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Recipe: Vegan Bacon & Cheddar Double Potato Pizza

February 28th, 2011 4:11 pm by Kelly


2011-02-26 - Potato Pizza FTW! - 0010

 

Last weekend, Shane and I decided to try our hands at making a Potato Pizza. Okay, okay; Shane’s hands, my eyes. Using this recipe as a starting point, he came up with a pie that was similar enough (minus the fancy blue potatoes); tasty, though surprisingly dry, even with a dusting of olive oil on the dough. Even the cheese shreds and Smart Bacon were dried out and ashy, positioned as they were on the top of the pizza. Ah well, back to the drawing board!

I’m happy to report that attempt #2, carried out on Saturday night, was an unqualified success. In lieu of the red sauce that normally graces pizza, we used cheesy mashed potatoes, which lent some much-needed moisture to the pie. On top of that went some extra cheese shreds, as well as bacon slices (all vegan, of course), followed lastly by the potato slices. Nestling the cheese and bacon under the potatoes helped to protect them from scorching – and of course locked the cheese’s moisture in, to boot. The only foodstuff that came out dry and crispy were the potato slices, which were almost like homemade chips or thinly sliced fries. Delicious!

The recipe is a three-step process: cheesy mashed potato sauce, dough and pizza. Lengthy, but easy enough. For extra-shiny bonus points, make a double batch of mashed potatoes and have some while you wait for the dough to rise! (Or transform it into potato soup for a completely different dish; details below.)

 
Bacon & Cheddar Double Potato Pizza

For the cheesy mashed potato “sauce”:

 

2011-02-26 - Cheesy Potato Sauce - 0007=

 

Ingredients

1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 onion, diced
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 large or 3 medium-sized baking potatoes (about 4-5 cups’ worth), sliced and diced
water
soy milk
salt, pepper, garlic powder, and/or onion powder to taste
1 tablespoon margarine
1/2 to 1 cup cheddar Vegan Gourmet cheese by Follow Your Heart (or the vegan cheese of your choice)

Directions

(Prep and cook time is approximately an hour, so plan accordingly.)

1. In a large saucepan or small soup pot, bring 1 to 2 tablespoons of olive oil to medium heat. (Use just enough olive oil to coat the bottom of your pot.) Add the diced onion and minced garlic and cook on medium until the onion is translucent and the garlic, golden brown.

2. Cut the baking potatoes into small, relatively uniform pieces: thin slices and/or small diced cubes. (The smaller the pieces, the more quickly they’ll cook.) Add them to the pot, along with just enough water and/or soy milk (I used half and half) to cover them.

3. Cook, covered on high, until the water begins to boil. Reduce heat to medium-high and continue cook, uncovered, stirring the pot every few minutes.

4. Add in the spices to taste and continue to cook until the potatoes become tender and begin to disintegrate. As you stir the pot, mash the potatoes as best you can by hand. If you think that the potatoes look a bit on the soupy side, continue to cook on low until the mixture thickens up.

5. When done cooking, transfer the mix into a large, microwave-safe bowl. Add a pat of margarine to taste. Using a hand mixer, whip the potatoes until they become smooth and creamy. If the mix is too thick, don’t be afraid to mix in a little extra water or soy milk.

6. Add in the cheddar cheese, stirring by hand. Microwave on high for two to three minutes, stopping every minute to stir. The cheese should blend in smoothly with the potatoes after several minutes of cooking.

7. You can use this “sauce” immediately (though be careful if handling while hot), or store it in the fridge until ready for use. When cold, the potatoes will be a bit firmer, and almost Jello-like in consistency. This is okay! You can either microwave it for 30 seconds or so to “loosen” it up, or stir it by hand until it becomes more easily spreadable, almost like the cheese of a “cheese log.” (For those who are milk-allergic like moi, a better analogy might be chilled French Onion dip made with Tofutti Sour Cream! Potato, potathtoe.)

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Saturday Garbage Plate: Vegan Meal Time

February 26th, 2011 11:28 am by Kelly


Garden Manicotti Pizza

Cheesy Vegan Garden Manicotti Pizza, with strips of red pepper and broccoli florets.
PCC image via Flickr user Bacon and Tofu.

All the pizza that’s fit to nom. All-vegan, too! (Like duh.)

Contests and Giveaways! Vegan Vagrant is giving away a package each of Fakin’ Bacon and Smart Bacon (both by Lightlife, for which I am a total fangirl) to one lucky winner; the deadline to enter is 2/28. Also ending on 2/28 is Vegan Machine’s Funk Off! Vegan Bath and Body Products Giveaway. Finally, TriniGourmet has a copy of Taymer Mason’s Caribbean Vegan: Meat-Free, Egg-Free, Dairy-Free Authentic Island Cuisine for Every Occasion up for grabs; enter to win by 3/2.

