This one is a keeper! While perusing my local natural food store I stopped in the deli to see a dish I knew I had to recreate.
Preheat your oven to 375.
First chop carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, yellow onion, parsnip (first time I've ever cooked it!), and garlic. Next put them all in a large pan, I used a 9 by 11 baking dish. Then I liberally poured olive oil and some balsamic vinegar on top. The final and most special part is the honey. My friend Collette recently bought our local honey companay, Humboldt Honey. It is super good and she is awesome which is why I'm so excited that I found another use for honey.
I have been slightly obsessed with a few new healthy things and thought I'd share them. The first one is called a Rumble Roller.
It is a new way to do self massage and boy does it work! According to the website:
The surface of the RumbleRoller contains specially designed bumps that are firm, but flexible, much like the thumbs of a massage therapist. As you roll over the top of the RumbleRoller, the bumps continuously knead the contours of your body, gently stretching soft tissue (muscle and fascia) in multiple directions. This action erodes trigger points, helps restore flexibility, and brings quick relief to common types of muscular pain. By design, the RumbleRoller's bumps are firmer than muscle tissue, but much softer than bone, so they deflect out of the way if they contact your spine or other bony protrusions. Through simple techniques, you can control the amount of pressure the bumps apply to your body. The bumps are closely spaced to one another (< 2" apart), so several of them simultaneously contact your body during most exercises. However, with a slight shift of your body, you can reduce your area of contact with the RumbleRoller, which increases pressure and provides deeper, more penetrating relief.
So go out and buy one for yourself and anyone else who needs this -PS we all need it!
Another new thing that I love is my vitamix
I posted a smoothie recipe a while ago and since then we have been having a green smoothie every morning. Our current favorite is apple juice, 5-6 stalks of kale, 1 cucumber, 1 peeled lemon, inch of peeled ginger, some grapes, and frozen pineapple. WOW....I tell you its better than coffee, and much better for you!
The last thing I'll drop on you today is the Neti-pot. It is for cleaning your nose. It seriously gets up there and gets all the congestion out. Its not as unknown as it once was, I think Dr. Oz talked about it on Oprah and I even saw a commercial for an Arm and Hammer one! I am a total believer. I try to do a Neti every morning. I use a special Neti tincture, salt, and really warm to hot water in my Neti.
Thats all for now! More to come I am sure. Take care and Happy Thanksgiving!!
Sometimes the perfect meal is the easiest one. I. Take tonights dinner for example, handmade style corn tortillas, pinto beans, brown rice, salsa and avocados. Yummy.
I'm glad we can all eat how we want. Feeling surprised that here in California proposition 37 did not pass. Why are we begging to read about what's in our food? For our family we just keep buying organic and stay as far away from as much packaged food as we can.
I came to the conclusion today that goat cheese is my gateway to eating animal products. It's what I first started with when I was pregnant years ago and what I continue to love on my salads today. I'm also enjoying goat cheese yogurt ... Especially as little frozen pellets. This is how you make these!
Put your yogurt in a makeshift icing bag, I use a ziplock. Next you cut a tiny hole in the corner. Carefully pipe bits onto a cookie sheet and freeze for a a few hours. Remove with a spatula and watch them disappear.
This one is a recipe my friend Meghan told me about. She serves it to her 14 month old. Mine didn't love it (today, anything can change in 24 hours), but I found it amazing. Creamy, sweet, just the right amount of everything. My oldest daughter is fighting the flu and I hoped this might be medicine to her. Too bad she is refusing to eat. At least I can enjoy it!
1 Tbsp Olive oil
1 yellow onion
2 cloves garlic
5-8 yellow potatoes
3/4 bunch of kale chopped
1 long strip Kombu
3 small pieces astragalus root
Saute olive oil, garlic and onion for about 15 minutes on low.
Add the carrots and potatoes. Let saute for 7-8 minutes. Add broth of some sort. I use veggie bouillon cubes and 4 cups of water. Cook on medium until carrots and potatoes are soft, then add kale. Cook for about 3 minutes more and, after removing the kombu and astragalus root, puree and enjoy!
For those interested...here is a little snippet from WebMD about Astragalus.
