Dec 14

Seitan Marbella


Welcome Virtual Vegan Potluckers!  Thanks for joining us!  I feel like I’m making it by the skin of my teeth today—this time of year is SO busy and I feel like my poor 4 year old is taking the brunt of my crazy schedule.  Today I put on my super mom cape, taking the boys to church, the grocery store, the park, and finally playing with David and his Wiki Sticks (you know, the ones they give out to the kids at Veggie Grill?) as I’ve been promising to do for days.  But first it’s time to get down to some cooking business….before running out to 2 back to back Christmas parties.  Oh, and I’m supposed to make a quick batch of cookies for one of them (maybe I should just bring a bottle of wine?). January….are you out there?  Hello, hello?


Today I’m sharing a veganized dish based on a dish my mom has been making for years.  My mom is definitely the hostess with the mostess.  I think she averages 5 or 6 different Christmas parties each year—Bible study, Women’s Bible study, neighborhood ladies brunch, friends party….the list goes on.  Not just attending, actually hosting.  With homemade everything.  She’s gathered a lot of great recipes over the years, and this used to be one of my favorites.  My recipe is based on the classic Silver Palate recipe for Chicken Marbella (mar-bay-yuh).  I don’t know for sure, but I’m guessing that it’s named for the city Marbella in Spain—Irving and I travelled there 5 years ago and it’s so beautiful!


The traditional dish is made with marinated chicken, olives, prunes, and a white wine sauce.  I’ve swapped out the chicken for Irving’s homemade seitan, and have cut the prep and cooking time down to just 30 minutes!  No messy marinades—just a quick stove top sauce packs this dish with amazing flavor.


I love the festive look of this with the bright green olives and parsley and the pops of red from the pimentos.  Because this is made with seitan (gluten-full!), I try to steer away from another bread-like carb.  Instead, pair this with roasted red potatoes or squash, and a big salad or other green vegetable.


Not only are Irving and I big fans of this dish, our almost 4 year David gobbles it up too!  His favorite part is the olives.  I hope you love this as much as we do, and that it makes it onto your holiday table this year.  If it does, please tag @frieddandelions or #frieddandelions.  I’d love to see your creation!

*** For Virtual Vegan Potluckers—please see the bottom of this post to hop to the previous and next stops on the potluck! Hope you’re hungry!

Seitan Marbella—serves 4
¼ batch homemade seitan (from this large recipe), or 1-2 boxes of store bought seitan (I like Upton’s Naturals—you can adjust the sauce as needed depending on how “saucy” you want it to be)
1 T olive oil (plus more for pan searing)
1 T flour
1 ½ c white wine (I use a white table wine from Trader Joe’s called Green Fin Organic)
2 T brown sugar
2 T red wine vinegar
1 t oregano
½ t salt
1 bay leaf
¼ c dried prunes, quartered
½ c green olives stuffed with pimentos, sliced
2 T capers, chopped
¼ c chopped parsley

Heat a splash of olive oil in a non stick pan (I swear by my Le Creuset cast iron—best pan ever!).  Cut seitan into small 2 inch cutlets, slicing on the diagonal for a more delicate presentation.  Add them to the pan, likely in two batches.  Pan sear on both sides until a light brown crust develops.  Remove from pan to drain on a plate lined with a paper towel.

Wipe the pan clean (don’t actually bother to wash it though).  Pour 1 T olive oil into the pan, and warm it over medium heat.  Add 1 T flour and whisk it in quickly.  You want to make a roux, lightly browning the oil-flour mixture.  Once it browns, whisk in the white wine.  Add the brown sugar, red wine vinegar, oregano, and salt and whisk.  Add the bay leaf, prunes, olives and capers.  Heat the sauce over medium heat while it starts to bubble and thicken.  This takes about 5 minutes.  Add the seitan and allow to cook for 5 more minutes, turning the pieces to coat in the sauce.  Remove from heat, discard bay leaf, and stir in the parsley.  Ready to serve—that was easy, wasn’t it?


Hop along to the next stops on the Virtual Vegan Potluck!

