Monday, November 29, 2010

I know it's a bit late but... Thanksgiving grub!

Howdy everyone! I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving out here in the U.S.A. and for those of you in other parts of the world...I hope you had a great weekend.
I'm so bummed that I haven't been able to blog.   We've had our internet and land line down since last Wednesday.  We've switched to cable but when the technician came on Friday and then left, our internet was freezing up.  Last night we spoke with a friend who is a computer guy and he told us what to do.  So here we are...Monday the 29th!

Moving forward we had a really nice Thanksgiving down at my in-laws.  My brother came out from AZ with my nephew.  We met up with some friends we haven't seen in a while for dinner the night before.  Good times!
Some ingredients used for the meal and dessert.

Vegetable Succotash

This is kind of like succotash but it doesn't have any lima beans in it. My brother-in-law that passed away quite a few years ago, this was his favorite veggie dish I made, so whenever I make this it's in honor of him.  We miss you Zig! My mother-in-law was very happy that I was making dish this year.   The ingredients are: red and yellow bell pepper, yellow onion, chopped garlic, sage(use fresh if you have it), fresh corn, zucchini, yellow squash, olive oil, salt and pepper.  You just heat up some olive oil, add garlic for about a minute.  Then if you have fresh sage add that and saute for about 30sec, if you have dried rubbed sage add later.  Add the veggies and cook until cooked but not mushy.  Season with salt and pepper.  The sage is what totally makes this dish!

Trader Joe's Cranberry Sauce(L), Veggie Succatash(bottom), Mashed Potatoes w/brocolli(right),
Field Roast-Celebration Roast(top) with Golden Gravy.

The potatoes were made by my sister-in-law and she just diveded half and left out the butter and cheese.  The golden gravy recipe I use is from The Real Food Daily Cookbook.  The Celebration Roast from Field Roast is so juicy, it's really really good!  We also had sweet potatoes and a green salad.


Pumpkin Cheesecake

This years pumpkin cheesecake was thicker and lighter due to using silken tofu.  You can forgo the silken tofu and sub in more non-dairy cream cheese if you want a richer more dense cheesecake but we loved the taste of this version.  It's almost mousse like.

Pumpkin Cheesecake


Preheat oven to 350.
2 paks graham crackers(there are 3 in a box)
1/4 C. organic sugar
1/3 C. Earth Balance
1/2 C. pecans, crushed

In a food processer pulse the pecans until crushed(don't process into fine powder)then pour in a bowl.
Next add graham crackers into processer and pulse until fine crumbs.  Add the sugar and Earth balance until combined then add the pecan back in and completely process together.  

In a cheesecake pan pour graham cracker mixture into it and pack down.  Bake in oven for about 7 min.

Take out and cool down.  Once cooled down wrap aluminum foil around the bottom because you will be baking the cheesecake in a water bath and you don't want water seeping into the cheesecake due to the cheesecake pan.

2 8oz. containers of Tofutti Better than Cream Cheese or any other non-dairy cream cheese
1 12oz. pak silken tofu, firm 
1 15 oz. can organic pumpkin
1 C. organic sugar
1/2 C. organic brown sugar 
2 tsp. vanilla
3 T. cornstarch or arrowroot
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ginger
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. cloves

In a food processor(blends better) or hand mixer, blend together Tofutti and silken tofu until smoothe.  Then add the rest of the ingredients and blend until all of the ingredients are thoroughly blended together and smooth.

Pour filling on top of graham cracker crust.

You will  need a baking sheet or something that has at least a 2 inch lip. 
Put baking sheet into oven then put cheesecake pan into the middle of the baking sheet.  Add boiling or very hot tap water into the baking pan so the water goes up almost 1-inch up the side of the cheesecake pan.  The reason for the water is that it keeps the cheesecake from cracking. Bake for 45-50min.  Until cheesecake is set in the middle.  

Once cheesecake is done let cool down to room temperature until putting into the refrigerator.  Chill at least 4 hours but it's better the longer it is refrigerated.  
I will be posting tomorrow.  It's my husbands b-day tomorrow so I'll be making something special. 

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

My internet went down the other day so that's why there was no post. Then we traveled yesterday to mee with the family sooooo. 