It is a natural dietary supplement that's used for various health conditions. For instance, it's used to treat the common cold, upper respiratory infections, fibromyalgia, and diabetes. Some proponents of astragalus use it for its heart benefits. They claim it may protect against heart disease. It's also used to help improve overall weakness.
Proponents also say astragalus stimulates the spleen, liver, lungs, circulatory, and urinary system. It's also used to treat arthritis, asthma, and nervous conditions as well as to lower blood sugar and blood pressure.
This came from one of my favorite blog's I don't know why it took me so long to try it. http://fitnessista.com/2010/08/serious-cereal/
I used my beloved Vega as the protein powder, and proceeded to make and consume three servings!
As the days get shorter and shorter and our layers clothes become more and more important I am thinking fondly of summer cucumbers and tomatoes-such a simple meal....that makes me so happy. Throw a little homemade balsamic dressing on it and I am flying high. Side note-I wrote this last October and I like it so much I am finally going to publish it! Hurrah, we will soon be eating these little tasty morsels soon!!!
My youngest daughter Lola is very easy to cook for. She simply loves everything. I'd say her favorite food is frozen peas....straight out of the freezer. Too bad everyone in my family isn't so easily satisfied. In this shot she has noodles, blueberries and yup you guessed it-frozen peas!
MMMMM...These were good! My husband loves banana muffins and I think he purposefully buys too many bananas so I am forced to make these. I used coconut oil instead of vegetable oil and it turned out so good! Mix the dry then the wet and then combine!
Here is the recipe ... Its originally from allrecipes.com
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup mashed ripe bananas
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
In the midst of life I sometimes have to be reminded by my children to slow down. Enjoy a game of GO FISH, play cars, draw a picture..Thank goodness for these little ones. The days here are so cold! We all are wondering when its going to really rain. We like these cold clear days, but we long for drinking water too! We have been taking advantage of the clearness by taking lots of walks and by going to the river. We got to bring Gigi's cousin Dante there the other day and a good time was had by all! Is this really February or is it May?
My dad and his lovely lady came to visit last week and it was a chance to cook something delicious for all! Since they aren't vegan I thought I'd throw them a bone in the form of some goat & feta cheese. First I assembled a salad of spinach, pecans, goat cheese, dried cranberries, pumpkin seeds and some red onion. Then I dressed it with a homemade dressing of olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, mustard and maple syrup. Then I roasted the potatoes and garlic. I used a new method to do the roasting. First I cut the potatoes and put them in a bowl with olive oil, peeled garlic and salt, then I covered them with foil and cooked them for about 20 minutes at 400. After the 20 minutes was over I tossed the potatoes and garlic and baked them for another 20 minutes. The main part of the meal was Spanakopita from Costco. I totally cheated and didn't cook it by hand and it was delicious!
I am thinking about how appreciative I am for right now. I just spent the better part of a day bathing with my baby, taking a lovely walk with her and the dog, lounging in the hammock with her and playing on the floor with her. How awesome is that!? Now she is asleep and I get to plan my friends birthday dinner for tonight! I am going to make squash stuffed with black beans, wild rice and veggies. There will also be salad and a yummy appetizer. I am so grateful that I have this time to do what I love to do. My family makes me feel so very loved. I have been eating Wasa crackers with hummus, hearts of palm, avocados, roasted red bell pepper, sprouts and any other goodies I can find. Very yummy and fairly easy to make & clean up! Miss Lola is now seven months and is enjoying eating with the rest of us! Lucky girl, her sister wants to feed her.
Since the weather is nearly freezing we need comfort food. This comes in our house in the form of veggie burgers, I love the Sunshine brand because there is just rice and veggies in them, no soy or anything else funky! YUMMY!
The verdict is in-you do not need a dehydrator to make kale chips. Baking them at 200 for 2 hours does the trick too. Parchment paper is recommended and you should switch the top racks to the bottom every half hour or so. My daughter likes them now so I will be making them as much as possible! They are also delightful on vegetable soup!
Lately I am obsessed with reading all these different blogs relating to family and fashion. Weird combo at first, but then I realized how inspiring it is for a mom to see other moms dressing up while keeping their families inspired and content. I personally have to remember to dress it up and not stay in my workout clothes all day! So in honor of that I am going to start adding some photos of what I wear to this lovely place in the blog-o-sphere. In this photo I am wearing Dansko shoes, thrift store find dress and earrings from my good friend jenny belle! Enjoy and take time to remember how special each moment is.
