When you crave a Meatball Hoagie, this is how you do it

A while ago I was having a huge craving for a fat meatball sub. So like anytime I am craving something, I sat down and started researching great methods to make the best meal for my craving. This is what I came up with: Sun-Dried Tomato “Meatballs” with vegan mozzarella, homemade marinara sauce and a side of vegan pretzel bites. It came out great and definitely satisfied my craving. This is the first time I ventured into mozzarella and pretzels. Anytime I experiment with something new it’s always exciting. I hope you enjoy and I urge you to try this. You won’t be disappointed.

 

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Sun-Dried Tomato Vegan Meatballs

Ingredients:
  • 1 Flax Egg (1 Tbsp flax seed meal + 2.5 Tbsp water)
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil, divided, plus more for sautéing
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/3 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1/3 cup loosely packed fresh basil, chopped
  • 1/3 cup loosely packed chopped sun-dried tomatoes (dry, not in oil)
  • 1/3 cup vegan parmesan cheese, plus more for topping
  • pinch each sea salt and red pepper flakes, plus more to taste
  • 1 Tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained, rinsed and dried
FOR COATING
  • 2 Tbsp vegan parmesan cheese
  • 3 Tbsp (12 g) panko bread crumbs
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees and prepare flax egg in your food processor or high speed blender.
  2. Heat a large metal or cast iron skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add 1 Tbsp olive oil and minced garlic. Sauté until slightly browned, stirring often – about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and cool slightly, then add to food processor or blender with flax egg.
  3. Next add panko bread crumbs, basil, sun-dried tomatoes, vegan parmesan cheese, salt + red pepper flakes, dried oregano, and 1 Tbsp olive oil. Pulse/blend until small bits remain, scraping down sides as needed.
  4. Next add rinsed/dried chickpeas and blend/pulse until a moldable “dough” is formed, scraping down sides as needed. You don’t want the chickpeas to turn into a paste, but you also don’t want any left whole.
  5. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
  6. Scoop out rounded 1 Tbsp amounts of dough and gently form/roll into balls – about 15 total. Then roll in additional vegan parmesan cheese-panko bread crumb mixture to coat.
  7. Heat the same skillet you used earlier over medium heat. Once hot, add enough olive oil to form a thin layer on the bottom of the skillet, then add meatballs in two batches, as to not crowd the pan. Add more oil as needed.
  8. Brown for about 5 minutes total, shaking the pan to roll them around to brown all sides. Turn down heat slightly if browning too quickly.
  9. Add sautéed meatballs to a bare baking sheet and transfer to the preheated oven and bake for 15 minutes.

 

Vegan Parmesan Cheese

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup raw cashews
  • 3 Tbsp (9nutritional yeast
  • 3/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
Instructions
  1. Add all ingredients to a food processor and mix/pulse until a fine meal is achieved. Store in the refrigerator to keep fresh. Lasts for several weeks.

Marinara Sauce

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup Olive Oil
  • 1 whole Yellow Or White Onion, Diced
  • 5 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 2 whole Large Carrots, Peeled And Finely Diced
  • 2 cans (28 Ounces Each) Whole Tomatoes
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 2 teaspoons Sugar (more To Taste)
  • 2 Tablespoons Minced Fresh Oregano
  • 2 Tablespoons Minced Fresh Parsley
  • 3 Tablespoons Tomato Paste

Instructions

In a medium pot, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic, and carrots and cook for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Pour the tomatoes and juice in a large bowl and use your hands to gently squish/smush the tomatoes so that the juices are released and they are all broken up. Add the contents of the bowl to the pot and stir. Add tomato paste. Add the salt, pepper, sugar, and oregano (or other dried or fresh herbs). Reduce the heat to low and simmer, uncovered, for 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally.

Add minced fresh parsley at the end and taste/adjust the sauce for seasonings.

