Monday, November 17, 2014

Crunk for the Holidays: A Very Crunk Thanks-living!

My first (and only, so far) cookbook, Cookin' Crunk: Eatin' Vegan in the Dirty South, has been out for a couple years now. And I'm sure many of you have it. But does your mom have it? Your sister? Your cousin? Your mom's sister's best friend's cousin? I figure the holidays are as good a time as any to launch a little cookbook push. Plus, new readers come along all the time. So each week from now until the solstice holiday, I'll devote one post a week to Cookin' Crunk fun. And a couple of those posts will include giveaways of signed copies! Yay!

Right, I know we're all planning our Thankgiving (or better yet, Thanks-living, because we're not eating animals) menus. Maybe you're having a totally vegan holiday at home, or maybe you have to sit through a meat-in-every-vegetable, turkey-carcass-on-the-table meal with your in-laws. Either way, you've gotta eat something. So I've put together a list of Thanksgiving-appropriate dishes to share (or horde for yourself). For those that have recipes online, I'll link. But some are only available in my book. Should you need to buy a copy, you can get them on Amazon! Or there's a link to Paypal on the right side of this blog for signed copies!

In the South, family dinners start with deviled eggs. In fact, most of them probably get eaten before the meal even begins, as everyone sneaks in the kitchen to grab one from the fridge. Swap out those chicken embryos for my Vegan Deviled Eggy Bites. Recipe is listed here.

And then you'd better get some greens in your body before fill yourself up sugar and Tofurky. Try this simple and elegant Seitan & Red Pear Salad. There's tender homemade seitan, crunchy red pears, omega-rich walnuts, and a white pear-balsamic vinaigrette. Of course, you can always cheat and buy pre-made seitan! Recipe is in the book.

If you're the type to serve a soup at Thanksgiving (my family never does), my Harvest Crowder Peas are light and soul-warming. Just crowder peas (or black-eyed peas if you can't find crowders), onion, garlic, celery, carrots, and fresh basil. Recipe is in the book.

Now for the main dish, I'm a plant roast kind of girl. And I generally always buy a pre-made roast, like a Tofurky or a Field Roast Celebration Roast. This year, I'm trying the Gardein Holiday Roast! But if you'd rather go homemade, you could whip up a batch of my Dijon-Pecan Seitan with Maple-Mustard Glaze. Tender nuggets of seitan are coated in a sweet and tangy mustard sauce, rolled in chopped pecans, and then baked in the oven. Recipe is in the book.

It's not Thanksgiving without dressin'!!! And my mama makes the best Vegan Cornbread Dressin' in all the world! Lucky for you, her recipe is in my cookbook. It's a little labor-intensive since it involves making your own vegan cream of celery soup to go in the casserole, but maybe one of these days, some awesome vegan company will develop a condensed casserole-friendly cream soup to make it simpler.

My mama also always makes a Hash Brown Casserole on Thanksgiving! Her vegan version — recipe is in the book — is so simple! You can use your leftover cream of celery soup from the dressing and then just mix in frozen hash browns, vegan cheddar shreds (we use Daiya), vegan sour cream, and sauteed onion. Top with corn flakes, bake, and boom. Deliciousness.

You'll be needing some veggie sides with all that brown food, of course! One little salad just isn't gonna cut it. Try my Mess O' Greens with Turnips. These are smoky, slow-simmered collards with a hint of sweetness, just like my Granny makes 'em. Recipe is here.

And then be sure and try my Smoky Stewed Okra & Tomatoes to add some fun African flair to your Thanksgiving table! Okra is slow-simmered with smoky flavors, tomatoes, and a hint of agave. Yes, we put a little sugar in everything down here. Cuts the acidity and brings out the natural flavor. Recipe is in the book.

Finally, if you have room left in your eatin' pants, it's time for dessert! You could go classic and make my Tipsy Dark Chocolate Pecan Pie. It's a creamy chocolate pie with roasted pecans and a smidge of dark rum! Recipe is here listed on the Earth Balance website.

Or there's always cupcakes! It may feel like winter already, but technically it's still fall. And that means, it's still pumpkin season. How about some Vanilla Spice Cupcakes with Pumpkin Buttercream? You'll need the book for that recipe!

And finally, we've got to work some sweet taters in here! Check out my recipe for Sweet Potato Bread! This makes a nice, light Thanksgiving dessert or a great breakfast the morning after the big meal. Enjoy with a cup of coffee!

Hope your Thanksgiving is super-crunk!!


GlutenFreeHappyTummy said...

dark chocolate pecan pie! looks so amazing :D

Barb@ThatWasVegan? said...

Oh yum! This makes me glad I already own your cookbook! (And I totally recommend everyone who doesn't should order a copy right now!)

Sheridan said...

Mmmmm, thanks for all of the reminders! I need to cook some Crunk recipes for the holidays this year fo' sho!

Cadry's Kitchen said...

All of this looks so good! I'm excited to see more pics from Cookin' Crunk in the coming weeks for inspiration. I have plans to make your hush puppy corn muffins within the next few days to have with Gardein fishless filets.

Susan said...

Looks amazing.