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Preview: Vegan Vice

Vegan Vice

pimpin' vegan to the max

Updated: 2017-11-17T09:06:40.639-07:00


Recipe Testing for Dynise Balcavage "The Urban Vegan" newest cookbook - part 4


Substantial Mix-n-Match SaladMango (Passion-less) SorbetMushy PeasPost-Race Protein ShakeSticky Rice with MangoChocolate-Dipped ThingsBaked Polenta FriesEasy Apple TartsOrange-Soy Seitan Tenders with Polish Pimped Mashed Potatoes & red kale[...]

Recipe Testing for Dynise Balcavage "The Urban Vegan" newest cookbook - part 3


(image) Shamefully Simple Chickpea Chili

(image) Chocolate Popcorn w/cashews

(image) Chocolate Popcorn w/cashews & Abi

(image) Sesame Seed Cookies

(image) Baked Apples

(image) Pimped Mashed Potatoes - Polish Mash

Recipe Testing for Dynise Balcavage "The Urban Vegan" newest cookbook - part 2


Peppermint Bark15-Minute Ice Cream Pie (Coconut & Mango)Marinating Seitan KabobsSmoky Yogurt Dipping SauceSeitan Kabobs with Smoky Yogurt Dipping SauceBaked Agave TofuBalsamic-Baked BeansLatkesTostones[...]

Recipe Testing for Dynise Balcavage "The Urban Vegan" newest cookbook - part 1


(image) Smoky Zucchini Bean Dip

(image) Chocolate-Covered Cherries

(image) Mega-Israeli Salad

(image) Balsamic-Baked Beans

Tonight's Dinner


(image) This is the first photo taken with my new photo box I got for Christmas. I'm so excited that I can now take food photos at night!!
Starting at 12 and going clock-wise:
1. Steamed collard greens with fresh lemon
2. Black Eyed Peas cooked in the Crockpot with sweet onion, garlic, and serrano pepper
3. Vegan Orange Chicken in tangy orange sauce with fresh oranges
4. Mashed potatoes
Garnished with boiled gold beets and a cherry tomato.

Halloween Treats


SPIDER CRACKERSRitz Crackers with peanut butter inside to hold the 8 pretzel legs. Use a small dab of peanut butter to attach the raisin eyes.Tailor these to your kids preferences. Another healthy variation is almond butter, cranberries, and Ritz whole wheat crackers.My kids love making and eating these. A perfect October after school snack!APPLE DUMPLINGS 1. Core and peel apples, leave an inch of the lower unpeeled.2. Divide a pie crust for each apple and place the apple on top.3. Fill the core with a small mixture of raisins, cranberries, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg.4. Press and seal the pastry around the apple. Put a dollop of coconut oil on the top.5. Bake the dumplings @ 375* for about 15 minutes while making the basting sauce.6. Bring 2 tablespoons Earth Balance, 3/4 C. apple juice, 3/4 C. water, 1/2 C. sugar, & 1/8 tsp. cinnamon to a boil in a small sauce pan. Reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes.7. Baste the dumplings with the sauce and pour the rest in the pan and continue to bake about 30 minutes until they are tender. Continue to baste the dumplings about every 15 minutes.Roasted pumpkin seeds are always a treat this time of year! I hope you are enjoying a healthy Halloween season!![...]

Vegan Treats! really is a treat.


From Scratch is always best. . .


Is your vegan food really vegan? They tested 17 LA area vegan restaurants for non-vegan ingredients. Read to find out why seven of them failed miserably.

Follow Your Heart Cafe


We were hungry and couldn't face cooking in Art's LA closet-of-a-kitchen. Plus the girls were with grandparents, so we were free to eat experimentally. Our options were limited since it was late on a Monday. Taking all this into consideration, we cut across the San Fernando Valley to Follow Your Heart Cafe, a mostly organic veg eatery that's open 7 days a week until 9. I was excited to eat at this vegetarian landmark and slather vegenaise on everything!There's my Italian Salad (marinated artichoke hearts, garbanzo beans, red onion, black olives, tomatoes, pepperoncinis, on a bed of organic greens)and Art's Caesar Salad (vegetarian version of the classic with organic Romaine lettuce, artichoke hearts, tomatoes, croutons, with garlic bread)Both salads were delicious and devoured."finally!" There's Art's Reuben (thinly sliced wheatmeat, natural swiss cheese, sauerkraut, mustard and vegenaise on oversized rye bread)Mine is a Club (triple decker with wholewheat bread, turkey-style wheatmeat, vegetarian bacon bits, tomato, lettuce, vegenaise, and I added avocado)each had carrots piled high and was delicious. But Art's would have been better had it not sat in the window for so darn long. duh!Here's a photo of my sandwich sitting lonely on the table waiting for the other. We waited and waited, and our waiter was no where to be seen, and no one else received our wondering glance. I watched the sandwich sit under the heat lamp...Never fear, the service won't keep us away, and perhaps it'd be better next time? Though Art chalks it up to classic vegan service. Is there something to this? Have you gotten apathetic service at veg restaurants?[...]

