What I Ate Wednesday: What I Ate Over the Weekend

Anything You Can Eat I Can Eat VeganI’ve been hit with so many negative comments about what I eat from internet trolls that a few months ago I almost stopped doing What I Ate Wednesday. The comments ranged from “you didn’t really eat that garbage, did you?”, to “you eat way to many carbs”, and “that corn is probably GMO.” If I had that much spare time, I most certainly would use it for something a little more exciting than leaving negative comments on blog posts and Facebook, but hey, that’s just me. Because of the trolls, I’ve actually stopped posting photos of what I’ve been eating on Facebook (but with the way Facebook is operating now, I don’t think people would see them anyway), posting them rather on Instagram, where the users seem to be far more friendly.

 

I have noticed, however, that people really are genuinely interested in what vegans eat, so I decided to continue on with What I Ate Wednesday. Last week at the Bethlehem VegFest, I was quite surprised at the amount of people asking Gene Baur and Matt Frazier what they eat on a daily basis, as well as asking for dietary advice for themselves. It’s pretty strange that someone would have the opportunity to speak with the co-founder of Farm Sanctuary and his question of choice would have to do with flax seeds, but I guess that just goes to show that people are still confused about the vegan diet.

 

The truth is that vegans eat pretty much whatever non-vegans eat, just without the meat, milk, and eggs, so there’s really not very much to be confused about. “Anything you can eat, I can eat vegan”, as the t-shirt says. This What I Ate Wednesday post is not to show off how healthy (or unhealthy depending on who you ask) my diet is, how many carbs I eat, or how much “garbage” I eat in a day. It’s simply to show off some delicious food photos and show what vegans really eat. This is what I ate over the long holiday weekend. I did quite a lot of cooking this weekend, getting recipes ready for Vegan MoFo, as well as making things from new cookbooks that have been sent to me to review.

 

Breakfast TacosI made super yummy Veggie-Good Breakfast Tacos from Going Vegan by Joni Marie Newman and Gerrie Lynn Adams for breakfast one day. You’re pretty much guaranteed to have a good day when you start it with tacos.

 

 

PicnicWe went on a picnic (that needed up getting rained out) one afternoon, and I packed us a lunch that included my Greek-Inspired Salad with Tofu Feta and Tahini Dressing, Herb-Crusted Coconut “Chèvre” (also from Going Vegan), and champagne grapes. Perfect lunch!

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI made a trip to Trader Joe’s last week, so we grilled up some of Joe’s Tofu Burgers with lots of veggies, and I made a slaw using Trader Joe’s Cruciferous Crunch.

 

Tofu ScrambleLike the veggie tacos, another yummy breakfast that came from Going Vegan was the Down-Home Country Tofu Scramble made with Sweet and Smokey Tempeh Strips.

 

Raw Taco SaladEven though summer is coming to an end, it’s been kind of hot and humid here, so we ate raw for several meals. I made raw taco salad with spicy chipotle aioli and cashew sour cream on Sunday. I’ll be sharing the recipe for this simple dish soon.

 

Kale ChipsAnd of course, there were kale chips. This is another recipe that will be coming soon.

 

SmoothiesWe also enjoyed Lemon Raspberry Cheese Smoothies from The Blender Girl cookbook by Tess Masters. These were super delicious! I’m looking forward to trying more of her smoothies and shakes.

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis Twisted Caesar Please was also from  The Blender Girl cookbook and was super hearty and filling for a salad. I added Tess’s Macadamia Feta to it, and the “cheese” gave it tons of flavor.

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI ended the weekend with this super-messy-yet-well-worth-it Seitan Gryo. I’ll be sharing the recipe for in the upcoming weeks.

 

That’s what I’ve been eating. What have you been cooking up?

 

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Greek-Inspired Salad with Tofu Feta and Tahini Dressing

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA A few years ago, I was sent some soy feta samples to try, and I quickly became addicted. I made greek-style salads for lunch for weeks on end. When I ran out, I was able to find the vegan cheese at both my local Whole Foods and Fairway Market, but either both stores discontinued it or the manufacturer started making it. Earlier this year I decided to try to make my own feta using tofu. The end result wasn’t a 100% match for feta, but it had a nice taste and worked well with my favorite salad. My Greek-Style Pizza with Tofu Feta recipe is actually based on this salad, and is pretty much the same dish in pizza form.

