Showing posts with label European. Show all posts
Showing posts with label European. Show all posts

Sep 20, 2014

gyro tempeh burger

Day 15 VeganMoFo is all about gyros and tempeh. Making this Gyro Tempeh Burger was just like eating a wonderful gyro, burger style. The tempeh is marinated in a Greek seasoned oil and is then served with a Cucumber Tzaziki.

I served these burgers on flat rounds, which mimic a pita quite nicely, but you can, of course, serve them in pita bread. Even if you use regular pita, make sure to toast it well to offer some desired crunch.

The tzaziki adds enough of a sauce-feel that there is no actual need for anything additional.  Gyros were one of my most favorite sandwiches pre-veg days, so I wouldn't steer you wrong.

If you happen to have Everyday Vegan Eats, make sure to check out my Greek Gyro with Tzaziki Sauce (page 77) for a more authentic version of a gyro.

Just as Tami Noyes (Vegan Finger Foods and American Vegan Kitchen) will make a Reuben out of anything, (really ANything,  I mean ANYTHING), I'll do the same with a gyro, hence this not-so-traditional burger.

This is the very last day to enter the giveaway for "Vegan Tacos" by Jason Wyrick. Enter HERE!

Gyro Tempeh Burger with Cucumber Tzaziki
Makes 4 burgers
1 (8-ounce) package tempeh
4 tablespoons Gyro Seasoned Oil, divided, recipe below
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, divided
¼ teaspoon sea salt
Fresh ground black pepper
1 medium cucumber, peeled into thin stips
¼ cup unsweetened plain vegan yogurt
¼ teaspoon red chili flakes
4 thin burger rounds or two pita bread, halved and split
Lettuce, tomato and onion, as needed

1. Cut the tempeh in half. Cut each half in half diagonally. Cut each quarter in half through the middle so that you have 8 thin slices of tempeh. Combine 2 tablespoons oil, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, salt, black pepper and sliced tempeh in a large bowl. Set aside for 10 minutes.
2. Squeeze the cucumber slices with your hand to eliminate much of the liquid. Make the tzaziki by combining the cucumber, remaining 2 tablespoons oil, 1 tablespoon lemon  juice, yogurt, and chili flakes in a medium bowl. Set aside.  
3. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Cook the tempeh in the skillet until golden, about 3 minutes per side. Take care adding the tempeh to the hot skillet; the marinade will sputter.
4. Add the reserved marinating onion and herbs to the skillet and cook until golden.
5. Oil the rounds with the seasoned oil and toast in the skillet until golden.
6. Assemble the burgers by layering lettuce, tomato onion, 2 tempeh slices and tzazki on each bottom toasted round and finish with the top buns. Serve.
Gyro Seasoned Oil
½ cup neutral oil
10 garlic cloves, minced
½ medium onion, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon oregano
1 teaspoon Rosemary

1. Combine the oil, garlic, onion, oregano and Rosemary in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes.
2. Strain the oil, reserving the vegetables.
3. The oil will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.

© 2014 Copyright Zsu Dever. All rights reserved.

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

Jan 5, 2013

greek chopped salad + pickled onions and creamy dressing

The beauty of a chopped salad is that you get to have everything that is in the salad in every single bite. And the joy of a chopped salad is that you personally prepare every single of those bites as you dice all of the ingredients. 
A bowl of love. 

The roasted pepper here is freshly roasted. I love the aroma the house assumes as a fresh pepper is being charred. And really, it is so easy. This recipe calls for a roasted red pepper. You can use jarred, but the time it takes from stove-top burner to bowl is just enough time to cook the pepper yourself.

 Roast the pepper on your burner, turning it a few times until it is charred, throw it into a bowl, cover the bowl with a plastic wrap and allow it to steam for 15 minutes. Remove wrap, place pepper on wrap and, using your hands, peel and seed. Place pepper in the now empty bowl. Head to the sink to wash your hands (not the pepper!), return to the plastic wrap, fold it over a few times and toss. Chop pepper.
 See how simple? 

That gorgeous pink-ish red onion on top of the salad is quickly pickled, thereby removing the "bite" of a raw onion, and is ready by the time your salad and pepper is also done, around 30 minutes.

The dressing here is a cross between creamy-style and a vinaigrette --- really the best of both kinds of dressings.

The "feta" is homemade. It is turning out better and better each time I make it, so look for the recipe real soon. Incidentally, it is raw, using the same technique that rejuvelac-inspired raw cheeses are based on, so just use one of those raw cheeses (or any creamy cheese - diced Daiya Wedges would be great!) as your feta replacement.

