BRIDAL SHOWER VIBES

Hey guys,

SO, for those that do not know, I am engaged, and about to get married in 2 MONTHS! I can’t believe how fast the time has gone by. I recently had my bridal shower, and of course it was amazing, and soooo overwhelming at the same time. I realized that, I really hate all the attention on me! Although, it was so nice to see my best friends, and family. I could not be any luckier to have such an amazing group of people in my life who support not only me, but the love of my life as well. I’ll link down below the YouTube video snippet of some of the bridal shower we were able to capture =)

VEGAN FRENCH TOAST

Oh the joys of trying new, innovative ways to get your cravings in! I thoroughly enjoyed making, and eating this yummy version of french toast.   

There are a couple ways of achieving a tasty vegan french toast. This is the route I decided to go on…

  • 2-3 mashed bananas
  • 1 cup Dairy-free Milk
  • 2 tbsp. Maple Syrup
  • 2-3 tbsp Cinnamon
  • Brown Sugar
  • Sliced Apples
  • Nut of your choice ( I used Walnuts)
  • Coconut Oil ( for skillet)
  • Vegan friendly bread

In a large bowl- add your mashed bananas, Dairy-free Milk, maple syrup, cinnamon and wisk thoroughly. 

In another bowl lightly add your sliced apples and walnuts. Lightly use coconut oil on the apples and walnuts while mixing in the brown sugar and cinnamon ( the oil will help the brown sugar/cnm stick). 

Grease  2 skillets ( one for caramelization of apples and nuts and one for french toast) with Coconut oil and set both pans on medium heat. In one pan, add your sliced apples, nuts, brown sugar and top with cinnamon. 

While your apples and walnuts are caramelizing, bathe your vegan bread in the other bowl. Then lay on pan. wait 2-3 minutes before flipping on the other side. Toast to your liking! 

I also used my toaster oven and put on broil setting because I like my french toast rather crunchy. 

OPTION: Many people also like to add in applesauce to their bread mix for taste and for a thicker consistency.

Once plated- top off your french toast with the apples, walnuts, and cinnamon! ENJOY! 

Check out my YouTube Channel, ” Cruelty-free Christine”. —->

 

I Started Painting

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vBF09JgsOaM&t=243s

Thats right kids, on to a new journey yet again!

When I tell you, I am in no way, shape, or form a creative being when it comes to my “artistic abilities”, I one hundred percent mean it!

Something happened to me the day I watched Dakota die ( my brothers dog) and ever since then, I have been drawn into painting. An all of a sudden ache in my gut has been pestering me to pick up a paint brush, and just let my mind free itself onto a canvas. So, with much inspiration and light heartedness, thats what I have started to do. Paint, paint, paint!

A big inspiration that got me started was an old friend. Brianne Applegate ( please do yourself a favor and look up her work). Brianne has a beautiful story that makes her art work extremely unique, powerful, and valuable. I have to give her a big thanks for giving me the confidence to start. Painting is addicting for me because, I am someone who struggles with turning off my mind.

It becomes exhausting, but painting has allowed me to completely free my mind of any worry, sadness, anger, depression, anxiety etc.. You get the point. I just allow whatever flows out to flow out. So, here is some of my work so far! No remember, I didn’t say I was good. I said it’s fun, expressive, and extremely therapeutic. Enjoy =)

   

Interview with VEGAN NUTRITIONIST- JACKIE (jgreen_nutrition)

Hey everyone!

So the other day as I was stalking Instagram, I stumbled upon a really cool  vegan page. Instagram name-  jgreen_nutrition, who is run by a young woman named Jackie ( last named unknown) from Australia. Jackie has a Bachelor Degree in Nutrition and Food Science, and Dietetic Medicine. As you know, I couldn’t resist to inbox her with a few questions. It basically turned into a mini interview. I just thought.. Hey, why not share it with you guys!

Me: I was wondering your take on vegan prenatals… not pregnant yet, but hoping to be in the future. I would love any advice on the vegan diet and being pregnant! ( I’ve been vegan for 1 1/2 years.)

