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Vegan No-Meat-Ball SandwichCrispy Pan-Fried Tofu with VeggiesMessy Delicious Italian Veggie SandwichMaking Better Hummus at HomeTasty Vegan Grilled Salad with Tofu and PortobellosMaking Panini for VegansSix-Ingredient Vegan Butterscotch Pudding with Mango and BlueberryMake this Rich Focaccia with Vegan Parmesan and Olive Oil

Tag: comfort_food

Vegan Blueberry Scones

I have an ongoing need for vegan baked goods of all varieties. The working day is long and there is so much coffee to drink! Who doesn't love something flaky and sweet with their caffeine? Although Toronto is currently enjoying an explosion of vegan bakeries, there are none around my office, so I find myself looking for ways to make my own. Watch this space for more ideas in the future. More

Filed under: Recipes > Desserts

Tags: dessert, scone, blueberry, coconut_milk, comfort_food

Baked Tofu and Veggies in a Balsamic Marinade

When I was a young omnivore I used to take the train a lot, so much that I got addicted to business class. (It's way too easy to rationalize the extra ticket cost when you're looking at spending half a day sitting in an uncomfortable seat with a bunch of strangers -- at least this way you'd get a couple of glasses of wine and a hot meal.) Serving meals on mass transportation is a bit of a lost art, but like me you might be old enough to remember (and get nostalgic for) a time when it was routine everywhere. I was always amazed by the flavour they were able to pack into those little convection-heated, single-serving dishes, which when paired with a little wine, some fresh bread, coffee and dessert, left you feeling completely satisfied and well taken care of. Unless you were vegan. Vegans in those days got spaghetti in a watery tomato sauce or a salad with some fruit and pecans strewn on top. Vegan meals were definitely an afterthought, or so it seemed. I was thinking about this the other day, and I wondered if there was a way to make a single-pan meal with a vegan protein and all the veggies and herbs that the omnivores used to get on the train. This recipe is what I came up with. Hope you enjoy. More

Filed under: Recipes > Main Dishes

Tags: tofu, mushroom, balsamic_vinegar, potato, marinade, comfort_food

Rich Vegan Mushroom Linguine with Basil

After last week's burrito adventure, I wanted to do something a lot simpler. But I also wanted a dish in the same comfort food vein as the burrito, something that leaves you completely satisfied while staying within the boundaries of a vegan diet. Let's just say I ate pasta all week. I wanted a basil pesto flavour overall, but I also wanted a ton of mushrooms. It took a little while to get it right. More

Filed under: Recipes > Main Dishes

Tags: pasta, comfort_food, mushroom, cashew, nutritional_yeast, basil

Vegan Bean Burritos Packed Full of Veggies

I've been working on the individual ingredients for this vegan bean burrito for the past few blog posts. Today, we finally get to put it all together and chow down. More

Filed under: Recipes > Main Dishes

Tags: Mexican, burrito, tortilla, comfort_food, bean

Homemade Vegan Flour Tortillas

My experiences with store-bought tortillas made from corn have been pretty positive for the most part, probably because I get them very close to where they're made. Not so for flour tortillas. I can't say that I've gotten a big hit of enjoyment from any package of flour tortillas that I've bought at a store. There's something faintly acrid about the flavour and something about the texture that screams "factory." So, I've been wanting to learn how to make flour tortillas from scratch for quite some time. More

Filed under: Recipes > Bread

Tags: Mexican, tortilla, comfort_food, coconut_oil

Four Ingredient Vegan Chocolate Truffles

Lately, I've been trying to be more deliberate about having something sweet on hand after meals. It doesn't need to be huge or elaborate, it just needs to offer some contrast to the meal. Because the meal is often spicy, the dessert offers a little relief too. Like I say, nothing over-the-top. When I used to take the train a lot, they would bring around small, very chocolatey truffles at the end. It was a highlight. I want the same, but vegan. More

Filed under: Recipes > Desserts

Tags: maple_syrup, coconut, comfort_food, coconut_butter, coconut_oil, chocolate

Surprisingly Zesty Vegan Queso Dip

Nachos with cheese sauce has become a ubiquitous fixture at sporting events, movie theaters and basement rec rooms. It's not altogether clear how much actual cheese goes into the sauce, but as omnivore comfort foods go, it's a surefire crowd pleaser. Let's try to make a vegan version, shall we? More

Filed under: Recipes > Light Meals & Snacks

Tags: comfort_food, queso, dip, appetizer, nutritional_yeast, sauce

Doubledecker Vegan Tostadas with Refried Black Beans

I struggled a bit with what I should call this. It's something like a quesadilla, but with spicy refried black beans instead of cheese. It also resembles a tostada because it features corn tortillas deliciously pan-fried in oil. But unlike tostadas, it has a second tortilla on top. So it's a doubledecker vegan tostada for want of a better name. What is not in doubt is my love for them. When corn tortillas get a few days old, their texture becomes a little rubbery. The solution is to fry them up. And it's a very good solution. More

Filed under: Recipes > Light Meals & Snacks

Tags: comfort_food, bean, Mexican, spicy, tortilla, peppers

Vegan Cheesy Garlic Pasta

I'm not sure I have the words for the way this cheesy, garlicky pasta makes me feel. I usually have it on a weekend evening after a day spent running around, accompanied by some kind of adult beverage. It feels like a mini-celebration of whatever little accomplishment the day produced. Or if there was no accomplishment, it feels like the perfect way to top off a day spent exploring the city, reading and recharging. Fettuccine, garlic and olive oil were meant for eachother. The cheesy flavour is supplied by nutritional yeast. Dried basil adds a faint hint of pesto. This is one of those dishes where the vegan version tastes better than the dairy version. The combination is way more than the sum of its parts. More

