Friday, March 16, 2018

Temari Rabbit 2-Tier Bento #104

Honeycrisp apple slices, more fancy dark chocolates (see yesterday's post about that), cucumber slices, off-brand Ritz crackers, and the "Chicky Salad" from Isa Does It.

This chickpea salad had sunflower seeds in it, and I was intrigued, in part because I haven't had sunflower seeds in ages and I'm trying to incorporate more seeds into my diet. (Variety is the spice of life and all--and also aids in ensuring we plant-only eaters get enough of all the amino acids.) I found this salad worked really well with these Ritz-type crackers. She didn't specify whether the seeds should be roasted or raw, so I went with raw, but I may try this with roasted sunflower seeds sometime and see how that goes.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

ToGoWare 2-Tier Tiffin #14

Bagel toppings (capers, Daiya non-dairy cream cheese, cucumbers, red onions, tomatoes, and carrot lox), fancy dark chocolates, and mini bagels.

I love, love, love carrot lox. It may be the most exciting thing about veganism for me. But there is more excitement to go around here, in the form of these dark chocolates.

Usually, I can't buy a box of fancy chocolates because even if some of the individual chocolates don't have dairy, others in the box do. But the stores are getting ready for Passover, and people want fancy non-dairy chocolates. I have been haunting the kosher sections of my local stores. Passover is quickly becoming one of my favorite holidays (that I don't celebrate). I love getting to eat truffles and nut clusters and creams.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

KOSOX 2-Tier Sushi Bento #22

Vegetable sushi (two kinds: carrot lox and cucumber and pickled daikon radish and cucumber), a strawberry, and soy sauce for dipping.

I put way too much rice in this. Good thing I like sushi rice so much!

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Happy Jackson Snack Boxes #49

A toasted mini bagel, some I Can't Believe It's Not Butter vegan spread, sliced cucumbers, a grape tomato, a couple of mini tofu omelets, a Gardein breakfast patty, and strawberries.

The omelet muffins are from the Isa Does It cookbook. I found the recipe posted online here, too. These things have opened up an entirely new world for me, one where I envision myself making omelets and quiches and loving every bite. They're so good! They're not exactly like eggs but extremely close, and the silken tofu is a very different experience than the firm tofu I've used in tofu scrambles. The only complaint I have is that the turmeric stained my muffin tin yellow and that is likely permanent. Oh, well.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Skater Lunch Box #36

Mashed Yukon gold potatoes, avhomemade vegan hamburger steak, and herbed peas and carrots (recipe below--skip to the bottom if you don't want to read about potatoes and vegan steak). This is kind of a homemade TV-dinner type meal; vegan comfort food at its best.

A while ago I read something that was a real revelation to me: Russet potatoes make lousy leftovers. It has something to do with how the starches break down. They're great baked potatoes that you eat up right then, or for mashed potatoes if you're not going to have any leftovers, but do not attempt to serve rewarmed Russet potatoes. Russet potatoes were pretty much the only ones my parents bought and cooked growing up, probably because they were the cheapest and most people probably think a potato is just a potato. But potatoes are not just potatoes, and you need something a bit waxier if you're going for good leftovers. Russet potatoes are kind of terrible left over. Hence, the Yukon gold (I was branching out from red). And I'll be darned if it didn't make a world of difference!

Live, learn, eat the right potatoes.

The hamburger steaks were a different kind of revelation. It was kind of a lot of ingredients, and so on that basis they were kind of time consuming to prepare, but otherwise they were pretty simple (one doesn't need major technical skills for this) and they were so good--so meaty and flavorful! I'm glad I didn't halve the recipe. They were every bit as good as the Beyond Burger, though they taste a bit more like Salisbury steak without gravy than a plain meat patty. They still also make great burgers on a bun, and the leftovers, as is the case of most of my adventures in vegan cookery, were better than the first go-around.

You've read this far looking for a recipe for peas and carrots. Well, you're going to get one, I promise.

Gorgeous little things when they catch the morning sunbeams, no? I loathed peas growing up but I have figured out that this is mostly because I usually encountered them canned. Peas and I get along great now. Whatever you do, don't use canned peas here. A friend wrote to me about canned peas being "gray balls of sadness" and I agree. Stick with frozen.

I scaled down this recipe when I veganized it, and still ended up with enough for a tiny army. That's okay, though, because they're pretty awesome.

Herbed Peas and Carrots
Serves 4-6

1 tablespoon vegan butter (such as Earth Balance)
1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
4 small to medium carrots, peeled and finely diced
1 shallot, finely diced
Salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup water
1 1/2 cups frozen baby peas
1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley (or use 2 frozen parsley cubes, or 1 tablespoon dried)

Melt butter with oil in a skillet over medium heat. When hot, add carrots and shallot. Season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring every so often, for about 10 minutes.

Add water and bring to a boil. Cook, stirring every so often, until the water evaporates, about 5-6 minutes. By now your carrots should be nice and tender.

Add peas and cook, stirring, until heated through.

Remove from heat. Stir in parsley, taste, and season with additional salt and pepper if needed.

This month's VeganMoFo MiniMoFo (MoFo here is "Month of Food") theme is "Go green," so I'll be linking this recipe there.

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Pack-a-Snack #91

Zucchini-applesauce muffins with applesauce (redundant? or genius?) topped with cinnamon sugar.

These muffins seemed very healthy, but if I made them again I think I'd make them less so, or maybe use sweetened applesauce or something. I found them a little too virtuous, somehow.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Laptop Lunches #289

Garlic spinach sauteed with mushrooms and tomatoes, mandarin oranges with sliced almonds, African rice and beans, and zucchini.

This rice dish was really good! The flavors were great. If I make it again I'll add more beans, though, to make it feel more like a main dish than a side.

This was the first gluten free lunch I've made in a long time, incidentally.