Monthly Archive: July 2011

Market meals

Last weekend I promised to share our vegan BBQ menu and then I got so busy with Disneyland, work, and my trip home I completely forgot about it. 

IMG_0280

We didn’t actually determine what we were having for dinner until we got to the Farmer’s Market.  So the menu was based entirely on what was fresh that day. 

Let’s start with the green beans

IMG_0283 

After washing them and cutting off the ends, I steamed them until they were nice and soft.

IMG_0285

Then I let them cool in an ice bath.  They stayed in the cold water in the fridge until dinner time. 

IMG_0286 

Just before dinner I drained them and threw in chopped cherry tomatoes.

IMG_0301 

While this simple salad would be perfect on it’s own, I decided to add a simple dressing.

IMG_0305 

Simple being the operative word. 

IMG_0309 

  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil with White Truffle (if you use a sprayer, you can get away with using less and still getting maximal flavor coating the entire salad)
  • Balsamic Vinegar (don’t skimp, the pricier ones are noticeably better)
  • Himalayan sea salt

IMG_0306 

As for the BBQ portion of the meal, we had vegan sausages, bell peppers skewers, and avocado on the menu. 

IMG_0287 

I had only previously tried one other Field Roast Grain Meat Co. product (the wild mushroom loaf), but I thought it was really good.  And since Kyle has nearly nixed his meat consumption when we eat in, we figured we may as well both eat the same thing…which is why we ended up giving some non-meat sausages a try.

IMG_0288

I’m what the food industry calls a “box turner” – meaning I flip products over and read the ingredients.  When I shop, I look for transparent labeling…none of this “spices” business.  I want specifics.  If a product says “flavoring” I want to know WHAT the flavoring is and what it’s made of.  When a package says vegan, it’s somewhat reassuring because then I know the source is at the very least not animal-derived.  But why I chose Field Roast Grain Meat Co. is due to the clean ingredients listed.  For a packaged product, the sausages’ stats are relatively impressive: non-sulfured dried apples, yukon gold potatoes, etc. 

IMG_0297 

Obviously the casing isn’t that of a typical sausage (pig intestines) which made them a bit fragile as compared to normal sausages.  But as long as they are handled with care as they are placed on the BBQ, they will hold up just fine.

IMG_0304 

Check out those grill marks!  Yum. 

The other notable difference is the cook time.  They were hot and ready in minutes. 

IMG_0303 

Flavor and texture wise these were the BEST faux meat product I’ve ever had.  I don’t even like sausage and I was mmmm-ing after each bite (as was Kyle).  I’m happy to say these are a perfect gate-way option for new vegans weaning themselves off meat AS WELL AS veg-lovers who just don’t like meat.  Seriously.  And with a non-freaky ingredients list, you don’t even have to feel like you’re eating fake food because they are made from real ingredients. 

IMG_0292

Next up were the avocados.  I know people thought this was an odd choice, but I read it in a magazine a month ago and the idea stuck with me.  All I did was coat them in lime juice and sea salt

IMG_0296 

They took just as long short to cook as the sausages. 

IMG_0291 

And because we still had a few colors of the rainbow not represented, we made bell pepper skewers, too.

IMG_0293

Again, the white truffle oil spray came in handy. 

IMG_0294 

These took the longest on the grill, but it was still a relatively short amount of time.

IMG_0298 

My BBQ-master husband grilled them to perfection.

IMG_0311

See?

All together now…

IMG_0313 IMG_0314

A perfect summer vegan BBQ for two :)

IMG_0316

We each went back for seconds, but I still had leftovers for lunch the next day.  There’s really nothing better than maximizing a perfect meal into a second perfect meal.

IMG_0318 

I simply threw the last of the sausage, tomatoes and bell peppers over a bed of lettuce, added some red quinoa, and called it a day. 