Veggie Grill, Vicious Dogs, & More. It's Southern California, baby.


The girls and I met Karen for lunch at the Veggie Grill on Campus Drive. This place rocked my taste buds and is 100% animal-free! I have a fantasy that this restaurant replaces every single McDonalds on Earth. Imagine that.Karen ordered The V-Burger (grilled steak burger) for now and The Stack (grilled veggie sandwich) for later at work. I got the Grillin' Chickin' (with cilantro pesto, avocado & other veggies on a wheat bun). Quinoa is a treat in the salads and you must get Sweetheart Fries.I can't resist vegan cookbooks, so I was eager to check this place. The store is tucked in the back corner of a San Diego shopping center - similar to the way the books are crammed in the store. Stacks and piles of (mostly) cookbooks everywhere! I like scavenger hunts and found an abundant vegetarian section, but not one vegan book. With all the clutter, I asked. She said there's a HUGE demand for vegan cookbooks and she can not keep them in stock. Disappointing. A Moosewood and Newman's Own Organics Guide was the best I could do.Vicious Dogs. It's a meathouse with killer vegan hotdogs! Willie understands and cooks it separately with pride. I've raved about this place a time or two before, and I mean it, if you are anywhere near North Hollywood and crave a delicious, no fuss, inexpensive vegan meal, you must give this a try. Really, do yourself a favor.You see fries, a plain with ketchup for Abi, and my new favorite. A #4 "Chicago Style" featuring tomatoes, onion, peppers, pickle, & green relish. What a treat! So fresh & zesty!I savored a shopping spree at Whole Foods while in California. I miss them and Trader Joe's dearly since moving to Idaho, but I digress. These are the things that caught my eye: I'd buy both food bars again (Organic Fiber Bar & Raw*Revolution) which are vegan and raw. Nature's Path Hemp Plus Granola is completely addicting. O.N.E. coconut water is rich in potassium & good in smoothies, but I'll stick to bananas. We went ga-ga over the eco-planet cookies. And I look forward to raw chocolate adventures with the cacao beans.and look! I won a BIG jar of Vitamineral Green from Kristen's Raw, who drinks it daily, says: "Many ways... in a fruit smoothie is great, or add a teaspoon to a green juice. If you're not used to it... start small with a teaspoon in whatever you put it in. I'm at a tablespoon serving now, but I worked my way up to it. Sometimes I just chug it down fast with some water or orange juice - it's very green, but so good for you! It's easily hidden in smoothies though :)"Next up is a Follow Your Heart restaurant review.[...]

Mostly Green


I updated my FB status with, "Vicki asks What to do with all this broccoli?" Getting responses like a YouTube of Dana Carvey's "Chopping Broccoli", or the "Love Food Hate Waste" link with recipes to use it up. Or, a PPK recipe Theresa suggested "Classic Broccoli Quiche" which you see. It was OK. I think it'd be righteous sandwich spread, or burrito filling - being complimented by other ingredients. If nothing else, go learn potluck faux pas & eves drop on the fall-out of one potluck party gone bad.This is the pie shell I used for the quiche. It was delicious and convenient. No wonder Wholly Wholesome was named "Best Pie Crust" in the November 2008 issue of Real Simple Magazine.Green because they are organic, animal-free pie shells. They are available in Traditional, Whole Wheat & Spelt, as well as Graham & Chocolate Pie. No kneed to roll the dough.My Costco broccoli bag continued...VICKI'S BROCCOLI POTATO SOUP1 onion, chopped1 clove garlic, chopped2 tbsp olive oil3 lb yukon gold potatoes, chopped6 cups boiling water2 tbsp "Better Than Bouillon" vegetable base4-5 cups fresh broccoli, cooked & drainedsea salt, fresh ground pepper & nutritional yeast1. In a soup pot saute onion & garlic in oil. Add potatoes, water and veg base. Cover, bring to boil and then reduce heat to medium and cook until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes. 2. Clean & remove broccoli stems and steam. Once cooked add to soup.3. In a food processor puree the soup and return to stock pot. Season with salt, pepper, and nutritional yeast.If you're lucky, you'll have Sweet & Saras on hand for dessert! Seriously.Have you heard of Cono Sur?You can feel even nicer drinking this wine because it's green. They are the first winery in the world to obtain CarbonNeutral delivery status, which means that CO2 emissions from the shipping has been measured and balanced to net zero through Greenhouse Gas Emissions reductions projects. They also grow organic grapes, and ride bicycles. Bet they recycle & compost too. And the wine doesn't suck either![...]

