Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Free Talla Sales plush toy

I've got another freebie for you this morning.
...Or I guess this one's more for your kiddies. Talla Sales is offering a FREE plush toy Tiger! It looks to be somewhat small since they're calling it a "sample" but none the less, I'm sure the kiddies will love it. Just fill out the form provided on the page and your tiger will be mailed to you shortly. I ordered mine today!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Little Chocolatiers

What do you get when you add The Little Couple and Little People Big World to Cake Boss and Ace of Cakes?

Why, The Little Chocolatiers, of course!
So I was up at 3am this morning watching TLC and saw this very unoriginal show... Come on now TLC...

Right now TLC is running Little Chocolatiers , as a one-hour special featuring Steve Hatch and Katie Masterson, the husband and wife team behind Salt Lake City's Hatch Family Chocolates.During the premiere, "not only [do they] need to produce 600 chocolate dice for a casino night party, they're asked to build a life-sized, all chocolate flower garden for a couple's fifth anniversary, but wonder how to complete a project that's bigger than they are. Then disaster is imminent when the air conditioner in their shop goes down..." As of now, Little Chocolatiers is set to continue as a six-part series in 2010... And I'm not really sure I'll be turning in... Nor would I be eating at their chocolate shop is I lived anywhere in the salt lake area. No gloves, no hair nets... Joking about highring unskilled people. THEN they had to throw some crap about healthcare into the episode... No thank you TLC...

This just reminds me of The Soup mocking TLC's reality shows with the "Fertile Little Tattooed Pageant Parents Who Enjoy Baking."


I'm probably only amused with this out of sheer boredom.
Thank you

I present to you, celebrates with out mustaches.

Get your FREE Blue Star Flag

In an attempt to reach out to the military community, and honor out families, Grantham University is offering service members FREE Blue Star Flags!

This is great, after five years of marrage and two deployments, I, for whatever reason, still don't own a Blue Star Flag... So I jumped all over this offer... And so should you.

You don't know what a Blue Star Flag is you say? The Service Flag is an official banner authorized by the Department of Defense for display by families who have members serving in the Armed Forces during any period of war or hostilities the United States may be engaged in for the duration of such hostilities. (

The service flag (also known as "blue star banners" or "son in service flags") was designed and patented [in] World War I... The flag quickly became the unofficial symbol of a child in service... In 1918 a suggestion made by the Women's Committee of the Council of National Defenses that mothers who had lost a child serving in the war to wear a gold gilt star on the traditional black mourning arm band. This led to the tradition to cover the blue star with a gold star on the Service flag to indicate that the service member has died or been killed.

During World War II, the practice of displaying the service flag became much more widespread. Virtually every home and organization displayed banners to indicate the number of members of the family or organization serving in the Armed Forces, and again, covered those blue stars with a gold star to represent each member that died.

The Department of Defense specifies that family members authorized to display the flag include the wife, husband, mother, father, stepfather, parent through adoption, foster parents who stand or stood in loco parentis, children, stepchildren, children through adoption, brothers, sisters, half brothers and half sisters of a member of the Armed Forces of the United States. The flag should be displayed in a window of the residence of person who are members of the immediate family.

Anywayz, to receive your FREE Blue Star Flag just visit and click on the Grantham University offer... ENJOY!!!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Individual Pumpkin Cheesecakes

Individual Pumpkin Cheesecakes (Makes 8 Individual Ramekins)

8 oz Cream Cheese, softened (I softened mine on a plate for 20 seconds in the microwave)
1 15 oz Can Pumpkin Puree
2 Eggs
1 Tsp Cinnamon
1/4 Tsp Nutmeg
1/2 Cup Agave

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. In a mixer or in a bowl with beaters, beat the cream cheese until creamy and smooth.
3. Add the pumpkin and mix until smooth and combined.
3. Add the eggs one at a time and beat until combined.
4. Add the remaining ingredients and combine.
5. Pour into 8 ramekins and fill 3/4 full.
6. Bake for 25 minutes.
7. Serve.

