recipes, food snaps, and travel musings

Monday, May 28, 2007

Return from Hiatus

Every once in a while some well-intentioned friend or relative will ask me "hey, how's that cookbook coming along" and after thinking 'what cookbook?' and 'like I don't have enough to do' I remember that I've been neglecting my VGML blog.

So, I made some Sunday Night Pizza. I know I promised to disclose the secret to my gooey cheese sauce, but I got inspired by the Urban Vegan's use of the Tofu-Basil Ricotta recipe from the VwaV on her arugula pizza. So inspired, that I headed in that same direction for my own delicious pies.

Actually, there were two pizzas made. One recruited a combination of veggie sausage, leek, tofu ricotta, basil, toaster-bag-roasted red pepper, mushroom to make a big, tasty mess (see left).

The other pizza involved tomato, arugula, red pepper, garlic, green olive, tofu ricotta, and was only slightly less messy to eat.

This was one of my favourite Sunday night pizza sessions to date. Maybe because last night we were going for an over-the-top feast, so we cooked up a dozen faux-chicken drumsticks to go with the pizza. See the picture (right) for the drumsticks before they are soaked in marinade, basted, and baked.

The marinade is the key to their succulence. If you let them swim around in a simple warm marinade (whisk 1 tsp vegan "chicken" broth, 1 tsp light miso, 1 tsp dark soy sauce, 1 Tbsp dry sherry, and a few drops of hickory smoke flavour into 2C boiling water) for an hour or two, they can be basted and baked (30 minutes at 450F) to uncanny resemblance to the real thing.

I decided to spice up the usual recipe by adding a liberal sprinkling of Blair's Jersey Death Hot Sauce to the barbeque sauce I used to coat the wings. I swear I only added about 6 drops of the stuff to the jar, and I even added a couple spoonfulls of agave nectar and sweet ginger paste to balance it. But when I shook it up and tasted it, I found that the spice level had increased alarmingly.

It says right on the bottle "not to be used without dilution" - and I believe them!

(Which is not to say that I haven't tried putting a drop of the hot sauce directly on my tongue... My -faulty- rationale was: "okay, it's the hottest death sauce sold by this new mexico store that sells 300 kinds of hot sauce. I've never found my personal limit for hot sauces ... this seems like a perfect way to find that personal limit, right?")

While I don't feel like I've yet hit the peak of my spice tolerance (there was no loss of consciousness, or permanent nerve damage), the sauce earned my respect with its fierceness. And judging by its potency after dilution, this bottle should last me until I graduate.

On a Sweeter Note:
For a friend's party the other day I made pistachio-chocolate bark with a spicy kick that hits you about 5 seconds after you take a bite. I don't regret shelling out for a pricy bag of 'stachios, because I think I've found a new favourite chocolate. Sooo easy to make.

Pistachio-Chocolate Bark (with a bite)
2 cups belgian chocolate discs
1.5 cups raw, shelled pistachio nuts
1/2 tsp mexican chili powder
1 tsp peanut oil
1/2 tsp ground cayenne pepper, divided

In a double-boiler over medium heat, slowly melt the chocolate, stirring ocasionally until completely melted. Be careful not to introduce any moisture to the bowl, or the chocolate will "seize" and become clumpy.

Meanwhile, toss the pistachios with the chili powder and oil, and 1/4 tsp of ground cayenne. Add the remaining 1/4 tsp cayenne to the melted chocolate, and stir well to combine.

When the chocolate has cooled slightly (2-3 minutes), gently fold in the pistachios and pour the mixture onto a sheet of parchment paper spread on a lightly-greased baking sheet. Cool in the fridge until completely hard, then break into 1" squares and enjoy.

47 comments:

Vincent Guihan said...

:D Pizza and wings. Fabulous!!

The Geographical Vegan Says... said...

it's best to start the week with a smattering of "junk food" - then your leftover lunches are more delicious.

Megan the Vegan said...

did you make the non-marinated drumsticks from scratch? they look fantastic

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cristobalcsowards said...

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mistiparnell said...

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眼淚 said...

人必須心懷希望,才會活的快樂,日子才過得充實,有意義,有朝氣,有信心。........................................

yahoo said...

任何你憂慮的事,你都應該去採取一點行動,不要只是在那邊想..............................

請客 said...

thank u........................................

情緒 said...

I love readding, and thanks for your artical. ........................................

欣盈 said...

We could learn a lot from crayons. Some are sharp, some are pretty and some are dull, Some have weird names , and all are different colors, but they all have to live in the same box.............................................

玉苓 said...

You may be only one person in the world, but you may also be the world to one person.............................................

HarriettAckley0317 said...

It's great!!.............................................

GenovevaPer32669 said...

Undertake no more than you can perform.......................................................

義珊 said...

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FranciscoL_Swaney0806 said...

如果,人類也像鼠輩一般,花很多時間來吃飯和睡覺,一定會改善健康。

kio said...

Just do it!.......................................................

函松 said...

世間是非,要如水泥地般水過則乾。..................................................

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mckinney said...

Judge not of men and things at first sight...................................................

淑慧 said...

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sda said...

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陳淳 said...

Pay somebody back in his own coin..................................................................                           

立偉立偉 said...

生存乃是不斷地在內心與靈魂交戰;寫作是坐著審判自己。.................................................................

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所有的資產,在不被諒解時,都成了負債............................................................

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Pen and ink is wits plough. ............................................................

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楊儀卉 said...

如果,人類也像鼠輩一般,花很多時間來吃飯和睡覺,一定會改善健康。 ............................................................

林柏毅林柏毅 said...

如果,人類也像鼠輩一般,花很多時間來吃飯和睡覺,一定會改善健康。 ............................................................

KyungBivo中如 said...

第一忠誠,第二勤奮,第三專心工作。.......................................................

黃威宇 said...

Rome was not built in a day............................................................

RicoLisi0802志竹 said...

快樂,是享受工作過程的結果............................................................

DaniloM_W志竹olff0615 said...

良言一句三冬暖,惡語傷人六月寒。......................................................................

秀吉秀吉 said...

耐心是一株很苦的植物,但果實卻很甜美。..................................................

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周志v豪 said...

放棄者不會勝利,勝利者永不放棄。............................................................

沈貞李添睿儀 said...

我對自己的信心已超越別人對我的評價................................................

4464 said...

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said...

好的部落格就要和好朋友分享--感謝分享............................................................

幸平平平平杰 said...

Poverty tries friends...................................................................

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............................................................

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