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Saturday, January 30, 2010

next cooking class has spaces open, Thai, February 20

hands on cooking class! each student will be creating and consuming each dish

Saturday February 20
limited space for 8

Thai menu
make your own coconut milk
make your own red curry paste
red curry soup with fried tempeh, kabocha and long beans
green papaya salad
lemongrass veggie stir fry
and more dishes to be added

Valentines dinner/concert w/ Chris Caswell, harp

Sunday, February 14, 2010
7 pm
limit for 10 couples

our third Valentines event. Returning to the series is the world renowned harp player and maker, Chris Caswell!!

this is the tenative menu we will be building from:

yuzu-sichuan peppecorn truffle rolled in matcha

maitak mushroom with silken tofu and lotus root tempura served in an iron pot for 2

blood orange-fennel-watercress with blood orange dressing

chocolate ravioli!
chocolate pasta filled with our delectable almond "ricotta" and raisins and pine nuts.

yuba roll stuffed with homemade tempeh and vegetables
stir fried choy sum with ginger
spiced acorn squash puree

concert: Chris Caswell - harp

pears poached in wine and spices in a crust made of cacao beans, walnuts and dates
Chocolate ice "cream"

vegan cheesecake


pie crust:

makes 2 crusts
1 cup flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp earth balance
1 1/4 tbsp tahini
about 5 tbsp water

combine flours. Cut in earth balance with pastry cutter till it resembles fine crumbs. Add water and bring ingredients together. do NOT overmix!
let sit, refrigerated one hour before using

custard for one cheesecake
place in food processor:
1 pound silken tofu
3 tbsp tahini
2 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp salt
grated rind of one lemon or yuzu

process till very smooth
add to crust
bake at 350 for 40 minutes

sauteed brocollini

sauteed brocolini with garlic and olives
serves 8

2 bunches brocollini
8 cloves garlic sliced
10 black olives, chopped
3 tbsp olive oil
1/4 red cup wine
 black pepper

wash and rinse the brocollini
chop olives
 slice garlic

heat up a pan over medium with oil and sautee garlic for a few seconds and then add rappini, stirring well to coat and sautee for 2 minutes or till vegetable starts to slightly wilt. add olives, capers and wine, immediately cover for 30 seconds. remove from heat, add black pepper and serve immediately

almost any green vegetable can be substitued such as brussel sprouts, broccoil, brcolli rabe, etc
use black olives
add toasted pine nuts

Winter Minestrone

for 8
8 cups stock
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
1 fennel bulb chopped
small kabocha, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 leek, chopped
several cloves garlic, minced
1 cup red wine
1 cup cooked beans (we are using Rancho Gordo Yellow Indian Woman beans today)
lots of chopped parsley and basil
2 tsp thyme
2 tsp oregano
2 tsp sea salt
1/4 cup olive oil

In a soup pot, heat up olive oil, add onions, leeks and salt and let sweat for 10 minutes. Add rest of vegetables, thyme and oregano and cook 5 minutes. Add red wine to deglaze and let most of it evaporate. Add the stock and cooked beans. Bring to simmer. Add fresh herbs at the end

konyaku w/ karashi miso dressing

konyaku wrapped in shiso with karashi miso dressing

for karashi miso dressing:
2 tbsp  saikyo miso
1 tsp mustard powder
1 tsp mirin
dash salt
mix very well, thin with a little kombu dashi, let sit 30 minutes before using to mellow.

slice konyaku very thinly.
place each piece of konyaku on a shiso leaf. Brush konyaku with karashi miso dressing



Yudofu is a classic Kyoto style dish, served in winter. It is very simple and one of the great ways to highlight freshly made tofu. The variations are as simple as tofu simmering in kombu stock to a more diverse hot pot with greens (often chrysanthemum), mushrooms and leeks.

In a nabe (Japanese hot pot), place a piece of kombu and 2 dried shitake and fill 2/3 way with water. Bring to simmer and let simmer for half hour.
Add your tofu and vegetables, cover and let simmer for 5 minutes.

