Cooking Delights

Monday, June 26, 2006

Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat them.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Mmmmmore Mmmmufins

These are also from Vive le Vegan. They are the orange poppy seed muffins... I made them into lemon poppy seed muffins because I don't have any oranges right now. They were delicious. These muffins were also very filling - again due to the ground oats I suspect. They were terrific for breakfast this morning. I made them in my gigantic muffin tins in honour of the fact that Dreena's daughter calls them mommy cakes... I thought they looked more like cakes this way. There is jam in the background, but these muffins didn't need jam. They were perfect on their own.

Fresh Herbs from the Garden

My herb garden is doing really well. This week we have been enjoying fresh herbs on our pasta and pizza. I put fresh oregano on the past primavera and fresh basil on the pizza. Yumma!

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Trying New Things...

This morning I tried two new things. I purchased a small bag of hemp seed nuts to try cooking with them. I tried the Apple Hemp Muffins from Vive le Vegan. The bag I bought was a little too small as it barely had half a cup in it. Anyway, the muffins were good, and very filling. I think they would have been a little plain if I had not added some raisins. I also used maple extract in the place of vanilla extract since I am out. These are a fantastic breakfast muffin.

Next up are the coconut lime cookies which I have been meaning to try for a long time. I thought they would be really pretty and I think they did turn out to be a pretty cookie. It probably would have been better to make them a little smaller. These are a tastey cookie for summer!

Monday, June 19, 2006

Happy Father's Day

In an effort to continue my restful weekend we did a really easy Father's day menu. We went to the local Canadian Superstore and picked up homemade fresh salsa, spicy hummus (see how tired I was to not even make my own hummus?), some olives, and corn on the cob. It was so incredibly good and satisfying. My husband commented that meat eaters don't know what they are missing ... and then he said, "I guess they eat this stuff too." I think the difference is that they don't know how satisfying a meal can be without meat.

This afternoon I was actually inspired enough to make my own hummus. I made the canelli bean and yam hummus from Dreena's Vive le Vegan. It was as good as everybody was saying and I didn't even have the hot chipotle sauce, just normal tabasco sauce!

A bit of a lull

Last week was particularly stressful for me. Making major life decisions and trying to make things happen can be exhausting and I needed to rest as much as possible. Therefore cooking and eating veggies and blogging took a back seat to vegging out.

First up was a simple pasta thrown together with asparagus, sundried tomatoes, garlic and olive oil. Easy and yummy. Everybody loved it.

Second I made thai burgers. These were unbelievably delicious with their combination of peanuts, peanut butter, tofu and cilantro (among other ingredients) The peanut sauce that went with them was delicious as well. I made them ahead for a picnic and even though they were quite good I think they would have been much better hot off the grill (the photo would have been better too!) LOL!

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Recipe Testing, Popsicles, and Gardening

This morning I had the privilege of testing a reicpe for Dreena Burton's new cookbook Eat Drink and Be Vegan. These are the crepes with the celestial creme. This was hubby's special birthday breakfast. OK, it was embarassing how good the celestial cream was... I was totally licking the bowl, the spoon, anything, everything. I loved eat peace please's idea of using the celestial cream as a fruit dip. This stuff is amazing, very easy too. We can't wait for the new cook book Dreena!!!

Second this morning my daughter and I made popsicles. This idea also came from eat peace please and then was further prompted by Megan the Vegan. We used the same combo as Megan - strawberries, banana, soy milk and OJ (without the protein powder) Verdict: delicious, my daughter loved them too. We have been coming up with other delivious combinations all day... mango, chocolate pudding (you know that recipe with the tofu and the chocolate chips), raspberry, banana... the possibilities are endless.

I spent most of the day weeding my vegetable garden. I am tired now. This technically isn't food yet, but it will be soon! I can't wait to cook with fresh produce from my garden. Pictured here are tomatoes, chinese cabbage, pumpkins, zucchini, butternut squash and my herb garden.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Happy Birthday to Hubby!

Well, one thing is for sure, I tuckered myself out making this meal! The recipes I chose were a lot more labour intensive than usual. Also I think when you have guests you tend to make multiple courses, whereas when it is just for yourself you only make one thing. I started Friday night. I began by making the marianade for the mango-ginger tofu from Vegan with a Vengance. The marianade was quite labour intensive. So, OK for guests but not good for everyday.

Then I made some ginger dipping sauce to go with the summer rolls. The ginger dippings sauce was from Vive le Vegan. I liked it better than the sauce that goes with the summer rolls in Vegan with a Vengance.

On Saturday morning I started in on the cake- I chose Raspberry Frosted Cake with Chocolate Cream Center from Vive le Vegan. Unfortunately the silicone cake pans I treated myself to were too big in circumfrence and I ended up with two pretty flat looking cakes. Next time I will have to double the cake recipe. After baking the cake I was on to the icing. This was my first time working with agar powder, and it was not easy for me. I mixed it with the soy milk and ended up with a big clump, which I managed to break into smaller clumps but never did actually disolve in my raspberry sauce. I think next time I will skip mixing the agar with milk and just sprinkle it into the raspberry mixture for easier mixing.

