My Most Made Recipes

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Vegan MoFo 2013 – Post #12

I don’t have a lot of time today for a post, as I should be spending the day studying for a test I have tomorrow, so I thought I’d just share with you some of the recipes I’ve posted about that I actually make repeatedly. The number is actually pretty small. There are just always so many new and interesting recipes to try that I find it difficult to repeat past ones, even when I really loved them. The ones that I do repeat are usually the ones that were really quick and easy, in addition to tasty.

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I make these Chickpea Flour Omelettes all the time! They are quick, easy, very filling, and easily adaptable to whatever vegetables I have on hand. My favourite fillings include spinach, peppers, something spicy like pickled jalapeños or red pepper flakes, and a bit of Daiya Cheese.

And for a variation, I’ve made these Vegan Scrambled ‘Eggs’ a few times since I discovered them.

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I’ve been making these Easy Hot & Sour Refrigerator Pickles on and off all summer long and they always disappear very quickly! I mostly just eat them as snacks.

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It isn’t a recipe, but I am pretty much obsessed with falafel salads and wraps. (Seriously, search my blog for ‘falafel’ and you’ll see one pop up on almost every What I Ate Wednesday post.) I used to use Casbah Falafel mix, but now I’ve been using the Baked Falafel Burgers from Veggie Burgers Every Which Way. Staples in my falafel salads are cucumbers, peppers, either hummus or tahini sauce, and (lately) Sriracha.

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These Wheat-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies from Veganomicon are a big hit with my family and I. I love the texture and taste from the oat flour and the recipe is really easy. The small batch means you won’t be taking cookies in and out of the oven for hours, and you won’t have too many leftovers to tempt you in the following days.

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This Lower-Fat Chocolate Chip Banana Bread from Veganomicon has been repeated quite a few times in our household, and is a big hit with omnivores and vegan (just me) alike. You can also see it here, with the addition of raspberries!

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This Basic No-Mayo Coleslaw is (in my humble opinion) crunchy, tangy, coleslaw perfection. I make this quite a lot, both for myself and as a contribution to family dinners. My mom and sister have also requested the recipe and made it a few times! 🙂 I find it seriously addictive, in a good way, and it never lasts long.

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And last, but certainly not least is my Avocado Toast with Balsamic Vinegar. Sometimes the simplest things are the best. I make this all the time, at all times of day, and I always thoroughly enjoy it! Hearty crunchy whole grain bread (I prefer Silver Hills), rich creamy avocado, tangy balsamic vinegar and lemon juice, and a punch of spice from the black pepper! Yum yum yum. I think I know what I’m having for lunch today.

Veganomicon: Blueberry Corn Pancakes

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Vegan Mofo 2013 Post #10 – It only took 17 days, but I’m finally halfway there! Looks like I may just make it to 20 posts!

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I’ve never been a huge fan of pancakes, but recently this recipe in Veganomicon for Blueberry Corn Pancakes caught my eye when I was looking for something a little different to make for breakfast one morning. Isn’t it great that 2 years later and I’m still always discovering new things in Veganomicon?! I’m in love with a recipe for Blueberry Corn Muffins from The Joy of Vegan Baking, so I knew the flavour combination was a winner.

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I loved these pancakes and will be making them again! The combination of blueberries, lemon, and cornmeal gives these a great natural sweetness and the cornmeal makes for an awesome texture. Just as it says in the book, they have a “little crunch and a wonderful mouthfeel”. These just feel like a perfect summer pancake. Light, bright, fruity, with just a touch of lemon.

P.S. – I think I’m starting to realize that I actually do like pancakes when they are thin, I just really dislike big fluffy doughy ones.

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I did make a few minor substitutions like I do:
– I used 1/2 cup whole wheat flour and 1/4 cup chickpea flour in place of the all purpose flour. The batter also ended up really runny, so I ended up adding another 1/4 cup whole wheat flour.
– Most of the recipes in Veganomicon call for a specific type of nondairy milk. This one called for soy, but I used unsweetened almond milk.
– I replaced the canola oil with melted coconut oil.

