Sunday, August 17, 2008

Vegan Gourmet Dreena Style & Brilliante Shout-Outs

I adore anything that is wrapped in pastry. Make it puff pastry or phyllo and I'm all over it. So when I saw the recipe Walnut, White Bean & Spinach Phyllo Rolls in Eat, Drink & Be Vegan, I knew I had to make it. Phyllo always looks so impressive, but you'd be surprised how easy it is to work with. I've used it in the past, so I knew this was going to be a cake-walk (or a pastry-walk if you will)

I tried to get a good shot of the filling and still show you the delicate flaky layers. The filling is savoury with perfect textures that don't overpower the pastry. These could be eaten hot or at room temperature and if made bite-sized they would be a terrific hors d'oeuvres.
I made these 'regular' size to have as a meal and was trying to decide what to serve as a side. Pasta is always a hit with Jim and I remembered a wonderfully delicious sauce I had made many years ago from Dreena's very first book The Everyday Vegan.






Here is whole wheat spaghetti smothered with Basic Creamy Garlic Sauce. This sauce is so freakin' delicious. The garlic is roasted first so it's a nice & mellow. Fresh herbs are mixed in to give it a little lift.

To top off this delicious feast, another winner from Dreena. This is also from her new book, Eat, Drink & Be Vegan -

Lime Sucker Coconut Pie

This is one of my new favorites. It's not very difficult to make and the lime coconut combo is a perfect compliment.

There are pretty flecks of green throughout. I don't know if you can see them too well in this photo. I made this in the morning so there would be no fussing after dinner. The pie kept nice in the refrigerator for a few days. This whole meal was very delicious and because I could do a lot of the prep work ahead of time, I made it again for a small dinner party we had. I was able to spend more time with my guests rather than in the kitchen and everyone really enjoyed the meal.

Thanks to Catherine at Food Snob & to Peggy at Vegan Teen Cuisine for giving me a shoutout. From what I gather, I'm now to nomiate 7 people that I feel are deserving of a Brillante Weblog mention, so here we go. (psssst....before I start, let me tell you that I've been known to not really follow the rules for these sorts of things.)

1. Urban Vegan - not only do I love the food Dynise makes, but the restaurants she frequents and the wonderful get-away holidays she blogs about. Her cats are adorable, her Omniman is wonderful (and has very handsome hands) and I LOVE her Philly digs.

2. Vegan Vice - Vicki is always cooking up something fun in her Idaho kitchen. Her daughters help alot and the cuteness factor there is over the top. Check out her red tile countertop - to die for. Vicki & her husband also take jaunts to California and she blogs about their beach & restaurant adventures there.

3. Are You My Mother & The Daily Antics of Kody (tie) - Both of these blogs are put up by Tanya Kristine, a kindred spirit. She's a drinking, partying, dog-loving, life-loving Irish woman like myself. Topics range from weight obsession to striking it rich to saving animals & bugs to pub crawls to heart wrenching family tales. Kody is her beloved dog who has his own blog full of handsome photos and funny stories.

4. Where's The Revolution? - Bazu loves her ice cream! And there's nothing wrong with that whatsoever. There's always something new & interesting on this blog. Whether she's educating us in Iranian customs, telling us about fellow bloggers she meets on her trips, or just showcasing downright tasty food, the revolution is in Syracuse.

5. Walking The Vegan Line - Think that living as a vegan in Texas would be difficult? No so! Besides hosting potlucks for Society of Peace, and showcasing delicious vegan fare right in the heart of Texas, Amanda is a Daring Baker and the goodies she whips up in her kitchen are nothing short of amazing. The trip to NYC for Vegan Baking Bootcamp & the photos of what she made there keeps me going back for sneek peeks. And did you know, her prom date was Johnny Depp? (hehehe) ;o)

6. Veggie Girl - Where she finds time to do all she does is just short of astounding, but Liz is an inspiration. She has such a love for life, animals & fellow humans, it shines through in her posts. Always willing to experiment in the kitchen, she shares her latest baking adventures with us. As a student, hoping to write for a magazine, she's certainly getting a great start with her blog.

7. Strictly Tastings - A fellow wine lover & Burlington resident, I've been lucky enough to meet Wino Will. I like the set up of this blog and how the entries are updated as the wines are tasted. We seem to have sort of similar tastes and I'm always checking to see if my favorites get a good score from Will. A wide variety of wines are chosen as well, from the uber cheap to more expensive Vintages releases.

