Posted by: Grub | January 5, 2016

Snow Day

Inspired by Terri…

Sam Snow Day

When Sam woke up this morning, he asked if he could stay home with me.  And then we looked out the window, and saw flakes almost the size of his hand falling out of the sky, and he asked how soon we could be at school!

This walk to school was a little more rushed than I would have liked, as with most days (and I forgot his water bottle at home, which I understand resulted in him having to go the water fountain today four! whole! times!) but it was quiet and lovely and smelled like snow. Not many of these in a year for us, so something to savour.

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Posted by: Grub | April 15, 2014

This & That

So, apparently my last post has disappeared into the ether. There is a draft version in my inbox that is about a quarter of the size of the post I actually wrote, and the comments are still recorded, just no post. Disheartening.

On a more positive note, here are two things I am proud of lately, and links to two recipes we really enjoyed.

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An herb garden!  Here you can see, clockwise from top left, thyme, oregano, cilantro (including both plant and seed), strawberry, rosemary, spearmint, parsley & chives, and marjoram. Not shown here are a couple of little cups with basil seeds.  I had a helper, with the shopping, planting and watering.  Can you guess which of the plants he picked out? (The marjoram was my favourite.)

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And here is something a little less exciting, but awesome nonetheless – look at the grill marks on this tofu!  I finally got my grill pan seasoned enough so that my lovely tofu doesn’t get ripped up and burned, and instead looks like this work of art:

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Also as promised, links to two recipes we enjoyed lately – Glam Chowder from the PPK blog and Peanut Butter-Banana Bran Muffins from Bryanna Clark Grogan’s blog.  The chowder was so warm and creamy and tasty on one of our recent crappy dark and rainy nights, and the muffins were a perfect sweet treat and healthful at the same time.  Sam gobbled the muffins up, and they are already gone – I didn’t even get a picture of one!

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Posted by: Grub | January 26, 2014

My Pretties

Just dipping my toes in here. I miss putting words down in this space, but am not sure how to find room for it in the day to day. In the meantime, I thought I might share some photos of what we are up to, maybe with words, maybe not. Here is a shot of a belated Christmas gift that arrived a few days ago – there are actually four of them, but this blue colour is my favourite (surprise). I filled it with one of my favourite simple meals to celebrate – tamarind lentils over brown jasmine rice.

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Posted by: Grub | February 19, 2012

Words

hi daddy mommy baby car book apple tractor wow truck nanny bus banana fire boat sock airplane bike choo-choo water duck quack iPad turtle hug kiss alligator animal cat dog cow moo kiwi bread bite hot light hungry all-gone up down walk shoe jacket pants ball outside diaper pooper no food eat more bath wash owl frog Branka Leo sleep PJ’s shirt cloth spoon flower tree stuck chair fish me cookie cracker watch toy night-night yum yuck eye nose mouth tongue uh-oh leg foot toes bunny belly browndog pillow computer work paper comb shut stinky beans bird sky hat hair mittens squirrel monkey tiger lion pig teddy pumpkin dragon Harry* toast bag sheep milk phone coffee picture buh-bye

*the dirty dog

Just for fun, I thought I would do a quick brainstorm of words that Sam has in his vocabulary right now – these are all words that he says out loud, unsolicited, that we are able to recognize, although some are more understandable than others (for example, he calls his jacket “jack”, and “animal” really sounds more like “enema”  – I’m sticking with “animal” on that one).  He has a few more that are strictly baby talk (“ba-ba”, for example, means “bottle”), a bunch of animal sounds that aren’t really words (my favourites are the monkey sound and the rooster sound) and he understands a lot that he isn’t actually speaking yet.  I had no idea how much fun this part would be!

Words conspicuously absent from this list: yes, please, thank you, sleep, nap, Maxy, Sam

Posted by: Grub | February 11, 2012

38 before 38

New year, new list. Onwards and upwards!

Hello, friends. I am excited about what we are going to do (and eat!) this year! (Check out my sweet old man PJs.)