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I think the only thing I would change next time is to drop the blueberries into the individual pancakes, instead of mixing them with the batter. The batter is quite runny (which makes for nice thin pancakes), so the blueberries just end up on the bottom and it was difficult to try and get a good amount in each pancake.

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You May Also Enjoy:
IMG_2768Vegan Scrambled ‘Eggs’

IMG_1807Smoked Tofu Benedict with Mushrooms and Arugula

IMG_1309Blueberry Blackberry Chia Jam

Dark Chocolate Raspberry Banana Bread

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Vegan Mofo 2013 – Post #8 – Now only 2 posts behind, and almost halfway through. I may actually make it!

I don’t know if you remember, but awhile back I posted about the amazing Lower-fat Banana Bread recipe from Veganomicon. Well, I recently stumbled upon this variation on that recipe, and it was a definite must-try! I usually add chocolate chips to my banana bread, but Herbivore Triathlete had the genius thought of also adding raspberries!

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Banana bread + dark chocolate + tart berry goodness = love!

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When making this Dark Chocolate Raspberry Banana Bread, I made the same minor changes that I mentioned in my previous post, except that this time I replaced the all purpose flour with 1 cup whole wheat flour, 1/4 cup brown rice flour, and 1/4 cup chickpea flour.

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You should give this a try!

You May Also Enjoy
IMG_3126Lemon Coconut Energy Bites

IMG_0867Vegan Dark Chocolate S’mores Brownies

Title, Cranberry Orange Cardamom MuffinsCranberry Orange Cardamom Muffins

 

Veganomicon’s Wheat-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies

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Jem and I whipped up a batch of these Wheat-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies recently for a last-minute evening treat and they were fantastic! This recipe is another one from Veganomicon that I’ve just tried for the first time. I love Veganomicon, and I love the fact that after almost a year and a half on my shelf, I still keep discovering new things within it’s pages.

As it says in the book, “these cookies couldn’t be any easier to make, unless you had someone else make them for you” (Veganomicon, Moskowitz and Romero, p. 237). Even with the extra step of processing some oats into oat flour, this recipe was very quick and easy to throw together. I will say that, while the tip included in the recipe suggests using a blender or food processor for making oat flour, I wouldn’t attempt it with a blender unless you have a very high-powered one. I used my blender and it was not very successful. I will be using my food processor next time.

The only change that we made to the original recipe was with the sugar. The recipe calls for 1/4 cup brown sugar and 1/2 cup granulated sugar. Since I prefer my chocolate chip cookies not very sweet (I find the chocolate chips provide more than enough sugar) and I only had sucanat on hand, we just used 1/2 cup of sucanat. Personally, I could lower this even more  next time, perhaps to 1/3 cup.

I also wanted to mention that I was surprised that this recipe actually made the exact amount (18) of cookies stated. Maybe I’m just not good at following recipes, but always find that cookie recipes almost always make far less cookies than the states yield suggests.

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Anyway, Jem and I had some of these Wheat-Free Chocolate Chip Cookies with our evening tea and they were delicious! The oat flour gave them a really great taste and texture. Also, they are chocolate chip cookies. Hard to go wrong there.

If you are going to make this recipe (and you really should) I wouldn’t suggest doubling it unless you are making them for a crowd. These cookies were still good the next day, but absolutely at their best fresh from the oven! And, they are so easy that you’ll have no problem making them all the time if that’s what you need to do!

Lucky you, in addition to Veganomicon, this recipe can also be found at the Post Punk Kitchen. Happy baking!

You May Also Enjoy:
Lower-Fat Chocolate Chip Banana Bread (Veganomicon)
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Ginger Chocolate-Chunk Scones (Post Punk Kitchen)
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Almond Joy Cookie Bars
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What I Ate Wednesday #109: Salad Love

For today’s What I Ate Wednesday post I’m going to share with you some delicious salads I’ve eaten in January and February 2013. After a very long time without eating any salads, they are back in my life and I am loving them. I’ve basically just been making sure that I have salad greens of some sort on hand, and then I throw in most of what I have on hand to throw in.

