Wednesday, October 12, 2011


Best Blog Tips
I forgot my camera when we had our first Thanksgiving dinner at my son Tim's house last Saturday. We had a wonderful (mostly vegan) dinner with Tim and his wife Amber, granddaughters Zoe (and her friend Lindsay), Faith and Mariah, my stepson Laurence from Vancouver, and our friend Brenda. On the Thursday before I had made 2 seitan "turkeys" and 2 seitan "hams", and some vegan gluten-free bread for Amber to use in her stuffing recipe (which she did not stuff into anything animal!.) Saturday morning I made vegan pecan pies (with a GF crust) and 2 kinds of (GF) gravy, and the 2 remaining seitan roasts (I brought one of each). Amber had made the vegan GF stuffing with cranberries and pecans, mashed potatoes (with almond milk), a lovely salad, and a delicious and colorful vegetable casserole of sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts and cranberries. They had turkey, but everyone tried the vegan dishes and enjoyed them.

On Monday afternoon we headed over to the main island (Vancouver Island) for another spread (mostly vegan) with my daughter Sarah, her DH Ben, and granddaughters Kate, Hannah and Cleo; Ben's parents, uncle and 2 aunts. I brought the last 2 loaves of pre-made seitan "turkey" and "ham", their respective gravies, plus tofu pot pie (a family favorite) that I had made the components for Sunday night and put together in the morning. Sarah has recently become a vegan, so she had made vegan pumpkin pie and apple-cranberry pie (with a veganized Weight Watcher's pie crust), stuffing in the slow-cooker, smashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole, and roasted veggies, and my granddaughter Savannah made a lovely salad with organic greens, pecans, pumpkin seeds, tomatoes and a raspberry dressing. So we vegans had lots to eat and to share!

Here are some pictures from the second feast:

  The vegan end of the Thanksgiving table (Lto R back: Smashed potatoes, roasted veggies, Susan Voisin's Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecan Topping; L to R front: "Ham" Gravy, my Seitan "Ham", my Tofu Pot Pie.

 Sarah's roasted veggies

  Smashed potatoes, roasted veggies and Savannah's salad

  My seitan "ham"

  My Tofu Pot Pie (recipe from my book Soyfoods Cooking for a Positive Menopause)

  Sarah's Apple-Cranberry Pie with veganized low-fat WW pie crust (see below)

Adapted from a recipe in Weight Watchers New Complete Cookbook.
Makes 1 pie crust

1 cup all purpose unbleached flour
2 teaspoons powdered sugar
1/8 tsp salt
2 Tbsp. cold vegan butter
2 Tbsp. cold vegetable shortening
(UPDATE: Now I would use 1/4 cup of my homemade vegan palm-oil-free Buttah, very cold, in place of both)
1 tsp. cider vinegar
3 to 3 1/2 Tbl. ice water

Follow normal pastry procedures and chill for 1 hour to 24 hours for best results. (Sarah froze the chunks of margarine and shortening as Julie Hasson recommended in her book Vegan Diner, and also her recommendation to use powdered sugar.) Sarah says: "With 1 cup of frozen marg/shortening, I was able to make a large batch for 4 cups of flour and it worked perfectly. It isn't fat free but much lower fat than normal pastry."
1/8 of recipe = 3 points , 114 calories
MY NOTE: This recipe was excellent, BTW. I prefer to use my Low-fat Oil Pastry most of the because it does not use solid fat, but this recipe IS flakier, if that's important to the dish, so I'm glad to have it in my repertoire. This recipe uses 2 tablespoons of fat per 1/2 cup flour. The flaky pastry dough in Joy of Cooking (1997 version) uses 3.2 tablespoons of fat per 1/2 cup of flour, and my Low-fat oil Pastry uses 1 1/2 tablespoons fat (oil) per 1/2 cup of flour (and I use 1/2 whole wheat).

  Sarah used my recipe for vegan Pumpkin Pie filling (in my book The Almost-No-Fat Holiday Cookbook and online here), with the same crust as above.

  Grandaughter C. modelling her Halloween costume for the family, with Grampa Brian being silly.

  Big sister H.,  expertly playing the theme from "The Piano" for us.

I hope you enjoyed (or will enjoy) your Thanksgiving dinner(s) as much as we did!


Anonymous said...

Looks yummy! I'm trying to go gluten-free and it breaks my heart to give up seitan :-(

Bryanna Clark Grogan said...

May I ask why you are going GF?

spiceislandvegan said...


Yummy dishes! Glad that your daughter became a vegan. You have a lot to share with her during family gathering.


Phlat said...

While my family ate turkey, I had pot pie from DF + Del. I make small ones and freeze the batch. It's a great tasting recipe.

Bryanna Clark Grogan said...

DF + Del????