Sunday, August 26, 2007

Last week of vacation

It's the last week of my vacation. College starts tomorrow and I haven't gone school supply shopping. See how much I care about school. it's going to be hard to balance out school, work and b/f. FUDGE!! I hate this crap. I haven't been doing much cooking this week since I've been quite busy. All I've been doing is living off of my banana kiwi quick bread and my frozen food. We went back to the Poconos this Wednesdays and we went with Moses since he wanted to buy some fireworks. that arse hahahaha.

Banana Kiwi Quick bread (Vegetarian)

This is the quick bread I've been living off of the whole week. I had to get rid of all the kiwi I had. The quick bread was very moisty and soft. It should be finished within a few days. It's not vegan because of the cream cheese. I also need to convert it to a vegan recipe. Does not seem like a hard conversion at all. Sorry I didn't weight the kiwi and the banana as I was very lazy that day due to the fudging weather. It looks like the sky will fall and the whole world will end.

Recipe Yields 8 Mini Loaf

Wet Ingredient
1 1/2 Cup/180g All Purpose Flour
1 Cup/120g Whole Wheat Flour
2/3 Tsp Baking Soda
3/4 Tsp Baking Powder
3/4 Cup/150g Sugar,Granulated

Dry Ingredient
2 Medium Banana
3 Small Kiwi
1/2 Cup/2 oz/57g Cup Cream Cheese, soften
2 Tbsp Vegan Butter, soften (I used Soy Garden)
1/2 Cup of Cooked Homemade Rice Milk (You can use 2 eggs worth of Ener-G)
2 Tbsp Rice Milk/Soy Milk

  • Preheat the oven @ 350 F.
  • In a large bowl, sift the all purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking soda, baking powder and granulated sugar together and combine it well.
  • Cream together the cream cheese and butter. Then combine the nondairy milk and "egg" into the cream cheese/butter mixture.
  • Puree 1 banana in a food processor and chop the other banana into tiny pieces.
  • Puree 1 1/2 of the kiwi and chop the other 1 1/2 kiwi in to tiny pieces.
  • Pour in the banana and kiwi puree into the wet ingredients and mix well.
  • Make a well in the flour mixture and pour in the wet ingredients.
  • Gently combine the two mixture together. Do not over mix you're batter.
  • Then Gently fold in the chopped banana and kiwi.
  • Place it in the oven and bake for 35 minute @ 350 F or until the toothpick test come out clean.
Paul's 19th Birthday
It was my b/f's 19th birthday yesterday and I baked him a cake from VCTOTW. A maple cake to be exact. I made a 9" cake but I think it was best to make a 8" cake so it'll look higher. Basically I used the recipe from VCTOTW. I made two batches separately and one recipe of the maple frosting but 2 recipe of the frosting is best if you were to use the frosting as the filling too. I toasted some walnut and coated the side of the cake with it since I didn't have enough frosting to cover up the sides. Fudge. Had a hugeeee slice. It was really rich and sweet. My brother described it as eating pancakes. hahahha

Trip to Poconos
Went to the Poconos again and here is Paul and Moses fooling around at the Crossing Outlet.

Went to American Candles and I couldn't resist this time. DOOD HOW THE HELL CAN YOU RESIST VEGETABLES AND ANIMALS. hahah Animals and Vegetable/Fruits is my life since hello I'm living as a vegetarian. I found it quite fitting. I had to purchase this. They had a variety of Home Grown Statues but I think this figurine resembles the vegetable and the animal the most. Cauliflower body and mushroom head. It's very cute, it also has the nutritional facts for these little figures. If you can't see it on the photo it says:

Serving Size: One home Grown Friend
Amount Per Serving
Companionship 100%
Total Laughst 25g - DV 100%
Saturated Giggles 10g - DV 100%
Friendship 15mg - DV 100%
Smiles 50mg - DV 100%
Humor Lots - DV 100%

If you are interested here is the site Enesco. They also have salt shakers and appetizer forks.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Day in Manhattan

Wow many things to say and talk about well I'm going to talk about first is my day to Manhattan since that is the title after all. xD

I went with two of my friends, whom I have not seen since high school to Union Square to explore the world or organic produce, green markets and veganism and the whole shindig.

