veganmofo 2011

Mofie Awards!! The Video Edition

In classic fashion, I read an old post and thought it was current. The post was from 2009 and I got all excited and wrote up a post to present the first annual mofie awards. I’m only two years late for that. Since there is no news on the mofie awards for this year, I suppose I’m in this alone, but since I didn’t participate in 2009/2010, these ARE my first annual Mofie Awards. Besides, you lovely winners deserve your awards no less than you did this morning.

I know it’s not common for presenters to give a thank you speech, but before I announce my virtual awards, I want to thank my family and friends. My family listened to me go on and on about kitchen failures and successes and encouraged me through it. My friends put up with me being “just a few minutes late” because I was tweaking or posting such and such a recipe. Some of them are even waiting for me to feel like making a particular thing again so they can actually try what they saw in the pictures. Others made rather willing testers. One of them did think for a minute that I was feeding him chicken (:P). My poor mother even tested the first batch of banana nut bread cookies (sorry, Mom). So thanks to all of you. I love you!

Now on to the awards part of this post…

1. The Cheerleading Squad Award

Presented to:

Jessy of happyveganface
Mandee of Cupcake Kitteh
Amanda of Newman Improved

I didn’t do an actual count, but I’m pretty sure these ladies were my most frequent commenters. Not a day went by that I didn’t hear from at least one of them. Frequently it was all three. On the days where I didn’t really feel like cooking or posting, I was able to push through because I knew they were “waiting” for me. So thanks, ladies for your consistency and your encouragement (and your own great blogs). I appreciate it!

I award to you:

this virtual cheerleading trophy

And, not that you need it, but just in case you ever want a lesson on spirit fingers or need to loosen your fingers after typing your latest post…here’s a clip of Sparky Polastri from Bring it On showing you how it’s done.

Oh, and Jessy, you might want to take a look at Cara’s award (#3) I think you might find her video pretty interesting.

2. Extra Effort Award

Presented to:

Sarah of I’m Vegan, and No, I’m not Starving

Not only was Sarah participating in mofo, she was also planning and preparing for her daughter’s birthday party and still made time to bake gluten free/soy free cookies for me. She’s pretty darn great.

So, Sarah, here’s an episode of Phineas and Ferb just for you. You don’t have to feel guilty about sitting and watching without the kid because it’s your award so you have to watch, right? <3


3. “Being…er…I mean…Making My Favorite Food Witch” Award

Presented to:

Cara of Fork and Beans for her Fig Witches

For you, dear Cara, I started on a mission to find you a clip of your favorite Teen Witch song. But, what’s this? I found a video of the WHOLE movie. Make some popcorn, take a break from your Thanksgiving food posting, put it on full screen, and enjoy Teen Witch and all its Bradaliciousness.

And, yes, I was totally tempted to post something of Justin Timberlake. But since you say you don’t really like him, you’ll have to search youtube for him yourself.

4. “Best Posts on the Prairie” Award

Presented to:

Lisa of Panda with Cookie

I grew up loving all things Laura Ingalls Wilder. The books. The TV show. Hating Nellie Oleson. And I know I would have loved the cookbook if I had it. Thanks, Lisa for raising my Prairie awareness.

For you, a clip of one of the finest of Laura/Nellie moments.

I bet they needed a big glass of vinegar-y ginger water after that.

And, a suggestion for your next veganizing vintage cookbook project:

Betty Crocker's Cookbook for Boys & Girls

I just hate I no longer have my copy. I’d love to see you veganize the bologna-egg cups. Yes, I used to make and eat those.

5. “Best evocation of memories while making memories of her own” Award

Presented to:

Kelly of Three and a Half Vegans for her Edible Candyland

For you, here’s another favorite childhood memory: Bill Cosby’s Picture Pages and his squeaky pen, Mortimer.


6. Linky McLinkerton Award

Presented to:

Johanna of Green Gourmet Giraffe and Mel from Veganise This

I didn’t do a search of the entire internet or anything, but as far as I can tell from my google stats, the most individual links posted on blogs back to my blog during mofo were made by Johanna and Mel. Thanks for the support and spreading the gluten-free/soy-free vegan love. Hope you enjoy the things you make! Come back and let me know how you go with them.

