Monday, October 10, 2011

Farm Vegan Retreat, Part Two

Yesterday, I filled y'all in on the happenings and food sampling on Friday night and Saturday morning at the Farm's second Vegan Retreat. Now I'll go into what happened after lunch.

When we returned from the Farm tour, I got to work on my cooking demos. I showed attendees how to make my Creole Steamed Sausages, Vegan Pimento Cheese, and Tomato Salad, all recipes from my vegan Southern cookbook. Here I am stirring the tomato salad:

Here's my Creole Steamed Sausages, all fried up, cut up, and ready to serve:

And a tiny Vegan Pimento Cheese Sandwich:

And a small scoop of my Tomato Salad. Somehow I managed not to get many tomatoes on my plate, but I assure you they were in there. Also, you may be wondering why I'd make such a summer-y salad in the fall. Well, it's still in the 80s here, and our tomato plants are booming. My home plant has nearly 30 little tomatoes on it, and I hope it stays warm long enough for them to ripen. By the way, you can find the recipe for this salad here on the Jazzy Vegetarian website, but you have to scroll down the page to see it.

After my demos, Douglas showed us how to make his Raw Crackers. Douglas is, by far, the BEST raw cracker maker in the world. I've had a lot of raw crackers in my day, and his are just phenomenal. He uses a mixture of nuts and seeds, ground up in the food processor, and mixed with cumin, salt, and tomatoes.

Douglas also showed us the old-school Farm way to make seitan, or gluten as they call it there. Basically, it's old high gluten flour method where you knead and rinse the dough in water over and over until it runs clear. That's the way I always did it when I first went vegan. It might seem to be pain in the ass these days, when seitan can easily be made from vital wheat gluten flour or purchased pre-made in the store. But this stuff is so much more tender and delicious. It's worth the work:

Then Douglas made the Indian street snack, Bhel Puri. I'd never tried this before, and it was unlike anything I'd had before — crumbled Ramen (you KNOW I loved that), spicy mint chutney, unsweetened puffed rice, garam masala, tomatoes, and some other spices. I'll certainly be making this again!

And finally, Douglas showed us how to make his simple Raw Raspberry Truffles. These are just made with freeze-dried raspberry powder, dates, raw cacao powder, and a little agave. And then they're rolled into coconut:

After dessert, we all made Veggie Sushi to take to a party on Saturday night at the Farm. Farm resident Rick was in town with his new married partner Rose, and they were having a tropical wedding reception in the Farm's Community Center. Here's Ebony, our class's master sushi roller, cutting the sushi:

And here's our Veggie Sushi, all plated and ready to go. Inside each roll is avocado, carrot, bell pepper, and cucumber!

I'll be back tomorrow with one final Farm Vegan Retreat post on the delicious eats at Rick and Rose's wedding party!


Jeni Treehugger said...

Such fun!
All the food looks good and I'm so impressed you made seitan the old fashioned way!

Lisa is Raw on $10 a Day (or less!) said...

Those sausages look awesome! So do the raw crackers. Looks like it was a fun and fulfilling (& filling!) visit :)

The Health Sleuth said...

mmmm teh yumz!

Melomeals: Vegan for $3.33 a Day said...

Oh I wish I was there! That pimento cheese looks sooo good!

Jen said...

I'm so jealous of your retreat! I read several of your posts and totally agree about Sarah Kramer's doughnut holes. They are good fresh, but not longer than a day. Good thing we eat them so quickly!

Sheridan said...

Yay!! Looks like another fun day! I can't believe I've never had your creole sausages, but they look awesome! And I've never even heard about making seitan that way...haha...shows how much I know!

Olivia said...

Hi! A tip for your tomatoes, if you want to give them the best chance to ripen faster before it gets cold. Cut off the top of the tomato plant (all the areas that are fuzzy that grow upward). This will force the plant to concentrate on ripening its remaining tomatoes, rather than growing the vine.

Also, I'm sure you know this, but if you pull and green tomatoes before frost hits them, they'll ripen on your counter. They won't be as good as ripened on the plant, but they'll be better than from the grocery store! I had to chop my plants and pull my green tomatoes already in Ohio. I'm jealous you still have the warm weather!

POPshop & Spazz Records said...

Yum- everything looks delicious!

celyn said...

oo! The seitan sausages, pimiento cheese sandwich, and tomato salad look wonderful! I am now wanting to make seitan the old school way.

KTBuns said...

Your little pimento cheeze sammy is so cute!! Love it. All of it.

Tender Branson said...

I'll take some of each. The only time I tried the old seitan way it didn't turn out as I had hoped. I plan on trying it again sometime.