Tag Archives: Potatoes

Thanksgiving 2012

It was good to have the family together after too many years and to celebrate with some flexibility in my eating habits.  😉

For breakfast I made pumpkin-cranberry scones from a mix from Trader Joe’s (had to get some pumpkin in somewhere)

My Dad made a ham, so I tried to think of hearty vegetarian entrees that would complement that.  I decided that pineapple would go well with sweet potatoes (much better than the classic/gross marshmallow topping) and then found this lovely recipe for pineapple upside down sweet potatoes.  It was wonderful!


I also made my Nine a Day Salad, which is always a hit. 

and some collard greens with pecans



some simple garlic mashed potatoes (made with soy milk)

cornbread stuffing mix from Trader Joe’s to which I added sauteed onions and celery + corn kernels

My sister made the classic/delicious green bean casserole: a huge crowd pleaser.  My Mom made Pilsbury crescent rolls and 2 pies: apple and pecan.

Everything was absolutely delicious!  I was thankful for an abundance of good food and family.

Baked Potatoes with Pesto-Tofu Cream

This is from a cookbook called The Complete Guide to Vegan Food Substitutions by Celine Steen and Joni Marie Newman, which was a belated Xmas present from my awesome friend Jesi. When I saw this particular recipe, I knew that I needed to try it ASAP.  It did not disappoint.  The tofu mixture has a creamy, comforting texture, and the fresh flavor of the basil is a lovely counterpoint to the earthy potato.

It makes enough to fill about 12 potatoes (more like 8 for me since I used less tofu), but the authors point out that you can also use it on sandwiches, pasta, or as a dip.  This is one of those things that tastes even better the next day, after the flavors have a chance to marry.

This is super easy to throw together.  Just grab a potato or two.  Stab it with a fork a few times.  Rub the skin with a bit of oil, and throw it in the oven at 375 degrees about an hour before you want to eat.  Meanwhile, blend in your food processor:

  • 19 ounces firm tofu (I used a 12-ounce box of firm silken tofu)
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh basil
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 2 large garlic cloves, peeled
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder (I omitted this because I was out)
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons agave nectar (I will omit this next time…I thought it was too sweet)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme (I used dried)

Then cut your potato open and fill it with about 2 heaping tablespoons of creamy pesto deliciousness!

  • 12 ounces silken tofu: $1.99
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh basil: $2.50
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar: $0.32
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil: $0.20
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes: $0.02
  • 2 large garlic cloves, peeled: $0.10
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard: $0.04
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice: $0.25
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme: $0.05
  • 8 potatoes: $1.99

=$7.46/8 servings


Mushroom Shepherd’s Pie

This might be one of the heartiest recipes I’ve ever made.  Yum!

I got the idea to make this:


…when it was on the front page of Food.com the other day as part of a feature on vegetarian meals.

That said, I had to convert the recipe from metric measurements, plus I scaled it down a bit and changed a few things (cut everything small instead of putting it in the food processor; added margarine, soy milk, soy sauce, etc.), so here is my version of gourmandelle’s lovely vegetarian shepherd pie:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Boil for about 20 minutes:

  • 4 medium Russet potatoes (peeled and quartered)

Mash with:

  • 2 tablespoons margarine
  • 1/4 cup plain soymilk
  • salt and pepper to taste

While potatoes are boiling, sautee:

  • 1 onion, diced finely
  • 1 carrot, diced finely
  • 1 red pepper, diced finely
  • 1 pound cremini or portabello mushrooms, diced finely
  • 1/4 cup Textured Vegetable Protein (aka TVP.  This is dehydrated soy.  It has a meaty texture, soaks up any flavor, and is super cheap.  It’s available in the bulk section of most health-food stores or with Bob’s Red Mill products)
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast (also available in bulk section)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika (use the good stuff)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

After about 10 minutes, stir in:

  • 1/2 bunch fresh dill, chopped
  • 1/2 bunch fresh parsley, chopped

Spray a baking pan with cooking oil or line it with parchment (I used a loaf pan, and it ended up being a good size).  Spread half the mashed potatoes in the pan.  Top with the veggie mixture.  Spread the remaining potatoes on top.  Bake for about 30 minutes.  Let sit for at least 10 minutes.  The recipe said 30 minutes, but I couldn’t wait that long, and it was fine.  Slice and serve.

I looked at gourmandelle’s profile on Food.com, which led me to her blog:


I love her blog!  Her tastebuds seem remarkably similar to my own.  I can’t wait to try her “Stuffed Button Mushrooms with Garlicky Rice Noodles” or “Stuffed Aubergines with Garlic Sauce.”  Who doesn’t love a good stuffed vegetable?  And garlic? Her pictures are lovely too.  Check it out.

  • 4 medium Russet potatoes: $0.95
  • 2 tablespoons margarine: $0.26
  • 1/4 cup plain soymilk: $0.05
  • 1 onion: $0.25
  • 1 carroty: $0.16
  • 1 red pepper: $1.26
  • 1 pound cremini mushrooms: $3.98
  • 1/4 cup Textured Vegetable Protein: $0.27
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce: $0.18
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast: $0.30
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika: $0.05
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme: $0.01
  • 1/2 bunch fresh dill, chopped: $0.99
  • 1/2 bunch fresh parsley, chopped: $0.85

=$9.83/6 servings


for a vegan “meat-and-potatoes” dinner!