Apple Ginger Buns
This recipe delivers a trifecta of food wins for me; they taste scrumptious, they look fancy and they make you feel that deep satisfaction that comes as a result of one’s own achievement. This recipe is sort of an answer to the cinnamon bun in that although I love the filling to bun ratio and the rolled up vibe, the unrelenting sugar to the max commitment of the cinnamon bun is offputting. If you want a little more balance in your bun, this recipe is for you.  
Ingredients
Apple Ginger Jam Filling
2 cups ginger- peel and rough chop3 cups granny smith apple- peel, core and rough chop2 cups water ¼ cup lemon juice¼ tsp salt4 tblsp vegan butter1 cup sugarPectin- I used Pomona’s Universal Pectin and followed instructions for 4 cup batch
Bun Dough1 cup almond milk½ cup vegan butter (I used Earth Balance)2 ¼ tsp instant yeast¼ cup sugar¼ tsp salt1 tsp cinnamon3 cups all purpose flourabout a tblsp melted vegan butter for brushingMethodJamming These instructions may vary depending on the brand of pectin you use. I used Pomona’s because it’s effective in low sugar content recipes. Just read the instructions or…well, if you’re reading this it means you have access to the internet therefore nothing is outside your grasp.1. In a pot combine ginger, apple, water, lemon juice, salt and simmer until your roots and fruits are soft.2. Remove from heat and transfer to a blender. Add butter and blend until as smooth.3. While you’re blending, in a separate bowl, combine sugar and pectin powder. 4. Return the apple ginger blend to your pot. Add sugar+pectin and your calcium water (pectin instructions) and stir through.5. Boil for one full minute. 6. Set aside 125ml for filling. If you think you will use the rest within 3 weeks simply store in the fridge. If you want to store it for longer, follow proper canning instructions. Dough 1. Warm the almond milk and butter together just to melt. Not too hot or it will kill our yeast-think bath water temperature.
2. In a bowl combine instant yeast and sugar, now pour warm milk mixture into the bowl- stir gently. Leave undisturbed for 10 minutes. The yeast will activate and you should see a foam develop. 3. Add cinnamon and salt. Now add flour ½ cup at a time. I did this by hand - the first cup I mixed in with a whisk, the second with a spoon and the third I kneaded in on a tabletop. Form the dough into a ball, slather with vegetable oil and place in a saran covered bowl to rise. Let rise until doubled in size. About 30 minutes. Buns - Preheat oven to 350° F 1. On a lightly floured surface roll dough into a long rectangle. The rectangle should be 8 inches tall and 24 inches long. 2. Brush the rectangle with melted butter. Spread 125ml of the filling evenly, covering the entire rectangle. Now starting from the long edge closest to you begin to roll the dough evenly up over itself toward the other long edge. You will end up with a log.
3. With a sharp knife, divide the log every 1 ½ inches. 4. In a baking dish place your buns, swirly side down, side by side. Bake for 25-30 minutes.     NotesThis recipe can play out like a ‘choose your own adventure’. Once you have made the jam filling you have created an ingredient, from this point on it can be used however you wish. The jam filling yields about 2 cups. I suggest setting aside 125ml for immediate use with this recipe and jarring the rest in 3 x 125ml mason jars.  You can use it in the future for tarts, cookies, cakes or just spread on toast and muffins.  

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Apple Ginger Buns

This recipe delivers a trifecta of food wins for me; they taste scrumptious, they look fancy and they make you feel that deep satisfaction that comes as a result of one’s own achievement. This recipe is sort of an answer to the cinnamon bun in that although I love the filling to bun ratio and the rolled up vibe, the unrelenting sugar to the max commitment of the cinnamon bun is offputting. If you want a little more balance in your bun, this recipe is for you.  

Ingredients

Apple Ginger Jam Filling

2 cups ginger- peel and rough chop
3 cups granny smith apple- peel, core and rough chop
2 cups water
¼ cup lemon juice
¼ tsp salt
4 tblsp vegan butter
1 cup sugar
Pectin- I used Pomona’s Universal Pectin and followed instructions for 4 cup batch

Bun Dough

1 cup almond milk
½ cup vegan butter (I used Earth Balance)
2 ¼ tsp instant yeast
¼ cup sugar
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
3 cups all purpose flour
about a tblsp melted vegan butter for brushing

Method

Jamming

These instructions may vary depending on the brand of pectin you use. I used Pomona’s because it’s effective in low sugar content recipes. Just read the instructions or…well, if you’re reading this it means you have access to the internet therefore nothing is outside your grasp.

1. In a pot combine ginger, apple, water, lemon juice, salt and simmer until your roots and fruits are soft.

2. Remove from heat and transfer to a blender. Add butter and blend until as smooth.

3. While you’re blending, in a separate bowl, combine sugar and pectin powder.

4. Return the apple ginger blend to your pot. Add sugar+pectin and your calcium water (pectin instructions) and stir through.

5. Boil for one full minute.

6. Set aside 125ml for filling. If you think you will use the rest within 3 weeks simply store in the fridge. If you want to store it for longer, follow proper canning instructions.

Dough

1. Warm the almond milk and butter together just to melt. Not too hot or it will kill our yeast-think bath water temperature.