The salad is packed with protein, including beans and kale, in addition to cucumbers, olives, tomatoes, romaine and carrots.

We loved this salad!

Cost Breakdown

lettuce, kale: $3
cuke, tomato, onion, carrot: $3
dressing: $1
beans: $2
olives: $.50

Total to make 6 servings:

Nov 12, 2012

annual gyros

It has been well over year since I have made Gyros and I can only delay in making them for the family for the sake of the blog for just so long: "Must make something new!" so goes my mantra.

For all the juicy details of what a Gyro is and my fascinating personal look into the Greek restaurants of Chicago-land, head over to last year's post.

This time around, however, I don't want to bore you with details, and instead only temp you with pictures.

I used the Simple Chicken Seitan Recipe, cooked for 4 hours as a roast instead of cutlets, and sliced it thin. 

Yeah. Still totally great! If you haven't gone here, yet, it is time to book the trip. 

Cost Breakdown

seitan: $2
pita: $2
olive oil, lemon, herbs: $1
yogurt, cucumber: $1.50
tomato, onion, lettuce: $1.50

Total to make 5 servings:

RECIPE UPDATE: this soup has been tested and revised and will be featured in the upcoming cookbook "Everyday Vegan Eats," by Zsu Dever.

Apr 18, 2011



Having lived in Chicago fifteen years ago and having worked in almost a dozen Greek restaurants, I am very familiar with the Gyro. Interestingly, having been back here for over a year now, I've yet to rediscover those familiar Greek  joints - not that I could eat at them anymore, but still, where have they gone?

Gyro is basically a bunch of meat skewered onto a vertical spit and roasted as it turns. The meat is sliced off in pieces, put on a pita with tomatoes, onions and tzaziki sauce. And please do not pronounce it as the orientation-stabilizing device, for it is not. It is not a hero, either.
It is: year-o.   

For the meat I used the Firm Seitan, but I have had delicious luck with using Tender Seitan. The seitan is cooked as a roast, is then sliced thin and marinated in olive oil, garlic, lemon juice, oregano and rosemary. Before you throw it into a pita, saute the pieces until some of it gets a little crisp.

The tzaziki sauce is soy yogurt with shredded and drained cucumbers (so your sauce isn't too thin), garlic, lemon juice, oregano and a little olive oil.

This is so worth making every time! My family loves it and if any of my old Greek bosses could taste it, they'd love it, too.

Cost Breakdown

seitan: $4
pita: $3
olive oil, lemon, herbs: $2
yogurt: $1
tomato, onion: $1.50
Total to make 7 servings:

Mar 19, 2011

FNF - bubble and squeak with sausages and onion gravy

Not to scare anyone that time has suddenly sped up and it is again a Food Network Friday, hosted by the lovely author of American Vegan Kitchen, Ms. Tami Noyes, this is due for April 1st. (So it is not too late to join in the fun! Redo Jamie's recipe vegan and send your creation to Tami.)

When I chose this one, I had St. Pat's Day in mind, so I made it on that day. Bubble and Squeak is a traditional English dish made of leftover vegetables and potatoes mashed and fried together until crisp. What is the connection to Ireland? The Irish claim it as well. Good enough for me!

We have traditionally enjoyed Corned Seitan and Cabbage on this holiday, but, truthfully, I wanted something else - not to mention that David requests Corned Cabbage throughout the year and does not feel restricted to the wearing of the green.

As written, this Jamie Oliver dish is not - not! - low fat in any way. This is obviously not a Food Revolution meal. A bit of recipe translation: A knob is a tablespoon and a glug is a couple of tablespoons. He asks you to use a glug of olive oil to fry your potatoes. No need, folks. The potatoes absorb the oil anyway and then you need to add more. Skip most of the oil, use a well seasoned cast iron pan or nonstick and your potatoes and root vegetables will brown just fine.

Since the sausage was the bit of creative element for this FNF, I made my Corned Seitan but rolled it into links. This maintained my tradition of having Corned Seitan on St. Patty's and tasted really good to boot.

The onion gravy calls for 1/2 cup of balsamic vinegar. This would not be a big deal, except Jamie does not reduce it any. This had me raise a Vulcan eyebrow.

Ultimately, the gravy was a little too thick, so I added another half cup of broth. The acidity would have been a bit much alone, but with the rest of the dish, it worked beautifully. This must be why he has a TV show and I have a blog.

I used baby arugula, dressed with a bit of lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper for the greens.

