Category Archives: Appetizers

Elianni’s Gluten-Free Vegan Huge Food Box Giveaway! Vedged Out 12 Days of Christmas

elianni - CopyFresh out of the review box! We ate everything before I remembered to take a proper photo of all the products together!

So, how would TWO OF YOU you like to receive this very same $75 value box?!?

I got the most incredible food box to review last month from Elianni! When they offered to send it out, I had no idea just how much stuff I’d be receiving! Lets just say when it came, it felt like Christmas came a little early this year! At first glance, I thought these products may be a bit too processed or have some ingredients that I might not be fond of that are in a lot of veggie meat replacements, so I was pleasantly surprised when I read all the labels. Every product has a very clean label so you can indulge to your heart’s content!

I got 4 different Organic and Vegan Veggie Rolls including: Mushroom, Tomato, Fine Herbs and Mediterannean Flavors. These rolls are positively wonderful for slicing and serving on sandwiches or for sauteing lightly and using in your favorite recipe. The mushroom roll was my favorite, though I loved them all!

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I also received 5 different Organic Vegan Pâtè’s including: Zesty Apple, Red Pepper Olive, Vegetable, Peppercorn and Mushroom. These pâtè’s are wonderful served on crackers or spread on a crusty loaf of bread. They also make a nice sandwich spread for a panini or toasted sandwich. The peppercorn flavor was my favorite one here!

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Also included was a box of Elianni’s Veggie Cutlets. This natural and nutritious high protein TVP vegan product is made of non-GMO soybeans and pinto bean flour and is a fantastic meat replacement in any recipe. The cutlets simply need to be hydrated and seasoned. We used it in a stir fry with excellent results!

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…and my favorite part of the box! This lovely bottle of Organic Mosto de Lagrima Free-Run Grape Juice. I don’t drink alcohol, so it was lovely to have this fancy organic drink at our last Holiday meal. It was simply delicious.

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Elianni

To learn more about or to purchase Elianni’s affordable and amazing gluten-free and vegan foods, please visit their site here!

Or for a chance to win this amazing Giveaway, Click on the link below to enter the Giveaway! Remember, this is going out to TWO readers! This contest is open to entrants in the USA only! You must also follow this blog by email or RSS feed to qualify. You have until Sunday December 22nd!  I will notify the winner by email on Monday the 23rd December. GO!!

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Day 1: Free Vegan Lifestyle MagazineDay 2: Free Case of Butler Soy CurlsDay 3: Alternative Outfitters Vegan Boutique $25 Gift Card and Free Messenger BagDay 4: Sunwarrior Raw Vegan Protein Powder or Product of Choice GiveawayDay 5: Tropical Traditions 1 Gallon Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil Giveaway. Day 6: Sweet Debbie’s Organic Treats, Allergy Free & Vegan Recipes. Cookbook Giveaway. Day 7: Extraordinary Vegan Cookbook Giveaway. Day 8: Emaline Delapaix, Music Download GiveawayDay 9: Jazzy Vegetarian Classics Cookbook Giveaway. Day 10: Bring Joy Totes & Field Roast Celebration Roast.

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Filed under Appetizers, Beverages, Giveaway, Gluten Free, Organic, Reviews, Sandwiches, Side Dishes, Snackage, Vegan

Extraordinary Vegan. Cookbook Giveaway, Chocolate Raspberry Tart Recipe and Review. Vedged Out 12 Days of Christmas

DSC_0016Chocolate Raspberry Tart, pg. 138 (with cherries instead of raspberries)

So, this is one of the cookbooks where I love the back story behind it as much as I do the cookbook. Private Chef, Alan Roettinger had done a previous book for Book Publishing Company. At the time, he wasn’t vegan, or even a vegetarian for that matter. But he wrote this vegetarian cookbook called “Omega 3 Cuisine.” It had good success, so Book Publishing Company asked him to write a second book, a vegan one this time. “Speed Vegan

DSC_0003-001High-Powered Green Juice, pg. 45 and Tarahumara Running Food, pg. 22

Somewhere along the line Alan mentioned in his writing of this book that the recipes were kind of “accidentally vegan” but were still good. [I'm paraphrasing here]. Book Publishing Company, a company that only publishes vegan and vegetarian cookbooks took issue with this and explained to Mr. Roettinger that their readers would too. They wanted him to understand that vegans and vegetarians think food without cruelty is delicious in its own right, and not that it’s some sort of mediocre substitute for an animal product based meal.

DSC_0006-001Three Sisters Soup, pg. 66

Around that period in time Alan went to the Dr. for his yearly physical. He had high blood pressure. His cholesterol was through the roof and he was tired all the time and overweight. His Dr. suggested that Alan should go on statin medications. Alan replied with something to this effect [paraphrasing again] “Naw, I’m going to go vegan.” I’ll check back with you in a few months and we can look at my results.”

