This Week’s Vegan Dinners

Monday – Ancho Chili Stew

Basically, just chili beans, tomatoes, onion, spices and a whole ground ancho chili.  Had with crackers and a dollop of cheddar ‘cheese’.

Tuesday – Avocado Pasta, Balsamic Glazed Carrots and Salad

Took pasta recipe from OhSheGlows.  Carrots were tossed with balsamic, stone ground mustard, honey and olive oil.

Wednesday – Pizza Night

Dinner with friends at their place.

Thursday – Black Bean, Polenta Stuffed Poblano Peppers

Black beans and cornmeal, onion, chili powder, garlic, cumin and topped with a sauce made of pureed tomatoes, jalapeno and onion.  Bake till golden and bubbly.

Friday – Veggie Burgers

Lots of ingredients…on the quest for the perfect one.  A review of this one from OhSheGlows will follow.

Fresh

Any of you that have ever shared a table and a meal with me knows that I have a passion for food.  There’s something about a kitchen, any kitchen, that takes me to a place of comfort and familiarity. 

 I’ve found myself in so many kitchens.  My own,  kitchens of family and friends, church basement kitchens, aircraft carrier galleys, dive-bar kitchens, outdoor kitchens, sailboat galleys…somehow each has a familiarity and ease of use for me and I’m always right at home.  Whether I’m doing the cooking, cleaning or serving I’m always happy to be there doing it. 

I assume this is how you truly know what your true love is.    

This week I’m reading Anthony Bourdain’s Kitchen Confidential and loving every page that drips with his sarcasm, cynicism and his overall unapologetic approach to describing the ins and outs of the industry he’s called home for most of his life.  I’ve always enjoyed his No Reservations and am having no trouble at all hearing his voice narrate the words of his book.  He writes very much as he speaks; a knack most writers don’t have. 

He is also inspiring me to go back to doing the thing I love.  I’ve back-seated my hobby and I’m ready to pour my heart into groceries again.  Chapter 8 had me snipping fresh chives, basil, oregano and thyme from my previously un-snipped planter to toss with pasta and Picholine olive oil from Australia.  Chapter 8 had me smelling the chopped herbs on my fingers and rubbing the olive oil cork on my lips.  I HAD these fresh things just waiting for me to get inspired. 

So it’s back to a kitchen for me.  Any kitchen.  With fresh passion and fresh everything else.

Random Post 1: Hawaii Breakfasts

Hawaii food is pleasingly simple and satisfying.  The culture, at least in Honolulu, was heavy in Asian influence and also carried some New York style deli food.  Odd combo, right?  Spam was always available alongside the freshest fish, the finest pastrami and loads, loads, LOADS of rice.  My first breakfast in Honolulu was very simple.  I explored until I found a grocer, purchased the first package of poke I could find and had it with some fruit.  Simple and Yum.  Notice how I’m eating it out of the hotel drinking glass. 

Second breakfast: not so simple.  The New York style deli downstairs served….wait for it….PASTRAMI EGGS BENEDICT!  Words can hardly describe my excitement about this.  It did not disappoint.  The eggs were even a bit runny for my taste and I gobbled until I was miserable.  It tasted SO good. 

In the same deli another morning, I ordered the bagel and lox and got way more than I bargained for!  I hearty serving indeed, I did not finish this one.  Also deeelicious. 

That’s about the extent of my food photography from the trip.  To be honest, the food is really easy to get excited about but not really something you feel like you need to picture.  Spam fried rice isn’t really all that pretty and you pretty much get the gist from the name.  Notable mentions also include the ever present Loco Moco as well as the calamari and garlic chicken from the Chart House which was a FANTASTIC dive bar on the water next to the Hilton Hawaiian Resort where we were staying.  A short walk could get you a sunset dinner with a killer happy hour on an open air bar with live music.  One stop shopping, right!!??

2011 Update

I’m the worst at juggling life and blog.  Sorry!  I have SO many food pictures aside from what I’m doing right now that I want to share so expect a random pop in from time to time if you’re keeping up with me.  Are you? Can you?

This year brought a new job.  Thankfully, I have a health minded foodie in the office with me that I can have fun with!  This week we’re sort of taking a new year cleanse / health approach to office eating.  No snacking on whatever is hiding in the candy basket or the bottom drawer of the desk.

Yesterday for breakfast we had quinoa with blackberries.  Took this one for a spin after I saw it on the Food Lover’s Cleanse on Bon Appetit.  It was interesting and definitely packed a punch of energy.

Lunch was a very large heirloom tomato stuffed with tuna and cottage cheese.  Believe it or not, this was seriously filling for about 2 and a half hours…

Then afternoon snack was a bowl of tangerine and orange segments tossed with a couple tspoons of unsweetened coconut flakes.  No picture.  Dinner was leftovers of this giant mess of spaghetti squash with baked chicken we had the other night at home.  I served it with a jarred Classico sauce and LOVED it.  I’ve eaten it twice and still have half the jar of sauce so I feel like my serving sizes are pretty accurate.

That gets us up to today.  This morning the plan was to have kefir, toast and grapefruit.  The kefir was with the office mate and the office mate was indisposed.  I made due with half, enjoying the plain toast and grapefruit.

The kefir showed up at lunch and I had a cup of that with a salad and a boiled egg.  Not photographed because I was RAVENOUS.  This afternoon I have a pretty solid headache that I may attempt to remedy with a cup of afternoon coffee; a habit I’m trying to break.  Or I may hold out for the dark chocolate afternoon snack…chocolate cures all.

So far so good.

Sushi Night

Sushi with Lori at her place last week: opah, tuna, carrots, cuke, spicy masago, sriracha. YUM!

Chanukah: Sushi Night & Potato Latkes

Here is my first attempt at potato latkes.  I used a traditional recipe, just potato, grated onion, white pepper, salt and egg.   Here they are frying in a liberal amount of oil for the occasion.

And again after the FLIP!  They were great with a liberal amount of sour cream. 

Later, after a trip to Ranch 99 to grab essentials we put together some sushi, tuna poppers and soup.  The tuna poppers were fried this time (naturally).  I made a big mess but it was worth it in the end, I think.

Mas Sopa

Spicy Chicken Tortilla Soup

-garlic, onion, celery, chicken asada, serrano peppers, tomatoes, cream, broth and oregano. 

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