Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Vegan Pizza Day!

In my opinion EVERY day should be Vegan Pizza Day, but at the very least it should have it’s own holiday, right? Well now it does, and that day was Saturday, January 29th 2011, which marked the first ever Worldwide Vegan Pizza Day! Although I didn’t blog about it until now, I spent part of the day in my kitchen up to my elbows in pizza dough, sauce, veggies, and of course VEGAN CHEESE!

In the spirit of the day, I made two pizzas, one for me and one for my boyfriend, Loukas, with the toppings of our choice.

My Pizza!

Loukas' Pizza!!

First up is my pizza! It’s my very own personal recipe that I call Bruschetta Pizza. I start with a batch of my home made Bruchetta, that consists of fresh Roma tomatoes, either sliced or diced (I sliced them for this one), fresh chopped garlic, fresh chopped basil, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper. I let that marinate in the fridge while I prepare the rest of the pizza. For the crust, I like to use Isa’s pizza crust recipe from Veganomicon, and her sauce recipe too unless I’m pressed for time, and in that case I cheat and buy store bought pizza sauce… very shameful, I know. I also find it fun and fragrant to kneed some complimenting herbs into the pizza dough. I used a mixture of basil, oregano, rosemary, and garlic for this one. As for the cheese, my favorite vegan cheese is Follow Your Heart, Vegan Gourmet, Mozzarella flavor.

I always pre-bake my crust so that it’s nice and crispy, so I pop the crust into the oven for about 10 minutes on 450-475 degrees, remove, and then proceed to add the sauce, cheese, and bruschetta. I then place the pizza back into the oven at 450 degrees for about 5-10 minutes, until it starts to look and smell good, then I turn the broiler on just long enough to melt the cheese to my desired liking. I remove from the oven, let cool, and there you have it, Vegan Bruschetta Pizza is served! And it was freaking AMAZING!

Bruschetta Pizza!

Next up, Loukas' pizza! He was craving olives and peppers and wanted his pizza to be kind of Greek-ish, so I made it with a regular crust, sauce, cheese, mushrooms, onions, olives, banana peppers, sun-dried tomatoes, and sprinkled it with some Greek style seasoning. He enjoyed it!

Greek-ish Style Pizza!

So that was our take on the First Worldwide Vegan Pizza Day! What was yours?


Monday, March 14, 2011

Welcome Back! to Me and Mac & Cheese...

Cue the Welcome Back Kotter theme song with that warm and fuzzy nolgastic feeling.

Welcome back, 
Your dreams were your ticket out.

Welcome back,
To that same old place you laughed about.

Welcome back, Welcome back, Welcome back...

Hello Zombie Cat fans… Is anybody out there?!? Well, I don’t blame you if not, cause it’s been three months since I have blogged… boo! And I kind of dropped the ball on VeganMoFo 2010, only making 6 posts… double boo! You see, the holidays kind of sucked the life out of me and made me loose all motivation for the things that I enjoy, but here lately, thanks to a few new friends, I’ve actually been super busy in the kitchen and getting crafty, just bad at taking photos and documenting it. But if you are willing to forgive me, I'd love to have you back and share what’s been going on and what’s to come in the world of Zombie Cats!

So in the spirit of welcoming things back, I'm FINALLY welcoming back Mac and Cheese into my life. Won't you join me!

I’ve been searching for the perfect vegan Mac and Cheese for that past couple years to no avail. That’s until I stumbled upon Veg News’ Signature Macaroni and Cheese. But of course I was skeptical at first, I mean, it doesn’t have any “cheese” in it, not even nutritional yeast… but after reading over the ingredients a few times and noticing that it contained things I actually like, unlike nutritional yeast… and the fact that I really dig Vegan Alfredo made with cashews and I always throw in a potato for good measure, I thought… lets give it a try.

At first glance the recipes looks daunting, so many ingredients and steps, so I'll admit that I procrastinated for a week… or umm… who am I kidding, I probably waited a good 2 months before giving it a go, but it was sooo worth the wait! I kid you not. And it wasn’t even half as hard to prepare as I thought it would be. I guess I figured that allot ingredients plus multiple steps, equals complications in the kitchen, but I should have known better than that being the self proclaimed “queen” of “experimental pies”, in which I pretty much dirty up everything I own and throw in everything I can find. So anyways, long story short… it was pretty easy to make.

I opted to adapt the recipe slightly, adding more potatoes and cashews, because they're yummy, and I didn’t measure anything, as usual. I more so used the recipe as an ingredients guide, just added things to my taste preference. It was kind of fun.

step 1
Boil the noodles.

step 2
Boil the veggies.

step 3
Puree the veggie/cashew/seasonings mixture.

step 4. 
Toss the noodles in the "cheese" sauce.
And honestly, you can stop right here is you want, cause it is freakin delicious as is.

step 5
Add bread crumbs (I cheated and bought pre-made ones. Very shameful, I know.)
and paprika if you choose, and pop in the oven.

Dig in!

Thanks for sticking with me as I struggle to find my motivation. I hope I’ve some what redeemed myself with these ooey gooey mouth watering pictures. Be sure to swing back by soon for updates of a few things I did accomplish over my absence and for new things of course!

Night Night you Zombie Cat lovers...

~amber :)