Monday, January 30, 2012

Video of Juicer

Second time using the juicer! See video:

I ended up adding another half of an apple and some celery for this experiment. It was too much lemon and too much ginger. But that's what experimenting is for, lesson learned- lemon and ginger are super potent!! Which is good because that means you can buy and use less and still have awesome flavor!! Patrick did about the same mixture this morning, but he did more kale, which I think ended up being too much kale.

Happy juicing!

Birthday Juice!!!

I've been a super busy little vegan these past few days. First off, it was my birthday last Thursday so on Wednesday night Patrick took me out on a date to Freesoulcaffe in Tustin.

I got a vegan BLT sandwich, which came with a salad with their amazing special dressing (soooo gooood), Patrick got a vegan Tuna sandwich and salad, and we split asparagus soup, and it came with amazing bread and vegan butter. And Patrick got a rootbeer, which is vegan. Absolutely everything in this place is vegan, which is so nice because you can order whatever you want, no worries! And it is all delicious. Patrick didn't love his tuna, but then again, what is vegan "tuna" anyway?? I don't like tuna period. It was a lot of food!

This was our dessert at Freesoulcaffe: Oreo Cheesecake! I found out this week that Oreos are vegan. Obviously I won't be eating them all the time since I am doing this for health reasons, but it is good to have something to indulge in every now and then. Warning though: Oreos are not vegan in Europe.

Then on my actual birthday I had to work until 10pm, and when I came home Patrick had prepared a wonderful dinner of spaghetti and salad, then he surprised me with another dessert from Freesoulcaffe, a vegan chocolate cupcake!!!! I really do have a sweet tooth. So delicious. Blowing out my candle...

Then on Saturday night we celebrated our combined birthdays (mine Jan 26, Patrick's Feb 3) with friends at Souplantation! If you have never been, they are all about fresh ingredients and an awesome salad bar. It's all buffet style. I found two really yummy vegan soups, salad, and Oreos for dessert :) It's not an all vegan restaurant though, so there were plenty of choices for everyone to enjoy! The staff was super friendly too!

One of my birthday presents was this juicer:

so this (apple, carrot, cucumber, spinach, and celery):

becomes this:

It may not look that appetizing (the glass is black, so that doesn't help), but it is actually not that bad tasting! and it is awesome nutrients! and I wouldn't necessarily eat kale or spinach, but I will drink the juice! It is fun experimenting with different fruits and veggies. And it leaves leftover pulp, so I am going to make veggie burgers with that! And try to find other fun things to make with the pulp.

Well that was a lot of vegan power for one blog! I'll let you know how the pulp cooking turns out.
Happy eating!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

"Pigging" out

I've been super healthy, obviously since going vegan. I kind of can't believe it and I am super proud of myself! But tonight I ate almost a whole box of wheat thins. I ate a pb banana corn tortilla sandwich around 4:45, then I went to a dance class that I really did not enjoy and when I got back all I wanted was lazy food! So I grabbed the box, got on facebook, and the rest is history.... But you know what, I don't feel so bad since it is a once in a million thing and I've been so healthy! Tomorrow, back to vegan super stardom! For tonight some more laziness, either going to watch Friends or another food documentary. Rachelle recommended one to me called Forks Over Knives. So possibly a review coming for that one soon!
Happy Eating!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead... NOT!

The other day Patrick and I watched a documentary on Netfilx called "Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead" Long story short it is about an Australian man who was over weight who turned his life around by doing a 60 day juice diet and road trip across the US. The film is really well done and fun to watch.

In the film the guy uses a juicer. So this educated us on what a juicer is and it totally caught our interest! No, neither Patrick nor I are going to do a juice fast, but I am asking for a juicer for my birthday (which is in 5 days! Jan 26). It intakes fruits and vegetables and produces juice, which means you drink it and get tons of nutrients, which is super healthy for you and gives you tons of good, natural energy! As opposed to drinking soda or energy drinks or other sugary things.

I do have to note that since I became vegan (18 days and counting!) I have felt WONDERFUL! I have had so much energy! I have been sleeping wonderfully every night and waking up in the morning with the energy to take on the day. This energy has even gotten me working out and best of all DANCING! I've made the effort and gone to a few dance classes recently, and I've started doing yoga with a free online video instructor in my room! Yay free yoga!! I've been doing a lot better about stretching consistently, and I've also been doing the fitness challenges on the video game Just Dance 3, which is so much fun it's like a workout incognito. Now I am not saying all of these things are thanks to going vegan, but it has certainly helped a well-rounded healthy lifestyle become the forefront of my life. I have also been told by a few people who are close to me that I have been inspiring them to be healthier. :)

