Eat Me.

Anything you can do we can do vegan.

Friday, February 29, 2008

Triple Vegan Success

Thursday was a triple vegan success day. (I am reading an Amy Tan novel at the moment - everything is triple lucky success in my mind.) Amos had to stop by the social security office before heading off to work so I had time to make a tofu scramble for breakfast eaten over my home-made bread. Plus orange juice plus latte. Perfect.

I then proceeded to be full until lunch time when I met my friend at Victory's Banner - a place I had heard was only so-so for vegans but worked well for lunch time. Oh how I miss living in a land where everything can be prepared "blackened." And here is a shout out to sweet friends - she picked out the restaurant just for me! I think the waiter summed it up when he said "what a beautiful friend" after she traded me her tea for my chai before he could come and pick it up. (If you don't have time to click on the link the whole staff studies meditation and the restaurant is described as standing as a spiritual expression. How fantastic is that?)

Then for dinner, this is going to sound anti-climatic now, I made this pot-pie in our cast iron skillet. It was sort of an odd combination of veggies for the filling - chard, turnip, peas, onion, garlic and white kidney beans. Plus tempeh and a sprig of fresh rosemary. But the crust (recipe from Veganomicon) had the slightest bit of cornmeal in it that gave the most wonderful texture.

I want to make this monkey bread (triple lucky success) to bring to my cousin's new house this weekend. Or maybe it won't make it in the car ride there and we should just eat it ourselves? Hmmmm..... Or I should just go with the cardamom bread I know she will love. What to do with my day?

Also of note:

This girl has some excellent looking tarts on her raw/vegan blog, the gluten-free hippie. I love raw desserts! Especially the carob mint snowballs over at Karen's Cooked.

I listened to a radio story yesterday that equated blogging with an overwhelming sense of self importance. Guilty as charged?

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Vegan Ice Cream

If you live in Chicago sign up on for free vegan ice cream!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Week in Review

We suspended our CSA for the week. We had to. Too many vegetables! So nearly all week I have been cooking up meals to use up those last two parsnips or few beets left over in the fridge. The two tablespoons of leftover pesto? As Amos put it when I used up the kale and parsnips in a minestrone and topped it off with the pesto "you had the hard ingredients."

Food Highlights of the week (play by play version):

Monday: Jugo de zanahoria fresca at el cid's.
Tuesday: Minestrone
Wednesday: KARYN'S COOKED (omg omg!)
Thursday: Roasted Beet Risotto
Friday: Frozen 'za from TJ's

And in anticipation of using up that swiss chard: Curried Lentil Soup with Swiss Chard. I also saw a recipe for horseradish hummus. And if anyone knows what to do with ONE turnip let me know. K Thanks.

Tomorrow we are going x-country skiing. This should be good ; )

Push It.

My new favorite mockumentory ever.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Virtual Bike Ride

I don't know what it is - but this virtual bike ride through nyc is sooo beautiful. If you can identify the song go ahead and tell me what it is!

And OMG!!!

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Zombie Potluck

Unfortunately the title sounds more appealing than what is actually going to happen. It seems like in Chicago there is just a plethora of things to do that I never find out about until the ninth hour. Of course in New Orleans there was also alot to do but it was limited pretty much to the drinking and eating catagory.

Vicariously - now and when I was in New Orleans - I live through whatever is broadcast on NPR sitting at my desk at work. Tonight there is a book reading at Quimby's - one of my most favorite places to just be when I have the time - by an author interviewed today on Eight-Forty-Eight - my favorite daily radio program.

So what the problem is I am stuck not going to the book reading to try and host a potluck (keep your fingers crossed for me on this one). Is it that I am still very much in the grip of the event limitations of my previous existence or is it just bad luck?

But if you want to listen to the interview with Elizabeth Crane on her book You Must Be This Happy to Enter it is here. Not food related but zombies are mentioned so you know - it could be relevant.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Could it be...

Would this be me if I didn't have to go to work all day? Probably a bit less pink... and flowery. There are so many kindred souls out there whose existence I completely envy.... Damn Job!


I almost ate this bagel too quickly to get a quick picture in of my new favorite weekend (and hopefully weekday when it is warmer) breakfast spot. Atomix is located not very conveniently for us but for a bagel with pesto, the best vegan veggie cream cheese I have ever had, tomato and onion I will go out of my way a bit. And the Americano - perfect. We haven't even tried any of the vegan muffins or cookies that dominate the baked goods case. (No kidding - if you want eggs in your cookie good luck.) The breakfast crowd comes late here - meaning at ten on a Sunday you can sit down then walk down the street to browse around the record store when it does get crowded.

Maybe a better photo next time but I just had to share : ) Also thanks to Sasha again for the recommendation.

Friday Morning Snow Day

Despite the foot of snow that fell Thursday night (and kept coming until lunch...) we still had to go to work. This is the courtyard of our building looking out our bay window.

Commute Home

One of the best parts of my day.

Swedish Coffee Bread

During preparation and done. Can you tell how much warmer our apartment feels after the bread is done?

Swedish Coffee Bread was an on again off again Christmas treat throughout my childhood. Since it is a yeast bread and let's face it - we weren't so good at that - it was always a toss up on Christmas morning between Pillsbury cinnamon rolls from a can and this lovely cardamom bread everyone loves so much.

