Monday, July 23, 2012

I love good recipes!

I have fallen for the Buffalo garlic tofu at Whole Foods. The problem is, they don't always have it when I want it! So I found the recipe online which could not be more easy. I especially love it because it gives me a reason to take out the Vitamix.

I also made delicious veggie quinoa with vegan ranch dressing courtesy of one of my favorite bloggers. It had all kind of goodies in it! I added corn in place of yellow peppers because I didn't have any on hand. Oh and I totally forgot I added a bit of chopped onion and some plumped up raisins. The recipe didn't need any additions but I'm not one to completely follow the rules ;)

The best part about about both of these recipes? They are vegan and gluten free and can be eaten hot or cold!


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Serious Sushi-Vegan Style

Stu decided he was going to try his hand at making a vegan sushi for us. I am so glad he did! Now we both know how to roll sushi rolls! We used vegan cream cheese, cucumber, scallions (we use scallion in everything), avocado, and even gluten free vegan shrimp! I didn't even know they existed!! But they do, so I posted a pic of the bag below. He got them at whole foods. They added something visually to the food but taste wise I would have been fine without them, they did not add flavor, only texture. 








Friday, June 22, 2012

Stuffed Potato Balls

 After having leftover mashed potatoes, we decided to make stuffed potato balls. Our mashed potatoes already had scallion and seasoning in them so we just rolled them into balls, stuffed some Daiya cheese in the middle, rolled them in nutritional yeast flakes and fried. One bite and it was like the heavens opened and the angels started singing. We also baked a few but it didnt have the same flavor as the fried ones.





Vegan Mac and Cheese



I cannot take credit for this recipe. I found it on Allrecipes. But we loved it so much we made it twice in two weeks! Here is the recipe. We made a double batch in order to use the entire bag of pasta. We also used gluten free brown rice pasta. It was also great as leftovers! Can't wait for lunch today!!

Saturday, June 2, 2012

My Birthday

The week before my birthday I kept getting asked the same question about my birthday party; "What can you eat?" My family was trying to plan some sort of dish that Stu and I could eat while they were having hot dogs and hamburgers. I share my birthday party with my nephew Nick, who turned 4 this year. The theme was Iron man! I finally told everyone not to worry, I would bring myself a GFV cake and have salad.  But two days before the party I ended up in the hospital Emergency room for excruciating pain and found out I have fibroids. So needless to say I was not feeling up to baking a cake. 
When I arrived at my parents house, my sisters and niece were so excited to show me that they had made me chocolate covered strawberries with vegan chocolate chips and a GFV chocolate cake! I could not have been more proud of their efforts and they were too. We laughed as they shared the whole experience with me of them venturing into whole foods not quite knowing what gluten free was, and looking for Gluten free, wheat free and "vegan free" cake mixes! lol.. Until a kind shopper overheard them discussing the matter and gave them the rundown of what gluten free means and what vegan means, She helped them pick out the cake mix and egg replacer and they even made the frosting. I smiled ear to ear because the thought really does mean alot and the cake was delicious.

We also had a beautiful salad for lunch. All in all they went out of their way to make it special and it was.


On my actual birthday at home, Stu surprised me with a vegan gluten free version of my favorite dish: Panang! I used to eat chicken panang from every Thai restaurant we went to. But his version was amazing and included unexpected ingredients like sweet potato and kale. While unexpected, they seemed to belong in the dish and really complete it. I will find out which recipe he used and post it. 
GFV Panang
Once the kids left to their dad's last night, we finished out my birth week with something we have not had in a long time. Dirty Martinis with blue cheese stuffed olives. On his way home from work, Stu picked up some vegan blue cheese and some Belvedere vodka. He stuffed the olives while I mixed the drinks. While the texture of the blue cheese was not the same, we found that the longer it sat in the drink the more it tasted like the real thing. Verdict: more dirty martinis tonight :) Cheers!


Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Spring Rolls


 I was getting my pedicure done when a man walked into the nail salon with a huge tray of spring rolls for the staff. I immediately began craving one so not long after I left the salon, did I head for the nearest grocery store to get my supplies.

My sister in law used to make lumpia, which are Filipino spring rolls so I had a basic idea of what I needed. I wasn't too sure whether I wanted raw spring rolls or cooked ones so I made both!

For the raw filling I used :
1 red bell pepper
1/2 green cabbage
handful of grated carrots
large bunch scallion
handful of bean sprouts
6 cloves of garlic
grated ginger
cilantro
basil

I squeezed lime juice over it along with some sesame oil,  tamari sauce and a small amount of chili sauce called sambal oelek. After soaking the rice paper in warm water for a about 15 seconds, I wrapped them over some filling and served it with sweet chili sauce. I do not think this recipe can be messed up as it is basically throwing in the things you like, as little or as much as you like!




