Rattlesnake Tofu

I love making rattlesnake tofu, even if it takes forever to do so.

This picture is the mix of the spices for the blackening seasoning


Roast Fail, Meatloaf Win!

I FAILED at making a roast overnight. I woke up this morning to find that the lid of the crock-pot had shattered all over the top of the roast. I didn't pull the crock-pot liner down around the outside of the crock-pot. I think that when it got hot, pressure couldn't release through the lip of the pot because the liner was in the way. Instead I think the roast or pressure must have pushed through the lid, hence GLASS INFUSED cider-braised pork shoulder with caramelized onion and apple confit. Boo. I will have to try it another time. It smelled SO GOOD!

So now I need to make something else that can feed 9 people tonight. I'm going to my standby "best meatloaf in the world" by Alton Brown. I made 1 & 1/2 of the recipe and split it into 2 meatloaves. Served with peas and Chipotle Smashed Sweet Potatoes (also from Alton Brown - Thanks for making them Michelle & Justin!). Candle brought a salad and I also made a no-cream potato soup with a yummy pesto from Oprah - who would have thought! I will make this again for sure! I followed the recipe, just added a little additional salt and pepper before serving. The entire party loved it!
Great night, good company, and congrats to Leah & Shawn ~ wish you both a long, happy & healthy marriage!


mmm... hummus!

HUMMUS Recipe (From Cheese Factory Restaurant, Baraboo, WI)

1.5 lbs canned garbanzo beans, drained; reserve 1/2 cup plus 2tbsp liquid
2 tsp minced garlic
3 tbsp lemon juice
3/4 cup roasted tahini
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp salt

Combine ingredients in food processor and puree until very smooth.

That is what the original recipe reads. We usually add a little more salt and lemon juice in tiny increments and taste until it is perfect. You can add sun-dried tomatoes, olives, roasted red peppers, or herbs to this to switch it up.

Drizzle with olive oil and serve with fresh or roasted veggies, warmed pita wedges, feta cheese, olives, radishes, etc...

You can dress up the serving plate with a sprinkle of finely chopped parsley and/or paprika.

Visit the Cheese factory website at: http://www.cookingvegetarian.com/


Cardamom Cookies

This is the recipe for the little groundhog cookies that were served at Groundhog Day '08 & '10

1 C butter, softened
2 eggs
1 C sugar
3 1/2 C flour
2 t baking powder
1/2 t baking soda
1/2 t salt
1 t cardamom
1 t cinnamon
1/4 C milk

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Cream together eggs, sugar and butter in mixing bowl.
Sift together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and cardamom.
Slowly add egg/butter mixture and mix well.
Add milk to form dough.

Roll out dough on lightly floured surface. Dough should be about 1/8 in thick. Use a cookie cutter to cut out cookies.

Place on greased cookie sheet or parchment paper and back 10-12 minutes, until light brown.

Cool cookies immediately on wire racks.

Once cooled, frost cookies with icing (recipe below). Makes about 80 2in cookies.

2 C Powdered sugar
1 t vanilla extract
1 t cinnamon
1-3 T water

Zucchini Pancakes

Michelle made these for appetizer dinner and shared with Guy and I. These are great dipped in marinara sauce. This recipe came from the back of the Dynasty breadcrumb box

1/2 lb zucchini (2 small)
1 egg
1/2 C japanese style bread crumbs

Mmm Indian Food!

We have been cooking from Sunita's Indian Recipe Collection for years. I kinda freaked out for a minute when I realized that geocities was gone and I was thinking how I need to copy these turmeric stained pages immediately...but I found it! http://reocities.com/NapaValley/3925/

If you have had Indian food at our house, it was probably the following recipes: Guchi Mattar, Cauliflower Curry, Peas Pulau, Butter Chicken, and the Basic Raita

Lasagna of Roasted Butternut Squash

This is one of the most decadent recipes we have ever made. Its super involved, dirties every dish in the kitchen, but is SO worth it - if you have the time. This is uber-comfort, off-the-diet, sooo rich and yummy food. Invite me over whenever you make it!

