Vegan Shepherd’s Pie – Happy St. Patrick’s Day with GT’s Kombucha

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Growing up, at school, church, and at home we ate corned beef and cabbage on this Irish and religious holiday.  However, I have recently come to find out that there is nothing Irish about corned beef and cabbage, and that Shepherds’ Pie has always been and still is a staple of traditional Irish cooking.  Shepherd’s Pie is basically a layered casserole with a veggie and meat mixture topped with mashed potatoes, thrown in the oven until the potatoes are browned.  Traditionally, ground lamb or beef is used in the meat mixture, but of course, I create my own type of soy-free, plant-based meat using nourishing whole foods: cooked quinoa, mushrooms, and walnuts.  Broken down in a food processor, this plant-based mixture eerily resembles traditional ground meat.

To be honest, there is nothing traditional about my version of Shepherd’s Pie.  I use a garlicky cauliflower potato puree instead of mashed potatoes.  My recipe also includes olives, which brightens up the dish with a bit of a zing and adds a nice salty flavor.  Additionally, I add sun-dried tomatoes for meatiness, a little sweetness, and more richness in flavor.  I really love the chewy texture of sun-dried tomatoes.  Without these two ingredients, I feel the pie would be a little flat.  My partner in kitchen crime, Davin, suggested I add a layer of vegan cheddar cheese between the layers of meat veg filling and cauliflower potato puree, and that idea was a perfect addition.  Why did he suggest it?  Think about it, “hamburger meat, potatoes, and cheese”, then to kick it up a notch, we ate it with a few drops of hot sauce and a drizzle of ketchup, and it was delicious.

Cook this dish any time of year, on the weekend for the week.  You can freeze and reheat, and even make little cupcake pies for kids.

Hope you and your loved ones enjoy this recipe as much as we did!

On St. Patrick’s Day, make it extra festive with GT’s Multi-Green Kombucha!  Have it on its own, or make cocktails by adding a little pineapple juice and vodka!

Cheers to healthy eating and drinking!

 

Shepherd’ s Pie

Prep Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Servings: 4

 

Ingredients

Topping:

Garlicky Cauliflower Potato Puree

1 large head garlic, top sliced off

3 cups cauliflower

2 russet potatoes, peeled and diced

½ tsp sea salt

 

Filling:

2 cups quinoa, cooked

½ cup walnuts

2 cups crimini mushrooms

1 Tbsp oil, optional

1 onion, chopped

2 carrots, peeled and diced

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 Tbsp oat flour (gluten-free, can sub with any gluten-free flour)

2 tsp tomato paste

1 cup vegetable stock

1 ½ Tbsp vegan worchestershire sauce

2 tsp fresh thyme, chopped

½ cup corn kernels, frozen

½ cup fresh English peas

1/8-¼ tsp shakes cayenne pepper, depending on desired level of spiciness

¼ tsp sea salt

2 Tbsp sundried tomatoes

4 Tbsp calamata olives, roughly chopped

Optional Ingredients:

Handful shredded vegan cheddar cheese (I like Follow Your Heart Brand)

Ketchup, as needed

 

Directions

Garlicky Cauliflower Potato Puree:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degress F.
2. Slice off the top of a large head of garlic to expose the cloves inside. Place the head of garlic on a piece of foil, cut side up. Drizzle about 2-3 Tbsp vegetable stock and wrap it tightly in the foil. Roast until cloves are lightly browned and tender, about 30-35 minutes.
3. Clean the cauliflower, removing the outer leaves and base. Peel and cut potatoes.  In a medium saucepot, add 2 cups of vegetable stock, ¼ tsp sea salt, and the cauliflower. Set the pot over medium heat. Bring it to a boil, then down to a simmer. Cover and cook until tender, about 20-25 minutes.
4. Once the garlic has roasted, let it rest for at least 5 minutes. It will be hot. Carefully open the foil, pick up the bulb, and push the garlic cloves from the skin (peel), starting from the bottom up, pushing the roasted cloves out and into a blender.
5. Strain the cauliflower potatoes and reserve the vegetable stock. Transfer the cauliflower to the blender. Add the remaining ¼ tsp sea salt. Add ½ of the reserved liquid. Blend just for just a few seconds.  Don’t over-blend or potatoes will get gummy, and adjust the consistency. An immersion blender is best for this.  Even a hand masher.  If the puree is too thick, add more stock. If it’s too thin, try cooking the liquid out on the stovetop.
6. Season to taste.

