Category Archives: gravies & sauces

My Favorite Vegan Thanksgiving Recipes

Appetizers

Olive-Fig Tapenade
Adapted from allrecipes.com

1 cup chopped dried figs
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2/3 cup chopped kalamata olives
2 cloves garlic, minced
salt and pepper to taste
1/3 cup chopped toasted walnuts
1 (8 ounce) package vegan cream cheese (optional)
Directions

Combine figs and water in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, and cook until tender, and liquid has reduced. Remove from heat, and stir in the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, rosemary, thyme, and cayenne. Add olives and garlic, and mix well. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cover, and refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight to allow flavors to blend.
Unwrap cream cheese block, and place on a serving platter. Spoon tapenade over vegan cheese, and sprinkle with walnuts. Serve with slices of French bread or crackers.

Cajun Spiced Pecans
Calm those ragin’ Cajun appetites until dinner is ready.
Recipe adapted from About Southern Food (about.com)
Serves 8
Preparation Time: 10 minutes plus 2 1/4 hours cooking time

1 pound pecan halves
1/4 cup melted margarine (Earth Balance)
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper

Combine all ingredients in slow cooker. Cover and cook on HIGH for 15 minutes. Turn to LOW and continue to cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally for 2 hours. Transfer nuts to a baking sheet and cool completely. Serve as appetizer, or pack into glass jars and decorate with bows for holiday gifts.

Main Dishes
Cashew Nut Roast with Herbed Stuffing

Recipe adapted from Rose Elliot’s Vegetarian Christmas & PETA
Servings: 12
Preparation Time: 1:30

-DRESSING-
2 small onions
4 slices bread white preferred
1/2 cup margarine melted
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon marjoram
1/4 cup parsley fresh, chopped
-ROAST-
2 large onion chopped
1/2 cup margarine
3 cups cashews raw (unroasted)
8 slices bread white or whole wheat
4 large garlic cloves coarsely chopped
1 cup water or light vegetable stock
1 teaspoon sea salt (to taste)
1 teaspoon black pepper (to taste)
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg (to taste)
2 tablespoons lemon juice (to taste)
-GARNISH-
lemon slices
parsley sprigs

Set the oven to 400 F and line one large loaf pan with nonstick paper (or use non-stick pans); use some of the margarine to grease the pan and paper (if using) well.

For the most efficient use of your food processor, and the least clean-up, grate the onion for the stuffing first. Dump that into the bowl for the stuffing, replace the grating blade with the “S” blade, and grind your bread slices for the stuffing. You will have about 3 cups of soft crumbs. Add the crumbs to the stuffing bowl. Add the melted margarine and the herbs to the stuffing mixture. Set aside. (Don’t wash food processor yet!)

Using your food processor, chop the large onions medium fine. Melt the margarine in a large frying pan and saute the onions in it until they are soft and translucscent, but not browned.

In the meantime, grind the cashews in the food processor with the bread slices and garlic, until they form a uniform grainy mixture, then add that to the onion, together with the water or stock and add salt, pepper, grated nutmeg, and lemon juice to taste. Be careful with salt/lemon juice balance. (You can wash your food processor bowl now.)

Put half the cashew nut mixture into the prepared pan, top with the stuffing, then spoon the rest of the nut mixture on top. Press lightly and smooth the mixture. Dot with the remaining margarine. Stand the pan in a larger pan to catch any margarine which may ooze out, and bake for about 30 minutes, or until firm and lightly browned. (Cover the roast with foil if it gets too brown before then.) (Lisa’s note: I like my nut roast crispy and brown on the outside, so I bake it an additional 15 minutes or so. Be watchful, though, as the crust can go from brown to nearly black very quickly.)

Let the roast rest in its pan for about 15 minutes, then turn out onto serving platter. Garnish with lemon slices and parsley. Serve with gravy. Have copies of recipe ready for eager guests.
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Notes: You can double this recipe and divide it equally between 3 small loaf pans.

Leftovers freeze very well. You can reheat slices in the microwave, or reheat the thawed loaf in the oven about 30-45 minutes at 350 F.

Per serving : 412 Calories; 32g Fat (67% calories from fat); 8g Protein; 27g Carbohydrate; 0mg Cholesterol; 478mg Sodium
Food Exchanges: 1 1/2 Starch/Bread; 1/2 Lean Meat; 1 Vegetable; 6 Fat

Wild Rice Stuffed Pumpkin

Recipe By: Lisa T. Bennett
Serves 8
Preparation Time: 3 hours

4 pound pumpkin
3/4 cup brown rice
3/4 cup wild rice
1 teaspoon salt or seasoning salt
2 tablespoons margarine (Earth Balance)
1 cup onion, finely diced
2 large scallions, sliced
1/2 cup dried cranberries
sea salt to taste
freshly ground pepper
dash cinnamon
dash nutmeg
2 tablespoons minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
1/2 cup pecans, dry-roasted, chopped
1/4 c hot water

Cut the stem end of the pumpkin as if you were about to carve a jack o’lantern. Set aside “lid”. Remove strings and seeds inside pumpkin and discard (or save seeds to roast and munch on). Using a grapefruit knife or melon baller, scoop out the flesh of the pumpkin, leaving a 1/4 – 1/2” thick shell. Chop flesh and set aside.