Happy Thanksgiving everyone. Enjoy the day with your family.  Can't wait to see all the delicious food
everyone had and shared with family and friends.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Vegan MoFo day 22/Chickpea Patties and pumpkin bundt cake

Is everyone staying warm and toasty?  Whew it's been cold.  We just got a 24hr notice from the weatherman that we need to cover our plants because Tuesday night it's going to dip into the 20's.  Okay it's California people and here that is coooooold! 
The other night I made some chickpea patties.  They turned out quite tasty too I might add.
Keaton liked them served this way on a tortilla with mustard, lettuce, tomato and avocado. I need to find the recipe I wrote down as I was making these before I post it.   
This small bundt cake is made using the pumpkin spice cupcake recipe from VCTOW.   
A light glaze would be perfect over this.

Tomorrow I'm going shopping for a few items I need for some Thanksgiving recipes.
Are you all prepared for Thursday? 

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Vegan Mofo days 20 &21/ Vacation trip part 2

So I missed a day of blogging for MoFo and I'm so bummed about it.  I was so busy Sat. morning with trying to get everything packed and ready to go for our overnight trip that I didn't have time to sit down at all.  We went to visit a friend we haven't seen in a while so......
Anyhoo I'm back and on to share more of our summer vacation trip on the northern coast of California. 
Farmers Market in Arcata one morning.  Yes it's summer and it was a cooler summer out here in CA.  Up in that area they said most of the summer was overcast like this. 
We spotted this tamale and salsa booth.
Vegan tamales were a score and ever so tasty.

This was really cool to see...raw juice at Farmers Market...very cool.
This handsome speciman was spotted on our way to Fern Canyon.  Isn't he beautiful!
The trees were just so huge and amazing.
We ate dinner one night at Humboldt Brews and they had a good selection of vegan choices.
These aren't very good pictures but I had the falafel that came with sweet potato fries.  Check out all of the veggies on top of the falafel.

Another pic of falafel.  Keaton had the grilled portobello but I forgot to take a photo of it.
Check out the menu by clicking above on Humboldt Brews.  They even had tofu as an option.

I'll share more photo's of the redwoods in future posts with more on food as well.
So tired....
Have a nice night.  Back tomorrow.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Vegan MoFo Day 19/ Sami's Bakery-GF sourdough bread

  Per Jessy at HappyVeganFace I ordered some great tasting GF-Bread.  It's from Sami's Bakery.
You have to try it if you can only eat GF-bread.

Yes that's right.  Sourdough!
You have to place a minimum order of $25 but that's okay for us cuz I'm just going to freeze the rest.  I ordered a couple of loaves of sourdough, the millet & flax bread and lavash.    Keaton loved it and I'm so happy he did.  We finally found a vegan GF bread that isn't heavy, dense and chewy.  YAY!\

Enjoy your night!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

MoFo day 18/ Pumpkin Scones

Good evening everyone!  Whooo...I'm barely making the post for day18!

I made 2 pumpkin desserts but I'm only posting one right now.  These are pumpkin scones with a cinnamon glaze.  They turned out more on the moist side, you know not as dry as most scones, kind of cake like and really light. 
Pumpkin Scones w/Cinnamon Glaze
serves 8

2 C + 1/4 C. spelt flour(if using white flour use 2C +1T. flour)
1 T. baking powder
1/2 Tsp. salt 
3/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. cloves
1/4 tsp. ginger
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
3/4 C. pumpkin puree
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 C. sugar
1 T. molasses
7 T. Earth Balance
3 T. full fat soy milk or non-dairy cream
1 tsp. apple cider vinegar

Preheat oven to 400.  Lightly oil a baking sheet.

In a mixing bowl add the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and spices.  

In another bowl blend together pumpkin puree, vanilla, molasses, earth balance, soy milk & apple cider.

Blend in the wet ingredients with the dry ingredients until completely combined.  The dough will be more wet than dry.

Flour hands and take the dough out of the bowl and place on baking sheet. Form the dough into a 7-inch circle or so and then take a knife and cut through making 8 slices, but keep it in the circle.

Place in oven and bake for about 20min.

Take the baking sheet out of the oven and let sit for about 5 minutes just to slightly cool.  Than take your knife again and gently cut through each piece and place on a cooling rack to completely cool.

Once scones are cool you can glaze.

To make the glaze use about 1 C. of powdered sugar, cinnamon and non-dairy milk until you get the desired consistancy to drizzle over each scone. 

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Vegan MoFo day 17/Better late than never

Not much in the way of food today.  We went on a new hike, Farmers Market, than picked up our dinner at Santa Ynez Burrito.  They have really good burritos, I had the grilled veggie burrito. The food is all organic which makes it even better.

