Nifty Mom

Vegan, Eco-conscious, Natural Parenting, Unschooling Wife and Mom

New children’s vegan book!! June 22, 2009

I’ve looked around for vegan and vegetarian books for Punkyroo before and tried a couple and  have found dissapointing. But one day looking for a new recipe to try out I saw a post about a new children’s book but talking about WHY we don’t eat animals like the vast population. It’s called That’s Why We Don’t Eat Animals: A Book ABout Vegans, Vegetarians, and All Living Things by Ruby Roth.  I checked it out and watched the youtube video about it and decided to order it. Since it was on pre-order at the time when I ordered it I had to wait atleast a month to get it! I was so anxious to get it and hope that Punkyroo liked it.

Finally it came in!!! I LOVE this book. the illustrations (also by Ruby Roth) are so cute and wonderfully written. Punkryoo likes it too. She’s known we are vegan and if you ask her why she would say “we are vegan because we want the animals to be happy”, that’s a pretty good way to put it to a 2 year old at the time and she says it’s with such joy. But  with this book it describes it a bit more without going into too much detail. She understands and actually asks all the time while shopping, cooking or making snacks.. “is that have no (insert animal/animal byproduct) so we can eat it? we are vegan we don’t eat that”, it’s nice to know she understands and questions about food.  

When we go grocery shopping she sees the lobsters in the tank and asks to see them, which I don’t like but made it into a teaching about us being vegan. We tell her that they are in there because some people eat them but they belong out in the ocean. She still always wants to see them and says “they belong in the ocean” with a sad face. Well last time we went they didn’t have any in the tank , which we didn’t notice until Punkyroo’s face lit up and shouted “there’s no lobsters!! they’re in the ocean!!” it was so hilarious and so cute.

Off track but back to the book… The book was wonderful and anyone vegan or vegetarian and has children really should get this book, I really recommend it!!

 

Vegan ribs!! March 9, 2009

Filed under: Dinner,Vegan — niftymom @ 2:12 pm
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The other day I was looking around the interent for new recipe ideas and I remembered seeing Your Vegan Mom blog featured in Vegetarian Times Magazine. While I was looking around I came across one post about a bbq and vegan ribs. “WHAT vegan ribs?!!! I HAVE to try these!” As I was reading the recipe from the creator,Fat Free Vegan, of these magnificin vegan ribz I realized I had everything to make them.

So Pizza and ribz it was for dinner, this way is Hubby doesn’t approve then he still gets his wonderful pizza and dinner wont be a bust. These ribz were SOOO easy to make, it’s the first time I baked seitan. I didn’t have any liquid smoke but it was still so yummy. Oh also I used a foreman, I think it might be better stick with a grill on this since my BBQ sauce kept carmalizing and cleaning the foreman is a pain, it’s right up there with dusting for me.hehe. These taste so much like the meat version it’s scary! Punkyroo and I had a few bites of testing before Hubby got home. She LOVED these! These will definelty be made again, especially for all my hunting/meat lover family members.

I do have a picture but I havn’t uploaded it to the computer yet, these are just too good I had to share right away, but I’ll add my pict was it’s uploaded, but Fat Free Vegan’s picts will definetly have you drooling.

 

I’m back February 6, 2009

Ok, so after a week of vaca and then getting back and a week of being sick I’m back!

We had a wonderful time in North Carolina, we stayed at this beautiful house, Eagle’s Nest-Eagle’s Lair, up on the mountains. Punkyroo got such a kick that tons of ladybugs were everywhere in the house. Don’t freak out, that’s the only bugs that were in the house. But we would collect as many as possible and release them outside and then a few hours later there’d be more, so she called it Lady Bug House and wants to go back she reminds us! It was also great finding a lodge to stay at in the mountains that wasn’t decorated with hunting or fishing stuff!

And a great topper was a well known cafe that specifically labels meals that are vegetarian AND VEGAN 10 minutes away, Lulu’s Cafe, it was great to have a take out menu to an vegetarian/vegan likings!! Bonus!! Although we didn’t go since we made our dinners but having that menu in the house and available was very nice.