 

Gooey Vegan Mozzarella

Ingredients

  • ¼ to ½ Cup Raw Cashews
  • 1 Cup Water
  • 3 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons Tapioca Starch (also known as Tapioca Flour)
  • 1 Tablespoon of Nutritional Yeast
  • 1 teaspoon Apple Cider Vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon Salt
  • ¼ teaspoon Garlic Powder

Instructions

  1. If you do not have a high-powered blender, you will first need to boil or soak the cashews to soften them. To Soak the Cashews: cover with water and soak for 4 hours or overnight. To Boil the Cashews: Cover with water and bring to a boil for 10 to 15 minutes until they are tender and can be easily broken between your fingers.
  2. Drain the cashews and add them along with the 1 cup of water and all the remaining ingredients to a blender. Blend until completely smooth. It will be very watery.
  3. Pour into a small sauce pan over medium-high heat, and continually stir as it cooks. As you stir it will start forming clumps, and then all of a sudden it will become a cheesy gooey mass of yumminess. This takes about 5 minutes. Continue to cook and stir for an additional 2 minutes to make sure it has firmed up completely.

Vegan Pretzel Bites

Ingredients

  • 2.5 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons active dry yeast
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar
  • 1.5 teaspoons salt
  • 1 cup warm water
  • ¼ cup baking soda
  • 1 Tablespoon molasses, or brown sugar
  • coarse salt
  • For the baking soda wash:
    1/2 cup boiling water
    1 tbsp baking soda
  • For the cornstarch (vegan egg) wash:
    1/2 cup water
    1 tbsp cornstarch

Instructions

  1. Start the pretzel dough: put the warm water, yeast and sugar in the bowl of a food processor. Allow to stand for 5 to 10 minutes, or until yeast is foamy, then add the flour and salt. Pulse to combine, then process for about 30 seconds or until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl. Turn out into an oiled bowl and let rise for about one hour.
  2. * After the first rise, the dough can be refrigerated (or frozen) in a gallon size zip top bag and used later. Cold dough must sit at room temperature for at least two hours before moving on to the next step.
  3. Divide the dough into four pieces. Using your hands and a lightly floured surface, roll each dough piece into a long snake shape, about one inch thick. With a dough cutter or knife, cut the dough snake into bite size pieces, and set aside, keeping the cut pieces covered with plastic while you work and dusted with a little flour to prevent sticking. Continue with the other three pieces of dough.
  4. Let dough bites sit under plastic for about 20 to 30 minutes to puff up.
  5. Meanwhile, fill a large stock pot with about eight cups of water. Set over high heat to bring to a boil.
  6. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
  7. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  8. Once pretzel water is boiling, add ¼ cup baking soda and molasses.
  9. Using a slotted spoon, drop the dough bites in a few at a time and scoop out onto the parchment-lined baking sheet once they float to the top of the water – about a minute. Continue with all the bites, scooping onto the baking sheet.
  10. Make the baking soda wash: Add baking soda to boiling 1/2 cup of water. mix and keep aside.
  11. Brush the pretzels liberally with warm baking soda wash. Let them sit for 2 minutes.
  12. Meanwhile Make the cornstarch wash: Mix the cornstarch in 1/2 cup of water, heat the water over medium heat until it thickens into a sludge. Brush the pretzels with the warm cornstarch wash. Sprinkle granulated salt on the pretzels.
  13. Bake the pretzels for 13 to 15 minutes, or until golden.

Now you are ready to serve and enjoy

Bon Appetite!

-Chef Drew

Today’s Letter is “Y”

As part of our New Year’s Resolution we decided to majorly branch out and try new things in 2016. Our goal is to go through the alphabet and try a new plant based product that starts with each letter of the alphabet. Some things we have tried before but have never cooked with and something will be entirely new. The other night I made a veggie loaf and to go with it, rather than mashed potatoes, I went for trying a Yucca root. Yucca root is very starchy and upon some research I found is commonly used in the same sense as potatoes ranging from mashed to french fried. I am not disappointed at all that I tried it. I may even like it better than regular mashed potatoes. They came out thicker and a little heavier than potatoes but were a lot creamier. I absolutely love how they came out. The veggie loaf I took from PlantPure Nation and as always, their recipes are top notch.

