Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Restaurant Review: Loving Hut Express (Food Truck)

SO, now that I'm basically wheat/gluten free, I was sad that I wouldn't be able to eat at the Loving Hut Food truck . I went to their website last week, you know to torture myself, and low and behold!!! They have a gluten free burger! YES! I immediately messaged them on FB. Yah, I liked them a while back, lol. They told me they'd have them on Saturday. I'd like to think it was special for me. LOL

They even went so far as to let me know they wouldn't be there until noon because they had some big catering event to do. (Yah for them!!!) Which worked out perfectly for me because I was going to go there after my appointment at 12:45 that day.

Gluten free burger

OMG, I cannot stress to you how tasty this is. There is so much saucy goodness in between this gluten free bun that I can't handle it. All my superficial ways get thrown out the door and I devour that thing, in public I might add, and get sauce all over my face and hands, trying to drop as little as possible cuz I don't wanna waste any. LOL Its quite the sight. It has guacamole, apricot-jalapeno relish and a chipotle mayo. WOAH mama! Get in my BELLY!!! And so it did. And then I was satisfied and very happy. It doesn't take much to make me happy. LOL

Check out this food truck if you're in Vancouver. You really should. Its at the corner of Pacific and Davie. Near the Roundhouse and Urban Fare. They are just lovely people working there. The other burger I had before was the Cripsy Chicken which was PHE-NOM!

Loving Hut Express on Urbanspoon




Restaurant review: Paradise Noodle House

Last week I had the pleasure of dining at Paradise Noodle House in Burnaby. I had heard of this place a while back but the fact that its not downtown and I don't drive has not permitted me to visit until recently. Its a vegan Vietnamese restaurant. I LOVE Vietnamese food, but depending on where you go, it can be not so vegan friendly. Some places have tofu dishes and various vegetarian dishes that are just normally vegan but some really have nothing. I always get crazy excited when I go to a vegan place because now I can choose from a whole menu versus like 3 things. LOL Its like Christmas! It always takes me so long to choose. Luckily I'm also nerdy and like to do my research before. I check out the menu online and reviews to decide what I want before. I'll still look at the menu when I'm there in case I've had a craving or a last minute game changer, but I like to be prepared. :)

My friend Jimmy took me there. He's not vegan nor vegetarian at all, but he's awesome so off we went. Obviously when eating Asian food ordering a few items and sharing is the way to go; Family Styles. I love family style eating. Its way better than a one plater type meal. I always want to try so many things on the menu. So its nice to be able to do that.

Fresh Spring Rolls
These spring rolls came with tofu, veggie ham, rice noodles and lettuce and an amazingly delish peanut sauce that I'd like to drink. But I didn't, lol I refrained.

 Yummmmmm, the innards of the fresh spring roll. :)

Hot and Sour Soup

I've had a many a hot and sour soups in my day. But this one took the award for best. It was SO different than traditional hot and sour soup but it had the most amazing flavour combinations and spiciness all in one pot. Plus it came in this cool contraption that was keeping it hot from underneath.

Look at it!!! Not sure what the English name of that spongy looking this is but she said its called 'Bac Ha'. So if you know, please let me know! It was so delish. I asked my friend Dave but he had no idea. Lol useless.

MMMMMMmmmm, so inside this delish soup was Bac ha, pineapple, bean sprouts, tomatoes, and some veggie meat thingy. It was a tvp puff. YUMMY. Jimmy really liked those. As did I. The style of soup is different but don't let it fool you. It was so full of flavour.

Black bean tofu

Both Jimmy and I like spicy food, so when she was asking how spicy we wanted the soup, she suggested she make everything spicy!!! LOVE HER!!! And that she did. The dish wasn't supposed to be spicy but we're special like that. LOL I love black bean sauce. The tofu was firm, the sauce tasty and spicy. All things I love.

Lemongrass Veggie Chicken
This one was very spicy and very good! I loved the texture of the 'chicken'. Sometimes veggie meat is bad, like really bad. I've def experienced some really bad ones in my day but this was deelish. Nice firm texture. The dish had a great lemongrass taste. I love it, it adds so much depth to a dish. I try to use it as much as I can. I pick it up every time I'm at T&T or my local Asian shop.

