Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Enchilada Deliciousness #vegetarian

I got some vegetarian "meat" crumbles, so I had to make something with them, right?

I began by making an enchilada sauce -- well, sort of an enchilada sauce. Since Charlie can't tolerate too much spice, I toned it way down for him.

Vegetarian Enchiladas
  • olive oil
  • chili powder
  • cumin
  • flour
  • tomato sauce
  • onion powder
  • sticky rice
  • black beans
  • flour tortillas
  • salsa
  • shredded cheese
Heat some olive oil in a pan. Sprinkle in some chili powder and cumin and toast it. If you can eat onions, include chopped onions; otherwise, wait and add onion powder to the liquid when you add it.

Add a little flour, then tomato sauce and onion powder (if you're using onion powder). Stir it around until it thickens. Add the meatless crumbles and heat until ... you know ... hot.

Cook some sticky rice and heat up a can of black beans (preferably Southwestern spiced).

Warm some flour tortillas. Top each tortilla with a little rice, beans, salsa, and cheese. Roll it up, tucking in the ends.

Lightly oil a baking dish and spread some enchilada sauce on the bottom. Put the rolled-up tortillas in snugly. We're light eaters, so I only made two and put each one in a mini-dish. Pour enchilada sauce over the rolled-up tortillas. Bake for about 30 minutes at 350 and top with cheese.
I'll tell you what, fellers: It was perty damn good.

Marian Allen, Author Lady
Fantasies, mysteries, comedies, recipes

Friday, August 28, 2015

Garlic Parmesan Cheese Bombs

I found the recipe for these yummy little cheese bombs at The Recipe Critic. I'll post the recipe below, but you really should check out the site for the mouthwatering tutorial.

Garlic Parmesan Cheese Bombs
  • 1 can refrigerated biscuits (like the ones by Pillsbury - I used their Texas-style biscuits)
  • 3 mozzarella cheese sticks, cut into 4 pieces each (so you have 12 total)
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon parmesan cheese
  1. Preheat oven to 400 and grease a baking sheet. Separate each biscuit. Place one piece of cheese in the center of each biscuit, pinch the sides around the cheese so it is completely encased by the biscuit dough. Place seam-side down on prepared baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes until golden.
  2. Melt butter. Stir in garlic powder, Italian seasoning, and Parmesan cheese. When biscuits are done baking, brush butter mixture over each biscuit. Serve warm.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Another Blast from the Past

Last week, I reminisced about Scholastic book orders. This week, I pay tribute to another relic from my childhood that my kids still enjoy. When I was a youngster, the arrival of my HIGHLIGHTS magazine subscription made any day a little brighter. I loved the stories, the projects and, who can forget the hidden pictures! Now, my youngest loves her HiGHLIGHTS subscription as much as I did. Of course, I have to sneak a peak at her issues! Who said you shouldn't live through you kids?

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Is Your Sugar #Vegan ? Do You Care?

I don't use much sugar except occasionally to sweeten tea, so I have no problem substituting Turbinado sugar for white sugar. Why do I want to?

I learned, to my sorrow, that cane sugar is (not invariably, but frequently) whitened by filtering it through bone char. That's charred bones. The bone char is so processed by the time it gets to work filtering sugar, it barely qualifies as an animal product -- kind of like Spam or Velveeta. But still.

Beet sugar doesn't have to be filtered with bone char, but, while some sugars proudly label themselves "cane sugar," I have yet to find one that labels itself "beet sugar". Wonder why?

Let me reiterate, since people don't seem to believe me: I AM NOT A VEGAN. I just cook like one on the internet. Actually, as I've said before, we have a vegan daughter, so I like to make my kitchen as free of culinary booby-traps for her as possible.

Besides: bone char. Even I ain't that Goth.

While researching this post, I learned that Whole Foods has a cane sugar that is not only filtered through non-animal charcoal, it's part of the Whole Trade Guarantee:
  • Meet our high quality standards
  • Provide more money to producers
  • Ensure better wages and working conditions for workers
  • Care for the environment
To sweeten the deal, we also donate 1% of all Whole Trade product sales to the Whole Planet Foundation, which funds micro-credit loans around the world with the mission to help end world poverty.

Way cool!

What kind of sugar do you use?

Marian Allen, Author Lady
Fantasies, mysteries, comedies, recipes

Friday, August 21, 2015

Making Pie Crust from Cake Mix?

Mini Pumpkin Mousse Pie with Meringue :: Recipe on HoosierHomemade.comI found this tutorial/recipe on Hoosier Homemade. The page teaches bakers how to make vanilla and chocolate pie crusts from boxed cake mix. It's really cool, so check it out! :)

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

It's Still Around!

I am so happy that they still do it! School kids still get the Scholastic flier (aka "book order"). My heart used to skip a beat when the fliers were handed out at my school. I am thankful my little girls have experienced the same joy over choosing a new book. Do you remember the Scholastic fliers?

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

The Eggy Spinach Thing #vegetarian

I made this, and it was very good:

I forget what it's called, but the base of it is Choux pastry -- the same thing you make cream puffs from.

  • 1/8 cup butter (or vegan margarine)
  • 1/4 cup water
Bring to a boil. Add:
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/8 tsp salt
Remove from heat, stirring till ball forms. Let rest 5 minutes, then add:
  • 1 egg
  • bit of ground mustard
  • cheese of your choice
I did something not quite right, so it doesn't look like it's supposed to. Don't know if I used too much shortening or didn't let it cool long enough. As my grandpa used to say, "It didn't hurt the eatin' of it."

Okay. Now.

Spoon the choux around the edges of a buttered baking dish. Fill the center with veg. Cauliflower is nice. I used spinach and mushrooms. Top it with cheese.

Bake at 400 F for 45 minutes or so, maybe longer. It looks like it isn't going to do anything, then it starts to puff up and rises around the veg.

Um yum!

Marian Allen, Author Lady
Fantasies, mysteries, comedies, recipes