We went to the union square green market and browsed around. There's so many produces and there was this vendor there selling vegan baked goods...well only two...There were the apple cranberry cake and the carrot raisin cookie!! I have not tried it yet though since I was eating alllll day today haha.

I also bought some berry hot garlic jam. No berries only garlic and hot peppers. It was expensive though, $4 for a 2.5 oz. It's minuscules!!! When I went to the poconos I bought my 10.5 oz mayhaw jame for $3.50 at the local green market. There were so many items ranging from herbs to vegetables to flowers to baked goods to ice cream to cheese to goat hide....WTF?! goat hide. I got so pissed I was standing in front of the standing screaming OMFG they killed the poor goats. GOAT KILLERS. Cursing like crazy. It was so upsetting to see. It ruined the whole excitement of being at the green market so we quickly left.

We went to Galaxy Global Eatery a "new age" cafe with a full menu and a lot of vegetarian/vegan choices. There weren't that many vegan choices for the weekend brunch though. We didnt get to see the whole menu since they only gave us the weekend brunch menu. I took the paper menu for a souvenir and that was when I learned that they have the most scariest non veg food in the world!! They served rabbits, ostrich, bison and buffalo. NO FUCKING KIDDING about the new age theme!! As for the vegetarian/vegan food items, they did serve seitan and tempeh and a lot of tofu. I was surprised a non veg restaurant would have even heard of seitan and tempeh. For vegans, there were the choices of all the salads, rosemary tofu skewers, vegan breakfast and bbq buffalo seitan with out the japanese eggplant since it was breaded. As for the vegetarians, there were many choices like the whole wheat blueberry flaxseed pancakes and many of the other dishes as the turkey bacon can be substituted with the tempeh bacon. I got myself the Vegan Breakfast.

The tofu scramble was a bit bland but it had a nice parsley aroma. The potato and tempeh was delicious but the salad was a bit too salty. Maybe the chef mistakenly seasoned the salad a second time instead of the tofu scramble. Don't understand as to how the chef can get that incorrect though...

Archer Farms Fruit Bars (Vegan)
Here's what I've found at Target...FRUIT BARS!! It's like fruit preserve...but they had boxes of fruit preserve next to them so I guess they're not as similar as I think it is. I've bought the pomegranate and the Tropical fruit bars. According to the ingredients of the Pomegranate one, it says apple, natural pomegranate flavor, fruit juice concentrates (pomegranate, blueberry and lemon), elderberry juice, absorbic acid (vitamin c). Here's the ingredients to the Tropical fruit bars:

Vegetable Crackers (Vegan)

Free gift from the Asian grocery store!! My mom got it for free for spending over a certain amount of money in Hong Kong Supermarket. Yayy it's vegan! Here's what the ingredients have to say wheat flour, starch, vegetable oil, celery, scallion, onion, salt, leavening agent (it says in Chinese: leavening powder for food usage) , edible color yellow no.4

Concoctions muahah...

Green Tea Jasmin Cupcake~Muffins
I was intending to make some green tea jasmin muffin but they turned out to be more like cupcakes :[ I must experiment more!! I think I over seeped the green tea because the mufifn had a bitter after taste.

Lara Bars Copy Cats
I love lara bars but I don't think I can afford to buy a bar ranging from $1.29 to $1.79 everytime I go to the supermarket. It super duper good!! I must make my own I shall experiment and see how close I can get to the real deal.

We only had a tub of kiwi and one banana left so I went to buy some fruits after work and my mom also saw that there were no more fruit so she decided to buy some fruits while she was at work and guess what we ended up with? A LOT OF FRUITS. We have 12 different varieties!!

