Sunday, November 13, 2016

Vegan Sloppy Joes

I made vegan sloppy joes this evening with Gardein crumbles and a can of Manwish sloppy joe mix, which is vegan.  I added some sliced carrots and sliced celery for crunch, and also added some freshly ground pepper.

We have not had this in years.  It was fabulous - and very low in fat which is great for my DH who is suffering with a wonky gall bladder just now.


Tuesday, November 8, 2016

V-Bites



Earlier last week i was in Brighton, a sea-side town. The day was glorious for the end of October - sunny and mild - the perfect day for a stroll along the strand.

I am travelling with my sister, and she and I had lunch in V-Bites, a vegan restaurant in town. I ordered the burger and sweet potato fries and my sister ordered fishy and chips. Both meals were excellent.



Sunday, November 6, 2016

Cranberry Pumpkin Bread

This posting for Vegan Mofo was a bit of a challenge because i was not at home in my own kitchen.  I am staying at my dad's house for a few days, and i am not entirely used to his oven.



I had some leftover pumpkin puree and thought I would make some pumpkin bread for my dad.  He's a big fan of banana bread but he can't have bananas for a week or two, so i thought pumpkin bread might be a good alternative.

To make this loaf, i simply used my banana bread recipe and substituted pumpkin puree for mashed banana.


In a large bowl, or the mixing bowl of a stand mixer, place

1 and 2/3 cups of all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon of ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
1/2 cup of vegan-friendly sugar
1/2 cup of chopped dried cranberries (or any other dried fruit)
1/2 cup of chopped walnuts (or pecans)


Flour in the mixing bowl



                                                 The spices have been added

Next comes the sugar







Give these ingredients a quick stir to blend them


In another large bowl, place
1 and 1/4 cups of pureed pumpkin
Egg replacer of your choice
3 tablespoons of canola oil


The Pumpkin puree


Stir these ingredients together

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir until they are well-combined.  You can use a stand mixer if you like, and I would have done so had i been at home, but this batter mixes up easily by hand.

Prepare a loaf pan according to your preferred way (I spritzed my loaf pan with canola oil.)



Carefully spoon the batter into your loaf pan, and place it on the middle shelf of the oven.  Oven temperatures can vary greatly I have found.   This loaf takes about 50 minutes to cook.  I set the timer for 45 minutes and tested it. It needed five more minutes.

Your loaf is done when a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean and dry.



Allow your loaf to cool in the pan on a wire rack for about ten minutes, then carefully slide it out of the pan to continue cooling on the wire rack.   When the loaf is perfectly cool, you can wrap it in waxed paper.  It will keep nicely, if wrapped,  for a few days.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

A Vegan Vacation

I have just returned to Canada from a fantastic all-vegan river cruise, and i can fairly say that it was the best vacation of my life.  Everything on the ship was vegan, from the wine to the snacks to all the breakfast, lunches and dinners.  Furthermore, I found out after the cruise that the cruise company which had chartered the riverboat also replaced all of the cruise boat's down bedding with vegan bedding - so it was vegan right down to the blankets and pillows. The room came with a mini-fridge that was re-stocked daily with drinks, and there were cookies and other treats left for us every day.


The cabin on the cruise.


Some wine and cookies!


More snacks!!!


I can't speak for anyone but myself, but I can say that when i spend money to go on a cruise, I don't want to have to pick my way through the buffet offerings to see what I can eat, nor do I wish to subsidize other people's meat dinners, which is what my dollars would do on a regular cruise.  Finally, I don't ever wish to sit near another table and listen to people rhapsodize over the tastiness of the meat on their plate, meat that they must know was obtained cruelly.

All meals were totally relaxed and enjoyable, even more so because there was no need to scrutinize the menu and ask the waiters about ingredients.  How many times have you gone on vacation as a vegan and had to hope against hope that a friendly chef would be willing to make something special for you, or had to hope that perhaps there was a veggie burger standing by in the freezer? That was not an issue here.


A kebab dinner.


Lime mousse with a chocolate wedge for dessert!



A vegan chef supervised all of the meal prep, and the meals were fantastic. The trip was amazing from beginning to end, and I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in a vegan vacation.  I will definitely be taking another vegan cruise with this company in the future.  Check it out: http://veganrivercruises.com

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Vegan Mofo is back!!!

I will be participating in Vegan Mofo again this year!

Watch this space for fantastic vegan food and restaurant reviews and recipes.


Monday, August 29, 2016

International Vegan Junk Food Day 2016

#IVJFD2016

In honour of International Vegan Junk Food Day 2016, I am posting this picture of vegan oatmeal cookies, not homemade, and French fries.













Thursday, May 5, 2016

Zucchini and Carrot Loaf

Many, many years ago, when I was still at university, a friend of my American cousins was visiting us for a few weeks.   Like most of my Californian cousins and their friends, I thought she was wonderful and worldly in a way that we were not.



She embroidered intricate designs on her clothing and on bandanas and she was a really good baker.   One day she announced that she would be making zucchini bread, and I thought at the time that nothing sounded more dreadful than bread made with zucchini.  She promised that it would be great, and went ahead and made it.  I tasted it reluctantly and was more than pleasantly surprised to find that it was fantastic.

That was forty years ago.



The other day as I was making banana bread (here is the link: http://downrightvegan.blogspot.ca/2014/12/cranberry-banana-bread.html) I remembered my friend's zucchini bread and decided I would try to invent a recipe that was vegan version of my friend's cake.  I used my banana bread recipe as a base for it, but had to do some tweaking of it.  For starters, I didn't have enough zucchinis on hand for the recipe and was reluctant to go to the store because I had to play Florence Nightingale to my very sick cat.




My banana bread requires three bananas to make 1 1/4 cups of bananas.  I had that muchzucchini but I wanted to make two loaves so I supplemented my zucchini with carrots, and the loaves turned out just fine.



The batter was very thick and I was afraid that baking soda alone would not be enough to make the bread rise so I also added baking powder.



This recipe makes two loaves of bread.

Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees

Wet ingredients

Mix together in a large mixing bowl or in the bowl of your stand mixer:

Egg replacer to the equivalent of two eggs.   I used ener-g egg replacer.
2/3 cup of canola oil
2/3 cup of pure maple syrup



Carrots and Zucchini

You will need a total of 2 1/2 to 2 2/3 cups of grated carrots and zucchini.  I measured out a total of about 1 1/3 cups each.  I didn't press the grated veg down too hard in the measuring cup, but the difference in total volume is based on the fact that when I pressed down on the grated veggies to measure them, the veggies expanded back up a little bit.

Add these veggies to the liquid ingredients and mix for for about ten seconds.



Dry Ingredients

Mix together in a large bowl

2 1/2 Cups of all purpose flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ginger
Pinch of salt
1 cup of chopped walnuts
1 cup of dried cranberries

Add these dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and the veggies in the bowl of your mixer, or if you are using a hand mixer, add them to the wet ingredients.

Mix until blended.  This batter is very stiff.

Prepare two loaf pans in your usual manner and then add the batter evenly to the pans and press down a bit to make sure there are no air pockets in your batter.

Bake in the oven for 30 - 35.  All ovens differ, and when I checked mine at 30 minutes it was not quite done.




Your loaf is done when a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean and dry