 

Filling:

While the potatoes and cauliflower are cooking, make the filling.

  1. In a food processor, combine the cooked quinoa, mushrooms, and walnuts.  Process until it looks like ground meat.  Set aside.
  2. Heat a large saute pan or pot, add the oil, heat it for about a minute, then add the onions, carrots, and garlic.  Saute until it caramelizes (browns a little) and onions are translucent.  If the veggies stick to the pan, add some water or veggie stock.  Can also make this oil-free by water-sauteeing.
  3. Add the quinoa, mushroom, and walnut mixture, thyme, rosemary, sea salt, cayenne, black pepper, sun-dried tomatoes, and saute for about 4 minutes.
  4. Add the flour and tomato paste and stir
  5. Add 1 cup of veggie broth (I use the vegetable broth that I used from steaming the cauliflower and potato)
  6. Stir in the corn and English peas and set aside.

 

Assemble:

In a casserole or deep pie dish, spread the filling evenly.  Top with a handful (or more) vegan cheese (optional) and the cauliflower potato puree.  Place on a parchment lined half sheet pan on the middle rack of the oven and bake for 25 minutes or just until the potatoes begin to brown.  Remove to a cooling rack fofr at least 15 minutes before serving.

 

Serve in bowls and top with a drizzle of ketchup and a few drops of hot sauce.

 

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Good bye to My Eclectic Kitchen and Hello to Yvonne’s Vegan Kitchen

 

 

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It’s official!  This blog site is changing it’s name to Yvonne’s Vegan Kitchen!

In 2013, Yvonne Ardestani, founder of this site, started the My Eclectic Kitchen blog.  Throughout the years, she developed a popular blog, recipe app, YouTube channel and wholesale vegan and gluten-free treats business.  After several name changes, from My Eclectic Kitchen to Yvonne’s Deliciously Vegan to Milano Sweets, and the list goes on, Yvonne finally decided to keep it simple and straight-forward and to name everything under her umbrella Yvonne’s Vegan Kitchen.

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With the name change, she decided to do a complete brand re-haul, changing the logo, website, social media platforms, recipe app, recipe development and consulting and wholesale line of goods businesses.  With that, we want to introduce you to:

the new website, Yvonne’s Vegan Kitchen 

the new recipe app, Yvonne’s Vegan Kitchen  in the App Store contains 170 vegan, gluten-free, soy-free recipes!

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Instagram account

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Facebook account

YouTube channel

other services…

Yvonne offers recipe development, consulting, and cooking classes for brands (social media), press, restaurants, hotels, markets, schools, private clients, and individuals. Email info@yvonnesvegankitchen.com to inquire

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Yvonne’s Vegan Kitchen has teamed up with many wholesale partners (restaurants, cafes, markets) throughout Los Angeles and Orange Country.

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Here is a full listing where you can find Yvonne’s Vegan Kitchen VeganCheese, Superfood Crackers, VeganCheesecakes, Cookies, and more:

 

Bloom Cafe

Bowl of Heaven

Elements Natural Foods

Grassroots

Follow Your Heart Market & Cafe

Joi Cafe

Lifefood Organic

Livestyle Juice Bar

Organix

Nuda Juice Shop

Prime Grind

Pure Pressed LA

Rainbow Acres

Stamp Proper Foods

Vanguish Organics

Yoga Urt

V Cheese Shoppe 

 

She also makes special occasion cakes and desserts.  Inquire via info@yvonnesvegankitchen.com

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On top of everything that Yvonne does,  she is still going to provide you with exciting new delicious recipes that are vegan, gluten-free, and soy-free, along with the products and services she loves that are in-line with her lifestyle.

 

From Yvonne and her kitchen team, we want to thank you for your continued love and support!  We are working to continue bringing you more high quality recipes, products, services, and content.

