Friday, November 2, 2012

You're a vegan, what do you eat? (Part 1)

A long time ago when life was a lot different, I had this great idea to do a blog series entitled, You're vegan? What do you eat? and showcase some of my better culinary endeavors.  Life and hyperemesis intervened, and I spent a lot of time dealing with that.  I'm still dealing with that, and there are a lot of foods I used to eat that I still can't eat, but I think that things are finally starting to get a little bit better.  Plus, I feel like much of the rest of the world probably thinks that vegans eat only iceberg lettuce (which we don't), and I would like to set the record straight.

So here's a compilation of what we ate (mainly for dinner) this week.

You'll notice that almost everything comes from my new favorite website, Plant Based on a Budget, but also that nothing I make follows their recipes exactly because I am incapable of following a recipe exactly. Also, I don't measure anything.  I think I own measuring cups, but I do not use them.

Monday 29 October

Up at 6:15am to run 5-ish miles then shower, get ready, and get little people their breakfast before school.  While Will was dawdling over his Raisin Bran, I made what I like to call Chickpea Salad-- a modified version of Mock Tuna Salad from the good people at PBB.

I used some chickpeas that I had previously soaked, boiled, frozen and then thawed overnight.  Gave them a whirl or two in the old food processor and then mixed them up with Vegan Mayo (currently using Nayonaise), chopped green onion, parsley, and celery, lemon pepper, sea salt, and apple cider vinegar.  Sometimes I also add smoked paprika, but on this particular occasion, it seemed too overwhelming to search through my spice bin for that, so I left it out.  I put the whole thing in the fridge to chill, and left for work.

It was a good thing that I made dinner ahead of time because I ended up having to work until 8:30pm that night.  

When I finally got home, this was like heaven on a bun (with romaine and sliced tomato).



Tuesday 30 October

I soaked some lentils overnight, and after my pre-dawn run (this time a bit less than 5 miles) I boiled them enough so that foam formed on the top, and I skimmed that off.  I've found that using this foam-skimming technique eliminates any kind of gastric distress anyone might experience from eating beans or legumes.

After the lentils were boiled and soaked, I added them to the crock pot with chopped onion, crushed (canned) tomatoes, chili powder (a ton, seriously, like 1/4 cup), soy sauce, brown sugar (just a pinch), and … get this … the secret ingredient to virtually all my recipes … liquid smoke.



Set the crock pot for 8 hours, and you come home to this:



The recipe is based off of Sloppy Lentils from Fat Free Vegan, but we do not actually eat it in a sloppy joe form.  We ate it in bowls, with Ritz Crackers, and Will prefers to call this concoction Chili.  He actually ate some of it, with a lot of coaxing.

Wednesday 31 October


 Red glasses Meli halloween

The red sunglasses and jaunty cap might look like a Halloween costume, but really, it was just what I wore to walk to work. The festive witch hat helped liven things up a few hours later when I was giving an exam to 350 students.

I had to work a little bit late (grading exams).  When I got home, we had leftover lentils for dinner and then went trick or treating.

Thursday 1 November

Too exhausted to run in the morning.  Slept in an extra hour and then got up and made Garlic Ginger Soup.  This was a little scary for me because all of the times I tried to consume ginger in an effort to calm my nausea when I was pregnant, and since ginger doesn't do a f*cking thing for hyperemesis, I just ended up throwing it up.  To this day, if there is a noticeable taste of ginger in anything that I eat, I instantly feel like I am 9 weeks pregnant and dying again.  Not fun.  But I decided to try the soup anyway, just with a drastically reduced amount of ginger.

To make the soup, I first cubed some tofu into tiny pieces and sautéed that with red pepper, garlic powder, and the tiniest smidgen of freshly grated ginger imaginable (I skipped the powdered ginger that the recipe called for).

Meanwhile, I heated up water in a pot and added some vegetable bullion cubes, unpeeled garlic cloves (I was confused about that aspect of it, but it ended up fine), the tiniest sliver of fresh ginger, soy sauce, lemon juice, and sriracha sauce.  I also cooked some rice noodles (real, actual rice noodles that I had gotten at an Asian market up on Olive Street).  I added everything together, and at some point I also added some chopped cilantro.


Then I put it all into a pyrex serving dish and stuck it in the fridge.  Doing all of this took a lot longer than I had, and I ended up having to (literally) run to work so that I wouldn't be egregiously late.  

All day long, I was looking forward to this soup, and when we finally sat down to dinner that night, it was the best thing I have ever tasted in my entire life.  (Rob will tell you I say that about a lot of foods.  But this time I really mean it, I swear).


I added a lot more sriracha to mine.  William refused to eat the soup, but he had some rice noodles with nutritional yeast on them.

Friday 2 November

Today.  It would have been my Grandma Florence's 97th birthday.  I thought about making some lemon sugar cookies or strawberry pie to honor her memory with the things she would want me to eat, but the reality is that I do not have time for any of that.

I ran this morning and then had to work a little bit late again.  When I got home, I made some whole wheat rotini and unthawed a few Avocado Pesto cubes.  Avocado pesto is another favorite of mine based on a recipe from PBB.

Basically, you take a ton of basil, avocado, garlic, lemon juice, pine nuts (I do not use pistachios like they call for in the recipe), cumin, olive oil, and sea salt, and you puree it in the food processor.

I like to keep this stuff on hand, so I make a big batch and then freeze it in cubes.  On nights like tonight, I can thaw about 4-5 cubes to put on our pasta.



Before I tried Garlic Ginger Soup earlier in the week, Avocado Pesto was my all-time favorite meal, ever.  It still ranks as a very high second.  Okay, maybe a tie.  Unfortunately, Rob doesn't like Avocado Pesto as much as I do, but he usually endures it.  I even got Will to eat some of this tonight, although it required a lot of bribing.  Still, it was a huge victory.  Massive.  Add in his consumption of lentils earlier in the week, and I am over the moon.


And so that's a week of vegan dinners, more or less. No iceberg lettuce to be found. Thanks for reading.


Anonymous said...

LOVED THE RECIPES~~~~~~~SOOO here's my question?? WHEN ARE YOU GONNA WRITE YOUR COOKBOOK??????? Maybe that's your NEXT writing to be done~~~~ the pictures, tidbits of add in's and what not, make it sound SOOO simple and FUN!!! ( makes me almost want to COOK> ???????????haha) I've got some suggestions if you're interested!! >:) about another career!! Will is a lucky little boy to have a mommy preparing MADE FROM SCRATCH HEALTHY FOOD ,and NOT ICEBERG LETTUCE~~~ after WORKING ALL DAY< and NOT just 9-5~~~ Luv you, hugs to all, mama nan

Anonymous said...

Very very interesting!!! Watching for part 2... Love and hugs, Auntie

halenfieldman said...

You did an amazing job.