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.

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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.
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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.

baked chocolate donut holes.

DONUTHOLES

Chocolate donuts covered in sprinkles? sign me up!

Ok, so maybe these arent traditional donuts, and maybe they arent the most sweetest things on the planet – however, they are taste like little bites of cake – and they are covered in sprinkles, so you cant go wrong in my book! I always want donuts, but rarely have them, and i ALWAYS want cake, but dont make it often, because i will eat ALOT of it. This seems to be an easy way to satisfy that cake craving – it makes 24, and they are small little bites.

I found the recipe here, and veganized it.

For the donuts:
  • 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup almond milk
  • ½ cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 flax egg
  • 4 tablespoons earth balance, melted and cooled slightly
  • 2 tablespoons brewed coffee, cooled slightly
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the glaze:
  • 2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 4 to 5 tablespoons almond milk
  • sprinkles, for garnish
Instructions
  1. To make the donuts – preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Generously spray a mini muffin pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt until there are no lumps. In a small bowl or liquid measuring cup, whisk together the almond milk, sugar, flax egg, melted earth balance, coffee and vanilla. Add the wet ingredients to the bowl with the dry and mix until combined. Fill each mini muffin tin about ¾ of the way full (about a heaping tablespoon in each). Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean. Allow the donut holes to cool for 3 to 5 minutes in the pan then remove to a wire rack. Let the donuts cool for another 10 minutes, then proceed with the glaze.
  3. To make the glaze – Add the confectioners’ sugar, vanilla and salt to a small bowl. Slowly whisk in the almond milk, one tablespoon at a time, until it reaches your desired consistency.
  4. Lay a piece of wax or parchment paper underneath your wire rack (so the glaze doesn’t drip on your counter). Add the sprinkles to a shallow bowl. Working one at a time, roll each donut hole in the glaze. Shake off the excess then roll in the sprinkles. Shake off the excess once again and then place on the wire rack to set.

granny square update 4.

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I forgot to post an update last week – but thanks to the blizzard I was able to make some progress that weekend! I also got a ton more of the circles crocheted up as well. I have enough for exactly 14 more rows making this 11×14 squares. Trying to decide if i should make it a little bit wider and increase the width to 12 across….which means I would need to make 14 more circles….decisions, decisions….

geometric valentine poster.

VALENTINE

Milo and I didn’t make his valentines this year because he found some star wars ones he HAD to have for his classmates – but we worked on this valentine poster for the house, since he LOVES having decorations. (we are seriously slacking on the valentines decor this year as well…i blame the cold weather).

This was a fun little project that we originally found here.

We used some rogue paint chips I had laying around, and that seemed to work perfectly, and was a great way to upcycle!
Milo had fun figuring out the pattern – it was almost like a big heart puzzle.

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You will need:
Cardstock, colored paper, or paint chips
exacto knife or rotary cutter
cutting mat
Gluestick
Large sheet of white paper

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Measure the colored paper and cut into squares. Ours were 5 inch squares, because we were working with the paint chips but you can do any size really!

Cut the squares in half, into two triangles.

Layout the heart design on the large sheet of white paper. Using a glue stick, glue each triangle onto the white paper.

Previous valentines here, here and here!

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pajama pants.

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We had a blizzard on sunday, which got me in the mood to do some sewing. A few years ago, I picked up these star wars sheets at the thrift store for milos big boy bed, only they are too small. I almost threw them out recently, but decided to keep them, just in case the crafting bug were to hit. I’ve made pants a few times now, out of old sheets, and its pretty easy to do and can be whipped up in no time. This time around, I had a helper. Milo did alot of the pinning, and helped me figure out the seams. He helped me prepare a bobbin, and I even let him do some sewing towards the end of the project. Good teamwork!
He loves his new pants!!

I have a pattern I use from a book, which looks like its out of print, but its very similar to this tutorial here.
I use my pattern, but then use a pair of existing pajama pants to adjust to make the size work to be a little bigger, since I have a growing boy!

spinach and artichoke pasta.

spinach&artichokepasta

So I told you about the Spinach and Artichoke dip I made for New Years Eve, right? Well I couldnt get enough of it, so when I found this recipe to make spinach and artichoke pasta I knew I needed to give a try.

This pasta was one of the best vegan cheesey pastas I have ever made! It’s so creamy and full of flavor. I changed it up a bit, based on my fake cheesey preferences and It was definitely a winner!

bag of baby spinach
3-4 cloves of minced garlic
1 can artichokes, drained1 T earth balance
1.5 T flour
1.5 cups unsweetened plain almond milk
1/4 tspn chili powder
2 T Nutritional yeast
1 tspn onion powder
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 bag Daiya, mozzarella
1 package pasta noodles, I used Campanelle pasta, as recomended in the recipe above
red pepper flakes (optional, but the little bit of heat was really nice)
Panko bread crumbs

Instructions
  1. Saute the baby spinach with the garlic and artichoke hearts over medium heat until it’s wilted, 1-2 minutes. Set aside.
  2. Add earth balance to pan and allow to melt, then stir in the flour. Stir until it’s combined and very thick (this is your roux). Pour in the almond milk and stir until mostly smooth and heated through, then add in the cheese, salt and pepper, nutritonal yeast, onion and chili powder. If it gets too thick, add a little more milk.
  3. Fold in the cooked pasta, artichokes, spinach and crushed red pepper flakes, stirring gently. When ready to serve, add the panko crumbs to individual servings, along with more pepper flakes if you want it SPICY!

granny square update #3

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Another update!

I hadn’t really touched the granny square blanket this weekend – but I got some work done to it last weekend, so I thought I would show its progress! Still a long way to go….

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