8. (see, I told you I cheat) Vivacious Vegan - After a too long hiatus, Crystal is back! Picking up from where she left off, delicious food porn is abundant on this blog. Whether she's showcasing dishes from trendy veg*n restaurants or scrumptious homemade creations, Crystal's photos will surely have you drooling. She's not shy about showing off her skateboarding skills either.

Honourable mention to Michelle at Can You Marry Your Dog. (honourable mentions are not cheating) Former chef & buddy of Tanya (see #3), Michelle blogs about food, her family, her dogs, the wine bar, etc. all with great wit. Any girl who thinks vodka is a food group is definitely worth a shout-out!

Now, those of you I nominated should in turn do your own nominating. Ready....GO!


LizNoVeggieGirl said...

My goodness, AL of the food looks brilliant - but I'm especially impressed by the Phyllo Rolls, since I"m too intimidated by phyllo to work with it, haha :0)

Congratulations on the well-deserved award!! Whoo hoo!! Aww, and thank you for passing it on to me :0)

urban vegan said...

Aw, thank you, Carrie. You are the Brilliante Woman and totally deserve this nomination! XOXO

I love Dreena's recipes. I can't wait to try that lime pie. It's been on my "must-make" list for far too long.

Rage And Love said...

I haven't been to this blog for so long! I see that life treating you well. Love the food pictures!

Tanya Kristine said...

oh my GOD! you made me LOVE me! i sound so much better now...

hahha...i'm so sincerely honored. thank you Carrie.

and your phyllo pastry looks delicious and i'm now hungry!

Caroline S. said...

that pie!!! i need to cupcake-ize it in some way, shape or form!!!

aTxVegn said...

Your meal looks fantastic! I still haven't made those phyllo rolls and now they're back at the top of my *must make* list.

Congratulations on the award and I agree with all your nominations.

bazu said...

Thank you! You love me, you really love me! Well I love you too and your blog. I couldn't function without my regular doses of Simon.

Michelle Ann said...

I love things in phyllo...yum!

And thanks you so much for the mention...I am honored!

Jenn said...

Those phyllo rolls look great -- I've always wondered if it is even possible to get the same thing at home if you try to make your own phyllo. The Fillo Factory organic whole wheat phyllo is so thin and ... I don't think I'd ever get it like that!

I found the craziest book about making stuff with phyllo at a library sale -- "The Art of Phyllo Cookbook" -- it has all kinds of great tips for handling and folding and rolling phyllo and lots of veganizable recipes.

Check out the spanakopita recipe in Vegan With A Vengeance -- it's a great base (I did my last batch with chard, arugula and spinach). I keep saving the juice that I get out of the spinach -- it's gonna make a mean soup broth or spinach pasta someday soon...

Vegan_Noodle said...

That is soooo sweet of you to nominate me! But I must say that Catherine and Peggy really knew what they were doing when they gave YOU a shout out!! After all, if you can master phyllo dough like that, you are certainly one of my heroes. :-)

Jenn said...

You guys do know this "Brillante Weblog" award is a HOAX -- right?

Brillante Weblog Premio
Status: Viral gimmick
Surf around the web enough and you'll notice a lot of sites that have announced they're the recipients of a "Brillante Weblog Premio" award. (Google "Brillante Weblog" and you'll see what I mean.)

Just to clue in anyone who might be confused -- this is not a real award. It's a viral nuisance. The gimmick is that you receive this award from a friend. Accompanying the award are these rules:

1. The winner can put the logo on his/her blog.
2. Link to the person you received your award from.
3. Nominate at least 7 other blogs.
4. Put links to those blogs on yours.
5. Leave a message on the blogs of the people you have nominated.

In this way, the award keeps circulating endlessly.

There are real "Brillante Awards for Excellence" awarded by the National Society of Hispanic MBAs, but they're not related in any way to the "Brillante Weblog Premio" award. (via Heart and Hands)

Anonymous said...

Thank you for nominating me and for your kind words! I like how you mention I'm back after an absence and then what do I do? Leave again. Goodness! Anyway, I'm back for real this time. I fell really far behind on all of my favorite bloggers and I'm slowly catching up. It's my goal to read every post I've missed.

I love the new look of your blog and your profile photo is so sweet.