So this vacation post is really long over due.  I mean it's November and we took our vacation at the end of August.  We traveled up to the Giant Redwoods in Northern California.  It was so beautiful!  Instead of posting about some of the first places we ate on our way up north I'm going to start with the best meal of our trip and the most exciting one.  Just so you know this was one vacation that there was plenty of vegan options all over the place.  A vegans dream!  Just how it should be everywhere you go.

My husband's friend's daughter(did you get that?) and her husband, bought this Japanese sushi restaurant a few years back in Eureka, CA.  When he found out we were going to vacation up that way he told us to go have dinner at their restaurant. It's called Kyoto Japanese Restaruant.  We heard that  it's best to make reservations because they are always crazy crowded.  I'm glad we did.  It's not a very big place but they are in the process of expanding...again.  So we get there and let Jenni know, the owner who is so nice, that Keaton and I are vegan.  She said it was no problem and that almost everything on the menu could be made vegan.  Keaton and I smiled.   Yippy jump for joy!

This is the miso soup for starters. Yum!

When you walk into the restaurant there is this big white board with the daily specials.  It was amazing how many daily specials there were on top of what was listed on the menu.

Mushroom Veggie Stuffed Squash Blossoms

  Jenni's recommendation was the stuffed squashed blossoms on the daily menu that were filled with crab but she spoke with the chef and he stuffed them with mushrooms and veggies and the batter was rice flour instead of egg.  I have to tell you these were absolutely exquisite!  I can't say enough about them or describe them any more but let me tell you at just one bite,  my mouth was very happy!  Seriously I could of eaten a whole plate full and would have been satisfied but I still had more food to eat.
This was a cold apple salad with a light veganaise dressing and almonds. Keaton didn't really care for it but Dave and I did.

Avocado Rolls and Tofu Tempura Rolls

Keaton ordered the tofu dinner and he said it was really good.  It came with tempura tofu rectangles(front right), rice, a savory cake like rice cake thingy(sorry I forget what it was but it's in the top right corner),  ginger salad(top left), carrot slaw and sliced ginger.
Dave had a non-vegan dinner so I didn't take a picture of that.

If you are ever up on the coast of Northern California you  must stop and eat at Kyoto Japanese Restaurant!

More vacation posts with vegan food to come.   

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Vegan MoFo day#16/Pasta Della California-Veganomican

We've been getting some of the best avocados from the Farmers Market, I mean just perfect!  They are also still so inexpensive right now that we keep a good amount in the house for salads and sandwiches.
With the weather being a bit warmer and having arugula and broccoli in the refrigerator I knew what I was going to make for dinner.  Pasta Della California from Veganomicon is one of our favorites.  The first time I made this I was skeptical about having warm avocados with pasta but the results were amazing!  Dave called me up yesterday and asked what the dinner menu was and when I told him, he was very very happy.   If you haven't tried this yet you must, I promise you'll love it. My mouth is watering again just wishing I had some leftovers to eat. 
Aren't these pomegranates beautiful!  My mother-in-law gave us about 6 when we went down to
there this past Saturday night to watch Pierce College play football.  My father-in-law is a football coach for them.  So anyways, she says it's too much work to take the seeds out.  This is the deal, it's easier to take the time and just seed them all at once and to put in a bowl and store in refrigerator.  They don't last long in our place and will probably be gone tomorrow.  Fill a big bowl of water, place in the sink and cut in half.  Then you just break and seed them in the water so there is no juice spurting out everywhere.  The result is tasty and great for you pomegranate seeds.  No added sugar and no concentrate, just pure crunchy with a burst of juice right in your mouth.    

Until tomorrow!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Vegan MoFo day 15/ Warmer weather calls for some grilling!

First let me start off by saying I'm the winner of a Trader Joe's gift card!!!   Woohoo!  They just called me and thanked me for bringing in my bag and told me the giftcard will be waiting for me.  It's funny the last trip to TJ's my husband Dave asked me when I was going to win cuz I've been filling out those slips for many many years now.  YAY!

A heart sliced beet.  That just shows how good beets are for you.  I usually juice beets but once in a while I roast them in the oven.  I also love the taste of beet greens, do you?  If you never have used them give them a try and let me know what you think.  They don't last long in the refrigerator only a couple of days or so.

