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Friday, November 29, 2013

Our All-Vegan Thanksgiving

I am thankful for my lovely, intelligent, understanding, and kind family. Thanksgivings past have not left me hungry and no one has questioned my lifestyle choices. They uncomplainingly have swapped out chicken broth for vegetable broth, used oil instead of butter and do not make faces at the vegan sides and desserts I supply. I know not everyone is so lucky.
This year my aunt and uncle who usually host Thanksgiving were traveling, so my folks and I went to our friends, Pam and Ed's, apartment. Their niece Dani and Pam's friend and her daughter were also there.
Pam is very involved with Catholic Concern for Animals, and I believe it was she who let me know about the viewing of a Peaceable Kingdom. I'm not positive either Pam or Ed are vegetarians or vegans, but I know they are very open minded and certainly do their best. This year they hosted an entirely vegan Thanksgiving! And, unsurprisingly, everything was delicious.
Cornbread with Earth Balance and apricot jam the morning of while I prepped.

I was in charge of the main dish. At Pam's request, I stuffed two small(ish) (3 lbs or so?) sugar pumpkins. The pumpkins I bought at the farmer's market, and the stuffing was Polenta, (Tofurky) Sausage, and mushroom stuffing from Nava Atlas' Vegan Holiday Kitchen.

 I made the stuffing the night before. Thursday morning I scooped out and pre-baked the pumpkins at 350* for about 45 minutes.

I put the stuffing in, and brought it to Pam and Ed's. We cooked the stuffed pumpkins there for about another 45 minutes, until the flesh could be pierced with a fork.
my parents contributed roasted fennel, leeks and a dessert:

We didn't eat these, but I thought they were so pretty. These are from my mom's tomato plant in their yard.

Pam had prepared a quinoa, black bean, bell pepper, and pea dish as well as a raw, massaged kale salad! Not sure what was on the kale salad but it was really great. Looked like hemp seeds, maybe?

She also made a delicious sweet potato, carrot, and lentil with chipotles stew that I didn't get a separate photo of, but was really delicious and nicely spicy.
my plate:

It's hard to see, but going clockwise from the pumpkin at the top left: pumpkin topped with stuffing, leeks, cranberry sauce brought by Pam's friend, the quinoa dish, kale salad, sweet potato-lentil stew, and roasted fennel. Believe it or not I didn't go back for seconds. This was definitely filling enough.
For dessert, my mom made baked apples which were sooooo good! She put maple syrup, dates, raisins, and walnuts in them and oh mannnnnn they were good. I also baked ginger cookies with raisins, another Vegan Holiday Kitchen recipe, which went well with the warm apples.

They drove me home and I made some tea before going out with a friend for some drinks.
It was a lovely get together - calm and nicely paced. Thank you so much to Pam and Ed for the holiday companionship, conversation and the food!
Leftovers lunch, still goin' strong:

Thumbs up for you, Wak. Peep my sweet gloves my friend Antonia made me! Annnndd does anyone have any ideas on how to use up the rest of the fresh sage and rosemary??
Edited to add photos from Pam:

 And my mom. This is her plate:

Monday, November 25, 2013

SNAX, mostly

 Breakfast: Rising Sun smoothie, cuppa Joe with half Cafe Du Monde coffee + chicory

I love this mug. G and I found two on the streets in Gowanus two years ago. This says Lapin, French for rabbit. The other one said Grenouille - it was a picture of a frog on a green mug but I think it's since been broken.

 After breakfast I went into the city for a Trader Joe's haul. Low Sodium roasted pistachios, fresh herbs for Thanksgiving, dried cranverries, GF brown rice bread, a few snack bars, almond butter (new packaging since its return), unsweetened applesauce, Irish Breakfast tea, and Vanilla & Cinnamon black tea! I used to love that stuff and had forgotten about it! I've been drinking a lot of tea in the evenings, though, so I wanted something I'd enjoy. After this I stopped by the bookstore briefly and went to the Farmer's market (bought two smallish sugar pumpkins for Thanksgiving for $5.25)
Snacks from the haul throughout the day:

              Caramel Nut Brownie Luna Bar. You can trick yrself into thinking it's candy.

For lunch I had made another recipe from Isa Does It, as temperatures were at 27* today. This is Sweet Potato Red Curry with Rice and Purple Kale. (I used green kale I HOPE THAT'S OKAY WITH EVERYONE.)
Swimming in a coconutty sea. Ginger, onions, coconut milk, and red curry paste made this smell amazing as it cooks. It's sweeter and not as spicy as I thought it would be but it's delicious. Plus the texture of kale is great in soups.

                             more snacking. Gala apple from the farmer's market the other day.

As you can see, there was a lot of random handfuls of food to mouth throughout the day so I wasn't super hungry for a proper dinner. I also cooked some chickpeas for the week and popped a couple of those in my mouth, and made a cornbread. Ate some of that right out of the oven, and more of it with cranberry-apple butter and the vanilla cinnamon tea.
"Full as Fuck," I believe they say. Or at least I do.

Friday, November 22, 2013


Leftover pancakes, heated up in the oven. Added Earth Balance and cranberry-apple butter. They tasted like raspberry toaster strudels, if you guys ever used to eat that garbage. Those were the shit when I was a kid - sooo tasty but filled with chemicals. This is preferable.

                                         Later in the day, another Rising Sun smoothie.

