Posts Tagged ‘Vegan’

  …get back…I’m alright Jack keep your hands offa my stack…

This lifestyle of my dd’s is expensive. Even if you make things on your own

(as opposed to buying items prepared already), it’s still a great expense. I think this is


◊  Suppliers of the various raw ingredients hike up the prices due to the fact that they’re (insert specialty label here).

◊  This cost is passed on to the manufacturer who then passes it on to me (us).

◊  Also items are packaged in smaller amounts as opposed to selling in bulk. Not only is this not “green” (as some would say), but totally unnecessary AND another reason to hike up costs. I find it a waste personally.

Do they think we’re stupid? No, but they certainly have us by the whatevers, don’t they? Sell small amounts of an item at a high cost and rarely on sale, and you’ve got ’em (us). It’s like a monopoly only worse. They’re doing this in the name of healthier eating or “supporting” a vegan/vegetarian lifestyle. They try to argue that it’s because the items from the suppliers are more labor intensive. okay give me a break. they’re not out there raising small quantities of product, they’re raising large quantities and treating them accordingly.

Now I’m not dissing the farmer here, Lord knows how they are treated and “abused” by the “system.”  I’m just saying “specialty” products are a RIP.OFF.

Just like plus sized clothing. Oh give me a friggin’ break. When a retailer sells a blouse for 40 bucks I think they can afford to sell an item that’s a couple sizes bigger without cutting into their profit margin too much. Particularly since they are buying mega rolls of a fabric and it’s made in some other country.

I’m not crabby … just something I wanted to “say” out loud. I guess because the other day my dd and I were chatting and she told me of a friend who is not “allowed” to be totally vegan per her doctor, because of a medical issue. And I understand that. She can lean as much as possible to that lifestyle but not the whole meat free enchilada. Also, my dd told her that she could buy organic milk, etc. The girl responded that her parents won’t do that because it’s too much money. I suppose that was my trigger for this post lol.

My son (and I) made paella as a surprise for his gf who started classes this week (he starts next week) so she could have a nice dinner when she got here around 830. It was a very nice tasting dish. We added shrimp, clams and chicken. This dish can EASILY be made vegan and I will try that very soon.

I still have to post the recipe I made the other night. We had a decent amount of leftovers and dd ate it all over three days. She wasn’t tired of it either YAY!

I will do that tomorrow. Bourne Identity and Bourne Ultimatum are on and they require my full attention.



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…trying a new recipe. Watch out!

I received an email from Allrecipes for “Mushroom Pie” and it looked yummy.

The only problem was that it’s non-vegan. No problem, I am going to convert the recipe so it is indeed vegan. (And you didn’t think vegetables proselytized, did you? hahaha sigh).

I will post several photos and the recipe as soon as it’s done. I already see an issue that may be a problem but I’ll figure that out when it’s out of the oven. The recipe I read called for putting the mixture on puff pastry and then sealing it. But there were other versions that were in a pie shell. I am using a vegan pie shell (Whole Foods®).

Now I know I can make my own pie shell but, as I explained earlier, I am buying the pre-made stuff for a while so I have a marker, good or bad, something to compare with what I make.

Here is my review of the pie (see recipe/photos on “Road Tests“):

It tastes very good. It looks really bad. The filling did not fill the pie crust, I believe if I doubled the recipe it would yield a much nicer looking and substantial dinner meal. I kind of had that feeling about it when I copied the recipe and looking at various reader photos on Allrecipes but I wanted to do it myself. And of course, I was right.

My daughter just told me/my husband that it was very good and she would like that again. She went back for seconds. I told her my thoughts on making it a thicker slice and she thought that wouldn’t be necessary. But if she got two regular slices, she’d only need one more substantial slice. Plus I would put a side salad with it.

So… onward and upward. No, not really. It just sound like something I should say.

NCIS is new tonight and I can’t wait! Then I’ll watch the rerun of Mob Wives which I missed on Sunday night.



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….that’s good enough for me!

I loved that song. When my son was little, before my daughter was born, we’d watch Sesame Street together …  mostly because I loved that show! Fond memories of it… and I wanted him to have them as well. By the time my daughter came around, he was watching TLC’s Little Bear and Busy Town, etc. So she watched those as well with him. They were never the kind of kids that would just sit there staring at the TV. They watched and they would play at the same time or just get up and do something else. I, being the cartoon/animation freak I am, would be the only one left in the room sometimes watching the show.

Anyway, I’m not quite sure what brought that on except I was looking through my files looking for a picture for a post and found this one. I actually LOL…I was never a huge fruit and veggie eater. I love both, but they’re just so much work..all that cutting and chopping and monitoring (to make sure they don’t go bad as if you were some kind of food police). I never forced the stuff on my  kids but they did eat it because well, I guess I did force it in some respects. When they were wee little, they ate their baby food stuff. Then they got older and ate my eggplant parm or some other such thing. Then they didn’t. They just stopped one day.

