Friday, June 3, 2011

Vegan BBQ (with Dessert)

When everyone else was stocking up on hamburgers and ice cream, Rob and I were searching for vegan recipes that we could make and bring along with us to our family's Memorial Day picnic. We decided on white bean and rosemary burgers, thai tofu kabobs, and a salad. My mother graciously decided on fruit for dessert so that we could partake, but we surprised everyone by bringing a cake. 

This chocolate blueberry cake, pictured in the banner of the Fat Free Vegan Kitchen blog, has been calling to me for some time now. The picnic was the perfect occasion (excuse) for it to make it's debut. And it didn't disappoint. My mother left the table to take a phone call while I was cutting the cake, and returned a few minutes later to a table full of empty plates. Find the recipe here

The burger recipe came from here. They were delicious and I didn't miss the hamburgers at all. The skewers of marinated tofu didn't come out so well though. They needed to be grilled much longer than I had anticipated and they weren't quite done by the time we sat down to eat. In the interest of time, I took them off the grill prematurely, making them relatively inedible. They also stuck to the grill, despite the marinade. I'm not convinced tofu was made for grilling. Next time I'll try tempeh or seitan. But, overall, the meal was proof that vegan food can hold it's own at a BBQ.  

Diet Update: I'm down one more pound for a total of ten. Next week, we'll utilize more fresh produce from the Holly Springs Farmer's Market and reestablish the importance of the salad as center stage of our meal planning.


  1. Hey Jill, love your blog...the cake looks delish, I am gonna try it. Quick question, how do you get the kiddies to eat vegan. My hubby and I went on vegetarian diet(allowed eggs and cheese) for 49 days after my mom passed away. It was sort of a religious dedication to her since she was Buddist. The Buddist monk told us we didn't have to make the kids go vegetarian since they were used to their chicken and that they were to young to understand. So Jay and I actually did not miss the meat and when we were able to go back to eating meat, we both were said that we would take our salads back anytime...didn't miss anything. That is a lot coming from Jay, he is a true carnivore. I also thought I was going to lose a lot of weight being a vegetarian, but I actually gain 2-3 lbs...I think it was all the carbs and the extra junk food I ate cause I was hungry all the time. Next time around I will cut out the junk, hopefully by then I won't be nursing anymore either and won't be constantly hungry. I would like to aim the family towards a vegetarian diet, don't know if I could go vegan, but how did you get the kids to do it. Tyler only likes broccoli and won't touch anything mushy like tofu. Alex is starting to get picky about his textures too. They love their fruit, but veggies are a problem. Thanks Jill, I will keep an eye out for your response and keep the postings coming. I always love trying new things!

  2. Kim,

    The short answer is, the kids don't always eat vegan. Liam will generally eat anything put in front of him and does eat tofu along with us. Zachary is much pickier. We are trying to lessen the amount of organic frozen chicken nuggets he eats and are introducing whole wheat pasta. He will eat peanut butter, but if I took away cheese, he'd never survive. We get him to try new foods by playing scientist. He conducts experiments on samples of the new foods, keeping track of how they feel, smell and taste. He doesn't always eat (or even swallow) them, but we have been told that it takes many interactions with any single food for that to happen. It used to really frustrate me, but the more I relaxed about it, the smoother the dinner hour has gone. For now, we are still buying "kid food" that is off-limits to us, but hopefully, we will be able to find compromises that will please everyone. Hope that helps a little bit. Good luck.

  3. Yes, that does help...I feel the same way with Tyler, he is picky but is starting to try new types of food. At least I don't feel like I am the only one out there that the kids don't eat!There must be something about cheese cause Tyler is the same way..he loves his cheese too! Thanks Jill, I will keep an eye for new postings and maybe we can get to eating better too!