 

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Beanie Veggie Loaf

1/2 low sodium ketchup

2 Tbs molasses

1 Tbs Dijon mustard

1 tsp chili powder

3/4 cup water

3 Tsp flax meal

1 onion, diced

3 celery stalks, finely diced

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 green or red bell pepper, diced

1/4 cup vegetable stock

 

1 1/2 cups canned chickpeas, drained and rinsed

1 cup dry oats

1 cup bread crumbs

1 cup shredded carrot

3/4 cup finely chopped walnuts

2 Tbs chili powder

1 tsp dried oregano

2 Tbs vegan Worcestershire sauce

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/4 tsp black pepper

 

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375. Line a loaf pan with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the ketchup, molasses, Dijon, chili powder, and 1/4 cup of the water. This will be your glaze for the top of the bean loaf. set aside.
  3. In another small bowl, combine the flax meal and remaining 1/2 cup of water and let stand while you prepare the remaining ingredients.
  4. Over medium-high heat, sauté the onion, celery, garlic, and bell pepper in the vegetable stock until tender.
  5. In a large bowl, smash the chickpeas. Add the sautéed vegetables, the flax mixture, and the remaining ingredients. Mix thoroughly.
  6. Spoon the bean mixture into the prepared loaf pan and even out the mixture with your hands
  7. Pour the glaze over top the loaf.
  8. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the glaze is caramelized and the loaf is solid.
  9. Let the loaf stand for 20 minutes before slicing.

For the Yucca root. Below is what it looks like.

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The peel is very tough and waxy. Using a knife, peel the root and cut the root up into small cubes. Boil like you would potatoes for about 20 minutes. Drain and place into a food processor. Add about 1/4 cup unflavored nondairy milk (you can add more later if you like your puree thinner.) Add your favorite seasonings like you would potatoes. I used garlic powder, salt, pepper, and dill. Blend on high until it reaches your desired consistency.

 

Enjoy!

-Chef Drew

My Big Fat Plant Based Thanksgiving

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This year was our first official Thanksgiving eating a plant based diet. As everyone is well aware, this is a holiday focused entirely around food. I was honestly pretty excited because it gave me a reason to make new things I have never made before. We also got invited to a friends house to do an island of misfits Thanksgiving. Any time I have the opportunity to make food for other people is a great day for me. I always love being able to show others how and why we chose to eat the way we do and hear feedback from them on how my dishes came out. Now these were all people on regular omnivore diets so there was plenty of meat and dairy dishes around the table but if I can show them an entirely plant based dish can be really tasty then it might encourage people to incorporate more plant based dishes into their regular meals. To me that’s the reward. I think I made some great things yesterday and people were complimenting them. We didn’t come home with really any leftovers, which disappointed Melissa, but made me pretty happy. I knew there was going to be a lot of food there we couldn’t eat so in an effort to provide enough alternatives I ended up making 3 different things. First was some great herb and cheese drop biscuits, next was a really good sweet potato and creamy kale tort, and lastly was a super bangin’ cornbread dressing which was my def favorite. Unfortunately I don’t have any pictures to post with these recipes. I was too excited to get them baked in time and get to our destination to remember to take pictures. But I can assure you they all looked, smelled, and tasted awesome!

 

Herb and Cheese Drop Biscuits

2 cups all purpose flour

1 Tbs baking powder

1 Tbs natural cane sugar

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/4 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp fresh minced rosemary

1 tsp fresh thyme leaves

1/4 cup fresh minced parsley leaves

5.5 Tbs coconut oil, frozen

1 cup unsweetened and unflavored almond milk

1/4 cup vegan shredded cheese

 

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper
  2. Place coconut oil in freezer until solid, about 5-10 minutes. Place the cup of milk in the freezer to chill as well
  3. Whisk the flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, and garlic powder together in a large bowl
  4. Using a pastry cutter, cut the frozen coconut oil into the dry ingredients until it’s the size of small peas
  5. Pour chilled almond milk over the dry ingredients + coconut oil mixture and stir until just combined. Fold in the herbs and cheese
  6. Drop about 8-10 biscuits all over the baking sheet, leaving 2-3 inches between each biscuit. Bake at 425F for 10 minutes, rotate the pan, and bake for an additional 8-10 minutes longer. Biscuits are ready when golden

I made these as a double batch by literally doubling each ingredient and got about 16 biscuits. They came out great and people really liked them.