*recipe testing* The Urban Vegan: 250 Street-Smart, Animal-Free Recipes (32-35)








Some of my new favorite things...


A place I love to get lost is Creative Kismet. I always see the cutest handmade things and am flooded with clever ideas to inspire me.I love how Regina recycled vintage neckties to make this lovely flower brooch Olivia is modeling. Thank you for the gift! :)Woot! I won a contest at VegDining, and the prize was a bracelet of my choice from Snooty Jewelry! Thank you! :)I loved my new bling bracelet even more when I found out this company's mantra is to promote compassion for animals, people, and the environment. This is a company worth promoting, so go and get yourself some bling!I was thrilled to receive a copy of Amey's annual cartoony vegan cookbooklet again this year! Such a clever way to share vegan recipes & captivating cartoons. Thank you, Amey! :)You'll want to check out more of Amey's artistic talent here.Another favorite Christmas gift was from my friend, Wendy. His and her matching LifeLine Green water bottles. After bummin' water off Wendy at playdates for so long, we now can rehydrate ourselves in style. The lovely background is my new fashionable shopping bag the bottles came in. Thanks, Wendy! You know exactly what I like. :)With so many reasons to be thankful, I wanted a new way to show it. Handmade cards adapted from Family Fun Magazine.PHOTO HOUSE CARDSupplies: heavyweight white paper, markers and/or crayons, photographs, craft glue, scissorsIf you'll be mailing this card, make sure it will fit into an oversized envelope without folding.Draw and color a house, including a window for each family member. Cut out the window, and place photos behind, taping in place. Glue another piece of paper to the back to cover the photos and on which to write your message.I made 6 different houses which we sent out, but not before going to Kinko's for extra color copies to have on hand as personal stationary.The whole family had fun picking photos and coloring. They didn't take much time to make, and now I'm thinking of the possibilities -- Christmas cards, invitations, birthdays, etc.[...]

*recipe testing* The Urban Vegan: 250 Street-Smart, Animal-Free Recipes (26-31)













*recipe testing* The Urban Vegan: 250 Street-Smart, Animal-Free Recipes (21-25)











*recipe testing* The Urban Vegan: 250 Street-Smart, Animal-Free Recipes (15-20)



Arty-Farty Party Nuts


Chocolate Mousse




Tri-Color Quinoa


Niblet Salad


Blueberry-Banana Bread

Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer


(image) Thrill your kids with these simple holiday treats! The idea came from Family Fun Magazine, but you can making them vegan using the following ingredients:

Nutter Butter cookies, red Sunspire candy, pretzels, semi-sweet chocolate chip, and white frosting.

Rudolph the red nosed reindeer, you'll go down in history!!!

*recipe testing* The Urban Vegan: 250 Street-Smart, Animal-Free Recipes (6-14)



*recipe testing* The Urban Vegan: 250 Street-Smart, Animal-Free Recipes (1-5)



