Tag Archives: holiday

Pressure Cooker Seitan with Red Wine Mushroom Sauce

Can I get a drumroll, please? (Drumroll) It’s here! The last giveaway of the year. This time, you all have a chance at winning a T-Fal Clipso Pressure Cooker and the useful Zabada Kitchen Handy! If that doesn’t get you excited, I’m not sure what will. And if you’ve been out of the loop because of holiday craziness, make sure to check out the THREE other giveaways that I’m hosting right now! 1: #vyatreatyoself, 2: YumUniverse cookbook giveaway, and 3: Massel Bouillon Prize Pack.

Now, let me say a little bit about my experience with this pressure cooker. I actually bought a different model from Fagor almost a year ago and have used it once. So, I’m not experienced with these AT ALL. But, was I excited to get another pressure cooker? Hell yeah! Once the Clipso showed up on my doorstep I excitedly opened it and was impressed with the quality of construction. This thing is heavy-duty. Not to mention, the awesome one-handed, latching system that really is a push of a button and that lid is locked on. I flipped through the instructions to make sure I had the basics down as far as cleaning and operating went. Then I started plotting what I was going to make in it.

I was chatting with my good friend Joni about all of the pressure cooker possibilities and how my mind was pretty stuck on grains and beans or maybe winter vegetables and squash. Then she suggested pressure cooker seitan. Say what? That’s brilliant! I went on to look at some tips from The Blissful Chef and Vegan Epicurean on times, and used my Stuffed Seitan Roast recipe with some minor changes. Naturally, I wanted to make it a wow-worthy dish for the holidays, so I thought that a simple and fancy red wine mushroom sauce would be perfect to top it off.

Honestly, I love making seitan because it is so damn easy. The only problem with big roasts is that they can take up to an hour or so to fully cook, and then you may have a slightly drier end result. After making this roast in the pressure cooker in just about 30 minutes, I’m SOLD. Unless I’m making sausages or something smaller, I can see this being the only way I make it from now on. The roast turned out flavorful with a great texture and an even cooking throughout, maybe just a little softer in the center but I liked that about it.

I can’t wait to try out different seitan flavors and applications in my pressure cooker, now! I must mention that there was quite a bit of cooking broth mixture left over in the pressure cooker so I saved it in a container to add to soup bases for more flavor. Wins all over the place!

Check out the recipe below and definitely keep it in mind for your upcoming Christmas dinners. Like I said, a beautiful seitan roast in 30 minutes! Plus, roasting some fingerling potatoes and making the wine sauce while the roast is cooking, works for reducing time spent in the kitchen and it’s all ready at the same time. Speaking of reducing time, the Zabada Kitchen handy is an awesome tool! Reusable, easy to clean and no harsh chemicals needed to aid in washing your dishes and kitchen when you have this thing in your hand. I’ll definitely be buying more of these in the future!

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Filed under Giveaways!, Healthy Recipes, Holidays, Savory Recipes

YumUniverse Giveaway and Super-Veggie Pot Pies!

I’ll get right to the point: today and for the following week, you’ll have a chance to win your own copy of YumUniverse: Infinite Possibilities for a Gluten-Free, Plant-Powerful, Whole-Food Lifestyle by Heather Crosby, of YumUniverse! Exciting, right? The answer you’re looking for is, “Hell yeah!”

This book is more than a colorful and eye-catching cookbook, it is a thorough guide to gluten-free, plant-based eating. Heather starts out with explaining WHY you should try out a plant-based diet, listing off the benefits (there are many!) then spends a while teaching you HOW to achieve it talking about pantry staples, prep, appliances and social situations. 

After all of that comes the stuff that I’m into, beautiful breakfasts (banana pancakes!), baked goods, toppings/sauces/spreads, entrees (fig & caramelized onion tart!), desserts (Mexican unfried ice cream!), and more. You may want to grab a napkin or bib before looking through this book, because I’m pretty sure that you’re going to drool on it.

I do have to point out that there are a few recipes where she uses honey, and I’m sure that’s why they call this book “plant-based” instead of “vegan”, just make sure to use agave nectar or maple syrup instead!

Now, you lucky readers get to see one of the tasty recipes that I made from the book, the Super-Veggie Pot Pies! I made these into larger containers than listed in the recipe and they came out to a perfect 4, filling, servings. Making gluten-free crust was fun and I’ll definitely have to try it out again. After the recipe, you’ll find where to enter the giveaway for a copy of YumUniverse! (US residents only, sorry!)

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Filed under Giveaways!, Healthy Recipes, Holidays, Savory Recipes

Trip to Italy – A Photo Essay

Happy Hump Day, everyone! Today, I don’t have a recipe for you, but instead, a ton of photos from my trip to Italy earlier this month. Actually, I say “ton” but this is a very small percentage of the photos I took. To give you a brief overview, my family and I first stayed in Rome for 4 days and enjoyed taking some tours, then headed out to the Italian countryside for a week in Preggio, Perugia and a few other cities within driving distance.

It was actually in Preggio and Assisi that I suffered from a serious panic attack due to freelance work emails and being overwhelmed with how much work needed to be done once I returned home. Talk about infringing on a great vacation. Now that I’m back home it’s gotten better but anxiety is now something that I struggle with more seriously. If there was one thing this trip taught me, it’s to not stretch yourself too thin because it will catch up with you in a huge way.

On a lighter note, I really loved Rome and walking around the city amongst buildings that held so much history. Overall it was a tremendous experience.

The Forum

Our amazing tour guide Antony

The House of Vestal Virgins

The Colosseum

The first of many fancy churches

Rome, Italy

Here is what I would show servers and chefs when I went out to eat with my family (yes, I know vegana is the feminine version, google translate didn’t know that I was female! ;) ). It was SUPER helpful!

Il Margutta Ristorarte – a vegetarian restaurant with many delicious vegan options; not to mention, walking distance from my hotel!

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Filed under Dining Out, Personal

Chunky Monkey Baked Oatmeal

One of the food-related things that I love about the holidays are the awesome breakfasts and brunches. There have been times where I’ve gone all out for the brunch and laid low for the dinner, but this year I think I’m going to do the opposite. Now, this doesn’t mean that you, or I for that matter, need to have a boring first meal of the day. That’s where this filling dish comes in!

Getting its name from a very popular ice cream flavor, this baked oatmeal boasts sweet bananas, chopped walnuts and sweet chocolate with a vanilla oatmeal base. As neat as it would be to eat ice cream for breakfast I feel that this version is going to get you a whole lot further and you won’t have a crazy comedown from your sugar high.

Besides that great flavors that this dish brings to the table, another good quality is that you prep it and leave it alone. No tending to it, making sure that nothing is burning or worrying about it thickening up enough. Just pulse most of the ingredients in a blender, pour it in and bake! Easy-peasy, right? Then you can get crazy with the toppings and serve it right up with a warm cup of coffee, or tea if that’s your thing.

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Filed under Holidays, Sweet Recipes