Sunday, June 29, 2008

When the Big Kahuna's Away...

The Big Kahuna is away at a conference for four days this week.  That means I've got the kitchen all to myself, and I'm going to take advantage of the opportunity to make all the crazy recipes I've been dying to try, but he just wouldn't eat.

First up:  Mac Daddy from Veganomicon.  I actually have made this one before, and it is completely addictive.  This time, I added a few cups of CSA kale, so at least I've got some greens in this otherwise junk-foody dish.  It turned out better than ever, but no picture since the sauce is a rather unappealing shade of yellow.

Next:  Tempeh Hot Wings, from Don't Eat Off the Sidewalk.  

I actually think the Big Kahuna would probably like these, since he loves anything that comes with a good sauce. Unfortunately, he's been scarred by a bad experience with tempeh in the past.  I had no idea you had to boil the bitterness out of tempeh before using it, so completely screwed up my first recipe using it.  I know better now, and love the stuff.  Sadly though, tempeh is now referred to as "that gross stuff."

I followed the recipe except I used maple syrup in place of agave nectar in the sauce.  

Finally:  Julie Hasson's Spicy Italian Sausages.  I've been wanting to try these forever, especially since the base recipe is so versatile and adaptable.  The Big Kahuna has eaten and enjoyed seitan in the past, but I thought it would be best to experiment with these on my own first, since I don't want a repeat of the tempeh debacle.

I halved the recipe, and ended up with 5 decently sized sausages.  There's a crazy number of spices in these, but the result is surprisingly authentic.  This was my first ever attempt at making seitan, and I was nervous because I'd heard it can be finicky, but these sausages came out perfect.  So let me be the millionth person to declare that Julie is a genius, both for the recipe and the method.

Tonight for a quick dinner I sauteed a bunch of escarole with garlic, and then sliced and browned one of the sausages.  Spicy and delicious.  


Lo said...

Ah, the brilliance of alternative "meats" like tempeh and seitan. Big Kahuna doesn't know what he's missing! :)

Jenny said...

I was looking for your DB post - maybe next month? :-)