Tamale Pie

Guess what, you guys! I got a new cookbook! I bought The Happy Herbivore, and so far I’m digging it. This the first meal I’ve made from the book, but I’ll be making another one tomorrow night, and I’m interested to see how it comes out.

This recipe for Tamale Casserole reminded me of a family dish we used to make called Tamale Pie. And while this dish bears little resemblance to the meat and cheese-filled heart-attack-inducing disaster that tasty item was, I loved it. I did make a few substitutions, which ended up with me having six portions instead of the recipe’s original four. Not really a problem, since this kind of casserole almost always tastes better the second day!

So here’s what I did:

  1. Instead of jarred salsa, I made my own, probably about a cup and a half
  2. I used 2 cups of beans instead of half a cup
  3. I added 2 cups of cooked bulgur (though you could use any sort of meaty grain you like)
  4. I added a small can of diced green chilies (because my husband loves them)
  5. I added 8 oz of tomato sauce (so that things wouldn’t get dry–they didn’t!)

I really liked my substitutions, because of their enhanced nutritional profile (hello, protein!) and that they bulked this up enough that I didn’t need to divide the cornbread topping. And the cornbread? HELLO. Delicious. I am always skeptical about making applesauce baked goods, but this worked. It didn’t rise much, but I think that’s because I went the extra cornmeal route, since this would be a very corny topping.

Also, serve with Tapatio. You’re welcome.



Three Cookbook Pie

It’s the pie that three separate cookbooks built!

I had a lot of organic apples that were just starting to get mushy, so I thought–oh! There’s a great recipe in Vegan with a Vengeance for roasted applesauce! I’ll make that!

Cut to me, unable to actually make the apple smoosh into sauce. I didn’t have a good food processor at the time, so I just froze my apple concoction with the hopes of someday making it into a pie. That day arrived!

Step two was defrosting, and mixing the apples with a can of drained tart cherries and about 1/4 cup sugar. After they boiled away on the stove for about 10 minutes, some of the liquids had thickened up and made a nice sugary syrup.

I used the pie crust recipe from Veganomicon–it turned out much better than my previous crusty attempts. I don’t even think I did it correctly (my dough was a little on the dry and stiff side), but it still rolled okay, and made a nice flaky crust.

And since I like my pies to have a crumble top, I whipped out Vegan Cookies Take Over Your Cookie Jar and halved the Blueberry Crumb Cookies recipe. It still made a little more crumb than most people like, but I’m a streusel girl, and I loved it!Now I kind of want to make a berry pie, with every berry I can get my hands on. I can’t wait for summer!

For recipes, of course, buy the books! Or at least check your local library.