That’s when I instituted the “no thank you helping” rule. They had to have a helping of whatever it was they thought they didn’t like or want and that’s all. It worked very well and unfortunately I STILL have to do this with my kids who are 16 and 19. What the heck is that all about?

I was searching online for vegan cooking classes in this area, just so I can get some more ideas maybe learn a technique or two. This turned out to be almost fruitless until I found this woman who lives nearby and has a FB account about her business/cause and will come to your house and show  you how to do it. It seems promising. We have emailed and I have to get back to her later on. It does sound like fun. 

Her blog is: http://savethekales.wordpress.com/ 

New Years’ day dinner was the traditional pork and ‘kraut but I made flash fried pork chops w/a panko crust and I cooked the kraut the way a German friend taught me years ago…it’s more of a sweeter ‘kraut but still has some sourness. For my daughter, I made tvp patties and a huge sweet potatoes. This time I put some tarragon in the patties along w/a splash of marjoram and nutmeg. They came out very nice. I had to stop my son from wolfing them down. He already had something like three chops.

Tomorrow I will be in NJ and will stop at Trader Joes for some fresh veggies and a couple of vegan treats for the girl child. She’ll be pleased.


♪ ♫ ♩ ♬ ♭ ♮ ♯  Ohhhh cookie, cookie, cookie starts with “C”  ♪ ♫ ♩ ♬ ♭ ♮ ♯

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…of a white Christmas because it sure ain’t happenin’ here!

Bummer … but that’s not what it’s all about, is it? It’s not about snow or gifts. It’s about Mary having a baby ~ on hay! with animals and animal poop around! with no drugs! AND she didn’t even have sex and here she was pregnant. All I know is I wanted drugs and lots of them. And then, after all that, I couldn’t even get the bugger out by pushing for four hours. I can’t imagine going through 44 hours of labour in a barn…on hay…on the ground…with animal poop. They ended up having to perform an emergency-c for my kid  but if I were Mary, I’d have no choice … and well, I would have ended up losing my beautiful baby boy. In any event, I am thankful for Mary, being pregnant, never having had sex, humiliated … and Joseph who hurried to marry her, embarrassed and humiliated… getting her away so she can have her baby…the Son of God. Amazing, no?

Anyway, food for thought. No pun intended.

My daughter is making her now famous chocolate chip cookies, vegan style. I have yet to make her/the cheesecake for tomorrow’s dessert. I will start that after I put out the antipast tray. The brie is slowly coming to temperature…I can’t wait…I LOVE brie.

My husband brought me flowers today after visiting his parents with the kids. I don’t go there. Long story. Not worth my time to write nor yours to have to read. The people who I care about know and that’s all that matters. Also his sister who is visiting and moving North, stopped by unannounced today. Something I really do not like. I do not do this to anyone else and as a matter of fact, I feel terrible if I call before I stop by without scheduling a time, even if the person is perfectly fine with me stopping by unscheduled.

That was the reason for the flowers. The anxiety of the sibling visit and the anxiety of the parental visit (even tho I wasn’t going). He was kind of saying things for being civil lol.

Okay, that whole rant (of sorts) was totally random. Back to “normal.”

We have had artificial trees displayed here the past couple years. I am not a fan. I would rather have a Charlie Brown Christmas tree than a fake one (actually we have two we display). But since my husband is the one who tends to setting them up and decorating them (I adjust the ornaments later), I will deal with the ersatz trees by lighting an evergreen scented candle.

That brings me to another subject…candles. How can there be so many awfully disgusting smelling evergreen candles out there? I just want one that’s subtle and doesn’t give me a headache. This is, apparently, something that is not very easily achieved but I think I found one this year. And I believe this is so because I haven’t gotten a headache … yet. YAY!

Anyway, these “problems” ~ amongst any others I  may have ~ are a mere pittance compared to what Mary had to endure.

Have a blessed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day!

See you Monday, December 26, 2011.

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…is just a Charcuterie.

Ha! Tricked ya, didn’t I?

In years past I would make the kids dinner and send their little butts to bed at the agreed upon time on Christmas Eve. As they got older, it became more difficult lol. After they were in bed, not sleeping, my husband and I would enjoy a nice meal served on nice china, candles glowing and a nice glass of wine. We would have this wonderful herbed quiche I would purchase from the caterer who was literally down the street and serve with it a nice mixed green salad w/a home-made balsamic dressing. We’d have music on and chat. Waiting patiently for those noisy children to finally drift off before the rush began.

The rush…hurrying to put together a million little pieces of a Micro Machines city set all packaged up in this container shaped like a van. You’d open it up and inside was a mini city that you could play with. I declare it had more than a thousand stickers… or putting together a Little Tykes toy w/o making too much noise.