DSC_0008-001Ratatouille, pg. 116

As you can probably guess, Alan never did need those statin medications. He dropped his extra weight, as well as his cholesterol and the blood pressure. He’s 100% vegan now and he’s never looked back. Today he’s creating Extraordinary Vegan meals where plants are the star of the show and loving it.

He served this beautiful tart at his birthday dinner the first year he was vegan. His guests were wondering how he could make a delicious birthday cake without eggs, cream or butter. I’m pretty sure this showed them that those things are completely unneccessary.

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Chocolate Raspberry Tart

Almond Crust:

  • 1 1/2 cups finely ground or chopped raw almonds
  • 1/2 cup palm sugar
  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin coconut oil

Chocolate Filling:

  • 4 1/2 ounces dark chocolate, chopped
  • 1 cup full-fat coconut milk
  • 2 tablespoons framboise eau de vie or raspberry liqueur

Topping and Glaze:

  • 2 pints fresh raspberries (I used cherries)
  • 3/4 cup fruit-juice-sweetened raspberry jam

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. To make the crust, combine the almonds, sugar and oil in a medium bowl and work with your fingers to form a thick, crumbly paste. Press into and 8-inch fluted tart pan with a removable bottom. Use a one-cup measuring cup or similar small container to press and form an even inside edge. Refrigerate until firm, about 45 minutes.

Put the tart pan on a baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes. The crust will be puffy and slightly misshapen. Press the crust gently back into shape with the measuring cup. Return to the oven and bake for 7 minutes longer. Remove from the oven and set on a rack to cool completely before proceeding.

To make the chocolate filling, put the chocolate into a blender. Put the coconut milk into a small sauce pan over medium heat. As soon as it begins to bubble around the edge, remove from the heat. Count 10 seconds and then pour over the chocolate in the blender. Add the liqueur and process until very smooth.

Pour half of the chocolate mixture into the cooled crust. It should come about halfway up the inner side of the shell. Spread it out evenly, taking care not to get any on the rim.

Starting from the rim of the tart, arrange half of the raspberries in tight concentric circles over the filling. pushing the berries down slightly so they touch the bottom. End with one raspberry in the center. Pour the remaining chocolate mixture over them, filling in spaces between the raspberry tops and covering them completely. Take car not to drip any filling on the rim. Layer the remaining raspberries on top of the chocolate. again in concentric circles, but don’t press them down. Refrigerate the tart until the filling is firm, 2-4 hours.

To make the glaze, put the jam in a small saucepan and warm over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until it melts. It should be fairly thick, but runny enough to apply with a pastry brush. Pour through a strainer to remove any raspberry seeds, pressing down to extract as much liquid as possible. Using a pastry brush, very gently brush the melted jam over the raspberries, allowing a little of the excess to drip down between them and cover the filling underneath. When the entire surface of the raspberries is coated, set the tart aside for at least 10 minutes to let the glaze congeal.

To serve, hold the tart pan rim with one hand and push up gently on the bottom with the other hand to release the tart. Set the rim portion aside. Slip a knife very carefully between the tart shell and the bottom of the mold. work the knife gently around until the tart comes away from the mold. Set the tart down on a cutting board and cut it with a hot, dry knife. bracing the rim with one finger on either side of the knife to keep the tart shell intact. Slide the knife under the cut portion and gently lift it out. Put the slice on a dessert plate. Repeat as needed. Serve at once.

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Buy the paperback copy of the book on Amazon here or get the Kindle edition for just $9.99 here!

Or for a chance to win this amazing Giveaway, Click on the link below to enter the Giveaway! This contest is open to entrants in the USA only! You must also follow this blog by email or RSS feed to qualify. You have until Friday December 20th!  I will notify the winner by email on Monday the 23rd of December. GO!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Day 1: Free Vegan Lifestyle MagazineDay 2: Free Case of Butler Soy CurlsDay 3: Alternative Outfitters Vegan Boutique $25 Gift Card and Free Messenger BagDay 4: Sunwarrior Raw Vegan Protein Powder or Product of Choice GiveawayDay 5: Tropical Traditions 1 Gallon Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil Giveaway. Day 6: Sweet Debbie’s Organic Treats, Allergy Free & Vegan Recipes. Cookbook Giveaway.

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Filed under Appetizers, Beans, Beverages, Books, Desserts, Giveaway, Main Dishes, Reviews, Soups and Stews, Vegan

Vedged Out’s 2013 Vegan Thanksgiving Menu

Vedged Out Thanksgiving

Appetizers

Kick Ace Extra Sharp Raw Vegan Cheddar Cheese Ball, served with raw flax crackers and assorted vegetables.

