Vegan Week Summary + Trader Joe’s

Hello!!

Just wanted to check in and report to you about my 5 days of being vegan. Sorry for the minimal posting; my sister flew in Saturday and we spent the weekend camping and white water rafting and I’m now getting ready to head back to Texas.

Anyway, as I mentioned before, last Monday-Friday I decided to go vegan. I thoroughly enjoyed my short run with veganism. Before the week began, I decided that I was not going to be using any substitutes. No tofu, or vegan cream “cheese” or anything like that for me. I understand the use of these things for long-term vegans, but I knew I could live without them for 5 days. I did use some almond milk and made muffins with soymilk, but I don’t really count that since I always use almond milk.

The week went great! I loved trying new foods and never missed meat or dairy. I don’t think 5 days is enough to totally change the way I feel or for me to fully experience veganism, but I did feel good. I did find myself a little hungrier during the day, but I would just have a little snack and that fixed that. Of course, I probably wouldn’t have had that problem except that I’m a total carb girl. Sure, I could have had beans or nuts or whatever, but I’d much rather have fruit or bread or something.

I always felt surprisingly full after dinner. Three nights starred Momma Pea’s recipes. Noodle Salad with Peanut Mmm Sauce started the week on a good note and made me realize the challenge wouldn’t be too hard. The next night we had black bean burgers.  

I loved these and will definitely be making them again. I always love a good black bean burger. Wednesday we had Red Lentil Enchiladas sans cheese/”cheese” and topped with guacamole. Avocado is better than cheese anyway, right?

I’m glad I went vegan as it totally got me to experiment and try new things while eating nutritiously. I may even consider going vegan for a longer period of time (lent???). If I felt it was necessary, I do think I could be totally vegan, but I’ve mentioned before why I’m ethically okay with eating meat. I do think eating away from home, whether a restaurant or another person’s house, could pose a challenge. Anyone who is a long-term vegan/vegetarian have any tips for doing so?

Source

Totally changing subjects, but I’m going to Trader Joes’s in Sante Fe on Wednesday. I’ve never been before so I’m pretty excited as I know many of you love it and I have heard many of y’all talk about great products you get there.

If you are an omniovore, would you ever consider going vegan for a while?

If you’re a vegan/vegetarian, do you have any tips for maintaining your diet in social situations? How often do you use vegan substitutes for non-vegan food (Daiya cheese, fak’n bacon, etc.)?

EVERYONE: What is your favorite thing from Trader Joe’s? What should I get while I’m there? Any good car snacks?

What I Ate Wednesday

I decided to join in on Peas and Crayons‘ WIAW party!

My day began with a grapefruit + a handful of Habenero BBQ almonds.

I ususally don’t like almonds because I find them really bland, but these are soooo good.

Source

I ate this thinking I was going to the gym and it would be a good, little pre-gym snack, but I didnt’t make it to the gym for a few more hours.

Around 11:00 a.m., I decided to mix up some of Mama Pea‘s Apple Cinnamon Pancakes.

With a mug of tea, yum!

After finally going to the gym and then running some errands, I had I snacked on some blueberries and veggie sticks

this x 2

and an unpictured granola bar.

Soon, dinner came rolling around:

The meal featured Mama Pea’s Black Bean Burgers, served on an English muffin bun (love those nooks and crannies!) with plenty of smashed avocado, lettuce and tomato. Along side, were some butternut squash fries and sweet corn on the cob. I will admit, I gave most of the fries to my dad. They tasted strinkingly similiar to sweet potatoes, which I do not like (sweet potato soup is a unique exception).

So, there you have it: my totally random day of eats, made espicially random by my going vegan for a week. I ususally try to eat more greens/veggies then I did yesterday, but I’m sure I’ll make up for it today :)

What’s the best thing you’ve eaten this week?

