Thursday, 31 October 2013

Cold rolls!

Ok, so I've been snacking on cold rolls lately and realized that not everyone knows how to make these awesome snacks/apps.


- Rice paper 
- Leafy green (Spinach, lettuce, kale etc)
- Veggies (Cucumber, carrot, avocado, sprouts, peppers etc.)
- Herbs (Cilantro, Mint, Parsley etc)

The beauty is that you could really do anything! 

I did kale, red pepper, carrot, cucumber and avocado.

To make it easy I had a bowl of pre-prepped veggies in the fridge. On the stove you'll need a pan with about an inch and a half of water and set the element to just above low. The water should be warm but not too hot to touch with bare hands.

Put one wrap at a time in the water for about a minute.

When it's ready it should be really soft and pliable, like this:

Let it drip dry for a second and then lay flat on a cutting board. Then load on your veggies:

Fold in the corners over what will be the "ends" of the roll. Then fold one of the two remaining sides and roll into "spring roll" shape. And you're done!

The rice paper is sticky so you don't have to seal with anything. Then slice in half and serve with your fave dip! I used a Szechuan  peanut sauce. 


Sunday, 27 October 2013

Spicy Bean Flautas!

Ok, so tonight's dinner goes in the top ten for awesome. It is flavorful, healthy, quick and DELICIOUS. 

I wanted to make taquitos, but from recipes I was looking at they were mostly fried and the baked ones seemed a little bland. So I made my own recipe, as I often do. It most closely resembles Mexican Flautas. This is a nice spicy one but you could easily modify to make it less so.

- 1 package of gluten free rice wraps (You can use any wrap, we just wanted to try these)
- 1 can green Mexican chili sauce
- 1 can refried beans with green chilies
- 1 can corn
- 1 can black turtle beans
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro 

Put all ingredients in a bowl and mix well.

Then spoon the mixture into the middle of a wrap and roll tightly, leaving the ends open. Put the Flautas on a parchment lined paper and spray with olive oil (I use a Misto) and then bake at 350 for about 25 minutes. I also added some vegan cheese to the top but you could add it inside if you'd like. 

Once they're out of the oven they should look more or less like this. 

To serve, I cut the it in half and added a dollop of Tofutti sour cream and sprinkled that with dried cilantro flakes.

I suggest you try these RIGHT NOW they're that good.  


Vegan What?!

Ok, so one thing that seems to go hand in hand with a vegan lifestyle is overall health and well-being. 

We all know the ethical reasons that people go vegan for, and it's pretty obvious the natural health benefits from conscious eating (even regardless of whether or not it's vegan). But what about other stuff that we do on a daily basis that's unhealthy? 

When I think of "all natural" products and the people who use them I automatically picture the "granola hippy" reeking of patchouli and sporting bloodshot eyes while reciting "namaste".  All stereotypes aside, I think they're onto something! 

Deodorant. Anti-Perspirant. Necessary evils. But do they have to be evil? A lot of conventional deodorants are a chemical cocktail and really not good for you. (Namely the aluminum) But what's the alternative? A healthy blend of patchouli and B.O? NO THANK YOU.

I started researching for natural deodorants that won't leave me feeling paranoid that every bad odour I smell, or think I smell, is me.  And that's where I found this recipe for a natural deodorant that claims to really work. It can be found here:  

I followed the directions and added some tea tree oil (it's a natural anti-bacterial agent) and now to test it! But not me! Haha 

My lovely works from home, and thus has limited human interaction most days which makes her the perfect guinea pig for this experiment. It's also works because she exercises throughout the day, thanks to the "7 Minute Workout" app so that will test its stink-fighting ability. 

The final product looks like this:

It's still solidifying, but basically starting tomorrow Faith will rub a pea sized amount under each armpit, and go about her daily routine. When I get home from work, I'll do the sniff test and report back.

Stay tuned!! 

Saturday, 26 October 2013

Banana Pancakes

It's a pancake kind of morning. And nothing could be easier than these! 

-1 ripe banana
-2 tbsp coconut flour
-1 "egg" (I used a flax egg)
-1/2 tsp baking powder

That's it! You can add spices like cinnamon, nutmeg or cardamom if you'd like. I just did mine plain. 

Smash the banana until it's pretty mangled, then add in the egg and whisk until it's frothy and weird looking. Then add your dry ingredients, mix well and you're done. 