It was a wonderful stay. The Smoky Mountains, Gatlinburg, Ripley’s Aquarium, Snow Tubing and SNOW BOARDING!! Oh yeah! After 4 years of no boarding I did really well and it was great to finally show Hubby in person myself boarding and Punkyroo was all excited and proud which made me feel really good. But it was a wonderful time, Hubby needed the vaca bad so that was nice to finally see him relax, since he works alot of weekends.

So I’ll get back to sharing recipes again soon, gave me time to try out some new ones, yummmm..

But one last thing, my last post was about the BNKC’s meeting….WE WON. All the commisioner’s voted YES!! Feb. 3rd was a wonderful turning point for the animals at the shelters. It wont happen over night of course but hopefully in 5 years we will be there!

 

Let’s add vegies to bread! January 3, 2009

Filed under: Bread,Vegan — niftymom @ 9:41 pm
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I really like zucchini, I can’t say love because broccoli is the veggie that wins that spot for me but zucchini is next. My dad would grow it and my step mom would cook with it and one thing is zucchini bread. I’ve never had it since I was never there during the harvesting time, but I was curious.

Well with the VEgan Planet cookbook the recipe is in there and Tahini Zucchini Bread one to be exact. This was soooo yummy and worth all the time to make it and be gone by the end of the day!

Tahini Zucchini Bread

Punkyroo and Hubby gobbled it down, with also help from me! I’m a crispy crust person when it comes to fresh baked bread. I definelty recommend this book! Ohh so many yummy recipes!

For dinner tonight I did a breakfast dinner night with Flax-berry Pancakes and the Vegetable Skillet hash from the book and ahhh soo yummy.  I wish we had good farmers markets over here, pretty much its the grocery store just outside. I thought Farmer’s Markets where grown locally but there are out of state stickers (even some out of country) on produce! So sad to say I don’t do farmer’s markets for produce except for Tomatoes when they are the only thing from Florida and that’s if they carry them. It’s funny since I’m in a area that’s so diverse Suburban, Urban and Country just mintues away from each other. But the Country side, there are lots of farmers and I don’t understand why they aren’t out there selling their produce. But for the day to be able to buy actually locally grown produce will be wonderful! (Until we get our gardening knowledge down).

 

Tofu Egg(less)rolls January 2, 2009

When I was prego with Punkyroo I had a cravings for Chinese food, the problem is Hubby hates chinese food beyond eggrolls and steamed rice and since he’d be hungry too I just picked another place we both could eat ate.  Well I finally came apon how to make eggrolls and YUM YUM they are sooo good and Hubby loves them too. Well when we went vegetarian I had to find a substitue for the ground chicken in it. At first I tried the ground vegan sausage crumbles but Hubby didn’t like the texture and so I finally tried the Tofu and it worked great. At that time I didn’t know you are suposed to press the tofu and then cook so when I made tofu the first time in a dinner it was disgusting and so I was afraid to try it again but after I learned how to properly prep tofu I tried it in these and it worked!! YAY I can keep my eggrolls. But then when we went Vegan (or should I say Punkyroo and I went vegan since Hubby is vegetarian) I found out my eggroll wraps I was using had egg in them.. I always wondered why they where called eggrolls when they didn’t have egg in them. So after all the ones in the stores having egg I finally found an Asian store and found some without egg! Yay! So sorry to say that you may need to do some searching for the wraps unless you can make them or have already made vegan eggrolls before.

 

Tofu Egg(less)rolls

 

Tofu Egg(less)rolls-Punkyroo's dish

 

Tofu Egg(less)rolls

  • 1 pck of Extra Firm Tofu (16oz)
  • 1 Tbs grated ginger (you could mince it if you are unable to grate)
  • 1 medium cabbage head (green),finely chopped
  • 10 oz bean sprouts
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrots
  • 5 green onions, chopped
  • 30-40 eggroll wrappers (It depends on how much you stuff them, sometimes I have 30 and other times I have as much as 40, due to this I usually buy 2 packages of wraps just in case)

Stir fry the tofu and ginger in a skillet on high heat until lightly browned. Add the cabbage, brean sprouts, carrot and green onions;cook for 2 minutes. (if you’d like your filling with some slight seasoning you can add 2-3 tbs of tamari now). Take the skillet off the heat and let cool down. Use 2 tbs of the filling for each egg roll (I usually make some smaller for Punkyroo).

