Nut Loaf – Vegan Month of Food

Poesy and Plate
Vegan Month of Food  2014
(check out the hundreds of VeganMoFo blogs HERE)
My goal: cook and blog about vegan food 20 times
  during the month of September. 

My theme: words and food

Night is My Sister, and How Deep in Love, by Edna St. Vincent Millay

Night is my sister, and how deep in love,
How drowned in love and weedily washed ashore,
There to be fretted by the drag and shove
At the tide's edge, I lie—these things and more:
Whose arm alone between me and the sand,
Whose voice alone, whose pitiful breath brought near,
Could thaw these nostrils and unlock this hand,
She could advise you, should you care to hear.
Small chance, however, in a storm so black,
A man will leave his friendly fire and snug
For a drowned woman's sake, and bring her back
To drip and scatter shells upon the rug.
No one but Night, with tears on her dark face,
Watches beside me in this windy place.

Day One - Delicious!

I’m pulling out the big vegan guns today with a nut loaf. This is the type of recipe I usually tip-toe around for about a year, glancing at the recipe from time to time, wondering when my husband will be out of town so I can try it – alone, in the privacy of a plate hovering over the garbage disposal in case of a gastronomic disaster. For an entire year, I ask myself, “Too vegan? Too many nuts? Where are the beans? Will I gag? Just plain old too weird?”

Well, first let me say that there is no such thing as ‘too vegan’ cuz ‘vegan’ just means ‘real food in its natural state’. I mean, for example, an apple is vegan.  Let me also say, there’s truly no thing as ‘too many nuts’ is there? Besides, these are pulverized so much that it’s not like eating a mouthful of walunts….crunch, crunch, crunch….no, not at all.

Next I want to say that I did not gag and I did not hover over the garbage disposal. Just the opposite.  I ate the entire 3 nut loaves all by myself. Mr. Living Cookbook never ate a bite. (Maybe I secretly DO harbor a smidge of ‘too vegan’ deep inside? Gotta get over that…..)

Leftovers the next day - still delicious! 

I include the touching poem by Edna St. Vincent Millay because the owner of this delicious recipe is one of three sisters – all three vegetarians their entire lives. I believe this was their mother’s recipe, originally called ‘Mother Eastlund’s Nut Roast.” I was fortunate enough to be given a copy by her son in law. He told me that the sisters were raised near a slaughter house and therefore became vegetarian. (I pause here to wonder what might happen if we all had a glimpse into a slaughter house….hmmmm.)

This nut loaf was frozen, uncooked. It turned out great!
 Just the tiniest bit soggy in the middle, as you might see in the photo. 

Mother Eastlund’s Nut Roast
 (note: This make an incredible amount! Cut this recipe in half and it’s enough for 1 ½ loaf pans, or one loaf pan and one smaller casserole for the freezer. This freezes great!)

2 lbs English walnuts (Diamond brand is best)
½ pkg. herb croutons (such as Pepperidge Farm seasoned)
1 ½ green peppers
4 stalks celery
1 ½ medium onions
Some sprigs of fresh parsley

Grind all of the above in a food processor until very fine

¾ - 1 large can of tomato juice (just keep adding juice till it’s moist but not wet – mine might have been too wet)
3 eggs (I used Ener-G Egg Replacer, but I think flax eggs would be better.)
½ t ground marjoram
½ t poultry type seasoning (I used a homemade Chicken-Style seasoning)
Beau Monde seasoning and tobacco to taste

Mix all ingredients and place in a buttered loaf pan
Press 3 T butter (Earth Balance is the best) into the top of the loaf which will create a nice crust
Bake 350 ° for 45-60 minutes or until brown.
Cool before slicing. (Mine was a bit wet in the center, but it didn’t affect the taste. The loaves I pulled from the freezer were also a bit wet.)

Serve with Mushroom Gravy.
(note: double the gravy recipe to have enough to serve over mashed potatoes)
Saute lots of mushrooms in butter until brown. Set aside. In the same pan brown 1 t sugar until toasted, but not burned. Add 2 T butter, and 1 T flour to create a nice brown roux. Add 2 C veggie broth and stir till thick. Return the mushrooms to the gravy.

Better-Than-Tuna Salad - Vegan Month of Food

Poesy and Plate
Vegan Month of Food  2014
(check out the hundreds of VeganMoFo blogs HERE)
My goal: cook and blog about vegan food 20 times
  during the month of September. 

