Monday 9 April 2012

The Lazy Person's Guide to Making Tofu

A very quick and dirty guide to making tofu for the criminally lazy.

1) Shopping

Buy some soya milk. You could make your own but you are lazy, remember? Tesco value UHT stuff does the trick and is about 60p a litter, which will make about 250ish grams

For coagulant you can use all sorts of things, Calcium Carbonate (gypsum) is popular, but epsom salts are just as good and you can get them any chemist for well under £1 for a tub that will do about 20 batches.

You can buy a tofu press which yields a firmer texture, but using a colander with a well fitting plate works just as well. Line the press or colander with muslin/cheese cloth.

2) Empty soya milk into a saucepan and bring almost to the boil.

3) Meanwhile, boil a mug of water.

4) When the soya milk has almost boiled (it doesn't really matter if it boils, just try not to boil it all over the job) turn it off and take it off the heat. Leave for a few mins to slightly cool to avoid scorching of the tofu on the bottom of the pot.

5) take one teaspoon of coagulant per liter of soya milk and stir quickly into the hot water. Stir the soya milk vigorously and pour the coagulant in. You should see fluffy clouds of tofu forming in a clearish golden whey. If not clotting happens heat the mixture up a bit or add a little more hot water with coagulant.

6) Let stand for about 20mins.

7) pour into lined press/colander (over sink or bowl to catch whey) and weight down. Leave a few hours, overnight for firm tofu.

8) Fin

Some folk use the whey in cooking or to soak grains in to make them more digestable. I don't normally bother.

It sounds like a lot of work, bit essentially it's boiling soya milk, adding coagulant, waiting then straining. It takes 5-10 mins of actual attention/work.

Monday 6 September 2010

Vegan Appetite: Food Network Friday: Double Dipped Fried "Chicken"

Vegan Appetite: Food Network Friday: Double Dipped Fried "Chicken"

Oh my! I made this for dinner tonight and it was lovely. I used seitan I'd simmered in a little 'chicken' stock and served up with some fresh new potatoes.

I really encourage others to give this a go.

Sunday 20 June 2010

Hot Diggity Dog

One of my birthday presents this year was a copy of 500 Vegan Recipes by Celine Steen. Its really rather wonderful, and today I made homemade vegan weiners for the first time ever. They came out well despite not spending hours needing the gluten. Certainly going to make them again, but boyo... they make a lot! Pictured is half of the recipe, and frankly that was more than was a good idea for the two of us to eat.

Tuesday 9 February 2010

Emergency hot chocolate

I've not been blogging much of late. This is partly because in October I realised I needed to kick my job hunt up a bit, and started working odd part time hours, then got a new job (yay) then got made redundant (boo) and now I've got a new job starting next week (yay!)

So, I've been rather lazy and really only cooking from recipe books, and when I do cook something it's normally dark outside, so most of my pictures turn out looking yuccky as I haven't got good lighting here.

Anyway, sorry. I'd say it won't happen again, but it will ;)

For the past few weeks I've been enjoying a lot of vegan hot chocolate made to this recipe

Unfortunately, I'm out of chocolate today, but had a terrible urge for some, so set about making something tasty to fill the gap, without being sinfully sugary or requiring much in the way of cooking. So, I half remembered a few recipes for Mexican atole, and had a bash. It actually turned out very nice, while massively deviating from how atole is actually made.

Quick Hot Chocolate Drink

1 tbs coco powder
1 tbs corn flour
2 tsp agave syrup or other sweetener of choice
1 cup soy, rice or other non dairy milk

In a small pan, mix the coco powder and corn flour with a little milk until a paste is formed
Slowly incorporate the remaining milk
Put over a medium heat, stirring constantly until thickened and warm
Add sweetener of choice

Serve hot.

Tuesday 5 January 2010

Winter Slow Cooked Seitan Pot Roast

For those of you in the UK you'll know what I'm talking about when I tell you how much the media is warning of heavy snow. We don't really get that much in the way of snow within the UK, so anything more than a sprinkling and it's time to panic.

