Nifty Mom

Vegan, Eco-conscious, Natural Parenting, Unschooling Wife and Mom

Vegan ribs!! March 9, 2009

Filed under: Dinner,Vegan — niftymom @ 2:12 pm
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The other day I was looking around the interent for new recipe ideas and I remembered seeing Your Vegan Mom blog featured in Vegetarian Times Magazine. While I was looking around I came across one post about a bbq and vegan ribs. “WHAT vegan ribs?!!! I HAVE to try these!” As I was reading the recipe from the creator,Fat Free Vegan, of these magnificin vegan ribz I realized I had everything to make them.

So Pizza and ribz it was for dinner, this way is Hubby doesn’t approve then he still gets his wonderful pizza and dinner wont be a bust. These ribz were SOOO easy to make, it’s the first time I baked seitan. I didn’t have any liquid smoke but it was still so yummy. Oh also I used a foreman, I think it might be better stick with a grill on this since my BBQ sauce kept carmalizing and cleaning the foreman is a pain, it’s right up there with dusting for me.hehe. These taste so much like the meat version it’s scary! Punkyroo and I had a few bites of testing before Hubby got home. She LOVED these! These will definelty be made again, especially for all my hunting/meat lover family members.

I do have a picture but I havn’t uploaded it to the computer yet, these are just too good I had to share right away, but I’ll add my pict was it’s uploaded, but Fat Free Vegan’s picts will definetly have you drooling.


Tofu Egg(less)rolls January 2, 2009

When I was prego with Punkyroo I had a cravings for Chinese food, the problem is Hubby hates chinese food beyond eggrolls and steamed rice and since he’d be hungry too I just picked another place we both could eat ate.  Well I finally came apon how to make eggrolls and YUM YUM they are sooo good and Hubby loves them too. Well when we went vegetarian I had to find a substitue for the ground chicken in it. At first I tried the ground vegan sausage crumbles but Hubby didn’t like the texture and so I finally tried the Tofu and it worked great. At that time I didn’t know you are suposed to press the tofu and then cook so when I made tofu the first time in a dinner it was disgusting and so I was afraid to try it again but after I learned how to properly prep tofu I tried it in these and it worked!! YAY I can keep my eggrolls. But then when we went Vegan (or should I say Punkyroo and I went vegan since Hubby is vegetarian) I found out my eggroll wraps I was using had egg in them.. I always wondered why they where called eggrolls when they didn’t have egg in them. So after all the ones in the stores having egg I finally found an Asian store and found some without egg! Yay! So sorry to say that you may need to do some searching for the wraps unless you can make them or have already made vegan eggrolls before.


Tofu Egg(less)rolls


Tofu Egg(less)rolls-Punkyroo's dish


Tofu Egg(less)rolls

  • 1 pck of Extra Firm Tofu (16oz)
  • 1 Tbs grated ginger (you could mince it if you are unable to grate)
  • 1 medium cabbage head (green),finely chopped
  • 10 oz bean sprouts
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots
  • 5 green onions, chopped
  • 30-40 eggroll wrappers (It depends on how much you stuff them, sometimes I have 30 and other times I have as much as 40, due to this I usually buy 2 packages of wraps just in case)

Stir fry the tofu and ginger in a skillet on high heat until lightly browned. Add the cabbage, brean sprouts, carrot and green onions;cook for 2 minutes. (if you’d like your filling with some slight seasoning you can add 2-3 tbs of tamari now). Take the skillet off the heat and let cool down. Use 2 tbs of the filling for each egg roll (I usually make some smaller for Punkyroo).

Follow the directions to fold the wraps on the package (if it doesn’t place the wrap on a dry surface with a corner pointing at you, place the filling in the middle, Fold the corner facing you over the filling snuggly, Fold both side corners snugly against the filling, wet the last corner with a little bit of water and roll to seal the last corner, lay flap side down until ready to cook to prevent unrolling itself).

