Thursday, March 13, 2008

Down on the Farm

I made two recipes from The New Farm Vegetarian Cookbook tonight.

Creamed Tempeh Over Toast

And Janet's Sauteed Cabbage

I picked up the book while visiting The Farm in Summertown, Tennessee last fall. It's one of the oldest, largest vegan communes in the country ... and it's just a three-hour drive from Memphis!

It was founded in 1971 by Stephen Gaskin, a former professer from San Francisco State University. He and a band of merry hippies traveled from SF across the country in a caravan of school buses, finally settling in Summertown (about an hour south of Nashville).

I did a story on it for The Memphis Flyer, the alt-weekly newspaper that I write for, so the Flyer's vegetarian photographer (Justin) and I got to spend a couple days down there back in August. We stayed with a nice couple named Barbara and Neil. Barbara is a vegan cookbook author ("More Fabulous Beans" and "Soup's On")! She cooked amazing food for us while we were there — BBQ tofu, roasted kombucha squash from her garden, scrambled tofu!

They even make their own tofu and soy yogurt at the Farm. And they sell it in the Nashville Whole Foods. I stock up everytime I go there.

So back to the was originally published in 1975 and it's filled with awesome pictures of hippie women cooking in their communal kitchens (the Farm no longer operates as a commune, but rather an intentional community, but they used to have serious communal housing).

The food I made tonight was great — definately Southern home cookin'. I had to reduce the oil in both recipes as each called for a ton. The creamed tempeh is essentially tempeh with country gravy served over toast. And the cabbage was made special with the addition of nutritional yeast.


Anonymous said...

How cool! I had no idea that place existed - I will have to check it out sometime!

Jennifer said...

We have a few of those here, though not all vegan, but vegetarian at least. There is actually an 'intentional community' down in the Lake of the Ozarks area of Missouri (it's vegetarian) that makes nut butters that I buy from my local grocery store. I believe Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage is vegan though. Pretty neat.

Anonymous said...

That's such a good idea. I would definitely be interested! Sounds like a blast.

ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

I've only tried one New Farm recipe-- their mac and cheese. But I love that recipe, so I should definitely give others a try.

Wow, and a vegan commune sounds like so much fun!

Anonymous said...

The farm cookbook is my bible. Seriously. I've gotten so much inspiration & motivation for vegan-hippy living out of it it's just insane. My copy is exceedingly tattered & it's covered in old food germs but I love it anyways.

jess (of Get Sconed!) said...

I've never even considered the idea of creamed tempeh on toast before, but that looks pretty darn good!

Urban Vegan said...

I never heard of this one before--btu it sounds inspiring. There are so many great vegan cookbooks out there.

Marisa L. B. said...

I came across your blog and I like it! Funny--my vegan friend Amber used to live in Memphis. A few years ago she gave me an old and dog eared copy of that book. I haven't used it yet but I will one of these days!

Marisa L. B. said...

So funny! As it turns out, my friend Amber who I previously mentioned knows you! She went to a potluck at your house last year. What a small world!

Veggie said...

Creamed Tempeh Over Toast, that sounds good. I remember eating creamed tuna on toast as a child, this sounds like a great substitute, i'll have to try it.

Veggie said...

I just found time to read your article in VegNews, and it's so cool that you got to visit 'The Farm'. Thanks for the link, i'll go check that out right now.
That cookbook looks great, it's going on my list.