Saturday, January 27, 2007

Dal Soup and Raw Truffles

A few nights ago I made Chunky Red Dal Soup from the January/Febuary 2007 issue of Cooking Light. It has onions, garlic, ginger, paprika, cumin, red lentils, chickpeas, canned tomatoes, lemon juice, and chipotle powder. The original called for harissa, but I used the chipotle powder instead. Very good, especially coming from a magazine like that.

Yesterday my parents went to Central Market and bought a lot of dates, so I decided to make Raw Carob Truffles from Raw Pleasure. Here is the recipe:

Easy Recipe for Carob Truffles


1 cup almonds
½ cup dates (pitted)
1 tablespoon raw carob powder
2.5 tablespoons filtered water
Coconut to roll truffles in

Put almonds into food processor and process until crumbs
Add dates 1 at a time until mixed in
Add in carob powder and process again
Add water and process
Roll into balls and roll in coconut and keep in fridge or freezer

I rolled them in more carob instead of coconut. Very good, and very easy.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Red Beans and Sweet Potato Curry

Here we have Red Bean and Sweet Potato Curry from Vegan Planet by Robin Robertson. It's pretty good. Nothing spectacular, but good enough. That's all there is to say for now. The picture's not so great, but there are leftovers, so maybe I can take a better one tomorrow when I eat the leftovers and post it. Have a good day everyone!

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Just Like Fish Without the Cruelty or Mercury

Well, the ice storm lasted longer than I expected. We didn't have to go to school Wednesday, and we went to school 2 hours later than usual Thursday! Wow, this was the shortest week of school ever.

Anyway, these past few days I have been eating leftovers, and on Friday we made another batch of lentil soup, this time using green lentils because we didn't have any french lentils left, and we made the whole recipe instead of half. Today, however we made what you see in the lovely picture above. This is Tofu Fish Sticks from Zenpawn. This was so good. The texture was perfect. The tofu was pressed under a heavy pan, then frozen overnight and defrosted, which improved the texture and made it soak up the marinade like a sponge! Now, I don't know if it really tastes like fish sticks because I (fortunately) have never tried real fish sticks. All I know is they're good! Behind the tofu sticks are sweet potato fries. Well, not fries, since they're not fried...hmm...bakes, maybe? To make them, just cut a sweet potato into strips, spread on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper, (no spray needed if you use parchemnt paper), and bake at 400 degrees F for 15 minutes, then turn them over and bake for 15 more.

A few days ago I discovered the Vegan Freaks podcast. If you haven't already, you should check it out. The online radio show discusses various issues related to veganism, from complaining about people's ignorance about veganism to teaching new vegans how to give up certain foods like cheese. It's a great show.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Quick and Spicy Quinoa and Black Beans

I enjoyed my ice day today. There was a little snow, so I gathered all the snow on my porch and sidewalk and tried to make a snowman with it, but it wouldn't stick together! I guess it wasn't powdery enough. There will probably be school tomorrow, though. I am dreading having to go back to school, but if we don't go tomorrow, we will have to make it up after the last day of school in May.

Tonight I made the recipe pictured above- without following someone else's recipe like I usually do. It was excellent. I could have been a little hotter, but I had to go easy on the spices because my mom is a spice wimp. The jalapeno peppers really added a nice flavor to it. Also, it's very quick and easy, great for when you need to get dinner ready quick!

Quick and Spicy Quinoa and Black Beans


1 medium onion, chopped
half of a medium red pepper, diced
1 jalapeno pepper, diced very small
3 cloves garlic
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. cumin
.5 tsp. coriander
.5 tsp. paprika
1 TB salt-free tomato paste
1 cup uncooked quinoa
2 cups water
2 cups cooked black beans
chipotle powder, to taste

Put a little water in a pot so the bottom is just barely covered. Add onion, jalapeno, garlic and spices and saute until onions are soft, then add the red peppers and saute for a few more minutes. Then, add water, quinoa and tomato paste and cook covered for 15 minutes. Then, add black beans and cook uncovered until most of the liquid evaporates, leaving and thick, stick mass, about 10 minutes. Sprinkle on desired amount of chipotle powder and serve.

Monday, January 15, 2007

Two Soups

I just found out that school is cancelled tomorrow! Yeah! (Of coarse, now we will have to make it up on the Friday before Easter) There wasn't a lot of ice today, just a little in the early morning that never melted because it stayed below freezing all day. Tomorrow, however, it's supposed to be much worse.

Today I made two different soups. I wanted to cook a lot of things this weekend and freeze some of them so I would have a quick, easy meal for nights when I have a lot of homework or don't want to cook. One was great, and the other was terrible! The former is pictured above. It is French Lentil and Portabella Stew from Fat Free Vegan. My adaptions: I halved it because I only had half a cup of lentils, water instead of broth, crimini mushrooms instead of portabella, left out the celery, used Yukon gold potatoes, and didn't use the wine.

Now for the terrible soup. I took a picture, but the picture is so horrible I didn't want to post it. It is called January Out-Of-The-Cupboard Lima Bean and Sun-Dried Tomato Soup from the Passionate Vegetarian by Crescent Dragonwagon. With a name like that, I thought it would be the perfect soup for a cold, icy January day like today. But I was wrong. It was edible, but just barely. The main problem was it was way too salty. I guess the su-dried tomatoes I used had more salt in them than I thought. I usually don't use salt or eat processed food that has a lot of salt in it, so I'm not used to salty food. This recipe might actually be tasty if fresh or unsalted tomatoes were used.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

UIL, Squash, and "Burgers"

Yesterday I went to a UIL competition and competed in Calculator Applications and Mathematics. UIL stands for University Interscholastic League. It consists of various academic competitions, including speech, history, writing, and math. I did ok on the Calculator. I got a 103. In the calculator competition, you have to do very complex operations on the calculator. In the Mathematics, however, I did extremely well, the best I've ever done! I got a 180, and ranked 9th place. If I had answered just one more (correctly, of course), I would have gotten a 186 and ranked 6th or better, which would have gotten me an award! Oh well, I did well anyway. Maybe next time I'll get an award!