My new thing is making my own sprouts. I just got sick of paying almost three dollars for not so crispy ones at the store. I have so far made fenugreek and alfalfa sprouts. The verdict is in and it is that I wish I started this phase of my life years ago. Homemade sprouts ROCK! The fenugreek are really good for nursing mammas, they help produce more milk! The other thing I have been doing tons of is soaking my nuts before eating them. I have read that soaking nuts for 12 hours cuts the fat content in half while making them much easier to digest. The soaked nuts also make the vitamins and minerals more accessible to your body. Sounds good to me! Hope everyone out in the blog-o-sphere is enjoying the last fleeting days of summer!
I recently acquired a recipe for kale chips from my friend Miriam and it is the bomb! With her permission I will reprint it here!
This recipe requires a dehydrator: ~Cut stems from 2 bunches kale. I like the curly, leafy kind the best. ~Keep kale whole or rip it into bite size pieces. ~Blend in food processor until very smooth: 1.5 cups cashews soaked for an hour or more 4 cloves garlic 3-4 slices of roasted red peppers juice from one lemon juice from two oranges 1-1.5 cups nutritional yeast .5 cups soy sauce or brags .5-1 cup water You can add more yeast to thicken or water to thin. You want a very thick, but pourable sauce. ~Toss kale in special sauce, wipe off excess sauce...it shouldn't be dripping or too sparse-experimentation works best here-see what you like! ~Spread single layer on parchment or Teflexx lined dehytrator trays ~Dry at 140 for about 4 hours ~Take kale off parchment and put directly on trays and dry for another 1-3 hours or longer until fully dry, crisp and brittle.
So I finally tried Daiya brand cheese and like everyone says its amazing. I used it to make a lasagna with no meat or dairy....otherwise known as vegan. My family (of which I am the only semi-vegan) loved it! I will post a recipe soon!!
Here at our household, the easier the dinner usually the better the outcome-hence our love of pesto. My father in law grows the basil and then at the peak of summer he whips up huge batches of pesto. He then freezes it in zip-locks to eat during the winter. Luckily for us he has been giving us a lot of them lately and we have been eating it up! I don't have his exact recipe (not sure that he uses one) but I do know that he doesn't add parmesan cheese to it-they prefer to add the cheese at the end and I prefer to not have it at all. Usually he mixes up basil, pecans, garlic, olive oil, and some salt and it is perfection! My own additions to this dinner were a salad of spinach, sunflower seeds, dried cranberries, finely diced celery and carrots, some avocado and a small amount of goat cheese topped with a homemade vinaigrette. To complete the meal I whipped up some wild rice salad with cranberries. This recipe is from "The Candle Cafe" cookbook, and I love it! The Candle Cafe is in NYC and someday I want to eat there!!!
Wild Rice Salad 1 cup black long-grain or other wild rice 1/4 cup sunflower seeds, soaked overnight if desired 1/3 cup dried cranberries 1/4 cup chopped red onions 1/4 shoyu or tamari 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil 2 tsp grated orange or lemon zest
Combine the cooked rice with sunflower seeds, cranberries and red onion. Whisk together other ingredients and pour over the rice mixture. Thats it! Another great thing about this rice is that it keeps well for leftover purposes.
Since I'm pregnant I am totally giving in to all the cravings.....on Valentines day we made these and they were winners!
