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Chopped! Contestant! Roundup!

Chopped! Contestant! Roundup!

Oolong Tea! Jalapeño! Fresh Prune Plums! Radish

Image via

Today, I’m featuring our 2014 Chopped! VeganMoFo Edition contestants! You all seriously rocked this collection of intriguing, hand-picked ingredients and showed us flavor combinations we never thought possible.  Thanks for all the hard work and showing your kitchen skills! Your panel of esteemed vegan culinary obsessed judges, J. Legume, Dan Reed, and Chelsea Hoshi, along the spirit of VeganMoFo, are heatedly discussing the results and their consequent new cravings, so stay tuned for who’s being declared our new Chopped! Champion! and prize delivery info from our sweet friends at Chicago Vegan Foods later this week!

You can read more about the ingredients and rules at: Ready, Set…Chopped! VeganMoFo 2014 Edition!!! The official entries are below, in random order. Click on the links to read descriptions and cooking methods behind the dishes. Enjoy!


Oolong Marinated Tofu with Plum Chutney and Pickled Apples and Radishes, @marylangmt on Instagram

Mary’s recipe + instructions are right here.


Dumpling Soup with Radish & Radish Leaves, served with Jalapeño, Plum Chutney and Spiced Lentil-filled Dumpling, Eating with the Rabbits

It’s true, this contestant had some tweaks, just like on the show itself, but I still enjoy the presentation and these quotes a bunch: “Isn’t VeganMoFo the best? ” So, yeah, this was far from perfect. BUT! The actual soup tasted pretty good, considering, and I never would’ve come up with this combination on my own. All in all, I’m happy with the result.”

Sweet Heat Sushi, Veganista Mama Assam Tofu, with braised radishes topped with Jalapeno, Assam, Plum sauce, Hasta La Vegan

Plum & Radish Tart with a savory Jalapeno, Oolong Tea, and Apricot Preserve Glaze, Bedazzled Vegan

Bedazzled has my favorite quote so far: Voila! The finished product was edible!” Score!

Channa Masala with Plums, Radish Salad and Oolong Rice, Vegan Needs Sauce 15051981937_4333cefc2e_z (1)   A Very Special Marinara Sauce, Monsieur Avocado (The blog’s in French, so GO GO Google Translate if needed)

Plum and Jalapeño Glazed Tempeh with Picked Radishes and Butternut Squash Purée (plenty of oolong in there too, I just couldn’t fit it into the tile), The Picky Vegan

Oolong Banh Mi Burger, Zsu’s Vegan Pantry 

Mexican Hot Lips Cake, The Mess in Messenger

Radish cakes with Prune Sauce, Kohlrabi and Quince

Barley Paella with Grilled Tofu & Fresh Plum Salsa, Cadry’s Kitchen

Stuffed Sweet Dumpling Squash in an Oolong-Plum-Red Wine Reduction with Jalapeno-Apple Radish, Rubber Cowgirl

Sweet Heat Tacos, Veganista Mama (Another creative submission from Veganista Mama!) Thanks to everyone who joined us for this eye-opening and tastebud-pushing competition! I hope they’ve gotten folks thinking differently about all of these lovely flavors and foods.

Stay tuned for the big reveal, our Judge’s Choice of Chopped! Champion!, and let us know what’s piqued your interest!

Looking Back at 2013 VeganMoFo Faves

Looking Back at 2013 VeganMoFo Faves

Hi everyone! With the start of the annual Vegan Month of Food aka VeganMoFo  just over a mere week away, I wanted to take this time to reflect on some of our own favorites from 2013.

via Teeny Tiny Tantrums on Etsy (We heart Kelly! You can buy this!)
via Teeny Tiny Tantrums on Etsy (We heart Kelly! You can probably buy this!)

Reading other vegan blogs and being struck by other people’s designs, creations, skills, writing and most importantly, being awed by their vegan culinary endeavors and purchases (all the UK vegan cheese never fails to get to my heart), is such a swell way to draw inspiration for your own projects and bloggin’ shenanigans. It’s an ever-growing, ever-impressive community that’s constantly changing and doing more and more (again, especially with vegan cheese, hello Miyoko-effect <3!).