For you, Schoolhouse Rock’s “Conjunction Junction” because as we all know conjunctions link things.

7. Positive Peer Pressure Award

Presented to:

Amanda of In My Vegan Life

Amanda used her peer pressure powers for good instead of evil. If it hadn’t been for her, I may not have even participated in mofo this year. Thanks, Amanda!

For you, a really cheesy peer pressure video obviously from the 80s. But, really, who couldn’t use a little more Mr. T in her life? I’m glad you’re not a bad influence like these kids.


8. “Most droolworthy sandwich/sandwich I most want to deglutenize & desoyatize” Award

Presented to:

Celine of Have Cake Will Travel & Tami of Vegan Appetite

For you…a Seinfeld clip. Sit back and relax in the knowledge that you are saving a lot of vegans from a moment like this


9. “ Some Kind of Wonderful” Award

Before I present this award, let me tell you that I don’t throw around awards like this every day. “Some Kind of Wonderful” are not words to be used flippantly. After all, it is the title of the best teen drama of the 80s.

That being said, this award is presented to:

The Veganmofo Headquarters team

Y’all are great! Even while keeping up your own blogs, you did daily round-ups & daily giveaways. You kept up the lists of bloggers so it was easy for us to use Google Reader. You put up with complainers. You fostered community in the vegan blogosphere. You gave gluten-free vegans our own category listing this year!! So thanks for all of your efforts and thanks for being you.

For you, since I cant afford to buy you each a pair of diamond earrings: the advice to stay away from Hardy Jenns AND the best clip from Some Kind of Wonderful.

Aside from the hygienic issue of swapping earrings from one person to another without cleaning them with alcohol, this clip does a heart good. ‘Cause who doesn’t want the guy to fall for the best friend at the end?

1 food 5 ways, Navy Beans, Way #5: Cranberry Nut Muffins

After a really bad failure on a pasta dish, I decided to throw caution to the wind, break out those fresh cranberries I picked up at Trader Joe’s last week and try baking with beans again. I’ve never been so happy to fail in all my life. If I hadn’t failed at that pasta, I would have never even attempted these muffins. I didn’t feel like I had a clue as to what I was doing, but somehow it worked! so much crantasticness in one place. I don’t think anyone will suspect you hid in some extra fiber and protein by way of my little friend the navy bean.

Without further ado, I present to you the beaniful Cranberry Nut Muffin. Now stop staring and get in the kitchen!

Cranberry Nut Muffins

Makes 17


1-1/2 cups brown rice flour

1/4 cup arrowroot

1-1/2 tsp cream of tartar

3/4 tsp baking soda

1 cup turbinado sugar

1-1/2 cups navy beans

1 cup orange juice

1/3 cup canola oil

1/4 tsp salt

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1-1/4 cup chopped fresh cranberries

1/2 cup walnuts


Preheat oven to 350 and line muffin tin w/paper liners.

In a large mixing bowl, mix brown rice flour, arrowroot, cream of tartar and baking soda. Set aside.

In the blender or food processor, blend sugar, beans, orange juice, canola oil, salt and cinnamon until smooth (it’s ok to have some sugar granules, but no obvious beans).

Pour the bean/sugar mixture into the dry ingredients and stir with a wooden spoon, just until well combined.

Fold in cranberries and walnuts.

Put 1/4 cup batter into each muffin paper (nearly full).

Bake for 35 minutes, or until muffins are lightly browned and toothpick comes out clean.

Note: It’s probably ok to just lightly oil the muffin tins, but I haven’t tested that yet. I wanted to use my cute little fall muffin papers.

1 food 5 ways, Sweet Potato and Navy Beans Way #5

Well, I really hate to end mofo like this. But the attempt at this last recipe was yuck. In theory it was good. The individual components weren’t too bad and it smelled great coming out of the oven, but all together I didn’t like it at all. It was was sweet potato stuffed shells with a creamy herbed sauce. The sweet potatoes were too sweet, the sauce was too thick and too strong. So, I’ve got nothin’ for way #5 for sweet potato and navy bean unless I come up with something tonight. I’ll have to owe them to you!

