A vegan's adventures cooking for her meatatarian husband

Tag Archives: easy

Sunday is hockey day at my house. I always feel like the Kid needs a slightly heartier breakfast when he is going to be skating his little tush off for 45 minutes and I am trying to stay away from the same old same old. He asked for pancakes last weekend and I was wondering if I could find something more creative than just regular pancakes. I had some walnuts left over from an awesome beet salad from earlier that week and a few apples in the fridge. Apple pie pancakes! Yes. Yes.

vegan spelt apple pie pancakes

They were even more amazingly delicious than they look in this photo. Something about the combination of the warm, soft, cinnamon scented apples with the crunchy and toasty walnuts over the soft and fluffy pancakes. Yup. Kitchen win over here. I needed a basic vegan pancake recipe so I modified this one.

Here’s what you need:

1 cup spelt flour
1 tablespoon coconut sugar
2 tablespoons baking powder  ( I know this sounds ridiculous but trust me, have faith)
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup almond milk or other milk alternative
2 tablespoons avocado oil
2 apples, sliced thin
1/2 cup walnuts
Earth Balance
Cinnamon to taste
Here’s what you do:
Apples and Walnuts:
Add some Earth Balance (1-2 Tbsp) to a hot pan. Once melted, add the walnuts and cook for a minute or two. Add the apple slices and cinnamon (approx 1 tsp or more if you love cinnamon) and saute over med-high heat until the apples are slightly softened, about 5 minutes. Set aside.
Mix the try ingredients. Mix the wet. Add the wet to the dry and mix. It will get super airy and puff up a ton. Just mix it again right before you pour it. If it starts to puff up again (think bread proofing and rising) just mix it again and it will fall. Scoop 1/2 to 1 cup of mix into a hot pan (I oil the pan with earth balance but you could use oil too I think) and cook as you would any pancake. You need a hot-ish pan and you have to wait until the pancakes bubble towards the middle before you turn them. Pancakes can be fickle little buggers and I think everybody has burned a few in their days. Don’t get too annoyed. This recipe will make at least 6 decent sized pancakes.
Serve the pancakes with the apple and walnut mixture on top and a heavy drizzle of Pure Maple Syrup. Please god to not think that Aunt Jemima is an acceptable substitute. Sacrilege!!!!

 

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A good friend of mine is trying to eat healthier these days and has been doing great but has had some challenges finding new healthy foods that actually taste good and appeal to her whole family. Wait what? Hubs and kids that don’t want to eat healthy foods. Weird… Sigh.

But I digress. I had her and her beautiful kids over this week and thought I would try something that had caught my eye this week on findingvegan. Raw, vegan, chocolate pudding. Made from avocado no less. I was in. I found about two dozen different recipes and I was a bit surprised to find that so many of them called for totally different ingredients and quantities of ingredients. I threw caution to the wind and mixed a whole bunch together to create this beauty:

raw vegan chocolate pudding

The friend loved it. My kid did too. Hubs thought it was not so chocolatey. But what does he know anyways. You can play with the cinnamon and the amounts of cacao and maple syrup to make it more your bag.

 

Here’s what you need:

2 ripe avocados

3/4 tsp cinnamon

1/2 cup Pure Maple Syrup (you could add more if you like a sweeter pudding)

1 Tbsp Pure Vanilla

1/4 (heaping) cup Cacao powder

Pinch of sea salt (or kosher if that’s all you have)

Fresh berries for garnish (I used raspberries and it was perfect!)

Here’s what you do:

Toss everything in the food  and blend until very well blended. You may need to scrape down the sides of the bowl once or twice in the blending process. Fill 4-6 bowls with pudding and refrigerate for at least an hour to set. Garnish with fresh berries and nom nom nom!!!