Jackie: “From my research on vegan prenatal vitamins, I would recommend: Deva Vegan Prenatal  (full of the basic vitamins and folic acid essential for conceiving a healthy baby) however, it’s quite low in calcium so just stay on top of your green leafy vegetables”!

She preceded with more information and tips

Jackie: ” Go for pills rather than capsules as capsules are usually made from gelatin. Be aware if your diet is iron rich as some vitamins can have up to 150% of your daily iron intake, so be careful you don’t consume too much iron as it can lead to nausea and constipation. During pregnancy you will need 1000 mg calcium per day and most vitamins will only have 200-300mg, so make sure your diet is rich in plant sources of calcium- again, green leafy veggies”.

“DHA is also essential for conceiving and for infant health. Most people think you can only get DHA from a fish source however, DHA is present in flax seeds, chia seeds and hemp seeds, so add them into your meals where you can. All in all, if you are eating a plant-based vegan diet you should already be consuming all the vitamins you need. However, B12 will need to be supplemented. You can find B12 sprays and tablets in health food shops. 

Jackie also recommended this website- http://www.today’sdietitian.com/newsarchives/tddec2007pg38.shtml

Me: All this information is exactly what I needed! How do you like being a vegan nutritionist? How were the classes, and the overall process? What are the pros and cons?

Jackie: “In terms of studying nutrition, it’s important to know what you will be getting out of your course. For instance, I did a Bachelor of Health Science ( majoring in nutrition and food studies) but after I finished, I felt nowhere near qualified to consult anyone! I learned a lot ( more scientific based) but not the basics when it comes to actually “being” a nutritionist- the business side of it”.

“So I have gone back to do a fast tracked Bachelor of Dietetic Medicine, where you are actually trained in business planning. You have consulting practice one on one with volunteers from the university. All in all, my best advice is, that you just need to make sure the course you choose will fully prepare you in the practical side of things.”

“In nutrition you are constantly learning, so the more you can learn the better! In terms of jobs- in Australia it’s not easy to find work as a nutritionist. As a dietitian it is, but vegan dietitians don’t really exist here due to the regulations on what foods, diet plans can consist of ( they are heavy on dairy). So basically, from everyone I know thats trying to find work after graduating, starting your own business or an online consulting business is the best way to go about it. But, you are located in the US. The job field in nutrition may be very different! Being vegan narrows things down a bit in terms of jobs, but to me it’s one of the best ways to promote a vegan message- by being qualified in the nutrition field”.

” I can tell you are very passionate about health and I would highly recommend getting into the field! Any questions you have, please ask. I’ll keep you updated with any business ventures as they happen so you can see what may be possible in vegan nutrition.” 

Me: Such great info! Very interesting indeed. I have also noticed specifically in my area, there are not many vegan nutritionist/dietitians. Its very refreshing to talk to someone who is!  What are your “go tos” ( as far as eating) on a daily basis? What do you need every day to make sure you’re getting what you need nutritionally?

Jackie: ” I personally eat very simple. A normal day for me would consist of oatmeal + banana cooked with rice milk. Most lunches I will cook potatoes and stir fry a mix of veggies. Usually for dinner would be any mix of rice, lentils, black beans, veggies, tofu/tempeh and spices. Basically, my shopping basket simplified is oats, rice milk, fruits, veggies, natural nuts, apple cider vinegar ( I put it on everything-Addicted) cans of beans, lentils, and diced tomatoes.”

“That’s a normal day, but I do eat out here and there, so when I’m home, I just try to stick to low sodium, no oil, no processed sugar and that keeps my digestion and blood sugar happy! I have put my diet in different variations through macro and vitamin tracker and everything is almost 100% or over for daily intake except for B12 which I supplement.”

Me: Oh my! You’re so good! I don’t really have a routine, but in the summer I was trying to follow a “raw till 4” plan. I love Ellen Fisher’s posts on instagram and YouTube ( insta: ellenfisher) (YouTube: Mango Island Mamma). Thats where I got the idea from. But I’m in the colder climates right now in Pa, so I love eating my hot food.