To serve

each person gets a bowl. To each bowl add a few spoons of stock from the hotpot. Add 1 tbsp each of mirin and shoyu to each bowl. The diners simply take a piece out of the nabe, dip it in their bowl and eat.

For today, we are making yudofu with homemade tofu, shimeji mushroom, leek and chrysanthemum greens.

wakame daikon salad w/ citrus dressing

Wakame Daikon salad w/ citrus dressing

1/4 cup wakame
1 large daikon, julienned
1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds

1 satsuma tangerine, juiced, zest
1 lime, juiced, zest
1 lemon juiced, zest
2 tbsp rice vinegar
1 tbsp mirin
2 tbsp shoyu
dash sea salt
whisk together and pour over salad just before serving

Place wakame in water for 20 minutes. Drain and press dry.
Toast sesame seeds in pan.
Cut daikon in julienne

arrange on plate, cover with dressing

adzuki kabocha stew

adzuki-kabocha stew

1 cup adzuki, soaked overnight
1 small kabocha, cut in half, remove seeds and medium chopped.
1 onion, chopped
2 tbsp ginger, minced
10 cloves garlic, minced
1-10 thai chilis, minced
1 quart shitake-kombu stock
1/3 cup sake
1/3 cup mirin
1/3 cup shoyu
2 tbsp non toasted sesame oil
1 tbsp toasted sesame oil

Drain soaked adzuki, place in pot, add 3 cups cold water, bring to simmer, cover and cook 40 minutes. Set aside.

in saucepan, heat up oil, add onions and let cook 5 minutes. Add garlic, ginger and chilis and cook 2 minutes. Add kabocha and cook 2 minutes. Add sake and mirin and cook 1 minute. Add cooked beans, stock, bring to simmer and cook till kabocha is cooked. Add shoyu, cook 30 seconds and season to taste. More shoyu for salt, more mirin for sweet. add toasted sesame oil, and serve hot

spicy lotus root pickles

spicy lotus root pickle

2 lotus roots, sliced very thinly on a mandoline
3 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tbsp mirin
2 tbsp shoyu
1 green onion, chopped
2 tien tsen chilis, chopped

Steam sliced lotus roots for 10 minutes
Let cool and place in bowl with the rest of ingredients. Mix well and let marinade at least 2 hours before serving

Friday, January 29, 2010

Noodle soup with fried tempeh, garlicky kale and sichuan chili oil

Hot bowl of noodles with many elements; fried, sauteed, pickled

4 servings

for this you will need, 1 recipe  homemade pasta (

for the Tempeh
cut tempeh into strips, 2" long 1/2" thick.
Deep fry in safflower oil till golden brown. Drain well. set aside

for the garlicky kale
Sautee 8 cloves chopped garlic in 1 tbsp sesame oil for 30 seconds. Add 1 bunch, chopped kale and sautee for 2 minutes. Add 1/4 cup stock, cover, remove from heat. set aside

Chop 4 green onions. set aside

for the stock
16 cups water
8 dried shitake
4 pieces kombu
bring to simmer, cover, let simmer for several hours. Strain.

Cut noodles to desired size and cook in boiling water for 2 minutes or till done.

Arrange noodles in bowls. Add kale and green onions to the bowls.  Arrange tempeh slices around the bowl. Pour stock over the noodles. Add a small dollop of sichuan chili oil to the center of the bowl.
Serve immediately and slurp away, happily.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

pumpkin ravioli

for this you will need:

1 recipe of my homemade pasta (
1 recipe of my homemade almond cheese (

to the almond cheese, add 1 cup of roasted pureed pumpkin and mix well. This is your pumpkin "cheese" filling.