By the way I am LOVING hearing how many salads everyone thinks they eat in a year.  So interesting.  For those who missed that post, don’t worry, there’s still time to enter the giveaway

Berry green monster (giveaway)

IMG_9758 

Hi gorgeous. 

Would you believe me if I told you the above creation had spirulina, chlorella, and flax lignans in it?  Because it totally does. 

Would you believe me if I said I was going to give away a tub of the same Antioxidant Natural Greens powder to one lucky HHH reader?  Because I totally am.  :)

IMG_9745 

I heard a scary stat the other day.  Did you know that the average American eats 38 salads a year.  A YEAR!  My jaw hit the floor when I heard that.  I have always known I’m on the more healthy end of the spectrum in terms of eating my veggies…but I never thought the rest of the nation was THAT far behind me!  Yikes. 

It’s a good thing there are stevia-sweetened berry green powders like this one to fill in the gaps where salads are MIA.  It has omega-3’s, probiotics, digestive enzymes, trace minerals, and so much more.  But the genius is the delicious flavor that masks the “healthy” properties. 

IMG_9762 

For a chance to win your very own tub of greens tell me (a) how many salads you think you eat in a year, and/or (b) a sneaky way you get greens into your diet. 

I’ll give an extra entry for tweeting about the giveaway mentioning @elisehippie (be sure to leave a separate comment telling me you did so).

I will announce the winner on Monday, August 1st.  Good luck!

Back in the Bay

I went to bed way too late last night, which made my 7 am alarm extra annoying.  At least I got most of my stuff packed up so the AM went by easy breezy. 

IMG_0413 

The night before I had made an oat bake but using silken tofu as a (vegan) egg alternative.  I also threw in some green apple chunks for good measure, but the almond extract is really what makes these bakes exceptional.

IMG_0416 

I nuked it in the microwave for a few minutes and then let it cool in the fridge overnight. 

IMG_0420 

The next morning I had this lovely guy waiting for me. 

IMG_0422 

I flipped it on it’s a$$ and wrapped it in tin foil for the road. 

IMG_0421 

The rest of the apples got packed up for my I-5 road trip plus more goodies.

IMG_0414

Carrots, nuts, dried fruit, bars…all the typical snack foods that are perfect for eating while driving. 

IMG_0415 IMG_0418 

I got the car loaded up, filled my coffee and water bottle, got my car consul perfectly arranged (gum x3, sunnies, iPod and phone), and off I went!

IMG_0424 

Thanks to Jillian Michaels’ podcasts and Adele and Glee cds the ride went by fairly quickly.

IMG_0428

Home! 

I was literally home for under 5 minutes before I turned right back around to head out…because my sister and mom and I were going to our second viewing of HP.

IMG_0426

It’s her birthday so she gets to pick the movie – even if all 3 of us already saw it.  She represented with the shirt :) 

IMG_0425 

I took a roll with me.  I am IN LOVE with Vital Vittles

In a funny twist of fate, the movie theatre was packed when we got there and we couldn’t even find three seats together.  Boo!  Unwilling to sit in random seats between strangers we ditched Harry Potter and went to the theatre next door for Friends with Benefits.  As a Justin Timberlake lover fan, I’m biased, but we all really liked it.  Cute and fun with laugh out loud dialogue at times. 

Post movie my mom showed me her garden’s new raised beds. 

IMG_0433 

Eggplant.

IMG_0434

Serrano peppers.

IMG_0435 

Bell peppers.

IMG_0437 

Sage, tomatoes, basil, rosemary, thyme, chives, etc.

IMG_0438

Sweet potatoes, string beans & strawberries.

IMG_0442

And greens, greens, greens!

IMG_0444

Chard, romaine, mustard greens, mesclun, etc. 

IMG_0432

I picked some tomatoes for dinner. 

IMG_0449 

Whenever we have family dinners for birthdays, the person celebrating gets to pick the meal.  Tonight Marie chose a family fave…

IMG_0457 

Taco night!