2. In a bowl combine instant yeast and sugar, now pour warm milk mixture into the bowl- stir gently. Leave undisturbed for 10 minutes. The yeast will activate and you should see a foam develop.

3. Add cinnamon and salt. Now add flour ½ cup at a time. I did this by hand - the first cup I mixed in with a whisk, the second with a spoon and the third I kneaded in on a tabletop. Form the dough into a ball, slather with vegetable oil and place in a saran covered bowl to rise. Let rise until doubled in size. About 30 minutes.

Buns - Preheat oven to 350° F

1. On a lightly floured surface roll dough into a long rectangle. The rectangle should be 8 inches tall and 24 inches long.

2. Brush the rectangle with melted butter. Spread 125ml of the filling evenly, covering the entire rectangle. Now starting from the long edge closest to you begin to roll the dough evenly up over itself toward the other long edge. You will end up with a log.

3. With a sharp knife, divide the log every 1 ½ inches.

4. In a baking dish place your buns, swirly side down, side by side. Bake for 25-30 minutes.     

Notes

This recipe can play out like a ‘choose your own adventure’. Once you have made the jam filling you have created an ingredient, from this point on it can be used however you wish. The jam filling yields about 2 cups. I suggest setting aside 125ml for immediate use with this recipe and jarring the rest in 3 x 125ml mason jars.  You can use it in the future for tarts, cookies, cakes or just spread on toast and muffins.  


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The Wurst Day Ever
Having a bummer day? Pick yourself up, get in the kitchen and prepare to feel puffy. I am eating this delicious treat as I write this and let me tell you the payoff is huge. It feels like I just rebuilt an engine. We are taking the highway straight to veganville with this recipe folks-things are getting serious ingredient wise but I promise you that these ingredients are widely available in health food stores and some grocery chains. All the ingredients in this recipe will be welcome friends in your pantry and will take your vegan cooking skills to the next level.
Ingredients
1 cup chickpeas + vegetable stock as needed- if using canned½ cup textured soy protein bits (or textured vegetable protein bits TVP)
2 cups water
1 tblsp plum vinegar
1 tblsp tamari
1 teas agave nectar

1 cup vital wheat gluten
1 tblsp ground flax seed
2 tblsp nutritional yeast
pinch nutmeg
¼ teas mustard powder
2 teas marjoram 
1 tblsp coarse black pepper - I broke down whole peppercorns with a mortar and pestle
½ teas salt
1 tblsp vegetable oil
⅓ cup vegetable stock (or cooking liquid from chickpeas if you used dry)

*You will also need aluminum foil and a steamer set up

Method
1. Simmer chickpeas in salted water until soft. Strain and reserve cooking liquid. In a blender or food processor, process chickpeas with enough liquid that they become a puree (think hummus)
2. Place the protein bits, 2 cups water, plum vinegar, tamari and agave nectar in a pot and bring to a boil then simmer until all the liquid has been absorbed/reduced-this should take about 25 minutes. Take off heat and let cool.
3. Combine vital wheat gluten, ground flax, nutritional yeast, nutmeg, mustard powder, marjoram and salt in a bowl - mix so ingredients are combined well.
4. Add cooked protein bits and chickpea puree to the dry ingredients in your bowl. Add 1 tblsp oil and ⅓ cup vegetable stock-or chickpea cooking liquid if you’ve got it.
5. Mix the ingredients, a dough will form. The dough should be moist but not wet. Add liquid if needed. Knead for about 5 minutes.
6, Using a knife, divide the dough according to how many/what size sausages you want. The size I made produced 8 sausages from this recipe.
7. Roll and shape your dough into a sausagey shape.
8. Take each sausage and wrap in aluminum foil by rolling it up around-like a candy wrapper. Twist both ends (think tootsie roll) and make sure it is sealed and there are no tears in the foil.
9. Steam for 45 minutes.

Notes
If this is your first time working with some of these ingredients don’t worry- the steps are  straightforward and I can’t foresee any surprises here. Plum vinegar a.k.a Ume vinegar a.k.a umeboshi is a truly fantastic ingredient to have around. It is a tart, salty, complex flavour that adds a nice layer to this recipe and has many regular everyday uses like in salad dressings for example.
It is important, while cooking the protein bits, to allow the liquid to fully reduce and not to strain, this intensifies the flavors so be patient. For me, coarse, freshly cracked black pepper is crucial in this recipe but not everyone loves pepper like I do;  fresh grind or even store bought grind is fine. Make sure you have plenty of water in your steaming set up, 45 minutes is a long time and you want to avoid total evaporation.
These sausages hold their own in a skillet or on a grill and brown really nicely. They also slice up well if you want to throw chunks into a pasta dish. Give it a go- you will not be disappointed.
puffybird.tumblr.com

The Wurst Day Ever

Having a bummer day? Pick yourself up, get in the kitchen and prepare to feel puffy. I am eating this delicious treat as I write this and let me tell you the payoff is huge. It feels like I just rebuilt an engine. We are taking the highway straight to veganville with this recipe folks-things are getting serious ingredient wise but I promise you that these ingredients are widely available in health food stores and some grocery chains. All the ingredients in this recipe will be welcome friends in your pantry and will take your vegan cooking skills to the next level.