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Dec 14

Homemade Seitan


My non-vegan husband makes homemade seitan for me.  He actually insists on it.

Just let that sink in for a minute.


I think I’ve mentioned this before—Irving grew up in the Dominican Republic on a vegetarian college campus (his parents are professors).  It’s a big part of the reason that he doesn’t mind that I’m vegan even though he’s not—he’s been eating vegetarian food for his whole life, and is totally happy to do so most of the time.  He’s actually taught me a lot about vegetarianism/veganism, and keeps me stocked with movies like Forks Over Knives and Food Matters—he’s a victim of his own success.  One of the vegan foods he introduced me to is Carne Veggie, or Seitan.  It’s sometimes called “wheat meat” and it is a faux meat made with the gluten of wheat flour.  Seitan originally hails from China where there was once a vegetarian emperor who wanted to eat meat-like foods, but not actual meat. Now seitan is a common grocery store item!


When I was first vegetarian (pre vegan) and we were visiting, one of his family friends made a batch and insisted that I try “carne veggie.”  I had no idea what that was, and had never heard of seitan.  I tried it and couldn’t tell if they were trying to trick me or not—my Spanish isn’t very good!  It was tasty, but I didn’t think much about it until I got Chef Chloe’s first cookbook with several recipes in it each calling for seitan.  I’ve made my own, but I like the way Irving’s comes out better, and I like that he is the one making it!


Irving has told me stories of the cafeteria ladies (on the college campus) going to the cafeteria at 4 am to get the seitan going so that it would be fresh for lunch each day!  They would actually take wheat flour and mix with water to make a dough, and then wash the starch away, removing all but the gluten—I can not imagine how tedious this would be.  So glad they sell gluten ready made!  This seitan comes together in about a half hour of active time, and another hour or so of inactive time.

pot^^^ Seitan dough boiling away in flavorful broth.

Go ahead and make a batch of this seitan so that you’ll be ready to make my Seitan Marbella this weekend when it debuts for the Virtual Vegan Potluck!


Seitan—This is a BIG batch.  It makes approximately the same as 6-8 store bought boxes of seitan.  We divide into 4 portions—refrigerating two and freezing two.  It freezes beautifully and thaws right back to its original texture.

If you don’t want a big batch (but you really should!), you can go ahead and make a 1/4 batch—just divide everything by 4.  We find that it’s not any harder to make a big batch, and then we have it ready to go!

1 ½ T powdered garlic
1 T adobo (optional)
1 ½ T ground ginger
4 c vital wheat gluten (we use Bob’s Red Mill brand)

2 c veggie broth (we use Rapunzel loose bouillon powder according to package directions)
¼ c aminos/soy sauce
2 T tamari optional
½ c water

Cooking Broth:
4 c veggie broth (again, we use Rapunzel loose bouillon powder)
1 pound carrots (4)
1 pound onion (2)
½ pound celery
1 bunch cilantro
2 ounces ginger (3 inches)
6 c water
1 T molasses

Mix dry ingredients together.  Add wet ingredients and stir.  Then begin to knead lightly by hand, forming a spongy dough.  If you bite off a piece it will have the texture of garlic bubble gum (mmmm….).  Don’t overknead, as it will get too tough and glutinous (oh the irony!).  Set ball of dough aside.

Put all broth ingredients into a LARGE stock pot.  Our 6 quart is full to the brim with this jumbo batch.  Alternately, divide evenly between two smaller pots.

Cut the dough ball into 2 or 3 inch pieces, mimicking “cutlets” of some type.  Remember that it will be very rubbery until it cooks, and it will also stick together.  To prevent sticking, place pieces directly into the broth.

Place pot on stove and boil for 45 minutes.  It will reduce—don’t add more water.  Remove from heat.  Pick out pieces of seitan and place into sealable containers*.  We freeze some of it right away to use at a later time.  It freezes great, and thaws in the microwave with no change in texture.  Just make sure you hang on to one portion of it for my Virtual Vegan Potluck Seitan Marbella coming up on Friday night!