IMG_0448 

The rest of the family had chicken, but I made chickpeas. 

  • 1 cup chickpeas
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • dash of salt
  • 1/4 cup diced tomatoes

IMG_0451 

Microwave together for 2 minutes and voila!  The simplest (and cheapest) taco “meat” you’ll ever make.

IMG_0450

Collect other toppings and then start layering. 

My dad has two jobs that nobody else can do on taco night.  The first is frying the corn tortillas (I had soft tacos because my GI system doesn’t exactly love fried food), the second is making the refried beans.  Not sure what he does, but they are always good. 

IMG_0454 

I used the shot glass to hold the tortillas in place (it also had a squirt of lime juice to add on top the tacos at the end).  Refried beans make a perfect taco base – acting as glue holding in the rest of the ingredients. 

IMG_0455

Then chickpeas, lettuce, tomatoes, avocado, salsa, and lime juice.

IMG_0458

And wine.

IMG_0456

And that, folks, is how it’s done.

24 episodes

How did I not know until just now that my idol, Jillian Michaels, has a free podcast on iTunes!?!  I’m 24 episodes behind, which means I have enough listening material for the drive to Nor Cal tomorrow (and back on Monday).  Score! 

I was heartbroken (no, seriously, I was) when XM radio discontinued Jillian’s last radio show, so imagine my excitement when I discovered she’s back!  And this time on iTunes!  There’s nothing more motivating than listening to Jillian speak about fitness and nutrition.  Weee!  I’ve never looked forward to the I-5 like this.  Ever. 

Today I worked, as per usual.  Nada much to say on the matter.  It was an ordinary day.

IMG_0405

Being the mega planner that I am, I prepped my lunch salad at the same time as my dinner salad.

IMG_0391

This way, I get home starving and don’t have to do any prep work, and I still get a fresh veggie-full meal.  :)  Happy hippie.

I used up all the rest of the Swiss chard in these salads, plus the bell peppers and cherry tomatoes.

IMG_0393

I topped both off with leftover quinoa/chickpea blend which had soaked overnight in the soy/lemon/cashini sauce and was oozing with flavor.  So so yum. 

IMG_0396

Breakfast was 100% divine because I was again creative with my oats

 IMG_0397

Chia seeds, whole rolled oats, apples

IMG_0398

Meet your raw neighbor, kaia foods’ cocoa bliss buckwheat granola.

IMG_0403

Ok truth?  This stuff deserves it’s own post. 

IMG_0400

And it’s from the East Bay.  I couldn’t be more proud of my hometown. 

IMG_0404

Here’s the masterpiece I wound up with.  Cocoa and raisins and flax, oh my!

IMG_0406

The rest of the snack pack included Mary’s Gone sticks & twigs, roasted salty almonds, dark chocolate edamame, and apple rings

Plus an almost hidden apple and candied ginger (obvs).

IMG_0407

And my luscious greens of course. 

IMG_0394

For breakfast I had a single slice of Silver Hills Steady Eddie bread.

IMG_0395

For a sprouted bread, this guy was soft and fluffy with that yummy nutty whole grain grit.  I am 100% in love.  Canada better get it’s act together and ship these in bulk to the Santa Monica Whole Foods because Lynn can’t keep supplying me forever!

Anyway.  Aside from all the Jillian Michaels excitement for the night, the real thrill was flipping through Mama Pea’s cookbook!

IMG_0408

Ok, calling it a cookbook isn’t quite right.  It’s so much more.  Her wit, her humor, her adorable family…they’re all in the book.  And her delicious recipes are the cherry on the coconut ice cream sundae. 

She’s an inspiration to vegans and non-vegans, moms and future-moms…oh hell, she’s an inspiration to anyone who likes to eat scrumptious food (and hey, it also happens to be good for you and the environment too)!  I’m very proud to call her a friend.  When she’s on ellen next year, I’ll say I knew her when…