p.h.d.elicious cooks plants in tiny kitchens

Plant-based Cooking!

Posts Tagged ‘beans

Yam-Black Bean Cakes with Sweet Mango, Mustard, and Chile Sauce

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Oooh, I went all fancy tonight, courtesy of The Artful Vegan. I had to sub out the yuca for orange sweet potato, and the habanero for red jalapeno (unfortunately so, because habaneros are my favourite chile pepper!) Yet this dish, from the book’s appetizer section, totally hit the spot! The dijon mustard-mango sauce was amazing, and I’ll be making it again! On top is the broiled tomato salsa that forms a sub-recipe of the general recipe–you know how those fancy Millennium restaurant recipes roll! I panfried the first batch of cakes, but knew it would rapidly become annoying (the pan was already full of that bane of vegan croquette existence: the stray particles due to near-disintegration of the whole business), so I baked the rest on an oiled pan, brushed with oil.

I knew it was likely to be pretty tasty when the bowl of ingredients was looking like this (n.b.: that grated orange pile looks eerily like cheddar cheese, but it’s orange sweet potato):

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The baked ones looked like this:

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Written by phdelicious

October 13, 2011 at 5:03 am

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Boston Baked Beans from 1968

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Oooh, what a square meal! Roasted brussels, boiled carrots, baked potato with vegan sour cream, and baked beans. The baked beans are the Boston Baked Beans, from the 1968 cookbook Cooking for Company, by the food editors of Farm Journal. Of course, this cookbook can’t ever hope to attain the greatness of my favourite cookbook of all time, 1965’s Farm Journal’s Complete Pie Cookbook. Pie recipes stand the test of time far better than other dishes, and the kitsch quotient, er, historical interest, er, food and social mores that are horrifying, fascinating, and grotesque, all dwindle a bit in the intervening three years between publication dates. But Cooking for Company still ranks high in my small vintage cookbook collection.
There are five recipes for baked beans in the book, with Boston Baked Beans serving as the basic, most “authentic” recipe, followed by shoutouts to Michigan, the “West,” the “Rocky Mountain Area,” and convenience more generally (using canned beans in sauce, for “when you’re pressed for time.”) The introduction to the section on baked beans tells us:
The hostess who lives on Cape Cod has no problem deciding what to have for supper when she has guests on Saturday. A pot of baked beans is the traditional main dish. Guests expect it. Women in other areas find this old-time favourite equally popular. There’s something friendly about the aroma of beans baking that permeates the house on a snowy evening.
Fascinating: all the heavy-handed talk of community expectations, normative gender prescriptions, and traditions; smells being “friendly.”

Here’s the recipe, halved and adjusted for lack of pork fat.
Boston Baked Beans
1 c. dried navy beans
about 4-5 c. water
1/2 t. salt
1 small onion, trimmed and peeled, but left whole
1 t. dry mustard
3 T. brown sugar
2 T. molasses (I used blackstrap)

Soak beans overnight. Place beans, salt, and water in a pot and simmer until tender, about one hour (mine were quite tender at a little less than an hour, depends on age of the beans). Measure out a scant 1 c. of bean-cooking liquid (add water if necessary), drain rest of liquid. In the bottom of a smallish casserole, drizzle a bit of olive oil and sesame oil, sprinkle with a bit of smoked salt (this sentence is what subs for the salt pork thing). See picture below! Add beans and wedge the onion into the middle. Mix the mustard, sugar, and molasses with the reserved bean liquid and pour over beans. See picture below! Drizzle a bit more olive oil over and a bit more smoked salt. Cover and bake five to seven hours “in a slow oven” (300F), adding more water if needed. I needed a little less than five hours.
I find all baked beans a little too sweet to want all the time, but this was fun to make!

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Written by phdelicious

October 11, 2011 at 6:10 am

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Chili with Coffee!

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What a fitting first entry for my MoFo Beans theme–with hidden secondary beans in the form of coffee! I adapted the Red Bean Chili with Ancho Chiles and Coffee from A Year in a Vegetarian Kitchen for this one. The main changes I made were to the kind of chile and bean: switched out the ancho, used a bulk bean mix called, I think, “Texas Chili Mix.” I’ve posted the recipe below, because it was delicious! It’s pictured below with a bit of Tofutti sour cream that I happened to have on hand, mixed with a bit of lemon juice.

