Vegan deliciousness

As I said earlier, I have had to stop eating dairy while breast feeding thanks to baby girl’s super sensitive tummy! It has been really fun trying new recipes and discovering the magic of turning nuts into cheese, sauce, and dessert!

Here are some of the amazing recipes we have tried:

Entree
Vegan Zucchini Gratin
Taco Chili with Nacho Cheeze Sauce
CauliPower Alfredo
Roasted Garlic White Pizza with Macadamia Ricotta

Cheese
Baked Cashew Cheese
Herb Cashew Cream Cheese

Dessert
Flourless Chocolate Cake (not actually vegan because it has eggs, but it is dairy free)
•and the most AMAZING THING EVERDouble Dark Chocolate and Raspberry Cheesecake

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Have you tried soaking cashews?? Who knew they become so creamy and versatile! Most of the time I don’t even miss cheese! (Although I could really go for some good cheddar on crackers, or a good cheese pizza!)

Also, I came across this recipe for a basic white sauce (can be used for sour cream, dip, sauce, cream cheese, etc, depending on how much water you add):
1 cup cashews – soaked in water for about an hour, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup olive oil
3oz of lemon juice
1-2 cloves garlic
1/2 tsp salt
1/4-1/2 cup water (depending on what you want to use it for, I used 1/2 cup for sour cream/dip)

Combine all ingredients in a food processor or high speed blender. Blend until very smooth. Place it in the fridge, it will thicken slightly when cooled. You can also add anything else, spices, etc!

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Potato Pancake Parmesan

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Growing up, my family established a tradition of eating my dad’s potato pancakes for breakfast on Christmas morning every year. Now that Matt and I have been cooking so much, we are constantly striving to make everything better than the last time we had it, so this is that success! (Not attempt, because this dish is AMAZING!!!). This recipe is a combination of my dad’s recipe (from the Joy of Cooking), Giada, and our own!

What you need for the potato pancakes (makes about 20):
3 russet potatoes
1 onion
1 zucchini
4 eggs
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
1/2 cup fresh chopped basil
1 cup Italian seasoned panko

Using a grater attachment of a food processor or a cheese grater, grate the potatoes, zucchini, and onions in a large bowl. Using paper towels or a clean dish towel, soak up any liquid in the bottom of the bowl. Add remaining ingredients and combine well. The mixture should be a little runny.

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Heat vegetable oil in a large pan. Using a spoon or your hands, form the mixture into pancakes and place in the oil (wait until the oil is nice and hot). Cook until brown, flipping once the bottom is brown. Place the cooked potato pancakes on a paper towel to absorb extra oil.

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This is a good place to stop, these potato pancakes are amazing to eat as is. Or…keep reading and prepare to be blown away!

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the cooked potato pancakes on a piece of foil on a baking sheet. Place a slice of fresh mozzarella and bake until the cheese has melted.

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Top with hot tomato sauce, and ENJOY!! It’s an amazing vegetarian version of our favorite chicken Parmesan, but the potato pancakes are also delicious on their own!!

Grilled Veggie Bruschetta

The longer we cook vegetarian, the more we try and find unique recipes! This grilled veggie bruschetta is our take on Jamie Oliver’s smoky veg bruschetta, but with a few of our own changes (like we always do…not good recipe followers)!

This bruschetta is so unique and was great on homemade tortilla chips from our favorite Artisan Blue Corn Flax Seed tortillas (just cut into wedges and bake until lightly browned, flipping once)

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It was also great leftover on BBQ pizza on whole wheat na’an!!

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What you need:
1 ear of corn
1 zucchini, sliced lengthwise
1 eggplant, sliced
1/2 onion, thickly sliced
1/2 bell pepper, cut in half
2 cloves garlic, minced
Juice and zest if 1/2 lemon
1-2 Tbsp basalmic vinegar
1 Tbsp olive oil

Shuck the corn and place on a piece of foil, add the lemon zest and a little salt and pepper, wrap in the foil to grill. Arrange the sliced veggies on the grill or in a grill basket. Grill for about 10 minutes, or until the edges are slightly charred and veggies have grill marks (the corn will take about 15 minutes)

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Cut the corn off the cob, chop the veggies, and add to a medium bowl along with the minced garlic, vinegar, oil, and lemon juice. Adjust seasonings to taste and ENJOY!

Egg Drop Soup

Matt and I love egg drop soup, especially at PF Changs. This recipe is so good, and so easy. Even though its made with chicken stock, I’d still consider it semi-vegetarian because there is no meat in it. If you’re eating strictly vegetarian, go ahead and use vegetable stock instead, I’m sure it would be delicious too! I got this recipe here and pretty much followed it, with only a couple little tweaks.

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4 cups chicken stock (I used fat free, unsalted)
1 T soy sauce
1/2 tsp freshly grated ginger (could probably be increased to 1 tsp)
5 T cornstarch mixed with 3-4 T water
3 eggs (3 whites and 1 partial yoke, if you use whole eggs, 2 should be enough) whisked
2 green onions, diced
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine stock, soy sauce, and ginger in a pot and bring to a boil. Once boiling, add cornstarch/water and stir, allow to boil until it begins to thicken (a couple minutes).

Now for the fun part (what I thought would be the hardest part). Reduce the soup to a simmer, and slowly pour the whisked eggs into the pot while constantly stirring in only one direction. The eggs will spread out and thin as you stir, so don’t be alarmed as you pour, just keep stirring!

Once the eggs are cooked, remove from the heat, add the green onions, season to taste, and ENJOY!

Watermelon Squares

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Watermelon Squares

This delicious treat is super easy to make!  Start by cutting watermelon into cubes.  Grab a ball of fresh mozzarella and cut that into cubes as well.  Stack the cheese on the watermelon and then put a fresh basil leaf on top (we used basil that we grow in our garden- our basil plant tends to grow small leaves, which was perfect for this!).  After you’ve assembled everything, drizzle balsamic vinegar around the edges.  Bon appetite!

Welcome to VanGent Kitchen!

Aside

We are Matt and Erin, a couple who loves to cook! We love to experiment with new recipes, eat healthy, and enjoy discovering great vegetarian food (sometimes)! We hope you find some recipes you’ll try and enjoy as much as we have loved making and eating them! Check back often for our new recipes!