Take a large skillet, wok, or other device to fry your eggrolls in. Fill with oil enough so each roll would be half deep. I usually set my burner on notch 7 since it’s not too too hot to pop oil every second but enough to brown each side quickly. Add a few rolls at a time and cook until golden brown usually around 2-3 minutes; flip on other side and repeat. Place on a paper towel lined plate and let cool.

If you are looking for a baked version, Sorry I havn’t looked into how to bake them yet. I’d love to learn how to to get away fromt the oil. So if anyone knows the directions to bake eggrolls please let me know!!

And since this is a rare dish to make in our house since the oil fried-ness and all here is a dip that is sooooo yummy but its only used for these.

  • Vegan mayo
  • Brown spicy mustard

Add amount of mayo you think is enough to serve with amount of rolls you will serve. Than add mustard and keep adding until desired taste is reached. I always eyeball and taste test it so I can’t give measurements but  Hubby LOVES it. Usually I make around 3-4 rolls for each of us, well 1-2 for Punkyroo; so I usually do 3 big spoon fulls of mayo and around 3 tbs looking like squirts of mustard and go from there, any left over I just cover and serve with the next nights batch of rolls.


Another “meat”ball try December 13, 2008

Filed under: Dinner,Vegan — niftymom @ 8:47 am
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So I’ve probably tried about 5 vegan meatball recipes by now and some have tasted good but just didn’t hold or just plan was gross but these are the best we’ve made so far. The taste and holding of these are good. All of us ate them up and 3 thumbs up.

This recipe is “neat”balls from Vegetarian Times magazine. I just put them with some spaghetti sauce and some cooked spiral noodles that I added fresh spinch to the pot while boiling and Voila! To be honest, this is our Thanksgiving dinner! We are thankful everyday so we don’t really concentrate on a big meal since only family close by don’t celebrate holidays due to religion. I wasn’t up to challenge a tofurky recipe as of that time anyways.

Neat balls


How I love my VTmagazine December 12, 2008

I LOVE LOVE LOVE this magazine, so many yummy recipes and I love their articles and like any magazine has awesome do dads and such that are finanically out of reach or a not-really-need that I get to drool over.

But anyways I made this a few nights ago, Unemployed Shephards Pie. This is made with eggplant as the main ingredient and Punkyroo and I give a thumbs up but Hubby doesn’t care for eggplant that much , quote from hubby “it’d be good without the onion….and the eggplant…” and I said ” oh so just the mash potatoes?!”  , Hubby “yep, sounds good!” ; My eyes are about to fall out from all the eye rollin by now. hehe.


Unemployed Shephards pie

To this day I’m still trying to find a recipe that my mom used to make, she barely cooked but one of her dishes between crazy diets was this eggplant casserole dish, it was sooo yummy I could almost each the whole thing. All I can remember was it having 1 or 2 eggplants peeled and diced up then boiled, then it having tomato sauce and also some crushed up saltine crackers?? If anyone knows of a similar recipe please let me know!!!


Vegan Stuffing November 28, 2008

Filed under: Dinner,Vegan — niftymom @ 4:07 pm
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I love my Vegetarian Times magazine. In one the the issues they had this chestnut stuffing and I felt up for a new recipe. I forgot to mention Hubby has asked if I can only make 1 new meal a week since we’ve had no so good luck with recent recipes I’ve made soo… I agreed to the terms, hehe.

Chestnut-less Stuffing

This dish called for chestnuts and I looked EVERYWhere for these darn nuts and couldn’t find them so I skipped them. What do you know next grocery day they were right there!! So I grabbed some since this stuffing was so yummy I’ll try it with the chestnuts. But this recipe also called for white wine and I could have sworn the alcohol evaporates when cooked but wasn’t 100% so I skipped that as well. Oh and I added some Vegan Kielbasa. Everyone goobled it up! Know what’s funny though is I didn’t even make it for Thanksgiving! We had it simple here, I tried a new recipe for “meat”balls hopping it’d be a winner, Yep that’s right we had Spiral Spaghetti and Neatballs for dinner, I did have some flavor of Thanksgiving… Pumpkin Muffins. I was a little distraught though when they came out gooey, popped them back in for longer, nope still gooey. I’ll have to see what I did wrong.