* We discard the broth and boiling veggies.  You could save it and use it for something else, although we find that the flavor is pretty distinct!  Taste it and see what you want to do with it.  And if you come up with a great idea, let us know!

I love to hear from you! Please leave a comment on my facebook wall or send me an email at sarah@frieddandelions.com.

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Nov 14

Candy Cane Cookies


I’m so excited to be sharing my recipe for Candy Cane Cookies on Keepin’ It Kind’s cookie swap.  Last year I shared my mom’s recipe for Sugar Cookies, veganized, and I’m honored that Kristy invited me to participate again this year.


David and I had a lot of fun rolling these out and putting them together.  As we mixed, assembled and baked we talked about some of the symbolism associated with candy canes.  If you turn your candy cane upside down it is a “J” for Jesus.  Hold it right side up it is a shepherd’s staff, reminding us of how Jesus guides us like a shepherd guides his sheep!


The white shows us that our sins are washed away and that God has made us clean as snow.  The red reminds us of Jesus’ blood shed for us on the cross.  David really enjoyed learning about the symbolism!  For more reading, the children’s pastor at my church recommends the children’s book The Legend of the Candy Cane.  

You might also like to check out last year’s post A Birthday Cake for Jesus.


While we’re here, on Small Business Saturday, I wanted to throw some love to two of my favorite Etsy artists!  Melysa, of Ink Meets Paper, has been my best friend since 2nd grade!  She lives way too far away from me now, but we keep in touch through the magic of Facebook.  She creates beautiful paper designs—note cards, note books, jewelry, and my favorite—her Christmas ornaments.  Right now she’s running a special giving 30% off everything in her store!  Use code “shopsmall” when you check out.

il_fullxfull.668047476_5e5sc/o Ink Meets Paper Design

Another of my fave crafters is Nell of Whole Parenting Goods.  You may remember her blog from a couple of weeks ago when I guest posted about the transition to solids for babies.  Nell is the talented lady behind the bandit bibs.  She has all kinds of beautiful blankets, leggings, bibs and more in her Etsy shop.  Right now she is selling her made to order large plush blankets for 30% off for Small Business Saturday.  Snatch one up for the little ones in your life!

il_fullxfull.407245701_n9eyc/o Whole Parenting Goods

And finally, I’ve slashed the price on Let It Snow, the ebook I wrote last year.  It features 6 recipes for vegan-gluten free Christmas candies, including Cream Cheese Mints, Sponge Candy, and Candy Cane Fudge!  All of this can be yours for just 99 cents!


Hop on over and visit my friends on Etsy, and check out the recipe for my Candy Cane Cookies in Keepin’ It Kind’s cookie swap!


I love to hear from you! Please leave a comment on my facebook wall or send me an email at sarah@frieddandelions.com.

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Nov 14

Pumpkin Orange Cranberry Muffins


Are you all ready for Thanksgiving? Can I make life harder for you by giving you just one more dish to consider making? I made another batch of these Pumpkin Orange Cranberry muffins last night and I have to share them! If it’s too late to get them on your Thanksgiving table, consider making them for Christmas. Or next Tuesday?  Or Wednesday? It doesn’t matter when! They are so delicious—I can not stop eating them!


Super moist, flavorful, healthy-ish, but not too healthy—they are so good! I actually started working with this recipe at the end of September. David’s teacher gave me the recipe they normally use to make pumpkin muffins and asked if I could veganize it so he could participate.  (I know, so awesome!)  I made egg replacers, reduced sugar, added molasses and spices…..and then last night I added a cranberry orange syrupy mixture! Ding ding ding—winner!


They are really easy to make and whip up in a mixing bowl—don’t bother dragging out your whole mixer for this! Hope you love these!


