Monday, January 27, 2014

Eagle Nebula Juice

To make 20 oz:

1 medium orange bell pepper
4 Cuties (leave 1 unpeeled)
4 large carrots
1 bunch kale


This nebula is an open star cluster living about 7,000 light years away toward the snake constellation, Serpens. To learn more about the Eagle Nebula, visit Chandra's Photo. For the full Hubble image go to the Hubble gallery.  Lastly, widen your horizons with more knowledge on Serpens by visiting Universe Today

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Breaking Vegan Bread

I absolutely love being hyper-organized. It makes my nerdy little heart sing with joy! So every week I make meal plans. Our breakfasts are juice and, an occasional, bar and our lunches are left overs or simple on the go meals. Dinner became my cooking fun time. I try to keep a good variety while not spending hours on one meal for two every night.

I've realized I spend many hours each week researching and refining awesome vegan dinners. To spread the vegan recipe love and "pay it forward", join me for dinner here! :D Also, I'd love any tips or suggestions you have on these recipes! Did you like the meal as a whole? Did your lover enjoy it as much as mine? Did you add a personal touch to a recipe?

Dinners for Monday, Jan. 27th through Friday, Jan. 31st:

--Vegan Lasagna with a French Roll
      Lasagna Recipe:
         **I exchanged the mushrooms for baby eggplants! I, also, seasoned the veggies with dried basil.
      French Roll: Just store bought and baked in the oven for a few minutes with vegan butter and basil smear.

--Vegan Enchiladas with Cabbage-Carrot Salad and Refried Beans
      Salad: Shred the cabbage and carrots, mix and serve with your favorite dressing.
      Beans: Nothing special… just warm up a can of vegan refried beans. :)
      Enchiladas: Ingredients - Corn Tortillas, Vegan Cheeze (shreds), Onion (diced), Enchilada Sauce, Frying Oil
                         Directions - Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Set up assembly station: heat oil in a frying pan, next to that heat up sauce in another flying pan, on the counter next to that place a large plate, above the plate place a large bowl with the cheese shreds and onion combined, lastly, place your casserole dish next to the plate. I always have a bowl of cold water and a dish towel with in arms reach since the tortillas will be hot! Once this is ready, fry one tortilla for just a minute to soften it, transport it to the sauce and cover generously. Place the hot, sauced (^-^) tortilla on the place. Spread a small handful of cheese down the middle of the tortilla and roll. Place this into the casserole dish. Repeat until you have the desired number of enchiladas. Pour the remaining sauce on top and cover with cheese. Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes. Check frequently and take out when cheese is melted. Serve with pico de gallo. 

--Steamed Artichokes with a Sourdough Roll and Hot Penne in Olive Oil with Sautéed Zucchini, Bell Peppers, Yellow Squash & Tomatoes
      **I'm making this one up as I go! I'll post what I come up with after. I'd LOVE to see what you create!

--Vegan Meatloaf with Roasted Brussel Sprouts in a Maple-Cayanne Drizzle and Mashed Purple Potatoes
      Brussel Spouts: Set oven to 375. Place halved sprouts on a cookie sheet. Lightly coat with olive oil. Bake for 20 minutes. Mix a small amount of maple syrup with a bit of cayenne pepper. Drizzle over sprouts and bake for 5 more minutes.

--Grilled Hummus with Caramelized Onion Sandwich & Vegan Tomato Soup

Thursday, January 23, 2014

"7Up" Juice

Woo! I think I just made healthy 7 Up! Here's what u did, try it out and let me know if I'm crazy. ;)

For 30 oz of juice (out of my old centrifugal juicer):

4 Granny Smith Apples
1 Jazz Apple
2 lemons (1 peel-less)
1 Bearr's lime*
4 inch hunk of ginger
1 bunch Dino kale*


*Also GIANT thank you to the local organic farm, Amy's Farm (, where I purchased these delicious plants. I can't wait for the chance to blog more about you!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Savory Snack Time!

Occasionally on ones search for tasty morsels you run across a perfect treat. This is spicy kale chips and garlic toast for me! (Right now at least.) 

Spicy Kale Chips

-Cooking Oil
-Spicy Garlic Rooster Sauce

Preheat the oven to 350. This setting is for both snacks. Loosely cut the kale into squarish shapes. Place on a foiled cookie sheet. Drizzle a super small amount of oil onto the kale. Add spicy sauce to your desired heat level. Bake for 15-20 minutes. 

Garlic Toast

-Whole Wheat English Muffin
-Vegan Butter
-Minced (preferably juicy) garlic
-Minced Dried Oregano

Generously spread butter on each piece of muffin. Next cover with a thick layer of garlic. Sprinkle oregano on top. Place on the same or a different cookie sheet. Pop in the oven for 15-20 minutes. 

Done! Enjoy your vegan crunchy savory treat! 

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Carbs: They're taking over the world.

There was a time in my life when I was scolded for eating a corn tortilla chip... For the carbs within it. The carbs. Not the grease, nor the excess salt. Nope just the carbs. Cause everyone knows "corn and carbs make you fat".

This is when my skepticism for carb haters began. Maybe because corn is basically my favorite veggie. There's just so many applications for it! (More on that in a future post!) For my skepticism to be credible, I had to learn all about carbs.

Here's the breakdown:

A carbohydrate is a macromolecule (macro due to larger size) made of carbon and water (hydrogen and oxygen). While most associate a carb with starch or sugar, carbohydrates play integral roles in everything from our DNA and RNA to energy storage. The D in DNA and the R in RNA are deoxyribose and ribose. Both are monosaccharides. Carbohydrates are called saccharides or sugars, for the smaller carb molecules. Sugars supply living bodies with immediate energy while starches (another form of carbohydrate) take longer for the digestive system to breakdown, thus, providing less immediate energy. See, carbs are everywhere! They are a product of photosynthesis. You know, that thing every plant does to live? So, in actuality, practically everything humans eat has some form of carb in it. 

Granted, too much of anything is a bad thing. For example, did you know you can even have too much water?? Yep! Water poisoning is real and very damaging. Here's an AWESOME article on that:

The list of good versus bad carbohydrates is common. The good is complex carbs, the bad is simple carbs. Complex carbs include whole grains, fruits, veggies (aka plants). Simple ones include sugars, refined bread (aka processed yuck). So yes, while corn tortilla chips are not the epitome of a good carb, it's not as "poisonous" as a carb hater would have you believe. 

There's more variation to consider amongst carbs, as well. Most notably, these variations are tracked by the Glycemic Index. The GI of a carbohydrate can help determine whether the food will give you immediate energy or energy later on. High GI foods, such as rice cakes (GI=123) and a baked potato (GI=121), restore the glycogen in muscle much quicker after a workout than low GI foods do. On the other hand, low GI foods, such as dried apricots (GI=44) and split yellow peas (GI=45), can increase endurance during strenuous workouts. Sugar, or sucrose, has a GI of 87 and enters your bloodstream at around 30 calories per minute. Complex carbohydrates enter at more like 2 calories per minute. So snacking on dried apricots before a work out gives you longer sustained energy due to the lower rate of absorption. A rice cake or two after your workout will get the glycogen to your weary muscles more than 15 times faster than if you munched on those apricots again. 

So instead of stressing, or obsessing, about what you can and cannot eat when it comes to carb intake, just eat plants. No plant contains bad carbs. No simpler, more effective solution exists!