Saffron & KFC

A lot of things are different lately. My fiancé and I have been in New York for the last 6+ weeks. Unfortunately some pretty tragic events are happening in my family and we’ve been here trying to…. come to terms with things I suppose. Plus, on top of all the bad things, something AMAZING happened. We finally welcomed our beautiful baby boy into the world on January 26th, so you can imagine how stressful and eventful our life has been as of late!

Before we came to NY though, we had really been trying to cook more. We had quite a few recipes we wanted to do and we were only able to do a couple.

The first I want to talk about is a Rachael Ray recipe. Off the top of my head I’m not sure which cookbook of hers it came out of, but I do know that it contained Saffron (which was an awesome gift I received from my fiancé’s mom). Neither of us have ever had saffron and were pretty excited to try it. Unfortunately, I think we chose the wrong recipe to test it out. It was a cream based pasta dish that originally had sausage and eggplant in it, but obviously being vegetarians we subbed the sausage with some steamed tempeh. The cream sauce was pretty darn good, the saffron very light tasting. The boy said he couldn’t place the flavor of the saffron at all, but I think it was just very very light. Annnnnnd, I have come to the realization I HATE eggplant. Unless it’s battered and fried and from Olive Garden, I have never ever ever liked it. So the dish was a flop and we’ve decided to try a risotto next to really accentuate the flavor of saffron.

The picture is pretty yellow, unfortunately that’s the kind of lighting we have in the kitchen when there’s no sunlight. Those breadstick looking things in the background were my favorite part of the meal. Just a simple loaf of store bought Italian bread with butter, Italian seasoning, fresh minced garlic and parmesan cheese.

The next recipe I want to talk about is something of glory. A recipe I can’t wait to try again… A recipe from one of the vegan food gods, Celine Steen. When I got Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day in the mail some odd months ago, I was super excited. There were at least 15+ recipes I couldn’t wait to try. After narrowing it down with help from the boy, we decided to try out the Retro KFC Sandwiches. The boy has always loved KFC and since being a vegetarian that’s all he ever talks about… how he wishes he had had that last KFC stacker, or that last Chick-fil-A sandwich. So when I suggested we make these sandwiches he was pretty excited. He had high hopes of them being just like the KFC stackers and although I have no idea what one tastes like, these sandwiches were divine.

Lookit that crispiness. They’ve got a corn flake crust and at first I was a little iffy about coating them in a breakfast cereal that I remember my father coating in sugar, but these were super tasty and crunchy and crispy and mmmmm.

The recipe had a mayo based sauce and suggested adding shredded lettuce and pickles. I can’t remember if the tomatoes were suggested as well, but either way. Delicious. The only negative comment I can say about this sandwich is the thickness of the “chicken”. The recipe has you making your own chicken style seitan and although I tried getting the pieces as thin as I could, once they were baked they were just a tad too thick. Next time (and there will be a next time!) I will cut the pieces in half horizontally before breading them and that will give me the option of having a thinner sandwich, or if we’re feeling frisky, maybe a double decker.

The last thing I want to talk about it (no, not the blurriness of this photo, I apologize) is this glorious kale and rutabaga mash with chickpea gravy on the right side of the plate. This beauty was found on Pinterest, off the site Vanilla & Spice. Talk about aweeessome. The chickpea gravy was a little eh, I didn’t like it so much with this dish. It has fresh ginger in it and I found it to be a tad to overwhelming, but damn… the mash was great. It really really was. If you’ve never had rutabaga before, this is an awesome first time dish.

Alright, those are the food escapades I’ve got for you for now. Hope ya’ll enjoyed them and I leave this post with a small intimate piece of advice. Enjoy your family, enjoy the ones you love and keep them close to your heart.. turn the tv off, play a board game, order a pizza… enjoy them!! Because you never know what will happen, or when you may not have them to do those things with.

Bon Appetit!!