Caramelized Onion Bisque with Cheesy Garlic Toast and Pine Nut Caesar Salad



This time I cooked for the boy using a recipe book given to me by my friend C for my birthday. On the menu: caramelized onion bisque with roasted garlic toast (sourdough bread with “coconut melting cheese” broiled on top) and pine nut Caesar salad with crispy (deep fried) mushrooms. While attempting to toast pine nuts I burned the first batch pretty badly, which is always a bummer when the nuts in question cost a million dollars per bag. The coconut melting cheese sauce was pretty dang amazing – definitely going to make some old fashioned mac’n’cheese with it at some point! We also tried (store bought) vegan Parmesan cheese for the first time and it was pretty awesome.


Pine Nut Caesar Salad with Crispy Mushrooms

via Vegan Secret Supper (Merida Anderson)

For the Caesar salad
1/4 cup pine nuts
1/2 roasted garlic bulb, skins removed
3 tbsp unsweetened almond or soy milk
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp brown rice syrup
2 tsp tamari
1 tsp nutritional yeast
3 tsp capers
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1/3 cup olive oil
1 head romaine lettuce, washed and chopped
1 cup croutons
2 tbsp vegan Parmesan
1 lemon, washed and wedged

Preheat oven or toaster oven to 350 F. Toast pine nuts for 5 minutes, stirring halfway, until golden and fragrant. Let cool. In a blender or food processor, combine all ingredients except oil and blend until smooth. Slowly add oil and blend until emulsified.

For the mushrooms
1 cup trimmed and chopped mushrooms
1/4 cup cornstarch, sifted
1 tsp salt
grapeseed oil, enough to cover bottom of small frying pan 1/2″ deep
1/2 lemon

In a shallow bowl, generously coat mushrooms with sifted cornstarch and salt. In a frying pan on medium-high, heat oil to 325 F. Drop mushrooms into oil and fry each side, turning after 30 seconds. Drain on paper towels. Sprinkle with a little lemon juice and serve immediately.

To assemble and plate
1 head romaine lettuce, washed and chopped
(optional) 2 cups finely chopped mustard greens and/or rainbow chard
3 tbsp capers
Vegan Parmesan cheese

Add the capers and dressing to the lettuce, and toss to coat. Top the salad with a few crispy mushrooms, sprinkle Parmesan on top and garnish with a lemon wedge.


Cheesy Garlic Toast

via Vegan Secret Supper (Merida Anderson)

10 slices sourdough or French bread

For the coconut melting cheese
6 roasted garlic cloves, skins removed
1 tsp tahini
1/2 cup soy or almond milk
2 tbsp coconut oil, melted
1 tbsp nutritional yeast flakes
1 tsp tomato paste
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
2 tsp fine corn flour
2 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp salt

In a blender or food processor, blend all ingredients until smooth.

Preheat oven to 425 F. On an un-oiled baking sheet, place slices of bread. Spread generously with coconut melting cheese and bake for 10 minutes, or until bread is golden brown and cheese is bubbly. If necessary, heat oven to broil to get the cheese bubbly, if you find the bread is toasting too quickly. Broil for 2-4 minutes, checking frequently to make sure it doesn’t burn.


French Onion Bisque

via Vegan Secret Supper (Merida Anderson)

2 tbsp olive oil
2 large yellow onions, halved and sliced thinly, lengthwise
3/4 tsp salt, to taste
2 tsp balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp tomato paste
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
1/2 roasted garlic bulb, skins removed and minced
5 cups vegetable stock

In a large soup pot on medium-low, heat oil then sauté onions and salt for 10 minutes stirring occasionally. Add vinegar and continue to cook for another 10 minutes until onions are soft and golden. Increase heat to medium and add 1/3 of the wine. Sauté for 2 minutes and repeat with another 1/3 of wine. Repeat until wine is gone. Add mustard, tomato paste, pepper, red pepper flakes, thyme and bay leaf. Add garlic and stir for 1-2 minutes. Add stock and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Discard bay leaf. With an immersion blender or in a blender, purée half the soup until smooth.


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