Roll out your ravioli dough and use a ravoli mold to form the shapes.

cook in boiling water till they float. do NOT overcook.

top with this pesto
2 cups basil leaves
1/4 cup pine nuts
4 cloves garlic
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil of a very high quality
place all in a food processor and blend till it becomes a pesto.
put aside

pear pecan tart

1 bottle red wine (i have great results using Wild Hog 2005 dolcetto)
1 star anise
6 pears, halved and cored
1/4 cup agave
place the above in  a sauce pan and bring to simmer, cover and let simmer for 30 minutes. Remove from heat and refrigerate for at least 6 hours.
After removing the pears, peel them and slice them.

for the crust
3 cups pecans
6 dates
1/2 tsp salt
innards of 1 vanilla bean, split and deseeded

place he above in a food processor and grind down. Pat into a tart pan.

place pears in concentric circles in the crust and bake at 350 for 12 minutes.

Pear roasted tempeh

This is a recent tempeh dish i have developed.

mix the following together:
3 tbsp pomegranate mollasses
1 tbsp tamarind extract
1 tbsp red miso
1 tsp cumin, ground
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/3 cup stock
1 tbsp mirin
1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
1 tbsp shoyu

place 1 pound of freshly made tempeh into the marinade. Do not cut the tempeh, leave it whole and let marinade overnight in the fridge.

Cover the marinated tempeh with sliced pears and brush the pears with the marinade. Roast the pear covered tempehs, in the marinade at 425, covered for 15 minutes.

The fruitiness of the pomegranate added to the pears are an amazing and unique flavor. The fresh mushroomy flavor of non packaged tempeh is ideal for this

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Gyan Riley dinner/concert this Friday!

We added a second night! January 23 sold out (We are taking a waiting list in case of cancellations for that evening) so we are now taking reservations for Friday January 22. Same amazing guitarist and composer, Gyan Riley and same chef, sous chef and server but totally different menu. Still working out the details of the menu but below gives you a pretty good idea what to expect. As always, local, seasonal cuisine, all vegan, and sourced as directly as possible from the most sustainable food producers.
For these events, everything is homemade including the tempeh, tofu, seitan, breads, noodles, etc.
seats are filling fast for this second evening

Guitar player and composer Gyan Riley in a solo performance on the dinner/concert series.

Friday, January 22, 2010
8 pm
$55/person, byob
limited seating for 20
space in West Oakland
for more information or reservations, phil at philipgelb dot com or 510 393 6096

Wild Mushroom w/ crustini
made with freshly foraged Chanterelles from the Oakland hills

Rancho Gordo Yellow Indian Woman bean patties
smoked chipotle sauce
sauteed radichio

blood orange fennel watrcress with blood orange dressing

fourth course
tempeh and choy sum stir fried in black bean sauce served in a fried taro basket

"cheese" cake
pears poached in wine and spices

Japanese cooking class, January 30

hands on class with all the participants creating and consuming each dish

Saturday, January 30
Limited seating for 8
location: West Oakland

winter Japanese menu
adzuki kabocha soup
yudofu (kyoto style tofu dish cooked in stock in a nabe pot
burdock root pickled with sichuan peppercorns and sesame seeds
spicy lotus root pickles
green tea muffins

Friday, January 15, 2010

simple tempeh dish with many variations

 Many of you are eating handmade, fresh tempeh for the first time this weekend and i am very grateful to that :)  You are probably noticing a very different flavor, aroma and texture than the frozen and pasteurized tempeh which is found in stores!

Here is a very simple way to prepare tempeh and several international variations.

First slice your tempeh into strips about 1/2 " thick. We are going to simply pan fry them till golden and hit them with a salt and an acid to finish them.

ok, Italian style
small amount of olive oil in your pan, get it red hot, put in the tempeh slices and pan fry on one side till golden brown and flip them over. Only turn them once! as the second side browns, sprinkle them with sea salt and pour 1/4 cup of marsala wine over them. serve immediately

Japanese style.
heat up your pan, put a small amount of sesame oil (NON toasted) in and fry your tempeh strips on each side. When it is finished browning, add a tbsp of shoyu, 1 tbsp sake and 1 tbsp mirin.  Remain on heat till liquid evaporates, then serve immediately.

