Tag Archives: dessert

Festive Raspberry Almond Thumbprint Cookies

These shortbread-y almond thumbprint cookies are flecked with tiny almond pieces and have ruby-like raspberry jam centers. Not overly sweet and with hints of almond flavor in each bite, these crunchy on the outside, chewy on the inside cookies are perfect with a glass of almond milk.

I brought these festive cookies to a Vegan Cookie Swap over at Keepin’ It Kind with Kristy! Click here for the easy recipe!

Thumbprint Cookies- Luminous Vegans

What’s your favorite holiday cookie?

PS I am currently taking an epic road trip from Atlanta to Oregon. Me + live blogging on the road = fail, but if you’re interested you can check out my twitter and/or instagram feed.

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Blueberry Flaugnarde aka Blueberry Custard Cake

Blueberry panstard? Cakestard? No. Stardcake…erm. How about blueberry cuscake? I’m tryin’ to Brangelina this lovely blueberry dessert. Because it is a suprising, yet magical combination between custard and pancake. And shouldn’t all magical combinations of things have their names blended together? 

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I saw this on The Misfit Baker’s (now retired) blog awhile ago. And since Neal recently bought a ginormous bag of frozen blueberries (which I also used here), I decided to give it a go. The recipe is super simple and doesn’t have a lot of steps which is something I love about all of Starr’s recipes. This particular recipe is as simple as blend, pour, sprinkle and bake.

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It tastes like a delicate blueberry custard with a bit of pancake-feel going on around the edges and bottom. Which is pretty much how Starr described it on her blog, as a mix between custard and pancake.  In fact, that very description is what led me to pin the recipe.

The only mods I made:

  • I was feeling extra non-measure-y, so I just drained and dumped in a whole 12.3 oz box of firm silken tofu in the food processor. This, instead of measuring out 1 1/2 cups of pureed tofu. Seemed about right.
  • Didn’t have a 10-inch spring form pan, so I used an 8-inch baker’s pan. This resulted in a thicker custard cake and I had to bake it an extra 15 minutes as a result.

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Even with my janky mods, it came out delicious! I ate it warm. I ate it cold (before I even realized that’s like a thing that French people actually do). In all variations, it was tasty. But my favorite way to eat it was warm with a glass of almond milk.

This blueberry flaugnarde was lovely to eat for breakfast and for dessert! It could even be a great afternoon snack. But of course if I ate it in the afternoon I’d have to follow it with a nice long nap. So if someone asked me what I did that day I could say — oh, I had some blueberry cuscake and an afsnap (afternoon snack and nap).

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What custard-y foods do you enjoy eating?

Simple Skillet Blueberry Apple Crisp

Can I just take a minute to tell you how wonderful Neal is. The other day he saw me struggling with food sticking to our main frying pan (see this post for deets). So he surprised me with a new cast iron skillet the other day! I had a cast iron skillet back in the day. Like back in the only eating ramen, microwave-meal days. Needless to say, it got neglected, misused and ended up in the cast iron skillet grave.Simple Skillet Blueberry Apple Crisp - Luminous Vegans

I’m thrilled that I’ve been given a second chance with this deceptively simple-looking pan. I’ve been using it non-stop since I got it. I refried the vegan egg in it. Success! I baked brussels sprouts in it and made polenta in it. And after each gentle cleaning and light oiling of my preciousss, I’m dreaming about what to make next in it.

Sunday morning I hopped out of bed and decided to bake a sweet breakfast in it. I don’t hop out of bed. I don’t bake stuff unless desperate. What’s happening to me? What have you done to me cast iron skillet?

Simple Skillet Blueberry Apple Crisp - Luminous Vegans

This simple and tasty blueberry apple crisp (adapted from this recipe at The Grit) involves tossing fruit with some flour, sugar and spices in one bowl. Mushing rolled oats, flour, sugar, vegan margarine and spices in another. Pouring them in the skillet and baking. This was one of those free-form-throw-it-together deals, so I only sorta measured the ingredients. The recipe listings are estimates only, but I think it’s hard to mess up fruit and oats. You can use whatever fruit you like, I just used what we happened to have in the kitchen and freezer.