Recently I've been finding that I'm not alone in craving salads again. I think it's the warmer weather we are having.  Fall salads are actually really yummy using seasonal veggies.  I grilled a large white sweet potato, russet potatoes, red  and yellow bell peppers, asparagus, carrots and beets.  I used the balsamic dressing from the other night to drizzle on top.  Served on the side of the salad are stuffed portobello mushrooms.  These mushrooms are so flippen good and is a great recipe to make for company.  The recipe is from the Candle Cafe but of course I make my adjustments.  To cut down on oil for the sauteeing of the onions and garlic I use water.  I add more garlic, cuz garlic is good, and more onion.  The rest of the ingredients are bread crumbs, sage, thyme, spinach and walnuts.  I don't use a measuring cup I just eye it. 


Sunday, November 14, 2010

Vegan Mofo#14/ Gingerbread Biscotti & Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti

Another warm day out here in California.  Beautiful! 

Just the other night I made a couple of Biscotti recipes.  I love Biscotti, always have, always will.  I love the  slightly sweet taste and the big crunch.  I'm not much into dunking my biscotti but my Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti does very well in the dunking area.

Gingerbread Biscotti

So this gingerbread biscotti recipe is taken from the biscotti recipe in Veganomicon.  I did make some changes due to I wanted less fat and less sugar.  A true biscotti isn't very sweet like a chocolate chip cookie for instance.  I usually cut down on the sugar in recipes because it seems like they are always just too sweet.
The following are the changes I made to the recipe and it still came out crispy crunchy!
1/2 C. sugar(instead of 3/4 C.)
1/3 C. oil (instead of 1/2 C.)
1/4 tsp salt(instead of 1/2tsp)
added 2 T. molasses
3/4 tsp nutmeg
1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
2 tsp. ginger
1/4 tsp. cloves
The only thing missing was vegan white chocolate drizzled on top.  I have to order vegan white chocolate and I keep forgetting to.

Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti

This combo is so delicious and the looks remind me of Christmas in a cookie.  I didn't have the time but I wanted to dunk half into dark chocolate, but you could add chocolate chips or chunks of chocolate into the mix if you wish.  These are definitely ones to dunk into coffee or tea.  They are more crunchy and drier which I like.  I so loved how these turned out.  Keaton doesn't like biscotti so I didn't try to make them gluten free but I would still like to try it out.  So if you come up with a great GF biscotti let me know.  Jessy?

A while back I checked out the Millenium Cookbook and got a great biscotti recipe that didn't have any oil in the recipe but I can't seem to find the recipe soooooo. I went to Fat Free Kitchen blog and found her gingerbread biscotti recipe and just added changes to it.

 Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti

2 cups white organic flour(note below) 
1/2 cup sugar

3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/2 tablespoons Ener-G egg replacer
4 T.water
4 T. Hemp Milk(divided)
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. salt
1/3 C. dried cranberries
1/2 C. pistachios

Preheat oven to 350F.
In a bowl mix together flour, baking soda and salt.  Set aside.  In a large bowl whisk the Ener-G egg replacer with the water and 2 T. hempmilk until frothy and thick.  Next whisk in the sugar,vanilla and 2 T. of Hempmilk until well combined.  Stir in the dry ingredients to the wet.  Once well combined add the cranberries and pistachios.  If dough is a bit dry add in more hemp or water a tablespoon at a time.  Form into ball.  Take the dough out and put on a prepared cookie sheet(sprayed with an oil) and form into a long loaf about 11 inch long, 3-4 inches wide and 1-inch high.  Bake for about 30-35 min. just until the loaf is slightly a very very light brown starting.

Remove baking sheet when finished baking, let cool for 20min. and lower oven temp to 300F.

Once the loaf is cool, take off cookie sheet onto cutting board and cut in about 1/2 inch diagonal slices.  Place the slices back on cookie sheet cut side down and bake for 10min.  Then turn cookies over and bake for 10 more minutes.

Note-I think spelt flour may give this cookie a slightly lighter texture.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Mofo#13/ Roasted Butternut on Mixed Green Salad

I hope everyone is enjoying their day.  We've been enjoying our warmer day although we have to bundle up at night.

Yesterday evening I was alone for dinner so I roasted up the rest of a butternut squash I had with a bit of fresh sage, olive and sea salt.  I already had a salad made so I just made some good balsamic dressing to go with it. The dressing I found is here.  The only changes I made to it was that I added a few tablespoons of water and used organic cane sugar instead of brown.  This is a really great balsamic dressing. In a pasta bowl I put some lettuce, butternut squash, dried cranberries and pecans.  Then I drizzled the balsamic dressing and fresh ground pepper.  I Sat down with a nice glass of red wine and scrolled through the old movie section of Netflix and found, to my pleasant surprise, Summertime starring Katherine Hepburn and Rossano Brazzi.  What a great way to eat dinner and enjoy a classic movie before the hubby got home.