But, I do hate to end like this, so I have my thinking cap on!
UPDATE: 9:50pm
We might have a winner for way #5…nope not for sweet potatoes (had another sweet potato fail actually). These muffins were made with navy beans! But, they’re too hot to see how the texture/taste is. If they turned out as well as they look like they did, I’ll definitely post the recipe.

Vegan Month of Food 2011 – 1 food 5 ways, Wrap Up

Wow! It’s been quite the month. I could go through and give you a list of all the recipes and links, but I’ll spare you that. You can click on the label 1 food 5 ways and get that. What I am going to do is just list out a few things that have stuck out to me this month.

My favorite meal
: I’m a sandwich kinda girl so I’m thinking the bbq’d portabella sandwich.

My favorite sweet: hands down – the banana split ice cream

My most-surprising/most-pleasing accomplishments: Besides actually finishing!… Making mofo headquarters’ roundup (more than once) being tweeted, referred to on other people’s blogs, being pinned on pinterest. It was all crazy encouraging.

My most frustrating recipe: definitely the banana nut bread cookies. If they hadn’t worked the third time, I think I would have cried.

My most surprising recipe: The Creamy Kale Pasta Casserole. I was originally trying to make polenta eggplant sliders with pesto. It was a complete disaster. The pasta bake was a “save” and ended up being one of my favorites. Second Runnerup: The sloppy joe pie. I wasn’t sure where it was going when I started, but I sure like how it ended up.

My least favorite recipe: that mango dressing on the blackened portabella salad. The mushroom, on the other hand was fantastic!

And the last recipe that I tried that I didn’t even bother posting. Yuck!
My post that received the most “buzz” : Without a doubt, the sweet ‘n’ sour cashews and chickpea nuggets (thanks to & dc*vegan)

My most interesting discoveries about my meals: When I’m cooking for the blog, my meals are more carbolicious than normal. I actually miss more regular salads, fruits, juices. I also miss not having to cook if I don’t feel like it.


My most interesting discoveries about myself: I’m better at making dishes up than I thought. Back when I went gluten/soy-free and vegan, I lost all confidence in doing things off the cuff. I’m starting to get that back again. And I am capable of finishing a major project like this if I put my mind to it.

My favorite parts of vegan mofo
I couldn’t choose between these three —
1. The kind cookbook authors who allowed me to post recipes (I hope I didn’t forget anybody!)
Isa Moskowitz, Terry Hope Romero, Bryant Terry, Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, and Tamasin Noyes.
2. Reading other peoples’ blogs. Especially you amazing gluten-free folks! I do want to go back and read/bookmark some now that this month is over.

3. You wonderful readers! You have been so encouraging. If it hadn’t been for your wonderful feedback, I might have given up on the days I got tired. Thanks for making it a fun month of 1 food 5 ways! <3
BTW, I am planning on making a pdf for myself of all the recipes from 1 food 5 ways. So if you’re interested in having an electronic copy (@ no charge to you), email me at dawn {at} drsimpsongallery {dot} com