Now on to the good part- FOOD!
Patrick and I had put off doing a good, big grocery trip for a good while, but we finally did yesterday. We got tons of fruits and veggies! (Among other things) From regular things like apples, bananas, lettuce, and oranges to new things we don't usually buy like cobs of corn, potatoes, limes, and another cantaloupe :) We also finally got some more soy milk, so I can enjoy my favorite of favorites- cereal. Tonight I made us a fabulous dinner, yes, all by myself. I'm such a good girlfriend. We both had baked garlic potatoes and corn on the cob, then Patrick had garlic lime chicken and I had a huge awesome salad. This was my first time ever making homemade potatoes or corn on the cob. Super easy and super delicious... and super healthy! Especially because I didn't put any butter on anything! (I was a big butterer before going vegan) Look at the beautiful colors! My salad consisted of lettuce, tomatoes, carrots, broccoli, vegetable salad topping sprinkle stuff, pepper, and olive oil.

A cool thing about being vegan is my body actually craves these healthy things. That huge salad never looked so good to me!

Stay tuned for a report on my first vegan holiday- my birthday! Planning to go to Souplantation. Yay coupons! Also, we discovered this awesome vegan restaurant/bakery/coffee and tea shop in Tustin, near us. Eyed me some yummy looking desserts :D
Happy eating!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Yummy Tacos

Look at this delicious dinner I had- completely vegan! Taco with refried beans instead of meat, with tomatoes, peppers, and lemon juice cooked into the beans, with lettuce, and taco sauce. Advice from my good vegan friend Danny- vegan's like flavor just as much as everyone else, so load up on yummy sauces! (His favorite is hot sauce) And Patrick is being so super supportive of my veganism, he made the rice, and he had chicken and rice for himself. :)

Happy eating!

Friday, January 13, 2012


So this was really hard. Tonight Patrick had a craving for frozen yogurt, which (before going vegan obviously) was one of our absolute favorite totally Californian things to do since moving here. The place we go near our house, Tutti Frutti, is colorful and fun and delicious and cheap. And frozen yogurt is healthier than ice cream, so we were like YAY. So we went to Tutti Frutti tonight and I decided to just look at their menu and see if there was anything vegan I could get. I asked them what's in their smoothies and of course it includes FroYo. I could've just gotten some strawberries and other fruit in the FroYo cup and no FroYo but I didn't think that was a good deal. So Patrick got his FroYo and I was still craving something sweet and cold and that would feel good on my soar throat. So..........

We went to the grocery store and I bought bananas and strawberries and I came home and made a smoothie: 1 banana, a few strawberries, ice, and sugar! Enjoying it now, thoroughly satisfied :)

Happy Eating!

Mother's Market

I just returned from a shopping trip to a very vegan friendly grocery store here in Santa Ana called Mother's Market, thanks to the advice of my awesome roommates Tiana and Joy. 

I got garlic flavored hummus, a kung pao asian bowl meal, two "tasty bite" meals that look interesting and that will be something new to try, and then i got a vegan taco dinner kit with 12 tacos (that'll last me a while!), and refried beans to go with that instead of meat. But possibly best of all, I got myself some lunch while I was there- vegan fettucini alfredo with vegan butter and sundried tomatoes. They have a food bar at the store and it's by the pound, so I just got a little bit (yay portion control!) and it wasn't that expensive, especially compared to what you'd pay in a restaurant for something that good. I just finished eating it and now I am so full and happy. It was delicious. 

I guess what inspired me to finally go to this place today was the fact that my main goal in going vegan is to not get bored! Don't get into a rut and just eat what I "can" eat and what I have in the house. Obviously I'm not going to go crazy budget-wise buying new and interesting things every day, especially when I need to finish the fruit I have in the house before it goes bad (but tip on that note- I had two apples that were a little past their prime, and so I made baked cinnamon apples from them! I probably would have never put that much effort into two apples before being vegan.) And also, I'm not going to buy things at stores like Mother's Market that I can get cheaper in the regular grocery store. But still, finding ways to have VARIETY is so important, in any diet. And it's more fun :) 

Also, Tiana is letting me borrow this book "Food Rules" by Michael Pollan. (Yes I know the picture is backwards.)

Happy eating!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

welcome to my vegan blog

So if you know me you know I've attempted regular blogging before. This time I have decided to start a little blog about my recent choice to be vegan. This blog is mostly for my friends and family who have asked me what I eat now, so they can know that I'm not wasting away into nothing and so they can know what food to feed me should I ever pay them a visit or go to a restaurant with them. It's also for myself so I can keep track of what I've been eating, post recipes I want to remember, and maybe hopefully get some tips and advice from my vegan friends. I also want to prove that you don't have to break the bank to be vegan- how to be vegan on a budget! :)

I do not want to be and will not be that vegan who thinks she's better than everyone else because she's vegan, nor will I try to turn you vegan. I will merely take you along with me, via my words and some pictures maybe, on my educational journey.