Mexican variation
same method as above but use olive oil and finish with a mixture of 2 tbsp lime juice, 1/2 tsp cumin, 1/2 tsp chipotle powder, 1/2 tsp oregano

Sichuan variation
as above but use sesame oil to fry and finish with 1 tbsp shaoshing rice wine, 1 tbsp mirin and 1 tbsp shoyu and 1 tsp sichuan chili oil

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

black lentil soup

What is more satisfying than a lentil soup on a cold afternoon. Along with some fresh bread, a nice salad and you have a very satisfying and delightful meal. Recently i have been exploring the catalog of heirloom beans from Rancho Gordo farms. The black lentils are incredible! Nice texture and a flavor with far more depth than lentils we are used to.
This takes very litle effort to make yet the results are enormous.

1 cup black lentils, soaked overnight
1 carrot, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 red onion, chopped
1 leek, chopped
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 1/2 tsp sea salt
2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
6 cups stock
3 tbsp lemon juice

Soak lentils, drain and rinse. Place in a pot with 3 cups water and cook for 2 minutes, Remove from heat and drain.

In a separate pot, bring olive oil to medium heat and add leeks, onions and salt. Sautee for 10 minutes or starts to caramelize. Add celery, carrot, thyme and oregano and sautee 5 more minutes.  Add stock and lentils and bring to simmer. Lower heat, cover and cook a few minutes, if needed, till lentils are desired softness. Do not overcook and let the lentils go to mush as you want to retain their integrity and thus their delightful texture.
finish with the black pepper, fresh herbs and lemon juice

Monday, January 11, 2010

fresh artisan made tempeh. next availability is Friday

Please place orders by Wednesday night.

We are now making our artisan tempeh available to chefs and individuals. 100% organic soybeans, filtered water and tempeh spores are the only ingredients used.

$8 a pound. Discounts for restaurants, chefs and caterers purchasing in bulk. 

star anise/red wine pear tart

For the crust
2 and 1/2 cups pecans
5 dried dates
scraped seeds from one vanilla bean
pinch sea salt

place all the above ingredients in a food processor and grind it down to a mash. Press this into an oiled tart pan.

1 bottle dry red wine (recent version, i used a 2005 wild hog dolcetto)
6 bosc pears
1/3 cup agave
the wood part of the vanilla bean you scraped
1 star anise

Slice pears in half, remove core and then slice them about 1/3".
bring wine to simmer, add vanilla and star anise.
Poach pears in the wine for 20 minutes, then let sit in the wine mixture for several hours. The longer they soak, the redder they become.

take 1/2 cup of the poaching liquid and bring back to simmer. Dissolve 1 tbsp kudzu in 2 tbsp water and add this to the liquid, stir well till thickened.

Put the pears in the crust in concentric circles.  Brush with the thickened poaching liquid Bake at 350 for 12 minutes. Brush again when the tart exits the oven and before serving.

we served this yesterday with a cinnamon ice "cream"

cooking class on Sunday!

this is my first class of the year and first one since the early summer!

a hands on class with all students taking part in the creation and consumption of each dish

Sunday, January 17
limited space for 8
for more information and reservations, contact phil at philipgelb dot com

Winter italian menu
winter minestrone
pumpkin ravioli with pesto including how to make your own almond "cheese" and your own pasta sheets
sauteed italian greens
"cheese" cake

Friday, January 8, 2010

lemon poppyseed miso dressing

This is one of the most popular dressings i have come up with. And it is so insanely easy to make. Simply throw the following into a blender:
1/3 cup poppyseeds (toast them lightly first!)
1/4 cup lemon juice and also use the zest from the lemons you juice
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
3/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup white miso
1.4 cup maple syrup
2 shallots
4 cloves, garlic
1 and 1/2 tsp chinese hot mustard powder
1/4 tsp celery seed
1/4 tsp sea salt

i like serving this with many different salads, especially mixed salad greens with roasted beets and roasted pumpkin

Thursday, January 7, 2010


more starchy decadence, Southern style!

