Friday, March 30, 2012

Homemade Whole-Wheat Naan

There are very few things I really, truly miss as a vegan. But naan bread is hands-down one of them. We order (or more recently, make) Indian food at least once a month (and sometimes it's more like once a week!) The past couple of times I've been so jealous of the buttery, fluffy, oh-so-delicious-to-soak-up-the-curry naan my husband gets. This time, I planned ahead and made my own vegan version. And I must say, I was quite pleased with myself with my delicious outcome ;-)

Freshly made, buttery-tasting, light, soft, perfect naan...

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Strawberry Fresca

The thing about living in the Bay area is, when it's cold in most of the rest of the country, it's (relatively speaking) warm here. And, when my East coast friends are talking about hot sticky weather in August, it's still the same temperature it was here that it was when they were talking about how cold they were. But when my other-coasters are rejoicing about the first signs of Spring and the amazingness of those first gorgeous warm days after a long winter, I get jealous. Especially when it's been raining for what seems like weeks on end here.

Enter this lovely refreshing drink, and we can all pretend it's the first day of Spring! No matter what the weather looks like outside...

Monday, March 26, 2012

Wheat Berry Fruit and Vegetable Salad

This is a slight variation on my Farro Fruit & Veg Rosemary Salad. Equally delicious! I love using the fresh grapes in this dish. Wheat berries are aptly named, I think, since they do remind me of little hearty berries (like a baby cranberry of sorts!). They go great in this dish (although so would other great grains!)

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Strawberry Pancakes

Not gonna lie, my top fruit-filled pancake choices are usually banana (#1) or blueberry (#2). But I was inspired by Chocolate Covered Katie's strawberry shortcake pancakes to try out a different pancake version, and OH MY were these guys yummy...

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Vitamin C Pie!

I never get sick. At least, I say I never get sick. This week, after coming back from a long weekend away with too little sleep, I felt it coming on. I downed one of those vitamin C smoothie drinks, along with some Cold-Eeze pills, but it was useless. Hellloooo cold/flu from hell. The last time I was sick (about 3 years ago), I remember my sister giving me kiwis, because they contain more vitamin C than an orange. And then I thought of this fruit-filled raw pie, and how refreshing it would be to soothe my sore throat, and I was on my way to kiwi pie heaven...

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Flat Noodles with Pickled Vegetables

This meal was a total winner in our house. We had my fruit sorbets for dessert too, and my husband said to me, "Ok, you can put on your blog that this is husband-approved. I loved this meal." Yep, husband (and vegan) approved. And completely easy to make, too!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Chocolate Dessert Cups with Avocado-Mint Ice Cream

This dessert is like the frozen version of a thin mint. I was completely curious when I saw this post for avocado mint icecream- avocado and mint?! - and then thought, what with all the thin-mint recipes going around, and after making my vegan mini creme cakes, how good it would taste in a chocolate crust. And these little chocolate mint cups were born!

Friday, March 16, 2012

Vegan Cremecakes

My husband hates it when vegan foods use words like "cheese" or "steaks" - and, I guess I understand. Don't promise something that you aren't... so, I'm calling these mini vegan "cheesecakes" creme cakes! That, and cashew-or-tofu-based cakes just doesn't have such a good ring to it ;-) I included these in my Vegan Valentine's Dinner Party menu post, sans recipe.... so it's about time for the recipe, right?!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Copycatin' and Adaptin'

I love finding, and being inspired by, new recipes online. I used to have a recipe "to-do" list link on this site, but more recently, I've been using Pinterest as a way to keep track of all those recipes I want to try. I've been making a lot of those recipes recently; the above is just a sampling! For recipes I've adapted a bit, I'll post more about later. But for now I wanted to share some delicious great finds!

Clockwise, from top left: SMBP's Sweet Potato Avocado Soup, Hobby & More's Aloo Gobi, a re-purposed version of CCK's deep dish cookie pie, Fork & Bean's better cheddar, and Giro Vegando in Cucina's Avocado Mint Ice cream, in my own crust.

For notes on these dishes, read on...

