Archive for March, 2011
I know there are various animal rescue/relief groups surfacing to aid animals who have been abandoned in Japan. If you’re looking for a place to donate the Japan Earthquake Animal Rescue and Support is “coalition of three groups; HEART-Tokushima, Animal Garden Niigata and Japan Cat Network … that have been rescuing and rehoming animals in Japan for many years.” You can read more about Japan Cat Network here where they have some updates on their rescue efforts. Donations can be made here.
And as an aside, did anyone know that CAT ISLAND is located west of the earthquake epicenter in Japan? It’s a small island with 70+ elderly residents and 100+ cats. They are reportedly doing okay but are in need of food/water/etc.
Mark Bittman’s NYTimes article, I’m two days behind: read it here. Something worth forwarding along to some open-minded animal loving meat-eating friends.
A few months ago I got on a lunch kick. I wanted to be more aware of what I was eating at lunch in regards to portions and food types. So I bought myself a Laptop Lunchbox – and I love, love, love it! Before the wonderfully compartmentalized laptop lunchbox entered my life I was the tupperware lady. I had my breakfast in tupperware (hello morning oatmeal + toppings) as well as at least 3-containers for lunch each day. My lunch bag was always out of control and spilling over the top, so really the bento style box was a solution to two issues.
Today’s lunch was a perked up version of last night’s so-so diner dinner with the parents (broccoli pasta salad – I added chickpeas and olives to the mix).
I had some apple slices on the side as well as my new favorite product ever (at the moment): Lisanetti Almond Cheese. Uhm, where I have been the past year?! How did I continuously pass this over in the un-cheez aisle? Well regardless of the reason, I am so so enthused that this has entered my life and my food resources! I coupled cubes of the mozzarella almond cheese with apples and the combination was so fabulously savory. *Edit to add I just learned there are slight amounts of casein in this. FAIL. Bye bye almond cheese, not going to let this get me too down buhhhhhhhhhhhhh. I totally need to be more aware, my friend recommended it and said it was vegan-friendly and I didn’t think twice. Fail fail fail.
If I had to rank my most anticipated meals of the day it’d be: 1) Breakfast 2) Lunch 3) Dinner – I know, very surprising. So lunch is pretty important to me. Okay I need to crash, these 12 hour days are just knocking me out. What’s your favorite meal of the day?
While I am primarily an oatmeal & cereal weekday breakfast girl, D prefers bagels on weekends exclusively. In fact, last weekend was the first time he’d ever been out for pancakes during breakfast hours. True story. He also last year famously declared that he had never eaten a green bagel. Now around here, in the bagel mecca of the United States, green bagels are all the rage during St. Patrick’s week. I couldn’t help but feel like his empty hole was my void to fill, with a green holed doughy breakfast treat.
I also decided to make myself a few sesame seed bagels to fill my own doughy void.
Since this was a bit of an on the whim decision, I assumed that I had all the ingredients on hand for Vegan Brunch‘s bagel recipe. Such as Vital Wheat Gluten. I saw it last week, I know I did. And so I proceeded to rip apart my cabinets, twice, in search of the stuff. To no avail. So I turned to a more generic, but still vegan, recipe here.
I followed the direction for the broiled bagels (broil, boil, bake). I boiled the water with molasses instead of sugar as per some review suggestions as well, then baked for 25 minutes.
And while I was trying to take some pretty photos of my sesame seeded creations, someone decided to some investigating.
He just couldn’t resist. Either could I.
Something about Sunday begs for a home cooked meal. Traditionally I like Sundays to be Italian meals, and after seeing Renae’s vegan pizza success I knew I had to try to get as close to her pizza as I possibly could. Her post convinced me of two things:
1) I should re-introduce Daiya into my life
2) I need a pizza stone
I’m still working on the latter.
I used the Bob’s Redmill gluten-free pizza crust mix with flax eggs and a shake of garlic salt, Daiya mozzarella, Galaxy soy parmasean, fresh basil and of course the only tomatoes that should ever top pizza or pasta – San Marzano (whole peeled).
I found the dough incredibly hard to work with – and split it into thirds to make it more manageable. I baked each third for 9 minutes without toppings and additional 20 minutes once the toppings were added at 450 degrees. I think the key to a successful well-cooked pizza crust is forming a thin dough, which was impossible with the gluten free mix.
