Wednesday, October 20, 2010

GOING BANANAS!


No, for once I'm not referring to my mental state but rather what to do with all those bananas going bad too quickly.

Don't throw them away: I found a quick and easy vegan banana bread recipe that didn't require too many offbeat ingredients -- some vegan recipes are loaded down with a ton of ingredients (which can be off putting to a non-baker like myself) many of which can only be found in specialty food stores.

However, this one is simple, easy and equally as yummy!

EASY VEGAN BANANA BREAD

Ingredients:

~4 bananas (the softer and browner, the better)

~1/2 cup vegan softened margarine or oil (use cholesterol free)

~3/4 cup of brown sugar (packed)

~2 teaspoons baking powder

~1/4 teaspoon salt

~1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)

~2 cups of flour (I use unbleached)

~1 teaspoon vanilla extract

**SIDE NOTE: Feel free to add a 1/2 cup of walnuts or semi-sweet chocolate chips if you'd like


INSTRUCTIONS:

*Preheat oven to 350

*"Smoosh" the bananas in a medium to large mixing bowl

*Add margarine (or oil) and mix with bananas

*Add vanilla -- mix

*Add brown sugar -- mix

*Add baking powder, salt and cinnamon -- mix

*Add flour and then mix all ingredients well making sure flour is thoroughly incorporated

*Lightly spray square glass baking dish and bake for 45 minutes or until done (test center by sticking a butter knife or toothpick in the middle and if it comes out clean, it's done).

*Let rest (on cooling rack) about 15 to 20 minutes before slicing and serving. It will still be quite warm.

*Top with vegan margarine and enjoy with hot cocoa or hot apple cider.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

AUTUMN PANCAKES



This month is 'National Vegetarian Month'.

It's also the time of year where I start to get excited at the prospect of cooler weather and warm, savory food to accompany it.

Mostly, it's those Sunday breakfasts that have become tradition to whomever is here to enjoy and indulge.

In the Autumn, that means breaking out the large mixing bowl to make a big batch of my Vegan Pumpkin Pancakes.

Places like 'I-Hop' start advertising their version of pumpkin pancakes for the non-vegans. Save yourself the expense and make your own: neither you -- nor your non-vegan guests -- will know they're vegan!

Vegan Pumpkin Pancakes:

~2 1/2 cups of flour (I use unbleached)

~ 2 tablespoons of sugar

~2 tablespoons of baking powder

~ 1 tablespoon of no cholesterol oil

~1 teaspoon of salt

~2 1/2 cups of soy milk or almond milk (regular or vanilla flavored would be fine)

~Half a 14-15oz. can of pumpkin

~A dash of cinnamon and/or nutmeg (or 'Pumpkin Pie Spice' or 'All Spice') -- optional

*Serves about three or four people depending on appetites and size of pancakes -- feel free to double the recipe using a whole can of pumpkin to accommodate more people.

Directions:

Mix all ingredients together in one large bowl -- if mixture is too runny, add a dash more flour. If too thick, add a dash more soy/almond milk.

They cook up just like regular pancakes so you'll know they're done when they've risen and are no longer soft in the center.

They don't taste vegan so you won't miss the egg and dairy one iota!

Top with vegan margarine and serve with warm maple syrup -- feel free to add chopped pecans to the batter or top with sliced bananas!

Make the most of the season!

Enjoy!