How "they" can improve Base Housing.

Over the past few years the DOD has transferred the management of "base housing" over to private companies. Although a lot has been improved, there are still quite a few areas I think "they" could change...

The biggest thing I wish base housing would do, is add built in shelving.I love how this shelving doubles as a dining room table.Or a bed in the wall for our small 2nd and 3rd bedrooms!
And I love this idea for the master bedroom!
And with this little gizmo, you could really cut down on bathroom space...Shower, toilet, sink in one... And with all that saved space, it'll leave room for one of these babies...And I love this storage idea! compartments under the stairs.
And I think this is just totally ingenious wallpaper... And I really think they should think of using this wallpaper in base housing to hide all the oddly placed electrical plugs.
And OMG check out this door! Not that it would make base housing any more efficient or space saving... I just think this looks totally awesome. It opens as a ping pong table!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Free Books

Really, I don't read too much. I wish I could read more then I do, but I just don't have the time. I've got one book I've been working on for a month now... I'll be honest, it's my bathroom read, The Duggars: 20 and Counting... It's good... Bu
t I just can't get into serious novels... But that doesn't mean you can't!

I came across these great freebies the other day. There's a website called Read It Forward that offers a copy of a limited number of select books for FREE! Right now they're running the offer on: True Confections' by Katharine Weber‎, Prima Donna by Megan Chance, and Breaking Out of Bedlam by Lesley Larson. If you wish you request a copy of one, or all, of the books... Just click on the provided link, fill out the short form, and vuala, you you'll get a free copy of one of these great new reads!

But you better hurry, while there is no purchase necessary, there are limited quantities, and the offer is only good while supplies last!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas 2009

Merry Christmas!!!
Hope everyone had as much fun as my 3 year old did.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Taking the Christmas out of the season.

It appears that the Grinch is alive and well in America. The latest grinchish act, is that cities across America are changing the name of the Christmas tree, to the "holiday tree". I think I'm living in some alien nation lately. Why? Why is the Christmas tree suddenly offensive, and to whom?

The America I grew up with was founded on the basic principles of freedom of worship, along with other fundamental rights. Slowly over the years, I've witnessed a slow progressive erosion of some of our most cherished traditions and rights, especially those concerning Christmas. What bothers me most about this, is that Christmas of all the holidays we have, is the one most based on pure love and the joy of giving.

Growing up, I lived in an upper class neighborhood, where Christians, Jews, Muslums,
Hindus and Buddhists co-existing peacefully, side by side. At school, we celebrated Christmas and Hannukah, out of respect for everyone. I remember celebrating the Chineese New Year at the end of January, and discussing both passover and Easter in the spring. No one made an issue over Nativity scenes or our neibhor's lit menorahs. We simply accepted and respected each others beliefs.

Nowadays, in many communities across this country, Nativity scenes are banned, and Christmas is referred to as the Holiday. Bah Humbug! I think we've gone too far in our efforts to be politically correct, and in the process, robbed our culture and our children of many of the most magical aspects of Christmas. What happened to our tolerance? Why are we allowing this to happen at all? I don't care if my current neighbors worship trees, believe in goblins or anything else. It is their right, as it is mine to enjoy my Christmas as I, an American citizen see fit.

Perhaps the Christmas grinches need to go live elsewhere, and leave the rest of us to pursue the right to liberty and equality. This nation was founded on a belief in God, it's on our currency for heaven's sake-In God we trust, and in our Pledge of Allegiance: "one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for ALL" We allow children of differing beliefs to be accommodated in our schools, but Christian children must not pray on schoolgrounds. It's not right that our most basic values and beliefs are being taken away, one by one.

I just think all this nonsince it rediclious. Shoping today after paying and have the casheer hand me the recept I said "thank you" and was a bit thrown off when for the frist time this holiday season I had him reply "Merry Christmas". It was nice... And something I really appreaciated... And unfortunatly something I got a little too used to NOT hearing.

So with that said...