You can use coconut oil or earth balance in the pan, I used earth balance. Then cook 2-3 minutes on each side and you're done! Top with crushed walnuts and agave syrup and you're golden!

Bon apetit! 

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Butternut Squash Ravioli!

Ok, so tonight I didn't make the soup I thought I'd make. I got home later than expected and instead picked up a Pho soup for my sickly wife. The kiddo got some other leftovers thrown at her so I could start on something I've been excited about all day. Butternut squash ravioli.

Probably one of my fave pasta dishes, which isn't saying much since I'm not a big pasta fan anyway. Regardless, what makes this my fave dish is the combination of savory, sweet and spicy. What's spicy you ask? 

Candied habanero pecans! 

To make these, set the oven to 375. While its warming up get two bowls ready. One full of water and one with your spice mixture. I used brown sugar and habanero powder. (I bought this ages ago and use it for EVERYTHING!)

Put the pecans in the water and then one at a time dip them top and bottom in the powder and lay evenly on a parchment lined cookie sheet. Repeat until your left eye twitches and the sheet is full. 

Then bake for about 5 minutes. They will bubble and look totally gnarly, but don't fret. Once they've cooked and cooled carefully pick each one up and place on "clean" parchment paper. I transfer them to one side and then fold the paper in and use the back. Once they're cooled, jar them and pretend that it was easy. 

Now on to the pasta. First the ravioli shell!

Add 3 cups of semolina flour, 6 tsp of olive oil, 1 & 1/2 cups of room temp water and a dash of salt. Mix the dough and when it's done wrap in a tea towel and set aside for 30 minutes. 

While you're waiting on that make your filling, or the guts as I like to call it. I cheated and had pre-cut butternut squash. Few things anger me like trying to cut up a whole squash. Then add onions and carrots and boil. Once they're boiled, drain and immersion blend the heck out of it. Then in a small pan add some olive oil, minced garlic and nutmeg. Once it's all cooked nicely add into the butternut mix and stir. Now your guts are done! 

They should look like this:

Now back to the dough. Unwrap it and roll it out on a well floured surface. Then use a cookie cutter, or well floured cup edge to cut your ravioli.  I used a scalloped edge cookie cutter for my shape. 

It should look like this:

Once the sheet is done, get a roll of tin foil and some vegetable spray handy. This will be your friend/nemesis for the next hour and a half. Break off a piece of tinfoil about 8 inches long. Spray a "line" of vegetable oil. Take one of your shapes, add a small spoonful of guts, put a top on, crimp the edges with a fork and voila! You have your first ravioli. Now place it on the veggie spray and repeat until suicidal, or until all of the dough and guts are gone. You will need a new sheet of tin foil every 3 pieces. The pecans don't look so bad now, do they? DO THEY?! Sorry. It's been a long night. 

If you've managed to stay with me, your pasta should look like this:

Wrap the pasta up nicely, don't give into the urge to smash it to the ground. Just place it gently stacked into the freezer and let it freeze. (Even if you do wish it would burn in hell instead.) 

I digress...

Now you have pasta! All that's missing is a simple tomato basil sauce. I didn't make that. But in theory to construct the most delicious meal follow these steps:

1. Boil pasta until it floats. Then strain.
2. Top with tomato basil pasta sauce.
3. Add some spiced candied pecans.
4. Die and go to heaven.

No clever sign off, I'm just out. Toodles!

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

A little spelt goes a long way...

I am so excited about tonight's dinner I can barely contain myself. 

I bought a pre-made spelt dough ball, which comes around the size of a softball. I had a hankering for a nice baked flatbread and after slicing off the right size and making flatbread there was tons more leftover. Naturally, I thought CALZONES!! 

For the flatbread, I used a wooden rolling pin to get it to the size I wanted and then added some matchstick sweet potato and hand torn baby kale. I used a silicone brush to add some olive oil and seasoning and then topped with caramelized onions and some sea salt. 


Then the calzone. I rolled out the remaining dough into a large "circle". I spread some pesto, topped with baby kale and sliced roasted red peppers, then some vegan mozzarella and more kale. Sealed it up and brushed with olive oil.


I'm off to enjoy the fruits of my labour now. Toodles!!! 


