The bad news is The Vegan Table is officially out of print. (Once the remaining copies are sold, it is not being reprinted). 14 years is a good run, I suppose.
The good news is the copyright to my own recipes have been reverted back to me, so I can create recipe bundles such as my new VEGAN HANUKKAH MENU. I plan on making lots of such bundles, including one for Thanksgiving and one for the winter holidays — and many more.
The delicious, traditional recipes in the VEGAN HANUKKAH MENU bundle were specially chosen to create the perfect Hanukkah menu for you, your family, and your loved ones.
*Potato Latkes *Cashew Sour Cream *Matzoh Ball Soup *Old-Fashioned Lentil Loaf *Noodle Kugel *Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Caramelized Onions and Apples *Hanukkah Cut-Out Cookies *Royal Icing *Rugelach *Challah
Mastering tofu (well, as much as a little grasshopper can master a 2,000-year-old practice) has been my highlight of 2020. It’s all the more exciting because I failed so many times, and when I realized what was hindering my success, it was like a dam breaking. I’ve never looked back and now make tofu successfully a couple times a week.
Is it worth making tofu at home? ABSOLUTELY!
Homemade tofu is so much less expensive than store-bought
Now that my live Homemade Tofu cooking class is available as an On-Demand class (full video and recipe/instructions), I thought it would be helpful to share the basic “equipment” needed to make your own tofu at home. As you’ll see, I mention a couple things you probably already have on hand, but there are some things that will be new to you.
Tofu Mold: As for the tofu mold, I prefer a wooden tofu mold, which I’ve had for years, but when I looked for one to refer you to, I found it difficult to find one that wasn’t part of a tofu-making kit. However, considering the fact that the kits provide you with everything you need, it may be worth it in the end. The two kits I recommend are:
Because I wanted to ease you into the homemade tofu-making process, I also wanted to find an option for you to use a mold you may already have on hand without having to buy one just yet. While a “colander” would work (as some blogs suggest), you need more than just a colander…you need a colander/strainer that will also act as a mold (usually square but any shape will do). So, two options to consider:
A plastic tupperware container you punch / drill holes into the bottom of.
A small plastic basket — like those that strawberries come in. The fruit basket is actually the perfect size, and it creates / presses a pretty little design into the tofu block once it’s finished pressing.
Cheese Cloth: Whatever mold you use, you still need a cheesecloth, though, so just purchase some at a store near you, or buy some online; here’s one I like — it’s unbleached, you can cut it into whatever size you need, and you can wash it and use it again and again and again. And I do.
Nigari: As for the nigari, as I mentioned, it can be purchased in crystal or liquid form and can be found at most Japanese or Asian grocery stores, or you can order online here(in crystal form) or here (in liquid form). FULL DISCLOSURE: I’ve used only the crystalized nigari that I dilute in water, and while it comes in a plastic bag, the amount of plastic waste you avoid using by making your own tofu makes up for it a hundred fold. (For instance, 1 pound of crystallized nigari makes about 240 pounds of tofu!) HOWEVER, I *am* curious about using liquid nigari, and since the one I recommendcomes in a glass bottle, it would be even less plastic waste. I just haven’t tried it yet. What I use at the present time is nigari salts that I dissolve in water.
Kitchen / Candy Thermometer: I mention below that this is not required, but I like to know I’m at the right temperature when adding my coagulant, so I use a simple thermometer to do so. Here is the one I have.
The main thing I learned in terms of successfully making tofu was that the soy milk has to be made … from scratch. I mean…you definitely can’t use store-bought commercial soy milk and try to make tofu, but my failed attempts at making tofu also came from using soy milk I made in my favorite soy milk maker. I still use that soy milk maker just for making soy milk for daily use, but for making tofu, you have to do it without a machine.
Instead of discarding that hearty Italian loaf that’s going stale, make this delicious bread salad that is absolutely divine in the summer when tomatoes, cucumbers, and basil are at their peak. Vegan, of course.
