Vegan Spinach Artichoke Dip Quiche

To learn more about the Save the Kales! half-hour television show, click here. STK! is a vegan cooking + lifestyle show which airs in Pennsylvania, and full episodes are available online.

.   .   .   .   .

Sometimes you just want to indulge, ya know?

This is a (vegan!) quiche inspired by a luscious, creamy spinach artichoke dip. If you need to impress Holiday guests, tofu-fear-mongers, or just want a hearty dinner reminiscent of an old comfort food — we’ve got you covered.

Vegan Spinach Artichoke Dip Quiche (makes 2)

  • 2 pre-baked vegan pie crusts (*baked about 15 minutes)
  • 1 block firm tofu, water drained
  • 8 oz. vegan cream cheese (one container of Tofutti brand)
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 cup almond milk (unsweetened)
  • 1-2 Tbsp olive oil, to sautee veggies
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • 1 can artichoke hearts (not in oil)
  • 1 bag spinach

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a food processor, blend tofu, cream cheese, garlic powder, nutritional yeast and almond milk. Add mixture to a large bowl.

In a pan, sautee the red onion in a little olive oil until soft, about 2-3 minutes. While thats cooking, chop the artichoke hearts into halves or fourths. (Don’t cut too small; you want big chunks of artichoke!) Add to the pan with onion for 1-2 minutes. Rough chop the spinach, unless you’re using baby spinach. Add spinach to the pan and cook at medium-high heat for 1-2 minutes. The spinach will get much smaller in volume once it cooks.

Add the veggies to the creamy mixture, and mix everything well. Pour 1/2 of the mixture into each pie crust. Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees, and the top of the quiche will start to turn golden-brown.

Vegan Spinach Artichoke Dip Quiche by Save the Kales!

*I used a pack of two pre-made, frozen vegan pie crusts. Check your freezer section and read ingredients. I pre-baked these for 15 minutes at 350 degrees. Do this in the beginning and leave the oven at 350 to bake the assembled quiche.

Save the Kales! makes a vegan Spinach Artichoke Dip Quiche

CAN BE MADE GLUTEN-FREE using a gluten-free pie crust!  One viewer wrote:

“I made two and took one to a Thanksgiving party Wed night and nobody knew it was gluten-free or vegan. In fact, a few ladies asked me for the recipe so gave them your blog address. 

The second one I froze and baked it for brunch today where there were a lot of meat eaters, and the first thing gone was the quiche 🙂 They almost fainted when I told them it was vegan.”

… Hey, now that’s nice to hear.

A little slice of heaven! I mean, Vegan Spinach Artichoke Dip Quiche.

You can watch the whole half-hour episode on my Youtube Channel, which includes:

… Watch all half-hour episodes HERE.

.     .     xo     .     .

Kayleigh of Deerly Beloved Bakery Interviews Save the Kales!

I love a good pun, so when I first heard of Deerly Beloved Bakery (how sweet is that!?) I was almost jealous I hadn’t thought of that name for something first.

Cutie-pie Kayleigh Read of Deerly Beloved Bakery

Deerly Beloved is owned by Kayleigh, one of the kindest souls I’ve yet to internet-meet. If one of us can ever get across the ocean to see the other (she’s in the UK), I’m sure we’d have a great conversation about which words the other pronounces funny while we stuff our faces with cake.

Kayleigh has been interviewing some of her favorite cooks throughout October, and I was so thrilled to be one of the lucky ones!

Deerly Beloved Bakery interviews Save the Kales! 

exerpt from Interview:

DBB: What advice would you give someone wanting to start a successful vegan recipe blog?

JK: “You doing your own creative pursuit is not preventing anyone else from doing their own, their way. Blogging helps you get in touch with yourself (this sounds hippy-dippy, bear with me) because choosing what to put into the world makes you pause and reflect on your life, opinions, and decisions. It’s literally the best thing I’ve ever done.”

Apple Rose Tarts with Lemon Curd Filling by Deerly Beloved Bakery

You can learn more about Deerly Beloved and drool over the food photos at the Facebook Page.

EPISODE 3: Vegetarian Summerfest, Graphic Design, Sandwiches and Raw Pie

I hope you enjoy Episode 3 of Save the Kales!

