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Cultured cauliflower Alfredo with gnocchi, arugula, and acorn swuash

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What you need:

  • 1/2 of one small cauliflower
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 c raw onion
  • 1.5 c easy soy yogurt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian herb spice
  • salt to taste

For the gnocchi:

  • one package gnocchi (I used Trader Joe cauliflower gnocchi, soft and chewy!)
  • one small acorn squash
  • one bag arugula greens

How to make it:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Cut the acorn squash in half. Scoop out the seeds and spread them on a baking sheet. I pre-scored the squash to make it easier to scoop after baking. Also, I’m not too picky about cleaning the stingy stuff off the seeds, I think it adds flavor.

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Cut up the cauliflower and put it on a sheet (you can put it all on one if you want. Easy cleaning!)

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Roast the veggies until they are done. You’ll have to stir the seeds at least once and remove them after about ten minutes. Flip the squash after about fifteen minutes. Stir the cauliflower to keep from burning.

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Once every thing is cooked, put the Alfredo ingredients into the blender and blend until warm.

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Cook your gnocchi as instructed. I pan fried the cauliflower gnocchi in oil until browned. Wilt the arugula (add to warm pot and cook just long enough to wilt it.) You can drain the arugula in a colander if you want to. I usually don’t because I don’t like to waste the nutrients in the water that cook out, unless it’s really going to mess up my plating.

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Stir the gnocchi and squash cubes into the arugula.

Top with Alfredo sauce and garnish with the baked squash seeds. Yum!

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Cultured cashew cream

What you need-

Blend the cashews until smooth, adding just enough water to blend easily. You can make it thicker but you may need to scrape the cashew butter down from the sides. Stir in salt and cultures, cover to avoid developing a skin, and place in your fermentation station for 8 hours.

You can add in any number of seasonings. I make it plain so that I can utilize it for multiple applications.

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Roasted romanesco broccoli with cultured cashew and persimmon sauce

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What you need-

  • 1 head Romanesco broccoli
  • 4 tablespoons cultured cashew cream
  • 1-2 persimmons
  • 2 apples
  • 2 shallots
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • seasoning

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Chop the apples, potato and shallots, drizzle with olive oil. I sprinkled on a little Italian herb spice and salt. Roast until soft.

Lightly core and cover the Romanesco broccoli with foil and roast for 30 minutes. Uncover and roast for another five for a little browning. Check from time to time to ensure it doesn’t burn.

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Place cultured cashew cream in the blender along with the flesh of the persimmon, 1/2 shallot, a pinch of salt, and a pinch of chipotle (optional). You can add other seasoning as desired.

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When everything is done roasting, drizzle the cream sauce on and serve! The light sweetness of the persimmon cashew sauce perfectly matches the sweetness in the roasted apples. It makes for a great sweet and savory dinner.

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Healthy cultured potato salad

What you need-

  • 3-4 pounds Yukon or red potatoes
  • 4 ribs celery
  • One small onion
  • One cup easy soy yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons vegan mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons mustard (Grandma’s special touch! Any kind will do)
  • 1 teaspoon celery seed
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste

Cut the potatoes and boil them until they are al dente. Run them under cold water to cool. Add in remaining ingredients except pepper and stir with a large spoon to keep potatoes from breaking apart.

Sprinkle with pepper.

The yogurt adds a light creamy tart flavor and reduces the need for so much mayo. Yum!!

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Cauliflower roast with lime cream sauce

What you’ll need for the sauce:

As an aside, you can use this versatile onion, pine nut, sunflower seed and yogurt sauce as a base for many different kinds of cream sauce- sriracha, curry, cilantro-jalepeño, etc.)

What you’ll need for the rest of the meal:

  • One head cauliflower
  • 1 tablespoon Italian herb seasoning
  • 1/3 teaspoon cayenne or Berbere (I prefer Berbere because of it’s rich flavor with the lime and cream sauce)
  • Baby potatoes (optional)
  • Asparagus (optional)

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Blend the sauce ingredients except the lime on high until smooth and creamy. I like to blend until the sauce is slightly steamy, to cook the onion a little bit so that some of the spice level and onion flavor comes down.

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Squeeze the lime into the cream sauce and mix well.

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Remove the leaves and stem of the cauliflower as best you can without separating the florets.

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Slather the cauliflower with cream sauce and place on a cookie sheet or skillet.