For me, a main event salad (as opposed to a side-dish salad) needs a lot more than raw veggies. It needs hearty vegetables (cooked yam, roasted squash, sautéed mushrooms), grains (quinoa, whole wheat couscous), or vegan protein (lentils, nuts, tofu). And for me, the best way to assure that I’ll happily scarf down the whole big bowl of salad is to include something spicy, balanced with a tangy acidic dressing. As you’ll notice from the descriptions below, my favourite dressing lately has been just a combination of lime or lemon juice and Vega Antioxidant Omega Oil Blend (which I’m gonna write as ‘Vega Oil’ for the rest of this post). Also, when in doubt, avocado will make any and every salad better!

I hope this provides you with some salad-making inspiration! Enjoy!

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Left to right:
1) Romaine, spinach, red pepper, and cucumber tossed with lime juice & Vega Oil. Mushrooms and Soyganic Smoked Tofu cooked with leftover marinade from Veganomicon’s Hot Sauce Glazed Tempeh. Plus avocado and black pepper. This was seriously the BEST salad ever! I actually made the exact same salad the next day!
2) Romaine, spinach, cucumber, pickled jalapeño, roasted butternut squash, whole wheat couscous, cranberry orange vinaigrette, and black pepper.
3) Romaine, spinach, orange pepper, and cucumber tossed with lime juice and Vega Oil. Soyganic Smoked Tofu sautéed with soy sauce and Sriracha. Avocado. I swear all that other stuff is under all that avocado and tofu!

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Left to right:
4) Lentil Taco Salad 1 – Romaine, cucumber, and red pepper tossed with lime juice and Vega Oil. Lentil Taco Filling*. This was so good I took the exact same salad to work 3 days in a row!
5) Lentil Taco Salad 2 – Romaine, cucumber, and red pepper tossed with lime juice and Vega Oil. Lentil Taco Filling and Daiya Jalapeño Garlic Havarti.
6) Cooked quinoa, red pepper, yellow pepper, a cut up Curried Chickpea Quinoa Burger* (a variation on this one), lime juice, Vega Oil, black pepper.

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Left to right:
7) Green leaf lettuce, fresh mint, cucumber, red pepper, a kiwi, lime juice, Vega Oil, 2  warm cut-up Gardein Chipotle Lime Crispy Fingers.
8) Cooked quinoa, cucumber, red pepper, fresh mint, 1 cut-up Gardein 7 Grain Crispy Tender, lemon juice, Vega Oil, black pepper.
9) Green leaf lettuce, spring mix, red pepper, lemon juice, Vega Oil, avocado, sliced almonds, Black Pepper Mushrooms*.

*Recipes coming soon.

Follow this link to check out the rest of What I Ate Wednesday #109.

This post has been linked up to Healthy Vegan Friday #31. Go check it out!

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What are your favourite salad toppings and/or your favourite salad dressing?

You May Also Enjoy:
Collage, 105-2What I Ate Wednesday #105 – I shared 18 recent meals including some other great salads!

IMG_0509Smoothies of 2013: Part 1 – 6 different smoothie recipes!

IMG_0609Back to Basics: No-Mayo Coleslaw

Veganomicon: Lower-Fat Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

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You might have read somewhere on here that I really don’t like bananas. This aversion, however, doesn’t hold up against banana bread. As long as there are no chunks of banana, I love it! And of course, it’s especially great when there are chocolate chips involved!

Jem and I recently made the Lower-Fat Banana Bread from Veganomicon for the first time (with the chocolate chip variation). I was looking for a vegan banana bread recipe because we had some bananas needing to be used, and I actually had a difficult time finding one that didn’t have huge amounts of oil and/or sugar. I’m so glad I remembered about this one in Veganomicon!

It came together really easily, smelled fantastic when baking, and tastes awesome! Especially when warm! Everyone in the house (vegan and omnivores alike) loved it so much that I made another one less than a week later!

