Monday, 17 October 2011

Cookbook Challenge Day VI

The cookbook challenge is back for it's third week & I have to admit that cooking three new recipes a day is stressing me out a little. I'm tired & my arms are killing after chopping 8 tonnes of potatoes (slight exaggeration!) & lifting massive pans yesterday and I've actually been thrown out of the kitchen by Nick for being too stroppy! He's made me sit down, listen to Less Than Jake & drink this...

I'm not entirely sure what it is but it's incredibly alcoholic & it has three straws. Awesome. He's currently cooking the rest of recipe three for me so that I can tell you all about one & two.

First out of the hat was The 100 Best Vegan Baking Recipes and page 61, Garden Muffins. I had very high hopes for these, I love both zucchini muffins & carrot cake and these contained elements of both.

Sadly the muffins didn't rise at all, if anything they actually shrunk a bit. They were incredibly gummy too & I actually couldn't eat them at all. Muffins are definitely the thing I have the most trouble baking, I love the spelt zucchini muffins from the Babycakes cookbook though & I think I'll stick to them in future.

Second book outa the hat was The Complete Guide to Vegan Food Substitutions and the generator picked the last recipe in the book, Chococado Pudding.

Now, I have to say that I love every other Celine & Joni recipe that I've tried (Hello Seitan en Croute!) but I just don't think that avocado in a chocolate dessert is for me. I'm not usually a pudding fan (in the American sense of the word) but the texture was beautiful & it did taste great but I just couldn't get over the avocadoey aftertaste. It's a ridiculously quick recipe though so if you have the book give it a try, maybe you'll have a better tolerance for avocadoeyness in desserts than me.

The third book of the day & the book that Nick's currently reading on his chair in the kitchen...yep, he's taken a chair in there, why've I never thought of that, is Appetite For Reduction. Now after yesterday's football food feast I was pretty happy to see this book. It's one of my favourites & I've been cooking from it a lot this year so it took a few tries with the generator to come up with a recipe I haven't tried, we eventually settled on page 28, Sanctuary Chef Salad. Now to be honest I've never made this because I'm kinda lazy and it has a lot of steps. There are essentially 5 recipes in one here & you have to cook & cool the roasted cauliflower, baked tofu & eggplant bacon before you can dive headfirst into your meal. It's definitely not a quick weeknight meal the first time you make this but once you've made it you'll have dinner or lunch sorted for 4 days if it's just you eating.

This salad is totally worth the effort. It's amazing! It's also huge and has a tonne of fun things in it. The eggplant bacon is perfectly smoky & crisp, the roasted cauliflower is better than I'd ever imagined roasted cauliflower could be & the baked tofu was always going to be a favourite. I made a couple of changes, I hate raw onion so there was no point including it & I couldn't find the correct sprouts so I just went for a random mix that I found at my local co-op. The real surprise with this meal was the dressing, I usually hate dill but I was brave & threw it in there anyway and it's really really good, like, really fucking good, eat it with a spoon good. This salad also made Nick like eggplant! Crazy! We can't wait to make this again.

17 comments:

  1. I've not even noticed that salad recipe before, it looks fab!

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  2. That salad looks in-credible!

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  3. I felt the exact same way when I tried avocado based pudding! Glad I wasn't the only one.

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  4. You guys are amazing. I love that you got booted from the kitchen with a fancy drink.

    xo
    kittee

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  5. I think making 3 new recipes a day for your cookbook challenge a huge task, so well done you!

    I've made chocolate-avo pudding before and I think it depends on your avo because sometimes I've loved it and other times it tasted off :/

    And I love those Babycakes zucch muffins (thanks to your tweeting about them) so I think I'll give the zucch carrot ones a go too.

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  6. I feel your pain on the muffins. I've tried a few different muffin recipes from various cookbooks and sometimes they just turn out... weird. And then I wonder if the author meant for it to turn out that way or if there's an error in the recipe or if I just did something wrong. I just can't imagine someone liking these weird, gummy muffins. Yick.

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  7. That chef salad looks amazing!

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  8. I love that eggplant bacon! I kind of only sometimes tolerated eggplant before that, but I love that bacon!

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  9. I've been on the hunt for some good savoury muffin recipes - handy to know which one to avoid!

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  10. I'm not a big salad eater, but that last photo is very enticing. Man, I would be stressed out too! You should treat yourself well after this! I love Nick's answer! Adam has similar sorts of answers, but in my case it was a shot of whisky, haha.

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  11. I've only had a few avocado in dessert things, and I often find it a bit too rich to eat too much of it.

    I haven't tried that salad yet, it looks yummy!

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  12. I'm not a big aubergine fan so never think of trying the bacon, think I better now though!

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  13. You are too cute! Move to California and be my best friend? That salad looks fantabulous!

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  14. baking failures are one of life's great disappointments. And then followed by a chocolate pudding no-go? No wonder you were stressed. But man that salad looks amazing. I never even look at salad recipe in cookbooks, but that salad looks totally incredible, so I"m gonna go check out my AFR!

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  15. It's so cute that he cooked for you!

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