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The Best Mushroom Gravy

I have made mushroom gravy before, but I tweaked it and I can honestly say this is the Best Mushroom Gravy. It has a secret ingredient that makes the mushrooms pop in flavor.

  • 1/2 c onion, small dice
  • 8 oz. cremini mushrooms, whole, remove stems and mince the stems
  • 2 tsp garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp All-Purpose Seasoning
  • 1 tbsp miso paste
  • 1-2 c Basic Vegetable Stock – reserve 1c for slurry
  • 2 tsp porcini mushroom powder
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch

Note: Remove the stems of the mushrooms and mince. Slice the caps. Those will be added in another step.

In a large skillet sauté onion, minced mushrooms stems and All-Purpose Seasoning . Cook over medium heat until the onions are translucent. Add garlic to skillet and cook the garlic until it is fragrant. Deglaze the pan with vegetable stock as needed.

Note: The porcini powder is made by grinding dried porcini mushrooms into a powder.

Mix together 1 c of vegetable broth with cornstarch and porcini mushroom powder to make a slurry. Set aside.

Add the remaining vegetable broth and miso paste to the mushrooms in the skillet. Bring to a simmer.

Turn heat off and add slurry. Stir gravy until has thickened.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

 

 

Posted on 6 Comments

Cashew Béchamel – Basic White Sauce

This sauce is my favorite sauce as of right now. It is very versatile and simple to make. The recipe is generous in portion, so you can use it in multiple recipes. I made this sauce and used it for creamed spinach, which I will share the recipe tomorrow. It was amazing. I also used a portion of this recipe for Creamed Spinach and Tomato Penne – Another outstanding dish. I still have some left, for at least one more meal. It also freezes well. You could portion it out into 1-2 cup portions and freeze it.

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I have developed a little short cut to soaking the cashews, which cuts the time down dramatically.

  • 2 c raw cashews
  • water, just enough to cover the cashews
  • 1 c onion, diced
  • 1 tbsp garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 c Vegetable Stock
  • 3/4 c pinot grigio, divided 1/2 c & 1/4 c (for sautéing)
  • 2 1/2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tbsp onion granules

In a medium saucepan add cashews and water (just to cover) and bring to a boil. Once the water begins to boil turn off the heat and let the cashews soak in the water for about 10 minutes. Drain and transfer cashews to a high-speed blender. Set aside.

In the same saucepan add the onions and sauté over medium heat. Cook until onions are translucent and are soft. You do not want any color on them. Add garlic and sauté with onions until the garlic is fragrant, 1-2 minutes. Use the 1/4 c of wine as needed to sauté onions and garlic.

Add onion mixture to the cashews in the high-speed blender, along with the rest of the ingredients: vegetable stock, 1/2 c wine, nutritional yeast and the onion granules. Blend for about 60 seconds, until smooth and creamy.

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Note: You can use right away, refrigerate or freeze. The sauce will reduce and continue to thicken when using in recipes, so you may need to thin it out with some liquid.

 

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Red Pepper Pesto

This pesto is a nice change from the ordinary green pesto and it is also wonderful for a non-traditional pasta sauce. The peppers have been roasted, which enriches the flavor of the pesto. You could also use the pesto as a sandwich spread or mix it with some vegan mayonnaise and make an aioli. There are so many uses for this pesto.

The pesto can be made in a food processor or blender. Just combine ingredients and blend. Now that is an easy sauce.

  • 16 oz. jar roasted bell peppers, drained
  • 3 tbsp pine nuts
  • 2 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 2 tsp garlic clove(s), minced
  • 1 tsp All-Purpose Seasoning
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

Combine all ingredients into a blender or food processor. blend until smooth.

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“Cheese” Sauce

This recipe is for those that cannot do dairy, yet miss the cheesy goodness. I promise this is a life saver in the cheese department. It is very easy to make too. I made this “cheese sauce to go in a Southwestern Bean and Rice Casserole, which I will share the recipe in an upcoming post.

  • 4 tbsp vegan butter
  • 1/3 c GF Flour blend
  • 3 c almond milk
  • 1/2 c nutritional yeast flakes
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp yellow mustard, dried
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric, ground
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

In a large pan melt butter over medium heat. Add flour and cook butter/flour mixture until a paste forms, stirring continuously.