8 c. water
2 c. mixed beans
2 bay leaves
1 and 1/2 T. pasilla chile powder
1 to 2 t. chipotle chile powder
3 T. oil
about 1 t. minced fresh habanero chile
2 medium onions, finely chopped
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 T. ground cumin
1/2 c. brewed coffee
1 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes

Soak beans overnight. Drain, place in soup pot with water and bay leaves, bring to boil, then lower heat to a simmer, and simmer for about thirty minutes. Add a teaspoon of salt, and simmer for about 45 minutes–beans should be getting tender. Discard the bay leaves, turn off the heat, cover the beans.
Fry the onions in the oil in a skillet with 1/2 t. of salt, stirring often, until translucent and turning golden. Add garlic, fresh habanero, and cumin to skillet and fry for about two minutes. Add chile powders to skillet and fry for about another minute, adding a splash of water to deglaze. Scrape all of this into the bean pot, add the coffee and tomatoes too, bring the beans to a boil again, then down to a simmer and simmer until beans are very tender, about one to one and a half hours. (I only needed one hour.) As always with beans, you may need a longer cooking time to get the desired tenderness. If you need to add more water, go for it! Taste for salt (I didn’t need any extra). The original recipe added 1/2 c. of chopped cilantro, but I didn’t have any on hand and it was great without it, but if you have some, go for it!

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Written by phdelicious

October 3, 2011 at 6:12 am

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Two-Rounds Scarlet Barley Dinners

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I can’t decide if the aesthetics of these dinners are blog-worthy, but I’m going to charge ahead. I eat dinner sometime between six and eight. My sweetheart works until eleven, so he eats dinner at 11:30. When he comes over after work, then, I get to invent a second version of what I did earlier in the day. (I must interject that I’m fully aware of the sunshiny domestic tone of this post: every time I express my enthusiasm for cooking for my boyfriend, I’m reminded of a scene from the TV show Roseanne. Jackie: “This is so great, you know, cooking for my man.” Roseanne: “Yeah, and if you play your cards right, you get to do it every single day until one of you DIES!”)
Anyhoo, I made the above for myself: scarlet barley from Appetite for Reduction, and warmed up leftover Hottie Blackeyed Peas and Greens. Like polenta or risotto, barley really firms up in the hours following cooking, so I decided to make pan-fried croquettes for round two, served with warmed-up Jamaican curry from Veganomicon out of the freezer.

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Written by phdelicious

February 19, 2011 at 7:41 pm

My Appetite for Appetite for Reduction

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Okay, I’ve been pretty buried under dissertation work, so I stopped both working out and updating the blog. Yet today, chapter draft still not done, I decided to both work out and update my blog, otherwise I’d be letting the dissertation win! (Yes, against all, and I mean all odds, I’ve become one of those people who starts to feel off when I haven’t worked out in awhile. To my own chagrin.) Anyways, I didn’t stop cooking. In fact, I’ve been obsessed with Appetite for Reduction, and have been cooking nonstop from it. Truth be told, my weight has been creeping up and up over the past couple of years, and now I can’t fit into half my pairs of pants. So, since I always get totally obsessed with new cookbooks, especially those by Isa and/or Terry, I was pretty relieved this one is devoted to lower-calorie offerings–and not, say, cupcakes. And I like Isa’s approach here, which is the one I tend to take on my own when I’m looking to eat healthier: a nice balance between proteins and carbs and some fat, lots of filling vegetables and beans. Typical of Isa’s books, the food is all scrumptious, too, and doesn’t taste low-fat or skimpy. So many of my updates for the next while will likely involve this book!

Above: the nicoise salad, which I had with her balsamic vinaigrette recipe instead of the green goddess recipe. I happily ate this for days.

Below: Pineapple Collards, Blackened Tofu, and Gingery Mashed Sweet Potatoes and Apples, all from the book.

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Below: Hottie Black-eyed Peas and Greens

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Below: Buffalo Tempeh (pretty much a lower-fat, streamlined version of my beloved Hot Sauce Glazed Tempeh from Veganomicon) and Caesar Chavez Dressing on Romaine.