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour 1 cup unbleached white flour 1 cup brown rice flour 1 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 cup safflower oil 2/3 cup maple syrup 2 t vanilla extract 1 t fine sea salt
2 cups grain-sweetened, nondairy chocolate or carob chips 1/4 cup maple syrup 2 T safflower oil
Preheat oven to 350 Combine the flours and baking powder in a large mixing bowl In a separate bowl, whisk together the oil, syrup, vanilla extract, and salt Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, and stir to form a smooth dough If the mixture is too crumbly, add a bit of water, 1 teaspoon at a time, and up to 1 tablespoon more oil until the dough just holds together Roll the dough out to ½” thickness between two sheets of parchment or wax paper Use cookie cutters or a knife to cut the dough into desired shapes Arrange the cookies on the prepared baking sheet Bake for 15-20 minutes or until lightly browned Transfer the cookies to a baking rack to cool completely While the cookies are cooling, combine the chocolate chips, syrup, and oil in the top of a double boiler and place over simmering water If you don’t have a double boiler, place a stainless steel bowl over boiling water and melt the ingredients in it Turn off the heat, cover, and let stand for 5-10 minutes or until the chocolate melts Stir until smooth Dip each cookie halfway into the chocolate sauce, and place on a sheet of wax or parchment paper Chill in the refrigerator until hardened
So this pregnancy thing has me craving lots of sweets, no surprise there. The other night we were sitting by the fire dreaming about pastries and I found this little recipe in the excellent book "Vegan Lunch Box" by Jennifer McCann that seemed easy enough. I had never made scones before but they just came together so perfectly I am sure I will make them again soon, and this time I'm going to double the recipe and freeze some for another day! Another change I will make for next time is I will add lots more lemon zest, lemon juice, and blueberries-I am always wanting for more flavor!
1 cup all-purpose flour 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour 1/4 cup sugar 2 Tbsp baking powder 1/2 tsp baking soda 1/2 tsp salt 1/4 cup earth balance 1/2 cup plain unsweetened hemp/soy/rice milk (or whatever milk you choose) 3/4 cup blueberries (or more if you like) zest of one lemon (I will use two lemons next time) extra hemp milk and sugar for topping
Preheat oven to 400 and line a baking sheet with parchment paper that is sprayed with coconut oil. Sift together the flours, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add the earth balance and cut in with pastry cutter until it looks like a course crumbly meal. Add the milk, blueberries, and zest. Mix together until it forms a dough. Place dough on a lightly floured surface and divide in half. Form each half into a round flat shape about 3/4 inch thick. At this point I used a cookie cutter to make little heart shapes because that is what my family requested. Even though once they were cooked you couldn't really tell what shape they were! If you like more traditional triangle shaped scones then you can do that. Then the topping of milk and sugar is added - don't forget this part it makes a yummy sugary crust that is unbeatable. Bake for 15-18 minutes, until the edges and bottom are golden brown. While this is baking you can make your lemon sauce.
1/2 cup sugar 1 Tbsp cornstarch 1 cup water 1/8 cup earth balance 1 tbsp lemon juice (I am going to change this to 2 tbsp next time) zest of one lemon
Whisk sugar and cornstarch together in a small saucpan. Gradually stir in water and heat over high to medium heat until boiling, stirring constantly. Boil for 2 minutes, until sugar has dissolved and the sauce has thickened. Remove from heat and stir in earth balance, lemon juice, and zest. Serve right away or let cool-the sauce thickens more as it cools.
Our little girl turned four on new years eve and she requested chocolate cupcakes with "white" frosting and chocolate candies on top. Being a total chocoholic I agreed, and made a double batch so there would be plenty for all and left-overs to boot! I couldn't wait to try out my new recipe from the book "Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World".
1 cup soy milk 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar 3/4 cup granulated sugar 1/3 cup canola oil 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1/2 teaspoon almond extract, chocolate extract, or more vanilla extract 1 cup all-purpose flour 1/3 cup cocoa powder, Dutch-processed or regular 3/4 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1/4 teaspoon salt
These are the instructions:
Preheat oven to 350°F and line a muffin pan with paper or foil liners. Whisk together the soy milk and vinegar in a large bowl, and set aside for a few minutes to curdle. Add the sugar, oil, vanilla extract, and other extract, if using, to the soy milk mixture and beat until foamy. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add in two batches to wet ingredients and beat until no large lumps remain (a few tiny lumps are OK). Pour into liners, filling 3/4 of the way. Bake 18 to 20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Transfer to a cooling rack and let cool completely.
I also made the vegan buttercream frosting for these and let me tell you, they ROCKED!
1/2 cup nonhydrogenated shortening 1/2 cup nonhydrogenated margarine, I use Earth Balance 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted if clumpy 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract 1/4 cup plain soy milk or soy creamer
Beat the "butters" together then add the sugar, vanilla & extract. Beat for about 5-7 minutes and frost to your hearts content.
