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Category Archives: Snacks

Vegan Recipe – Buffalo Hummus

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I love buffalo sauce.  A lot.  The problem is, a lot of it contains milk/butter.  Sriracha is a pretty awesome substitute, but sometimes you want that uniquely buffalo flavor.

I also love hummus.  It’s great with veggies, pita, spread on wraps, whatever.  The problem with store bought is that the flavors are very limited.  You’re lucky if you find a selection of original, garlic, red pepper, and artichoke in one place.  It’s also pretty pricy for something that’s easy to make at home.

So, I decided to try my hand at making Buffalo hummus using this recipe provided by No Meat Athlete (shared on Oh She Glows).

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I like things really spicy, so when I finished, I felt like it was just vaguely buffalo flavored, so I increased the amount of hot sauce.  In fact, I doubled it.  Unfortunately, this made it too spicy for most of the people who tried it.  I loved it, but could only really eat it with pita bread to absorb some of the heat.  I think somewhere around 1 1/2 tablespoons of hot sauce would work.  It was delicious and so easy to make with a good food processor.  If you don’t have one, I’m sure you could use a good blender, but get yourself a food processor – it’s so useful!

Vegan Recipe – Chocolate Pillsbury Crescents

Sometimes I think I should have called my blog “Semi-Homemade Vegan” because I’m not a from-scratch cook on a day-to-day basis.  I like to challenge myself and try tougher recipes from time to time, but in general I like to make it easy on myself.  My cooking style often reminds me of that of Sandra Lee with the Semi-Homemade cooking show on the Food Network.  However, she can take it to the extreme.  I once saw her take a perfectly good store-bought pumpkin pie and scoop out the pumpkin filling for use in another recipe.  Talk about wasteful and expensive!  Especially when canned pumpkin pie filling can be found at every grocery store in the Fall.

Anyway, this is a very simple and impressive recipe that’s good for morning pastries, snacks, or dessert.  It’s not particularly healthy, but can be thrown together in minutes.

CrescentsIngredients are simple, one roll of Pillsbury Crescents – they are accidentally vegan! – and one bag of vegan chocolate chips or chocolate chunks.

Simply unroll the dough, top the short side of each dough triangle with a handful of chocolate chips, then roll the short side over the chocolate chips toward the point.  Follow the regular Pillsbury Crescents instructions.

When done, eat the crap out of these warm, gooey treats!

Crescent Rolls | A Vegan in Progress

Vegan Recipe – Vegan Chocolate Shake

This is not a real recipe post.  I’m just sharing a delicious treat that I made recently.  It has been super hot in Southern California recently… it’s one of the things that I hate about living here.  Our summers are seemingly endless days of 90-112 degree weather.  So anyway, I bought some Almond Dream chocolate ice cream and by the time I got home, a chocolate shake sounded even better.  I got out the blender and plopped the whole tub of ice cream in at once.  I added about a cup of Almond Breeze original almond milk and blended it, taking care not to over mix it.

It was enough for two good-sized shakes or one giant one (which was my choice on this hot day).  I sprinkled some chopped nuts on top and added a cute reusable straw.

Vegan Chocolate Shake | A Vegan in Progress

Vegan Camping – Table Mountain Campground

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As I mentioned before, two of our closest friends are likely to move out of the state this year, so we have lately been making an effort to appreciate and explore LA and the surrounding areas.  Previously, we went on a day trip to Solvang, where I had a surprisingly nice vegan meal at Bit O’Denmark.  This time we planned a camping trip.  We all agreed on woodsy camping and eventually Eric found Table Mountain Campground in Wrightwood, about two hours from our home.  We estimated that the tent, sleeping bags, two coolers, four chairs, personal bags, and other supplies would not all fit in the trunk of a regular car, so we rented a Dodge Ram 1500 Crew Cab extended bed.  This turned out to be a great decision because the truck gave us plenty of room for all of our luggage, but was also super comfortable for the ride to and from the campground.

I put a lot of thought into food that would be easy, filling, and easily made vegan for me.  Before the trip, we bought a Coleman Matchlight 2-Burner Propane Stove.  I thought that this would be really useful because, although each campsite has a grill, the stove allowed us to cook two things at once and allowed us to cook something warm for lunch without setting up the charcoal grill again.