It is really cold here! Tomorrow it is very likely there will be ice or snow. We don't have school tomorrow anyway, but school might get canceled Tuesday if the weather turns out how they predict. We don't get this kind of weather very often, so when we do, even the tiniest bit of ice will get school canceled.

Tonight I cooked Red Bean-Chipotle Burgers. I didn't bother taking a picture because Susan already has a picture that is way better than my picture would be if I took one. These burgers stayed together very well! These are the first veggies burgers I have made that haven't fallen apart. We ate 4 and have 2 left over, which I'm going to try freezing for those days when I'm too swamped with school work to cook. To go along with the burgers, I made the squash you see above. This is adapted from Nuts and Bolts Squash from Dr. Fuhrman. I only had one acorn squash, so I only made half of it. Also, I used almonds instead of pecans, and added one nice, big, juicy Medjool date. I didn't use the orange juice either, and I the squash alone for 45 minutes (without water in the pan), then put the fruit/nut mixture in the squash and baked for 10 more minutes. It was really good, the dried fruit and nuts really seemed to compliment the sweet and creamy squash.

That's all for now. I hope I can post again tomorrow!

Friday, January 12, 2007

Spinach, Potatoes and Black Beans, Costa Rican Style

Hey, I'm back. I've been real busy with school this week, and had no time to cook anything interesting or blog. Fortunately, I have Monday off, so I get a 3 day weekend. Tomorrow I have to go to a UIL tourament, though. Anyway, tonight I made Spinach, Potatoes and Black Beans, Costa Rican Style from the All God's Creatures Website. I'm not at all religious (in fact I'm an athiest), but this site has some great recipes on it. Next to it are some baked zucchini slices. I also had this salad:

It has romaine lettuce, cucumbers, red and green peppers, jicama, red cabbage, and tomato. I eat a salad similar to this one every day, either with lunch or dinner. Simple, but delicious.

Friday, January 5, 2007

Ethiopian Soup and Sorbet

I'm so glad it's Friday! I'm already sick of school after only 3 days back! Anyway, today I made two things. The first was Ethiopian-Inspired Red Lentil Soup from Fatfree Vegan Kitchen for dinner. It was delicious, and pretty simple to make.

For desert, I made Persimmon Sorbet from Passionate Vegetarian by Crescent Dragonwagon. To make it, chop up persimmons into chunks (the recipe calls for 4, but I only used 2). Place in the freezer until solid, which could take 3-4 hours. Then, process in a food processor with as little fresh orange juice as needed to blend. That's it. You have to use hachiya persimmons for this. They are large and acorn shaped. The other kind, Fuyu persimmons, are small and tomato shaped. They also have to be very ripe. They will be very soft all over when ripe, and will fall apart when you cut into them. This sorbet is so good and has a taste and texture similar to soft-serve ice cream (or at least how I remember it-it's been so long since I've eaten it!)

Thursday, January 4, 2007


Hello and welcome to my blog. This is my first post. I was planning to start this days ago, but my computer wasn't functioning. So, I have many pictures to post. I am a 16 year old vegan who lives in Texas. I am a junior in high school. Yesterday was my first day back to school after winter break. I am very health conscious, and I care about the environment and animals. When I go to college, I think I will study biology or chemistry.

I love to cook, and that will probably be the main focus of this blog. Sometimes, though, I am too busy with schoolwork, UIL math competetions, and volunteering to cook interesting things, so I just have plain beans or grains and raw or steamed veggies. Here are some things I have made the past couple of days. I know, I'm not a great photographer.

This is a stirfry I made. I thought it would be great, but it was just ok. It had a sauce made of fresh orange juice, Bragg's, garlic, ginger, kombu, and thai chiles. The tofu was marinated in this and then baked. The veggies were onions, carrots, lemon grass, zucchini, more garlic, mushrooms, and a pound of mixed frozen vegetables.

This is a raw apple pie I made from Delights of the Garden by Imar Hutchins. The crust is made of unsweetened dried bananas, dried pineapple, and dates. The filling is apples, dried pinapple, lemon juice, and apple pie spice. It was delicious, even though it was made with nasty, mealy apples. My omnivore parents loved it too.

This is Spiced and Roasted Winter Vegetables from a flyer from Whole Foods. This photo is aweful, but this is so delicious! Here is the recipe:
2 winter squash, sliced in wedges
2 parsnips, sliced in 1 inch pieces
2 sweet potatoes, cut in wedges
2 carrots, sliced
2 red onions, cut in wedges
3 Yukon gold potatoes, cut into wedges
8 cloves garlic, peeled
1 teaspoon pepper
4 cinnamon sticks
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
6 whole star anise
Preheat oven to 400 F. In a large mixing bowl, mix the vegetables and pepper. Put in a roasting pan covered with a sheet of parchment paper and bake for 25 minutes. Add last 3 ingredients and bake for 10-15 more minutes until vegetables are tender.
The original recipe called for salt, oil, sugar, and butter, but I left these out. This is so good it doesn't need any of that unhealthy stuff! If you make the amount in the recipe, this makes a HUGE amount. I only made half and it was still a lot. What you see in the photo is probably less than a quarter of the amount I made, after making half.
There was another recipe I took a picture of, but the picture isn't so pretty, this post is already long, and I want to go to bed, so that's all for now. I will try to post again tomorrow.