1. Run a 10k

2. Ride a bike

3. Swim

4. Cook beans from scratch

5. Bake a pie

6. Eat salad at least once a week.

7. Host a vegan potluck series

8. 50 recipe challenge

9. Cook from 5 different food blogs

10. Try a new fruit and vegetable

11. Blog regularly

12. Participate in the vegan community

13. Take Sam camping

14. Prepare for the zombie apocalypse

15. Make a move

16. Put up pictures

17. Pay off student loans

18. Play Ultimate

19. Take Sam to a farm sanctuary

You're halfway there - I think you deserve another photo to get you through to the end. Did you know I am 1.5 years old now?

20. Eat jackfruit

21. Eat at 10 food carts in Portland

22. Make a birthday cake for Sam

23. Take Sam to the farmer’s market

24. Play in the snow with Sam

25. Smoke tofu and portobello mushrooms

26. Take Trish for lunch, twice!

27. Do yoga

28. Learn a new camera function

29. Fill Sam’s baby book

30. Get a massage

31. Go to a movie

32. Read 25 books

33. Bake a cake for Maxy

34. File my taxes on time

35.  Make an Ethiopian feast, including injera, and a Mexican feast, including tamales and fresh corn tortillas

36. Make sure that Sam spends time with all of his cousins and both sets of grandparents

37. Make Black Forest Cake and Tiramisu

38. Make vegan peanut butter chips

**You will see that I don’t have a lot descriptions this year.  That’s partly in the interest of getting this posted before summertime, partly because it will make a year-end recap next year much easier to do, and also because a few of the things on this list are a bit more mysterious, shall we say, and I am going to wait to talk about them at least until I feel like I have a better handle on them myself. I’m also open to suggestions on any of the things on this list if you have any! (What books should I be reading?  What camera function should I learn? What’s a food blog you love that I should check out?  You see what I am saying.)

The end. Thanks for joining us. Seeya, suckas.

Posted by: Grub | February 5, 2012

Recap of 37 before 37

Hey everyone,

WARNING – enormous post ahead!

In case you are interested, here is a recap of my 37 before 37.  To be honest, I kind of sucked (also, this post has been sitting here in draft for over a month now, so I have been continuing to suck).  There were a few things on the list that were a little out of my control, but mostly I left too much stuff until the end of the year and then life intervened.  Oh well. There’s always this year!  Stay tuned for 38 before 38!

  1. Start blogging again – I would say that I did this, although not as regularly as I had hoped.
  2. Update and restart working through my cookbook list – I did a terrible job of this, but in my defence, I got to a cookbook early on that I just couldn’t find anything to cook out of and then totally stalled.  I am planning to work through my list this year, but in a cook one recipe from whichever cookbook you feel like and then cross it off the list kind of way.
  3. Try a new fruit and a new vegetable – I didn’t do this one, either.  I know, right?  One of the easiest items on the list.  It’s going on this year’s list.
  4. Bake bread – Although I didn’t make Chad’s dad’s recipe for bread, I did make bread in our breadmaker, and made both my great-grandmother’s butterhorns and some fabulous pumpkin rolls (the recipe is here, these were RIDICULOUSLY good and easy and they were snatched up in no time at a party I took them to at Craig and Meagan’s place).

    Great Grandma P's butterhorns

    Pumpkin rolls cooling in the autumn afternoon sun

  5. Watch Chad finish a 100-miler – I was at the stadium at 4am to see Chad finish the Western States 100 in June, the first of the four races in the Grand Slam series of 100-milers, and then Sam and I both saw him finish the fourth race in the series, the Wasatch 100, just outside Salt Lake City, Utah in September.  Chad was the second-place finisher overall in this year’s series and we think that he set a Canadian record for the Grand Slam!  Pretty cool.  Yay, Chad!

    Western at 4am, sub-24h! (Check the time on the clock.)

    Finishing Wasatch (and the Grand Slam)

    Chilling, post-Grand Slam - Chad with Sam the cookie-face.

