Earlier this week, I learned that today (Thursday, November 19) would be Blogger Vegan 4 a Day. Considering I eat mostly vegan these days without putting much thought into it anyway, I was happy to participate! Testing Happy Herbivore Cookbook recipes makes eating vegan a no-brainer, too. So today, breakfast was the usual fruit, lunch was Happy Herbivore corn pudding leftovers, but dinner…therein laid the challenge.
I decided to take a break from cookbook testing and create a new vegan recipe of my own, and I am SO happy with how it came out. Brace yourself, though—it’s definitely one of the more unorthodox dishes I’ve come up with, in terms of mismatching flavor + format. But hey, I’d be (more) boring if I didn’t let my freak flag fly up in here.
The criteria: use up remaining silken tofu and turnips in one dish that requires no additional purchases.
The result: Savory Miso Bread Pudding.
If you guessed by my last post that I’ll be visiting my parents in Japan for Thanksgiving, you were right! (I could still use another couple guest-posters, by the way!) I must have Japan on the brain in a major way right now because I can’t get Japanese flavors off my mind. So I decided to incorporate some of my favorite Japanese food elements into a casserole using aforementioned required ingredients.
Vegan Miso(aked) Bread Pudding
- 4 small turnips (each a little bigger than a golf ball), peeled
- 1/2 cup silken tofu
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 1/4 cup non-dairy milk
- 1 tbsp miso paste + 2 tbsp boiling water
- 2 tsp nama shoyu (or soy sauce)
- 2 tsp brown rice vinegar
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp dried/powdered ginger, or to taste
- 2 slices stale whole grain sandwich bread, cubed
- Preheat oven to 350*. If your bread isn’t stale, you can let it dry out in the oven for a few minutes while it preheats. Just keep an eye on it that it doesn’t toast up much.
- Meanwhile, steam whole, peeled turnips for 15 minutes, or until fork-tender.
- Pour 2 tbsp boiling water over 1 tbsp miso paste in a small dish and stir with a fork until dissolved and fairly smooth.
- Blend tofu, pumpkin, milk, miso mixture, shoyu, vinegar, garlic powder and ginger until smooth. An immersion blender works fine.
- Place bread cubes in a medium bowl and pour tofu-pumpkin batter overtop, stirring to coat.
- Chop steamed turnips and stir into bread + batter mixture.
- Pour into small greased casserole dish and bake 30 minutes, until top is browned and fairly firm.
- Let stand 5-10 minutes before slicing.
I garnished my serving with a little dulse and served it over turnip greens, which I reserved from the tops of the turnips that went into the casserole. I just tore them up and sauteed them ‘til wilted in a bit of sesame oil, salt and pepper.
The amount of ginger I added to this was more like a whole tablespoon, and it kinda blew my head off, but in a good way, since I love ginger. I recommend going easy with it, though, and just keep tasting your batter until you have the proportions of all the ingredients to your liking.
Having exhausted my culinary creativity making dinner, I thought I’d leave dessert up to Lindsay, knowing she wouldn’t let me down. And so it was that I tested the upcoming cookbook’s Pumpkin Oatmeal Raisin Cookies.
And of course, by raisin I mean chocolate chip. I was fresh out of raisins, imagine that! ;)
Even though I took that liberty with the recipe, it was killer. But what else is new?
Actually, I have an answer for that:
Give it up for Celestial Seasonings holiday teas being on sale at Whole Foods today! I was kind of gratuitously excited to see these, I have to say. I’ve already tried both flavors and they are so dessert-y delicious! So far, I think I favor Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride over Gingerbread Spice, but I may need to do a few (dozen) more dessert pairings such as this before I can form an educated opinion.
There may or may not be a box of Candy Cane tea hibernating in my office desk as well…