SOOOOO, all that being said, I loved this place!! Its got this vegans thumbs up AND Jimmy loved it too! Plus he saw a coworker there who was not vegan or vegetarian. And we talked to some other folks next to us and they weren't vegan either. Well they didn't tell us that, but I was totally listening in on them and the questions they were asking clearly indicated they had no idea. LOL but they loved it and asked what we got for next time. ALSO it was packed when we got there so you know its good. CHECK IT OUT!!!

A little side note, she does like to spread vegan propaganda though. She's super passionate about being vegan and saving the world this way. But she's just so cute. So take it with a grain of salt. Listen, nod, take her reading material and leave when you're done. Its not my way but its hers. Its ok. We just listened and smiled. She was so passionate about it, you couldn't help but smile.

PS: My little blog has over 10k hits now!!! Thank you to all my readers!! I'm so happy that people are reading it and I can at least make you drool over some good vegan eats. Maybe a laugh or two in between. :)
Paradise Vegetarian Noodle House on Urbanspoon




Monday, February 27, 2012

Recipe Review: Curried Red Lentil Soup with Lemon (Vegetarian Times)

Last night I had a little Oscar party at my place for myself and 3 friends. It was actually my first time watching the whole thing from start to finish. Even the red carpet stuff. Which is the best I think. I love looking at all the outfits. My faves of the night were Gwenyth Paltrow and Mila Jovanich.

Mila Jovanich

Gwenyth Paltrow

Gorgeous! I'm not that into the cape that Gwenyth is wearing but the dress is pure perfection. So classy yet sexy. And same goes for Mila. Love the detail on that dress. I thought the oscar's were relatively well done. Billy Crystal was funny but the commentary was horrific. Like bad. The people were annoying and had trainwreck fashion. LOL 

Back to food, So I got this recipe book from Vegetarian Times and finally made a recipe from it. Well I have but I changed it so much that it turned out completely different. This time I followed it with a few minor changes. 

Curried Red Lentil Soup with Lemon
2 cups red lentils
4 cups water
2 cups veggie stock
1 onion, diced or 1/2 large
4 celery stalks, chopped finely
3 medium sized carrots, chopped finely
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
1 tbsp curry powder
1 tsp cumin
1 lemon, juiced

1. Bring lentils, broth and 4 cups of water to a simmer in a large pot. Skim away foam that rises to the top. Reduce heat to medium low and cover. Simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Drain and rise. Put back into the pot with another 2 cups of water and 2 cups of veggie stock.
2. Add onion, celery, carrots. and garlic. Simmer uncovered for 20 minutes. Add cilantro, curry powder and cumin and simmer for another 20 minutes. Add the lemon juice. 

Mmmmm big ole pot of goodness.

I put a little brown rice at the bottom.

So the changes were minor. I used less onion, extra carrots because mine were small, more garlic and I more cilantro I think. But I don't think that would have changed the flavour much from the original. I also used 2 cups of veggie stock vs a quart, because I don't know how much a quart is. And I was lazy to google it. LOL

My friend Lauren brought me flowers!!! What a nice hostess gift. I LOVE getting flowers. I def don't get that enough. I guess that's what happens when you're single. LOL I just buy them myself sometimes. AND I don't think she knew that tulips are my fave. My birthday is coming up so for any of my friends reading....I love flowers and I LOVE tulips!!! Lol.

I put together a veggie tray and made some homemade hummus but forgot to take a pic. I'll post the recipe and a pic of the hummus tomorrow though. Its amazingly easy to make and WAY cheaper and better for you.




Friday, February 24, 2012

Vegan Pinto Beans

I picked up a bunch of dried beans and other legumes recently for my cleanse and because I'm trying to eat less canned food. I've been cutting it back for quite some time but I still use it as its so darn convenient. BUT this week, I cooked some pinto beans and lentils and just popped them in the fridge so that when it came time for meal prep I had some beans ready to go!

I usually only use pinto beans when I make my refried beans (which I totally need to make again soon) but this time I wanted to use them differently. I created a delish meal that I completed with some brown rice that I had leftover. The whole thing took less than 20 minutes to make. So a little planning can go a long way. 

Vegan Pinto Beans
1 cup dry pinto beans, cooked
1/2 head kale, in bite sized pieces
1 lg tomato, diced
1 jalapeno, chopped
1 lime, juiced
1/2 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
2 tsp chili flakes
1/2 cup veggie stock

Pan fry the onions and garlic in a ladle full of water for 2 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and cook for 10 minutes. Serve on top of brown rice. 

