VEGAN HOLIDAY MENU SHOW #710

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Mini Raspberry Cheeze-Cakes

MAKES 12

 

CRUST

• 1/2 cup raisins

• 1/2 cup chopped pecans

• 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded dried coconut

 

FILLING

• 1 block (14 to 16 ounces) extra-firm regular tofu, well drained

• 1 aseptic box (12 to 12 1/2 ounces) firm silken tofu, well drained

• 3 tablespoons maple syrup

• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

 

TOPPING

• 5 teaspoons maple syrup, divided

• 1/3 cup apricot preserves (or orange marmalade) + 2 teaspoons water

• 36 fresh raspberries

 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Thoroughly coat a 12-cup standard muffin tin with vegan margarine. To make the crust, put the raisins, pecans and coconut into blender and process until the mixture forms soft dough. Transfer the dough to a plate. Put 1 heaping tablespoon of the dough into each of the prepared muffin cups and gently press it into the bottom of the cup to make a crust. Continue in this manner to make 12 crusts. Pre-bake the crusts for 6 minutes. Put the tin on a wire rack and let cool for 10 to 15 minutes.

 

Once the crusts have cooled, put the filling ingredients into a blender and process until very smooth. Divide the filling evenly among the 12 muffin cups, smoothing out the top as you go. Bake for 24 to 26 minutes, or until the filling is almost set. Put the pan on a wire rack and loosen the sides of each mini-cake with a knife.

 

Drizzle ¼ teaspoon of maple syrup over the top of each mini-cake. Let cool 10 minutes, then carefully remove each mini-cake from the muffin cup, and place it on the wire rack to cool for 15 minutes.

 

While cakes cool, put 1/3 cup apricot preserves or orange marmalade, the remaining 2 teaspoons maple syrup and 2 teaspoons of water into a small bowl and briskly whisk. Spoon about 11/2 heaping teaspoons of the mixture over the top of each mini-cake. Artfully press 3 raspberries into the top of each mini-cake. Refrigerate at least 4 hours before serving. Stored in the refrigerator, the mini-cakes will keep for 1 day.

 

Holiday Rosemary Smashed Potatoes

 

35 to 40 ounces fingerling or baby potatoes, scrubbed potatoes must be pre steamed,

1½ tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon crushed dried rosemary

½ teaspoon sea salt, plus more as needed

 

Fit a steamer basket into a medium-sized saucepan with a tight-fitting lid. Add 2 to 3 inches of cold water to the pot and then add the potatoes. Cover and bring to a boil. Steam potatoes for 10 minutes.

 

Put the potatoes large bowl and let cool 10 minutes. While the potatoes cool, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper.  Add the olive oil, rosemary and sea salt to the cooled potatoes and toss to lightly coat, using a large spoon, letting the excess olive oil and rosemary run to the bottom of the bowl.

 

Arrange the potatoes about 1⁄2-inch apart in a single layer on the prepared baking sheet. Using a sturdy, flat spatula, “smash” each potato so slightly flattened. Brush tops of the flattened potatoes with the seasoned oil that settled into the bottom of the mixing bowl. Roast for 50 to 60 minutes, or until the potatoes are golden brown and slightly crispy. Season with more sea salt, if desired, while still hot. Let cool 10 minutes and serve warm.

 

Quick Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms

4 to 6 Servings

 

6 medium Portobello mushrooms, cleaned and stems removed

1 tablespoon, plus 1 ½ teaspoons olive oil, plus more as needed

1 tablespoon tamari

5 to 6 slices whole grain bread, torn in several pieces

1 tablespoon all-purpose seasoning

½ teaspoon sea salt, plus more as needed

¾ cup chopped pecans

2 cups (packed) baby spinach, finely chopped

 

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with unbleached parchment paper. Arrange the mushrooms on the prepared pan, gill side up.  Spoon ¼ teaspoon olive oil and ½ teaspoon tamari over the gills of each mushroom.

 

Put the bread, all-purpose seasoning and salt in blender and process into crumbs. Transfer to a large bowl. Put the pecans in blender and process until coarsely ground.

 

Transfer the pecans to the bowl with the breadcrumbs. Add the baby spinach, 1 tablespoon olive oil and stir until thoroughly combined, adding more olive oil if the crumbs still seem a bit dry.

 

Divide the breadcrumb mixture evenly among the portobellos, mounding about 1/2 cup of the mixture in each (an ice-cream scoop works well). Press the mixture firmly in place so it will adhere to the mushrooms while baking.

 

Tent the mushrooms with foil and bake for 40 to 50 minutes. Remove the foil and bake uncovered for 5 to 10 minutes longer, until the topping is crisp and the mushrooms are tender. Serve immediately.