Talk Trash

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Vegan/ GF Orange Spice Muffins

Have you ever gotten a sudden, unexplainable craving? For some reason I get a sudden urge for orange near the beginning of winter each year. Orange juice, orange cake, orange candy and oranges of course. I even had blood orange candies to eat during the birth of our son, hahaha! I remember a while back sitting in the cafeteria with some of my best friends at the time and one of them peeled open a Clementine. Our lunch lady stood creepily behind us and exclaimed “Smells like Chreeestmas!!” From that point on it was a bit of an inside joke. I only wonder now if oranges to me signify that simpler time or if maybe age makes oranges smell like Christmas/ pine. Who knows. These muffins will most certainly ease that craving for oranges and strangely remind you of Christmas.

Vegan/ GF Orange Spice Muffins:
1 cup corn meal or polenta
¾ cup rice flour
1 tbsp aluminum free baking powder
Pinch of finely ground sea salt
4 tbsp vegan margarine melted
¼ cup light brown sugar (aim for a natural cane sugar without molasses; ie: muscavado
1 tbsp ground flax seed
6 tbsp warm water
1 cup soy milk
Zest of 1 orange
½ cup fresh orange, finely chopped and pressed
Sprinkle of cane sugar* and cinnamon
Begin by mixing the tablespoon of ground flax seed with the warm water in a small bowl, set aside (this is your egg). Mix together all dry ingredients. Including orange zest. Fold in wet ingredients including your pressed and chopped orange (Simply chop half a cup of fresh orange and place between two paper towels until mostly dried. You may also use dried apricots.) DO NOT over mix as this will result in heavy muffins. Next fill prepared muffin pan and sprinkle cane sugar and cinnamon on top, bake at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until a fork pushed into the center comes out clean. Let muffins cool completely before serving. (Or sneak a warm one ;). *Sigh* "Smells like Chreeesmaaaas!"

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

A Vegan Thanksgiving with the Carbons.

This year for Thanksgiving we did things a wee bit different than our usual “sit and eat a feast” considering many new factors. One, our new little fella got to join the festivities. Two, Alex had a stomach virus and Sebastian had a runny nose. At the start of the day, we were planning to spend our evening in the emergency room because Alex just couldn’t take it anymore.. However, he pushed through it and thought a big meal might help liven his spirits. Forgetting the fact that he didn’t feel much like moving. We casually decorated one of our upstairs desk chairs each and decorated our hallway ‘room’ fit for Thanksgiving dinner and sick family movie night. I assembled a lovely dinner filled with the homemade goodness of gluten free macaroni and yease, gluten free cornbread stuffing, garlic rosemary mashed baby red potatoes, mushroom gravy, pumpkin pie, and broiled brussle sprouts (Mustering up all the energy he had, Alex even helped with the brussel sprouts). The only thing boxed or packaged was our huge chunk of gluten-ous goodness of the Tofurkey. The vegan me was totally against the Tofurkey but the sale-lover insisted upon it since I had a $4.00 off coupon.. I’ll tell you the taste was good, although, beware if you have even the slightest of gluten-intolerance.. I was bloated out of my mind and had a pain in my gut till morning. The majority of Alex’s night was spent in the bathroom following dinner.. Apparently gluten is one of the WORST things to eat while suffering from gastroenteritis.. SO glad he’s better now. Being alone out here for yet another holiday is nothing new (I prefer it if it means spending the holiday with my side of the family. Seriously, one minute with them and you're reconsidering your whole life and ready to  jump from a moving car onto a bed of nails and then submerged into a sea of acid. No exaggeration). I am so thankful we got to spend it together though, even if the circumstances weren’t ideal. Got to love Carbon family holidays, haha. We are chaos, controlled.
Our beautiful little man:)
Getting dressed for his first Thangsgiving!

Our lovely Dinner:)
Drink Station!
Temp. Carbon Theatre.
Gnomey joined the fun!!
So yummy!!
Preparing to feast.
Pretty much how we all felt after our meal.. Haha
Cuddle time!
Sebastian is always hungry for more!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

GF, Vegan. Hot Holiday Breakfast Cereal.

