Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Feeling Fall!

Here in Louisiana it has been *less* hot the last week or so- in the 80's and 90's instead of the 100's. Yay! I have been on a major decluttering spree. Bags and bags of stuff to Goodwill, boxes upon boxes of things shipping out to happy Ebay customers all over the world! We even tackled a major project this weekend, sucessfully rewiring the cable in our family-ish room and rearranging the space to make it much more functional and happy to spend time in. Awesome!

I am feeling the Fall spirit and wanting to be ever more thrifty and green this coming season. I've been line drying my clothes whenever I can, and loving it. They smell nice and I don't miss the clickety clack of the dryer at all. 

 Today I looked up this great site for recipes on homemade housecleaning. I tried out the toilet bowl cleaner and was happy with it. Then I wiped and sprayed everything with my leftover Thieves Oil from last year. The house smells clean, with a nice warm spice kick from the clove and cinnamon in the oil mix. It's also terrific for my hands to smell like essential oils, rather than the gross old chemical smell that usually lingers after cleaning things. Yay! I used some of the aforementioned Ebay money to restock on the baisc oils I use a lot: cinnamon, clove, lemon, lavender, and rosemary. My kit is still good on eucalyptus and tea tree.

Anyone have great uses for your oils? I'm curious as how to incorporate them more and phase out other products. Hippie Central around here, with the clothes waving in the wind, the giant Dr. Bronner's in the bathroom, and lavender wafting...but I love it!!

And just for fun...the first thing I've seen in a while that I wanted to add to my virtual Christmas wishlist!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Thrifty Find: Mushrooms

For starters, check out this gorgeous green smoothie! I am back in my green smoothie swing and loving it.

I'm varying what goes in, mostly according to what I have, but also based on budget. I'm running low on greens powder so I'm throwing in big handfuls of spinach. Ran out of probiotic Pearls, but found Good Belly on sale for $2.00. It all works out! I also use frozen fruit, hemp seeds, chia seeds, almond milk, and Twister Power powder (a pouch lasts forever, as I use it sparingly).


Now onto my exciting find! The $1.00 produce bin at the grocery store always excites me. Among the smushy canteloupes and giant bags of spotty peppers, I can always seem to find something really good. This time it was 4 containers of Baby Bella and white mushrooms all for $2.00! They are usually about $2 a piece, and I got 4 packs for that price. Yay! Sometimes the price of mushrooms makes me skip them in recipes, but now I'm stocked for a while.

I looked up how to best save mushrooms and came up with a parboil & freeze method.

I washed them and did a quick 3 minute boil, then rinsed in cold water.

Ready for freezing:

Yay thrifty mushrooms!!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Veggie Pot Pie Mishmash

Healthy, easy, cheap. These are the food priorities in my kitchen lately. Last night I was craving something homey, and it's been a week since the last grocery trip, so pantry staples were the best bet.

I took two favorite recipes and modfied each according to what we had on hand.

Country biscuits from Hot Damn & Hell Yeah

I don't buy white flour anymore, so all baking is a wild experiment. I used a combo of whole wheat, oat, and brown rice flours for these biscuits. They were not the fluffy white biscuits that white flour makes, but were yummy and super delicate- great for serving something hearty over!

The rest of the meal was the filling portion of Sarah Kramer's Veggie Pot Pie in Vegan A Go-Go. I used canned carrots as we were out of fresh ones. I also threw in some extra nutrtional yeast and seasonings. The result was yummy, easy, cheap, healthy meal. Yay!!

Monday, August 23, 2010

The New Luxury

On my mind lately: 1. Scaling down...about 1/3 of my closet is now on Ebay, and you know what? It's very refreshing. It's like an exciting game that I almost always win at!

2. enjoying simple but amazingly delightful treats that I used to take for granted...

♥soy iced coffee♥
...and a nice juicy letter from a friend (never take those for granted!)
3. Looking forward to visits in the upcoming months...2 of my best friends are making the journey back to their former homes (my still home!) and I can't wait!! It will be a frenzy of cooking, biking, and having fun!

Although this pic is ancient, it gets the message across...

Have a great day!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Burger Night!

Yep, even crazy vegan health-nut people have burger nights! They're just a little different... the people and the burgers! My burger nights used to revolve around frozen veggie burgers. In the name of both budget and health, I've taken it a step further.

Behold, the homemade Nature's Burger!!

Little delightful patties of oats, garbanzo beans, and seasonings. I also made some vegan mozzarella cheese sauce to dip my (non-healthy) fries in! Humble-looking, but so good I kept sticking my finger in for more while I finished up the meal...heehee! It is also oats, plus nooch and seasonings. I have realized the insane amount of healthy stuff packed into nutritional yeast, so I'm trying  to get the 3 Tablespoons daily recommended. Not too hard..even the cat loves it's cheesy good flavor!

Here's the compiled meal, including an Ezekiel bun (heaven!!), India relish, mustard, ketchup, and romaine lettuce.

