29 August 2011

Sweet Potato and Seitan Chorizo Enchiladas

This has become one of my favorite things to eat. Simply roast sweet potatoes with sweet corn and onions, mash and add seitan chorizo and you have the perfect filling for Vegan enchiladas. In fact, I am making these bad boys tonight for my friend's birthday potluck. I hope she loves them!



I found some "accidentally" Vegan enchilada sauce at Sunflower Markets which made making these a whole heck of a lot simpler. The seitan chorizo recipe I got from 500 Vegan Recipes. They were very tasty but, for me, the texture was a little less than desirable. I think next time I will make the chorizo out of tofu or TVP.



Top with a sprinkle of Daiya cheddar and pair with homemade re-fried beans and Spanish rice. Yum!



(Sorry the photos are poor quality the light in our kitchen is ancient and started to burn out, but we fixed that so hopefully no more crappy images)

21 June 2011

Birthday Images


birthday tattoo


birthday breakkie at 24 Carrots in Chandler, Vegan eggs benedict


Dani and I at my party


Brenna and Jeremy


Brian and Timmy


my Uncle, Sister and her man


Zoey and Josh


Timmy my love!


Bonnie and Camilla doing the Elvis


day after birthday hair

17 June 2011

09 May 2011

Stuffed Mushrooms



Everyone has their very own special way in which they grill portobello mushrooms. Some people choose to simply brush on oil, grill and eat, others add all of the bells and whistles. My favorite way to grill portobellos is with plenty of balsamic vinegar, pepper and olive oil, but while checking out at the grocery store yesterday my friend Petra asked if I was going to stuff my mushrooms. The thought hadn't even crossed my mind and as I left the store a million ideas were running through my noggin. My final decision was based off of my love of mushroom pizza and I quickly began my mushroom stuffing assembly.

First I prepared a bowl of tasty Italian flavored TVP.

1/2 cup dried TVP
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
pinch of salt
pepper to taste
1/3 to 1/2 cup hot water
1/8 tsp liquid smoke
1 1/2 T. tomato paste
1/4 cup shredded Daiya



In a heat safe bowl combine TVP, basil, oregano, salt and pepper. Add hot water to bowl, first starting with 1/3 cup and mix, TVP will thicken and may require more water. You don't want it to liquidy but not too dry either, as you want it to be moist when you grill the mushrooms. Add in liquid smoke and tomato paste then stir until well blended.

Using a spoon take out stem and scrape off ribs inside of mushroom. Chop the stems and mix in with TVP mixture, then stuff those babies! Wrap in foil and put on the grill on high for 10 minutes. Remove the foil and turn heat on grill to medium. Place the mushrooms with stuffing side faced up and sprinkle on Daiya, and cook until cheese is melted. Eat and Enjoy! These little guys taste just like mushroom pizza and are perfect with a crisp summer beer.



Fills 4 medium or 2 large portobello mushrooms.

03 May 2011

Taking on the V-Con Pt. 12


As many of you know three lovely ladies and myself decided to challenge our selves by cooking our way through the Veganomicon, our own Vegan version of Julie and Julia, if you will. It was great fun, but unfortunately didn't last as long as I had hoped. I haven't even looked at the Veganomicon since our last recipe, almost a year ago. Lately I haven't had the expendable income to purchase groceries needed to fulfil new recipes and have been making standards and creating new things from what I have in the house. I have had an enormous amount of lentils in the house due to my love of lentil soup but as the temperature increases my love of soup diminishes (only a little, really) thus I found myself staring at a pound of red lentils and not a single clue on how to consume then. I then remembered the fabulous Snobby Joe's recipe we did last year with red lentils and decided to see if there were anymore creative and delicious recipes with lentils as a main ingredient.

I had only to turn to page 177 and find my favorite meal of all time Lentil Fetoosh, or as called in the Veganomicon "Lentils and rice with caramelized onions and spiced pita crisps" whew, that is a mouthful...of awesomeness! There is a restaurant Timmy and I frequent called Pita Jungle and we tend to order only one thing, the lentil fetoosh salad. Firstly because fetoosh is so much fun to say and secondly because it is the best fucking salad I have put into my mouth. The recipe in the Veganomicon is not spot on but it was close enough for me!