In a large saucepan, bring 3 quarts of salted water to boil and stir in the brown rice and wild rice. Bring rice back to a boil. Cook over low heat, covered until still a bit hard to the bite — about 35 minutes. Drain well.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Heat the margarine in a skillet. Add the onion and celery and sauté until the onion is golden. Add the apple and sauté another 5 minutes.

In large bowl, combine pumpkin flesh, the sautéed mixture, the partially cooked rice, the orange juice, scallions, and dried cranberries. Season with salt, pepper, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Spoon stuffing loosely into pumpkin, sprinkle with the hot water and put “lid” on tightly. Place on sturdy baking sheet and bake till pumpkin is tender to the point of a knife — about 2 hrs. Cut into wedges and serve.

Brown Mushroom Gravy

Recipe By: PETA
Serving Size: 24
Preparation Time: 0:15

1 medium onion diced
2 tablespoons oil
1 cup sliced mushrooms
5 tablespoons flour
2 cups vegetable broth
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup water

Sauté the onion in the oil until soft. Add the mushrooms and sauté for 1 minute more. Shake the flour, broth and water together in a jar and add this to the onions and mushrooms. Mix in the soy sauce and stir over medium heat until thick.

Per serving: 36 Calories; 2g Fat (37% calories from fat); 1g Protein; 5g Carbohydrate; 0mg Cholesterol; 481mg Sodium
Food Exchanges: 1/2 Fat
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Everybody’s Favorite Cream of Mushroom Soup

Recipe By: adapted from The Nutritional Yeast Cookbook, J.Stepaniak
Serving Size: 4
Preparation Time: 0:30

1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 pound mushrooms thinly sliced
1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
4 cups warm water or vegetable broth
3 tablespoons nutritional yeast
3 tablespoons tamari soy sauce
2 tablespoons fresh parsley minced
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 cup soy milk not low-fat

Place the oil in a 4 1/2 quart saucepan or Dutch oven, and heat it over medium-high flame. When the oil is hot, add the mushrooms and saute until they are soft, about 4-6 minutes.

Stir in the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Gradually stir in the warm water or broth using a wire whisk. Work slowly and carefully to keep the mixture from lumping. Then stir in the nutritional yeast flakes, soy sauce, parsley, and paprika. Bring to a boil. Then reduce the heat to medium-low, cover the saucepan, and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in soymilk and serve.

Yield : 4 servings.
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Notes: To make a vegan version of “condensed” cream of mushroom soup for casseroles, reduce the broth to 2 cups.

Per serving (excluding unknown items): 81 Calories; 5g Fat (45% calories from fat); 7g Protein; 6g Carbohydrate; 0mg Cholesterol; 763mg Sodium
Food Exchanges: 1/2 Lean Meat; 1/2 Vegetable; 1/2 Fat
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Cranberry Chutney

Recipe By: Vegetarian Celebrations, Nava Atlas
Serving Size: 8
Preparation Time: 1:00

12 ounces cranberries fresh
1 cup peeled apples diced
1 cup orange juice
1/2 cup dried apricots diced
1 teaspoon fresh ginger grated
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 cup maple syrup to taste

Place the first seven ingredients in a deep, heavy saucepan and bring to a simmer. Cook over low heat with the lid slightly ajar for 20-25 minutes, or until the liquid is mostly absorbed. Add maple syrup to taste and simmer uncovered for another 5-10 minutes until thick. Let the chutney cool to room temperature, then store in a sterilized jar, tightly covered but not sealed. Refrigerate until needed. Before serving, bring to room temperature.

Per serving: 97 Calories; less than one gram Fat (3% calories from fat); 1g Protein; 25g Carbohydrate; 0mg Cholesterol; 3mg Sodium
Food Exchanges: 1 Fruit; 1/2 Other Carbohydrates

Braided Sweet Potato Bread

Recipe By: Nava Atlas, Vegetarian Celebrations
Serves 8
Preparation Time: 3 hours from start to finish

1 package active dry yeast (or 2 teaspoons)
1/4 cup lukewarm water
1/4 cup canola, safflower, or olive oil
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 1/2 cups cooked, mashed sweet potato
3 tablespoons maple syrup
1 cup soy milk
3 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup unbleached flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
soy milk to brush top of loaves

Combine the yeast and the water in a medium-sized mixing bowl and let stand 10 minutes. (The yeast water should look bubbly. If not, try again with fresh yeast.)
Stir in the oil and thyme, then the mashed sweet potato, maple syrup, and soy milk. Stir gently until the mixture is smooth.