 Then I used all the same ingredients but I wilted it down in the pan and added extra tamari and extra sesame oil. This was the fun part because we tasted as we went along . When we were happy with the taste, we rolled up more spring rolls and popped them in the oven. I served it with THIS very simple sauce, but I changed out the soy sauce for Tamari to make it gluten free. I also used apple cider vinegar because I did not have rice wine vinegar and added a little grated ginger as well. It was amazing!

Friday, May 25, 2012

Chocolate cake anyone?

I came across this Gluten free chocolate cake recipe on Ginger Lemon Girl's blog. I have to say it was so amazing that it was gone in two days.  I added a handful more of the vegan chocolate chips than the recipe called for and it was enough to satisfy any rich chocolate craving a person could have. Next time I will use canola oil instead of the coconut oil because my son Ryan does not care for the flavor of the coconut oil that much. I also took her tip and used Pillsbury Chocolate frosting as it is vegan and gluten free and drizzled some over the top with powdered sugar. It could not have been easier!

Last Night's Dinner

We love roasted veggies but last night we had them with a little twist. I was not feeling well so Stu took over the dinner making. I must say that I was pleasantly surprised to have Daiya shredded pepper jack cheese on the broccoli and cauliflower. So tasty and so easy.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Lentils

A few weeks ago, I attempted making lentils for the first time. I did not follow a recipe but just took a little bit from everything I read online. However, I did not follow one piece of advice I read about : "Do not mix newly purchased lentils with ones you already have at home as they will be more dried  out and cause them to cook unevenly." 


I will just cook them a little longer I thought, who cares if they are overcooked, right? Wrong! Some of the lentils were a bit under-cooked and I learned my lesson! At least they were two different colors so I could easily pick them out. I am proud of myself for trying something new, which seems to be a regular thing lately!

Gluten free vegan meatloaf


I used this recipe , using the gluten free substitutions. I also added chopped garlic and green pepper to it because of course I have to have garlic in "meatloaf"! For the topping I just used what I used to make for regular meatloaf, a mixture of ketchup, brown sugar and liquid smoke. Stu absolutely loved it. He couldn't get over the flavor and we were blown away by the texture. The recipe is from the book Let Them Eat Vegan so I actually want to buy the book now and make some more amazing dishes!


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

GFV Red Velvet Cake

So my guy was secretly busy in the kitchen last night making me stay in my room as to not see what he was up to. I smelled him baking something. He said it was some kind of oats cake with raisin glaze. I will admit I smiled but was not enthusiastic over the sound of that at ALL. When he was finally done I was so surprised! We each ate a nice sized piece. It was so goooood. But after eating clean wholesome foods for the past 6 weeks, the ingredients in this cake made us both feel terrible shortly after. (Shortening being a main ingredient). We decided we would not have any more of it but it was delicious and I was very touched that he went through all the effort to make something like this. I will find out where he sourced the recipe and post it later.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Guacamole

This week we were on a guacamole kick. The Hass avocados were 10 for $10  and it just so happened they were all ripe and ready for eating. So I made some guacamole. One night we used it as a topping for our rice burgers. We also enjoyed it as a dip with rice chips. Rice chips were a happy accident we found in the rice cake section and they were labeled certified GF. I had no tomatoes or onion so it was super quick and easy and just as delish as ever!

3 hass avacados
2 garlic cloves
3 T lime (or to taste)
sea salt to taste -I dont measure
3 shakes of cumin
2 shakes of Cayenne pepper
cilantro-  I used about a half cup because it gives it the best flavor!

I just mash with a fork because I like it a bit chunky as does Stu.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Domino's Gluten free pizza

So, no pictures to post as I just wanted to eat, and we had a full house.

Domino's is offering a gluten free crust (only in small size) so we each got one. They were both cheese free, first time for me but Tiffany has had cheeseless before.

I had mushrooms, roasted peppers pineapple and black olives, Tiff had peppers, onion, mushrooms.
I liked both flavors and I liked the idea that I can pick up something on the way home, somewhere that the kids can get their meal too. Mine tasted  like a Hawaiian without the meat.

I will update later on in the month when I/We learn to make our own at home.

Stu

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Carbs for breakfast?! Yeah mon!

I  don't believe I mentioned but Stu is from Jamaica and if you have ever been there, you know that breakfast is not traditional American breakfast. They eat salt fish, callaloo, dumplings, yams, and boiled banana all on the same plate... (lots of carbs which I love), and the bulk of most dishes contain pepper- not black pepper, but the ever so hot and flavorful scotch bonnet pepper. This is no problem for me because I love all things spicy. So when Stu surprised me on Saturday morning with this flavorful mash I was NOT complaining! It was basically boiled potatoes with the skin on, mashed up with raw red onion, scotch bonnet pepper, scallion, salt and a "likkle" bit of almond milk. It is a heavy breakfast depending on how much of it you eat and I admit- the two of us polished off this entire bowl! He said its his take on alloo choka, which is a West Indian dish. I am one lucky girl because I have a man who loves (and know how) to cook!

