Category Archives: food

Partying- Pumpkin Style!

This past weekend I hosted a little party. The Second Annual Punkin’ Potluck Par-tay to be exact. The point of this soirée is to get together with a few friends and family members before the holidays and enjoy each other’s company and, umm, gorge ourselves on all things pumpkin!

Pumpkin Fun!

I kept the party of little smaller this year but there was no shortage of pumpkin deliciousness! My friends outdid themselves! And almost everyone made an effort to bring something vegan, even though there were only three actual vegans at the party.

I made a main, savory dish, the Pumpkin Baked Ziti with Caramelized Onions from Veganomicon. This dish is always a hit with vegans and omnis. I made it for a yoga potluck once and people were freaking out about how good it was! I made this last year for the Punkin Par-tay too and guests were anticipating it again this year. I couldn’t disappoint. Plus, I made an extra smaller dish of it so I’d be sure to have leftovers the rest of the week.

so much fun!

I also made a pumpkin spice cake with cream cheese frosting (veganizing a recipe I found online using a box of spice cake mix), chocolate pumpkin cupcakes (recipe from Cupcakes and Kale) and pumpkin scones.

cuppies!

The guests brought an array of awesome: pumpkin-cream cheese-chocolate brownie bites, pumpkin cranberry cookies, and chocolate spice cake with the most insane chocolate icing that tasted like chocolate donut icing! There was a pumpkin brownie cheesecake, and my mom made a lovely Autumn Harvest soup that had pumpkin, carrots, sweet potatoes and butternut squash. Another friend brought some homemade spicy pumpkin butter! And I’m sure there’s a bunch of other stuff I’m forgetting!

super creamy!

I served hot apple cider (spiked with Buttershots and, I swear, it tastes just like a caramel apple!), and the Great Pumpkin Martini made another appearance. Although, without the spooky friends hanging on the side of the glass.
I had so much fun noshing all afternoon on pumpkin goodies. Can’t wait to do it again next year!

Vegan MoFo 2011 Comes to an End

I signed up at the VERY last moment for MoFo (Vegan Month of Food) this year. I’m so glad I did! Even though I took a couple weeks break in the middle due to a work trip (read about my food adventures in Los Angeles here and here), I really enjoyed writing about food (especially NACHOS) for the month of October. I can honestly say that I never got tired of eating nachos this month. I even ate nachos multiple times without taking pictures or blogging about them. I just really do love nachos that much!

I discovered tons of new and interesting blogs and made some new bloggy friends! And of course I kept up with my regular vegan food blog reading.

I especially enjoyed the testing of Creepy Cocktails, masterminded by SnarkyVegan. This was a perfect Halloween activity for me. Cocktails, creepy toys, butterscotch schnapps…

I will definitely participate in Vegan MoFo again next year. I’ll be thinking about my theme for the next 11 months or so… but it will probably end up being Nachos again- I mean- why not? A few of my friends have crowned me “Queen of Nachos”, so I think I’ll roll with it!

Trick or (Popcorn) Treat!

Chocolate and peanut butter is my favorite flavor combination for sweet stuff. I created this recipe for Kala of VeganCraftastic‘s fabulous Halloween Zine called “Late October”, which she is selling in her etsy store. This would make the perfect treat for a Halloween party, to give as treats, or just to eat all by yourself!

trick or treat, smell my feet (eww)
Trick or (Popcorn) Treat!
Chocolate/Peanut Butter Crispy Popcorn Treat
1/2 cup light corn syrup (or brown rice syrup)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup peanut butter (smooth or chunky)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 c semi-sweet vegan chocolate chips
pinch of sea salt
10 cups popped popcorn
2 cups rice crispy cereal
various tiny candies of your choice (I used tiny orange jack-o-lantern candies)
Mix the popcorn and cereal together in a BIG bowl and set aside.
In a small sauce pan heat the syrup till bubbling. Add the sugar and stir constantly till dissolved. Add the peanut butter and stir until melted and incorporated. Add the vanilla, chocolate chips and salt and continue to stir until completely melted and combined.
Immediately pour over popcorn and use a wooden spoon to stir it all around until evenly coated. Work quickly so the liquid doesn’t harden. Mix in the tiny candies. Spread on parchment or wax paper in an even layer and let cool for at least an hour.
Serve in a big, festive bowl, or divide up into goody bags and give as treats!
give me something good to eat!

Vegan Eats in LA- Part 1 Vegan Sushi!

Last week and the week before I was in Los Angeles for a trade show for work. I ate a few amazing vegan meals and a few ok vegan meals. I didn’t get photos of everything because, honestly, by the time we got to eat most days I was totally starving and the last thing on my mind was snapping pics! And the photos I did get were in dark restaurants on my phone… so anyway, on to the food!

beautiful painting in Shojin's ladies' room

First up was ABSOLUTELY THE BEST MEAL I’VE EVER EATEN. EVER. Shojin vegan sushi restaurant in Little Tokyo, downtown LA. Going to a totally vegan restaurant is such a treat for me. For one thing, we don’t have one in Bakersfield, and secondly, it is amazing to be able to just ORDER. Anything you want without asking questions or asking to hold this or hold that. Yay!

We started with the Shojin Gyoza. The menu said, “filled with many kinds of” and that’s it! So, I’m not sure what the many kinds of things were, but whatever the many kinds were, they rocked! (no pic of this)

Next I got the Kale Caesar Salad- it was also amazing, and I also did not get a photo… it was too good to stop!

Next my dining companion (who is an omnivore and also totally love this place!) and I shared two rolls. The first one had the best name of a dish that has ever existed. Pirates of the Crunchy! Holy yum was this ever good. It was topped with fried tempeh in a crunchy tempura batter and spicy mayo. I wanted to go back every day and order two of these just for myself!

Pirates of the Crunchy!

Our second roll was the Rainbow roll and it had marinated peppers over top that mimicked the texture of fish on a typical rainbow roll. This dish was completely gorgeous!

beautiful rainbow roll

We finished off our meal with the Halloween Cake. This was a chocolate cake with orange layers of sweet potato filling, topped with a fudgy frosting.  It wasn’t overly sweet and it was so up my alley! It was served with a tiny scoop of vanilla ice cream and some fruit. It was a completely lovely meal!

Halloween cake

Next up will a post on cupcakes and pizza! Stay tuned…