Friday, December 14, 2012

VegCookbookClub for December

My library hold finally became available for the VegCookbookClub's December selection, Vegan Holiday Kitchen by Nava Atlas. This cookbook is a hardback collection of over 200 recipes with some great photos by Susan Voisin. It has a charming introduction with sage advice for vegan holiday meals, such as "If you're going to be the lone vegan..bring a main dish, at the very least. Bring plenty of what you'll be eating, because everyone will want some..."(ix). How true! I'm interested in trying some of Atlas' go-to holiday fare. I decided to start with these two simple recipes.
Cashew Chocolate Mousse Pie
This chocolate tofu pie, from Chapter One: Thanksgiving, was a breeze to assemble. It requires soaking cashews, then blending the cashew butter with silken tofu. You heat that mixture, melting in chocolate chips and adding maple syrup to taste. I used a store-bought whole wheat pie crust, and topped it with some stray mini chips before baking. I'll have to report back on the results because I'm saving it for my parents' visit this weekend, as a belated Thanksgiving treat.
Baked Tofu-Tortilla Extravaganza 
I did taste this dish, which comes from the small brunch section in the final chapter of the book, Chapter Six: Brunches, Appetizers, and Potluck Dishes. Perhaps this casserole should be called Extra-Verg├╝enza because, much to my shame, it looked solid in the pan but fell apart when served. Maybe I should have used a shallower dish? It was an easy recipe to throw together, almost like making a tortilla lasagna but without all the fuss of layering. It has tofu, onion, garlic, corn tortillas, tomatoes, chili peppers, spices, and some grated vegan cheese on top. Next time, I'd leave off the fake cheese and add nutritional yeast.

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