Yesterday we hosted our 4th Birthday Party at our Vegan Cheese Shop. This marks one full year in our new location!
It was such a wonderful day and it was so great to see so many friendly and supportive faces. Some that have been fans since the very beginning and some brand new! I feel truly blessed to be surrounded by this wonderful community and to be able to host these fun events now that we have the space.
Thank you to everyone that made the trip out to visit and support us on this special occasion!!
Ok... back to what I love best.... FOOD!!
For brunch this morning I wanted to make use of some of the amazing seasonal produce I had on hand. Particularly some run away zucchinis from my garden and left over sweet corn. I whipped up a batch of these zucchini and corn fritters and served them with Horseradish Dill Aoili and some garden tomatoes and cucumbers. (I would have served it with our tzatziki, but we sold out completely yesterday!)
I added some black salt, and it gave these fritters an eggy taste, which made them even more brunch-y.
Combine flax seeds and water and set aside to gel. Mix all dry ingredients, then prepare your veggies and herbs. Combine almond milk with the dry ingredients and mix well. Fold in all veggies and herbs and season with salt and pepper.
Heat a non-stick pan over medium high heat. If desired add a small amount of vegetable oil to your pan, but you can leave this out to avoid extra oil and calories. Drop dollops of batter into the heated pan and fry on each side until golden brown, about 2-3 minutes on each side.
Serve warm with my Dairy Free Tzatziki, or your condiment of choice! In the picture above I served them with a Horseradish Dill Aoili but any kind of chutney or salsa will work!
Nothing says 'I love you' like crêpes stuffed with creamy vegan cheese and smothered with blueberry sauce... right?? Well, maybe diamonds....
For this dish you can use your favourite crêpe recipe or the one for whole wheat crêpes that I have included below. Please use whole wheat pastry flour and not regular whole wheat flour..... I've tried it, the results were less than spectacular.
My suggestion is to make the crêpes and Blueberry Citrus Sauce the night before and then just assemble the whole dish in the morning.
I used our Rosemary Blueberry Chèvre cashew cheese in these crêpes, but you could use Zengarry Brie style or Gruyere style vegan cashew cheese. The Rosemary Blueberry Chèvre is available directly from me on our online store.
1.5 cups of whole wheat pastry flour
2 Tbsp. cornstarch
1 tsp. salt
1 cup water
1 cup almond milk
2 Tbsp. sunflower oil
2 Tbsp. maple syrup
Put all ingredients in the blender. Blend on high for a minute or so. Refrigerate the batter for about 1 hour. The batter should be very thin.
Heat a non-stick pan. It will be ready when a few drops of water sizzle when dropped on the pan. Spray the pan with non-stick cooking spray. Ladle about 1/2 cup batter into your pan. Swirl the pan gently to spread the batter out into a large circle. Cook until the edges of the crêpe is dry and the centre is bubbling. Flip and cook another minute or so. Remove to a plate and repeat with the rest of the batter.
Blueberry Citrus Sauce
1/4 cup orange juice
3 Tbsp. lemon juice
1/2 cup sugar
1 Tbsp cornstarch
4 cups frozen blueberries
zest from the lemon
In a saucepan combine orange juice, lemon juice, sugar and cornstarch. Heat over medium heat and mix until well combined and the sugar is dissolved. Add the blueberries, bring to a boil and simmer for 10-15 minutes. Remove from heat and add lemon zest. Allow to cool and thicken slightly.
Assemble your Crêpes
Lay out a crêpe on a flat surface. Spread Zengarry Rosemary Blueberry Chèvre style cashew cheese (you could also use Zengarry Brie style cashew cheese) in all the way down the crêpe and roll the crêpe up like a cigar. Repeat with the rest of the crêpes. Top with Blueberry Citrus Sauce and and orange wedges and serve immediately.
Quiche doesn't HAVE to be just for brunch, though it is a great way to kick off your Sunday morning. This makes a great lunch or dinner with a nice side salad. I served a variation of it for dinner last night with a massaged kale salad with pink grapefruit, toasted pine nuts and an orange vinaigrette.
Excluding cooking time, it only takes about 15-20 minutes to pull this together. You can make it the day before and just warm it up in the morning.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Once preheated poke the pie crust with a fork a few times and cook for 10 minutes.