But anywho back to the stuffing…. This was really good. I think this was in the latest issue or the one before.


Vegan Spinach Stuffed Shells November 23, 2008

So one of my “hit” dishes to make when people came over and a constant plea to make for dinner was my Spinach Stuffed Shells. Of course pre-vegan these were mixed with ricotta cheese and parm cheese and egg. So in desperation to not hear grumbly moans and disgusted looks from Hubby for another night I reached to re-invent my “famous” dish. What do you know it worked Hubby LOVED it and says it’s a make again. He was extremely excited when I told him what I was making and that quickly changed to disapoinment when I told him I was concockting my own filling to make it vegan. But I pulled it off with a little bit of this and that and cooking directions from this and sauce from that I was able to please everyone in my house for dinner!

Vegan Spinach Stuffed Shells

I do have to say I’m so thrilled to say we bought a new blender, we couldn’t go any longer without one so I can get back to hummus, smoothie, soup makin!! Yay!

I can add the recipe later if anyone is interested, just let me know. I just have to sit down and remember what all I put in and what I did and write it in my Cookbook Journal! But here are some picts of my yummy dish! I do have to say there is one suprising ingredient you might not have heard put in stuffed shells, well atleast none that I’ve heard of.

Vegan Spinach Stuffed Shells

So I finally sat down and put together what and how I made this…

  • 1 box Jumbo shell noodles, cooked and drained
  • 1 1/2-2 cups Marinara sauce
  • 2 eggs worth of No Egg egg replacer
  • 1 tbs plain Silk
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 10 oz package of frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry (you can always add more spinach if you’d like it more spinachy, I’d say up to 2 packages of 10oz)
  • 3/4 cup bread crumbs (1 slice whole wheat bread heavily toasted and blended to crumbs)
  • 1 small-medium onion, grated and slightly squeezed
  • 1 avocado, pureed or mashed if you are unable to puree
  • * if you’d like to have have the cheese tast in there add 1/4 cup vegan shredded cheese, but it’s good with or without.

Preheat oven to 350*. In a small bowl, whisk the egg replacer mix, silk and salt. Stire in the spinach, bread crumbs, (add cheese here if you want it), onion and avocado.

In a 9x13in baking dish spread just enough marinara to slightly cover the bottom of the pan. Start stuff the noodles with about 1 tbs of spinach filling and arrange in dish until the pan is full. (I usually leave out the rest of the noodles for us to munch on while I’m cooking to keep from any melt down tantrums from Punkyroo…and sometimes Hubby 😀 ).

Once the pan is full place a spoonful of marinar on top of each shell and then spread to coat the top of all the shells, if you like alot of sauce then you’ll need more marinara and then you just pour the jar over all the shells. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes.


Sesame Spinach Noodles November 17, 2008

Filed under: Dinner,Vegan — niftymom @ 2:35 pm
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In the midst of trying to find a quick easy dinner to put together on those days that errands/apts drag us late and this is just the thing. I try to always have on hand extra pasta and some type of sauce in 911 dinner situations. One night I had pasta but no sauce and so I searched around for something to flavor the noodles…. Sesame seeds, sesame oil, soy suace…BINGO! This is a dish the whole fam loves and it’s put together as fast as you cook thin spaghetti!!!

Sesame Spinach Noodles

Sesame Spinach Noodles

  • 1 box Thin Spaghetti
  • 4 cups spinach, chopped
  • 1 medium zucchini, chopped in bite size pieces
  • 2 tbs sesame oil
  • 3 tbs tamari
  • 4 tbs sesame seeds

In a large pot boil water. Add spaghetti and let cook for a few minutes. Add the spinach and let cook some more. Add the zucchini to the pot when your noodles have only  2 or so minutes left so they are cooked but still retain slight hardness.

Drain noodles and place back in the pot. Add the oil and tamari (you may need to add more tamari for taste). Once noodles are evenly coated add the sesame seeds and mix well. Serve!