Monday, December 13, 2010


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Dori's Raw Cranberry Relish (recipe below)

We don't go to alot of parties, but yesterday we had 2 in one day-- our neighborhood Christmas get-together, and our vegan dinner party group holiday meal.  Both are potluck, so I made most of my contributions, or the components to them, on Saturday.

Herbed Mushroom Pate (UPDATE: recipe in my new book World Vegan Feast)

At 4 PM we went up the road apiece to our neighbors, Toby and Mikell, to meet and greet and eat with the neighbors in our little area of Denman Island.  It's a diverse group of interesting people of all ages, incomes and backgrounds. Unfortunately, in order to finish off my dishes for the vegan dinner party, we only had an hour!  Most of the nibblies there looked wonderful, but were not vegan.  There were some lovely roasted nuts, olives, a spicy bowl of popcorn and some aromatic mulled (local) cider, which was plenty for us, since we had a feast to attend later!  I brought my Herbed Mushroom Pate (recipe in my new book) because I got several requests for it after the last party I brought it to.  ALL of the omnis loved it and I must admit that I take pleasure in watching the reactions when I tell them  there's no meat involved!  (I made an extra one for us to enjoy at home, too-- it makes a great snack on a  rye crisp cracker, or a delicious sandwich.  I usually make more than one at a time because it freezes well.)

We rushed home to turn on the oven and roll out the fat-free vegan brioche dough (rising in the refrigerator) for my Vegan Chikn Pot Pie, which is full of somewhat unusual veggies and a sherry-laced cream gravy-- I'd made the filling the day before and the gravy that morning.  I popped those in the oven along with one of my seitan "hams" (made 2 of them on Thursday) and some pineapple chunks.  I had made the "ham" gravy that morning, along with a delicious raw cranberry relish.

Vegan Chikn Pot Pie, just out of the oven above; leftovers below 

My seitan "ham":

It was great to join with the four other couples in our vegan dinner group for great conversation, wine, and too much wonderful vegan food!

Starting the dinner with Fireweed's absolutely delicious Borscht, made with local (roasted) beets and potatoes!  In the center of the table is Sarah's scrumptious Succotash Salad, which I neglected to get a separate photo of, darn it!  It was soooo good-- full of lima beans, corn, arugula, zucchini and lots of other stuff.

Also un-photographed, I'm afraid,  was our hostess's lovely roasted potatoes and glazed, grilled eggplant slices.

Ellen brought the dessert, which included some delicious Scandinavian almond brittle, again, un-photographed, as well as:
 Homemade vegan truffles

 Ellen's refreshing raw berry pudding with vegan ice cream and a truffle on top!

Here's the recipe for the raw cranberry relish I brought.  It was given to me by Dori Harvey, a longtime subscriber of my now-defunct  newsletter, an enthusiastic vegan cook, many years ago and we loved it!  It was a hit at the dinner party, and I ate some for breakfast!

Printable Recipe

Place the following in a food processor and chop to the size of rice:

12 ounces fresh whole cranberries
1 peeled orange or 2 mandarin oranges, removing most of the pith
2 Tbsp. grated organic orange zest
1 medium apples, cored and chunked

Add the following to a medium mixing bowl along with the processed mixture above:

1/2 cup crushed pineapple
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup organic sugar
1 tbsp. minced fresh ginger
Optional: 1/4 tsp cinnamon

Combine well.  Allow flavors to meld one hour.

Dori wrote: “Whenever I find a great buy on cranberries I make a bunch of this up and freeze it in addition to just freezing the berries.  I add it to muffins, put it in salad dressing, and directly onto the salad when I want color.  I also add it to sandwiches, stir into my morning oatmeal, and top cornbread with it for an interesting change.  Even after it has been frozen it has an acceptable texture.  As you can tell this is my favorite.”



Kim said...

Oh...I want a vegan holiday party! I am surrounded by not only omnivores, but serious carnivores! Hoping to find the vegan "ham" recipe on your pages...or in one of your books?

Wild & Bright Blessings!

Michael said...

Is the recipe for that "ham" in the new book as well? I've been hoping to find such a recipe for a while...

And, actually, any tips for making big blocks of seitan without them getting rubbery? I'm quite good at making small pieces and absolutely inept at larger ones for holidays!

Laloofah said...

Your vegan dinner group party looks delicious and beautiful and sounds like such fun! I wish I could reach in through my computer screen and sample everything (without anyone noticing!) :-) (And I hope Kim gets a vegan holiday party too!)

I'm an absolute fiend for cranberries and am always on the lookout for new cranberry sauce recipes, and I've already printed this one. It's so pretty and I just love the sound of it, with pineapple and fresh ginger! As soon as I can nab some organic oranges, I'm making this! Thank you so much for sharing!

Oh, and I'll be watching for your answer to Michael's question about making big batches of seitan without them turning out rubbery. I'll be making my first big batch soon and I've heard that's a common problem.

Thanks again for all your wonderful recipes and informative web site and blog! Happy holidays!

Anonymous said...

hello Bryanna, great blog, and killer food.
thankyou for sharing.
is the new book available?
i really want to make the herbed mushroom pate for christmas day.
thomas hooper.

Marie said...

That feast looks lovely.
It's so nice to see omnis enjoying vegan food.
Can't wait for the new book too. Looks promising!

Amey said...

two parties in one day can be overwhelming, but it's also really fun. That pate looks incredible. Also, I love the dreamy shot of the whole table... it looks so warm and cozy and inviting!

By the way, I must be out of the loop... but what's the story on your next cookbook. Is this the seitan book I've been hearing whispers about?


Bryanna Clark Grogan said...

Thanks for posting, All! To answer you questions: My new book on international vegan cooking will be out in August; The Field Roast book is on hold right now, but we hope to get it rolling again soon; and I'm working on my seitan book slowly between these projects. However, I hope to work on it more regularly in the new year. (The ham will be in the seitan book.)

Dori said...

Still a fan, still a follower, just busied with job and classes. :-) Thanks for using my favorite cranberry recipe. Happy Holiday!

Bryanna Clark Grogan said...

Thanks, Dori! Good to hear from you! I made a double batch of this and everyone-- including those who don't like cranberry sauce-- loved it! We've been eating for snacks and I just had some for breakfast. I'm going to add some to some coleslaw I made a couple of days ago!

Bryanna Clark Grogan said...

Michael, I forgot to answer your question. The secret to non-rubbery seitan is slow-cooking (however you do it) and adding something else to the dough to cut down a bit on the gluten. Other flours, etc.

Gauri Radha गौरी राधा said...

Looks splendid :-)

Lisa is Raw on $10 a Day (or less!) said...

This all looks amazing!