Vegan Pan Fried Dumplings

I love making these, number one because they are so good and number two because it’s fun. This would be a great weekend project for the kids.

This recipe is simple, but needs to be followed quite closely. Be sure to arrange all the ingredients, before you begin preparing the dish. 

 
This should allow you to make 15 to 24 dumplings. You may freeze any leftovers that are uncooked, and the skins will keep well in the refrigerator or freezer.

Ingredients

 
Dumplings:
1 package of Dumpling Skins. Easily found at any Asian market.
½ cup each of fresh Bean Sprouts, Bamboo Shoots and Bok Choy. All finely chopped.
8 oz of Extra Firm Tofu, crumbled. A few pulses in a small food processor is perfect.
1/4 cup Green Onion, finely chopped
1 inch piece of fresh Ginger, chopped very fine or grated.
½ tsp Sugar
1 Tbsp. Light Soy Sauce
1 tsp Toasted Sesame Oil
1 tsp. Corn Starch
 
Dipping Sauce:
4 Tbsp. Light Soy Sauce
3 tbsp. Rice Wine Vinegar
1 Tbsp finely chopped Green Onion
2 tsp. Toasted Sesame Oil
Chili Paste, optional

1-2 Tbsp Vegetable Oil, for frying.

Begin by finely chopping all of the ingredients to stuff the dumplings. The ingredients must be finely chopped so they can cook properly. Mix all dumpling ingredients and allow to sit in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. Longer is okay.

 
Take a dumpling skin and lay it flat, then add about 1-1 1/2 tsp of filling, wet the edges of the skin with water and fold over, crimping with your finger. Set aside and continue. You may also use a dumpling press, which is easy to find at any Asian market. Make as many as you want, as they freeze very well. 
 
After the dumplings are stuffed, heat a non-stick pan with the oil and then add the dumplings to the hot oil, with their flat side down. Put as many in as will fit, leaving a little room for expansion. Brown the bottoms over medium heat, being sure not to burn them. Then carefully pour in 3 to 4 Tbsp. of water, quickly cover and cook on medium/low heat for 10 -15 min, or until all the water is absorbed.
 
Remove carefully and serve with the dipping sauce and hot chili paste if desired.
 
Makes 15 to 25 dumplings

Linguini with Lemon and Walnut

I’ve always been a big fan of crudo sauces that require no cooking. While not a 100% follower of raw food, I do appreciate the healthy qualities. 

This is a wonderfully light and healthy pasta. The lemon, parsley and walnuts work very well together.

Ingredients 

1/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/3 cup freshly squeezed Lemon Juice
2 cloves of Garlic, crushed
1 Tbsp Lemon Zest
1 tsp Chili Flakes
1 tsp Sea Salt
Freshly ground Black Pepper
1 lb Linguini, Fusilli or Farfalle would be good choice as well.
1 cup Italian Parsley, coarsely chopped.
1 cup Walnuts, Pecans or Macademia nuts, coarsely chopped.
Parmesan Cheese to taste. I like the Go Veggie brand to keep it vegan.

Combine lemon juice, olive oil garlic, lemon zest and chili flakes and slightly emulsify and allow to rest for 30 minutes. I find this takes the edge off the raw garlic.

Preheat your oven to 350F and then toast the walnuts or pecans for 7-8 minutes. Watch them carefully so they do not burn.

Start you water for pasta and when boiling add a generous tablespoon of sea salt. Add your pasta and cook until just al dente.

Drain and combine with all additional ingredients and serve immediately.

Serves 4

Pimento Cheese – A Southern holiday classic

If there is anything more truly southern  than pimento cheese, I’m not sure what it is. This stuff is the real deep South deal. Right up there with fried chicken, sweet tea and biscuits. 


The beauty is that you have so many variations of the basic recipe, that you can add most anything, so be inventive. I’ve given you a basic recipe as a starting point.

Serve it on crackers, make a stunning cheese and tomato sandwich, use it for grilled cheese. It\’s amazing stuff.

And yes, it can be veganized by substituting the cheddar with a non dairy option like Daiya and using a vegan Worcestershire Sauce and mayonnaise.

Ingredients

8 oz finely shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
8 oz finely shredded mild Cheddar cheese
1 – 1 1/2 cups of Mayonnaise
2 tsp grated Onion
1 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
4 oz of chopped Pimentos
1 small Garlic clove, crushed
1/8 tsp ground Red Pepper
1-2 tsp fresh Lemon juice

Combine all ingredients by folding them together until incorporated. Adjust for flavor and cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 8-12 hours. Then mix well and transfer to individual ramekins or a suitable serving bowl.

Allow 30 minutes to come up to room temp and serve with crackers, crudités, sliced baguettes or whatever you like.

Makes about 4 cups

Latkes – A Hanukkah Tradition

As part of Hanukkah, Jewish families make latkes or potato pancakes and serve them with sour cream and applesauce. They are amazing. 

Additionally, they make wonderful canapés when topped with smoked salmon and a little creme fraiche. Add a tiny silver of fresh chive and it’s epic.

Ingredients 

3 lbs of Russet Potatoes, peeled and grated.
1 Egg, lightly beaten.
1 small Onion, finely grated.
1 small Shallot, finely grated.
3 Tbsp Matzo Meal
1 tsp Salt
Peanut Oil for frying.

Grate and drain the potatoes in a dish cloth or cheese cloth. You want them dry. Add in all other ingredients, except for the oil.

Heat your oil in a large sauté pan until hot, form your latkes into 3-4 inch patties and gentle slide them into the oil.

Fry until they are well browned, and then turn. A fish spatula is perfect.

Drain on paper towels and serve immediately with sour cream and applesauce.