Taco Tuesday

Well, we made it! We have been residents of Mississippi for just over 3 weeks now, and are finally getting settled in. Most of the boxes are unpacked and the last room that needs work (the man cave) is well on its way. Liam has been taking everything very well, which is exceptional because for the first few days he slept in his pack and play in an over crowded room .  The area around our new house is very cute, with lots of stuff walking distance.  I just picked out a new bicycle today and am looking forward to taking  family rides down to the beach that is about a 10 minute bike ride from here!

Liam and I will be coming back to Oklahoma as soon as my youngest brother Gregory gets home for his break in his tour in Iraq, can’t wait to see every one!

On to food ❤

Before we left Oklahoma, my mom introduced me to the site Happy Herbivore. She is a fat free vegan, and has lots of interesting and yummy recipes on her website for free, and she also has a cook book and a second is in the works! The first thing of hers I tried was her chickpea tacos. I have made one or two alterations to this new staple in our house, but essentially it is just the same as hers.

The first time I made these Matt almost instantly requested a “Taco Tuesday” and with the exception of a few days when I had no access to a working oven, and or food processor, we have had these eeeevery Tuesday. Liam usually eats the filling with a little of the aoli and eats it off pieces of taco shell lol.

Chickpea Tacos

1 can chickpeas

1 T tamari

2 t lemon juice

  • Taco seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Rinse and drain chickpeas, roll on paper towel to dry off. Mix together all the seasonings, lemon juice and tamari and toss the chickpeas in the sauce.  Lightly oil a cookie sheet and spread out. Bake for about 30 min stirring frequently until a little crunchy. The first time I made these, I served them just as she said, whole. Matt didnt like that very much and so we pureed some with a little bit of vegetable stock and made it more mushy. This is the tastiest way I think.

Takes around 1/4 cup of vegatable stock and scraping down the sides as needed to get it to this point.

I serve our tacos with diced onion, tomato,  a diced arugula, spinach mix, black bean salad, and a sriracha aeoli.

Black bean and corn salad

1 can black beans, rinsed and drained

1 can corn, drained

1 can diced green chilies

1/2 white onion diced

1 roma tomato diced

2 T cilantro chopped

2 T red wine vinigar

1 /2 T agave

1 T lime juice

1 t cumin

1/8 t cayenne

salt and pepper

Mix all together! (nom as discretely as possible- I have been known to spoil my dinner on this while fixing everything else)

Fancy sriracha aeoli

2 T veganaise

1t lemon juice

1/2 t cumin

1 1/2 t cilantro chopped

1t sriacha

salt and pepper

mix well, put on everything …tacos…sammiches….

I eat my “taco” like this….every thing all chopped up in a salad with one taco shell smushed on it. nummy ❤

So, thats about how much effort I put into dinner 5 or 6 days a week. Some days…like yesterday… I can barely convince myself to cook an Amy’s cheese-less pizza, much less make a proper dinner.  So days like that inevitably end in frozen pizza, or this 🙂

Not too glamorous huh? Well, this is something that came to me from an old recipe. I used to make Black bean and sweet potato burritos, and this is essentially that, minus the tortilla, and the beans are a little different. I like to bake my sweet potatoes in a 425 degree oven for any where from 40 min – 1.5 hrs depending on how big the potato is. When the skin is crispy, and the potato can be pierced easily with a fork, it is done. I like to cook it a little longer than some because I like the caramelization that happens .. .sooooooo good.

Black beans ( I wrote down the recipie!)

I will rewrite it for those of you not fluent in chicken scratch ❤

Black Beans

1 can Black Beans

2 T soy sauce

1 T yellow mustard

1/8 t cayenne

1/2 t oregano

1t garlic powder

1/2 t onion powder

1 t cumin

1 1/2 T lime juice

Put everything in a small sauce pot and allow to simmer for 15 – 20 min.

Put over nummy sweet potatoes top with diced white onions, chopped jalapenos and sriracha ❤

I’m off to play Zelda! Don’t be jealous of my ocarina!  One more random picture just cause it makes me smile ❤

This window is over my sink, I have ALWAYS wanted a window like that! ❤  Gnnight! Miss you all!