Before you head on to the recipe I thought I would quickly share the dishes I’m making this year! As I mentioned last year, we live near to my parents so we go to their house for most major holidays. We’ll be there on Thursday with the vegan portion of the meal. I will be making my all time favorite Green Bean Casserole, Garlic Smashed Potatoes, and My Aunt Betty’s French Apple Pie (I’m using the crust recipe from Veganomicon). I am also making a cornbread stuffing for the first time (easier to make my own vegan stuffing to share than trying to work with my dad on veganizing the family classic!). I’m using the recipe for Vegan Richa’s pumpkin cornbread, but doing my own thing for the stuffing. I’ve asked my dad to make his famous Cranberry Orange Relish—it’s not Thanksgiving without it!  And I’m making a pupkin pie, using The Minimalist Baker’s recipe (but with that same Veganomicon crust). My mom loves her pumpkin pie recipe, and it’s not vegan, which is why I always make the apple pie. But I really wanted pumpkin pie too—it’s been 3 years since I’ve had pumpkin pie!  So I’m making a pie all for myself!

Are you stuffed yet? No? Good—then make these Pumpkin Orange Cranberry muffins! You’ll thank me later!


Pumpkin Muffins
makes 18 large, or 4 dozen mini muffins

Dry Ingredients
2 ¾ c flour
1 c granulated sugar
½ c brown sugar
2 t baking powder
2 t baking soda
½ t salt
2 ½ t cinnamon
1 t nutmeg
1 t cloves
1 t ground ginger

Wet Ingredients
½ c orange juice
2 c cranberries
¼ c apple cider vinegar
½ c coconut oil (or other vegetable oil)
1 15 oz can of pumpkin puree
1 T molasses
1 t vanilla
½ t orange extract

Mix all dry ingredients together. Set aside.

Pour orange juice and cranberries into a smalls aucepan. Heat over medium high heat until the berries pop and begin to squish. Turn off heat. Add coconut oil, pumpkin, vinegar, molasses, and extracts. Mix well.

Pour the wet mixture over the dry and mix well, incorporating all of the dry ingredients.

Spoon into well greased muffin tins (I love Trader Joe’s spray coconut oil), about ¾ of the way full.

Bake at 350* for 25 minutes (20 + minutes for mini muffins). A toothpick inserted in the middle of the muffin should come out dry. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to finish cooling. I like to serve with coconut butter. Enjoy!


I love to hear from you! Please leave a comment on my facebook wall or send me an email at sarah@frieddandelions.com.

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Nov 14

Apple Pie Ice Cream


If you’re like me, you know that ice cream is not just a summer treat!  I eat ice cream all year round.  I come from a whole family of ice cream lovers!  So it only seemed right to take a classic fall flavor like Apple Pie and transform it into a cold and icy treat!

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Bright pops of apple, hints of maple and cinnamon, creamy coconut goodness and crunchy cookies bring all of the flavors of apple pie into one bowl!  I really like Enjoy Life’s sugar cookies and Trader Joe’s snickerdoodles—both are allergen free—no gluten, soy, nuts, dairy, etc.  The Trader Joe’s cookies are softer so they will melt right in to the ice cream, and the Enjoy Life cookies will stay a bit crunchier.  You can’t go wrong!


Satisfy your summer ice cream cravings and whip up a batch of this yummy ice cream this week!  Enjoy!


Apple Pie Ice Cream
1 large apple/2 small apples, diced small
1 T coconut oil
¼ t cinnamon
sprinkle of clove
sprinkle of nutmeg

1 can coconut cream (I like Trader Joe’s brand in the brown can)
1 t vanilla
½ t almond extract (optional)
¼ c maple syrup (more to taste)
¼ t cinnamon
4-6 cookies (sugar cookies, snickerdoodles or gingersnaps would all work well), divided

Melt coconut oil in a skillet.  Toss apples in cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg.  Add them to the skillet and cook over medium heat until apples are soft, but not mushy.  Set aside.

Pour coconut cream, vanilla and almond extracts, maple syrup, remaining cinnamon, and 3 sugar cookies in blender.  Blend until smooth, with no cookie bits remaining.  Crumble remaining cookies into ¼ inch pieces.  Mix in apples and cookies with the cream mixture and pour into ice cream maker.  Follow machine instructions to freeze ice cream.  Store in freezer to firm up and serve!


I love to hear from you! Please leave a comment on my facebook wall or send me an email at sarah@frieddandelions.com.

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