  6. Plant herbs on deck – This didn’t happen, only because we just weren’t here enough over the summer.  I would love to add it to this year’s list, but we already have a two-week trip lined up in June, and so I think it will have to wait for another year.
  7. Take Sam to the farmer’s market – we did this a few times, including one day with my Mom when it snowed last winter.  It was fun, but it is harder work than it used to be!  I can’t wait until he starts learning what things are and picking out what he wants.
  8. Go camping – We had a trip planned, but it was cancelled due to weather – oh, poop!  It’s on the list for this year.
  9. Get new pots and pans – Although this was already on my list of things to do this year, Chad got me gorgeous new copper pots and pans for my birthday (my parents also contributed), and I am not exaggerating when I say that they have already transformed my cooking experience. I don’t even mind having to wash them by hand every time I use them!
  10. Make a dessert with avocados in it – The first avocado dessert recipe I tried was kind of gross, but I tried again and had great success with thischocolate avocado pudding.  Based on my experience, I would recommend using perfectly ripe avocadoes for this from both a texture and flavour perspective.  I liked this pudding on its own and also layered with chia pudding and fresh fruit in a parfait.

    Chocolate avocado pudding, chia pudding, fresh pineapple and local strawberries. Delish.

  11. Take Maxy for a run – This did not happen as many times as I had intended, but it did happen.  Maxy was pleased.
  12. Try out a new recipe for Christmas dinner – I made an apple and cranberry strudel as my “second dessert”, which was also an exercise in veganization.  I was reminded that phyllo is truly my cooking nemesis, even more so than pie pastry.  I had intended to make the Voluptuous Vegan gingerbread recipe, but decided that it was too close in flavour profile to the pumpkin pie I was already making, so I made the gingerbread later in the week and it was truly amazing.
  13. Take homemade cookie packages to the Fondon’t – last year, I was feeling too tired and crummy to make individual packages (I was pregnant! Who knew?), so I promised myself I would persevere this year, and I did!
  14. Veganize 5 favourite non-vegan recipes, including Great Grandma Patterson’s Butterhorns – Done!  And the butterhorns were incredible and easier than I remember them being from when I first made them in highschool (see photo above).  1. My Mom’s Dutch Apple Cake; 2. Mushroom and Caramelized Onion Strudel for Christmas; 3. Chilaquiles; 4. Great-Grandma’s Butterhorns; and 5. My formerly “famous” chicken stirfry (now with tofu).
  15. Take a class/lessons with Sam – We did swimming lessons, sign language and an art/painting class!  Super fun.

    Blowing bubbles (not really).

    This picture makes it look far more civilized than it actually was.

  16. Write a letter to Grandma – I did this and was also able to send her some photos of Sam. We also got to visit her in Manitoba this summer!

    Easily one of my favourite photos of the year.

  17. Get back to doing yoga – Although I did yoga once in a while, I don’t think I can cross this one off.
  18. Make a train cake for Sam’s birthday – I didn’t even make a cake for Sam’s birthday!  But before you start throwing stones at me… we decided to do birthday cupcakes because we had an open house for his birthday, and didn’t want to have to set a time to blow out candles and cut a cake.  It worked out OK, but I may have to do a cake next year.  Maybe it will be a train!
  19. Fill up Sam’s baby book – Not done, but it is on my current to-do list.
  20. Introduce Sam to his cousins, Claire and Violet – We saw Violet in the spring and just recently in November, both times here at our house.  We saw Claire and Sam’s second cousin, Regan, in Manitoba in July.  (We also visited with Sam’s other cousins, Kailey and Garrett, when they came for Sam’s first birthday party in August!)

    Swinging in B-town with Claire.

    We didn't get any great photos of Sam and Violet together, but I love this one I took of Violet on her first visit. This is at Trimble Park near our house.

    Sam with Kailey and Garrett at his first birthday party.

  21. Make Father’s Day brunch – Didn’t do it.  In fact, I didn’t even remember this goal until I reread my list.  (I am the WORST.)  In my defence, we were on the road, and on the road for a long time.  I did make a pretty awesome pre-race meal before Western States!