2 cups flour
4 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 cup grapeseed oil
3/4 cup soymilk (see note)
1 tbsp cider vinegar

Preheat oven to 450

whisk dry ingredients together in one bowl
cut in the oil till it resembles coarse, tiny pebbles. Add vinegar to soymilk and dthen add it to the dry ingredients. Do NOT overmix. When dough comes together, turn onto floured board and pat or roll to 1/2 inch thicknes.
Cut dough with biscuit cutter.
 Place on ungreased cookie sheet so sides of biscuits are barely touching.
Bake 16 minutes or till golden brown.

first cooking class of the year January 17

a hands on class with all students taking part in the creation and consumption of each dish

Sunday, January 17
limited space for 8
location: West Oakland

Winter italian menu
winter minestrone
pumpkin ravioli with pesto including how to make your own almond "cheese"
sauteed italian greens
"cheese" cake

contact me for reservations

brunch/concert on Sunday! 3 seats available

due to some cancellations we have 3 seats available for our first brunch/concert. After hosting dinner/concerts for 3 and a half years with an amazing array of world renowned musicians performing, we are expanding to hosting occassional brunches. This time we have an amazing duet of Diana Rowan on harp and the incredible vocalist, Bon Singer. Beautiful original compositions, inspired by their studies of Eastern European musical styles. 5 courses, 4 paired with teas. Contact me for reservations.
Sunday, January 10
11 am BRUNCH

Our first Brunch. Been contemplating offering this for a while.
Featuring the return to the series of the extraordinary vocalist, Bon Singer. Bon founded the renowned chorus, Kitka and is one of the foremost vocalists and teachers of Eastern European women's music. This time she is accompanied by another friend of the series, Diana Rowan, a harp player who has appeared on the series before. Expect some truly gorgeous music from these 2 brilliant women.

Bon Singer - voice
Diana Rowan - harp

we will be serving Japanese green teas with these courses. Pairings to be announced soon...

drinks warm and cold
Warm: Hot, homemade amazake with ginger. The classic Japanese warming winter drink.
Chilled: freshly squeezed citrus juice. A blend of Californias oranges, tangerines and grapefruits

fresh out of the oven pumpkin bialys. The traditional Polish Jewish bread is updated with a pumpkin twist. Served with homemade cashew herb cream "cheez" and beet nut pate
tea: Karigane Shinto Grand Shrine

roasted pear and parsnip soup
tea: Sencha Shinto Grand Shrine

fourth course
Vegan quiche
We make a custard from silken tofu and our homemade soymilk and will fill it with sun dried tomatos, caramelized onions, and arugula
roasted heirloom potatoes spiced with smoked paprika and rosemary
satsuma tangerine spinach salad with satsuma ginger dressing
Tea: Tung Ting High Mountain Taiwan oolong
Bon Singer - voice
Diana Rowan - harp

pear walnut tart
spiced cranberries
cinnamon ice "cream"
tea: Genmaicha Shinto Grand Shrine

teas sourced from our friends at
Also coming up on the series:
Jan 22 gyan Riley - guitar
Jan 23 Gyan Riley - guitar

Valentines night -Chris Caswell- harp
Feb 27 w Mari Kimura - violin, computer

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

stir fried tempeh in black bean sauce in potato basket

A nice sichuan dish. Usually this would be made with taro but i did not have any around. Sweet potato can also work.

For the potato basket.
Shred some potatos (kennebecs are a great variety for this!) and then using a basket mold, form a basket and submerge into hot oil (use rice bran, peanut or safflower for deep frying).  Allow your inner Homer Simpson to relish in the delight of mmmmmmm fried. Cook till golden brown, remove from oil, remove from mold and set aside.

Cut tempeh into small square chunks. Drop into deep fryer for 2 minutes. Homer again, mmm fried. Remove, drain well, place on towel to further absorb any remaining oil and put aside.