Filed under: Recipes > Main Dishes

Tags: comfort_food, nutritional_yeast, pasta, noodle

Falafels from Scratch

A vegetarian newly arrived in any major city quickly sniffs out the decent falafel shops. It's really one of the only meals you can pick up and enjoy on the go with little advance planning. And I do mean enjoy. It's not about the chickpeas -- it's about the onion, lemon, parsley and spices. Of course, the chickpeas are the vehicle that delivers all that flavour to your mouth, and there would be no falafels without them, but the other ingredients are what make you go mmmmmmm. The chickpeas also contribute some good, quality vegan protein, which is never a bad thing. More

Filed under: Recipes > Main Dishes

Tags: falafel, salad, tahini, chickpea, comfort_food

Easy Vegan Pad Thai

Pad Thai is a delicious noodle dish, but it's almost impossible to find a vegan version in the real world. Even if you can get it without the scrambled egg mixed in, it is usually full of fish sauce. Still, there is something magical about the combination of sweet, tangy, salty and spicy flavours that makes me want to try my own version. With tofu for protein, broccoli for colour and beansprouts for their unique earthy flavour, you've got a complete meal in one dish. I add the peanuts, sriracha sauce and lime after the noodles are on the plate so that everything stays fresh and vibrant. This is clearly comfort food, a once-in-a-while treat, especially suited to cold nights after a long day of outdoor activity. In other words, October. More

Filed under: Recipes > Main Dishes

Tags: pad_thai, noodle, tofu, comfort_food

Save Room for Vegan Apple Crisp

Of course, apple crisp is a classic. Tangy apples on the bottom are set off against a sweet, crumbly oatmeal topping. Butter is usually a big part of that topping. As an experiment, I wanted to see whether I could use a combination of plant-based oils to produce the crumbly-but-substantial texture that gave this dessert its name. More

Filed under: Recipes > Desserts

Tags: comfort_food, apple, dessert, coconut

Aloo Gobi will Make your Mouth Happy

Cauliflower is one of the in-vogue vegetables right now. It seems like you can't start up a browser without seeing a cauliflower used as some kind of stand-in for carbs: a rice substitute, a bread ingredient or even the base of a pizza crust. As tempting as these nutritious replacements are, you can never go wrong with the classics. And aloo gobi is definitely a classic cauliflower dish. The magic is in the spice -- a perfect blend of spicy, tangy and salty. It's a popular North Indian accompaniment and a delicious way to get your cauliflower. More

Filed under: Recipes > Side Dishes

Tags: comfort_food, cauliflower, potato, Indian, spicy

Grilled Tempeh Bowl with Vegan Mushroom Gravy

In many North American meat-eating households, family celebrations almost always feature turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy and veggies. A lot of us grew up participating in these celebrations and the memories are deep-seated. KFC taps into these memories quite effectively by marketing a bowl consisting of mashed potatoes, corn, chicken and gravy. What if we could make a vegan version of that bowl with a good source of protein and a vegan gravy that actually tastes good? More

Filed under: Recipes > Main Dishes

Tags: comfort_food, tempeh, gravy, potato, mushroom, sauce

Vegan Fried Noodles with Lots of Veggies

I've always wondered about the magical flavour combinations that make up chow mein. When I see it in restaurants here, it's usually a very simple noodle dish with nothing but beansprouts and green onions as accompaniment. But whenever I've had it, there's always been this mysterious synergy going on between the noodles the sauce, which I've never been able to duplicate at home. Well, the internet has satisfied my curiosity and my appetite at the same time. Again. More

Filed under: Recipes > Main Dishes

Tags: noodle, Chinese, soy, comfort_food

Deluxe Vegan Macaroni and Fake Cheese with Spinach and Mushrooms

That would be a yes -- a big, emphatic "you betcha." In fact, I had been feeling like the earlier vegan macaroni and no-cheese recipe needed something more, something to make it a little more interesting to eat and also something to give it a little more nutritional oomph. Something like baby spinach. I also think sauteed mushrooms play nicely with the lemon in the sauce. More

Filed under: Recipes > Main Dishes

Tags: spinach, macaroni, pasta, comfort_food, nutritional_yeast

Warm up with Some Potato Leek Soup

My quest for warmth and comfort in the form of thick soup continues. This time, I'm looking for a creamy-but-vegan potato leek soup. Will I be satisfied? I can't wait to find out. More

Filed under: Recipes > Soups

Tags: soup, potato, leek, comfort_food

Vegan Macaroni and (No) Cheese

I don't think it's any kind of exaggeration to call macaroni and cheese the ultimate childhood comfort food. I'm always on the lookout for jazzed up variations that can satisfy my inner seven year old while offering my adult mouth something a little more interesting. In this vegan take on the classic, the no-cheese sauce is based on ground cashews combined with a mix of harmonious flavours and textures that perfectly complement the elbow macaroni. More

Filed under: Recipes > Main Dishes

Tags: nutritional_yeast, cashew, soy, nuts, comfort_food