Ingredients

1 cup chickpeas + vegetable stock as needed- if using canned

½ cup textured soy protein bits (or textured vegetable protein bits TVP)

2 cups water

1 tblsp plum vinegar

1 tblsp tamari

1 teas agave nectar


1 cup vital wheat gluten

1 tblsp ground flax seed

2 tblsp nutritional yeast

pinch nutmeg

¼ teas mustard powder

2 teas marjoram

1 tblsp coarse black pepper - I broke down whole peppercorns with a mortar and pestle

½ teas salt

1 tblsp vegetable oil

⅓ cup vegetable stock (or cooking liquid from chickpeas if you used dry)


*You will also need aluminum foil and a steamer set up


Method

1. Simmer chickpeas in salted water until soft. Strain and reserve cooking liquid. In a blender or food processor, process chickpeas with enough liquid that they become a puree (think hummus)

2. Place the protein bits, 2 cups water, plum vinegar, tamari and agave nectar in a pot and bring to a boil then simmer until all the liquid has been absorbed/reduced-this should take about 25 minutes. Take off heat and let cool.

3. Combine vital wheat gluten, ground flax, nutritional yeast, nutmeg, mustard powder, marjoram and salt in a bowl - mix so ingredients are combined well.

4. Add cooked protein bits and chickpea puree to the dry ingredients in your bowl. Add 1 tblsp oil and ⅓ cup vegetable stock-or chickpea cooking liquid if you’ve got it.

5. Mix the ingredients, a dough will form. The dough should be moist but not wet. Add liquid if needed. Knead for about 5 minutes.

6, Using a knife, divide the dough according to how many/what size sausages you want. The size I made produced 8 sausages from this recipe.

7. Roll and shape your dough into a sausagey shape.

8. Take each sausage and wrap in aluminum foil by rolling it up around-like a candy wrapper. Twist both ends (think tootsie roll) and make sure it is sealed and there are no tears in the foil.

9. Steam for 45 minutes.

Notes

If this is your first time working with some of these ingredients don’t worry- the steps are  straightforward and I can’t foresee any surprises here. Plum vinegar a.k.a Ume vinegar a.k.a umeboshi is a truly fantastic ingredient to have around. It is a tart, salty, complex flavour that adds a nice layer to this recipe and has many regular everyday uses like in salad dressings for example.

It is important, while cooking the protein bits, to allow the liquid to fully reduce and not to strain, this intensifies the flavors so be patient. For me, coarse, freshly cracked black pepper is crucial in this recipe but not everyone loves pepper like I do;  fresh grind or even store bought grind is fine. Make sure you have plenty of water in your steaming set up, 45 minutes is a long time and you want to avoid total evaporation.

These sausages hold their own in a skillet or on a grill and brown really nicely. They also slice up well if you want to throw chunks into a pasta dish. Give it a go- you will not be disappointed.

puffybird.tumblr.com

Nice Guy Pot Pie
This blog is about food that you can feel really proud about making and serving to friends, family or just yo self. This recipe brings me back to being a kid, at home in Montreal in deep winter at my family supper table with its warmth and welcome and reminds me that good food can transport and change us. This goes out to my mom who served up scratch meals to my large family every single night- that is next level puffy bird status.
Ingredients
Pie Crust
2 ½ cups all purpose flour
1 teas salt
1 cup vegan margarine

6 tblsp ice water
Pie Filling⅓ cup brown or green lentils5 button mushrooms- small dice8 dried shiitake mushrooms- rehydrate and small dice
1 small onion- small dice1 carrot- small dice1 russet potato- medium dice6 cups water2 tblsp tamari (or soy sauce)1 teas salt1 tblsp arrowroot starch (or corn starch - if you must…)|dash of nutmegdash of allspicedash of mustard powder
Method - Preheat oven to 425°F
Pie Crust
1. In a large mixing bowl combine flour and salt. 
2. Cut butter into flour. This means incorporating the butter in a way that leaves small lumps of raw butter. These will cause separations in the dough and when baked will create a flaky crust.
3. Add ice water and mix sparingly until combined. 
4. Wrap dough in cellophane and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes before use. 
Pie Filling 
1. Bring 6 cups of water, 2 tblsp tamari and 1 teas salt to a boil and add dried mushrooms only- we need to rehydrate them and claim their delicious mushroom nectar for our gravy. Let simmer on low heat until liquid is reduced by half, turn off heat and cover with a lid for 20 minutes.
2. Drain and reserve mushroom liquid. This is your pot pie’s life source. 
3. Put lentils on to cook. Nothing fancy- just cook them in salted water until tender, strain and set aside.
4. Get a large pot hot and add vegetable oil.  In this order add your ingredients allowing each some time to cook before adding the next. You are layering the flavors. Button mushrooms, shiitake mushrooms, onion, carrot and finally potato.
5. Once all the veggies are snuggling in harmony add 1 cup of the 3 cups of mushroom nectar. Now add your nutmeg, allspice and mustard powder. Allow to fully reduce while stirring frequently. Add another cup and allow to reduce fully while stirring. Before adding the final cup stir 1 tblsp of arrowroot starch into it. Once you have added it reduce until you have a satisfactory gravy ratio. 
6. Stir in your cooked lentils, remove from heat and allow to cool.
Combine and Bake
1.  Fill your baking receptacle within a half inch of the top with pie filling- don’t want overflow.
2. Working quickly; roll out pie dough, cut down to desired shape and place over top of your baking dish. This part is personal preference- do you want it to hang over the edge or just fit over the filling- up to you. Makes slits in the top of the crust for steam to escape.
3. Bake for about 30 minutes or until crust is golden brown. 
Notes
Successful pie crust is all about keeping the dough cold. You don’t want to let the fat melt before it gets in the oven. Handle it as little as possible and once you have topped your pies - place them in them in the freezer for 15 minutes before baking.  Stirring the filling will help thicken the sauce. Russet potatoes are starchy and when you stir you agitate and release it- sort of like risotto technique.
puffybird.tumblr.com