Falafel can rarely go wrong in my books. Last night I wanted one after the gym so I made some garlic hummus, spread it generously on a whole grain wrap, topped it with baby kale and cukes, smashed on a few baked falafels, drizzled some tahini and hot sauce and OM NOM NOM!!! 

Sometimes, it ain't pretty but it hits the spot!


Monday, 21 October 2013

Coconut Mini-Loaves...

Ok, so I saw a recipe for coconut bread and was intrigued. It came from the same website as the mango chutney. (

4-Cups Plain Flour
2 tsps Baking Powder
½ tsp Salt
3-Cups Grated Coconut
¾ Cup Caster Sugar
1 tsp  Vanilla Extract
1  Egg (beaten)
1-Cup Milk

Preheat oven for 375, mix dry ingredients, then add wet. Bake for 50 minutes and voila!

It was not a vegan recipe, calling for milk and eggs. I substituted almond milk and a "flax egg" for the real deal. I also subbed coconut flour and coconut sugar for regular flour and sugar. Here is the result. 

It is a pretty dry loaf, coconut flour tends to be very "absorbent" and trying to take that into consideration I almost tripled the almond milk. (I halved the overall recipe and still used 3 cups of milk.)

The outside is crunchy and the inside is very...hrmmm. Kind of like a dry scone. All in all I'd give them about a 5/10. My original plan was to slather it in jam anyway, so once I did that they were a solid 7/10. (I used Crofter's Superfruit Blend.) 

I might give them another go with non-coconut flour. But not any time soon. Now I need homes for these loaves! Who loves coconut, huh? :)

Saturday, 19 October 2013

Mango Chutney!

I was flip-flopping between chutney or pickle, but went with chutney because the recipe seemed to have the nicest spices... I found it on this website:

It smelled wonderful while simmering, even though it didn't look that nice necessarily. 

One or two of the mangoes I purchased were on the sour side, but I'm hoping that all of the tamarind, raisin and date sweeten them up. 

Normally I wouldn't mind too much except that these particular preserves have a destiny to fulfil. There is a woman named Cassandra who works at a store that I often find myself at. 90% of the time that I'm there I am cranky, distracted and hangry. Until I see her! 

She embodies what ALL customer service agents everywhere in the world should aspire to be. She is not just delightful, she's helpful! She knows where everything is, has a smile that's contagious and an energy that can permeate any amount of negative funk. I now find myself looking for her while I'm there. 

I may have promised her mango pickle, not mango chutney, but somehow I suspect she'll forgive me. 


Heirloom Tomato Chow-Chow!

Holy. Mackerel.

So, we all remember the BEAUTIFUL heirloom tomatoes my friend Nancy bestowed upon me. Let me refresh your memory...


I made a brine of:
  • 4 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 2 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoon dry mustard
  • 2 tablespoon turmeric
  • 4 tablespoon pickling spice
  • 2 tablespoon habanero pepper powder
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 4 pounds firm green and red heirloom tomatoes, cut into quarters
  • 5 medium onions, diced
  • Once you start boiling the brine, wow. Delicious! 

You can find the full recipe online at Food Network, but I changed theirs a bit.

I have never canned before, so I made a few novice mistakes. I didn't wipe the rims before putting the lids on. Who knew my messy ways could actually hinder the process? Oh well. Once I re-did that step (ahem, following instructions) they sealed within 10 minutes. Hooray!

They're now sitting on the counter cooling and I am SO EXCITED!

I had a bit that didnt fit in the jars, so naturally I taste tested. WHOA MAMA. The tart taste of tomato hits you first, followed by a kick in the ass from the habanero and then it finished with the sweet sugar taste.


You should too :)

And now, Mango Pickle... 

Breakfast of Champions!

Ok, so today I have a LONG day of canning ahead of me. I made my brine last night and its been sitting- so in a few hours I'll be ready to start my mango pickle. 

This is how I have justified a GIANT delicious breakfast of Curry Tofu Scramble w/Sweet Potato Hash.

Not only will this fuel me for the entire day, but it is so easy to make!

Chop some peppers and onion. Heat a pan with a bit of oil/butter/margarine etc. Then once the veggies are almost done, throw in a spoonful of curry paste, stir and let simmer for about 2 minutes. Then cut in some silken tofu for the scramble and DONE! 