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Baby Girl's Dance Recital

The kids preformed The Nutcracker

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Mommy's little Ballerina

Mommy's little ballerina's been getting ready for this year's Nutcracker where she will preform three dances. She's a "Candycane soldier" in the battle scene, a "Winter-Garden Butterfly" and a "Santa Baby".

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Cancun Chik'n Tacos

Prep Time: 5 min
Total Time: 15 min
Makes: 2 servings, 1 taco each

2 frozen BOCA Meatless Spicy Chik'n Patties
2 Tbsp. reduced fat mayonnaise
2 tsp. lime juice
1 cup coleslaw blend
1 medium radish, thinly sliced
2 flour tortillas (6 inch)

COOK patties as directed on pkg.
MEANWHILE, mix mayonnaise and lime juice in small bowl. Stir in coleslaw blend and radishes until well blended.
CUT patties in half; place 2 halves on each tortilla. Top evenly with the coleslaw mixture. Fold tortillas in half to serve.

Special Extra
Add a sprinkling of chopped cilantro to the taco filling.

Great Substitute
Prepare as directed, using whole wheat tortillas and/or BOCA Original Chik'n Patties.

Obama Brand

Parents at several Missouri schools are complaining about notebooks and pencils with designs similar to the logos from President Barack Obama's campaign, reports Fox News. Now school supply vendors are scrambling, trying to recall the controversial items.

The design some parents are steamed over includes a picture of pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters. Above and below the picture is the phrase: "CHANGE ... WE CAN BELIEVE IN."

Below the words is a likeness of the round logo used by the Obama campaign, in which the top half is white and blue and the bottom is white and red.

According to Fox News, two families at one Missouri school have complained about the design, and Principal Mary Sue Gibson said she planned to complain to the supply company.

Personally these supplies would make you mad, but then again... I would be a bit weirded out if they were handing out notebooks with the big "W" logo on it (Bush). They are SUPPOSED to be out presidents, not "products".

Monday, December 7, 2009

Easy One-Skillet Stroganoff

Prep Time: 10 min
Total Time: 35 min
Makes: 6 servings, 1 cup each

1 medium onion, thinly sliced
1-1/2 tsp. vegetable oil
2 pouches (1 cup each) frozen BOCA Meatless Ground Burger
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1 can (14-1/2 oz.) vegetable broth
1 can (8 oz.) mushroom pieces and stems, drained
3 cups medium egg noodles, uncooked
1 container (8 oz.) light sour cream
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley

COOK onion in hot oil in large nonstick skillet on medium-high heat until crisp-tender and lightly browned, stirring occasionally.
ADD all remaining ingredients except sour cream and parsley; mix well. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover. Simmer 10 to 12 min. or until noodles are tender. Remove from heat.
STIR in sour cream. Sprinkle with parsley.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

BBQ "Meatloaf" Bake

1 pkg. (12 oz.) frozen BOCA Meatless Ground Burger
1/2 cup plain dry bread crumbs
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup cholesterol-free egg product
1/2 cup barbecue sauce
1/4 cup ketchup

PREHEAT oven to 350°F. Microwave ground burger in medium microwaveable bowl on HIGH 1-1/2 min. Add all remaining ingredients except ketchup; mix lightly. Let stand 5 min.
SHAPE into loaf in 8-inch pie plate or into 2 smaller loaves in 2 miniature loaf pans sprayed with cooking spray. Spread top evenly with ketchup.
BAKE 35 min. or until cooked through.

Easy Cleanup
Using the same 1/2-cup measuring cup, measure the ingredients in the order listed. Then, the barbecue sauce will come out easily.

Great Substitute
Substitute 2 lightly beaten eggs for the egg product.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Lentil Soup

* 1 onion, chopped
* 1/4 cup olive oil
* 2 carrots, diced
* 2 stalks celery, chopped
* 2 cloves garlic, minced
* 1 teaspoon dried oregano
* 1 bay leaf
* 1 teaspoon dried basil
* 1 (14.5 ounce) can crushed tomatoes
* 2 cups dry lentils
* 8 cups water
* 1/2 cup spinach, rinsed and thinly sliced
* 2 tablespoons vinegar
* salt to taste
* ground black pepper to taste

1. In a large soup pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions, carrots, and celery; cook and stir until onion is tender. Stir in garlic, bay leaf, oregano, and basil; cook for 2 minutes.

