It’s National Oatmeal Day! Whenever I’m forced to eat breakfast in a non-vegan-friendly restaurant at a work event or whatever, I can almost always count on the oatmeal to help me leave feeling full, if not exactly satisfied (“$7 for this? I make this at home every morning. Thank god someone else is paying…”).
But maybe it’s time we kick our oatmeal up a notch. Maybe it’s time we do steel-cut oats, and in a slow cooker, with cardamom and rose water and pears. Maybe it’s time we MAKE THIS RECIPE!
Or just get a packet of the instant stuff and eat it straight, no water, whatever you need to do to get through the day.
Let’s have a moment of silence for all the oatmeals out there. Amen.
Hey look! It’s the Regal Vegan teaching you how to make vegan Banh mi! Well. How do you like that.
Product review: Wholesome Chow’s Big Yummy (gluten-free) Brownie! »
Okay, here’s the deal you guys: I’m not the biggest sweets fan. In fact, sometimes when I eat too much sugar, my skin gets red, puffy and really warm.* This just happened at my birthday party, and freaked out my entire family. I finished my cake anyway, but everyone kept touching my red, blotchy arm as if I were a science experiment.
Being the incredibly talented (as well as good-looking, charismatic and hilarious) professional pastry chef that I am, people are often quite confused that I don’t really eat sweets anymore. I’m like, “good thing you guys, this way at the end of my shift there’s actually prouduct available for the public to buy!” I mean, makes perfect sense to me—I go home and gorge on pizza, so everyone wins.
Cutting to chase here, I usually pass up on dessert samples for Vegansaurus. However, because of my success with, and complete admiration for, Wholesome Chow’s products in the past, I was not willing to give up the opportunity to try their gluten-free brownies! I was expecting to get a dry mix in the mail that I would then bake, so imagine my delight when I opened a package with three BIG brownies encased. I mean, I’m excited just reminiscing about that evening.
Let me tell it to you straight: The Big Yummy Double Chocolate Brownie by Wholesome Chow is not playing around. It took all the willpower I had not to eat all three brownies in one sitting. They’re quite sizable, and everything no brownie in the past has ever been to me. To be honest, I eat cake and brownies as vehicles for frosting, and these babies didn’t even need it. I didn’t miss a side of fudgy chocolate frosting AT ALL.
I’m someone who stays away from sugar, has never really been a brownie person (I mean, usually they can be SO dry) and doesn’t have to eat gluten-free (though I do feel better when I do). On that note, I crave these. I think about them all time. But where can I find these chocolate sensations, since Wholesome Chow doesn’t deliver them anymore? Well, here’s a handy list for you! (Just try to beat me to Rainbow to buy out their stock, I dare you.) Unfortunately for now, they are only available in California, but maybe you can ask your local natural food store to carry them? Of course you can always buy the brownie dry mix online too, as I’m sure it does not disapoint! Chef Veronica of Wholesome Chow also has a recipe for these decadent treats on their company blog!
*I did not have any type of reaction to the sugar in Wholesome Chow’s brownies, which may have also been because for once I exerted some amount of will power in not eating all three in one sitting.
Recipe: Vegan fry bread tacos! »
Fry Bread tacos, you guys, am I right? They’re scrumptious. If you live in the Bay Area, I highly recommend that you visit Rocky at El Rio, because he will take care of you. I realize some of you don’t have that option, or are perhaps too lazy to hop on Muni (it takes like an hour to get there from the Haight), so this is for you. We’re doing a recipe here. Or rather, I’m linking you to the Food Network site, because their recipe worked out so well for me.
I followed this recipe from the Food Network website. I was happy with the results. Now, I’m not claiming it’s like, super authentic or anything, but the fry bread was tasty and reminiscent of Rocky’s, so I was pleased. I simplified the recipe a little because I kneaded the dough right in the bowl, just until the ingredients were combined, instead of on a floured countertop. I’m also pretty sure I didn’t refrigerate the dough because it seemed unnecessary and I like to cut corners when I can. Hey, I’m a busy girl (there’s a lot available on Netflix to catch up on).
