Sunday, July 29, 2012

Staying Alive

I got an automated email the other day warning me that this blog (which, I’ll allow, has been dormant for some time now) was at risk of being deleted unless I posted something post-haste! So, in the interest of keeping this collection of vegan recipes on the Internet, here’s a lovely little Ethiopian-inspired dish I made last night, recipe courtesy of my decidedly un-Ethiopian (and totally not vegan) friend Chris.

Spicy Peanut Eggplant Stuff

4 tbs olive oil
1 yellow onion, finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, minced
1.25-2 lbs of eggplant cut into cubes
2 1/2 cups tomato sauce and/or a tomato (very finely chopped) and/or 2 tbs. tomato paste (add water if using tomato paste)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp cayenne pepper (or Bere Bere, an Ethiopian spice mix)
1/2 tsp ground or freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 c smooth peanut butter

1. Heat olive oil in a large pan on medium-high heat till dissolved.
2. Add onion and sauté for 7 miunutes or until wilted.
3. Add garlic and eggplant and reduce heat to low; sauté for 10 minutes or until eggplant is golden/soft.
4. Add tomato sauce (or whatever), salt, sugar and spices and simmer for 5 minutes. Probably add more salt.
5. Add little dabs of the peanut butter all around sautéeing mixture until all peanut butter is in the sauce; let it warm up till peanut butter is melty, then stir in until smooth.
6. Simmer for 10 minutes to blend flavors, and serve over your choice of starch (In Ethiopia you’d probably use teff. Chris prefers thickly cooked cream of wheat. We used cracked wheat last night and it was good too)

And speaking of “staying alive”, did I ever tell you about that time Tom and I were walking across a street in downtown Manhattan and this woman walking toward us made the “V for Victory” sign and sang “Vegan for life. Go Vegan!” It was definitely something.

Anyway, that should be enough to keep this blog in “business” for another 18 months. See you in 2014?

Posted by Max in 23:05:09 | Permalink | No Comments »

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

we may or may not need another hero

It’s been a while since my last entry (what can I say, besides “the end” and that I’ve been busy), but if the spambot comments I’ve been deleting left and right are to be believed, my vegan-baking and blog-maintaining skills are still in great demand. So, thus, then, therefore, and so on, this past weekend I came out (again) of semi-retirement (um, again) to whip up an award-winning recipe for the papercut zine library‘s vegan bake off part II: cupcakes vs. muffins. Enjoy!

Max’s Peanut Butter Puffin Muffins


•    1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
•    1 teaspoon baking soda
•    1 teaspoon baking powder
•    1/2 teaspoon salt
•    1 large overripe banana, mashed
•    2 tablespoons soy margarine
•    1 cup brown sugar
•    1/2 cup chunky peanut butter
•    1/2 cup vegetable oil
•    1/2 cup soy milk
•    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
•    1/4 cup cocoa (optional)
•    chocolate chips (optional)
•    1 cup crushed peanut butter puffins (the cereal, you savages)
•    4 tablespoons soy margarine
•    1/4 cup sugar
•    1 tablespoon peanut butter
•    1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Equipment: Mixing bowls, muffin tins, muffin liners, whisk, spatula, measuring stuff.

Music: Extra Life/Nat Baldwin – A Split


1. Preheat the oven to 375 and line a muffin tin with muffin liners. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a mixing bowl.

2. In a separate bowl, combine the banana, 2 tablespoons margarine, brown sugar, peanut butter, oil, soy milk, and vanilla, and mix until smooth.

3. Fold the flour mixture into the banana mixture, then separate the batter into two bowls, 1/3 and 2/3.

4. Mix the cocoa and chocolate chips into the bowl with 1/3 or the batter. Scoop into muffin liners (filling each 1/3 of the way) and top with the non-cocoa batter (up to the top of the liners)

5. Mix the remaining margarine, sugar, and peanut butter together with the cinnamon and crushed peanut butter puffins. Sprinkle by the handful on top of the muffin batter.

6. Bake 25 minutes for full-sized muffins (or 15 for miniature).

The end?

pbpm packaging

Posted by Max in 03:06:50 | Permalink | No Comments »

Friday, January 18, 2008

Mad Max Beyond Blogodome

We had one hell of a party at my place the other night, full or music, merriment, and molasses to honor the memory of an historic boston tragedy. To celebrate, I constructed what must be one the more absurd desserts in the history of vegandom. I present to you the making of the cupcake cake:

I started off with four flavors of cupcakes and four of frosting (chocolate, vanilla, mocha, and almond), and laid them like brickwork around a central support.

