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Well, This is Awkward…

Hello There.

I just thought I should finally announce (2 years too late) that I’m actually no longer a vegan… I don’t regret this experiment for a second though- All sorts of lessons learned, and perhaps most importantly- that food is an incredibly loaded topic- emotionally, politically, socially… It certainly was a bumpy ride for me.  I look back on some of this writing and think, “Jeez- I really was sipping the vegan kool-aid!”  Part of me just wants to delete it- But I feel like it should stand here as a testament to the rabbit hole one that I once fell into-  and after losing my dad in 2008, I think I really needed a distraction of this magnitude.  So Goodbye, Veganism- you taught me lots… but ultimately…I choose bacon.

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September 28, 2012 at 6:57 pm Leave a comment

Raw Week, Days 5 and 6: Like Minds

Day 5:

Today I cheated a bit.  I’m a member of a really awesome veg group that meets up twice a month at various restaurants for delicious vegan meals….I could have un-RSVP’d myself, but I really wanted to catch up with my veg buddies, and since raw week is more of an experiment than a die-hard cleanse, I allowed myself some wiggle room.  Plus, sitting down with like minded people and sharing a meal is just plain good for the soul.

Here we are! This was a smaller lunch gathering- mostly people who work from home, like me.  (At dinner meet-ups, there are usually 30-50 of us!)

I managed to persuade several group members to follow me to the T&T in Chinatown after the meal, in search of kimchi and burdock root.  (I finally found burdock root after 6 months of searching!)  I spent another $40 on groceries,  bringing my weekly grocery bill up to $146.00.

Groceries: beansprouts, kimchi, thai chilis, burdock root, carrots, bok choi, scallions, wakame, asparagus, green tea, kombu

As I walked my groceries home, I beheld one of the most beautiful sights I have ever seen:

...um, not the pulled beef bit...lower.

VEGAN MAC AND CHEESE! 3 blocks from where I live!  Praise Quinoa, this must be another Daiya miracle!  I was briefly tempted to write today off entirely in terms of eating raw, since I had already broken the rules once…  However, I felt pretty sleepy after all the sushi rice and veggie teriyaki, so I knew that I needed to get back on track…

With some RAW sushi!  I was excited to use my new organic, raw nori sheets, and since I was finally  in possession of burdock root, all the stars in my universe aligned to bring forth Ani Phyo’s “Ginger Almond Nori Rolls.”  Highly recommended.  I threw in an avocado to make them even more delicious!  I also staged a repeat performance of her “Miso Mushroom Soup.” C’est magnifique!

Day 6

After cheating a little bit yesterday, I felt the need to start my day on the raw straight and narrow.  What better way that at Sejuiced in Kitsilano?  I had a delicious smoothie and a raw apricot almond bar.  Yum 🙂

For lunch I whipped up a Blended Garden Gazpacho:

1. juice a carrot and a small beet

2. In blender, add carrot/beet juice, 3 tomatoes, 3 stalks of celery, a bit of chopped oregano,  1/2 of an avocado, and a dash of salt to taste.

SO GOOD.

Day 6’s dinner was the highlight of my raw week.  Through the magic of the internet, I went to a Raw Vegan Prepluck! What is a raw prepluck, you ask?  It is best described by this formula:  10 strangers + raw food + 1 kitchen  = delicious feast and 10 new friends!  It was awesome.  We all showed up at 4pm with ingredients and a recipe we wanted to share, took turns using the VitaMix and the food processor, et voila- a feast was ready at 7pm…  here we are:

chopping and rolling station...

the lineup for the VitaMix...just kidding. The nice thing was everybody helped each other out, so all of our recipes became very social!

It was dark, so I couldn’t get the best photos…but you can see my Pad Thai from Day 1 in the bottom left corner… (Big hit!)  The questionable-looking brown substance in the middle of the shot was actually one of the best soups I’ve ever had. The rolls in the bottom right corner were made out of a zucchini/flax mixture that was dehydrated into flexible sheets, and then rolled with a cashew cream, lettuce, and served with a sundried tomato sauce. Dear God, it was delicious!  There was also some mind-blowing salads and a exquisite cranberry dessert, not to mention amazing, juicy, and local walnuts that we cracked ourselves. Oh!  And a mad cacao-coconut shake that was deliciously reminiscent of a Wendy’s Frostie!