Also Saturday morning I made raspberry lemonade. It is really tart. But I love it. This is a great drink to sip on. After making the cake, the icing and the lemonade, I headed off to teach my one fitness class, one yoga class and one prenatal yoga class.

When I got home I made the summer rolls and did the prep work for the pad thai.

So dinner was a hit, I think. My family kept teasing me about the vegan nature of the meal. You should have heard all the jokes about the tofu icing on the cake. Despite all the teasing, everything was TOTALLY gone. So they may like to poke fun, but the food was enjoyed by all!

Friday, June 09, 2006

Summer Favourites

Today for lunch I grilled eggplant and red pepper on the BBQ and placed it on a crusty bun with some goats cheese (sorry vegan friends). We love this in the summer.

One of my yoga students gave me some rhubarb on Tuesday so I made it into a strawberry rhubarb pie today. This is kind of scary because I am the only one in my house that likes rhubarb! It is delicious to me!

Tomorrow is my hubby's birthday so watch out for cake and goodies!

Lemon Herb Tofu and Leftover Salad

Well, I had heard so many great things about Dreena's Lemon Herb Tofu that I had to see what all the fuss was about. First of all it was great because it didn't take many igredients - really I had everything on hand, which is pretty impressive since I need to go grocery shopping this morning. It was delicious, both warm and cold. I haven't tried making it into a sandwich filling yet because I am still enjoying it with leftover salad.

Next came a clean out the fridge salad. I used a leftover vinagrette that I had made earlier this week and then used up all the vegetables that I had in my fridge. This too was great for clean out the fridge.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Staging food and Dreena's Totally Nutty Bars

I just had to post this photo, not because the dinner was particularly good (although hubby downed it like a vaccuum cleaner both yesterday and today for leftovers), but because my four year old daughter is really getting into taking pictures of our food. Today after I made dinner she came from outside with a flower and said, "Mommy this is to make the dinner look pretty for the photo" Wow, how artistic, what a kid! Anyway, this is Fettucini Alfreda from Vegan with a Vengance. I think next time I will try making it with cashews instead of pine nuts.

This morning I made totally nutty bars from Dreena Burton's Vive le Vegan. They were fantastic - totally healthy, totally tasty. Also, you don't have to bake them, which is great in the heat. They are totally all gone now. I was hoping they would be around for a few days to grab on the way out the door to my yoga/pilates/fitness classes. Oh well, guess I will have to make more and try a different nut combination.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Welcome Home

I wanted to welcome home my hubby and daughter with a great home cooked meal and something special. I whipped up some coconut heaven cupcakes from Vegan with a Vengance. For dinner I made a curry, and asian cole slaw. Hubby devoured all the cupcakes despite my efforts to get him to save some for today. He also really loved the curry.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

When the cat's away, the mouse will play

Well, I had the place to myself this weekend. My daughter and husband were off camping. That meant simpler meals to serve only one person. Also, it meant a few treats for mommy, since I was not setting an example for anybody!

I started with a trip to the Great Canadian Superstore and treated myself to some better pecan toffuti (my absolute favourite), organic sodas, orange/cranberry/raspberry juice, corn chips and lemon gelato. I have a real weakness for ice cream (in case you didn't notice). We tried the raspberrry gelato before and it did not disappoint, so I had to try the lemon. It was delicious too. The organic root beer was absolutely incredible. I loved it. I will definitely pick that up again.

On Friday night I made myself a waffle for dinner. Because my daughter wasn't around I was able to throw a small scoop of toffuti right on top and drizzle it with maple syrup. It was defnitely yummy.

I had been craving fresh salsa and corn chips since 28 cooks posted it on May 22nd and May 30th. I made my own and it was pretty good. I am definitely going to try the recipes from 28 cooks because I wasn't that impressed with mine (let me know if you have any suggestions for good salsa recipes).

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Spanakopita (Spinach Pie)

Wow! This was fantastic. It is from Vegan with a Vengance. I have been a bit gun shy with this cook book since the scrambled tofu - which is silly because everything but the scrambled tofu has been excellent. I cooked it this morning since the weather has been so hot and we had it at dinner. It was so good - even cold. I can't imagine how good it might be warm! I loved the combination of tofu, ground walnuts and spinach for nutritional value. I will definitely make this again. Once again, it would be a good take a long to a non-vegan family dinner, so that our family can have something satisfying to eat. Why yes, that is the recycled quinoa salad, for the last time, I promise!

Easy Dinner Yesterday

It was so hot again yesterday. I couldn't imagine cooking inside. I took a quick trip to the No Frills and bought PC portabello mushroom burgers, Miss Vickies pepper lime chips and recycled the quinoa salad. Very satisfying.

Quinoa for Breakfast

This was a fantastic breakfast for the hot humid weather we were having. This is a bowl of quinoa (cold) with frozen fruit, some sliced almonds, a bit of coconut and then a sprinkling of maple syrup, cinnamon, and soy milk. Quinoa is really light, so it was a great breakfast. Even though quinoa is a complete protein, my only complaint is that it wasn't quite filling enough (I usually eat a monster breakfast)