I don't know what caused me to stop on this recipe in Vegan with a Vengeance, but I'm glad I did. It was another night when the fridge was pretty bare, so this dish worked out perfectly. Besides the time it takes to roast the garlic this soup comes together super fast. It was so good too! It tastes rich and like it took a long time...gotta love the complexity that simple roasted garlic can add. I'm not the biggest fan of white beans, because of their tough texture, but I love their versatility and when they're blended up (like in the biscuits with white bean gravy also from VwaV) then they're right up my alley!
We like to have something to dip when we eat soup. Cuz we're super classy like that...so I made the focaccia from The Urban Vegan to great results. I loved that everything was just tossed in the food processor to be mixed up and then baked. I cooked it a tad too long, so it was a little tough, but still good. Some fresh herbs in place of dried would take this fantastic little flatbread to new heights.
1) Remember the obligatory green bean casserole at holiday dinners? I remember really liking the crunchy onions (even though I didn't like onions...I guess if you fry anything) but the rest left me wanting to gag. Not so with this version from cute and delicious! A cheesy nooch sauce has replaced the cream of mushroom soup and now it just looks yum-my.
2) Something that makes my heart happy: Babycakes is now serving up vegan, gluten-free baked goods at Walt Disney World. I think my love of Disney has been made quite apparent (especially the last few days--I really need a vacation) and this makes me so excited. They're one of the few parks to actually have veg options at almost every single restaurant and to cater to vegan or other dietary needs at their fancy sit-down restaurants. I've had some of my best meals in restaurants ever at DisneyWorld (especially at California Grill and Jiko--the latter even has a vegan menu); they send the chef out to talk to you and make up something special based on what you like--it's awesome! Where they were lacking was the dessert department, although a couple of their shops do now sell Divvies, but looks like they're taking care of that now too!
3) I recently had the opportunity to eat at Encuentro in Oakland. It's an all-veg wine and tapas bar. It was a bit pricey, but it was good. We ordered the vegan cheese platter and I loved the idea of the different nut cheese spreads and pates. I want to put one together sometime for my next house party...maybe Thanksgiving or Christmas. Anyway, over at Vegan Good Things is a porcini and pecan pate (recipe from Gather in Berkeley, and a nominee for one of the 10 best restaurant dishes of 2010) that looks so tasty and would be the perfect accompaniment to a lovely vegan cheese platter.
4) My mom's signature dish used to chicken and dumplings. My whole family loved it--she made it well. After being away for awhile that's the dish we would always ask for, it was also what I missed the most after going vegetarian. She's since come up with some great vegan recipes (her black bean soup is amazing) for when I visit, but I think it's about time we try to veganize this old family favorite! Tofu Mom over at Tofu 'n' Sprouts has been doing a different post about gravy for the entire MoFo. Yup, I didn't know it was possible either, but she's doing it and doing it well! Today is a recipe for "Chicken" Gravy with Dumplings--it's full-on comfort food and I can't wait to try it out!
Win! This week Robin Robertson has a copy of Vegan Fire & Spice
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