See, what happens when your father-in-law and husband take over the garden plotting is you end up with – amongst other things – not enough of some things and too many of other things. Radishes, in this case. At least, that’s how it worked out this year, for us. I have bags full, and many of them are too old, simply because there *are* so many. So since somehow *I’m* the person responsible for creating a Radish Plan to deal with the Situation, I’ve been scouring the net looking for possible recipes. These are the best candidates right now, that I plan on trying out this week.
Well, things are still a bit hectic, so another quick post here. I did a bit of baking recently in an attempt to use up some aging produce. Firstly I made apple bread, using a veganized recipe from shannonsrunning blog. Nice and straight-forward, this bread baked up a treat and used up three ratty, withered apples I had lying around. I think if I make it again, though I’ll probably try to sort out cutting down the sugar – I don’t think it needed to be as sweet as it turned out.
Same day, I also made a couple of loaves of chocolate zucchini bread. (I had a couple of ratty zucchini’s that needed using up.) These loaves were really good – full of walnuts and chocolatey goodness, but probably could have used the chocolate chips called for – the bread wanted to fall apart a bit – seems like chocolate chips might have helped keep it together. In any case, it’s a great recipe, ‘though do be advised it makes 2 loaves.
(Please excuse the pics – really need a new camera, I guess. :P)
I took some quick snapshots (using my old camera) of the cookies I took to a friend’s Thanksgiving party. (I made pumpkin chocolate chip cupcakes from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World, too, but totally forgot to photograph them. They were good, but very rich!) Please forgive the first blurry pic – I didn’t realize how bad a pic it was until the, um, evidence was gone. 😉
These are The Best and Easiest Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies, recipe found at VegWeb.com. This is a very simple recipe, and I think that I’m going to try to make it xGFx (gluten-free) soon – should be easy as the recipe only calls for half a cup of flour as it is.
Gotta run – need to sort out lunch supplies for this coming school week – my latest crochet projects will have to wait until later I suppose.
Have a great Sunday!
I have to say, as I approach my first Holiday Season as a crocheter and proto-knitter, I’m struggling a bit with veganism and yarn. I’ve been a vegan for more than 4 years, and I don’t buy wool – with the *possible* exception of second hand. However I really do like a good wool yarn. I don’t know if that’s a side effect of having a mom who knitted with wool when I was a kid or what. Maybe so.
There are a lot of synthetics out there, but then I worry about the environmental impact their creation makes. On the other hand, cotton is a very water intensive crop for most farmers. It can be done “dry” but then one is looking at organic yarn, which is a bit beyond my budget at the moment. Actually, a lot of better yarns are beyond my budget at the moment. o.0 So I’m mostly stuck *wanting* to get fancy vegan yarns (bamboo, soy, etc.) but actually purchasing affordable synthetics.
Today I’m going hunting for affordable yarn I can use to create the Delicate Web Wrap from Hooked Throws. You can see the pattern at Lion Yarn (it’s free) or at Ravelry. (I was a bit freaked out to see errata at the Lion site – hope that’s not par for the course for my chosen projects from this book!!) I have some ideas, and I hope I can find what I need – I’m hoping to make this for a relative for Christmas! Wish me luck! ^_^
Ok, so it may not be a very glamorous shot – I didn’t have time to do any more than take a quick point-and-shoot photo the day I made this – but I did mention making Orange Dreamsicle Snack Cake. I really wish I’d gotten a better pic, because it’s really yum. Really rich, but really yum.
It just so happened that the day I got My Sweet Vegan I had all the ingredients for this decadent cake. I felt it was Fate. So, way later in the evening than I should have, I set to making this, much to the eventual delight of my family:
Ahem. Silly boy. Seriously, though – I’ve yet to make something of Hannah‘s and not really enjoy it. This morning I made her Chocolate Chickpea Spread to spread over some left-over ciabatta bread I’d toasted. I’d share my picture of said toast, but I totally forgot I was wearing a bandaid when I was holding it to be photographed. o.0 Not so lovely. Her pics are much lovlier. The spread was good, too. ^_^
To continue…assuming anyone’s reading this somewhat self-indulgent display of received gifts. ^_-
Just like last year I got a gift certificate from my folks to Amazon, and also just like last year I spent a couple of weeks deciding what I wanted. Totally skipped anything practical this year (I’d feel guilty, but due to a family emergency I’d already cashed a birthday check for quick survival money. :P) and ordered a slew of crochet and cooking related books for myself. Well – almost nothing practical. I spent *some* money ordering replacement rechargeable batteries – my beloved-but-unobservant husband threw them away in a dumpster whilst taking photos at a client’s site – he hadn’t realized they were in the camera!
