They reminded me of pork chops…

December 5, 2010 at 2:07 am | Posted in cats, cooking, Life, utah, vegan, vegetarian | 2 Comments
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I made seitan cutlets for the first time a few nights ago.  They were pretty good, but I made them a little chewy, and when I took them out of the oven I remarked to my husband that well, they look a little bit like pork chops. They were small and kinda round, and had a brownish tint to them. Well, I fried them in a little oil and served them up with some Spicy Boiled Collards and realized that they had a similar texture to the pork chops I remember eating as a kid- chewy. CHEWY. I was sad. Next time I’ll add a bit more water to the initial gluten mixture in the hopes that they are not chewy. I followed the recipe to the letter, and have I ever mentioned that I am not always good at taking instruction? I’ll keep you updated on the seitan cutlets when attempt two happens. Still, not bad for a first try.

See what I mean?

Does anyone here use Mimic Cream? I read about it on one of my fave blogs, Veganize it… Don’t Criticize it! And I can’t wait to try it. Apparently Good Earth in Provo sells it.

Down home vegan

December 2, 2010 at 3:46 am | Posted in cats, cooking, Life, utah, vegan, vegetarian | 3 Comments
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Wow, tonight’s dinner was so good I had to blog about it when it was still fresh in my mind. I made Hot Sauce Glazed Tempeh with mashed potatoes smothered in Jalapeno Corn Gravy. Wow, talk about delish broke food. 🙂

Both recipes come from Veganomicon. (Normally I would just embed links for everything, but the link thing on WordPress is still broken.)

Hot Sauce Glazed Tempeh
By Isa Chandra Moskowitz

Ingredients:

1 8 ounce package of tempeh

1/2 cup broth
1/4 cup hot sauce
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons soy sauce
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (juice from 1 lemon)
hing
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Bring a pot of water to boil.

Whisk all marinade ingredients together in a bowl large enough to fit the tempeh slices.

Cut the tempeh in half widthwise then cut each of those squares diagonally to form 4 large triangles. When the water is boiling, add the tempeh, lower the heat and steam for 10 minutes.

Use tongs to remove the tempeh and then immediately place them in the marinade bowl for 1 hour, flipping them every now again to cover with the marinade.

Preheat a greased grill pan over medium high heat. To grease it, brush lightly with olive oil or if you have a spray bottle of olive oil, that works, too. (Get a spray bottle of olive oil already!)

Grill each side for 5 minutes. When the second side is almost done, spoon some of the marinade over the tempeh and let cook for 30 more seconds.

Alternative broiling instructions:
Preheat the oven broiler. Place tempeh in a rimmed pan (I like to use my cast iron pan for such purposes). Spoon some of the marinade over it and broil for 5 minutes. Flip it and spoon some more marinade over it and cook for another 5 minutes. When the second side is almost done, spoon some of the marinade over the tempeh and let cook for 30 more seconds.

Jalapeno Corn Gravy

Ingredients:

1 cup veggie broth
1 tbsp cornstarch
1 tbsp olive oil
hing
2 jalapenos, diced
2 cups corn
1/4 cup milk (I used almond)
2 tbsp lemon juice

Saute the hing and jalapenos in the oil for 5 minutes, until soft.
Add the corn and cook for 5 minutes.
Mix cornstarch and broth together in a bowl. Add broth mix and milk to pan, stir, and let thicken for four minutes. Remove from heat.

Transfer to blender or food processor and puree. Add lemon juice to taste.

I felt like such a grownup eating this.

Things soon to come: seitan, more greens, and fudge!

Lasagna MoFo

November 29, 2010 at 6:00 pm | Posted in animals, cats, vegan, vegan mofo, vegetarian | Leave a comment
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I wanted to make sure that I did a Lasagna post this MoFo as I want to dispel the myth that lasagna is difficult to make. All you need are a few simple and relatively inexpensive items: Vegan Cheese (optional, but sometimes I like it on top); quick cooking lasagna noodles;  can spaghetti sauce; about one cup of small chopped lightly steamed veggies of choice (I recommend zucchini); tofu ricotta (quick recipe is one 1 lb mashed tofu, a little lemon juice, salt, nootch, and thyme all mixed together) and one chopped roma tomato. Here are the steps:

1. Layer sauce and tomatoes on bottom.

2. Place dry pasta on top of sauce and tomatoes and cover with more sauce.

3. Layer Tofu Ricotta on next

4. Another layer of lasagna noodles and sauce with diced tomatoes.

5. Layer on steamed veggies and diced tomatoes.

6. Another layer of pasta, sauce, and cheese.

(The cooked and uncooked dish looked almost the same)

I undercooked it due to some problems I am experiencing with my oven. Due to this it fell apart and dose’nt resemble lasagna so there are no pictures of it plated up. I recommend cooking it for about 40 minutes covered and another 10-15 uncovered.

