Monday, December 29, 2008

Im a Bad, Bad Girl

Or maybe just a terrible blogger. Christmas is over (happy holidays, everyone) and I haven't even discussed Thanksgiving yet. I suck. I also suck for not getting a shot of my whole Thanksgiving table. Lacking that, I'll open this post with our centerpiece:

That there is the Edible Mayflower (higher res on Flickr).

You may ask yourself "Where is that large automobile?" "Why the crap would anyone make an edible Mayflower?!" I don't have a good answer to that question. But I do have a story.

A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away (i.e. about a year ago, on the Internet), my friend found the Meat Ship (insert rather obvious Gross Out Warning here). I was struck by both its grossness and it's awesomeness (hello there, edible BOAT) and decided I had to make a vegan one. My friends were kind enough to gift me a pirate ship cake pan to aid me in my quest, and the rest is history (or dinner).

Once I decided to make the ship itself from cornbread, I took to the Internet to find out what people enjoyed most with the stuff. After polling the constituents, I ended up with sails made from Veganomicon style sauteed collard greens, Pilgrims made from mini Spicy Pinto Sausages wearing sauteed mushroom hats, sailing the seven seas of Yellow Rose Recipes Better Than Basic Chili. Perhaps not the most traditional of Thanksgiving foods, but damn tasty just the same.

Here's my first plate of the night. Yes, we went classy and ate Thanksgiving dinner on disposable plates. Don't judge me!

Clockwise from that poppy-seed covered ball of awesome, we have:

Poppyseed Pull-Apart Rolls (Vegan Brunch). Harvest Vegetable Medley (Vegetarian Times). Sweet Potato Pear Tzimmes with Pecans and Raisins (Veganomicon). Stuffed Twice Baked Potatoes (Yellow Rose Recipes). Thanksgiving style polenta seitan (Parsnip Parsimony, The I-40 Kitchen). Gravy (my friend Sarah). Grilled Asparagus (Veganomicon).

I had another plate after that with chili, collards, stuffing, cranberry crumble and I don't even know what else. My foodbaby was enormous.

I made the Chestnut Apple Stuffing from last fall's Vegetarian Times for Thanksgiving dinner, substituting Isa's Spicy Pinto Sausages from the upcoming Vegan Brunch for the store bought ones. Everyone loved it. My mother has some sort of sausage aversion and asked me not to put sausage in the stuffing, so I only put in two and she really liked it. Yet again, vegan food has proven her wrong!

That was my first time eating chestnuts. I don't think I'm a fan. I won't pick them out of anything, but I won't go hunting down chestnut-based recipes either.

I enjoyed the Harvest Vegetable Medley from the same magazine a lot more. Everyone loved it, even my vegetable-phobic grandmother. This was surprising because it's really just plain, old roasted vegetables. Then again, it's not so suprprising because it has almost thirty cloves of garlic in it and who doesn't love metric assloads of garlic? Please note that if you make the recipe as written, you will be able to feed at least a dozen people for two days. I suggest halving it unless you're having a platoon over for dinner and/or really love leftovers.

Thanks to Parsnip Parsimony, I now know about the joy that is polenta seitan. This is not something that would have occurred to me to make, so I'm really glad she thought of it. It's got great bite and I can easily eat a whole batch of it at once if I don't stop myself. Sadly, it's not very photogenic.

Don't let that put you off, though. It's still awesome.

Let the record show I don't like sweet potato. And I don't like tzimmes. I like my vegetables savory, my fruit sweet and never the twains shall meet. My family, however, loves both, so I made them the Sweet Potato Pear Tzimmes with Pecans & Raisins from Veganomicon. Since I made it, I decided to give it the benefit of the doubt and take a taste and actually liked it. Holy crap. That's the sort of word eating I can get behind. I think the pecans may have been what converted me. I love me some pecans.

The Stuffed Twice Baked Potatoes from Yellow Rose Recipes are pretty amazing. How amazing? Amazing enough to get my little brother to eat mushrooms. That's borderline miraculous. These potatoes are stuffed with broccoli and mushrooms and win. Mine don't look so great because they're a bit over baked, but that's how we like them.

Here's a shot of the full pan of Poppyseed Pull-Apart Rolls from Isa Chandra Moskowitz's upcoming Vegan Brunch. They're good for brunch or any damn time. I obviously thought they'd make good dinner rolls and I was right. However, they are crazy with the poppy seeds. Be prepared to make a mess with these babies.

No SSD family dinner is complete without grilled asparagus. Is that weird?

For dessert, we have leftover birthday cake, my friend Sarah's Tofu Pumpkin Pie and Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake with Cinnamon Icing from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World. Not the prettiest desserts ever (I ran out of decorating time), but they more than made up for it in tastiness. Especially the cake. I can't get enough of it and neither can anyone I've ever made it for.

And that's a wrap. Happy holidays, everyone! Stay safe. See you back here in 2009.