Vegan Roast Masterclass With Green Renters Featuring Tofurky

After attending the Green Renters soy beans and nuts masterclass a fortnight ago, I was very much looking forward to today’s class on vegan roasts.

Cate from Green Renters first took the class through what we would be making.  Desserts were up first as they needed time in the fridge and freezer.  You could hear all the “phwoaaaarrr” sounds because we had tiramisu, a chocolate peppermint torte, lemon pie and ice creams! We broke up in to groups of four and made our way to the kitchen:

vegan master class kitchen

As I’m a big big fan of anything lemon pie, that was the choice for me:

vegan lemon pie

After we made our desserts it was time for morning tea.  Cate had made some lovely donuts and baklava.  I went back for another donut and piece of baklava.  Twice.  Okay, three times (but the last time was kinda sneaky):

vegan donuts

vegan baklava

For the roast part, I teamed up with Johanna from Green Gourmet Giraffe and L. for a tofurky. I’ve never made a tofurky but I’ve attended a demonstration in the past.  The tofurky involved making a marinade, the turkey part and the stuffing:

vegan master class kitchen

vegan tofurkey

The stuffing is rolled in to a log and placed on the tofu mixture (which has been flattened down on some baking paper):

vegan tofurkey

vegan tofurkey

vegan tofurkey

You then roll it all up, luckily it all held together:

vegan tofurkey

Johanna expertly crafted some drumsticks and then the marinade was pasted on:

vegan tofurkey

…and eventually Tina Turkey was done:

vegan tofurkey

Cate and her assistant Jen took care of arranging a cheese platter and roasting potatoes, pumpkin and carrots:

vegan cheese platter

roast carrots

roast potatoes

The other teams made a nut roast wrapped in cabbage leaves:

vegan nut roast

A seitan roast:

vegan seitan roast

My plate of meganomz. I just realised I didn’t take a photo of our tofurky sliced up, but that’s it in the middle.  There’s also a wellington at the bottom there, I forgot to take a photo of it when it was done so here it is sliced:

vegan roasts

I was so full after that and couldn’t finish my meal but I managed to eat dessert of course. They all turned out great but unfortunately the ice cream didn’t set in time. The green dollop you see is avocado lemon cream. This was delicious. Our lemon pie was great (though quite runny, you can see how the filling has plopped everywhere!) but my equal favourite was the tiramisu:

vegan chocolate peppermint tart

vegan desserts

After all that food I had trouble finishing the rich chocolate tart so it went in to my lunchbox to take home.

The class was great and I thoroughly enjoyed it.  Tofurky is really easy to make even with the three different components.  It might be more time consuming but things are easy to make (the time consuming part was sauteeing the onions, mushrooms and celery so you can see it’s not actually difficult).  I liked all the roasts, especially the wellington but my favourite was the tofurky.

I would love to attend more classes but sadly (for Melbourne peeps) Cate is heading off overseas and this was the last class. I was also really pleased that through these classes I met two of my favourite bloggers, Linda and Johanna.

Hours later, I’m still really full but very much looking forward to leftovers tomorrow!


Soy Beans and Nuts Master Class With Green Renters

Today I attended a fab master class workshop put on by Cate and Chris of Green Renters. I’ve never made my own tofu, or the numerous cheeses I planned to make when I purchased vegan cheese cookbooks a long time ago.  Same with vegan yoghurt, I always meant to make it (I even bought a yoghurt maker on sale… which isn’t necessary for making vegan yoghurt) but felt a bit too information-overloaded when I’d look up different vegan yoghurt making websites.   So I thought that for my first efforts, I’d prefer to have an expert show me.

We started off with making tofu.  Soy beans were cooked up and then strained/drained but the strained liquid is what you want, not the actual mooshy beany part (which can be used for other things):












Next up was almond milk. Retro blender!!!


Coconut bacon on the stove (I’ve made mine in the oven before), with liquid smoke, tamari and molasses (I’ve used maple syrup in the past but I liked the molasses):


Vegan butters, oh my:



Some vegan butters Cate brought along:


We split up in to small groups and made a variety of different cheeses.  My little group, which included Linda from The Lentil Institution, made a mozarella, which I put in the fridge there and forgot to take home:


One of the cheeses made by another couple in the class:


I’ll need to go over the instructions for the yoghurt again but here is some barley and quinoa a-sproutin’:


Apple cider vinegar added to soy milk to make it curdle:



These vegan yoghurts were used in the process:


We had to give these a shake and now at home it still hasn’t really appeared to work unfortunately!


Kitchen hustle-bustle:


Cate and Chris provided an awesome feast.  For morning tea there were Portugese custard tarts and a banana cake with a cashew icing.  Yes I asked for a second tart and I was very tempted to ask for more cake but I think I may have wound up on some blogs, in the context of  “I met Veganopoulous and man WHAT a greedy guts”:


Anyway, below is a coconut peppery cheese on the left and a basil pesto cheese on the right:






Some really, really good bread.  Made even better when Cate said she would send me the recipe and it’s no-knead.  I love it more already:


My plate.  It looks polite and demure but I went back for way more bread and the cheeses (which you see on the bread).  That Veganopoulous, mannn what a greedy guts:


And then 4pm rolled around a little too quickly. My bus stop was nearby and although it was a pleasant day, my icy hands and ears were not impressed to see I missed the bus by five minutes and I had a forty minute wait for the next one.  Silly Sunday timetables:

While sitting on the bench at the bus stop, I saw this sign on the footpath.  From a distance, I was saying to myself “why did they spell school as scool? Are they trying to be all totes cool with the lingo? Appeal to the kids with the whacky spelling? And if so, why did they spell school correctly in the bottom triangle?”  So I was sitting there doing armchair psychology on the person who came up with this sign, then when I got up to take the photo I realised the second triangle doesn’t actually refer to the word ‘school’.  That Veganopoulous, man what a whiner:



Here are today’s efforts now safely at home (minus the mozarella and my Tupperware).  Also missing from the cheese-butter platter photo is a red capsicum cheese one of the other couples made.  Because I dropped it right before taking this photo.  So here it is, cleaned up a bit but still not edible:



I’m very glad I went, everything was great and I’m now super confident about going off in to the wild to make my own tofu, cheeses, butter spreads and yoghurt!