We did make the following minor substitutions:
– Replaced the applesauce with pumpkin puree, simply because it was what we had. Either way, it’s only a small amount and you won’t be able to taste it.
– Replaced 1 1/2 cups of the flour with spelt flour one time and with whole wheat flour the second time. Both variations worked really well and tasted great.
– We used sucanat for the sugar in the recipe. Probably unnecessary because the recipe already has molasses in it, but I didn’t have any regular sugar on hand.

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To make sure there were no banana chunks in the bread, I pureed the wet ingredients in a blender (rather than just whisking by hand) before adding them to the dry ingredients. Though I’ve read warnings against doing this with bananas, as they tend to get gummy, this didn’t seem to happen.

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If you’re interested in this recipe, here are a few other blogger reviews for your viewing pleasure:
Cupcakes and Quinoa, Vocal Vegan, The Baking Bird, Forkful of Food

I’ve realized that I’ve been making a lot of other people’s recipes (from both blogs and cookbooks) recently. A lot more than I’ve been experimenting with my own recipes. This is mainly because my stove/oven hasn’t been working for the past couple months. Luckily, I do have access to my Mom’s stove/oven upstairs, but my cooking and baking habits have been altered accordingly. Let’s just say that even with simplified recipes and less cooking, I’ve been making a whole lot of trips up and down the stairs with my arms full! Hopefully I should have a new stove/oven later this week.

In the meantime, I’ve realized the need to create a category or page on here to accommodate the growing number of reviews of recipes that aren’t my own. I haven’t quite decided whether this will be in the Recipe page or on it’s own, but it is in the works. I will let you know when I have it up and running!

Questions:
Do you have Veganomicon or any of Isa’s other cookbooks? If so, what is your favourite recipe that you’ve tried? Feel free to link up to a review you’ve done if you have one.

You May Also Enjoy:
Title, Blueberry Oat SconesBlueberry Oatmeal Scones

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100_2726Spiced Banana Bran Mini Loaves

Kale-Millet Croquettes with Cheezy Tahini Sauce

Vegan MoFo 2012 Post #13

These croquettes are made by forming cooked kale and millet into little cushions, and lightly panfrying or baking them. They are tender with some chewiness from the kale. I flavoured them with garlic, smoked paprika, and red pepper flakes. While these are good on their own, they are best when paired with a creamy brightly flavoured sauce, like my Cheezy Tahini Sauce.

The kale-millet mixture must be fully cooled before you form them into croquettes. If you cook the kale-millet mixture a day in advance, then it will only take about 20 minutes to finish preparing the dish.

Kale-Millet Croquettes (Adapted from Veganomicon‘s Broccoli-Millet Croquettes)
1 tsp olive oil, plus extra for panfrying
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2-1 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 cup millet
2 1/2 cups water or vegetable broth
1 bunch kale

Heat a large pot over medium heat. Saute the garlic in the olive oil for 30 seconds then add the red pepper flakes, smoked paprika, sea salt, and millet. Stir constantly for about 3 minutes. Add the water or vegetable broth, cover, and bring to a boil. Once the mixture is boiling, lower to a simmer and cook for 17 minutes, stirring occasionally.

While the millet is cooking, prepare the kale. Tear the kale leaves off of the thick centre stems and discard these stems (or clean them and save for veggie broth). Thoroughly wash kale and pat or spin off any excess water. Very finely chop the kale leaves. You can do this by hand, in a few batches or by pulsing in a food processor. Try not to leave any larger pieces as they will cause the croquettes to fall apart.

When millet has cooked for the 17 minutes, uncover the pot and stir in the kale. Cook for another 10 minutes, uncovered, stirring often. All or most of the water should be absorbed at this point. Turn off the heat, cover the pot and leave for another 10-15 minutes. It is very important that the millet be well cooked otherwise the croquettes could fall apart. It should be mushy and clumping together.

When millet-kale mixture is well cooked, transfer to a sealable container and allow to cool for about 15 minutes. Seal and move to the fridge to cool the rest of the way, about 45 minutes or overnight.

Once cooled, tightly form the millet into golfball-size balls. Press between your hands to slightly flatten and pat the sides in to form tire-shaped croquettes. You should get about 16 croquettes.