Delicious meal.

Cost Breakdown

corned sausage: $4
potatoes, leek, turnip, carrot: $4
onion, arugula: $3
chestnuts: $4 (and on sale!)
flour, herbs, vinegar, stock: $2
Total to make 6 servings:

Feb 14, 2011

lima bean bake (January 24)

Meatless Monday

I chose to make Lima Bean Bake for tonight's meatless Monday meal because it is easy to make and so rewarding.

You can use either dry large Lima beans (which need to soak first - no short cuts here) or canned Lima beans or butter beans. I few minutes on the stove and then into the oven for a few hours rewards you with an exceptional meal. I have taken this dish to many a potluck and never came home with a single bean. No culinary expertise is needed. Only the two hours to bake it.

To accompany the rich, buttery beans, some garlicky greens are ideal. Today I made a Swiss Chard dish. I had fought to make chard tasty for so long, but either the chard I received from my CSA has mellowed out, or I have figured out a way to cut the earthiness-taste down to size.

I have decide that chard needs something else cooked with it. Even adding the stems of the chard makes some difference. In  this case, I also added cauliflower. Just a simple pan searing with garlic is all that it needs as long as the cauliflower has been steamed. If not, just steam it after charring it a bit, but be careful to not burn the garlic. In fact, use large chunks of garlic to flavor the oil and then remove it.

Cost Breakdown

Lima beans: $4
tomato, carrot, onion: $2
spices, garlic: $.50
chard, cauliflower: $4
Total to make 5 servings:

Feb 6, 2011

hungarian layered potatoes

I have tried numerous times to successfully remake this very popular and absolutely delicious Hungarian meal. My parents made this on special occasions and as I have blogged before on a former attempt to make this, in its original form, it is full of fat. So much so, that it is considered well made if you can see the fat oozing out of the layers.

While my previous attempts were absolutely delicious, I still felt that it was missing something or something was just a tad off. Thinking what it could be, it became obvious that in its original state, cooking the potatoes and then slicing them relatively thick was acceptable since all of the fat would soak through the potato layers. However, without the stick of butter, pound of bacon and sausage, pint of full-fat sour cream and half-a-dozen-or-so eggs, this was not going to work. The potatoes needed to be thinner - more like that of an Au gratin dish.
This worked beautifully!

Also, after having been encouraged by Tami Noyes of American Vegan Kitchen, I went and bought a Tofu Express presser. As I have stated before, pressing your tofu between layers of paper towels and plates and whatever you need to weigh the whole contraption down with, does not work. Period. Wrapping the tofu in layers of a thin kitchen towel and setting it in the fridge overnight is your second best bet.
Your very best bet is this machine.
I cringed at spending $45 on a tofu press (a tofu press!!), and had been mulling it over for the past six months, but in the end it is totally worth it.
Thanks, Tami!

I made the 'eggs' in this layered dish using the Tofu Express and couldn't be happier with how it turned out. You can slice the tofu as this as you need to after pressing it in this thing and that is a key to making the 'eggs' successfully. In addition, the tofu does not crumble after pressing.

Cost Breakdown

potatoes: $3
tofu: $2
spices, herbs: $1
vegan sour cream: $2
vegan sausage: $4
vegan milk: $.50
 Total to make 6 servings:

Feb 3, 2011

romanian potato patties

European/Potato Night

Romanian Potato Patties. These are similar to a knish or aloo tikki in the sense that all three are mashed potatoes. This version sautes veggies - cauliflower, carrots, onion, garlic - and green peas and mixes it into the mashed potatoes. The mixture is shaped into patties which are then pan sauteed and served with a very simple tomato sauce.

I like the idea of these patties because I used flax seed meal to bind the potatoes (which they probably did not need, but the addition of flax to anything is golden in my mind) and there are lots of vegetables incorporated into them. In fact, you don't have to use my combo of veggies, just use about 2 cups worth of any vegetables chopped fine. 

This made vegetable eating easier for my oldest daughter who actually picks out minced bell peppers from anything. However, she doesn't mind overtly much when vegetables are encased in her favorite vegetable, the potato. Or I might be deluding myself.

The tomato sauce in this recipe was ready in about 10 minutes and was needed to complete the dish, so don't omit it.

When using flax seeds, use golden flax seeds when making a dish that will be light in color (potatoes, cookie dough without chocolate, light smoothie). It makes the finished product look prettier than using the dark seeds.
If you care.

