Monday, May 3, 2010

Vegan Turkey for Thanksgiving

For vegans and vegetarians, the Thanksgiving holiday is the cruelest time of year. It's hard to resist joining in on the ritual of eating a bit too much turkey, gravy, and stuffing.

Several years ago, we discovered of a recipe for tofu turkey, and with its reasonable approximation of the real thing it has become a family tradition. Little "legs" are formed from mashed tofu, to be placed on either side of the-- well, carcass. This main part of the turkey is formed by pressing mashed tofu into a colander lined with cheesecloth, then inverting this domed shape onto a baking sheet. The bird is marinaded with a mixture that uses dark sesame oil (available at Asian food markets) for a hint of meatiness.

In Search of the Seneca Horn Potato

Some years ago, we had a family taste test of potato varieties from the garden, sampling them plain. Our favorite was Seneca Horn, an heirloom of uncertain origins. To us, it tasted of butter, mayonnaise, even cheese-- and that's with only a pinch of salt.

Nevertheless, the variety became unavailable anywhere-- until this year, when a Norwegian grower offered tiny olive-pit-sized tubers by mail, through Seed Savers Exchange (left, in photo). The challenge now is to get the little things to sprout eyes and grow to a reasonable size. And then to propagate this talented spud and make it available through SSE myself.