When it got cold I just didn't have it in me to sit and eat a bowl of cold cereal for breakfast. I needed something warm and feel good. Oatmeal is usually my first choice and with the endless possibilities on how to 'dress it up' it is a sensible option. Until I got bored. All the dressing up couldn't mask the fact that I'm eating oatmeal EVERY morning. Healthy- yes. Tasty- yes. But just like anything, moderation truly is key. I've recently stumbled upon Bob's Red Mill GF Mighty Tasty Hot Cereal. It's a lovely mix-up of brown rice, corn, buckwheat, and sorghum. Naturally low in fat and sodium, it easily replaces my oatmeal while still yielding great health benefits. It's basically grits but... grit-e-er? I don't know how else to explain it but it sure is 'mighty tasty'.
*As a side note, grits should also work here. They too are naturally gluten-free and vegan:)

Pumpkin Pie Hot Cereal
1/2 cup cereal
1 cup water
1/2 cup fresh or canned pumpkin puree
2 scoops stevia (or a sweetener of choice)
Splash of soymilk*
Top with toasted unsalted pumpkin seeds and raw almonds*
In a microwave safe cereal bowl add cereal and water. Microwave for 2 minutes, uncovered. Stir, microwave another 2 minutes or until cereal is fully cooked; adding extra water as needed. You may also follow the package stove top directions, I just find it easier to microwave in the morning. I hate seeing dishes in the sink that early. Once your cereal is finished cooking, stir in pumpkin, cinnamon and stevia. Top with soy milk, almonds, and pumpkin seeds if you choose to do so.

Chocolate Raspberry Hot Cereal
1/2 cup cereal
1 cup water
1 tbsp cocoa powder
2 scoops stevia
Splash of soy milk*
1/4 cup fresh raspberries*
*Optional (Although it would just be plain chocolate without the berries..)
Follow the cooking directions above for cereal. Once it is finished cooking, mix in cocoa powder and stevia. Top with a splash of soy milk and raspberries.


Sunday, October 21, 2012

GF, Vegan Meal Bars

1 ½ cup whole raw almonds, unpeeled
1 banana, peeled
¾ cup raw whole dates, pre-soaked one hour
½ tsp fennel seeds
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
1 ½ tbsp ground flax seeds
1 ½ tbsp chia seeds
Add all ingredients with the exception of the chia seeds. Process until smooth then fold in chia seeds until well mixed. Layout on a sheet of parchment paper creating a bar about 3”x6”. cover with plastic wrap and freeze overnight or the minimum of 2 hours. Cut into three bars. Thaw slightly before eating, SO good!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Leek and Acorn Squash Pizza


I know I really should make my own GF pizza crust from scratch. It would save money, packaging etc. If you have a recipe you want to substitute, go right ahead. For now I’ll stick to my Bob’s simply for convenience and quality. A mother of a nine month old doesn’t always have that sort of time:/. Anyhow, this pizza is sweet and savory- one of my favorite combos. Not to mention (but I am anyway) the textures! Crunchy, creamy and juicy (is that a texture?). I’m usually a four slices kinda girl (so what, I’m a runner!) but this pizza fills me up in two! Our family is obsessed with pizza. Here’s my way of stretching that obsession throughout the seasons:) Eat up!
1 package Bob’s Red Mill pizza crust mix
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp ground flax mixed with 12 tbsp warm water (Eggs for crust)
½ package firm tofu, drained
½ tbsp dried basil
¼ tsp sea salt
½ tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tbsp fat-free vegan mayo (I use Nayonaise brand)
½ tbsp low fat vegan butter
Apprx. 1 tbsp soy milk (use as much as needed for desired consistency)
Black peeper and salt to taste
½ cup chopped spinach
½ acorn squash, roasted and chopped
¾ cup leek, chopped
10 garlic cloves, roasted and peeled
½ large tomato, thinly sliced
Sprinkle of black, roasted sesame seeds and red pepper flakes
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Peel the outer layer from garlic head, trim tops off all the cloves and wrap in aluminum foil. Wrap squash in foil. Place directly on oven rack and roast until tender. Remove from oven and completely cool before handling. Make crust according to package. While dough rises and vegetables cool, prepare sauce. Add Tofu, lemon juice, basil, salt, nutritional yeast, mayo, butter and black pepper into a food processor. Blend while slowly incorporating the soy milk until a smooth saucy texture is achieved. When veggies are cooled, peel garlic and dice squash into small cubes. Spread pizza crust out on a prepared pizza pan/ stone. Bake for 5-7 minutes without toppings. Remove from oven and spread on sauce, place all veggies evenly on pizza. Top with tomatoes, sesame seeds, black pepper and red pepper flakes.