 

Sweet Potato and creamy kale tort

For the dough I used the same recipe I always use as it is quick and simple. You can find the recipe here:

https://veggieandthefulleffect.wordpress.com/2015/10/27/i-was-told-they-would-be-punch-and-pie/

 

Filling

2 Tbs vegan butter

1/2 a cup finely chopped leeks

1 bunch kale, stemmed and chopped

1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

olive oil

salt and pepper

1 small sweet potato

1 cup softened vegan cream cheese

1/2 cup shredded vegan cheese

Instructions

  1. Make the crust according to the link above. Make sure you allow time for it to sit overnight or at least one hour in the refrigerator
  2. Roll the dough out and fir it to your tart pan. Pierce the dough all over with a fork
  3. Preheat the oven at 375F and prebake your dough for 10 minutes
  4. Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add chopped leeks and cook for about 10 minutes. Add kale, red pepper, and a couple drizzles of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook for another couple of minutes until kale is just wilted. Remove from heat.
  5. Peal your potato and slice very thin
  6. Add the cream cheese to the kale mixture until fully melted and incorporated
  7. Place a layer of sweet potato slices in the bottom of the tart shell. Spread the kale and cheese mixture evenly over that and top with another layer of sweet potato slices. Brush the top thoroughly with olive oil and sprinkle shredded cheese over tart. Bake for about 20 minutes, until golden brown

Now I don’t own a tart pan and I wanted to make a double batch so I used a large casserole dish and doubled all the ingredients. The bake time was about 35 minutes and it came out great. Very tasty and filling.

 

Cornbread dressing

This was by far my favorite recipe of the day and maybe the month. I took the recipe from the chef on our local news network because it looked great and I’ve always wanted t make home made dressing but never had the opportunity. I replaced his cornbread recipe with my own because we love it so much and I knew it would make the dressing the best.

Cornbread

2 Tsp apple cider vinegar

2 cups almond milk

1 1/2 cups finely ground yellow cornmeal

1 cup all purpose flour

2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

6 Tbs cane sugar

1/3 cup canola oil

Preheat over to 400F. Whisk the apple cider vinegar and almond milk together vigorously and set it aside. In a large mixing bowl, mix together the cornmeal, flour, baking soda, salt, and sugar. Add the oil to the milk mixture and then add the wet ingredients to the dry ones until totally incorporated. Line a 8×8 inch square baking pan with parchment paper. Pour the mixture into the pan and bake for 35 minutes or until the top of the cornbread is firm and the edges are turning golden brown. Allow the bread to cool completely on a cooling rack before moving on to the dressing recipe.

Dressing

1 recipe of cornbread from above

1 stick vegan butter

1/2 cup onion medium dice

3 stalks celery medium dice

1 poblano pepper minced

3 cloves garlic finely chopped

3 slices white bread torn into bite sized pieces

3 Tbs flaxseed mixed with 9 Tbs cold water

4 cups vegetable stock

salt and pepper to taste

1 Tbs poultry seasoning

Directions

  1. prepare cornbread according to recipe above
  2. preheat oven to 400F
  3. melt butter over medium high heat, add onion, celery, poblano and cook to soften, 2-3 minutes
  4. add garlic and cook for one minute
  5. remove from heat and allow to cool completely
  6. crumble cornbread in a large bowl, add white bread and cooked/cooled vegetables
  7. season with salt and pepper and poultry seasoning and gently mix to combine
  8. add flax mixture and stock and gently combine
  9. place in a large casserole dish and cover with aluminum foil
  10. Place in oven and cook for 30 minutes, remove foil and place back in oven
  11. continue to cook until cooked through and set, 15-20 minutes

 

I apologize again for not having pictures to show but trust me if you make these you will not be disappointed. They made a great meal for us and great sides for everyone else’s meals.