Simple Skillet Blueberry Apple Crisp - Luminous Vegans

Skillet Blueberry Apple Crisp

Ingredients

For the fruit bottom:

  • 2 gala apples cored and cut into chunks
  • 3 1/2 cups frozen blueberries
  • 2 1/2 tbs flour
  • 2 1/2 tbs sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of salt

For the crispy oat top:

  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup vegan margarine
  • pinch of cinnamon and salt
  • 12 inch cast iron pan

Directions

Preheat the oven to 375 F degrees. Throw all the ingredients for the “fruit bottom” in a bowl and mix well so all the fruit is thoroughly coated. Pour it in the skillet and let that sit so everything will meld together while making the crispy oat top. Throw all the ingredients for the “crispy oat top” in a bowl. I then used my hands to incorporate everything together so all oats were coated and the margarine was melted. The oats were semi-clumpy and sticky. Crumble oat crisp on top of fruit. Bake for about an hour until the top turns golden and crispy and the fruit filling is all bubbly.

Simple Skillet Blueberry Apple Crisp - Luminous Vegans

If you don’t have a 12 inch cast iron skillet, this can still work in a 10 inch or even 8 inch baker’s pan. Of course, you might have to either adjust the amount of fruit used or let it bake longer because it will be thicker.Simple Skillet Blueberry Apple Crisp -Luminous Vegans

I love how simple, mistake-proof and tasty this was. One of the things I don’t enjoy about baking is having to measure every single thing out precisely. I was able to eyeball a lot of stuff. This is just one of those dishes where a little less/more flour or a little less/more sugar or margarine just doesn’t seem like it’s going to hurt it. I am so excited to try this out with other fruit. While I really enjoy blueberries, I might go for something that doesn’t give me “blueberry smile” next time!

Simple Skillet Blueberry Apple Crisp - Luminous Vegans

Have you used a cast iron skillet before? What are your favorite ways to use it?

Easy Banana Pudding Cups

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I grew up eating traditional Thai food. But there were several American (mostly Southern) dishes that we would eat on occasion. This was probably due to my pa. He didn’t cook a lot, but there were a handful of American dishes that were his jam.

One of these dishes was sweet banana pudding with Nabisco vanilla wafers. I can’t actually remember if he made this or if he was just a champion at eating it. Either way, this banana pudding dessert was something we both really enjoyed.banana-pudding-cups-8220-1

I’ve made it before using store-bought vegan vanilla pudding packs. This time I wanted to go all Martha Stewart on the pudding and make it from scratch. A couple of recipes from An Unrefined Vegan and The Vegan Cookbook Aficionado got me thinkin’— oh yeah, I forgot cashews can be used for more than just cheese! So the banana-y creaminess of this pudding is amped up with raw cashews.

Layered with organic vanilla snaps (storebought—I don’t have time to Martha Stewart everything!) and fresh banana slices, this dessert is a fresher animal-friendly version of the yellow stuff I grew up with. Yet it still remains creamy, decadent and full of banana-vanilla flavor.

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Banana Pudding Cups with Vanilla Cookies

Ingredients

This makes about 1 1/2 cups of the banana pudding. When layered with cookies and bananas, it fills two 8oz cups as shown.

  • 1 cup raw cashews soaked overnight (at least 6-8 hours) and drained
  • 4 tbs coconut cream
  • vanilla beans scraped from one inch of a vanilla pod
  • 2 tsp maple syrup
  • 3 ripe bananas  (if you don’t want your dessert turnin’ dark due to banana oxidation, lightly soak the bananas in a little lemon juice mixed with water before blending or assembling)
  • 6-8 vanilla wafers (I used these or make your own)

Directions

Blend the cashews, coconut cream, vanilla beans, maple syrup and 2 bananas in a high-speed blender or food processor until silky smooth. Set aside. Slice the remaining banana. Now, assemble. You can do the layers however you wish. I was pretty random but I think I did cookie, pudding, banana slices…until I reached the top of each cup (about 3 pudding layers). Cover the cups with saran wrap and let it sit in the fridge for at least 3 hours so the cookies soften from the pudding and the pudding firms. Then when it’s ready, crush some more cookies on top and dig in!

