About Me

My photo
California born and bred 25 year old dance machine now living in Salt Lake City. Sardonically irreverent spinster, DIY decorator & vegan baking enthusiast who enjoys sequins, house plants & malt liquor.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Vegan Mini Chip Shortbread Cookies

I spent a good portion of my childhood shoveling these cookies in my mouth when my mother's head was turned the other way. I LOVED THEM and could not ever get enough. They're rich and buttery and perfectly chocolatey and now I'll never have to go without them again.
  • 2 sticks vegan butter (room temperature)
  • 2/3 C powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 C all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 C mini chocolate chips 

  • In a medium mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar together for 3 minutes.
    Beat in vanilla extract.
  • Add flour to the bowl in half cup increments, being careful not to blow it all over the place.
  • Use a spatula or wooden spoon to fold in chocolate chips.
  • Transfer dough to a ziploc bag and refrigerate for 2 hours (I left mine overnight).

  • When ready to bake:
  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees.Roll dough out on a floured work surface and cut into desired shapes. You could also press the dough into a pan and cut into squares after baking.Bake for 13-15 minutes or until slightly golden. You want them to still be pale! 
  • Devour.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

The Very Best Vegan Alfredo.

It really is the best, I promise. It's smooth and creamy, insanely rich and tofu-free.

1 lb fettuccine noodles (I do NOT recommend whole wheat pasta here)
1 stick (or 8 T) Earth Balance butter
1 C vegan parmesan (I like Galaxy Natural Foods version)
1 C vegan cream (I used Silk coffee creamer)
Pinch of nutmeg
S&P to taste

Bring a pot of water to boil and cook the pasta until al dente, or about 10 mins.

Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add cream and heat through (do not let it boil!), then add cheeze and nutmeg. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

If the sauce gets too thick, try and save a ladleful of cooking water from the pasta and use that to thin it out.

Toss pasta and sauce together, sprinkle with more parmesan & some parsley and dig in.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Vegan Pistachio Gelato: a novel.

DID YOU HEAR THAT, INTERNET? VEGAN. PISTACHIO. GELATO. I was an ice cream fiend in my pregan days. Some of my favorite memories include stopping at Thrifty's with my mom or grandma and getting a huge cone of chocolate brownie ice cream after a day of thrift shopping or the countless nights in high school that I spent hanging out with a bunch of friends at Coldstone demolishing a 'love it' size bowl of cake batter ice cream with rainbow sprinkles. I wasn't introduced to pistachio flavored..anything until one Christmas when my mother decided to make a pistachio cheesecake for dessert. The general reaction was confusion. Pistachio cheesecake? All I knew about pistachios was that my grandpa got a huge bag of them for Christmas from my uncle EVERY YEAR (still does) and I would always sneak a handful once he opened them. Despite my trepidation, I tried the pale green dessert and something in my taste buds changed forever. IT WAS MAGICAL. It's been years since I last had a bite of one but I can still remember it perfectly. Smooth, creamy, tart cheesecake with a rich, nutty flavor. Buttery chocolate graham crust. Chocolate shavings, toasted pistachios and perfectly piped, perfectly rich, homemade whipped cream on top. After that I needed pistachio anything. Pudding. Cookies. Ice cream. You name it, I ate it.

Cut to vegan days. Pistachio flavored delights had left me forever. I tried pudding, cookies, and cupcakes and they all failed spectacularly. I had given up hope until just a few days ago when an ice cream maker entered our home and my mother announced she was making pistachio gelato. I was determined to make a vegan version.

Veganizing especially dairy-ladden recipes is always like playing with fire and usually ends in disaster. I was also extra cautious because pistachios happen to be $14 a pound at Sunflower, er Sprouts. Imagine the stars in my eyes when I came across David Lebovitz's recipe for pistachio gelato WITH NO EGGS. It was love at first sight and I just knew it would work. And it did. It's perfect. Rich and creamy and packing a serious pistachio punch. Mission success.

I subbed full fat coconut milk to up the richness but I'm sure any other milk will do.

I didn't even bother searching for 'Bronte Crema di Pistacchio' because Vegan Pie In The Sky by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero happens to have a pistachio paste recipe! I was so excited when Candice gave me this book for Christmas and even more so when I learned there is a pistachio pudding pie recipe. That's next on my list.  Here is their recipe for pistachio paste:

1 C raw, shelled pistachios
1 T almond or grapeseed oil (I used canola but I think any light tasting oil will do)
2-3 T powdered sugar

Pulse pistachios and oil in a food processor until smooth and creamy. Be warned this takes forever. I had to add some water to it because the mixture kept clumping up and getting stuck. Once you get it as smooth as possible, add in the powdered sugar until a paste is formed. Also know that it is sticky and thick as hell. I about broke an arm trying to whisk the paste into the cooked cornstarch mixture so I might suggest using a handheld mixer if you want it to be creamy. I didn't mind the lumps and bumps because I added some chopped, toasted pistachios to it after I took it out of the ice cream maker, anyway.


Thursday, January 3, 2013

Sayonara 2012.

Blogspot? Who blogs anymore? I do! Another year has come and gone and it's been another six months since my last post. I'll skip the pleasantries and move on to the highlights of 2012:

-Love: I played the single party girl role for awhile, but the universe had other plans and brought Levi and I back together again. I am so thankful that it did.
-Life: In August, I made the extremely difficult decision to move to my parents' house in West Jordan to save money/decide what I'm doing my life. The result: Levi and I will move downtown in/by March, go to school to get my AAS at SLCC then head to Weber State to get a paralegal certification and move out of Utah to a location that will be determined at a later date. Somewhere in there I plan to buy another car as well.
-Travels: CA (twice), MN, PA, NY, AZ, ID and NV.  I also went camping a ton!
-Random incidents worth noting: I went through SIX cell phones this year, the most recent of which was dropped in a toilet twice and came out unscathed. I was physically attacked by my paranoid schizophrenic neighbor, twice. I got on a first name basis with the owner of a pizza place from spending so many nights being drunk and starving (single party girl phase). Kristan came to visit! I lost two IDs and debit cards. Actually, the whole year was filled with minor unfortunate events and bizarre stories from my apartment building. I'll stop here.

My agenda for 2013 is ambitious to say the least. I've already started out on a good foot, so let's cross our fingers for continuity. See you in six months.