Saturday, August 30, 2008


School has started...great. Summer passed by so quickly.

I made some Whole Wheat bread and I used a folding technique to knead my very very wet dough. Accord to the Fresh loaf, "the wetter the better". It's nearly impossible to knead wet bread since it'll stick all over your finger so that's where the folding method comes in. It came out very coarse so beats me. I must readjust some more. Yay!!

Mooncakee!! The mid autumn festival is coming well it's already the 2nd day. It's suppose to be on Sept 14th. Im going to make myself some vegan mooncakes. Im going to try the bing pei which is the one made with cooked glutinous rice flour (koh fun) and I'm going to try to make the traditional Cantonese baked mooncake. No salted duck eggs obviously :] If i have time I'll try to make the jelly mooncake which is made with agar agar. I'm so excited but with school and possibly observation for my secondary class, I'm quite scared I won't be able to make it on time.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Lots of salad

Long Week

Since last week of Friday my b/f and Moses has been redoing an apartment in Brooklyn. It took us four days to finish and during one of those days we went to an authentic vegan Caribbean Restaurant. It was awesome. My b/f and Moses ordered the vegan hamburger but I bought my own lunch for that day. I made mushroom rice. The employees made the burgers fresh there. It was awesome. It wasn't like those frozen patty that they heated up, it was fresh. I took a bite out of my b/f's and it has a very delicious special sauce coating it. I couldn't help myself staring at all the baked goods so I bought myself a Cassava Pone and I bought my b/f a coconut roll but it wasn't the traditional coconut roll. It was colored by beets.

We worked Friday, Saturday, Monday and Tuesday. On sunday we went to the beach with a group of friend. I bought in the Mini Crustless Tofu Quiches from the FatFreeVegan blog. I think it tasted great but I don't think my other friends really liked the taste of nutritional yeast. :/ I can't force them. It's just that I have to pick better choices of vegan food they are more fond and use to.

Yesterday I bought some food to a picnic with my b/f but it was raining so we ate it in the car. I made some macaroni and cheese from VegWeb. I thought it tasted ok but it wasn't cheesy enough for your regular maracroni and cheese but it was pretty decent. I also made some garbanzo and black bean salad.

Yields 4 Serving 194 Cal/ Serving

8 oz Garbanzo Beans, Cooked and Drained
7 oz Black Beans, Cooked and Drained
1 Handful of Spinach
1 Handful of Amaranth ( Or just another handful of Spinach)
1/3 Cup Scallions, Chopped
1/4 Cup Cilantro, Minced
1 1/2 Tbsp Basil, Minced
1 Tsp Fresh Lime Juice
1 Lemon Boy Tomato, Chopped (I used it for color since it's very yellow. You can use a regular beefsteak tomato)
10 Grape Tomatoes (Also used for color)
6 Green Olives
Salt and Pepper to taste

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Green and Brown Goodness

Vegetarian Times Vegan Thumbprint cookies

My boyfriend wanted to buy some Pepperidge Farm Verona cookies which are totally not vegan but he is not a vegan yet but he trying. I know he wasn't going to buy it but nevertheless, I felt bad and I told him I'll make him some vegan thumbprint cookies since apparently this current September issue of Vegetarian Times happens to have a recipe vegan thumbprint cookies.

I found the cookie to be quite tasty but before the initial bite there was a strong aroma of soy/tofu. I think it's just from the Soy Garden Earth Balance margarine I used. I also found the cookie to be a bit softer than how I hoped it to be. I used mayhaw jam rather than the traditional raspberry jam. I only had the mayhaw one at the time.

The thumbprint cookies does not even really resemble a thumbprint cookie. It looks more like a jam filled cookie. I know my boyfriend LOVES jam, well filling in general. He over does it many of the time so I decided to over do it just for him. Rather than giving the cookie a cute little thumb indentation, it was more like a huge TOE indentation. I over filled the middle with jam and it kinda spread during the baking process. Oh wells.