                                   Brown rice, collard salad, zucchini, chickpeas, avocado.

Breakfast superfood pudding. Chia seeds, raw vanilla protein powder, spirulina mixed with water and left to sit overnight.

Raw broccoli, brown rice, baked yams, chickpeas, tomato paste, and Braggs. Sort of a random salad but wtf else am I supposed to do with a leftover can of tomato paste?

I made socca the other night! It's a little too salty, but I want to make it again. A lot. It's so easy. And cheap. And filling. This had added rosemary, black pepper, and thyme in it.

Another Isa Does It recipe: Chicky Tuna Salad Sandwiches. I guess chickpeas are going to be the theme of the day (month? year? so cheap!) There are also raw sunflower seeds in the mix! Crazy, right? I KNOW!!! Served open-faced on a slice of gluten-free bread. I didn't want to buy a tomato and have it be sad and pink and mealy, especially after all the amazing ones I ate this summer from the Farmer's market and I don't have any more leafy greens in the house right now! Sad, right? I KNOW! So, no lettuce and no tomato. BUT I mashed half a tiny avocado onto the bread because what doesn't avocado improve? Decent, quick dinner.

More yams for lunch. With zucchini, rice, sunflower seeds, and sundried tomatoes. In tahini, Braggs, and cayenne.

Rice lunch continues. With stir-fried broccoli, onions, and mushrooms. Added red pepper flakes, soy sauce, and ginger after the photo.

Baked a coffee cake for my homie Conrad's birthday. Vegan Brunch recipe, with the jam variation. I swirled about 3 TBs apricot jam into the batter.

Brought it into work; this is what I had for breakfast instead, haha. Overnight oats with vanilla protein powder, cacao nibs, 1/2 a banana, and maybe 1 tsp. chia seeds. Muck muck.

Guess what! More rice! In miso soup. Warm. Nice.
Don't worry, Thanksgiving is coming. The meals will look slightly different soon enough.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Brunch with Isa Does It

...with a lot of help from G.
I don't often eat brunch (because I like to eat quickly and get an early start on my days off) but I love brunchy foodssss. And Isa obviously does too because she comes up with the most amazing stuff for that fabricated meal. I mean, hell, she devoted an entire book to it.
When G and I went through Isa Does It a while back, two recipes (of a, like, 27 item list) that stood out to him were Scrambled Chickpeas and Puffy Pillow Pancakes, even though he always talks smack on pancakes. "I'm a waffle man!" "If it doesn't make you poop it's not food." The photo would have lured anyone in, though, so it's understandable.
We were going to have a DAY on Sunday with brunch and a museum but it was rainy and lazy and we both had stuff we needed to do so we nixed the museum (until another day) in favor of food, because of two options, that is the correct choice.
I cooked the chickpeas when I got up this morning and when G came over, he started on the pancakes. He is good at following directions and actually sifting. I am lazy; I worked on the savory scramble for which you can eyeball ingredients and is difficult to screw up.

Slightly harder to mash than tofu for a scramble, but enough coffee will do ya good. We added spinach, which the recipe doesn't call for.

Hard at woik, dolloping batter. "Don't look at me! Don't look at how much oil I added!" Poor guy, I even turned down the heat on him.
Despite my meddling, G made some picture perfect puffy pillow pancakes:

 my plate:

Earth Balance and maple syrup on the pancakes, a tiny bit of sriracha on the scramble. Rorshach tests in the pancakes. Mimosas would have been nice.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Same Interspersed with City

I did a pretty good job this week of prepping...if I do say so myself. I'd eat the same banana + almond butter breakfast most mornings (sometimes + toast), make two lunches at a time, change things up a little in the middle, have soup for dinner, drink tea to stop snacking, and send myself to bed earlyish. The portioning out of dates and nuts was a big help in not overdoing the snacking as well, and stretched them longer than usual.
Breakfast today, after using up all the bananas, was a pantry breakfast, as well as something really filling so I didn't need to snack at all until lunch:

It ain't pretty but A+ on everything else. Soaked overnight oats with almond butter, coconut flakes and TJ's cranberry-apple butter.

Trains were screwy this morning, so I took the above-ground train. It's a bit longer ride but the view is definitely preferable.

Collard salad, raw sunflower seeds, roasted carrot and rutabaga, sundried tomatoes, zucchini in a tahini sauce.
                      Union Square for lunch, after the skies cleared up from the morning.

Lunch yesterday: cold mung bean noodles, tofu, portabella mushrooms, spinach, and onion with soy sauce, sesame oil, and sriracha.

              Roasted, salted almonds from the bulk bin. I ate about three handfuls of these.

  Quick dinner the other night. Celery sticks, zucchini, carrot sticks, miso-tahini sauce.

The city tonight, back to its cloudy, foggy usual. Before Jon and I walked down to Chinatown and I almost had a pissfit about how hungry I was and yet refused to spend money.

Lunch another day this week: collards, roasted rutabaga + carrot, rice, raw sunflower seeds with Braggs, nooch, and cayenne.

Took a break from the split pea-rutabaga soup for a loaded miso soup. Spinach, mushrooms, rice, onion, carrot, spices.

One little treat for the end of the work week.
Repeats aplenty, but with slight variations and interspersed with new dishes, sort of. Oh what oh what will the next prep day bring for the week? (Especially since I am using up all my rice in magic jars...)