We chose campsite #103, in the Zuni loop.  It had lots of shade and a great view and was spaced pretty far away from the other campsites, giving us privacy.  The only downside was that the bathroom was literally a short hike away.  The hill we had to hike up to get to the bathroom, combined with the 7,500 foot elevation left us huffing and puffing every time we had to make the climb.  Something worth knowing about Table Mountain is that you can reserve a campsite, but once you are there, you can change to any other unreserved site, so if you find one with a better view, you are free to move.  Some sites are first come, first served, so this is a good way to get them.  Overnight camping on a single site is $20 per night.

We left early on Friday afternoon and made it to the site with enough time to set up before making dinner. I knew that we would want something quick and easy for dinner after the drive and all the setting up, so I planned on burgers for everyone and Don Lee Farms Veggie Patties for me.  We cut up tomatoes and onions at home and totally forgot to get them out of the cooler Friday night, so our burgers were pretty plain.  I also cubed up a package of Trader Joe’s Organic Baked Tofu, Teriyaki Flavor, before we left.  I wrapped the cubes in tinfoil and cooked it on the grill.  It was actually a really tasty addition to my veggie burger, all on its own.

The next morning, I woke up really early (to use the restroom) and got a chance to see the sunrise.  I decided to set up the propane stove and make some tea.  I was so glad that we brought the tea kettle, because this was a nice treat.  I then set up breakfast for everyone… we had cereal with soy milk as well as bagels and fruit.  After a simple breakfast, we were ready for the day.

The great thing about camping in the forest is the hiking.  During our two off-trail hiking adventures, we came across beautiful views, steep hills, fallen trees, and fleeting glimpses of deer running deeper in the forest.

Vegan Camping | A Vegan in Progress

Hiking, day one

Vegan Camping | A Vegan in Progress

Hiking, day two

After our hike on day two, we were pretty hungry, so we headed back for hot dogs.  They had kosher dogs and I ate Lightlife Smart Dogs.

They taste exactly how I remember cheap hot dogs tasting.  It was nice to have something quick and easy to grill.  I put spicy mustard and chopped tomatoes on them.

Lightlife Hot Dogs - Vegan Camping | A Vegan in Progress

That night, while they had grilled pollo asada, I had an awesome foil pack meal, grilled corn, and grilled veggies.  Prior to the trip, I had done a lot of searching online for recipe ideas and really liked the idea of foil pack meals.  I adapted this BBQ Party Pack recipe from Vegan Yack Attack.

I just made a few changes, though.  Instead of chopped onion, I threw in some Pearl Onions from a frozen bag that I bought at Trader Joe’s.  I decided to double the spices in the recipe.  I also took Yack Attack’s suggestion and added chickpeas.  I also steamed some tempeh, to get the bitterness out, then cubed it and left it in a container of the following marinade, then spooned out the tempeh pieces and added them to the foil pack right before grilling it.

Tempeh Marinade:

  • 1/4 cup liquid smoke
  • 1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp sesame oil
  • 2 garlic cloves

I was really looking forward to this meal and for good reason, because it turned out delicious.  The bell peppers and the tempeh were the best part.  The only bad thing was that I should have chopped the carrots MUCH smaller because they took so long to cook.  They never softened much and I ended up eating around them, mostly.  The foil pack was simple and a very clever way to have a whole meal without a pot, also effectively keeping my food separate from the meat on the grill.

We all ended up with plenty of food.  Get a load of my full plate!

Vegan Camping | A Vegan in Progress

Dinner, night two

A while after dinner we made s’mores (I used vegan ingredients).

We all got ready for bed and a movie.  We brought a small camping table into the tent, set it up at our feet, and watched The Cabin in the Woods on my laptop.  I thought it would be cute and clever to watch a scary movie set in the woods while we were camping in the woods, but it just made it harder to hike up to the bathroom that night!

The next morning, we expected to have chocolate chip pancakes, but the propane stove heated up so hot that the outside of the pancakes were burning before the inside had cooked.  We abandoned that idea, just packed up early, and stopped for breakfast on our way home.

The lesson for me was that vegan camping is actually quite easy.  Foods that are commonly eaten while camping are easily veganized.

I hope this post helps others plan for a dual dining camping trip!

