven, take off cover, use a spoon to stir the veggies/spoon some of the liquid over the tofu. Return to oven, bake uncovered for another half hour, until golden brown.

I've never had liquid smoke but I think a drop or two of it in the tamari/nut butter would be really effective.

8 comments:

VeggieGirl said... Best Blogger Tips

hooray for more posts! :0)

your monochrome breakfast is my favorite; but EVERYTHING looks delicious!

ChocolateCoveredVegan said... Best Blogger Tips

Sharing the parsnip love! I had 'em for the first time last year, and now I don't know how I ever lived without them!

Liz² said... Best Blogger Tips

congrats on the computer! And I love how you choose your food. :D

Vegan_Noodle said... Best Blogger Tips

So glad your new computer is up and running!! I need to give parsnips another chance... I had them once and gave up.

Jeffrey said... Best Blogger Tips

Parsnip chips are so amazingly good.

Rural Vegan said... Best Blogger Tips

I would have bought the Pants Parsnip too, it's just too cute!

I am intrigued by your Tofu Ham too, it turned so well with the criss-crosses on the top!

Judy said... Best Blogger Tips

All the food pics look great, now I am hungry :)

And don't ya just love Apple computers???

Ruby Red Vegan said... Best Blogger Tips

I love your passion for vegetables! You really have a thing going for those parsnips... I am glad you were able to give them a loving home, because you're right, someone else probably wouldn't appreciate them as much as you! I'm going to have to try those guys eventually - maybe by copying the way you prepared them and having them for breakfast...

As you were describing the pumpkin ziti, I was thinking that it would probably be good would with the butternut squash puree they sell at Whole Foods... And then you said that's what you used! Mmm, what perfection that meal sounded like!

And peanut sauce rocks! I want some of your pakora. Because cauliflower rocks, too.