 

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Greek-Inspired Salad with Tofu Feta and Tahini Dressing

Tofu Feta

  • 1 pound extra firm tofu, drained and pressed
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon mellow white miso
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt 

Tahini Dressing

  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon chopped parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt

For the Salad

  • 6 cups romaine lettuce, shredded (about 1 large head or two small heads)
  • 2 cups baby spinach, chopped
  • 1/2 cup red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • 1 cup cucumber, chopped
  • 12-14 ounce can or jar artichoke hearts, quartered (not the oil packed kind)
  • 4 or 5 pepperoncini peppers, sliced
  • 1 cup cooked chickpeas
  • 1/3 cup kalamata olives, chopped
  • 1/3 cup toasted pistachios, chopped

 

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA Directions: For the Tofu Feta:

  1. Crumble the tofu into large chunks and place in a shallow bowl or baking dish.
  2. Mix together the rest of the ingredients and whisk until smooth.
  3. Pour the lemon juice mixture over the tofu. Toss gently to combine.
  4. Place the dish of tofu in the fridge for several hours or overnight. The longer it sits, the better the flavor.

For the Tahini Dressing:

  1. Mix all ingredients together until smooth.
  2. Set aside until ready to use. Sauce will thicken after sitting for a while. Add water when ready to use, if necessary. 

Assemble the Salad

  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl.
  2. Top the salad with the tahini dressing, and toss to coat. Add the tofu feta.
  3. Divide salad into 4 bowls and enjoy! 

Serves 4

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Vegan MoFo Begins!

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I’m so excited to be participating in Vegan MoFo once again this year! I don’t have a particular theme – other than food of course! –but I do have a schedule.

 

Mondays – Cookbook reviews

Tuesdays – My own Recipes

Wednesday – What I Ate Wednesday

Thursday –  Guest-post recipes and blog tours

Friday – Foodie Friday restaurant and product reviews

 

When it comes to recipes, I will be focusing on easy to make dishes with simple ingredients. I’ll have recipes for salads and sandwiches, since that’s what I’ve been eating myself lately. As we move into fall, there will be more warming dishes.  I will have giveaways and other fun stuff too, so stay-tuned!

What I Ate Wednesday – The Bethlehem VegFest

Beth Veg FestOn Saturday Dennis and I hopped in the car and drove to Bethlehem, PA, for their annual VegFest. It was a day long celebration of all things vegan, with lots of food, vegan health and beauty products, clothing, food, accessories, notable speakers, cooking demos, and even more food! I did a cooking demo myself, and I showed how to make Indonesian Broccoli with Tempeh in Spicy Peanut Sauce. I over indulged a little on food from The Cinnamon Snail and Vegan Treats, and I was happy to see old friends and make new ones. I got to chat with Farm Sanctuary’s Gene Baur, I gave my friend Jaime from Save the Kales a hug, and I was fortunate hear No Meat Athlete’s Matt Frazier speak.

 

Vegan Treats CakesOur first stop was at the Vegan Treats table. There were so many delicious treats, and they all looked almost too go good to eat. Almost. Quite a lot of it came home with us. (And no, we didn’t eat it all at once. We still have some of it left!)

 

Seitan al PastorFrom there we went to The Cinnamon Snail and waiting on a massive line for lunch. I usually Creole Grilled Tofu Sub, but this time I had the Seitan al Pastor. It was made with beer battered jalapeños, grilled pineapple, arugula, and chipotle mayonnaise on grilled baguette, and it was 100% delicious.

 

Cinnamon Snail DonutAlso from the Cinnamon Snail, I had the world’s most amazing donut: peanut butter chocolate chip cookie dough. 

 

Freakin VeganSomehow, several hours later I was hungry again, so I had a broccoli and “cheese” empanada from Freakin’ Vegan. I went back for another – a “cheesesteak” one this time – to hold me over for the drive home.

 

Chickn n WafflesAt home, Dennis and I split one of Vegan Treats’  now famous Chick’n and Waffles donut. It was a strange mix of sweet and savory and it was delicious!

 

SaladIn addition to all of the sweets and treats, we left with a giant bag full of produce from the farmers market stand that was set up at the VegFest. To make up for the indulging, on Sunday we I ate lots and lots of greens!

 

What have you been eating lately?