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In Love and Health,

Yvonne’s Vegan Kitchen

 

 

Author: Davin Washington, Editor and Partner

 

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One-stop Vegan & Ethical Fashion, Bead & Reel

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I’m loving my beautiful Matt & Nat Webber Wallet that I ordered through Bead & Reel’s website, curated by Sica Schmitz.  It’s a lovely wallet that I can double as a wallet or a clutch.

I’m excited to tell you about where I ordered the wallet.  Bead & Reel is a vegan and ethical fashion shopping site. It is easy to navigate through and perfect for this season of giving.  Why would I recommend shopping through Bead & Reel?  Every time you shop at Bead & Reel you are supporting 55 independent designers spanning clothing, shoes, handbags, jewelry, accessories, and gifts.  In addition, a portion of each sale is donated to a differently monthly cause to better the world.

I love that Bead & Reel provides clear, verified labelling such as Organic, Fair Trade, Made in the USA, Vegan, and that it has a female founder!  I also think it’s wonderful that they hold an annual fair trade fashion show and quarterly clothing drive for vulnerable women.  Check out their weekly blog posts to learn more!

If you’re still shopping around for gifts, please visit Bead & Reel to do your one-stop shopping!

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Days 4 & 5 of #Yvonnes12DaysofGiveaways with Vegetaryn!

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VEGAN TEES GIVEAWAY!!! 

It’s Day 4 & 5 of #Yvonnes12DaysofGiveaways and my gorgeous friend Taryn of Vegetaryn and I teamed up to give away 2 t-shirts! An “If Looks Could Kale” and “I think therefore I Yam” tee from her Vegetaryn line of punny vegan tees!

Entering is easy! Simply:

1) Like this post in Instagram

2) Follow @vegetaryn and @yvonnesvegankitchen

3) Make up a funny vegan pun or mention your favorite pun from her line

4) Tag 3-4 friends

Contest is open worldwide and ends Thursday at 5pm PST. Good luck!

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Mint Chocolate Chip Cake | Holiday Collaboration with Sweet Simple Vegan & Ahnest Veggie

img_2206Happy holiday season!  Whether you celebrate a holiday or not in December, ’tis the season to indulge in sweet Wintry treats, like this Mint Chocolate Chip Cake, a Braided Cream Cheese & Jam Danish, and Almond Cinnamon Marshmallow Treats.  I teamed up, once again, with a few of my favorites gals from Sweet Simple Vegan and Ahnest Veggie to bring you these must-try recipes!  Woo not only yourselves but your loved ones when you come to the table with one or all of these desserts-in hand.  They are sure to please not only the eyes but your taste buds.  Oh, and of course, they’re all vegan!

I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw Jasmine braiding this wonder on her InstaStory.  I am quite impressed.  In my pre-vegan life, I was not only a lover of croissants, but of danishes especially with cream and jam in them.  Jasmine’s dessert is a dream come true. Find her step-by-step braided Cream Cheese& Jam Danish recipe, here!

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Nothing says the holidays like cinnamon and sugar.  Add a touch of almond, and I am transported to an Italian Christmas celebration.  Sarah’s adult-version rice crispy treats not only remind me of marzipan, they bring the child-like spirit out of me.  At the holiday dessert table, why pick up a cookie when you can reach for a Cinnamon Almond Marshmallow Treat?  Ooooo la la!  They are even dipped in chocolate and marked with an almond star.  Thanks for bringing the child-like wonder back with this sophisticated marshmallow wonder.  Find Sarah’s recipe, here!

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Now, for my Mint Chocolate Chip Cake.  Mint and Chocolate have always been one of my favorite flavor combinations.  Ever since I was a kid, I loved York Peppermint Patties, Andes Chocolate Mints, Junior Mints, you name it!  Then when my parents took me to the ice cream shop, I liked Mint Chocolate Chip among other flavors.  Still do!  All year round, too.  But it seems like folks like it most around the winter season.  The chill of cooling mint in your mouth is reminiscent of cool icy weather and chocolate is a nice rich and decadent offset.  The desserts I’ve been making have seemed pretty boring lately, and while making this seasonal dessert, I became excited again.  I had lots of fun. I love the creme de menthe in the frosting and I love the chocolate cake and chocolate sauce drizzles.