 

Enjoy!

-Chef Drew

Take me back to the docks

When we became vegan we made the decision to count seafood as meat. Seafood has probably been the hardest for me to give up because there are so many great dishes and types of seafood. I love all of them and miss a great piece of fish or a big plate of clams and oysters. Last night I made New England Chowder and some zucchini cakes that literally took me back to the docks. It still amazes me the flavors you can create without ever using any kind of meat or dairy. This was a very hearty chowder and the cakes really reminded me of a crab cake. They were both packed full of great veggies and of course filling and extremely tasty. These recipes were both taken from Plant Pure Nation and everyone should be trying these, you will not regret it at all. If you’re looking to add more plant based meals into your diet this one would make a great addition to your weekly meal plan.

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New England Chowder

2 quarts low sodium vegetable stock

1 onion diced

3 leeks, washed well and cut small

3 celery stalks, diced

1 carrot, diced

1/8 tsp red pepper flakes

3 large Yukon gold potatoes, diced medium

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup flour

2 cups cashew cream (recipe to follow)

10 oz button mushrooms, chopped

1 Tbs lemon juice

2 sushi nori sheets torn into small pieces (kitchen sheers work great)

1/2 cup nutritional yeast

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/2 tsp black pepper

  1. In a large soup pot over medium high heat add 1/2 cup of stock and saute the onion, leeks, celery, and carrot until tender. Add the red pepper flakes and cook briefly.
  2. Add the remaining stock and the potatoes, bringing them to a boil. Turn down the heat to medium and cook the potatoes until tender.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine the water and flour and whisk until smooth. Add to the soup mixture.
  4. Add the cashew cream, mushrooms, lemon juice, nori pieces, nutritional yeast, salt, and pepper. Simmer until the flavors are well blended and the consistency is creamy, stirring frequently.

Cashew Cream

1 cup raw cashews, soaked in water to cover for 2-3 hours then drained

2 cups water

  1. Place the cashews and 2 cups fresh water in high powered blender and blend on high until smooth and creamy.

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Zucchini Cakes

2 celery stalks, finely diced

1 onion, diced small

2 carrots shredded

1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

1/4 cup flax meal

1/2 cup warm water

2 small zucchini, shredded

1 14 oz block extra firm tofu, drained and crumbled

2 cups panko bread crumbs

1 cup tofu cashew mayonnaise (recipe to follow)

2 nori seaweed sheets, finely chopped

1 Tbs old bay seasoning

2 tsp dry mustard

1 tsp sea salt

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside
  2. In a skillet over medium high heat, saute the celery, onion, carrot, bell pepper, and parsley until soft but firm
  3. Mix the flax seed and water in a small bowl. Let stand for 5 minutes
  4. In a large bowl, combine the sauteed vegetables, zucchini, tofu, 1 cup bread crumbs, mayo, seaweed, old bay, mustard, salt, and flax/water mixture. Mix thoroughly.
  5. Shape into 1/2 inch thick cakes. Carefully dredge the cakes in the remaining cup of bread crumbs to coat. These patties are delicate and must be handled gently to avoid having them crumble.
  6. Place the cakes on the baking sheet and bake for 30 minutes or until golden. Serve warm.

