Tofu Reuben

22 11 2011

Layers of warm tofu, tons of sauerkraut, Russian dressing and swiss cheese, nestled between toasty pumpernickel bread… gah. I would have stacked this sandwich to the ceiling if I had the means.

I didn’t use a marinade with the tofu. Though I wonder how it would taste marinated in some type of corn beef brine. Oh well, didn’t have the time or patience for the stuff tonight. I just sliced the tofu thin and fried it in oil with salt and pepper.

You can use any vegetarian sandwich stuffer when making a reuben; tofu, tempeh, seitan, I don’t care. And even though you’re using a meat substitute, don’t you dare try to make this a healthy sandwich. It is not/should not be one. Slather it in dressing, rub butter all over them breads, melt cheese over the whole thing, vegan or not, either way, make it decadent. Perfection, thy name is reuben.

Tofu Reuben
Adapted from Vegan Planet

2 tbs. soy or regular mayonnaise
1 tb. ketchup
1 tb. sweet pickle relish
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tbs. olive oil
4 slices bread (Rye is the standard, though I love me some pumpernickel)
1 package tofu, drained and sliced thin
1/2 cup sauerkraut, drained and warmed (You can use a microwave, but I think the best method is heating it up on a skillet with some oil, salt, pepper and caraway seeds)
Swiss cheese/vegan cheese/whatever cheese

In a small bowl, combine the mayo, ketchup and relish. Season with salt and pepper to taste and mix well. Set aside.

Brush a small amount of the olive oil on one side of each slice of bread. Place the bread oiled side down on a flat surface and spread the mayo mixture on the other side of each slice.

Layer the tofu, sauerkraut and cheese on 2 of the bread slices and top with the remaining 2 bread slices, oiled side up.

Heat the remaining olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Place the sandwiches in the skillet and cook, turning once, until toasty on both sides, about 2 minutes per side. Remove from the skillet, cut in half, and serve hot with a pickle!

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Seitan Goulash

5 11 2011

If I had my own restaurant; my own vegetarian comfort-food diner/café/show space/brewpub/rocket-ship, this seitan goulash would be on the menu. Then come Halloween time, I would re-name it to Seitan GHOULash. It would be amazing. Hell, I would sling this out of a dinky food-cart in the dead of winter. Whole cities shoveling steaming spoonfuls of goulash into their mouths; loving every second of it.

Sadly, The Chicago Diner already beat me to it. But do they add sauerkraut?? Nien! The recipe is mine.

Juicy chunks of seitan, tender potatoes, along with the creamy tartness of sauerkraut and sour cream, make this a total go-to cold weather comfort food. Use Hungarian sweet paprika if you have it on hand, otherwise, regular paprika is fine.

Ghoulash…

Seitan Goulash
Adapted from The Chicago Diner Cookbook

Marinade:
2 tbs. vegetable oil
2 tsps. onion powder
1 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsps. paprika
1 tsp. thyme
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup tamari/soy sauce
3 cups water

Seitan:
1/2 lb. seitan, cut into chunks
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. onion powder
1/2 tsp. paprika
Vegetable oil for frying

Vegetables:
2 tbs. vegetable oil
2 medium onions, diced
1 cup carrots, sliced
2-3 large potatoes, diced
2 bay leaves
1 cup celery, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped

1 can sauerkraut, drained
Vegan sour cream
Noodles/pasta of choice

To make the marinade, heat the 2 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet. Add the remaining marinade ingredients and simmer 5-10 minutes. Remove the bay leaf. Pour marinade over the seitan and let sit for about 20 minutes; drain, reserving the marinade.

Mix the flour, garlic powder, onion powder and paprika in a bowl. Heat about 1/4 cup oil in a medium skillet until hot. Dredge the seitan in the flour mixture and sauté until brown. Remove from the skillet and set aside.

Heat the 2 tablespoons of oil for the vegetables in a large pot. Add the onions and carrots and cook 8-10 minutes. Add the potatoes and bay leaves and cook 10-15 minutes more, or until the potatoes start to get tender. Add the celery and bell pepper, cover with the reserved marinade and simmer 5 minutes. Add the seitan, stir and cover. Remove from heat and stir in the sauerkraut and vegan sour cream to taste. Serve on hot noodles/pasta and topped with more vegan sour cream.





Ginger Cranberry Sauce

1 11 2011

Am I supposed to be posting about cranberry sauces when things like this are going on? Sometimes it’s hard to find your place in the struggle when your passion lies in making yummy-tasties.

I’ve never made a cranberry sauce before. Growing up, I had a hatred for chunky cranberry sauces. It seems that most kids have a problem with textured foods. I wanted that smooth, gelatinous, can-shaped mold. And honestly, I stick by it. On Thanksgiving, give me that tin-scented jello slop. But this sauce is in a whole different ballpark.

Sweet and with a strong backbone of ginger spice, this sauce is ideal served warm over a stack of pumpkin pancakes or mixed into a bowl of oatmeal in the morning; the perfect fall condiment.

Ginger Cranberry Sauce
Adapated from Vegan Brunch

2 cups fresh cranberries
1 1/4 cups water
1/3 cup sugar
1 tb. ginger, grated
1/4 cup pure maple syrup

Mix together cranberries, water and sugar in a saucepan. Cover and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and let simmer for about 10 minutes. Unconver and set simmer until the mixture reduces by half, about 10 minutes or so. Stir frequently. Remove from heat and grate in the ginger. Let cool for at least half an hour, then stir in the maple syrup. Serve warm.