So my brother could not entirely remedy the downward-spiral situation that is my computer, due not to a lack of knowledge on his part but to the age of my computer. BUT the important thing is that it works occasionally. Like now! So in thanks to my brother, my theme for this entry is food items that wouldn't be here without someone else's help!
First up, a gift from Vegan Noodle over at Walking the Vegan Line! It was sort of a condolence prize for completely losing her Guess-the-Number-of-Chocolate Lentils contest.
She sent me a little copy of her Society of PEACE's Vegan Sweets cookbook, homemage "VEGAN" magnets, and AMAZING homemade chocolate truffles! I ate them immediately after taking this... delicious! THANK YOU! <3 <3 <3
Also, I went to my parents' in upstate NY a couple weeks ago and we made a large, tasty brunch in my honor:
Tofu Scramble with swiss chard and shallots, Blueberry Pancakes, and Mango-Apple-Pear Fruit Salad. WITH local maple syrup, produced by my parents' friends.
Remember how much I hate making pancakes? WELL, my mother made the batter and my father fried them, so I didn't have to deal with the pancakes! I made the scramble and the salad, and watched Dad's technique. And I am proud to say: I HAVE MASTERED PANCAKES.
I did these! They did not burn! yessss
topped with yogurt and fruit. mmm.... SO thanks, Dad, for the training (and mom, for making the batter).
FINALLY, an actual recipe. A friend brought me a bottle of organic vegan wine a while ago, but I don't really drink, so I've been trying to think of things to do with it. My roommate uses the bottle as a rolling pin for pie crusts, but I wanted to do something with the contents.
Dried Fruit Compote
(serves 2-4, depending on what you use it for)
1 C chopped dried fruit (use different kinds! apricot, prune, raisin, and cherry are especially recommended, but use anything you've got. Fig would be awesome, date's probably too sweet)
1/2 C red wine
3/4 C water
1 Tbsp crystalized ginger, chopped small, or 1/4 tsp ginger powder
1/2 tsp cornstrach or arrowroot powder
Combine all ingredients EXCEPT the cornstarch in a small saucepan and cook over medium-low heat until most of the liquid is absorbed, stirring occasionally (15-20 minutes). Taste: if it's not sweet enough (sweetness depends on what fruit you use, what kind of ginger, and the wine), add a bit of your favorite sweetener and allow to simmer for another 2-3 minutes.
In a small bowl or glass, mix the cornstarch with a tablespoon or two of water (this way you can stir out any lumps before you mix it in with the rest). Add to mixture, stir until thickened, 3-5 minutes.
Garnish with chopped nuts. You can eat it straight, but it's even more delicious on top of cake, short bread, ice cream or stirred into yogurt or oatmeal. The result is tasty, healthy, and a BEAUTIFUL garnet color.