"Oh, I may be on the side of the angels...but don't think for one second that I am one of them." - Sherlock, The Reichenbach Fall

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas!

We give gifts of zucchini bread to family and friends every year.  This year is no exception.

Here is the recipe we used this year:

3 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
3 tsp ground cinnamon
3/4 cup applesauce
1 cup vegetable oil
2¼ cups sugar
3 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups grated zucchini
1 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 325ºF.

Combine all applesauce, vegetable oil, sugar and vanilla until creamy.  In a separate bowl combine all dry ingredients, whisking together until well combined.  Then, combine dry with wet, adding zucchini and walnuts until all is well mixed.

Divide batter between two well-greased and floured loaf pans.  Put in preheated oven and bake for 1 hour.  Check for doneness with a butter knife in the center of each loaf.  Bake another 10 minutes if needed.   Enjoy!

We had some for breakfast this morning and it was delicious.  It's very moist and can be toasted if you like.  We're using our Kitchenaid mixer that Marcus gave me for Christmas last year.  It is very sturdy and can mix double and even triple batches.  We're having a lot of fun with it.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Belated Birthday post

I almost forgot to post something about my birthday.  It was a wonderful day.  Amy gave me a little book, a copy of The Tale of Peter Rabbit, which is a favorite of mine.  Marcus gave me a Le Creuset baking dish - very very nice.  I will definitely use this!
Amy made a feast of Spaghetti For Peanuts (veganized, from Diet For A Small Planet) and roasted Brussels sprouts.  She also made a veganized Red Velvet cake.  YUM!  We had some really good eating today.

Later, Marcus took me out to dinner and we went to Tito's Diner.  I had their hummus and a veggie burger and sweet potato fries.  YUM.

All in all, it was a very fun birthday!

Twice baked potatoes

I used to make my own recipe for these back in my pregan days.  I used copious amounts of sour cream, but pretty much they were like the video in the link below:

Twice Baked Potatoes - Food Wishes

Anyhow, I think I can veganize them as follows:

Bake several russet potatoes at 400ºF for an hour.

Placing them lengthwise, cut about 1/3 of the skin off, and scrape out the the potato from the skin.  Save the cut part, and put it inside the hollowed out larger part.

Mix together the baked potato, some Earth Balance spread, some green onions, salt, pepper and cayenne pepper.  When mixed well, add some Daiya cheddar shreds and some vegan sour cream. (The original recipe calls for butter, cheddar cheese and heavy cream)  Mix all this together very well, until it is creamy.  Fill the potato husks so they are heaping with potato filling.

Bake the filled potatoes at 400ºF for 20-30 minutes to brown them.

Eat and enjoy!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Work out

Getting the other half of the equation going now.  Rode the lifecycle at level 2 for 20+ minutes.  I want to work back up to 25, then 30.  Watched BBC America all the while.  Only thing I don't like - advertisements.  But you take the good with the not-so-good.  Still a good beginning to working out again.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Family meals together

Marcus arrived on December 4th, and it has been pretty hectic.  We finally put up the Christmas tree on Monday night.  I had to beg off of church choir rehearsal that night, and I'm supposed to play flute this Sunday!  I still can't find the music I am supposed to play.  I have no idea where it is.  I'm going to try to look under the piano.  I didn't go to choir because I had to go to the bank's atm at short notice.  This time of year always bites financially.

Anyhow, we've enjoyed some truly singular vegan meals lately.  First of all, I've veganized the Irish Soda Bread recipe from Recipes for a Small Planet.  This is easily done, with applesauce in place of the egg, molasses in place of honey, and soured soy milk in place of buttermilk or yogurt.  I may eventually try this recipe with soy yogurt just to see if it works.  I've made this bread the last two nights and Marcus seems to like it okay.  It's a bit too crusty for the kids, but I intend to make it again and again! 

Sunday, I made Leek and Bean Cassoulet from Veganomicon.  There was enough left over to freeze for two or three days worth of lunches.  Monday night, I made vegan chili using TVP for the first time.  That stuff definitely gives a meaty texture to vegetarian dishes.  I will definitely use it again.  Last night, I made Roman Rice and Beans from Diet for a Small Planet, something I've made time and again, because it's easy and it's vegan without the parmesan.  Marcus, Amy, Chris and Brian all like it.  Somehow, I made it with green peppers last week, and Amy just raved about it.  Last night's rendition contained orange and yellow peppers but it was still VERY good.

Interestingly enough, I much prefer cooking at home now to going out.  Marcus and I are still going out for my birthday Sunday night, but to tell the truth, if he decided to make me a good dinner at home, that would work just as well.  The kids are making brunch for Sunday  noon.  Alison is coming up and she and Amy will probably cook the brunch, though I suspect I will probably take part also.

I think Saturday, I will try making the Almost All-American Seitan Pot Pie from Veganomicon.  That is really good, and I think Marcus would like it.  Yes, I want to make food my husband enjoys.