2. Stir in lentils, and add water and tomatoes. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for at least 1 hour. When ready to serve stir in spinach, and cook until it wilts. Stir in vinegar, and season to taste with salt and pepper, and more vinegar if desired.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Sloppy Joes

Prep Time: 5 min
Total Time: 11 min
Makes: 2 servings

1/4 of a medium onion, finely chopped
1 tsp. vegetable oil
1 pouch (1 cup) frozen BOCA Meatless Ground Burger
1/2 cup barbecue sauce
1 Tbsp. sweet pickle relish
2 hamburger buns, split

COOK and stir onion in hot oil in small nonstick skillet on medium heat 3 min. or until tender.
ADD ground burger, barbecue sauce and relish; mix well. Cook 3 min. or until heated through, stirring occasionally.
SERVE in buns.

Creative Leftovers
Have some leftover hot dog buns? Serve the sloppy joe mixture in them instead of the hamburger buns!

Special Extra
Serve with crisp fresh radishes, carrot sticks and celery sticks.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Enchilada Bake

Monday, April 28, 2008

Banana Muffins

    3 ripe bananas
    1/4 cup oil or melted margarine
    1 cup sugar
    2 cups flour
    1 tsp. salt
    1 tsp. baking soda
    1 cup chopped walnuts (optional—see other options listed below)

• Mash bananas (overripe ones make the best bread). Add oil/margarine and sugar. Mix well.
• Sift the flour, salt, and baking soda together and add to the banana mixture. Mix until the flour is blended (do not beat).
Pour into muffin pans or a bread pan and bake at 360°F until a toothpick comes out clean.

Optional: Add a handful of walnuts, oatmeal, raisins, chocolate chips, currants, coconut, or all of the above!

Makes 1 Dozen Muffins

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Shepherd’s Pie

If you're wary of replacing the dairy in your recipes, never fear—blended tofu makes a great substitute for soft cheese.

    1/2 lb. lasagna noodles
    2 10-oz. packages frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
    1 package ground Boca
    1 lb. firm tofu
    1 Tbsp. sugar
    1/4 cup soy milk
    1/2 tsp. garlic powder
    2 Tbsp. lemon juice
    3 tsp. minced fresh basil
    2 tsp. salt
    4 cups tomato sauce

• Cook the lasagna noodles according to the package directions. Drain and set aside.
• Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
• Squeeze the spinach as dry as possible and set aside.
• Place the tofu, sugar, soy milk, garlic powder, lemon juice, basil, and salt in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Stir in the spinach.
• Cover the bottom of a 9-inch-by-13-inch baking dish with a thin layer of tomato sauce, then a layer of noodles (use about one-third of the noodles). Follow with half of the tofu filling. Continue in the same order, using half of the remaining tomato sauce and noodles and all of the remaining tofu filling. End with the remaining noodles, covered by the remaining tomato sauce. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes.

Makes 6 to 8 servings

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Greek Pasta with Tomatoes and White Beans

* 2 (14.5 ounce) cans Italian-style diced tomatoes
* 1 (19 ounce) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
* 10 ounces fresh spinach, washed and chopped
* 8 ounces penne pasta
* 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese


1. Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente.
2. Meanwhile, combine tomatoes and beans in a large non-stick skillet. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes.
3. Add spinach to the sauce; cook for 2 minutes or until spinach wilts, stirring constantly.
4. Serve sauce over pasta, and sprinkle with feta.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Chik'n Pot Pie

Prep Time: 10 min
Total Time: 50 min
Makes: 6 servings

3 frozen BOCA Meatless Original Chik'n Patties, coarsely chopped
3 cups frozen mixed vegetables
1 can (10-3/4 oz.) condensed cream of celery soup
1/4 cup water
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1 pkg. (15 oz.) ready-to-use refrigerated pie crusts (2 crusts)

PREHEAT oven to 400°F. Mix all ingredients except pie crusts until well blended; set aside.
PLACE 1 of the pie crusts in 9-inch pie plate sprayed with cooking spray. Fill with vegetable mixture. Cover with remaining crust; seal and flute edge. Cut several slits in top crust to allow steam to escape.
BAKE 35 to 40 min. or until golden brown. Let stand 10 min. before serving.