5 to 6 medium tomatoes, cut into large chunks
4 to 6 cups (360 to 540 g) day-old crusty bread (Italian loaf or French baguette), cut into cubes the same size as the tomatoes (a full loaf or baguette should be fine)
1 medium hothouse cucumber, unpeeled, seeded, and coarsely chopped
½ small red onion, finely chopped
2 to 3 medium cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons capers, drained
20 large basil leaves, coarsely chopped
2 to 3 tablespoons high-quality balsamic or red wine vinegar
¼ cup (60 ml) high-quality extra-virgin olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
Add the tomatoes, bread, cucumber, red onion, garlic, capers, and basil to a large bowl, and toss together. Drizzle in the vinegar and ¼ cup olive oil, and toss some more. Add salt and pepper to taste, and add additional olive oil, if desired.
Set aside and marinate, covered, at room temperature for at least 30 minutes, up to 12 hours. I would avoid marinating the salad in the refrigerator, since the tomatoes tend to become somewhat “mealy” in the fridge.
Serve at room temperature.
Yield: 8 generous servings as a side
For Your Edification
Panzanella is an Italian salad (pan means “bread”) that was most likely invented out of necessity as a way to use stale bread, along with fresh vegetables from the garden. The earliest written reference to Panzanella is from the 1500s in a poem by the famous artist, Bronzino. Because the tomato hadn’t yet been introduced to Italy, the original recipe wouldn’t have included tomatoes.
For Your Information
If you don’t have stale bread, take a fresh loaf of hearty bread, cut it into large cubes, spread them on a baking sheet, and bake in a 200°F-degree oven for about 10 to 15 minutes. You don’t want to completely toast the bread; you just want to dry it out. It’s essential that you dry out the bread first before soaking it in the oil and vinegar; otherwise, it will just become soggy.
For Your Modification
Add other ingredients that pair well with the traditional classic, such as olives, sundried tomatoes, capers, red wine, parsley, mint, roasted bell peppers.
In this episode I explain why message for eating healthfully can be narrowed down into three little words:eat by color. The pigments in plant foods are a key to their nutritional benefits.
BANANA OAT “COOKIES” These couldn’t be more simple and more delicious. There is no added fat, no added sugar — only the protein, nutrients, and natural sweetness from the banana and cinnamon. Mash up 1 banana in a bowl. Stir in 1/2 cup oats (quick-cooking or rolled), some cinnamon, and a dash of salt. Use a spoon to drop 4 cookie-shaped dollops onto a parchment-lined baking tray, and bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes until they are a golden brown. (I just use my toaster oven.) Let cool (or not!), and enjoy. (I’ve also made variations where I press a couple blueberries in before baking!!)
As always, you can find lots of resources for living compassionately and healthfully at joyfulvegan.com, you can find my books wherever books are sold, and you can join me in my online cooking classes or in an upcoming vegan trip.
This is one of my go-to soups whenever I want something quick and delicious. It’s also a perfect New Year’s dish, as the lentils represent prosperity and luck in the coming year. If the apricots seem weird to you in a soup, trust me! They add a touch of sweetness and cook down into melt-in-your-mouth goodness.
2 tablespoons oil or water, for sautéing 1 medium yellow onion, chopped 2 cloves garlic, minced 1/2 cup halved dried apricots 1-1/2 cups red lentils, picked through and rinsed 5 cups vegetable stock 3 Roma (plum) tomatoes, seeded and chopped 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste Freshly ground black pepper, to taste 1 -15-ounce can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), rinsed and drained
Heat up the oil or water in a large soup pot. Add the onion, garlic, and apricots, and cook for about 7 minutes over medium heat, until the onions begin to turn translucent. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking.
Add the lentils and stock. Cover, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
Stir in the tomatoes, cumin, thyme, and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer for 10 minutes.
Puree 1/2 of the stew in a blender or food processor (or using a stick/immersion blender), then return to the pot. Add the chickpeas, cooking until they’re heated through, about 5 minutes. Serve hot.
With Hanukkah coming up, I couldn’t resist sharing this traditional recipe — vegan-style. Frying foods during Hanukkah is an ancient tradition, connected with the oil that was used to light the menorah during this “festival of lights.”
2 tablespoons ground flax seeds 4 tablespoons water 4 cups peeled and shredded potatoes (about 5 medium potatoes) 6 scallions, finely chopped 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour 1 tablespoon cornstarch 1 teaspoon salt, or to taste Canola oil for frying Nondairy sour cream and applesauce, as accompaniments
In a food processor or blender, whip the flax seeds and water together, until it reaches a thick and creamy – almost gelatinous – consistency, about 1 or 2 minutes. This is going to be our “eggs,” which will help provide some binding for our potato pancakes. Set aside.