My theme: words and food

One, two, three, four, five
Once I caught a fish alive.
Six, seven, eight, nine, ten
Then I let it go again.
Why did I let it go?
Because it bit my finger so.
Which finger did it bite?
The little finger on the right.
Great little jump-rope thyme for vegans and other fish lovers. Great recipe for EVERYONE! We could not believe how good this is…..actually BETTER than tuna fish salad. It’s natural to crave salt and fat no matter what we eat, and this simple recipe provides both. Don’t be shy with the mayo and be sure to include the celery seeds. (secret ingredient)
A reasonable explanation to avoid eating tuna – please consider all the annual bycatch that is killed when tuna longline fishing occurs. That’s hundreds of thousands of dolphins annually, hundreds of thousands of sharks annually and hundreds of thousands of turtles annually that are carelessly killed just because we want to eat tuna. Don't forget about the hundreds of thousands of albatrosses annually that are also 'non targeted kills.' I don't want to be a part of that ugliness anymore.  Just give the amazing chickpea a chance. You might be surprised – we were. 

No Tuna Tuna Salad (adapted from Colleen Patrick Godreau)
2 15 ounce cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/2 - 3/4 C mayo (Veganaise is the all time best)
1 medium size red bell pepper, minced
2 carrots, peeled and minced or shredded
2 celery stalks, minced
2 T fresh parsley
1 C chopped walnut
1 t celery seed (my addition, and oh so good)

Here's what you do:
Grind the chickpeas in a food processor until somewhere between whole beans but not  mush. Think small flakes. Use the pulse button. Pour chickpeas in a large bowl. Add the remaining ingredients - adjusting for taste. Salt and pepper at the end. 

Vegan Jalapeno Poppers - Two Ways - Vegan Month of Food

Poesy and Plate
Vegan Month of Food  2014
(check out the hundreds of VeganMoFo blogs HERE)
My goal: cook and blog about vegan food 20 times
  during the month of September. 

My theme: words and food

Today I share Emily Dickinson’s beautiful poem entitled “Prose.”  I not only think this is her take on the beauty of a lyric poem, but I think it has a deeper meaning regarding her view of being female.  You know, don’t shut us in; don’t make us write prose! Let us flap our lyric wings!

Really, are there any words more simple yet more beautiful than these? The image of a caged bird is always painful to me, so I love to imagine a bird escaping toward the stars.

They shut me up in Prose —
As when a little Girl
They put me in the Closet —
Because they liked me "still" —

Still! Could themself have peeped —
And seen my Brain — go round—
They might as wise have lodged a Bird
For Treason — in the Pound —

Himself has but to will
And easy as a Star
Abolish his Captivity —
And laugh — No more have I —

Vegan Jalapeno Poppers – Two Ways
Here’s what you need:
¾ C raw cashews soaked for a few hours, then drained
½ sweet onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 T Nutritional yeast
1 t cumin
1 T chicken-style seasoning with ½ C water(optional)
½ C veg stock (if not using the chicken-style seasoning)
1 4ounce can chopped green chilis (optional)
10 jalapenos, halved, seeds and veins removed
Olive oil
½ C crushed tortilla chips OR bread crumbs

Here’s what you do:
Brush the jalapeno halves with olive oil and set them aside. Prepare the filling by sautéing the onions and garlic in a bit of oil until softened. At the same time, toast the crushed tortillas chips in a 400 degree oven for about 5 minutes. Watch them closely.

Place sautéed veg, cashews, Nutritional yeast, cumin, seasoning, chilies and cream cheese (if using) in a blender. Loosen with a little veg stock or water. I found that the green chilies provided plenty of moisture! Adding more cream cheese will firm the mixture up also.

Spoon or pipe mixture into jalapenos. Bake for about 10 minutes in a 400 degree oven. Add the toasted chips (press in) and bake for another 10 minutes.  Broil for a tiny while at the end to get a nice toasty appearance.

Second Day:
There was plenty of filling to serve these another day, but I added some cream cheese to the mixture to firm it up. Instead of toasted tortilla chips, I used bread crumbs.

Asian Salad with Coconut Curry Noodles - Vegan Month of Food

A path near my house. 

The Road Not Taken, by Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Quintessentially American.
     Rugged New England.
         Mended fences and good neighbors.
                Little calves standing by their mamas.
 Horses that shake their harness bells on a snowy night.
       John Kennedy’s inauguration.
                 Robert Frost.