Serving Suggestion
Serve this family-favorite with a crisp mixed green salad or fresh fruit.

Jazz It Up
For a browner and crispier crust, brush top crust with 1 Tbsp. cholesterol-free egg product before baking.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Enchilada Bake

12 oz. vegetarian burger crumbles (Morningstar/Boca)
1 packet taco seasoning
2 15.5-oz. cans enchilada sauce
18 corn tortillas
2 15.5-oz. cans pinto beans, drained
2 green onions, chopped
2 cups vegan cheddar cheese, shredded
1 4.5-oz. can diced green chilies
2 cups Fritos corn chips, finely crushed


• Preheat the oven to 375°F.
• In a small bowl, combine the burger crumbles and taco seasoning and set aside.
• Spray a 9-inch by 13-inch pan with oil.
• In layers, spread a generous amount of enchilada sauce, 6 corn tortillas, 2 cans of pinto beans, a handful of green onion, a third of the shredded “cheese,” half the can of green chilies, lots more enchilada sauce, 6 more tortillas, all the seasoned burger crumbles, another third of the “cheese,” the remaining green chilies, more enchilada sauce, then the final 6 tortillas, more enchilada sauce, and the rest of the “cheese.” Cover in foil and bake for 30 minutes.
• Remove the foil, top the entire casserole with the Fritos, and bake for another 15 to 30 minutes or until bubbly and browned.

Makes 6 servings

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Chik'n Pot Pie

Prep Time: 10 min
Total Time: 50 min
Makes: 6 servings

3 frozen BOCA Meatless Original Chik'n Patties, coarsely chopped
3 cups frozen mixed vegetables
1 can (10-3/4 oz.) condensed cream of celery soup
1/4 cup water
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
1 pkg. (15 oz.) ready-to-use refrigerated pie crusts (2 crusts)

PREHEAT oven to 400°F. Mix all ingredients except pie crusts until well blended; set aside.
PLACE 1 of the pie crusts in 9-inch pie plate sprayed with cooking spray. Fill with vegetable mixture. Cover with remaining crust; seal and flute edge. Cut several slits in top crust to allow steam to escape.
BAKE 35 to 40 min. or until golden brown. Let stand 10 min. before serving.

Serving Suggestion
Serve this family-favorite with a crisp mixed green salad or fresh fruit.

Jazz It Up
For a browner and crispier crust, brush top crust with 1 Tbsp. cholesterol-free egg product before baking.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Greek Pasta with Tomatoes and White Beans

* 2 (14.5 ounce) cans Italian-style diced tomatoes
* 1 (19 ounce) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
* 10 ounces fresh spinach, washed and chopped
* 8 ounces penne pasta
* 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese


1. Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente.
2. Meanwhile, combine tomatoes and beans in a large non-stick skillet. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes.
3. Add spinach to the sauce; cook for 2 minutes or until spinach wilts, stirring constantly.
4. Serve sauce over pasta, and sprinkle with feta.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Poor Animals!