My cousin and aunt are a stickler for tradition though so usually I can gleam one slice each year from the loaves they bake for my mother and grandmother. I haven't been able to afford the cardamom since I went away to school (yes that was back in 2000) and finally felt financially stable enough to spend 12$ on a few ounces at The Spice House.

Swedish Coffee Bread

You Will Need:

2 Cups Non-Dairy Milk
1/2 Cups Earth Balance or other non-hydrogenated buttery item
1 Cup Evaporated Cane Juice or other vegan sugar
6 Teaspoons Ener-G Egg Replacer
8 Tablespoons Warm Water
2 Packages Yeast
1/4 Cup Warm Water
8 Cups Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1 Teaspoon Salt
2 to 2-1/2 Teaspoons Ground Cardamom
2-4 Tablespoons Melted Butter
1 Teaspoon Cinnamon


In small pan scald milk on stove top and add butter.

In a large mixing bowl whip Ener-G egg replacer and 8 tablespoons water until thick and creamy.

In small bowl proof yeast in 1/4 cup warm water for five minutes.

Once milk mixture has cooled to less than 100 degrees combine with yeast in the large mixing bowl with egg replacer. Add sugar, salt and cardamom. Now gradually mix in flour 2 cups at a time with wooden spoon using your hands once spoon fails. (This might be a good point to start adding flour more cautiously - you might not need all 8 cups.) On a floured surface with floured hands knead dough for approximately 5 minutes or until smooth and elastic. At this point the dough should only stick to itself and you won't need any more flour on your hands or surface.

Place dough back in bowl and lightly oil with melted butter or other oil. Place a damp clean dishtowel over bowl and let rise in a warm place for 2-3 hours.

Now for the fun part. Remove towel and give the dough a light punch to the center. Manipulating dough as little as possible take dough out of bowl and put on clean surface. Try and place the deflated dough down in sort of a square shape if possible. Mark 9 separate sections with a knife and with a sharp knife cut dough into nine equal pieces. Braid together 3 pieces and place on greased cookie sheet or in greased bread pan. Continue with other six pieces. If need be gently fold under ends to make the loaves look just so.

Cover formed dough with re-moistened dish towel and let rise for another hour.

About 20 minutes before dough is finished rising preheat oven to 325 degrees. Melt
butter in small bowl and add cinnamon. Brush dough with buttery cinnamon mixture and bake for 30 minutes. Remove to wire rack to cool.


I accidentally forgot this bread was usually made on a baking sheet rather than in a bread pan. However it still turned out pretty fantastic. It was just an odd square shape like those square watermelons in Japan. This bread baked on a cookie sheet will yield a much more organic loaf.

I also ran out of unbleached flour so used about 3 cups unbleached flour and 5 cups whole wheat flour. This also tastes good.... : )

A good way to tell when the water is warm enough for the yeast is it should feel warm but not hot to your hand. Since your finger is 98 degrees (or should be anyway) and yeast dies at about 100 degrees it should not feel warmer than well, yourself. Thanks to Amos' grandma - the unofficial bread-master of the universe - for this tip.

Also thanks to Sasha for tipping us about the Spice House so my cardamom dreams could come true.

Lucky Swede

Swedish coffee bread coming soon... I can smell it baking right now!

Pumpkin Banana Bread

In the vegan pantry a can of pumpkin is essential. Whether used with an accidentally vegan cake mix when a last minute desert is required or turned into a chocolaty pumpkin pie it is also a backup for rescuing recipes from the brink of disaster. Like when you are out of apple sauce but NEED to bake something. Or when you accidentally put twice the amount of sugar into your banana bread thus requiring you to double the recipe but alas - no more bananas. And from these situations come happy accidents that taste absolutely delicious. So it was that pumpkin banana bread was born.

A few words to describe: dense, moist, spice, warm. Need I say more if your mercury is as low as ours?

Pumpkin Banana Bread

You Will Need:
3/4 C Evaporated Cane Juice or other Vegan Sugar
1/2 C Maple Syrup (or I suppose you could just add another 3/4C sugar)
1/4 C Vegetable Oil
1-1/2 C Whole Wheat Flour
1-1/2 C Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
2 Teaspoon Baking Powder (See note below...)
1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
1 Teaspoon Allspice
1/2 Teaspoon Cardamom (If you have it...)
2-4 Tablespoon Non-Dairy Milk
1 16 oz. Can Pumpkin (I prefer the Trader Joe Organic or any Organic variety - it makes a huge difference)
2 Very Ripe Bananas

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 2 bread pans (I prefer light metal) using whatever greasing method you like.

In a large bowl combine sugar, maple syrup, vegetable oil, baking soda and spices. Add flour and stir well to combine. Now add bananas and can of pumpkin. At this point we want the dough to be pour-able but definitely not runny. If your dough is too stiff loosen it up with the aforementioned non-dairy milk.

Pour into pans and bake for 1 hour. Cool in pan for 15-20 minutes then remove to wire rack. Store in closed container. Makes 2 loaves.


Baking Powder: I originally added this when veganizing my mom's banana bread recipe to add a bit of lightness to compensate for the egg removal. However I didn't use it at all the past few times and the bread is a bit denser but I don't think that is such a bad thing..... It is all up to personal taste at this point.

Bananas: I find that throwing your brown bananas in the freezer works well to save them for when you need them. Throw them in the microwave for a minute or so to thaw before you use them. Just don't leave them there if you plan on evacuating for a hurricane. I am told they get quite gross after sitting in a freezer for four weeks with no electricity in the August heat.