Monday, April 27, 2009

Food pyramid

For all of you wondering what vegans eat, what to eat, and how much of it, etc, here is the vegan food pyramid. (not made by me)

(Click on the image to make it larger)

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Vegan caesar salad

Mmm! I made some vegan caesar salad today, and it's quite good! So I'll share the recipe with all of you who read my blog. (anyone?)

Here's another Google image...

1 cup vegannaise (or other vegan mayonnaise)
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 clove garlic (finely minced)
1 tbsp fresh ground pepper
1/8 cup nutritional yeast (or to taste)

1/2 loaf (or less) French bread (chopped into crouton sized pieces)
olive oil
seasonings (whatever you like, I like basil, oregano, nutritional yeast, dill weed, garlic powder and pepper)

3 heads romaine or 1 head iceburg lettuce (or spinach or other greens to make it healthier, but you won't get that classic caesar salad you used to get at restaurants)
chicken substitute (optional)

Mix first 6 ingredients (vegannaise through yeast), taste, and adjust to make it just how you like it.

Put the chopped bread on a cookie sheet. (they should  not be too crowded, there also should only be one layer, so if there's too much for that, make two batches) Then drizzle it with the oil, then mix that up, then add the seasonings and stir, then lay on one layer on the cookie sheet, and put it in a 350 degree oven. Stir occasionally. Once lightly golden and crunchy, let cool.

Cook the chicken substitute, and cut however you like. Then chop the lettuce. Then mix the lettuce, dressing, and croutons together, and lay the chik'n on top. Enjoy!

Also, I did more free hugging on Friday, and also on Saturday. (at Saturday market!) The people there were very friendly and we got lots of hugs.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Trip to my grandpas' house

I went on a trip to my grandpa's house this week, and had tons of fun! (Saturday-Wednesday) I got to go to work with him, got to help him with home maintenance, and gardening. And of course cooking!
The first night (Saturday) I made a pasta with homemade sauce and a salad, then sunday we didn't have a dinner, then Monday we had the neighbors over for dinner and had a yellow curry (with potatoes, carrots, onions, zucchini) with a side of rice. On Tuesday we had a homemade jambalaya, (recipe) with a salad and some roasted asparagus from the garden. And for lunches we'd have a sandwich, leftovers, etc. And also I made some chocolate chip cookies. (I couldn't come to my grandpas house and not make him any sweets!) 

Friday, April 17, 2009

Free hugs!!

Today is "Free hugs" day!
Me and some of my friends went to downtown Portland, wearing shirts that said "Free hugs" , "Lets hug it out" and "Got love? Give a hug!" shirts, and gave as many people as many hugs as possible (mainly strangers). It was tons of fun. We got some very nice people and responses. Some of the good responses were hugs, asking if we'd hug specific people, etc. Some of the bad ones were refusing hugs, ignoring us, and some of the boys wouldn't hug some of my male friends because "that's gay". *sigh* But the best response we got was this: they accepted the hugs then "okay, do you want to do an awesome hug?" said the person "Okay. How do we do that?" asked my friend. "Um, okay, lets run at eachother and then hug." "Okay!" Then they did that and then my friend picked her up and spun her around, she was lots of fun.  And then the worst response was one guy, we asked him if he wanted a hug, without even looking at at us he said "NO!" and kept walking. He seemed very angry!  We also tried to hug cops and security guards at the mall, all but one of them said something along the lines of "Not while I'm on duty." But we got to give hugs from one, but we had to hug him quick or he might have gotten in trouble.

It was a ton of fun. I highly suggest you do it sometime, just not by yourself, you should really do it with friends. It helps spread a little joy. :)

Monday, April 13, 2009

Vegan Easter!

Wondering what to do on Easter if you can't paint eggs? Well, there's a variety of things you could do
1: You could paint rocks or plastic eggs, etc.
2: You could paint cookies.
3: You could paint/frost cupcakes.
4: You could not paint anything, but still have an Easter hunt with plastic eggs.
Or 5: You could paint vegetables! That is what we did this year, we painted a variety of vegetables (zucchini, yellow squash, yams, spaghetti squash, carrots, acorn squash, etc) with food paint.
Then we made little graham cracker houses out of graham crackers, candies, and frosting to hold it all together. (a lot like gingerbread houses) You could make your own frosting, or you could use Pillsbury frosting if you're low on time. 
Or you could do an Easter hunt with plastic eggs, but I would recommend only doing the hunt or the houses, because that's a lot of sugar.
And if you chose to paint veggies, what would you do with all those painted veggies? Well, you could wash them, and then make tempura! (That's what we did, this recipe is amazing, just make sure you have some other food, because sweets, and fried veggies aren't the most healthy meal ever.

