Tuesday, December 18, 2007

I came across this survey here and thought I'd fill it out :)

1. Favorite non-dairy milk?
Silk. Chocolate is the best, but I've acquired a taste for the plain stuff too.

2. What are the top 3 dishes/recipes you are planning to cook?
nanaimo bars (for a potluck)
faux liver pate from How It All Vegan (for a potluck)
sushi to go with my new serving platter!

3. Topping of choice for popcorn?
Earth Balance margarine and a bit of salt

4. Most disastrous recipe/meal failure?
primavera pasta in a slowcooker

5. Favorite pickled item?
pickles only

6. How do you organize your recipes?
cookbooks, in a recipe book by category

7. Compost, trash, or garbage disposal?
trash, but I would love a kitchen composter, or to live in a city that composts

8. If you were stranded on an island and could only bring 3 foods...what would they be (don't worry about how you'll cook them)?
mac and cheese
soy ice cream

9. Fondest food memory from your childhood?
my dad's potato dumpling soup

10. Favorite vegan ice cream?
mint fudge

11. Most loved kitchen appliance?
food processor

12. Spice/herb you would die without?

13. Cookbook you have owned for the longest time?
Garden of Vegan

14. Favorite flavor of jam/jelly?
strawberry; blueberry in close second

15. Favorite vegan recipe to serve to an omni friend?

16. Seitan, tofu, or tempeh?

17. Favorite meal to cook (or time of day to cook)?

18. What is sitting on top of your refrigerator?
flashlight, cards

19. Name 3 items in your freezer without looking.
corn, bread, filo

20. What's on your grocery list?
stuff for nanaimo bars

21. Favorite grocery store?

22. Name a recipe you'd love to veganize, but haven't yet.
my mom's broccoli bake

23. Food blog you read the most . Or maybe the top 3?
Gooberific Goes Vegan
A Veg*n for Dinner
Vegan Dad

24. Favorite vegan candy/chocolate?
Lindt' silver package chocolate
swedish berries

25. Most extravagant food item purchased lately?
nothing comes to mind

Monday, December 17, 2007

Camera or No Camera

I've been cooking a little bit, so I figured I'd write about it, so I don't completely lose my blogging skills ;), even though I don't have the best part: the pictures!
I made tasty tempeh chili from La Dolce Vegan yesterday. I didn't eat it yet, but the few tastes I had were promising. It has onion, garlic, tempeh cubes, corn, chili, cumin, tomato sauce and tomatoes. I'm looking forward to topping some baked potatoes with this, since I have a ten pound bag to use up!
I had leftover tempeh, so I also made the tu-no tempeh salad from LDV. Its basically crumbled tempeh with soy mayo, and typical tuna salad fixings. It was very good broiled with some cheese on toast...mmmm. Billy even said it tasted somewhat like tuna. I guess that would be from the kelp powder.
I also made my all-time favourite...mac and cheese! If you haven't made this (from LDV) yet, and you have access to vegan soy cheese...do it now! I love it, it's my go-to recipe.

Well that's that. Billy and I are in the process of moving into a bigger place, so I won't be buying a new camera anytime soon, but hopefully I can get mine fixed.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Wow I have a blog?

Hahaha. It has been forever. Just though I'd post a quick update for anyone that still checks occasionally. My camera is officially broken, so no pictures. School is busy as all get out, so I don't cook as much as I would like, but I still have fun in the kitchen.
We finally found a new, bigger apartment, so I can stretch out into a bigger kitchen :)
If you have How It All Vegan, you must make the peanut butter chocolate cups. If you miss Reese's PB cups, this is for you! I'm eating way too many.
Anyways, hopefully I get a new camera soon when I magically win the lottery so that I can start posting some pictures.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

I served a table of 8 or so in the summer, and they ended up being family. I overheard their conversation and they mentioned my parents' hometown, so I jumped in. It turns out that one of the men was my dad's cousin, so we were second cousins. That was the only time I met him, but I heard that he was pleased to meet family. I later learned he was battling cancer. He passed in September. I thought I would share this video that one of his co-workers created, check it out if you're interested, there's some great shots of wildlife towards the end.