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I find this childhood favorite of mine sophisticated and exciting at the same time.  It’s, of course, vegan and gluten-free, and I think you’re gonna love it!

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Mint Chocolate Chip Cake

Time: 3-4 Hours
Servings: 6-8
Ingredients
Cake:
Dry Ingredients:
1 ¾ cup oat flour
½ cup cacao powder
1 ¾ tsp sea salt
1 tsp xanthan gum
1 tsp baking soda
Wet Ingredients:
1 ¼ cup almond milk (or rice milk for nut-free)
2 tsp
1/3 cup grapeseed oil
1 Tbsp coconut vinegar (or apple cider vinegar)
1 cup coconut sugar
8 drops liquid stevia
1 tso vanilla
2 tsp peppermint extract
Other Ingredients:
½ cup vegan semi-sweet chocolate chips, soy-free
2 popsicle sticks
Frosting:
1 cup organic shortening
3 cups vegan powdered sugar
2 tsp creme de menthe flavoring or peppermint
green natural food coloring or water and handful of spinach blended well together (homemade food coloring)
filtered water, as needed
Directions
Cake:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Line the bottom of 2 6-inch round cake pans with parchment paper. Pull out 7 inches
of parchment paper, fold it in half, and trace a circle, using the 6-inch cake pan. Cut out
the circle and you should have two circles. Spray the pans with cooking spray, place the
parchment paper circles at the bottom of each cake pan, then spray again. Set aside.
3. In a large mixing bowl, mix the wet ingredients
4. In another bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients.
5. Fold the dry ingredients into the wet mixture just until they combine. Taste and adjust minty-ness to your liking.  If you want it more minty, add a bit more peppermint extract  Fold in the
chocolate chips until well blended.
6. Distribute the batter evenly into the 2 6-inch cake pans. Alternatively, evenly
distribute batter into 12-cupcake pan, lined with cupcake baking cups. About a heaping ¼
cup each.
7. Place the 6-inch pans onto a baking sheet, then into a preheated oven and bake for 27-
30 minutes. The cake should have a little bounce back when pressed.
8. Cool the cakes in the pans for at least 40 minutes to an hour, or until completely cool.
While the cakes are cooling, make the chocolate frosting.
Frosting:
In a standmixer, add all the ingredients and paddle until fluffy. Adding a tbsp of water at a time to loosen it up.  Taste and if you’d like the frosting to be mintier, add more mint flavor. If you add to much water, add more powdered sugar.
Assemble the cake:
1. a) For cupcakes, frost the cupcakes once the frosting has set in the refrigerator. If it’s
too hard, keep it out at room temperature until it is spreadable.
1. b) For a cake, center a 6-inch cake circle on top of a revolving cake stand.
2. To remove layers from baking pan, turn the cake pan upside down and it should fall
out onto your hand. Remove the parchment paper from the bottom of the cake. Place the
first layer, bottom side down, at center of cake stand.
3. With an offset spatula, evenly spread approximately 2 ½ ounces of frosting on the
layer. Center second layer on top of first layer with the topside down.
4. Measure the height of the cake by inserting the popsicle stick towards the center of the
cake. Pull it back out and cut off the excess popsicle stick. Cut the other popsicle stick
the same length. Place the sticks back in the cake, toward the center, about an inch
apart. These will keep the layers in place.
5. With an offset spatula, spread the remainder of the frosting to cover the top and sides
of cake.
6. Refrigerate until needed.  You may want to warn your guests about the wooden sticks, or remove it
from their slice if you see them. Enjoy with vanilla ice “cream” or chantilly “cream.”

Please don’t forget to tag me on Instagram, @YvonnesVeganKitchen, and use hashtag #YvonnesVeganKitchen when using my recipes.  I love seeing your recreations!

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Day 3 of Yvonne’s 12 Days of Giveaways with The Veggie Republic!

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BRACELET GIVEAWAY!!! .