I think this might be my favorite poem: I love it for its simplicity. I love that it speaks truth to my heart. I love how it challenges me to live my life as I believe I ought, even in the face of pressure to conform. As I write these words I realize that one of my favorite Bible verses, really my life verse, is from the second chapter of Romans the 12th verse. “Do not be conformed to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”

“Way leads on to way,” and we can’t turn back time to re-live our lives. Make the most of every day….and serve your loved ones delicious and healthy food.

This salad is delicious. We ate it for dinner two nights in a row – the second time adding some teriyaki tofu.  And yes, the dressing has 16 ingredients. A simple poem. A complex recipe.

For the coconut curry noodles:
1 can light coconut milk
2 T green curry paste
10 ounces long pasta noodles
2 t olive oil
For the salad:
6-8 C Bib or butter lettuce or Romaine
Cubes or slices of teriyaki baked tofu or other similar protein
1-2 ripe avocados, peeled and sliced
1 -2 ripe mangos, peeled and sliced
½ C salted peanuts
For the dressing: Simple combine all the ingredients and mix well.
2 Cloves garlic – minced
1 T fresh, grated ginger
1 T red onion, minced
¼ C rice vinegar
1 t Dijon
3 T brown sugar
3 T honey
1 T soy
1 t sesame oil
1 t Sriracha sauce
2 T sesame seeds
2 T poppy seeds
1/3 C olive oil
¼ C Canola Oil
1 t salt
½ t pepper

Here’s what you do:
Combine the coconut milk and green curry paste in a sauce pan. Bring to a boil, lower heat, simmer for about 10 minutes. In the meantime, cook the pasta according to the package. Drain the pasta and place in a large bowl. Drizzle olive oil over pasta and toss with two forks. Pour the coconut curry sauce over the pasta and set aside.

Prepare the salad by arranging the avocados, mangos and peanuts on a bed of lettuces. Serve the pasta in the same serving dish for a fabulous presentation. Drizzle the dressing over the lettuce part of the salad. 

Orange Saffron Paletas - Vegan Month of Food

Poesy and Plate
Vegan Month of Food  2014
(check out the hundreds of VeganMoFo blogs HERE)
My goal: cook and blog about vegan food 20 times
  during the month of September. 

My theme: words and food

maggie and milly and molly and may
E. E. Cummings

maggie and milly and molly and may
went down to the beach(to play one day)

and maggie discovered a shell that sang
so sweetly she couldn’t remember her troubles, and

milly befriended a stranded star
whose rays five languid fingers were;

and molly was chased by a horrible thing
which raced sideways while blowing bubbles: and

may came home with a smooth round stone
as small as a world and as large as alone.

For whatever we lose(like a you or a me)
it’s always ourselves we find in the sea

Here is Michigan we are surrounded by water, so we know what it means to find ourselves in the sea (or ‘lake’ I guess would be more accurate.) It doesn’t matter if it’s a hot August day at the beach or a quick drive by in the dead of winter – Lake Michigan is sure to put us in our place and help us remember how small we are in comparison to all of God’s creation.

This poem seems so old fashioned and sweet to me. How often do we slow down enough to play at the beach, to listen to shells until our troubles melt away? Not enough.

For some reason, in my mind’s eye, little Maggie and Millie and Molly and May are wearing those baby-doll type dresses with smocking and maybe a pocket with an appliqued bunny peeking out. Can you picture them?

Orange Saffron Popsicles (adapted from “Pure Vegan” by Joseph Shuldiner. This cookbook has the most beautiful photos and some pretty glorious food as well.)

Here’s what you need:
¼ C sugar
¾ C water
¼ t saffron threads (or more if you are lucky enough to have them, like me)
2 perfect oranges, zested, peeled and separated into segments
2 C fresh orange juice
¼ - ½ t  Rose water OR 1 t orange flower water

Here’s what you do:
Combine the sugar and water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until sugar is totally dissolved. Remove from heat, add saffron and set aside to cool.

Prepare the oranges by zesting them, peeling them with a knife so not one speck of the white pith remains, and separating them into segments. Place the oranges, orange juice and Rose water in a high speed blender and blend until smooth. Add the saffron water and stir.

Divide equally between popsicle molds and allow to freeze.  

Sesame-Honey Tempeh and Quinoa Bowl – Vegan Month of Food

Poesy and Plate
Vegan Month of Food  2014
(check out the hundreds of VeganMoFo blogs HERE) 
My goal: cook and blog about vegan food 20 times
during the month of September. 

My theme: words and food

My son built this in a Tennessee river. 

Black Stone on Top of a White Stone, by Cesar Vallejo
I shall die in Paris, in a rainstorm,
On a day I already remember.
I shall die in Paris-- it does not bother me--
Doubtless on a Thursday, like today, in autumn.

