Last weekend, Alex and I were in Philadelphia. It was our first time visiting the city so we did some research and made a list of all the vegan restaurants within 5 miles of our hotel. (Quite serendipitously, the current issue of Chickpea Magazine had a vegan guide to Philly! I took copious notes as I made my lists in Evernote.) One restaurant that did not come up on our radar during this research, however, was Vegan Commissary. It only opened in December 2013 so it is brand new, explaining why we only stumbled upon it on Saturday morning as we searched for a place to get vegan breakfast/brunch. For such a new restaurant, though, it already had a lot of good reviews on Yelp so we decided to go there.
…Man, oh, man, was this place amazing! I had the breakfast wrap while Alex had the tempeh hash with poached avocado. We then followed that up with cinnamon rolls and quinoa porridge. (Walking everywhere, especially in snow and slush, works up quite an appetite!) We were in absolute vegan food bliss.
Now, I didn’t get to try the tempeh hash with poached avocado but I decided to recreate it—or my version of it—for breakfast today. The following is what I came up with and it was quite divine, if I do say so myself.
Tempeh Hash with Poached Avocado and Hollandaise Sauce
My attempt at recreating a delicious brunch item from Vegan Commissary, an amazing vegan restaurant in Philadelphia.
Amount Per Serving
Calories from Fat 620
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 14g
Monounsaturated Fat 41g
Total Carbohydrates 59g
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
- 8-oz tempeh, cubed
- 1/4 C onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
- 1/2 C potato, chopped into 3/4-inch pieces
- 1/2 C sweet potato, chopped into 3/4-inch pieces
- 4 Tbsp raw pumpkin seeds, chopped
- 2 Tbsp, rounded, nutritional yeast
- 1 Tbsp toasted sesame oil
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- salt and pepper, to taste
- paprika, to taste
- 1 avocado, halved and peeled, pit removed
- 2 Tbsp water, divided
- 1/4 C cashews, soaked overnight or for at least 4 hours
- 1/4 tsp turmeric
- pinch sea salt
- pinch cayenne pepper
- 1 Tbsp + 1 tsp lemon juice
- 5 Tbsp water
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 handful of baby spinach
- 2 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
- Sriracha, to taste (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Combine all ingredients except paprika in a bowl and stir until everything is well coated in oil. (Add more oil as needed.)
- Lay out in a thin layer on a cookie sheet or in a shallow, wide dish. (If the dish is too deep, the top will brown and the rest will simply cook. You want to achieve maximum crispiness here.)
- Dust with paprika and bake for about 18 minutes, or until beginning to brown.
- While the hash is cooking, take out two square sheets of foil.
- Place an avocado half in the middle of one foil sheet, drizzle with 1 Tbsp water, and seal it (like a roomy pouch). Repeat for the other half.
- Once the time is up on the hash, stir the tempeh mixture and place the foil packets on a separate rack.
- Crank up the temperature to 400°F. Cook for another 5 minutes.
- Drain and rinse the cashews. Place them in a blender with the rest of the ingredients. Blend until smooth. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary.
- Just before serving, heat the sauce in a microwave until warm (15-20 seconds).
- Divide the spinach among two plates.
- Spoon tempeh hash onto the dishes.
- Top with poached avocado.
- Drizzle with hollandaise sauce and sriracha (if using).
- Sprinkle on the fresh parsley.
When I make this next, I’ll try to get some photos before Alex and I gobble it all up.
Thanksgiving is two days away and I still don’t have any plans. (Traditionally, I’ve spent the day with my parents and their friends. Lately, I’ve been spending it with my sister. This year, our plans have somehow fallen through so I’m left without anywhere to go or anyone to see.) So I’ve come up with a tentative Thanksgiving menu for me and Alex:
Roasted beet salad with warm maple mustard dressing
Stuffed Thanksgiving burger patties
Roasted veggies (Brussels sprouts, rainbow carrots)
Stuffing with pears and pecans
Sauces & Gravies
Pumpkin cheesecake with crunchy pecan topping (using homemade graham crackers)
heavily entirely on the recipes of Isa Chandra Moskowitz for the special occasion. But the hot cocoa recipe is my own!
1/3 C unsweetened cocoa powder
1/3 C white sugar
1 pinch salt
1/3 C boiling water
3½ C unsweetened soy milk (or your favorite non-dairy milk)
¾ teaspoon vanilla extract
- Combine the cocoa, sugar, and salt in a saucepan. Pour in the boiling water. Bring this mixture to an easy boil while you stir for about 2 minutes. Be careful not to scorch this mixture.
- Stir in the milk and heat until very hot (but not boiling). Remove from heat and add vanilla extract.
- Divide evenly among 4 mugs and enjoy!
We’re looking forward to a really mellow night in. Dinner will probably be followed by a movie and then slumber. (Maybe we’ll even do the dishes that night? But probably not.)
My sister recently moved and, on Friday, I visited her new domicile for a quiet housewarming party. This caused me to freak out slightly:
The fact that my veganism causes others to have to change their dinner plans is kinda sucky. So I immediately texted her back and said I’d be bringing vegan desserts for everyone to enjoy. In the end, not only did I bring sweets from the amazing Clementine Bakery in the Clinton Hill/Bed-Stuy neighborhood of Brooklyn but I also brought a nutrient-packed salad that I threw together in about 30 minutes. I’ve been on a Mexican kick lately (I love Mexican food!) so I created this bean and avocado salad:
- 15-oz can black beans, drained & rinsed
- 15-oz can sweet corn kernels, drained
- 2 plum tomatoes, chopped
- 1/2 red onion, chopped
- 1 bunch scallions, chopped
- 1 jalapeño, deseeded & chopped
- 1 avocado, diced
- zest and juice of 1 lime
- 1 bunch fresh cilantro, finely chopped
- salt, to taste
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 Tbsp vinegar
- In a large bowl, combine the drained & rinsed beans and corn.
- Add the chopped tomatoes, red onion, scallions, and jalapeño to the bowl.
- Now it’s time to add the chopped avocado.
- Season with salt and pepper, using as much or as little as you like. (I like a lot of black pepper!)
- Add the lime zest and juice.
- Add olive oil and vinegar.
- Toss everything to coat evenly.
- Add the finely chopped cilantro and mix well.
This makes one large bowl of salad, enough to accommodate 8 people as a side. (Perhaps six people can partake if serving the salad as a main dish.) It’s hearty enough to be used as filling for tacos (you’ll just need some warm tortillas) or served simply with a side of tortilla chips. Or on its own! It’s delicious and so good for you.
In fact, it’s so yummy that I recreated it for lunch on Saturday. Now I have enough salad to feed me for days!