Sunday, September 1, 2013

MOVH 2013 :)

If you follow vegan recipe blogs at all you're probably aware that September is Vegan MOFO (month of food) 2013. Readers of this blog may be expecting me to participate, largely because I told quite a few people "hey, I think I'm posting for MOFO this year!" I would have been more correct had I said "hey, I'm going to plan for MOFO this year" without the bit about actually executing said plans.

 I will be posting this month on vegan topics, but without any explicit connection to Vegan MOFO. Most of the posts I'm planning don't really fall into the category "food". Consider the next few weeks the "month of vegan history". (MOVH?) We'll begin in the next post where I'll ruminate on whether ANY of the history I'll be discussing can be correctly termed "vegan history".

I sure hope I can convince myself that it can, otherwise my name for the week is completely inaccurate.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

ANZAC Day Biscuits

It's a good thing Earth Day is now stretched into Earth Week. It gives me a few more days to put up my posts that tie in with Earth Day.

Today my post commemorates an entirely different day - ANZAC Day.

ANZAC Day is commemorated in Australia on April 25, which is today in my part of the world. I'm not certain what day it is right now down under, but it's close! I want to get the recipe up now so I make sure the post gets made on (or close to) the appropriate day. The explanation of WHY this recipe is relevant to this blog will come shortly, but for now, LET THERE BE COOKIES!!!!

ANZAC Biscuits
reprinted from the Australian Government Department of Veterans' Affairs

The following is an original recipe provided by Bob Lawson, an Anzac present at the Gallipoli landing.
1 cup each of plain flour, sugar, rolled oats, and coconut
4 oz (125g) butter
1 tbls treacle (golden syrup)
2 tbls boiling water
1 tsp bicarbonate soda (add a little more water if mixture is too dry)


1. Grease biscuit tray and pre-heat oven to 180°C.
2. Combine dry ingredients.
3. Melt together butter and golden syrup. Combine water and bicarbonate soda, and add to butter mixture.
4. Mix butter mixture and dry ingredients.
5. Drop teaspoons of mixture onto tray, allowing room for spreading.
6. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until golden. Allow to cool on tray for a few minutes before transferring to cooling racks.

This recipe is lacto-vegetarian if dairy butter is used. To veganize it simply use a vegan margarine or other equivalent. The most widely available brand of golden syrup - Lyle's - is vegan. 

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Samp Pudding

This post is part of the Food Bloggers Against Hunger project. I only found out about the project this morning so wasn't able to plan ahead and integrate it seamlessly into the structure of this blog, which is why you're seeing the recipe before the history. Don't worry. The history is coming!

 Please take a few moments to send a letter to congress asking them to support anti-hunger legislation. There is more information on taking this important action at this link. You can learn more about the issue of hunger at Share Our Strength's website.

The recipe as printed:

Boil the samp well till dry, add good milk, a little sweetening, and a good quantity of sweet apples sliced thinly, well baked, eaten with molasses, sugar, or without.

My adaptation:

Adapted from Nature's Own Book by Asenath Nicholson (1835)

2 1/4 cups unsweetened non-dairy milk, divided
2 Tablespoons sugar
1/4 cup coarse corn meal
1/2 cup apple, very thinly sliced

Heat 2 cups of the milk and the sugar together over very low heat. Gradually whisk in corn meal, stirring thoroughly to avoid lumping. Continue to cook mixture, stirring until thickened. Arrange apple slices in bottom of a well-greased baking dish and pour pudding over the apples. Pour 1/4 cup of milk over the pudding, do not stir it in. Bake at 300 degrees for about 2 hours.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Almond Caudell

adapted from A Forme of Cury (circa 1390) (with guidance)

1 cup blanched almonds
2 cups white wine, preferably sweet and inexpensive
1/2 tsp ginger
pinch saffron
pinch salt
brown sugar to taste (a few Tbs)

Add almonds and wine to blender and puree. Bring mixture to a boil in a saucepan. Add ginger, saffron, and salt. Lower heat to a simmer and add brown sugar to taste. Simmer 15 minutes. Serve while warm.

 Scan of original page from University of Manchester:

 From the Project Gutenberg ebook of Samuel Pegge's 1780 transcription:

Take Almaundes blaunched and drawe hem up with wyne, do þerto powdour of gyngur and sugur and colour it with Safroun. boile it and serue it forth.

[Although far from a vegetarian cookbook (500+ years early for that :) ), as the first English language cookbook A Forme of Cury is worthwhile to know about for anyone interested in cookery. The recipe above is my own take, informed by too many sources to link to. I think I looked at pretty much every resource on the web dealing with medieval cookery.]