A bunch of Banana
3 Pears
8 Pluots
11 Plums
A bag of Logan
1 Cantaloupe
3 Nectarines
10 Oranges
A bag of Grapes
9 Mango
9 Kiwi
3 Dragon Fruits (Not in the Photo)

I love durians, the king of all fruits!! I had 6 nuggets and mommy bought another durian!!! It's 99 cent per lb!! DURIAN SEASON IS HERE!!!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Homemade Rice Milk

I'm going to try and post smaller and more frequent post. It's hard to browse because you would have to keep scrolling down the the bottom of nothing just to get to your destination. :3 I've said that before but apparently I haven't improved yet.

Rice Milk
Have you ever tried Rice Dream or Whole's Food 365 Rice Milk? If you haven't you should! My initial reaction was damn this is good. I personally prefer rice milk over soy milk because it's so light, crisp and tasty but, soy milk provides more protein. I'm so upset by the price of these alternative milk since it cost around 3 dollars for a quart of UHT milk. I can finish that in two days!!! I've tried making my own rice milk using the recipes acquire from nomilk. I've tried two of the recipe and they do not come close to any of the commercial rice milk. Here's my review for them.

Rice Milk Recipe #1
1 Cup of Warm Cooked Rice
4 Cups of Warm Water
1/2 Tsp Vanilla

  • Cook some rice or you can use left over and put it in a blend.
  • Pour in the warm water and blend it on high until there are no more rice particles.
The Recipe ask you to let it sit for half and hour and pour off the water but my rice milk has been sitting in my refrigerator for a couple of days and never separated. The liquid was very thick and pudding looking. It did not taste like rice milk but rather like rice. If you have ever tried congee, it's like a pureed form of it. It's not the best drink beverage but I think it would work great as a thickener in cakes and it goes well with coffee.

Rice Milk Recipe #2

1 Cup Rice, Raw
4 Cup Warm Water
1 Tbsp Sugar
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract (optional)
  • Wash the rice until the water becomes clear to get rid of all the starch.
  • Soak the rice in water overnight or for at least 4 hours.
  • Rinse the rice out with clean water and wash the rice until the water is clear.
  • Put the rice into the blender and pour in the warm water and blend for about 3 minutes.
  • Let the rice particles separate from the liquid and blend it again for another 1 minute. *(I found that if you just pour the layer of water off as the rice milk, it taste jsut like water)
  • Pour the rice water into a fine muslin cheesecloth and catch the liquid with a bowl or a bottle to filter out the remaining rice particles.
I think this recipe taste the most like the commercial rice milk BUT unlike the manufacturing companies, we do not have a nice fancy filtration device to filter out the liquid from the solid resulting in gritty rice milk!! Another problem is that when you let the rice milk sit in your refrigerator, the liquid will separate and it must be shaken before you use it. It is also not wise to warm or cook the rice milk because it will turn into a thicker form the previous rice milk. It's going to turn into paste!


I'm in love with buns! Steamed buns to be exact. This has to be my favorite brand of steam buns. They're in such an adorable size and they come in several different flavor!! Red bean paste, lotus paste, sesame paste and butter cream. I don't the brand name in English but I just call it the Flower Head Man Buns!!! My mom bought the sesame paste one and the butter cream one. The butter cream is not vegan because it contains butter, cream and cheese powder. I'm not exactly sure if that is vegetarian since I'm not really going to call international to China. I've never heard of cheese powder but I'm assuming it's custard powder since many of the other companies uses custard powder to make the custard fillings. My mom love these buns too so she'll be eating the butter cream one. I believe the other fillings are all vegan but I don't have them stocked in my freezer. I'll edit this post when I purchase the other fillings.

Flower Head Man Buns
Sesame Paste Buns - Vegan
Butter Cream Buns - Not Vegan and ?? if it's vegetarian
Red Bean Buns - ?? for now
Lotus Bean Bun - ?? for now

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Weekend getaway

More like a one day get away. I went with my b/f to the Poconos. Stayed at hojos and lots of candle stores/factories. They're also a cute little farmers market near by and two health food store. Awesome. Pangea the restaurant in the Poconos had a wide variety of food from different parts of the world and they also had a whole section for vegetarians. The waitress was very nice unlike some other waitress when you ask them about the food they would just lie about their answer. We asked the waitress some questions and she actually when to ask the chefs to find out the answers.
Other than that I didn't do much at all this week except for buy buy buy.

