Wild Mushroom Pasta

I'm a big fan of Good Eats and Alton Brown. I've learned a lot from him. So when he suggested that dried exotic mushrooms were an umani flavor bomb I took to amazon to procure some. 

When you only cook with and eat plants, sources of deep and real flavor are important. 

His advice was spot on. I got a dried exotic mushroom mix and used it in my pressure cooker to create a sauce/broth for pasta and even though I forgot to add olive oil, it still had tons of flavor. 
After the pressure cook was finished I added the oil I forgot and cooked it off for a  few minutes. I then stirred it into my precooked pasta. Let it rest 5 minutes to tighten up. It was a perfect sauce to enrobe my pasta. . 

Dried exotic mushrooms are not cheap. But if you don't eat/cook with animal products, they feel like a bargain. There's so much flavor to be had. It's worth it and then some. 

1/2 box pasta, cooked to al dente

2 ounces dried fancy mushroom mix, big pieces broken or diced
1 pint …

Asian Vegan Delight

Soy and ginger are a great combo. Sweet and salty  and unctuous. Garbanzos love soy and soy loves garbanzos. Let's put all these elements to work for us.

This is a simple Asian bean salad. I don't do a lot of Asian. Chinese takeout is already great. But sometimes I want something more raw and fresh.

1 bunch scallions, sliced on the bias
1 inch ginger, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeno, minced
1 orange bell pepper, diced
1 can garbanzos, drained and rinsed

2 tbls soy sauce
2 tbls apple cider vinegar
2 tbls olive oil
1 tbl asian chili garlic paste
1 tbl hot sauce
1 tsp crushed pepper flakes
2 tsps basil
2 tsps salt
! tsp black pepper

Put everything in a large container and stir to combine. Rest in the fridge a few hours.

Rice wine vinegar would've been more authentic, but I didn't have any on hand.

Orange and yellow bell peppers are something I used to just overlook. I always went red or green. But since a market opened nearby that sells them all for the same price, I've discovered the subtle differences in sweetness and texture and how they each work in their own unique ways with other ingredients. It's worth exploring.

I don't use citrus for acid because it doesn't agree with me. But lime and/or orange would totally work here.