Monday, July 19, 2010

My Book!

I am beside myself "literally" as I announce to you that I am writing a book! ("Literally," get it?! I know it's totally cliche, but I am pretty excited!)

This isn't just a poetry book with, like, 22 poems. Although, my poetry books are good, too. And you should buy and read my poetry books. They have soulful energy to help you feel alive and connected with your quirky universe.

But no, I'm talking about a REAL BOOK! A non-fiction collection of tales and yes, recipes of all persuasions, concoctions that may or may not be edible AND more. Yes, more.

But... I'm not telling any more except that it has everything to do with this blog.

And it has everything to do with every person, place, thing or thought that led to the creation of Ravings, Cravings & Misbehavings and that's all I am saying!

So I PhotoShopped this little graphic based on a blank book image that I found which was created by BazaarDesigns, to help me and all of us get excited about my book.

This is definitely getting my creative juices flowing! (Thank you, Susie and Vanessa and Ron, and everyone who knows about the concept for my book and is supportive!)

I have written several stories so far and intend to finish my first draft by August 15, 2010. Yeah, that's what I said.

So, post a comment here or email me with a reason that I should put you in my book. And you'd better make it a really good reason or I won't even reply! Because I'm a busy writer now! Get to it!

Email me: sharine [at] sharine [dot] com

Falafel Patties with Tabouli Salad and Tahini

It was FINALLY hot over the weekend! Summer has arrived, late but ever-so-welcome.

In honor of the triple-digit temperatures, I decided to make Falafel and Tabouli with Tahini.

It required several major stages of cooking/baking, since I started with dry bulgur, but was well worth the effort.

And, it yielded enough yummy food for several meals! Don't these look scrumptious?!


3/4 cup TVP (textured vegetable protein)

3/4 cup vegetable broth

1 cup garbanzo beans, mashed

5 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 cup onion, chopped finely

1/3 cup parsley, chopped

1/2 cup cilantro, chopped

2 teaspoons sesame seeds

2 teaspoons cumin

1 teaspoon paprika

Freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup plain bread crumbs or panko

1/3 cup vital wheat gluten

1 teaspoon baking powder
Non-stick cooking spray or olive oil

In a large mixing bowl, rehydrate TVP in vegetable broth for about 5 minutes. Add ingredients through bread crumbs and mix until combined. Stir in vital wheat gluten. Cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with foil and spritz with non-stick cooking spray.

Remove Falafel mixture from refrigerator. Fold in baking powder. Form in 8-10 patties and place on baking sheet. Spritz each patty with cooking spray or brush with olive oil.

Bake 20 minutes, turn over each patty then bake for another 10-15 minutes until golden brown.


3/4 cup cooked bulgur wheat

1/2 English cucumber, seeded

and coarsely chopped

1/3 cup parsley, chopped
6 green onions, chopped
1/2 cup red onion, chopped
1/4 cup lemon juice

1 clove garlic, minced
2 medium tomatoes, chopped

Freshly ground pepper


Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours or overnight.


1/3 cup tahini

1/3 cup water or vegetable broth

1/4 cup lemon juice

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 cup parsley, chopped


In a small bowl, slowly whisk together tahini and water or broth. Add remaining ingredients. Cover and chill until ready to serve.


Check out another photo of this delicious meal!

As you can see, I served my Tabouli over chopped romaine in a light raspberry viniagrette from TJs.

The Falafel patties are lightly drizzled with Tahini.

(And yeah, that's ketchup on the side. I am a big fan of both ketchup and mustard!)

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Beef-Style Seitan

This is a healthy alternative to beef!

- It's full of protein!
- It's low fat!
- It's cholesterol free!
- It's got a meaty texture!
- It's yummy!

Use it like any meat product:

- Crumble it into Sloppy Joes or Bolognese!
- Chop it into a stir fry!
- Slice it as a topper for an Asian Salad!
- Cube it for stews, soups or my Bourguignon!
- Grill it like burgers or steaks!



1 cup TVP (Textured Vegetable Protein)

1 cup beef broth

1 tablespoon ketchup

1 teaspoon coarse grain mustard

1/2 cup yellow onion, minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 teaspoons Mrs. Dash Steak

1 teaspoon liquid smoke

1 egg white

1/2 cup vital wheat gluten

1/4 cup nutritional yeast flakes

Beef broth, if necessary

Olive oil, for coating


Preheat oven to 375°F.

In a large bowl, mix together TVP and beef broth. Set aside for a few minutes.

Stir in ketchup, mustard, onion, garlic, Mrs. Dash, liquid smoke. Add egg white and combine.

This is a photo of my Beefy Mushroom Bourguignon with Seitan:

Add vital wheat gluten and nutritional yeast. If mixture is too dry, add broth by the tablespoon until dough sticks together.

Cover a baking sheet with foil. Coat with non-stick cooking spray.

Form into 6-8 “steaks” and place on baking sheet. Brush tops of seitan steaks sparingly with olive oil.
Bake 30 minutes, turn once and bake for another 10-15 minutes or until thoroughly heated.

Cool, store covered in refrigerator and use within 7-10 days

This is a photo a my awesome Chicken Style Dijon recipe with grilled vegetables on the side.

Simply substitute Mrs. Dash Chicken Seasoning for the steak seasoning, you can create a Chicken-Style Seitan! Easily as useful as the beef recipe!

Recipe modified from

Beefy Mushroom Bourguignon with Seitan

A healthy French Bourguignon meets mushrooms and beef-style seitan. I served it over creamy polenta and steamed vegetables. Day two, leftovers were even better!



1 cup onion, minced

2 stalks celery, diced

4 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 cup white wine

3 cups fat-free beef broth

1 (28-oz.) can diced tomatoes, drained

1 Tbsp tomato paste

1 cup dry red wine

1 Tbsp fresh rosemary, chopped (or 1 teaspoon dried)

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1 teaspoon fresh sage, minced

2 red or yellow bell peppers, seeded, sliced and roasted

I roasted the sliced red peppers and half a large yellow onion in advance.

It's easy: Place the vegetables in a bowl and add a bit of balsamic vinegar and low-sugar apricot preserves. Mix to coat vegetables and set aside while the oven preheats to 350°F.

Lay vegetables on a cookie sheet in a single layer and bake for 30-45 minutes until soft and beginning to caramelize (you'll see browned or blackened areas).

6 oz. crimini mushrooms, cleaned and quartered

1 cup peas

1 /3 cup cold water or broth

2 Tbsp arrowroot powder or cornstarch

Beefy Seitan, cubed

Could you make your own Beefy Seitan? Oh, yes, you could!


In a large pot, sauté onion, celery and garlic in white wine until onions are translucent. Add peppers, mushrooms, and peas. Bring to a simmering boil.

Whisk together water and arrowroot powder or cornstarch until smooth. Slowly pour into simmering sauce, stirring constantly.

Add seitan. Lower heat and continue stirring as sauce thickens, about 5 minutes.

Serve with steamed vegetables for a healthy French meal. Delicious over creamy polenta!

Q: Hey, Sharine, you ask, What's the big green twig in the photo?!

A: It's a bouquet garnis: A sprig of fresh rosemary and several stems of thyme, tied together with cotton string. Add this to your Bourgignon after vegetables are soft. Remove before serving!

Recipe from Vegetarian Times, modified slightly using recipe from The Veggie Table and my own additions!