1 food 5 ways, Sweet Potatoes, Way #4: Sweet Potato – Black Bean Nachos

These are arguably the best nachos that I’ve had since going vegan. Granted, I don’t make them much, and I don’t usually branch away from the ordinary, but I really liked these. The ingredients were inspired by all the colors I think of for Halloween: orange, black, purple and green. By the time it all cooked up, it was close to the same color except for the guac, but it was Halloweenish going in.
Sweet Potato-Black Bean Nachos
Serves 2
6 blue corn tortillas
1 Tbsp Canola Oil
Salt, optional (I actually used yummy smoked salt)
Preheat oven to 400. Brush both sides of the tortillas with a little bit of oil. Sprinkle on salt if desired. Bake on a pan until crispy, about 8 minutes. I use my big pizza pan so they all fit on one pan.
Sweet Potato-Black Bean Topping
2 tsp Canola Oil
1/2 cup red onion
2 cups shredded sweet potato
1-1/2 cups black beans
1-1/4 cups water, plus extra to desired doneness
Your favorite Taco Seasoning, to taste
Preheat the oil in a heavy skillet over medium to medium high heat. Add onions and cook about 5 minutes until beginning to turn translucent and brown a bit. Add the sweet potato, 1-1/4 cup water and taco seasoning. After sweet potato is well coated, add the black beans. Cook until the water has mostly cooked out, but nothing is sticking yet. Check the doneness of the sweet potato. If it’s not done enough for you, add 1/4 cup water and cook until it’s almost done again. I ended up doing this twice (adding a total of 1/2 cup of water) for sweet potato that wasn’t mushy, but wasn’t crunchy anymore either. Total cooking time was about 20 minutes.
Other Ingredients:
Daiya (or your favorite cheese or cheese sauce)
Assemble by putting chips on the plate, topping with some of the sweet potato-black bean topping, then daiya, then more sweet potato-black bean topping then a dollop of guac. Really, assemble it how you want, but that’s how I did it.
1. For the taco seasoning, I used 2 Tbsp of this one and to me it was on the hot side. If I were serving it to others in my family, I would probably just use 1 tbsp)
2. I thought the Daiya would melt when I put some of the hot filling on top. It didn’t. I liked it fine unmelted, but if you want the cheese melted, you’ll need to put your nachos in a pan and heat in the oven or put it on a microwave-safe plate and melt it that way.
3. If you don’t want to make your own chips, use store bought. Blue is great for Halloween, but yellow or white would taste the same.
4. Here’s my guacamole, but make it however you like.
Well, there’s one recipe left! Yes, I know you think there are supposed to be two because I still have way #5 for both navy beans and sweet potatoes. But, the plan is to celebrate the last day of the Vegan Month of Food by getting a little crazy and combining them! Let’s see how it works…

1 food 5 ways, Sweet Potatoes, Way #3: Sweet Potato Pie Juice

A couple months ago, I was doing a short juice fast. Generally, I preferred the vegetable-y green juices, but one day I really wanted something sweet. This was it!
Sweet Potato Pie Juice
Makes about 1 cup, depending on your juicer and the size of your ingredients

Put through the juice extractor:

1 large sweet potato (9-10 oz)
1 fuji apple
Stir 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice into the juice
Place in a airtight glass container or bottle and chill. (It is one of those juices that will leave/some sugar or starch on the glass, don’t get worried if you see a buildup in the bottom)
Shake and enjoy!
Just so ya know, YES, I do plan on finishing up the theme and doing a wrap-up by the end of tomorrow. But if I don’t finish tomorrow, I will finish up in the days following just as if mofo hasn’t ended.

1 food 5 ways, Sweet Potatoes, Way #2: Sweet Potato Pancakes

I’m not trying to build suspense with the last navy bean recipe. Because, really, I’m not even sure it’s going to turn out the way it is in my head. But, I forgot to pick up an ingredient that I really, really want in it. I daresay I need it in there. So, on to sweet potato way 2 (and possibly a couple other sweet potato dishes before the last navy bean post).

Saturday morning breakfast is my favorite meal of the week. I like to take my time in the kitchen and at the table. It’s a chill time. Unless I’m rushing out to Saturday cycling class, which I usually am, and then I have to wait and chill later in the day. But today I couldn’t go, so I got to make a classic leisurely breakfast. I present to you gluten-free sweet potato pancakes!
Sweet Potato Pancakes
Sweet Potato Pancakes
Makes 9-12, depending on size you want
1/2 cup chickpea flour
1/2 cup arrowroot
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 tsp baking soda
1-1/2 tsp cream of tartar
1-1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 cup sweet potato puree, see note #1 below
1 tsp vanilla extract
1-3/4 cup almond milk
2 Tbsp canola oil
2 Tbsp maple syrup
Chopped Pecans, optional for topping
In a medium mixing bowl (preferably with a pour spout) mix together arrowroot, chickpea flour, brown rice flour, salt, baking soda, cream of tartar and spices with a whisk. Set aside.
In another medium mixing bowl, whisk together the remainder of the ingredients, except optional pecans, until sweet potato is completely smooth (there shouldn’t be any clumps). Pour this mixture in with the dry and whisk until everything is well incorporated.
Let the batter sit for 2 or 3 minutes to settle.
Pour out the batter onto your preheated/oiled cooking surface and cook until edges start to brown. This batter didn’t bubble up for me like your typical pancake batter so it’s all about how brown they are. Flip and cook the other side until golden brown. It took mine about 2-1/2 to 3 minutes on the first side and then about 2 minutes on the second side on an electric griddle set around 375.
Top with chopped pecans if desired. Then drizzle with your favorite syrup. Actually you can drown them in Earth Balance and syrup if that’s how you like it. But I’m a minimal syrup girl.
1. Make your own sweet potato puree by steaming chunks of sweet potato until soft and then whizzing it all up in the food processor until completely smooth. Easy peasy. The canned kind would probably work just fine though.
2. I got 9 relatively large pancakes. But I made one of them a little smaller just to see and they were a little easier to flip smaller. So next time I’d probably go for 12.
3. These are my favorite gluten free pancakes so far 😀