Today’s product review is Whole Soy and Co. lemon yogurt. Yum. I was very pleased. It tasted almost like the real deal.

Rating: ***** Five out of five stars

Cuteness!

Vegan Pantry 101

November 18, 2010 at 5:27 pm | Posted in cats, cooking, vegan, vegan mofo | Leave a comment
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I thought it would be nice to switch things up a little bit and provide the lowdown of things that I always keep in my pantry (and fridge) to help me stay a good vegan.

Nutritional Yeast

Olive Oil

Coconut Milk

Canned beans (black, pinto, and garbanzo)

Almond Milk

Daiya vegan cheese

Liquid Smoke

Tempeh

Tofu

Pasta

Wheat Gluten

Bullion

Quinoa

Braggs Liquid Aminos

Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar

Tomato Paste

Crushed Tomatoes

Panco Bread Crumbs

Spaghetti Sauce

Pepper Grinder

Vegan Baking Chocolate

Wheat Germ

Wheat Flour

Rice

TVP

Tahini

Egg Replacer

Flax Seeds

And here is a short list of kitchen equipment that you might want to have on hand:

Coffee Grinder (for grinding spices)

Paint brushes (for glazing baked goods and brushing out your spices from the grinder)

Cast Iron skillet

Tofu Press

Strainers (at least two)

Food Processor

Good knives

Cutting Boards (including a few of the flexible ones)

Blender (upright and immersion)

Food Processor

Melon Baller (for removing the stems from tomatoes)

Raj and I, chillaxin.

Breakfast for dinner and other exitement.

December 12, 2009 at 8:30 pm | Posted in cats, cooking, ekadasi, utah | Leave a comment
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Haribol!! It is so cold and snowy outside. I have been entertaining myself by watching the snow fall while I chant my rounds and boy is it coming down. My cats have been hibernating since it’s been snowing. They must sleep 15 hours a day now, like little bears. Only coming out to sleep and be petted.

When Lulu is not sleeping by the window on the couch she enjoys watching the snow fall.

A few nights ago I made breakfast for dinner: Tofu Rancheros with tomatillo salsa; Tofurky Sausages; and my fave frozen hash browns. Yum.

Last night was Ekadasi. That means no grains or beans but I didnt want anything with quinoa and I already ate a baked potato and steamed veggies for lunch. What to make?? I decided to make the Pumpkin Chipotle Soup recipe that I had cut out of Natural Health Magazine a year ago.  The end product was quite tasty and filling, but if you use this recipe I recommend doubling the amount of pumpkin puree as it was not thick, creamy, or pumpkiny. All we could taste was the chile so we decided to add another can of pumpkin and it fixed the problem.

Till next time stay warm and dry!

Playing catchup

December 3, 2009 at 12:32 am | Posted in cats, cooking | 2 Comments
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Haribol! Today I finally got all those pictures off my camera and onto my pc.

About a week and a half ago I ordered a cheesless pizza from work. Yum!

Later last week I made Terriyaki Yaki Soba with tofu and veggies.

The day before Thanksgiving I had a craving for a bacon cheeseburger so I made some vegan bacon from VWAV. And, here is a copy of the recipe.If you dont own this cookbook you need to buy it!

  • 3 Tbs. Bragg’s liquid aminos or soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup apple cider
  • 1 tsp. tomato paste
  • 1/4 tsp. liquid smoke
  • 1 8-ounce package tempeh
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 Tbs. peanut oil or vegetable oil
  1. To make the marinade combine the soy sauce, cider, tomato paste and liquid smoke in a wide, shallow bowl or pan and mix with a fork until the tomato paste is fully dissolved.
  2. Cut the tempeh into thin strips (less than 1/4 inch thick) lengthwise. You should be able to get about 12 strips. Rub the strips with the crushed garlic, then toss the garlic cloves into the marinade. Submerge the tempeh strips in the marinade and let sit, for at least an hour and up to overnight. After marinating, discard the garlic.
  3. Heat the oil in an 11 or 12 inch skillet over medium heat. Add the tempeh strips and cook for 4 minutes on one side; the bottom should be nicely browned. Flip the strips over and pour the remainder of the marinade over them. If there isn’t much marinade left add a splash of water. Cover and let cook for 3 more minutes, or until the liquid is absorbed. Uncover and check for doneness; if necessary keep cooking uncovered until all sides are nicely browned. Remove from heat and serve. (I recommend doubling the marinade recipe.)
  4. bacon marinating

    Sizzle!