Just a heads up! These sandwiches have a lot of components – you can make most of them the day before, then simply assemble and broil when you are ready to eat. Once you know how to make the different elements, you can use them in other recipes, of course.

<div style=”height:1.4em;visibility:hidden;”>ANY CHARACTER HERE</div>

In this episode, view the “kale cam” video diary from my attendance at Vegetarian Summerfest 2012, including clips from some of the most inspirational authors, speakers, and activists in the plant-based movement.

Back at the kitchen, we make one heck of a sandwich: tempeh bacon, caramelized onion, roasted pears and a walnut-carrot spread topped with melted vegan cheese and broiled to a gooey perfection. Follow up this sweet and savory dish with a healthy, ripe raw berry pie using three kinds of fresh berries and an almond-coconut crust.

Finally, meet Save the Kales! graphic designer (among other things!) Christian Weber as he shows off the Bethlehem Vegfest 2012 posters.

Note: I will be posting longer clips from some of the talks/speakers very soon, as well as a full Summerfest wrap-up. Stay tuned!

<div style=”height:1.4em;visibility:hidden;”>ANY CHARACTER HERE</div>

.

<div style=”height:1.2em;visibility:hidden;”>.</div>

Tempeh Bacon

  • 1 block tempeh
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp tamari (or soy sauce or Bragg’s)
  • 2 Tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1 Tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp liquid smoke
Cut tempeh into very thin strips (use the whole block). Put the strips in a container with a lid. Use remaining ingredients to mix marinade in a bowl, then pour over tempeh. Put the lid on the container and led it marinate in the fridge, turning the container every few hours or overnight. When you are ready to make tempeh bacon, spray some cooking spray in a pan and add the bacon so it’s not overlapping (may not be able to do it all at once) so the bottom will brown and crisp, then flip over so the other side side gets brown.
Carrot Walnut + Cinnamon Spread
  •  1/2 cup carrots, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 1 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp brown sugar

Put carrots in the oven at 350 until they are soft, about 25 mins. Set aside to cool. Add all ingredients to a food processor, stopping to scrape down the sides, and blend until a thick spread is made. (Add a little water if you need to move things along in the processor.)

Caramelized Onions

  • large white onion (you can use red!)
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • dash of salt

Cut onion in half, then thinly slice into half-moons. Toss in a pan with olive oil. Put on the stove on a high heat until just starting to brown, then bring the heat low. (You want them to brown, not burn.) Stir in the pan every few minutes to slowly caramelize. Add the salt at 10 minutes of cooking. At about 30-40 minutes, a minute before you take the onions off the stove,  add the brown sugar to help caramelize and flavor onions. Take onions off the stove and set aside.

Browned Pears

  • 1 bosc pear, thinly sliced (remove seeds)
  • 1 tsp vegan butter

Put pears with butter on the stove on a medium heat until pears start to brown and get soft.

… FINISHING THE SANDWICH

  • nice bakery rolls (no eggs/milk!), sliced in half
  • Daiya mozzarella piled high on top of everything else!

Turn on the broiler. Put the bottoms of the rolls on a sheet pan and start building the sandwiches using all of the above components, topping with vegan shredded cheese. Put a nice smear of the sandwich spread on the top half of the rolls, and put those on the pan.  Put in the broiler for 3-4 minutes until cheese gets melty. Don’t burn the bread!

Tempeh bacon, caramelized onion and pear sandwich.

.<div style=”height:1.4em;visibility:hidden;”>ANY CHARACTER HERE</div>

.<div style=”height:1.4em;visibility:hidden;”>ANY CHARACTER HERE</div>
CRUST
  • 2 cups soaked raw almonds (almonds soaked in water overnight)
  • 1 cup shredded coconut (unsweetened)
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
Add everything to a food processor and blend until crumbly and sticky. (You can use a little spray oil on your pie pan to help cut the slices out easier.) Push the crust into the pan, working it against the sides and bottom evenly.
FILLING
  • 2 cups berries of choice (mixed, all one kind, whatever! I used blueberries, blackberries and raspberries)
  • 1 cup frozen peaches
  • 1 Tbsp. agave or maple syrup
Put about 1 cup of berries aside so you can use them to top the pie! (Or omit this step.) Put the rest of the ingredients in the food processor and process until smooth. Pour into the pie crust, and put into the fridge for a minimum of two hours (a few more is better). This will allow the berries to naturally gel together.
When you are ready to eat, toss the saved berries in a bowl with 1 tsp liquid sweetner and 1 tsp water to make a simple glaze to make them shiny, then top the pie with them before serving!

