Mar 18, 2013

colcannon with corned sausage

I believe we all have some Irish in us and it is just a matter of tapping into our elusive ancestors. St. Patrick's Day is a reminder of this, for whether we are religious or not, most of us will wear green, drink beer, or eat Irish food in celebration of the holiday. "Party" is the term I believe most accurately describes how we Americans like to remember this day, whether with food or spirits.

There are numerous Irish dishes, such as Corned Cabbage, which we love at our house, made with cabbage, potatoes, carrots, onions and smothered with horseradish sauce, or the famous Sheppard's Pie, easily made vegetarian or vegan and spinning off various adaptations itself.

This Patty's Day, I chose to make Colcannon. Regardless of what you have heard that this dish is all about the potato or cabbage, it isn't. It is all about the butter. Authentically, around three pounds of potatoes and a head of cabbage would call for two sticks, or one cup, of butter. It's as if Paula Dean had a direct channel to the Irish. 

Traditional Colcannon contains potatoes, cabbage or kale, ham, green onions and butter. I decided to stick with tradition as much as possible, therefore, be warned, this is not a low-calorie recipe and if you choose to minimize the vegan butter, you do so at your discretion. This dish is amazing with all the called for butter, and while half would still be pretty good, indulging once a year is not going to hurt. Too badly.

I decided not to ignore the ham. I have read that it adds a lot of subtle flavor. I made Corned Sausage to replace it. I used Tofurkey Kielbasa as the sausage and cooked it in a corned sauce for a few minutes. Did the trick! You know something is done pretty well when your teenagers return for seconds of a dish full of kale. 

Or maybe, just maybe, it was the butter.

Cost Breakdown

potatoes: $3
cabbage, kale: $5
green onions: $1
sausage: $4
spices, butter, milk: $2

Total to make 6 servings

Mar 1, 2013

king ranch casserole + "nut butter universe" winner

The above is a King Ranch Casserole, a Tex-Mex favorite, typically made of well-seasoned chicken, layers of cheese, and tortillas all in a creamy sauce. 

I used black beans instead of a chicken substitute because I thought it would work well -- and it does. It has layers of cheese, beans, tortillas, onions, chilies and sauce. Then to finish it off, it is topped with tortilla chips and baked until it is hot and bubbly. 
Really good, partner.  Overall, this is a very flavorful, quick and easy casserole to assemble. 

Cost Breakdown

beans: $4

tortillas: $2
cheese, tomatoes, onions, milk: $4
seasonings: $.25

Total to make 6 servings:


As for other business...

As some of you know, today is the day chooses the winner of Robin Robertson's brand new cookbook, "Nut Butter Universe," published by Vegan Heritage Press. You have got to love a publishing company that is vegan run! 

Here are a few more pictures from "Nut Butter Universe," 
in addition to the pics on the last post:

Power Ball Energy Bites

Peanut Butter Biscotti

Creamy Mushroom Soup

Pasta with Cauliflower-Cashew Alfredo

West African Peanut Soup

Mouthwatering, right?!?

If you are not the winner, please check back in case the first winner doesn't respond. 
Also, FYI, this book is available on Kindle as well! Neat!

I have to say that vegans have got to be the most creative commentators around! It must be all the BS we have to put up with daily defending the animals. You guys rocked with your nutty comments; I was literally laughing my head off. Well done!

Without further delay, the winner out of 45 comments is...
Comment Number 33 - Sambycat!

"A peanut sat on a railroad track,
His heart was all a-flutter.
The five-fifteen came rushing by--
Toot toot! Peanut butter!"

Please email me by March 3rd at veganaide at yahoo dot com.

Robin Robertson is also hosting a Nut Butter Universe Blog Tour! Head over to this link and be sure to check out other ways to win a copy of the book or get more inside info!