Seitan is Evil?!
This is a slightly different type of post- and I apologize in advance for the lack of redundancy. But, there will be a few changes with Manifest Vegan. Nothing huge, but I thought I should let everyone know. My intention for the site will still be the same: to show people that their old favorite foods will not be compromised when switching to a vegan diet… and to share a few good recipes with fellow vegans.
But you may notice a few differences in my posts. Earlier this week, I found out that one of the things that gives me the greatest pleasure in life –gluten– apparently is my worst enemy. Turns out that I, a dedicated and truly avid baker, am a celiac.
Which totally sucks. Because now, I have to get used to baking gluten-free. Also, I will never again enjoy the incredible sensation of eating seitan, or drinking a hefeweizen, or anxiously awaiting my bread dough to rise into smooth, glowing perfection. Or most importantly- enjoying all those things at the same damn time… which is how most of my days went.
On the bright side… I guess I will feel better.
I kinda owe a humongous thank you to Gena of Choosing Raw. Her site inspired me to try out a “high raw” diet. I wanted to give it a shot just because I was getting very little in the way of raw veggie intake, and I was desperately needing an upgrade in my diet. In fact, my husband went “high raw” too… and we both loved it. But the best thing about it, aside from raw kale twice a day, all the dates I can stomach, and zucchini noodles… is that it has literally saved my life.
By trying out a high raw diet, I was actually eliminating the reason I have been chronically ill: I was eating gluten at alarming rates, and it was simply poisoning me. I and my doctor had a major realization that gluten and I were in a very abusive relationship. I loved it desperately, and I would run to it all times of the day and night. And it, in turn, would beat the crap out of me. This apparently has been going on for five years or so. But, I was too smitten by gluten’s charms and just didn’t see it. Incidentally, by following a “high raw” diet, I eliminated all gluten I was consuming… and sure enough, I felt normal again when I went gluten-free. Looking back on it… VeganMofo almost killed me. Next year I will know better.
So, from now on, you will see posts that will be arranged a little differently. And, there will be a lot less wheat flour around here. Some of my recipes originally made with all-purpose flour will now have a gluten-free version, which will be shown in the photo. But, I will also share my “gluten-full” or regular vegan version if there happens to be one (for those of you still on good terms with wheat flour). And, since I am currently mourning the loss of my gluten dependent lifestyle… we will have to wait and see where it goes from there.
For now, please enjoy this Mexican Wedding Cookie recipe.
Moon Cookies (Mexican Wedding Cookies)
My gluten free version of a vegan version of my favorite cookie as a kid: Moon Cookies. Since this is my first time baking gluten-free cookies… I bought one of those “Bob’s Red-Mill” mixes and subbed it and some xantham gum where my trusty old all-purpose flour would go.
The version with all-purpose flour is incredible. I highly recommend trying it out if you can do gluten.
The gluten-free mix produced okay-ish results. They were good, pretty much the same, but there was definitely an aftertaste. So I have some work ahead of me to figure out my own perfect all-purpose flour substitute… or however that works. But these are pretty good for a first attempt.
Gluten Free Option: substitute 2 1/2 cups “Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free all purpose baking flour” and 1/4 tsp xanthan gum, for “all-purpose flour” in recipe ingredients below. Make sure you mix these ingredients together before adding. Also, be sure your vanilla extract is gluten free. Prepare and bake the same way as described below.
- 2 1/2 cups all- purpose flour
- 1 cup Earth Balance margarine, cold
- 1 cup confectioner’s sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup finely chopped almonds, roasted or raw
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Cream together sugar, vanilla and margarine. Add chopped almonds to the sugar and margarine mixture, then gradually mix in flour. Your dough will be crumbly, but easily formed into a ball when worked slightly with hands.
Form into balls, about walnut sized. You then can go on to shape them into moons with your hands, or leave them as spheres. To retain the crescent shape… keep them kinda on the slim side, because they spread a little bit.
Bake on un-greased cookie sheet in preheated oven for about 12 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool on cookie sheet about 15 minutes. Roll generously in confectioner’s sugar until very well coated. Let cool an additional 20 minutes on wire rack.