It was super yummy and full of awesome nutrients. It has A LOT of fiber in it among other things such as protein, iron, molybdenum, etc. Its quite the little powerhouse. Lol

I had a cup of these pinto beans for lunch today and paired it with a salad. I made a quickie salad with spinach, half a red pepper, cucumber, and celery with half a lemon juiced over top. Sprinkled with hemp seeds. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

Did I tell you that if you pair celery and cucumber it makes a complete protein? And remember that food pairing doesn't have to be in the same meal, just the same day. Celery has 18 amino acids and the same sodium balance as your body! Cool!

I'm so big on salads right now. I was on a green smoothie kick for a while but salads took over. I try to eat them every day. And I pretty much do. I love incorporating as much raw foods as I can into my day. I always feel the best when I eat a lot of them. Not 100% raw by any means, Just a lot of salads, raw fruits and veggies and some raw nuts and seeds. 

Last night I FINALLY got my hair did! I am loving it! I feel like a new woman. Its funny how something like a hair cut can make you feel so amazing. I get the same feeling when I get new undies. Lol

Black is back!

Its black again and I got some swoopy bangs too! I missed having bangs. I thought I wanted to get rid of them so I grew them out, but nope, I did not. Love having them back. And its so shiny and rich. You can't tell that well in the pic, but believe me, its luxurious. HAHA

Great way to start the weekend! And I'm feeling AMAZING on this cleanse! I did ALMOST wanna cheat last night, but I held strong. I feel so energetic and happy. Its pretty close to the way I felt when I first went vegan. So energetic, full of life and feel so light. Not bogged down by over processed foods. Love it!

I'm stoked for tonight. Going for a workout, swim, make dins and play some scrabble and banana grams with my friend Mike! I know, we're nerds. But I love scrabble and banana grams is gonna be a new fave I think. 




Thursday, February 23, 2012

Restaurant Review: Organic Lives (again!)

I know I know, I've reviewed this place multiple times but I can't help it, I just love it so much. Since I'm doing a cleanse I needed to eat pretty clean, and Organic Lives is about as clean as you can get, in terms of eats. I was having a date night with my friend Steve and Brooke. Yah, Steve is quite the stud. Him and 2 lovely ladies. Lol

As per usual, we started with the Tapas Platter. Its honestly the best thing to get, especially if you're a newbie. It gives you a little taste of what Organic Lives is all about. Its fresh, its delicious and its VERY satisfying. 

Tapas Platter
We also had the Mexi Spirals. Steve REALLY wanted to try these because they have a heirloom tomato cape. LOL Food with a cape is awesome. We ended up calling the cape a fruit roll up. Because that's what it was like, but with tomatoes. And ps they don't sell them anymore, I asked. (sad face)

Mexi Spirals
They are so yummy!!! Filled with tons of veggies and a nice little sauce. I'm pretty sure I ate 3 of them. And the lettuce that was on the bottom. HA. I don't like to waste. And I'm a pig. Lol

I got the Veggie Burger that had tons of sprouts, tomato and YAM BREAD!!! BAM! This burger was seriously good. I think there might have been beets in it maybe and there was ground masala in it. Super yummy. I would DEF get this again. Plus it had a side of kale chips, which are awesome FYI.

Brookey got the Masala Dosa. It is so good. I really like this dish a lot. Maybe a fave? Not sure. Everything is so good. I also love the presentation of it. Its so huge!! Its a bit intimidating to eat but so delish. And the soup they give you on the side is super spicy and I love it.

Masala Dosa

It comes with 2 sides of chutney, raisin and coconut. Mmmmm. Its got a eggplant and green pea filling. Which doesn't sound appealing to me because I don't like eggplant or green peas too much. And when I say that I just don't like them on their own, but all mashed up with spices like this is heaven! 

Steve got the Sicilian Wrap. This I've never had and I gotta say its super yummy. It also has the fruit roll up around it. And it came with either a caesar salad or soup. Steve opted for the soup. It was good, but not my fave. I love the spicy one that comes with the Masala Dosa too much I think. 

Sicilian Wrap

Looks amazing right? T'was indeed. 

THEN we had dessert. Its all vegan, soy free and gluten free. Plus the whole place is wheat free too. LOVES it! I've never had good macaroons until I came here. Honestly. I was never a fan. But these macaroons are to DIE for. 