Nice Guy Pot Pie


This blog is about food that you can feel really proud about making and serving to friends, family or just yo self. This recipe brings me back to being a kid, at home in Montreal in deep winter at my family supper table with its warmth and welcome and reminds me that good food can transport and change us. This goes out to my mom who served up scratch meals to my large family every single night- that is next level puffy bird status.


Ingredients


Pie Crust


2 ½ cups all purpose flour

1 teas salt

1 cup vegan margarine

6 tblsp ice water


Pie Filling

⅓ cup brown or green lentils
5 button mushrooms- small dice
8 dried shiitake mushrooms- rehydrate and small dice

1 small onion- small dice
1 carrot- small dice
1 russet potato- medium dice
6 cups water
2 tblsp tamari (or soy sauce)
1 teas salt
1 tblsp arrowroot starch (or corn starch - if you must…)|
dash of nutmeg
dash of allspice
dash of mustard powder


Method - Preheat oven to 425°F


Pie Crust


1. In a large mixing bowl combine flour and salt.


2. Cut butter into flour. This means incorporating the butter in a way that leaves small lumps of raw butter. These will cause separations in the dough and when baked will create a flaky crust
.


3. Add ice water and mix sparingly until combined.


4. Wrap dough in cellophane and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes before use.


Pie Filling


1. Bring 6 cups of water, 2 tblsp tamari and 1 teas salt to a boil and add dried mushrooms only- we need to rehydrate them and claim their delicious mushroom nectar for our gravy. Let simmer on low heat until liquid is reduced by half, turn off heat and cover with a lid for 20 minutes.


2. Drain and reserve mushroom liquid. This is your pot pie’s life source.


3. Put lentils on to cook. Nothing fancy- just cook them in salted water until tender, strain and set aside.


4. Get a large pot hot and add vegetable oil.  In this order add your ingredients allowing each some time to cook before adding the next. You are layering the flavors. Button mushrooms, shiitake mushrooms, onion, carrot and finally potato.


5. Once all the veggies are snuggling in harmony add 1 cup of the 3 cups of mushroom nectar. Now add your nutmeg, allspice and mustard powder. Allow to fully reduce while stirring frequently. Add another cup and allow to reduce fully while stirring. Before adding the final cup stir 1 tblsp of arrowroot starch into it. Once you have added it reduce until you have a satisfactory gravy ratio.


6. Stir in your cooked lentils, remove from heat and allow to cool.


Combine and Bake


1.  Fill your baking receptacle within a half inch of the top with pie filling- don’t want overflow.


2. Working quickly; roll out pie dough, cut down to desired shape and place over top of your baking dish. This part is personal preference- do you want it to hang over the edge or just fit over the filling- up to you. Makes slits in the top of the crust for steam to escape.


3. Bake for about 30 minutes or until crust is golden brown.


Notes

Successful pie crust is all about keeping the dough cold. You don’t want to let the fat melt before it gets in the oven. Handle it as little as possible and once you have topped your pies - place them in them in the freezer for 15 minutes before baking.  Stirring the filling will help thicken the sauce. Russet potatoes are starchy and when you stir you agitate and release it- sort of like risotto technique.

puffybird.tumblr.com

Mondo Corn Bread Muffins and Dill Sour Cream
This recipe can be baked in any shape you like- just make sure to adjust your baking time accordingly. It yields 6 mondo muffins but also makes a great loaf if you prefer less extreme baking. I, for my part,  will remain firmly unreasonable in my baking practices.
The dill sour cream is truly delicious. Working with non-vegan ingredients as a restaurant cook has made me particularly intolerant of vegan-y tasting food. But, this sour cream gets my vegan cook self-hating seal of approval! 
Ingredients
Corn Bread
Dry
1 ½ cups fine corn meal2 cups all purpose flour1 teas baking powder1 teas salt⅓ cup sugar
Wet
2 bananas2 cups soymilk½ cup vegan margarine
Dill Sour Cream
¾ cup soft tofu¼ cup vegetable oil1 tsp lemon juice¼ tsp salt1 tbsp chopped dill
Method
Corn Bread
1. preheat oven to 375 C and grease baking receptacle.
2. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl. Mix thoroughly.
3. In a separate bowl; combine wet ingredients thoroughly. I used a potato masher to break down and then a whisk to incorporate. My kitchenaid is broken. Wah. 
4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients. Fold just until batter comes together.
5. Divide batter equally into baking tin and bake for 35 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. 
Dill Sour Cream
1. Either by hand with a whisk or in a food processor; combine tofu, oil and lemon juice- blend or whip to a creamy texture.
2. Transfer to a bowl and stir in the salt and chopped dill.
Notes
I used fresh soymilk made with the previous recipe post and I encourage you to do the same. Now, when you combine your wet and dry ingredients - be gentle. Baking powder is a quick acting leavening agent that, once hydrated, releases carbon dioxide gas into your batter. We simply want to start the process (by stirring in the wet ingredients) and then leave it be to do its work. This gas will remain trapped in the batter and create a lighter, fluffier end result.
puffybird.tumblr.com