Heat a thin layer of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Fry croquettes in batches, 3 to 4 minutes on each side, until they are lightly browned.

These can also be baked in the oven, and I actually enjoyed them better done that way. Just put the croquettes onto a lightly greased baking sheet and bake at 425° for 20-25 minutes. You don’t need to flip them. When baked the whole outside of the croquette gets golden brown and crispy, while the inside stays moist.

Enjoy!

I had mine with roasted yams, and smothered in Cheezy Tahini Sauce. The sweet creaminess of the roasted yams was the perfect complement to this dish. I devoured my dinner in about 2 seconds!

Cheezy Tahini Sauce
1/2 clove garlic, roughly chopped
1/3 cup tahini
1/4 tsp sea salt
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
1/4 cup water

Place all ingredients in a blender or small bowl of a food processor and process until smooth and creamy. Sauce will thicken when refrigerated, but you can bring to room temperature or heat before serving.

This post has been submitted to Healthy Vegan Friday #13 and will be submitted to  Meatless Mondays A-Z for Kale.

the veggie nookBetter With Veggies

Curried Lentil Soup & Cooking for the Freezer

I wouldn’t say that I like my food really spicy (I prefer to still be able to taste my food under the layer heat), but I do love spices and spiciness! Any breakfast scramble (tofu or veggies) isn’t complete without Cajun seasoning and any mention or thought of curry leaves me practically drooling and unable to think of anything else. So, when my sister and I were brainstorming what kind of soup to make on our first day of baking/cooking for our freezers – more on that later – my first thought, especially once I realized I wanted an easy lentil based soup, was curry. The following Curried Lentil Soup is what we came up with. I used a Red Lentil Cauliflower Curry recipe from Veganomicon (page 186) that I had made before as a soup for an idea of the method, measurements, and spices to use, but used our own mix of lentils and vegetables to create a very different soup.

Curried Lentil Soup
1 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 inch piece ginger, minced
1 large shallot, diced
1 cup chopped carrot
3/4 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup diced potato
3 1/2 tsp mild curry powder
1/2 tsp each: turmeric, cinnamon, cumin, ground coriander
3/4 cup red split lentils
3/4 cup green/brown lentils
2 cups vegetable broth
2 cups water
1/2 tsp sea salt (omit if using store-bought vegetable broth)

Set out all of the ingredients and chop the vegetables. In a large pot, heat the oil over medium heat. Saute the shallot, garlic, and ginger for a couple of minutes, until tender. (You might notice this recipe doesn’t have any onions in it. That is because I really don’t like them and besides shallots and small amounts of dehydrated onion I do not cook with them. If you want to add onions to this soup, add them first, sauté until translucent, and then add the shallot, garlic, and ginger.) Add the spices and cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Add carrots, celery, potato, and lentils (after sorting and rinsing them). Slowly pour in vegetable broth and water. Cover the pot, raise the heat to high, and boil for 1 minute. Stir, then cover the pot again, lower heat to medium-low, and let simmer for about 20 minutes. Check to see if the potatoes and lentils are done, they may need a little more time. When the potatoes and lentils are cooked then your soup is done. Cover and let sit about 15 minutes before serving, to let the flavours meld.

I like this soup as is, with a piece of toasted whole grain bread (my favourite is Silver Hills) or served over brown rice or quinoa. Enjoy!

As I mentioned earlier, this was one of the things that my sister Jem and I made on our first designated day of baking and cooking for both of our freezers. In addition to this Curried Lentil Soup, we also made sun-dried tomato pesto based on this one from Oh She Glows (we froze it in ice-cube trays), chocolate zucchini loaf based on this recipe, chocolate chip peanut butter cookies from Colleen Patrick-Goudreau’s The Joy of Vegan Baking (we baked 1 tray full and then made 2 rolls of the dough for the freezer), blueberry almond waffles adapted from this recipe, and falafel burgers from The Vegan Table. Half of everything went to me and the other half is for Jem and her fiancé. Our intention was to make a bunch of things that we could both have in our freezers for quick meals and snacks later on. Our day was very successful and we have plans to make this a monthly (or around there) tradition. We have so many ideas of things we want to make!

