Vegan Peanut Butter Cups

I am going to see my friend’s performance tonight, and it would be quite rude to show up empty handed, especially since the tickets were generously given to me for free. Flowers would be nice, but to generic. Said friend is a chocoholic and a vegan, and so I thought making something chocolatey would be nice.

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I also woke up today with excruciating neck pain due to a spasm that I had overnight, apparently. I vaguely remember waking up and possibly hearing something strange from my neck/shoulder area and feeling it do something strange. In other words, the mobility in my neck has been reduced to nearly nothing. So, I needed a recipe that was a) yummy and b) minimally laborious. Enter peanut butter cups which require only melting chocolate, mixing up peanut butter with sugar, and piecing it together.

 

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A quick google search yields loads of recipes and most follow the same basic pattern, which I will explain below. I based mine onĀ this recipe, with a few additions such as cinnamon and vanilla and coconut oil.

DSCN3081Ingredients (for 12 PB cups, but I halved it to make 6 PB cups)

  • 12 oz vegan chocolate chips (+/- some depending on how thick you make your chocolate layer)
  • 2 T coconut oil
  • 1 C natural unsalted peanut butter
  • 1/2 C powdered sugar
  • pinch o’ salt
  • dash vanilla
  • dash cinnamon
  • cupcake liners and a cupcake pan

Method

  • line a cupcake pan with the liners. I had aluminum ones on hand and they worked fine. I am pretty sure paper ones would be great too.
  • Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave or in a double boiler. Once melted, stir in salt and coconut oil.
  • Coat the bottom of each liner with chocolate. I would say about a spoonful of chocolate in each one. Spread it out with a spoon and shake the muffin pan to get it evenly distributed on the bottom. Once all 12 are coated, stick it in the freezer.
  • While the chocolate is hardening, in a bowl mix together peanut butter, powdered sugar and a dash of cinnamon–maybe 1/4 teaspoon. Or more, if you, like myself, like the cinnamon chocolate PB combo. This will soon become thick, which is what you want.
  • Once the sugar has been mixed in, use your hands to roll balls of peanut butter and then flatten them into disc shapes. Get your chocolate from the freezer and place the disk-shaped PB on top (see the photo above)
  • The final step is dribbling the rest of the chocolate over the PB as a final layer. (You may need to remelt your chocolate to make it easier to spread. And if you run out of chocolate, never fear, just melt more) Use a spoon to drop spoonfuls on top of the PB, and again shake the muffin tin to evenly spread it out. Put it in the refrigerator to harden. Lick the bowl.
  • When eaten at room temp, the chocolate is nice and melty, which is very delicious. So take them out of the refrigerator a few minutes before you plan to consume. Alternatively, you could eat them frozen, which is good too.

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Soba Noodles with Peanut-y Tempeh

This is one of my favorite things to have. Garlic and onions go oh-so-well with mushrooms and tempeh. Buckwheat soba noodles have a way more interesting texture and taste than pasta.

Not your typical spaghetti with meatballs. Instead, its soba noodle and brussels sprouts

Not your typical spaghetti with meatballs. Instead, its soba noodle and brussels sprouts

Here is what you need:

  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1-2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
  • dehydrated mushrooms, I used 1/2 oz i think
  • 1 package tempeh
  • brussels sprouts-1 bag frozen and cooked according to package instructions
  • soba noodles: 2/3 of a package
  • 1-2 Tablespoons peanut butter
  • lemon juice and soy sauce to taste, but I used about 1 large lemon and 2-3 Tablespoons of soy sauce

Here is how you make it

  1. Put your mushrooms in a bowl and cover with boiling water to rehydrate. Don’t throw out the liquid because you will use it throughout!
  2. Heat a teaspoon of coconut oil in a saucepan. When its hot, add the garlic to brown. Throw in the ginger and onions.
  3. Keep cooking the garlic/onions/ginger until the onions are soft and translucent, about 20 minutes. To prevent it from burning and sticking and drying up, add several tablespoons of the liquid from the mushrooms whenever you may need to.
  4. Chop the rehydrated mushrooms and add them in. Crumble the tempeh into the mixture
  5. Keep adding mushroom water as needed. Add the lemon, soy sauce, and peanut butter. You can adjust quantities to taste. Keep cooking for a few more minutes, until creamy and warm throughout.
  6. Cook your soba noodles and brussels sprouts according to package directions.
Final Tempeh Concoction

Final Tempeh Concoction

The Fungus Among Us

The Fungus Among Us

 

To Assemble

  1. I like to rinse a few handfuls of salad greens and place them in a large bowl
  2. While the Tempeh sauce, brussels sprouts, and noodles are still hot, add them directly on top of the salad greens. This will wilt them slightly
  3. Mix it all together
  4. Eat. With hot sauce if needed
  5. Get your other to do the dishes for you
Greens and Brussels Sprouts are your friends

Greens and Brussels Sprouts are your friends

Final Product

Final Product