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What dessert from your childhood do you still love to eat?

Baked Peaches with Coconut-Vanilla Cashew Cream

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I pictured this dessert in my head long before I executed it. I envisioned raw peach halves filled to the brim with sweet cashew cream. This idea danced around in my head for several weeks.

I bought peaches every week with every intention of bringing this dish to fruition. But the peaches just sat in the fruit bowl and eventually just ended up in my belly…no cashew cream, no dessert.  There was something missing.

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Until one morning, this article came up on my Flipboard. And I was all — that’s what’s missing! I need to bake the peaches!

So I bought more peaches and set aside four specifically for this dessert.

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I call it a dessert because it’s sweet and has jelly-syrup and cookie crumbles on top. But real talk, I did eat some for breakfast one morning because well, peach and jelly. Those are breakfast-y things, right?

Baked Peaches filled with Coconut-Vanilla Cashew Cream

Baked Peaches Ingredients

  • 4 peaches
  • some melted vegan butter (enough to coat the tops of the peach halves)

Coconut-Vanilla Cashew Cream Ingredients

  • 1 cup of cashews soaked overnight and then drained
  • 1/2 cup of coconut cream
  • 2 tbs sugar
  • 2 tbs maple syrup
  • 1 tbs almond milk
  • seeds from half a vanilla bean

Jelly-Syrup Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup of your favorite jelly, jam or marmalade. I used a lemon-raspberry marmalade.
  • 3 tsp melted vegan butter (can omit)
  • 1-2 tbs of water

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Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Halve the peaches and remove the pits. Place the peaches in a baking pan and brush the tops of the peaches with the melted butter. I don’t have a brush, so I just used a spatula with a very flexible tip. Bake for 25 minutes.  While that bakes, make the cashew cream and the jelly-syrup.

Throw all the cashew cream ingredients in a food processor and blend until super smooth. I would usually bust out my Vitamix for this, but I decided to give the food processor some love. If you blend for a long time, you’d be surprised how smooth it can get in a food processor. Once smooth, store it in the fridge.

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For the jelly syrup, put the jelly in a small pot on low heat. Stir in the melted butter if you’re using it. I put that in because I had leftover melted butter from rubbing it on the peaches. Let it warm and then slowly drizzle in water until you get a syrup consistency of your liking. I used about one tablespoon of water. It depends on how thick your jelly is and whether you use butter or not.

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Next, assemble! I put a dollop of cashew cream in each peach and drizzled with the jelly syrup. We happened to have some store-bought vanilla cookies on hand so I crumbled a few of those on top too.

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I enjoyed eating this straight from the oven hot because the heat helped melt all the different components together. This ensured that every bite was creamy, sweet and peach-a-rific.

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Thanksliving 2011

As much as I detest the historical context that is thanksgiving, we still cook lots of good food on this day.  I think when we first went vegan it was mainly to show “regular folk” that when one makes the decision to start caring for our fellow earthlings, it doesn’t mean that you can’t have hearty, filling holiday food.  And now?  Its still for that reason but also vegan holiday food is fun to make and more fun to eat.

Let’s start with some food prep, shall we?

Seitan loaf.  This is my favorite recipe because its easy (you don’t have to knead the thing endlessly) and the loaf ends up being really moist.  Yes, it takes 2 hrs to simmer and then another 20 minutes in the oven, but the prep time is minimal and while its simmering away, you can make other stuff….or take a nap.  

Cranberry sauce with clementines and cinnamon.

Creamed kale. Dear kale, you are my favorite.

The finished plate.  We also had stuffing (some organic mix from a bag) and some mashed taters (homemade, no recipe), and mushroom gravy (homemade, no recipe).  This is making me hungry.  We also had blueberry cobbler for dessert but failed to get a pic.

The lovely aromas wafted around the house enticing the dogs out of their slumber.

                          

With such enticing smells, they were desperate for some table scraps and crumbs.  That’s soy nog in the cup…yummm.

                  

We gave in only because we were so full and we were mostly just playing with the food left on our plates at this point.

                 

See.  Julius Caeser.  No?  Oh well.