Saturday, February 20, 2010


Well, my smugness at not having caught that cold everyone had is over. I officially have it. But it's not that bad. A little sore throat, minor congestion, and I coughed a couple of times this morning. I can fight this. I am working on it right now with my kefir and orange juice breakfast...then a banana. I bought groceries last night and got plenty of fresh fruits and veggies. NO sugar for me today. I swear. Plenty of fluids and vitamin C is how I plan to get rid of this.

I have also been checking out some raw food recipes and planning on incorporating more of them into my diet. I bought a couple of coconuts, and if I can get them open, they can be an awesome part of several different nutritious recipes. I also came across this:

These are raw cinnamon buns from this great website. These look unbelievable...I might try them out in the near future. The only thing I am leery of when it comes to raw foods is the use of so many different nuts. While I love nuts and know they are incredibly nutritious, I am technically not supposed to have them around because of Grace's peanut allergy.

But still, I am going to fight this cold with diet, not tons of chemical cold medicine that is harmful to my body. I am going to use my immune system to take care of things the way it is supposed to, and I am going to help it along with delicious, nutritious whole foods.

Two things:

1. I am now craving those cinnamon buns.

2. Where the hell did my label cloud go?

Monday, February 15, 2010

Hippie Loaf

Sometimes you just need to eat food in a loaf shape.

I made this Hippie Loaf for Christmas...and I didn't really like it. I thought there was waaay too much Italian seasoning. Other than that, I liked the taste of the black beans, mushrooms, and quinoa all mashed together. Last night I tried it again, with no Italian seasoning at all, and it was delicious. Especially with ketchup, although I am assuming it would be wonderful with gravy as well. It is also gluten free, which is great for some people. I used oat flour instead of the brown rice flour.

The picture is the loaf before I put it in the oven. It is so yummy, and so nutritious. Chopped up onions, mushrooms, garlic, carrot, quinoa, mashed up black beans, mmmmmmmmm...... I ate it with some broccoli and a baked sweet potato. Garrett was brave enough to try it again, and this time he liked it as well. Good, filling comfort food. There must be some sort of comfort in this icy-cold, snow-filled winter.

Leftovers tonight!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Spaghetti and Beanballs

I have been craving something with tomatoes and pasta, and this recipe from Veganomicon was calling out to me. Last night was the night. I was busy busy in the kitchen making two different sauces for the family. I used the marinara sauce from the book as well, and it was simple and delicious. The beanballs were easy to make too. I baked them instead of frying them. I think if I would have fried them, and made them smaller, they would have been chewier. They were a bit mooshier than I wanted them to be, but very yummy. I will make them again sometime. I served the meal with steamed broccoli.

I have also made one recipe from my new cookbook, 1,000 Vegan Recipes. I made the Mushroom Black Bean Spinach Quesadillas one night, and ate them with guacamole. Very, very yummy!

I have a whole menu planned for my next adventure. Samosa stuffed baked potatoes (from Vcon), vegan Toor Dal (a curried red lentil soup), and homemade chapatas (an Indian flatbread from 1,000 Vegan Recipes) with mango chutney. Who's coming over?

Monday, February 8, 2010

Medicinal Soup

This weekend I watched the movie Julie and Julia at my mother's insistence that I would love it. Pretty sure my mom has no idea how grossed out I would be by the TONS of butter used in the film, or the cutting up of animals, and boiling lobsters live in a pot. UGH! But still, the movie was OK. It made me feel like cooking, anyway.

Grace has been sick with a cold over the weekend. She had a fever, runny nose, and nasty cough. I made her some Chickpea Noodle Soup from Veganomicon. I did not use the soba noodles because it said they would swell up a lot if it wasn't eaten up right away. I broke up some whole wheat linguine instead, and it was perfect. I also added kale (of course) for the nutrition, color, and taste. It was a steaming bowl full of chickpeas, noodles, mushrooms, carrots, onion, garlic, kale, vegetable broth, and dried herbs. It was also a steaming bowl full of nutrition and vitamins Grace needed to fight off her cold, and I needed to keep the cold away (so far so good!).

Grace hadn't eaten much all day except a bit of a smoothie, but when I gave her this soup, she scarfed it down, and then asked for more. I was so excited!

Grace just informed me that she feels better, even though she still has "the coughs." I like to think this soup helped her little body along. Plus, it was really delicious.

Off to eat some good food to help keep my immune system up. Being surrounded by sick people at work is not fun.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Stir-Fry Story

I have not made a stir-fry for a long, long time. I have been thinking about it for weeks now, and finally got around to it tonight. I realized when I started that I did not have fresh mushrooms. I reluctantly pushed was snowing and cold and I didn't want to run back to the store. Then I saw that my garlic was also gone, and that was that. I bundled up, left the kiddos at home, drove to the store, and was back in about six minutes. I timed myself.

Grace has been going through a nightmarish phase lately. I guess she's making up for being a perfect, adorable, loving angel the first few years. I may start a photo album of her tantrums, because they are pretty funny. What else can you do when she has fallen to the floor, screaming, thrashing and crying in the middle of the store for the tenth time but laugh at it?

Despite all of this, I absolutely adore cooking with her. It has always been her favorite thing, and I am in love with the fact that I get to share this with her. She is really good at it, too. She can even use a sharp knife and is very careful (although it makes me nervous). And I try to explain things as we go along. Here she is after I chopped up all the vegetables:

I love the outfit she wore today.

I pulled out the wok I have only used a couple of times because I needed the room. I had a lot of veggies that needed to go in. Grace insisted on helping with that.

Stir-frying the tofu.

Then things got all weird with the wok. The tofu was sticking and the bottom was getting burned and I didn't like it and it's an old wok anyway so I gave it up. I moved on to a different pan for the veggies. It turned out most of them were green. Broccoli, pea pods, green peppers, zucchini, carrots, mushrooms, and onions.

Making up for the lack of veggies in my diet this weekend.

For the sauce, I did not have my usual organic tamari sauce, so I had to use plain old soy sauce instead. I just mix some soy sauce, water, garlic and cornstarch together and dump it in the veggies when they are done cooking. The result? Meh. It was okay. The broccoli was awesome, but the zucchini tasted funny, and the tofu left some to be desired. The sauce was saltier than I like. Things just went downhill from there...Grace refused to eat hers, and demanded chicken nuggets. By the time I was cleaning up we were back to this:

Ah, well. It's good for a laugh, anyway. And a blog post.