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Go to Mac’s!

07/06/2011

A few nights ago, Z took me to Mac’s pub in Clifton, Cincinnati.  They have vegan pizzas!  Usually I’m kind of scared of vegan pizzas that have “cheese,” but both of theirs are award-winning, so I decided to try!

I took my first bite.  I immediately died and went to pizza heaven.  I hadn’t had pizza like this in two years!

Here’s a link to their site, which hosts their menu.  Check it out!

Mac’s uses a ton of locally made products and locally grown produce, too!

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Parties are for vegans too!

07/06/2011

Over the course of the last few months, I have been the catalyst for or host of several parties.  One of my friends, Katie Hettinger, has a very famous Oreo truffles recipe that we vegan-ized for our friend Allison’s bachelorette party.  Here it is!

Ingredients:

1 box/bag thing of plain oreos
1 8oz tub of Tofutti Better than Cream Cheese
1 bag of vegan dark chocolate chips
a tiny bit of vegetable oil

Directions:

Whiz the entire bag of Oreos in a food processor.  After they are in a very fine, sandy form, smush the 8oz of cream cheese together with the Oreo dust in a bowl.  Form approx 1.5in diameter balls with this mixture.  Place on baking sheets that are covered in wax paper and let chill in the fridge until firm.

While balls cool, heat the bag of chocolate chips and about 1/2 tbsp of veg. oil in a double boiler (or a solid bowl above bowling water in a pan will do). Heat until melted through.

When balls are firm and chocolate is melted, roll the balls in the melted chocolate to coat.  Put each ball back in its place on the baking sheet and then return to the fridge to set.

Birthday Blog!

04/01/2011

My birthday was the other day and I’ve had a really good time!  Wednesday, Z took me to Vincenzo’s where his mom is the chef.  Being vegan, it is sometimes hard to eat at restaurants, but when we go there Sue always makes me my own dish!  Come dessert time, though, I can almost never eat at “regular” restaurants, but Sue made me the most delicious surprise: berry crisps (with oats and nuts and magic for the crisp part), with vanilla bean coconut milk ice cream, vegan whipped cream, strawberries and blueberries.  I almost cried when I saw it, seriously.  It was so good!

Thursday I helped my older sister make fresh baby food, using only veggies, fruits, water, and food processors.  Here is the result:

So many colors!

Finally, Thursday night, I make Cincinnati style chili for a bunch of people and my sister made me a vegan birthday cake (I had chocolate coconut milk ice cream as well).  I’ve posted on the Cinci chili before, way back when.

I might be adding some more dinner pictures, later, but that’s all for now when it comes to vegan birthdays!

Banana Pancakes and Gardein Stir Fry

03/28/2011

Today has been a day of wonderful food!  Zander and I had banana pancakes this morning (afternoon).  I based them off of a vegnews.com recipe, but I changed a few things.

Banana pancakes (serves 3-4):

Ingredients:

1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup all purpose flour
2 tbsp sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp cinnamon sugar
1/8 tsp allspice
1 1/4 cups unsweetened almond milk
3 big ripe bananas (or four smaller ones)
1/2 cup frozen mixed berries, thawed
1/2 cup fresh strawberries, sliced
1/2 cup banana slices
2 more tbsp sugar
syrup/honey/agave nectar

Directions:

Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl.  Put the bananas and almond milk in a food processor and process until relatively smooth.  Mix this with the dry ingredients in the bowl.  Heat skillet and spray with cooking spray.  Each pancake should be about two or three tbsp of batter.  Flip when you see bubbles forming.

While the pancakes are pancake-ing:  slice up the strawberries/bananas.  Put the frozen mixed berries (I used frozen raspberries and blackberries) into a small pan with a little bit of water, 2 tbsp of sugar, and possibly a little honey or agave nectar. Let cook down.

Stack pancakes on a plate, adorn with fresh banana and strawberry slices.  Drizzle with berry reduction.  Drizzle again with syrup/honey/agave nectar.  Enjoy!

This evening, Z and I made Gardein stir fry. (Serves two)

Ingredients:
Noodles (one serving for each person.  I used whole wheat spaghetti noodles and Z used rice noodles), cooked according to package directions
2 tsp sesame seeds
2 tbsp olive oil (or vegetable oil/canola/sesame)
1.5 cups frozen stir fry veggie mix
An entire container of baby portabella mushrooms, quartered
2 servings of Gardein beefless tips
1/2 cup frozen shelled edamame
low sodium soy sauce
pepper
onion powder
garlic powder
curry powder
paprika

Directions:

While noodles cook, heat oil in skillet or wok.  Cut mushrooms.  Begin to stir-fry mushrooms in oil.  When they have started to release moisture, add the frozen edamame.  Next, add the Gardein.  Finally, add the frozen veggies and the sesame seeds.  Douse everything with soy sauce at it cooks.  Stir, stir, stir.  Season with pepper, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, and curry powder.  Stir more and more.  Cook until everything is heated through and seasoned well.  Serve stir fry mixture on top of noodles and enjoy!

