Cookbook Review: The Homemade Vegan Pantry

Hello everyone,

And happy long weekend! How are you spending it? Finally getting that household project done? Relaxing? Visiting with friends? I’ve been in cleaning mode, but it inspired me to rearrange my dining room and break out my sewing machine. I’m so excited to finally make something with the most adorable cat fabric I found at a small shop in Denver last fall. Wish me luck. One other thing Cory and I have been up to—making crackers! In the past we’ve made homemade pita bread and a simple crusty bread. Those are both wonderful recipes, but when you’re looking for something to go with your fresh bruschetta or faux cheese, nothing beats a crunchy cracker.

Last summer, I attended the Cleveland Vegan Festival. Not only was it an amazing day filled with food demos, vegan treats and free swag, but I also got to meet Miyoko Schinner! If this name is new to you, you are missing out. She is the queen of vegan cheese and even wrote the book on it!

I absolutely love her vegan butter and rustic “cheese” wheels. They are so good it will fool all of your non-vegan friends and family members! I was so excited to see Miyoko’s cheese demo and to meet her afterwards. Admittedly, I actually went a little speechless.

Once I snapped out of it, I purchased her classic book, The Homemade Vegan Pantry: The Art of Making Your Own Staples.” This book is the perfect “how to” guide for anyone seeking to learn how to make classic staples right at home. I know, I know. Why make pantry staples at home? Especially, when you can go to the store and buy them for reasonable prices. But I have to tell you, it just isn’t the same. Homemade food is fresher, healthier, and you know exactly what you’re eating! Plus, Miyoko’s book is proof that homemade, rustic staples don’t have to be a pain. Anyone can make them with a little time and practice.

This  book is chock full of thick, smooth paper with beautiful color photos to accompany many of the recipes which will inspire you to get ready to roll up your sleeves and cook. The Homemade Vegan Pantry: The Art of Making Your Own Staples includes everything from homemade vegan butter or mayo to pizza dough or other breads, to granola and breakfast sausage. These recipes pack a punch, but don’t require a chef’s expertise. Most ingredients are common and can be found in your local grocery store, but a handful of recipes require some more unique finds like yuba, aka tofu skin.

Cory and I have made Miyoku’s cracker recipe no less than four times the past month! It’s so simple, with just five required ingredients! Plus, you can customize it according to your own taste preference. The first batch we made was spiced with oregano and thyme. For the next batch we went with a slightly cheesy taste by using nutritional yeast. The best part—this recipe takes under an hour to make from start to finish.

Vegan Pantry

Why not check out The Homemade Vegan Pantry: The Art of Making Your Own Staples the next time you’re in the market for a cookbook? You won’t regret it!

In the mean time, what’s your favorite staple to make at home?

Cheers!

Jocelyn

* Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate and referral links. I may earn a commission or bonus if you click through to make a purchase.  All opinions are my own. I only work with companies and brands I personally support.

 

Simple Homemade Crusty Bread

Hello everyone,

My partner has been trying out different bread recipes for sometime now. I’m excited to say, he thinks he finally found “the one.” Cory stumbled on this Youtube video from Tasty and decided to give it a try. He ended up making a few changes, including proofing the dough twice instead of once and using a little more water. The result was an amazing—a simple homemade crusty bread with a soft center! I think the result is partially due to the new Lodge Cast Iron Double Dutch Oven 5-Qt that we picked up last month.

Side note: I did not want this dutch oven as my kitchen is quite small and it takes up some space, BUT it is so versatile and makes everything taste great—really, anything from sauteed peppers and onions to this bread recipe!

This recipe + Lodge dutch oven made the tastiest homemade bread with just the right outer shell crunch and soft, fluffy center. This bread is perfect for soups, sandwiches or even bread pudding! It’s visually pleasing with a nice golden color and the taste is perfectly yeasty! Watch the video and give our adapted version of the recipe a try!

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Cheers and happy eating!

Jocelyn

PS —Like this recipe? Check out my post on homemade pita bread, too!

* Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate and referral links. I may earn a commission or bonus if you click through to make a purchase.  All opinions are my own. I only work with companies and brands I personally support.

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Recipe: Crock-pot Red Lentil Potato Soup

Hello everyone,

Ah, soup season. A time to indulge in comforting, warm stews while binge watching your favorite Netflix show! Soups are also a wonderful “make it once” and “eat it all week” solution. Throw a slow cooker/ crock pot/ pressure cooker recipe into the mix and your job just got even easier (if that was possible)! I love making a huge batch of soup in my crock-pot on Sunday evenings, and my ridiculously easy Crock-Pot Red Lentil Potato Soup does not disappoint.

The ingredient list isn’t very long, with just a handful of vegetables, garlic, lentils and then some seasoning. Don’t let it fool you. This soup packs a serious flavor punch! I really like adding a touch of cayenne to give the after taste a little bite, but even without the heat, the flavor is wonderfully bold. Plus, this recipe simply couldn’t be easier. Simply toss the ingredients in your crock-pot and go. Voila!

Cheers & happy eating!

Jocelyn

PS – Like this recipe? Check out my hearty vegan chili!

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Thanksgiving Dessert Made Easy

Hello everyone,

Who is ready for the holidays? It’s the season for good food, great company, and even more time to relax and do what you love. I’m hosting my family for Thanksgiving again this year, and I can’t wait. I simply love hosting this holiday in particular. Pumpkin is one of my favorite seasonal flavors so I’ll be making three different pumpkin-themed desserts. This is Thanksgiving dessert made easy!

If you’re looking for a simple addition to your current dessert spread, the Vegan Cardamom-spiced Pumpkin Cookies won’t disappoint! Of course, pumpkin roll is always delicious, albeit a bit anxiety inducing trying to avoid those cracks, and who can say no to “cheesecake.”

If you’re looking for an “easy out” to your Thanksgiving dessert preparations, I highly recommend picking up a tub of Eat Pastry cookie dough. You simply scoop out the 100% vegan, non-GMO dough and place golf-ball size dough balls on a baking sheet and drop it in the oven. It’s ridiculously easy and hassle free!

I picked up a tub of the Peanut Butter Chocoloate Chip last week, and it did not disappoint! The cookies were perfectly gooey and sweet—a hit at my latest game night! Why not give one of my tried and true recipes a try, or if you’re going easy on yourself, pick up some Eat Pastry cookie dough.

Cheers & happy holidays!

Jocelyn

* Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. As always, all opinions are my own!

Spooktacular Vegan Graveyard Cake

Hello Everyone & Happy (almost) Halloween!

Are you planning a halloween potluck? Heading to a boo-tastic bash? A frightful party? Why not make a spooktakular vegan graveyard cake?!

This fun dessert is quick, easy, and devilishly delicious! It’s not a made from scratch piece of art—instead it’s a cake that is easy to whip up so you can spend all that extra time on the decorations! There are so many “accidentally vegan” baking items on the market that are perfect for this recipe. Just grab a boxed cake mix, follow the instructions, add icing, and then decorate your ghostly graveyard cake! I’ve been making graveyard cakes off and on since I was in elementary school so I can attest that they never grow old! Why not give it a try?

Cheers and happy haunting!

Jocelyn

* Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. As always, all opinions are my own!

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