It was a small cheat on the cleanse, But not much. The only ingredient would have been the coconut that I'm not supposed to have. But its organic and amazing. So I'm cool with it. We couldn't wait and had a bite before I could snap a pic. Then we got silly.....

Raspberry Macaroon
We had the heart cookie, the lemon macaroon and the raspberry macaroon. And they threw in a thumbprint for good measure. LOVE them!!! Thank youuuuuuuuuuu!!!! I think my fave was the cookie, or the raspberry wait it was the thumbprint. Oh dang, this is hard. Lol

Then we jetted off to Whole Foods to pick up a couple snacks for the movie and some groceries for Steve before we went to the movies. We saw "The Woman in Black". Which was good. Super creepy. It was one of those jumpy scary movies. Brooke and I were very stressed out. I screamed and gasped many times. Had to cover my mouth, cuz it makes me feel safe. LOL And Steve even scared me! Jerkface. Lol He planned it for like 2 minutes. It was pretty awesome, but he got a few smacks for it. Well worth it I'm sure. Lol

I decided to sell some seaweed snacks while I was at Whole Foods. LOL Just being silly.

These are really good by the way but there's this Korean brand that is WAY better. These are more oily then the Asian brands I find. And the Asian brands are thicker, which I like. But I'm good right? You'd buy it from me right? Lol

So to sum up. GO TO ORGANIC LIVES. They also have classes and workshops. Some of which are free. They are AWESOME!! I've gone to one and I can't wait till I can go to the next. So informative and fascinating. 

OrganicLives on Urbanspoon




Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Vegucation and Recipe: Black Beans Edition

I thought I'd start talking a bit about the foods that I'm eating and why they are so good for you. Just a little Vegucation PLUS a recipe. Duh. Today is all about black beans. These are my fave bean. I eat them a lot. My second fave is the chickpea. Mmmmm I need to make hummus soon. Yes, that's an idea. Lol

Nutrients (% of Daily values)
Amount: 1 cup
Calories: 227
Dietary fiber: 60% 
Protein: 30%
Iron: 20%
Phosphorus: 24%
B1: 29%
Magnesium: 30%
Molybenum: 172%
Folate: 64%

Health Benefits
In that one cup serving you get about 15 grams of fiber and 15 grams of protein! What's great about black beans (and other legumes) is they give you protein AND fiber at the same time. This provides some major benefits to the digestive track and keeps your blood sugar from spiking. Unlike other sugars and fats,  both protein and fiber can move through the digestive tract at a more moderate pace.  This allows for a more agreeable digestion process which will put less of a burden on your system. 

The protein and fiber combination in black beans and other legumes is also a key to their support of blood sugar regulation.  Because it is moving at a slower rate through the digestive system it releases the sugars it converts to at a slower pace, therefore not spiking your blood sugar. Yah!

Its also high in soluble fiber which helps lower cholesterol levels. Which is great as it will help reduce your risk of heart disease. (As long as you eat well and exercise too, its no miracle worker).

ALSO, as if you needed more, it is high in anti-oxidants and has anti-inflammatory phytonutrients which are great to consume because inflammation has been known to be a breeding ground for cancer. Not to say that its going to prevent cancer or anything but a diet high in anti-inflammatory foods will help reduce your risk.

SO there you have it folks. Eat your black beans! They're good for you. And now you know why. Now on to the food porn!!

Mexican Beans and Rice
1 can black beans
1 cup frozen corn
1/2 onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1 lime, juiced
1/4 tsp sea salt
1 jalapeno, minced

Saute the onions and garlic in a pan with 1/4 cup water. Add the black beans after 2 minutes, cook for 5 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and cook for another 5 minutes. Serve on top of brown rice! 

Diced cucumber
Quickie salsa

Quickie Salsa
2 roma tomatoes, diced small
1 jalapeno
1/4 red onion
lime juice
1/8-1/4 tsp sea salt

Combine all ingredients and serve!

It was SUPER spicy. The jalapeno was crazy hot. LOL I was sweating. But I love it! I love spicy food. If you are not into hot food, I'd use half the jalapeno in the salsa. The beans were fine though. Or omit it altogether. I can't do hot sauce right now so I gotta start spicing things up with peppers. Mmmmm I ain't complaining!!




Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Indian spiced lentils with quinoa, kale and swiss chard

I set out last night to make this recipe I got from the Vegetarian Times "Eat to Beat Inflammation" book but, well it didn't turn out that way. I always change recipes to fit my taste or what I have in the cupboard, but this time I didn't have anything. So I guess this dish was Vegetarian Times inspired. Lol

Indian Spiced Lentils with quinoa, kale and swiss chard
1 tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp fenugreek
2 inch piece ginger, minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/3 red onion, sliced
1 cup green lentils, cooked
1 cup quinoa, cooked
1 cup veggie stock
5 cups kale, bite size
2 cups swiss chard, bite size
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp cumin

1. Dry roast the fennel and fenugreek for about 1-2 minutes. Stir constantly to prevent burning. Add the minced garlic and ginger. Pour in 1/4 cup water to prevent sticking. Cook for 2 minutes.
2. Add the onions and cook for 3 minutes. Add a little more water if needed.
3. Stir in the lentils, quinoa, and veggie stock. Cook for 5 minutes then add the kale and swiss chard. Cover and cook for 5 minutes.
3. Add the remaining spices and stir until well combine. Add any additional spices to taste.

I served mine with steamed gai lan (Chinese broccoli).

It was so tasty and yummy. And obvs healthy. Duh. Its how I roll. Most of the time that is. 

I started a cleanse today. I am doing it with a friend and then I convinced 3 ladies at work to do it with me. Day 1 has begin. Only 11 more to go. We're doing the Wild Rose cleanse. Its not officially vegan but whatevs. I've never said I was perfect. I just like this one. It promotes a healthy lifestyle and doesn't have any weird chemicals in them. SO far its going good. There was a little complaining from the ladies this morning because they didn't like the smell of the pills and concoction. lol

Today I started my day with a quinoa dish. I cooked the quinoa normally, add a few tbsp's of roasted acorn squash, mashed that in REAL good, then added some hemp seeds, sunflower seeds and cinnamon. It was good! Not amazing. Oh yah, I threw in some frozen mixed berries. I enjoyed it though. For a mid morning snack I had some natural almonds. Not roasted or salted. For lunch I made a big spinach salad with purple cabbage, half a red pepper and juice from a lime with a side of steamed gai lan.

I also roasted up some Brussel sprouts and made a celery radish salad. Which was YUMMY!!!

Celery Radish Salad
3 celery stalks, chopped on an angle
6 radishes, sliced
1/4 red onion, sliced
1 lemon
salt and pepper

Combine all ingredients and eat!

Super easy and quick to make. And did you know that celery has the same sodium balance as your body? Cool little fun fact for yah.

I'm pretty stoked about the cleanse and that I'm doing it with so many ppl. We can all support each other and share food. LOL Mostly the food part though. :)




Monday, February 20, 2012

Vegan Shepherd's Pie, Private sushi chef, peanut butter stuffed pretzels and more!!

My friend Dave and I decided to surprise his gf Natasha for her birthday with me!!!  Lol. It was pretty awesome. He even got her to make a vegan shepherd's pie without her even realizing it. He told her he hasn't been feeling well when he eats dairy (which is true) so she didn't ask any other questions. LOL We blew her mind. Her reaction was so awesome!

I don't have the recipe yet but when I do I will def share it. It was super yummy and Natasha says its very easy to make. 
All in my belly!

I just sauteed 2 small heads of broccoli with water (about 1/8-1/4 cup), then seasoned with lemon pepper seasoning. Put that on top of green leaf lettuce, cucumber, carrots and drizzled dijon mustard and sriracha.

 Ok so this bar is damn good. Tasty as hell BUT its 400 calories, 20g of fat, 21g of sugar! HOLY CRAP! Um, no thanks. Its vegan and delish but there is no need to eat a bar that's 400 cals. A meal yes, but not a bar. TOo bad.

Peanut butter filled pretzels
Need I say more? Nope.

Sushi counter set up

Chef and Assistant at work

Round 1
This doesn't begin to show you how much sushi we had. Plus there was tuna and beef tataki which was to die for I'm told. Like melt in your mouth OHMYGOD amazingness good. That good. There was SO much food, I could not even handle it. Well I could, and I did. I ate the shit outta those veggie rolls. And there were lots. They made sure they made lots of veggie rolls. I even got a special veggie cone made just for me. Lol Well almost everyone got a cone, but mine was one of a kind. Ha. 