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Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. I quartered the potatoes and baked them with a diced onion, olive oil, and Italian herb spice at the same time. Adding the diced onion brings the flavor and texture up infinitely, because the onion caramelizes in the process of baking. I finished the potatoes with a healthy sprinkling of flake salt.

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Uncover and bake for 45 more minutes to an hour. Check for desired level of browning. I put a little more cream sauce on mine and baked for five more minutes. I used this five minutes to steam up the asparagus with a little water and a little olive oil.

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Sprinkle with Italian herb and cayenne or berbere.

Slice the cauliflower into quarters (large slices helps keep it from falling apart into florets). Spread a little more cream sauce onto the cauliflower and serve!

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Vegan fettuccini alfredo with king oyster scallops

 

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What you need-

Scallops-

  • 4 king oyster mushrooms
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds (black and white)
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons tamari (wheat free soy sauce)
  • 2 tablespoons dulse (seaweed flakes for extra seafood-ish flavoring-optional)

Noodles-

  • one packages fettuccini noodles (I use Tinkyada gluten free brown rice)

Asparagus-

  • 1 pound trimmed asparagus
  • sesame seeds
  • 1 teaspoon herb seasoning

“Alfredo” sauce-

  • 2 cups vegan easy soy yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/8-1/4 cup cashews (no need to soak if you have a powerful blender)
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon Italian herb seasoning
  • salt to taste

Garnish-

  • 1 bunch parsley
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

Heat the oven to 425 degrees and salt a pot of water to boil. Once the water has come to a boil, add the fettuccini noodles.

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Slice the oyster mushrooms to approximately the same width and spread on a cookie sheet. Drizzle with olive oil, tamari, sesame seeds, and dulse. I cover this loosely with another inverted cookie sheet for the first 15 minutes, then remove. You could also use tin foil.

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While the mushrooms are baking, trim and slice the asparagus. Put in a skillet with sesame seeds and italian seasoning. I find that mixing various elements of a meal together melds the final result well. Add one cup of pasta water to the asparagus in a skillet and cover, steaming for 2-4 minutes. Remove from heat. Pour any liquid left into your blender container.

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Flip the mushrooms over to get a good brown on both sides.

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Start the alfredo sauce in your blender. Add all the “alfredo” ingredients to the water in the blender container. Blend until smooth.

Uncover oyster mushrooms until liquid has mostly evaporated (you will need to check this to make sure it doesn’t burn off totally). Remove mushrooms from the pan.

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Add a bit of “alfredo” sauce to the baking sheet to deglaze. When you have finished deglazing, add all the sauce to the asparagus.

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Garnish-

Wash the bunch of parsley. Put on a cutting board with salt and lemon. Chop finely.

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Plate up a serving of noodles, add “alfredo” sauce with asparagus, and finish with garnish. This meal may seem complex at first, but once you make it you will start to see the rhythm of mixing one part with another, as well as the intelligence of not reheating water or wasting good flavors by washing them away. Finish with a sprinkle of cayenne (optional).

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Rice yogurt

What you will need-

  • 2 cups cooked rice (I used white)
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon maple syrup (optional)
  • 1-2 cups water
  • 1 blue scoop Avellana Vegan cultures

Put all the ingredients except the vegan cultures into your blender and blend until smooth. Your finished yogurt will be the same consistency and thickness of this mixture, so add the amount of water you want to reach your desired thickness.

Add the Avellana Vegan Cultures and mix for a few more seconds.

Put mixture into your fermentation station and culture for 8-12 hours at around 100 degrees.

This yogurt has a mild taste and a creamy, slightly glutinous texture. It’s definitely not your average yogurt texture or flavor. I really love it!

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Cashew-Chickpea yogurt

What you need:

  • 1 c soaked chickpeas
  • 1/8-1/4 c cashews (more=creamier and fattier, less is beanier and lighter. If you want, you can omit these altogether and opt for a plain chickpea yogurt)
  • 1.5 c water
  • an extraction method (nutmilk bag, colander, panty hose)
  • a pot
  1. Soak chickpeas and cashews over night.
  2. Add chickpeas, cashews, and water to blender and blend until smooth (you can also grind the cashews separately and add to the chickpea milk after you cook it, if you prefer. It adds a step, but may make the final result a little creamier. I’ve tried it both ways and it’s good either way…I guess it’s a matter of preference). Extract the excess fiber. It’s easier to squeeze the milk out using chickpeas because they are a little more fibrous and less squishy. I filter it back and forth a few times until I have little or no pulp left over.