Soo – what did I get?
Hooked Scarves: 20 Easy Crochet Projects by Margaret Hubert (she has a blog here). I also bagged onto another of her books, Hooked Throws: 20 Easy Crochet Projects. These look like fun patterns, and I look forward to trying them out, though I guess I’m looking at a lot of veganizing yarn choices for a lot of them. Also, it took me paging through the throw book to really grok how much yarn a throw/afghan takes. o.0 Yowza.
I also picked up a highly-reviewed out of print book – The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Crochet Projects Illustrated by Marcy Smith. It’s got some really different patterns in it, and lovely clear pictures on how to do basic stitches, etc, but most of the projects don’t really catch my interest. Also – there are lots of projects with things like felting, etc, which really won’t work for me as a vegan crocheter. So, while it’s a fun addition to my library and I will undoubtedly use it, I probably wouldn’t get it if I had it to do over again.
On the other sauce, under the category of Completely AwesomeSauce – I picked up a copy of Crochet the Complete Guide. This is an AmaZing book – I highly recommend it – basic practical stuff at the beginning, plus lots of stitch references and some basic patterns in the back. This is going to be a book I use FreQuently – do check it out, whether you’re a noob like me or a master crocheter – I really think you’ll like it!!
My final crochet-related gift was the Boye Beginners Crochet Kit, which I bought for the kit goodies, really, and not the book. The basic instructions are great in this book, but I’d be *very* careful if I ordered it from a Seller on Amazon, etc. The copy I got that was supposed to be “new” was the older pattern guide from the 80’s and not the newer one. Frankly, however, it was too much hassle to complain. 😛 Like I said, glad to have picked up the hooks and stitch markers, ‘though the latter are a bit hard to use in my clumsy fingers.
Anyhoo, moving on to some happier Book Goodness:
These two have been on my want list forever, and it seemed like a good opportunity to pick ’em up, especially as I *do* need to feed my peeps everyday. Well, I guess My Sweet Vegan is more of an indulgence, but there are good recipes for things like French toast, rolls, muffins and the like. However, I will own up and share that as I had all the ingredients, I made Orange Dreamsicle Snack Cake first. (I’ll post about that another time, as this post is starting to draw on, and I *did* sign up for NaBloPoMo for November. o.0 Gotta have *something* to post about all those days….) ANYhoo – if you’d like to know more about Hannah Kaminsky, check out her blog, BitterSweet. She’s got some fun free crochet and knit patterns there, in addition to lovely recipes and just good food blogging.
Last but not least, I picked up Vegan Brunch – Isa Chandra Moskowitz‘s latest. If you’ve not tried ’em – her cookbooks are the bomb – I highly recommend them. My only grouse is sometimes the ingredients are hard to find – she’s lived in the NYC area most of her life (now Portland, OR), so her perspective on what’s easy to find is a bit skewed. ^_- It looks fab – lots of yummy stuff in there. I’ve not had a chance to make anything other than banana flapjacks, but those were insanely good – didn’t even manage pics before they disappeared!
This was a fab haul! Thanks Mom & Dad – much love!!!!
A dear love of ours made Eldest Son some strawberry shortcake for a belated birthday present. It wasn’t bad, but it was not perfect enough that it drew a lot of razzy comments about vegan cooking. So – with a third of a quart’s wilty strawberries in mind, I went looking for another recipe. What I found was seriously the best cupcake ever. Very good shortcake experience – I highly recommend:
This is not my pic – I was too much of a bum to run down to the office to get the camera, so this has been shamelessly borrowed from the blog of origin: Vegan.Chicks.Rock.