Rest in Peace, Miles.


Thursday, September 27, 2007

I don't know how great of a blogger I'll be this year. I've been cooking and baking regularly, but either I forget to take pictures, or the camera batteries are dead. Most nights its "cook, eat, homework" and nothing in between. I'll try to post more regularly when I make something great. So far I've made oriental pasta, banana-berry muffins and oatmeal chocolate chip muffins from Looneyspoons, and lemon-poppyseed muffins from LDV. I also made a really good chickpea chowder from Looneyspoons...but no pictures!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

And I thought Science was hard...

Oh my...I'm bombarded with work already. I'm used to the first two weeks of school being slack...needless to say, posts might be a little less frequent, although I'm still trying to cook a lot.

Last weekend, I made a fettuccine alfonso from The Uncheese Cookbook. The sauce was made with soymilk, white beans, onion powder, etc. It was good. A little bland, but I added some S&P, and vegan parm to jazz it up a bit.

For lunches, I'll be using Vegan Lunch Box again...so many great ideas! I oven-dried some tomatoes last weekend and used them in a pita with flaxy hummus. Very yummy along with some cucumber spears, fuzzy peaches and some peach yogurt with frozen blueberries.

The first dinner I made during the week was from Vegan Slow Cooker. I did not even bother to take a picture...yuck! Pasta primavera....veggies for primavera are not meant to be cooked that long, I got through three or four bites and threw everything out. Mostly everything I've made from this book so far has been good though.

The next night, I made a simple Shepherd's Pie from Cooking for the Rushed, except I used ground round and made the mashed potatoes vegan. Very good. Billy really liked this too, particularly the spice in the ground round mixture.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

The end of summer

I finally buckled down and cooked again. It'll be nice to start school, just so I can get back to my regular routines of cooking and exercise.

From Looneyspoons I made the "Canajun" rice and beans, a mix between Canadian and Cajun flavours. I'm not posting the recipe because I didn't really need to change any of the ingredients, it was in the vegetarian section. I really like this dish, there's some spice but not too much.

From Cooking for the Rushed, I made the chicken pot pie. I adapted it by using fake PC chicken strips, Earth Balance and soymilk, and instead of using prepared Pillsbury biscuits, I made mine from scratch, using the baking powder biscuits from La Dolce Vegan. This dish is amazing!! I love the idea of placing biscuits on top of the pie, instead of spreading a crust. And the biscuits are phenomenal!

I had a craving for fried foods last night after work, so I decided to try my hand at cheesesticks. They actually turned out pretty good. I cut up Follow Your Heart Mozza cheese into mini sticks, and then dipped them in a flour/arrowroot mix, an egg replacer/water mix and then a breadcrumbs/ Italian seasoning mix....and then redid that. I fried them in oil for about 30 seconds and then sprinkled them with a bit of salt and parmesan. They really hit the spot! I want to refine the seasoning a bit, but they're a great occasional snack.

Back to school Tuesday, better hit the mall for some school supplies.

Monday, August 13, 2007


This is my 200th post :) I got back from Barrie yesterday. Me and 9 other friends went to the Warped Tour there and had a blast! I even died my hair purple, but since I'm a redhead, it just made it a darker red haha; as you can see (on the right).

Anyways, I wish I could say I baked cupcakes for my special post, but I really made them for our jello shooter-making party we had on Friday. And everyone loved them. They were basic chocolate with buttercream frosting, from Vegan Cupcakes. And I even managed to make myself some vegan shooters from a recipe on vegweb. But I added too much agar and they were way too strong, so I didn't even drink them. I'll have to tweak the recipe.

Other than that, the only other thing I've made is Maui "chicken" and rice, from a recipe I adapted in Looneyspoons. I made chicken seitan to replace the meat in it.