Anyway, when the weather is cold I want to fill my belly with stodgy food. I don't normally go crazy for fake meats, but I'm rather fond of seitan, and a this is a rather 'quick' dish as the seitan can cook in the slow cooker. Yes, you need to spend ages with it actually cooking, but it only takes a very short period of time in the kitchen. If you have a slowcooker with a timer on it, or a slowcooker and a plug adaptor with a timer on it if you are like me, you can quickly make the seitan and brown the veggies either in the morning or the night before and set your slowcooker to finish when you get home from work. There is not much nicer then coming into food ready to serve up.

I followed a recipe called "Not Your Mama's Pot Roast" from Robin Robertson's Fresh From The Vegetarian Slow Cooker, however, the recipes is available on-line here.

If you are vegetarian, vegan or just an omnivore looking for a little more variety in your diet I can't recommend this book enough. As a vegetarian, I barely used my slowcooker, thinking it was mainly for the occasional stew and only really of use to people who cooked meat. This book provides a lot of very tasty, easy and totally vegan recipes. Check it out :)

Some little changes I might suggest is using a little more water to make the seitan, making it in a breadmaker and chopping it into chucks to make it a little more like a stew then a roast.

If you are in the UK and curious as to where to get seitan quick mix, I just use 'gluten powder' purchased from The shipping costs are a little still, but you buy a decent amount it's not a huge issue. Compared to the costs of buying store made meaty chunk things it's perfectly reasonable, and much more variable.

Saturday 2 January 2010


Do you ever do that thing where you follow a recipe without really giving any consideration to the sheer vastness of the dish it will make?

Today I tried a recipe from Garden of Vegan . Recipe stated it made one pie.... which I was aware is a lot of food for just me and the Hubby, but I was kinda tricked by the fact it contained two of my fav foods, peanut butter and chickpeas. Anyway, I have been rushing about today and not really eating enough and since I wasn't going to be having any side dishes with it, I thought hubby and I could eat most of it.... I think I failed to realise how big the pie was going to be. Ladies and Gentlemen, I present you with Piezilla!

Like the leaves? My Hubby made the pie crust and the leaves too :)

Full of lovely veggies

So you can see the full vastness of it. It's like a pie from a medieval banqueting hall, but all vegan like.

Curried Vegetable Pie with Chickpea Crust, the recipe is on Calorie Count, if you decide to have a go and you like it, please buy the book.

It was actually a very tasty pie. I would recommend it who heartedly, or at least try adding a bit of chickpeas to your normal pie crust, and maybe peanut butter to the filling.

But yeah, I might explode.

Monday 30 November 2009

Sloppy Lentils and Vegan Chocolate Buttons...

... are very nice for greedy gluttons!

Another short post today. I really can't justify posting this recipe because the only adaptation I made was halfing it and using green lentils instead of brown ones. This was another recipe from Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker which is a secret vegan treasure with all the recipes being vegan. I expect they realised selling it as 'Fresh from the Vegan Slow Cooker' might be a little to scary!

On the side you'll note left over Tofu Hash, adapted from Vegan Bites. This was very nice but mostly a little less spicy then I like, so I added a little hot sauce. Nom Nom Nom.

From Ready, Veggie, Cook

Tonight I was feeling a little tired, so Hubby cooked a nice chilli. This was a simple mix of soya mince, kidney beans, spices, yeast extract and tomato purée. Since we had some kicking about, we also put a field mushroom in. This added a lot to it, so I think it might become a regular addition to our 'heck, there isn't much in the fridge' chilli.

From Ready, Veggie, Cook

The other exciting news is my endless craving for white chocolate is now sated. Just yesterday evening I was lamenting to the long suffering husband about my desire for white chocolate. While doing my usual blog crawling I noticed this recipe for White Chocolate Syrup over on Lusterous Musings. I was very excited to note that Dairy Free now did white chocolate buttons. It being a Sunday night I couldn't drag him out to Tesco on the pretence of looking for something else, so had to content myself with a post work mooch this evening, which turned up these gems.

From Ready, Veggie, Cook

They taste exactly like I remember Milky Bars tasting. This is a good thing indeed, and I greatly enjoyed nomming on a few while waiting for dinner to cook.

On a last note, how nice is this? My new co-worker made cupcakes for everyone at work today, but made vegan ones (so I could have them) and nut free, so my other nut allergic colleague could have them. This is why I love my new job. The people are great. That's what makes an office more than just a building.