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Tomato Nuttose


adapted from

6 T creamy peanut butter
1 cup tomato pulp
1 cup bread crumbs
1/4 t sage
1/2 t salt
1/4 t marjoram
Onion salt or celery salt (probably garlic salt if you want)

Cream peanut butter into 2/3 cup hot water. Add tomato pulp. Put bread crumbs in bowl and mix the herbs and salt. Add to tomato and nut butter mixture. Add flavored salt to taste. form mixture into a loaf, wrap loosely in foil, and steam 2 1/2 to 3 hours. 
Nuttose was developed in 1896 by Dr. John Harvey Kellogg. Yep, the breakfast cereal guy. You'll be hearing lots about him in the future, but for this post I'm keeping the focus on Nuttose.

Nuttose is considered the first product intended explicitly as a meat analog or replacement, although some authorities award this honor to Protose (also developed by Kellogg). At any rate, Kellogg was selling Nuttose commercially by at the latest 1908. The basic "formula" of Nuttose - grind nuts into paste, add water and flavorings, thicken with a starch, form a cutlet or patty and steam it - will be familiar to many reading this post.
For a different Nuttose recipe click here . Please note the recipe at this link is not historically accurate - Nuttose did not contain gluten as an ingredient (other meat analogs developed by Kellogg contained gluten, but Nuttose did not).

Tuesday, March 26, 2013


adapted from 'All-Protein Crunchy Granola' Recipes for a Small Planet (1973)
makes 12 cups

1/2 to 3/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup oil
1 Tbsp vanilla
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup sesame seeds
1 cup soy grits
1 cup wheat germ
2 cups grated unsweetened coconut
7 cups rolled oats

Heat the syrup, oil and vanilla in a dutch oven until very thin.
Take of the heat and mix in the remaining ingredients in order given. Try to coat as thoroughly as possible.
Place the dutch oven in a 350 degree oven and toast the granola lightly. The mixture will begin to toast after about 15 minutes. Stir mixture every 5 - 10 minutes after it begins to toast. Allow to cool before placing in containers.

Fruit Sticks

adapted from Food and Cookery, 1911

1 3/4 cups pastry flour
3 T sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 1/2 T oil
1/3 c water
2/3 c raisins

Finely chop raisins. Combine flour, sugar, and salt. Rub oil well into this dry mixture.Mix water in so it is evenly distributed and forms a dough. Take half the dough and roll into a thin sheet. Distribute the chopped raisins evenly over it. Roll the remaining dough into a sheet and cover the first sheet of dough. Press the sheets together and cut diamond shapes. Prick each shape several times with a fork. Bake in 450 oven until the crisps are just light brown. Do not over bake.

A 1910 List of "Vegetarian" Cookbooks

This list of  "vegetarian" cookbooks was printed in the May 1910 issue of The American literary magazine The Bookman:

Vegetables and Vegetable Cooking, Mrs. E. P. Ewing, 1884. [not veg]
American Salad Book, M. DeLoup, 1901. [not veg]
Fifty Salads, Thomas J. Murrey, 1885. [not veg]
Fruits: How to Use Them, H. M. Poole, 1890.[gelatin]
Vegetarian Savouries, Mary Pope, 1904. [no preview]
Novel Dishes for Vegetarian Households, Mary Pope, 1904. [no preview]
Vegetarian Cookery, F. A. George, ??. [1908, gelatin]
The Corn Cook-Book, E. O. Hiller, 1907. [revised 1918. lard/bacon drippings/some meat]
How to Cook Apples in One Hundred Different Ways, Georgiana Hill, ?? [1865].
How to Cook Potatoes in One Hundred Different Ways, Georgiana Hill, ?? [not veg].
Salads: How to Dress Them One Hundred Different Ways, Georgiana Hill, ??. [no preview]
Salad and Salad Making, Mrs. Emma P. Ewing, 1888. [NOT VEGETARIAN]
Fruit Recipes, R. M. Fletcher-Berry, 1907. [gelatin]
Edible and Poisonous Mushrooms, M. C. Cooke, 1894. [no preview]

The compiler of this list paid scant attention to whether the books listed were actually vegetarian cookbooks. Of the 14 listed 6 have meat dishes while another 3 use gelatin. I was unable to view any text from books noted with 'no preview'.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Savory Frijoles with Natural Rice

Adapted from New Age Vegetarian Cookbook (1968)

Savory Frijoles with Natural Rice

1 1/3 cups cooked rice (preferably brown rice)
1 can pinto beans
1 Tblsp margarine
2/3 tsp Vegex (see note)
3 Tblsp vegan sour cream (see note 2)
Chopped parsley, to taste

Drain and rinse the beans. Heat the margarine, Vegex, and sour cream in a pan over medium heat, stirring,  until the sour cream dries noticably. Stir in the beans and continue to heat until warm. Serve beans over the rice. Garnish with chopped parsley.


Vegex is a yeast extract similar to marmite or vegemite. It is commercially available, although the alternatives may be easier to find without resorting to buying over the internet. Another good substitute in this recipe is Better Than Bouillon No-Beef Base.