Have a great easter!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Vegan sushi!

Today I made...... Vegan sushi!
It's soooooo good. Today I made veggie rolls, (sprouts, carrots, cucumber, green onions, and avocado) inari (fried tofu pouches stuffed with rice) and miso soup. (with seaweed, tofu, green onions, oyster mushrooms, and bok choy)

And I'm getting annoyed with my camera still not working, so here's some Google images.

So here's how you make the sushi:
(makes about ten sushi rolls)
2 cups rice (I use white, but I think brown works too. But brown is much more filling, so you might want to half-batch it if you use brown)
10 sheets sushi seaweed
About 1/2 cup rice vinegar

Fillings: (choose one or more)
1-2 carrots
1/2 a cucumber
Green onions (less than one batch)
1 avocado
1 package sprouts (whatever kind you like. Make sure they're not brown or wilted)
Baked teriyaki tofu (store-bought or home-made)
Bamboo mat (wrapped in plastic wrap)

First take the rice, and rinse it under water about three times. (six if using brown rice)
Then add 2 3/4 cups water. Boil rice, once boiling, lower heat to a light simmer. (stir occasionally)
Let it cook until done, then take off the heat, season with vinegar, and let cool. (if in a hurry, put it in the fridge to cool)
Meanwhile, slice your carrots, cucumber, and green onions into thin sticks. (as long as the seaweed) Slice the tofu. And then put a bowl of water next to your workplace.
Once the rice is cooled, and the fillings are cut, take a piece of seaweed, and put it on your bamboo mat, and spread a small amount of rice over the whole thing evenly.(dip your hands in the water bowl to prevent it from sticking to your hands) Then on the far side of your seaweed, put a horizontal line of veggies, and tofu at the far side. Then pull the far side of the mat gently towards you. (so that you barely start to roll the roll) Then press it down gently. Then lift the mat off the top of the roll, and roll a tiny bit more, and press down, repeat until the roll is rolled. Then squeeze it gently together. Repeat with remaining rolls. Then thinly slice it with a sharp wet knife, and serve on a plate with a sauce bowl of soy sauce, wasabi, and pickled ginger.

Then to make the inari, just buy some inari pouches (come in small cans at Asian markets)
and put a little of your sticky rice in it Then close it up, and serve!

To make the miso soup, just boil some water, and whisk in some miso paste. (be SURE to not have any lumps, it's like finding a piece of bullion in your soup) Then add some chopped mushrooms, cubed tofu, sliced green onions, bok choy and wakame. (dried seaweed specifically for soups) Then let the veggies cook,(shouldn't take more than five minutes) and serve!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Veggie rolls

Yum! Veggie rolls! (also known as salad rolls, and Summer rolls)

I had these for dinner tonight, and ended up making them for the whole family. (Mom looked at what I was cooking, asked if I'd make some for Dad, ate one of Dads, asked for some for herself, then came the brother)

So here's how you make them!
1/3 cucumber
1 carrot
1 tomato (the ones that are ripe, but barely, so that they have that really nice "fresh" flavor work best)
1 avocado
a few leaves of basil, minced
1 cup spinach
about 1/3 container rice papers (Can be found in most Asian markets, and looks like this)

Okay, so cut the carrots and cucumber julienne.
Then cut the tomato in half, and then slice it.
Slice the avocado.
Then get a bowl, or pan, or something, and have it full of hot water. (pans work well for this because they are wide, and you can keep them warm) You don't want it simmering, you want to be able to put your hand in the water without hurting yourself, but you want it hot enough to be able to cook the rice papers.
Once you have all of that done, take a rice paper, and put it in the water until when bent it doesn't crack, or make sounds, but not too soft that it rips easily. Then put it on a cutting board, put on a small amount of spinach, carrots, cucumber, tomato, avocado, and basil. (try not to overfill it, or it will break and look messy) Then repeat with remaining ingredients.
Tada! (makes enough for two, or a moderate snack for four)

Monday, April 6, 2009

Birthday party

Phew! That was a fun birthday party! I had so much fun! I had all my friends over, and we played games, talked, and watched movies.
I need some more birthday activities for next year though, we got bored at times since most of us stayed up until 4PM the next day.

