I don’t know how many of you are in California, but this summer is bumming me out! Ever since I’ve been back from the South, it’s been gloomy and cold! In some ways, however, it’s been a blessing as I now have a ton of time to cook with no distractions (like the beach)… which is nice because then I’ll be able to have some recipes pop up while I’m in Baja for two weeks (because I won’t be doing any blogging while I’m down there).
Ever since New Orleans I’ve been reminiscing about all of the delicious food and thinking about ways to make it a little bit greener. While I was there, my mom and I went out for po’ boys, however, as I said before, the BP oil spill in the gulf has made a lot of the seafood disappear from New Orleans. Our search for po’ boys took us to a couple of different shops before we finally found a place that still had the catfish and oyster po’ boys on their menu. They were deliciously crispy and oozing with goodness. Because of the oil spill disaster, and the overfishing problem that already exists, I decided to redo this Southern favorite with a tofu vegan version. It was super delicious and I really hope that you enjoy it as much as I did! In this recipe I used a great spice blend that I actually bought in New Orleans. Since I’m doubting you have it in your spice rack, a good alternative would be a mixture of cayenne pepper, garlic powder, allspice, and dried thyme.
New Orleans Style Tofu Po’ Boy
- 1/2 pack Extra Firm Tofu, sliced in triangles and down the middle, drained, and pressed (place a heavy book on top of the tofu until excess liquid comes out)
- 1/2 cup Soy Milk
- 1 tbsp. Cornstarch
- 1 tsp. Lime Juice
- 1/2 cup Cornmeal
- 3 tbsp. Joe’s Stuff (or mix of spices shown above)
- Salt and Pepper, to taste
- Coleslaw, recipe below
- Bread of choice
While the tofu is being pressed, mix the soy milk, cornstarch, and lime juice in one bowl and the cornmeal, Joe’s Stuff, and salt and pepper in another bowl. Once the tofu is pressed, heat oil in a pan and dredge the tofu slices in the wet mix first then the dry mix. Heat for about 3 minutes a side, or until golden brown. Top the bread with the tofu and coleslaw and enjoy a vegan take on a New Orleans classic.
- 1/2 cup Cabbage, shredded
- 1/3 Carrot, shredded
- 2 tbsp. Vegenaise
- 1 tbsp. Joe’s Stuff (or mix of spices shown above)
- 1 tsp. Dried Mustard
- 1 tbsp. Lemon Juice
Mix ingredients together. (If you like a sweeter coleslaw, I recommend adding agave nectar to sweeten it up).
Here’s a picture of Joe’s Stuff (since I’m obviously obsessed) 🙂
- A completely vegan take on a normally heavy-on-the meat/animal byproducts recipe.
- Making your own coleslaw means picking your own ingredients–>organic, local products anyone?
- You save a lot of food miles if you make New Orleans classics at home instead of going there to try them. (Though I’m not one to talk).
- This isn’t an eco-benefit, however, this Po’ Boy recipe is about as healthy as Po’ Boy recipes come. Most times, going green means getting healthy!
Posted in Dinner, Lunch
Tagged cabbage, carrot, coleslaw, cornmeal, cornstarch, dried mustard, Joe's Stuff, lemon juice, lime juice, soy milk, tofu, vegenaise
So I really like fresh homemade warm-from-the-oven bread. And I had a huge craving the other day. It led to me looking up Irish Soda Bread recipes and what I found was that they were all made with all-purpose bleached white flour, eggs for days, and refined sugar. So I did a little recipe enhancement to make this easy-to-make recipe a little more eco-friendly. Here’s what I came up with:
Irish Soda Bread
1 1/2 cup All Purpose Bleached White Flour
1 1/2 cup Whole Wheat Flour
1 tbsp. Baking Powder
1/6 cup (just do half of a third cup) Refined Sugar
1/6 cup All Natural Unrefined Sugar
1 tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Baking Soda
1 Egg, beaten
2 cups Milk
3 tbsp. Lemon Juice
1/4 cup Butter (I recommend Vegan Margarine but I didn’t have any on hand)
Preheat oven to 325. Grease a 9×5 loaf pan.