Cost Breakdown

potatoes: $1.50
flax: $.25
onion, garlic: $.75
tomato: $2
cauliflower, carrot, peas: $3
Total to make 25 patties:

Jan 13, 2011

seitan and kidney bean pie

European Night

Steak and Kidney Pie, a British comfort food is literally made with steak and kidneys - often that of a cow, lamb or pig. It is cooked in a brown gravy with onions and Worcestershire sauce and topped with a crust of some sort - pastry, shortcrust or puff.

Interesting to note, the only vegetable in the traditional pie is the onion. Well, there are plenty of other dishes with veggies in them - no need to crowd this one full of 'em!

Keeping true to the dish, I made my Seitan and Kidney Bean Pie with Firm Seitan (beef-y), but replaced the kidneys with the obvious substitution of kidney beans. 

Adding some flavor to this dish, I caramelized my onions first and then added the dredged seitan to be seared. Dredging the seitan makes sure I had the flour in the dish needed to thicken the sauce. I deglazed (added wine to the pan to help loosen the brown bits on the bottom and then allowed it to mostly evaporate to cook off the alcohol) the pan and added the beans and broth. While you would need to cook this for about an hour if it were meat, I just had to simmer it for a few minutes to marry the flavors.

I used a whole wheat herb crust as the top crust of the pie and served it with a green salad.

Cost Breakdown

onion: $1
flour, herbs, spices: $2
coconut oil (crust): $1
seitan: $3
beans: $1
wine, broth: $1 
salad: $3
Total to make 6 servings:

Dec 30, 2010

seitan paprikas

Last week I blogged about 'Poor Man's Paprikas,' also known as Paprikas Potato, so I decided to make the actual, very popular Hungarian dish, apparently intended only for rich folks, Chicken Paprikas.

The good news is that the seitan costs about as much as the potatoes and, in fact, the costliest ingredient here is the cashews for the cashew sour cream.

Tender Seitan in sauteed until it starts getting brown and then set aside. The base of the sauce is very authentically Hungarian, being reliant on onions and fat. I cut most of the oil out, but the flavor was still wonderful.

My recipe calls for 2 T of oil, one large onion and 1 T of Hungarian paprika. You can cut the oil in half again, just make sure to keep the onions moving so they don't burn. In addition, "sweat" your onions at some points as well (cover with a lid to keep the moisture in the pan not in the air).

To make it even more authentic, I made Galuska with this to sop up the lovely gravy. Galuska is a dumpling, almost like a gnocchi but no potato and much less work. These "require" eggs, but having made them in mass proportions with eggs at the restaurant and now making them without eggs, it is obvious that as long as you cook them for a minute or two after they start floating, they are just as fluffy as their counterpart.
Another egg "requirement" debunked!

Cost Breakdown

seitan: $3
pepper, onion, tomato: $2
paprika: $.50
cashew, flour: $1
flour, turmeric, salt: $2
Total to make 6 servings:

Dec 19, 2010

seitan marengo

Napoleon fought many battles, but the one at Marengo produced this dish. The original dish was made using whatever was around the countryside at the time, according to legend. There was chicken, crayfish, tomatoes, onion, garlic, herbs and olive oil.

I've seen many modern renditions of Chicken Marengo, utilizing mushrooms, peppers, olives and/or wine, but the one thing that still remains the same is that the chicken is cooked in a tomato sauce.

Here is my version, keeping it simple and replacing the chicken with seitan cutlets and the crayfish with mushrooms. If you can or want to get oyster or lobster mushrooms, the better. Of course, if you are not a fan of mushrooms, replace it with a vegetable. I added another twist: instead of using vegetable broth, I used plant milk to make the tomato sauce a bit creamy.

This one is relatively simple, but give it about 15-20 minutes to simmer. Tomato sauces always taste better if they simmer a bit to cook away some of the tomato's bitterness.

I served this with ... mashed potatoes, not just because it is traditional, but because it is Cat's birthday week and I still have 2 bags of potatoes to cook for her. It was outstanding.

Cost Breakdown

tomato, paste: $2.50
mushroom: $1
onion, garlic, herbs: $2
potatoes, plant milk: $4
Total to make 6 servings:

Dec 17, 2010

hungarian paprika potatoes

European Night

Continuing with Cat's Birthday Week menu, I made March of the Grenadiers. In order to make the March, you need to make Paprika Potatoes. Paprika Potatoes can stand very well on its own, hence the double picture, but when mashed a bit, mixed with pasta and then baked, it is outstanding.

