The Goddess Weighs In

Living Large and Healthy

Vegan Recipes I’ve Learned (16-20)

on November 17, 2013

My friend Sara has a “sour tooth”.  The first time I met her she ordered a pasta dish and then after a few bites she asked the server for vinegar.  She said she knew we would think she was odd, but that she liked things sour.  I actually didn’t find it all that strange since days before that I had contacted my friend Sean in desperation as my bean soup was flat and he suggested adding a bay leaf, but more importantly a bit of vinegar or lemon juice to give the soup a bit more punch.  I took his advice and made quite possibly the best soup I’ve ever made so when she asked for some vinegar I knew what she was up to.  What I never expected though was the extent of her craving for sour.  Since our first meeting I have watched her add countless lemon slices to her water, float her french fries in vinegar and suck on lemons.  Recently I found a recipe for salt and vinegar potatoes (see below) and I immediately sent her the link because I knew she would like them.  We were both surprised that the potato slices are boiled right in the vinegar, but it is a perfect way to capitalize on maximum pucker.  As I continued to search for recipes I found one for a lemon granita and then an idea was born.  I would make a meal for Sara that was sourlicious.

The main course was a meat loaf as Sara is not a vegetarian or a vegan, but everything else was vegan and I slipped lots of veggies in the meatloaf when no one was looking.  We had the salt and vinegar potatoes, an arugula and baby spinach salad with a simple vinaigrette, pickled vegetables (from a jar),  a tangy barbecue sauce and to finish it off the  lemon granita.  All washed down with virgin margaritas.

The margaritas were simple to make and tasty, my favourite kind of recipe.  I made the simple syrup ahead of time and we added more lemon juice to sour it up a bit, but I will definitely make this recipe again, possibly as a party punch. The granita took the longest to make, but actually it was a pretty simple recipe and I made the initial syrup ahead of time so it only took about three hours to make while Sara and I chatted and cooked.  The result was lemon snow.  It was a little too sour for my taste, and I think next time I might add strawberry juice or a bit more sugar, but it was a really nice, light dessert.  Better suited to a hot summer’s day than a chilly evening in November, but still very tasty.  I can imagine serving it as an elegant finish to a dinner on the patio.

The only wrinkle to our meal was the Salt and Vinegar potatoes.  They were simply too sour.  The recipe suggested white wine vinegar, but we used regular white vinegar instead.  It was given as an alternative and this recipe was developed from one that called for white vinegar so it seemed a safe change.  Next time I think I would still use white vinegar, but I would dilute it by half.  The potatoes were edible, but just.  Even Sara’s sour tooth was overwhelmed.  Otherwise the meal was pretty good, and I loved the barbecue sauce, it was a bit of a witch’s brew of ingredients, but you just heat them up and you’re done.  Easy peasy, lemon squeezy.

16. Virgin Margarita (recipe)

  • 2 ozs simple syrup (see below)
  • 1 oz lime juice
  • 1 oz lemon juice
  • 1 oz orange juice
  • ice
  • 1 wedge lime (garnish)

1. Combine the ingredients in a cocktail shaker filled with ice and shake vigorously (you can add 1oz of tequila for a bit of kick).
2. Pour into a glass.
3. If serving frozen, combine the ingredients in a blender with 3/4 cup ice and blend until smooth. Pour into a glass.
4. Garnish with a lime wedge.

Simple Syrup (recipe)

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
  1. Bring sugar and water to a boil in a small saucepan, stirring to dissolve sugar.
  2. Let cool completely, and refrigerate for up to 1 month.

17. Tangy Barbecue Sauce (recipe)   

  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons prepared mustard
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a small saucepan; bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 30 minutes.
  2. Discard bay leaf.

18. Greens with Vinaigrette (recipe)

Basic Vinaigrette

  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • Pinch of salt
  • Pinch of fresh ground black pepper

Italian Vinaigrette

  • basic vinaigrette (use EVOO and red wine vinegar)
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon italian seasoning
  • 1 pinch crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

Mustard Dressing

  • Italian vinaigrette
  • 1 teaspoon prepared mustard
  • 1 -3 teaspoon honey (optional) or 1 -3 teaspoon another sweetener, to taste (optional)

Lemon Dressing

  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
  1. Let stand 10 minutes to rehydrate dried herbs and/or blend flavors.
  2. Shake again then dress salad as desired.

19. Grilled Salt and Vinegar Potatoes (recipe)  

  • 2 cups white wine vinegar (next time I will try 1 cup vinegar, 1 cup water)
  • 1 pound  waxy potatoes, cut into 1/4-inch slices
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon flaky sea salt, plus more for seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  1. Pour the vinegar into a medium saucepan, then stack (or arrange) the potatoes so the vinegar covers them completely.
  2. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for about 5 minutes, or until the potatoes are just fork tender. You want them to hold their shape, so they don’t fall apart on the grill later.
  3. Let the potatoes cool in the vinegar for 30 minutes. Drain well, then very gently toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper.
  4. Heat the grill to medium high. Grill potatoes, covered if possible, until golden on one side, then flip and grill the other side – roughly 3 – 5 minutes per side. Serve sprinkled with salt to taste.

20. Lemon Granita (recipe)

  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 cup fresh lemon juice (juice of about 6 medium lemons)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated fresh lemons, rind of (about the peel from 1 medium lemon)
  • 2 teaspoons lemon extract

1. Combine 2 cups of the water with the sugar in a medium nonreactive saucepan; bring to a simmer over medium heat.
2. Cook, stirring constantly, until the sugar is completely dissolved.
3. Add the salt, stir, and remove the pan from the heat.
4. Stir in the remaining water and let cool to room temperature.
5. Cover and refrigerate for a minimum of 1 hour.
6. Meanwhile, place a shallow metal 2 1/2 qt container (such as a large cake pan) in the freezer to chill.
7. Add the lemon juice, lemon peel, and extract to the chilled sugar mixture; stir until well blended.
8. Pour into the chilled metal pan.
9. Place the pan in the freezer for 30-60 minutes, or until ice crystals form around the edges.
10. Stir the ice crystals into the center of the pan and return to the freezer.
11. Repeat every 30 minutes, or until all the liquid is crystallized but not frozen solid, about 3 hours.
12. To serve, scoop the granita into chilled dessert bowls or goblets.
13. If the granita has become too hard, scrape it with a large metal spoon to break up the ice crystals. Serve at once.

– the Goddess


One response to “Vegan Recipes I’ve Learned (16-20)

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