So many pretty colors!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Gluten Free Vegan Pizza "Roll"

1 Package Bob’s Red mill Gluten free pizza crust mix
(2 tbsp ground flax + 12 tbsp warm water to replace eggs)
2 tbsp olive oil
3-4 tbsp Vegan cream cheese (I use Tofutti Brand)
1 sprig fresh oregano, leaves removed
4 cloves roasted garlic, chopped
½ tbsp red pepper flakes
10 kalamata olives, sliced
¼ onion thinly sliced
2 artichoke hearts, roughly chopped
Approx. 15-20 baby spinach leaves
Sprinkle of Daiya cheese (optional)
Mix together pizza ingredients according to package. Skip the rise. Wad up dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap that’s been lightly greased; about 12 in. long. Spread dough out with hands as much as possible. Powder with rice flour and roll out until approx (w)7” by (l)12” by ½” thick. Mix together ‘cream cheese’ oregano leaves, roasted garlic and red pepper flakes. Spread mixture out evenly on dough sparing ¼ inch at bottom- This is vital to help keep your roll sealed when cooking. Evenly place toppings on dough, again sparing the bottom ¼ in. Carefully and tightly roll dough towards the naked bottom (lengthwise) letting the plastic wrap and gravity guide you. When dough is rolled, wet your fingers and press end closed. Place on a prepared cookie sheet or pizza stone seam side down. Bake for about 20 minutes at 350 degrees or
until fork comes out clean when poked in middle. You may also want to turn over for the last 5-10 minutes of cooking to ensure evenness. Remove from oven and let it cool for 5 minutes before slicing (a bread knife works great!) Serve with your favorite sauce or the recipe that follows.
7 Heartbreakingly ripe roma tomatoes, roasted
1 sprig fresh oregano, leaves removed
3 basil leaves, chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
Remainder of the roasted garlic not used in your roll
Dash of black pepper and sea salt to taste
Add all ingredients into a food processor. Pulse until everything is evenly distributed. Pour into sauce pan, bring to a rapid boil on high, reduce heat and let simmer for 15 minutes.
*Cooking tip: cut the tips off a whole head of garlic, rub olive oil over exposed garlic, wrap in aluminum foil and bake in oven at 400 degrees until golden brown. Slice tomatoes in half, lengthwise, and lightly coat with oil. Broil on high until skins show first sign of blackening. Allow garlic and tomatoes to cool completely before handling.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Butternut Squash Soup with Tofu Triangles

Fall has got to be my favorite season. The smells, the ambiance, the cuddly sweaters but mostly the indulgent food. I pamper myself with warm soups, fresh breads, pies, cinnamon and squash of every kind. Here is a favorite of mine that helps ease into fall. Butternut squash soup with tofu triangles.
1 medium butternut squash; peeled, seeded and cubed
2 cups cooked lentils
2 cloves garlic
1 small white onion
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 celery stalk, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
4 cups vegetable stock
1-2 tsp black pepper (or to taste)
1/4 tsp fine sea salt (or to taste)
1 block extra firm tofu, drained and pressed
olive oil, for coating
1 tbsp Daiya cheese (or any vegan cheese you prefer)
For the soup:
Heat olive oil, on high, in a large pot. Add in garlic, onion, celery squash, lentils and carrot. Cook for about five minutes. Reduce heat to low add in enough vegetable stock to cover veggies. Bring to a boil then reduce heat to low. Simmer until veggies are tender. Blend contents in blender until smooth. Return to pot and add in remaining vegetable stock until desired consistency is reached.
 For the tofu:
Cut block of tofu in half (down the middle. You'll be left with 'two' blocks of tofu, only thinner). Cut each half into triangles. Coat with olive oil and sprinkle with vegan cheese. Broil on high until browned, then flip and brown. Serve with soup!