In a large frying pan sauté onion and garlic in olive oil or veggie broth over medium heat until onion is translucent. Add broccoli, thyme, salt and pepper and continue to cook another 5 minutes or so until broccoli has softened.
In a food processor crumble the tofu and pulse until all the large pieces are gone. Add Zengarry Garlic and Fine Herbs Cashew Cheese, mustard and turmeric and process until smooth. Add about half of the onion and broccoli mixture to the food processor and process until combined, but not completely mushed. You want to leave it a bit chunky.
Scrape the tofu mixture into a large bowl, add the remaining broccoli and onion mixture and mix until well combined.
Scoop the tofu mixture into the partially cooked pie shell and smooth the top. Decorate with cherry tomato halves or a sprinkling of paprika. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes. Allow it to cool for about 15 minutes before slicing.
Replace the broccoli with mushrooms, spinach and artichokes and the thyme with red chill flakes for a spinach, artichoke dip quiche.
Replace the Garlic and Fine Herbs Cashew Cheese with Sun Dried Tomato and Basil Cashew Cheese.
In my humble opinion, brunch is THE best part of the weekend. How about a nice mimosa and a chickpea omelette stuffed with Zengarry Gruyère Sauce and steamed asparagus??
If you can find Kala Namak or Indian black salt use that! It gives your dish an amazingly eggy taste. The lady at Good Rebel Vegan grocery said it would change my life, and it has! Use it in Quiche, tofu scramble or 'eggless' egg salad. I have yet to try a vegan frittata with it, but I think I see that in my not too distant future.
It's not the easiest thing to find... I snapped mine up at Good Rebel Vegan in Toronto... but it looks like you can get it on amazon.ca or from The Silk Road Spice Merchant in Calgary.
Mix everything except for the water in a large bowl. Heat a NON-STICK frying pan over medium heat. Add a scoop of vegan butter or margarine to keep the omelette from sticking. Mix in water and stir until well combined. It should be thin like pancake batter.
When the pan is hot pour 1/2 to 3/4 cup of the mixture into the pan swirl the pan and spread until thin. Allow the omelette to bubble and brown and then flip and brown the other side. Fold and serve. Makes 4-6.
Zengarry Gruyère Sauce
Warm Gruyère in a small sauce pan over medium low heat. Add vegetable broth and whisk until smooth.
Place a few stalks of steamed asparagus and some Zengarry Gruyère sauce on each omelette, fold in half and serve immediately.
To encourage you to add more of this succulent spring vegetable to your diet, I came up with this tasty little tart recipe! Ideal for brunch, lunch or a light supper with a side salad, I recommend doubling the recipe.
Makes one large or two smaller sized tarts.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Roll out puff pastry to a size to fit your tart pan. Spray your tart pan with a little non-stick spray. Lay your puff pastry in the tart pan and tuck in the edges.
Add margarine to a preheated non-stick frying pan. Add onion, chopped mushrooms, asparagus, garlic and herbs de Provence and sauté on medium heat until the vegetables soften (about 10 minutes). Deglaze the pan by adding wine and mixing well until most of the liquid has evaporated.
Turn the heat down to low and add Zengarry Garlic and Fine Herbs Cashew Cheese and salt. Mix well and remove from heat.
Spread your cheese mixture into the puff pastry shell and garnish with reserved asparagus spears cut in half lengthwise and mushroom slices.
Brush the top of pastry and tart with a bit of melted margarine and bake at 400 degrees F for 25 minutes or until golden brown.
Allow to cool for 10 minutes before cutting.
I'm sure I'm not the only one with a garden full of fresh crisp rhubarb!! This is one of my familily's favourite ways to enjoy it.
These muffins are moist and delicious without being overly sweet. A little sprinkling of sugar on the top is the only processed sugar in the recipe, but you could leave it off. I've used spelt flour, but you could use all whole wheat or a mixture of whole wheat and white, depending on what you happen to have on hand.
Makes 12 muffins
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
In a large bowl mix together flours, baking powder, baking soda, cardamom and salt. Mix well.
In another bowl mash the banana, add orange zest, orange juice, almond milk, agave nectar, vegetable oil and vanilla extract. Mix well.
Add liquid ingredients to dry ingredients and mix until just blended. Gently fold in the rhubarb.
Spoon batter into 12 prepared muffin cups and sprinkle with a bit of sugar.
Bake in preheated oven for 22-25 minutes until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Allow to cool at least 5 minutes.