If for some reason you have never been to the blog Fork & Beans, you may be living under a rock. The blog’s creator, Cara, is incredible and super talented when it comes to transforming your favorite indulgences into gluten-free, vegan delights. So, when I heard that she was putting together her own cookbook, I just knew that it would turn out amazingly.
Lo and behold, I received a copy of Decadent Gluten-Free Vegan Baking to check out and it looks incredible! Her recipes paired with Celine Steen‘s photography equal some gorgeous recipes. Below, I’ve been given permission to share the delectable recipe for her Strawberry Swirl Cheesecake with Chocolate Graham Cracker Crust!
Fortunately for me, my dad’s birthday was earlier this week, right when I was making this cheesecake. I expedited the setting process by putting it in the freezer so that it would be ready in time for presents, which worked wonderfully. After my mom and I sang “happy birthday” to my dad, he blew out the candle and we dug in.
We are in the hottest month of Summer and here it has been humid as hell. The other day it was raining and I felt like I was back in Michigan, when my family would travel out there each August. I would stand outside during the thunderstorms, under the pouring rain, and it would still be almost 90F outside. With such greenery out there, it was a lot more enjoyable, where as here it’s just a light rain and tons of concrete.
Luckily the moisture has taken a break and today we had some nice breezes with the heat, so it wasn’t like walking into a sauna every time you went outside. This is the time of year when eating anything warm just sounds terrible – aside from grilled goodies, of course. Because of this, I have a nice, chilled salad recipe for you today! It’s perfect served as a side, maybe along with that Herbed Tofu Tomato Salad recipe from last week? Which, by the way, was a total hit! I’ve had at least five or six people make it and be very pleased with the outcome.
Anyway, this salad is made with sweet yellow and white corn, mostly for a little extra color, a creamy basil pesto aioli, fresh spinach and some red onion. Super easy to put together and is PACKED with flavor, especially after you chill the dish before serving it. If you want to make it a little healthier, add more spinach to the end product and omit some of the vegan mayo from the aioli, replacing it with plain yogurt.
Oh! I almost forgot, I have some incredibly exciting news! I’ll be a speaker at Vida Vegan Con 2015 in Austin! Eep! I’m super excited and feel very lucky to have been chosen out of the many people who applied to speak, and can’t wait until they announce the rest of the speakers closer to the end of the month. Who all is planning on going? If you’re on the fence, let me say that it was an awesome experience and you should take a look at my 1, 2, 3 part review of the 2013 conference.
I have to be honest, I’ve never prepared jackfruit on my own before. Of course, I’ve enjoyed BBQ Jackfruit Sliders and the like, but it was never very easy to find. But, now that I work at Whole Foods, I found out that my location has the canned jackfruit in brine and I couldn’t be more stoked. For my first homemade jackfruit recipe I thought that I’d try it out with Massel’s Concentrated Liquid Stock, Beef-Style; which is vegan and gluten-free!
Now, the texture didn’t come out quite as firm as I would have liked, but the jackfruit tasted great all the same. One of the best parts of this recipe is that it’s all prepared on the grill. Of course there’s some marinated and mixing, but it’s seriously low effort. I’d also like to mention that this was my first time grilled tomatillos, and oh my goodness you guys, SO GOOD. I’ve used them in green salsas before, but this- this I’ll have to do more often.
To balance out the savory, warm components of this recipe, I made a seasoned sour cream sauce to drizzle on top. I may have cheated and used Tofutti, but if you want to go the homemade route, blend 2/3 C. raw cashews with 1/4 C. water for a creamy sauce base, then stir in seasonings.
I must mention that using the concentrated liquid stock shortened marinating time immensely and really added significant flavor to the jackfruit. It is a tad on the salty side so taste your marinade and adjust accordingly; keep in mind that the end product won’t be as potent as the marinade itself. Massel actually sent some of their products for me to try out, so I’ll definitely be using another one soon, and hosting a giveaway, too! So, keep an eye out for that.
What a weekend! It all started when I got out of work late Friday night and got to baking some vegan and vegan/gf cupcakes for a friend’s wedding. Stayed up late, afraid that I would fall asleep and lay my head into the mixing bowl at any moment. On Saturday it was rush-rush-rush all morning, icing cupcakes, getting last-minute shoes for the wedding while also getting ready for LA Vegan Beer Fest afterward. The ceremony was gorgeous and I am so happy for my two good friends and their special day.
Talk about a “fashionably late” entrance, I got to the LAVBF at 4pm after an hour-long drive from Orange County! But, I was still able to squeeze some tasty foods and chats with great people in the 2 remaining hours. Going to the fest has been a tradition for me, and this was my 4th one! I can’t wait for next years.
Sunday was more visiting with friends that were in from out-of-town, tasty vegan eats (like a vegan churro in swirled soft serve, SO GOOD) and a dinner at Shojin on Monday night (another fantastic meal). Now, it’s back to work shooting cookbooks, making food over at Whole Foods and blogging for y’all, of course!
I made this incredible coffee cake on Mother’s day for my family/boyfriend’s family and everyone loved it! I have a mixed berry version on the blog and a pumpkin pie version in my Great Vegan Pumpkin eBook, as well. I’d have to say, this one is a new favorite for me! My next version will be with Apple Pie Filling, me thinks.
This is a vegan food blog, run by Jackie Sobon, that covers everything from indulgent desserts, to healthy dinners, and even raw recipes! I also write up restaurant reviews and am sort of a beer snob. You'll find that there is something for everyone, here!
If you would like me to contact me about photography jobs, testing out a recipe, review your restaurant or just have a question you'd like me to answer email me at: [email protected]!