Lasagna of Roasted Butternut Squash

Soysage Egg Casserole

I made this with Soysage for the first time at our Groundhog Day Party and it turned out delicious! This is quick and easy to make - no overnight prep!

1 tube of Gimmie Lean Ground Sausage (-OR- 1lb Pork Sausage)
1 med. Green pepper, diced
1 med. Onion, diced
10 Eggs
3 C Skim Milk
2 t Dry mustard
1 t Salt
1/2 t Pepper
6 English muffins, torn/cut into bite-size pieces
1 med. Tomato, seeded and chopped
2 C Cheddar cheese, shredded

1. Butter a 9x13 baking pan. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
2. Add 1-2 T butter or oil to the skillet. Cook soysage, breaking up crumbles. * If using sausage, you may need to drain off excess grease.
3. Toss in green pepper and onion with the soysage to soften, about 5 min. Dump into baking dish.
4. Add cut english muffins, tomatoes, and 1 C sharp cheddar cheese to baking dish. Mix together. (You can prep this the night before, if needed.)
5. Combine eggs, milk, dry mustard, salt and pepper. Wisk well.
6. Pour egg mixture over casserole. Press down contents so egg mixture completely covers it.
7. Top with 1 C sharp cheddar cheese. Dish may be refrigerated for up to 1 hour before baking.
8. Bake uncovered 55-60 minutes, until eggs are set.


Sweet Potato Ginger Soup

This recipe made a very large batch, could half the recipe in the future.

I used leeks, but have rarely used these... check here to see how to clean them...How to clean leeks
otherwise substituting with onion and browning slightly will turn out similar.

I wanted to use my Cuisinart, so I used the slicer disk to finely dice the leeks. And since it was already out, I used the chopping blade to cut the sweet potatoes.

2 T Olive Oil
2 C diced leek or onion
1/2 t red chili flakes
3 T minced fresh ginger
4 T tamari or soy sauce
6 Large Sweet Potatoes, peeled and chopped
2-3 T ground coriander
2-3 T garam masala
8 C vegetable stock
1/2 C chopped fresh cilantro

Heat oil. Add the leeks, chili flakes and fresh ginger. Saute for a few minutes.
Add sweet potatoes. Saute for a few minutes.
Add coriander and garam masala. Stir frequently.
Add vegetable stock. Bring to a boil.
Reduce to a simmer 10-15 minutes until potatoes are softened.
Blend soup until smooth. Return to heat.
Garnish with cilantro when served.

Whole Wheat Pasta with Tofu and Cucumber

This is one of my all time favorite tofu dishes. Its one of the few recipes I don't mess with!

Total Time:  20 Minutes                 Serves 4

3/4 pound whole-wheat spaghetti

1 1/4 pounds firm tofu, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 tablespoon plus 4 teaspoons soy sauce
2 1/2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
2 1/2 tablespoons cooking oil
2 tablespoons wine vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon Asian sesame oil
3/4 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cayenne
2 cucumbers, peeled, halved lengthwise, seeded,  
    and cut into 1/4-inch slices
3 scallions including green tops, sliced
3 tablespoons chopped cilantro or fresh parsley

In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the spaghetti until just done, about 15 minutes. Drain the pasta. Rinse with cold water and drain thoroughly.
In a medium bowl, combine the tofu with the 1 tablespoon soy sauce and 1/2 teaspoon of the grated ginger. Let sit for about 5 minutes.
In a large glass or stainless-steel bowl, combine the remaining 2 teaspoons ginger and 4 teaspoons soy sauce, 1 1/2 tablespoons of the cooking oil, the vinegar, lemon juice, sesame oil, lemon zest, salt, and cayenne.
In a large nonstick frying pan, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon cooking oil over moderate heat. Add the tofu and cook, stirring frequently, until browned, about 8 minutes. Add the tofu, pasta, cucumbers, scallions, and cilantro to the dressing in the large bowl and toss.