Maui "Chicken" and Rice

4 chicken seitan "steaks", cut into cubes
2 1/2 cups "chicken" or vegetable broth
1 can/14 ounces pineapple tidbits in juice, undrained
1 1/2 cups uncooked long grain white or brown rice (if using brown, use the rice that cooks in 25 minutes)
3/4 cup finely chopped carrots
1/2 cup each chopped sweet red and green pepper
1/3 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons each of brown sugar, white vinegar and soy sauce
2 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup chopped green onions

Spray a large saucepan with cooking spray. Cook seitan over med-high until heated through.

Add remaining ingredients except green onions and stir well. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to med-low and cover. Simmer for 25 minutes, til rice is tender. Stir occasionally.

Stir in green onions during the last 5 minutes of cooking time.

Makes 4-6 servings

Monday, July 30, 2007

Just got back

We just returned from a week of relaxing and visiting with family. I had a blast, and didn't worry about food too much, so it was mostly veggie burgers, sausages and sandwiches. I do have some pictures lying around from before though.

I made tiramisu from the Candle Cafe cookbook. I used half the amount of espresso required, since I'm not big on coffee, and it was the perfect amount. Its a sponge cake layered with a cream cheese/tofu mixture. I brought it to a girl's night, and everyone devoured it!

Also, from Looneyspoons, a roasted veggie and soy cheese sub, with a sweet mustard sauce. It was delicious! I'll be making it again.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Long time no see

Wow, its been a while. I was cooking, but I also got caught up in reading the Harry Potter series, so I became a hermit!

First of all, I found out yesterday that I get a scholarship next year, woot! So now I can buy groceries and not worry about not saving that money ;)

So lets start with dessert. Some of the girls from work decided to have a tea party, so I made some chai cupcakes from VCTOTW. They were deliciously spiced and had a really simple topping of cocoa powder and powdered sugar. Yummy!

I tried some more adaptations of recipes from Looneyspoons, and I'm quite happy with the results. First I made a broccoli cheese soup using soy cheddar, soymilk and Tofutti sour cream. It was delicious. The only change I'll be making will be to melt the cheese more before adding the sour cream, so that its more cheesy.

And I also made a baked mac n' cheese. This had vegan parm, soy cheese and Tofutti cream cheese. Very creamy, and I loved the bread crumb topping. It had a strong onion flavour, but nevertheless was good. I think it might have gone well with some ketchup too.

Now the fun news. I just got back from a trip to Toronto to visit some high school girlfriends. I had so much fun, we went shopping and went to a club and there was a lot of eating involved. We even went to Fressen (since it was the closest of all the veg places at the time) and we really enjoyed it. We ordered a basil fettuccine, a pesto gnocchi, beer battered tempeh fish (which rocked) and a mushroom puff pastry. And of course, dessert. We weren't too crazy about the dessert, which was some sort of nut roll, but it was still good. The plating was amazing too.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

My convocation is online. I'm at 1:16:50, approximately. :D

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Excuse my laziness

I actually did cook at the beginning of the week, but decided I'd rather read all day then do anything else, like blogging, for the rest of the week!

For breakfasts, I decided I'd make some glazed cinnamon buns from Table for Two. They were alright, and only the day of. They were rather dry, and not nearly sweet enough for my liking. The only sugar came from a little bit of juice concentrate in the batter and in the glaze. Plus the tahini/apple butter filling just didn't do it for me that much. I much prefer the cinnamon buns from Garden of Vegan with their delicious cream cheese glaze.

But, once I made them, I was in a baking mood...so I made some vanilla cupcakes with a cinnamon "glaze" from Vegan Cupcakes. I botched the glaze but it turned out tasty anyways.

Since I'm supposed to be eating more kelp and seaweed, I made a miso soup with a kelp powder broth and some nori chopped up in it. Blech. It was okay, but just too strong for my liking. It was a bastardized version of the miso soup in How It All Vegan, which I'm sure would be fine if made properly. After I made this, I went out and bought kelp tablets. haha

I mentioned a while back that my How It All Vegan cookbook had fallen apart. Well, my wonderful mom took me out shopping last weekend and bought me a brand new one!!! So to celebrate, I made the soup from HIAV and the artichoke rotini, except with spaghetti instead of rotini. This was a really yummy meal. And light too, which is nice when it gets this hot.

