tempura is my life


Happy Halloween! Anybody hung over? After a long weekend of costumes, Pauly D, breaking my phone, dancing to Daft Punk and way too much alcohol some good food is much needed! I suggest fried food and more alcohol. Yes, I said fried food...sometimes a little grease can go a long way to make you feel better. Last week I fried something for the first time in my life. I can't say it was a pleasant experience and I'm not sure I'll ever do it again...but if you are comfortable with hot oil coming at your face then you should try this recipe! I was inspired by a recent trip to Las Vegas where I dined at Shibuya in the MGM Grand Hotel. I was a bit self-conscious to mention that I was vegan but the waiter knew every vegan item on the menu and actually gave me the option of trying a vegan version of the vegetable tempura. I, of course, said yes, and it was every bit as delicious as any regular tempura I've ever had. I highly recommend this restaurant! The food and service were both top-notch. Anyway, I was cooking a friend his first full vegan dinner and I decided to give vegan tempura a go. I used a recipe for the batter from Vegan Yum Yum (http://veganyumyum.com/2009/02/vegetable-tempura/): Tempura Batter 1 Cup Cold Water 1 Cup Flour 2 Pinches Salt 1/4 tsp Baking Powder 1 Tbs Ener-g Egg Replacer Powder mixed with 3 Tbs Water 1/4 Cup Extra Water, if needed, for thinning

Instead of egg replacer I used ground flaxseed. I filled the pan with lots of vegetable oil and heated it to 350 F. Dropped the first piece of broccoli in the batter, then in the pan...popping and squirting and craziness occurred but with the help of my roommate we figured out a good system. She held the splatter guard, I dropped the broccoli in and she fished it out to cool. In the end it was delicious but to tell the truth I was a bit traumatized! I'll leave the frying to the pros. But try it for yourself. I served it with mushroom miso soup, a mixed greens salad and blackened teriyaki tempeh. 

If that's too intimidating for you, another good hangover cure is my recipe for Boozey Brussel Sprouts! Instead of a bloody mary, why not add some booze to your veggies! This is so quick and easy!

Boozey Brussel Sprouts

About 10 Brussel sprouts

white wine

oregano, salt, pepper

Fill a skillet with about an inch of white wine. I used a cheap Trader Joe's Pinot Grigio, but I've tried it with Chardonnay as well. Wash and cut the Brussel sprout into quarters and add to the wine. Cover and let them simmer until tender. Add the oregano, salt and pepper to taste. And that's it!

And last but not least, since I can't eat candy on Halloween, I have to make something sweet and yummy to satisfy the candy cravings that automatically come during Halloween. I chose to try red velvet cupcakes. The recipe I used is from the Babycakes cookbook. If you haven't been to the Babycakes in either New York or LA you are missing out! The pastries are all vegan and mostly gluten free! (http://www.babycakesnyc.com/) These are the ingredients:

Vegan Red Velvet Cupcakes

.5 cup rice milk 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar 3.25 cups whole spelt flour 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder 4 teaspoons baking powder .5 teaspons baking soda 2 teaspoons salt 2/3 cup coconut oil 1.25 cups agave nectar 2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract 5 tablespoons of natural red food coloring
I highly recommend trying these!! I added homemade vanilla frosting and cocont shavings. But you can do some cute Halloween decorations as well.
Have fun with these Halloween Hangover treats :)