Granted this is a promising article about Naked Mole Rats possibly holding some connection to the cure for cancer... But I mean, just read the photo's caption "Even though it is sensitive to touch, the naked mole rat doesn't even flinch when inflicted with burning acid" OMG! These poor defenceless animals. The article goes on to say "About 1,500 naked mole rats live in clear tanks connected by long tubes at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio" which is the largest colony in the US. These poor animals live for 30 years, vs the average 2 years that lab mice live. Can you imagine, 30 years in captivity?!? That's horrible!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Double Standards

This is absolutely horrible, as I'm sure everyone's heard of Adam Lambert's wild AMA performance. Well Adam Lambert appeared on CBS' The Early Show on Wednesday morning to address the controversy surrounding his kiss at the AMAs. Will this just disgusts me, the network blurred out the image of Lambert kissing his band member!!! EVEN THOUGH just moments later CBS shows the clip of Madonna and Britney making out at the VMA's and it's completely UNCENSORED! So let me get this strait, it's Ok to show girl-on-girl kissing, but not Ok to show a guy-on-guy kiss??? Hmm, I wonder is they know the meaning of double standard?!?

Happy Tofurkey Day!

So as I have my Thanksgiving Tofurkey in the oven baking away, I had to send a little Thanksgiving blog out... Now I have to admit, although Tofurkys taste wonderful, they look rather bland. Mr. Kevin Forbes, my newly minted vegan Thanksgiving hero, has offered an awesome solution to jazz that cruelty-free center piece of yours up!! And in the wonderful vegan tradition of sharing and vegan awesome wonderfulness, he has made a template (with complete directions) for everyone to print out and decorate their Tofurkys with! I think this is just too funny and am heading upstairs to print mine out right now. I can't wait to see the look on my husband's face when I bring the tofurkey to the table this year.

The holidays are always rough for us vegetarians. Most of the year, we get by well enough on our lentils, rice and Indian food. But whenever North American families get together, a turkey dinner is inevitable. And with the dinner, come the questions: “Don’t you miss steak?” “How do you get your protein?” Blah blah blah.A good way to avoid a lot of the hassles of the season is to get a Tofurky. It looks like a ham, tastes like a turkey (kind of), and is made entirely out of plants. With a slab of Tofurky on your plate, you can blend into the background of any extended family dinner. It’s like vegan camouflage!

But sometimes, that’s not enough. Sometimes, in the presence of so much carnivorousness, something primal is stirred. You see meat. You smell it. The caveman hunter wakes up inside of you, and you go on the prowl. In times like these, vaguely meatish soy product is not enough! You need...

... a Tofurky Disguise Kit! That’s right! By following these simple instructions, you can assemble a convincing disguise for your Tofurky, or other meat analogue. In a matter of minutes, your pretend turkey log will resemble a living, breathing, wild turkey! Then, you can hunt it, kill it, and fight your old man for the neck!

Here’s what you’ll need to assemble your very own Tofurky Disguise Kit!
1. Tofurky Disguise Kit Template
2. 8.5” by 11” card stock or bristol board
3. Toothpicks
4. Scissors, tape, and a gluestick

Assembly Instructions:
Download and print out the template. You can print it in glorious full colour, or even in gritty black and white to create a mysterious Film Noir effect.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Apple Pie Coffee Cake

Apple Pie Coffee Cake

Dry Ingredients:
1 cup quick or whole oats (not instant)
1 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup Sugar (Vegan is fine)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 Egg
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt

Wet Ingredients:
3 tablespoons water
2 Apple Juice
1 Tablespoon pure vanilla (or half water half vanilla extract)
2 Medium Banannas (Mashed)

2 Medium apples (any kind)
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 tablespoons cinnamon
2 tablespoons coarse sugar, such as demerara or raw sugar

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly spray or wipe the bottom and sides of a 8 X 8-inch springloaded pan with oil or cooking spray.

Mix the oats with the other dry ingredients. Add the wet ingredients and stir until moistened and completely combined, but don't overmix. Pour into the prepared pan (batter will be thick). Smooth batter throughout the pan, creating a small lip around the sides of the pan.

Dice apples and toss in the cinium and granulated sugar. Pour apple mixture in center of pan and gently smooth over dough. Sprinkle with the course sugar.

