Food Friday: Gluten Free, Vegan Biscuits and Gravy

Growing up in the south, I’m pretty familiar with good ole country food – grits, sweet tea, chicken-fried meats, and anything made with bacon, lard, and butter. Biscuits and gravy are no exception. I’m not so much a fan of biscuits and gravy, but occasionally, the craving hits me.  As it should happen, a recipe found its way into my inbox and with a little vegan magic (and a lot of googling), here’s a recipe for gluten-free biscuits & gravy.

 

Biscuits

  • 3/4 cup coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup tapioca flour
  • 1 cup rice flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3 Tablespoons cold Earth Balance buttery spread

Gravy

  • 1/4 cup vegan butter
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 4 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 5 cups mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup rice flour
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 Tablespoon tamari
  • fresh black pepper to taste

 

PREPARATION

Biscuits:

  1. Place butter in the freezer for at least 10 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 450°
  3. Lightly oil a baking sheet or place a piece of parchment paper over the baking sheet.
  4. Combine coconut milk, water and apple cider vinegar in a small bowl and set aside.
  5. In a medium size bowl, add rice flour, tapioca starch, baking powder, baking soda, salt, dried basil and dried dill. Gently stir to combine.
  6. Add cold buttery spread to flour mixture and use a pastry cutter or two knives to incorporate. Don’t overmix, it will lead to hard biscuits.
  7. Pour in the coconut milk/apple cider mixture and stir until just combined.
  8. Place 1 heaping tablespoon of batter at a time on a baking sheet and cook for 10 minutes.

Gravy:

  1. Melt vegan butter in a large skillet and saute the onions and garlic for 5 minutes.
  2. Add mushrooms, herbs, and salt and cook for 4 minutes, stirring occasionally so that mushrooms don’t stick to the bottom of the pan.
  3. In a small mixing bowl add the water and the rice flour and whisk to combine.
  4. Slowly add water mixture to the mushrooms and stir to combine.
  5. Add tamari and cook on low for 4 minutes, stirring occasionally until gravy thickens.
  6. Pour warm gravy over warm biscuits.

 

Veganly Yours,

 

Megan

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Food Friday: Herby Cheddar Biscuits

It’s been about a billion years since we’ve been to Red Lobster… not that I’m complaining. When I learned Red Lobster goes through more seafood than the entire country of Japan, I was done. Since going vegan, I’ve occasionally gotten the craving for those delicious herby, cheesy, biscuits served before the meals.

 

Finally! Here’s your recipe. These are deliciously wonderful and quite addicting. Best if they’re served with a large group of people, like your upcoming dinner party (or your vegan Thanksgiving!), so you don’t eat them all in one sitting.

 

INGREDIENTS

For the Biscuit:

  • 2 1/2 cups pancake mix
  • 4 tbsp cold vegan butter
  • 1 cup vegan cheddar style shreds
  • 3/4 cup almond milk (or other non-dairy milk)
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder

For Brushing on the Top:

  • 2 tbsp melted vegan butter
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley, minced

PREPARATION

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Using a pastry cutter or fork mix the flour and cold butter. Do not overmix, it should be quite crumbly. Add the non dairy milk, cheddar and mozzarella (or just one cup of cheddar) shreds and use your hands to form a dough (do not over-mix, it will still be quite crumbly.
  3. Place nine equal portions on a lightly greased baking sheet. You may need to roll the dough a bit to form a ball.
  4. Bake for 15-17 minutes or until light golden brown.
  5. Remove from the oven and melt the butter, garlic powder and parsley. Brush over the top of the biscuits before serving.

 

Veganly Yours,

 

Megan

Food Friday: Vegan Fried Green Tomatoes

By Megan Vick

 

My most favorite restaurant in the world is closing soon and I have been heartbroken since I got the news. Friends are out of jobs, customers are out of delicious local food, and I am out of pickled ramps and butternut squash gnocchi (not served together, I swear).

 

During our last visit there, we had delicious fried green tomatoes and I have been determined to recreate them. I think I’m doing pretty well so far… the best part is, instead of frying them, I’ve baked them in the oven for a healthier version. This recipe makes a great appetizer for 2 or small meal for 1 person. They were so good I forgot to take a picture – shocking, I know.

 

Here’s what you need:

 

  • 2 large green tomatoes (preferably organic)
  • 1/3 cup almond mik (either plain or unsweetened… I’m sure any plant milk would work here)
  • 1/2 cup flour (almond, chickpea, all- purpose… anything you like)
  • Salt, pepper, garlic powder to taste

 

Here’s how to do it:

  • Preheat oven to 425F
  • Slice your tomatoes into thick slices (or quarters if you want to be fancy)
  • Put almond milk into bowl – set aside
  • Combine flour, pepper, salt, garlic powder together and mix well in another bowl – set aside
  • Dredge tomato slices in milk, then in the flour mixture – be sure to cover both sides completely
  • Put slices on a baking sheet, pan, or dish
  • Bake at 425 for 15-20 minutes until coating is golden brown

 

Pro Tip: Serve with some vegan ranch (a la Native Foods Cafe) for dipping or a balsamic reduction – Divine!!

