Is the food blog back? We’ll see, but for now, here’s something: my first ever stuffed shells! I’ve been wanting to make these for a while and finally assembled all the ingredients. The roasted tomato awesomesauce was part of the large quantity I put by in the freezer last summer, the chard was from the first farm share pickup of the season, and the basil came from the porch garden.
As it often my way, I looked at an assortment of recipes and combined them into something I thought would work. The “ricotta” is mostly a cross between two different recipes in Veganomicon. My original plan was to mix in spinach, but since I had the chard, used that. Good thing, too, because without it, I would have been pretty short on stuffing, so definitely pick a green, or if you can’t stand the idea of vegetables mixed in, make extra ricotta. You could also modify this recipe slightly for lasagna, which would maybe be a little less fancy but also save the stuffing time, though you’d have a higher pasta ratio.
The end result was quite delicious and I would definitely like to make this again. Leftovers have been fantastic. Even with the work of stuffing the shells, it was still pretty fast, and the most time-consuming part was our friend M. (who is a wonderful person, but a little slow in the kitchen) tearing and washing the chard. But if you use frozen greens, this is *really* fast.
Over Labor Day weekend, my roommate and I hosted a barbecue, and since everyone knows I can’t host an event without some sort of schtick, I rented a tank of liquid nitrogen to make ice cream, and thus was born the Ice Cream Barbecue. Many of my friends are familiar with this method of freezing because of a long-running annual event that features the stuff, but I was unable to attend this year due to a theater gig, so this was my alternative. By the time the tank was gone, a total of 24 flavors had been made, and half of them were vegan! Which was, of course, awesome.
One of the flavors I made after the crowds were gone was this maple praline pecan. I found the praline recipe as part of another ice cream recipe and just winged it for the base. Don’t be fooled by how embarrassingly easy it is! Even cow’s milk folks loved this stuff and many assumed it was dairy even knowing I’d made it.
In addition to the recipe, I’ve also included a (very) brief run-down of various ways to freeze ice cream.
Okay, and it’s not actually macaroni, either, but I love the way radiatorre holds the sauce. The principle is still there, and it tastes damn fine. One of the first things I cooked for myself as a young’un was Kraft Macaroni & Cheese, and it was one of those comfort foods that I really missed as a vegan. This stuff has the same feeling for me, but tastes so much better! And, though I often forget, it’s not even unhealthy. It might even be good for me.
This is adapted from an uncredited recipe that was posted in the VeganCooking LiveJournal Community, and I was unable to track down the original author. It was certainly similar to some recipes I’ve seen in books, so it could be anyone. If you’re out there, thank you!
The original called for a jar of pimentos but I have since discovered that roasted red peppers work just as well and are much cheaper. I buy them large jars then freeze into recipe-sizes portions. This dish is so quick to make that even though the first thing I do is put the water on to boil, everything else is ready by the time the pasta is drained. (Though that might not be true if I had an induction cooktop.) It’s a great last-minute dinner that is always a guest pleaser as well.