Jackie: “Oh, I’m not ALWAYS good! My boyfriend went vegan with me at the start of the year, but he has a sweet tooth and loves to go out so I’m always stopping and starting with my “diet”. Raw till four is a great lifestyle! But yes, definitely hard in the cold climate, that’s why I eat oats every morning- so satisfying. If you ever have any digestion issues- lentils are great to add in, just grab a can of them, put them in a pot with some veggies/sauce and BOOM, hearty meal for that cold weather”!

There you have it everyone! If anyone has any questions for Jackie, please feel free to inbox her on instagram- @jgreen_nutrition . She is full of wonderful insight and information!

Buffalo Cauliflower Bites with Vegan Ranch Dressing

1 large head of cauliflower 1-2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil 1/3-1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs 1/2 cup tabasco/hot sauce ( I used franks)
1 large head of cauliflower
1-2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
1/3-1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs
1/2 cup tabasco/hot sauce ( I used franks)
VEGAN RANCH DIP 1/2 cup vegan sour cream 2 tbsp lemonjuice 1/2 cup soy milk 1/2 tsp salt 1/2 tsp onion powder 1/2 tsp garlic powder 1 tbsp dried parsley
VEGAN RANCH DIP
1/2 cup vegan sour cream
2 tbsp lemonjuice
1/2 cup soy milk
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tbsp dried parsley

INSTRUCTIONS:

  • Preheat oven to 450F.
  • In bowl, drizzle EVOO over cauliflower and toss coat well.
  • Pour breadcrumbs over and toss again to coat.
  • Pour cauliflower on parchment lined baking sheet and spread out into one layer.
  • Roast for 20 min or until cauliflower starts to get tender.
  • Take out oven and pour back into bowl.
  • Pour hot sauce over cauliflower and toss to coat. ( feel free to add more breadcrumbs at this point as well)
  • Place back on baking sheet and roast for another 10-15 minutes or so until cauliflower starts to get crispy on the edges.
  • Meanwhile, make the Vegan Ranch Dip. Combine all ingredients in a high speed blender and blend until combined ( I just used my fork to blend)
  • Take Cauliflower out of oven. Serve with Ranch dip and ENJOY!!!!

CREDIT: veggieinspiredjourney.com

CRUELTY-FREE PUMPKIN MUFFINS- VEGAN

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Makes 6 jumbo muffins!

1 3/4 cups flour

1 1/4 cup sugar

1 tbsp baking powder

1/4 tsp salt

1 teaspoon cinnamon ( I did 2)

1/2 tsp nutmeg

1/2 tsp ginger

1/4 tsp allspice

1/8 tsp ground cloves

1 cup of pumpkin puree

1 tbsp soy yogurt

1/2 cup soy milk

1/2 cup vegetable oil

2 tbsp molasses

DIRECTIONS *Preheat oven to 400F. * Grease muffin tins with vegetable shortening or spray on oil *In a separate bowl whisk together wet ingredients * Pour wet into dry and combine
DIRECTIONS
*Preheat oven to 400F.
* Grease muffin tins with vegetable shortening or spray on oil
*In a separate bowl whisk together wet ingredients
* Pour wet into dry and combine
Fill muffin tins 2/3 of the way
Fill muffin tins 2/3 of the way
Bake for 27-30 min. till toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Bake for 27-30 min. till toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
let cool in the pan for 5 minutes before taking muffins out of tin.
let cool in the pan for 5 minutes before taking muffins out of tin.

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Enjoy!!
Enjoy!!

Add some melted butter or top with anything else to your liking and enjoy!! Credit: food.com

 

A Taste of Thanksgiving- VEGAN

Credit: ilovevegan.com

CRUELTY-FREE THANKSGIVING?

YES PLEASE!

You know I just HAD to try this recipe. And of course, I fell in love with it.

