Tuesday, March 25, 2014

A late night snack

If you ever need a late night snack, these are pretty righteous. Yes, it'd be better to go organic, add some deep greens etc... But it sure beats dorritos for a quick fix. 

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The Choices We Make

Pretty Plain Sweet Curry Quinoa Burger, but Oh So Tasty.

Yes, I tried Guinea Pig.
So I'm not a huge proponent of processed foods. I don't want to be a junk food vegan. However, I recently came across these at Target and when you take limited time in the day and the option of toasting up a yummy "Sweet Curry Quinoa Burger" vs. McDonald's, the choice would seem clear, but is it?

There was something nagging at the back of my head... what did I hear? Could it have been about the the trend of Westerners flocking to Quinoa for their health, while unknowingly pricing out and starving the Peruvian and Bolivian farmers that subsist on this crop? Here's the first article that came up when I searched out the topic: Can vegans stomach the unpalatable truth about quinoa? Can we not do anything right? I've been to Peru. It doesn't give me any kind of cool cred, but I can tell you that most of them do not live like we do here.

Perhaps this Quinoa is grown somewhere great. Perhaps it's not. Can we truly be informed on where all of our food comes from and who it may affect in a positive or harmful manner? Is it our responsibility to do so? Buy local. Buy organic. Don't buy GMO. Don't do this. Don't do that. I can't keep track all of the time.

Were these tasty? Hell ya they were. Did my purchase hurt a Peruvian farmer? I have no real idea. Would me buying a McDonald's burger hurt a cow or hurt an underpaid/undocumented worker that is operating in unsafe conditions? Probably, yes.

I do have to say these listed ingredients are better than anything you'll find at McDonald's:

Bottom line is I'm doing the best I can. First and foremost for me and my family's health. Hopefully not at the expense of someone else. But is that even possible anymore?  - jaded consumer

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Oven Baked Vegetable Fajitas!

 Wow it's been a while! Life took over doing what life does, but I'm still 56 days strong in my plant eating adventure!

Amber and I recently ate at El Loro, which had some fantastic vegetable fajitas which included some potato and squash. Since I really liked this oven baked chicken fajita recipe before ditching meat, I thought I'd modify it for the plant lovers out there.

Freshly Sliced Veggies

  • 1 can no salt added pinto beans
  • 2 Tbsp Olive oil
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp dried oregano
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 medium onion (sliced)
  • 1 large bell pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 2 Potatoes (sliced)
  • 1 zucchini (sliced)
  • 3 carrots (julienned)
  • Whole Wheat flour tortillas
  • Extras like Daiya cheese, avocado, salsa, brown rice – if desired


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place pinto beans in a greased 13×9 baking dish.
  2. In a large bowl combine the oil, chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, dried oregano, and salt
  3. Place all vegetables into the bowl and mix by hand.
  4. Bake uncovered for 25-30 minutes or until potatoes and carrots are tender. Serve on tortillas with desired toppings.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Breakfast is Back Baby!

Naniboujou Lodge:
Best Breakfast Buffet I've Experienced (Not Vegan Friendly)

I love breakfast. I love everything about it from the pancakes, to waffles, to scrambled eggs with cheese, thick cut maple bacon, sausage and orange juice. It makes my mouth water just to daydream of the feast. Is there anything better than an amazing breakfast buffet?

However, now that I'm not eating animal products, is my love affair with breakfast over? Is it condemned to variations of oatmeal, raisin bran and green smoothies?  Actually, most of those are pretty good too. But No! There is breakfast after vegan.

Some of the best waffles I've ever had the pleasure to eat

Without high hopes, we decided to try some vegan waffles. With a little modification from this recipe, we found success. So much so that we ate them two mornings in a row and for dinner on a third.

  • 1 cup of whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup of soy or almond milk
  • 1 Tbsp of coconut oil
  • 1 Tbsp of baking powder
  • Couple shakes of cinnamon
  • Dash of vanilla
  • strawberries or other fruit (optional)
Whisk all together in a bowl and put in a waffle iron to cook to your desired crispness. If batter is too thick, add a little more milk substitute.

Top with fresh fruit and all natural maple syrup.

Breakfast is back baby!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Day 30: I made it!

I still prefer the term "Whole Foods Plants Based Diet" over Vegan.
You can be Vegan or Vegetarian and still have a crap diet
filled with processed foods.

Wow, day 30 is here! Like recovery, I've been taking this one day at a time, trying not  to plan too far into the future as to not be discouraged, but my original goal was to try 30 days and assess how I feel. And you know what? I feel pretty damn good! Giving up meat was actually pretty easy. Giving up dairy was quite a bit more difficult, but I no longer crave that either. Giving up chocolate cake and oreo Blizzards might be the toughest. There will probably be a vegan chocolate cake recipe, like this, coming very soon.

What is probably the most difficult is giving up convenience, because eating a whole foods plant based diet is more work. It just is. But great things are not great because they are easy. You have to work for them.

I read that the average person only eats about eight different meals on average, varying it a bit here and there. That seems to be the case with me, before I changed my diet and now after. Back on Day 1, I made something I called "Mexican Toast." I hadn't revisted it since, so I thought I'd try it with a new twist.

Mexican Toast with a New Twist
  • Two slices of Ezekial Bread
  • 1 Avocado
  • Lime juice
  • 1/2 can of low sodium black beans
  • Salsa of your choice
  • Daiya chedder cheese
It's pretty simple, I mashed up the  the avocado in the bowl and added some lime juice. Spread that onto the Ezekial bread, cover in black beans, salsa and the Daiya cheese. Toss in the oven on a baking sheet at 400 degrees for 10 min.  Bam! Simple and super tasty.

My next posts won't be coming with quite the ferocious tempo, but they'll still be coming.  Until then, I leave you with this. It's a little different than the food pyramid that the meat and dairy industry has lobbied to teach our kids and culture as a whole.

I like that there's some sunshine in this one too ;)

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Day 29: What Else do Vegans Do?

Well as you probably know by now, I like to run. But I also like music. So instead of taking the time to write a blog this evening, I'm going to sit down with an old friend (my Grandpa's 1963 Epiphone Rivoli Bass) and play some tunes.  Happy cooking ya'll!

Left: Ephiphone Rivoli       Right: Fender Mustang

Day 28: Dazed & Confused

I've tried to go into this adventure with an open mind, and so I have to entertain the possibility that I'm missing some nutrient or possibly not taking in enough calories. The past day or so I've been forgetful and exhausted. Our baby is sleeping pretty well, so the only other thing it might be is stress from work or the fact that it's been negative a bajillion degrees for months here and we're all getting cabin fever and no sweet sweet sunshine. I'm even toying with the idea of risking leathery skin and hitting a tanning booth.

All over the web there are scare stories of vegans being B12 deficient and having "brain fog." Could this be me? I'm taking a supplement, so you'd think I'd be ok. Or maybe it hasn't kicked in yet? I'm far from an expert on how these things work. Plus it's only been a couple of days.

I'll give it another few days and see if I come around and take in some extra calories. I know there's thousands of vegans that are out there feeling great.

Update: I said "screw it" and went for a 3 mile run. I feel pretty damn good now.

Not Me Running

In the meantime, I don't know why I waited so long to learn how to properly mince garlic.  I would basically break it out of the husk and squeeze it in a press, then remove the gunk and repeat. Today I went to wikihow.com and wallah! I was mincing garlic like an amateur in no time!

Pro-tip of the day: Add some pineapple to your pizza for a sweet treat.