Ingredients:
3 large yellow onions (I used 1 1/2, because three seems like way too much)
3/4 cup olive oil (i drizzled mine on, maybe used 1/3 cup)
1 cup long-grain basmati rice
1 cup red lentils
1 cinnamon stick
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1 1/2 teaspoon cumin

Pre heat oven to 400 degrees

and start slicing your onions into thin rings.

Spread onions our on a deep baking dish and coat with olive oil. Roast in pan and stir often, I checked mine every five minutes. While the onions are roasting bring 4 cups of water to a boil, add rice cinnamon stick, all spice and cumin. Lower heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes, then add lentils. Gently stir in lentils to incorporate and bring to a boil. Once boiling lower the temperature and cook for about 45 minutes.

Gently fluff the lentils and rice when finished then fold in caramelized onions. You can eat the lentils and rice as so, or do what we did, put it over a bed of lettuce and have yourself a plate of lentil fetoosh. We made a lemon dressing similar to the one at Pita Jungle and drizzled that on top of our salad.


along with the salad we enjoyed a marinated bean salad as well. Yummy!

20 April 2011

Earth Day 2011


Please stop by tomorrow at the Vegan booth and receive free goodies!

18 April 2011

Ask A Vegan Pt. 21

Growing up as a girl with a boy's name, I got picked on A LOT. I was called Ricky Ricardo and often asked if I was truly born a female. As an adult it is funny to think that I found these things so hurtful when really they are quite silly, but I also know what it was like being that six year old girl who was ridiculed for her name. For the longest time I wanted to change my name. When I turned 18 I was so happy that I could vote, raise hell and legally change my name to something ore "feminine" but I didn't and I am glad that I grew to appreciate and yes, even like my name. Over time I met other girls with boys' names like, Jeri, Jimmie, Stevie and many more. All of these girls were unique and tough women who all said they thanked their name for that. They too were picked on and had to grow a thick shell which in turn helped them develop into the awesome ladies they are today.

I am always super excited when I meet girls with boys' names, and I was particularly happy last week when I stumbled across a blog written by a Vegan lady with a boy's name, and not just any boy's name, her name is Rikki. Another super rad girl named Rikki who also happens to be Vegan like me? Incredibly radtastic! I decided this Rikki must be cool if she is both named Rikki and is a Vegan, and my hypothesis was spot on! She agreed to be featured in "Ask A Vegan" and her answers are insightful and intelligent. She is doing the Rikki's of the world proud. Check her out!


Name: Rikki Carter
Age: 26
Location: Orem, Utah
Website: read rikkis thoughts & twitter.com/broomhat


How long have you been Vegan?
I have been a vegan for just over a year.

What made you decide to go Vegan?
Like many vegans, I had been a vegetarian for years. The more I learned about the factory farm and food industry and the effects they have on the environment and on health, the harder it became to claim I was an ethical eater while contributing to these industries. After reading the book “The China Study” by Dr. T. Colin Campbell about nutrition and health, while at the simultaneously reading about the benefits of veganism in “Skinny Bitch” by Rory Freedman and Kim Barnouin, I decided to commit to the ‘vegan thing’ for one month and see how I felt, and I have never gone back!

How do you feel health wise with this diet choice?
When I began and committed to a vegan diet for one month, I decided to pay special attention to how my body felt. I could honestly feel the difference that this lifestyle choice made, both internally and externally. Not only did I lose weight, have more energy, healthier skin and hair, I noticed that my attitude became more positive and my confidence rose. I felt good inside and that was reflected outwardly.

Are you open about your Veganism?
If so, are you involved in any activism i.e. protests, leafleting etc…

I am open about my veganism and regularly participate in vegan events. I feel that the best sort of activism though is leading by example. Showing those around that a vegan lifestyle is both functional and rewarding has been far more effective at cultivating change and getting people to examine their own ethics than other actions.

What do your family, friends, co-workers think about your diet?
Those around me have been very supportive of my vegan lifestyle choice and this has made things a lot easier. Having a supportive community is always a plus. In turn, people feel comfortable asking questions about my choices and I happily and confidently answer their inquiries. Many have made changes to their diets, eating less meat or opting for vegan products.