Raw triple berry pie with coconut almond crust.

<div style=”height:1.4em;visibility:hidden;”>ANY CHARACTER HERE</div>
Bethlehem Vegfest will be held on Sept. 8th, 2012 from 11am-6pm on Bethlehem’s southside greenway! This is a FREE event with cooking demos, food, speakers, animal adoption groups, live music, a kid’s corner, vendors, and so much more.
Last year was the first event with over 10,000 (ten thousand!) attendees.  Stay updated by following the FACEBOOK PAGE and I’ll be sure to give more updates as it gets closer.

Bethlehem Vegfest 2012 poster by Christian Weber.

LAUGHING TIL YOU CAN’T BREATHE: Behind the Scenes of the Save the Kales!

Episode 3 airs THIS SUNDAY NIGHT (July 8th) at 9:30pm on RCN Channel 4 in the Lehigh Valley, PA. It’ll air another 9-12 times in July and be on Demand as well (dates/times to come), so keep your eyes open! And the episode will go online in another week!

They say laughter is contagious. I hope so, and I hope this can help you today, especially if you really need it.

Here’s a short behind the scenes video of a very typical day on the set:

This is why I used to get detention in elementary school. Really.

“Everybody laughs the same in every language because laughter is a universal connection.” Yakov Smirnoff

SAVE THE KALES: Episode 1, Tofu Factory. Vegan Cooking Show with Jaime K

Here it is! The first full episode! Wow!

In this episode, we go to the Fresh Tofu, Inc. factory. President of the company, Gary, tells us about how they got started (a vegan food truck in the 1970’s – this guy is awesome) and you can buy their products in and around Pennsylvania, and they also supply to some “high profile” NYC restaurants and businesses.

Then back at the kitchen, we make a Tofu Garlic and Basil “Ricotta” Pizza with Fresh Arugula and Lemon. PLUS my Sunday Morning Tofu Scramble — a true weekend staple in the Karpovich/Hill household.

Finally, our friend Johnny Gee from the blog Johnnysized joins us to share the meal and talk about how going on a plant-based diet has helped him lose over 70 pounds (to date, currently) and get off ALL medications.

You can find the recipes below.

RECIPES

BASIL “RICOTTA” PIZZA

  • pizza crust of choice, cooked
  • 1 block firm tofu, pressed
  • 1 bunch basil leaves
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
  • salt to taste
  • fresh arugula
  • fresh lemon wedges to squeeze on pizza
  • fresh cracked black pepper

Have a pizza crust already cooked and ready to go!

Cut tofu into 1/2 inch thick slices, lay on a clean towel, and press with your hands to get the water out.

Put tofu in a food processor. Take all the leaves of a bunch of basil and add to the food processor, along with garlic, lemon juice, nutritional yeast, salt, and olive oil. Blend until smooth, stopping to scrape down the sides if needed.

Spread the mixture on top of the pizza dough. (Mixture and any leftovers can be put in the fridge for a few days.)

Drizzle olive oil on the pizza, then top with fresh arugula. Serve with a wedge of fresh lemon and guests can use it to add fresh lemon jucie to their own pizzas (or do this yourself ahead of time). Fresh cracked black pepper and some salt finish the dish.

.           .           .           .           .

SUNDAY MORNING TOFU SCRAMBLE

  • 1 block extra firm tofu, pressed
  • 2 small yellow or white onions, chopped
  • 1/2 red bell pepper and 1/2 green pepper
  • 1 cup mushrooms
  • 2-3 Tbsp Bragg’s Liquid Aminos(or tamari or soy sauce)
  • 1 Tbsp garlic powder
  • 2 Tbsp turmeric
  • 1 Tbsp dried basil
  • 1/4 cup – 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
  • garnish with fresh herbs or avocado slices

Press the water out of the tofu and set aside.

Cut up the onion, mushrooms and peppers and set aside.

In a large pan or skillet, heat up the onion and olive oil until onion is translucent, about three minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook for about three more minutes. Then add the peppers and cook for another 2-3 minutes.