Here's what we had to eat:
Lunch: pizza, there were mushrooms, onions, peppers, zucchini, spinach, soy cheese, homemade sauce, olives, pineapple, and artichoke hearts.  (not all on one pizza of course)
Dinner: lasagna, I used the recipe from How It All Vegan, but added some sauteed mushrooms, onions, zucchini, and peppers.
Breakfast: tofu scramble, with mushrooms, onions, and kale.

The tofu scramble and pizza worked out fine, but there was a lot of extra lasagna left, so here's my plan for next year.
Lunch: make-your-own sandwiches. (lettuce or sprouts, tomatoes, avocado, onion, etc)
Dinner: pizza and maybe a salad. (I'd use the left-over veggies from the sandwiches, and maybe a little extra)
Breakfast: tofu scramble.
With this, I don't think I'd have much trouble with leftovers, because this way, lets say there's leftovers from everything, no one ate much at all. (highly unlikely, but it's hypothetical) So, if there were leftover sandwich veggies, make them into a salad, condiments go in the fridge, and bread can always go to use somehow. For the pizza, take the extra crusts and toppings, and make the pizzas, but don't cook them, then wrap them in plastic wrap, and freeze them (then you can just put it in the oven, and have a nice homemade pizza within half an hour). If there's leftover salad, just eat it, you can handle eating a little leftover salad. If there's leftover tofu scramble, just put it in tortillas, wrap it up, put it in a plastic bag, and freeze it, tada! Breakfast burritos! The other thing about these meals, is that you can do most of the work the day before, so that even if you have guests coming early, you can still have plenty of nice food, without spending the day in the kitchen. You can slice all the veggies for the sandwiches ahead of time, chop the pizza toppings, pre-make the crusts and sauce, and chop all the veggies for the tofu scramble, and crumble the tofu ahead of time. Also the cake can be made the day before, or at least the batter can.

 Also, I think you should limit your sweets to only two different sweets, I made too much this year, I think a cake, and something else will be fine, rather than the cake, cupcakes, sex-in-a-pan, and all the other stiff the guests brought.
As far as snacks, maybe have some chips, and make the rest healthy snacks, like hummus with carrots, maybe some crackers with spreads, etc.

A fun activity to do is to make little graham cracker houses, just take some graham crackers, frosting, and a variety of candy, and let your imagination (and possibly taste buds) do the rest! You'll get cute little houses, gardens, and whatever else you can think of, and then you get to eat it! (just make sure that when the guests leave, to make sure they take their houses, or else you'll be stuck with too much candy and frosting, and then within a couple days, stale graham crackers, it's not good.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

First day of college!

It's my first day of college!
It was so much fun!
Today I took a "Vegetarian cooking Adventure" class! Todays adventure was greens! (which seemed to include broccoli)
The teacher is actually a vegan! Hooray!
We made a bunch of food, and everyone got samples, we made a soup (veggies, beans, miso), tofu scramble (with greens and onions), no avocado "guacamole" (made with broccoli), and a chocolate broccoli cake. (surprisingly very good!)
I learned so much! I love the teacher, (David Gabbe) and  am thinking about signing up for his classes in Portland. (since he only has a couple classes here in Salem)

But anyway!
It's also April Fools Day! I was going to trick you, but my camera STILL doesn't work.
So I'll just tell you about all the tricks I played on other people. When I went to class I dressed in boy clothes and put my hair up, and pretended to be male. (not sure if I tricked anyone or not. It was a little hard to tell)
Also, on both of my parents computers, I put a fake error message up that said something along the lines of "All applications have crashed. Please restart your computer.   Mac OS X" Totally got my mom, my dad, not so much. (it was great timing though, since a worm virus was said to be sending out today)
That's all I did though, I find most April Fools pranks not funny, or just mean, or too messy, so I usually don't do much trickery.

If any of you  live in Oregon, see if you can take a class with David Gabbe. (he doesn't only do classes at colleges)

Have a great week! I'll probably be posting on Sunday about my birthday party!