What advice would you give those interested in becoming Vegan?
Educate yourself. Going vegan affects many parts of a person’s life, not just what you eat. That said, really critically think about your personal reasons for choosing veganism. If you can identify those for yourself, it makes sticking to it much easier. Also, enjoy it! Cooking, eating, and shopping vegan can be really fun if you embrace the challenges instead of looking at them as negative things to overcome.


Rikki (on right) and her friend Kaycee from Vegan Machine
Would you eat at Mc Donald’s if they carried a Vegan burger?
I would not! McDonald’s to me represents a lot more than just unsavory food options. Their disregard for both human and animal life is enough to keep me away.

Do you have a Vegan celebrity that you find particularly dashing?
I don’t really pay attention to what celebs eat, but if knowing celebs are doing it helps other make healthy life changes, I’m all for it!

Do you have a favorite Vegan blog or website that you follow?
There are a few that I frequent- My friend Kaycee at Vegan Machine has great recipes and vegan posts that are relatable, easy to make, and delicious. The Vegan Stoner is another favorite. Their recipes are quick and easy and don’t call for ingredients I don’t regularly have on hand, making it easy to whip up their creations in a jiffy! Plus, the drawings are adorable.

What is your least favorite question that you are asked about your diet?
I am happy to answer questions, but when people don’t really think about it before they ask, that is bothersome. When I am eating something and someone proclaims “You can eat that?!” I just want to pull out my sarcasm card, but I try to take the opportunity to educate instead- usually :).

What is your favorite dish?
I am on a quest to find the perfect vegan pizza at a restaurant! The quest continues though…… (oh Rikki I too love pizza, my fav place so far to find Vegan pizza is Whole Foods, they use Daiya and have faux meaty stuff, if ever in Portland Dove Vivi is the place for pizza, they have two Vegan pies and they are over the top!)

What do you typically eat at Thanksgiving?
At Thanksgiving I try to make vegan versions of staple foods to take to events, generally mashed potatoes, desserts, sweet potatoes, even tofurky on occasion. Last year a friend put together a pretty elaborate Vegan Thanksgiving and invited both vegans and non vegans. The food was fantastic and sitting down with a group for the shared experience of eating a vegan meal was accompanied by a pretty unique feeling of community. I would recommend hosting or attending an event like this to anyone and hope to make Vegan Thanksgiving a tradition in my social group.

If I could make you any flavor cupcake in the world what would it be?Cupcakes have never had the appeal to me that they do for so many other vegans. COOKIES on the other hand are the one dessert I can never pass up, the book “Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar” is my bible. So, maybe if I could make a cookie dough cupcake, all would be right in the world. (make a vanilla or chocolate cupcake and drop a ball of cookie dough in the center, then bake. Bake cookies to put on top, or make a cookiedough crust by lining the cupcake wrapper with cookie dough then pouring in cupcake batter. It is fantastic, another favorite I do is Newman's Own peanut butter cookies (similar to Oreo cookies) and put those in the bottom of the cupcake pan and pour batter on top, my grandma loves those!)

Please share your favorite Vegan recipe.
In my family, we have the tradition of eating doughnuts for breakfast on our birthdays. This year, my sister and I made our own vegan doughnuts when my birthday rolled around. We just found the recipe online but here it is-




Vegan Chocolate Glazed Doughnuts
What You Need-
For Doughnuts-
-1 cup non-dairy milk (we used soy)
-1 t lemon juice
-2 t vanilla
-3 T maple syrup
-1/4 c brown sugar
-2 cups wheat flour (we used 1 cup of wheat and 1 of white to diminish the wheaty taste)
-1/4 cup cocoa
-1/2 t salt
-1/2 t baking soda
-1/2 t baking powder
-1/4 c of chocolate chips (chopped fine)

For Glaze-
- 1 c powdered sugar
-1 t vanilla
-1 T maple syrup
-1 T non dairy milk (again, we used soy)


Preheat oven to 350. In a small bowl, whisk milk lemon juice maple syrup, brown sugar, and vanilla until foamy and bubbly. In a large bowl, combine flour, cocoa, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and chocolate chips. Pour wet mix into dry and mix well (mixture will be thick). Roll between hands and shape into doughnuts. (if the dough is a little sticky, put flour on your hands before rolling) Place on greased cookie sheet and bake for 15 minutes. Remove and let cool completely.
While doughnuts are baking, mix glaze ingredients. Once doughnuts are cool, submerge in glaze and place on wire rack to drip, dry and harden.

