buffalo · grilling · pasta · seitan · tailgate · vegan · veggie burgers · vital wheat gluten

2019 Tailgate Season Preview

We’re baaaacccccccck!!! That’s right, your favorite tailgate blog is back online with a little something special to get you excited for the 2019 football season. This year will be the biggest season EVER in the Muni Lot. You don’t want to miss a single tailgate. 8293B9BF-1498-470E-BE30-24D9F53CC7DB

To get you hype, check out this tailgate season preview video. It features a little sample of the tailgate wares we’re gonna be cooking up this season!

  • Buffalo tempeh wings with cashew ranch
  • Grilled veggie pasta salad with creamy balsamic
  • Pizza burger with homemade seitan bean patties, pizza sauce, pesto and Miyokos Mozz on a pretzel bun (pictured right).

Big thanks to Scott Esterly of Esterly Photography for the video. This is his first crack at food videography so except some big things from him! Also thanks to the GreenRoom for a fabulous venue. I can’t say enough about Scott or the GreenRoom team. I highly recommend them for your photography, video or event space needs.

See you on September 8th!

 

cashew cheese · cashews · cheese · grilling · liquid smoke · mushrooms · sandwich · smoked · tailgate · vegan · vital wheat gluten · vitamix

Grilled Vegan Cheesesteaks

Week 9 Browns v. Bucs

The vegan tailgate is going strong! Not to be confused with the Bucks of Ohio State, the Browns took on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers this past weekend in Cleveland. Perfect football weather made for perfect tailgate conditions. And the Brown won! The Browns have a winning record and this recipe was quite the crowd pleaser. 

This is another seitan recipe, so if you follow the blog you are basically an expert by now! It is my take on Philly Cheesesteaks, inspired by the Vegan Zombie. Everything, except the buns, is made from scratch, so you’ll need to set aside a few hours the night before the game to make everything. Also, this doesn’t have to be made in the parking lot and can be made at home very easily. Great for away games!

The key here is the tender, thinly shaved seitan and homemade herbed cashew cheese.  They pair together very well with grilled marinated peppers, onions and mushrooms. Load these sandwiches up the brim and expect a mess. We used a little BBQ or Sriracha on top and served alongside a roasted cauliflower and peanut salad with peanut dressing. Enjoy!

Ingredients

Seitan dry ingredients:

The seitan after baking for 90 minutes in homemade stock

1 1/2 cup vital wheat gluten

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 tbsp brown sugar

1 tbsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp turmeric



Seitan wet ingredients:



1 cup vegetable stock
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

1 tbsp soy sauce

1 tsp liquid smoke

2 cloves of shredded garlic

Ground pepper to taste



Stock for seitan:

1 1/2 cup vegetable stock

1 diced onion

4 smashed cloves garlic

2 bay leaves

1/4 agave nectar

1 tsp chili powder

1 tbsp dried parsley

1/2 bunch of fresh thyme

1 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp molasses

2 cups water



Herbed cashew cheese:

Herbed cashew cheese block


1 cup cashews raw

1-1/2 cups water (and more if you need to soak your nuts)

2 tsp agar agar powder OR 2 tbsp agar agar flakes (this can be hard to find but most health food stores carry it)

1/4 cup nutritional yeast

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice

1 tbsp onion powder

1 tsp smoked salt (or just regular salt)

1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/8 cup fresh herbs (I used basil and oregano)



Veggies:

3 bell peppers
2 medium onions
8 oz. mushrooms
2 cloves garlic
2 tbsp. Fresh herbs (I used thyme and oregano)
1 tbsp. lime juice
1 tbsp. soy sauce
1 tbsp. agave nectar
1 tbsp. rice vinegar


AND:
8 Hoagie rolls

Directions
-Preheat the oven to 375
-Combine the wet and dry ingredients and form a dough. Roll into a log and place in a covered casserole dish (I used a roasting pan)

-Bring all the ingredients for the stock to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes

-Pour the stock in casserole dish to cover seitan. Cover and bake 375 for 45 minutes (Note: baste the seitan if it didn’t quite cover it every 20 minutes or so). Then flip seitan and continue to cook for 45 hour uncovered.
-Meanwhile make the cheese: Bring the water to a boil in a small saucepan and add the agar agar. Boil for one minute, stirring constantly. Turn down the heat to simmer and cook another 5 minutes, stirring constantly until the agar is dissolved completely.