I can vouch for these cupcakes, any person, vegan or not would be silly not to eat one or two or three of these babies! All of GiGi's friends gobbled them up like they hadn't eaten in weeks!
One food item I am wild about is kombu seaweed. Whether I am preparing rice, soup, oatmeal, or any other boiled food; I add about an inch of it to every inch of boiling water that I am using.
Now the reasons for my madness. According to "The Kind Life", they "are considered tumor inhibitors, and researchers at both McGill University and the FDA have found that alginate present naturally binds and discharges radioactive materials such as strontium 90 and cadmium from the body. They are also aniti-inflammatory, antiviral, reduce blood pressure and make for truly badass skin, hair, and nails."
What other reasons do you need? Add some kombu to your diet today!
So this one is a total throwback to my childhood. I have been told that my grandfather used to make it for my dad and then my parents made it for me. I like it because its warm and sweet and has all the memories of being a kid wrapped up in it. Also I love real maple syrup on breakfast.
Basically you make pancake batter (however you like it). Then you are put it in a hot greased pan (we grease with coconut oil these days for pancakes). The secret is leaving a hole in the middle for the egg to be placed into. You let the pancake cook for a few minutes and then add the egg when the pancake is almost ready to be flipped. This gives the egg just enough time to settle and you don't burn the pancake. Then you flip the egg and cook for another two or three minutes, depending on how brown you like your eggie cakes.
Add earth balance and maple syrup and watch your family and yourself smile!
On this lovely day I was feeling extra inspired and I also made home-fries. For these I typically boil the potatoes for about 10 minutes. Then I chop them into bite sizes and add them to a pan of caramelized onions. They cook for about 15 minutes more and then are served hot with ketchup!
These babies are some of my favorite foods. I first had them at a Thai restaurant and since there is no place to get them around here, I have had to start making them (a familiar story for me). The first step is to make the rice noodles. They are made similarly to regular pasta. They need a bit of olive oil in the boiling water and they need constant stirring. They usually take anywhere from 5-8 minutes to get soft enough to remove from the heat. Then you want to let them cool completely.
The next step is to chop your veggies! You can use whatever you like in these...I use green cabbage, hearts of palm, cilantro, red pepper, avocado, baked tofu, cucumber, and carrots. If I don't have one (or many of these) I just use what is on hand.
The rice paper rolls need to be made now. I boil a little bit of water and then pour some of the boiling water into a pie pan. I use a pie pan because it fits the size of the rice paper. The rice paper only needs to be soaked in the hot water for about a minute and then it softens up enough to be folded and used.
I then put the softened rice paper roll on a plate and begin placing ingredients in the middle of it. You don't want to add too much food or else it won't close properly, but unlike nori these rice papers will stretch and are very forgiving. The way I fold them is by folding down the top, then each side then the bottom. Now you've done it!
I also make my own peanut sauce to dip these into. The ingredients are as follows:
1/4 cup peanut butter A few tablespoons rice wine vinegar A few tablespoons soy sauce A few teaspoons toasted sesame oil Maple sugar to taste
Sometimes I need to add coconut milk or water to this to make it the right consistency. Again it is all up to you!
Also this peanut sauce makes an excellent salad dressing!
I am starting to cook again and everyone in the house is happier for it. Gone are the days of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and nachos. I never thought I'd hear my husband be glad for no more nachos, but he is! In honor of the world series we have been eating some veggie burgers with fries. I use Brio brand foccacia for the bun and then grill up the Wildwood brand tofu burgers, add some Veganase, ketchup, avocado, red onion, tomato and lettuce and you are in for a real treat. A-MA-ZING! The fries we have been buying are organic frozen Alexia crinkle cut style. It is great to be eating like a normal person again!
I have to report that lately the only thing we are eating for dinner is cereal and jam sandwiches. The reason for this is that I am pregnant and cannot stomach cooking. All smells are repulsive to me, even my good smelling Eminence lotion. Well hopefully it will pass and I will again be able to create masterpieces in my kitchen. Until then, eat well and often!
Ok, enough with being so healthy, lets have some fun! Yesterday I was craving something salty sweet and delicious and this recipe from Alicia Silverstones' "The Kind Life" foot the bill perfectly.