I generally DESPISE recipes that attach the word 'vegan' to an ingredient without providing more guidance, yet I'm doing that myself here. There are plenty of recipes for sour cream taste-alikes floating around the net to try out. When I see 'sour cream' in a recipe my mind reads 'plain soy yogurt', so that's what I use.


Again, my adaptations were modifications to fit the way contemporary cooks go about the business of cooking. If I was making this as a meal I would tweak the flavors quite a bit. As is it seems terribly bland. Could definitely use some cumin and oregano ....

Nut Butter with Sprouts and Vindication

Just a personal history note today. Don't worry, I'll get back to the other stuff. Just indulge me a bit. It will soon be over. :)

Some time in the early 90s I developed a taste for a particular sandwich - peanut butter and alfalfa sprouts on a garlic bagel. I'm not sure when I first tried this combination or why I thought it would be a good idea. The way the counter help stared in disbelief when I'd order this little piece o' heaven I could have been sprouting a second nose or something.


Guess it is odd. Probably not a combination too many people have tried. Or so I thought.

This afternoon I was researching old vegan cookbooks when I ran across this suggested make-ahead lunch on page 70 of the March 1981 Vegetarian Times:

"nut butter and sprouts"

Not  exactly what I came to call "lesser sandwich of the gods" - the garlic bagel is absolutely essential - but the world still seems a little less bleak knowing there are others who have eaten of the PB&sprouts tree.


"Lesser sandwich of the gods" suggests a question - is there a "greater"? Yes, there is. Apple butter and almond butter on whole wheat.

But I should really be getting back to larger topics ...

Peanut Soup

Adapted from A Vegetarian in the Family (1977), page 25

2 servings

1 cup vegetable stock
1/4 cup peanut butter
scarce 1/2 cup soymilk
1/4 tsp chili powder

Bring stock to boil in a pan. Whisk in the peanut butter. Reduce heat to a simmer. Add soymilk and chili powder. Allow to simmer for 15 minutes. Add salt to taste.


Most of the dishes in this book are fairly everyday type food. There is little in the way of flash or flair. What intrigued me about this dish are its (unstated) African origins. It stands out compared to other more humdrum dishes.

The original recipe calls for 1/4 tsp salt, which I have changed to 'season to taste'. Peanut butter usually contains salt, as do many stocks. Additional salt will often be unnecessary.

Note 'natural' peanut butter should be used. Peanut butter should contain no more than 3 ingredients: peanuts, oil, and salt. Any additional ingredients are usually unnecessary.

Other than eliminating the additional salt my 'adaptations' are merely 'fixing' the quantities listed so they fit contemporary recipe style (e.g. '1 cup' instead of '1/2 pint')

Retro Review: A Vegetarian in the Family

A Vegetarian in the Family
by Janet Hunt
96 page mass market paperback

This slim volume is more a book of ideas to get a fledgling cook started than one meant to be referred to time and again. Although it does contain full-fledged recipes with ingredient lists and quantities, a fair number of recipes are are bare bones. In  'Nut Milk' on page 16 for example, the reader is directed to whisk ground nuts (as in 'ground with a grinder', not 'peanuts') into fruit juice. No quantities are given. Suggestions for tasty nut/juice combinations are made but no other guidance is offered.
A handful of recipes require 'soya meat'. Agar is used in one recipe. TVP is mentioned in passing (but never actually called for). For these specialty ingredients the reader is referred to their local health food store. The majority of the ingredients used would have been widely available from everyday grocers (even in 1977!)
This is a British cookbook. I have an American edition which was apparently printed simultaneously with the UK edition. There are at least two revisions with increased page counts and a name change from 'A Vegetarian ...' to 'The Vegetarian ...' I'll be posting an updated recipe or two from the book some time in the future after I have a chance to try some out.


Compiled from used book lists and Google book searches. Other than the book I purchased I have never seen any of these titles.

Animal friendly meals for all seasons 1998
365 plus one vegetarian puddings, cakes & biscuits: 1994
The vegetarian in the family 1994
365 + 1 vegetarian starters, snacks and savouries 1992
Green Cook's Encyclopedia 1991
Celebrity Vegetarian Cook Book 1988
Fast and easy vegetarian cooking 1987,1989
365 + 1 vegetarian main meals 1987
Thorsons guide to the very best of vegetarian cooking 1987
The caring cook 1987
The vegetarian lunchbox 1986
The compassionate gourmet 1986
Vegetarian Pâtés & Dips 1986
The holistic cook 1986
The very best of vegetarian cooking 1984,1991
Vegetarian snacks and starters 1984
Natural Sweets 1984
The Complete Vegetarian Cookbook 1983,1987
Vegetarian dinner parties 1983
Italian dishes 1983
Pasta dishes 1982,1987
Pizzas and pancakes 1982
Quiches and flans 1982
Simple and speedy wholefood cooking 1982
The wholefood sweets book 1981
The wholefood lunch box 1979,1983
The raw food way to health 1978
A vegetarian in the family 1977,1984