Spring has sprung: Vegan empanada class, New York Vegetarian Festival


Last night’s northeast snow and hail be damned, it’s finally spring and I know you’re feeling it too! Time to get out of the house, or maybe not head home after work right away and do something. And that something could be making vegan empandas with me next Thursday March 31st at the Brooklyn Kitchen!

Spaces are still available, and if you mention “Terry’s Discount” in the notes section of online registration you’ll get a $10 store credit good for good towards any of the fantastic cooking wares, books, aprons, canning and brewing items and other goodies that the fabulous Brooklyn Kitchen has to offer.

Also, for some really exciting news; did you know that New York is going to have it’s very own premier, kick-ass, large-scale vegetarian food festival next month? Join me and loads veggie-hungry New Yorkers on Sunday, April 3rd for first ever NYC Vegetarian Food Festival. A boatload of veggie food vendors; two stages of speakers, events, cooking demonstrations (including one from yours truly); and a few other surprises are waiting for you April 3rd at the perfect price of FREE for general admission.

And now a question: what should I make for my demonstration? Sarah from Rescue Chocolate has requested something “meaty” and I’m suspecting seitan tacos will fit the fast and furious bill just fine. But what other sort of edible, veganlicious treat do you think would celebrate this great vegan-friendly city?

Never-too-late ganache strawberries

I’m typing this in my pajamas, and hopefully you’re reading this in bed, but take a second to consider making something last minute in celebration of the last night of 2010. Bringing along a plate of hand-dipped chocolate-covered strawberries to whatever New Year’s Eve adventures await will make you a thousand times more memorable than the guy who brought the hummus.

Even lackluster winter berries won’t be denied wearing a jacket of chocolate ganache spiked with liquor. 20 minutes is all it takes for treats for impressing your friends and family into the new year, so relax, you have plenty of time yet. And if I don’t run into you tonight bearing a golden platter of these, have one hell of a happy new year and I’ll be seeing you in 2011!

Chocolate Ganache Jacket Strawberries
2 quarts strawberries, stems & leaves intact
6 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips (about 1 overflowing cup)
1/3 cup almond milk or soy milk creamer
1 teaspoon non-hydrogenated vegan margarine
1 tablespoon orange (Grand Marnier) or hazelnut (Frangelico) liqueur

Wash and pat dry strawberries. Line a cutting board or large dinner plate with waxed paper.

In a deep saucepan over medium heat bring almond milk to a gentle boil, then remove from heat. Using a rubber spatula stir in margarine and chocolate chips. Stir constantly until chocolate chips are melted and very smooth, about 4-5 minutes. Stir in liqueur and let mixture cool for 4 minutes. Gently hold a strawberry by the stem, and using a swirling motion dip the bottom half of the berry into ganache and place immediately on waxed paper. Repeat with remaining berries and move cutting board or plate of berries into the refrigerator, chill until ganache is firm. Serve immediately or store chilled in a tightly covered container for a day.