Archive | January, 2013

Speechless Sauce

21 Jan

I posted this picture to Instagram this afternoon.

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And it seems everyone is intrigued by it. If you’re not familiar with the fast food joint that “thinks outside the bun” then you might not know what those look like but I’m assuming most of you do.

Long story short, I live with an omnivore and tend to drool when said omnivore orders these so I decided I needed to figure out a vegan version AND I DID!!!!! It’s simple and delicious and the sauce is freaking amazing you’ll want to put it on everything!!

Vegan Cheesy Crunchy Tacos
Corn taco shells
Fluffy flour tortillas
Cheddar Daiya shreds
Shredded lettuce
Speechless Sauce
Prepared TVP
1 packet of taco seasoning

*remember to check ingredients for no animal products. All of my ingredients are national brands or store brands but make sure to check.

Speechless Sauce
3/4 cup vegan sour cream( I used Tofutti)
1/2 cup vegan mayo
1tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 Tbsp nutritional yeast
2 Tbsp jalapeño juice from jarred jalapeños
1 jalapeño’s worth of jarred slices or to your taste
1/4 cup Daiya cheddar shreds
1/4 of a red bell pepper
Salt and pepper to taste

Blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth, adjust salt and pepper and spice to taste.

Taco “Meat”
To prepare the TVP taco meat I just boil 2 cups of water with 2 tsp of veggie bullion paste(or two cups if veggie stock) add enough TVP to absorb all of the liquid. Remove from heat and add the packet of taco seasoning. Add a bit f water if its too dry. I found “hamburger” TVP in a store while I was on a business trip, which is what I used, but regular works fine too.

To assemble, heat the hard shell taco. Sprinkle a little cheddar Daiya on a flour tortilla and microwave just enough to melt the cheese. Wrap the soft shell onto the hard shell and let it sit for a minute so it all sticks together. Layer in the meat, sauce and lettuce and devour!!!!!

I think after my post gym smoothie, these will make a fantastic and fast dinner every night this week!!!

Obsession: Jackfruit Tacos

13 Jan

I have many obsessions; beets, smoothies, coffee, anything orange, AND among many other things, mexican food.  I love anything that faintly resembles Mexican food clear up to authentic Mexican food.  Now you may be wondering how I eat anything other than chips and salsa since Mexican food is full of cheese, cream and lots of meat.  I love chips and salsa(and lived on it through college and a few years after) but I’ve figured my way around the meaty cheesyness to still enjoy my favorite mexican food and create some new favorites.  

ENTER JACKFRUIT!!! 

If you’re not familiar with jackfruit, google it(I’m having trouble getting the link to load).  I buy my young jackfruit in brine, at my local Asian store.  When i first learned about jackfruit, it was the fact that it was similar to pork and when cooked low and slow it would shred just like pulled pork.  I bought some, cooked it low and slow, added some barbecue sauce and i wasn’t thrilled.  Then i was watching something on TV and they shredded the jackfruit in a food processor(like you would do with cabbage or carrots) and it looked exactly like shredded chicken or pork. I shredded it, threw some marinade on it, cooked it on the stovetop in a nonstick skillet and WALLA it was amazing and a new obsession had entered my life.   Since first finding out how I like to prepare my jackfruit, I’ve made Greek jackfruit tacos with a tangy mayo, kalamata olives, pepperoncini and red onions and buffalo jackfruit taquitos with all of the spicy heat we all love and an herby ranch dipping sauce but my most recent creation is a variation of the widely loved Al Pastor tacos.  

Al Pastor is a mix between Mexican pork tacos and Mediterranean schwarma.  It is spiced with achote, a couple different dried chilies, onion and pineapple(among other things as you will see at the ingredient list). I’ve always wanted to try Al Pastor but I learned what it was AFTER i stopped eating meat, enter an opportunity to get creative.  The marinade is extremely flexible and adaptable to your certain taste but this is my recipe.  I just didn’t find any recipe that i thought would suit my taste so I came up with my own and I think its beyond phenomenal.  SO without further adieu…………………..

Jackfruit Al Pastor Tacos

2 cans of young jackfruit in brine, drained and well rinsed then shredded in food processor

1 package corn tortillas

1 small head of Napa cabbage shredded( I slice mine thin with a knife rather than in a food processor.  Its just my preference)

Cilantro Lime Dressing(recipe below)

1 big bunch of cilantro, finely chopped

1 lime, juiced

2 pinches of salt and pepper to taste

3/4 Cup vegan mayo

1 Tbsp agave

1/4 to 1/2 tsp garlic paste

Blend all dressing ingredients together, season to taste, and set aside for at least an hour for flavors to blend together.  

1 white onion finely diced for garnish

whole torn cilantro leaves for garnish

Marinade

2 Tbsp ancho chile powder

2 Tbsp guajillo chile powder

1 Tbsp achote powder

1 tsp tumeric

1 tsp ground corriander

1 tsp smoked sweet paprika

1 1/2 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper

1 Tbsp ground cumin

1 Tbsp white vinegar

1 heaping Tbsp crushed fresh garlic

1 small can pineapple tidbits in pineapple juice

Squeeze fresh lime juice(half of a lime)

1 chipotle in adobo, finely chopped

1/2 Tbsp adobo sauce

2 Tbsp vegetable oil

Blend all ingredients for the marinade together and thin marinade with fresh orange or pineapple juice so it has the consistency of a thick sauce.  Add in the shredded jackfruit and mix so that all of the jackfruit is well combined with the marinade.  Let marinate overnight or at least a couple hours.  Image      

This is what the Jackfruit will look like before you mix it with the marinade.  After it has marinated for at least a couple of hours(or when you’re ready to eat) head a large nonstick skillet on high heat with a couple tablespoons of vegetable oil.  When the oil is almost smoking, add all of the jackfruit and press into a layer that covers the bottom of the pan, layer on one thinly sliced white onion and let the jackfruit brown on the bottom.  After it has browned for two or three minutes, stir mixture and continue browning jackfruit until the onions are translucent.

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When the jackfruit is ready, spoon in warmed corn tortillas(I double them up in case one rips). 

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 Top with raw, chopped white onions.

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Add the cilantro lime dressing.

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Top it all off with a big handful of shredded Napa cabbage for some cooling crunch.

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Stuff your face and enjoy.  There’s really no elegant way to say it because you’re going to want to go all carnal on them because they’re that good.  Trust me. 

I keep all of the components separate and just heat the jackfruit up each night and assemble for dinner each night when i have leftovers.  They’re amazing as leftovers too.  

Sidenote: since this is flavored with a lot of spices, buy good ones.  I get mine at a local spice shop but if that isn’t an option, get the best you can from the regular grocery store.  It definitely makes a difference.  

Well, there you have it. I hope this inspires you to try jackfruit whether you’re vegan or just wanting a new Meatless Monday option.