And here is the finished bacon cheese burger. Yum!

On Thanksgiving I made two apple pies and two pumpkin pies. I found the pumpkin pie recipe on Recipezaar.com. Seriously, this is the best pumpkin pie recipe I have ever tasted. And its simple to make.  Here is a link to it:  http://www.recipezaar.com/Pumpkin-Pie-Made-With-Tofu-No-Milk-or-Eggs-78098.

The pumpkin pies were a big hit. We went to the temple for aarti and Thanksgiving lunch and everyone kept asking who made the pumpkin pie. I brought the other one for family Thanksgiving dinner. Last year a turkey flew onto the temple farm. He knew the safest place in the world to fly to. He is now the guest of honor at the temple Thanksgiving lunch. He likes to hang out at the farm with a peacock.

Caught stuffing my face.

Caught with my mouth full!

Till later stay warm!

The Lovecats.

What do vegans eat anyways?

November 10, 2009 at 6:37 pm | Posted in Animal Rights, cats, why vegetarian? | 2 Comments
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I often get asked what I eat and it suprises me as there are so many more plants to eat than animals and animal products. The list of what I dont eat is way shorter than the list of what I do eat. First, let me define veganism: Veganism is a diet and lifestyle that seeks to exclude the use of animals for food, clothing, or any other purpose. Vegans endeavor not to use or consume animal products of any kind. The most common reasons for becoming a vegan are ethical commitment or moral conviction concerning animal rights, the environment, human health, and spiritual or religious concerns. Of particular concern to many vegans are the practices involved in factory farming and animal testing, and the intensive use of land and other resources for animal farming .” (from Wikipedia)

What I don’t eat:

eggs

milk

cheese

meat

honey

What I do eat:

veggies

soy

junk food

fast food

fried food

chocolate

sweets

faux meats

starches

carbs

raw foods

sugar

agave nectar

legumes

nuts

oil

faux cheeses

almond milk

The list of what I eat could go on forever as I eat a wide and varied diet. Veganism is not some fad diet. Veganism doesn’t limit one to a raw diet, or no fried food or sugar, etc. Vegan food doesn’t mean health food. Vegans come in all body types both fat and thin and everything in between. The days of the anorexic pale vegans are over. I am most certainly not some anorexic vegan. I am a good cook and it shows. 🙂

I have been vegetarian since my 18th birthday back in 1995 and I have been integrating a vegan diet for the past 2 years. I still slip up once and a while but I don’t beat myself up about it. It’s amazing the stuff that dairy products are hidden in!

I have held strong convictions about animal rights for many years. I learned about vivisection when I was 11 or 12 and protested against it but didn’t put it together with what was on my plate. I come from a very meat and potatoes family and I think my vegetarianism made me a bit of an outcast. But I am okay with that too. 🙂 In high school I had some vegetarian friends. None of them were veggies for animal rights reasons though and on my 18th birthday not too long after I had moved out of my parents house I quit eating meat for good. I wish I had access to the vegetarian and vegan resources then that I have now as it was really really hard for me. I didn’t know how to cook and all the fake meat subs and veggie burgers back then tasted a lot like cardboard. Fast forward to two years ago. I cooked a bunch of yummy cheese and milk laden dinners back to back and ended up in the hospital and had to take almost a week off work. It really sucked. I have had a lifelong cow dairy allergy and it had finally caught up with me. Now I had to deal with the fact that my current lacto-veg diet was not living up to the needs of my body and the fact that I really was not helping to save animals by being vegetarian. It was time to live up to my own ideals. It was time to go vegan.

I have read a few really good books on animal rights and veganism. Here are the books that have made my life better: The Skinny Bitch, The Skinny Bitch in The Kitch, Animal Liberation, and Vegan With A Vengeance. I just received Free the Animals- the story of the Animal Liberation Front in the mail today and I look forward to reading it. I also have another book coming in the mail- Vegan the new ethics of eating. I really look forward to reading it. I may not be the perfect vegan. I have the occasional dietary slipup but being hardcore and unforgiving won’t make anyone a better person. I aim for perfection, but my feet are on the ground. I have no plans on blowing up a lab anytime soon, but I do like to fantasize about freeing all the cows that I see in the pastures here in rural Utah. Well, thats my vegan story. Want to tell me about yours?

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Last night for dinner Tota made some delish dal and rice.

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The Lovecats.

Gratuitous Cat Photos

September 25, 2009 at 6:59 am | Posted in cats | Leave a comment
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I have the best cats in the world. Here are some pictures of them for your enjoyment.

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