Let’s dig right in…

Franzbroetchen, Seitan is My Motor

One of the most mentioned by my organizer colleagues was the month of jaw-dropping classic German desserts by Mihl at Seitan is my Motor. There were so many bakery-case starring pastries and detailed recipes that you should have a go at!

Here’s a couple more to pique your fancy, trust me:

Slice of Apfelkuchen, Seitan is my Motor


Try out some Tschechischer, Seitan is My Motor

Now, if you’ve been paying attention to the vegan internets this past year, it should come as no surprise that the newsworthy, tortilla-stockpiling TACO CLEANSE out of Austin, TX not only tops my own list of memories from 2013, but everyone else’s at VeganMoFo-land.

Tacos, people. Tacos. Sandwiches are so dumb (IMO, at the moment).

Maria’s Tacos on Taco Cleanse Day 27, Lazy Smurf

The Lazy Smurf breaks down the Hows and Whys on her blog here.

via Lazy Smurf

Now, I’m not really one for leisurely math, but TACO CLEANSE + all their new vegan food carts (including taco carts, of course) + Capital City + Sweet Ritual pretty much cemented Austin’s status as THE VEGAN CITY TO VISIT IN THE USA…AND BEYOND. What other vegan city in the USA is this exciting right now?!

Vegan diners & bloggers from all across Austin (and again, beyond, in honor of this delicious cultural phenomenon) took part in the TACO CLEANSE, which naturally thought to include dessert:

Chocolate Taco special at Sweet Ritual, via Rabbit Food Grocery

As someone who’s liked Austin’s vegan taco scene so much they’ve pushed to help move a certain Vida Vegan Con there for 2015, wanting the TACO CLEANSE to return is an understatement. It’s a way of life, right?

Speaking of Mexican goodness, Cadry of Cadry’s Kitchen took us “Back in Thyme” all month long for an always-creative look back at cooking in her own life, often giving a revamped take on some of her all-time favorite food memories and dishes, including these Puffy Nachos:

Puffy Nachos & Spicy Black Beans, Cadry’s Kitchen

Family-style Taco Joe’s!

Jeremy’s Taco Joe’s, via Vegan Eats & Treats

I can’t quite let tacos go yet…

Another wonderful VeganMoFo spirit comes our friend and fellow organizer Amey. Last year, she took a Noshtalgiac look on her blog, Vegan Eats & Treats!, with drawings, heartfelt stories and just as many appetizing creations. The two featured here come from the tale of family-style Taco Joe’s:

via Vegan Eats & Treats

Okay, another one of my favorite personalities in the vegan community lately is Randi of Laughfrodisiac. She had the charm and zest to do a whole month of Veganizing Friends recipes, I kid you not. One of the most memorable of the month, for both Randi and her readers, was Rachel’s monstrous English Trifle:

Rachel’s English Trifle, via Laughfrodisiac

From the blog: “My main theme for VeganMoFo 2013 is to veganize some of the dishes featured on one of my all-time favorite TV shows, “Friends”. As those of you not living under rocks should know, Monica was a professional chef, so we have some interesting & fancy dishes coming up in the next few weeks. However, I had to start  not with one of Monica’s amazing creations, but with perhaps the most famous dish of the ten years of the series’ run…and perhaps the most famous TV dish of all time (yes I went there): Rachel’s English Trifle, or the Thanksgiving Cockup“.


The thing is, I was just talking about Friends, of all thingswith another vegan pal last night, who I really need to point that way.  Read all about it and get the recipe here!

Moving on, because I’m currently inside a chilled coffee shop, regretting my choice of iced coffee and wishing I had a mug of coffee and these to dip in from Veg-Am:

Apple Butter-Filled Donut Holes, via Veg-Am

All right, I’ve got to bring it back to Mihl for one dessert!

Nougatringe, via Seitan is my Motor

So, keep in mind: If you’re looking for inspiration & great reads, just spend some time checking out the ‘VeganMoFo’ tags on any of these blogs!

And hey, you’ve got three little days left to officially sign up and participate in whatever form you like. See ya there!