While that was happening I put some sweet potato hash in the oven with some olive oil, sea salt and a touch of garlic chili powder. 


Thursday, 17 October 2013

Vegan "Caramel" Apples...

Ok, so tonight I had zero motivation to cook anything. Like, nada. Zip. Zilch.

So the best thing to do? Make something that takes less than 30 minutes, is one dish or less and is not a pain in the ass.

That's why I chose to make the caramel apples. The caramel is actually a mix of:

- Dates (1/4 cup)
- Coconut Oil (2 tbsp)
- Cinnamon (a splash)
- Raw Agave (a squirt)
- Water

Throw it in a blender and voila. Dippable, pourable, crack. 

The recipe calls to roll it in crushed nuts but seeing as these are for a friend whose daughter can't eat nuts (and I have apparently run out of crushed toffee like I promised! Gah) I used chocolate sprinkles. Which may or may not be vegan. I didn't look because I'm not eating them. Ha! 

It also calls for drizzled chocolate on top, but you can skip back to the beginning for that. I'm tired and I didn't want to. :)

They will look better once they've hardened, and I will definitely try again with nuts and drizzled chocolate- but for tonight, this lazy Thursday- here you go! 

Cheers all ya'll! 

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Guyanese Conkies!

Ok, so I wasn't actually really excited to make these. I didn't think I liked them based on the ingredients. Pumpkin, corn flour, lard- no thanks!

But I absolutely love and adore my father in law, and he requested them. Like any other recipe, I veganized and made my own judgement on the recipe. Here's how it all played out, more or less:

Pumpkin Purée (1 cup)
Corn Flour (1 cup)
Vegetable Shortening (1 tbsp)
Black Pepper (1 tsp)
Nutmeg (1.5 tbsp)
White Sugar (1/4 cup)
Brown Demerara Sugar (1/4 cup)
Shredded Coconut (1/4 cup)
Coarse Sea Salt (1 tsp)
Seedless Sultana Raisins (1 cup)
Water - until dropping consistency. About 1 cup. 

Ok, so it all goes in a bowl, stir it up and voila. Just keep adding water until it is thick enough to shape on the leaf. Too runny and it won't steam properly. Too dry and it won't have the desired "pudding" like texture.

I'm growing fond of steaming things in banana leaves. And not just because I have millions of them to use. It is just so much fun. Like opening a present every time!!

Here's how they turned out! I had a taste and I must say- DE-LISH! 

They have a moist cakey taste to them. I want to say like bread pudding, but I can't remember for sure. 

What's next on the agenda? Maybe vegan "eggs" Benny! Stay tuned! 

Touché Fall, Touché...

What I wanted for dinner was a BBQ veggie burger and (cauliflower) "buffalo wings". What I REALLY wanted was a taste of Summer back! I think Fall had a point to prove because this was a #fail!! 

Veggie burgers aren't my fave- but they're a damn good vessel for all kinds of delicious stuff; jalapeño hummus, spinach, zucchini relish, honey mustard, tomato, pickles. YUM! 

I would have taken a picture of it, but I ate it before that could happen. I'm not sorry. I'll do it again.

I used the recipe for cauliflower "buffalo wings" off of the PETA website. I'm willing to give other variations a shot but honestly, this one was BLECK! 

I think I've found my first "Never Again" recipe. 

First of all, the batter. It was crunchy outside  but wet and spongy inside. And then when I added the hot sauce it just got wet and spongy on the outside. The overall flavour of the dish was good but the texture was like...I don't even know what to compare it to. Maybe a wet dish sponge. 

They did look tasty though...

Oh well. I guess you can't win them all. 

I'm onto some Conkies now! Wish me luck!! 

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Tricks of the trade...

For me, one of the most important rules about being vegan is being prepared. Or else it's really easy to fall into fast food, packaged food or non-vegan foods. It's not too hard to justify burritos when you're hangry. 

To avoid being in a bind, I try to do the following:

1. Prep ahead of time. For example, the sweet potato hash is a great side dish for dinner on a weeknight because it only takes 15 minutes in the oven. (@425) But shredding a sweet potato can feel daunting, and the clean up sucks. I shred them ahead of time and just refrigerate until I need it. Then, I just open the container, grab a handful, toss with sea salt and olive oil and voila. 

