Grilled and chilled jerk tofu with hearts of palm, mango and avocado salad

It’s become a joke in our house now that when I ask Matthew what he wants me to cook with the tofu in the fridge, he always responds with “Something from Horizons”. I do agree him that some of my favourite ways to eat tofu come from these books, so I went off searching for a different way to use it.

I don’t generally eat much cold food and I’ve made little from the salad sections of either book, but we’ve been having some hot days recently so I decided to try the grilled and chilled jerk tofu and the salad that came recommended as a side dish with it. I did alter the proportions of some of the salad ingredients just to fit in with what I had and I certainly used less mayo.

This was a perfect hot weather meal which I enjoyed far more than I expected. I served it alongside some plain rice, but one of the great things about being vegan is that you can reuse your marinades without fear of food contamination, so I drizzled the leftovers over the rice. The tofu itself was tangy and perfectly spiced and would be fantastic in a sandwich too.

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Caribbean Caesar

 

 

 

We generally have a light starter before our Christmas meal, just something to keep the hunger pangs at bay while the roast potatoes cook, and to give us a chance to have a glass of something light and crisp alongside it. This version of a Caesar was very simple, and the picture makes it look dull, but it wasn’t. The dressing uses one of the trademark Horizons spice mixes, which give anything a zing. I tweaked the ingredients a touch just because the vegan mayonnaise and the dijon mustard we get here are a bit different to US brands. The optional plantain chips aren’t optional as far as I’m concerned; they added a great crunch and flavour.

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Grilled Tofu Provencale

Another Horizons recipe, another new method of preparing tofu. This recipe marinades the tofu, then grills it, then it goes back in the fridge to cool and then gets reheated in the Provencale sauce just before serving. The sauce has wine, tomatoes, black olives, capers, thyme and mustard, and is seriously delicious.

I served it on a bed of cooked spinach with some baby potatoes. The recipe headnotes says it tastes better cold the next day. I find it hard to believe but next time I’ll make extra on purpose so I can try it!

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Seitan Feijoada

I fancied making a thick hearty comforting stew and my first thought was the feijoada from Viva Vegan, which I’ve made several times. Then I remembered that there’s a feijoada recipe in Horizons that I haven’t tried before so I decided to try that version instead.

This one is different in that it uses seitan and one of the brilliant Horizons spice blends. The portions at Horizons must be massive as the recipe calls for 1lb of dried beans and 1lb of seitan for just 2 servings! I chopped it down a bit and used 8oz dried beans and 10oz of seitan and still got 4 servings. Unusually, the recipe uses the bean soaking liquid which gives the stew an extra dark colour and a thick rich earthy flavour.

I served the feijoada with 2 side dishes from Viva Vegan – the yellow rice with garlic and the braised Brazilian kale. They were perfect choices as they paired perfectly with the dark spicy stew. We drank a big Portuguese wine with it and it was a wonderful match to a great dinner.

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Korean Grilled Tofu Steak

Tami has already reviewed this one and I’ve made it before we started this blog, but it was so good I couldn’t resist making it again. I’d managed to get hold of some fresh tofu, and when I do that my first instinct is always to look at the Horizons books, because they do tofu so well. This spicy sauce, made with Gochujang Korean chilli paste, is perfect with theĀ  tofu.

I served it some sesame seed rice, and stir fried morning glory or water spinach, which I picked up when I got the tofu. It was an amazingly tasty dish.

 

I also got some morning glory or Chinese water spinach

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Baby Spinach Salad with Fresh Mushrooms, Vegetarian Bacon and Horseradish Roasted Onion Vinaigrette

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As written, this salad is very quick to put together. Rich gives suggestions for possibly adding radicchio (didn’t have any) and croutons. To keep with the roasted theme of the dressing, I roasted some quartered tomatoes to add the color the radicchio would have had. And croutons as an option? More like a necessity. We love croutons and eat them almost like popcorn when we’re waiting for the meal. Not a good habit, but a very tasty one. I used sourdough for the croutons and made them my favorite way: on the stove. I like them rustic and the cast-iron imparts a little added flavor.

I wasn’t crazy about this dressing. It was on the sweet side for me. I liked it, but it wasn’t the best dressing ever. Jim, who is far less receptive to salads, and even hates creamy dressings, actually loved it. I used the full amount of water and reduced the oil to 3 tablespoons. I think if I were to make it again, I’d add some vinegar. But the horseradish and mustard flavors are wonderful with the spinach and mushrooms. After I finished, I thought that some vegan blue cheese might have been a great addition. Next time!

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Chickpea Tuna Salad

I’ve made quite a few vegan versions of tuna salad now, but this one was probably published first out of the ones I’ve tried. It’s very straightforward, based on chickpeas, and uses Old Bay seasoning to give it some oomph. I am a huge fan of Old Bay so I was always going to like this a lot. I’ve made this a couple of times now on Sundays and used it for lunches during the week. The version above is grilled in a sandwich with tomato, but I’ve also had it cold in pitta bread and in little lettuce cups as salad. My type of salad!

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