Did You Know?

Did you know??
Although using avocados and bananas are all the buzz now to get soft and shiny hair, all it will get you is a messy kitchen and bathroom. These products are great to help your hair for one day, but the proteins in them are way too big for your hair to absorb. And unless you are going to use them each day (yikes!), then you should head to a beauty supply store and check out some Vegan products that use "hydrolyzed" proteins - proteins from avocados and bananas that actually are small enough to help your hair.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Pumpkin Spice Cake

Happy Halloween!

'Tis the season for pumpkins. Even if you're a pumpkin hater (and I'll admit, I sometimes am), this cake will delight and astound. Decorate it plain with a simple cream cheese frosting or make it autumn-ready with a cinnamon and pomegranate glaze; either way, you'll be pleasantly surprised (just like me)!

3/4 c butter, softened
1 c dark brown sugar
1 c white sugar
2/3 c pureed silken tofu
1 c pumpkin pie mix
1/2 c vanilla soymilk plus 1/2 tsp of apple cider vinegar
2 cups AP flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 allspice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cream together the butter and the sugars and set aside.

In a blender, puree the tofu. Combine the soymilk and vinegar in a separate bowl. Then, mix the soymilk mixture with the tofu puree and the pumpkin and stir thoroughly.

Combine all the dry ingredients in a medium bowl.

In thirds, add the dry ingredients to the creamed butter and sugars, alternating with the pumpkin mixture. Once all the components are added, stir until just mixed, and scoop into cupcake liners.

It will make 24 large cupcakes, or 36 regular cupcakes.

To frost:

Pictured above, we used a traditional cream cheese frosting:
1 package (8 oz) vegan cream cheese, like Tofutti
6 oz vegetable shortening
2 tsp vanilla extract
4 c confectionary sugar
2 - 5 tsp soymilk
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt

Combine all ingredients, adding the sugar in small interval amounts as you go. Add more or less soymilk/confectionary sugar to get desired thickness.

Decorate with marzipan pumpkins.

But, we also had some yummy success with a cinnamon & pomegranate glaze:
1/2 c agave nectar, light or amber
1 - 1 1/2 c conf sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup pomegranate seeds, smashed slightly to release juices

Drizzle on warm cupcakes. Be careful - this one is the messier option!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Vegan French Toast


There's really nothing better than a slow Sunday morning and a yummy, albeit fattening, late breakfast. Mostly, for us, that means blueberry pancakes or our Breakfast sandwiches, but this past week we were both feeling a certain longing for this childhood favourite. So, without further ado, here is our French Toast:

3-5 slices of thick wheat or cinnamon raisin bread, left out overnight OR lightly toasted

1/2 cup soft silken tofu

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/2 c vanilla almond milk (or other non-dairy milk)

3 tbsps maple syrup

2 tbsp vegetable oil

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp nutmeg

powdered sugar for dusting

Blend the spices, tofu, oil, milk and maple syrup in a blender until completely homogeneos. Once blended, pour into a large, low-cut bowl. Take your toast or "stale" bread (it has to be hardened otherwise it will fall apart when cooked) and dredge it in the mixture, coating each side.

Heat a skillet with a small tab of butter (with a little bit of oil, too, so the butter doesn't burn). Once the skillet sizzles when you flick water at it, you're ready to go. Drop your first piece of coated toast onto the skillet and let cook for about 3-5 minutes. Once it seems stable on the cooking side, flip it with a spatula and cook the other side.

When all your toasts are cooked up and crunchy on the outside, serve hot with warm maple syrup, walnuts, whipped cream and/or fresh berries and sprinkle the whole stack with powdered sugar.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Lemon Chickpea Wrap


This lemon chickpea wrap is reminiscent of a chicken salad wrap in texture, but not in taste. The great thing about wraps is that they are a way to mix up your meals if you're trying to eat more salads-- as it's simply a salad in a wrap! While a typical wrap might include all of these ingredients, the way they are brought together here is what gives this one the particular texture that makes it so refreshing. If you're looking for a new way to eat your veggies, this is it!

The one thing I have noticed is that over the years, I have never really rolled a successful wrap. I either put too much food on it, or not enough, or I break the shell. Somehow, amazingly, for the picture above I was able to finally get the perfect wrap. Upon success I had expected lights, balloons-- the whole nine yards. While that didn't happen, the enjoyment of eating a wrap without having to fish for falling objects with my thumb as I jammed it in my mouth was a gift in itself.

1 (15 ounce) can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
1 stalk celery, chopped
1/2 medium white onion, chopped
1 tsp olive oil
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp dried chives
salt and pepper to taste
1 tsp red wine vinegar
1 tbsp of your favorite sauce/covering (i.e. guacamole, mayonnaise, cucumber sauce, etc.)
1 few leaves of lettuce, sliced
1 wheat wrap

Drain the and rinse the chickpeas. Place the rinsed chickpeas in a bowl.

Smash the chickeas with a fork until 2/3 of the chickpeas have been broken. The best way to eyeball this is to notice that there are some whole chickpeas left in the bowl, but most are crushed.

Add the celery, onion, olive oil, lemon juice, spices, vinegar, and sauce to the bowl and mix well. The end product should be a thick, lumpy mass of deliciousness.

Leave in the fridge for a minimum of two hours for the flavors to blend. Place on wrap with the lettuce and enjoy!