Crystallized Ginger (Vegan)
Bought some Vietnamese "sweetened ginger" thinking it's crystallized ginger at my local Chinese supermarket. I bought it before but I remember to taste more spicy. They also did not look like that either. It looks and taste like they have been boiled down and lost all it's ginger taste and dusted with confectioner sugar. It reminds me of those sugared cover Chinese new year candy like those sugar coated winter melons. I got the recipe from Great Cooking.

Verdict: I love sweet spicy ginger!!

Recipe Yields around 5.6 oz - 6 oz/156 g - 170 g
8 oz/227 g Large Young Ginger (Old wrinkly ginger has thread in it)
2 Cups/400 g Sugar, Granulated
1 Tbsp Water

  • Peel the ginger with a spoon and slice it 1/8th to 1/4th an inch which ever way that will yield you the widest slice. (Yes peel it with a spoon! The spoon is harder than the ginger skin but not harder than the ginger so it makes peeling so easy. You wont peel away all the flesh of the ginger either.
  • Toss the ginger with the sugar in a bowl
  • In a large sauce pan put in the water, sugar and ginger. Try to layer the ginger evenly so that it gets cooked evenly.
  • Bring the mixture to a slow simmer on low heat for about 45 minutes or until the syrup turns into paste. Stir when things starts sticking together or the ginger starts burning. It's best not to stir at all or else the sugar will crystallized. When it looks like the mixture will brown, lower the heat Do not let it brown at all or else it'll be too hard or bitter.
  • When it reaches a paste like mixture start stirring the mixture more often to form sugar crystals.
  • When the whole paste turn into sugar crystal place your crystallized ginger into an air tight jar or container. You can save the ginger sugar for tea or for your gingersnap cookies.

Sweet Potato Ginger Tong Sui (Vegetarian/Vegan)
I love ginger and sweet potato who know how many bowls I ate in one sitting. "Tong Sui" literally means sweet water in chinese so this is a dessert recipe. It's actually a sweet soup. The measurement is really not on scale because I just made it to my preference with no measuring cups. My mom never use measuring cups or any measuring utensils. She just grabs and dump and that's exactly what I did. I think the rock candy and the peen tong contains honey. I'm not sure... I was almost finished with the dessert, all except for dissolving the sugar but I had to run out to do something quickly. I'm assuming my mom used the rock candy cause that's all she uses.

24 oz- 36 oz/680g - 1021 g Sweet Potatoes
2 in" worth Ginger
2 Handful Dried Jujubes (Chinese Red Dates) (optional)
1 Handful Dried Logan (Fruit similar to the lychee) (optional)
Peen Tong/Rock Candy if none are available use Granulated Sugar
  • Peel and cube the sweet potato ginger into 3/4" - 1" cubes.
  • Peel the ginger with a spoon and slice it 1/8"-1/4" thick.
  • Rinse both the dried red dates and the dried logan. They both can be purchased at the dinese herbal store or your local Chinese supermarket.
  • Dump the sweet potatoes, ginger, jujubes and logans in a huge pot and pour in enough water cover 1 cm over the sweet potatoes.
  • Let it boil on med to high heat until the sweet potatoes are soft and sweeten the soup with the sugar. Put as much as you like.
Frey Chocolate Bar (Vegan)
Frey, the Swiss chocolate company also has an American Line of chocolate called the supreme. Target is the only place in America that sells Frey's chocolate. So far I have only found out that Frey's Swiss Dark Chocolate and Frey's Supreme Hot Chilli Peppers are vegan but may contain traces of milk. All the other chocolates like Endanger Species, Chocolove, Rapunzel and Green and Black are considered vegan but may contain traces of milk. Up to you to decide. I do no have the email to authenticate my words on the Swiss dark chocolate but the ingredients does not contain any milk solid, butter, nonfat milk and other dairy products. I need to buy the bar and scan the wrapper on. I do have the email saying that the hot chilli pepper is vegan.