The frosting helped to bind the layers together, and I built it up until a towering edifice loomed over the tabletop.

I drizzled chocolate frosting over the top, painting the whole thing brown (much like a certain tank of molasses just before some fateful day).

Finally, I watched as my handiwork at the the hands of ravenous guests was unmade.

A happy disaster was had by all.

In slightly less exciting news, those of you who are interested in reading “I Was A Teenage Vegan Cookbook, Volume 3: Fall is Full of Stuff” without dealing with the myriad hassles of capitalist exchange and the lingering guilt of paper product consumption can now download, in stunning black and white, a digital version of your very own, to have and to hold, in breakfast and in bed, until death or untimely hard drive meltdown do you part. Download yours today!

Despite all of this exciting news, today is a sad day here at iwasateenagevegancookblog, as I, having left my friends in Boston behind to return to school must now part ways with this blog and with you, gentle readers. I have classes to take and a new kitchen full of housemates to whip into shape, and will probably not have world enough and time to post about it here. We’ve had a good run, you and I, but don’t think of this as goodbye, so much as some abstract and completely metaphorical form of “see you later”. In closing then, take this cliched and borrowed phrase as both bene- and valediction: eat, drink, and be merry.

And now, the moment you’ve all been waiting for:

The End.

Posted by Max in 02:36:56 | Permalink | No Comments »

Monday, January 14, 2008

Post-Holiday Pictures

You’d think that having quit my job I’d have more time to work on this blog, but I’ve been busier than ever. What can I say? I’m sorry. I wish I could make it up to you, but I’m afraid this internet relationship just hasn’t been working out the way that I’d planned. I just wasn’t ready for this sort of commitment. Please accept these humble pictures from some of my recent recipes as a token of my esteem for you, dear readers.

To start things off we have a dinner chock full of stuff from my latest cookbook, including boston brown bread, apricot-glazed green beans, cornbread stuffing, and, the undisputed highlight, toftemptan (which, for all you laypeople out there, is tofu stuffed with tempeh stuffed with seitan).

Next, a couple of my latest and craziest dessert recipes, chocolate/almond-filled coconut macaroons and mulled apple cider cupcakes with orange cream frosting and crystallized ginger.

Penultimately, as a reasonably British breakfast or teatime treat, here are some whole wheat walnut and apricot scones.

And lastly, something I threw together for a party featuring a live action game of clue the other week (where the assignment was to bring a murder-themed food), allow me to present this humble arrangement of hummus and carrot swords.

For those of you keeping score at home, it was Professor Plum, in the Billiards Room, with the Tomahawk, and it was I, the dashing and flamboyant Earl Grey, who solved the case and brought the most foul murderer’s evening reign of terror to what was quite literally a crashing halt.

I’m hoping to make the most recent volume of my cookbook available for download soon as a PDF (check my profile for the earlier two), but for those of you who simply cannot wait that long (and given the increasingly lengthy intervals between my posts it may yet be some time), physical copies are still available online through the Paper Trail Distro and in person at the Lucy Parsons Center in Boston, Printed Matter in New York (maybe) and the newly founded Hunter Seeker zine shop in San Francisco. Also, for more of my delightfully abstruse rambling, check out my recent interview with Paper Trail here. I also made another trip down to Fiore’s in JP last week to do some baking for with Homefries, and threw together some pear and soy cream danishes. Those are probably all gone by now, but if you’re in the area you should stop in for a bite and see what h.f. and her crew have been cooking up.

In addition to baking, I’ve been doing a lot of audio work recently. Look for a remix I contributed to my pal PdL for his new album Stop Means Go that should be coming out on his label Vanita Phone Company and available through iTunes as soon as he finished sewing the cd packaging together, as well as a sound art piece (and a couple of photographs) that I contributed to ReconnectUS (they have yet to accept/reject any submissions, but it may turn up on their website if not in their show itself), an upcoming art show focused on the war in Iraq that will be going up in Providence and Pawtucket in March.

Posted by Max in 19:22:40 | Permalink | No Comments »

Thursday, November 29, 2007


I swear that if this blog was actually my baby (and not in some cliched metaphorical sense) I would have long since been tried for criminal neglect. I mean, it hasn’t yet contracted sudden infant death syndrome or anything, but I do keep leaving it locked up here in the backseat unattended while I run off to finish some last-minute errands. Maybe if I had me a husband to look after things while I was gone. . . this is what it looks like when blogs grow up in broken homes.