Mondo Corn Bread Muffins and Dill Sour Cream

This recipe can be baked in any shape you like- just make sure to adjust your baking time accordingly. It yields 6 mondo muffins but also makes a great loaf if you prefer less extreme baking. I, for my part,  will remain firmly unreasonable in my baking practices.

The dill sour cream is truly delicious. Working with non-vegan ingredients as a restaurant cook has made me particularly intolerant of vegan-y tasting food. But, this sour cream gets my vegan cook self-hating seal of approval!

Ingredients

Corn Bread

Dry

1 ½ cups fine corn meal
2 cups all purpose flour
1 teas baking powder
1 teas salt
⅓ cup sugar

Wet

2 bananas
2 cups soymilk
½ cup vegan margarine

Dill Sour Cream

¾ cup soft tofu
¼ cup vegetable oil
1 tsp lemon juice
¼ tsp salt
1 tbsp chopped dill

Method

Corn Bread

1. preheat oven to 375 C and grease baking receptacle.

2. Combine dry ingredients in a bowl. Mix thoroughly.

3. In a separate bowl; combine wet ingredients thoroughly. I used a potato masher to break down and then a whisk to incorporate. My kitchenaid is broken. Wah.

4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients. Fold just until batter comes together.

5. Divide batter equally into baking tin and bake for 35 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

Dill Sour Cream

1. Either by hand with a whisk or in a food processor; combine tofu, oil and lemon juice- blend or whip to a creamy texture.

2. Transfer to a bowl and stir in the salt and chopped dill.

Notes

I used fresh soymilk made with the previous recipe post and I encourage you to do the same. Now, when you combine your wet and dry ingredients - be gentle. Baking powder is a quick acting leavening agent that, once hydrated, releases carbon dioxide gas into your batter. We simply want to start the process (by stirring in the wet ingredients) and then leave it be to do its work. This gas will remain trapped in the batter and create a lighter, fluffier end result.

puffybird.tumblr.com

Soymilk!
2L of store bought organic soy milk costs $4-$5
However, 2L of homemade organic soy milk only costs $0.75 to make!
Whoa right? The numbers don’t lie folks. Not only is homemade soymilk super easy and  inexpensive to make, it gives you total ingredient control (no weird preservatives or ingredients). You’ll feel super artisanal and crafty when you make it- so hot right now. You will need cheesecloth (I purchased mine at a local home hardware store), but aside from that this process does not require any special kitchen gear. It only takes about 25 minutes to make (once your beans are soaked- I recommend doing this overnight). The best part is, from here you can make your own fresh tofu and even bean curd sheets- just as simply, with the same savings, product quality assurance and puffy bird status. Let’s do this.
Ingredients
1 cup organic soy beans
water to cover- about 2 cups
6 additional cups of water
Method
1. Soak beans for 8 hours or overnight in a container with a lid- glass preferably. Your beans will almost triple in size so take that into account when choosing your container.
2. In batches: blend the soaked beans, their soaking liquid and the additional 6L of water together, on high, for 2 full minutes.
3. Into a receptacle large enough for 2L of liquid; overlay a strainer lined with 4 or 5 layers of cheesecloth. Pour your pureed milk into the cheeseclothed strainer and allow the liquid to pass through.
4. Squeeze as much liquid as you can from the pulp by gathering the corners of the cheesecloth, twisting and pressing it, wringing out any liquid remaining. Discard the pulp OR use it in another recipe, it is commonly called okara and there are loads of recipes online that call for it.
5. Place the raw soymilk into a large pot and bring almost to a boil. Before it boils, lower the heat to a low simmer and allow to cook for 20 minutes, stirring frequently to avoid sticking at the base of the pot.
6. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Enjoy!
Notes
I know a lot of people are like, “WHAT?! Soak beans overnight?! Yeah right! I will NEVER do that.” I know because I used to be like you, but then, one time, I soaked beans overnight and I was like, “I was a dummy for thinking this was hard.” So that is that, as they say. Case closed. Soak those beans and that is all there is to it. This soymilk recipe is as plain Jane as it gets, this is so that it can be versatile - it can be zuzzed up with a sweetener of your choice (I love coconut sugar)  or vanilla beans for yummy coffee treats or savourized (word?) with salt and herbs for cooking purposes. It can also be turned into tofu as I mentioned.  It is a great building block ingredient to have in your refrigerator and will stay good for about 7 days. I will definitely refer back to this recipe and build on it in the future so stay tuned!
puffybird.tumblr.com
 

Soymilk!