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Add milk, nutritional yeast flakes, tomato paste, salt, mustard and onion powder.

Bring to a boil, whisking frequently. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until sauce has thickened.

Add lemon juice and stir.

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This sauce can be used for so many different dishes.

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Enjoy.

Posted on 10 Comments

Alfredo Sauce – Vegan

I came up with this sauce because I wanted a creamy “cheesy” sauce for a sandwich I was going to make. Back in the day when our boys were young we would take the boys to Downtown Disney. I think it is called Disney Springs now. It was an inexpensive day trip. There was no admission charge, that was huge plus. There was a lego store, another huge plus. And, they had pontoon boats you could rent. Even with all those cool and fun things the favorite place we liked the most was the restaurant called Rainforest Cafe.

The boys loved all the animatronics. They would go and watch all the vignettes of animatronics. It was a lot of fun. The restaurant had a sandwich I ordered every time we went there. It was called a Plant Sandwich. I remember it having a giant portabella mushroom, a slice tomato and some greens. Those are a few of the ingredients that I remember. It has probably been at least 15-20 years since we have been there, but I still remember that sandwich.

Thinking of that time period inspired me to come up with my own plant sandwich (will post soon), and this sauce was just what I needed to complete that feat.

  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 large onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 c raw cashews
  • 1 1/2 c water, hot
  • 2 tbsp white miso paste
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/4 c nutritional yeast
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • fresh parsley, chopped, garnish

In a large skillet drizzle olive oil. Heat oil over medium. Add onions and garlic and cook until they are translucent and softened. Remove skillet from heat and set aside.

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In a blender add cashews and water. Let the cashew soak for at least 15 minutes.

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Add onion and garlic mixture, lemon juice and salt to cashews.

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Blend on high speed until smooth and creamy.

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Posted on 7 Comments

Chinese Brown Sauce

This sauce should be a staple in your refrigerator, if it is not already. By using this sauce you can make stir-fried: noodles, rice, veggies and anything else your heart desires to stir fry. It goes with just about everything. I had all the ingredients in my pantry so I did not have to make a special trip to the store for any of the ingredients.

This recipe is a dump all the ingredients in a saucepan at once type of recipe – Easy. It is easy to double or triple the recipe so that you can have it ready to use whenever you want something quick and flavorful to help get a meal on the table.

I will be using this sauce to make Fried rice with Vegetables (post coming soon).

  • 1/3 c vegetable broth
  • 1/3 c coconut aminos
  • 2 tsp ginger, fresh, grated
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp arrowroot or cornstarch
  • 1/4 c maple syrup

In a small saucepan combine all the ingredients. Heat over medium until thickened. Stir occasionally.

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Creamy Herb Dressing/Sauce

I initially made this sauce to go with salmon patties. However, it has taken on a life of its own. This makes a nice dressing for a salad, dip for veggies, and even a marinade for chicken. It is very versatile. This has become a staple in my refrigerator.

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Combine all ingredients and mix well. Chill for 30 minutes. Store in a a 8oz. mason jar with lid. Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Marinara

I think you should have two really good red sauces in your repertoire: a meat-sauce and a marinara. I know they are both red sauces. However, I use the meat-sauce for something that is hearty. I use the marinara sauce for a lighter touch. This marinara is great for pizza.

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  • 1 tbsp vegetable broth
  • 1 onion, large, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • Mediterranean Seasoning
  • 6 oz. tomato paste
  • 2 26.46 oz. can/box diced tomatoes (Pomi)
  • 1 29 oz. tomato sauce
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 bay leaves
  • basil, garnish

Add onions, garlic, and sprinkle a generous amount of mediterranean seasoning to a large dutch oven. Cook over medium heat until onions are translucent, add vegetable broth as needed to keep onion mixture from sticking. Add tomato paste to onion mixture. Stir in tomato paste, working the paste into the onion mixture. This takes only 2-3 minutes. Add some more mediterranean seasoning. You want to layer flavor at every step.

Add diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, maple syrup, bay leaves, and some more mediterranean seasoning. Stir occasionally. Turn heat down so the sauce is at a low simmer. Simmer for 2-3 hours. Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

To store in freezer, let sauce cool and transfer to gallon ziplock bags. Make sure you get out the air, close and lay flat. Remember to date your bag, and first in is the first out.