Monday Matters

1. My brief lack of blogging is because I spent the weekend (err Wednesday through Saturday) in Keystone. My dad has a conference there, the basic theme for the event was “making Colorado the healthiest state.” There were a few sessions about nutrition and my dad invited me to attend snuck me into one of them. I’ll be discussing it more in a future post.  Look forward to that soon!

2. We climbed our first fourteener on Saturday! The atlitude + rockiness + steep incline made this a tough hike, but we made it!

3. I totally lied to you the other day when I said something about 61 songs. It was an accident. The number is actually higher. STOP JUDGING ME.

4. I start school in 11 days. Nooooooooooo. Summer reading, College apps, SAT stuff, and service hour sheets will be occupying my week. It shall be lots of fun (what is this, opposite day??).

5. I’m going vegan for the week. Actually, 5 days. The thing that is making it most difficult is I’m refusing to use any substitutes. No margarine, tofu, or soy yogurt for me. I’m sure if I was a long-term vegan I would use those things on occasion (except for margarine, I would NEVER cheat on butter like that) but I figure I can go without them for 5 days. I will be making lots of Mama Pea recipes.

Peas and Thank You: Simple Meatless Meals the Whole Family Will Love

6. I head back to Texas a week from Wednesday. I’m going to die in the heat.

7. I have a super easy, tasty, healthy, breakfast to share with you.

Trail Tacos

Whole-wheat tortilla + natural pb + granola + honey + apple slices + cinnamon

Try ittttttttttt.

Seal with peanut butter (it help it stay closed!) and love.

Make ahead, store in the fridge, grab when you’re hungry.

Perfect thing to eat while climbing mountains, listening to teeny bopper music, or reading borrrring books.

Can you believe it’s August 1st???

Blog Updates

Happy Monday!

I just wanted to stop in and let you know that I added a Blog Roll. I also updated my About Me tab and added an Important Posts tab. Be sure to check it all out!!

Also, I have a question for y’all. I’m thinking about going vegan for a week sometime this summer and I was just wondering, What is your favorite vegan dinner? (feel free to leave breakfast, lunch, and dessert suggestions too, but I am specifically looking for dinner ideas).

Overflowing Portabellos, either made with Daiya or no cheese is one of mine!

 

Thanks!!

~Ann Claire

Dark Chocolate Raspberry Cups

I’m participating in Alex’s sugar-free challenge. But, I wasn’t going to let that keep me from enjoying a delicious dessert.

So, yesterday I created dark chocolate raspberry cups

They were so good I had to make more today so that I could eat more get exact measurements and take pictures so I could share them with you.

They’re kind of extremely delicious. You should try them.

Dark Chocolate raspberry Cups

Vegan, gluten-free, sugar-free

Makes 12

1/2 cup raw almonds

1/2 cup oats

1/4 cup shredded coconut (plus more for garnish)

1/4 cup coconut butter (coconut oil, regular butter, or margarine would work too)

4 dates

2 oz (or  more) bakers 100% chocolate finely chopped*

1/3 cup all fruit raspberry jam (I use 365 brand)

Fresh raspberries (for garnish)

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line a muffin pan with 12 muffin liners.

In a food processor (or blender) combine almonds, oats, and shredded coconut well blended. Add coconut butter and dates and blend until everything is mixed. Divide batter between the 12 muffin cups. Using the back of a spoon pack the measure firmly into each muffin cup. Bake for 8-10 minutes. Remove from oven and spread a heaping teaspoon of raspberry jam on each one. Top with 1/12th of the chocolate and more jam if desired. Bake an additional 5 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool. Garnish with raspberries and coconut . Place in fridge or freezer until the chocolate solidifies. Serve and enjoy! Store in the fridge.

*I usually find 100% chocolate way too bitter but, mixed with the sweetness of the jam it is perfect.

What’s your favorite summer dessert? Do you have any tips for improving food photography? (I’ve been working on improving my picture quality but I’ve still got a long way to go)

P.S. I’m submitting this to Katie as a delicious vegan dessert. You can submit something here!