japanese curry.

curry

Hey! I made curry again! This time it was a japanese style curry, with kabocha squash.

½ kabocha squash (about 1½ pounds), peeled, seeded and cut into ½-inch cubes
1 tablespoon olive oil
½ large yellow onion, thinly sliced
3 ounces carrots, cut into 1-inch chunks  (½ cup)
1/2 cup green beans
1 garlic clove, crushed and minced
½ tablespoon tomato paste
2 teaspoons Oriental curry powder ( I use S&B oriental curry powder, which i found on amazon)
3 cups vegetable broth (
1 small apple, peeled, cored and finely grated
¼ cup soy sauce or tamari
1 tablespoon unsweetened dairy-free milk
toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
Salt to taste

For the Roux
2 T olive oil
¼ cup all-purpose flour or sweet rice flour
2 tablespoons Oriental curry powder ( I use S&B oriental curry powder, which i found on amazon)

Prepare your squash and roast cubes at 425 for about 30-40 minutes or until tender.

Heat oil over medium heat in a large soup pot or Dutch oven and add the onions. Cook, stirring often until onions are translucent, about 5-7 minutes. Add garlic and continue to cook for another minute, until fragrant. Add tomato paste and curry powder, cook for another minute, until mixed in. Add the broth, carrots and bring to a gentle boil, cover and reduce the heat to medium low and simmer for about 10 minutes. Carefully remove foam as it forms (optional).  When there is no more foam, add grated apple and soy sauce. Cover immediately.

Meanwhile, make the roux. In a small saucepan, heat the oil over low heat, add the flour all at once, whisking until incorporated. Brown roux, stirring constantly for about 10 minutes. Add the curry powder and continue to cook for 2 minutes until fully combined. Remove from heat immediately.

Add a ladleful of liquid (up to 1 cup or more) from the vegetable pot into the roux and stir rapidly with a wire whisk until smooth. Add more if needed, then transfer the roux mixture to the vegetable pot. Stir constantly until the curry is smooth. Add the green beans and kabocha. Cook, stirring often, about 10 more minutes until it thickens a little. Just before serving, stir in the non dairy milk and season with salt. Serve over rice with sesame seeds.

original recipe found here.

blackened tofu tacos.

tofutacos

Tacos! Who doesn’t love them?! We sure do, and we made this recipe twice now. The avocado crema is divine.

1 package extra firm tofu, pressed
2 tablespoons smoked paprika
1/2 tablespoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons conrstarch
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
corn tortillas

Cabbage Slaw
1/2 head red cabbage, thinly sliced
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
salt

Avocado-Lime Crema

1 avocado
1/2 cup cilantro leaves
2 garlic cloves
juice of 1 lime
1/2 teaspoon salt
pepper

Instructions

  1. P the oven to 400°F. Begin preparing the slaw by combining the cabbage with the vinegar and salt in a large bowl. Massage it with your hands for a few minutes then set it aside to marinate.
  2. Once the tofu has been pressed, dice it into 1-inch cubes and then transfer to the baking sheet. Bake in the oven for 10 minutes on each side until it’s light golden brown.
  3. Meanwhile mix together the spices (paprika to pepper) in a large bowl. Using your hands, lightly coat the tofu with one tablespoon of oil and then transfer it to the bowl with the spices. Coat each piece evenly then sprinkle the starch on top. Mix with your hands or a spoon until each piece is coated with the starch as well.
  4. Warm the remaining 1-2 tablespoons of oil in a skillet over medium heat and then saute the tofu on for about 5 minutes on each side. Depending on the size of your skillet, you might have to do this part in two steps, using one tablespoon of oil at a time.
  5. Allow the tofu to sit in the skillet on warm then prepare the avocado crema by placing all of the ingredients in a food processor and blending until smooth.
  6. Warm the tortillas (I usually microwave them for 15-20 seconds) then place tofu inside. Top with cabbage and avocado cream and serve immediately.
  7. Tofu and cabbage can be made ahead of time and stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. The avocado crema can be stored for up to 2 days.orginal recipe found here.

bananaberry smoothie.

smoothie
My ultimate go-to-i-cant-get-enough-of-you-smoothie right now.