Saturday, May 5, 2012

GFV Pizza & a Rookie Mistake

Tonight we decided to try out a place called Pizza Fusion. I found it online and when I found out they had GFV crust and GFV brownies I was in. But it was the GFV beer that had me at hello.I can honestly say the pizza tasted like ordinary pizza on a thin crispy crust. I did not taste anything funny in regard to the soy cheese either. 
 
"GF NOT VEGAN" BEER


The beer was so nice and felt like a real treat.When we were about halfway through the bottle we realized that while it was gluten free, it had honey in the ingredient list so of course it was not vegan. Another rookie mistake on our part because we should have checked the label without taking the waitress's word for it. 


I admit we did finish that round and split a second beer that WAS actually GFV.


What I liked about the salad was that I did not have to make the dressing and it was delish. I admit having spiral carrot strips made the salad feel special to me! It's the little things:)

He told me to look at the camera and then he kissed me, but I kissed him back-I promise!

What's a night out to a newly discovered restaurant without a gluten free vegan brownie??

Admittedly, my son's cookies looked amazing but they are NOT GFV so we snapped a quick pic and turned away from the cookies lol.

Another Meal From Greenwave Cafe

Last night Stu decided to stop and pick up dinner on his way home. Since we "discovered" this place a few weeks ago and quite liked it, we decided to go for another round of colorful, delicious, freshness. As an appetizer we had the "sushi" which was every bit like sushi and I can say nothing seemed to be lacking in flavor. The sauce was amazing as was the roll. We used to be regular sushi eaters before we made the switch to being vegan so we were quite impressed with this dish!
We also shared the lettuce wrap tacos which I think were even better than the burrito we had last time. The "cheese" sauce and guacamole were up to par.
Below were the kelp noodles. I do not recall what the name of the actual dish was called but it was an Asian inspired dish. I have to say I was not fond of the kelp noodles and neither was Stu so we only ate a few bites. 

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

The Search Begins!

Today is the first day of May and so the search begins for THE BEST gluten free, vegan devil's food cake recipe ever! Why? Because my birthday is this month and I am determined to make my first GFV cake! I will be scouring blogs and recipe websites and reading reviews which I heavily rely on before attempting new recipes. Any ideas? I'm salivating already :) Oh and it goes without saying that I will be needing a chocolate frosting recipe as well- just saying ;)

Monday, April 30, 2012

Love Affair With My Vitamix!

Can we say Carb overload? Since we got the Vitamix on Saturday I have been making making everything I can  in it. In the span of two days I made Stu and I butternut squash soup, green smoothies, and potato soup (pictured above). For the kids I made vanilla ice cream, scooped some out for my one child who only likes vanilla, then added cookies and chocolate for the two chocolate loving kids. What a breeze! Where have you been all my life Vitamix 5200?


Sunday, April 29, 2012

Which Syrup is Healthier?

Today we had our favorite Sunday breakfast of GFV chocolate chip pancakes and scrambled tofu. I posted pics of this in a previous post.

Stu had the Blue Agave syrup, while I had the pure Maple Syrup. The kids had the Lite Butter syrup which ironically says  "Contains No Butter" under the title.

While we were having our after breakfast chat at the table I turned the Maple syrup bottle around and almost fell out of my chair after reading the calories. We quickly began comparing and I was wishing I could go back in time and "unpour" some of the syrup I had already eaten.

PURE MAPLE SYRUP
AGAVE
LITE BUTTER SYRUP
I am now officially confused as to which would have been a better choice! The Lite syrup had half the calories and sugar! HOWEVER the list of ingredients was long compared to the Pure Maple Syrup. The Agave is a low glycemic index sweetener so perhaps that would have been the better choice. I just thought by going with PURE and NATURAL I made a wise choice. Maybe next time I need to put less than a quarter cup though :(

I would be interested in any feedback concerning this.

Bean Noodles Stir Fry

Stu said this has been his favorite dish so far. I used bean noodles which he prefers to the rice noodles. Tossed in broccoli, squash, mushrooms, scallions, garlic, tamari sauce, chili sauce and peanut sauce. I will take a pic of the sauces we use because they are GFV and I only use a spoon or two when cooking a dish so they last a long time.

Portabello Mushrooms and "Not So Great" Curry Tofu

Lightly seasoned with Sea Salt and pepper- very quick and easy side dish which Stu loved.

This tofu curry wasn't too bad but not great either. It was just good enough to get another dinner done.I had no idea what I was making for dinner and just started throwing stuff in the pan. The end result smelled good and tasted alright. I think the mushrooms were the star of this dinner.