Category Archives: Vegan

Mirin Roasted Kabocha

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Do you have a bottle of mirin in the back of your fridge or cupboard? Do you remember what you bought it for? I used to forget about my mirin until a recipe like Heidi’s Black Sesame Otsu came along, and then afterward I’d let it get pushed back into the shadows all over again. Thank goodness it takes a very long time to go bad. But over the past year I’ve been reaching for it a bit more frequently and experimenting with it in some less obvious ways.

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Filed under Baking, Gluten-Free, Recipe, Side, Vegan, Vegan option, Vegetarian

Scallion and Watercress Kimchi + Feast by Lukas: Building Blocks

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Last time we did kimchi, 2 years ago (every day, week, month, and quarter—it’s been a quarter of a year since I wrote anything here—just picks up more and more speed, snowball style), it was a quasi-traditional, vegetarian, napa cabbage one, and I live-tweeted the whole process. This one is similar, but a little quicker and therefore arguably a little easier. Scallions are one of the easier-to-get-your-hands-on spring vegetables, available in abundance, so I thought it’d be a good thing to highlight here. Farmer’s market scallions—you can pick up some purple ones!—are thinner and have longer, bushier tops than the grocery store varieties do. They’re also grittier and need a more rigorous cleaning, in several changes of water.

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This recipe comes from the latest issue of my digital magazine, Feast by Lukas. In this issue, called “Building Blocks,” kimchi functions as one of those little accessories that makes for easy, tasty, component-style meals. I’ll add kimchi to lots of things—sandwiches, rice and noodle bowls, savory pancakes, in soup, as a topping for crostini, and right out of the jar with a fork. Other dishes in this issue include a “slaw starter,” primers on the #putaneggonit egg, some excellent vinaigrettes, a recipe for “nut muffins” (saying that out loud still makes me chuckle), and more. Also, I’m proud to share that photographer Cara Howe collaborated with me on this issue, and her gorgeous photos—that’s hers up top, and on the cover of the issue—are such a huge improvement to the project I still can’t even believe it. You can download the Feast by Lukas app in the iTunes store, and within that you can subscribe or purchase individual issues.  Continue reading

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Filed under Gluten-Free, Side, Snack, Toppings, Vegan, Vegetarian

New Year’s Day Dal

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It’s almost over. 2013 has been good to me, with exciting developments and lots of change, but with all the fluster and the bluster, with all the new types of stress and the unrelenting, unfamiliar feeling (for me) of not quite being able to maintain the grip on things in the way that I would like to, I know that I’ll be just fine when 2013 is a speck in the rearview mirror. Maybe it always feels this way, with the rush that November and December always are. And maybe the fluster and bluster is just a sign of activity. Whatever. Next.

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My grandmother had the tradition every New Year’s Eve of setting outside a coffee mug that contains a quarter, nickel, dime, and penny. The coins should be shiny, and the mug should go out where it’ll get lots of air circulation. This was thought to promise prosperity, and I’ve never missed a year, never deviated from it or questioned it. The only thing is that living in New York, my access to the outdoors is a fire escape, so I’ve never been sure if that’s enough air circulation or not. Maybe you’ll want to give this a try. Continue reading

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Filed under Beans, Entrees, Gluten-Free, Recipe, Vegan, Vegan option, Vegetarian Entrees

A Few Recent Lunches

I don’t have a recipe today, but I’m still sharing some Instagram shots some of my lunches—on the days I work from home and when, most importantly, the natural light is good—over on the Facebook page, which you can follow if you’d like to. My Instagram is @LukasVolger if you care to follow there.

Hopefully one or two of these will inspire you in the kitchen, give you something new to try, particularly as far as summer food goes. Let me know in the comments if you have any specific questions. Happy July—almost August. I hope you’re enjoying vacations and hikes and summer produce and the steamy outdoors as much as I am.

Up top is a garbanzo salad with upland cress, roasted bell peppers and tomatoes, and a smoked paprika vinaigrette.

Here’s a sandwich with sharp cheddar, avocado, and a spicy corn salad on a toasted baguette. Continue reading

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Filed under Uncategorized, Vegan, Vegan option, Vegetarian, Vegetarian Entrees

Lentil and Cabbage Skillet Bake

Now that asparagus and ramps and spring onions and all the verdant promise of a springtime farmers market are finally inching onto our plates, how about a nice and hearty Lentil and Cabbage Bake for dinner. Does that sound good? No? Am I a little off base? Oh well, this happened last spring, too. I suppose I’m always a little reluctant to close the book on cold-weather comfort food.

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Filed under Entrees, Vegan, Vegetarian, Vegetarian Entrees

Vegan Kimchi Veggie Burgers

[Apologies for the lapse here. I hope you didn’t miss Martha Rose Shulmans’ great column a few weeks ago in the New York Times that focuses on veggie burgers.]

This burger has been in the works for a little while. The seeds were planted sometime two years ago, when I started making my own kimchi. I first used it as a condiment for veggie burgers, and from there, it wasn’t long before I thought to use it in the veggie burgers. But it took a while before I got the formula right. As usual, I wanted to add too much—watercress, chard, bok choy, tofu, seitan—and each previous attempt resulted in a flavor that was cloudy at best, and unpalatable at worst. So I did as Amanda Hesser advised in an interview that I can no longer locate (I’m paraphrasing): Cooking is similar to that rule about dressing yourself, take one item off before you leave the house.

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Filed under Gluten-Free, Vegan, Vegetarian, Veggie Burgers

Vegetarian Kimchi Weekend: Coming to You Live on Twitter

DAY 1: Here are the instructions for Day 1, in their natural Twitter state. You’ll probably need to zoom in a bit in order to make them legible. I’m happy to answer any questions.

Important change: I’m sorry to do this, but I’ve had something come up on Sunday and I need to shuffle the times below so that Day 1 of kimchi making is on Friday, and then Day 2 is on Saturday. Sorry for any confusion.

I was thinking it’d be fun to make something in an interactive, real-time way, and it occurred to me to try doing it over Twitter. Kimchi seemed like an obvious contender, since it’s a fun, relatively easy thing to make, yet one that I know a lot of people haven’t tried for themselves. Also, my own supply has been getting low, and it’s time to replenish.

So here’s here’s the plan: I’m going to put my shopping list below, then this weekend, we’ll convene at the times listed—on Twitter—and I’ll show you how I make my vegetarian (vegan, in fact) napa cabbage kimchi. It’s an uncomplicated two-day process, and I’ll take you through the step-by-step instructions and post some photos. Does that sound fun? I should have thought to do this in November, on kim-jang day, when in Korea it’s the tradition to convene and stock up on kimchi for the subsequent year. Alas, I lacked the foresight then, and now I lack the patience to wait 8 months.

Some of the ingredients—well, really just the pepper powder, and maybe the daikon radish depending on where you live—might be tricky to track down. This is why I’m announcing Veggie Kimchi Weekend now, in case you need to schedule a trip to your local Chinatown or your local Korean grocery. The idea is that we can all do it at the same time, and chime in with questions and observations, but I’ll also post the recipe next week when we’ve completed the project. And then we’ll all have kimchi to eat in a few weeks! If you want to participate, just use the hashtag #veggiekimchiweekend, and feel free to Tweet at me, @LukasVolger. Continue reading

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