1 cup almond milk
1 frozen banana
1/2 cup or so of frozen berries
1 tspn peanut butter
Spinach
hemp seeds
Flax seeds

YUM.

curry.

curry
you guys, I MADE A CURRY! and it tasted good!!!

I have the hardest time with curries, every so often i get the urge to make one and its just so bland, so I’ve pretty much given up on it. But something inspired me to try it again. After looking at a few recipes on the internet, I got the basis down and decided to go my own way and just make something up.

Feel free to use whatever vegetables are in season or you have on hand.

I package tofu, pressed and drained
Coconut oil
1 medium onion
Large chunk of fresh ginger
4-5 garlic cloves
1 can coconut milk (i used light)
2 1/2 tpsn madras curry powder
salt
Green beans
brocolli
red bell pepper
kale/and or spinach (i used both because I had a little of both on hand)

cashews, lightly roasted or pan fried
Cilantro
1/2 lime
Rice or quinoa, or grain of your choice

First – Prep your tofu. Set your oven to 400 degrees; cut into 1 inch cubes, put on baking sheet and bake 10 minutes. flip over and bake 10 minutes more. set aside.

Finely chop your onion, garlic and ginger Using about 2T coconut oil, sautee them in a large pan or saucepot. Once onions start to soften, add the curry powder and a 1-2 T water to deglaze the pan so nothing burns. Add the bell pepper and green beans and saute for a few minutes. pour in the coconut milk and add the tofu and let simmer for about 3-5 minutes. Add about 1/2 tspn or so of salt to help bring the flavors out in the vegetables. Add the brocolli and greens and cook for a few minutes more, until your vegetables reach your desired firmness. Squeeze the juice of half a lime over the curry. Let stand for a few minutes to let the flavors meld.

Spoon on top of some rice, and top with cilantro and cashews.  I sprinkled some simply asia ginger and garlic seasoning on top of mine.

Definitely adjust the seasonings to your liking, and feel free to customize with any you might think are good. This is a great recipe to start with and build on to make better and better each time.

coconut milk scones.

scones

I found this recipe for scones a while back and finally gave it a try. I love a good scone for breakfast, but whenever I find a recipe, they are loaded with butter, or oil – not really want to i want to load myself with the first thing in the morning. While delicious, not the most nutritious thing. When i came across this recipe I noticed it had NO butter or oil, so I was definitely intrigued. These turned out pretty good. They arent as melty-amazing on the inside, nor are they overly sweet – but they have a nice outer crunch, and a softish middle. These are easily customizable – the flavor combinations are endless. I made two batches, and froze one for later, so I didnt waste the can of coconut milk I opened.

2 cups flour ( I used spelt flour)
1/3 cup sugar (I used coconut palm sugar)
1 Tbs. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup canned coconut milk (I used the lower fat kind and it seemed to work fine!)
1 cup dried fruit (cranberries, apricots, cherries, raisins, etc.)*

*I made cranberry/orange/coconut and chocolate chip/cherry/almond versions.

coconut milk
sugar

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Grease your baking sheet.

In a mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.  Pour in coconut milk. Gently mix with a wooden spoon or a rubber spatula just until it’s combined. Fold in dried fruits. Transfer dough onto a floured surface and shape into a disc about 3/4 inches in thickness. Using a sharp knife or pizza cutter, cut into 8 wedges onto prepared baking sheet 2 inches apart. Brush the tops with coconut milk and sprinkle generously with sugar. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Serve immediately or store them in an airtight container after they have completely cooled.

creeper mask.

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Is your kid mine-craft obsessed like mine??! I dont know what hes more crazed about – watching the videos on you tube, or actually playing the game….I got this perfect sized box to fit right on my kiddos head, so we made a creeper out of it. We used masking tape and all our green shades of prismacolor markers to make it work. We taped off the squares, one by one, which worked as a good guide for milo to color in the squares evenly. We looked at a pattern online of the creeper so we would have an idea where the eyes would go.  When we were finished we cut out squares in the eyes so he can see.

cookies and cream cheesecake

CookiesandCremeCheesecake

I tried this recipe to make cheesecake. Now, mine not have turned out to be the prettiest, but it defintely tasted good. Its really rich and decadent and tastes alot like the real thing, from what I can remember. My non-vegan friends loved it as well!