2L of store bought organic soy milk costs $4-$5

However, 2L of homemade organic soy milk only costs $0.75 to make!

Whoa right? The numbers don’t lie folks. Not only is homemade soymilk super easy and  inexpensive to make, it gives you total ingredient control (no weird preservatives or ingredients). You’ll feel super artisanal and crafty when you make it- so hot right now. You will need cheesecloth (I purchased mine at a local home hardware store), but aside from that this process does not require any special kitchen gear. It only takes about 25 minutes to make (once your beans are soaked- I recommend doing this overnight). The best part is, from here you can make your own fresh tofu and even bean curd sheets- just as simply, with the same savings, product quality assurance and puffy bird status. Let’s do this.

Ingredients

1 cup organic soy beans

water to cover- about 2 cups

6 additional cups of water

Method

1. Soak beans for 8 hours or overnight in a container with a lid- glass preferably. Your beans will almost triple in size so take that into account when choosing your container.

2. In batches: blend the soaked beans, their soaking liquid and the additional 6L of water together, on high, for 2 full minutes.

3. Into a receptacle large enough for 2L of liquid; overlay a strainer lined with 4 or 5 layers of cheesecloth. Pour your pureed milk into the cheeseclothed strainer and allow the liquid to pass through.

4. Squeeze as much liquid as you can from the pulp by gathering the corners of the cheesecloth, twisting and pressing it, wringing out any liquid remaining. Discard the pulp OR use it in another recipe, it is commonly called okara and there are loads of recipes online that call for it.

5. Place the raw soymilk into a large pot and bring almost to a boil. Before it boils, lower the heat to a low simmer and allow to cook for 20 minutes, stirring frequently to avoid sticking at the base of the pot.

6. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Enjoy!

Notes

I know a lot of people are like, “WHAT?! Soak beans overnight?! Yeah right! I will NEVER do that.” I know because I used to be like you, but then, one time, I soaked beans overnight and I was like, “I was a dummy for thinking this was hard.” So that is that, as they say. Case closed. Soak those beans and that is all there is to it. This soymilk recipe is as plain Jane as it gets, this is so that it can be versatile - it can be zuzzed up with a sweetener of your choice (I love coconut sugar)  or vanilla beans for yummy coffee treats or savourized (word?) with salt and herbs for cooking purposes. It can also be turned into tofu as I mentioned.  It is a great building block ingredient to have in your refrigerator and will stay good for about 7 days. I will definitely refer back to this recipe and build on it in the future so stay tuned!

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Chicory Salad with Orange Blossom DressingI visited the Jean Talon Market here in Montreal yesterday and looking around at all the beautful produce in season I felt inspired to get a salad jam session going. This salad is so tasty but I have to give the credit to the veggies this time. The radishes were incredible; classic radish tang but these guys were a little sweet. The chicory was fresh and peppery, the fennel was bright and crunchy and the dill fresh and soothing. My dressing pairs well highlighting the flavors in the salad with orange blossom. IngredientsDressing2 tbsp sherry vinegar1 tsp orange blossom water1 tsp mirinJuice of half a lemon2 tbsp olive oil1 small shallot- thinly slicedSalt and pepper to tasteSalad Chicory Nicoise lettuceRadish- thinly slicedFennel- julienneEdamame beansFresh Dill- choppedSalt and Pepper to tasteMethodDressing 1. In a small bowl combine sherry vinegar, orange water, mirin and lemon juice. Add olive oil while whisking to incorporate.2. Add sliced shallot and season with salt and pepper. Allow flavors to snuggle for twenty minutes before serving. Salad1. Into a bowl tear lettuce into appropriate sized pieces; add remain ingredients.2. Season with salt and pepper, toss with dressing and plate. NotesIt is such a fantastic time where I live right now for food. After a long winter of either eating imported or going without it is so amazing to be able to enjoy fresh tasty veggies from the market. When I ate this salad I was honestly surprised by what a marked difference in flavor and all around quality I noticed in the produce I was eating. I`m going to majorly encourage you guys to try and have this experience if you can. It reminds me why I am a cook!
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Chicory Salad with Orange Blossom Dressing

I visited the Jean Talon Market here in Montreal yesterday and looking around at all the beautful produce in season I felt inspired to get a salad jam session going. This salad is so tasty but I have to give the credit to the veggies this time. The radishes were incredible; classic radish tang but these guys were a little sweet. The chicory was fresh and peppery, the fennel was bright and crunchy and the dill fresh and soothing. My dressing pairs well highlighting the flavors in the salad with orange blossom.

Ingredients

Dressing

2 tbsp sherry vinegar
1 tsp orange blossom water
1 tsp mirin
Juice of half a lemon
2 tbsp olive oil
1 small shallot- thinly sliced
Salt and pepper to taste

Salad

Chicory Nicoise lettuce
Radish- thinly sliced
Fennel- julienne
Edamame beans
Fresh Dill- chopped
Salt and Pepper to taste

Method

Dressing

1. In a small bowl combine sherry vinegar, orange water, mirin and lemon juice. Add olive oil while whisking to incorporate.
2. Add sliced shallot and season with salt and pepper. Allow flavors to snuggle for twenty minutes before serving.

