Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Vegan "Escargot" A La Bourguignonne En Croute Vegan Brioche with Cafe De Paris "Butter" and an URGENT MESSAGE

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, being a vegan can often be accompanied by a slew of cultural stereotypes: "Health Fanatic", "Hippy-Dippy", "Kombucha-Guzzling Yogi"...you get the point. Sure, we all deeply value our bodies and how we treat them. More importantly, we value the bodies and minds of all living creatures...and do as much as humanly possible to ensure ethical treatment.

I rarely use this blog to address serious issues...but for the first time in all my years as an animal activist, I have encountered a fellow vegan that bucks every single stereotype I've ever heard slung our way. Allow me to explain:

My girlfriend almost lost her life back in the winter due to a completely unnecessary physical attack by her roommate. He was on heavy amounts of recreational drugs at the time of the attack, and she fled her home fearing her life. She unfortunately had to leave her dog, Jezzy, behind.

In the months following the attack, she has pursued legal action against him. One of the terms of the settlement was that she wanted her dog returned safely. This past week, we learned that he not only gave the dog to a vegan friend of his in San Francisco...but convinced her to write an extremely defamatory letter against my girlfriend stating that the dog "exhibit[s] some classic symptoms of severe abuse", "had never been to receive her vaccinations" and that Jane "never provided her with food, water and exercise".

This vegan's name is Sheerein Hosseini. She lives in San Francisco. All of her statements are violent, terrible lies.

Jane and I have a dog, Shwee, together. I have seen her give nothing but love and devotion to Shwee. She cares for her needs better than mine :) I have also seen the vaccination and vet visit papers for Jezzy, as we obtained them some months ago just incase proof of ownership was needed during her legal battle.

To make matters completely worse, Sheerein had met Jeezy in Jane's presence about year ago...and had blow marijuana smoke in the dog's face without my girlfriend's permission. Sheerein already has three dogs...and even if Jezzy was the only dog in her possession, couldn't possibly care for the dog as well as Jane can.

If you know her, please send me an e-mail so we can bring her back safely to her rightful owner. If you're feeling particularly ballsy, you can e-mail her directly at:
and let her know how you feel. I am in utter disbelief that someone claiming to care for all living so deeply could commit such an act, and I'll do whatever it takes to make sure that this wrong is made right.

EDIT: Here's a link the the entire story...

Sorry to get all super-cereal on you guys, I'm just pretty peeved off.

On a completely unrelated note, MY COOKBOOK IS GETTING PUBLISHED!!!

I'll post more details when I have them, but let's just say I'm super-duper stoked. If my consistent rate of posting slacks off over the next few months, know it's because I'm hard at work. The quality of my book is my top priority.

Vegan "Escargot" A La Bourguignonne En Croute Vegan Brioche with Cafe De Paris "Butter"

Brioche ingredients...
  • 6 TBSP Vegan Margarine. plus more for greasing pan
  • 2 cups Flour
  • 2 1/4 tsp Dry Active Yeast
  • 2 TBSP Warm Water
  • 1 TBSP Sugar
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1/2 c MimicCreme, at room temperature
  • 2-3 TBSP High Fat Soy Milk (I like Soy Dream)
  • 2 TBSP melted Vegan Margarine mixed with 1 TBSP MimicCreme, for "Egg" Wash
"Escargot" A La Bourguignonne ingredients....
  • 18 Fresh Morel Mushrooms, cleaned (you can substitute Shiitakes or Chanterelles)
  • 2 tsp Vegan Margarine
  • 1 medium Carrot, roughly chopped
  • 1 small Onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 stalk Celery, roughly chopped
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 6 Black Peppercorns
  • Fresh Thyme
  • 4 cups Low Sodium Vegetable Broth
  • Salt
Vegan Cafe de Paris "Butter" ingredients...
  • 3/4 cup Vegan Margarine
  • 1 TBSP Shallots, minced
  • 1 clove Garlic, minced or pressed
  • 1 TBSP Parsley, chopped
  • 1 tsp Mustard
  • 1/8 cup MimicCreme mixed with 2 TBSP "Egg" Mix
  • 1 dash Vegan Worcestershire Sauce
  • 1/4 cup Burgundy Wine
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste
For the Brioche...
Coat a bread loaf pan with vegan margarine and flour.

