Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Hell yeah

When I was visiting the AK Press website to order my Slingshot, I noticed a vegan cookbook for only $3: Hot Damn and Hell Yeah: Recipes for Hungry Banditos by Ryan Splint. I'm often hungry, and I would like to be a bandito, so I decided to add it to my order.

The day it came in the mail, Andy flipped through and decided we had to try the Sweet Potato and Black Bean Burritos from the cookbook (in my last post). We got some silken tofu to make the Almost Sour Cream, and with the leftover tofu we made the Mayonnaise recipe. We both loved the burritos. The filling was thick and creamy and flavourful. The Almost Sour Cream was fairly different to cow sour cream, but it was good alongside the burrito filling nonetheless. Andy wasn't sold on the mayo, but I think it's pretty good. We also used the Easy Gravy for our meat pie (also in the last post). Four recipes down.

The next night as I made a side salad and tried to think up a dressing, I thought: we have mayo in the fridge finally. I tried to recreate Thousand Island Dressing. But considering that I've never even seen a recipe for the stuff, this may be completely off. It is Hot Damn Mayo, some diced gherkins, dijon mustard, and tomato sauce. The mayo made a great base for the salad dressing since it coats all the veggies, and Andy decided he likes it.

Saturday morning I woke up well before Andy did, and I felt like baking. Hot Damn and Hell Yeah was still on the countertop, and I remembered it had a recipe for Cranberry Rockcakes. We didn't have any dried cranberries, so I used dried mixed fruit instead, and replaced the lemon zest with cinnamon. These were quick to make, fun to pull apart, and delicious warm from the oven. The description of the recipe says these are good for lazy Saturdays at the bandito hideout, and I think Ryan hit the nail right on the head.
The next recipe we tried from the new cookbook was Potato Salad. It utilised some more Mayo, along with chopped gherkins, mustard, celery (I used celery seed for the flavour since I didn't have the veggie on hand) and shallots. My only other change to this recipe was using a mixture of regular potato and purple sweet potato (which I loved and Andy didn't). This potato salad recipe was the most reminiscent of the potato salad my mum used to make. We had it alongside some glazed beets and stir-fried zucchini and carrots.
Finally (so far), corn bread. I followed the recipe exactly, because last time I tried making corn bread it turned out like dense, flavourless polenta. I used Ryan's suggested egg replacer: a mix of baking powder, bicarb soda, flour and water. I don't have an 8 inch square pan, so I thought a round pan would work... I don't know whether to blame the pan or the egg replacer, but this got so big. I was not expecting it to rise so much. But, I guess the excessive rising just means more corn bread to go around. The texture and flavour of this cornbread was exactly what I had in mind. It brought back memories of eating cornbread alongside split pea soup that my mum made.
So far I've made seven recipes from this cookbook, and I've only had it a week. That should be enough of a rave review. But seriously, this cookbook is awesome. Many of the recipes remind me of childhood comfort foods. It has a serious dessert section, including Apple Enchiladas, which I can't wait to try. The recipes all call for ingredients which are easy to find, and they are quick to prepare. I strongly recommend buying this cookbook. For $3, you get lots of yummy recipes, cool drawings of skeleton banditos, and, the whole thing is written in a southern accent. But since it was written by an Australian, I imagine an Australian trying to sound southern, which is hilarious.

On an unrelated note... yesterday I looked out my office window and the view was pretty much like this one, except that the car that I saw was blue instead of silver. The main road of the uni became a raging torrent (well, maybe that's an exaggeration, but there was quite a current!). A BIG tree fell down near Andy's office. Today, I see blue sky. Gotta love the rainy season.Photo from this article in the Townsville Bulletin.


the pleasantly plump vegan said...

i want that cookbook. i have been eyeing it for a while now.
that rain is crazy!

Liz² said...

ooh, I'd heard lame things about that cookbook, but ferk that, all the food you made from look damn good!

woah, flood. O_O

kristy said...

everyone seems to be talking about that cookbook at the moment.

I want it, but it's seems too much just to order one cookbook from the US especially when I just ordered don't eat off the sidewalk zine.

Anonymous said...

yum!!! all the food looks so tasty and comforting.

wow so much rain.

Ashasarala said...

That cookbook looks homemade, which makes it look even more awesome.

I haven't been able to find a homemade mayo recipe I've liked yet. I still buy Vegenaisse religiously, especially now that they have an organic version.

Celery seed belongs in every potato salad recipe if you ask me, even if you've got plenty of celery in there already.

That rain is scary. I'm glad we only have little floods in my neck of the woods. ::knock on... wood::

ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

Yikes-- I hope the rain lightens up!

All the recipes look stellar, especially those "rockcakes". Plus, what a great price!

Vicki's Vegan Vice said...

Hi Theresa! I love your new blog look and profile photo! I have this cookbook and don't cook from it nearly enough it seems. I also made the cranberry scones, but what you call them is much more descriptive! I've never heard them called rockcakes before. Pays to sleep in at your place! :)

VeggieGirl said...

WOW you've been active with that cookbook - everything looks fantastic... hell yeah, indeed! :0)

my goodness, talk about wild weather conditions!! stay safe!!

urban vegan said...

All I can say is, Hot Damn. Hell yeah. (Except for the floods--hope things have dried up a bit)

Monika K said...

Don't you just love it when a last minute purchase turns out to be awesome? I spend WAY too much on cookbooks as it is, but you've made this one look pretty great...

Theresa said...

kristy, the only way I can justify ordering a book from the US is to order more than one at a time. The hard part is narrowing down the choices.

suzie, I love vegannaise, but there is pretty much one (very expensive!) vegan mayo in the shops here, and it is not so great. Stupid townsville.

Oh, and I've only just realised that, for $6, you can buy a combination of Hot Damn and Hell Yeah, and 'The dirty south cookbook'. Maybe better value, especially if it's shipping very far.