INGREDIENTS 1/2 cup Earth Balance butter (I use the one with olive oil because I'm not down with canola) 3/4 cup crunchy peanut butter (preferably unsweetened and unsalted) 3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs or 10 graham cracker squares 1/4 cup maple sugar or other granulated sweetener 1 cup grain-sweetened, nondairy chocolate or carob chips 1/4 cup soy, rice, or nut milk (I used unsweetened vanilla hemp milk) 1/4 cup chopped pecans, almonds, or peanuts
PREPARATION 1. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners. (If You Care makes unbleached liners made from recycled paper.) Set aside. 2. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. 3. Stir in the peanut butter, graham cracker crumbs, and maple sugar and mix well. 4. Remove the mixture from the heat. Evenly divide the mixture, approximately 2 tablespoons per cup, among the muffin cups. 5. Combine the chocolate and milk in another pan. Stir over medium heat until the chocolate has melted. 6. Spoon the chocolate evenly over the peanut butter mixture. 7. Top with chopped nuts. 8. Place in refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
You will be amazed at how these little morsels melt in your mouth and leave you craving for more!
I have always wanted to use phyllo dough for something. I remember watching my mom make spanakopita and marveling at how when used correctly simple flour and oil could create something so divinely flakey and delicate. Well the time has come for me to try my hand at it. I found a recipe from the cookbook "The Candle Cafe" and then changed it according to what was in my refrigerator.
First I thawed the phyllo for about 3 hours in the fridge. I assembled the filling during that time too. The filling consisted of baked tofu, baked sweet potato, crimini mushrooms and finely chopped basil from the garden. I preheated my oven to 350 and tried to work quickly because I know how delicate phyllo can be. I first folded the phyllo lengthwise and then brushed olive oil on it. Then I put the ingredients in the middle of the sheet - about 1/4 cup total. Then I pulled all corners of the sheet together to form a little pocket. I then baked them for about 19 minutes and TA DA...I've successfully used phyllo.
If my mom was alive she would be so proud! My little girl didn't care for them until I named then "fairy pockets" then she was on them like white on rice! Oh and of course we dipped them in Sues organics sauces-tahini and brewers feast! YUMMY!!!
So I am back, and so is my camera! Hurrah for being a finder of things. So lately I have been kind of obsessed with this new product at our local natural foods store. Its called "Sues Organics". Sue lives in our neighboring town of Redway and is making some amazing sauces and dips. She has four different varieties and so far I have picked up only one type-its called "Nutritional Feast". I have been making pasta, putting tons of Sues sauce on it, and then cutting up all sorts of raw veggies, red bell peppers, carrots, zucchini, peas, and carrots to the mix. It is very good, especially served cold. One of the best parts of this meal is that you make it and then you are set for days....no more cooking! Even though I love cooking I do love a good leftover meal, and this is it. Another meal that has been a staple in our house these days is Tabbouleh . I have been using Bob's Red Mill whole grain bulgar and it tastes so healthy and yummy. I found this recipe online and have been using it with great success.
I really wanted a fresh salad today for lunch and the homemade salad dressing was begging to dress something. I first washed and chopped some delicious homegrown (not by me, but a friend) greenleaf lettuce. I added to that some cool cucumber, savory red onion, crunchy pecans, sensational cilantro, roasted beets, a tablespoon of flax meal and some sweetened dried cranberries. I really really love SALAD! I think I'll remake this to accompany our dinner too.
We are so excited for summer! The weather is sweet and so are these delicious blueberries that were bought by me at our Friday farmers market today. They come from Honeydew, more than an hour away. I'm sure they will be gone by Sunday, but we will savor every bite!
Tonight we had a family favorite, pancakes for dinner. There was a twist however and that twist was chocolate. Brace yourself for one of the best recipes for pancakes EVER!
1 cup whole wheat flour 1 cup buckwheat flour 4 tsp baking powder 1/2 tsp salt 3/4 cup sweetened chocolate almond milk (we use almond breeze brand--its the bomb!) 1 cup sweetened chocolate milk 4 Tbsp safflower oil 2 Tbsp flax meal mixed with 6 Tbsp warm water (this is what I use to substitute two eggs, it works great!) A few squares Paul Newman dark chocolate 55% cacao chopped into tiny pieces
I mix together the dry ingredients and wet ingredients and then combine the two. We use a cast iron pan with coconut oil to fry the bad boys up and what you have is a dreamy dinner for three! Upon finishing cooking I add Earth Balance and pure maple syrup.