It shall be a Thursday, because today, Thursday
As I put down these lines, I have set my shoulders
To the evil. Never like today have I turned,
And headed my whole journey to the ways where I am alone.

César Vallejo is dead. They struck him,
All of them, though he did nothing to them,
They hit him hard with a stick and hard also
With the end of a rope. Witnesses are: the Thursdays,
The shoulder bones, the loneliness, the rain, and the roads...

I don’t like the ‘black stone’ of evil and loneliness that crushes the ‘white stone’ of Cesar Vallejo in this sad poem. I can’t stand the thought of someone standing up to evil only to be struck down.  I wonder if Sr. Vallejo actually had to ‘set his shoulders’ toward some ‘evil’ only to find his way blocked by haters and evildoers? How sad that there are no witnesses except his shoulder bones and the rain. 

I believe this poem is a call to stand against evil when we see it and to be a witness to those that are brave enough to speak out. Don’t create loneliness.

In honor of all things Peruvian, including Cesar Vallejo and quinoa, I offer today’s excellent recipe from Eating Well. I added the green beans for an extra splash of color.

To see the recipe go to the Eating Well web site or simple click HERE

Creamy Zucchini Sauce - Vegan Month of Food

Poesy and Plate
Vegan Month of Food  2014
(check out the hundreds of VeganMoFo blogs HERE)
My goal: cook and blog about vegan food 20 times
  during the month of September. 

My theme: words and food


’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
      Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogoves,
      And the mome raths outgrabe.

“Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
      The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
      The frumious Bandersnatch!”

He took his vorpal sword in hand;
      Long time the manxome foe he sought—
So rested he by the Tumtum tree
      And stood awhile in thought.

And, as in uffish thought he stood,
      The Jabberwock, with eyes of flame,
Came whiffling through the tulgey wood,
      And burbled as it came!

One, two! One, two! And through and through
      The vorpal blade went snicker-snack!
He left it dead, and with its head
      He went galumphing back.

“And hast thou slain the Jabberwock?
      Come to my arms, my beamish boy!
O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!”
      He chortled in his joy.

’Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
      Did gyre and gimble in the wabe:
All mimsy were the borogoves,
      And the mome raths outgrabe.

This poem is pure genius. Read it ten times if you must, but be sure to read it with an open mind and a critical eye toward the structure of the beast (pardon the pun.) All nouns are in the correct place, verbs are in their proper tense and descriptors are true perfection. What,  in the English language, could be better than: "Twas brillig and the slithy toves did gyre and gimble in the wabe."? 

In case you don't know, this beautiful poem is in the middle of Carroll's novel "Through the Looking Glass," written in 1871. You could analyze the meaning of the poem for hours, digging into possible meaning for the 'nonsense' words that Carroll used. Apparently, he wrote the first verse years before publishing the novel and then extended it just for Alice's dream. 

Apparently, you must check the zucchini plants
daily. This sauce is perfect for the
monsters hiding in your garden.
Save the tiny zucchinis for a nice
presentation and use the humongous
ones for Creamy Zucchini Sauce. 

I don't need to know Carroll's purpose in writing it, I simply know that I love the sound and feel of this masterpiece. All my students study and memorize this one. 

And speaking of things that don't go together, like 'frumious' and 'Bandersnatch,' how about putting zucchini and cashew cream together? Another moment of pure genius, this time by ME! 

Creamy Zucchini Sauce 
Here's what you need:
Lots of zucchini - shredded
lots of garlic minced
red pepper flakes to taste (optional)
1 C raw cashews

Here's what you do:
Warm some oil in a large pot. Add the minced garlic and optional hot pepper flakes. Add the shredded zucchini. Cook and stir until all the veg is soft and wilty. Process all the zucchini in a high-speed blender until totally smooth. 
In the mean time, soak 1 C raw cashews in water for at least 30 minutes. Drain off that water and cover the nuts with fresh water. Blend at high speed in a high-speed blender. Add to the zucchini. Stir! 

I froze some of my sauce in plastic freezer bags, well labeled, laying flat on a baking sheet. When they are frozen solid, I slide them into another large freezer bag. 

Cheezy Potatoes - VeganMoFo

Poesy and Plate
Vegan Month of Food  2014
(check out the hundreds of VeganMoFo blogs HERE)
My goal: cook and blog about vegan food 20 times
  during the month of September. 