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Mmmm…. bagels….

Bagels are quite possibly the most wonderful use of carbohydrates known to man. However, a truly fantastic bagel is hard to come by and there are a ridiculous amount of average and sub par ones out there to sort through.  To me there is only one type of bagel worth buying and that is an everything. But they can be so sneaky! You look at it, see all the poppy seeds, bits of onion and garlic and sunflowerseeds, then you get it home, open it up and find out its just a fancy package for a plain bagel 😦 such disappointment. This is what I was faced with the last time we went shopping. The looked like they had such potential! But, alas 😦 boring plain. Oh well, just need more stuff on it then.

I think I have said before that while we are here we are lucky enough to be getting fresh eggs from a friends parents farm! I love scrambled eggs, I just hate the idea of the chickens in their hell hole cells… But yeay! Guiltless eggs! I bought some Morning Star sausages, having read about how close to sausage tasting they were, and couldn’t get the idea of a breakfast bagel out of my head. Normally, I don’t bother with veggie pattie anything unless I make it, but having so few kitchen utensils takes it’s tole, and I am not interested in trying to Macgyver  my way in to some seitan while I am here.  Aaaany way….  LOVE THESE SAUSAGES! They fooled Matt. I made him take a bite (he was playing modern warfare and is used to me shoving food in his face without warning)

“Wait, what is this I’m eating?”

Me “Saussage!”

Matt “what, like tofu sausage?”

so cute 🙂

I have made these a few times, but I know now that I have to only have half of one in front of me or I will eat it all.  I actualy went and woke Matt up to come finish the other half of the above bagel because I kept ninjaing bites….

This one had goat cheese mmmm!

This is what my counter looks like after we go grocery shopping… I’m not even going to show you the fridge!

While we were in Canada, since we didn’t get in to cooking much, and because basically every meal consisted of meat something or other, I bought lots of like 3 bean or chickpea salads from the grocery store deli. They were so yummy and I was really feeling something on the lighter side today, so I decided to attempt a recreation.

Turned out pretty good I think!

Chicpea Salad

1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained

1 small zuchini diced

1/2 onion diced

1/4 c cucumber diced

6 or 7 grape tomatoes quartered

parsley

dressing

3 T balsamic vinager

2 T olive oil

1/4 t red pepper flakes

1/4 t oregano

1/4 t dijon mustard

1 t agave or sugar

2 T lemon juice

salt and  pepper

In a medium sized bowl combine all the vegetables and peas.  Place all the ingredients for the dressing in a small jar with a lid and shake. Toss salad in dressing and let rest a few hours. (I was starving so I didnt wait but have since gone back for seconds and it is way better)  Top with goat cheese.

Liam is awake! ❤ Hope you all have a wonderful day!

Cleaning out the fridge

Freaking crazy day today… As I am sure many of you know, Monday we had an awesome storm that produced many tornadoes, and some of the biggest freaking hail I have ever seen. While I am exceedingly grateful that we were not hit by a tornado, we did have baseballs flying at the side of our house for about fifteen minutes at what seemed like sixty miles an hour. This did not break as much as it could have, it did however, shatter my windshield and dent the crap out of my roof 😦 So now we need a new roof 😦 crumbs 😦 So all day (literally) I have been talking to insurance claims adjusters, the insurance agency, or roofers. All the while crossing my fingers that I am not making huge unfix-able mistakes. Stress! lol  k done pouting!

On a more fun note, my brother, his roommate and his roomies super sweet girlfriend came over for dinner the other night and we had so much fun! I really wish I had taken pictures of that dinner because the desert at least was something I had never tried, but will be making many many many times lol. I got a before picture, but it is not that impressive.

Chocolate tofu pie *yes it is really tofu!*

1 box silken tofu (I used extra firm)

1 bag semi sweet chocolate chips

1/4 cup strong black coffee

2 tsp vanilla

1 graham pie crust

Melt chocolate over a double boiler ( ie a metal bowl on a pot of simmering water lol, seriously, who has one of those?)