Monday, March 12, 2012

Citrus Salad

Got a case of the Mondays? This vibrant, refreshing salad should snap you out of it! It makes for a great reviving lunch; or, it could even be a breakfast salad. The citrus flavors are great for waking you up!

This was my first time using kumquats, so I was pretty excited to satisfy my veggieosity and test them out in this delicious salad...

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Corn Chowder

I used to love clam chowder, though I never did really want the clams in there... I just liked the creamy soup in a bread bowl. After my yummy creamed spinach, I re-purposed some of the leftovers in creamed peas and corn, and then that eventually morphed into this soup after I was inspired by this post for vegan chowder. This recipe takes are a few of my favorite things, veganized!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Easy Fruit Sorbets

Don't have a Vitamix, but craving icecream or a low-fat frozen yogurt? Never fear, easy vegan frozen dessert is near! I have a regular-old Cuisinart blender and food processor, and this sorbet came out perfectly, and completely satisfies the "I scream for ice cream" desire. Plus, these are low fat, pretty low-cal desserts. And ridiculously easy to make!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Vegan Creamed Spinach and Roasted Cauliflower Slices

Creamed spinach is one of those things I loved as a vegetarian, and my sister-in-law always used to get a completely decadent version from a gourmet grocery store every year for Christmas. But, it's the type of dish that makes you feel kind of gross afterwords; it's rich, creamy, and delicious going down, but heavy and thick sitting in your stomach. That's not my favorite kind of food; my favorite food is food that makes me feel GOOD after eating it, but that's still delicious and satisfying. So I decided to take that creamed spinach and make it much healthier and vegan!

This vegan creamed spinach has a tofu base, so you can have it as a side or a meal; but it also uses a somewhat "creamy, cheesey" vegan white sauce, so it still tastes a little decadent. I paired it with a version of these "cauliflower steaks," which made for a delicious, healthy meal!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Homemade Chocolates with Sugar Filling

Every week there's at least one food picture I find online that makes me say, "I HAVE to make that!" These Easter Egg Peppermint Patties were it this week. I thought it'd be fun to try my hand at making my own chocolates- specifically, my own peppermint patties! But, as I tend to do with most of my desserts, I made a few different variations...

Sunday, March 4, 2012

White Sangria, Vegan Dinner Party #4, and More!

It was gorgeous here this weekend - blue skies, sunny, and incredibly warm. Saturday was one of those days where you feel like it should be a rule to be outside. It inspired this easy, spring/summer themed dinner party menu - which, other than the homemade chocolates, was a snap to to throw together last-minute.

Beverage: White Summer Sangria (see notes below)
Appetizer/Starter: (made by my man!) Caprise salad (not pictured above, but it was beautiful, with yellow & red vine ripe tomatoes. Made vegan by using avocado instead of mozzarella)
Main: Wheat berry salad with roasted delicata squash, grapes, asparagus, apricots, walnuts and rosemary (a variation of my farro fruit & veg salad; for a quicker cooking time, use farro or quinoa instead of wheat berries)
Desserts: Homemade sorbets and chocolates (posts coming soon!)

...and More: Getting to Know You/Me

This weekend I was tagged in a little "getting to know you" game by another food blogger, Sunday Morning Banana Pancakes (SMBP). If you haven't already, you must check out her blog, her pics and recipes are wonderful.

I have to admit, whenever I get chain letters or forwards that promise bad luck if you don't send them along, I cringe. Sometimes I do them because I feel guilty; most of the time I pray that I don't upset the voodoo Gods and I delete the message. But, this was a little different (and without the threats of bad luck of course!), and reading other blogs, I have often thought, "this person seems like someone I'd be friends with in real life." SMBP is one of those people, so when she tagged me in this little getting to know you game, I figured why not?! But don't hate me for altering the rules slightly! ;-)

Friday, March 2, 2012

Great grains... and OH Farro!

Dear Quinoa,

It's not you, it's me. I will always think you are a great grain. You make a delicious meal with roasted veggies, have protein and fiber, and are so much more exciting than rice. You can even be red or white. But... I have to be honest.... I've met someone else. His name is Farro, and I can't get enough of him. I'm sorry, but Farro is my new favorite grain....