It came to me tonight while gorging myself on juicy artichokes grown down the street from me, that artichokes are like the ribs of vegetables. When you eat them you use your hands and get very messy. There is a sense of being a truly savage animal while ripping apart something with your teeth. They were truly delicious. I had them with some veganase chiplote dressing. I covet the recipe for that dressing. They include it with the taco salad at our local natural foods store. I will be experimenting and I will find out what is in it!
After purchasing some Earth Cafe vegan raw cheesecake I was determined to figure out how to do it myself. I think my first attempt turned out pretty well and my mother in law said it was the best cheesecake she had ever had-vegan or otherwise. Here is the recipe and a picture....Enjoy!
The Crust: For the nuts and dates you only need to soak them in hot water for 15 minutes or so. 1 cup raw cashews soaked 1 cup pecans soaked 1 cup almonds soaked 5-10 dates depending on how sweet you like your crust 1/2 cup coconut flakes 3 Tbsp flax meal (just to health it up a bit)
Pulse in food processor until it has a texture you can easily form into a springform pan.
Clean our food processor and then begin the inside of the cake. The meat of one Thai young coconut 1 can coconut milk juice of two lemons 1/2 cup cashews (soaked for about 15 minutes) 6 large strawberries (or whatever fruit you want your cheesecake to have in it) 1/2 cup coconut oil 1/2 cup brown rice syrup (might not be 100% raw, but neither am I) 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
Pulse in food processor until throughly mixed. Pour into your crust and refrigerate for 2 hours. Serve cold and enjoy your raw vegan cheesecake!
I accidentally erased all the comments on the page. Sorry to the people coming back for an answer to their questions. Please ask again and I will respond. Until then, take a look at this yummy treat-we grew it!
My friend Rebecca reminded me that she needed the recipe for these delicious ice cream alternatives so here they are for all the world to enjoy!
2 cans native forest coconut milk (The only brand that I know of that doesn't use BPA in their cans) 5-7 pitted dates that have been soaked in hot water for 5 minutes to soften them large spoonful of nut butter (we make a combination of cashew, almond & pecan) 1 Tbsp of vanilla dash of maple syrup (optional) 3 Tbsp cacao (also optional, if you wanted to make a chocolaty batch-usually I make half chocolate, half regular)
Put all ingredients into the blender and throughly mix. Place mixture into popsicle maker of your choice, freeze overnight and enjoy!
We also REALLY enjoy this mixture when it has been in the refrigerator overnight. It makes a very think whipped cream consistency that is really good as a dip for rice crispy treats, fruit, or anything else you can think of.
Another pizza hit for me! I made pesto and then layered fresh pineapple, artichoke hearts, grilled onions, and sundried tomato on top of Brio Bread and paired it with a delicious spinach salad complete with cucumbers and strawberries. On the salad was one of my famous dressings. Here is a loose recipe for it.
2 Tbsp olive oil 2 Tbsp hemp oil 1 tsp rice wine vinegar 1 tsp apple cider vinegar 2 tsp balsamic vinegar A squirt of maple syrup A squirt of mustard As much garlic as you like, we are crazy about the stuff so I add 7-8 cloves chopped finely Salt and pepper to taste
One of my new favorite products is by the amazing vegan athlete named Brendan Brazier. I wrote about his great garlic oregano yam fries on the previous post. He formulated this amazing powder that is mixed with water or added to a smoothie. It contains all sorts of good things including; maca, chorella, pea protein, hemp protein, brown rice protein, digestive enzymes, and probiotics. Also it tastes REALLY good! I find that its a great snack anytime I am hungry but just wanting something light and nourishing.
I made these tonight and darn it, my camera did not have batteries. You should really make them for yourself tonight though, they are THAT good! Its from the book "Thrive" by Brendan Brazier. He is an amazing vegan athlete who is one of my new heros!
