Monday, September 3, 2007

Happy Labor Day Weekend

After being away for a while, we wanted to spend the long weekend close to home.

We started the weekend by going to the Farmer's Market. It was the biggest FM of the year (doubling in size) and lasted 2 days (doubling in duration). There were two stages for performers and an extra street was blocked to accommodate more vendors. Lots of people came out for the City Harvest and to support local farmers and artisans.

I took home apples, peaches and green beans.

Abi & I enjoyed sharing a couple Honey Crisp apples. Art took a look at us and wanted to know what all the crunching was about, and ate one also. These are THE BEST apples. They are super crisp, juicy, and perfectly tart. But the lady who grows them says they aren't the best for cooking.

We were invited to a BBQ, and that morning, Wendy called to ask if tofu would be a good sub for hamburger. There was a recipe in the newspaper (article by Jim Romanoff) for burgers, and she wanted to make them vegan for the party. I steered her in the direction of LightLife, which is what she did. Here they are all prepped for Fred to grill.

Art and I were touched and impressed that she served these. They were super tasty! Wasn't this so thoughtful & generous?!

'Smokey "beef" and Black Bean Burgers'
1 tsp. canola oil
1 sm. yellow onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. ground chipotle pepper
3/4 c. canned black beans, rinsed & drained
2 slices firm ww bread, torn in small pieces
2 Tbsp. tomato paste
1 package Litelife "Smart ground"
2 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper

Heat the oil in a small nonstick skillet over med. heat. Add onions and saute until softened. Add the garlic, cumin, & chipotle and saute 1 min. Transfer to a dish to cool.
In a med. bowl, combine the beans, bread and tomato paste. Use potato masher or fork to mash them into a rough paste. Add the Smart ground, cilantro, salt, pepper and the onion mixture. Mix thoroughly, then shape into four 3/4-inch thick patties.
Grill the burgers on a well-oiled rack. I chose a sesame seed bun and added avocado, lettuce, mustard, & sriracha. Served with that was the sweetest corn on the cob, and Fred's insalata caprese. We all enjoyed some laughs in the backyard while the kids played.

We picked up an electric ice-cream maker at a garage sale earlier this summer for $5, and I tried it out today. On page 284 of this cookbook is 'Chocolate Sorbet' and the description fits, "a rich, chocolaty frozen dessert, with a texture between that of sorbet and ice cream."
3 first time events for me: first time making home made ice cream, first recipe I've made from this cookbook, and first time making cashew milk.

I'm happy to report that it was a big success all the way around. The sorbet is delicious -- perfect texture and the flavor is major chocolately with a touch of espresso. My daughter went to bed asking if she could have more tomorrow. And, I'm ready to try another Voluptuous Vegan recipe, like the 'Coconut Sorbet' or any of the many other recipes that caught my eye.

I admit to being a delinquent blogger lately, and I miss your inspiring blogs. But vacation has a way of picking up my momentum. I'll be back with that next time.


Jody from VegChic said...

Wow, I don't think the Farmer's Markets are ever that big around here.

Hey, I also dig Honey Crisp apples. Though the best apple I've ever had was called Liberty. It tasted almost like a piece of cinnamon Valentine's candy was dissolved in it. Unfortunately, I've never found Liberty apples again.

Wow, the ice cream/sorbet looks awesome. I've yet to try making my own. Some day...

Johanna3 said...

cool post, your girls are growing so much, and cutest!

Vegan_Noodle said...

Looks like a fun holiday weekend! I'll have to keep my eye out for Honey Crisp apples, thanks for the tip.
I thought those were real hamburgers for a minute! They look mighty tasty coming off the grill!
Ooohhh, and your chocolate sorbet looks yum, I love sugar cones.

VeggieGirl said...

ooh, I LOVE honey-crisp apples!! I can't wait until the farmer's markets around here start carrying them!! by the way, I have the same green Whole Foods cloth grocery bag as you :0)

those "burgers" sound sooo delicious, as does that "ice cream"!

julie hasson said...

Hey Vicki! Welcome home. It's looks like you guys had a really fun weekend.

I hope you and Art had a great time celebrating your anniversary. We missed you in Boise.

bazu said...

Those burgers are fantastic! What a lovely and thoughtful friend. (And I'm glad she asked your advice before slapping some plain tofu on the grill!)

Ooooh, and ice cream...

Theresa said...

What a cute picture of Abi next to the grill. And how nice of your friend to veganise her burgers for you!

urban vegan said...

I've heard honey crisps are the best but have never tried one.

I would like a burger-or two, please.

maybepigscanfly said...

I bet the farmer's market was so much fun. I love going every week, as I mentioned in a recent post. I always love watching the families with their young kids, enjoying a day together getting good food (sometimes I'm a little jealous).

How nice of your friends to create a vegan option for you at their bbq!

The sorbet looks divine... no one could refuse!

Katie said...

That chocolate sorbet looks so yummy!

springsandwells said...

That's super awesome that your friend made the burgers veggie for you. Isn't it amazing how touching an effort like that is?

Also! Love the choccy sorbet! I've gotta try it! How did I miss that? As you may have noticed, I've been making tons of sorbet, and tons of recipes from the Voluptuous Vegan, and somehow didn't put the two together.

:) cute picture of the ice cream monster!

:) Amey