Friday, September 19, 2008

Yay for Potlucks!

On Tuesday night, my friend Kat had a bunch of people over for a vegetarian (and mostly vegan!!) potluck! I love the idea of potlucks: everyone sharing their great food and talking and spending quality time together and eating that great food. What more could you want?? Plus, Kat works for PETA, so you know she's a cool girl!

I made my FAVORITE tofu salad recipe...I'll share the recipe some other time...and it was all eaten by the time Steve and I left! I'd say that's a good sign! Here was my potluck plate, sans dessert:I had (clockwise from the top) a teriyaki noodle and broccoli dish, an Indian dal with jasmine rice cooked in with it, quinoa tabouli, whole wheat pita wedges with hummus, my tofu salad, and some slices of baguette I brought from our local Uprise Bakery! (There were also some chips and homemade salsa and guacamole, as well as some local melon, but those were just nibbles....) Then there was dessert! Kat made a vanilla cake with chocolate frosting, and another guest made this amazing peach crisp that we ate warm! I cannot remember the last peach crisp I had, and I have never had a vegan one before, so I was supremely pleased needless to say! Plus, she used local peaches! DUH!!

A few nights later, some friends gathered for art night (a weekly artsy fartsy gathering among some friends) where we made paper mache things that will be turned into pinatas next week (I won't say what I made, but it's not PG.) For our gathering, I had to bake something, because that's the kind of weirdo I am. So, I went with my favorite thing pretty much ever: Raspberry Chocolate Chip Blondie Bars from Isa's Vegan With A Vengeance!! You seriously can't go wrong with these. Crowd pleaser and mouth pleaser. Cakey and gooey and fudgy and sweet and fruity and chocolately and vanilla-y. Too many "y's" to mention, really.

Raspberry Chocolate Chip Blondie Bars (makes 12-16)
For Raspberry Layer:

2 cups frozen raspberries

3 Tbs tapicoa starch

1/4 cup cold water

1/3 cup sugar

For Blondie Layer:

3 3/4 cup flour

1 1/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

6 oz. vanilla or plain soy yogurt

1/4 cup milk substitute (I used Silk creamer. damn!!!)

1/2 cup plus 2 Tbs canola oil

2 cups sugar

1 Tbs vanilla extract

1 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 F. Lightly grease a 9x13 inch pan. Make the raspberry layer: In a saucepan, combine all of the raspberry layer ingredients and stir until the tapioca starch has dissolved. Bring to a boil, then lower heat to a low boil, stirring often. do this for about 5 minutes or until mixture is thick and gooey. Remove from heat and make the blondie layer.

To make the blondie layer: In a mixing bowl, sift together the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, combine the wet ingredients. Mix the dry ingredients into the wet, in batches, until a dough forms. Set aside 1 cup of this dough. Spread the rest into the greased pan. Spread he raspberry goo layer over the blondie layer, then sprinkle half of the chocolate chips over the raspberry layer. Drop the remaining blondie dough over the raspberry/choc chip layer...spread out so it covers a lot of the top, but there is still some pretty pink goo showing through. Sprinkle the other half of the chocolate chips over the top of everything. Bake for 35 minutes, then let cool and serve. Be careful, though...these are so delish that they pose a hazard to your health. From Isa Chandra Moskowitz's Vegan With A Vengeance

Why don't I just eat these for every meal???

Also, I tried a new food last night: PawPaws! These JUICY fruits have a more tropical origin, but the ones that Steve and I ate were locally grown here in Mid-Missouri of all places! I didn't know what to expect, but I was freakin floored by these things!!! The taste is almost like halfway between a mango and a banana, and the texture is like a really soft papaya or mango, without the stringy bits. They are soooo sweet and have almost a vanilla-like flavor. In the words of Joey Lawrence: whoa!!! :) Here's the inside of the gooey and yummy.
Here are the pawpaw seeds...they were stuck in the fruit randomly throughout, and were easily removed. They were the size of big kalamata olives, but felt like buckeyes. weird.
And here they are all innocent and ready to be eaten. You know you want one!


Destiny's Vegan Kitchen said...

What a fun potluck! I still need to make the blondies from VWAV. What is wrong with me?!

Jennifer (of Veg*n Cooking) said...

That potluck sounds like it was really fun! And one where you can eat almost everything there - wahoo.

Those blondies look fantastic, seriously, now I'm hungry.

Anonymous said...

What a great potluck and yes blondies should be eaten at every meal!

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

Ooh, I love potlucks! I have never heard of paw paws!