Makes 9-12 doughnuts

11 April 2011

Quinoa And Sweet Potato Pancakes


Brinner is one of my most favorite meals (breakfast for dinner) it is quick tasty and it is the only time I can really eat waffles, pancakes, faux sausages and hashbrowns. Most big breakfasts are way too big for me, eating that amount of food and carbs first thing in the morning can spell out disaster. A pancake for breakfast usually means I will be returning to bed and wearing my pajamas for the remainder of the day. A normal breakfast for me consists of a banana and a larabar and then a four mile walk. So now you know why I go gaga for brinner. Tim and I had originally planned on having pancakes and a tasty tofu scramble but then we both agreed pancakes were enough.

I wanted to make sweet potato pancakes and was inspired by the Thrive diet book by Brendan Brazier to add quinoa to my pancakes. I cooked up both red quinoa and regular quinoa and added 1/2 cup to my pancake batter, but I think next time I will add more as when I was eating it I kept thinking I wish there was more quinoa in here. I also diced up a handful of medjool dates and tossed those in and once cooked they added a gooey sweetness to the pancakes. I was really bad and just eyeballed the measurements, because there is still need for some improvement but this is what I did and I thought they were fabulous.



1 cup flour
1/4 cup ground flax meal
2 tsp. baking powder
dash salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp cloves
2 cooked medium sized sweet potatoes
1/2 cup cooked quinoa
1 1/2 cups soy milk
2 tablespoons canola oil
4-5 dices medjool dates
1 tablespoon agave nectar


First cook peel and cut your sweet potatoes into cubes then cook. I boiled mine but as an afterthought I wish I had roasted them with some Earth Balance and a bit of brown sugar and maybe some raisins. OOOOOOOHHHHH that sounds good, huh? While those are boiling/roasting cook your quinoa, once cooked set aside to cool. Mix all of your dry ingredients together and set aside. When the sweet potatoes are cooked put into a mixing bowl with agave and mash. Add the oil and soy milk to the sweet potatoes and mix. Once mixed add your dry ingredients and mix until incorporated, do not over mix or you will end up with rubbery IHOP pancakes. Then fold in your quinoa and diced dates.




Heat up your griddle and go pancake crazy!I hope you like these, I know Timmy did he ate six or seven of these bad boys, which is really only two restaurant sized pancakes.

24 March 2011

Day at the Park


Last week Willow and I discovered a wonderful little park in my neighborhood and in the last week have gone there four times to play, feed the ducks, walk the dogs and check out turtles. This park is pretty small but packs quite a tranquil and serene landscape into such a tiny are, and since it is in the middle of a neighborhood, it is very quiet. Willow climbs all over the slide and runs around the playground like a crazy and I get to sit and chill with the dogs and a book, how awesome is that? I have been babysitting Willow for the last two weeks and we have had some fun adventures, but the park has been the best so far!


crappy cell phone pic


Willow, isn't she the cutest?


Ellie watching Willow on the swing set


Adelaide being adorable per her usual

I seriously think this will be my new hangout. If you need to find me, I will be at the park eating oranges, possibly blogging, tanning my feet and reading feminist novels. Timmy and I went here on a Saturday and it was packed, so I think I will stick to weekdays for my quiet time.

22 March 2011

Cupcakes And Art

This last weekend was pretty darn amazing. I made cupcakes for two very different but equally fantastic art events. The first was Friday night celebrating the second anniversary of Vanity On Mill and the incredible artist opening for local Arizona artist Jared Aubel.
Here are some photos from that event:

Bloods VS Crips Deer by Jared Aubel


Endless Bummer by Jared Aubel


baby cupcakes made by me!


the most amazing cupcake stand provided by the Cake Hole Poject

Then on Saturday I was off to Modified Arts in Phoenix for phICA's inagural event with Brazilian artist Laerte Ramos. After the event Ted Decker from phICA and Kim Larkin from Modified Arts were kind enough to have Timmy and I out for drinks and tasty hors d'oeuvres, as Kim is Vegan also we were able to nosh on some tasty foods. We got a chance to hang with Laerte and learn about his life in Brazil and what things are to come from this extremely talented artist.