Spread it on a parchment lined baking sheet before cooking and watch the edges around the 10 minute mark.

I paired this with a wrap for tonight's dinner. Truthfully, I was so hungry I didn't take a pic of the wrap because I devoured it. But it was a whole grain tortilla with:
-Guacamole (home made)
-Spinach (organic)
-Sprouts (home grown)

I felt a little snacky after dinner, perhaps it was the knowledge that I have 1,800 loads of laundry to do (ALWAYS! But that's another blog...) so I had a small bowl of (unknown flavour) Kashi cereal, dry. (They're snack bowls and hold about 1/2 a cup)

Now I'm onto laundry (Only 1,798 left!) but I'll be back. With fresh clean sheets and Conkie! 


Sunday, 13 October 2013


Everyone seems to be chirping about what they're thankful for, so I've decided to follow suit. 

I'll do this in point form to make it as painless as possible. 

📌My family. This includes my beautiful wife and daughter who love me every minute of every day, even when I'm a little squirrelly. 

📌My mother and father, my sister and brother in-law and my precious nephews who make me laugh like no others. 

📌My grandfather, whom I'm lucky to still have in my life, though admittedly I don't prioritize him the way I should. 

📌My mum and father in law. They get an extra special shout out. Not only because most people have so many complaints about their in laws, but because mine are just incredible human beings. At Thanksgiving my mum makes a separate vegan meal just for me. A MEAL, not just a dish. The unconditional love I get from mum and dad is in direct competition with my birth folks ;)

📌My pets! Maya the dog, Bronson and Tang the cats. The happiness that they give me fills my heart. 

📌My friends! Most people are lucky to have a few good friends. I feel like I have ten time more than anyone else. And you're all top notch. TOP. NOTCH. 

I just inhaled my vegan spread and I'm full and nappy. But I'll leave you with the vision of love that I'm blessed to see every morning when I wake (minus the cats and kid who are off screen)

Happy Thanksgiving!! 

Friday, 11 October 2013

Hot Tamale!

Ok, so the lovely Jaime came over and helped me make tamales. By "helped" I mean she drank red wine and talked me out of bad ideas. Or at least tried to. In not very good at listening or taking direction. Which is why I now have a massive vat of corn dough leftover. I should have halved the recipe. Dangit! 

Anyhow, after making the filling and then the dough, it was time for the pain in the ass banana leaves. I searched all over the place for corn husks but everywhere was sold out. Fack. So I googled and got banana leaves as a substitute. 

The banana leaves are a pain in the ass and this better be worth it! Good lord. Each one is 3 feet long and frozen in a Z fold. Before they can be used they need to be cleaned and soaked in hot water. 

I was having trouble with them splitting, which was apparently entertaining to watch and entirely my fault. I'm not a gentle cook, obviously. Smashy Smashy! 

I loaded the steamer and set the timer for just over an hour.  I did an hour and change because I wanted to be sure they were cooked through even though the recipe only calls for an hour.

Once they were done we sampled one plain and with taquiero sauce. Tomorrow I'll try it with the sauce and vegan sour cream. I bet it will be amazing! 

The finished product!!! It's like opening a Christmas present! 

Pumpkin Spice Rolls!

And oh man are they delicious!

The kiddo has no school today, it's a PD day. I think that may stand for "Painful and Delirious". Or maybe "Painkillers and Dilaudid". But today has been a good day, so far. 

I am quite proud of myself, and expect that you all should be, too. I didn't yell, screech or twitch once. NOT ONCE.

And we are baking up a storm!

We started with the pumpkin spice rolls, which are basically cinnamon rolls but with cardamom and other spices in a pumpkin pastry. It called for pumpkin pie spice but I didn't have that so we improvised. Making dough is my least favourite thing EVER to do. Surgery might even be ahead of it but thankfully I have child labour! And she LOVES getting filthy so it's a win win. 

Once the dough was made they were actually pretty easy to make. Spread, slice and bake. Presto! 

Then since we had pumpkin left over we decided to make a pumpkin pie. The kiddo was extra excited by this since she is the only one in our house who likes it. She has asked about 20 times, "So I get the WHOLE pie?! Really?!" Yes BB, really.

Now we started with something I've been really excited to try. CINNAMON RAISIN BAGELS!! Oh man. I have been putting it off because bread making always seems like such a chore to me. It's not nearly as difficult as I had thought, at least so far. 