Break tofu up in food processor add the chocolate, coffee and vanilla blend until super smooth.

Pour in to your crust and let set in fridge at least 2 hours. I made a strawberry sauce to put on it as well, but raspberry or peanut butter would be super yummy 🙂

There  was one very big piece of that pie left yesterday and I ate it all lol. So today I am feeling a little repentant from my indulgence yesterday so a light lunch sounded very nice. Plus, if you can tell me something better to eat when it is cool than soup I will call you a liar.

I just used up the last bits of my carrots celery and onion for this guy. I have never made it but I think it turned out pretty yummy :-).

Carrot and ginger soup

2 Tbsp evoo

1/2 onion

2 cloves garlic

5 carrots

2 stalks celery

1 inch of grated ginger

3 cups ( about) vegetable stock

2 tsp agave

1 tsp orange juice

1 tsp lemon juice

salt and pepper to taste

dash of all spice

Sweat out the onions, garlic and celery until soft, add carrots and ginger, sauté about 4 minutes. Add stock and season to taste. When carrots are soft let cool a bit and spin up in blender or with your immersion blender.

My pretty mothers day roses and kale chips!

I wish I knew how often I have made this, and am just now getting around to putting it up here lol. This is my go to dinner because it takes about 10 minutes to make from start to finish, and that is if I am slacking lol. It also makes a ton and costs about 50 cents a plate so….yeah lol

Chickpea Curry

*I like SPICY and strong flavors, no kidding around here this can be very hot so start with less cayenne if you are weary of spice*

2 T evoo

1/2 onion

2 cloves of garlic

1-2 inces of grated ginger

2 cans of chickpeas

1 tsp of each of the following spices

tumeric

coriander

cloves

cinnamon

cayenne

Vegetable stock or water to thin out.

A few handfuls of kale or spinach

Sweat out onions, garlic and ginger. Add spices and a bit of liquid to help soften it up. Add in chickpeas and more liquid if it looks like it needs it. Before serving put in whichever green you want and let wilt a bit in the pot.

I think all I have left in the fridge is some celery, some spinach and a cucumber lol. Hope you all are having a great week! ❤

First two vegan days <3

So, after a super awful start to the day yesterday, I came home and started my vegan cleanse. Ie throwing or giving away all my dairy and cheese  (wasn’t much to begin with but still felt very cathartic) I have been in the habit of making vegan meals without any one, my self included, really realizing they were so, going from a vegetarian to a vegan really isn’t that big of a step. That is until you get to baking, which I plan to explore fully this summer 🙂 Since I have been considering veganisim as a lifestyle choice, I have been reading lots about them. Unfortunatly, most of what I have read has lead me to the assumption that the majority of vegans are pretentious jerks in a pissing contest for who can eat the most restrictive diet with an ethical argument to back it up. I’m not going to play that game. I am practicing a vegan diet for these reasons.

1) I love animals. Ask any one who knows me and they will confirm this. ❤

2) Dairy and me … not good bed fellows. I feel better when I avoid it.

3) Cheese and butter are delicious, but fattening lol… enough said.

4) Meat should be a luxury, not an industry as it has become.

That being said, I am not so naive to believe that cows have a greater purpose than being walking meat machines. So, when Matt gets back, I will buy 1 lb of grass fed humanely killed beef and make the most bitchenest burgers you have ever seen. But for now, since it is less expensive, easier and fun for me to explore I am, as of yesterday, a vegan ❤

Fair? Fair. Let’s continue 🙂

Kung pow chickpeas and broccoli

This is so easy and can be substituted with any veg you have on hand.

1 clove garlic grated or pressed

1 tsp fresh grated ginger

4 tbsp soy sauce or brag’s liquid aminos

2 tbsp agave or honey

1 tsp cornstarch

1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

1 tsp toasted sesame seeds

broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, snap peas, what ever you want

1 can drained and rinsed chickpeas

2 tbsp crushed peanuts

Heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a wok until almost smoking, add veg. Stir fry about 4 minutes. Meanwhile, combine all seasonings except pepper flakes and sesame seeds. Pour over veg in wok, strir fry an additional 3 – 4 minutes *unless using snow peas in which case reduce cooking time by half* remove from wok, replace with chickpeas, stir-fry aprx 2 min until heated through, add veg back, toss with peanuts, sesame seeds and red pepper flakes and serve.