Spread the grated/shredded potatoes on a kitchen towel or cheesecloth, and roll it up jelly-roll style. Twist the towel tightly to wring out as much liquid as possible. You may need to do this again with a second towel to extract all the water. Transfer to a mixing bowl.
Add the “flax egg” to the potatoes, along with the green onions, flour, and salt. Use your hands to combine the ingredients and to get a feel for the mixture. You want it moist but not too wet.
Heat some oil in a large nonstick sauté pan over medium heat until hot but not smoking. Using a tablespoon, scoop a large spoonful of the potato mixture into the hot oil, pressing down on them to form 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick patties. To make a good medium-size patty, I use two tablespoons, but you can use one.
You are not trying to create dense patties, but the batter should stick together enough to form a patty and be flipped without falling apart. Slide a spatula underneath each latke while they’re cooking to make sure they don’t stick to the pan too much.
Brown on one side, turn and brown on the other. You may need to add more oil as you add more latkes to the pan. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to soak up excess oil. Season with additional salt.
Serve hot with nondairy sour cream and/or applesauce.
Yield: 15 to 20 latkes
TIPS FROM COLLEEN:
Shredded/grated potatoes will oxidize (turn a grayish/brownish color) pretty quickly, so I recommend having your green onions chopped and your “flax eggs” prepared before shredding the potatoes.
Grate/shred the potatoes by hand, or use the special grating blade in your food processor, which is a lot easier and faster.
Add additional shredded veggies such as carrots (or zucchini — but be sure to squeeze out the water) + herbs for my flavor, color, and nutrients.
A very nostalgic recipe for me — from The Joy of Vegan Baking. I have fond memories of eating butterscotch pudding, albeit not from scratch, when I was a youngster. I love the color as well as that slightly burnt flavor, which comes from the cooked molasses in the brown sugar. It brings me right back to my childhood.
3 tablespoons non-dairy butter 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar 1/2 cup non-dairy milk 1-1/2 cups plant-based milk 1/4 teaspoon salt 3 tablespoons cornstarch 3 tablespoons water 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Melt the butter over low heat in a small but heavy saucepan. Stir in the brown sugar, and cook, stirring constantly, until it’s melted and bubbling.
Gradually stir in the 1/2 cup of milk. Continue stirring over low heat until the sugar is dissolved. Add the 1-1/2 cups of milk and the salt, and stir until blended.
In a small bowl, dissolve the cornstarch in the water. Mix until smooth.
Stir this cornstarch mixture into the milk mixture, and while the mixture is still on low-medium heat, stir constantly until the mixture begins to thicken. Reduce the heat to low, and stirring briskly, bring to a simmer and cook for 1 minute. Remove from the heat, and stir in the vanilla.
Pour the pudding into bowls, cups, or ramekins. Cover the surface of the warm puddings to prevent a skin from forming. If you like skin on your pudding (like I do!), simply leave the pudding uncovered until cooled and then cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 3 days.
In one of my recent virtual cooking classes, I taught my students how to make homemade soy milk. As everyone learned, when the milk is done, what you’re left with at the end is okara.
Okara is the name for the soybean pulp left over when making soy milk. It has a delicious nutty flavor and can be added to smoothies, baked goods, and oatmeal — adding flavor, texture, moisture, and nutrients. It can also be used to make these delicious fluffy, oil-free, fat-free pancakes!
Ingredients 1 cup all-purpose flour 1 tablespoon cornstarch 1 tablespoon sugar 1 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1 cup nondairy milk 1/2 cup okara Dash of salt
Add the dry ingredients to a mixing bowl, and thoroughly combine. Then add the milk and okara, and stir / whisk until thoroughly mixed into a pourable batter.
Heat up a nonstick skillet with or without some oil or nondairy butter, and ladle some batter onto the hot pan into the size pancakes you prefer. Repeat until you use up all the batter.
Serve with your favorite nondairy butter, syrup, and fresh fruit.
Yield: Makes about 6-8 pancakes, depending on the size
Recipe by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, Joyful Vegan, copyright 2020. Please provide credit when sharing.