What made me decide to try to be vegan?
My good friend Danny stayed over at our apartment on New Years Eve. He is vegan and I wanted to cook us all a nice breakfast when we woke up on the 1st. I woke up naturally at 9:30am and got a recipe for vegan blueberry banana pancakes. Sounds yummy, right? It was. I went grocery shopping with the mindset of a vegan, and it was just interesting and informative. I liked actually seeing everything that was in my food, by actually reading the ingredients lists on the food in the store. So I made the pancakes (doubled the recipe and ended up making SO MANY!) Luckily, maple syrup is vegan. Yum. I spent the day asking Danny "Is this vegan? Is that vegan?" It got me to realize that a lot of stuff is actually vegan! Before, I always kinda thought, oh vegans, they can't eat anything, and especially not anything too tasty and filling. I was so wrong! So on Jan 1st and Jan 2nd I ate all vegan foods, except for dinner both of those nights, because I had not decided to actually full out try to be vegan yet.

By the end of the day on the 2nd I decided to gradually see how many days I could just eat vegan, kind of as an educational experiment, so I could continue learning all about what's vegan and what's not. My thought process was, when people go off of being vegan or vegetarian they always do it gradually, so why not go in to being vegan gradually just the same? Today is Jan 11th and I have eaten only vegan stuff since the 3rd.

So now I will do a quick catch up of some of the kinds of things I have been eating up until now.

Breakfast I have had:
-vegan PANCAKES. See recipe below this post. When the first batch ran out I made more just blueberry pancakes, no banana, and I never used walnuts- too expensive. They are good leftover too, and as a vegan anything warm and hearty is so welcome!
-shredded wheat cereal with soy milk
-oatmeal, variety pack! (tip for being vegan- find as much variety in whatever you can!)
-oh and of course, COFFEE is vegan! with just sugar, no milk, which I stopped using a while ago anyway :)
-orange juice

Lunch/Dinner I have had:
-peanut butter sandwiches on whole wheat bread
-peanut butter on corn tortillas with banana slices
-roasted pears, sliced and peeled, made with sugar and lemon juice (fresh squeezed from a lemon I picked myself from someone's backyard in San Jose! I love this state.)
-salads! The ones I've made at home have had some combination of lettuce, broccoli, carrots, tomatoes, olive oil, pepper, and this awesome veggie salad seasoning Patrick found at the store and got for me. Salads are a good thing to get when I have to get food at work. There's an okay salad bar with lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, and balsamic dressing. I even tried this raspberry vinaigrette once but didn't like it.
-Rice and broccoli
-Whole wheat pasta, with mushroom based tomato sauce, or olive oil and pepper and garlic. I LOVE pasta!

Snacks and other stuff: (I've really been eating more frequently and less portions at a time throughout the day. I love eating so it makes it more a part of your day when you have to think about it more often and do it more often!)
-apples (often with cinnamon, yum)
-celery (and PB)
-vegan trail mix. They had packs of this in the odv office at work and I ate like three or four. yum
-there's a really good vegan protein bar at the caf at work. yay protein!
-whole wheat triscuits
-wheat thins
-tea tea tea teaaaaa!
-Coca Cola. It's vegan. I looked it up. But it's not vegan in Europe apparently. lol idk.

And as a special treat one night I had some vegan chocolate that my roommates had lying around! So great!

There might be more stuff I am forgetting. And today we did a good shopping trip and got more fruits and veggies. I'm most excited to break into that cantaloupe. How to do vegan on a budget- stuff like soy milk is more expensive than regular milk, but fruit is SO CHEAP! It's awesome and delicious.

Well I will post more later, especially as I find more interesting recipes. And I'll try to include my thoughts on how it's going as I continue this.
Happy eating!

Vegan Bluberry-Banana Walnut Pancakes

These are tender and fluffy and make the perfect vegan breakfast.
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup unbleached flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 banana, mashed
  • 1 1/4 cups non-dairy milk (I like oat milk)
  • 1 Tablespoon granulated sweetener
  • 1 cup blueberries, fresh or (defrosted) frozen
1. In a large bowl, sift the flour and baking powder together. In a small bowl, mash the banana with a fork and add 1/4 cup of the milk, mixing together until there are no lumps. Add the banana, sweetener, blueberries, and remaining milk to the dry mix and stir together until "just mixed".
2. Heat a nonstick pan or a lightly-oiled frying pan. Using a measuring cup of your choice, scoop batter onto pan to make cakes. Let sit on medium heat until the bottom turns golden brown. Flip and cook other side. Repeat process until all the batter is gone. Makes 2 or more servings.

They came out blue because I stirred the blueberries in too soon I guess, but hey BLUE PANCAKES, COOL! :P