Thursday, March 17, 2011

Yummy Curried Cabbage and Incredible African Stew, but Authentic Vegan Irish Soda Bread Remains Elusive

When St. Patrick's Day rolls around I always find green cabbage on sale have the urge to cook with cabbage.  This year VM picked me up a 6 pounder (yes, really), so the urge is now gone.  But, in the meantime, I made two dishes that turned out great.

First I whipped up the Curried Cabbage and Peas (p. 111) from Appetite for Reduction.  I did sub frozen sugar snap peas for regular (this is now a vegetable I do not recommend buying frozen) and it was really tasty: kind of like a less-carby, kicky, and healthier halushki.  I tried serving it over udon noodles (no, I don't know why), but that was a fail; the dish is much better on its own.

Then I tackled the African Vegetable Stew (p.148-149) from The Natural Vegan Kitchen.  I've taken classes with the author, Christine Waltermyer, and have always been very impressed by her flavor combinations; I've even successfully recreated many of her recipes (tempeh salad, lentil-walnut pate, basil summer rolls, broccoli slaw) in my own kitchen.  So, when her cookbook went on sale became available I knew I had to buy it.  I was a little daunted by the amount of ingredients in this recipe, but it came together quite easily.

The final dish was really impressive and hearty.  The base of the sauce is peanut butter with elements of clove, tamari, and cinnamon; I'd recommend throwing some actual peanuts in right before serving for extra crunch.  And, even though the scoops are much cuter, I'd suggest serving over rice; reason being, cute = work.  Why have to combine the dry rice into the meal as you're eating if the rice can be absorbing the delicious sauce from the moment it is plated?  You can't argue with this kind of laziness logic.

I had made up my mind not to attempt Irish Soda Bread this year because it never turns out authentic.  But then VegNews posted an easy recipe so I had to give it a try.  I decided to make mini-breads instead of one big loaf and I doubled the raisins, which was an excellent call.

Unfortunately, the result was the same as always: some sort of muffin/scone hybrid not at all like traditional Irish Soda bread.  It didn't taste bad, but if I wanted a muffin or scone I would have just made one.

Eh, Irish Soda bread isn't one of my favorites anyway.  I should have just turned my attention to potatoes.


  1. Nice job, but do you know how to fry Facon Bacon? Now that's tricky, I wonder if they offer classes for it...

  2. Hey, i'm sorry you had trouble with your bread but if you want a no-fail, i developed a recipe for it and it turned out tasting very close to the real thing (i would have liked it to be sweeter but i like everything sweeter). Check it out on my blog : ) P.S. your second picture of the veggie stew is making my stomach growl!

  3. Veganthropology-
    So funny because I actually read your recipe before you pointed it out, but I was feeling defeated. But you know, everytime I think I'm out they pull me back in!!


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