florafloraflora (florafloraflora) wrote in vegancooking,
florafloraflora
florafloraflora
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Beer-glazed black beans; chocolate-tofu pudding

At the risk of sounding like a big shill, I have to share how happy I am with the vegan recipes I'm finding on Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything iPhone app. That, and my veganized version of the Everyday Buttermilk Waffles yesterday morning were a huge success. [Note on waffles: ground flax seed makes a good egg substitute if you like 'em crispy, but if you prefer them chewy the way I do then silken tofu is the way to go.]

Here are two vegan recipes that made me happy recently. I didn't copy them out word-for-word, but all the essential information is here.

BEER-GLAZED BLACK BEANS

Bittman says, "It's amazing how much flavor you can get from adding beer to black beans," and he's right! I used Shiner Bock, but any beer that tastes good to you will do good things for your beans.

2 tablespoons extra-virgin oil
1 onion, chopped
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 cup beer
3 cups cooked black beans, drained but still moist
1 tablespoon chili powder*
2 teaspoons agave (the original calls for 1 tablespoon honey)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Heat a skillet over medium-high heat, then add oil. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, cook for about a minute, then add the remaining ingredients with a good sprinkling of salt and pepper.
2. Bring to a steady bubble and cook until the liquid is slightly reduced and thickened, about 15 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Serve hot or refrigerate up to 3 days and then reheat.

*Bittman recommends making your own, like this:

2 tablespoons ground ancho, New Mexico, or other mild dried chile
1/2 teaspoon cayenne, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
2 teaspoons coriander seeds
1 tablespoon dried Mexican oregano

Combine all ingredients in a dry skillet. Toast over medium heat, shaking the pan occasionally, just until the mixture is fragrant, 3 to 5 minutes. Grind thoroughly in a spice grinder (I used a blender) until powdery. Store tightly covered for up to several weeks.

CHOCOLATE-TOFU PUDDING

This is the easiest, most delicious chocolate pudding I've ever made or tasted. It's halfway between a custard and a mousse, and 100% scrumptious.

1 pound silken tofu
8 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
About 1/2 cup sugar (see directions)
1 teaspoon vanilla

1. Make the simple syrup. You'll need equal volumes of sugar and water, enough to make 3/4 cup of syrup. I used 1 cup of each and had about twice as much as I needed, so I estimate that 1/2 cup of each would be enough. If you'd rather be safe than sorry you can always make extra and use the leftover to sweeten drinks.

Combine the sugar and water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Stir a minute or two, just until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.

2. Melt the chocolate. I use a double boiler over simmering water, stirring almost constantly so that the chocolate is just barely at melting temperature when it's finished melting. You can also use a microwave on low power (30% or so), stirring after every 30 seconds.

3. Once the syrup and chocolate are cool, combine all ingredients in a blender and whirl until smooth. Pour into a large bowl or six to eight individual serving cups. There's no need to cover with plastic wrap--unlike egg-based custards this pudding won't form a skin. Bittman says to chill at least half an hour, but a full hour or more is better. This pudding is at its most solid best when it's fully chilled.

4. Enjoy in small nibbles. Swoon.
Tags: beans-black beans, desserts-mousse, desserts-puddings, substitutes-eggs-for pancakes/waffles
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