Now you will need:

Chop several cloves of garlic
mince a small piece of ginger
1 tbsp fermented black beans
1 medium sized bok choy, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 carrot, julienned
1 tbsp oil from the fryer 

mix together the following:
2 tbsp tamari
1 tbsp mirin
1 tbsp shaoshing
1 tsp sichuan chili oil
2 tsp kudzu
1/2 cup seaweed/mushroom stock

to finish
chopped cilantro

In a wok or frying pan, heat up the tbsp oil. Stir fry garlic, ginger and black beans for 1 minute. Then add carrot and bok choy and stir fry 1 more minute. Add the rest of the ingredients at once, stir, cover and let cook 15 seconds. Add the fried tempeh and some chopped cilantro

Serve the stir fried tempeh and vegetables in the potato basket. The effect will be a stunning crispy/soggy delicacy as the black bean sauce melts into the basket.

Monday, January 4, 2010

barbecue sauce

A delightful sauce that goes well with the chipotle bean burgers i recently posted.
Since it is winter, i am using sun dried tomatos, rather than use ones greenhouse grown or from foreign lands.

Cover your tomatos with water and soak  overnight or a few hours in advance. Drain them, yet save the water from them to use in the sauce!

in a sauce pan, heat up
3 tbsp olive oil

then add
One onion, minced
one leek, minced
1 large carrot, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
10 cloves garlic, minced
20 sun dried tomatos, reconsituted
1 tsp sea salt

Cook for 10 minutes, till vegetables are well cooked, then add:
1 tsp ancho chili powder
1 tsp sweet paprika
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp half sharp paprika
1/2 tsp cayenne
1 tsp coriander
1 tsp thyme
2 tsp chinese mustard powder
2/3 cup apple cider vinegar
2/3 cup agave
1/3 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup soaking water from the sundried tomatos

and simmer for one hour on very low heat.

Then add:
1/2 tsp allspice
1/4 cup hatcho miso

place everything in blender and puree.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

vanilla oolong ice "cream"

Here is another one of my ice "cream" recipes.

You will need a high speed blender and also an in ice cream maker to produce this recipe.

first mix:
1 cup unsweetened soymilk (see note)
1/2 cup raw cashews
2 tbsp kudzu
dash salt

In a high speed blender, place the above ingredients in and let go on high for 3 - 4 minutes, till it becomes totally pureed, heats up and becomes thickened.

Meanwhile, in a sauce pan bring to simmer, 2 more cups of soymilk (see note)
After it comes to simmer, remove from heat and add 2 tbsp high mountain Taiwanese oolong leaves. I am using Dong Ding variety. Cover and let steep for 4 minutes and then drain the leaves out of the soymilk.

Place this oolong soymilk in the blender, adding it to the first mix that is now thickened. Add 1 tbsp vanilla extract and 1/2 cup agave syrup. Blend till mixed.

Place this mixture in an ice cream maker and proceed to freeze.

Serve with oolong apple muffins! (recipe to be posted soon)

Note: for this recipe you have to use unsweetened soymilk with nothing added to it. No preservatives and most important, no sweeteners, thickeners or anything besides water and organic soybeans. Otherwise it simply will be gross to put it bluntly.

Friday, January 1, 2010

tempeh scramble

 Another nice brunch treat!

Fairly easy to make and when you have homemade tempeh, oh man is it ever so good! If you are in the bay area and want to try some artisan made tempeh, please contact me as my homemade tempeh is soon going to be available for purchase!

for 4 servings:
1/2 pound tempeh, crumbled
1/2 orange pepper, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 small red onion, chopped
1 tsp chipotle powder
1 tsp sweet paprika
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp cumin
1 1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tbsp olive oil

finish with
2 green onion chopped
2 tbsp chopped parsley
1 tbsp lemon juice

Heat up a cast iron skillet.
 Add olive oil and onions and salt. Fry for 2 minutes and then add garlic, pepper, carrot and celery and spices. Fry for another 2 minutes, stirring often. Add tempeh and fry for 4 more minutes.
Add the lemon, green onion and parsley and remove from heat and serve with shredded hash browns