We said grace, passed around each dish one at a time, and we each said a little something about what we made. Beautiful!

Some people were experienced raw food gurus, others were flirting raw newbies, like me.  It was a wonderful mix!  I learned a TON of info about raw foods, especially this:

  • Always soak nuts 24 hours before using.  Mother Nature has endowed nuts and seeds with enzyme inhibitors, so that when a bird eats it, the bird can then fly away, poop, and when hits the ground, the moisture from the soil breaks the enzyme inhibitor, similar to soaking it. It starts sprouting and germinating to create a new plant.  So we should soak the seeds overnight and rinse them very well to wash away these inhibitors.  (Makes sense why my tummy hurt after all of the nuts I ate on Day 3!)

I stuffed myself full of so much delicious food, but I still felt energetic and vibrant in the evening- It was probably close to midnight when I got home, but I had so much excess energy, I cleaned the kitchen! (A feat never witnessed at that hour).

I’m so glad I went to this!  I was a bit apprehensive about meeting up with a whole bunch of stangers for dinner, but this I will tell you: Raw Foodists are anything but cold!

I asked a few of the Rawluck-ers to share their recipes with Home Veganomics, so stay tuned for some seriously delicious posts in the future!

Namaste 🙂

Laura

March 2, 2010 at 10:33 pm 17 comments

Four-and-a-Half Layer Dip

Hello Amigos!

In the spirit of the Super Bowl, and Superbowl related snacks, I’d like to present the most awesomest chip dip, ever:  Four-and-a-Half Layer Dip!   Obviously, this is a vegan version of the classic 5-layer dip that usually includes sour cream and shredded cheddar.  My recipe uses a decadent cashew ricotta to replace the sour cream and cheese.   Since “4 layer dip” sounded so underwhelming to me, I squeaked in another half layer consisting of several yummy confetti garnishes!

Materials: food processor, spatula, clear, medium-sized casserole dish

1. Refried Bean Layer

  • 2 c. cooked pinto beans (or 1 can, drained)
  • 1 Tbs. cooking oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 Tbs chili powder or taco seasoning
  • 1 jalapeno, minced (optional)
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Heat oil and saute onion and jalapeno until tender.  Dust with salt and chili powder and cook 30 seconds more.  Stir in Pinto beans and add a Tbs of water to thin out mixture.  Transfer to food processor or blender.  Blend, adding extra water if necessary to get a smoother consistency.  Adjust seasonings and spread into the bottom of glass dish.

2. Simple Guacamole Layer

  • 3 large, ripe avocados
  • lime juice to taste (about 1.4 C, about 2 limes)
  • salt to taste (1/2 tsp +)

Put 2 of the 3 avocados in food processor with lime juice and salt.  Dice remaining avocado into small cubes.  In a medium bowl, fold together.  Taste and adjust seasonings.  Spread over top of bean layer.

3. Cashew Ricotta Layer

  • 1/4 C thick cashew cream
  • 4 oz tofu, cubed roughly
  • 1 Tbs nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • juice of 1 lemon (about 1/4 C)
  • 1 tsp miso paste
  • 1/2 tsp salt

Combine all ingredients in food processor and pulse.  Every few pulses, scrape down sides of bowl.  Do not over-process, as you want a ricotta-like texture.  Taste and adjust seasonings.  Spread carefully on top of guacamole mixture.

4. Salsa Layer:

  • 8-10 cherry tomatoes, halved

Arrange decoratively on top of Cashew Ricotta mixture.

5. “1/2” Layer

  • 1 chopped green onion
  • 2-3 cilantro sprigs
  • 3-4 chopped black olives

Srpinkle green and olive pieces uniformly, arrange whole cilantro sprigs on top.

Serve with Tortilla Chips and enjoy!

February 4, 2010 at 8:48 pm 1 comment


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