I heart bacon, vegan bacon, of course. I like it so much I’m thinking of naming the blog mascot, Bacony McBaconface. Alas, the bunny responded with an emphatic no. But I’m thrilled to be today’s stop for the blog tour of a new plant-based cookbook that’s all about bacon, Baconish by Leinana Two Moons who blogs over at Vegan Good Things.
That’s right, a whole cookbook devoted to nothing but the salty, smoky, umami packed flavor that is bacon. Covering everything from how to make your own bacon out of such things as coconut, carrots, mushrooms, eggplant and even chickpeas to savory, bacony, main dishes to salty and sweet desserts.
I started off with Butternut Squash Carbonara with Bacon and Sage page 144, pictured above. I don’t think I ever had traditional carbonara with egg yolks and cream before so I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect or what it’s suppose to taste like. Basically, it tasted like butternut squash sauce with pasta (I used spaghetti noodles since that’s all I had in the pantry). The recipe calls for a 3 ounce serving of pasta, I normally only eat 2 ounces but had no problem finishing my plate.
Seeing as I love roasted king trumpet mushrooms, I was destined to make the King Trumpet Mushroom Bacon page 25, which somehow turned into a comedy of errors. First, I couldn’t find the smoked salt called for in the recipe. Surely, Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s would have it, they didn’t. Having already bought the mushrooms, I sallied forth without.
Reading the recipe a little closer, I don’t have a baking rack either. Oh well, I made it anyway. It was totally fine. Turns out the real problem is saving enough of the mushroom bacon for use as a topping for the split pea soup I was also making.
Smoky Split Pea Soup with Bacon page 81, easy enough to make yet somehow mine looks, uh, different than the luscious photo in the cookbook. Much more of an orange-brown color, perhaps it’s the smoked paprika that I got from Penzey’s. It’s the brightest paprika ever, turning everything it touches a bright orange color. Actually, I think the color enhances the smoky flavor.
I’ve been a huge fan of coconut bacon ever since cracking open that first bag of Phoney Baloney’s Coconut Bacon. To save my wallet from the poor house, I regularly make a batch of Coconut Bacon page 21. Now you can too.
The author, Leinana Two Moons and publisher, Vegan Heritage Press have generously shared the coconut bacon recipe below. Of all the plant-based bacon this is my favorite and the one that’s most bacon-like. Smells like bacon. Tastes like bacon. And it’s crisp, just like bacon.
I managed to refrain from gobbling down handfuls of coconut bacon long enough to make The Famous Coconut BLT page 107. Famous, indeed. If you would like to give this classic sandwich a go, the recipe is also below. I didn’t have any tomatoes when I made it, but avocado works too. I meant to save some of the coconut bacon for other recipes like the Maple-Bacon Doughnuts or Chocolate-Covered Coconut Bacon. So many Baconish recipes to try…
The Famous Coconut BLT
Makes 4 sandwiches
8 slices sandwich bread
2 cups Coconut Bacon (recipe follows)
1 large ripe tomato, sliced
Lettuce leaves, washed and patted dry
Spread each slice of bread with a generous amount of mayonnaise. Top the mayonnaise with about 1/2 cup of the Coconut Bacon per sandwich, followed by slices of tomato and lettuce leaves. Top each sandwich with the remaining bread slices. Cut each sandwich with a serrated bread knife and serve immediately.
Makes 2 1/2 cups
3 tablespoons tamari
1 tablespoon liquid smoke
1 tablespoon water
1 tablespoon maple syrup
3 cups unsweetened large-flake coconut
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Whisk the tamari, liquid smoke, water, and maple syrup together in a large bowl. Stir in the coconut and mix well to ensure that the flakes are evenly coated.
Spread the coconut in an even layer on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake 10 minutes, then stir. Bake another 8 minutes, keeping a very close eye on the coconut in the last few minutes. The coconut will go from almost done to completely burned very quickly. Remove from the oven when the coconut flakes on the outer edges of the pan are becoming a deep, dark brown, but not black.
Place the baking sheet on a cooling rack. The coconut will continue to crisp as it cools. Coconut bacon will keep 1 to 2 weeks in an airtight plastic container, but will become less crisp the longer you store it. So make those BLTs right now and eat up.
From Baconish © 2016 Leinana Two Moons. Used with permission from Vegan Heritage Press.
Disclosure: I received the book free of charge from the publisher to review. The opinions and experience with the book expressed herein are my own. There was no pay to say.
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