I don’t think I’ll ever have the conscientiousness or will power to be vegan, but I’m curious about vegan substitutes and how well they compare to their delicious fatty and animal counterparts. (On a side note, two of the restaurants I’ve frequented most in L.A. so far are vegan restaurants. One of them is a block away and delivers and makes an awesome fake orange chicken, and the other one is near campus and does the vegan mac and cheese I posted earlier.) I saw this easy recipe for vegan hollandaise using silken tofu, so I tried it out pretty much exactly. After reading the comments, though, I think I’ll try it next time with real butter instead of oil (come on, if you’re going to use fat anyway, might as well be butter in a hollandaise) and a little extra nutritional yeast (this stuff is bizarre). The end result was the perfect consistency and color, just a little too lemony and missing that rich buttery taste. Being non-vegan and all, I added fried eggs on top of my asparagus and a side of bacon baked in the toaster oven. Baking bacon is awesome because you’re not occupying an extra pan or burner, and all the fat comes out nice and clear and ready to be used for another dish, like kimchi fried rice or a bacon vinaigrette! So yes, safe to say I won’t be going vegan anytime soon…
I broiled the asparagus for 10 minutes on low + 3 minutes on high. So much easier than blanching and roasting like I normally do, and the end result is pretty much the same. In my apartment in San Jose, I didn’t realize there was a broiling option the whole two years I lived there.
Another vegan substitute I tried recently is shirataki noodles. These things are amazing. The texture and flavor don’t bother me at all because I’m used to eating tofu, but it’s great with Asian soup bases and some uni. I tried Hungry Girl’s fettuccine alfredo version, and it’s not bad. The texture of the noodles is nowhere near al dente, so I don’t know if it could ever really work for Italian noodle recipes. I did do an udon carbonara once, but if you hate mushy noodles, it won’t work for you.
Fried eggs taste great on everything! I consulted a number of fried recipes to get the best tips. If I had paid any attention to my mom’s cooking growing up, I probably would’ve realized a number of them already. For instance, the best rice is at least one day old… it needs to be a bit dry to get a nice fry on and not get mushy. Another blog said to fry all the ingredients separately and then combine. Kimchi has been a food fad of mine lately due to mentaiko kimchi udon, and this kimchi fried rice recipe was inspired by the huge $5 portion of kimchi fried rice at Gushi plus bacon a la Momofuku for 2.