Preheat oven to 300 degrees
Chop the following ingredients together:
2 cloves garlic (I used about 7, but thats just me) 2 tbsp pumpkin seeds 1 tbsp oregano (I didn't have any-left it out and it came out fine) 1 1/2 tbsp coconut oil 1/2 tbsp basil
Chop 2 medium yams into fry shape, or any other shape that floats your boat.
Coat the pieces with the mixture and bake on a cookie sheet that has been coated in coconut oil.
Bake for approximately 40 minutes, more if needed. Enjoy!!!
Another winning dessert from Alicia Silverstones "The Kind Life". Imagine rice crispy treats with peanut butter minus the questionable marshmallows. This is an amazing treat that I can only make once in a while-otherwise we can't control ourselves around here!
1 box brown rice crisps cereal (or rice puffs) 1 1/2 cups brown rice syrup (or honey, or agave, or whatever liquid sweetener you desire) fine sea salt 3/4 cup almond butter (again, feel free to substitute any nut butter you like, we use a combo of almond, pecan, cashew & peanut because we can't decide!) 1/2 cup nondairy chocolate chips
Pour rice cereal into a big bowl. Heat syrup and nut butters together with a pinch of sea salt. When the syrup & nut butter liquifies pour over the rice cereal and mix well with a spoon. Once the mixture has cooled a bit add the chocolate chips (which aren't totally necessary, but add alot of pizzaz!) and stir. Then you push press the mixture into a 9 inch by 13 inch baking dish and wait for it to be ready-which it is right away, gotta love that instant gratification!
One of our only fine dining places here in SoHum is called "The Groves". It is also a winery and has some divine wine. The only main dish I can get there is pasta with mushrooms, asparagus and truffle oil. It is very subtle and delicious, especially as leftovers the next day. Here I paired it with a delicious and classic avocado sandwich with lettuce from our very own deck garden!
I am currently doing the P90X program with my husband and I have been loving it. We are on week eight of the twelve week program. We always enjoy Tony Horton's silly comments and he seems to know when to encourage you to "bring it!". Tony is the brainchild of P90X and also the leader of the group, or the "band" as he calls it! To my surprise and delight I just found out that Tony Horton is a vegetarian. He is also in his fifties! What a STUD!!! This gives me so much joy! He is in such amazing shape and has done it without eating meat-now if he would just give up the dairy-I guess I can't expect that, but a girl can dream. If you don't know what P90X is, I encourage you to look into it, it might just give you the results you have been looking for.
If anyone around the So Hum area is having an event and they want sushi at it, I am your girl. I recently catered a friends birthday party because she loves my vegan sushi so much she wanted all her friends to try it. It was a huge success and I am ready for more! I can customize your rolls to your desires and guarantee your taste buds will be singing a happy song at the end of the day!
A few weeks back we were eating ALOT of asparagus. Now I am finally getting a chance to blog about it. First off, in order to enjoy asparagus it is common knowledge that one needs a mayonnaise like substance to dip into. Being a veganish lady I use Veganase. I like to add a bunch of chopped garlic to it to make an aioli sauce. For this meal I also cooked up some quinoa (a vegan girls best friend...full of protein and vitamins and minerals). When the quinoa was done cooking I added chopped basil and dried cranberries to it. I also served this meal with fresh salad and homemade dressing. On the side we had sweet potatoes with the customary Earth Balance. I love cooking and eating this way!!!
I have been hearing all about how you can bake Kale and make it taste like potato chips. Well I just had to try this bag from our local natural foods store the other day. It took all of about 7 minutes for the hubby and I to scarf down this entire seven dollar treat. Naturally now I have to start making it. The ones I bought are dehydrated and since I don't have a dehydrator I plan on removing the hard inner part of the kale and baking them at 300 degrees until crispy. I am going to try and recreate the taste of these and so I plan on putting cashews, lemon juice, miso, nutritional yeast, apple cider vinegar, habanero powder, garlic powder, and salt into the food processor and then coating my kale with it before putting it into the oven. I will report later on how they taste, in the meantime ... maybe you should try something new today too! I am just so inspired by all of the vegan food blogs I see. Just yesterday I found this cool one called www.vegandad.blogspot.com. It was so fun to read all about all of the food being cooked in other kitchens by other people that looks so good to me. I hope I can inspire with my blog as I am constantly encouraged and motived by different blogs I see.