Bake for 30-40 minutes. Allow to cool for at least 15 minutes. Eat and celebrate!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Banana Coffee Cake

Banana Coffee Cake From: FatFree Vegan
Banana Coffee Cake

1 tablespoon flax seeds, ground
4 tablespoons warm water
1/4 cup turbinado sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/3 cup soy yogurt
1/3 cup vanilla soymilk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup agave nectar
1 cup white whole wheat flour (or whole wheat pastry flour)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 bananas

Preheat the oven to 375F and oil a pie pan or an 8-inch square baking dish.

Mix the ground flax seeds with the warm water and set aside to thicken.

Mix the turbinado sugar and cinnamon together in a small bowl. Set aside.

Combine the soy yogurt, soymilk, vanilla, and agave nectar in a bowl. Add the flax mixture.

Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Pour the soy yogurt mixture into the flour mixture and stir just until combined. Pour half of the batter into the prepared pan and spread to cover the bottom. Slice the bananas and place the slices over the batter. Sprinkle with half of the cinnamon-sugar. Spread the remaining batter over the bananas. Sprinkle with the remaining cinnamon-sugar. Bake for 25 minutes, or until cake appears set in the middle. Allow to cool for a few minutes before cutting into 6 slices and serving.

Makes 6 servings. Per serving: 211 Calories (kcal); 1g Total Fat; (5% calories from fat); 4g Protein; 49g Carbohydrate; 0mg Cholesterol; 308mg Sodium. Weight Watchers: 4 Flex Points.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Eggless Bananna Bread

3 ripe bananas
1/4 c. vegetable oil (I used 1/4 c. applesauce instead)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 c. sugar
2 c. flour (I used 1 c. all purpose and 1 c. whole wheat)
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 c. chopped walnuts or pecans (I didn’t use nuts - didn’t have any)

Mash bananas (overripe make the best bread). Add oil, vanilla and sugar. Mix well. Sift flour, salt and soda together and add to banana mixture with walnuts if using. Mix until flour is blended in but do not overmix.

Put into loaf pan and bake at 350 degrees F. for 45-60 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes in pan, then remove to rack to cool completely before cutting.

Notes: My substitutions are in blue. I made muffins vs. bread and baked about 20 minutes until my knife came out clean. I think next time I’ll make the bread. They turned out pretty delish.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

BBQ Black-Eyed Pea Collard Rolls

The Rolls


  • 1 bunch of collard greens, 12 of the leaves set aside for rolling (pick out the biggest, nicest leaves of the bunch)

  • 1 t. oil

  • 8 oz. cremini mushrooms, sliced thinly (I could not track 8 oz. of these down, so I used a 4-oz. mix of cremini, oyster, and portabellas)

  • 4 c. chopped collards

  • 1 15-oz. can black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed

  • 3 c. Backyard BBQ Sauce


Slice off the stems of 12 nice collard leaves (run a knife alongside either side of the stem and then cut it out of the leaf). Boil a large pot of water. Submerge the 12 collard leaves into the boiling water and cook for 6 minutes. When done, use tongs to transfer them to a strainer and let cool. Handle with care!

Preheat a large skillet over medium, and cook the mushrooms in the oil for 5 minutes. Add the chopped collards. Cook for 7-10 minutes until the moisture has cooked off. Add the peas and cook through. Pour on 2 cups of the BBQ sauce and cook until the wateriness is gone. (5-10 minutes). Let cool.

Place a collard on a flat work surface with the side that has not been sliced facing you. Place some of the black-eyed peas mixture in the lower third of the collard. (The recipe says to put 2 T. in each roll, but I was able to generously use 1/4 c. in each, with some of the black-eyed pea mix still left over. It'll all depend on the size of your leaves though.) Fold the bottom up over the mixture, then fold in the sides. Roll the collard up, gently but firmly.