My pizza was actually
pretty tasty absolutely delicious! The tomato/basil combo really stole the show with the Daiya taking a subtle backseat. I’d definitely give Daiya another go atop pizzas, but the gluten-free pizza crust I’m not so sure about. My pizza definitely doesn’t look as beautiful as Renae’s – but I’m going to blame that on the lack of pizza stone and will aim to remedy the situation before my next pizza attempt.
Now I’m off to increase my vitamin-C intake with some champagne. Nothing like evening mimosas to kick off the new week!
Things have been a little crazy and very devastating in the natural world. Yesterday it poured all day and night here in NJ. After working until 6:30 last night I made a compromise with myself that I would go to spin class only if I was able to grab a spot out front. I am so so thankful that I was, as the instructor had an awesome song lineup and I was able to enjoy the rain from the indoors and blast some calories. However the rains did take it’s toll and the town that I work in as well as the towns alongside it are now flooded to the point that the National Guard has come in and schools were closed today.
Sad face for all the families who are affected by the mass floods, happy face for another day off. Sleeping in was only a brief possibility before I was inundated with text message and phone calls regarding the earthquake and tsunami waves headed to California. My first thoughts were “is this really happening?” – this weather is so out of control and frightening, especially since we are utterly helpless in our ability to prevent their strikes. I digress.
Now I’m enjoying a sunny day on my couch with my cat, and lunch begged for something to reflect the sunny day and promise of spring. I whipped up a delicious avocado chik’n scallopini sandwich.
Two toasted slices Ezekial Sesame bread, roasted red pepper hummus, very ripe avocado, tomato slices and grilled Gardein chik’n scallopini. Incredibly satisfying.
I need to make more time for savory sandwiches as spring approaches, as this was both filling and refreshing. Bring it, Spring!
Yesterday was officially day #2 of the Vegan Meal Exchange. I actually received two meals yesterday: black bean soup and a thai green curry. I gobbled up the black bean soup for lunch and so I took no photos – it wasn’t too pretty anyhow but it did taste good!
After a busy day of work one of my coworkers who is doing the meal exchange and I went and got our hot yoga on. I sweat my asana off and left desiring something cold and refreshing. I even considered juicing, however I had a perfectly good meal made for me already and I hate for fresh food to go to waste. So green curry with rice noodles it was (and sugar snap peas and cabbage).
HOLY HOT. I don’t know what is in green curry but she made it SUPER hot. I gobbled up four mouthfuls and then all of a sudden it hit me – “MY LIPS ARE TINGLING”. I dropped the bowl and downed four strawberries because water did nothing to ease the pain. Unfortunately as delicious as this was, the pain of the spice outweighed the savory and I had to put it away and snack on some hummus. And chocolate. My snacks are totally out of control lately and it’s not good.
Today was the final meal of the meal exchange which I also enjoyed for lunch. The plan was to take home the pretty looking meals and share them on the blog but today’s meal was the Happy Herbivore’s Chickpea Wraps and they were a bit soggy looking, although absolutely satisfying. So lunch they were – and I recommend this recipe for sure, it tasted phenomenal.
My snack issue is bringing me to Lent. I am by no means a religious person and I keep that belief separate from my food beliefs. We all have our own beliefs and I’ll save my soapbox for well thought out adult conversations that occur face to face. That being said, there is something to be said about giving something up selflessly for 40-days. I’ve read a few facebook updates about people giving up “carbs” for Lent. REALLY?? I think that is more of a diet restriction to lose weight in 40-days than a way to selflessly give something up for a cause. Just sayin’ – you choose to skinny yourself for your religion – got it.
Back to me. My downfall to feeling healthy is my sweet addiction. So in the name of Myself, I give up chocolate for 40-days. Because when you admit that you are giving something up for the sake of YOU, you are being honest. And I can honestly do this, for me. As I pop my last handful of semi-sweet chocolate chips. That doesn’t mean I cannot bake for others. It does mean a bake-strava-ganza will occur at the end of this.
Anyone else giving something up, for whatever reason? I’ve never given something up like this before for a set amount of time, although I do remember in high school all my friends gave up soda and M&Ms and they couldn’t really tell me why, except because it was for Lent.