Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Holiday Roundup

With the cookbook(s) done and the trip back home for the holidays done, I finally have some time to blog again! No real recipes in this post, I am sorry to say, just a tour of some of the gastronomic holiday highlights.

First up, birthday cake (sort of). If you have been reading this blog for a while you know that I decorate a cake however the birthday boy wants for his special day. This year, under the influence of the Christmas cards arriving daily at our door, Son #1 requested a gingerbread house. Vegan Mom and I thought it would be a good idea to let each kid at the party decorate his own house, so I made these four houses (thankfully, Son #1 only had one friend over for a sleep-over party, plus his two brothers). I used the same recipes as last year, except I tried something new for the icing to hold the houses together. I heated 1/3 cup of light corn syrup in a small pan, then added enough icing sugar to form a thick paste. I let it cool a bit, then rolled strips of it in my hands to create a mortar-like substance. It held really well.
For Christmas dinner with my in-laws I made the roast from Everyday Dish. No pic, I am sorry to say. I found the whole thing rather disappointing--bland and tough. For Christmas with my parents I made seitan cutlets cooked in apples, apple juice, roasted chestnuts, dried cranberries, and thyme. The recipe was rather like this one, and was very tasty.
Here is an apple frangipane tart that my sister-in-law made. My plan is to veganize this puppy in the near future, so stay tuned for that.
Other dishes in the recent past that were simple and tasty but not novel enough to warrant their own post: red peppers, onions, garlic and seitan chunks (could be tofu), and rotini tossed in olive oil, nooch, and plenty of basil.
Rice vermicelli, tofu, and bok choy in and orange ginger sauce. Kind of like this recipe.

13 comments:

shelby said...

Lovely food, and amazing dessert!

Laura said...

the tart is gorgeous!!! i am excited to hear about a vegan version. and, you are such a great dad for decorating cakes for your kids and introducing them to the healthy and conscious world of veganism! you rock :)

happyherbivore.com said...

ooh friend, i have a faux turkey recipe to share - remind me on chat.

Vegetation said...

Those gingerbread houses are adorable (plus yum!). All the food looks great, sorry you had a disappointing Christmas meal though :( Mine was delicious thanks to one of your recipes :)

VegSpinz said...

Those gingerbread houses are adorable- even better decorated, I bet! Yeah, since last year I've used graham crackers to make gingerbread houses, and my 7-year old nephew loves to build & decorate them. It's so much easier to set-up and no baking involved! I posted it on my blog this year, if you'd like to check 'em out. Happy New Year!

PurpleStick. said...

Sorry to hear that the Vegan Roast didn't turn out. I was going to make it, but due to some turn in events due to the snow, I never did. Kind of happy I didn't now though. =P Oh well, even though I have yet to try them, your "roasts" look so much better anyway, especially the recipe for Seitan stuffed with rice and chestnuts. Mmm.

Ali said...

I'm really looking forward to reading about the vegan frangipane tart!

Eating Consciously said...

I love seeing all the great vegan food we all enjoyed during the holidays. I am going to have to play around with you "royal icing" recipe for the gingerbread houses.

Tiina said...

Your blog is amazing. The pictures are great and the food looks delicious. A very happy new year to you and your family. Greetings from Finland

Kelly said...

That all looks great. The individual gingerbread houses is such a fantastic party idea. I also had no idea your whole family was so talented. The tart looks amazing.

Chaos Mom said...

welcome back! hope you had a great christmas. i made that same vegan turkey roast too, but we found it moist and tasty! the boy devoured most of it over the next 2 days, leaving virtually no leftovers for me. he requested it again this week, but i'm going to surprise him with your vegan reuben sammiches instead (the boy's new favorite is reubens).

btw, that apple dart looks almost too beautiful to eat, and i practically licked my screen when i got to the vermicelli, bok choy & tofu picture.

i'm SO glad you're back!

Eve Love said...

those gingerbread houses are SO cute!! what a great birthday party idea!

Veg-a-Nut said...

I made the same roast and found it rather tough. I did add extra spices simple from past experience so the flavor was good, just tough. Orange tofu is one of my most favorite dishes. Great job on the ginger bread houses!