Combine dry ingredients: flours, sugars, salt, baking powder, baking soda. In a a separate bowl, mix the egg, milk, and lemon juice. Combine dry and wet together. Then add the melted butter. Mix it all up and put it in the oven for about an hour or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Voila.
Halving the refined sugar and bleached refined flour and making the other half whole wheat flour and unrefined sugar decreases your foodprint while still allowing for the same flavor.
I didn’t have any buttermilk on hand, so rather than making an extra trip to the grocery store I improvised by mixing the milk with the lemon. It’s a great substitute that improvises an ingredient not commonly used with some you’ll probably have on hand. Less gas!
Using one egg still allows for binding but cuts out some animal byproducts!
Vegan margarine would’ve been another great way to cut out animal byproduct, however, it isn’t worth the extra gas to go to the store to get just that.
Posted in Breakfast, Dinner, Lunch, Snack
Tagged all purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, butter, egg, lemon juice, milk, salt, sugar, unrefined sugar, vegan margarine, whole wheat flour
So. I know I’ve beat the fish issue into the ground. For that reason, and because I have a paper to write and a house to clean (we threw a party last night and our apartment was trashed… but it was fun!–>I’ll give you some green party tips at the end of this post) I’m not going to tell you the same things again. If you’re looking for a more sustainable way to eat fish check out my other posts about it: Fish: What Practices are Actually Sustainable and Overfishing. For now, I’m just going to give you another delicious sustainable fish recipe. Fish tacos! And believe me… this is absolutely delicious.
- USA Farm Raised Tilapia filet (not a carnivorous fish, safe)
- 1/2 cup Whole wheat flour
- Herbs, chopped (I chose rosemary and thyme because I found them organic and they’re my favorite)
- A splash of cheap Beer (leftover from your kegger?)
- 1 tbsp Vegenaise or Canola Mayonnaise (if you prefer non-vegan)
- 1 tbsp Organic Salsa
- squirt of Lime or Lemon Juice
- Cabbage, shredded
- optional: Organic Cheese
- Whole wheat tortilla
Either chop the tilapia into bite sized pieces, or leave it as a whole filet. Mix flour, herbs, and paprika. Add just enough beer for the mix to become gooey. Dredge the fish in the beer mix. Pan fry the fish. Meanwhile, mix the Vegenaise, Organic Salsa, and citrus juice. Heat tortilla until warm via any means you want: stovetop, microwave, oven… Top the tortilla with the fish, cabbage, salsa mixture, and cheese if wanted. I realize it’s not the healthiest thing I’ve made… but I promise it’s a family favorite at my house. Use organic and vegan options for the ingredients, and it can be eco-friendly too!
“Green” Party Options:
- Just remember I’m talking about a college kegger. Not a classy dinner party here. So I’m sorry ahead of time… I’m just a college student.
- Buy a keg! Kegs are reusable, and do not involve all of the packaging that comes with multiple thirty racks. No cans!
- If you have red cups for your beer, put them all in the dishwasher when the party is done and clean them up for next time–>washing dishes in a full dishwasher load is way better than hand-washing that many dishes.
- Recycle any cans, handles, or red cups (that are beyond cleaning). Recycling is one of the most important things you can do for the environment!
- Even better would be to ask people to bring their own cups to parties (but that’s not really an option at college).
- No smoking! Aside from health effects for you, they have huge environmental impacts! Check out these sites to find out more about how cigarettes cause deforestation, water pollution, and the effects of your cigarette butts. And if you didn’t know, cigarettes are the #1 most littered substance.
Posted in Dinner, Lunch
Tagged beer, canola mayonnaise, herbs, keg, kegger, lemon juice, lime juice, paprika, rosemary, salsa, thyme, tilapia, vegenaise, whole wheat flour