Click on the photo to enlarge

Korean Traditional Rice Syrup (Vegan)

I found it at the local Korean supermarket. It cost $3.99 but my b/f bought it at his local korean market for a buck cheaper and twice the size. I was comparing and contrasting this syrup and the one I had from Lundberg. The korean rice syrup was a bit more diluted and the taste was not as strong. It's possible that water was used to dilute it or it was mixed with malt syrup but I can't tell for sure. On the ingredients all it said was Rice Malt syrup. I think i might use this as a substitute for brown rice syrup.

Bread.A Bakery
Hooray a vegetarian bakery opened near my neighborhood. For all those who live in Flushing, NY you should check it out. Although it's quite small and has not so great of a selection, the girl who works there is really nice. A Taiwanese person opened this place so the workers there might not speak English well. I know I was having a hard time communicating with the girl who works there since I can't speak Mandarin and she was not quite familiar with English. I hope the other workers there are more knowledgeable of English.

They have cakes, cookies, buns and entree.
They have a variety of bread and buns. I love buns!!! They had many buns like those Chinese bakery buns. They have the red bean, cinnamon raisin, black sesame and others. I love the fact that someone actually tried to make those vegetarian buns!! The drinks they serve are very delicious too.

They don't really serve any vegan cake or cookies but they are willing to custom make it for you. Yay vegan birthday cake but damnnit birthday passed. Too bad it's situated in a poor area though. It's right on an area in which there are many construction companies, auto shops and hardware stores. I am afraid they might do a lot of business. The place also a bit small. Its like an extremely small bakery with 2 tables and several chais in the back.

Goodies from the Place
Po Lo Bao (Pineapple Bun er...more like pumpkin bun)

It was Po Lo Bao at all. I think it was the pumpkin bun but I don't think the girl understood me when I was speak in Cantonese but never the less it tasted quite good. I loved the dough especially the flaky coat layer. I was having so much fun peeling it as i was eating it. The filling was decent, not the best but not the worst either. It was mildly sweet and reminded me of apples. I thought it would have had more filling though.

Hong Dao Sa Bao (Red Bean Paste Bun)
I think it tasted funky to me. The red bean didnt really taste like red bean. It tasted a bit bitter and not sweet at all.

Hak Zee Ma Bao (Black Sesame Bun)

It looked really cute... too cute to eat. I like the walnuts in the bottom of the filling and the sesame was pretty good.

Everything there was fairly decent. I like the service since the girl did try really hard to help me and I loved the drink that my brother got and the fact that there are buns!!

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Mango cheese cake

I forgot to post last week. I could've sworn I did but it's too late.

Mango Pineapple Cheesecake (Lacto Vegetarian)

Verdict: My mom a 2 boxes of 10 huge mango for $5.50. Too many mango for us to consume and plus I still need to get rid of my cream cheese and graham crackers.

They were the red, yellow, green orange one. I prefer the whole orange one. I think if you used the orange one, it'll taste much better.

Recipe Yields 8" pie/8 slices 228Cal/serving

16/62g Graham Cracker Rectangles or you can use a prepared crust
2-3 Tbsp Vegan Butter, Cold (I used Soy Garden)

1 1/2 Pkg/ 12 oz Neuchatel, Room Temperature (You can try it with vegan cream cheese or use silken tofu + lemon juice
1/2 tsp Pineapple Essence
1 1/4 Egg Using Ener-G, Seperated
4 Tbsp/78g/ Mango Puree 0r 1/2 Cup Sliced Mango Pureed in the Blender
1/2 Cup + 2 Tbsp/125g Sugar, Granulated