Here was my FIRST plate.

Clearly you can see from all my pics that my wheat/gluten free days are over. LOL I demolished them this weekend. Ground round in the shepherds pie, pretzels, and I think that's it. I opted not to eat bagels but they were there. But I def through my healthy diet out the window. Well, for me this was out the window. I still ate lots of veggies. But man was it ever worth it. I'm back on track today and starting the Wild Rose cleanse tomorrow.

Grocery shopping tonight! And the bachelor of course. Lol

All in all, trip to the island was awesome! I'm quite the multi-tasker, I drank only vodka waters. Hydrate while I dehydrate. Lol 




Thursday, February 16, 2012

Thai Green Curry Soup and Baked Whole Apple Pie!!!

I was a little grumpy yesterday and totally didn't want to go to the gym or eat healthy. But I knew that was just the mood so I persevered through it, ate healthy and worked out. I didn't think I'd make it through my workout. After 2 minutes running I wanted to quit, go home, make a pizza and eat the whole thing. LOL Even after my workout, I thought I would make myself something naughty, but I came out of Safeway with a sweet potato, broccoli, bananas, and oranges. HA!! I just figured that I need to keep it clean and at the end of my journey, I will reward myself. AND on Sunday I ate A LOT of chocolate, so I should be good. I felt good about my will power. 

My next idea for something a little more naughty than usual for my meals was to have noodles. I was gonna make a stir fry and put it on top of some buckwheat noodles. Buckwheat noodles are awesome! And very Japanese. BUT I read the ingredients and they're made with wheat flour! BAH!! SOOOOO disappointed. I need to check out if they are all made this way or if there's a non-wheat version. Such BS. 

OK, time for the food. The reason you come here. Lol

Thai Green Curry Soup
1 head broccoli, chopped
1/2 onion, diced
1 tomato, diced
1 carrot, sliced
1 mango, diced
2-3 cups sui choy, chopped
half bunch kale, bite sized
1 160 ml low fat coconut milk
1 tsp dry veggie stock
1.5 cups water
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tbsp green curry paste
2 tsp chili flakes
1 can black beans

1. Pan fry the onions in 1/4 cup water until translucent, about 4 minutes. 
2. Add all remaining ingredients except for the coconut milk, simmer on medium-high heat for 10 minutes. Add coconut milk and taste. Add any additional seasonings to your own taste.
3. Serve in a big bowl with rice noodles or like me, with nothing. YUMMY!!!

I also roasted the whole sweet potato with a lemon, sea salt, garlic powder and veggie seasoning. OH man was this meal satisfying. Then I went and made dessert. How I had time for all this plus a workout.....I have no idea. Lol It really didn't take much time at all to prep and make all this.

All I did was hollow out a green apple and blend together the following ingredients which I stuffed into the apple and baked for 20 minutes. Another 5-10 minutes would be a little softer, but I'm like mine a little crunchy still.

Baked Whole Apple Pie
2 green applles
1 cup rolled oats
2 tbsp peanut butter
2 tsp agave nectar

1. Cut the top of the apple off, and hollow it out. 
2. In a food processor blend all the ingredients, except for the apple, until well mixed. Stuff the apples and bake for 20-25 minutes. 
3. Eat it up!!

A little cinnamon would have been good but I forgot. Another idea for next time would be to use mixed berries. Mmmmmm




Wednesday, February 15, 2012

I have awesome friends

Its true. I do have awesome friends. In particular I'm talking about the ones who are cognizant of the fact that I'm vegan and still want to cook for me. Some omnivores find it difficult to figure out what to cook for a vegan. So I really appreciate it when my friends take the time to make me a meal and really put some thought into it. Especially now that I'm wheat/gluten free. It sounds intense or fanatical but its really not. 

In particular I'm talking about Kevin. You've heard me talk about him. I've never told him what to cook, how to cook it, or what makes certain foods vegan or not. He just gets it and probs looks up the stuff he's unsure of online (Gawd, I love google) Lol. Last night was no different, he made me an awesome meal that was gluten free and deelish. Obvs vegan too.