1 food 5 ways, Sweet Potatoes, Way #1: Sweet Potato-Scallion Rice Paper Rolls with Peanut Dipping Sauce

You may have been observant enough to notice that I skipped over way #5 of navy beans. Have no fear, I will get back it. BUT, as is probably pretty obvious from earlier weeks, Fridays are usually busy days for me. Today is no exception. Tonight is my Sunday School class’s pumpkin carving social. So I decided to skip on to way #1 of my last food for Vegan Month of Food so I could take them as my contribution to the snack table. And the last food for the month is…sweet potatoes! Sweet dishes, savory dishes, I love them pretty much any way you can make them and am looking forward to experimenting in the next couple days and to enjoying this favorite of mine!

These are such a favorite, that ever since I came up with this combo, I haven’t bothered making any other rice paper rolls. I actually usually use the cashew sauce I posted earlier in the month, but my Whole Foods Market has removed its grind-your-own cashew butter machine and I didn’t have time to make it from scratch today. So I just replaced the cashew butter with peanut butter. The lime overpowered the peanut butter a bit, so I added about a Tbsp more of PB, a couple dashes of Coconut Aminos and a little salt. Just adjust ’til it tastes right. That’s a double batch in the picture. Probably more than I’ll need for the rolls, but I don’t mind leftovers 😀

Sweet Potato-Scallion Rice Paper Rolls (makes 14)


2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1-1/2 to 2 lbs of sweet potatoes, cut french fry size
14 – 8″ rice paper wrappers
4 oz rice noodles (Asian style, not spaghetti noodles) cooked according to package directions, drained and rinsed in cold water
1/2 bunch (about 8) scallions/green onions, white bulb removed and the rest sliced

Preheat oven to 400. On a rimmed cookie sheet, toss the sweet potatoes in the olive oil until coated. Spread out in a single layer and bake sweet potatoes for 30 minutes, turning them over after 20. Set aside to cool.

When all the components are ready and cool, you can assemble the rolls:

Fill a large pie plate or bowl with very warm water. Place two rice paper wrappers in the water at a time, completely submerged and let sit for about a minute, until they have softened.

Handle each wrapper gently as you place it on your work surface. Place about 3 Tbsp rice noodles in the lower third of the wrapper, leaving about 1-1/2 inches of margin from the far edges on either side (you’ll be folding those in.) Place a layer of sweet potato above the noodles (I probably used 8-10 “fries” for each roll). Add scallions (probably about 2 tsp-1 tbsp). To roll, snugly fold the left and right sides of the wrapper over the filling. Lift the bottom of the wrapper over the filling and tuck it underneath the filling, then roll firmly but gently Place the rolls seam side down on a plate or clean cookie sheet. Cut in half when ready to serve. (I cut them at an angle. They just seem fancier that way)

1. I cooked 2 pounds of sweet potatoes, but it was a little too much for 14 rolls. So you can cook less. Or do what I did and mix up a little maple syrup and chipotle tabasco. Dip and eat.
2. My work surface is a piece of wax paper taped to the counter.
3. You’ll get a setup that works for you after you do it a time or two. My water bowl sits on the counter to the side and I have everything else on the island where I’m assembling the stuff. My assembly station looks like this (sorry for the dark pic – it’s raining here today) :

4. Don’t feel the need to be too uptight about what goes in the roll. Some will have more rice noodles, some will have more sweet potato. As long as it’s close, you’re golden. By all means don’t stress yourself out by measuring.
3. If you’re scared of rice paper rolls, don’t be. They are a lot easier than you think!