 

 

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Indonesian Broccoli and Tempeh with Spicy Peanut Sauce

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This is a recipe I’ve posted before, but it’s so good it’s worth repeating. In my health coaching practice, I meet a lot of people have never tried tempeh before, or who have tried it and didn’t like it. I’ve found that this dish is a good way to introduce people to it, as it shows tempeh’s versatility. Often people who have previously said they don’t like tempeh have ended up loving it after trying it cooked this way with broccoli and peanut sauce. The first step in this recipe is key, as it helps to get rid of the fermented taste some don’t like, and it prepares the tempeh to absorb the flavors of the spicy sauce that’s added later.

 

This is the recipe I  be demonstrated on Saturday at the Bethlehem VegFest. If you joined me at my demo, thank you! If you couldn’t make it, here’s what you missed:

 

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Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons peanut oil, divided
  • 1/2 cup water or vegetable broth
  • 8 ounce package tempeh, cut into cubes
  • 3 tablespoons tamari or Bragg’s Liquid Aminos
  • 1 bunch broccoli, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • 1  bell pepper, cored and cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2/3 cup coconut milk
  • 2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chili sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 tablespoons crushed peanuts

 

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Directions

  1. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a wok or large skillet over medium heat. Add tempeh and sear for 3 minutes on each side. Add the water or broth and 1 1/2 tablespoons of tamari. Cook tempeh for 5 more minutes, until all of the liquid has been absorbed. Transfer to  a plate and let cool, until it’s easy to handle. Crumble by hand until no large chunks remain.
  2. Heat remaining oil in the same skillet over high heat. Add the onion and saute for several minutes, until it starts to become translucent. Add broccoli and pepper and stir-fry for a few minutes, until they begin to brown.
  3. Mix together the coconut milk, peanut butter, garlic, ginger, chili sauce and remaining soy sauce. Add it to the skillet with the crumbled tempeh and stir-fry for about 2 minutes.
  4. Serve with brown rice and garnish with crushed peanuts. Enjoy!
Makes 3-4 servings
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What I Ate Wednesday

As I was preparing today’s What I ate Wednesday post, I realized that my cooking hasn’t been very creative over the course of the past few weeks. I’ve been eating lot of my standard salads and grilled sandwiches. It could be because I’ve got quite a lot on my plate at the moment, so to speak, or it might have to do with the gorgeous weather we’ve been having. The dishes I cooked up last week weren’t very different from what I ate the week before, but they sure have were tasty.

 

Fruit and yogurtThe nice people at So Delicious recently sent me some of their new almond yogurt to try, and it really is so delicious! I’ve been eating it for breakfast with cherries, champagne grapes and toasted coconut.

 

VeggieBurgerI’ve fallen in love with Trader Joe’s tofu burgers, so I stocked up the last time I was there. We like to grill them and top them with peppers and summer squash. I’m pretty sure these are actually Wildwood’s veggie burgers, but they’re a whole lot cheaper in the Trader Joe’s packaging! I made my Raw Kale Slaw as a side, but used Joe’s Cruciferous Crunch mix instead of just kale.

 

Eggplant SandwichI realize this dish looks almost identical to the one above it, but it’s totally different! This is a Grilled Eggplant Sandwich with a Caesar salad on the side.

 

Greek SaladLunch is almost always a big salad, but I try to mix things up. This one is a Greek salad made with romaine, cabbage, carrots, pea shoots, cucumbers, tomatoes, chickpeas, pepperoncini peppers, olives, toasted pistachios, and lots of and lots of tahini dressing.

 

GyroWell, sometimes lunch can also be a wrap. Seitan Gyros were in regular meal rotation a few years ago, but somehow fell out of favor. I recently came across some Uptons seitan and gyros were the first meal that came to mind. I’ll be sharing this recipe next month during Vegan MoFo. I served my sandwich with a side of kale chips.

 

Portobello PeachThe Grilled Portobello Peach Sandwich is a thing of beauty, and we’ve been eating them on a weekly basis this summer.

 

Taco SaladTacos Salads have also been part of my weekly menu this summer. The “meat” in this one is actually neat meat replacement. 

Cherries One of my favorite summertime desserts is simply fresh cherries with cashew cream. Last week I found myself craving chocolate, so I made a quick ganache to drizzle over the top.

 

 

That’s what I’ve been eating. What’s been on your plate recently?