It had chickpeas, lots of veggies, mushrooms, low fat coconut milk, lemon grass, curry. He laid down a bed of spinach in the bowl, topped it with red rice and then the curry. SUPER yummmm factor here. I loved the bed of spinach. I keep meaning to do it but I always forget. The Foundation does that for many of their dishes and I always think to myself that its a great idea. Lol. Kudos Kevin. :)

He then baked some thinly sliced tofu and drizzled some sriracha on top. Duh. I can't have a meal without it. It was a lot too, my mouth was on fire!!! But like a true sriracha fan, I powered through to build my tolerance.  Check out this funny ode to sriracha

Some other friends that are also awesome at making vegan food for me is Brooke and Natasha. Both are pretty healthy eaters and not vegan. Nor is Kevin. But they love to eat healthy and obvs they love me too. LOL 

I've been on a salad bender these past couple weeks. Roasted veggie has been the fave but this past 8 or so days its been all about mangoes for some reason. I just use spinach, kale, and whatever veggies I have. Cucumber being a good accompaniment for the mango then I drizzle some fresh lime juice on top. No other dressing needed, 

This one in particular had spinach, kale, purple cabbage, celery, green onion and mango. With lime. YUMMM. 

Have you heard of Carrot Lines? Its a Vancouver based app for your iphone that lets you put in some criteria and scan food to make sure it fits your profile. For example, under lifestyle I put Vegan, Nutrition I chose calories, fat, trans fat, sodium, fibre, sugars (less than 5g), calcium and iron. Under Allergy I chose dairy free, gluten free, and wheat free. So when you scan a food item, it tells you if it meets your criteria. Or just some. Its cool!! I can't wait to get home or go to the store and start scanning away. I won't need it tooooo much cuz I don't eat a lot of foods but I did suggest it to a few friends who might need it. And to Kevin. Lol Perfect for when he doesn't know if something is gluten free or what not. 

One thing that I couldn't figure out was when I scanned an item (hemp seeds) that it didn't have in its database it asked if I wanted to google it. So I did. And then that's it. Nothing happened. No addition to the database. No analyzing it. Nada. So I dunno. What do you do when something isn't in their database? Hmmmm But other than that, seems pretty cool. Its also FREE!!! Bonus!




Tuesday, February 14, 2012

A quicky is all you need

Sometimes a quicky is all you need. They can be very satisfying, fulfilling, and fun! So I def recommend them when time is tight. Sometimes you need a quicky in the morning, at lunch, or in this case it was dinner. Lol I needed a quicky on Friday night after the gym and before heading out for the night. Ha. I whipped up this little number which was super nutritious and filling and kept me going all night. 

Quicky Quinoa
1 cup dry red quinoa
1 cup mixed beans
1 carrot, chopped
1/2 tsp dry veggie stock
1/2 tsp cumin
3-3.5 cups water

green onion

Add the quinoa, water, carrots and beans to a pot and bring to a boil. Cook on medium heat for 20 minutes. Add more water if needed. The quinoa should be soft but a little crunchier than white quinoa. Add the seasonings and serve. Top with green onion and fresh jalapeno.

I served my quicky quinoa along side some steamed veggies and smoked tofu sandwiches. I picked up some awesome non-gmo and organic smoked tofu, pan fried it with no oil then made little sandwiches with hummus, green onion and jalapeno. I just steamed some bok choy for about 3 minutes for some added veggies.

This is what I got:

 I just drizzed a little dijon on my bok choy. Me loves mustard.

 This was a little lunch I picked up from the good ole Whole Foods. I got a ABC juice (apple, beet, carrot), a raw kale tahini salad and I tossed in a little cucumber and hummus and a cup of my leftover quinoa. YUM!

And here is another Whole Foods meal. I picked up a burrito bowl with my friend Laura for our Bachelor Mondays. I LOVE the burrito bar from WF. Seriously, its the bomb! And if you're veggie, they got bbq'd tofu! BAM! This sucker is loaded with brown rice, corn, black beans, bbq tofu, roasted veggies, guacamole, 2 kinds of salsa, green onions, tomatoes and lettuce. LIKE WOAH. 

Check it out!

PS: SO I'm thinking about adding posts where I talk about particular veggies/fruits/legumes/grains/nuts/seeds/etc and their nutritional components and such. What's their goodness quotient and such. You likey that idea? Yah, I think it'll be beneficial to ppl. I always get asked about a particular food, maybe that will be my wknd posts since I never do them. lol