Thursday, February 7, 2008

Comfort Food & Vegan Mini-Malls

Cupcakes, Fried Tofu & Mac & Cheese (vegan of course) comfort food at it's best!

I was waiting to post another blog until I get the html stuff worked out the way I want it but alas, it is taking me too much time to find time for that and I have all these pictures and recipes piling up on my computer.

So cuddle up with something (or someone) fuzzie and enjoy some comfort food at it's best. It's still quite chilly and rainy in Oregon and this dinner washed those winter blues away!

PhotobucketFried Tofu: (I attempted to make the batter for this rather bland, my husband was craving fish & chips so I attempted to recall the catfish breading my grandmother used when she fried catfish.

1 pound tofu, drained & sliced into 16 triangles... like so:

1 cup soy milk combined with 2 tablespoons corn starch (make sure all corn starch is fully dissolved)
1 cup corn meal
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 tablespoons black pepper
1/4 tablespoon white pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons salt

Mix all dry ingredients well.

Heat about a 1/4 inch of oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Sprinkle in a bit of soy milk to test if the oil is ready (it will hizz and bubble rapidly). Dip the tofu individually in the soy milk/corn starch mixture. With your other hand move the tofu into the dry ingredients and coat on all sides. Place about 1/2 of the tofu into the oil fry for 2 - 3 minutes on each side. Remove the tofu and bring oil back up to temperature (this should only take a second) before frying the other 1/2 of the tofu. Drain and pat tofu with paper towels!

We served it up with Mac Daddy, The Veganomicon recipe for mac & cheese which I need to play around with a bit (too little tofu in my opinion, too "mustardy" in my husband's opinion, but I think he was just turned off by the color). We still ate every bite and it was great, just not as good as it could be.

For dessert, we had black & white cupcakes with chocolate hazelnut butter cream!

PhotobucketChocolate & Vanilla Marble Cupcakes (from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World)
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 cup soy milk
1/2 cup margarine, softened
3/4 cup, plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon cocoa powder

Preheat oven to 350. add the vinegar to the soy milk and set it aside to curdle (*note i've made lots of vegan cupcakes and I've found that Silk brand soy milk curdles better then Soy Dream or West Soy). sift flour, baking powder and salt in separate bowl.

in another bowl cream margarine & sugar for 3 - 5 minutes until light and fluffy. add the vanilla and almond extracts and cornstarch. mix to combine.

alternately add some of the curdled milk then the flour and mix with a hand mixer for about 15 seconds to incorporated the ingredients well. mix until batter is smooth.

fill a saucepan with 1 inch of water and bring to a boil. put the cocoa powder in yet another bowl. add 3 tablespoons of the boiled water and whisk until smooth. take one cup of the cupcake batter and stir in the cocoa. mix until all the batter is chocolatey.

fill liners full by alternating the chocolate and vanilla batters. i did mine side by side and did not mix them because i thought it looked cool that way, haha

Photobucketbake 24-26 minutes until a knife or toothpick comes out clean.

Chocolate Hazelnut Butter Cream (a modification of VCTOTW's chocolate buttercream)

1/4 cup of Earth Balance Margarine, softened
1/4 cup shortening
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3 tablespoons Silk brand hazelnut coffee creamer
1 1/2 teaspoons almond extract
2 1/2 cups of powdered sugar, sifted (I never end up using this much)

cream together margarine and shortening until well combined. add the cocoa powder and incorporate well. add about 1/2 cup of the sugar and the creamer and extract. beat well. add the sugar in 1/2 cup batches, beating well and tasting after every addition. I tend to use much less then the 2 1/2 cups because I like bitter dark chocolate.

I crushed some hazelnuts and spun the cupcake in the hazelnut pieces!

PhotobucketCheck in next week as I will have some pictures from the Vegan Mini-Mall that opened about a month ago in Portland. It combines my favorite tattoo artist (Ryan Mason at Scapegoat), food fight vegan grocery store, herbivore (which has a clothing line and publishes a magazine), and a vegan bakery (sweet pea)! I finally have a weekend off so Ian and I are finally gonna go for a visit!


Stef said...

I read this quickly and I thought you had made fried tofu cupcakes. :)

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

Adorable cupcakes!! I'm jealous of your mini mall trip!

How To Eat A Cupcake said...

I'm not vegan, but I'd totally eat that cupcake!


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