Yields 36 cookies 76 Cal/Cookies
1 1/2 Cup All Purpose Flour
1/2 Cup Whole Wheat Flour
1/2 Tsp Baking Powder
1/4 Tsp Salt
3/4 Cup Sugar
1/2 Cup Margarine, Room Temperature
1/3 Cup Vanilla Soymilk
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
1/4 Tsp Almond Extract
1 Cup Raspberry Jam [ Use any, Apricot taste good as well ]

  • Sift and combine all the flour, baking powder and salt together in a big bowl.
  • Beat the sugar and margarine together.
  • Then slowly beat in the soymilk, vanilla and almond extract.
  • Beat ind the flour mixture until everything is well combined
  • Wrap the bowl in plastic wrap and chill it in the refrigerator for at least half an hour.
  • Preheat the oven to 325 F.
  • Take the dough out and roll it into 36 balls and place it onto a greased cookie sheet or parchment paper lined onto of the cookie sheet.
  • Gently flatten the the ball of dough a bit and make an indentation with your thumb.
  • Put the cookie sheet back into the refrigerator.
  • Pour the jam into a bowl and break up the big chunk of jam with a fork.
  • Then place pur the jam into a pastry bag or a zip lock bag with a hole slit on a corner.
  • Take out your cookies and fill the indentations with the jam.
  • Place it into the oven and bake it for 12 to 15 minutes or or until lightly browned.
  • Cool the cookies on a cooling rack.
Fat Free Vegan Can't be Beet Chocolate Cake

I got this recipe off of FatfreeVegan. I wanted to get rid of some of the beets that I had in my fridge. These little cupcakes were really delicious but I found it to be a bit too chocolaty. This cake were moist and not dense despite the fact that it was made up of mainly whole wheat flour. I wanted to get rid of the baby food that were in my cupboard so I used that instead of the apple sauce and I also reduced the sugar from 1 Cup to 3/4 Cup. I found the cupcakes to be sweet enough but my boyfriend thought that it was very subtle and would preferred it to be sweeter. He described it as eating very dark chocolate. I made them as cupcakes since it were much easier for me to eat and I gave more than half away to my boyfriend since I'm the only one in my family who eats vegan food, chocolaty food and sweet food. I would never be able to finish it.

Avocado Amaranth CousCous for 1 Person

I don't normally post meal recipe since I'm never measure anything I just eyeball it so the measurements for this will obviously be from eyeballing. I hate it that I am the only one eating. My parents thinks that because I am vegan I don't have much to eat want so they don't eat my food even though I offer it to them. They also don't like any other type of food other than Chinese. I always end up with so much leftover and I hate that so this recipe should be enough for one person. I still think it's more than enough for one person. It's like for one and a half person. This dish is a bit Chinese and a bit Middle Eastern. I believe that's where it originated. I have never seen amaranth leaves sold anywhere else except for the Chinese market so if there aren't any amaranth leaves available, you can use spinach.

In Cantonese it's called Yeen Choy (莧菜). Amaranth is also called Chinese spinach and there are two varieties. There are the white and red. The white are just the regular green leaf but the red one has purple in the middle of the leaf and the purple branches outwards. When you blanch the red amaranth, the water turns purple like beets. Amaranth are very high Vitamin A, Vitamin C, calcium and iron. There is up to 28% Calcium and 17% iron in one cup of amaranth. That's how much I can grab with my chopstick at one time and I tend to reach for my amaranth several times cause I love it oh so much.

Yields 1 serving/ 289 Cal per Serving
1/4 Cup CousCous
1/4 Cup Vegetable Broth

2 Big Shallots, Finely Diced
1 Clove of Garlic, Minced
Handful of Amaranth, Rinsed and Roughly Chopped [You can use Spinach]
2 Tsp Thai Basil, Minced [ You can use Basil ]
2 Tsp Cilantro, Minced
2 Strand of Green Onions, Finely chopped
1/3 Stalk of Celery, Finely Diced
1/4 Avocado, Diced
5 Grape tomatoes, Quartered
1 -1 1/2 Tbsp Tomato Sauce or enough to lightly coat everything.
Salt for tasting