In a large mixing bowl, mix 1/2 cup of the flour with the compressed yeast and water. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and set in a warm place (no hotter than 85 degrees F). Let the dough rise until it has doubled in size.

Kneed the rest of the flour with the sugar, salt, MimicCreme and soy milk. This mixture needs to be forcefully kneaded for about 15 minutes for the appropriate amount of gluten to develop in the dough. Once the dough has come together with a smooth consistency, work in the soft 6 TBSP of vegan margarine. Now work the two dough mixtures together (the one you just kneeded + the one you set aside to rise) until you have one smooth ball of dough. Place the ball in a floured bowl, cover and place in the refrigerator for 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.

Form the chilled dough into six even "balls", then place in them side-by-side in the greased/floured bread pan. Place the pan in a warm area, and allow the dough to rise again until doubled in size.

Brush the top of the Brioche loaf with the faux "Egg" wash, then bake for 25-30 minutes until golden dark brown and set. Remove from the oven and set the pan on a cooling rack until cool enough to handle.

Turn down the oven temperature to 425 degrees F (or preheat if you decided to take a break for a Mai Tai). Slice the Brioche into 1-inch-thick slices, then use a cookie cutter or the rim of a glass to cut 2-inch round discs from the slices. Press down in the center of each round to create a well where the "Escargot" will sit. Place the discs on a baking pan and put into the oven, then toast until light brown.

For the "Escargot" Bourguignonne...
Melt the 2 tsp of vegan margarine in a medium saucepan over medium heat, then saute morels for 2 minutes. Add the vegetables, vegetable broth and herbs to the saucepan, then bring to a simmer. Allow the mixture to simmer for 10 minutes.

Prepare the Cafe de Paris "Butter" by creaming all of the ingredients together. Place in the refrigerator to chill.

Preheat your broiler. Place the Brioche discs back on a baking tray, then place 1 "Escargot" (Morel) in the well on each disc. Top with a dollop of Cafe de Paris "Butter", the place under the broiler for 1-2 minutes until the butter has browned.


The Voracious Vegan said...

Sorry to hear about all that drama, and I'm heartbroken that an innocent dog is being harmed by all of this. It doesn't sound like that woman could possibly be as good a guardian as your girlfriend. I will be thinking of you and hoping this all gets resolved quickly.

On a happier note: congratulations on your cookbook! Vegan escargot??? YES PLEASE!

Tami said...

I'm so sorry about the dog situation and hope things get worked out for that asap.

And.. congratulations on your cookbook! I can hardly wait!

Jes said...

Ugh. I hope you guys can get the dog back-that woman sounds like the biggest hypocrite alive.

And CONGRATS! on the cookbook!

And damn, vegan escargot--yums!

Jenni (aka Vegyogini) said...

I'm appalled and disgusted by what's happening to Jane. She's a sweet, loving, devoted person and I can't believe anyone would say such things about her. Not to mention, how could a so-called animal lover keep a dog from her true mama? Please let me know if you need help other than what you mentioned in this post.

CONGRATULATIONS on the book publishing! I knew it would happen for you quickly...you're probably the most talented and innovative vegan chef I know.

Jenni (aka Vegyogini) said...

You're welcome! You are two of the best people I know and this situation is absurd. xoxo

Mihl said...

I am really sorry to hear about what happened to your girlfriend, her dog, and you! I hope it gets sorted out.

Congratulations on the cookbook. That's fantastic news! And yay for another super-awesome recipe.

the house vegan said...

Congratulations on the book! Can't wait to see what you have in store :)

iRaw said...

That is just despicable! I'm hoping that this has a happy ending for you guys.

I am SO excited to know you have a cookbook in the making. w00t! Congratulations !!

Unknown said...

Hi! I'm new to your blog. I'm psyched that I found you as the news is coming that your cookbook is getting published, because your food looks incredible--you clearly have presentation and photography skills, too! Congratulations to you, and I look forward to hearing more about your book.

Newish LA resident,

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

YAY for the cookbook! Also, vegan brioche?!