I don't have a fancy KitchenAid countertop mixing stand, but as mentioned before, I have child labour. Which is actually better, tbh. I set the timer and she worked that dough for the required 5-7 minutes and then again when we added the cinnamon and raisins. She didn't start complaining until I chortled while taking a picture. 

The fruits of her labour! 

I think that once the bagels are done I might call it a day. Although I still have to make a mango cake to bring into my inlaws. And I did buy new cake pans, so maybe I'll make something in them. 

I think I'm addicted!!

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Vegan Fudge...

Ok, so I made the fudge.

It is dangerously easy to make. I almost wish it was harder, or more complicated. Because something tells me that this is going to be my "go to" dessert now. Move over stuffed dates! There's a new crack in town...

The ingredients are simple.

  • 1/2 cup virgin coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder (or raw cacao powder)
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup (or agave nectar)
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

  • That's it. That's all. Throw it in a blender and you're practically done. I added crushed walnuts at the end. Then spread it on a saran-lined cookie sheet and threw it in the freezer. Voila! Rich, melt in your mouth fudge!

    Now the experimenting begins. 

    I'm going to try it with half the cocoa and add almond milk in lieu of sweetener. Then maybe add some Oreo crumble. [Side bar: Oreos are totally vegan!] Which leads me back to my vegan does not = healthy. Especially with desserts!!

    Or maybe I'll double the cocoa and add dried blueberries or cranberries. 

    The possibilities are endless!

    Feel Good Food...

    Sometimes you just want some feel good food. Not a salad. Not a soup. But FOOOOOOOD. Ok, so that didn't make a lot of sense. 

    Some days salad and soup are feel good food. But tonight I wanted something warm and "un-vegan" in the intellectual sense. Like, I know that its vegan but I want to trick my brain into thinking its a relic from the past.

    So tonight we had ribs and slaw! I also had some sweet potato laying around so I grated it on my mandolin into shoestrings, drizzled it with olive oil and sea salt and added some rosemary. DE-VINE. Oh my gosh! 

    The ribs were leftover from the other day, so I threw them on the BBQ to crisp up and did they ever! 

    The slaw I used pre-packed cabbage slaw mix and made the sauce. I just pour and scoop ingredients but I'm going to try and guess here.

    The sauce consisted of:
    - Vegenaise (1/2 cup roughly)
    - Rice Vinegar (3 tbsp?)
    - Wasabi Paste (1 tbsp?)
    - Jalapeño flakes (2 tbsp)
    - Fresh Cilantro (1/2 cup?)
    - Sugar (2 tbsp?)

    I also added raisins. Because I wanted something sweet to balance out the spicy. Here's how it looked!

    The sweet potato, once grated and tossed was spread onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Then baked at 450 degrees for about 15 minutes. Once the edges were nice and crispy I took it out and put it in a bowl. It was SO good and so easy to make!

    I now feel so full and satisfied. 

    I'm debating making some vegan fudge tonight but truthfully I'm just so tired. If I do, there will be an entry! 

    Stay tuned! 

    Monday, 7 October 2013

    Sweet Tooth in a Hurry

    As you've probably gathered by now, the kiddo wants to help me in the kitchen. Like, really, REALLY badly. Desperately.

    I am terrible at sharing my kitchen. Really REALLY terrible. Horrible. 

    It is this conundrum that leads me to bake things that are 5 ingredients or less and take less than 20 minutes start to finish. That way we both win. She gets to help mommy, and mommy doesn't need to drink her weight in wine to make the left eye twitch go away. 

    That lead us to tonight's mother-daughter dessert. Samoas Babies. (I didn't make the name, trust me.) 

    To be honest, at the beginning I didn't really care whether or not they turned out. I just wanted to get it over with. But then I tasted one. BIG MISTAKE. These things are like crack. Trouble!!

    Basically, add dates, chocolate chips, coconut, a pinch of salt and vanilla into a food processor and blend. Then roll into balls and enjoy. 

    But why stop there? I somehow got the idea to make a coconut chocolate to add on top. Best idea ever!

    In a double boiler I melted some coconut oil and added in some semi-sweet chocolate chips. Then instead of making balls of the cookies, I made them flat with a divot in the middle. Poured on the chocolate and BAM. Diabeetus! 