Recipe reprinted by permission of Food and Wine. All rights reserved.
Nutrition Information
Serves 4 - Facts Per Serving:
Calories:               495         Fat. Total:            15g         Carbohydrates, Total:    73g
Cholesterol:       0mg       Sodium:               728mg   Protein:                24g
Fiber:    13g         % Cal. from Fat:                27%        Fat, Saturated:  0g
©1998- 2012 Cooking.com
Source: Quick from Scratch - One Dish Meals



Banana Applesauce Bread

1 ¼ C flour
¾ C whole wheat flour
½ C packed light brown sugar
1 T baking powder
1 t cinnamon
¼ t baking soda

½ C egg whites or (4 whites)
1 cup smashed bananas
½ C butter milk -OR- skim milk soured with 1 T lemon juice
1/3 C unsweetened applesauce
1 tsp vanilla

½ C chopped walnuts
½ C rasins
1 T grated orange zest (optional)
Cooking spray

Preheat over to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x5 loaf pan with cooking spray. Dust with flour.
Combine first 6 dry ingredients, stir.
In a separate bowl, whisk or beat egg white until foamy / almost doubled in size.
Prepare soured milk if needed.
Add next 5 wet-ish ingredients to the dry mix. Mix until just blended.
Add walnuts, raisins, and grated orange zest.
Pour into prepared loaf pan.
Bake for 55 minutes, until toothpick comes out clean.
Cool on a wire rack at least 10 min before flipping bread out of pan.
Let the bread cool completely before slicing.

Adapted from The Eat-Clean Diet Cookbook


Longbranch Tofu Dumplings

I have yet to try to make this recipe but have loved these dumplings when I have had them at Longbranch Coffee House. This is usually served over rice noodles.


Yield: 72
Shelf Life: 5 days

6.0 # tofu (6 whole boxes)
12 scallions (1 1/2 bunches)
12 oz. celery
3 oz. fresh parsley
2 cans water chestnuts
1 ½ c peanut butter
1 c soy sauce
2 1/4 c flour


Yield: 2+ bottles
Shelf Life: 10 days

1 carton apple juice (6 cups)
¼ c brown sugar
6 T soy sauce
6 T white vinegar
¼ c ginger powder
¼ c garlic powder
2 T corn starch

For Dumplings:
1. Drain tofu and toss it into small metal colander in a large stainless bowl. Place a small plate under colander.
2. Crush tofu uniformly by hand. Place a dinner plate on top and two heavy items on top of the plate. Drain for 1-2 hours in walk-in.
3. Meanwhile, chop scallions, celery, parsley and water chestnuts into ¼” dice.
4. Add veggies to tofu and mix well.
5. Add peanut butter, soy sauce and flour to veggies & tofu.
6. Blend thoroughly by hand until completely uniform.
7. Using the blue-handled scoop, place full and level scoops onto large baking sheets, 24 to a sheet or 6 x 4.
8. Flatten each dumpling slightly with wet fingers.
9. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Turn tray and bake for another 15 minutes.
10.Place on cooling rack until cooled.
11.Place in two small containers – 36 each – with parchment paper between layers.
12.Label, date, time and store in freezer, unless needed immediately.

For Sauce:

1. Combine everything except corn starch in small saucepan. Bring to a boil.
2. Whisk cornstarch with ½ c cold water until smooth.
3. When sauce boils, whisk cornstarch water into sauce when. Return to a boil.
4. Take off heat and let cool slightly. Pour through a strainer to remove clumps.
5. When completely cool, pour into squirt bottles, label, date and time and store in walk-in.


Sausage Gravy

My brother makes great sausage gravy and was thrilled to try it this year! I can totally get away with a soysage version of this as well using a tube of "Gimmie Lean" instead of "Jimmy Dean" Meat eaters don't even know the difference!

1 lb breakfast sausage
½ cup flour
6 cups hot milk
1 ½ tsp salt
1 ½ tsp white pepper

Brown the sausage in a large frying pan. (If using Gimmie Lean, you may have to add some oil since there is less fat) Remove only the sausage from the pan leaving the drippings in the pan. Add enough butter to the drippings to equal 1/3 cup. Stir in flour with a whisk and cook until light brown. Add hot milk, stir constantly until mixture thickens. Season with salt and pepper and stir the sausage back in.

The secret to good gravy is the sausage. Use a quality pork sausage that is low in fat and not filled with heavy seasonings and salt. I used Bob Evans Mild.