Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Steamed Sausages with Apple and Onion Sauce(vegan); my rheumatologist

My first appointment with the rheumatologist was this past Monday, the 21st. I'm not going into too much detail, but do want to hit the high spots of my visit. First and foremost, I really like this guy: He asked ALL the right questions, and he knew ALL the trigger points to poke and prod, the ones that make me holler, lol. Even tho his lab tech drew about nine tubes of blood, and altho he's sending me for a series of x-rays, he is just about convinced that I don't have rheumatoid arthritis. I do, however, have just exactly what I thought I had: Osteoarthritis and Fibromyalgia. I KNEW IT!!! So, the new series of drugs is as follows: Flexoril, Cymbalta, and Lyrica. And of course he thinks I should do aerobics, 30 minutes at a time, three times a week, and, he thinks I should lose weight. Sigh. Anyway, hopefully the drugs will kick in within a couple weeks, and I'll start feeling better: Less pain, more energy, better sleep, etc.

Susan Wittig Albert has written a series called "The Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter," and the Apple and Onion Sauce recipe comes from one of those books, "The Tale of Applebeck Orchard." The other recipe, the Steamed Sausages, I found on the PPK blog, by Isa Chandra Muskovitz. She attributes the recipe to a lady named Julie, and Isa has placed a video of Julie making these sausages on the blog. They are very good, and not too difficult at all. In fact, it has been my experience that working with the wheat gluten is never too difficult.

So, without further ado, here's the recipe for the sausages...vegan, btw.

1/2C pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1C cold vegetable broth(I didn't have any, so used plain cold water)
1Tbs. olive oil
2Tbs. soy sauce
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/4C vital wheat gluten
1/4C nutritional yeast(didn't have any, so used about 1/8C veggie Parmesan cheese)
1 1/2 tsp. fennel seed, crushed
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 tsp. sweet paprika
1 tsp. dried oregano
Several dashes black pepper

1. Get the steaming appartatus ready. Have the water at a full boil. The rest of the recipe comes together quite quickly.

2. Have ready 6 sheets of tinfoil. In a large bowl, mash the pinto beans until there are no whole ones left. Throw the rest of the ingredients in, in the order given, and mix with a fork. Divide the dough into 6 equal parts. Place one part of the dough onto tinfoil, and roll into a 5-inch log. Wrap in foil, like a Tootsie Roll. Don't worry too much about shaping it, it will snap into shape while steaming.

3. Place in steamer, turn the heat down to a simmer, cover, and simmer for 40 minutes.

First of all, I used a collapsible vegetable steamer, but a bamboo steamer will work, and in a pinch, a large metal colander works, too. Secondly, in the video, Julie added more spices than are listed in the written recipe: Smoked paprika, which is what I used in place of the sweet paprika, allspice, and if I remember right, some chili powder, too. Julie used both types of paprikas.

I only used half the amount of soy sauce, and only about 1/4 tsp. of the fennel seeds. As I mentioned above, I used plain cold water, and I used the veggie Parmesan cheese.

In spite of my substitutions, these sausages turned out really well. They have a good color, a good flavour, and they actually have a bit of a "snap" when I bite into them, just like a real hotdog or sausage has.

Will I make them again? Absolutely, and the next time, I will use the allspice, too, and hopefully will have the veggie broth, as well.


1/2 onion, chopped fine
clove garlic, crushed
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 pound apples: Granny Smith or another tart apple
2 Tbs. water(I used about 5 in all, I think)
2 Tbs. cider vinegar
Bay leaf
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 C brown sugar...optional, as it's not in the original recipe

Saute onion and garlic in oil until golden brown. Peel, core, and chop the apples. Add to onion with water, vinegar, bay leaf, and brown sugar if using. Simmer 15-20 minutes, until soft. Remove bay leaf, and puree sauce in a blender. Add salt and pepper to taste.

The brown sugar made the sauce into a sweet and sour, and I loved it, and yes, will make it again. The meal consisted of the sausages, mashed potatoes with the sauce, and green beans. Heavenly, no kidding. And, I have enough leftovers for tonight's supper, too, so that makes it double Heavenly, lol.

I think that the sausage mixture could be turned into one or two larger logs, and steamed probably about an hour. Then they could be sliced very thinly and used for luncheon meat. What do you think?

Which reminds me: I splurged and bought a package of Yves "bologna," and was very pleased with it. Along with the veggie smoked provolone cheese I love so much, it made really good sammiches, I thought. There are ten thin slices of "bologna" in the package, which makes five sammiches...for $2.99 a package. I'm not sure, but that seems a bit expensive to me, but, it's been so long since I bought the real bologna, that I don't honestly know how it compares.

Anyway, until next time, Happy Eating!!!


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