  • Lightly spray a nonstick pan with oil and cook the shallots on medium heat for about 3 minutes.
  • Add in the garlic and continue to cook until the shallots are transparent.
  • Then add in the amaranth and cook until they are dark green. Then put it in a dish and set it aside.
  • Cook the couscous with the vegetable broth in the same pan as the onions until all the broth is gone. Please watch carefully since there is very little couscous and moisture, it will easily burn.
  • Fluff it up with a fork and mix the shallot and garlic into the couscous.
  • Lightly toss in the basil, cilantro, leek, celery, tomatoes and avocado.
  • Add in the salt and tomato sauce and lightly coat everything. I used tomato and basil flavored tomato sauce.

Hoe Down

The Hoe Down at Farm Sanctuary was awesome. As we were arriving to Farm Sanctuary, we witness one of the most beautiful sunset. We had to stop in the middle of the road and get out to take pictures. Thank goodness there were no other cars on the road. It was so empty and relaxing.

We saw many cute little animals and we were allowed to pet and see most of the animals with the exceptions of those who were quarantined due to illness or not used to human contacts.

The staff working at farm sanctuary said that they rescued 69 gestation pigs from Iowa during the Iowa flood. It was so sad. Even during the time of a natural disaster, the farmers rushed to collect their corns to take with them but apparently they dont do the same for the pigs. They just left them behind because they were not worth as much as the corn. The majority of the pigs were died but those who managed to get free were shot down by the people on the levy because they were afraid that the heavy pigs would destroy the levy when they try to climb onto the levy. The people were the one who breeds the poor pigs to be so large that many of them get knee and feet problems as they get older.

Turkeys gooble gooble. It's so sad. Many turkeys get their beaks microwaved so that the tip of the beaks die and it it eventually will drop off. The same procedure is used to destroy their toes so that they don't peak or claw each other to death. They also get their snood teared off as a little baby chick. It's so terrible. They are also bred to gain a lot of weight in a short period of time and many of them can not work due to the weight problem and the missing toes. They can't even fly when they fall. People are so terrible.

That goat is Brooklyn and the guy petting it, is my b/f Paul. The name of the goat speaks for itself. It was recovered from Brooklyn, NY from a live goats and lamb market. The lucky little goat was abel to escape death. Thank goodness.

Baa baa black sheep have you any wool yes sir yes sir three bags full. One for the master, one for the dame, one for the boy who lives down lane. Many of these sheep are used for wool and like the other farm animals, they are bred to be a specific way. These wool sheep were bred to have folded skin so that there would be more surface area to produce wool. The folded skin causes the caretaker to accidentally shave off parts of the skin. The sheep were also bred to produce so much wool that they can not even shed for themselves. Boo wool. Boycott wool!!

Moo mooo. Cows are so cute but a few were a bit aggressive. They were busy munching on their grass.
The Farm Sanctuary staff said most of their bunnies were rescued from a breeder. The breeder's neighbor saw how bad the conditions were and managed to convince her to turn them in. Another half were recovered from experimental laboratories.

We also attended a nature hike where Geoge Eisman was the speaker. It wasn't much of a hike. We just walked behind the People Barn hahaha. We we learned that those disgusting weed growing on your lawn is very edible and nutritious.

Dandelions - You can eat the whole flower including the flowers and the white seeds when it becomes old. The only thing is that the leaves would become more bitter after it flowers but it's still edible.

Red/White Clovers - The whole plant is edible. It's also very nutritious too so you can chuck some into your salad.

Plantain Plants - Do you remember these big huge plants growing on your lawn?! They are so annoying but also very good for you. Like the other three plants. The whole plant is edible but I'm not sure about the roots though. The leaves are good for cuts and minor injuries so just grab a leaf and chew it to make a paste and then place it on your wound. The seeds can also be used to thicken soup and not only that, they are good for your digestive system. It's a natural laxative. They are sold in stores under the name psyllium. Instead of paying $5 dollars for a small bottle, you can collect your own.

Beware though. You should becareful of pesticide spraying so just call your park's department and what not to make sure before you go out to collect your goodies.