Tomorrow I'll be back with 2 different biscotti recipes.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Vegan MoFo #12/ GF- Chocolate Chip Cookies

Happy Friday!  Another beautiful California day but boy was it chilly this morning.  Last night was the coldest so far...brrrrrr. 

These cookies do contain oatmeal so if you are one who has Celiacs, you will need to buy GF certified oats. For you readers who don't know much about Celiacs disease, if you are truly gluten intolerent you can not have any food that touches gluten or processed from a facility that may also process wheat products.  My son doesn't have celiacs but he is sensitive to too much wheat so he does okay with organic oats.  Keaton says that these are his favorite GF cookies so far.  So coming from a kid that's pretty good.  Also for you out there I won't always list my ingredients as organic but most of them are.  The chocolate chips I use are Guittard, they are also Gluten Free and the dark or semi-sweet chocolate doesn't contain milk.  Personally, I feel these chocolate chips totally out do Ghiradelli in taste, they have this wonderful underlying caramel taste to them. Yum!

GF-Chocolate Chip Cookies with Oats

Preheat oven to 350.

In a mixing bowl cream together:
1/2 C. brown sugar
3 T. apple sauce
1/3 C. oil
1 tsp. vanilla

In another bowl combine:
1/2 C. sorghum flour
1/2 C. rice flour
1/2 C. tapioca flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. baking powder(Rumford brand  aluminum-free)
1/4 tsp. salt

When sugar mixture is completely creamed together add in the dry ingredients.  Next stir in 3/4 C. oats and 1/2 C. chocolate chips.

Use a tablespoon to drop cookie dough onto cookie sheet.  Bake in oven for about 12min.

Enjoy your friday night.  Keep warm.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Vegan MoFo Day 11/ Cheesy Sauce quick post

 Whew this week has just been flying by!  I don't have any recipes for you today this is just a quick post. 

Keaton went back to school today.  He still can't hear out of both ears but he made it through.

Carrots, celery, golden beet, apples, cucumber juice
For dinner I made something really quick.  Didn't feel like cooking.
I made a cheezy sauce (the nacho recipe subbed roasted bell pepper for the pimentos).
I poured the sauce over an organic russet potato and organic broccoli.
The cool thing about this sauce is that the only fat comes from the cashews(high in magnesium), nutritional yeast( is a complete protein and full of b-vitamins).  So you can have what may look like a non-nutritional, fat laden, artery clogging sauce... but it isn't!  Yum!

Back tomorrow with a GF-chocolate chip cookie

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

MoFo #10/ A different Tahini recipe w/chickpeas, veggies and brown rice

Did you think I had forgotton about todays post?  It's almost 5 and I just got back from a day of errands and after this it's off to the Farmers Market.

One of the first vegan meals that I had in my rotation was this.  I usually use shitake mushrooms in it but I didn't have any on hand.

I'm not going to give out exact measurements but I will tell you what I used in the recipe.  You can also use what veggie you have on hand.  Shitake just goes so well with this dish and I usually don't use carrot either.  First I cooked up a pot of brown rice.  As the rice is cooking you saute up some yellow onion and 2 minced garlic cloves,until soft.  Then add in veggies of choice. I had broccoli, carrots, cauliflower and italian red pepper. Saute just until slightly tender and then add about 2 C. chickpeas.  The sauce mixture I just add right into the pan-1/3 C. Tahini, 3 T. Braggs Liquid Aminos or Tamari, 1 1/2 C. no-chicken broth or veggie broth and mix in well and let reduce slightly.  Add firm tofu chunks if you with.  I did.  Add more tamari if you wish as well.  Serve over brown rice.

Okay I got to go.  Have a great night.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Vegan MoFo#9/ Light Gumbo with Seitan Sausages

Happy Tuesday!  Today is going to be a quick post.  I have to clean up around here and I'm going to watch a movie with Keaton.  Yes he's home from school again. I went to go get his ears checked out and come to find out not only does he have fluid in the ears but he has strep!  He came home from school yesterday with a sunburn type rash and his hands/feet were sore.  The doctor said his throat looked red but that was it.  According to his other symptoms...strep. 