My theme: words and food

Every single diet I ever fell off of was because of potatoes and gravy of some sort. Dolly Parton

Not gonna lie….I didn’t love this. But I am a sucker for all things potato, so I couldn’t resist. What it needs is a stick of Earth Balance to make it creamy. Not gonna lie.

God bless Dolly Parton for saying so eloquently what I wanted to express. Of course, I ate every single shred all by myself, no problem. Proof of my love affair with the potato.

Here’s what you need:
1 28 oz bag frozen shredded hash brown potatoes
1 onion finely chopped
3 medium potatoes, peeled and chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and chopped
3 C water
½ C Nutritional yeast
¼ C olive oil
1 T chicken-style seasoning (or other similar seasonings)
Garlic powder
Hot sauce

Here’s what you do:
Place the thawed hash browns and onions in a greased casserole. Set aside.

Combine the chopped potatoes, carrots and water and simmer, covered, until very soft. Save the cooking liquid. Place the soft carrots and potatoes in a high speed blender. Add 2 C of the cooking water. Also add the Nutritional yeast, olive oil, seasonings. (Keep the paprika for a garnish only) . Blend until very creamy and thick and pour over the hash browns. Stir a bit to distribute the cheese sauce. Sprinkle the paprika over the casserole. Bake until bubble, maybe 30 – 45 minutes. Freezes great. 

Zucchini Tart with Basil Cashew Cheese - VeganMoFo

Poesy and Plate
Vegan Month of Food  2014
(check out the hundreds of VeganMoFo blogs HERE)
My goal: cook and blog about vegan food 20 times
  during the month of September. 

My theme: words and food

What is Green? by Tracy Wood

-slime, mold, scum and bacteria
-life, fresh air, grass and tomatillos

Green is a shamrock on top of a cupcake
                a lucky gold coin at the end of a rainbow
                a Tennessee river

Can you see spring’s first crocus poking its insistent tip through the frost?
Can you smell freshly cut football fields?
                How about a tummy ache – that’s green too

Cold air on a March morning
The 1st step into Lake Michigan
A bite of a sour apple

My birthday

For the basil cashew cheese recipe, click HERE. For the zucchini tart recipe, click HERE.

ps - slather the basil cheese on the pre baked pie crust underneath the zucchini. :) 

Tomato Jam – Vegan Month of Food

Poesy and Plate
Vegan Month of Food  2014
(check out the hundreds of VeganMoFo blogs HERE) 
My goal: cook and blog about vegan food 20 times
during the month of September. 

My theme: words and food

Spice and Cinnamon
The warm aroma of spice and cinnamon
Blends with laurel and cloves.
You taste of cinnamon,
Said she. And you,
Said he, of almonds.

Cinnamon. Cloves. Ginger. Brown Sugar. Love.

I found this beautiful poem on and I found this beautiful recipe on the internet. The recipe was actually posted on a food blog I read, but I have to admit, I can’t remember which one!! So sorry! If it’s *your* recipe and you are reading this, please speak up! Your jam is heavenly! It made my entire home smell warm and spicy as it gently simmered all day (I doubled the batch, so you can imagine how long it took to thicken).

Keep Stirring!

“How does one eat Tomato Jam,” you ask?

Veggie Burgers.
Black Bean burgers.
Portabella Mushroom burgers.
Slathered over vegan cheeses (see my Simple Almond Cheese).
On crackers.
On top of a pile of freshly grilled corn.
Tofu scrambles.
With any eggplant dish (on man, that will be good) .
Over grilled tofu.
On toast in the morning, especially if it has a little cream cheese on it.
On grilled bread, like a bruschetta.
Roasted Cauliflower
Roasted Potatoes

I ate this .... and another entire sandwich....and another half sandwich.
 That's VEGAN cheese, my friends: mozzarella and cheddar. 

Here’s what you need:
5 pounds tomatoes, roughly chopped
1C to 1 ½ C granulated sugar
¼ C packed brown sugar
8 T fresh lime juice
2 t salt
1 t freshly grated ginger (or more)
1 t ground cinnamon
½ t ground cloves
2 t red pepper flakes
2 t hot smoked paprika

Here’s what you do:

Combine all the ingredients in a large non-reactive pot. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, until it comes to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer until it’s very thick. It will thicken as it cools. You can always check to see if it’s the correct consistency by placing a small amount in the fridge and checking it after it has completely cooled down. It should be thick enough to stay put on top of a burger.

Process in canning jars for 20 minutes.  

(printable recipe)  I found this recipe on Savory Moments. Check it out HERE.

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