Dec 16

skillet pear gingerbread cake

Happy Friday, friends! I’m delighted to announce that the Skillet Pear Gingerbread Cake you see above is a menu item for the Virtual Vegan Holiday Dinner!

The Virtual Vegan Holiday Dinner was created by Marly McMillen of Namely Marly and Alison Kramer of Manifest Vegan as a way to showcase a traditional holiday menu with a vegan spin. Our menu includes everything from appetizers to desserts and all things in between. I’m honored to be a part of this very special virtual event and to share the stage with so many uber-talented vegan bloggers. Just click the links below to view each dish, you won’t be disappointed!

Virtual Vegan Holiday Dinner

Appetizer
Carrot Pâté by Diet, Desserts, and Dogs

The Drink
Winter Warmer Cocktail by Pea Soup Eats

Main Dish
Vegan Holiday Casserole by Namely Marly

The Sides
Cranberry and Orange Ginger Mango Chutney by Loves Veggies and Yoga
Vegan Sweet Potato Puree with Maple and Sour Cream by Vegan Good Things

The Bread
Crescent Rolls by That’s So Vegan

The Best Part: Desserts
Four Ingredient Vegan Pumpkin Pie by Lunch Box Bunch
Skillet Pear Gingerbread Cake by The Tolerant Vegan
Chocolate Pecan Cookie Pies by Your Vegan Mom
Eggnog Cheesecake by Manifest Vegan

I was inspired to make this cake when I recently picked up a can of Kentucky pure cane sorghum at a food store in Brooklyn.

Pure cane sorghum has a taste similar to molasses. In baking, it can be used to replace molasses, brown sugar, honey and syrup. It’s a perfect sweetener for sweet tea and it’s also delicious when mixed with a spoonful of melted Earth Balance Natural Buttery Spread and poured over pancakes. For this recipe, I used the pure cane sorghum to compliment the ginger and brown sugar.

Skillet Pear Gingerbread Cake
Recipe adapted from Serious Eats
Serves 10
Printable recipe

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1 1/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
  • 3/4 cup grapeseed oil
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup pure cane sorghum
  • 1/2 cup dairy-free yogurt
  • 1/4 cup dairy-free milk
  • 1/2 tbsp. fresh ginger, grated
  • 1/4 cup of unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 tsp. of baking soda
  • 1 tbsp. of distilled white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup brewed hot coffee, regular or decaf
  • 2 ripe pears, peeled, cored and sliced into 1/4″ pieces
  • 1 tbsp. of Earth Balance Natural Buttery Spread
Directions:

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit
In a large bowl, whisk together the all-purpose flour, ground ginger, 1 tsp sea salt, cinnamon and ground cloves.

In a separate bowl, stir together the grapeseed oil, 1/2 cup brown sugar, sorghum, yogurt, milk, freshly grated ginger and unsweetened applesauce

Gradually add the dry flour mixture to the wet ingredients, stirring well. Stir in the baking soda and coffee, then stir in the distilled white vinegar.

Pour the batter into a 10″ cast iron skillet

Arrange the pear slices on top of the batter, forming a large circle around the edges and a smaller circle in the center


Stir together the remaining 1/4 cup of brown sugar and 1/4 tsp sea salt and sprinkle the brown sugar/salt mixture over top of the cake.
Add a dab of Earth Balance to the outer edge of each pear slice


Bake the cake for 45 minutes, or until a toothpick can be inserted and removed cleanly. Allow the cake to sit for 10 minutes before serving.

 

I hope you enjoy this cake and I also hope you head over to the Virtual Vegan Holiday Dinner to check out the array of sweet and savory goodies on display.

I’m going to sign off until after the holidays, so I’ll see you kids in a couple of weeks.

Happy Holidays, everyone!

Dec 06

chicken-less pot pie soup

Hey you. How’s it going? Are you so full of holiday cheer that you can’t see straight? Yeah, me too.

These are the holiday cards that Moose and I are sending to friends and family this year.

We totally lucked out because not only do these cards support The Humane Society, the drawing on the front just happens to look like our very own three kittehs!

I like to think that if Santa opened our mail slot (not that we have one, but let’s say we did), this is the same look that he would get from our cats. One is totally indifferent. One is thinking about food. The third cat is faking a sad face in hopes that Santa will open the door to console him, in which case he would claw Santa’s face and steal his sleigh.

Yes you, Court Kitty. We’re on to you.

While the kits are busy hogging our shipping supplies

I’ve been working on a mixed CD of holiday classics.

Nothing says “the holidays” like Ella Fitzgerald playing with a football game on in the background, am I right?

Side note: Moose has been schooling me on football. In the past when I watched football, I just yelled “sack!” at the TV a lot because that seemed to work in almost all situations. Not anymore. I don’t have a favorite team yet. I don’t really like the Giants or the Jets (Liz, if you’re reading this, I’m sorry). I’m not going to choose a team based on colors or mascots, I promise. But the Cowboys have a giant TV in their stadium and I really respect them for that. So we’ll see.

I think I’m finished rambling now. Let’s talk about food.

As I’ve said before, I usually don’t like fake meat. It’s just weird to me. I think it’s because I never liked the taste of real meat, so I never crave it. It seems to be that I’m only into the ficken. I like frozen ficken nuggets when they’re done right. I liked the ficken taquitos I made a few months ago. And now I’m going to tell you about my new favorite fake chicken meal.

Chicken-less Pot Pie Soup!

Just think about it – a traditional, comforting classic turned vegan and minus all the hard work of actually assembling a pie. Easy plus delicious!

Chicken-less Pot Pie Soup
Recipe adapted from The Food Pusher
Serves 5-6
Printable recipe

Ingredients:

  • 4 tablespoons Earth Balance Natural Buttery Spread
  • 3/4 cup yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup celery, chopped
  • 3/4 cup carrots, chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
  • pinch of garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups plain soy milk
  • 2 cups soy creamer
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 cups meat-free chicken, chopped (I used Trader Joe’s Chicken-less Strips)
  • 2 cups diced potatoes, cooked
  • 1/2 cup corn
  • 1/2 cup peas
  • 1 pie crust
Take your onions, celery and carrots

 

and toss them into a large pot with the Earth Balance. Saute the veggies in Earth Balance until soft, around 5-7 minutes.

Stir in the basil, thyme, sea salt, garlic powder and black pepper.

Stir in the all-purpose flour and let the mixture cook for one minute.

Add in the soy milk, soy creamer and vegetable broth. Stir continuously until the soup reaches a simmer.

Stir in the chicken

then the potatoes, corn and peas.

 

Allow the soup to simmer, stirring occasionally for 35 minutes. The soup will thicken as it cooks.

Remove the soup from the heat and let it sit for another 10 minutes.

To make the crust, preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and break your crust into pieces.

Note: if you’re using frozen crust, be sure to thaw it out first

Bake the pieces for approximately 10 minutes, or until the edges brown. Serve some crust in each bowl of soup.

Now go stick one of those Ambient Fire DVDs in your player, curl up in your snuggie/slanket and share your soup with a loved one. Wait, what’s that? You have a real fireplace? I’ll be over in ten minutes.