Easter, 2009

On Sunday, I made an Easter Bunny Day lunch for my boyfriend, my sister, and my sister’s boyfriend. This is the menu I decided on:

Easter Lunch

Easter Lunch

Seitan “Ham”
Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes with Chives
Sauteed Green Beans with Shallots and Garlic
Glazed Carrots, Pre-made Rolls
Mock Mint Juleps
Cream-filled Chocolate Eggs

Easter Lunch - the sides

Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes with Chives

The cheese sauce I used for the potatoes is basically the cheese sauce from this recipe, with a few alterations.

Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes with Chives

3 lbs Yukon Gold potatoes
1/2 C margarine
1/2 C flour
3 1/2 C hot water
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 TBSP soy sauce
1 tsp garlic powder
Pinch turmeric
2 TBSP vegetable oil
1 C nutritional yeast
Chives, for garnish

In a saucepan, melt the margarine over mediudm-low heat. Whisk in the flour until the mixture is smooth and well-combined. Stir in the hot water, salt, soy sauce, garlic powder, and turmeric. Whisk until all ingredients are incorportated and until mixture becomes thick and bubbly. Whisk in the oil and nutritional yeast, remove from heat.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Peel and slice potatoes into 1/8″ slices. Spray a medium-sized casserole dish with cooking spray, and arrange 1/3 of the potatoes (slightly overlapping the slices) in the bottom of the dish. Sprinkle potaotes with salt and pepper, and cover with 1/3 of the cheese sauce. Repeat twice or until all potatoes are used, and cover with remaining cheese sauce.

Cover dish with aluminum foil and bake 30-45 minutes, or until a knife slides into the potaotes easily. Increase temperature to 425 degrees, remove foil from dish, and bake another 15-30 minutes, until the cheese begins to brown. Remove from oven and sprinkle with chopped chives.

Green beans and carrots

Green beans and carrots

For the green beans, I used this recipe from MarthaStewart.com:

Sauteed Green Beans with Shallots and Garlic

2 tablespoons coarse salt
3 pounds green beans, ends trimmed
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 shallots, finely chopped ( 1/2 cup)
4 garlic cloves, minced (2 tablespoons)

Fill a large bowl with ice water, and set aside. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, and add salt. Add half the beans, return to a boil, and cook until bright green and just tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, plunge beans into ice water to stop the cooking. Transfer to paper towels to drain. Repeat with remaining green beans. (Blanched green beans can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 2 days.)
For shallot-garlic green beans: Heat oil in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add shallots and garlic, and cook, stirring frequently, until soft and caramelized, 8 to 10 minutes. Add green beans, raise heat to medium-high, and cook until heated through and beginning to brown in places, 3 to 4 minutes. Season with salt. Serve immediately.

For the carrots, I used the following recipe from the Everyday Food cookbook, Great Food Fast.

Glazed Carrots

9 carrots (1/2 lbs), quartered and cut into 2-inch lengths
1 TBSP sugar (I used a bit more, along with some agave nectar)
2 TBSP butter (used margarine)
1/2 tsp coarse salt
Fresh ground pepper

In a skillet, bring the carrots, sugar, butter (margarine), and 1/2 C water to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, partially covered, 6 minutes. Cook uncovered, over high heat, tossing often until tender, 3-4 minutes. Season with pepper.

Mock Mint Julep

Mock Mint Julep

Mock Mint Juleps

2 C cold water
1 1/2 C sugar
3/4 C lemon juice
6 mint sprigs
5 C ice cubes
2 1/2 C ginger ale, chilled
Lemon slices and additional mint, for garnish

In a bowl, combine the water, sugar, lemon juice, and mint – stir well. Let stand at least 45 minutes. Strain the mixture and discard the mint. Place ice cubes in two 2 qt. pictchers. Add half of the lemon mixture and half of the ginger ale to each. Pour into glasses and garnish with lemon and mint, if desired.

Recipe found here.

Agave and Dijon-Glazed Seitan Ham

For the seitan “ham”, I don’t really have an exact recipe. I just kind of wing it every time I make it. But, basically, I mix 1 1/4 C vital wheat gluten + 1/2 C nutritional yeast. Then I make about 2 C of a liquid mixture consisting of ketchup, water, liquid smoke, soy sauce, garlic powder, onion powder, and a bit of paprika. I mix the two together, forming one large or two small oval-shaped gluten “hams”.

Seitan, formed into hams

Seitan, formed into "hams"

I simmer this in a liquid consisting of all the above liquid ingredients + tomato juice for 1 – 1 1/2 hours, turning the “hams” every 20-30 minutes.

Seitan hams, simmering

Seitan hams, simmering

Seitan hams after simmering, pre-oven

Seitan hams after simmering, pre-oven

After simmering the gluten, I make a glaze with a 1:1 ratio of dijon mustard and agave nectar. I put the hams in a baking dish sprayed with cooking oil, and spoon the glaze over the top of each “ham”. I bake the “hams” at 325, occasionally spooning over more glaze, for about 30 minutes.

Seitan Ham - Baked, glazed, and ready to eat!

Seitan Ham - Baked, glazed, and ready to eat!

The “ham” is best served hot, with extra glaze spooned over the slices. I’ll try to get a real recipe worked out soon!

Easter Lunch - plate

Easter Lunch - plate

Up next, I’ll post a tutorial for the cream-filled chocolate eggs!

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2 Responses to “Easter, 2009”

  1. Ari Says:

    First, thanks for the recipes! They all look so delicious and I can’t wait to make them. :D Great photos too.

    Second, I know this is probably a difficult question to answer, but I’m curious about changing the ham a little bit. My family has problems with seitan’s glycemic index, but when I made Vegan Dad’s seitan loaf it was OK because it had white beans in it (http://vegandad.blogspot.com/2008/06/veggie-lunch-meat.html). Do you think adding beans to the ham mixture would work? Any idea how much, and what changes would be necessary to the recipe? I’m not very good at figuring out substitutions, so I thought I’d at least ask just in case you had some insight! Like I said, I know this is a long shot, but thanks for your time either way. :)

  2. Andrea Says:

    Well, thank you and you’re welcome! :-D

    I would think that would work well, but I couldn’t tell you how much to add since I’ve never tried it. If you did add the beans, I would probably add a little bit extra of all the other liquid ingredients and spices to keep the flavor the same.

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