Easy Turtles

Last week, my mother suggested to me that I get some turtles candies for my grandmother this holiday season. Mmmm, turtles! I loves me some chocolate and caramel.

Seeing as I’m on Christmas break (and have waaaaaay too much time on my hands!), I thought, why not try to make my own turtles? Coming up with no good reasons, I took a stab at it.

* whips out Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle weapons *

Well, not really. But these were super easy to make and super delicious. I used walnuts, because I didn’t have any pecans on hand, but I will be making future batches with pecans. Yum!

Easy Vegan Turtles

Easy Vegan Turtles

Easy Vegan Turtles

by Shelly

Prep Time: 10

Cook Time: 30

Keywords: chill sweets vegetarian vegan chocolate nuts

Ingredients (12 turtles)

  • 2 tbsp Earth Balance
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla soymilk
  • 3/4 – 1 cup sweet or semi-sweet vegan chocolate chips (or 4 oz. vegan baking chocolate)
  • 2 cups pecan halves or walnut pieces

Instructions

Prepare a baking sheet lined with parchment and make room in the fridge.

In a small saucepan, melt Earth Balance over medium-low heat and add brown sugar one tablespoon at a time, whisking constantly. Add 1 tbsp of soymilk to help dissolve the sugar, if necessary. Continue to add brown sugar until the mixture looks like caramel.

Remove from heat. Allow to cool. (Place your caramel mixture briefly in the fridge or freezer if you can. This will help thicken it).

Melt chocolate, either in the microwave (stirring every 15-30 seconds until smooth) or in a double boiler.

On the lined baking sheet, make little clumps of a few pecans or walnuts.

Spoon a bit of melted chocolate onto each clump of nuts. Then, spoon some caramel onto each. Lastly, spoon one more coat of chocolate on top.

Transfer to the fridge to firm up, about 30 minutes.

Store in the refrigerator.

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Classic Pesto a la Vegan With A Vengeance

The Magic of Pesto

I’ve gone on and on about pesto here on this blog. Ever since I discovered it earlier this year, I’ve been obsessed. It is the star of one of my favorite all-time sandwiches (the veggie pesto panini), and I’ve been known to blob it onto pasta and salads as well. I have even used it as pizza sauce. So good!

In honor of Vegan MoFo, I’ve decided to give my love – pesto – its due diligence. The recipe I use is from the world’s vegan punk rock sweetheart, Isa Chandra Moskowitz, in her cook book Vegan With A Vengeance. You can view the recipe on Google Books, page 132 – Classic Pesto.

Look at that gorgeous basil!

Look at that gorgeous basil!

I make a couple modifications to the recipe. First, I only use 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil instead of 1/2 cup; I use 1/4 cup water for the other part. Next, I mix up the nuts. Sometimes I use walnuts as recommended, but often, I’ll use cashews instead, or mix the two. I’ve also been known to throw some pepitas (pumpkin seeds) in there. Lastly, I always use the nutritional yeast (marked as optional in Isa’s recipe). Note that there aren’t any pine nuts in the recipe. It’s nice and easy on the wallet! I don’t miss them one bit.

Pesto in the Food Processor

Pesto in the Food Processor

I’ve never made a batch of this pesto that I didn’t love. It comes together super-quickly and the flavor is out of this world.

Classic Pesto a la Vegan With A Vengeance

Classic Pesto a la Vegan With A Vengeance