Roll all the collards. When ready to serve, spoon extra BBQ sauce over the rolls.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Black Bean Vegetable Soup

* 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
* 1 onion, chopped
* 1 clove garlic, minced
* 2 carrots, chopped
* 2 teaspoons chili powder
* 1 teaspoon ground cumin
* 4 cups vegetable stock
* 2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
* 1 (8.75 ounce) can whole kernel corn
* 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
* 1 (14.5 ounce) can stewed tomatoes

1. In large saucepan, heat oil over medium heat; cook onion, garlic, and carrots, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until onion is softened. Add chili powder and cumin; cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add stock, 1 can of the beans, corn, and pepper; bring to boil.
2. Meanwhile, in food processor or blender, puree together tomatoes and remaining can of beans; add to pot. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes or until carrots are tender.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Crumb Cake

Crumb Cake

I’ve been looking for the perfect vegan crumb topping for a while now. Before today, my crumb toppings had always been sort of soggy, sort of greasy; more crummy than crumby. I wasn’t sure how to fix the problem.

About a month ago, I subscribed to Cook’s Illustrated. My mother used to get a subscription years ago that I loved, and but it’s taken me this long to finally get my own. Along with the magazine, they sent me their new cookbook The Best of America’s Test Kitchen: Best Recipes and Reviews 2008, and in it is a recipe for crumb cake. I read a little closer, and saw a technique for crumbs that I’d never tried before. I ran into the kitchen to try it out, and oh my, it worked! Perfect crumbs!

This is a veganized version of the recipe found in The Best Of. It’s easy to throw together with few simple ingredients (no specialty egg replacers), making it perfect for a weekend treat or a quick dessert or teatime cake for guests.

Crumb Cake

Crumb Cake
Serves 9 (8×8″ cake)

Crumb Topping
8 Tbs Earth Balance Margarine, melted
2/3 Cup Granulate Sugar*
1 tsp Molasses
3/4 tsp Cinnamon
1 Pinch Salt
1 3/4 Cup Flour (cake flour or all-purpose)

*The original recipe calls for 1/3 cup granulated sugar and 1/3 cup brown sugar. I was out of brown sugar, so I used only granulated sugar with added molasses. Afterall, that’s how brown sugar is made commercially–they simply add molasses back into the sugar after processing.

1 1/4 Cups Flour
1/2 Cup Granulated Sugar
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1/4 tsp Salt
1/3 Cup Canola Oil, or 6 Tbs Earth Balance Margarine, softened
1/3 Cup Soymilk + 1 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar (or lemon juice)
1 Tbs Cornstarch mixed with 1/4 Cup Water
1-2 tsp Vanilla Extract
Powdered Sugar, for dusting

Preheat the oven to 350º F.

Whisk the still-warm melted earth balance with the sugar, molasses, cinnamon and salt. Mix in the flour with a spoon, or your hands, until a thick dough forms, similar to the texture of cookie dough. Let sit to cool for about 10 minutes. It should be ready when after you’ve put together the batter for the cake.

Before making the crumbs

Line an 8×8 pan with aluminum foil (two sheets in a cross formation, leaving excess draped over the edges to help you remove the cake later). Spray with vegetable oil. Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add oil, soymilk mixture, cornstarch mixture and vanilla extract. Whisk until smooth, but do not overmix.

Add the batter to the lined pan. Begin to break apart the crumb mixture into smaller, pea sized pieces. You want to take chunks from the bowl and gently break off the crumbs, like so:

Making the crumbs

Cover the batter evenly with all the crumb mixture. It will seem like a lot! When I thought I had enough, I wasn’t even half-way through the mixture. Use it all, as the cake will expand and the crumb mixture is tasty. After all, this is crumb cake. Don’t be shy!

Crumbing the cake
Crumb cake has a lot of crumbs!

Bake for 40-50 minutes at 350ºF, or until the crumbs are slightly browned and a toothpick in the center of the cake comes out clean. Use the toothpick to push over a crumb or two in the middle an make sure the top doesn’t look gooey (I went the whole 50 minutes). Grab the aluminum foil and gently lift the cake out to cool for 20-30 minutes on a cooling rack. Give it a nice dusting of powdered sugar, slice and serve.

Crumb Cake, dusting

Wrap up any leftovers in plastic wrap. If there are any leftovers!

Crumb Cake