Let’s be real, I ate two of these guys before they even hit the paper towels.
I topped mine with Daiya cheese, refried beans, lettuce and homemade guacamole.
Try ‘em out, learn a little something about Navajo history and culture, and make a plan to go visit Rocky at El Rio sometime (isn’t it about time you booked that flight to S.F.?)
Recipe: The Vegan Italian Hoagie! »
Growing up in Philly, I ate plenty of hoagies in my pre-vegan days. Italian hoagies were my jam especially so when I saw that Diaya was coming out with provolone slices, I was like, “this is it! It’s hoagie time!” And god bless me, my vegan hoagie turned out out of control delicious!
You too can make your own Italian hoagie, here are the supplies you will need:
-Italian Amoroso-type roll (I found one at the deli at the regular grocery store—had cornmeal dust and all)
-Vegan mayo (I used Earth Balance)
-Veg salami (I used Viana Velami, got this and the Daiya from Vegan Essentials)
Slice your roll along the side (not the top like crazy Subway) and spread the mayo inside. Place your meat and cheese slices like so:
Then slice your lettuce and onions. BTW this is prob the only time I will ever recommend iceberg for anything. Don’t tear it or anything, the lettuce should be sliced into strips like these:
And I just sliced the onion similarly. Sprinkle ample amounts of lettuce and onion on top of your open sandwich. Then top with pickle slices.
Sprinkle a little of your oil and vinegar on top. Then the salt, pepper, and a dash of oregano.
White Chocolate Cake Batter Fudge, you’re a beast. A motherflipping BEAST, and I need to tame you.
(This just got sexual, and I think we all like that.)
Summer in Winter: a smoothie and salad to cure your winter blues »
My “cooking” style can best be described as hodgepodge. The more I try new things in the kitchen, the more comfortable I get, just like most things in life. Even though I needed to text TWO separate people asking them how to work the rice cooker that was immediately in front of me, and even though I’ve never finished preparing a meal without my sous chef, Chef Google-Search, I’m always pleasantly surprised at the finished product. And that’s saying a lot because I am the most self loathing person I know.
Back to the food. I say hodgepodge because I enjoy throwing many ingredients into what I’m making to try to find something that I haven’t tasted before or just switch things up from the monotony. Case-in-point, the rice cooker. In an effort to save money and not waste food, I try to eat as many things left in the closets, cupboards, and ‘fridge on the day I bring groceries home. Rather than gorging myself on all the new treats. A couple months back I did a post on SooFoo and their grain blend. I came across the nearly empty bag, buried in our bulk-food drawer, and decided I was going to finish it off but with some new twists. Then saw a bag of salad about a day before it was set to turn slimey and dark, a bag of bread that only had one heal left, and a soft kiwi. It was like the Island of Misfit Toys, but with vegan friendly food from your local grocer. That’s when it hit me, let’s make a cheap meal that will bring all the boys (or girls, or both) to the yard.
First up: the SooFoo.
Normally, you follow your ricers directions of 1 cup (which isn’t a real “cup” and no one has given me an explanation of why) of the blend and some water up to the “1” line and a teaspoon of oil. I said, to myself, “NAH SON.” Threw the rest of the bag of the blend in the ricer, along with a handful of roasted/unsalted peanuts and a handful of raw pecans. For the water, I felt that was the easy way out, so I threw one part water and one part Trader Joe’s Low Sodium Garden Patch juice. Think V-8 but way less gross and actually good. And not disgusting. Then I pressed the button and let this interesting concoction boil in that plastic and metal cauldron. After it was finished, which I should have done way earlier but my kitchen neuroses kicked in, I threw in a gang of spices—thyme, garlic powder, sea salt, black pepper, chili powder, and cayenne pepper—then mixed it in and was taken aback by
my its awesomeness.