I have to share this picture of Logan with you. It demonstrates why we named him Logan, after Wolverine from X-Men ;) I guess its time to trim those claws!

Friday, June 08, 2007

Lasagna with Mex Appeal

I finally saw a naturopath about my eczema. She doesn't believe its diet-related, but rather that my body and my thyroid are run down from a stressful year(s). So I was given some sulfur and orders to rest, sleep and eat kelp (iodine) and rosemary. I'm hoping this works. I'm free to eat what I'd like for now.

Billy cooked dinner on Tuesday (gasp!) and it was delicious. We adapted a recipe from Looneyspoons for Mexican Lasagna. It has tomatoes, beans, peppers and spices layered with corn tortillas and soy nacho cheese. I'd also like to try it with flour tortillas.

For a decadent breakfast this week (full of wheat!) I made some raspberry/blackberry muffins. This is a variation of a muffin recipe in How It All Vegan, in which you choose the fruit combination that you'd like. Raspberries are awesome in muffins. It made 6 jumbo muffins, but you could also make 12 regular sized muffins, which I will do next time for better portion control. I also used 3/4 whole wheat flour to make them a bit healthier.

And for dinner last night, I made the tofu loaf from La Dolce Vegan, along with dijon mustard brussels sprouts, also from LDV. This was good. The inside was still a little too mushy for my liking, but the flavour was good. I used rosemary instead of parsley and tossed in some kelp powder as well, which didn't affect the taste.

It looks like the weekend will consist of mainly leftovers, but I'll be back next week with more food :)

Sunday, June 03, 2007


I am now officially Melissa, B.Sc (Hon), cum laude. Haha, although I won't refer to myself that way. As it turns out, I graduated second in my class, and was only one percent away from having top marks....story of my life. Graduation was fun, graduation dinner was fun (and delicious) and my graduation BBQ was even more fun. My grandparents and some aunts and uncles came, along with my family and Billy's family. They grilled meat and such, but I wasn't deprived. I also grilled some corn on the cob that everyone ate.

As for me, I had a Sol Spicy Bean Burger on a whole wheat bun (I ate wheat for the weekend), with grilled pineapple and some yummy Mango Ketchup from Candle Cafe.

Dessert was Death By Chocolate Brownies from Sinfully Vegan. I really liked the texture of these, dense and fudgy; and so did everyone else.

And for lunches when my cupboards and fridge were a bit bare, I made a great red lentil soup recipe that I found on vegweb.

There you have it, I kept it fairly simple so I could spend time with my family instead of in the kitchen.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Summer and Sushi!

I had my last day of placement yesterday...and summer begins! I just got back from a walk on the boardwalk, it could not be any more gorgeous out.

Billy and I had plans to shop yesterday so when I got home (it was a half day) I made a quick pasta and bean lunch; with romano beans, diced tomatoes, onion, garlic, mushrooms and brown rice pasta. I topped it with some vegan parm too.

To celebrate the start of my vacation, I decided to finally try (and make) sushi for the first time. I kept it really simple with fillings of cucumber and tofu bites. For the sushi rice and instructions I used Vegan Lunchbox. Sushi is yummy! I got Billy to make a roll, but he refuses to try it :( Next time I'll be making it with brown rice, since there's basically no nutrition in these ones, but I wanted to go for authentic my first time. And they're fine as next-day leftovers too.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Summer starts now!

It was a busy week, but I'm finally done placement! I forgot to take pictures of my lunch this week...but it was yummy. I made the cheesey lunch box fondue from Vegan Lunch Box. It was delicious with some dippers like baby potatoes, broccoli and mushrooms. I had it with an apple and some almond dark chocolate.

I also forgot to take a picture of a delicious soup I made. I modified it quite a bit from the mushroom barley stew in How It All Vegan, to use up some stuff in my fridge. It was sooooo good, and Billy loved it.