Our pesto cubes.

Our falafel burgers.

 Making extras for the freezer is something I already do, but making a day of it together was actually Jem’s idea. This gives us a day together, and we figure that it will help get us creative, eat less processed foods, and save some money. It really is those times when you just don’t feel like cooking, or have the time, that it is so easy to reach for a can or box of something way too processed, or to eat out.

What I really love about doing this is that while everything we make will be vegan, or vegetarian if Jem adds cheese to her half of something, neither Jem nor her fiancé are vegan! They are both omnivores and pretty heavy meat-eaters. However, my sister has always been open to trying my vegan and vegetarian food, and is really interested in eating healthier and trying new things. It always makes me happy to get people interested in vegan food and I love sharing my discoveries with her. I think we already have our menu planned out for July’s For the Freezer Day and we are both looking forward to it!

Questions
Do you like spicy food? If so, what is your favourite heat-inducing ingredient?
My favourite is chipotle! I use chipotle hot sauce, chipotle chile powder, and canned chipotle peppers in adobe sauce. I’m also addicted to Cajun seasoning. I have one now that I’m not sure is vegan. It is going to run out very soon and then I’m going to have to create my own, which I’m looking forward to.

Do you have a favourite vegan soup recipe?

Do you make extras for the freezer? Or cook/bake anything specifically to have on hand in the freezer?
I always have homemade vegetable broth and applesauce in the freezer. Since I’m baking mostly for one, I usually put half of each loaf, muffin, and bar recipe in the freezer for a month or two later. Also, I’ve been trying to cook pots of beans on days when I’m at home in order to keep some handy in the freezer. I’m trying to use more dry beans and less canned ones and I find this is helping.

1, 2, 3…GO!

Ok, here it goes, my first post! Here are a few things to get us started:

I decided to start this blog as a way of expanding a food journal I have been doing on   Pinterest for the past few months. I have a board called Everyday Vegan Goodness where I have been documenting some of the vegan food I make and eat everyday. I’ve really enjoyed doing this, but as much as I love Pinterest it just didn’t provide me with enough room to write full recipes properly and make other comments about my entries. Also, sometimes only one photo per recipe, just isn’t enough! (Even though my photos are not so good yet) It was time to blog.

I think one of biggest misconceptions about being vegan is that your only options when it comes to food are salad, tofu, and granola. Don’t get me wrong, while I love all three of these things they definitely do not make up my whole diet. Or any vegan’s probably. There is a huge variety of options and, especially if you are open to being creative and trying new things, it doesn’t have to be difficult at all. When I was considering becoming vegan the one thing that made me believe it was something I could actually do was Veganomicon. Just seeing the huge variety of vegan recipes, many of which I wanted to run to the kitchen and try right away, took away my apprehensions about veganism. Instead, I was excited! I knew that this was something I could make happen, and I did!

This blog is a way for me to document and share my passion for creating great-tasting healthy vegan food. For me, healthy means limited processed food, no white starches (flour, breads, rice, pasta), limited refined sugar, limited use of added fats, and a minimal use of salt. And of course, vegan means no meat, seafood, dairy, eggs, honey, or gelatine. Eating within these restrictions doesn’t have to be boring or complicated or tasteless, and that is exactly what I would like to help illustrate with this blog. I would like to help show the wide variety of food available in a nutritious vegan diet. I would be ecstatic even if I can encourage one person to try one recipe or make a few small changes towards a plant-based diet. I believe small changes can make a huge difference.

I know I’ve been talking about veganism a lot, but I really hope that this blog will appeal to anyone hoping to follow a more (even a bit more) nutritious, plant-based diet. Everyone is welcome!

For an idea of what kind of food I will be including, please check out my board on Pinterest where I’ve previously been keeping a food journal.

If you actually read through to the end of this post: THANK YOU for reading! Please feel free to follow my blog or Pinterest account, make comments, and ask questions. I hope to see you later!