Next: The smoothie.
I like to brag about my smoothie skills. But that’s like bragging about exercising and we all cannot stand that person who loves to tell you how much they just ran, all before the sun came up too. But I wear my smoothie skills like a badge of courage—or more realistically, a badge of healthy poo. Because let’s be serious for a moment, that’s all the really matters in this world. The smoothie began with an extremely squishy kiwi that would not have been fun to eat normally. Then half of an avocado. Then a good sized handful of that almost wet and slimey salad. Followed by some almond milk. After blending those ingredients and getting a nice green, milky consistency, I threw in the frozen portions. Blueberries, raspberries, and spinach. Then blended like crazy and poured into a re-purposed glass peanut butter jar that any hipster on Pinterest would be envious of. I garnished it with a cuke moon because I’m classy (ignore aforementioned poo reference in previous paragraph).
Lastly: the salad, which is English for ensalada.
There was a giant Fuji apple nearby, that must have been in the bottom of a shopping bag because it had a dent and gash in it in the shape of a cereal box. Instead of doing some mouth-maneuvering around the bruise, I figured I’d use the apple in my salad. I chopped it up to 1 CM squares, which is way smaller than I usually make my salad-bound apples. I wanted each forkful to have as much of the many ingredients. After the apple came the other half of the avocado, cut, while still in its skin, into similar sized squares as the apple, then squeezed into the bowl. Next up with throwing the rest of the bag of salad in, followed by 1/3rd of a cucumber, cut into half moons. I toasted that lonely heal of bread and chopped it up to make semi-homemade croutons. Sandra Lee woulda been proud.
Finally I threw a heaping of the SooFoo blend into the salad and mixed it all with some goddess dressing. Between the kiwi in the smoothie, the apple and avocado in the salad, the (relatively) cold SoCal winter seemed to wither away. It was like, all the way down to 59 today. But this extremely fresh, resourcefully made, and low budget-friendly meal was reminiscent of just 3 weeks ago when it was 70. (hash tag California)
Andrew E. Irons is a blogger from Long Beach, Calif. He co-created and contributes to Rhode Island-based hip-hop website The Echo Chamber Blog under the pseudonym Verbal Spacey. You can track his daily diatribes by following him on Twitter.
NPR does vegan: Bryant Terry recipes and more! »
Last week, with everyone on vacation and news slow, NPR’s Morning Edition deigned to do a two-part series about veganism. Coverage is coverage!
"It isn’t all brown rice and steamed vegetables," says Renee Montagne. I’m just going to assume she’s pretending to be ignorant for the benefit of her ignorant listeners.
Best part of the interview: two recipes from Bryant’s most recent book, The Inspired Vegan! His black-eyed peas in garlic-ginger-braised mustard greens, and molasses, miso, and maple candied sweet potatoes sound perfect for chilly winter nights. Check them out on the NPR website, or maybe just buy his book, because you know it’s full of good food, and suggestions for excellent literature and music accompaniments.
[photo by Jennifer Martiné/Da Capo Lifelong Books via NPR]
It’s almost Christmas! It’s cold and dark (it drops below 30 at night out here!) and we need booze and fat and sugar to keep us warm and fat and awake! Also something aesthetically pleasing, to keep the SAD at bay. Lucky for us, Meagen of Vegan Food Addict whipped up this wonderful antidote to the December grays: a chocolate peppermint martini! Get into it! (Seriously, I want to Dita Von Teese this thing and climb in.)
PS: Need something warmer? Try Angela Liddon’s ultra-creamy mocha hot cocoa. I bet it’d take to booze pretty well.
Pumpkin Parfaits with Ginger Snaps! I got this from this great Vegan Thanksgiving board on Pinterest, where there are millions upon millions of tasty Thanksgiving recipes! Yay, Thanksgiving, LET’S EAT IT ALL!!!!
Also, Bay Area, don’t forget it might be your last day to order Thanksgiving stuff!