This just in: Daiya Pepperjack Cheese!

Support a prochoice vegan in The National Abortion Access Bowl-a-Thon! (Fuck yeah, prochoice vegans! Ditto: vegan mozzarella sticks!) Just $179 to go and Emelda will have raised enough scratch to fund one abortion for a woman in need.

Kinship Circle - 2011-02-18 - Brazil Mudslides 03

If you still have a little extra monies floating around after that, why not make a donation to Planned Parenthood in honor of Mike Pence, Congressional Rep. and woman-hater extraordinaire? With any luck, our collective snarkery will make his head implode while also supporting a good cause, namely reproductive health care (including but not limited to breast cancer screenings; pelvic exams; STI testing; and UTI and yeast/bacterial infection diagnoses and treatments). Please and thank you.

Want to help the nonhuman victims of the recent flash floods and landslides in Brazil but don’t know where to start? Check out this roundup of resources I compiled over at my other pad: 2011 Brazil Mudslides: Animal Rescue & Vegan Relief Resources.

Have you ever seen the web series Epic Meal Time? (Hint: it’s almost like a parody of the Food Network’s most obnoxious, testosterone-driven, artery-clogging, meat-loving hipster d-bag cooking show, whatever that may be. (Don’t ask me, I don’t watch such ridiculousness!) Almost, but not quite. Apparently people actually recreate some of those recipes, WTF!) No? Well that’s okay, cause Vegan Meal Time is hilarious either way. Basically it’s like a spoof/response to EMT, with plenty of self-referential vegan jokes thrown in for good measure.

Read vegansaurus’s rundown here, and then subscribe to Getting Friendly’s YouTube channel here. I’ve embedded my favorite of the two vids below.

“THIS IS WHAT VEGANISM CAN DO FOR YOUR BODY!!!!”

Epic.

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Find-a-Friend Friday: Marshmallow Mary & Stella

February 25th, 2011 1:11 pm by Kelly


Update, 3/14/11: Today, The Gentle Barn posted a shiny, happy update on Stella!

I have great news that will start your week off well; Stella got a home today! She has a new mommy who will take her everywhere she goes and two new kitties to be friends with. Stella’s heart is sad now, but she will soon realize that she will be loved and cherished for the rest of her life!

Yay!

_______________

 

This week’s edition of Find-a-Friend Friday is filled with double the cuteness! Animal sanctuary The Gentle Barn has been trying to rehome Stella for several weeks now; “Marshmallow” Mary has been available for adoption for a month or more. After weeks of seeing their sweet, beautiful faces grace the pages of The Gentle Barn’s weekly newsletter, I’m spreading the word in hopes that someone out there – somewhere, some way – can come to Mary and Stella’s rescue. (Note: The two do not come from the same household and do not need to be adopted together.) The Gentle Barn doesn’t specify where these girls are located but, given that the group is based in Santa Clarita, CA, methinks it likely that Mary and Stella live somewhere close by.
 

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Mary, a fluffy white cat with spots of brown and black, does her best lolcat for the camera.
Photo courtesy The Gentle Barn.

“Marshmallow Mary” Wants a Lap!

This beautiful, sweet Calico is looking for a home with a lap she can call her own. We call her Marshmallow Mary because she is so soft and sweet. She is 5 years young, great with people, and gets along with laid-back cats and dogs.

If you have a lap for Mary to fill, and a home that needs a great cat, give us a call ASAP at 661-252-2440 or email us at info [at] gentlebarn.org

 
 

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Stella is a stocky little pibbie with tan and white fur and soulful brown eyes.
Photo courtesy The Gentle Barn.

Please Help Us Find Stella a Home!

3 years ago Stella was one of 250 dogs and 37 cats left for dead by a hoarder. They were all living in tiny, filthy cages, sick and starving. We healed them and found homes for them all. It was the longest, hardest 10 months of our lives.

Stella found a home and was living there for the past 3 years, happy as can be. But, for personal reasons her person had to return her. Stella’s heart was broken into a million pieces.

Stella needs a home to care for her for the rest of her life! She is excellent on leash, wonderful in the car, affectionate, playful, loving and loyal! She is good with cats but has to be the only dog.

If you want unconditional love for the next 10 years, please email ellie [at] gentlebarn.org or please share!

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Saturday Garbage Plate: Ain’t No Party Like a Scranton Party*

February 19th, 2011 11:25 am by Kelly


vegan pizza

A slice of vegan pie from Viva Herbal Pizzeria.
CC image via Flickr user roboppy.

Happy THREE DAY WEEKEND, peeps! This totally calls for a VEGAN PIZZA PARTY! (But then, doesn’t everything, hmmmm?)