Yesterday's lunch.
Ezekiel English Muffin w/mashed white beans, avocado and tomato


Light Gumbo with Seitan Sausage

To get my recipe for my gumbo click here.  In making this gumbo lower in fat it also was a bit more runny than thick. I just used 2T. Olive oil and 3T. flour for the roux.  I only used 4 Cups of water and 1/2 a cup of pale ale(not dark) and 2 fresh tomatoes chopped.  I sauteed seitan sausage, chopped them and browned them in the skillet using olive oil spray.  The seitan sausage recipe was based on the steamed white seitan from Viva Vegan.  I just adjusted the spices accordingly and made 6 small loaves.
Enjoy your evening!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Vegan MoFo #8/ Lemon Tahini Sauce over GF noodles

Happy Monday to you!

It's on to the second week of Vegan MoFo!  There are so many delicious recipes to try.  I'm trying to check out new blogs everyday and support my usual blogs at the same time.

FYI.  If you haven't seen the film FOODMATTERS you really need to.  It's also a really good one to share with your non-vegan family members.   
Lemon Tahini Noodles

Tahini sauce makes for a nice change instead of using a peanut sauce over noodles.  The noodles I used were rice noodles from TJ's.

Lemon Tahini Noodles

1pd. rice or udon noodles
Prepare noodles according to package.  While water is boiling prepare sauce.

In a blender add the following ingredients and blend until smooth.
1/2 C. Raw Tahini
1 garlic clove
2 T. fresh ginger, chopped
3 T. maple syrup or agave
3 T. Braggs Liquid Aminos or Tamari
2 T. Brown Rice Vinegar
2 T. sesame oil
3 T. fresh lemon juice or more to your liking
2 T. cilantro
2 scallions, chopped
Splash of sriracha or more if you like to add some heat
1/2 -3/4 cup of water to thin out.

olive oil
1 garlic clove
1tsp. ginger
vegetables of your choice.
 Gently saute vegetables in a large pan with garlic and ginger.  Once vegetables are slightly cooked add the noodles and the sauce.  Stir together well.  You can then serve into dish and top with sesame seeds.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Vegan Mofo #7/Simple Lentil Soup w/GF Chickpea Flatbread

It's been a week of MoFo'ng already... wow it flew by!  I've been trying to view other blogs this month that I've never been on before and it makes me so happy!  Everyone is doing fabulous and there is so much yummy vegan food!

  Lentil soup is one of those that you can add and do so much to.  I chose last night just to do a simple lentil soup.
Lentil Soup


Olive oil
1  1/4 C. brown or french lentils, uncooked but rinsed
2 med. yellow onions, diced
6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 1/2 C. celery, sliced
2 C. carrots, chopped
3 red tomatoes, chopped with juices
1/3 C. white wine
6 C. un-chicken broth or vegetable broth
1/4 tsp thyme
red pepper flakes, optional
*s & p to taste
balsamic or chili oil, drizzled to serve (optional) 

1) In a large stockpot heat up 1-2 Tbsp. Olive oil.
2)Add in onion, garlic, carrots and celery cook until soft.
3)Add in red tomatoes, stir and let cook until they are quite soft.
4)Mix in lentils, white wine and thyme and cook for about 2min.
5)Pour in broth, stir and bring to a boil.
6)Once the mixture is boiling, cover with lid and bring to a simmer for about 40-45min. Cook until
   lentils are soft.
7)Once lentils are soft, use an immersion blender to blend some of it or take a cup or so and put into blender.  Blend until pureed and add back into mixture.  Stir thouroughly and add red pepper flakes if you wish and continue to cook for 10min. more.  Depending on how salty your broth is you may not need any salt.
8)Ladle into bowls.  You can drizzle balsamic or a chili olive oil on top if you wish.

Berean (Chickpea) Flatbread

Yesterday on the Melomeals $3.33 a day blog I saw these delicious flatbreads Melody  made with chickpea flour.  These are totally gluten free which is great, especially for Keaton.  The chickpea crepe recipe I usually use also contains white flour so I was very happy to make these ones. So last night I whipped some up and served them with our lentil soup!  Keaton loved these, alot. You must check them out try them for yourselves.    I also added some fresh rosemary to half the batter, yummy too.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

MoFo#6/Balsamic Tofu w/peppers & onions

I hope everyone's weekend has started off to a good one.  The sky is cloudy and grey.  One of the perks with raining is that my water bill is a lot less money.  Bring on the rain!

Thanks for all the get well wishes for Keaton.  He woke up yesterday feeling alot better.  He still has a cough that's lingering but it's random now.
He's bummed because we didn't let him go to Magic Mountain with his friends but that's just a long day and
when Dave was giving him a hug this morning he noticed he was warm.   He'll be fine, rest is all he needs.