 

You can thank me later! Enjoy and Namaste

Food Friday Feature: The Fiction Kitchen – Raleigh, NC

By Megan Vick

 

On Thursday, July 24, Matt and I made time to treat ourselves to dinner – a fancy dinner. Despite the encroaching rain, we headed to beautiful downtown Raleigh to the all-vegan restaurant, The Fiction Kitchen. The Fiction Kitchen opened a couple of years ago and we went shortly after it opened. It was great back then, but we lived about a 40 minute drive away. Now, we’re a quick 10 minutes from the restaurant – and believe me, we’ll be there a lot more often.

 

We were greeted and seated right away and we had water on the table before I could blink my eyes. After much debating about what we would have, we decided to get the vegan tasting plate as an appetizer and some house-made root beer. Then, Matt ordered the chicken and waffles while I ordered the evening’s special, the tomato pie.

 

Tasting Plate: local crackers, spiced pecans, blueberries, peach jam, smoked cashew cream, tempeh pate, and cashew cream.

Tasting Plate: local crackers, spiced pecans, blueberries, peach jam, smoked cashew cream, tempeh pate, and cashew cream.

 

Let’s talk about this tasting plate for a minute… wait, sorry… I’m drooling. Anyway, the smoked cashew cream was maybe the greatest thing I’ve ever had. Matt and I had a great time mixing and matching different combinations. The tempeh pate with the smoked cashew cream was exquisite and the cashew cream with a little peach jam topped with spiced pecans was divine. We even ordered extra crackers so we could savor the cashew cream combinations and before our wonderfully attentive waitress took our plate, she let me scrape up the extra goodness with my finger. Oh yeah, I was that girl. Poor Matt – he just can’t take me anywhere.

 

Vegan Food

Matt’s Chicken & Waffle

 

What you’re seeing there is The Fiction Kitchen’s house made “chicken” breaded and fried better than the Colonel himself could do it. He’s also got a light and fluffy Belgian waffle under all that chicken along with blueberries and arugula. There were pros & cons with this dish. Pro: It was so good, Matt devoured it. Con: It was so good, Matt devoured it and I didn’t get any.

 

raleigh vegan food

Nightly Special – Farmers Market Tomato Pie with Fried Chicken

 

My picture of my meal did not do it justice. I didn’t turn on my flash because I didn’t want to disturb the other guests at the restaurant. I have an heirloom tomato pie with cashew creamed corn topped with fried chicken. The chicken was an additional suggestion by our waitress (did I mention how awesome she was? I think her name was Taylor…). Even though we already had an appetizer, I went for adding the vegan protein to the meal because why the hell not?! It’s North Carolina – how often do you get deliciously wonderful vegan fried chicken??

Not to mention, I had seen it coming out of the kitchen for several minutes while we ate our tasting plate and it looked so good, I couldn’t say no. I have no self-control when it comes to food. 

The tomato pie itself was delicious and the tomatoes were some of the sweetest I’ve ever had. It was quiche-like, minus the eggs, of course. And that cashew-creamed corn… Holy Southern-Style Vegan Food Batman! I could seriously eat that ALL.DAY.LONG. It was sweet and creamy, like creamed corn should be, but had a little bit of an extra kick to it too.

 

Vegan Food Raleigh

Vegan Peanut Butter Cheesecake with a Pretzel Crust

 

Ah yes, the piece de resistance – Vegan Peanut Butter Cheesecake. It’s so good, it deserves to have all the words capitalized. It was light and fluffy with a crisp, but not crispy, pretzel crust. Best of all, it was topped with soy whip. Matt suggested we share a piece and I (reluctantly) agreed. I was ridiculously full, so I am glad we shared the cheesecake. Despite the sharing, I still want to cradle the cheesecake in my arms and whisper, “My Precious,” over and over. Because it was that good.

 

Long story short – go to The Fiction Kitchen in Raleigh. If you’re a local – visit often! If you’re not a local, make time to grab some food during your visit. And if you’re travelling alone – let me know because Matt & I won’t even hesitate to join you.

 

Thanks to The Fiction Kitchen for being awesome and letting us linger in the restaurant for damn near 3 hours while we ate, talked, laughed, took pictures of food, ate some more, and drank the best root beer ever. Y’all rock. ❤

Food Friday: Inspiralized Vegan Lemongrass Thai Green Curry Soup with Zucchini Noodles

By Megan Vick

 

When I got this recipe in my feed the other day, I am fairly certain I actually drooled. At my desk.

 

I’ll be honest, I haven’t had a chance to make this yet because we’ve been getting some big orders and making soap like crazy (more on that later). But this looks seriously delicious and further cements my girl-crush on Miss Inspiralized (aka Ali). Check this amazing-ness out: Vegan Lemongrass Thai Green Curry Soup with Zucchini

 

Yummy!!!!