Sweet Roasted Squash and Carrots: 1 large Carrot peeled ( i used baby carrots)  1/2 Medium Acorn Squash ( I used butternut)  1 tbsp. olive oil 1 tbsp. brown sugar ( i used a whole lot more than suggested)  pinch of salt black pepper to taste
Sweet Roasted Squash and Carrots:
1 large Carrot peeled ( i used baby carrots)
1/2 Medium Acorn Squash ( I used butternut)
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. brown sugar ( i used a whole lot more than suggested)
pinch of salt
black pepper to taste
ROASTED GARLIC BROCCOLI 2 cups of broccoli 2 cloves of garlic, minced ( i used like 6 cloves) 1/2 tbsp olive oil ( I used more than suggested) pinch salt black pepper to taste
ROASTED GARLIC BROCCOLI
2 cups of broccoli
2 cloves of garlic, minced ( i used like 6 cloves)
1/2 tbsp olive oil ( I used more than suggested)
pinch salt
black pepper to taste
MASHED CREAMER POTATOES 1.5 lb bag of little potato companies baby boomer potatoes. ( I used organic red potatoes instead)  1 cup of low sodium vegetable broth. 1 tbsp of vegan butter 1/4 tbsp salt pinch each of dried oregano and thyme
MASHED CREAMER POTATOES
1.5 lb bag of little potato companies baby boomer potatoes. ( I used organic red potatoes instead)
1 cup of low sodium vegetable broth.
1 tbsp of vegan butter
1/4 tbsp salt
pinch each of dried oregano and thyme
EASY VEGAN GRAVY 1 tbsp vegan butter ( or olive oil) 2 tbsp flour 1/4 tsp each of onion powder, thyme, oregano 1 cup of low sodium vegetable broth
EASY VEGAN GRAVY
1 tbsp vegan butter ( or olive oil)
2 tbsp flour
1/4 tsp each of onion powder, thyme, oregano
1 cup of low sodium vegetable broth

OTHER: 1/4 cup chopped pecans

Optional: feel free to add brussel sprouts and cranberry sauce to this delicious meal.

Instructions:  Preheat oven to 425F. Prepare a nice big baking sheet lined with parchment paper. In a bowl mix carrots, squash with olive oil, brown sugar, salt and pepper. Spread both carrots and squash out on your baking sheet.

Next,mix the broccoli with olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper, making sure to really massage the garlic into the heads of the broccoli. Spread broccoli out on baking sheet and pop everything in the oven. Bake 20-30 minutes. About half way through the cooking time, flip and stir everything with 1/4 cup of chopped pecans, and top the squash and carrots with extra sprinkles of brown sugar.

MASHED POTATOES:

While everything is baking, you can boil your potatoes in one element and make your gravy on another. Boil potatoes for 15-25 minutes ( until fork tender) before mashing up with vegetable broth. ( I bought a large masher from Giant and LOVE IT). Add vegan butter, salt, dried thyme and oregano. I also added garlic powder.

EASY VEGAN GRAVY:

in a small saucepan heat vegan butter over medium heat. Once hot, whisk in flour, salt, thyme and oregano. Mix well. Cook for about 1 minute before slowly whisking in the veggie broth ( you might find you need a little less depending on your preferred consistency). Simmer for 3-5 minutes until thick or desired consistency.

  • You can serve with cranberry sauce. Top mashed potatoes and or roasted veggies with gravy and enjoy.

 

Chocolate Avocado Truffles- VEGAN

Hey everyone! Sorry its been a little bit since my last post.

Lately, my 13 year old niece has been into baking/cooking, and wanted to try something where my Mom and I are able to enjoy it. Before making these, she made these AMAZING vegan friendly cookies, that I just have to get my hands on the recipe. I had no part in making this tasty treat, but they’re great when you’re having a major sweet tooth and in need for some chocolatey goodness!

Layla, you did a fantastic job making this, and whats even better is its a NO BAKE RECIPE! Here are the Chocolate Avocado Truffles!