Avocado Ruben *not really but … meh*

1 tsp olive oil

1/2 avocado

2 tbsp saurkraut

2 slices bread *preferably rye*

1 tsp strong mustard

Thousand Island dressing

equal parts Dijon, ketchup, and sweet relish.

Heat oil in skillet over med high heat.

Put 1000 island dressing and sourkraut on one side of the bread, on the other half put the mustard and avacado. Mush toghether, and put in skillet. Cook both sides till brown and crispy. I freaking love this sandwich…

Dinner tonight was an unintentional cinco de mayo celebration. I honestly had not made the connection until watching the news lol.

This doesn’teven constitute an ingredient list lol it was so easy.

Liam’s dinner ❤

yeah, thats a frozen margarita in a chimay glass, wanna fight about it? ❤

consider my new blender christened! ❤ I’m going to go watch Harry Potter, or read in the bathtub lol… Happy cinco de mayo!

Seitan!!!!!!!!

Yesterday, while perusing some fav blogs I came accross this recipe for Chickpea cutlets. It is from Veganomicon *which I am adding to my want list* After looking the recipe over, we went straight to the health food store to pick up some vital wheat gluten. I was so excited to make these I almost made these last night >.< When I told my dad what I planned on doing he so sagely replied…”Bull…Chickpeas don’t have cutlets.” Thanks Dad! ❤ Anyway, since we have dinner plans with friends for this evening I decided to make them for lunch 🙂

Nuggets seemed less fancy… Also, I agree with my dad…chickpeas don’t have cutlets, but chicken don’t have  nuggets either. I have, however had chickpea burgers. I told Matt to think of those instead of thinking of chicken nuggets when we ate them. I don’t believe these are supposed to replace chicken, just giving you that satisfying sink your teeth in to it feeling that I sometimes miss.

Pre baking 🙂

Edit: Let me tell you I could barely wait to eat these little guys. They smelled SO  good. I burnt my mouth on one because I ate it the second it came out of the oven.

Things I will do differently next time:

1) Make sure I am not out of bread crumbs. I didn’t realize I was out until I was assembling lol. Couple of pieces of toasted bread spun up in the food possessor worked just fine though hehe.

2) The recipe says to kneed for 3 minutes. For me, this is too long. They were a little chewier than Matt liked. I still thought they were yummy.

3) Triple the recipe…

I had doubled it and so I have like 8 in the freezer (yeay!) Get a load of the protein content in these puppies.

Bobs Red mill Vital Wheat gluten

Serving size: 0.25 cup
Amount Per Serving
Calories 120
Calories from Fat 5
Amount Per Serving and/or % Daily Value*
Total Fat 0.5g (1%)
Saturated Fat 0g (0%)
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 0mg (0%)
Sodium 9mg (0%)
Total Carbohydrate 6g (2%)
Dietary Fiber 0g (0%)
Sugars 0g
Protein 23g

Canned Chickpeas

erving size: 0.5 cup
Amount Per Serving
Calories 120
Calories from Fat 15
Amount Per Serving and/or % Daily Value*
Total Fat 1.5g (2%)
Sodium 10mg (0%)
Potassium 250mg (7%)
Total Carbohydrate 19g (6%)
Dietary Fiber 5g (20%)
Protein 7g (14%)

So those little guys have about as much as a whole chicken breast …pretty awesome I think. Not to mention the nummy factor …

Oh what is seitan? It is basically any thing made with vital wheat gluten. Its high protein content has made it super popular in addition to tofu and tempeh in vegetarian kitchens 🙂 I also must warn you that this may have become slightly addictive. I see sausages in the not to distant future 🙂

Obligatory Liam cuteness…