Monday, January 10, 2011

Cookbook Challenge. Week 1. AFR-Buffalo Tempeh and Mac & Trees with Easy Breezy Cheezy Sauce

We are only a day into the Cookbook Challenge and I have already seen so many great meals cooked by other PPKers. There is not a menu in the Table of Contents that I am not interested in cooking. I may or may not have already said this, but if you don't own this book, buy it!

On the menu for tonight was Buffalo Tempeh and Mac and Trees with Easy Breezy Cheezy Sauce. The second meal I made from Appetite for Reduction was another winner. I made a few minor modifications out of necessity but it wasn't anything that would make a difference in the way the recipe turned out.

The Buffalo Tempeh was made according to the recipe with the exception that I used fresh garlic and onion instead of the granules because I didn't have them. I cooked them down in a little EB before adding cayenne sauce, veg broth and oregano. I would have never thought to add oregano to hot sauce before, especially because I think hot sauce is good on its own but the flavor it brought was great. I usually don't steam tempeh before I cook it but I really do feel it helped it to absorb the marinade and made the texture better.

I have read the Mac and Trees recipe a few times while flipping through the book and again while making my shopping list, I'm not gonna lie, it took me until I actually bought the broccoli to get the "Trees" part. I should have gotten it sooner because growing up my dad always pretended like broccoli was a little tree with little tiny birdies living in it. Now, thinking back, I'm surprised I even ate broccoli that I though contained little baby birdies. Anyways, the Mac and Trees was simple to make, I subbed rotini for macaroni because for some reason the pasta aisle at Whole Foods tonight was barren, maybe due to the impending snow storm we are supposed to get in the Northeast tomorrow night/Wednesday. I think rotini holds sauce better anyways so I wasn't completely devastated.

The Cheezy Sauce was a nooch based sauce which was awesome, but to be honest, I can't really ever tell a difference in any of the nooch based sauces I've made in my vegan life. They all have different ingredients but they always taste very much the same. Again, not complaining, I love a nooch sauce as much as any vegan. After the tempeh was done cooking and the nooch sauce was all mixed in with the pasta I drizzled some of the leftover buffalo sauce over my plate of pasta . As an omni I never actually had buffalo mac, but if I did, I would have to say the vegan version is better. Not only is it better for you, it just tastes awesome.

This was a really hearty meal that left me feeling full after a small bowl and knowing that it was relatively good for me made it taste even better. Just like the lettuce wraps and fried rice I made last night, this is absolutely going to become a staple in my recipe repertoire.


  1. You know buffalo is my fav! question, will you please post the recipes for these amazing meals you are making...or just mail me some!

  2. Looks like you had MUCH better luck than me! I don't know what it was but I really thought the cheezy sauce I made was lacking something and my poor tempeh just was not what I was hoping..I probably made a flub somewhere along the line but hey..there's always round two! I added cheddar Daiya to the leftovers and it made mine a ton better. Woohoo!

    PS: Dave keeps mowing the vegan cookies I made, hahaha :)