My most recent excuse is that I spent most of the past few weeks in such far-flung, exotic locals as France, Switzerland, Italy, and New Jersey, and was for the most part bereft of both cooking implements and the internet. Touring Europe was a pretty good time, aside from the fact that all of the people there speak some crazy moon language, and that depending on how much of a tourist you are a cup of coffee costs between a dollar-fifty and $12. Also, I think I might have started suffering from peanut butter withdrawal, so this week’s recipe should definitely be good for what ails me. Based loosely on a brownie recipe I got from one of the classes I taught with homefries, these have been hailed by all who have tasted them as not only the best brownies, but in fact the best things ever. Having recently surveyed the entire history of Western civilization in ruin form I would be tempted to agree. But don’t take my word for it. . .


  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup corn (or brown rice, agave, etc.) syrup
  • 1/2 cup soy milk
  • 1 tbsp. vanilla extract
  • 3/4 tsp. salt
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup cocoa
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 2 cups chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup soy milk
  • 1/2 cup margarine
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter

Equipment: Mixing bowl, cake pan, electric mixer, sauce pan, oven, refrigerator.

Music: Belly Boat – Dear Robert Hanoy


  1. Preheat the oven to 350. Lightly oil a rectangular cake pan.
  2. In a mixing bowl or measuring cup, combine the oil, syrups, soy milk, and vanilla.
  3. In a separate bowl, stir together the salt, flour, cocoa, sugar, and baking powder. Add in the liquid ingredients and mix until combined, then fold in one cup of chocolate chips.
  4. Pour the batter into the cake pan, spreading it evenly, and bake for 22 minutes.
  5. While the brownies are baking, combine 1/4 cup soymilk and margarine in a small mixing bowl and blend. Add in the powdered sugar one cup at a time, then add peanut butter and mix until fluffy. Set aside.
  6. Remove the brownies from the oven and set them aside to cool, using the refrigerator or freezer to accelerate the process if desired.
  7. In a saucepan, heat 1/2 cup soymilk until it starts to bubble. Remove the pan from heat, add the remaining cup of chocolate chips and whisk together until the chocolate is fully melted and combined. Set aside to cool slightly.
  8. Spread the peanut butter frosting evenly across the top of the brownies. Drizzle the melted chocolate on top of the frosting, spreading it with a knife or spatula to form an even coat.
  9. Put the brownies in the refrigerator to cool until the chocolate frosting has set. Slice into squares and serve.

On an unrelated note: for those among my readers who live in the Jamaica Plain area, do I have a treat for you! I was just down in your neighborhood yesterday, dropping off some zines for the paper trail distro and putting in a couple of hours with homefries, who has started whipping up some delicious vegan desserts for Fiore’s bakery on South Street. I made a batch of vegan tiramisu for the occasion (astute readers will recognize it from the first volume of i was a teenage vegan cookbook), which, while I wasn’t able to stick around and try it out myself, no doubt turned out deliciously. If you’re in the area and in the mood for tiramisu, flan, fruit pie, cupcakes, or whatever else h.f. has cooked up, stop on by and support the slowly encroaching veganization of your local businesses.

Posted by Max in 02:11:10 | Permalink | Comments (1) »

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Charmed, I’m sure

Ladies, gentleman, and varyingly post-freudian “other”s, it gives me great pleasure and some satisfaction to announce the release of my newest and most terrifying creation upon the unsuspecting reading public. Bear witness to the awful majesty that is I Was A Teenage Vegan Cookbook, Volume Three: Fall is Full of Stuff.

I just finished drawing the last line in them yesterday (after several weeks of anti-social days and semi-sleepless nights), so they are not yet available in any stores. I’ll keep you posted (pun mostly intended) as I start sending them out to the usually suspect establishments – and I’ll possibly be posting a digital version available for download here eventually – but if you simply can’t bear to wait that long then send me an email and I’ll be happy to send some your way, especially if you happen to be involved with any sort of independent zine/book store/distro and are interested in getting them by the bushel, gross, or hogshead.