Cheap Vegan Eats, Hollywood


It feels great to be back in So Cal! Yesterday, we rented bikes and cruised Venice Beach.I wanted to check out the new vegan restaurant, Seed, but my family expired before I could find it. Next time. Anybody eaten there? But I have nothing to complain about, the food so far has been delicious and priced just right! Here's an unofficial guide to eating cheap in and around Hollywood!I have been known to rave once or twice about the soul food served up at the Hollywood Farmer's Market Sunday mornings at Selma & Vine by A Taste of Life. As usual, Art and I shared the soul food dinner combo with kale, black-eyed peas, vegan pot roast and macaroni and cheeze. comes with cornbread. $12 -- For the price, you can't do better than this if you don't mind sitting on the sidewalk.This is a new favorite routine of mine:Go to How's Market, NoHo. Order tofu skewers from the service deli. Check the deli case, and if you're lucky, there will be inari sushi (basically rice inside tofu pouches). Go to the coffee counter and score yourself a Peet's Coffee. Settle at a table in front of the TV and enjoy the newspaper left behind. -- less than $10I've been dying to try Vicious Dogs since Art discovered it and wrote his guest post.The owner's name is Willy, and he boasts 4 varieties of vegan dogs. He magically transforms Yves hot dogs into something that looks like this (minus the giant bite). Mine had grilled onions & peppers, sweet & sour sauce, and chopped tomatoes for only $3.99Abi enjoyed hers plain with ketchup. We sat out front watching the cranes across the street build a new theatre.All is good here in California! We're looking forward to more adventures including Thanksgiving with family. Hope yours is full of happiness.XO[...]

Thanksgiving Dessert Turkeys


(image) We hosted a kid's Thanksgiving craft party recently, and I wanted to share this sweet idea with you. It's easier than pie, 99.9% vegan, and 100% kid approved!

Get Newman-O's (I used Wheat & Dairy Free Creme), Candy Corn (they do contain honey), dark chocolate covered almonds, and frosting. I'd describe how to make them, but you get the picture! :)

Pampered Chef Vegan Cooking Show


Here's Marliece setting up the party in my home. I met her through a vegan meet-up group (click here to find/start a group), we got to talking, and I became interested in hosting one of her cooking shows. We decided on a veganized version of the 'Chipotle Ck*n Cornbread Cups'1 c. grated vegan cheddar cheese1 c. cornmeal1 tbsp. sugar1 1/4 c. Tofutti sour cream1/4 c. all-purpose flour2 tbsp Chipotle Rub (PC item)1 small red bell pepper, finely diced1-2 green onions, thinly sliced1 1/2 c. finely diced cooked ck*n (Morning Star Meal Starters Chik'n Strips)1. Preheat *350. Combine cheez, cornmeal, sugar, 1 c. sour cream, flour and 1 tbsp. of the rub to form a thick batter.2. Spray mini-muffin pan with nonstick spray. Divide batter evenly among the cups, and bake 15 minutes until golden brown.3. Saute bell pepper. Add ck*n and remaining rub and heat through. Combine ck*n mixture, green onions, 1/4 c. sour cream in a small bowl.4. Remove muffins from oven and quickly press tops to form cups. Cool. Divide ck*n mixture evenly among cups. Top with additional sour cream and sprinkle with cilantro if desired.The party was fun, the food yummy, conversation casual, and check out this kitchen booty I received. . .Mini Muffin PanMini Tart ShaperSeason's Best Recipe BookPrep Bowl SetFood ChopperMini Loaf Stoneware PanSweet Cinnamon & Chipotle Ruball this for $28, which is less than the price of the chopper alone! Not bad, eh? :)[...]

Green Your Diet


Australian Anzac Biscuits


I'm delighted that my daughter's school has adopted an international focus in their curriculum. I hopped on board the cooking committee, and our first mission was to make Australian Anzac Biscuits for the entire school. How fun! There were four of us baking, and there was enough for the staff, too. These traditional biscuits were baked by anxious wives and mothers during WW I, packed & sent to the Australian soldiers in the trenches.I veganized the recipe (easy since it didn't call for eggs), and tweaked it slightly (my changes in parenthesis), and these cookies (actually called "biscuits") are simply delicious!Appropriate for schools since they aren't obscenely unhealthful, and are basically allergen-free without nuts or dairy. You could probably make them gluten-free using 1 1/4 c. spelt flour instead of white.Anzac Biscuits1 cup rolled oats3/4 cup desiccated coconut (I used regular & processed it to fine in my food processor)1 cup white flour1 cup sugar125g (4oz) butter (Earth Balance, of course)2 tablespoons golden syrup (I used 2 tbsp. brown rice syrup & 1 tsp. molasses)1/2 teaspoon baking soda1 tablespoon boiling waterPreheat oven to 300F1. In a big bowl, mix oats, flour, sugar & coconut together.2. In a little bowl, melt syrup, molasses, & butter together.3. In a baby bowl, mix soda with boiling water. Add to melted butter and syrup. Then, add that to dry ingredients.4. Place 1 tablespoonfuls of mixture on parchment paper lined cookie sheets (allow room for spreading). Bake for 20 minutes.[...]