My Photo
Location: California

I love paper. Books printed on acid-free paper and bound in cloth turn me on. I'm crazy about bookmarks, and I buy too many stickers. I could spend hours in the build-your-own-greeting card section of my neighborhood craft store. My favorite thing to eat is bread, and my second favorite is fruit. (Mm, pineapple.) I read too much and too fast, and I watch too many food shows (two ways of looking at gluttony). Gloomy, rainy weather calms me and so I can't wait to move out of California, which will happen, sadly, too many years from now to count. I'm vegan, though I haven't managed to eliminate honey from my diet yet. I practice yoga; it's the only way I can keep fit. I have a better life than I ever imagined I would (or deserve to) have, but I do my best to enjoy it rather than feel guilty about it. That's my daily struggle -- and also to be thoughtful and observant and honest with myself.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Food Fever

This weekend I had my first adventure baking vegan chocolate chip cookies. I used a recipe in my Vegan Planet cookbook, and was skeptical because it required canola oil instead of a solid butter substitute. But the cookies turned out wonderful -- crispy around the edges and on the bottom, and chewy at the center. They contain some maple syrup and I wonder if that's the secret to this perfect texture. I haven't baked non-vegan chocolate chip cookies in a long, long time, so my memory could deceive me, but these vegan ones taste better to me than the regular ones I made before.

I've also experimented this Sunday with making a Bechamel sauce with Earth Balance, soy milk and a soy mozarella that I found by accident at Trader Joe's (and that is not one hundred percent vegan because of the lactic acid that's added to the soy milk to curdle it). I thought the sauce turned out delicious; I had missed it so much. But Husband wasn't quite so impressed. He's an expert at making the real thing, and compared to that my quasi-vegan Bechamel was a rather mediocre concotion. No matter. I was happy. I had missed so much the velvety, creamy texture of the sauce, and the slightly bland, sweetish taste.

Lately I've had a crazy craving for macaroni and cheese and am looking for a truly vegan recipe for the dish. I found a "Macaroni Hates Cheese" recipe on a website; the sauce contained soy milk and nutritional yeast. It tasted very unusual but not bad. And I was so happy about being able to eat mac and cheese. It's hard to give up these comfort foods, though I find that as time passes I have fewer and fewer cravings for cheese, which was one of the toughest things to give up as a vegan.

Here's the first vegan cookbook I've found that looks absolutely beautiful: The New Vegan Cookbook by Lorna Sass. It has glossy pages and luxurious photographs. None of the other vegan cookbooks I own have pictures that make your mouth water and inspire you to tackle a new and slightly complicated recipe.


Post a Comment

<< Home