There was this meal I used to make for Dave, not myself, in my pescetarian days. It was a balsamic chicken with pepper and onions. This was one of his favorite meals. I gave it a go from memory and it was delicious! If you want to impress dinner guests but don't want to spend hours in the kitchen, this is it. I served it over mashed potatoes. You can adjust the recipe for a single serving to or just make more and just have it for left overs.

Balsamic Tofu w/peppers & onions

4 servings

Olive Oil
14oz. Firm Tofu, sliced into strips
4 garlic cloves, chopped
2 C. yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 1/2 C.  Red Italian or bell peppers, sliced
1 tsp. fresh rosemary, finely chopped
1/4 C. White wine
1 T. balsamic vinegar
s & p to taste

Heat up skillet(I use cast iron) and add olive oil.  Once heated up add the onion, garlic and peppers to skillet and saute until soft.  Next add in the rosemary and a bit of salt and pepper, continue to saute for about 2 minutes.  Once done take out vegetables and put into a dish and set aside.  Next add a bit more oil to the skillet and add the tofu strips, sprinkling a bit of salt onto the tops.  You want to sear the tofu on both sides until they start to turn brown and get a bit of a crust on them.  Once the tofu is done add the vegetable mixture back in with it and add the wine.  Stir for about a minute or so until completely warmed through.  Then stir in the balsamic vinegar.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  Serve over mashed potatoes or pasta.

Using a good balsamic is real important.  My mother-in-law always makes sure I have balsamic vinegar handy and luckily she knows which ones are best.  This one is from Oliviers & Co. and tastes wonderful!  It's more syrupy but not too much and a bit sweet instead of real acidic.  This is the kind you can drizzle over pasta or veggies before serving your guests or yourself.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Vegan Mofo #5/Almond Milk & Tulsi Tea

Happy Friday and MoFo day 5!

Yesterday I didn't make much in the way of food.  My son Keaton has been home from school since Wednesday.  He started with a cough Monday night,Tuesday evening the dry coughing progressed and he was very tired.  At least he's able to sleep through the night. He had a fever yesterdaywhich I think was a good sign that his body is finally fighting, whatever is going on, off.  He had such a busy weekend last week and stayed up until the wee hours in the moring at a sleepover.  I'm thinking his lack of sleep didn't do any good for his immune system as far as fighting off anything he was exposed to. 

 I usually use Umcka cold care or Sambucus Elderberry syrup but decided to try a homeopathic one.  I know it takes time to work but I just wasn't feeling that it was doing much for him.  I went back to our local health food store and purchased New Chapter Immunity Take Care Lozenges, and
Honey Gardens Apitherapy Honey Wild Cherry Bark Syrup(the gal highly recommended this one).  The honey is raw and not heated so it contains the medicinal properties in it to fight bacteria and virises.  As a vegan to use honey is a personal decision.  Personally I don't buy much honey but when I do it's from a respected smaller farm and usually local.  As far as this syrup containing honey, I'd rather give this to my son than antibiotics or medication. 

So this morning he looks better, no fever, no dizziness, still has a cough and a bit of a yucky stomache but I think the stomache issues are linked with the coughing.  We'll see.

Homemade Almond Milk

So a  couple of weeks back I saw a video on The Plant Based Dietician blog where they made almond milk using filtered water and raw almond butter.  Talk about saving some cash, this is so easy to make.  Isn't it pretty? 

This is Holy Basil Tea which they call Tulsi Tea.  Keaton and I tried some this summer when we hit up the Farmers Market in Arcata, CA this summer.  This is just such a nice tasting and smooth tea with a bunch of great health benefits to go along with it! 

Office before painting. (Shelving was taking down already)
Office finished

I guess since my computer is back up and running, we finished our office and fixed our computer, I can finally
post our summer vacation.  Hey better late than never.  What a great month to post about it too since I have to blog like every day.  I promise I will post about it!
See ya tomorrow!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Mofo #4/ Homemade chickenless nuggets and Bok choy salad

Good day to all it's day 4 of Vegan Mofo! 
Before I continue with today's food I must let you all know that Trader Joe's Hemp milk that I previously posted about is quite delicious!  Hempseeds have a strong flavor yet the milk doesn't have that taste at all and is quite mild in taste.  It seems that Hannah at bittersweet has also tried it and enjoys it as well.  They also make a vanilla hemp milk.  You can't beat the price for a great tasting non-dairy milk 

I found this great recipe online  for fat-free chickenless nuggets and I tell you these are so yummy and easy to make too.  It was less expensive to make and doesn't have a bunch of extra stuff in it as well.
The recipe comes from Happy Herbivore so click on over to get her recipe.  Her recipe does say "fat-free" but I melted a bit of Earth Balance and drizzled over each piece before I baked the nuggets.  I'm sure you could spray olive or canola if you wish to as well.