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Vedged Out’s Macadamia Nut Brie En Croute

 Salad

Alexander’s Rainbow Salad with Kale and Orange Red Pepper Dressing from In Vegetables We Trust

rainbow-kale-salad-vegan-orange-red-pepper-dressing (1)photo used with permission 

Bread

Vegan Monologue’s Buttery Pan Rolls

You can also use whole grain white whole wheat flour in this recipe!

 

Amanda’s Whole Grain Cranberry Walnut Sourdough Bread

(this is what we slathered the Brie En Croute all over! They were made for each other!)

sourdough bread

Drinks

Lemon Seltzer Water

Cranberry Fizzy: equal parts cranberry juice and ginger ale

 Mains and Sides

In Pursuit of More’s Cashew Loaf (just make it, and you’ll want it as the centerpiece at every holiday!)

Somerkey Sage and Maple Seitan Loaf, stay tuned, recipe still in testing mode, coming at the start of next week!

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Dad’s Wild Rice, Cranberry and Pine Nut Stuffing

Dad’s Pine Nut and Glazed Onion Mashed Potatoes

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Vedged Out’s Sauteed Green Beans, Red Onions and Radishes

  • 2 lbs fresh green beans, washed and trimmed
  • 2 T. extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 red onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 bunches radishes, washed, greens removed and quartered
  • ½ C. Toasted Slivered Almonds
  • salt and pepper to taste

In a large saute pan heat the olive oil until glistening over medium heat. Add green beans, radishes and red onions. Saute until vegetables are crisp tender, about 5-10 minutes. Season with salt and peper and sprinkle with the slivered almonds.

Maple Cranberry Sauce

Maple Cranberry Sauce

Roasted Sweet Potatoes, lightly glazed with pure maple syrup and unrefined coconut oil

Desserts

An Unrefined Vegan’s Apple Pie

applepie3photos used with permission

Razzleberry Pie 

Gabby’s No Bake Pumpkin Mousse Cake

An Unrefined Vegan’s Hazelnut Pumpkin Cheesecake w/ Chocolate-Hazelnut Topping

Hazelnut cheesecake

Vegan Coconut Whipped Cream

Healthy Happy Life’s 4 Ingredient Vegan Pumpkin Pie

and Vegan Ice Cream

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Filed under Appetizers, Beverages, Bread, Gluten Free, Holiday Recipes, Main Dishes, Nut & Seed Butters, Nuts and Seeds, Raw, Salad Dressings, Salads, Side Dishes, Vegan

Kick Ace Extra Sharp Raw Vegan Holiday Cheddar Cheese Ball. Virtual Vegan Potluck Edition.

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Ah, the Holiday Cheese Ball. When you’re standing around snacking on it at a family gathering, you feel like you’ve got the most coveted spot in the kitchen. If you take this to a real live potluck, you’d better guard it fiercely so it doesn’t simply disappear while your back is turned, leaving you cheeseless and forlorn.

DSC_0003-001no turkeys were harmed in the making of this post

Thankfully, this is a virtual potluck, so nobody can hork this from me. Though, I have to admit to scrambling at the last minute to put this post together since the last cheese ball I made disappeared in the middle of the night last week. Apparently, I’m not the only one in this house who is obsessed with it. Luckily, the recipe is ridiculously simple with only about 10 minutes of hands on time.

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You can serve the cheeseball with any of your favorite raw vegetables, we even put sliced honeycrisp apples on our tray, the combination of the sweet crisp apples and the piquant cheese was amazing.

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The cheeseball is also incredibly good with crackers, raw or otherwise.

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Kick Ace Extra Sharp Raw Vegan Holiday Cheddar Cheese Ball

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups raw cashews, soaked in purified water for 4-6 hours
  • 2 packed tablespoons dry pack sun dried tomatoes, snipped into small pieces with kitchen scissors then soaked in the purified water with the cashews
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon dry sherry (optional)
  • 1 heaped tablespoon mellow white miso (use chickpea miso if you are sensitive to soy)
  • 1 tablespoon raw apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry ground mustard powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • dash cayenne
  • 1/2 cup organic unrefined coconut oil

Method: Pour the soaking water off the cashews and sun-dried tomatoes and then rinse them with fresh purified water. Drain well. Place the cashews and the tomatoes in a food processor or high powered blender and pulse until they start to form a paste, scraping down the sides as necessary. Add all of the seasonings and pulse until thoroughly combined. Add the coconut oil. Blend or process until the mixture is completely smooth, scraping down the sides occasionally. This process takes up to 10 minutes in a food processor and a few minutes in a power blender. Scrape the soft cheese into a container. Cover and refrigerate for 4-6 hours or until the cheese is quite firm. Scrape the cheese out of the container and place onto a clean surface. With your hands, form the cheese into a ball. See note below for topping/variation ideas.

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Notes: The organic unrefined coconut oil does leave a very slight coconut flavor in the finished product. If you prefer, you can use refined coconut oil for no coconut aftertaste.