-Put the cashews into the blender with all the remaining ingredients. Pour in the agar mixture and Blend on high until very smooth.

-Pour into a glass dish or non-stick pan (if you think it will stick then spray with vegetable oil.) Refrigerate until firm. Remove the cheese by running a knife or spatula around the edge and it will pop out of the container.
-For the veggies, slice the peppers, onions, mushrooms and garlic and place in a sealed bag or container. Add lime juice, soy sauce, agave, rice vinegar and herbs and let marinate until ready to grill.
-Once the seitan is done, let cool and wrap up in foil, along with cheese, until its tailgate time.
-Grill the peppers, onions and mushrooms until charred. Set aside
-Shave the seitan using a grater or sharp knife. Grill in a grill pan or cast iron skillet.

-Grate this cheese using a box grater. toss on the seitan in the last few minutes to soften.
-Toast the buns on the grill and assemble the sandwiches to your liking







Marinating the veggies the night before






Grilled veggies

Shredded seitan
I used my cast iron skillet on the grill
The sandwiches can be served with your favorite side dish
Ready to take a bite!





avocado · beans · daiya cheese · grilling · seitan · veggie burgers · vital wheat gluten

Avocado Stuffed Black Bean Burger Sliders

Week 6 Browns vs. Steelers

The entire city of Cleveland is riding high. The Browns trashed their bitter rival on a perfect October day and it was a long time coming. Years of frustration alleviated by a hometown hero, leading the team he grew up watching to a winning record. It just doesn’t get much better.



Perfectly grilled stuffed sliders

Actually, it does get better if you were able to join us at the muni lot today and sampled these stuffed veggie burgers. The creamy avocado center took it to another level.

The recipe for the burgers has been in development for a little while now. I made very similar patties for a memorial day cookout and they were gone in a flash. Its a combination black bean and seitan base so it holds up very well on the grill. The last thing you want it a mushy veggie burger falling through the grill grate.

The roasted corn and red pepper provide the necessary “veggie” to the mix. The roasting unlocks the special flavor in any vegetable and those two rank right up at the top.

Chrispy is hungry!

And stuffing a burger? I mean, everyone likes a little surprise inside of things, right? You wouldn’t expect to find avocado in a grilled burger but you’ll be blown away at how well it works. Don’t be afraid to experiment with other fillings too.
Toss a half slice of Daiya cheese on top and you have one creamy, hearty slider. I served them alongside pulled BBQ Beyond Meat sliders and grilled sweet potato wedges. Enjoy!


An avocado surprise!


Ingredients

  • 2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup vital wheat gluten
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • 2 flax eggs (3 tbsp warm water. 1 tbsp ground flax = one egg)
  • 1 cup corn, frozen or fresh
    Roasted corn and red pepper
  • 2 red peppers, halved and deseeded
  • 1 tbsp vegan Worcestershire
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce (just double if you don’t have Worcestershire)
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika 
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 2 avocados
  • Juice of one lime
  • 6 slices vegan cheese (I used Daiya cheddar)
  • 12 slider buns
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 425. Place the corn and red pepper in the oven for about 20 minutes. Watch the corn, you don’t want to burn it! 
  2. Meanwhile, mash, blend or process the beans. They should be mushy but with some chunks.
  3. Add the beans, flax eggs, Worcestershire and soy sauce to a large bowl. Mix well.
  4. Then add the wheat gluten, bread crumbs and spices. Knead well, about 3 minutes. 
  5. Once the pepper is cool, peel the skin (here’s a primer on roasting red peppers. Or you could just buy the jarred stuff) and chop into small piece. Fold the chopped pepper and corn in with the burger mix
  6. Mash the avocado with the lime juice
  7. Now comes the fun part. Make a small patty in your hand, Put a small spoonful of the mashed avocado in the center and set it down on a plate. Make another small patty and carefully seal the two patties around the avocado (take a look at the pictures below!)
  8. Keep the stuffed patties until ready to grill. Once the grill is ready, grill each side until browned. Toss the cheese on to melt. Serve on a slider bun.

Flat patty ready for filling



Add the avocado



Get ready for patty #2



Seal the edges



Burgers on the grill with Pulled Beyond Meat



A plate full of goodness, including grilled sweet potato wedges



Take a bite

bbq · cole slaw · mac and cheese · seitan · smoked · tailgate · vegan · vital wheat gluten

BBQ Smoked Vegan Brisket

Week 2 Browns vs. Saints

Vegan BBQ never looked so good

It feels good to be back! The Browns decided to show up this week and bring home a win. The weather was perfect for grillin and we got down.