It’s Day 3 of #Yvonnes12DaysofGiveaways and The Veggie Republic and I teamed up to gift 3 lucky winners 2 bracelets each–so one for you and one for your bestie!  For every bracelet sold, The Veggie Republic donates 5lbs of fresh produce to families in need, so that’s 30 lbs of food donated as a result of this contest. Sweet!! Thanks for all that you do, The Veggie Republic! 💚🌱

Entering is easy! Simply:

1) Like this post in Instagram

2) Follow @theveggierepublic and @yvonnesvegankitchen

3) Tell us what 3 foods you can’t live without

4) Tag 3-4 friends

Contest is open worldwide and ends tomorrow at 5pm PST. ☃️❄️✨

The Veggie Republic is also offering my followers a 15% off discount code: LOVEVEGGIES15. It will be good for 15% off all Veggie and Avocado Bracelets through December 18.

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Day 2: Yvonne’s 12 Days of Giveaways with Melissa’s Produce!

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FRUIT BASKET GIVEAWAY!!! 

It’s Day 2 of #Yvonnes12DaysofGiveaways and my favorite speciality produce company, Melissa’s Produce, and I teamed up to gift one lucky winner this Deluxe Exotic and Tropical Fruit Basket! 🍍🍌🍊🍇🍐🍒🌶

Entering is easy! Simply in Instagram @yvonnesvegankitchen:

1) Like this post in @Instagram

2) Follow @melissasproduce and @yvonnesvegankitchen

3) Tell us what your favorite fruit is or what’s the most exotic fruit you’ve ever eaten!

4) Tag 3-4 friends

Contest is open worldwide and ends today at 5pm PST. Good luck!

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Day 1: Yvonne’s 12 Days of Giveaways

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COOKBOOK GIVEAWAY🎉

It’s Day 1 of #Yvonnes12DaysOfGiveaways and do I have a prize for you!! 

My talented friend Amber St. Peter aka Fettle Vegan just released her new vegan cookbook, #HomestyleVegan: Easy, Everyday Plant-Based Recipes. Her food is so DELICIOUS. I absolutely love her creamy tomato soup and jalapeño cornbread and want to try her biscuits with mushroom gravy and apple cider donuts next.

I know y’all will love her cookbook, too. (If you need help de-glutenizing recipes, just hit me up with questions!)

Amber and I teamed up to give one lucky winner a signed copy of her cookbook!

Entering the contest is easy! Simply:

1) Like this post in Instagram

2) Follow @fettlevegan and @yvonnesvegankitchen on Instagram

3) Tell us why you’d like to win

4) Tag 3-4 friends

Contest is open worldwide and ends tonight at 11:59pm PST. Good luck!

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Yvonne’s 12 Days of Giveaways!!!

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Check out these Donut Friend Vegan Donuts !!!☃️🎉

Ok, now that I have your ATTENTION, do I have a TREAT for you!!! So, I celebrate Christmas, and in the spirit of giving, I want to thank you all for all the love and support you’ve given me and the Yvonne’s Vegan Kitchen brand brand by giving away some of my FAVORITE things!

There are 12 days till Christmas and from today until Christmas, I’ll be having #Yvonnes12DaysofGiveaways! Each day, I will post what I’m giving away. In order to enter, all you will need to do is like my giveaway post on Instagram, follow me (@YvonnesVeganKitchen), follow the brand I am hosting the giveaway with, tag 3-4 friends, and tell me why you want the item that’s being given away! It’s as simple as that!! Every following morning, I will select and announce the winner!! .

Who’s ready to get started!?!  

Alright now, stay tuned for the first giveaway starting in just a few minutes!

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Vegan Cheesecake Workshop at Grassroots

fullsizerender-2Ever wondered how to make vegan cheesecake?  Attend my free vegan cheesecake workshop at Grassroots Natural Market in South Pasadena on Thursday, December 15th at 7pm!  I’ll be demonstrating how to make 3 types of cheesecakes: Peppermint Chocolate, Pumpkin Pie and S’mores!  Not only will you learn how to make my special desserts, you’ll have the opportunity to taste them, too!

Everything is vegan, gluten-free, raw and contains no refined sugar, dairy or soy, and every bite is sure to bring back sweet memories of the holiday season.

Hope you will join me!

Register for the free class here .

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