The reason for making the nuggets were to add to this crisp and crunchy bok choy salad.  One of my girlfriends signed up for the 21-Day Vegan Kickstart Challenge and I signed up as well to see about getting some new lower-fat recipes to help my husband out. This recipe by celebrity Ginnifer Goodwin stood out and it's just the perfect meal for a hot day or if you want a light meal.  I actually couldn't stop eating it. lol!  


Gramma's Bok Choy (& Chick'n) Salad

Makes 6 servings

1 medium head organic bok choy, washed, cored, and dried

1 bunch organic green onions, chopped

2 1/2 ounces organic sesame seeds

1 2-ounce package organic sliced almonds

2 3-ounce packages Nissin Top Ramen Oriental noodle soup mix, uncooked

garlic powder, to taste

2 generous tablespoons soy sauce

1/4 cup rice vinegar or cider vinegar

1/2 cup organic sugar

1 package Gardein Crispy Tenders vegetarian chick'n, prepared as directed

Chop bok choy into bite-size pieces; add onions and chill. Discard seasoning packet from the soup mix or save for another use. Break up noodles. Sauté sesame seeds, almonds, and noodles in oil. Add garlic powder and salt. Cool and store in a covered container for an indefinite time. An hour before serving, combine soy sauce, vinegar, and sugar and boil for no more than 1 minute. Toss the salad with Gardein chick'n and all of the above ingredients. For variety, this salad is also great with chopped pimiento or mandarin orange. Enjoy!

*note-I used a different Ramen noodle from our local health food store.
Until tomorrow......laugh a little.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

MoFo #3: Hemp milk & GF pasta w/spinach, tomatoes

Okay so it's day Mofo day 3!   Another sunny day and elections are over, finally.  I'm done with all of those ads and phone calls towards the end. 

Trader Joe's finally has Hemp Milk! Woohoo!  I've been not-so-patiently waiting for this.  It's only $2.99 compared with the much  higher prices at other stores.


Add some Hemp milk and almond butter to your smoothie...delish!

This GF past dish is so easy to  make and tasty too!

I don't have exact measurements so your on your own, sorry.  I can give the step by step and ingredients used.  I hope that helps.

GF pasta or whatever kind you want to use, cooked
olive oil
4 large cloves of garlic, chopped
Cherry tomatoes-halved
fresh spinach-cleaned and chopped
white wine
ground walnuts(optional)topping

 For the sauce:  Heat up a saute pan then add some olive oil.  Next add garlic and saute for a minute or so.  Next add in the halved cherry tomatoes and chopped spinach until soft.  Add about 1/3 c. or more of white wine until the wine has reduced a bit.  Season with salt to taste.  Serve into pasta dish and top, drizzle with more olive oil if you wish and top with ground walnuts!

See you tomorrow!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Vegam MoFo#2: Pumpkin Seeds and Leftover Chili

It's day 2 of Mofo.  Hope everyone is having a great day.  It's warming up again and is supposed to be in the 90's, crazy eh?  This won't last though and the nights have dropped in the 30's...burrrr!

Today I'm going to post about the pumpkin seeds I made last night.  I love pumpkin and pumpkin seeds. 
The first thing I did was to take all of the pumpkin flesh off of the seeds, and patted dry.  Then I  layed them out on a cookie sheet and put them in a 250degree oven for about 45min to almost dry out.
Once dried out I poured a couple of tablespoons of olive oil on them then sprinkled some dried thyme and sea salt.  Put back into oven and turned the heat up to 350.  These cooked about 20min. and I stired them around a couple of times to evenly toast. Wallah!  A hint of thyme and sea salt.  The cool thing is you can add any herbs you like or spices.  
 This is something I like to do with leftover enchiladas but for this I used left over chili.  First warm up the chili in a pot.  Then in a bowl add some salad, then the warm chili(or enchiladas), avocado and some chips.  I don't know why I like this but it's just a tasty way of eating leftover chili.

I'll be back tomorrow with more food!