I’ve had weird pancake cravings lately. All of a sudden all I want is a syrupy plate of them. Adam made me some wonderful buttermilk pancakes from the Bunners cookbook on the weekend, and we put chocolate chips in them & slathered them with peanut butter! Perhaps a little too desserty for breakfast?
My recipe is one I’ve tinkered with to make vegan, and then subsequently gluten free. They’re fluffy without being ridiculously thick, and they’re really easy to amend to include spices (a dash of cinnamon, or perhaps some pumpkin spice mix?), throw in a nice half cup of blueberries, or even a little lemon juice & zest for freshness. These are great just with syrup, or as a side to a killer full breakfast of tofu scramble, home fries and tempeh bacon!
Gluten-Free & Vegan Pancakes (makes approximately 6 pancakes 5 inches/12cm in diameter)
1.5 cups gluten free all-purpose flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill)
1/4 tsp Xanthan gum
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1.5 cups soy or almond milk (or any dairy-free milk, really)
2 tbs vegetable or canola oil
Mix the flour, baking soda, baking powder together. Add the milk and mix well. Then add the oil and mix well until there are few lumps left.
Heat a non-stick pan on medium heat; pour batter and let it spread to desired diameter. When bubbles start to appear, flip the pancake and let it cook for another 30-60 seconds (I usually let it go 30 seconds then check it doesn’t overcook and is nicely brown).
When they’re done, flip ’em out on a plate and devour with maple syrup, or however you dig it.
Tofurky pockets! Dude, they’re vegan hot pockets. Oh man, so good. I have these ones and they’re handy for a quick work lunch snack.
I got myself a new water bottle recently, and I’m finding it is actually helping me drink more throughout the day! It comes with me to work, and the gym, and if i’m out for the day too. Solid!
I’m very fond of Isa Does It, and we’ve still got so many things to try. Right now our constant go to is her “lentil-a-roni” dish, which I LOVE and is so freakin’ quick to put together and you can tinker it if you really like. We use GF pasta, and usually throw in some kale or spinach at the end. It’s a treat with some almond parm on top! I don’t want to link to the recipe where I’m not sure it’s reproduced with permission, so get your hands on the book! It’s worth it.
I’ve started rewatching Twin Peaks (my shiny blu-ray set!) in advance of a trivia night at the start of Feb. I love this show so damn much. And I about flew out of my seat when I heard the news Kyle McLachlan will be back for the new episodes. COOP.
Book club! My friend MeShell started up the Toronto Veg Book Club, and I love it because it (a) gives me a chance to read books I might not normally think to and (b) I get to get together and hang out with lovely vegan folks and eat delicious food while we chat about the books! This weekend we’ll be chatting about the Lucky Ones, which I just wrote about. And eating all the things at Bloomer’s. CANNOT WAIT.
How’s your Thursday, folks?
Sometimes when I want a more fulfilling salad than just something heavy on green leafies, I’ll go for beans (or potato.. but this is more veg heavy thankfully!). But I like variety and texture rather than just all beans, so here’s a kinda thrown together recipe for a well-rounded bean salad that’s pretty easy to customize and tinker with (strongly encouraged!). Dress it however you like! Creamy tahini-based, a vinagrette, something garlicky and packed with umami.. anything really works here.
Nicole’s Dead-easy Bean Salad (vegan and gluten-free) – Serves 4 as a main, 8 as a side.
- 1 15oz can of cooked beans (I used navy beans this time, but I like chick peas or a 5 bean mix, too!) – or whatever the equivalent of home-cooked beans would be
- Around a dozen grape tomatoes, sliced into thirds (to make small discs)
- 1 bell pepper (or capsicum, if you’re Australian) diced
- About a cup of diced green beans
- One large head of broccoli, cut up into the smallest florets you can
- A half a bunch of kale, torn into small pieces and massaged (the instructions for massaging kale, here, are great)
- Freshly cracked salt and pepper, to taste
Note: You could also add diced cucumber, finely sliced red onion or scallions, corn kernels, edamame etc.. Any veg that is or can be prepped to be bean-sized and that’s delicious in a salad! I’ve even thrown in lightly steamed diced sweet potato before.
How to get to the part where you end up eating delicious bean salad
Massage your kale, if you haven’t already! Set aside. Next, blanch the broccoli & green beans until just tender. Rinse with cold water and set aside.
Take a large bowl (or a large container you’ll be storing/transporting this salad in). Rinse your beans and throw them in. Next, add the diced veggies – here, tomatoes & bell pepper. After that, add the cooled broccoli & green beans, then the kale. Toss everything together with freshly cracked salt and pepper to taste.
Dress with your choice of dressing and serve! I often like to just add a little more lemon juice and olive oil, to keep it light complement the kale.
I’ve never ever had pulled pork, and never will. But there’s a couple of great establishments here in Toronto that do a mean Jackfruit pulled pork – Hot Beans & the Hogtown Vegan – that make my mouth water every time I eat their Jackfruit tacos or pulled pork sandwiches respectively.
I always marvelled at the culinary wizardry involved at taking a strange SE Asian fruit & making it into shredded savoury goodness. I figured it’d be too tough to pull at home, and wasn’t convinced I could have success with an ingredient I had no idea about. I Googled around a bit reading various recipes to get an idea of the process one would go through to create the magic, and also the different mixes of ingredients and flavours.
After a while I settled on this “Carolina Pulled ‘Pork’ Sandwich” recipe – I wasn’t going to make sandwiches, but tacos, but the ‘sandwich’ part of this recipe is more of a serving suggestion – and as a bonus, if you ignore the sandwich part, the recipe is automatically gluten-free. There was a good idea in the notes of what to expect of preparing the jackfruit before it even touched any other ingredients, which I liked. But what I was interested in were the flavours – especially mix of spices in the dry rub and how they’d complement the wet sauce mix – and that it also looked like the finished product was of about the right texture that i’d tried in the Hot Beans tacos. Away I went!
In the end, the process isn’t really that complicated – no more so than prepping a marinated tofu/tempeh dish, say. It’s pretty easy to get the ‘mise en place’ of your spice mix/dry rub and your wet sauce ingredients ready to go and then zoom through the process – it’s really only the cooking times that draw the jackfruit adventure out. Like the write-up on the page says, this is a pretty spicy recipe naturally – I liked it, but I think I would round it out better next time to not have that be so up-front. We just had it in simple corn tortillas with whatever green mix we had, plus some rice, tomatoes & chopped avo (sadly too firm for guacamole-ise). Next time I gotta get my sunflower sour cream action on, too.
Would I make this again? Well, I picked up two more cans of young jackfruit in brine while shopping in Chinatown this weekend, so hell yes! (Two cans because next time i’m making a double batch – we mowed through this in one taco sitting.) I think i’d also like to make a more saucy, possibly more BBQ-y type of pulled jackfruit next time too – perhaps something like Sarah Kramer’s BBQ sauce, but try and cut the richness down a little. Now I know what to expect out of the magical ingredient jackfruit texture/process-wise, the vegan pulled ‘pork’ world is my un-oyster!