Shane and I are gonna try experimenting with a potato pizza this weekend. (Ew, pervert, not like that.) How ’bout you?

Contests & giveaways! vegansaurus! is giving away one copy of The Happy Herbivore Cookbook; just leave a comment on the blog to win. Also, like Paw Prints: The Magazine’s FB page by 2/27/11 and you’ll be entered tp win a Magellan RoadMate 3065 GPS system.

Spay & Neuter Kansas City spayed and neutered 129 dogs and cats and provided over $1,950 in spay neuter subsidy assistance this week alone. Way to go, guys and gals!

10 things everyone should know about vegans. Bullet point numero uno: we rock.

On that note, I have an uber-important announcement: I HAVE OFFICIALLY MASTERED THE ART OF THE VEGAN TWINKIE!

2011-02-15 - Twinkies! - 0004\

And so can you – just follow this recipe from Shmooed Food! It’s easy, yo! And delicious. Soooooo delicious….

Tip: for extra creamy goodness, ram a chopstick completely through the Twinkie before injecting the cream; this will allow for maximum fill. Sideways (at three points) is easier than lengthwise, especially if you’re working with a blunt instrument.

If yer doin’ it rite, you should be able to see the top of the Twinkie puff up with cream. If you’re especially lucky, some cream will even make it all the way through and spurt out the other side. It’s like a volcano of yum, y’all!

That’s all I have to report this week, folks. What’s going on in your corner of the interwebs?

* I was gonna do a play on this phrase – involving vegan pizza, natch – but once I remembered The Office’s remix, I couldn’t get it out of my head. And now by the transitive properties of YouTube, I shall curse you similarly. Muahahahaha!

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Find-a-Friend Friday: Esme & Ester

February 18th, 2011 9:56 am by Kelly


The story of Esme & Ester (abridged, < 2 minutes). Doesn't the still shot just break your heart? YouTube video courtesy of Wayside Waifs.

When first I spied Esme in Wayside Waifs’ weekly newsletter (she was one of three “Waifs of the Week”), my eye was immediately drawn to her. Not because she’s gorgeous (though she totally is! such fluffy, snow-white fur – and so much of it, too!), but rather because I thought she was missing a leg. (Seriously, check out her photo! Do you see her front right leg?) And if you know me, you know that I have a soft spot for the hard luck cases.

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Esme (left) and Ester (right), a pair of bonded, purebred American Eskimo dogs
available for adoption through Wayside Waifs.
Photos courtesy of Wayside Waifs.

Alas, all four of Esme’s legs are intact and functioning. Yet, Esme’s is still a “special needs” case. At 6 years old young, she’s hardly a shiny new pup anymore. Plus, she has a younger sis (Ester) with whom she’d desperately like to be adopted. As hard as it can be to place one dog in a happy new home, try two! To say that it’s doubly difficult is an understatement. And yet, this is just what the nice folks at Wayside Waifs are trying to do.

Here are Esme and Ester’s Petango listings, in order:

Name: Esme
Animal ID: 12242995
Breed: American Eskimo
Age: 6 years
Gender: Female
Color: White
Spayed/Neutered: Yes
No: Small Children
Size: Medium

Hello everyone! It’s me, Esme, a 6 year old purebred American Eskimo lover of a dog searching for a home of my own. I’m so cute and soft and sweet and cuddly, I will take your breath away! I sure hope you fall in love with me, because I’ve had it with life in a shelter and I want to go home!

At 20 pounds, I’m a perfect medium size to cozy up next to you on the couch. I’m not too big, not too small. And are you familiar with my breed? Well, besides our beauty, we’re known for being loyal and smart. You can’t go wrong with those qualities, can you?

I came to Wayside as a transfer from another shelter. Well, first I was surrendered to that other shelter, along with my sister, Ester, when our owner could no longer care for us. Living in one shelter was bad enough, then no one came for us so we were sent here. It’s almost too much to handle! My sister and I would like to be adopted out together since we have lived our lives together.

I’m sort of shy, at least until I get to know you and trust you. No, I’m not the life of the party and probably never will be, but if a sweet, quiet girl is more your style, then you won’t go wrong with me. I love to go for walks with the volunteers around the Wayside campus and they say I do really well with leash walking. And after our walks, a little cuddle time is definitely in order. Anything to keep from going back to my kennel!

In my new home, I’m looking for patience, understanding, attention, and love. Do you think you can give me all that? I’d like a new home without kids under the age of 12. They are scary and unpredictable to me and they make me nervous. Other dogs are ok, but please bring them to meet me before we all go home together.

I’m in the prime of my life and I deserve a home of my own with people who care about me. Isn’t that what we’re all looking for? Someone to care for us and someone to care about? That’s all I want. Please come to meet me soon. I need you.

Love, Esme

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