The vegans took over the muni lot with an outta this world vegan tailgate. Cowboy Caviar, Mac and Cheese, Green Beans and more. This brisket recipe requires a bit of advance prep. Form and boil the brisket the night before and coat with a dry rub.

On game day, use your favorite BBQ sauce or make your own (I will post my BBQ sauce recipe later this week). I went ahead and put the brisket, along with a simple cole slaw, on grilled Texas toast for a loaded sandwich. I drew inspiration from my two favorite vegan food trucks, Homegrown Smoker in Portland and BBQ Revolution in Austin. They are worth following and be prepared to drool at every post!

Now onto the brisket! Smoking can be accomplished in many different types of grills. I used the simplest method in my new horizontal grill. By sprinkling the charcoals with soaked wood chips and using indirect grilling, you can smoke the brisket “low and slow.” This recipe will knock the socks of your guests. Enjoy!

Seitan Brisket
Ingredients


Huge bag of Wheat Gluten
  • 3 cups vital wheat gluten (I buy this stuff in 10lb. bags!)
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast flakes
  • 2 and 1/4 cup cold water
  • 1/2 cup low sodium soy sauce or tamari
  • 2 tablespoon ketchup
  • 5 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon Old Bay
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder

Directions

  1. Combine dry ingredients (gluten, nutritional yeast and spices) in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, mix together wet ingredients (water, soy sauce, ketchup, garlic, and lemon zest).
  2. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and combine. Knead dough in the bowl for about 3 minutes until you have a spongy dough. Let rest for a few minutes, then shape into a log about 7 or 8 inches long. Cut into 3-4 pieces.
  3. In a large soup pot (the biggest you’ve got) fill with cold water (make sure it’s very cold, otherwise the seitan will get crumbly) and soy sauce/veggie brother to taste. Gently put the pieces of dough in the liquid. Partially cover the pot and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer for one hour, turning the pieces occasionally. Let it cool
  4. Squeeze out all the liquid you can, without breaking it up (some pieces will fall off. Save these for stir fry, meat sauce, or some other use).
The seitan after boiling

Dry Rub
Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoon coarsely ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon granulated white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons mustard powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons chili  powder
  • 2 teaspoon chipotle or cayenne powder
  • 1 teaspoon  of kosher salt

Directions

  1. Combine all of the spices in tupperware. Shake!
  2. Coat each piece of brisket, being careful not to break any. Really rub it in.
  3. Wrap each piece in plastic wrap or place in a Ziploc bag and refrigerate for several hours or overnight until ready to smoke .
  4. Soak wood chips (I like hickory) for 45 minutes or more.
  5. Start a fire in your charcoal grill or smoker. Prepare for indirect heat if using a grill (you don’t want it to be hot, keep temp around 225)
  6. Place the brisket on the grate. Throw some wood chips on the hot coals and close the cover. Smoke for 1 to 1 and a ½ hours, adding more soaked wood chips occasionally. Baste with bbq sauce in the last 20 minutes.
  7. Remove from the grill and keep covered while you grill the Texas toast (see below)
  8. Slice and coat with BBQ sauce.
Dry rubbed and ready to chill overnight


Smoked brisket

Smoked brisket, sliced

Simple Coleslaw (adapted from Salt Lick BBQ in Driftwood, Texas)
Ingredients

  • 1 head cabbage, shredded (for a primer on how to shred a head of cabbage, click here)
  • Pinch celery seed
  • 3 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
  • 3/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • Pinch white pepper

Directions

  1. Place cabbage in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Place vinegar in a heavy saucepan and bring to a boil. While vinegar is boiling, slowly add sugar and salt, stirring constantly until dissolved. Turn off heat. Place pinch of white pepper in a mixing bowl. Slowly pour vinegar mixture into white pepper while whisking, and mix well. Cover.
  3. Sprinkle celery seed and sesame seeds over cabbage and mix thoroughly.
  4. Add vinegar mix and combine well.

Texas Toast
Ingredients

  1. Thick (1″!), soft, white and fluffy bread
  2. Earth Balance at room temp
  3. Garlic puree (I used a head of garlic)
  4. Salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Mix together the Earth Balance and garlic in a bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  2. Brush one side of the bread with the Earth Balance mix and place on the grill, spread side down.
  3.  Grill the bread for 1 to 2 minutes until lightly golden brown. Flip and quickly toast the dry side.