The cheese ball can be served as is or rolled in any variety of chopped nuts and or herbs. I used sliced almonds, but walnut pieces or pecan pieces with some fresh minced parsley, thyme or sage would be amazing.

The cheese ball gets softer as it reaches room temperature, so it’s best if it’s kept chilled until immediately before use.

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To start at the beginning of the potluck, click here:

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If you run into any broken links along the way, (some bloggers show up a little late to the party) here’s a list of the bloggers in the potluck to help you get back on track. Pretty cool to see over 150 bloggers from all around the world flaunting their vegan awesome! Use the buttons below to Go Back to visit the lovely Holcomb HollowGo Forward to see what Sensual Appeal brought to the party.

go_bck-300x257go_forward-300x243

 

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Filed under Appetizers, Cheez, Nuts and Seeds, Organic, Raw, Snackage, Vegan, Virtual Vegan Potluck

Bake and Destroy. THE RADICAL HALLOWEEN EDITION. Review, Revenge Cookie Recipe and Giveaway.

When I was a kid, my favorite holiday by far was Halloween. My dad would bust out the bbq and fire up hot dogs for the whole dang neighborhood. Everyone came, warming up their cold little hands for a tasty meal amongst the sea of noxious candy. Of course it was also awesome that one of our neighbors brewed rootbeer in a giant cauldron and served it up while dressed as a cackling witch. We were lucky kids in that corner of Green Valley.

Revenge Cookies


One Halloween, I had the flu and couldn’t go trick-or-treating. I swear I thought it was a fate worse than death. I sobbed (and puked) on the couch in our front room as I watched out the front window and saw what seemed like hundreds of gleeful kids come eat hot dogs and enjoy the festivities.

I’ve always wanted to follow in the family tradition and grill up hot dogs too, but since I’m vegan now, and you can’t really give kids anything that isn’t store bought and pre-wrapped anymore without the parents having a heart attack, we do mini bags of potato chips, a savory salute to my childhood days.

Anyway, when I got a review copy of Bake and Destroy, it was like the perfect Halloween present had come early. I dare you to read through this book and not be thoroughly amused by the dark and silly humor whilst developing a sweet girl crush on bad-a** Natalie Slater.

Natalie Slater

First up, I made the Cannibal Corpse Crock-Pot, which is made with Jackfruit, in an awesome BBQ sauce that will blow your mind. I also put it all over a deep dish pizza, but we ate it before I could get non-Iphone photos of it. Oh, the Vegan Mayo in the book that’s on this sandwich is so delicious and diabolically simple that it’s worth the purchase of the book alone: you’ll have no more guilt over eating oil-laden store bought vegan mayo, but you’ll also stop pretending that blocks of tofu seasoned with lemon juice and pureed, or the non-fat vegan mayo versions taste anything like real mayo. Stop fooling yourself kids. Her special sauce tastes even better than the real deal without clogging your arteries or leaving your taste-buds fully disappointed.

Cannibal Corpse Crock Pot
As for the Samoa Joe Cupcakes, well, I took these bad boys to a Mormon Ward Halloween Party. They won the competition for Best Dessert Overall. Yes, they were that good. People are still talking about them… What’s not to love about a luscious cupcake filled with caramel sauce and topped with salted caramel-coconut butter-cream and chocolate drizzle? Yeah, vegan desserts rock.

Samoa Joe Cupcakes

Samoa Joe 2

Even more awesome, was that my brother Abe (vegan siblings rock) was staying at my house for several days for a printmaking show and conference while I was testing recipes from the book. He fully worshipped them all. We had this totally legit Non-Cop-Out Tofu Scramble on his last morning. Since Abe mostly eats beans and rice, he was on the edge of pure vegan food bliss at every meal.

Tofu Scramble

These cute cupcake mummies made out of Natalie’s ridiculously simple Vanilla Cake Mix also went to the church party. I got a second award for best themed dessert. Ah yeah.

Vanilla Cake Mix

Funnily enough though, the recipe I tested that made me the most nostalgic, was the Pretzel Dogs of the Dead. They were insanely delicious. You know I’ll be baking these up again on Halloween with a pot of chili and another batch of those Samoa Joe Cupcakes, even if I can’t serve them to the neighbor kids. (p.s. these really are vegan hot dogs, no animals were harmed in the making of this post). I made some of Natalie’s No-Honey Mustard to dip these in, but ended up using it as a delicious salad dressing instead after I forgot all about the dip.

Pretzel Dogs of The Dead

Now, for the awesome bit. I made these Cheryl’s Sweet Revenge Cookies (not in the book and based on the movie, The Evil Dead double bonus here) and there were so many, that I took a big part of the batch to a neighbor so I wouldn’t eat them all. Somehow during our discussion I found out that my neighbors know Natalie Slater and her mom. Some things are just meant to be.

