A Very Vegan Christmas

Food

A Very Vegan Christmas

Jessica In The Kitchen

Wednesday, December 25, 2019

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Pistachio-Crusted Vegan Cheese Ball

This pistachio-crusted vegan cheese ball is actually very easy to make! It tastes incredible and is great for appetisers and parties!

Ingredients:

1 cup soaked cashews overnight in water

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

Juice of two limes (2 tablespoons)

1 tbsp white vinegar

1 tbsp white cooking wine

2 cloves garlic

2 tbsps water

1 sprig rosemary, torn into bits

1 sprig thyme, torn into bits

1/2 cup to 3/4 cup pistachios, crushed

Method:

Soak the cashews overnight in your fridge in enough water to cover them.

Drain water, and add cashews to a food processor. Add in everything except the rosemary, thyme and pistachio. Blend together until creamy and incorporated. The cheese will be spreadable.

Stir in the rosemary and thyme at this point. Taste the cheeseball and add salt if necessary.

Spoon the vegan cheese mixture into a cheesecloth, or a very thin dish towel or even a handkerchief. Wrap into a ball and place ball over a strainer in a bowl. Leave in your fridge to release the excess liquid overnight.

Remove the cheese ball from the cloth. There should be some liquid drained and the cheese should be more firm. Smooth down the edges of the cheese.

Place the crushed pistachios in a plate. Roll the cheese around in the plate, covering the entire outside with pistachio.

Serve with crackers and enjoy!

Notes:

1. This recipe is naturally vegan and gluten-free. The vegan cheese is edible and delicious even before reducing liquid to create the cheese ball; you can eat it at this point if you desire. You can add nutritional yeast if you want. I didn't have any and still got the desired taste!

2. How to store cheese ball after the cheese ball is rolled in the pistachio: I like to wrap mine in saran wrap and then store in my fridge. After about a day in the fridge, the cheese is very easy to slice, so you can make this ahead of time if you so desire. The cheese ball will last at least a week in your fridge.

Red Wine Apple Cider Fall Sangria

This red wine apple cider Fall sangria is perfect for all your holiday parties and events! The flavours are reminiscent of Fall and it tastes amazing!

Ingredients:

cup coconut or cane sugar

cup water

1 Granny Smith apple, cored and cubed

1 Gala/Honey crisp apple, cored and cubed

1/3 cup pomegranate arils

cup fresh cranberries

3 cinnamon sticks

1 bottle red wine

2 cups sweetened apple cider

cup red rum or bourbon

Method:

In a pot over high heat, stir the water and sugar until it comes to a boil. Boil together until they form a simple syrup for about 1 minute. Remove from heat and set aside to cool. You want to use cup of the final simple syrup (so you might have some leftover). You can use more if you want it sweetener!

In a jug/pitcher, mix all the other ingredients together. Add the simple syrup and swirl to sweeten the sangria.

You can sneak in a sip now, but refrigerate for 4 hours to overnight for the flavours to meld together properly and be smoother. Enjoy!!

Sweet and Sticky Orange Cauliflower Bites

Ingredients:

Cauliflower Bites

1 medium head cauliflower

1/2 cup Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour

1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk

1/4 tsp sea salt

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (1/2 if you want it very spicy, leave out if you don't like spice)

1 cup crispy gluten-free panko breadcrumbs (seasoned with salt and pepper) or brown rice cereal puffs, crushed and seasoned*

Sesame seeds and chopped scallions, to garnish

Orange Sauce

cup water

cup orange juice

2 tbsps maple syrup

tsp ground ginger

tsp garlic powder

2 tbsps liquid aminos/low sodium soy sauce

2 tbsps rice wine vinegar

1 tbsps cornstarch plus 1 tbsp water (stirred together until cornstarch is dissolved)

Method:

Preheat oven to 450F/230C. Prepare a baking pan by lining it with a silicone baking sheet or greased foil.

Remove florets from the cauliflower (that is, don't use the stem). Chop the cauliflower into smaller, bite-size pieces.

In a separate bowl, whisk the gluten free flour, almond milk, salt, ground black pepper, garlic powder and crushed red pepper flakes in a bowl to make the batter.

In another separate bowl, place the breadcrumbs. Line it up beside the batter bowl.

Toss the cauliflower in the batter mixture one at a time, shaking off excess batter. Do not soak. Dip the cauliflower into the breadcrumbs to coat completely, then place onto the baking sheet. Repeat until all of the bites are coated.

Bake for 22 minutes. Please ensure your oven is completely preheated and hot. While baking, prepare the ingredients for the sauce (see below).

Remove from oven. Toss the bites in the sauce using tongs or a large spoon, coating completely. Remove from pot and place back on the baking sheet. Bake for another 5 minutes for the sauce to soak into the bites.

Remove from oven and serve immediately with sesame seeds and chopped scallions. Enjoy!

Orange Sauce

While the bites are baking and have about 5 minutes left, in a pot over high heat, mix all the sauce ingredients, except the cornstarch slurry.

Bring to a boil and keep boiling for about 1 minute. Reduce heat to medium low. Add in the cornstarch slurry and whisk vigorously until dissolved into the sauce. Let it cook for about 3 to 4 minutes until the sauce begins to thicken. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. Taste a little bit to decide if you need more sweetener or more soy sauce.

Notes:

If you want to see how this is made in general, check out Jessica's YouTube video:

About the bites:

1. Don't use olive oil to grease the baking sheet since it will burn the bottom of your bites. If using a silicone mat, you don't need to grease it at all.

2. The batter will only adhere to the cauliflower bites dry. So, if for any reason you wet your cauliflower, it has to be 100% dry for the batter to stick.

3. If you want to substitute soy sauce, PLEASE taste the sauce before it goes on the bites first. Some soy sauces can make this too salty. I recommend a reduced sodium soy sauce.

How to store cauliflower bites

You can store these cauliflower wings in airtight tupperware container in your fridge for up to 4 days, and reheat them in an oven until warmed. They taste best fresh. I wouldn't recommend freezing these as the batter may get soggy.

How to use frozen cauliflower

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Heat the cauliflower for 15 minutes in the oven. Remove and drain off the excess liquid in a strainer. Toss the cauliflower lightly with a few tablespoons of Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour, coating lightly to soak up any liquid. Now, proceed with the recipe!

* I used brown rice cereal puffs this time around, they added a delightful crunch.


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