Thursday, November 26, 2009

Pumpkin Bundt Cake

Until recently, I was a skeptic about vegan pastries. Really, how could a cake made without eggs, butter, cream, etc actually taste good? This recipe convinced me that some vegan goods are not only edible, but they are better than full fat carnivorous versions! Moist and light, this cake works well for breakfast as well as dessert. Either way, it's great with a cup of coffee. Look for ingredients like date sugar and barley flour at a health foods store. If you can't find date sugar, substitute maple syrup. You may use canned pumpkin (just choose the unseasoned, plain variety), but I prefer to roast my own. I recommend a combination of squash and sweet potato. Roast them in a 325 degree oven for about an hour, or until they are very soft. Set them aside to cool, remove the skins, and puree in a food processor. Don't worry if you have more than the recipe calls for -- use the leftovers for dinner!

Makes 1 - 10 inch Bundt Cake

Oil for greasing the pan
Flour for dusting the pan
1 1/2 cups pecans
3/4 cup golden raisins
1 1/2 cups pumpkin or sweet potato puree
1/2 cup canola oil
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 1/2 cups soymilk
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
4 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup date sugar
3 1/2 cups barley flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons baking powder
4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground allspice
3/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt

1. Set the oven at 350 degrees. Oil the bundt pan and dust lightly with flour.
2. Place pecans on a baking sheet. Toast for 10 minutes. Cool completely, and chop roughly.
3. Cover raisins with boiling water. Let soak for 25 minutes. Drain and set aside.
4. In a bowl, whisk together pumpkin, oil, syrup, soymilk, vinegar, and vanilla.
5. In a large bowl, use a clean whisk to mix date sugar, flour, baking soda, baking powder, spices, and salt. (If you whisk well, you do not have to sift the dry items.)
6. Using a rubber spatula, fold the pumpkin mixture into the dry ingredients. When the dry ingredients are halfway incorporated, add the raisins and the chopped pecans. Continue folding just until the mixture comes together. Do not overmix.
7. Pour batter into prepared pan. Smooth the top with a rubber spatula.
8. Bake for 45 minutes, rotating the cake from front to back after 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
9. Cool in the pan for 15 minutes.
10. Invert the cake onto a wire rack. Continue cooling. Transfer to a plate, and dust with powdered sugar. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Turkey Salad with Mayfair Dressing

I had forgotten about this recipe until a link showed up on this year's Thanksgiving issue of the Boston Globe online. The recipe for the dressing came from my mother-in-law. It's a great way to use up leftovers!

Turkey salad with Mayfair dressing
By Karoline Boehm Goodnick, Globe Correspondent | November 24, 2008

Serves 4

Turkey sandwiches with cranberry chutney are delectable later that evening or for lunch the next day, and a pot of soup is a fine way to recycle the carcass. Here's another use for the rest of the meat. Make a light curried mayonnaise-style dressing - a similar one was originally served at the Roberts Mayfair Hotel, a historic property in St. Louis. Add the dressing to your cooked bird with red grapes and shelled pistachios, or stir in leftover green beans, chunks of roasted squash, or Brussels sprouts. Hold the pie. That's for later.

1/2 stalk celery, chopped
1/2 medium onion, chopped
1 large clove garlic
1/2 tin (2 ounces) anchovies, drained
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 teaspoon curry powder
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons yellow mustard
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 egg plus 1 extra yolk
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 bunch parsley
8 cups (2 pounds) chopped cooked turkey
1 1/2 cups red seedless grapes, cut in half
1 cup shelled pistachios

1. In a blender, combine the celery, onion, garlic, anchovies, and lemon juice. Blend into a puree.

2. Add the curry powder, salt, pepper, mustard, and sugar; blend well.

3. Remove the cap in the blender lid and with the motor running on medium speed add the egg and extra yolk, then slowly drizzle in the olive and vegetable oils.

4. Add the parsley and blend until it is coarsely chopped. Chill the dressing for 30 minutes.

5. In a large bowl, combine the turkey, grapes, and pistachios. Add enough dressing to moisten the mixture well. Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper, if you like.

I styled the photo above, and it was shot by Wendy Maeda.