Sunday, June 13, 2010

Chimichurri Adventures


Ever since I got Terry Hope Romero's new cookbook Viva Vegan! I've cooked so many awesome, authentic-tasting vegan Latin recipes. I made the Chimichurri Baked Tofu as per her recipe and served it atop her Cilantro-Lime Rice. I used to think I didn't really care for cilantro, but this rice sure proves me wrong. It's so good and refreshing. I didn't even use fresh limes, so I didn't have any zest, just lime juice from a bottle, and still, soooo good! Same goes for the chimichurri sauce and the baked tofu, the whole meal is so tasty and summery and easy. And when you bake the sauce with the tofu, it tastes even better than it did raw. And it is darn good raw. This book may have finally turned me on to making sauces. It's so easy and rewarding -- throw everything in the food processor, make the centerpiece to a truly homemade meal.

Anyway, the sauce inspired me. See, when I want to NYC not too long ago to see some friends of mine, we went to this place that just sold fancy hot dogs, including this hot dog with chimichurri sauce on crusty bread. I really wanted to imitate it! I made Independence Day Wieners and Little Baguettes from the book 500 Vegan Recipes.  The recipe for Little Baguettes has you actually make the baguettes bigger than I made them (the recipe makes two of 'em, but I made three), but I knew I wanted them smaller for my purposes. Also from Viva Vegan!, I made Pickled Red Onions, just figuring they'd be good on top. And boy was I right! This really hit the spot. Next time, though, I think I'll make a different bread. I haven't really been impressed with the bread I've made from "500 Vegan Recipes" -- too doughy and not delicate enough. But still, this did the trick.

A few weeks ago, I got a cookie press from Home Goods (I love that store!) and I was excited to use it. Too excited to wait until I actually had the chance to get the actual ingredients called for in an actual recipe. But I improvised. I took the recipe for Chocolate Marmalade Sandwich Cookies from the book Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar, omitted the orange zest, and used blueberry preserves instead of orange marmalade and made these cute li'l lintzertorte-style cookies. I used hearts cuz I was feeling sentimental.

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