Posted by Max in 13:26:14 | Permalink | Comments (2)

Friday, October 26, 2007

Pumpkin Pielets

Miniature things are inherently charming, or so cupcakes, kittens, and munchkins would have me believe. It was with this in mind (and the practical difficulty of serving pie without silverware) that I settled on the idea of pumpkin-pecan “pielets” for Chris’ party. They take a bit longer to prepare than a traditional pie – which you can easily make from this recipe by simply halving the measurements for the crust ingredients and using a pie plate instead of a cupcake pan – but are worth the extra effort for the looks of childlike wonder they inspire among children and overly enthusiastic adults. Next up: miniature tofurkey. Anyone who can point me in the direction of a Rick-Moranis-style shrink ray will get their reward. . . their eternal reward.


  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup shredded coconut
  • 3 tbsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 10 tbsp. margarine
  • 6 tbsp. water
  • 1 cups pecans, chopped
  • 24 pecan halves, whole
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup margarine
  • 15 oz. pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 2 measures egg replacer
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. cloves
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

Equipment: mixing bowl, refrigerator, frying pan, cupcake pans, oven.

Music: The Panoply Academy – Everything Here Was Built to Break


  1. Combine flours, coconut, 1/2 tsp. salt, and 3 tbsp. sugar in a mixing bowl. Cut in margarine, add water, and mix until combined. Form into a ball, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate.
  2. Cook pecan pieces and halves with 1/4 cup margarine and 1/2 cup brown sugar in a frying pan over medium/high heat until the sugar dissolves and the mixture coats the pecans completely and the excess liquid is mostly reduced. Set aside, separating the halves from the chopped pieces.
  3. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  4. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and roll it by hand on a floured surface into a log shape, roughly 3″ in diameter. Cut into 24 equal slices. Press the dough slices into the cupcake pans, using your fingers to shape the crust around the sides forming a small lip that extends slightly abovethe top edge. Fill the bottom of each crust with the caramelized pecan pieces.
  5. Combine the remaining ingredients in a mixing bowl and blend until smooth. Fill each crust with an equal amount of filling. Place a caramelized pecan half in the center of each pielet.
  6. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake for an additional 35-45 minutes, until the centers the pielets have set and are firm to the touch.
  7. Remove from the oven and let cool before removing from pans.

I asked the people in the pastry kitchen at work if they’d ever made pumpkin pie from scratch (using a whole pumpkin, rather than a can) and they said yes, but that it turned almost identical to the canned variety, albeit waterier, so that the extra work was in no way justified. I remain skeptical – while thankful for the convenience of modern canning technology (and certainly preparing a new batch of pumpkin puree for each of this recipe’s iterations would have rapidly become tiresome), I can’t help but suspect that, like with almost every other food product I’ve ever had, a skillfully prepared fresh dish would easily trump a mass-produced and preserved one. Perhaps one day when I have more time and druthers I’ll investigate further. First I should probably figure out what druthers are, and where some might be acquired.

Posted by Max in 14:55:53 | Permalink | No Comments »

Monday, October 22, 2007

Get Schooled

Here are a couple pictures from the vegan cupcake class that I taught with Homefries recently – it was truly a heady blend of veganism, cupcakes, erudition, exposition, and (in my case) sarcasm. Together with our students we concocted apple, gluten-free quinoa fudge, and maple cupcakes with cream cheese, buttercream, and pumpkin frosting, respectively.

Then Homefries broke out the decorations and all hell broke loose.

Much fun and sugar was had by all.

And here’s the recipe for pumpkin frosting that I whipped up. Try it for all your seasonal baking needs (except tofurkey – that would just be gross (by which I mean more so than usual)).


  • 1/2 cup margarine
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp. cloves
  • 1/4 tsp. nutmeg
  • 3-4 cups powdered sugar

Equipment: mixing bowl, electric mixer, cupcakes.

Music: World/Inferno Friendship Society – Hallowmas Live at North Six


  1. Using the electric mixer, combine margarine, pumpkin puree, and spices in a mixing bowl until thoroughly blended.
  2. Beat it powdered sugar one cup at a time until the frosting reaches the desired fluffy consistancy.
  3. Spread on your choice of cakes or cookies, or take out your pastry bag (or plastic bag with a corner cut off) and go crazy.
  4. Refrigerate extra for future use.

It’s spooky.

Posted by Max in 14:11:12 | Permalink | No Comments »

Monday, October 15, 2007

Monster Mash

So there are some out there who seem unsatisfied with the cornucopia of un-savory somethings that my cookblog provides, and who have kindly requested that I post a selection of recipes that are altogether less sweet. Fortunately for them, my grandiloquent magnificence is only exceeded by my gustatory munificence, so sheathe your poison pens, nay-sayers, and feast your eyes (and eventually your mouths) upon this delectable dish:

This recipe was among the six featured at the party mentioned in my previous post, and is essentially comprised of roasted mushrooms stuffed with a hearty mish-mash/ghoul-ash of autumnal ingredients. I’ve had a little problem with the mushrooms shrinking more than I’ve expected, but fortunately the extra filling holds up excellently by itself. I’m sure it could easily be used as a more flavorful and less starchy alternative to traditional stuffing as well, provided you have some other things lying around that you’d like to stuff with it.


