Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Kimchi Soup with Tofu, Shiitake Mushrooms, and Veggies

Confession: I have never had kimchi.

Until now!

It is really common for kimchi to have fish sauce in it, so...not vegan. However, vegan/vegetarian kimchi does exist! I picked up some from Trader Joe's and have been hanging onto it for some time, not sure of what to do with it. Well, tonight it became part of a soup.

I started with some thinly sliced onion and sauteed it in coconut oil until translucent. I added mini sweet bell peppers sliced into strips and thinly sliced garlic - 1-2 cloves. Then some frozen shiitake mushrooms, an entire container of firm silken tofu (the little ones in the aseptic containers). I cubed half the tofu block and just tore the other half into chunks. Then I poured in a bunch of broth - I used Pacific Vegetaria Pho Starter soup base, along with some water and soy sauce. I brought everything to a boil, then turned off the heat and added a handful of baby kale and some cilantro.

This was a pretty easy, tasty soup. I had a ton left over for more than one lunch. I would maybe use a different base if I made this again and I added a lot of spice later on because it was not spicy enough for me.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Pizza Tortilla Wrap with Vegan Ranch Dressing

This wrap came together because I was craving pizza, and then realized I picked up some Yves Meatless Pepperoni the other day from the co-op.

I started with an organic tortilla & spread out some strained tomato sauce that was kicked up with garlic salt, olive oil, & red pepper flakes. I sliced up 2 mini sweet bell peppers and fanned the pieces out on the tortilla. Then a bit of Daiya cheddar shreds, some pieces of torn-up peppered Tofurky deli slices, and then a few of the aforementioned Yves meatless pepperoni. Zapped it in the microwave until the cheese was melted.

I swirled on some "accidentally vegan" ranch dressing I found in the $1 area of Cub Foods for a final touch.

The ingredients of the dressing: water, vegetable oil (soybean oil), modified starch (corn or potato), salt, onion powder, garlic powder, oregano powder, pepper powder, monosodium glutamate, vinegar, xanthan gum, potassium sorbate, sodium benzoate, bht, artificial flavor, caramel color, sucralose, FD&C Yellow No. 5 color. Contains: SOY

It tastes really similar to when I mix some powdered dip mix into Vegenaise. It's pretty good, does a decent job replicating ranch for me.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Masu Sushi & Robata - sushi, drinks, appetizer

Masu Sushi & Robata has made several "best-of" lists since it opened a few years ago. I finally made it out to the NE Mpls location (they have opened a second location at the Mall of America).

Masu is great! They have a separate vegetarian/vegan menu as well as a gluten-free menu.

For an appetizer, I had some vegetable tempura. Delicious! A good mix of squash, eggplant, and other veggies:

Also had a great vegetable sushi roll. I think this was called a firecracker? Had some veggies rolled up with rice and nori, then coated in crushed wasabi peas and some sriracha/hot sauce over the top. Awesome:

I also had a delicious drink and brought home a caterpillar roll (vegan-style) for Mr. Coconut.