    Western pre-race meal. Quinoa, black beans, baked tofu, pumpkin seeds, avocado, spinach, squash, zucchini, red onion, lemon-dill dressing... you name it, we ate it.

  22. Make 5 new recipes from food blogs that I follow – I increased the difficulty on this, requiring that I make recipes from at least five different blogs.  I’ve linked to the blogs in case you are interested in checking them out!  These were all super delicious, make-again recipes (and in fact I have made four of them at least twice, three of them more than three times!) 1. Peanut Butter Cup Oats for One from Peas and Thank You; 2. Avocado Cumin Dressing and Chocomole (see above) from Choosing Raw; 3. Easy Vegan Overnight Oats, Tropical Lemon Cranberry Bars, 15-Minute Avocado Pasta, and Olive Oil Pasta with Walnuts, Lentils and Red Peppers, all from Oh She Glows; 4. Spinach and Artichoke Dip from Vegan Mouse; and 5. Single-Lady (Chocolate Chip) Cookie Dough Balls from Chocolate Covered Katie.

    Here is the pasta from the Oh She Glows blog. We have enjoyed this more than once - the ingredients are an odd combination but they taste great!

  23. Comment on a stranger’s blog – with all of the blogs I read, this is something I should be better at, but it is also really outside my comfort zone. I did this a bunch of times, but probably not as many as I should have!
  24. Pay off student loans – Nope.  Stupid. On the list for this year.
  25. Take Trish out for lunch – Nope.  I am putting this on my list this year, but twice, to make up for not doing it last year! I AM THE WORST!
  26. Go for a massage – This was on my list of things to do before I went back to work, and it just didn’t get to the top of the priority list (new work clothes and haircut beat it out).
  27. Host a dinner party for friends – We did do this a couple of times, and I have a new goal that is a twist on this one for next year.  Also, I made poached pears!
  28. Play football – I played two seasons of football this year, and it was so great to be back on the field.

    The team at practice on a lovely sunny day.

  29. Play Ultimate – This is one that I also didn’t get to do this year.  Maybe next year.
  30. Wear a bathing suit – We took Sam for a swim in the pool when we were in Stowe, Vermont, and it was glorious.

    Post-swim. We are pooped.

  31. Go on a road trip in the US – We did a really long road trip to California with my parents for Western States, and then, although we flew to most of the rest of our destinations, we always had to rent a car and do some road travel to and from races.  LOVE road trips.  Sam was a really great road tripper!

    Near Mount Shasta, California (that's us in the Subaru!)

    Watching the world roll by...

    Not one of our biggest road trips, but one of my favourites - the Eastern Townships in Quebec.

  32. Visit a farm sanctuary – We weren’t able to fit this in – the timing didn’t work, and the one local sanctuary that I thought we might get to wasn’t allowing visitors this year.
  33. Eat at a vegan food cart in Portland – We visited a couple food carts in Portland – my favourite was Native Bowl!  I can’t wait for our vacation this summer so that I can hit up a whole bunch more.

    Sam and I sitting beside Native Bowl (you can't see it in this picture, unfortunately.) Sam is happy to be here!

  34. Make 50 recipes from Appetite for Reduction – I actually thought I didn’t make this goal (I thought I only did 49!) but I did a run through today, and we got to 50!  We also ate a lot of the “bowls” in the back of the book, which don’t really count as recipes.  We are still working through this book – so many fantastic recipes and meals.  Highly recommended if you are looking for lower-fat and easy meals with whole food ingredients that taste fantastic. I especially loved the Butternut Coconut Rice, Chimchurri Tofu and Arabian Lentil and Rice soup.  And the Scarlet Barley.  And the cashew miso mayo.

    Another AFR favourite - buffalo tempeh and cool slaw with avocado in a sandwich. Yummers.