Snacks

03/26/2011

I just had one of these, so I was thinking maybe I’ll share some vegan snacking ideas with you.

My favorites:

-Endangered species dark chocolate (they have several vegan varieties).  I generally have one or two squares. (50 cals each)
-Baked Tostitos Scoops and guacamole/salsa.  The other day I actually cut up some tomato and added that and 1/4 cup of black beans to some guac.  It was the best!
-Applesauce
-Apples and peanut butter
-Celery/carrots/broccoli and hummus
-Any fresh fruit!
-Strawberries and soy yogurt or almond milk
-Frozen mixed berries (plain or in yogurt/milk)
-Saltines (okay these are not good for you really but they are my Kryptonite)
-A whole wheat tortilla, some veg cream cheese, and three slices of veg lunchmeat all wrapped up (a snack to go)
-steamed edamame
-Air popped popcorn (1 cup is only 30 calories).  I spray mine with a little cooking spray and then sprinkle on some salt, pepper, and paprika.  YUM.

“They” say that when snacking you should mix a carb with some kind of protein, that combination fills us up and keeps us full, so some snacks come with that built in – like apples and peanut butter together or yogurt/berries together.  Sometimes if I’m having just a carby snack, I’ll just have a glass of unsweetened almond milk with it, that gives me protein and calcium (and tastiness).

Yay snacks!

The Busiest Bees

03/26/2011

Hello people!

I’m so extra busy lately – student teaching, job searching, working, etc.  I’m neglectful of my lovely blog here.  I wanted to share an article with you that makes me happy.

Next, I wanted to tell you that over my spring break (which started yesterday at three o’clock), I will definitely be updating the blog (amidst much paper-grading and resume’ mailing)!  My birthday is in the coming week and we will be doing a sushi night at my house.  (Complete with vegan birthday cake made for me by sister extraordinaire Ashley).  Also, I found an amazing recipe for banana pancakes on vegnews.com and I’ll SURELY be making those puppies.  Finally, my sister Ashley’s son is starting to eat baby food and I should be helping her make some home-made batches, which I’ll share!

Oh and I forgot to mention, Zander and I will hopefully be checking out The Loving Hut this week! (Formerly The Loving Cafe)

Whoops!

02/05/2011
tags:

I realized just now, as I was eating lunch at work, that I neglected to include the portion of my last post that was supposed to talk about what I take to lunch student teaching or at work on a normal day!  So I’m making a random list of assorted lunches I can remember recently:

I take one snack to eat during the day (pretzels, craisins, etc) in case I get hungry before 12:40 when we eat.

Generally I take either a sandwich/pasta dish/soup/chili as the main part of my meal (or cereal some days).  Soup, chili, or pasta I will just put into a container the night before and leave in the fridge.  I hate pre-assembling sandwiches because they get all crushed and weird, so I usually put my bread in a tupperware, then put each sandwich ingredient in its own little tupperware or baggie and I bring a butter knife to spread any spreads and cut my sandwiches in half.  If I’m having something like cucumbers/tomatoes on my sandwich, I will cut those up before and put them in their containers or baggies so all I have to do at lunch is assemble.  We have a fridge in my classroom so I leave anything I need to keep cool in there and leave the rest in my lunchbox.  I always bring a bottle of water with me, but sometimes I’ll bring almond milk in a mason jar (my cooperating teacher thinks this is so funny).  I also bring cereal in a mason jar because then I can eat it right out of the jar.

Here’s my lunch formula:

Whole grain + protein + vegetable and/or fruit +water +sometimes sweet.

Here are some of my usual lunches:

-Amy’s brand black bean chili is awesome for a quick chili lunch (only second to home-made chili) + almond milk +fruit
-Peanut butter sandwich on whole wheat + carrots and celery with hummus + almond milk
-Vegan cream cheese, tofurky lunch meat, mustard, and alfalfa sprouts, spinach, and/or lettuce on whole wheat + apple + vegan pudding
-My cauliflower/mushroom soup + banana + vegan pudding
-Corn Chex + almond milk + berries/banana + carrots and hummus
-Mixed greens and veggies salad with balsamic vinegar dressing + small container or soup/chili
-Whole wheat pasta with edamame, nutritional yeast, paprika, and olive oil + celery and white bean dip
-Whole wheat pasta and any leftover sauce I might have + banana
This recipe + cucumbers + apple
Today: garlic hummus, cucumber, spinach, and alfalfa sprouts on whole wheat + apple + vegan pudding

So basically, take any whole wheat, protein, veggies and maybe add some fruit/almond milk/sweets.  You’ve got it!