Revenge Cookies 2

Cheryl’s Revenge Cookies

Recipe used with permission

Somer’s Note: I couldn’t help myself and added a half cup of mini-chocolate chips to this recipe to make them the ultimate “Everything Cookie.” They were amazing!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (I used half organic all purpose and half whole wheat pastry flour)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1/2 cup vegan margarine
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons ground flaxseeds + 3 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped nuts, your choice (I used a combination of sunflower seeds, whole almonds, cashew pieces, peanuts and hempseeds)
  • 1 1/2 cups dried fruit, your choice (I used cranberries, raisins and goji berries)
  • 3/4 cup sweetened, shredded coconut or whole rolled oats (I went with the coconut, but used unsweetened since that’s what I had on hand)

Method: Preheat your oven to 350º and line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Whisk the dry ingredients into a small bowl. With an electric mixer, beat the margarine until smooth and fluffy. Add sugars and beat until smooth. In a small bowl, whisk the ground flaxseed and water together until thick and gooey. Add this to the sugar mixture and beat until combined. Mix in vanilla.

Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and mix until smooth. Stir in the nuts and fruit. Drop batter (2 tablespoons = one cookie) onto the  lined baking sheet, about 2″ apart. Bake 12-15 minutes or until golden brown. Transfer to wire rack to cool. Makes about 2 dozen vengeful, murderous cookies (unless you are Somer and you make smaller cookies and end up with 3-4 dozen).

Cover Photo

Buy “Bake and Destroy” Good Food for Bad Vegans in paperback format on Amazon here or get the Kindle version for $9.99 here.

Visit Natalie Slater at her site Bake and Destroy here.

For a chance to win a copy of this amazing cookbook, Click on the link below to enter the Giveaway! This contest is open to entrants in the USA onlyYou must also follow this blog by email or RSS feed to qualify. You have until Halloween on the 31st of October to enter!  I will notify the winner by email on Friday the 1st of November. GO!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

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Filed under Appetizers, Books, Bread, Breakfast, Desserts, Giveaway, Main Dishes, Mormon, Nuts and Seeds, Reviews, Salad Dressings, Sandwiches, Side Dishes, Snackage, Vegan

And the Award Goes To…. Virtual Vegan Potluck Flashback

vegan-blt-sliders

It’s that time of year again, the Virtual Vegan Potluck is rapidly approaching! Annie (Creator and Head Mistress of the VVP) is the featuring the winners of each category over at the Virtual Vegan Potluck site, and today, my Jackfruit and Kimchi BLT Slider Bites are being featured. Head on over to check it out, and if you haven’t signed up all ready, what are you waiting for?

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Filed under Appetizers, Friendship, Snackage, Vegan, Virtual Vegan Potluck

A Fork and Beans Halloween Special! Monster Rice Cereal Treats Recipe and Worldwide E-Book Giveaway!

halloween cover

I’ve had a girl crush on Cara ever since I started stalking her at her site, Fork and Beans. For those of you that know Cara, she is infinitely creative, has a crazy sweet tooth, and makes everything that would seem impossible to make vegan, gluten-free, egg-free and dairy free into absolute perfection. I shamelessly use her Gluten-Free flour blend in nearly every gluten free recipe I make that requires a flour replacement. It’s so good that when I catered my brother’s art show, with more than 200 people in attendance, that no one could believe the baked goods were gluten-free (seriously).

Cara has recently taken the leap into full time blogger, meaning, she quit her day job to make all her culinary dreams at Fork and Beans come true. Radical! She offered me a chance to give one of my readers a copy of her very first E-Book, the very timely A Fork and Beans Halloween Special. If you know Cara at all, you know her love for all things Halloween borders on psycho obsessive (in the most endearing way)! Here’s a sneak peek at what’s inside:

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These recipes would all be fantastic for your next Halloween shin-dig! All of the recipes are vegan, egg-free, dairy-free and gluten-free, most of the recipes are also nut-free/soy-free. So, you’ll be happy to know you can serve it all to all your guests without worrying about everyone’s individual allergies/food needs! Today I’ll be sharing (with Cara’s permission) her Monster Rice Cereal Treats Recipe.

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Monster Rice Cereal Treats

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups Dandies vegan marshmallows
  • 6 cups gluten-free rice cereal
  • 3 tablespoons vegan butter
  • Natural green food coloring
  • Edible candy eyes
  • Gauze
  • Skull cookie cutter

Directions:
In large saucepan melt the vegan butter over low heat. Add marshmallows and stir until completely melted. Remove from heat.

Add a few green food coloring drops into the mixture and stir until evenly colored.

Add cereal and stir until well combined.

Using wax paper, evenly press mixture into a greased 13 x 9 x 2-inch pan. Allow to cool.

Cut out skull shapes with the cookie cutter.