Well I have officially been M.I.A. I own it. I took it upon myself to become a yoga instructor! Namaste yo! This very exciting new chapter in my life also was the most time consuming and all encompassing as well. Sadly something had to give and it was cooking. Ha. Sorry family. Mommy fail for 3 months. Alas, what can you do? Now I’m done and super excited to get back on track. Stay tuned for some great new recipes as well as a focus on some cool raw vegan items. I also decided I would try to add much more raw into my diet and have been experimenting a fair bit lately especially with desserts. I don’t think the Hubs is going to jump on the raw kale salad anytime soon, so dessert may be our common ground. In the meantime, for any of you awesome readers out there with kiddos that are in a mid way of the year lunch box slump I will share what my kid got today. Firstly, you need one of these. Then go crazy. I find it way easier to fill a lunch box when I have size restrictions. It’s really just like packing for vacation. Once you know which suitcase you’re taking, packing should be a breeze! This little bad boy has vegan squirley bread with Adams Peanut Butter and Organic Santa Cruz Concord Grape Jelly. Good old seaweed snacks and an organic Trader Joe’s cheese string. Add in some grapes and some red peppers and you’re laughing. The Kid actually ate the whole thing. There was one grape left in the container (why do kids do that anyways!?!?) and I was pretty chuffed since he usually objects to something or another in there. Almost five is a glorious age. And by glorious I mean god awful. AWFUL. Stay tuned readers! Exciting things to come.

lunch box lunch

 


I am always on the hunt for new recipes. Especially ones that seem pretty straight fowrad and easy. If I think the Kid AND the Hubs will eat it, I’m all in. When I came across this recipe on a very cute/funny site for Vegan Mushroom Pie I though, okay, who wouldn’t want pie for dinner!? While making the recipe I realized that the instructions are a bit lacking so I wouldn’t suggest using their instructions to be honest. That being said, the pie was a HUGE hit. The kid wasn’t feeling well but I suspect he would have gobbled it up otherwise and Hubs ate about half and took the leftovers for lunch. I’d say that’s a win. Plus I learned something new. Tenderflake puff pastry is accidentally vegan!  Because who are we kidding, I’m sure that was not their intention. Nice bonus though! I’m sure all the Oreo fans out there would agree that sometimes the accidentally vegan items are super awesome. I’m not an Oreo kinda girl but I do see the appeal. Here’s how mine turned out. Not too shabby for a first try I would say.

vegan mushroom pie

mushroom pie dinner

 

I decided to make pan fried potatoes and some roasted asparagus but honestly anything would pair well with this. Broccoli or carrots would be nice or a big green salad or some steamed garlic kale…..mmmmm kale…… Anyways, so just go for it. Plus, you can buy the crust, so it’s SUPER easy to make. Enjoy!!!

Here’s what you need:

1 oz dried mushrooms

1 TBSP EVOO

2 Large Portobello Caps brushed and diced small

2 Cloves garlic minced (or just buy the crushed kind like I do and use about a TBSP or more depending on your preference)

1/2 Large White Onion diced small

1/2 Cup of left over re-hydration liquid from the dried mushrooms

2 TBSP Earth Balance or other vegan margarine

2 TBSP flour (chickpea, or whatever you have on hand really)

1 Tsp Oregano

1 Tsp Thyme

Salt and Pepper to taste

3/4 of a package of frozen puff pastry, completely thawed (this is key!)

 

Here’s what you do:

Preheat your oven to 350.

Place your dried mushrooms in a glass bowl and just cover with very hot water. Approximately a cup. Meanwhile, get your EVOO going in a pan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for about 5 minutes or until they just start to become translucent. The dried mushrooms should have soaked for about 15 minutes and then you can chop them up. They can stay larger than the diced ones but I wouldn’t leave them huge. Add all the mushrooms to the pan with 1/2 cup of the liquid from the dried mushrooms and your spices and stir occasionally for approximately 10 minutes or until most of the liquid is gone. While they are cooking, spray a glass pie dish with cooking spray and roll out your puff pastry on a lightly dusted surface. cover the bottom of your dish with one half of the pastry and then roll out about half of the rest of what you have or the whole thing if you want to completely cover the pie. I made a lattice so I didn’t need the whole rest of the package. But if you cover the whole pie remember to add knife slits on top to let the air out. Or kaboom.