Tailgate! Assemble the sandwich like so…

beets · daiya cheese · grilling · tempeh · vegan · veggie burgers · vital wheat gluten · vitamix

Veggie Burger Off 2014: Beet Bacon Cheeseburgers

Week 9 Browns vs. Ravens

The last time the Browns beat Baltimore I was a senior in college.  11 straight losses and a Super Bowl win later, the Ravens came to town in a much-hyped matchup. A 4:30 game meant the tailgate had “bonus hours.”  Add that to a bonus hour from daylight savings time and we had a recipe for an amazing tailgate.  A great time to hold the annual Veggie Burger Off, where I ask all vegans to bring their best veggie burger to grill.


Last year’s edition of the Veggie Burger Off ended in bitter disappointment for me, as my friend Rob stole the show with his Spicy Bean Burgers.  This year I was determined not to drop the ball.

Many people in Ohio and beyond claim that Northstar Cafe in Columbus has the best veggie burgers.  They are made with beets, black beans and brown rice for a meaty texture and unbelievably simple and delicious flavor.  My intention for the veggie burger off was replicate it and then take it to another level.  Instead of just black beans, I used red kidney beans.  I also topped it off with some tempeh bacon and melty daiya provolone cheese slices.  A recipe for success… Enjoy!

Ingredients

Gator wanted me to drop something!
  • 1 lb. beets, roasted
  • 1/2 dry brown rice, cooked (slightly mushy)
  • 1 medium onion, diced small
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup vital wheat gluten
  • 1/2 cup dried black beans, cooked (or use 1 can)
  • 1/2 cup dried kidney beans, cooked (or use 1 can)
  • 1/4 cup prunes, chopped small
  • 2 tbsp. mustard of choice
  • 1/2 tsp. coriander
  • 1/2 tsp. thyme
  • 1 flax egg (1 tbsp. ground flax mixed in 3 tbsp. hot water)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 package tempeh bacon (I used Lightlife Brand Organic Smokey Tempeh Strips)
  • 1 package Daiya Provolone Deli Slices 
  • Buns
Directions
  1. Wash beets, remove greens and wrap tightly in foil.  Roast at 425 for about an hour.  Let cool in the foil packet so skin loosens.  
    1. Meanwhile, sauteé onion for 10 minutes over medium heat.  Add garlic and sauteé for another minute.
    2. Pour half of the beans into a food processor or vita-mix.  Add the prunes and pulse.  You want to chop the beans but you don’t want to blend them.  

      Looks gooooood
    3. Peel and grate the beets once they are cooled.  Pressed the beet shavings into a colander and drain as much juice as possible (I had a shot of beet juice left over!)
    4. Add the onion/garlic mix, beans (both chopped and whole), beets, vinegar, mustard and spices to a large bowl.  Mix.
      1. Then add wheat gluten and flax egg.  Mix again.
      2. Put it in the fridge over night or at least an hour to set.
      3. When your ready to grill, wrap the tempeh bacon in foil and poke a few holes.  Place it on the hot part of the grill for 15 minutes. 
      4. Meanwhile, form the patties and place on a well oiled grill grate.  Cook 5 minutes each side.
      5. Once you flip the burgers, place a slice of provolone on top.  
      6. Assemble your burger and enjoy!
      Wrap tight!
      Hot beets
      Bean chop
      Mix!
      Veggie burgers on the grill
      Assembly
      Award winning
      Mmmmm yum!
      liquid smoke · nutritional yeast · sausage · seitan · vegan · vital wheat gluten

      Vegan Links on the Gridiron

      Week 6 Browns vs. Lions

      The Browns were dealt a low blow losing hometown hero QB Brian Hoyer last week to a season ending knee injury.  Back comes Brandon Weeden and he precedes to make “the worst interception of all time.”  All joking aside, this is kind of what we come to expect from the Browns, year after year.  So what do we rely on? The tailgate.  And it was one of the years best.  Perfect fall day and people in good spirits.

      I decided to make vegan sausages for the 3rd time.  I had a couple practice rounds before trying it out at the tailgate.  People tend to grimace when I tell them my sausages are vegan, but honestly do they even know what kind of meat is in a “normal sausage?”  Probably better they don’t know.  While some don’t want to know how the sausage is made, I’m ready wax poetic about how to make these delectable vegan apple sage sausages. 