Salad

1. Into a bowl tear lettuce into appropriate sized pieces; add remain ingredients.
2. Season with salt and pepper, toss with dressing and plate.

Notes

It is such a fantastic time where I live right now for food. After a long winter of either eating imported or going without it is so amazing to be able to enjoy fresh tasty veggies from the market. When I ate this salad I was honestly surprised by what a marked difference in flavor and all around quality I noticed in the produce I was eating. I`m going to majorly encourage you guys to try and have this experience if you can. It reminds me why I am a cook!

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Anonymous said: are the beets in the beet tartare raw or cooked?

They are raw

Raspberry Rose Water DrinkSecond installment of delicious homemade summer drinks. This is a winner gang. Earth cherries are sweet and tart which, to me, basically screams “blend me up in a fun summer drink.” If you don’t already have rose water in your arsenal and you are all “sorry PB but I’m not going to buy that stuff just for this drink” think again. Rose water is great for baking as well, salad dressings umm I’m pretty sure it’s a really great toner/cleanser for your face. It wears many hats and it really takes this recipe to a lovely place. Don’t freak on the salt and pepper either- just trust me, don’t make me place a finger to those lips gently and say shhhhhhhh. Just go with it.     Ingredients2 cups raspberry1/2 cup earth cherries2 tsp rose water1/2 cup sugar cane syrupJuice of 1 lemon1/4 tsp salt1/4 tsp pepper1 1/2 cups iceMethod1. Place all ingredients, except ice, in a blender and process until smooth.2. Strain juice through a fine mesh strainer to remove seeds.3. Pour back into blender, add ice and process. NotesI’m not going to push anybody into anything but I recommend cutting this with white wine. Summer!!

Raspberry Rose Water Drink

Second installment of delicious homemade summer drinks. This is a winner gang. Earth cherries are sweet and tart which, to me, basically screams “blend me up in a fun summer drink.” If you don’t already have rose water in your arsenal and you are all “sorry PB but I’m not going to buy that stuff just for this drink” think again. Rose water is great for baking as well, salad dressings umm I’m pretty sure it’s a really great toner/cleanser for your face. It wears many hats and it really takes this recipe to a lovely place. Don’t freak on the salt and pepper either- just trust me, don’t make me place a finger to those lips gently and say shhhhhhhh. Just go with it.    

Ingredients

2 cups raspberry
1/2 cup earth cherries
2 tsp rose water
1/2 cup sugar cane syrup
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

1 1/2 cups ice

Method

1. Place all ingredients, except ice, in a blender and process until smooth.
2. Strain juice through a fine mesh strainer to remove seeds.
3. Pour back into blender, add ice and process.

Notes

I’m not going to push anybody into anything but I recommend cutting this with white wine. Summer!!

Almond PestoUp until now I have kept my recipes posted here pretty neutral in terms of the ingredients being more or less familiar to the average bear. But if you will please observe item four on your ingredients list it is..yes..torula yeast! Kablam! Some may not be familiar with this product, it is a magical powder that is an incredible source of calcium, iron and fiber and yummers to boot. Torula also adds a vaguely cheesy flavor to vegan recipes (like this one!) So don’t be scared of a little ‘torula’ friends, it only wants to make you healthy and strong! That said, get ready to be introduced to a few more ingredients that may not be on your radar. Let’s party.     Ingredients2 cups fresh basil leaves1 cup almonds- blanched, skins removed1 small garlic clove1 tbsp torula yeastJuice of 1 lemon1/4 cup olive oil1 cup vegetable stockSalt and pepper to tasteIf you are serving this over pasta you can replace in part or in full the vegetable stock with the salted cooking water you strained off from cooking your pasta. Method1. Place basil, almonds, garlic, torula and lemon juice in blender.2. Start blender and steadily pour vegetable stock (or cooking liquid) in through the top of the blender as it is processing. Process until smooth.3. To finish, drizzle olive oil slowly in through the top of the blender as it is processing to emulsify.NotesI served this cold over shell pasta and garnished simply with sliced tomatoes and arugula. I already had almonds with skins on in my pantry so I blanched and peeled them but I’m not going to lie- it is a little tedious. I would recommend buying prepared almonds, even those slivers will do. Usually pesto is fuelled by oil but I replaced a large part of the oil here with stock or cooking liquid just to keep things light. I also find it keeps nicely without all that oil to separate on you.
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Almond Pesto

Up until now I have kept my recipes posted here pretty neutral in terms of the ingredients being more or less familiar to the average bear. But if you will please observe item four on your ingredients list it is..yes..torula yeast! Kablam! Some may not be familiar with this product, it is a magical powder that is an incredible source of calcium, iron and fiber and yummers to boot. Torula also adds a vaguely cheesy flavor to vegan recipes (like this one!) So don’t be scared of a little ‘torula’ friends, it only wants to make you healthy and strong! That said, get ready to be introduced to a few more ingredients that may not be on your radar. Let’s party.    

Ingredients

2 cups fresh basil leaves
1 cup almonds- blanched, skins removed
1 small garlic clove
1 tbsp torula yeast
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup olive oil
1 cup vegetable stock
Salt and pepper to taste

If you are serving this over pasta you can replace in part or in full the vegetable stock with the salted cooking water you strained off from cooking your pasta.

