Monday, November 8, 2010

Vegan Monday: Tofu Scramble (and Bonus: Sweet Potato Smoothie)

I sometimes wonder if my library sees my check-out trends and stocks new books just for me. On our weekly trips to the library, Boy-O usually dictates the time that I can spend looking at books for myself, but usually is able to use his "library voice" long enough for me to at least peruse the New Books shelf. Last week, I was excited to find a brand new vegan cookbook: The Vegan Table by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau.

Colleen's book is a guide to vegan entertaining, and recipes are organized seasonally and by occasion. It's full of great photography and recipes, exactly the type of cookbook that I can read cover to cover and then drop into my endless Amazon cart since I know it will continue to be an inspirational addition to my kitchen library.

So, early this morning when I was "Vegan Mondayless", and awake bright-eyed at 6 AM instead of bleary-eyed at 7 thanks to that daylight savings time, I decided that I had to make a tofu scramble for breakfast. Tofu scrambles, or the vegan approach to scrambled eggs, are things that I've eaten out numerous times, but for some reason have never made at home. The scramble in The Vegan Table looked so good when reading about it late last night, and since I had it on two accounts with recently reading a similar recipe in the VitaMix cookbook, I felt more than confident that a good breakfast would ensue. Well, needless to say, I loved it... and now know that I will probably be making it a lot using up all kinds of different veggies.

Now, I should note that I wish I had a bottomless appetite. The truth is, it usually doesn't take much to fill me up. I used a half recipe (amount from The Vegan Table) which should have fed me, one person, but it actually could have fed me twice. That's OK, since now I have tomorrow's breakfast taken care of...

Vegan Tofu Scramble (adapted from The Vegan Table and the Vita-Mix cookbooks)
serves 1-2, easily doubled
  • 8 oz. firm tofu, crumbled (not silken)
  • 1 T. olive oil or water
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 10 crimini mushrooms, chopped
  • 1/2 - 1 red or green (or some of each) pepper, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced (or pinch of granulated garlic)
  • 2-3 leaves fresh spinach, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 t. turmeric
  • 1/2 t. cumin
  • 1/4 t. paprika
  • 1 T. nutritional yeast
  • salt and pepper
  • (optionals: chopped jalapenos, diced tomatoes or salsa, red chile flakes... etc.)
Heat olive oil or water in a large pan over medium high heat. Saute onion, mushrooms, garlic and pepper(s) until softened. Stir in crumbled tofu, spices, nutritional yeast and spinach, and saute about 5 minutes until tofu is bright yellow, and heated through. Season with salt and pepper.

I ate half of the above portion with a Black Bean Tortilla that I had made the other day using some leftover pinto beans. The tortillas are also vegan and freeze well.

Tomorrow's breakfast.

Happily working through my morning organizing my house and paring down clutter before Winter comes, I eagerly anticipated this smoothie for lunchtime. Yesterday afternoon, I roasted some sweet potatoes (whole, in their skins at 400 degrees for about an hour) with this recipe in mind. It is in the VitaMix cookbook, and I never would have imagined how delicious it is. So good in fact, that even if you don't have a VitaMix, it would be worth trying to approximate in a food pro or with an immersion blender. But hey, if you live in Milwaukee, just stop in so you can share one with me!

Autumn Sweet Potato Smoothie (VitaMix cookbook)
makes 2 generous cups (I drank one glass, and saved one glass for later...)
  • 1 c. red grapes
  • 1/2 medium orange, peeled
  • 1/2 sweet potato, cooked and cooled
  • 1/2 medium apple, halved
  • 1/4 c. fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 1/2 t. fresh ginger root (I love ginger, so I used a two inch section of ginger root, roughly chopped)
  • 2 whole pitted dates
  • 2 c. ice cubes
  • (I also added about 1/4 c. water)
"Place all ingredients into the VitaMix container in the order listed and secure lid. Select Variable 1. Turn machine on and quickly increase speed to Variable 10, then to High. Blend for 1 minute, or until desired consistency is reached."

Every once in a while, one part of a whole makes me feel like alone it is worth the price of admission. That is how this smoothie is. Like if it was the only thing I ever made in my new machine, it would be fully worth astronomical VitaMix pricing. (Though, in all reality, I couldn't be happier with my machine. It stands up to it's hype, is worth it's price, and impresses me daily - so consider me a proud spokesperson!)

I was thinking about Mark Bittman today, and how he likes to "go vegan until 6 PM". I guess that would be 5 PM central time, and I'm well on my way for today anyway. It is an intriguing idea for those of us omnivores who tend to be heavy on the veg side of things. If it wasn't for my leftovers, that often loom large for me to clobber days after a meal if I forget to appropriately scale down, I would certainly be able to commit to this diet myself!


  1. How funny! I love your website. You and I have very similar posts from yesterday. I made something different than tofu scrambles and I made a smoothie. I am actually doing green smoothies every day in November.

  2. As a sweet-potato-holic I have to admit to never even thinking of having one via smoothie. But I am intrigued. After Thanksgiving dinner when everyone is eating dessert I eat more sweet potatoes. :) I also had to google VitaMix, you make it sound so cool. And I guess it would be...if it weren't for all that yarn I "need" first.


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