 

Photo respectfully borrowed from Inspiralized.com courtesy of Ali Maffucci

Photo respectfully borrowed from Inspiralized.com courtesy of Ali Maffucci

 

 

 

Family Vacation – Vegas Baby! The Food

By Megan Vick

 

While none of us are big gamblers, we had a ball eating our way through Vegas (I gained 6 pounds!!) and watching enough Cirque du Soleil shows to last a lifetime. After arriving at our hotel, The Desert Rose Resort – just off the strip, around 1:00pm on May 10,  we went right out to find food and ended up at Rainforest Cafe at the MGM Grand. While the experience left a lot to be desired, there were several vegetarian and vegan options available (yay!). I was pretty stoked to know that I would be able to find some good vegan eats while on vacation. Thank you Las Vegas!

 

Las Vegas Vegan

 

Matt and I surprised our moms on Mother’s Day morning with a reservation at Mon Ami Gabi at Paris Las Vegas. With its French setting and menu, we knew our foodie moms would love it. We had the amazing luck of being seated just next to the outdoor patio and had a full view of  the Bellagio and its legendary fountain. Mon Ami Gabi had a few vegetarian options, but I called ahead to make sure certain items were vegan (or could be made vegan) so I wouldn’t be stuck with a just a fruit cup. Even though I called ahead to alert the server of my veganism, I still ended up with the most beautiful bowl of fruit ever. Berries, melons, pineapples – oh my! I also got the thick cut oatmeal – just to try it. I have never liked oatmeal (it’s a weird texture!), but this was delicious.  So good, it was gone before I thought to take pictures.

 

Throughout our week in Vegas, we found tons of great restaurants and just about every one of them offered a vegetarian or vegan option. One of my favorites was Gordon Ramsay’s BurGR in Planet Hollywood. It’s exclusively a burger joint, but stepped up a notch because, you know, it’s Gordon Ramsay. I was genuinely impressed to see the Earth Burger on the menu. It had all the veggies on it and instead of meat or a veggie patty, I was able to enjoy one of the biggest, juiciest portobello mushrooms ever. It was absolutely stunning. Once again, it was gone before I thought to take pictures… I have to get better about that.

 

Next time you visit Vegas, you won’t be disappointed with the options for vegetarians and vegans. Since it’s a massive tourist destination, restaurateurs are catching on to the vegan and gluten-free lifestyles of customers. If you are considered, be sure to call ahead and ask questions. It’s Vegas after all – there’s not much that can’t be done in that city.

Food Friday: Inspiralized Miso Roasted Tomatoes & Carrot Noodles

By Megan Vick

 

I had the honor of getting a spiralizer for my birthday from my mother-in-law. I’ve been really getting into cooking lately, but we’ve really worked hard to cut back on pastas. While we LOVE LOVE LOVE pasta, it’s getting too heavy for us in our old age (late 20s, that’s old – right?). Robin introduced me to zucchini noodles – zoodles – and I’ve been following a blog, Inspiralized, for a while.

 

Now, I don’t know Ali – the wickedly talented chica who is the end-all, be-all for Inspiralized, but I like to think she’s my homegirl. So many dishes of hers are either vegan already or can easily be veganized by either leaving out the meat or subbing something like Beyond Meat in its place. The meals are crazy fast to make and don’t get crazy with ingredients. Her posts are super-fun and the recipes are wonderful and healthy. Check out this Miso Roasted Tomatoes & Carrot Noodles.

 

 

Miso Roasted Tomatoes and Carrot Noodles

Prep Time: 10 minutes/Cook Time: 20 minutes/Total Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:

  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 3 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 2 tbsp light yellow miso
  • 1 tbsp peeled and minced ginger
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp honey (I used agave to keep it vegan)
  • 2 tsp lime zest
  • 2 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • salt, to taste
  • 2 pints cherry tomatoes
  • 3 large carrots, peeled, Blade C, noodles trimmed
  • 4 scallion stalks, thinly sliced (I didn’t have these, so I didn’t use them – still turned out great!)
  • 2 tsp sesame seeds

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
  2. In a bowl, whisk the vegetable oil, vinegar, miso, ginger, seasame oil, honey, lime zest and lime juice until smooth. Season with salt.
  3. On a baking sheet, toss the tomatoes with 3 tablespoons of the miso dressing and season with salt. Roast for 20 minutes, stirring, until the tomatoes are charred in spots. Scrape into a large bowl.
  4. While the tomatoes are roasting, bring a medium saucepan with water to a boil. Once boiling, add in the carrot noodles and cook for 2-3 minutes or until al dente. Drain into a colander.
  5. In a large mixing bowl, add in the carrot noodles, tomatoes, scallions and the dressing and toss well. Divide into bowls and top with sesame seeds.

 

Now you have a delicious meal to share with your friends using your awesome new spiralizer. Thank you to Ali at Inspiralized.com for awesomeness every single day.