Method

1. Place basil, almonds, garlic, torula and lemon juice in blender.
2. Start blender and steadily pour vegetable stock (or cooking liquid) in through the top of the blender as it is processing. Process until smooth.
3. To finish, drizzle olive oil slowly in through the top of the blender as it is processing to emulsify.

Notes

I served this cold over shell pasta and garnished simply with sliced tomatoes and arugula. I already had almonds with skins on in my pantry so I blanched and peeled them but I’m not going to lie- it is a little tedious. I would recommend buying prepared almonds, even those slivers will do. Usually pesto is fuelled by oil but I replaced a large part of the oil here with stock or cooking liquid just to keep things light. I also find it keeps nicely without all that oil to separate on you.

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White Bean Croustini with Corn RelishThe white bean should not be underestimated. Initially a bit of a snooze to look at but get ready for a “She’s All That” moment- whatever happened to Freddie Prinze Jr. anyway? Given the right attention a white bean can really shine. With this recipe you will end up with a rich, creamy puree  and the smokey, spiced relish marries well. I encourage you to take these recipes and use them in other dishes. IngredientsCroustiniBaguetteOlive oilSalt and pepper2 cups cooked white bean250 ml vegetable stock3 cloves garlic- whole1 tsp maple syrupSalt and pepper to tasteRelish2 ears corn- cooked and cut off the cob (about 1 cup)1 small red pepper- trimmed and brunoise1/4 cup fresh cilantro- rough chop1 small shallot- brunoise1 tblp apple cider vinegarJuice of 1 lemon1/4 tsp smoked paprika1/4 tsp cuminSalt and pepper to tasteMethodCroustini1. Cut baguette into 1/4 inch thick pieces. If you want a longer croustini, cut on a bias.2. Brush with olive oil, season with salt and pepper.3. Bake in 350 oven for 2-5 minutes until golden. Reserve.White Bean Puree4. Place pre cooked white bean in a small pot; cover with vegetable stock and add whole garlic cloves, salt and pepper.5. Simmer for 25 minutes. Strain but reserve excess liquid for blending. Remove 2 garlic cloves leaving only 1.6. Add maple syrup and hand blend until your have a puree. Add a small amount of cooking liquid reserved in step 5 to achieve desired consistency. Relish7. In a bowl combine all ingredients and let rest in refrigerator for 20 minutesNotesIt may seen redundant to recook beans. The only reason I suggest this is white beans will absorb a lot of liquid when cooking so in order to conserve precious stock I suggest cooking them in salted water (maybe throw some herbs in there- even stems will do!) to start. When they are basically cooked you can then simmer them in stock to infuse flavor. If you have stock to spare then go crazy from the start. The principle is to think of each step in the cooking process as a flavor opportunity; what can you add to introduce flavor. Why cook in plain water when you can add herbs and spices or use a flavorful stock…that’s how to hit a homer, think like a champ.
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White Bean Croustini with Corn Relish

The white bean should not be underestimated. Initially a bit of a snooze to look at but get ready for a “She’s All That” moment- whatever happened to Freddie Prinze Jr. anyway? Given the right attention a white bean can really shine. With this recipe you will end up with a rich, creamy puree and the smokey, spiced relish marries well. I encourage you to take these recipes and use them in other dishes.

Ingredients

Croustini

Baguette
Olive oil
Salt and pepper

2 cups cooked white bean
250 ml vegetable stock
3 cloves garlic- whole
1 tsp maple syrup
Salt and pepper to taste

Relish

2 ears corn- cooked and cut off the cob (about 1 cup)
1 small red pepper- trimmed and brunoise
1/4 cup fresh cilantro- rough chop
1 small shallot- brunoise
1 tblp apple cider vinegar
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 tsp smoked paprika
1/4 tsp cumin
Salt and pepper to taste

Method

Croustini

1. Cut baguette into 1/4 inch thick pieces. If you want a longer croustini, cut on a bias.
2. Brush with olive oil, season with salt and pepper.
3. Bake in 350 oven for 2-5 minutes until golden. Reserve.

White Bean Puree

4. Place pre cooked white bean in a small pot; cover with vegetable stock and add whole garlic cloves, salt and pepper.
5. Simmer for 25 minutes. Strain but reserve excess liquid for blending. Remove 2 garlic cloves leaving only 1.
6. Add maple syrup and hand blend until your have a puree. Add a small amount of cooking liquid reserved in step 5 to achieve desired consistency.

Relish

7. In a bowl combine all ingredients and let rest in refrigerator for 20 minutes

Notes

It may seen redundant to recook beans. The only reason I suggest this is white beans will absorb a lot of liquid when cooking so in order to conserve precious stock I suggest cooking them in salted water (maybe throw some herbs in there- even stems will do!) to start. When they are basically cooked you can then simmer them in stock to infuse flavor. If you have stock to spare then go crazy from the start. The principle is to think of each step in the cooking process as a flavor opportunity; what can you add to introduce flavor. Why cook in plain water when you can add herbs and spices or use a flavorful stock…that’s how to hit a homer, think like a champ.

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