I figure the best way to get back into blogging is to start up with Vegan Mofo again. I know I've been a terrible bloglady as of late, but I do have a reason or two. September was a bit insane. My birthday was at the beginning of the month and I got...engaged! Yep, Michael popped the question and I said yes and ever since, the wedding (ok, mostly the food) is all I can think about. We're getting married next October, I have a year to plan, and it is consuming most of my waking thoughts. So...excuse my little absence from the blogworld last month. I've still be cooking and eating and farmers marketing, so let's jump right in with a quick overview of some tasty things that have been brewing in our kitchen.
Might as well start with my birthday foods.
what better way to begin a post than with cake?
Excuse the crap photo of my lovely birthday cake. This is our family's (accidentally vegan) wacky cake that I have been eating since my very first birthday (presumably). My mom dutifully makes this for me every year, even though I'm 27 years old and living 3 hours away. I think it's because the last time I tried to make it, I royally screwed it up, thus disgracing my family name. Anyway. She now tops it with the chocolate buttercream icing from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World...and it is even more divine than ever. We also found some sorbet (raspberry and lemon) to go along nicely. And she made two cakes, so Michael and I ate on this for over a week. (My mom rules.)
That evening we went out and I forgot to take pictures of my Mexican veggie pizza, but Michael and I made a trip to Athens, OH a few days prior and I remembered to bring my camera.
best balls on the planet
We traditionally go to Casa Nueva for my birthday dinner, as they have nice vegan food and a great beer selection and prepare local and seasonal fare. This year we started with tofu albondigas meatballs in their housemade bbq sauce (which was fantastic) atop a bed of jasmine rice. I could have eaten a couple plates of these and been done with dinner and it would have been just fine. They were amazing. Stayed together perfectly. The sauce was sweet and tangy, with some flavor that reminded me of my mom's Christmas molasses crinkle cookies, which sounds weird, but was in fact awesome.
adorable little salad
Next up was a salad comprised of baby greens and sprouts and a terrific lemon-basil vinaigrette. Perfect.
Our entree was a stacked enchilada with seasoned tofu and the veggies of the day (tomatillos and green beans). It also contained a vegan queso cremosa (uh...fake cheese sauce) and was topped with some smoky salsa. The tofu was, as always, delectable, and the addition of those two strangely compatible vegetables was a huge hit. The beans lent a nice crunch while the tomatillos were smooth and nicely sour. I could barely finish this, but finish it I did. We took a nice, long walk afterwards.
Sometime before or after that, I made these things:
sweet and sour chipotle tempeh with sweet potatoes
This recipe is from Eat, Drink, and be Vegan...and I didn't really like it. Michael loved it, don't get me wrong, but it was just a teeny bit too sweet for me. I've never really liked the main part of my dinner meals to be sweet, so this isn't too surprising. Still, it was delicious in its own right. Just not the right that goes up my alley.
this looks like an octopus
But it's not. I made some seitan cutlets (my own concoction) and layered it all up with some couscous and steamed spinach. Michael made a lovely little mango salsa to top it all off. This was a delicious and relatively easy little meal.
Another recipe from ED&BV. The true hero of this mixture is the apples in the salad. They add this lovely little crunch and just a hint of sweet. I'm assuming this is supposed to feed a family of four for 2 days of lunches, but we polished it off in one sitting.
lemony garlic pasta
Gosh, another ED&BV recipe. I had forgotten I made so many this past month! This one was stellar. Absolutely amazing. It wasn't overly saucy, but there was plenty of sauce to stick to the noodles...incredibly garlicky...and some walnuts added a good crunch and some protein. That woman is amazing.
And that's it for me today. I have to be at work in a little bit and Michael is nursing some horrible sickness that has been going around (and somehow I haven't caught it yet). I need to force some soup into him (some impromptu thing I made with fake chicken bouillon, scallions, garlic, ginger, chili garlic sauce, and noodles...and it's pretty tasty for the non-sick, too). I still have backup food to show you, so expect to see me back here tomorrow!