    Side bar: Diabetes, when said with a strange "Southern" accent becomes Diabeetus and is so much fun to say! Just ask Cheryl. :)

    Anyhow, chocolate coconut crack cookies look like this:



    I've been a vegetarian my entire life. My wife has not. In fact, for the first 39 years of her life she was a solid omnivore. Then in January of 2013 she made the decision to go peascatarian (seafood only) and last month she made the leap to vegetarian.

    Her transition went rather smooth, except for one thing. Ribs. Since January all I've heard is, "Ribs. I want ribs. Why isn't there a rib alternative? Can you find one? I WANT RIBS."

    Well friends, thanks to my good friend Tatiana (with some help from Google) I HAVE MADE VEGAN RIBS.

    I'm a firm believer that 90% of the awesomeness of a dish is the sauce. I'm a total sauce whore. Seriously. I'll do almost anything for sauce. Almost. 

    Anyway, I was super skeptical as my dealings with Seitan (Vital Wheat Gluten) had been non-existent up until tonight. 

    You can use any vegan Seitan recipe that google comes up with. They're all relatively the same. I got mine from 

    Without further adieu, THE RIBS!

    As for the magic sauce, it was hot as hell. Just like we like it in our house. I measured nothing, but I'll guess as best I can here for ingredients:

    Tabasco sauce
    Brown sugar
    Wild Turkey bourbon
    Soy sauce
    Crushed garlic
    Hot chili peppers

    Basically, just mix it all in a saucepan and bring to a boil and the reduce to a low simmer. 

    When the ribs are done sauce the hell out of them and OM NOM NOM.

    I asked my lovely to sample them and this is what I got back...

    I hope you all enjoy them that much too!


    Sunday, 6 October 2013

    Sweet Potato Flour

    A while ago someone bought me sweet potato flour. It has sat in the cupboard, lonely and neglected. I decided that tonight was the night it would be used, damnit. 

    Thank god for Google. 

    "Sweet Potato Flour + Vegan Recipe" yielded a plethora of results and this was the winner...

    Vegan Oatmeal Quick Bread 

    I made a few substitutions. I used organic sunflower oil and raw agave and of course, sweet potato flour in place of whole wheat flour. 

    It's still baking away in the over but it looks promising.  This is what it looked like before it went in the oven...

    I didn't expect it to rise much, seeing as there is no yeast or active rising agent in the recipe but it did get about 50% bigger and cracked nicely. It was supposed to be round and I made it oval. That may have made it crack deeper than is visually appealing. Meh. 

    Here is the final product!

    I'll happily go interrupt my lovely watching The Walking Dead and force feed her bread while demanding a useful review. 


    And the verdict is in! 

    It's good! But not as a loaf. Next time I would spead it thin on parchment paper and make flatbread style crackers with it. Then smother it with hummus and other savory things or even tofutti cream cheese and jam. 


    Recipe can be found here:

    Curry and Cumin and Turmeric- Oh My!

    Spices are what make the meal. And in our house we LOVE spices. I was away this weekend with a friend and upon coming home my lovely had begun dinner. This is very exciting for me for two reasons. 

    1. I don't have to cook! 


    Usually the only reason that I have "after shots" only is because I cook kind of like the Swedish Chef from the muppets. So I keep my phone (camera) far far away. But now I had the opportunity to take "how to" pics while inhaling delicious smells.

    Tonight for dinner is a staple in our house; curried vegetables. Sometimes on their own, sometimes over rice or quinoa. Always delicious!

    Not only are curried dishes SO good (and good for you) they are also super easy to make. 

    First you sauté some onions in a tablespoon of oil...

    Then you add your spices to a bowl. We used curry paste, curry powder, turmeric, cumin, chili powder, sugar, ginger and garlic. 

    Then add some veggies to the onions. We used broccoli, cauliflower and kale. 

    Add your spice blend to the vegetables, mix well, cover and let cook for a minute.

    Once the veggies are coated evenly add some diced tomatoes. I used leftover rustic tomato soup. Then simmer while the spices devour the veggies!

    After about 20 minutes of simmering on a low heat this delicious meal is ready to be eaten. I'm eating it alone but my family are eating it with some jasmine rice.

    Pumpkin pinwheels are coming, likely Friday. Stay tuned!