All the food was made from:

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


Artisan Felt Handbag Giveaway :)

I ♥ Produce

My recent cookbook find has me all excited about healthy cooking again! I was in a lame-o food slump for a while there (we'll blame it on the tropical heat!), but I'm back. Whoohooo!!! I'm also fairly free of caffiene and alcohol at this point, having decided to save those things for special occasions. The result is tons of energy and a happy outlook most of the time :)

Here's another cooking foray with my Mayo Clinic Williams-Sonoma Cookbook.

Roasted Veggie Fajitas! Ahh look at this beauty!

Chopped and ready for roasting:

Our favorite salsa, Becky's Pico De Gallo from Sarah Kramer: Brad says it tastes just like San Francisco...

And now after all that build-up, all I have to show is a fat burrito. After swimming and bike riding, we went for the fastest method to get food into bellies!! Though not gorgeous, it was deeelicious!!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Thrifty Goodness

I love it when thrift items become an indespensable (ohhh spelling?!) part of my routine. I have a great love for decorative goodies, but cute and functional is the ultimate score.

Enter my retro-stylish pump thermos!! My husband found this gem on one of our many thrifting treasure hunts. I am kinda queasy about old containers that have been closed up a while, but this one was perfectly shiny and odor-free. Well-taken care of by the previous owner! Today I initiated it with some soup. I am a lunch-carrier again due to working at our store, and it was woooonderful to have hot tomato soup at lunch time. Yay!! (I also enjoyed the ridiculously bizarre looking double veg hot dog tortilla mustard creation that I brought!)

Thursday, August 12, 2010

New Cookbook Joy!

Funny story...I forgot to bring a fork to eat my lunch with the other day. I skipped down the sidewalk a few store to one of my favorite antique places and bought a nice stainless steel job...plus a cookbook! I am in love with this book! I think I made 3 things from it just this weekend!
The Mayo Clinic Williams-Sonoma Cookbook: Simple Solutions for Eating Well

It's the Mayo Clinic Williams-Sonoma Cookbook. It's not vegan or vegetarian on purpose, but the majority of the recipes are veg or easily converted. I stocked up on produce and got cooking!

The first recipe I made was Gingered Carrot Soup. Yum!! The only change I made was to use almond milk in place of dary milk.

Veggies sauteeing:

 The fnal product:

This weekend I also made a delicious Eggplant Subzi from Holy Cow! Vegan Recipes. Here are my eggplants roasting, Sadly, we gobbled up the rest before I remembered to take a picture.

For snacking, I made a batch of my favorite dip, the magical Cheezy Garbanzo Spread from Compassion Over Killing.

Many more food posts to come. I'm back in my cooking groove!!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Whaaa?! *Whine*

"Eating white sugar will paralyze and hinder your white blood cells from fighting off an infection. Eating 25 teaspoons of sugar will paralyze 92% of your white blood cells for approximately five hours. The average American eats over 42 teaspoons of sugar per day. For example: A banana split has 24 teaspoons of sugar. A 12 oz coke has approx. 8-10 teaspoons, a piece of white bread 2 teaspoons. It must be remembered that sugar or empty calories and junk foods interfere with the working of the body’s immune system." from here.

Now if I can just apply this in real life...

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Monday, August 9, 2010

Peanut Butter Pasta Spirals

Viva la Please Don't Feed the Bears!! Everything I've cooked lately is from this awesome little cookzine. The latest creation was last night's "Caught In A Mosh Peanut Butter Pasta Spirals. So easy and soooo good.

We used whole wheat pasta cuz I'm outta the fancy sprouted grain and quinoa stuff. The sauce is a basic mix of pb, soy sauce, broth, and rice vinegar, and seasonings. You can add peas as the recipe calls for, or whatever veggies you have. Broccoli is great in it! We topped it with a little Sriracha hot sauce and ate up! Yum!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Sweet Nature Designs Giveaway

Here you go!  Take a little time to click through the rest of this great blog as well :)

Thursday, August 5, 2010

HoopPretty Giveaway!!

Yay!! Check it out!

Pesto Quinoa Pasta

I have been using Quinoa and sprouted grain pasta rather than traditional pasta, these days, and the results have all been very delcious!

Quinoa pasta is really tasty, affordable, and I suspect healthier than the flour pasta. I am not sure how it falls in line with Eat To Live, but as quinoa is preferred to rice and pasta, I think the same might go in this situation. Anyhow....

I made a recipe right on the back of the pasta box. It was a nice opportunity to use some of my garden basil.

Here's the veggies sauteeing:

And the final product, complete with vegan "parmesan" and sprouted grain bread with vegan smoked cheddar spread!


Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Wasn't this a food blog?!

Ohhhh it's so hot here!!! 115 heat index...needless to say I haven't been in the kitchen slaving over elaborate meals. It's all about easy right now. Promise there will be some food soon! In the meantime, let's talk books!

Yesterday I started a new book, Louisiana Women, edited by Janet Allured and Judith F. Gentry. It's very exciting and well written so far. It profiles a cross-section of Louisiana women from all time frames and backgrounds. It was  a featured book in our library's summer reading events, but as usual I'm a little late to the game!

Have a great day!