Arma Branca by Laerte Ramos


Ceramic work by Laerte Ramos


more cupcakes!

11 March 2011

Eat Yer Veggies


Last night's dinner was all about the leafy and green, the crunchy and bitter and with just the hint of slightly sweet. I used to hate salads, if I saw a salad come near my face I was bound to kick it and yell, "Vegans eat more than salads, gosh!" but that is when I realized salad was more than shredded carrots, iceberg lettuce and gross tomatoes. Salad can be an exotic flavor combo so intense I find myself skipping dessert because my salad creations have met every craving my crazy head desires.


Along with my taste-tastic salad I roasted up some beets, carrots, onions and garlic. I kept the skins on both the beets and carrots because we all know, fiber is where it is at, right? The beets were only slightly sweet and the carrots caramelized a bit making for an amazing dish that I think I will revisit tonight.

For fun, here is the nutritional break-down of my dinner:

Salad

Red leaf lettuce- good source of Vitamin A
Kale- rich in calcium and Vitamin K, good source of beta carotene
Spinach- full of vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin K, magnesium, manganese, folate, betaine, iron, vitamin B2, calcium, potassium, vitamin B6, folic acid, copper, protein, phosphorus, zinc, niacin, selenium and omega-3 fatty acids. WOAH!
Tomatoes- high in Lycopene
Cucumbers- with skin on high in potassium and Vitamin E
Golden Raspberries- high in antioxidants and fiber, and help regulate special lady time
Blueberries- also full of antioxidants and can reduce inflammation
Edamame- rich in carbohydrates, protein, dietary fiber, omega-3 fatty acids and micro nutrients, particularly folic acid, manganese and vitamin K

Now that is a vitamin packed salad!

Roasted Veggies

Beets- contain certain unique pigment antioxidants present offer protection against coronary artery disease and stroke, lower cholesterol levels in the body and have anti-aging effects.
Carrots- high in vitamin-A, Beta Carotene and fiber
Garlic- is shown to lower risk or some cancers
Onions- believed to have anti-inflammatory, anti cholesterol, anticancer, and antioxidant properties
Olive Oil- can reduce the risk of coronary heart disease
Sea Salt- eh...not that good for you but it does have trace minerals, and we ladies love trace minerals, I think.

Pretty sweet, huh?

08 March 2011

Busted!

I should really consider myself lucky, as this is the first pair of glasses I have broken in over five years, and considering how I am not very careful with my face, it is almost a miracle! Sunday evening my good friend Jinia was trying to strip the green from my hair and in walked Willow (the most awesome and adorable five year old on the planet) and I hear this crazy loud crunch and realize...holyfuckingshit there go my glasses. I am incredibly blind and the thought of even going five minutes without my glasses is a most horrifying though indeed. Luckily Jinia is super crafty and super glued my specs until I can get a new pair.

As silly as it is, I ordered the exact pair of frames because I am a big Paul Frank dork and because these glasses are over the top rad, right? You've seen 'em, you know how cool they are. Anywho, I am hoping to be one-hundred percent visually repaired in about a week or so.


super awesome Paul Frank glasses

Do any of you have glasses? If so, what kind of crazy things have happened to yours? I have heard of them falling in toilets, being run over by bicycles and the like. Please share your story so I can tell Willow, and hopefully she won't feel so bad. (:

Rikki Cupcake

03 March 2011

Happy Birthday Timmy!!!

My sweet babycakes is having a pretty monumental birthday tomorrow, though his age is increasing he still has the looks of a mere babe. I was going to make some silly over-the-hill decorations for him but since he is such a stud and the only thing old and rickety about him is his once broken arm and his inability to eat without choking I think I will have some lighter, happier decorations. I love this man so very much and cannot wait to share in this special day!


this is how one will typically see Tim, with chihuahua on lap and usually drinking wine.


See, he is really just an adult sized kid! He actually sat on this kicked his feet up and and instantly fell off. Hilarious!