I was supposed to make a bean and bulgur salad from Vegan Cooking for One...but didn't want to use bulgur (wheat). So instead I used a ground round subsitute that I found, that's only made of soy flour. Its called So Soya. This salad had navy beans, the ground round and some veggies, and was pretty darn good.

Dinner this week was the Southwestern Corn Casserole from La Dolce Vegan. It is soooooo good, go and make it right now. At first, I wasn't quite sure what to expect based on the ingredients (silken tofu, soy milk, flour, corn, etc) but I was pleasantly surprised.

I made cookies two nights ago for all the staff on my floor at placement, as a little thank you. I made the chocolate chip cookies from Vive le Vegan (Since I know they're great), and also tried the chocolate pecan/walnut cookies from La Dolce Vegan (without nuts, extra chocolate chips). They both turned out great, everyone loved them. I had some leftover too, which led to me eating way too many....which led to me spending an hour at the gym, hahaha.

That's it for now. I just felt guilty for not posting sooner

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Week 2 Wheat Free

More cheesecake (Sinfully Vegan)! This is Billy's plate, along with a nut and seed butter cookie from Vegan Lunchbox. The cookies are gluten free. We were expecting traditional peanut butter cookie taste, but they're different. I still like them though, and they'd be great with a cold glass of vanilla soymilk.

This week, I decided to take a week of dinners from Vegan Cooking for One, since they're usually pretty quick and easy recipes, with lots of veggies in them. Sunday lunch was bean and potato salad. It was surprisingly very good. Potatoes mixed with green onion, navy beans, vegan mayo and soy yogurt.

Sunday dinner was zucchini and tomato flan...which was basically a veggie pie. Very yummy.

Dinner on Monday had to be quick, since I came home and had about half an hour before we were out the door to play softball. The cashew vegetable curry was really easy to make, and I already had cooked the brown rice, so I was able to fit in a healthy dinner for the night.

I didn't make dinner last night. I ended up crashing after my placement and didn't wake up til 10:30 pm. So I had some air popped popcorn and applesauce instead.

Tonight, I did not feel like cooking, but I forced myself to, and it really didn't take long. I made tofu stew with basmati rice. The stew has carrots, onion, green beans and celery, sauteed with tofu, and thickened with rice flour and veggie stock. I love the sage in it. Billy ate this for dinner too, so its a winner.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

No matter what happens, I'll always have food...

OK, where to start...I guess I'll just get into it right away!

Curried bean and rice filled zucchini from Vive le Vegan:

I made the rice and spelt kernels on the weekend so when it came to cooking this on Tuesday, it was pretty quick. There's great texture in this dish, from the rice, beans, spelt kernels, raisins and cashews.

Then, I had leftover rice and black beans from the zucchini, so for breakfast I made a quick burrito (with a brown rice tortilla), with the rice, beans, salsa, red pepper, and some cheese. Mmm it hit the spot. I'd kill for a whole wheat tortilla, but what are you gonna do, right?

Lunch for the week was from Vegan Lunchbox again. Wheat free oatmeal pancakes with maple syrup, strawberries and almond buttered sweet potatoes. However, by Friday, I was out of strawberries so the picture has a banana. Also, I was not a fan of the sweet potatoes so I brought yogurt instead for the rest of the week. The rest of the week, the pancakes were smaller, but these two were my first batch and I made them bigger than I was supposed to.

From the stuffed zucchini I had a bunch of leftover zucchini, as I had to scrape out the insides. So I made some gluten free lemon zucchini muffins. The texture is a bit grainier, but Billy didn't mind, and ate them as soon as they were out of the oven (haha, he ate zucchini...shhhhh). They're delicious! They have a great lemon flavour. Here's the recipe:

Lemon Zucchini muffins (or loaf):
1.2 cup shredded zucchini
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg replacer
1/4 cup oil and 1/4 cup applesauce (or all oil)
1.5 cups gluten free flour (or you can use regular wheat flour)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp lemon zest
1 T lemon juice

Preheat oven to 325 F. Grease a muffin tin or loaf pan.
In a bowl, beat the zucchini, sugar, egg replacer, oil, applesauce and lemon juice. In another bowl, sift the flour, salt, baking soda and powder and stir in the cinnamon and lemon zest.
Stir flour mixture into the zucchini mixture til just blended. Pour into muffin tin or loaf pan. Bake 45 min for loaf or 30 min for muffins, til a knife inserted comes out clean.
Cool ten minutes before removing to cool completely.