After the 10 minutes, add the Earth Balance and Flour and stir to thicken. Remove from heat.

Pour your mushroom mix into your pie dish and add whatever top you are going to do. Lattice or full pie crust on top. Either will be awesome. Bake for 40-45 minutes and remove and let sit for 5 minutes. The fill is HOT. So eat with care. But eat eat eat!!! So good. Enjoy.


So I’m not really a pasta girl. Perhaps you will notice on my blog that I AM a carbs girl. But my kind of carbs are bready, muffin-y, cookie goodness. Pasta has never really float my boat. The Hubs however, is a huge pasta guy. I wanted to blow the bank this past meatless monday and thought back to a dish I had many many years ago on our anniversary or his birthday or something that was pretty basic. Gnocchi in a brown butter sauce. It was way too rich for my taste and he pretty much ate my whole dinner. I looked around for a good sounding gnocchi and found a sweet potato gnocchi in a sage butter sauce that is totally vegan by Chef Chloe Coscarelli. Hardcore vegans will be familiar with her work, the rest of you should be. Check these bad boys out:

sweet potato gnocchiKind of beautiful right!?

As much as I don’t love gnocchi there was something about these that were just amazing. Plus they are cooked in batches and I realized that they were even more amazing when the earth balance was a bit hot and they got a crispy exterior on them. Perfection.

Plus, it was REALLY satisfying when Hubs walked in and balked when he realized that I was making them from scratch. Clearly he thought I meant I bought sweet potato gnocchi when I asked if he was okay with that for dinner. HA. Take that silly meatatarian! He made it clear that he has never made gnocchi before because he is always scared they will be rocks. Mine were perfect. Maybe could have been a teeny bit lighter but we were both super happy with the result. Making these again next week for sure!

Here is her recipe with a few of my added tweaks!

What you need:

2 Large (approx 2 lbs) Sweet Potatoes or Yams (depending on the colour you are working towards)

2 tsp kosher or sea salt

1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

1/4 tsp black pepper

2 to 3 cups unbleached AP flour (or a GF mix if that’s how you roll)

1/2 cup vegan margarine (I used Earth Balance)

1/2 cup fresh sage leaves torn into large pieces

 

Here’s what you do:

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees . Bake your sweet potatoes until tender, approximately 40-50 minutes. Give them a firm squeeze if you’re not sure. Once they are cooked through and cool enough to handle, scoop all the flesh out and mash in a bowl and place aside or in the fridge to cool completely.

Add the salt, nutmeg and pepper to the cooled sweet potato and mix. Add the flour half a cup at a time until the mixture becomes a slightly sticky dough that you can handle but be sure not to over work it and don’t add too much flour! This is apparently the trick. Too much flour and too much muscle equals rock hard gnocchi. Divide the dough into six pieces and roll each out on a lightly floured surface, again, not too much until you have six “ropes” that are about half an inch thick. Cut your gnocchi into half inch pieces and if you want to be fancy, you can roll each one with a fork for that restaurant look. Clearly I did NOT do this.

Get a medium pot going with boiling water as well as a pan with the margarine and sage leaves. I would keep the margarine pretty hot, medium high heat so that you get that nice crispy exterior on the gnocchi.

In batches, add about 20 gnocchi to the gently boiling water for about five minutes. They should start to float to the surface after about four minutes. If not, give them some time to float up. Then transfer to the “butter” and sage and fry for a few minutes and flip until each side is nice and crunchy.

Serve! I added a sprinkle of salt to mine. Hubs added cheese. Sigh. I was so close. Ah well. It was still awesome!