 

 

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Upcoming Events

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Happy Monday! I’ve had a busy few weeks, and while I haven’t blogged too much lately, I do have some great things planned for Vegan MoFo in September. I also have some great things planned for friends in the Northeast, and I hope you’ll be able to join me for one of my upcoming events.

 

Bethlehem VegFest

I’m super excited to be doing a cooking demo at the Bethlehem VegFest this coming weekend!

When: Saturday, August 23, 11:00am – 6pm (my demo is at 3pm)

Where: 316 South New Street (at the corner of S. New St & Mechanic St) in SouthSide Bethlehem

Website: DowntownBethlehemAssociation

 

Dairy-Free Cheeses

Jenna from Good Good Things and I will be teaching a dairy-free cheese class at the Adult School of Montclair this fall! Registration starts today. This class is going to be popular and space is limited so sign up now!

When: Wednesday, October 8, 7pm – 9pm

Where: St. James Episcopal Church, Monclair NJ

Website: AdultSchool.org

 

 

What I Ate Wednesday – Eating In the Great Outdoors

It’s hard to believe it’s August! Not only has time flown by this year, but the weather is so pleasant that I actually don’t mind being outside. Usually summer finds me miserable from the heat and suffering from heat rash and humidity-induced headaches. It’s been so nice in fact that I’ve been taking most of my meals outside and eating in the yard. I’ve been recipe testing for a few friends who have upcoming cookbooks, so some of the recipes behind these dishes are top-secret, but I can show you teaser photos. I will let you know more info when I can. Here’s what I’ve been eating:

Eggplant SammiesLast year we ate grilled eggplant sandwiches at least once a week, but they fell off our dinner radar this year somehow. Last weekend I bought an eggplant and we made them again, and they were so good we wondered why we waited so long to make them this year. We also grilled corn and romaine. (Yes, romaine.)

 

Sir Digby Chicken CaesarI don’t buy veggie meats very often, but in June Beyond Meat tweeted me a coupon for free food, and I kind of stocked up on it. It’s great for making vegan chick’n Caesar salads with.

 

Chickn SammieI also stocked up on Gardein because there was a big sale at the local Fairway. I bought some of their chick’n patties to try to recreate my favorite un-chicken grilled sandwich from Blossom DuJour. I grilled them up with some potatoes and brussels sprouts. If you’ve never grilled sprouts, you really need to try it.

 

VeggieBurgerI also bought Gardein veggie burgers and had them with grilled asparagus and coleslaw. Asparagus is another veggie that tastes great grilled.

 

Tofu GyroThis tofu gyro was so good that I didn’t even mind locking myself out of the house when I went into the backyard to have it for lunch. Oops!

 

Veggie WrapThis veggie wrap was just as good as the gyro, and I managed to unlock the door before I went outside to eat it.

 

Wedge SaladWell, the photo of these wedge salads was taken inside, but we did eat them out on the patio.

 

Birthday Party PlateOn Saturday my friend Jenna‘s family threw a surprise birthday party for her. Her mom made tons of great vegan food, and there was a birthday cake from Sweet Avenue Bakeshop for dessert.

 

Potluck PlateOn Sunday I had a great potluck with my MeetUp group. We had all sorts of picnicky-type dishes and salads. I made three dishes myself – a rice salad, macaroni salad, and a bean salad. All of the food was really tasty!

 

That’s what I’ve been eating. What’s been on your plate recently?

 

 

 

 

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Greek Pizza with Tofu Feta

Greek Pizza with Tofu Feta

As an omnivore, pizza for me used to be crust, tomato sauce, cheese and a topping – pepperoni when I ate meat and mushrooms while I was a vegetarian. Now as a vegan, pizza has become much more creative and flavorful. Who says we need to stick to the rules of using tomato sauce and cheese? Why not put chickpeas and tahini on a pizza? This pizza was inspired by my favorite lunchtime Greek salad. I originally made it with vegan Soy Feta that had been sent to me to review. After I ran out of the samples, I found it at the local Whole Foods, and quickly became an addict, but sadly, they no longer carry it. Rather than give up on my favorite salad altogether, I set about making my own “feta” with tofu. While it doesn’t taste exactly like feta cheese, it has a similar flavor, and it compliments this pizza quite nicely.

