We awoke one morning, ravenous and deciding that we wanted to forego the vacation-standard, go-to, made in the room, smoothie. What to eat became the question. It was the only rainy day, at least it started out as such, so we decided to take a trek over to the Mel Fisher Maritime Heritage Museum, located in the Historic Seaport neighborhood. We fell into Two Friends Patio, one of the few remaining original Old Towne restaurants, established in 1967 and still family run. The place was hustling and bustling. Cutting straight down the middle of the restaurant, however, is an open walkway, so they had to close off some of the tables because of the rain. No one seemed to care, even those patrons who were graced with the occasional spray of rain. It really didn’t matter to us because, even though we had our all-weather jackets on, we were fairly damp already from the walk. We were hungry, that’s what mattered. And, they had a table with only about a 15 minute wait. Worked for us. Continue reading Eating Our Way Through Key West – Part 2 – Hits & Misses
Recently, my partner Richard and I had the exquisite joy of traipsing about Key West for a glorious nine days of fun and sun (and eating). Continue reading Eating Our Way Through Key West – Part 1
With summer approaching, I love making quick and delicious wraps. They are so versatile, from what you put in them to what you choose to wrap them. They get in and out of the kitchen quickly, pack well for a hike or picnic, and are very nutritious and satisfying. Continue reading It’s A Wrap
Growing up, my Italian Grandma Mary would make these delectable and delicate cookies on what looked to me like a mini waffle iron. She would stand in front of that machine for over an hour, as each set of cookies (her “iron”, which I have come to know as a pizzelle machine, made two at a time” would cook the cookies in a minute flat. She’d then remove them to a cooling rack and sprinkle them with powdered sugar, and if we grandchildren didn’t snatch them before she got to do it, after about another minute or two, she’d stack them onto a beautiful ceramic platter.
Of course, her recipe, which she passed on to me, was not vegan, having eggs and milk in it. Also, they were made with your typical white flour. Today, I’ve been able to use my ‘veganification’ methods, and convert her heirloom recipe into the exact same, absolutely delicious, cookies that I so fondly remember, without any sacrifice, and now 100% plant-based, vegan. Continue reading Pizzelles
One of my favorite culinary techniques is working with doughs or all sorts. I think I probably have the most fun with focaccia dough because it is rather unlike most other doughs in that it is soft and wet. Rather than kneading the dough and punching it down, you instead do a sequence of stretching and folding the dough to develop the gluten followed by a sequence of what I like to call “playing the piano.
The lightness and airiness of the interior of the focaccia coupled with the crispiness of the crust and the toppings you select make for a delightful bread that rightfully can stand alone but also makes a great sandwich bread or dipping into gravy (either my Italian tomato gravy or Bolognese). Continue reading The Magic of Focaccia
During Martin Luther King’s Birthday weekend, I participated in the Sedona VegFest as an Exhibitor (that’s me on the right-hand side representing the Meetup Group that I founded/organize, Verde Valley Vegans). It was an exciting weekend, having the opportunity to meet so many like-minded, wonderful, and interesting people.
As is typical of me, conversations tend to shift towards the direction of food and recipes. One of the lovely participants (who requested to remain anonymous but gave me permission to share her recipe), told me about one of her family’s heirloom recipes for a Gingerbread Cake. It was not at all vegan; however, she successfully veganized it; and shared it with me so I could share it with you. Continue reading 3-Ginger Gingerbread Cake
I am fortunate to have whom I consider to be the absolute best neighbors in the world. They live across the street from me. For the first six years, I did not reside in my home, but rather, visited several times each year. During the first six years, we became friendly with one particular couple. And then finally, on September 1, 2015, it happened! I was able to semi-retire and move to my dream house in my fantasy world, although it was neither a dream nor a fantasy. It was real life. Ah, so much to be grateful for today. Since then, we (my partner, Richard, and I) have become endearing friends with Skip and Cynthia. But, I am digressing here just a bit. Back to being on point….
If you’ve been following this blog, you might have realized by now that I not only love to cook, but also have a real passion for baking as well. Coupled with that, it positively feeds my soul to gift my baked treats to those I love.
Skip is diabetic, so I tweaked my original carrot muffin recipe (which was not vegan) into a delicious (and quick and easy) sugar-free carrot-apple muffin in his honor.
I just finished baking these muffins as part of my Holiday gift to Skip and Cynthia. I will be presenting these baked goodies to them on “The Giving Plate”. The giving plate reads: This special plate is yours today. Its purpose is very clear. It comes to tell you that you’re loved and someone holds you dear! Savor all the plate contains and fill it full again. Then send it on renewed with love to family and friends.
So, here’s my new, veganized recipe. At the very end, I will include my former original non-vegan recipe, since after all, this blog is “veganification”, celebrating the journey of becoming and being vegan. That includes recipes in addition to us sentient beings. Continue reading Carrot-Apple Sugar-Free Muffins & The Giving Plate
Have some bananas that are getting to the over-ripe point and want to do something with them? Ah, I have just the idea! A quick and simple, yet incredibly moist and yummy, banana bread.
You probably have all the items in your pantry and refrigerator, so here goes…
2 large or 3 small ripe bananas, mashed
¼ cup unsweetened, plain yogurt (or pureed apples, peaches, or even jam)
¼ cup avocado oil
½ cup unrefined sugar
2 tablespoons molasses (or dark agave or brown rice syrup)
2 cups white whole wheat pastry flour (or other flour, even a gluten-free mix)
¾ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
Pinch of ground allspice, optional, but really yummy when added
Pinch of ground cloves, ditto the allspice
- Prepare one bread loaf pan by lightly coating with oil or Earth Balance creamy spread
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
- In a large mixing bowl, mash bananas.
- Add the yogurt, oil, sugar, molasses, and mix until well combined.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, sea salt, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing until just combined.
- Pour batter into your prepared bread pan.
- Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.
- Allow to cool in pan on wire rack for 10-15 minutes, then flip out of pan and allow loaf to cool completely on the wire rack.
Note: This banana bread freezes incredibly well, so you can save it for another day’s treat.
Feeling a wee bit crazy and adventurous? Trying adding a cup of chocolate chips, or some raisins, or how about some nuts? Or how about a combination? Get crazy. Make it your own. But most importantly, enjoy!
*An important aspect of sharing original recipes is to give proper credit to the author(s) of the recipe(s). I hope that you enjoy using these recipes and making them your own; but please do so with that integrity in mind. With much gratitude. Linda
Trust me on this one. I serve this cake to non-vegan guests, much to their delight and amazement. It is truly worth the effort. A show-stopper, both in appearance and flavor. It is rich and decadent, so thin slices are recommended. Continue reading Decadent Chocolate Stout Cake
Here’s a simple, yet extraordinarily delicious, muffin that you can whip up and serve on your Thanksgiving table that will wow everyone who likes to have a piece of bread to sop up that amazing vegan gravy you’ll be serving.
All you need are the ingredients, which you probably already have in your pantry, a large mixing bowl, a wire whisk, a 12-cup muffin tin (or a 6-cup large muffin tin, but I recommend the small muffins for the best results), and an oven. Continue reading Down’n’Dirty Quick’n’Easy Beer Muffins