    The chimichurri tofu (ridiulously easy and good) over top of the Corn and Blue Potato Salad (also very good)

  35. Make homemade baby food for Sam – This is one thing we have been very good about.  Sam is a such a great eater, and so it has made it easy to try all kinds of great things with him.  We did the food cubes thing early on, and then moved on to mashed and blended, more complex foods.  (The Magic Bullet has been our best friend.) Now he pretty much eats whatever we do, and loves “crackers”, “cookies”, “‘nanas” and “apples” and asks for more “bites”!  (He has lots of food words.)

    The early days - steamed peas and carrots with plain soy yogurt, about to be blended up. Yum! (Actually, gross.)

    It didn't start out all that well...

  36. Start a “Sam journal” – So I did this for a while and then abandoned it (story of my life) but partly because I have found that I prefer the blog format for this kind of thing – I can put pictures together with stories, and then have comments from our friends and family.
  37. Learn to use my camera – I am crossing this out because I feel like I did some good learning, although I have so much more I want to learn about with my camera.  Going back to work has been hard, especially at this time of year, because it feels like there are so few opportunities to work with decent light.  Even the daylight is dark right now!
Posted by: Grub | January 9, 2012

A New Year

Happy New Year to anyone who is still reading or checking our blog. Life got a little bit crazy back in October, and even crazier in November, and then December was as December always is… and here we are in 2012 already. Wow. I am hoping to get back to posting more often, and my goal is to just post smaller and simpler posts more regularly rather than huge ones once in a while.

I am working on my new goals list for the year (this year it is 38 before 38 – I am OLD), and will hopefully also get around to posting a recap of last year’s goals, mostly as an excuse to post some of my photos and stuff from last year that I didn’t ever get around to posting. I also had a whole bunch of posts planned for the last half of October that I didn’t get around to, so hopefully they will make it on here, too!

Since I know that 99% of the reason that any of you read our blog is to see photos of the big guy, here is a recent one of him from Christmas Day.  I know it isn’t a nice, cute smile-y photo, but he is so hard to catch in focus these days and this one makes me laugh.  He is walking and talking and generally changing every single day.  So wonderful!

Posted by: Grub | October 13, 2011

What We Eat Wednesdays – More Macaroni and Cheese

This is going to be another quickie What We Eat post today – things at work are kind of crazy right now, and I think I need to get some sleep tonight so that I can make it through the week (so that I can work on the weekend, too).  Barf.

We made a new macaroni and cheese recipe this week that was pretty tasty.  This is the Cheesy Mac from Vegan Diner (which I talked about yesterday) but I already think of it as Smoky Mac.  It has a bit of a hit of smoked paprika and a noochy, cashew-based sauce, and her technique of melting in some Earth Balance and stirring in some nutritional yeast at the end is so reminiscent of making Kraft Dinner that I nearly shed a tear.  This got gobbled up like nobody’s business, and Sam had a great time eating the cheesy gemelli noodles with his fingers.

(As a side note, that sprinkling of smoked paprika on top was my own addition and was really unnecessary, and I actually wished I had left it alone. Try it and see if you like it, and if you really feel like it needs more smoke, then by all means sprinkle away.)

On deck for tomorrow, another vegan product that we love!  See you then.

 

Posted by: Grub | October 12, 2011

Top Ten Tuesday – Our Favourite Cookbooks

Tonight has to be a quickie post, as I (hopefully) just finished working for the night and need to clean up the kitchen (and eat leftover mini pumpkin pies).  I thought for our top ten tonight, I would list my top ten favourite cookbooks.  Chad’s list may differ, so maybe I’ll let him comment if he would switch anything else in (hint, hint, partner in blogging).  So, without further adieu (what does that mean anyways?), here they are:

10. Yellow Rose Recipes – Joanna Vaught
This book has my favourite seitan recipe in the whole world (mustard crusted seitan, so ridiculously good) as well as many other easy and tasty recipes.  It is also probably the cutest book I own, as the pictures in the book are all drawn by a friend of the author, whose drawing I really love.  Sadly, it is no longer in print.  😦  (Further sadness: Joanna is not writing cookbooks anymore, although I do have her two follow-up Potluck Mania zines.) I am not sure that I can bear to risk lending it out, but I will share recipes if anyone is interested.