Wrap each head with gauze and place the edible eyes on by either pressing firmly in the treats or “glue” with royal icing.

Now for the best bit. This E-Book is for sale on Cara’s site for a mere $7. While I’m doing a giveaway here, I know that most of you probably have that much in change under your couch cushions, so support Cara, buy this book and throw the best Halloween Party ever!

Oh and the book includes a special bonus! 10 of Cara’s Homemade Gluten, Egg, and Dairy-Free Candy Bars!candy bars

For a chance to win a copy of this amazing cookbook, Click on the link below to enter the Giveaway! This contest is open to entrants WORLDWIDEYou must also follow this blog by email or RSS feed to qualify. You have until Monday the 7th of October to enter!  I will notify the winner by email on Wednesday the 10th of October. GO!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

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Filed under Appetizers, Beverages, Books, Desserts, Friendship, Giveaway, Gluten Free, Main Dishes, Reviews, Snackage, Vegan

Vedged Out Turns One, Gets a Sweet Book Deal and More Awesomeness!

Howdy beloved readers! It’s Vedged Out’s One Year Blogiversary today and I’m taking you on a tour through the highlights and lowlights of the year:

chocolate layer cakeInsane Chocolate Layer Cake

It’s been an amazing year! Some highlights included Forks Over Knives featuring my health transformation testimonial and ChooseVeg.com featuring me on their health page.

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Then we’ve had two very. awesome. Virtual Vegan Potlucks.  

macadamia nut brie en crouteSpooky Macadamia Nut Brie En Croute 

um, I’m still dreaming about that one

vegan-blt-slidersMini Jackfruit and Kimchi BLT Slider Bites 

Two words. Jackfruit. Bacon.

The top viewed post on my site this year:pizzaIndividual Vegan Margherita Pizzas with Homemade Fresh Moxarella

people go crazy when homemade vegan cheese is tastier, easier, healthier and cheaper than running to your local Whole Foods for another bag of Daiya.

The least viewed post on my site this year:maple lima beansBaked Maple Dijon Baby Lima Beans

Yeah, can’t blame my readers, doesn’t look like the most appetizing dish, does it? I swear they were good!

The cookie bars that took over Pinterest by storm:cookie barHealthied Up Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

who doesn’t love an easy to put together ooey gooey dessert?

This ALL VEGAN Thanksgiving Menu shared with beloved friends and family, including Annie at An Unrefined Veganvegan thanksgiving

Then we had that low point, with that injury (currently still injured, I’ll have another healing series coming up soon).goodbye-runningGoodbye Running, I still miss you like crazy.

But when one door closes another one opens! And now I’ve also got some awesome news, I’ve signed a book contract with Vegan Heritage Press! I couldn’t be more proud to be working with such an amazing and compassionate publishing house. You’ll have to wait for all the juicy details, but it’s official. I’m an author!

vegan heritage press

The Vegan Heritage Press family all ready includes some Vegan Superstars: the amazing and talented raw vegan chef Amber Shea Crawley, prolific vegan cookbook author and goddess Robin Robertson, recipe developer extraordinaire Bryanna Clark Grogan, vegan baking fool Tamasin Noyes, national recipe competition winner Betsy DiJulio and several new faces that I can’t wait to become acquainted with!

SunWarrior+Blogger+Banner

Oh, and I’ve all ready been a recipe contributor for Sunwarrior for some time, but now I’m joining their expert ambassador team as well! Yeah, just gotta submit that Bio. They’ve truly got the best vegan vitamins and supplements on the planet. Pure love.

Thanks for all the love and support along the way. Can’t wait to see what this next year brings!

good-clean-foodAmanda, Somer (holding Amanda’s juicy baby), Carolyn and Erika

If you want to start at the very beginning, see my very first post on Vedged Out here: 20 Reasons Why Going Vegan Sucks.

Love, Somer

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Filed under Appetizers, Books, Bread, Cheez, Desserts, Films, Forks Over Knives, Friendship, Healing Series, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Main Dishes, Running, Sandwiches, Sunwarrior, Ulcerative Colitis, Vegan, Vegan Heritage Press, Virtual Vegan Potluck

Lentil Quinoa Bolognese Sauce from The Great Vegan Bean Book + Review and Giveaway!

zucchiniTopped with Easy Almond Parm, pg. 27


Kathy Hester is one of my very favorite cookbook authors. She’s saved my vegan bacon on many rushed days with her book: The Vegan Slow Cooker.  Every. Single. Recipe. I’ve tried out of that book has turned out fabulously, so you can imagine I jumped at the chance when she asked me to review her newest cookbook: The Great Vegan Bean Book. I’ll be sharing (with her permission) the recipe for the Lentil Quinoa Bolognese Sauce later in this post, but first feast your eyes on some of the other creations I made from her book.