Once veggies are cooked, use your hands to crumble the tofu into the pan. Add Bragg’s (or soy or tamari sauce), garlic powder, turmeric, and dried basil. Mix everything. Add nutritional yeast and mix again. Salt and pepper to taste.

Top with avocado or fresh herbs, and this can be stored in the fridge for several days and eaten as-is or as part of a sandwich, salad or burrito.

.         .        .        .          .

Come back for Episode Two which will be on air/online in June! We go to a local community garden, give some hearty comfort foods a healthier vegan makeover, and learn more about The Bethlehem Food Co-op. 

If you’re interested in advertising on the show, send an email to postsputnik@postsputnik.com

Teaser/Commercial

Here’s the 30 second commercial spot for the full show!  I’ll have the whole half-hour online within the next two days. Until then, here’s a peek…

***I need to mention that before we used the “Making a world a kinder place, one recipe at a time” tagline, I googled it and tried to see if anyone else had used it. I couldn’t find anything. However, after Episode One was shot, I found another vegan cook had used “Making the world a better place…” I never intended to rip off anyone’s (super awesome) line, and I will no longer use it in furture episodes. Sorry for the mix-up!

Nerves Before the Pilot Episode

Emotional Sunday.

I spent the afternoon at a baby shower for the producers (and editors and camera crew and director and assistant) of the show, and my heart was just so full at the thought of these two wonderful people, Matt and Sarah – one of those cool, creative, fun and constantly involved-in-everything-awesome married couples – bringing a baby girl into the world.

(Also producers of the show Lehigh Valley Mirror!)

Now it’s a few hours before the the pilot show airs for the first time, and my stomach has been in knots all day.

I can’t stop thinking about how this happened… how I got here, wherever “here” is anyway. Two and a half years ago, in the darkest time of my life, when I felt I had hurt people too much, done nothing but created a mess that could never be undone, felt like my existence in the world was causing more harm than good, and what was the point…

… something in my guts said, “Jaime. You are going to do something important. Please hang on. You’ll figure it out eventually. You will.”

I still don’t claim to have figured it out. Those closest to me know the amount of time I still spend trying to figure it out (bless their hearts), the worry and anxiety and fear that creeps in while trying to find a purpose and learning and getting better and wanting  everything to be good for everybody.

When I think of the people who have helped put this show together, I am beyond humbled. They could spend their time and energy on anything else — countless hours of editing, texts at 1am asking about graphics layouts, the first episode surviving  amidst a production computer that totally crashed and died, hauling equipment around, setting up lighting, takes and retakes, finding the right music, money spent on software and groceries, etc…

To you all, thank you for believing in me enough to devote your skills, energy and friendship. Matt and Sarah; and Christian: you are the greatest bunch of people a girl could work with. If a day ever came when money was no object, I would see to it you are taken care of for the rest of your lives. This is just as much your show as it is mine. I love you and “thank you times infinity” is still not enough.

This is only the beginning!

The TV Guide channel. Kind of surreal.

–         –        –         –          –

Last year I went to a discussion panel on creativity at Lehigh University. A student in the audience raised his hand and said, “I want to make movies, but Lehigh doesn’t offer video production, so for now I’m majoring in English and I’ll study film when I get to grad school. What English classes should I take?”

As one person on the panel began to answer him, he was interrupted by another professor who stood up so assured and said (I’m paraphrasing):

“We live in a time when you don’t need permission from anyone.

You don’t need to wait til grad school. If you want to make movies, get a camera – buy one, rent one, borrow one – and make a movie. You’re in school during the week? Do it on weekends. You can’t get it done by yourself? Meet people who share your passion and help each other. You do not need to wait. You don’t need a class. You don’t need  four years of school and to graduate: those are excuses.

If my five year old son and his friends can grab our digital camera, turn it to the movie setting, make a video of them playing Cops and Robbers, upload it to Youtube and get a few thousand hits, all in one afternoon, YOU CAN MAKE A MOVIE.

Now go and make one.”

 –        –        –        –       –

I do hope you’ll enjoy the first episode of Save the Kales! Surely, there is still a lot to learn and I’m so excited to see how we’ll all learn and get better as time goes on. A lot of work and love went into this project, and seeing it in a tangible form… Wow. Now that I have this out of my system, I’m speechless.

Enjoy!