In another bowl, combine the flours, cornmeal, and salt. Make a well in the center and pour in the wet mixture. Work together, using a spoon at first, then hands, until thoroughly combined into a dough. Turn out onto a floured board and knead for 8-10 minutes, adding additional flour a little at a time until the dough loses its stickiness.

(Or you can knead the dough in your large stand mixer or large food processor according to the directions.)

Place the dough in a clean bowl and cover with a tea towel. Let rise in a warm place for 1 1/2 hours, or until doubled in bulk.

Punch the dough down and turn back out onto the board. Divide into six equal pieces. With hand, roll each piece into a long coil, about 1 inch in diameter. To make each loaf, braid three coils and pinch the ends together. Place the loaves on a baking sheet sprinkled with cornmeal, cover with a tea towel, and let rise until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour. Brush the tops of the loaves with soymilk. Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 40-50 minutes, or until the tops are golden and the loaves feel hollow when tapped.

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Notes: To make a bread braid without stretching the dough too much, begin the braid at the center of the loaf, then braid out to each end.

To make the dough in a bread machine, cut the recipe in half, put the ingredients in the order your machine requires, and stop at the end of the first rising period. Continue on to punch down, divide, shape, and bake your bread as directed.

Creamy Mushroom Soup
Recipe By: Nava Atlas, Vegetarian Celebrations
Serves 8
Preparation Time: 45 minutes

3 tablespoons margarine (Earth Balance), divided
1 cup onions, chopped
2 potatoes, peeled and diced
2 stalks celery ribs with leaves, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 cups water
2 vegetable broth cubes
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 cup dry white wine, optional
12 ounces white mushrooms, sliced
6 ounces fresh shiitake or other wild mushrooms OR 6-8 large dried shiitakes
2 cups canned or cooked navy beans or cannellini
freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup minced parsley

Heat 2 tablespoons of the margarine in a large soup pot. Add the onions and sauté over moderate heat until golden. Add the next five ingredients and bring to a boil. Add the seasonings and wine, cover and simmer over moderate heat for 15 minutes.

Add half of the sliced white mushrooms and simmer another 10 minutes. Remove the soup from the heat and let stand several minutes.

If using fresh wild mushrooms, wipe clean, remove the stems (you can save these for broth or discard), and slice the caps. If using dried shiitakes, soak in warm water for 15 minutes, then remove and discard the stems and slice the caps. Heat the remaining tablespoon of margarine in a skillet. Add the reserved white mushrooms and shiitakes. Sauté, covered, for 10 minutes.

Puree the soup along with the white beans, in batches in a blender (Be careful! Don’t fill a blender more than half full of hot liquid) or with an immersion blender in the pot. Return the soup to the pot and stir in the sautéed mushrooms. Grind in pepper to taste. (You can make the soup up to 2 days ahead and refrigerate it, tightly covered, at this point.)

Before serving, bring to a simmer for at least 10 minutes. Adjust the consistency with more water if soup is too thick. Divide among soup bowls and sprinkle each serving with the parsley.


Georgia Kudzu Pecan Pie

Recipe By: Meredith McCarty, in Lorna Sass’ Complete Vegetarian Kitchen
Serves 8
Preparation Time: 45 minutes, plus time to set

1 9 inch unbaked pie shell (check ingredients or make your own)
1 1/2 cups brown rice syrup (see cook’s notes)
1 1/2 cups water
1/4 cup agar flakes
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons kuzu or arrowroot
water, to barely cover the kuzu
2 cups toasted pecans
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Set pie weights or beans into the pie crust and bake on the middle shelf of a 375 F oven until lightly browned, about 15-20 minutes. Set on a rack to cool. This is a good time to toast your pecans as well. Check them after 12-14 minutes.
2. In a heavy saucepan, prepare the filling. Whisk together the rice syrup, water, agar flakes, cinnamon, and salt, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer over very low heat until the agar completely dissolves, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes.
3. In a small bowl, dissolve the arrowroot in water to barely cover and add to the agar-rice syrup mixture. While cooking the mixture at a low simmer, whisk it until the chalky color becomes clear.
4. Let the mixture cool for 15 minutes. Stir in the pecans and vanilla and pour into the prepared pie crust, taking care to distribute the pecans evenly.
5. Let the pie cool to room temperature and set, about 2 hours (or refrigerate pie about 1 hour to firm up more quickly). For optimum flavor, bring to room temperature before serving.
Cook’s notes: For the filling, Meredith favors the dark brown rice syrup made by Mitoku. Other brands (often lighter in color) sometimes prevent the filling from setting firmly. (Lisa’s note: I use either Tree of Life Rice Syrup or Lundberg Gluten-Free Brown Rice Syrup – both quite light in color – and both work well).

Option: To really make this pie a truly decadent Chocolate Bourbon Pecan Pie, use about 1 cup water and 1/2 cup bourbon to dissolve the agar flakes (the alcohol will dissipate while simmering, leaving just the flavor), and add 1/2 cup non-dairy chocolate chips to the partly cooled filling before you pour it into the crust. Yum!!
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