  • Preheat the oven to 350F
  • To prepare the crust, crush the graham cracker into crumbs and cut the cold butter into the crumbs.
  • Press the crumb onto the bottom and the side of your 8" pie pan and bake it in the oven for 8-10 minutes.
  • Lower the oven temperature down to 325F.
  • Beat the pineapple essence and sugar into the neuchatel cheese until the batter becomes smooth
  • Separate the batter in half and place one half in another bowl.
  • In one bowl of batter beat in the mango puree until it is combined. This will be the mango layer of the cheesecake.
  • In the other bowl mix in 1/2 egg using Ener-G plus the required amount of water.
  • In the mango cheesecake batter mix in 3/4 egg using Ener-G plus the requied amount of water.
  • Pour the plain pineapple batter into the pie crust and even out the layer.
  • Then pour the mango cheesecake batter onto of the pineapple layer and even it out.
  • Place it in the oven and bake it at 324F for an hour or until the middle of the pie is very close to firm when you jiggle it.
Banana Nut Toast (Vegan)

Verdict: Bananas going bad.

Recipe Yields 1 Serving 404Cal/Serving

1 Large Banana
2 Slices of Bread or bagel
2 Heaping Tbsp Cashew Butter (more or less to your liking)
Pinch of Cinnamon, Grounded (optional)
  • Spread the 1 tbsp of cashew butter on each slice of bread
  • Slice the banana 1/4" thick and line it across each slice of bread. (I could fit 4 slices by 4 slices)
  • Quickly sandwich the two slices together before the banana falls off.
  • Heat a skillet or pan and toast your bread on med-low heat until the bread is lightly browned.
  • Then take the remaining banana and heat it up in the skillet/pan and throw in a pinch of cinnamon and serve it on top of the toast.
Banana Nut Jam Rice Cake (Vegan)

verdict: Keep buying banana's even though I know I can never finish them quick enough.

Couldn't help but take a huge bite out of it before I took the picture.

Recipe Yields 1 Serving 285Cal/Serving

1 Plain Rice Cake
1 Tbsp Plum Preserve*
1 Tbsp Cashew Butter*
1 Small Banana
1 Heaping Tbsp of Plain Soy Yogurt*
  • Spread the cashew butter onto the rice cake, then spread the Plum preserve on top of the cashew butter.
  • Slice the banana into 1/4" and line it around the rice cake.
  • Nuke it in the microwave on high for 45 sec.
  • Top it off with the Soy Yogurt
*Use what ever flavor you wish.

Pathmark Brand Plain Rice Cake (Vegan)

Rice cake...I want to make some asian rice cake now. Same name but totally different. Asian rice cake are normally made of glutinous rice. Japanese rice cake is known as mochi and in China, Malaysia, Thailand, they're known as filling wrapped with rice. Actually they're many variations. They also have an actual cake made of steamed rice topped with dates and red beans.

Plain Flavor

Dude I shop at Pathmark and buy pathmark brand items cause I'm cheap and can't afford to buy organic food at the health shops. Nothing can beat pathmark's weekly specials! hahaha

Didn't really check out the other flavors. I believe most of these other flavors are vegan as well but it was a while ago when I bought this.

Vegetable Cutlets (Vegan)

Got the recipe off of I don't quite trust that site. There's no rating, no nothing. These don't taste so well. They're quite bland so I ended up adding some onion powder and pepper which helped a bit.

Bing Tong Wuu Lo (Vegan)

My dad always tell us that he use to eat these as a kid even thought these originated from the Northern parts of China, they were available in the Southern parts as well. My uncle went back to China this summer and he went on a tour to Beijing and got these for us. I've always wanted to try them. Hm... Thank goodness they're vegan. I'm pretty sure they might have these available in the Chinese supermarkets. The freshly made ones contain several balls of these poked through a long skewer.

They're made with hawthorn white sugar, rock candy ( a type of sugar Chinese people use), Maltose, Sesame seeds. They're just basically hawthorn formed into balls and coated with a sugary syrup and sprinkled with sesame seeds. Some are plain and do not contain sesame seeds. Hawthorns are actually quite healthy for you.