9. The Modern Vegetarian Kitchen – Peter Berley
This was an early purchase for me, and remains one of my favourite cookbooks.  It is arranged seasonally and is full of both simple and more complicated recipes full of fresh veggies and beans and whole grains.  I love the mustard green beans and the romaine with miso vinaigrette and the celery salad and the stuffed collards and… pretty much everything.  There is a crazy delicious recipe with Savoy cabbage in it in there, but I can’t find it right now to tell you what it is.  SO GOOD.

8. How to Cook Everything Vegetarian – Mark Bittman
This is my current kitchen bible.  There is a recipe for pretty much anything and everything, and all are simple, relatively quick, and highlight fresh produce.  Although the cookbook is vegetarian, there are many vegan or veganizable recipes.  He also has lots of great, easy bread recipes and lots of international flavours.  Highly recommended if you are looking for an all-around resource.

7. Vegan Soul Kitchen – Bryant Terry
I haven’t cooked as much out of this book as I would like, but what I have made has been fantastic.  In particular, there is a spicy tempeh recipe with cherry tomatoes and creamy polenta that is amazing (albeit not a quick recipe) and a great BBQ tempeh sandwich.  I was hoping to get to some of his peach desserts this summer but they will have to wait for fresh peaches next year. I also love that he pairs his recipes with music and writes a lot about his family and his food memories.

6. Eat, Drink and Be Vegan – Dreena Burton
Dreena writes great family-friendly and healthy recipes, and she is a local (from White Rock), which makes me love her even more.  We have a number of her recipes on constant rotation in our house, and I find that this book is one that I pull out when I am looking to make a great dip or appetizer for Book Club – they are all awesome, and there is a whole chapter on different hummuses (hummi?). She is coming out with a new book in the spring (I think) that I can’t wait for.

5. Vegan with a Vengeance – Isa Chandra Moskowitz
So this is where my list gets funny.  I love everything that Isa has ever written, and have never encountered a cookbook author with more reliable recipes. This was her first, and was probably my first vegan cookbook. There are so many things in here that I love, from the pumpkin muffins, to the pancakes, to the biscuits and tempeh sausage gravy, to the pomegranate BBQ tofu, to the chocolate pudding, to the peanut butter pie, I could go ON and ON and ON.

4. Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World – Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero
This book is my birthday cake bible.  (Funny, since it is a cupcake book.)  I have never, ever brought leftovers home from a work birthday cake, and in fact, we are always challenged to slice ever thinner slices. There is everything in here – basic chocolate and vanilla, some lower-fat recipes, gluten-free basic flavours, and then lots and lots of fantastic flavour combinations and decadent frosting and toppings.  You will never need to make a non-vegan birthday cake again.

3. Vegan Brunch – Isa Chandra Moskowitz
Brunch is honestly my favourite meal – what better excuse to have both sweet and savoury breakfast options on the same plate, especially at dinnertime?  This book is full of all kinds of pancakes, waffles and French toast to go beside my tofu and tempeh scrambles, tofu bennies and tofu omelettes. It also has the best muffin recipes I have ever made.  There are so many things in this book that I still haven’t tried – cinnamon rolls! pierogies! bagels! I love brunch!

2. Vegan Diner – Julie Hasson
I have talked about this a few times on the blog this year.  It is a beautiful cookbook with simple, delicious recipes that we have had nothing but great success with.  A really good and easy chicken-style seitan recipe (steamed), homemade BBQ sauces (yes, two), chocolate chip cookies, banana pudding pie, and most of the components to make the Mississippi Bowl from the Native Bowl food cart in Portland.  I have lots on my list still to try, including at the top of the list the pastrami-style seitan (for a Reuben) and the chocolate cherry cake.  Highly recommended.