Follow the directions to fold the wraps on the package (if it doesn’t place the wrap on a dry surface with a corner pointing at you, place the filling in the middle, Fold the corner facing you over the filling snuggly, Fold both side corners snugly against the filling, wet the last corner with a little bit of water and roll to seal the last corner, lay flap side down until ready to cook to prevent unrolling itself).

Take a large skillet, wok, or other device to fry your eggrolls in. Fill with oil enough so each roll would be half deep. I usually set my burner on notch 7 since it’s not too too hot to pop oil every second but enough to brown each side quickly. Add a few rolls at a time and cook until golden brown usually around 2-3 minutes; flip on other side and repeat. Place on a paper towel lined plate and let cool.

If you are looking for a baked version, Sorry I havn’t looked into how to bake them yet. I’d love to learn how to to get away fromt the oil. So if anyone knows the directions to bake eggrolls please let me know!!

And since this is a rare dish to make in our house since the oil fried-ness and all here is a dip that is sooooo yummy but its only used for these.

  • Vegan mayo
  • Brown spicy mustard

Add amount of mayo you think is enough to serve with amount of rolls you will serve. Than add mustard and keep adding until desired taste is reached. I always eyeball and taste test it so I can’t give measurements but  Hubby LOVES it. Usually I make around 3-4 rolls for each of us, well 1-2 for Punkyroo; so I usually do 3 big spoon fulls of mayo and around 3 tbs looking like squirts of mustard and go from there, any left over I just cover and serve with the next nights batch of rolls.

 

Catch Up December 30, 2008

With having Hubby home for almost a week due to the holidays I’ve put my blog on the back burner. But here is a quick catch up of a couple dishes I’ve made lately….

Spicy Zucchini Noodles

Gingerbread Men

Veggie Burger Kebobs 

Tofu Egg(less)rolls

Quoina with Curried Peas and Potatoes

Italian Rotoni with Chickpeas

 

Also no picts uploaded yet but I have been testing out some recipes from Vegan Planet and love them! Ahh the banana pancakes are soooo good! I think this is my fav vegan cookbook so far.

I also checked out Vegan Freak and read that so fast I was shocked, I usually take my time reading books but this one made me want to know everything it offered asap. Althought Hubby would of rather me not of read it since after a couple chapters I ran around the house reading all the labels and doing a Vegan purge. I have done one for the obvious food and such but not in the personal care items like shampoo, shaving cream and what not so he was upset to come home and see the counter covered with stuff for me to get rid of. I ended up putting them in our garage sale since th eco-side of me didn’t want to throw it away and end in the landfill. I had to make a few calls to verify the glycerin in some since I thought some were vegie base but didn’t say on the ingredients but sure enough I called or went online to their websites and there it was (yay, I liked my newly found eco-friendly hand soap!).

But I told Hubby “atleast there’s nothing left to purge!”. 

 

Another “meat”ball try December 13, 2008

Filed under: Dinner,Vegan — niftymom @ 8:47 am
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So I’ve probably tried about 5 vegan meatball recipes by now and some have tasted good but just didn’t hold or just plan was gross but these are the best we’ve made so far. The taste and holding of these are good. All of us ate them up and 3 thumbs up.

This recipe is “neat”balls from Vegetarian Times magazine. I just put them with some spaghetti sauce and some cooked spiral noodles that I added fresh spinch to the pot while boiling and Voila! To be honest, this is our Thanksgiving dinner! We are thankful everyday so we don’t really concentrate on a big meal since only family close by don’t celebrate holidays due to religion. I wasn’t up to challenge a tofurky recipe as of that time anyways.

Neat balls