Then we’d fill the stockings and put them by their doorways. They were allowed to open those when they woke up and go in each other’s rooms but they had to leave us alone until (we’d say a certain time) and only then can they come get us. THEN (we were so evil lol) we would go downstairs, making them wait at the top of the steps and have coffee and get ready, making sure the camera and video cam was ready and then we’d stand at the bottom of the stairs. We’d look up and they’d protest while giggling and we’d just sip coffee and tease them.

Finally we’d let them loose. Those were such fun times and times I hope they’ll never forget and remember with such fondness as we do.

So what does this have to do with meat … particularly on a blog about vegans?

Well with those days gone and my children in their teens and don’t just go to bed at 8:00. SO… every year we’d have a nice dinner with some seafood and a nice salad. This is not a possibility this year. One of us decided she was vegan. As I was wandering around Fresh Market tonight looking to spend money (apparently since I couldn’t just leave) and thought, I know, I’ll make a platter of assorted cheeses and meat. I was happily perusing all the lovely choices and then it hit me…DOH! We have a vegan amongst us.

I then went about and picked up grapes,  fresh made bruschetta and garlic toasted french bread rounds. Also I picked up lavash crackers and I have fresh humus already in the fridge. So we’re all set YAY!

Tomorrow I will make a vegan cheesecake for the girl child. I think everyone will eat it, shouldn’t be a problem. I do need to figure out what to serve her for her main dish. Maybe I’ll make that mushroom pie or even some “buttered” pasta and she can add veggies that I’m serving to the pasta to make a custom dish.

I should be wrapping gifts but I am happy to sit here typing and watching NCIS… gotta love the Gibbs…but that’s for another time.

PS: Isn’t that the coolest Christmas tree you ever saw? I miss the beach and the water and some day I’ll be going back there permanently…to where all our memories of Christmas as a family began…

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         …Joy, Joy


Cookies!!! YESSSSS!! 

My daughter made cookies yesterday afternoon ~ snickerdoodles, oatmeal raisin, chocolate chip and cutouts. Here is a phone camera shot of them below, not the best shot but it will do. Tonight she made chocolate chip cookies and they were AMAZING!! OMG.

Today I went to Whole Foods. The ENTIRE reason I wanted to go there was to buy Grainassance’s mochi sheets. I left there after spending $221 … nope, that’s not a mistake. (((Sigh…HUGE Sigh))) 

I bought a lot of stuff that normally, under any other circumstance, I wouldn’t buy … and I bought more than one. Whole Foods is about an hour from my house and not a place I would frequent except MAYBE once/month. I bought Earth Balance butter and “frying” butter i.e., lard. I bought one of the former and two of the latter. I bought several types of pre-prepared food from their “salad/food” bar(marinated tropical teryaki grilled tofu; “egg” salad; green bean dish). I bought three different types of pints of ice cream, several types of different vegan  yogurt, different “food” bars, fruit snacks, veggie sticks/chips and other assorted snack bags; organic baking ingredients; smart links and bacon; pie crusts; frozen meals (omg $5+ a pop).

Also I bought things like a healing lotion that’s vegan for my daughter, an odor eliminator that was $7; a vegan magazine; chicken curry salad for moi; I can’t remember the rest. But I will say I was VERY shocked at the bottom line. I thought maybe $125. Man oh man.

I was excited to be able to buy things that I can buy at my grocery store but they only have one flavor of the product or some other such thing. A lot of the stuff I bought was to taste how it “should” taste so that when I make it, I have a marker to work towards and possibly improve.

It’s kind of exciting to learn a whole new way of cooking and I will not be able to continue to spend this kind of money … I want to be able to make a lot of this from scratch and I know I can…I’m an excellent gourmet cook but haven’t been able to cook as such since children LOL.

I’ve babbled enough…the typings of a tired, old mom. 😀

And taaaa-daaaaaa my girl’s cookies from Sunday ~

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…*face palm*

I figured out what those recipes mean by “mochi banana bread” or “mochi cookies” … they’re referring to the flour! Instead of calling the “key” ingredient by its REAL name, they just shorten it to “mochi.”

After reading those two tiny cookbooks, I get it now. For the life of me, I could not figure out how a person was making cupcakes and other baked goods with the mochi I knew and loved, the dried version.

So after I got over my feeling dumb and then feeling extremely irked (because of people’s inability to use the proper ingredient names), I was able to read the recipes with a regular frame of mind. (As if my mind has ever had such a thing but you know what I mean.)

These little cookbooks are great! You don’t need huge cookbooks dedicated to “mochi” because basically it’s a flour, as I knew, that’s used instead of the type of flour we all know and love. Below is a photo of the cookbooks. The Hawaiian one was great in providing the proper definitions of “mochi” for the reader.

I intend on making mochi for real perhaps next week. I will try to remember to post photos along the way, including detailing my horrible mistakes as I’m sure there will be plenty.


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