Artichoke DipLets just say that the dip disappeared before the bag of pita chips was gone. I thought for sure I was going to need to doctor this recipe with some vegan sour cream to fatten it up. Nope. It’s perfectly skinny and delicious just the way it is.

Chickpea SeitanA certain someone in my house likes to occasionally nosh on the Boca Vegan Chik’n patties. Not ever buying those again after making these. I’ve been looking for a “chick’n” patty replacement I could make at home for some time now. I once made another way inferior chickpea patty recipe from a certain plant based author. Those sucked. These ruled.

SandwichThen I combined the above two recipes and made a Crispy Grilled Sandwich Delight on Marbled Rye Bread with the Creamy Spinach Artichoke Dip White Bean Dip, the Baked Crispy Chickpea Seitan Patty and Kimchi. SO good I could have cried.

Coconut Pecan BlondiesOf course I had to try a dessert. These babies were absolutely calling my name.

Bite Sized BlissCoconut Pecan Blondies, pg. 181. I heart you.

Campanelle

Now back to the Lentil Quinoa Bolognese Sauce. Did I mention your kids will eat it, and ask for seconds? Here’s the conversation surrounding that dinner:

Silence while everyone is nomming on the sauce over noodles…

Somer: Did you guys know I put a whole head of kale in this?

Kid #1: I can’t even taste the kale

Husband: My head turned into kale today

Kid #1: All I can taste is vegetable deliciousness

Kid #2 who doesn’t like vegetables: Silence whilst gobbling down all his dinner.

Polenta

Lentil Quinoa Bolognese Sauce

This hearty, protein-rich sauce serves a crowd, or it can be a staple you make every month or so, freezing any leftovers so they will be there for you during those crazy weeks (we ate it all weekend, hence photos of all the ways we used this delicious and nutritious pasta sauce)

  • 1 cup (192 g) lentils (green, brown, or beluga)
  • 3 medium carrots (peeled if not organic), each cut into 4 large pieces
  • 1-2 cups (235 to 475 ml) water
  • 2 tablespoons (28 ml) olive oil
  • 1/2 small onion, chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, cored, seeded and chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 can (20 ounces, or 560 g) crushed tomatoes, or 3 cups (750 g) homemade puree plus 2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 1 1/2 t. dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon (2 g) dried basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes or crushed dried chilies (optional)
  • 1 small bunch kale, stems removed and torn into small pieces (about 3 cups [201 g]) (optional)
  • 1/2 cup (87 g) quinoa, rinsed well
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) red wine or 2 tablespoons (28 ml) balsamic vinegar
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Cooked pasta, for serving, use GF pasta for a GF meal

Add the lentils, carrots, and water to a large soup pot. Turn the heat to high, cook until the mixture is simmering, and then decrease to low and cover. Cook until the lentils are tender, 20 to 30 minutes.

While the lentils cook, heat the oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Add the onion and saute until translucent, about 5 minutes. Then add the bell pepper and garlic and saute for 1 minute more.

Once the carrots and lentils are cooked remove the carrots from the pot of lentils and add them to a food processor or blender along with the tomatoes, oregano, basil, red pepper flakes, kale, and sauteed veggies, and puree until smooth.

At the same time, add the quinoa and red wine to the pot of lentils. Turn the heat to medium, cook until it starts to simmer again, and then cover and decrease the heat to low. Cook until the quinoa start to show their white tails.

Add the puree to the lentil-quinoa mixture and cook, covered, over low heat until the sauce melds and heats thoroughly, about 20 minutes.

Eggplant LasagnaKathy’s going to have to forgive me, since her book is so popular, her publisher didn’t have review copies available, so I got the book in a PDF format until a hard copy is available to send out. The PDF copy is stamped with the publisher’s logo on each page and was difficult for me to read cover to cover (the way I always read cookbooks). So, I invented a Grilled Eggplant Lasagna, using the leftovers of Kathy’s amazing Lentil Quinoa Bolognese Sauce, then later read through the PDF to find that Kathy has her own Eggplant Lasagna recipe in the book. Well, the more the merrier I say! I’ll be sharing my version with you later in the week.

hi-res image

Buy “The Great Vegan Bean Book” in paperback book on Amazon here or the Kindle version here

Visit Kathy Hester at her site Healthy Slow Cooking here

Visit “The Great Vegan Bean Book” Blog Tour page here

Visit the photographer’s site for the book, Renee Comet, here

For a chance to win a copy of this amazing cookbook, Click on the link below to enter the Giveaway! This contest is open to entrants in the USA onlyYou must also follow this blog by email or RSS feed to qualify. You have until Monday the 10th of June to enter!  I will notify the winner by email on Wednesday the 12th. GO!!