Tofu Cashew Mayonnaise

1/4 cup raw cashews, soaked in water to cover for 2-3 hours, then drained

7 oz extra firm tofu

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/2 tsp tahini

4 tsp lemon juice

1 1/2 tsp white vinegar

1 Tbs dijon mustard

2 Tbs apple cider vinegar

2 1/2 tsp agave nectar

2 Tbs water

  1. Place all ingredients in a high powered blender. Blend until smooth and shiny.

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Enjoy this great meal

-Chef Drew

Forget the “Blue Box Blues”

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We all grew up on that amazing fake taste of Kraft mac and cheese but as you become an adult you realize how much better homemade is. There is a lot you can do and tons of variations to make amazing cheese sauces to top your favorite pasta. This is the first recipe we made from my new favorite cook book “The Plant Pure Nation Cookbook” by Kim Campbell. This recipe uses Butternut Squash and OMG I think this is my new favorite way to make mac and cheese. The recipe only uses half a squash so we made it twice last week and decided to do it two ways. The first we stayed true to the full recipe and made baked mac and cheese. The second time it was after a work day and I wanted to save some time so rather than baking it I just tossed the pasta in the cheese sauce and used shells which I like because they hold in extra sauce. Both were awesome and I encourage everyone to try this. You can pick your favorite way or do what we did and make it both. You can never have too much mac and cheese in a given week.

Macaroni and No Cheese

1 cup cooked and mashed butternut squash

1/4 cup raw cashews

1 1/2 cups nondairy milk

2 Tbsp cornstarch

1/4 cup nutritional yeast

2 Tbsp Dijon mustard

3/4 tsp garlic powder

1/2 Tbsp lemon juice

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/4 tsp black pepper

12 ounces macaroni noodles

1 cup peas

1/2 panko bread crumbs

Hints: using frozen butternut squash is a time saver however if you’re like us and prefer fresh then allow yourself time to bake (40 minutes)

If you do not have a high powered blender, presoak your cashews for a few hours or boil for 15-20 minutes to soften

  1. Preheat oven to 350
  2. Place cooked squash, cashews, milk, cornstarch, nutritional yeast, mustard, garlic powder, lemon juice, salt, and pepper in a high powered blender or food processor. Blend until smooth and creamy.
  3. Transfer to a saucepan over medium heat and whisk until thickened, if you prefer thinner add water.
  4. Cook the pasta according to package directions
  5. Combine the pasta, sauce, and peas in a casserole dish and sprinkle with bread crumbs.
  6. Bake uncovered for 20-30 minutes, or until golden brown and bubbly.

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If you are skipping the baking step, simply add your cooked pasta to the sauce in the saucepan and toss to coat.

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Enjoy!

-Chef Drew

Recipe brought to you by this amazing plant based book and documentary

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Why cheat just because it’s a holiday….

A lot of people use the excuse that it’s a holiday to cheat. Summer holidays are always hard because everyone wants to enjoy BBQ or have a cookout. Becoming vegan has been a little bit of a struggle particularly with the cookout category. I love hotdogs and hamburgers but let’s face it, the vegan options at the grocery store are still terribly processed and bad for you. So how do you enjoy cookout food and still eat healthy food? The answer is taking some chances and venturing to make your own. I made a great Labor Day feast this weekend by taking taking some risks and learning some more great new tricks. I was not disappointed at all by the outcomes. Our menu consisted of Mac salad, baked beans, and hotdogs (or in this case carrot dogs.) An entirely plant based meal and had me thinking I was enjoying all the cookout foods I used to, this time a lot healthier and with no meat or dairy.

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Carrot Dogs:

8 large carrots

1/4 cup soy sauce

1/4 cup water

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

1 tsp garlic powder

1 Tbs Liquid smoke

1 Tbs canola oil

8 gluten free hotdog buns

  1. Peel the carrots, cut off ends and cut them to bun length. Bring a pot of water to a boil and cook the carrots until the are fork tender, about 15 minutes. Drain them and run them under cool water to stop the cooking.
  2. In an air tight storage container, mix the soy sauce, water, vinegar, garlic powder and liquid smoke. Marinate the carrots in the fridge for at least 4 hours and up to 24 hours.
  3. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Remove the carrots from the marinade and arrange them in the skillet in a single layer. Add a few spoons of the marinade and cook until they begin to caramelize. Rotate often.
  4. Serve on buns with your favorite toppings.