Very simple and quick, this is a staple in our home. I don't usually go to the extend of exerting myself with an extra pot and make March of the Grenadiers, but it was specially requested by Cat.

Super Yummy and Super Quick.

Cost Breakdown

potatoes: $3
onion, garlic: $1
paprika: $.50
pasta: $2
Total to make 6 servings:

Paprika Potatoes

March of the Grenadiers

Oct 23, 2010

cordon bleu

I have been on a roll lately!
First the Twice-Baked Crispy Gluten, then the Braciole, and now
"Chicken" Cordon Bleu. Cordon Bleu has a thin slice of Prosciutto and Swiss or Gruyere Cheese rolled in a pounded chicken breast, then breaded and pan-fried.

This is very easy to veganize and the result is extravagantly exquisite.

Using the Tender Seitan Recipe (recipe is coming), roll out the gluten and place a slice of Tofurkey and a slice of vegan cheese (I used Daiya and Follow Your Heart) in the middle. To make this soy free, use a recipe from the Uncheese Cookbook by Jo Stepaniak, maybe the Buffalo Mostarella or the Muenster Cheez (use 1 T less fresh lemon juice than the recipe calls for) and skip the Tofurkey unless you have a soy-free cold cut.

Roll the gluten up and sear the packages. If you do not sear it on all sides, the gluten will unravel. Not good. If you want to see a How-To, check out the Braciole How-To Breakdown for the rolling and searing instructions, scroll down to The Seitan part.

After searing each gluten roll, cook them in the simmering liquid from the Tender Seitan Recipe and bake them for two hours, just like the recipe says to do for the whole roast, just use the seared rolls and cut the cooking time to 2 hours.

When they are cooked, cool them and bread them in (1) flour then in (2) cashew cream (soy free!), then in (3) fresh bread crumbs and pan fry them until golden brown. The cashew cream is just as effective as using soy yogurt
or eggs (BAD- never use eggs!!)
to stick the crumbs to the rolls.

Cost Breakdown
gluten: $3
Tofurkey: $3
Cheeses: $5
fresh bread: $1
coconut oil: $1
cashews: $2
bok choy: $3
polenta: $2
Total to feed a family of 7:

Oct 21, 2010

swedish vegan meatballs

Swedish Meatballs!

Swedish meatballs are supposed to be light and fluffy on the inside. Since I am not using meat, I made a  version of Bryanna's Neatballs. These are made with TVP and gluten. I am positive that they can be made with bulgur instead of TVP to make it soy-free. These are first baked, then cooled and then simmered in the gravy or tomato sauce. These little guys stay together really well and are light and fluffy - just as intended.

The gravy is a cashew cream based gravy with a dark rich stock to replace the veal stock in the original recipes. 

My husband commented that he had not realized how much he had missed Swedish Meatballs until I made these. He also said that they kicked-butt.

Serve these with mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce in lieu of the authentic, but hard to locate, lingonberry jam. 

Cost Breakdown:
TVP, gluten: $4
cashew: $1
onion, garlic, veg stock: $3
bread: $1
potatoes: $5
cranberry: $.50
Total to feed a family of 6:

Oct 6, 2010

corned cabbage

Family Favorite

Well, this is almost a family favorite, since two of the five don't consider it one, but the other three that do speak very loudly.

This is a super easy to make, very simple meal, but oh so wonderful.

We started making out the entire corned seitan (corned beef) dish, complete with seitan, cabbage and potatoes, but as time went on, we realized we actually like the vegetables. True the seitan makes a great Reuben (see the Corned Setian recipe on the Recipe list page), but the corned seitan can be frozen and it takes more work and we found ourselves eating the cabbage and carrots and potatoes more.

The obvious solution was to skip the seitan and make only the vegetables. Now before you ignore this dish, let me tell you how fantastic it is.
 It is thhhhhiiiiissss good.
The horseradish sauce is really what puts it over the top, so no matter what eggless mayo you use, Veganaise, Nayonaise or a homemade one using tofu, this is the sauce that makes the humble cabbage and potatoes an aristocrat.  

To make it all you do is put all of your vegetables, cabbage, carrot, onion and potato in a large pot and add the cooking broth made of pickling spice, balsamic vinegar, ketchup, maple syrup, cloves, garlic and paprika. Simmer until the vegetables are tender and serve with the Horseradish sauce.

Cost Breakdown
carrot, onion, garlic: $2
potato: $2
cabbage: $4
veganaise, horseradish: $1
spices, maple, ketchup, vinegar: $1
Total to feed a family of 6: