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


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)
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


1 cup veggie broth
1 tbsp cornstarch
1 tbsp olive oil
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


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




Wheat Gluten



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




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.

Adoptable Pets of the Week: Girlie Girl Army

February 16, 2010 at 8:36 pm | Posted in animals | Leave a comment
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If the animals are on this list that means that they are URGENT and may be killed at their shelter for lack of space if people like us don’t adopt or foster them.  Note that transport from State to State can usually be arranged with rescues.  PLEASE FORWARD THIS EMAIL TO YOUR FRIENDS! Its one of the cheapest easiest and most effective things you can do to help animals (and bump up your place in heaven.)

PIE –  4 ½ yo Am-bull dog
New York, NY:
NYC/DC URGENT Fosters cannot keep! Meet Pie, 4 ½ yo Am-bull dog. 71 pounds of goofy, silly, black, chubby, cute boy.  Rescued from CACC in NYC ..due to crappy owners (moving, new baby ..) was adopted and returned FOUR times. Fosters love but cant because he is cat aggressive.  Pie needs a home without young children, cats, or dominant/aggressive dogs. He NEEDS to have someone who can spend the time training him and getting him to trust humans again.  He is a quick learner and responds to set boundaries, verbal commands, and simple commands using the choke chain.  On neutral territory he is great with other dogs. He loves everyone! He is sensitive, protective, smart, and fun.  He loves to play, run, a good brushing, and his favorite are walks on the leash.  Email for more information about Pie.

Voorhees, NJ: Cat colonies in danger to be euthanized. Urgent help needed.  Email if you can help.

Queens, NY: Kittens outside in the cold need homes. Conatact for more info.

Mt. Vernon, NY: Shelter (which is a “death camp”) has a sweet senior Mini-Pin that needs urgent Foster/Rescue. For more information please call Adoption Volunteer Ellen at 917-543-6092.

New York, NY: Spot – a sweet, friendly, extremely well behaved 13 month old puppy needs a home. or call 212-481-4544.

Sound Beach,LI: Jerry, 12 year old, gorgeous shepherd/chow mix abandoned needs home asap.  Pix and contact here.

New York, NY: CONTACT: All Sentient Beings, Inc. at or 212 642 8219 We need your help! Our shelter is COMPLETELY full. We are even turning away owner surrenders because we have NO cage space. We are asking you to PLEASE help us! If there is a dog you have your eye on, and you are waiting for him/her to go on the euth list… DON’T! Take them now! We have no room and that means tomorrow’s euth list is going to be enormous. If you are a local group, please considering coming in today and pulling a dog. Every open cage makes a difference. Scroll our animals here.

Philadelphia, PA: LOOK AT VIDEO! Now on URGENT list!  Please rescue LuLu and Lala, Beautiful Mother & Daughter! Sweet girls! Contact Marian at (@ yahoo. com) or call  267-385-3800 OR Email or or Michelle at to help or adopt them!

Pittsfield, IL: FINAL CALL! Animal Control URGENT list of Desperate Dogs (all breeds, some purebred/ small) IN NEED!! Pix and contact here. Transport available!

Clinton, IA: No offers for this beautiful 4 month old baby boy! Such a sweet boy please help time is running out for this puppy.

Los Angeles, CA: 82 parakeets at East Valley Shelter Need Rescue.  Please pass on to bird people.  Pix and contact here.

Crescent City, CA: 4 nice dogs at major risk of euthanization.  See their sweet faces and please repost or twitter them.

EXT URGENT!! Sherman Oaks, CA: Cruelty Case – SEAACA Shelter Dogs Need Rescue.  Photos and contact info here.

Chatsworth CA: 18 pound black cat named Sonny needs rescue asap. If you can help Sonny, please call Larry at West Valley Shelter!! He’s a big and beautiful boy! Photo and info here.

San Bernadino, CA: two magnificent dogs are captured and at the vet as of 2/11 — need funds, fosters, and forevers!!! Pix and details:

San Luis Obispo County, California: Senior Shitzu Maltese needs a loving home.  Contact and pix here.

Shreveport, LA: Many nice doggies need rescue from shelter – all breeds.  See their sweet faces!.  Transport is available! Please see photos and info in link and rescue one or more of these current orphans or crosspost their Picassa Photo link or Blog post if you can; this is a partial list.,

Mocksville, NC: Newborn cattle heeler puppies need urgent rescue!  Gorgeous tiny babies!! Contact and pix here.

St. Pauls, NC: Urgent. Adopt/Rescue Sharpei Mix, Samira.  Sweetest girl.  Contact and pix here.

York, SC: Shelter is overrun with animals – purebreeds, puppies, mutts, etc. Contact: York County Animal Control 803.818.6500 or Say you’d like to rescue an animal off the kill list.

Don't breed or buy while shelter pets die.

O Christmas Tree O Christmas Tree!

December 14, 2009 at 8:48 pm | Posted in Life | Leave a comment
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I came home from work Saturday night to a wonderful surprise. A REAL Christmas tree in my livingroom!! It makes the whole house smell like pine, so nice.

The cats have been pretty well behaved with the tree. The first morning after it was put up we found three ornaments on the floor, but none since.

Last night we tried to go to the temple for the Sunday program but lo and behold we got stuck in a snow drift right in front of our house. Talk about all dressed up and no where to go!

And last but not least, some gratuitous cat photos for your enjoyment.

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!

My life in pictures.

November 16, 2009 at 9:18 pm | Posted in Life | Leave a comment
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After not attending Sunday Feast services for almost 3 weeks I went to the temple for the program last night. It was a very nice program with a good lecture and lots of funny jokes too. The deities were dressed in beautiful red outfits that I had never seen before. Here are some pictures.






Last night Lulu was acting cuter than ever when we arrived home from the temple.

The weather has been pretty cold lately. There is still some frost on the ground where it is shady. Here are some pics of the mountains that surround the valley I live in.

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:






What I do eat:



junk food

fast food

fried food



faux meats



raw foods


agave nectar




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?


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


The Lovecats.

Broccoli and Sundried Tomato Fritatta

November 1, 2009 at 8:36 pm | Posted in cooking | Leave a comment
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Vegan MoFo is now over. I have had a blast this past month cooking and posting and reading all the other MoFo posts. I really feel that this month has made me a better vegan. Well that and watching the Peta Land O Lakes undercover video (disturbing, so disturbing in fact that I never want to consume any dairy products ever again!!!) As promised I am using recipes out of Vegan With A Vengeance by Isa Chandra Moskowitz, founder of the Vegan MoFo. This morning for brunch I cooked the Broccoli and Sundried Tomato Fritatta. In one word YUM! I want to eat this every single morning for breakfast lunch and dinner. The recepie in the book was for an asparagus and sundried tomato fritatta, but I happened to have brocco’s at home instead and brocco’s and sundried tomatoes happens to be a fave combo of mine. As usual I altered the ingredients to make it sattvic.




Here is the slightly altered recipe:

Asparagus and Sundried Tomato Fritatta

1 lb firm tofu

1 tsp soy sauce

1 tsp dijon mustard

1/4 cup nutritional yeast

2 tsp olive oil (I used canola oil)

2 tsp hing

3 stalks asparagus cut into bite sized pieces

1/4 cup chopped sundried tomatoes packed in oil

1 tsp dried thyme

1/4 tsp ground turmeric

1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, torn into pieces

Preheat oven to 400 degrees

In a mixing bowl crumble tofu until it looks like ricotta cheese. I like to use a potato masher for this. Mix in soy sauce, mustard and nutritional yeast. The recipe didnt call for any salt so I added some salt to the mixture.

In 8 inch skillet saute veggies and sundried tomatoes for 3 minutes with remaining seasonings. Transfer this cooked veggie mix to the tofu in the mixing bowl and stir till evenly mixed. Transfer this mix back to the skillet and press in evenly. Bake for 20 minute and then place on top rack and broil for another 2 minutes or until top is slightly browned. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving so it keeps it’s shape. (Mine fell apart anyways.)

Sleeping princess.


Fall food MoFo

October 22, 2009 at 6:06 pm | Posted in cooking, vegan mofo | 1 Comment
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mofo3Haribol ya’ll! Fall weather is finally here. It’s time to eat warm comfort food and rake leafs in the yard and add them to the compost heap. All this cold weather makes me crave warm dense food like chili and mac n cheese. Actually, I have had this mac n cheese craving for a while now but I have been resisting it as fake cheese is so darn expensive. I finally broke down and made some last night for dinner. I had no recipe for it as I made a vegan baked mac n cheese and just could’nt find one that used fake cheese and did’nt have some complex sauce made out of nutritional yeast and 400 spices and herbs. The results were quite tasty. 🙂

Yesterday for lunch we baked some chili that Tota had made a few days ago in a pumpkin with the pumpkin guts mixed in along with some peices of pumpkin. Yummy! Not to mention it made the house smell great while it was baking!





Fall makes everyone sleepy.


Lulu found a whole yard of grass to eat outside in the backyard!

Lulu is the original catcow.

Lulu is the original catcow.

Gaura Nitai all dressed up for Prabhupadas disappearance day.


I have had such a craving for mac n cheese for about a month now. It’s been driving me crazy. So last night I took matters into my own hands. I am thankful I did too as it was tasty and filling!! Too expensive to make all the time thoough as it took 2 packages of Follow Your Heart for an 8 x 8 glass baking dish. Sigh, to live in a world with affordable vegan cheese.



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Till next blog post Lulu says to stay warm and cozy!

Till next blog post Lulu says to stay warm and cozy!

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