1. Veganomicon – Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero
Probably my favourite of all, Veganomicon has a mix of everything – comfort food, international flavours, easy recipes, hard recipes, fancy recipes, simple presentations, lots of veggies and beans and grains, cookies, cakes, desserts.  I can’t even count how many recipes I have made from this book, and many are among my all-time favourites.  Tamarind lentils.  Chickpeas romesco. Smlove Pie. Chewy chocolate raspberry cookies. Lemon Coconut Bundt Cake. Chickpea cutlets. Chickpea noodle soup.  These are a few of my favourite things.

(*** I am about to cheat.  Appetite for Reduction, also by Isa Chandra Moskowitz (in case you are counting, that is five Isa titles) should really be on this list, but the book is in such high rotation that it isn’t even on the shelf with the most used books, it is on the cart in the kitchen, and so I missed it until I got the end and couldn’t figure out why it wasn’t on the list. This is my go-to for quick, low-fat, easy weeknight meals that are tasty and healthy.  Definitely my most used cookbook of the year.)
(*** Since I didn’t give AfR a number on this list, it is still a Top Ten list, right? RIGHT?)

There are many, many other cookbooks that I love that didn’t quite make the list today, but maybe would have on another day.  Viva Vegan by Terry Hope Romero is full of delicious vegan Latin food that we love, and Hearty Vegan Meals by Joni Newman and Celine Steen is another book that is relatively new but holds a lot of promise (I currently need to be eating low-fat rather than full-fat, but I am hoping to be back to some full on hearty eating soon).  Two other resource-type books I would highly recommend are 1,000 Vegan Recipes by Robin Robertson and Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone, by Deborah Madison (my first vegetarian cookbook, a gift from my RLM colleagues, including Chad, way back in the day).

It occurs to me that I should have included a photo of our cookbook shelf, but it is way too dark right now, so maybe I will update this post in the morning. And, on that note, off to bed!

Posted by: Grub | October 11, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

My apologies right off the bat for the dark, awful, yellow photos in this post, but we ate Thanksgiving dinner well after dark, and although I planned to take some natural light photos with leftovers today, we decided to save the leftovers for dinner tomorrow night, so… crappy photos. Oh well.

We started cooking last night at 5:40pm and were eating dessert by 10:30pm, so I feel like we had a successful meal. We had decided ahead of time that we didn’t want to do anything too fancy, but that we did want to have the traditional components of our Thanksgiving meal.

This was actually really easy meal to put together – the only real difficulty was trying to juggle everything that had to go in the oven. It would have been easier if I had pan-fried the chickpea cutlets rather than baking them, but we prefer them baked. All of these recipes are tried and true for us, and I think are all in our past holiday cookbooks, if you have those.

Clockwise from the front left: Chickpea cutlet with punk rock chickpea gravy, mashed potatoes, roasted delicata squash and roasted garlic Brussels sprouts

The only new item on the plate this year was our dessert – I wanted something pumpkin-based that was quick and easy and didn’t require any soaking, chilling or lengthy setting times.  This recipe for crustless mini pumpkin pies fit the bill perfectly.  The one problem I had with the pies was that I found them overly spiced – I used a premixed pumpkin pie spice and I think that next time around I would mix up my own and gradually up the spices to taste.  But, I loved the sweet nutty topping, and the pumpkin custard was good too, so this will definitely make another appearance on our table.

Mini. Pumpkin. Pie. Toasted pecans. Yum.

In addition to it being Thanksgiving, Sam “turned” 14 months this weekend. Here is a quick photo of him enjoying a little bowl of macaroni and cheese tonight.  He is harder to catch with the camera these days – a combination of him being less interested in the camera and more interested in just about everything else around him.  Even when he is strapped in to his highchair, he would much rather be checking out other stuff than posing for the camera.  Luckily, I got this winning smile out of him before he dove right into the pasta.

There are so many things I am thankful for this year, but I saw this posted on a friend’s Facebook page, and, other than the obvious good stuff in my life, it sums up many of the general things pretty well.  Happy Thanksgiving to everyone – hope you were all able to eat a delicious meal with family and friends over the long weekend!

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