And last, but not least, some of you may have noticed that my mom has now found my blog (now I have to censor myself lol), and requested a cheesecake for mother's day. Happy Mother's day mom!!!!! This one's for you: Swirled Raspberry Cheesecake from Sinfully Vegan. This is so good. I had two pieces yesterday, and as a result have to be really good today ;)

Wow that was a long post. I'll leave you with this hilarious picture of Logan. *Warning* there's cat parts in the picture, turn your eyes away if you're under 18 :P

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Still here....

Despite my lack of posting, I have cooked a little. I made a vegetable curry from La Dolce Vegan, but ate the last of the leftovers today without taking a picture...whoops. It was too spicy for my liking, but that can be fixed next time. I liked the chickpeas and loads of veggies (zucchini, red pepper, spinach, etc).

Hopefully, I'll have a picture of my lunch for you tomorrow.

I've been doing a placement from 9-5 and its very tiring, so posts may be a bit scarce for a bit. Also, this week I started a wheat free diet to see if it helps with my skin. Its so hard!!!!!!!

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Time to bake!

I've sat through two days of initial practicum preparation...and they've managed to stress me out, not only about my placement this month, but about all of next year when I do my B.Ed. So when I got home today, I needed to bake something. I knew if I indulged too much, I wouldn't stop eating, so I decided to try something somewhat healthy. That's where Vive le Vegan's Energy Cookies come in. These are wheat free with a bit of barley and spelt flour. The rest consists of sunflower and pumpkin seeds and hemp seeds, along with some chocolate chips and cinnamon.

These are good. I got to bake and enjoy an after school snack without blowing my diet for the day. Now, that chocolate bar Billy brought me is a whole other story...

Monday, April 30, 2007

Tuscan Sandwiches

I feel like I haven't posted in forever! It felt nice to be back in the kitchen cooking today. More like baking. I made French baguettes from Garden of Vegan to use for sandwiches. For dinner, I made Tuscan white bean pate sandwiches with spinach and tomato. The recipe is from Candle Cafe and its supposed to be with arugula, but there was none at the store. Since I'm tracking my food intake, the amount of bread I used was probably less than desirable for what the authors had in mind. Its very filling though. The pate is made with navy beans, garlic and a few other ingredients. Its kind of liquidy, but that can be fixed by leaving out the water next time. I had the sandwich with some corn and broiled asparagus.

I'm back to school tomorrow to start my placement, so I'll be packing lunches and post pictures of them, if they're fun.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Nacho bean pizza

I had cheese and refried beans leftover so I thawed my last individual size pizza dough (from Vegan Lunchbox) and made pizza. I just put refried beans instead of pizza sauce and topped it with the nacho flavoured cheese. This turned out to be really good! I haven't made much else this week. I've been eating the Lick's veggie burgers in my freezer and some canned goods.

I went on a shopping spree today and spent more money than I have...what fun!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Comfort Food

Sometimes, its fun to just wing it and not use a recipe. As I mentioned before, I didn't do many groceries for the week, since I want to just eat whatever I already have on hand and save some money. I decided to have a downright comfort food meal for dinner last night. I had mashed potatoes, peas and corn and my own version of shake and bake. For that, I thawed some "beef" seitan I made from La Dolce Vegan, coated it in a breading and baked it for ten minutes. This meal really hit the spot.

It was my friend's birthday yesterday and she had a potluck. I brought a 5 layer dip and guacamole along with some tortilla chips. The dip is from Garden of Vegan and is yummy. Refried beans, sour cream, salsa and nacho cheese. Everyone loved the guacamole, although I've had better. I got the recipe from the simple little vegan slow cooker.