  • 25 Oreo cookies (or 1½ cup Oreo cookie crumbs)
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil

Vegan Cheesecake Filling:

  • ½ cup raw cashews
  • 15 oz can coconut milk
  • 2 (8 oz) packages of vegan cream cheese (I used Tofutti)
  • 14 oz container of extra firm tofu
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons corn starch
  • 2 tablespoons Earth Balance margarine
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 10-12 Oreos, roughly chopped for the batter
  • 10-12 Oreos, roughly chopped for the topping
    For the Crust:

    1. Place the whole cookies (filling and all) in a food processor or blender and pulse until the cookies resemble a coarse crumbly flour. Add the coconut oil and pulse for another second or two to combine.
    2. Press the cookie crumb crust into an 8″ springform pan. Distribute evenly across the bottom and up the sides of the pan. Set aside.

    For the Vegan Cream Cheese Filling:

    1. Place the cashews and the coconut milk in a vitamix or high powered blender. Pulse the food processor for several seconds to break down the cashews. Pulse until smooth and creamy.
    2. Add the vegan cream cheese and extra firm tofu and pulse again until smooth and creamy.
    3. Next add the sugar, corn starch, margarine, and vanilla. Pulse for several seconds, up to a minute until you have a nice, creamy mixture.
    4. Add the 10-12 roughly chopped Oreos and give it one more stir to combine. Set aside.
    5. Turn your oven to 325F while you let the filling settle for a few minutes.
    6. When the oven is ready, pour the cheesecake filling into the prepared crust and spread the 10-12 roughly chopped Oreos over the top.
    7. Bake your cheesecake for 60 minutes and then turn the oven off and leave the cheesecake in the oven for another hour. Remove from the oven and allow to cool before placing in the fridge. I recommend letting the cheesecake cool for at least four hours (or even a full day) before slicing and serving.

granny square update 5.

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So I thought I was in the home stretch as I approach what I THOUGHT would be the last row of the blanket. The more I look at it, and the more I think about it, I’m going to just go for it and make it bigger.  I’m planning one more row across down, and three more across.  Which means I have about 50 more squares to make and a few more skeins of yarn to buy, since Im ran out of quite a few colors.  I figure, if I’m going to do this, might as well DO this, am I right?! So I definitely have my work cut out for me, but this is such a fun project, I’m ok with it.  Hopefully a few more weeks of work cut out for me, but photo sessions are starting to pick up, and we have some travel in our future, so we shall see….

dream catchers.

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Milo and I made these dream catchers on saturday and I absolutely love them. We made one for his room, and one for my room. We used plastic bangle bracelets we found at the thrift store, and some random other materials we had laying around. Milo and I collect feathers when we find them, so this was a good project to use some of those from our collection. His includes a skull bead from a bracelet he got on Olvera Street that broke on him. It was fun to give it a new life.
I really really love these little dreamcatchers, and love that we worked on them together, repurposing items around our home, and giving them new life.

IMG_2392

For these dream catchers you will need:
Yarn (thanks for the scrap yarn jennifer! We put the white to use!)
Embroidery Thread, bakers twine, cording, etc.
Hot glue
beads
feathers
Bracelet or something round

First wrap your bracelet in yarn, very tightly. Leave a long strand at the end so you can hang your dreamcatcher. I secured the end with some hot glue as well to be safe.
IMG_2393
Next, use some of your embroidery thread, cording or twine and string some beads along on it. Tie an end of the string onto your round circle and wrap around making some kind of shape and adjusting your beads accordingly. I used a dab of hot glue on the back to secure my end of the string.

Next, affix your feathers and beads if you prefer to more of the string of your choice and have them dangle from the bottom to your liking.

Hang on your wall and dream some good dreams!

funfetti cupcakes.

funetticupcakes

Nothing says happy birthday like funfetti cupcakes, am I right?? Tomorrow is my birthday, so I thought this recipe was fitting. I actually made these for my co workers birthday last week and they were a hit.
These just might be the most perfect vegan vanilla cake! you can find the recipe over here, these did NOT dissapoint!

I topped mine with vegan cream cheese frosting because its the best!
1/4 cup vegan creme cheese
1/4 cup earth balance
2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tpsn vanilla extract

Beat all ingredients with a mixer for a few minutes until light and fluffy.

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