UPDATE: Harry Potter (kinda) Jack-o-lantern. We had a great time carving, visiting and eating yummies.

1 food 5 ways, Navy Beans, Way #4: Breakfast Scramble

One of my favorite easy meals to eat pre-vegan was egg scrambles. I can only assume I’d love tofu scrambles too. But, since I can’t have that, what to do? I do consider navy beans to be the tofu of beans. So…it was a natural jump. This may seem pretty simple to some of you, but it actually took me until this year to realize I could make a scramble out of navy beans. If you haven’t tried it yet, do it! It’s totally yum!

You can put whatever you want in it, but I’m a one scramble kinda girl. In fact, I fancied it up a bit for you by actually using onion and garlic this time. It was good, I think I’ll add it to my usual. Of course, the likelihood that I’ll ever measure it again is pretty slim.

I call it a breakfast scramble, but I eat breakfast for lunch and dinner too. Eat it whenever you want. Call it whatever you want. It’s ok by me.

Here it is pictured with my latest failure of a biscuit. Biscuits seem to be my arch nemesis. But one day, maybe I’ll get it. Finally, the flavor was decent, but they were a crumbly mess.

But I digress… Don’t let the scramble’s homeliness fool you, it’s tasty!

Breakfast Scramble

1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup chopped onions
1/2 tsp crushed garlic (approx equiv 1 clove fresh)
1-1/2 cups navy beans
1/4 cup water
1/2 tsp black salt, plus extra for sprinkling at the end
1/2 cup large dice tomatoes
1 cup loosely packed spinach leaves, chopped
1/8 nutritional yeast
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Heat olive oil in skillet over medium heat. Add onions and saute until translucent, 3-5 minutes. Add garlic and cook for another minute. Add beans and water. (The water is useful for keeping the beans from sticking, for making the beans a little creamier and making a bit of a sauce with the nutritional yeast). Add in the 1/2 tsp black salt and mix throughout the beans. Cook for a minute or two until about half of the water has cooked out. Add tomatoes and spinach and stir to combine well. Cook for a minute or so until warm throughout. Stir in the nutritional yeast until well mixed. Sprinkle on any additional black salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste. Eat up!

1 food 5 ways, Navy Beans, Way #3: Pumpkin Bars

Sarah’s pumpkin cookies and my first ever almond milk pumpkin spice latte (Thanks, Benelux Cafe!!) have got me in the pumpkin spice mood. I used this (non-vegan) bean based blondie recipe as inspiration and added my favorite fall flavors! They aren’t super sweet, so if you roll that way you would definitely need to add more molasses or sugar. You would, of course, have to adjust otherwise to make up for it. The lightly sweet molasses and the mild pumpkin flavors make me think they’d be perfect for a nice fall brunch.
Pumpkin Bars
(You could call these something like Navy Bean Pumpkin Bars or Gluten Free Beany Bars, but I figure why scare people?)
1-1/4 cup brown rice flour
1/4 cup arrowroot
1 tsp cream of tartar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1-1/2 cups cooked navy beans
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup canola oil
3/4 cup canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie mix)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup light molasses
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cloves
1/8 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp salt
Preheat oven to 350. Lightly oil a 9×9 baking dish.
Using a fine mesh sieve, sift together the brown rice flour, arrowroot, cream of tartar and baking soda into a large bowl. Set aside

In a good blender or food processor, blend the remaining ingredients until really smooth.

Pour the bean-pumpkin mixture into the flour mixture and stir with a wooden spoon until well incorporated.
Spoon the batter into baking dish and smooth with a rubber spatula.
Bake until top has cracks in it, bars start to pull away from sides of dish, and toothpick comes out (mostly) clean, about 40 minutes.
Place on wire rack to cool completely. Slice into bars and serve.

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