Baked Tofu and the Birdmen

For me, baked tofu is one of those things where I love it for a little while, then I’m over it.  Weeks later I remember it again and make some, then I’m over it.  And so the cycle continues.

I was digging it this week so I marinated some pressed firm tofu in kecap manis, garlic, ginger and sesame oil then fried it on a griddle pan.  I made lettuce leaf wraps with spiralised raw carrot and zucchini:


And for the the leftover tofu I made a simple salad with the Asian Miracle Dressing from Vegan Lunch box, which is made up of balsamic vinegar, dijon mustard, sesame oil, soy sauce, olive oil and maple syrup:


Let me explain the flag that DeeW insisted be in the photo. Husband had taken DeeW in to the city and they lasted ten minutes at the Moomba parade (because of the heat and crowds, although I secretly believe Husband couldn’t handle the tacky element).  Moomba is an annual festival held in Melbourne, first celebrated in 1955.  My goodness, I just read the Wikipedia page and had no idea about the buttocks theory.  Anyway, when I was young, the highlight of Moomba was the Birdman Rally, where people would create some ‘flying’ contraptions (more like things that involved flapping one’s arms) and then seeing who could jump off a platform and ‘fly’ the furthest.  Most of the time people flew straight down in to the Yarra River.  I don’t know you guys, Moomba these days just doesn’t seem to have the magic it once did.  Although after reading the Wikipedia bit about bums, I think the magic may be back.



Black Pepper Sneaky Tofu With Veg

The other day I blogged about the black pepper tofu I made using the recipe over at Where’s The Beef?  When Husband likes a vegan dish, I grab on to it and put it on regular rotation.  He said the sauce was good but not the tofu and could I make it with potatoes instead next time?  So I did that.  Sort of.

Here’s what I did differently to the recipe:

* boiled some cubed potatoes in advance then blanched green beans when the potatoes had cooked through (then drained them)

* I left out the tofu cubes entirely.  I happened to have about 150g of soft silken tofu.  I mooshed it up with my hands and whisked it up with the black pepper, soy sauce, kecap manis and sugar.  I added about 2Tbs of water as well.  Did not tell Husband about the tofu.

* I reduced the pepper to 1Tbs and left out the chili entirely 🙂

* I reduced the sugar by half and used brown sugar

* omitted the butter (and any vegan alternative)

* I made this as a stir fry so I first fried off both onion varieties then added in the ginger and garlic.  Then threw in some sliced button mushrooms, julienned carrot, trimmed green beans, thinly sliced sticks of green capsicum and red capsicum and sliced celery.  I added a splash of water when it was looking a bit dry

* When all that was nicely cooked I added in the soy/kecap manis/sugar/mooshed/pepper tofu sauce and let it boil up a bit and then served it over plain steamed rice:


So as you can see the sauce is kind of mostly the same-ish although there wasn’t enough for the quantity of veg I had.  With this much veg (enough leftovers for two big meals) I think I need double the amount of sauce but my kecap manis ran out.  This sauce for us is a keeper and I’m glad I can keep using it in a way that Husband likes, even though I’d prefer those crispy tofu chunks.  I could always throw mine in separately but I wanted to up the protein content of this meal, so I’m happy to keep on sneaking it in  😉


Black Pepper Tofu and the “Hot! Hot!” Jig

I’ve had this recipe for Black Pepper Tofu, over at Where’s The Beef?, bookmarked for a little while.  Yesterday I bought some firm tofu and even though today’s weather forecast is a horrible 41C (105.8F), I thought I’d fire up the wok before it got too hot in the house and make this delicious looking meal.  Here’s a news article about our weather (you might want to have your speakers low as some video plays when you load up the page).

I can’t remember the last time I fried something in oil more than a couple millimetres deep.  I think DeeW was a baby when I made jam donuts so that would be about four years ago.  I use oil in my cooking but only a little splash. Crispy fried tofu is delicious though, so I was more than happy to try this out.

Now as you can probably tell from the recipe, this is spiiiiiiiiiicy.  And because I put in some chilli paste, and only a little at that, it was hoooooooot.  The only thing I didn’t do was add butter or a vegan alternative.  And I added in some carrot for colour. Oh and I used a wok so it was all a stir fry in the end.  Next time I’d leave out the chilli entirely.  I’m not even sure why I put it in but I underestimated the heat of the chilli paste I have.

Anyway, this is really tasty and very very peppery. Some in my family would consider it hot/spicy enough to burn a hole in your stomach.  I don’t usually go for chilli, I find I enjoy meals more when I’m not jiggling up and down because of the heat.  Which is what I did when I had a taste of this and the kids thought it was really funny.  Like this one time, I was flipping channels and that Parker Lewis Can’t Lose show was on.  And I’ve never, ever watched that show but the scene happened to be the father heating pizza in the microwave and then he takes a bite and does the “hot cheese!  hot cheese!” dance.  That was me today.

So yep, a recipe I would make again but I’d completely leave out the chilli and maybe reduce the black pepper by at least half  🙂  Husband doesn’t like tofu but he said the sauce is really good and can I make it next time without… tofu.