Okay yes, I have been MIA for a while but I’m back and have an AWESOME recipe for you! Look at this bad boy!!! Friends again?

vegan cupcake cones

Looks like an ice cream cone right? Wrong! It’s a cupcake! I saw a recipe for this ages ago and thought it was just the cutest party idea ever. We had planned for a bbq that got a bit weathered out by the recent wonky weather here in the Pacific Northwest so we just had a few friends over with kids the same age as The Kid. I figured I would make these and see if they were decent. I may have made a bit of a misstep by putting them in the fridge after I made them but I was a bit scared the vegan butter cream would start to melt. I think next time I would just wait until the very last minute to ice them because the cones were not crispy at all and it lended them an odd texture. The cupcake part and icing were great though and I would make these again in a heartbeat!

Here’s What You Need:

Basic Vegan Cupcakes:
1 cup almond milk (I used vanilla because that’s what I had)
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
3/4 cup coconut sugar
1/3 cup mild oil (avocado would be good but any veg oil would work too)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup unbleached all purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

2-3 tablespoons of sprinkles if you want to make them “funfetti” cupcakes which is what I did.

4-5 tablespoons of vegan chocolate chips to sprinkle in the bottom of the cones (why leave this step out!)

Here’s What You Do:

Preheat oven to 350.

Mix the almond milk and vinegar to make buttermilk. Mix the dry ingredients together. Add the oil, vanilla and sugar to the “buttermilk” and then slowly stir into the dry ingredients until combined. Add the sprinkles if you want and then drop a tsp or so of chocolate chips into the bottom of each cone. Stand the cones in a regular muffin tin and fill each with the batter (I poured the batter into a spouted measuring cup for easier pouring) until almost full.

Bake in the middle rack for 20 minutes or so. Test them at 18 minutes to see if a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a rack until completely cool. Make your favorite vegan butter cream icing. Vanilla or chocolate or both and ice them to look like ice cream. sprinkle more sprinkles on top if you like or add a drizzle of melted chocolate.  YUM.


We haha few manky looking bananas hanging around (haha, get it hanging?? okay sorry, been a long day) and I knew it was a banana bread kinda day. I always buy too many bananas so that I can make bread, muffins, smoothies, the list goes on. I saw a few recipes that looked pretty good, but I saw one that called for oat flour and it caught my eye since the oats I have are gluten free and that would make the loaf vegan and gluten free. Double bonus. This recipe looked the best and I decided to give it a go. OMG. Best banana bread EVER. EVER. Epic. Wow. It was fully of vegan mini chocolate chips, that probably didn’t hurt either…..

Please make this!!! I was also a bit skeptical about the peanut butter but it was a ever so slight hint of PB flavour but moist moist moist. I could have eaten the whole loaf. Hopefully there will be a bit left tomorrow for the Hubs to try. The Kid went to town on it too. 50/50 that he will get any. Sorry babe. Sucks to go out of town on baking days.

you may notice that some of the loaf is missing. we couldn't wait.

you may notice that some of the loaf is missing. we couldn’t wait.

Vegan Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Banana Bread

2½ cups oatmeal (make sure they are certified gluten free if you have a gluten intolerance)

1 cup mashed ripe bananas (3 bananas if they are small, 2 very large bananas)

½ cup peanut butter

½ cup coconut sugar

2 tsp baking powder

½ tsp cinnamon

non-dairy milk or water (if necessary, I did not need any)

1½ cup chocolate chips (I used Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips)

 

Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  2. Lightly oil a loaf pan and set aside.
  3. Put oatmeal in a blender or food processor and pulse to a fine crumb.
  4. Add all of the remaining ingredients except the chocolate chips to the blender and blend until combined. You may need to scrape down the sides and then blend again to get completely combined. (it will not be completely smooth. The oatmeal will give it a grainyness and it will be very thick! Much thicker than a traditional banana bread)
  5. If the batter is very crumbly add a few TBSP of water or non-dairy milk to the mixture. You want the batter to be very thick but it should still hold together.
  6. Fold in 1 cup of the chocolate chips.
  7. Pour batter into prepared loaf pan.
  8. Top with remaining ½ cup of chocolate chips and banana slices if desired.
  9. Bake for 25-30 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.