Sunday, October 6, 2013

Inaugurating the Expanded Kitchen

I inaugurated my new kitchen this week (officially) by baking my first batch of gluten-filled challah for the husband, completely with a shehechiyanu, believe it or not.

Jonesing for a pot pie of some variety, I managed to find and execute probably one of the most savory and delicious things I've ever made that would make my simple, Midwestern kin pretty darn proud of me. I timed out the bits and pieces with making the challah, too, and I even came up with a clever way of making the challah in a single pot that relieves my poor KitchenAid from duty.

(Oh, and I also threw together some crockpot rice pudding, which I've been eating as a snack topped with milk, maple syrup, golden raisins, and pecans.)

I started with the most giant stewpot that you can find at Ikea, filled it full of 14 cups of flour and all the other ingredients, kneading the entire thing by hand (with gloves, of course ... I might need a face mask next time, too). Leaving it to rise, I tackled the first component of the pot pie: vegan mushroom gravy.

When the gravy was done, I punched down the dough and moved on to the second component of the pot pie: the gluten-free almond-based crust.

The crust was quick to throw together, so after I put it in the fridge to chill, I moved on to the veggie mixture for the pot pie.

I quickly threw together the gravy and veggies, nabbed the dough from the fridge and rolled it out, and put the pie together. Throwing it into the oven, I grabbed the challah and with my brand new huge kitchen counter space, began braiding the dough. For the first time in my life, the challah was braided quickly and ready to rise for the third time while the pot pie finished up.

The pot pie came out of the oven, the challah went in, and the husband and I devoured the goodness of a classic comfort food. Mr. T ate probably half the pie, which told me I was doing something right. I don't know how often I'll be making this pot pie, because it was a little time intensive (or maybe it felt that way because I was doing double-duty with the challah), but it was so worth it. The homemade gravy, especially, will come into play in the future whether over mashed potatoes or with my Vegan Veggie Loaf.

On Friday I threw together a complete hodge-podge of a Sundried Tomato, Feta, and Spinach Crustless Quiche (complete with creamed tofu mixed in with the eggs) and this Gluten-Free Black and White Cake, which we took out to dinner Friday night. (Alas, I didn't realize my SD Card wasn't in the camera while I was taking the photos, so ... not pictures of that sweet, delicious, gluten-free goodness.)

This week, I'm planning on trying these Buffalo Cauliflower Bites with Vegan Ranch Dressing, Slow Cooker Bean and Spinach Enchiladas, and this trio of delicious smoothies! I'm already thinking about next week's Shabbat menu, and I envision some stuffed peppers and perhaps some vegetarian chili for Friday night since it's been hella cold out here in Neve Daniel over the past week (which I'm loving).

What's on the menu for you this week?