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Filed under Appetizers, Beans, Books, Desserts, Giveaway, Gluten Free, Reviews, Sandwiches, Vegan

VVP Edition: Mini Jackfruit and Kimchi BLT Slider Bites

Peppered Maple Jackfruit Bacon

Yeah, I invented a new vegan bacon, especially for the Virtual Vegan Potluck 3.0. It might just be the meatiest and most versatile vegan bacon yet… You’re welcome.

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Since I can’t just serve you bacon, (I mean, I could, but this is supposed to be the appetizer course). I’m sharing my take on some special bite sized BLT’s. For size reference, the plate I’m using in these photos only has a 3 inch diameter.

Collage 2

To assemble these little cuties, you’ll need the following: Mini Caraway, Onion and Rye Pretzel Rolls (recipe follows), Kimchi, store bought or homemade, Peppered Maple Jackfruit Bacon (recipe follows), sliced tiny grape and or sun sugar tomatoes, and Vegan Wasabi Ranch Dressing (1/4 c. vegan ranch dressing + 1 t. wasabi paste, stirred til combined)

Vegan BLT Sliders

Peppered Maple Jackfruit Bacon

  • 1 can young green jackfruit in brine (unsweetened) I bought mine from a local Asian Market
  • 1-2 T. liquid smoke (mine is concentrated, so I only used 1 T.)
  • 1 T. Bragg’s liquid aminos or coconut aminos for those with soy allergies
  • 1 T. extra virgin olive oil or melted unrefined coconut oil
  • 2 T. pure maple syrup
  • 1 t. – 1 T. ground black pepper (depending on how peppery you want your bacon)
  • 1 t. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 t. unsulphered molasses
  • 1/2 t. sea salt (optional)

Method: Rinse and drain the jackfruit. Press lightly onto clean kitchen towels to drain any excess moisture. Slice jackfruit into very thin strips with a filet knife, it’s okay if some of it shreds. Jackfruit is kinda shreddy like that. Press sliced jackfruit on the clean kitchen towels again to remove additional moisture. Place jackfruit slices in a medium bowl. In a small bowl, whisk together all the other ingredients to form the marinade. Pour marinade over the sliced jackfruit and gently toss to coat with your hands. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes to let the jackfruit absorb the flavors. Preheat your oven to 425°. Lightly oil a large rimmed baking sheet and arrange the jackfruit slices on it so they don’t overlap. Bake for 25-30 minutes, stirring a time or two and watching to make sure the jackfruit bacon doesn’t burn and that it gets nice and crispy (a fine line). Remove from oven and spread onto paper towels and let cool a bit before use.

Collage

Mini Caraway, Onion and Rye Pretzel Rolls

  • 1 1/2 C. unbleached organic all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 C. dark rye flour
  • 1/2 t. sea salt
  • 1/2 C. warm water
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 1/2 t. active dry yeast
  • 1 T. caraway seeds
  • 1 T. cocoa powder
  • 1 T. vital wheat gluten
  • 1 T. unsulphered molasses
  • 1 T. dried chopped onion or 1 t. onion powder
  • caraway seeds, sesame seeds and flaked sea salt for sprinkling on the rolls

Method: in a medium bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients (including yeast). Add the wet ingredients and stir with a wooden spoon til combined. If mixture seems to dry, add warm water, a tablespoon at a time. knead dough for 10 minutes. Place in a lightly oiled bowl, cover and Let rise for 30 minutes or until doubled. Punch dough down, divide into 32 mini pretzel roll bites or 16 slider sized rolls. Lightly press each piece of dough down with your fingertips. Arrange rolls on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper or a silpat (otherwise they’ll stick like crazy). Cover and let rise for 20-30 minutes until doubled in size. In the meantime, bring to a boil: 2 quarts (8 cups) water with 1 T. kosher salt and 4 T. baking soda.  When the water comes to a rolling boil, Poach 4 rolls at a time, if doing bite sized, poach for 20-30 seconds, for slider sized 30-40 seconds, turning over halfway through poaching time. See photos of this method hereRemove rolls with a slotted spoon. Slash each roll a couple of times across the top with a sharp knife. Quickly sprinkle with caraway seeds, sesame seeds and flaked sea salt. Repeat until all buns are poached. Let rest while oven preheats to 400 degreesBake for 10-15 minutes for bite sized or 15-20 minutes for slider rolls. Please use parchment paper or a silpat to bake on, otherwise you will need a chisel and a hammer and quite possibly ruin your favorite baking sheet.

Bite

To start at the beginning of the potluck, click here:

vvpIf you run into any broken links along the way, (some bloggers show up a little late to the party) here’s a list of the bloggers in the potluck to help you get back on track. Pretty cool to see over 169 bloggers from all around the world flaunting their vegan awesome! Use the buttons below to Go Back to visit the lovely Bex (Sparkles) at Vegan Sparkles in Australia. Go Forward to see what The Singing Vegan brought to the party.

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Filed under Appetizers, Bread, Salad Dressings, Vegan, Virtual Vegan Potluck