My toppings were Red Onion Sauce and Pickle Relish

Red Onion Sauce:

1 cup water

1 tsp corn starch

3/4 cup ketchup

2 Tbs balsamic vinegar

2 tsp Dijon mustard

1 Tbs brown sugar

1 tsp hot sauce

2 tsp ground cinnamon

2 tsp chili powder

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp black pepper

2 Tbs canola oil

2 large onions thinly sliced

1 tsp garlic powder

  1. In a bowl combine the corn starch and water. Whisk until it’s smooth
  2. Add in the ketchup, vinegar, mustard, brown sugar, and hot sauce
  3. Mix in the cinnamon, chili powder, salt, pepper. Whisk until smooth
  4. In a large skillet, heat the oi over medium high heat
  5. Add the onions to the skillet. Add the garlic
  6. Cook the onions until softened but not browned, about 8 minutes
  7. Add the sauce to the pan and toss to coat
  8. Bring sauce to a simmer and cook until the sauce thickens and the onions are tender, about 25 minutes

Pickle Relish:

1 large cucumber

3/4 cup cider vinegar

1 tsp mustard seeds

1 tsp coriander seeds

1/4 cup cane sugar

2 tsp salt

1 green bell pepper

1 small white onion

  1. Trim the ends of the cucumber, cut it in half lengthwise, seed, and finely chop.
  2. Bring the vinegar to a boil in a saucepan. Add the cucumber and cook for about 4 minutes, stirring frequently, until it is just starting to lose color and is tender but still crunchy.
  3. Use a slotted spoon to scoop the cucumber out of the vinegar and set aside. Add the mustard seeds and coriander seeds to the vinegar and bring back to a boil. Stir in the sugar and salt and reduce heat to simmering.
  4. Finely chop the pepper and onion. Mix with the cooked cucumber. Pour the vinegar over the vegetables and stir to combine.

Vegan Macaroni Salad:

1 pound of your favorite pasta

1/4 cup iced celery

1/4 cup minced onion

2 carrots, shredded and chopped. (I used 1 yellow and 1 purple for color)

Vegan Mayo (recipe to follow)

1 Tbs mustard

1 1/2 tsp cane sugar

1/2 tsp salt

pepper to taste

  1. Cook pasta according to directions on package. Drain and rinse with cold water to cool off.
  2. In a large bowl add pasta, celery, onion, and carrots.
  3. Mix in mayo, sugar, salt and pepper

Vegan Mayo:

1/2 cup soy or almond mild (unsweetened)

1/2 tsp sea salt

1 tsp ground mustard

2 tsp garlic powder

2 tsp apple cider vinegar

2 tsp agave

1 cup canola oil

  1. Place milk, sea salt, ground mustard, garlic powder, vinegar, and agave in a food processor. Place lid on and turn to slow.
  2. Take the middle part of the lid out while blending and slowly pour in oil.
  3. Place lid back on and blend until thick and creamy.
  4. Allow to sit over night

Slow cooker baked beans:

1 lb dried beans

1 large onion finely diced

1 cup water

1 6 oz can tomato paste

1/4 cup maple syrup

1/4 cup molasses

4 tbsp brown sugar

1 tbsp vinegar

1 tsp Worcestershire sauce (if you care make sure it is a vegetarian version)

1 1/2 tbsp salt

1 tsp ground mustard

1/4 tsp pepper

1/8 tsp cinnamon

1/8 tsp nutmeg

  1. The night before, soak beans with enough water to cover by 2 inches. Soak overnight
  2. In the morning, mix together all ingredients except beans and onion.
  3. In the bottom of your slow cooker layer the diced onion then top with beans.
  4. Pour the liquid mixture over the beans then add up to an additional 3 cups of water until the tops of the beans are just submerged.
  5. Cook the beans on low for 12 hours or on high for 6-8.

That way my meal and I loved it. If your feeling adventurous I suggest trying one or all of these. Enjoy!

-Chef Drew