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Written by phdelicious

January 27, 2011 at 4:13 am

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Sage, Rosemary, and Thyme

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Right after the big Christmas meal I had a bunch of fresh herbs left over– those little plastic packages of herbs from the supermarket really hold too much, especially when you’re talking sage, rosemary, and thyme. Herbs that need a sparing hand, in other words. I made a total comfort meal, which was more beige than I would have hoped, but that’s partly because these brussels sprouts were bordering on being too anemic (old, yellow, etc.) to eat. I fell in love with grits when I made them for Christmas dinner, so I made them again, minus the sauteed garlic and plus some fresh thyme (and some leftover cashew cream from Christmas dinner’s grits, which made these extra comfort-foody.) To use up some rosemary I added some to the brussels sprouts, which I cooked according to the recipe for shaved brussels sprouts from Appetite for Reduction. Finally, the white beans, which I’ve heard classically go with sage. First I sauteed a bunch of garlic, then added leftover white beans (again, from Christmas cooking) and some veggie broth and chopped sage. Simmered it down a bit into a half puree/ half ragout, and it was delicious. The whole thing was delicious, and screamed Winter Dinner! I still didn’t use up all those herbs, but at least I made a deeper dent.

Written by phdelicious

January 3, 2011 at 3:01 am

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Christmas Feast

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Here’s what my boyfriend and I ate for Christmas dinner last night! I was so pleased with how everything turned out.
The soup is the Scarlet Carrot Soup from the final printed issue of Gourmet magazine, November 2009. I thought they reproduced all the recipes from Gourmet on epicurious, but apprently they don’t. Someone’s reprinted the recipe here, though, so take a look if you like. It’s a great soup– very simple yet interestingly layered in flavour. Because it’s so simple, be sure to taste and fiddle at the end with the salt level and so forth. I tasted it and found it a little too bland, but just one more twist of salt brought out all the flavours as if by magic. The carrot ribbons were a great touch and worth the effort.
The crazy-looking entree is from The Artful Vegan, one of Millennium Restaurant’s cookbooks. I’ve had this cookbook for years, but have really only had the chops to cook from it properly for the past year or two (my first attempt to make an entree out of it, years ago, was one of the most stressful experiences ever!) Now I know better what kind of prep is required, and what I can substitute and how I can streamline the process. Necessary knowledge when you’re cooking from an ingredient list that’s not only lengthy, but includes multiple other recipes from the book that I don’t have a sous chef preparing for me at 5AM. I made this entree last year for a para-Christmas meal in Vancouver, and didn’t get any photos because I didn’t bring my camera on that trip. For that meal, I had made a parsnip puree in place of the garlic grits you see here. It had been delicious, but I think in the end the Millenium folks sure know how to pick the elements of a dish and I’m glad I followed them this time. Yet instead of the the grilled broccoli rabe, here you can see I substituted a saute of beet greens– I just prefer beet greens over broccoli rabe, and so does my boyfriend! But beet greens still fit the tuscan profile very well.
So, what you see here is a pool of wine-mushroom sauce– they call it zinfandel porcini sauce, but what you see here is cabernet-portobello sauce. Now, this is one of the most flavourful sauces around. Not only is this–

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–not even all the shallots I used, but this–

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is just the first flavour layer of the sauce: Dark Roasted Vegetable Stock from the same book. This stock alone has two layers of wine flavour–the vegetables are roasted with wine, and then simmered with more wine and herbs. The resulting stock is just one element of the final sauce. Along with the shallots I already showed you, there’s also a pound of mushrooms, a beautiful dark roux, and more wine. Nuts. Special-occasion worthy.

Okay, enough about the sauce. The purse is filled with a beautiful mix of white beans, shiitake and oyster mushrooms, fennel bulb, onions, herbs, and a bit of crispy vegan sausage (the only Tofurkey product that made its way into this holiday meal, incidentally). The purse sits on a cloud of garlic grits, which have been elevated to crazy decadence with some cashew cream. Grilled bosc pear and sauteed beet greens complete the picture. And below we have a picture of the stars of the soup, just because it looks pretty:

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Stayed tuned for a plum pudding post!

Written by phdelicious

December 26, 2010 at 6:51 pm