      Fall means apples in Ohio and across the midwest.  A trip to an apple orchard with my girlfriend left us with a huge bounty of several varieties of apples.  I made sure to get a number that were good for baking and making sauce.  By cooking down the apples, I made a plain jane apple sauce (just water and apples) to use in recipes, including the one below. 

      The technique is similar to the All-Pro Veggie Burgs, where you knead wheat gluten with wet ingredients, wrap in foil and then steam.  Afterwards, the sausages can be refrigerated until they are ready to grill. Next time I might use a bit less wheat gluten to make the sausages more moist.  The flavor was incredible though and people were impressed. We even topped them off with some polish stew for an authentic taste.  Enjoy!

      Ingredients (makes 10-12 sausages)

      Cooking the apples

      3 cups vital wheat gluten
      1/4 cup nutritional yeast
      1/2 tsp ground cloves
      2 tbsp dried sage
      1 tsp garlic powder
      1 tsp onion powder
      1 tsp ground cayenne
      1 tsp liquid smoke
      1 cup smooth cooked down apples or unsweetened applesauce 
      1 tbsp agave nectar or maple syrup

      Directions 
      1. Combine the dry ingredients in one bow and whisk the wet ingredients in another bowl.

      Wet and dry

      2. Mix the wet and dry ingredients together and knead for about 5 minutes.  
      3. Pull off a small clump of the dough and roll into a log. It should be the size of a sausage!

      Its a sausage!

      4. Wrap tightly in aluminum foil (see picture)

      The wrapped sausages

      5. Steam for 40 minutes in a steamer or a pot/pan with a steamer basket.
      6. Remove and refrigerate until ready to grill.
      7. Grill on an oiled grill grate for 5-7 minutes.

      Grillin and chillin
      grilling · liquid smoke · peanut butter · tvp · vital wheat gluten

      All-Pro Veggie Burgs

      Week 5 Bills v. Browns

      How meaty!
      Sorry for the delayed posting.  I made these veggie burgers at an impromptu apartment tailgate before the Thursday night game last week.  Vegan tailgates are known for veggie burgers, but they don’t have to be tasteless and boring like those depicted in the recent Bud Light commercial.  
      This recipe comes come from vegan grilling legend (and Clevelander) Tamasin Noyes.  When I met her a few months back, she insisted I try my hand at making this burger.  She said it delighted many meat eaters and vegans alike.  The technique is the same, but as you can see my recipe varies quite a bit.

      What sets it apart is its meaty texture.  The TVP gives it a ground beef appearance and the vital wheat gluten holds it together.  Like most veggie burgers, the flavor is really customizable with the spices and the liquid smoke and vegan worcestershire add a great burger taste.  Enjoy!
      Ingredients
      1 1/3 cups hot water
      1 cup texturized vegetable protein
      1/4 cup finely minced onion
      1 tablespoon garlic powder
      1 tablespoon onion powder

      1 tablespoon Penzey’s Chili 3000, or other spice blend
      2 teaspoons smoked paprika
      1/2 teaspoon salt
      1/2 teaspoon white pepper
      1/2 teaspoon black pepper
      2 teaspoons instant tapioca or cornstarch
      1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon vegan Worcestershire sauce
      1 tablespoon liquid smoke
      1 1/2 cups vital wheat gluten
      1/4 cup fresh ground peanut butter (I omitted the oil from the original recipe. Why no oil?)
      1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons vegetable broth or water
      Directions
      1. Combine the hot water with the TVP to rehydrate, about 10 minutes. 
      Rehydrate
      2. Add rehydrated TVP to a large bowl with the remaining ingredients (in the order given). Mix well, and knead for about 3 minutes.
      Assembly 
      Knead
      3. Divide and shape the burger into 6 patties.  Place each burger in the center of a piece of foil. Fold the foil over each burger to make a packet. (Note: Don’t make the foil too tight in order for the burger to expand.
      4. Transfer wrapped burgers to a steamer (or a steamer basket inside a covered pot/pan) and steam 1 hour. 
      Steam
      5. Unwrap and transfer the burgers to a plate and refrigerate for 1 hour.
      6. Throw them on the grill! Make sure you oil your grill grate.  Cook about 5 minutes per side.
      The final grilled product