1 medium avocado, ripe 10 oz od dark cacao nibs 2 tablespoons of cacao powder
1 medium avocado, ripe
10 oz od dark cacao nibs
2 tablespoons of cacao powder

Directions:

Cut avocado and scoop out flesh. Mash up until there are no more chunks, Using a fork, electric hand mixture or food processor.

Take 1/2 cup of cacao nibs and roughly chop into little bits and set aside ( optional).

Melt the rest of the chocolate in the microwave or by stove top. To do without burning the chocolate, microwave in 10 second intervals, and then stirring. Repeat until completely melted.

Scoop avocado mixture into the bowl with melted chocolate and mix until well-blended. Stir in cacao nibs.

Refrigerate mixture for an hour.

Scoop out 1 tbsp. of mixture and roll with your palms. Repeat with the rest of mixture.

With the Cacao powder on a separate plate, roll the balls in the powder until covered.

ENJOY!!

PUMPKIN CURRY- in the crock pot!

Ahh! Its my favorite time of the year. The leaves are changing colors, and falling. There is a crispness in the air, and the smell of autumn filling up my nose.

What better way to bring the fall season in, then cooking an undeniably delicious pumpkin dish?

I give you, Pumpkin Curry!

2 (15 oz) cans chickpeas, drained 1 medium yellow onion, diced 2 cups of low-sodium vegetable broth 1 cup red lentils, rinsed 1 cup pumpkin puree 1 tbsp curry powder 1 tsp kosher salt 1/4 tsp ground cayenne pepper 1 (15 oz) can coconut milk FOR SERVING: White rice, brown rice or cauliflower rice Fresh lime wedges Cilantro leaves
2 (15 oz) cans chickpeas, drained
1 medium yellow onion, diced
2 cups of low-sodium vegetable broth
1 cup red lentils, rinsed
1 cup pumpkin puree
1 tbsp curry powder
1 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp ground cayenne pepper/ 2 garlic cloves, minced
1 (15 oz) can coconut milk
FOR SERVING:
White rice, brown rice or cauliflower rice
Fresh lime wedges
Cilantro leaves

 

  • Add all ingredients except the coconut milk to your slow cooker (aka) crockpot. Cook on low for 8-10 hours, or high for 5-6 hours. Stir in the coconut milk and cook on low for another 30 minutes.
  • The curry thickens up as it sits.
  • Scoop over rice and serve with cilantro and fresh lime wedges to squeeze over top.

CREDIT: kitchentreaty.com

I use "Bella" crockpot and love it!
I use “Bella” crockpot and love it!

This dish is so insanely easy, and the flavor is explosive! I used Nature’s promise Organic white rice, and cooked that in a separate pot for about 20 minutes.

The only thing I forgot to pick up at the grocery store was the lime wedges and cilantro, but it was still amazing without it.

I started cooking this late in the day, so John and I were too hungry to wait 5 hours. We waited 3 hours and it was ready to eat!

This dish has an awesome zip to it, the pumpkin flavor is very light, so feel free to add more puree then directed. img_1411

Overall, this was a great fall dish to warm you up on a cold autumn night, and fill your bellies! Can’t wait to eat my left overs!

RAW ZOODLES

4 zucchinis 2 carrots 5 medium sized russet potatoes 1 yellow onion Cashew Cream Sauce Salt Pepper Garlic powder
4 zucchinis
2 carrots
5 medium sized russet potatoes
1 yellow onion
Cashew Cream Sauce
Salt
Pepper
Garlic powder/Lemon Juice

Tools: SPIRALIZER

Wash your vegetables first.

Peel your potatoes, dice and boil to soften.

Spiralize your zucchini’s and carrots.

Chop your yellow onion.

Throw it all together in a big bowl. Add Salt/ Pepper/ Garlic Powder/ Lemon juice to your liking. Then add your Cashew Cream Sauce ( recipe in older post).

Serve cold.

This is a great dish to bring to a social gathering. Easy to eat, very refreshing, easy to digest, and extremely healthy! I love this dish because you can get very creative with it, and pair it with a lot of different options.  Great flavor, and will leave you wanting more!