Saturday, July 18, 2009

Summer meals


It's been a strange summer here, cool and dry, with nary a thunderstorm. Some summers we have them almost every night. The thunderheads still boil up most afternoons...then the sun breaks through and they flee before his face. Still, I've been craving salads and quick fries and other light, raw-ish food.

Not because I think these dishes are especially brilliant and inventive, but in the interests of showing the curious what vegans eat every day (or one vegan, anyhow), here are some recent meals of mine:



Salad rolls (which clearly I have not mastered the art of rolling, though they did taste good), with a little dipping sauce, not shown:


More zucchini spaghetti, with lacquered tofu from Deborah Madison's Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone and ginger-spiked avocado from Celia Brooks Brown's Party Food for Vegetarians. More on the latter a little later, since searching for an online recipe for the sauce to share with you, I came upon this recipe for gingered avocado creme, which maybe I'll try tonight...



And another cold soba noodle salad, with a dressing made primarily of dark soy sauce, ginger, and sesame oil. The beans are shelled edamame, originally frozen and tossed in with the soba noodles about halfway through cooking to cool the water and keep it from boiling over, which worked well. The tofu is fresh tofu that had been drained under a weight for about half an hour, so it's still like little cool puffs of cloud, but not so delicate that the clouds break when gently stirred. Er, is it obvious by now that my favorite foods are tofu and avocado?


And finally, a zucchini-besan omelet the recipe for which I've already posted, this time with the addition of chopped green onions, plus chappati, salsa and sweet potato salad from The Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home, the recipe for which I did find online, and which follows the picture.


Sweet Potato Salad
(from The Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home)

2 large sweet potatoes, peel and cut into 1/4 inch cubes
1 1/2 tbsp wine vinegar or cider vinegar
1 1/2 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tbsp honey (you can sub whatever you sub for honey, or leave it out if you don't like really sweet dressings)
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 cup diced celery
1 cup diced red bell peppers
salt & pepper
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
1 scallion, thinly sliced
salad greens

Steam sweet potato cubes for 6 to 8 minutes, until just tender. Do not overcook. While potatoes steam, whisk vinegar, mustard, and honey in a small bowl. Slowly add oil in a thin stream, whisking until dressing emulsifies.

Place diced celery and red peppers in a serving bowl. Add steamed potatoes and dressing. Stir gently, add salt and pepper to taste, set aside for a few minutes. When salad has cooled a little, toss in parsley and scallions. Serve on salad greens.

(I didn't serve on salad greens, but I did augment the vegetable content with chopped cucumber, and the sauce with a little tamarind paste, to give it a tarter edge to cut the sweetness. Next time I think I'd leave the sweetening out altogether, but that's just my taste.)

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