(It looks a little weird now, outta the kitchen :/)

(oh no! I got a run in my stocking!)

3. Heat up the milk until it is steaming, but not quite boiling. It will start to get a little thicker, don’t worry, that’s just the proteins changing with the heat. Put a lid on it and let it cool down for several hours.

4. Put the milk in a jar and add one blue scoop of Avellana culture. Put it in your fermentation station and let it culture for eight hours at around 100 degrees. Don’t let this culture too long! It will take on a strange, otherworldly smell. (I’ve eaten it anyway when it smells like that and I didn’t die…but proceed at your own risk! 🙂

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Hazelnut ricotta

What you need:

  • 2 c hazelnuts soaked for 8 hours
  • 2 T baking soda
  • 4 c water
  • 2 T apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 t salt (or to taste)
  • A pot
  • A fermentation station
  • A drip station (a towel lined colander works well for this job)
  • Avellana vegan cultures
  1. Place the soaked hazlenuts in a pot with plenty of water and the baking soda. Bring the pot to a boil. The water will turn red due to the tannins in the hazelnut skins. You can use this to dye with if yo’re a natural dyer!
  2. Once the skins start slipping off the hazelnuts, take them off the heat and drain the red water. Refill the pot with cool water and run the hazelnuts back and forth between your hands to get the skins off. They are pretty sticky and make a little mess. You don’t have to remove every skin.
  3. Add the nuts and 4 c water to high speed blender in blend on high for a minute or two.
  4. Use your extraction device to remove the fiber. SAVE 1/2 cup of the fiber! This can be dried on low heat and used for baking! It is defatted hazeltnut flour. It’s super light and delicious.
  5. Put the filtered milk back into the pot and add the apple cider vinegar.
  6. Bring the milk to a boil, stirring frequently. Let it simmer/boil for about three minutes.
  7. Let this milk cool and then pour it though the drip station. It may take a day or so for it to dry out to ricotta texture.
  8. Add one blue scoop of Avellana Creamery to the curd, along with the salt. Place this in the fermentation station for 24 hours at around 100 degrees.
  9. If you’d like the ricotta to have move texture, add the 1/2 c fiber from step 4 back into the ricotta.
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Cultured Peanut Sauce with veggies and noodles

I was once a decidedly BAD cook. I tried. I made raviolis from scratch! They sucked and we had to go out to eat. Then I found a book called On Food and Cooking by Harold McGee. It was all about the science behind food and what makes it good. I was pretty fascinated by this, though I will admit, the only thing I still remember (I checked it out from the library five years ago) is the five flavors rule. When you are cooking, you gotta understand the six flavors-sweet, sour, salty, spicy, bitter, and umami. Each of the flavors has its inverse operator. Here’s a nifty chart to help. Screen Shot 2018-01-28 at 7.50.52 PM

(from cooksmarts.com)

This idea saved my cooking. I didn’t suddenly become good at ravioli (I tried them again literally two days ago and we ended up ordering out) but I did begin to understand what makes food taste good, once I started tasting things and trying to understand what they needed to become balanced. This recipe is going to need a little of that adventurous spirit on your part!! Don’t worry, it’s hard to go wrong with these ingredients:

  • some peanut milk cheese (umami and sour)
  • sriratcha (spicy! and sour)
  • maple syrup (sweet)
  • garlic (bitter)
  • salt (duh)
  • veggies of choice (I used onion, corn, red pepper, and broccoli)
  • noodles of choice (I used my favorite Lotus pad thai noodles)
  1. This is the peanut cheese. If you’re making this from scratch, just don’t drip the peanut protein out as much. Drip it out until it is a nice saucy texture. If you’ve already made the cheese, mix in sriratcha to taste, four tablespoons of non-dairy yogurt (or 2 T non-dairy milk if you don’t have any yogurt), two-three tablespoons of maple syrup, and salt (start slow, like 1/4 teaspoon, and move up from there SLOWLY. Understand that things will get saltier as the salt dissolves, so wait before you add more salt. Salt is my nemesis.)  Taste it a million times and start to try to understand what it wants to be good and balanced! It’s fun, once you get the hang of it.

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This is the peanut cheese. ^

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  1. Ingredients whisked in.  ^

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2. Don’t forget the maple syrup! Its super important to balance out the double sours from peanut cheese culture and the sriratcha vinegar.

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3. Steam or stir fry your veggies.

4. Cook up your noodles. I love these. 

5. I usually cook up a little tofu too.

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