  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp. flour
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • Several large mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 1 package seitan, diced
  • 1 package tempeh, diced
  • 1 cup carrots, diced
  • 3 cups fresh spinach, chopped
  • Parsely, sage, rosemary, thyme, oregano
  • Salt and pepper
  • Vegetable oil

Equipment: Several frying pans, knives, and cutting boards. Large cake, cookie, or roasting pan.

Music: Monster Mash – Bobby “Boris” Pickett (R.I.P.)


  1. Preheat the oven to 375.
  2. Remove the stems and scoop out some of the undersides of the mushrooms. Chop these into small pieces and set aside. Place the mushroom caps stem-side down on an oiled sheet pan and bake for 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and allow to cool before draining off the excess liquid, turning the mushroom caps over on the pan, and setting them aside.
  3. Prepare the vegetable broth (either by boiling water for the bullion or opening the cans (you lazy so-and-so).
  4. Combine the onion and garlic in a frying pan with a little vegetable oil and cook until browned then remove from heat.
  5. Whisk together the flour and olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat until fully combined. Add the broth by half-cups, whisking continually to prevent lumps from forming. Add onions, garlic, chopped mushroom pieces, and spices and simmer.
  6. Toast the walnuts and cranberries together in a dry frying pan over medium heat, cooking them until the walnuts are browned.
  7. Fry the seitan and tempeh over medium/high heat in a large pan with some vegetable oil until they begin to brown, then add carrots and cook for a couple more minutes. Add spinach and cook until reduced, then add walnuts and cranberries and stir in garlic/onion/mushroom gravy. Reduce heat to low and cook for a few more minutes before removing from heat.
  8. Spoon the stuffing into the mushroom caps, pressing it down firmly and piling it on as high as possible. Return the mushrooms to the oven and bake for 20 minutes. Remove them from the oven, allow to cool slightly, and serve.
Posted by Max in 03:18:39 | Permalink | No Comments »

Friday, October 5, 2007

Fall is Full of Stuff

It’s been an eventful period of lost time here at I Was A Teenage Vegan Headquarters (which, for those of you keeping track at home, is in fact a giant orbitital culinary battlestation, beaming these transmissions down to earth from the immensely dark quietude of space): the class at the BCAE that I mentioned in my last post (that I co-taught with Homefries and the head chef at Veggie Planet) went swimmingly, except for the somewhat unreliable ovens, the mathematical impossibility of producing four desserts in three hours, and the overabundance of delicious sugar consumed by all. The following weekend I provided the food for a music and art party hosted by my friend Chris in Stony Creek, Connecticut, from the menu for which the title of this post and accompanying artwork (deftly crafted by my roommate Eric) are taken. This was my first attempt at catering experience and it involved more sleep-deprived evenings spent slaving over the stove than I’d care to shake a stick at, as well as my first semi-successful attempts at molecular gastronomy. Things went swimmingly there as well – especially for those hardy party-goers who actually went swimming – except that the salt-water air turned all of my food fairly lukewarm and somewhat soggy about 15 minutes after I had set the table, and that the smoke detector in Chris’ kitchen went off at least 10 times  before his boyfriend quite helpfully removed it from the ceiling and put it on the porch. Aside from all this general busy-ness business, some other things that have conspired to keep me from the blogosphere have been my life’s continued entropic tendencies, which recently resulted in both my bicycle and my teeth falling partially apart – necessitating emergency trips to Bikes Not Bombs and the dentist, respectively – and my outrageously expensive new computer’s complete inability to perform seemingly simple graphic tasks like taking large photos and making them smaller, which my old computer (with its completely not-illegally downloaded photo-editing software) did with aplomb. Also, a couple of zine distributors have ordered my cookbooks recently, so I’ve been scrambling to get them printed, assembled, and mailed like the consummate businessman that I am. I’m working on putting all of these things into some semblance of order, and hope to post pictures and recipes from the party for your consumption presently. Stay tuned.
Posted by Max in 21:59:46 | Permalink | No Comments »