Crispy Gnocchi

I always have my homemade gnocchi in my freezer. Usually, I boil them up, heat up sauce, and voila, dinner is ready in 5 minutes. Sometimes I crisp them up in a skillet as a fun alternative. Today we went to check on my house after Hurricane Sandy and there was no power, so I brought the whole bag of gnocchi back to the city. It was essentially a clump of defrosted gnocchi (except for the 2 that escaped for this picture) but they crisped up really well. Think about it, fried gnocchi. Delicious!

Gnocchi
Olive oil
Salt

If the gnocchi are still frozen, boil them for a minute until they float to the top. Heat up the olive oil in a non-skillet. Drain the gnocchi and turn them right into the skillet (or just put them right in if they are defrosted.) Don’t touch them, just let them get really done. Sprinkle with salt. Enjoy!

Hot Chocolate! (Instant Mix)

When I need a basic recipe, I check out Martha Stewart. I adapted this recipe for homemade hot chocolate mix that is simple and to keep it vegan, I use vegan milk and Dandies vegan marshmallows. Keep it in the pantry for the perfect hot chocolate kind of day, like today.

Hot Chocolate Mix
1 3/4 cups vegan cane sugar
1 cup + 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/2 tablespoon salt

Combine sugar, cocoa, and salt and combine well. Store the mixture in an airtight container. That’s it!

For hot chocolate, it’s one cup vegan milk (soy, almond, hemp) plus two tablespoons of hot chocolate mix. Heat up the milk and add the chocolate mix. Stir until it dissolves. Top with Dandies and enjoy!

Stew!

Growing up, my mother made stew all the time. Comfort food. This is my vegan version and it is just as comforting!

serves 4 to 6

1 onion
1 carrot
6 yukon gold potatoes
2 cups tomato sauce
2 cups water
2 cups cooked cannellini beans
1 cup fresh green beans
1 cup frozen green peas
1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
S and P

Heat grapeseed oil in a deep pot. Chop the onion into chunks and add to the oil. Chop the carrot into chunks and add to the pot. Peel and chop the potatoes and add to the pot. Cover with tomato sauce and water. Bring to a boil and then reduce to a simmer to cook the vegetables and potatoes. Clean the green beans and add to the stew. After 10 minutes or so, add the beans and green peas. Season with salt and pepper. Cook on a low flame for another 10 minutes and then turn off the flame. Let the stew sit for a while. Reheat when ready to serve. Enjoy!

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Truffles

Vegan cookie dough is the best because it can be eaten raw, no questions asked. These truffles are up there with my favorite things to make and eat! I adjusted my chocolate chip cookie recipe by leaving out the baking powder and baking soda and figured out how to make truffles all by myself.

makes approximately 12 truffles using a 1 tablespoon ice cream scooper

Cookie Dough
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup cane sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 flax egg (1 flax egg = 1 tablespoon ground flax meal + 3 tablespoons water)
2 tablespoons sunflower oil
2 tablespoons mini vegan chocolate chips

Truffles
1 cup mini vegan chocolate chips

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Make sure the sheet can fit flat in your freezer! Using a 1 tablespoon ice cream scooper, make dough balls. Freeze for a half hour.

Melt the chocolate in a double boiler.

Take the dough balls out of the freezer. You will need a plate, a fork and 2 spoons. The challenge here is that the frozen dough balls freeze up the chocolate so I had to figure out a way to keep the coating process separate.

Spoon out some chocolate and drop it onto the plate. Roll the dough ball in the chocolate to cover it using the other spoon and fork to roll it back and forth. If you need more chocolate, drop some more in.  Don’t put the cold spoon into the chocolate.

Place the truffles back onto the baking sheet and when they are all done place them in the freezer for another half hour. Try to wait at least a few minutes before eating them. Enjoy!

Mushroom Stroganoff (Oil Free)

My husband does not eat mushrooms; he is against them in principle. They are not a vegetable, he says. Whatever! I love mushrooms and now that I am cooking myself lunch three days a week, this dish is getting a lot of play. I concocted this recipe from a few different sources but the balsamic vinegar is Engine 2’s idea.

makes 2 servings

1/2 red onion
1 cup white wine (I use Chardonnay because I like to drink it)
1 lb. mushrooms
1/2 cup almond milk
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon arrowroot + 2 tablespoons cold water
Salt
Fresh parsley
1/2 lb. whole wheat linguine

Get the pasta going.

Slice the onion into semi-circles and cook in in white wine until soft. Slice the mushrooms and add to the onions. Add the almond milk and balsamic vinegar and cook together until mushrooms are soft.

In a small bowl, whisk together the arrowroot and water. Pour into the mushrooms and let the sauce thicken. Season with salt.

Toss pasta into Stroganoff and garnish with chopped fresh parsley. Enjoy!