Vegan Camping | A Vegan in Progress

A few tips for future campers:

  • Definitely bring a tablecloth for your picnic table.  I bought tablecloth fabric from a Joann’s near me that is relocating and liquidating all of their material.
  • Go to a Dollar Tree or 99 cent store for the majority of your supplies.  We found big plastic clips there that held the tablecloth down and attached the trash bag to the side of the table.
  • Bring lots of water.  For the four of us, for essentially two full days, we drank 6 gallons of water.
  • Fill large tupperware bins 1/4 full and freeze in advance of the trip.  Run warm water over the outside of the tupperware containers to release the ice blocks.  They have less surface area than ice cubes and melt slower.  Ours lasted us the whole weekend.
  • Freeze all of your food that can handle it… it will work as ice packs as well.
  • Bring reusable water bottles to drink from since you can also use them on hikes.
  • Bring walkie-talkies for the hike to the bathroom at night – cell phones don’t always work in the forest!

Vegan Recipe – Teriyaki Cauliflower “Wings”

You may recall that in my post, Copycat Mohawk Bend Buffalo-Style Cauliflower “Wings”, I said that the baked cauliflower could potentially be tossed in any kind of sauce to make different appetizers.  A week or two ago I tested that theory.  I followed the same steps for the coating and baking of the cauliflower, but when it came to tossing them in sauce, I used Lawry’s Teriyaki 30 Minute Marinade (which didn’t have to be thinned with oil).Teriyaki Cauliflower "Wings" | A Vegan in Progress

The resulting wings were fantastic.  I imagine that an assortment of them made in different flavors would be great for a party.  I’m on the hunt for different marinades and sauces to try.  Next time I’m going to try the Chipotle Lime Grilling Sauce from the Archer Farms brand at Target.  Stay tuned!

Teriyaki Cauliflower Wings | A Vegan in Progress

Vegan Recipe – Copycat Mohawk Bend Buffalo-Style Cauliflower “Wings”

Hey everyone!  This week’s recipe is a copycat of a popular veganized bar favorite, buffalo wings!  The original Buffalo-Style Cauliflower “Wings” can be found at the hipster bar, Mohawk Bend, in LA.  I have never personally been to Mohawk Bend… I keep missing out on every opportunity!  However, Eric went with a friend since it is very close to where he grew up.  It was a vacant movie theater and home to many squatters for as long as he could remember, but it has since been revived into a cool pub.  Their food and drinks are made mostly with California-based products and their website boasts a menu for everyone – offering “vegan, vegetarian, and non-vegan options.”  I really want to swing by on a Monday for their three course meatless Monday meal.

Ever since their visit to Mohawk Bend, Eric’s friend was dying to try out some buffalo-style cauliflower “wings”.  After finding a recipe on pinterest (originally posted here), I have tried it out a few times and am ready to give you a full report.  I altered the recipe a bit, mainly so that it would result in more, and a little thinner, batter to more easily fully coat the cauliflower pieces.  I ended up with a little too much batter and a little too much buffalo sauce, but I thought it was worth it to make it easy to evenly coat every piece in comparison to the time I followed the recipe exactly.  They turned out deliciously crispy on the outside, but soft on the inside.

Vegan Copycat Mohawk Bend Buffalo-Style Cauliflower “Wings” | A Vegan in Progress

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 head of cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour (any flour works, but I had whole wheat at home)
  • 1 cup water + more if needed
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup hot sauce (Frank’s brand of hot sauce works well)
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil or earth balance (I used oil)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400º and oil/butter up a baking sheet.
  2. Mix the flour, water and a pinch of salt into a batter.
  3. Coat each cauliflower floret in the batter making sure it’s not too thick (add more water here if needed) so it crisps up in the oven like fried batter on chicken wings. Arrange on baking sheet then pop in the oven for 30 minutes or until edges brown slightly.
  4. Mix vegetable oil or earth balance with hot sauce.  If you like them super fiery, just toss them in straight hot sauce, omit the oil.
  5. When florets are done and cool, toss them in the hot sauce mixture.

The original blog post also has a recipe for Vegan Blue Cheese Dressing, which I did not try.  If you’re interested, follow the link found here.

Here’s a peak at the “wings” before they were tossed in the buffalo sauce mixture.  You could potentially toss them in other sauces to make teriyaki “wings” and other fun appetizers.

Copycat Mohawk Bend Buffalo Cauliflower Wings | A Vegan in Progress