 

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Tofu Feta

  • 1 pound extra firm tofu, drained and pressed
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • ¼ red wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • 1 tablespoon mellow white miso
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt

Tahini Dressing

  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt

For the Pizza

  • 12” or 15” prepared pizza crust
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/2 red onion, diced (about ½ a cup)
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 5 ounces baby spinach, chopped
  • 1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
  • 4 or 5 pepperoncini peppers, sliced
  • 2 artichoke hearts, chopped
  • 1/2 cup cooked chickpeas
  • 1/3 cup kalamata olives, chopped
  • Sprig of chopped fresh oregano, or a sprinkle of dried

 

Greek Pizza With Tofu Feta

Directions:

For the Tofu Feta:

  • Crumble the tofu into large chunks and place in a shallow bowl or baking dish.
  • Mix together the rest of the ingredients and whisk until smooth.
  • Pour the lemon juice mixture over the tofu. Toss gently to combine.
  • Place the dish of tofu in the fridge for several hours or overnight. The longer it sits, the better the flavor.

For the Tahini Dressing:

  1. Mix all ingredients together until smooth.
  2. Set aside until ready to use. Sauce will thicken after sitting for a while. Add water when ready to use, if necessary.

Assemble the Pizza

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Preheat crust, if necessary.
  2. Sauté the onion and garlic in the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat until the onion turns translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the chopped spinach and cook for just a minute or two more, until it wilts.
  3. Spread the spinach mixture over the crust. Layer on the rest of the ingredients with the exception of the tahini sauce.
  4. Cook for 10-12 minutes.
  5. Drizzle on the tahini sauce, slice into 8 pieces, and then eat ‘er up!

 

 

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What I Ate Wednesday – A Little Weekend Indulgence

Financial DistrictOn Saturday Dennis and I drove into New York City to attend the Vegan Shop-Up at Mooshoes vegan shoe store. I always see posts and photos from the monthly Shop-Ups and they look like a lot of fun, but they’re usually in Brooklyn, which is a little bit of a trek from our suburban New Jersey home. We did get to attend a few months ago, when we happened to be invited to party on the same day, but usually Brooklyn happenings are a little off our radar. Fortunately for us, this month saw an extra Shop-Up in Manhattan, which isn’t too far, so we decided to make a day of it and attend. We knew it was going to be a day of indulging, so we had giant green smoothies for breakfast. We bought a lot of sweets on Saturday, but we didn’t eat them all in one go, and we still have quite a lot of our haul left.

 

Pala PizzaOur first stop was at Pala Pizza. Pala is not an entirely vegan establishment, but it’s extremely vegan friendly. In fact, the waitress noticed my “vegan” necklace and placed the vegan side of the menu face-up on the table for us. The menu has changed since we were there last, and they didn’t have the Patatosa Pizza I’m so fond of. I had the Broccolini Pizza though, which is made with broccoli, fennel and potatoes, so I was able to satisfy my potato pizza cravings. Dennis had the Funghi E Salsiccia which is made with veggie sausage, field mushrooms, daiya cheese, and hot peppers. We both had cocktails to sooth our nerves after the very stressful drive in to NYC through the Holland Tunnel and through the Financial District and China Town. (People don’t seem to obey any type of traffic laws down there!) We also split an order of Patatini, which is Pala’s homemade potato chips made with truffle oil and herbs. It was all incredibly delicious.

 

BabyCakesAfter lunch we rolled ourselves over to Mooshoes for the Shop-Up, but we made a small pitstop at Babycakes, where we picked up donuts to go.

 

Shop UpOnce we got to Mooshoes, we were greeted with even more delicious vegan indulgences. In attendance were Yeah Dawg hotdogs, Tamerlaine Farm, Sweet Maresa, and Cake Thieves. We got goodies to go from Gone Pie bakery and Lagusta’s Luscious. We also picked up some skin care products from Meow Meow Tweet.

 

Snail foodThe Cinnamon Snail was parked outside Mooshoes, and the line to get their yummy vegan noms was the shortest I’ve seen it in a long time, so even though we were totally full, we decided to get food. We picked up a Korean Barbecue Seitan sandwich, a Creole Grilled Tofu Sub, a cheesecake brownie, and a donut to go. The donut went faster than I could take a photo of it. We ate the sandwiches for dinner at home alongside giant salads.

 

The Vegan Shop-Up will be popping up at Mooshoes again on Sunday, August 10th and Sunday, September 21st. Proceeds benefit Tamerlaine Farm, a new animal sanctuary in Montague, NJ.

 

 

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Dr. Fuhrman