Sunday, December 28, 2008

How I scram.

I woke up this morning and upon entering the bathroom, I noticed that the waterline was a wee higher than usual. I flushed, and that's when I quickly realized that there was a problem. After calling the property manager's emergency pager, bailing out the water and um...stuff...I spent the morning keeping the cats out of the bathroom, checking to make sure the water was shut off, and fighting the urge to purge. Once the guy came to fix it (and he was happy to, as he gets time and a half today)and I finished bleaching and sandblasting the toilet area with Comet, I looked at the clock. Less than one hour until game time.

A while back (during MoFo, I believe), some bloggers were sharing their tofu scramble secrets. I never got around to it, since I was trying NEW things. You know, like taking pictures of my refrigerator.

Anyhoo, here's how I do it. Sauté some chopped mushrooms and a little onion in olive oil. Crumble in some extra firm tofu. Add minced garlic, dried thyme, a little Kala Namak (if you're into an eggy taste), whatever other seasonings you like (the Southwest Seasoning from Penzey's is awesome), and some nooch.* Add a little water and cook for a few minutes. Stir in some fresh chard. I like the Chard of Many Colors from Trader Joe's, because it's so pretty. Add the juice of half a lemon (or one small one), and stir until the scramble is cooked and the chard is wilted. Sprinkle with toasted sunflower seeds.

You are now ready for kickoff.

* I don't measure this stuff. Just use as much as you deem necessary. Just remember to add a little water if you like a lotta nooch in your scram.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

A belated Weihnachtsgrüße!

For Christmas this year, I went with a German dish. The half of the family I was with is the German-Norwegian side, and all things sausage and beer are most appreciated.

My mom made this once. All I remember is that she called it "Auflauf." Turns out, all that means is "to come together." The dish itself was a variation on Schaefer or Wagners Auflauf, and my mom made it all her own. It's supposed to be like a shepherd's pie; knackwurst, sauerkraut, and topped with mashed potatoes and baked. My mom made it with a layer of scalloped potatoes, sauerkraut, wurst, and a topping of gouda cheese. I wasn't completely into the idea of making vegan sausage as well as taking a risk with the Gooda Uncheese, so I made it the easiest, and most traditional way.

I started with Isa's spicy pinto bean sausage recipe, but left out all the spices and soy sauce in her recipe, and instead used about a teaspoon of sea salt, cumin, ground coriander, and half a teaspoon of nutmeg. Then a generous dose of pepper (white pepper would be much better, but I am all out), and nooch. Kneaded it with my hands, rolled up in foil and steamed until I forgot and the smoke detector went off.

Here are my sliced knackwursts in my Brand New Le Creuset.

I made mashed potatoes, using grapeseed oil, unsweetened soy milk, salt, and a little nooch. Use red potatoes, and leave the skins on. You want it to be spreadable, so a little more milk than usual helps. The sauerkraut was from a can, although I prefer the Eden Organic in the jar. It was what they had at Target, which is where I came up with the idea. I heated it up in a small saucepan with a tablespoon of maple syrup and a tablespoon or so of caraway seed. Spread it evenly over the knackwurst slices.

Then the potatoes.

Bake for 30 or so minutes at 400° until the top looks nice and golden. Let sit for 15 minutes, and serve in slices. Wash down with a good German beer with family and friends. Don't tell them it's vegan until the dish is picked clean.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Quick explanation

It's been a rough few weeks.

First, I make a mistake at work that is basically my third strike. I begin jobhunting in earnest. I interview for a warehouse data entry position. She loves me. I am still sending out resumes.

Second, my computer died. Finished. The power supply went to shit and I was given a bad prognosis.

Third, I quit my job at the bank. Just quit. No notice. I was offered the warehouse job on Sunday, and quit on Monday. I worked a little that day, so I can stock up on prescriptions before my health insurance runs out. The last thing I need when starting a new job is to be fertile and crazy.

Fourth, started the new job. It starts at 6:30am and I'm off at 3. Still getting used to leaving in the dark and coming home in the sunlight.

Fifth, I got a new computer. I have zero dollars in my account, so my BFF Ed fronted for it.

Sixth, I am brokedy broke. I am waiting on my last check from the bank, which pretty much all goes toward advances. My check from the new job doesn't come until the 19th. Seriously. This is why I haven't blogged. I can only take so many pictures of elbow macaroni with tomato sauce or beans and rice. Oh, and I just plain forgot about taking pictures on Thanksgiving.

Once the money starts flowing again, and my life starts to feel normal, I will be back with plenty of tasty treats. Maybe as soon as this weekend!