Sunday, February 27, 2011

All Things Babushka

I love love love how cute babushka (aka matryoshka) dolls are. I have been seeing them everywhere lately from kitchen stuff to stationary. Yeah for babushka!

1. Babushka hair pins from creamrose via bohaute  2. Babushka mugs from Maxwell Williams 3.Babushka plates from Sweet Tidings 4. Cool robot babushkas from The Spoon Sisters via tiny iron fists 5. Super cool measuring cups called M-cups via touch wood design 6. Nesting cups sweetly named Babushkups via the hip infant 7. Textiles designed by Kristen Doran via bohaute

Saturday, February 26, 2011

In The Mail

I just received my subscription to Uppercase in the mail this week. If you have not heard of this magazine before I highly recommend you check it out. The first time I read through an issue I was convinced they had created the magazine for me personally. Seriously read it.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Trail Mix Cookies

I remember my dad making these cookies when I was a kid. The recipe got lost somewhere along the way and then a few years ago magically turned up. We were vegan at the time so I adjusted the recipe and tried them out. They were as delicious as I remember and have become a favourite in our house. The best part about these is you can use whatever "trail mix" ingredients you have around - different types of nuts, seeds and dried fruit all taste good.

This batch of cookies had chocolate, raisins, brazil nuts and sunflower seeds

Trail Mix Cookies
3/4 cup Earth Balance
3/4 cup sugar
Egg replacer equivalent to one egg
1/3 cup soy milk
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 cups rolled oats
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp cinnnamon
1 cup chocolate chips
3/4 cup dried fruit
3/4 cup nuts
1/2 cup seeds

Cream together Earth Balance and sugar. Add "egg", soy milk and vanilla and mix. This mixture may separate a bit but don't worry it will work fine. In a separate bowl mix together oats, flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Add dry ingredients to wet and then fold in the chocolate, dried fruit, nuts and seeds. Make walnut sized balls and place onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Be sure to flatten the cookies a bit as they don't spread very much. Bake in a 375 degree oven for 10 - 12 minutes. Once cool store in an airtight container.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Pink Cupcakes

I was surfing around looking for cute stuff for my three valentines day posts (here, here and here) and I noticed a theme. Pink cupcake stuff. So I thought it deserved its own post.
1. Amigurumi cupcake via Amigurumi Kingdom on Flickr 2. Pink cupcakes from Cutest Food 3. Victoria Secret cupcake underwear via all things cupcake 4. Pink rose cupcakes from Created by Diane 5. Cupcake ring (so sweet!) from MaruMaru 6. Cupcake panda print from SugarLuxe

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Vegan Banana French Toast

Sunday morning french toast served with roasted pears and quebec mayple syrup. How delicious.

Banana French Toast

1 - 2 bananas, mashed
2 tbsp chickpea flour (or any other type of flour - chickpea just gives an eggy flavour)
1 cup soy milk
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract

1 baguette cut into1/2 inch thick rounds

In medium bowl mix all ingredients with a whisk until well incorporated. Then dip pieces of bread into mixture. Cook in a pan on medium low heat with a generous amount of Earth Balance or oil. My biggest tip is to just leave the bread alone and cook it over low heat for crispy pieces of french toast. Once bread is browned on one side flip it over and do the same on the other side.

Roasted Pears

2 ripe pears
1 Tbsp sugar

Cut pears into slices and place in oven safe dish. Sprinkle sugar over pears and place under a broiler. Cook until pears are crispy on the edges 5 - 7 minutes. Turn off oven and let pears sit inside until ready to use.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Vegan Squash & Pear Bread

I took this recipe for pumpkin bread from Hell Yeah It's Vegan and made some modifications. Mainly I used half pumpkin and half spaghetti squash and I added some fresh pear to the top. Also I don't have brown sugar so I used 3/4 cup of organic granulated sugar and 1/4 cup of molasses. This bread was soft, yummy and perfectly spiced.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Tantalizing Teapots

If my kitchen was bigger I would have a collection of teapots. One for every occasion. 

1. One teapot by Vessel via Design*Sponge 2. Pinstripe and Cherry Blossom teapot from Kristen K Swanson 3. Super cool teapot from Normann Copenhagen Familia (how much do you love the cork lid?) 4. Ultra modern teapot from Stelton via Trendir 5. Sweet bird teapot via teapots teapots teapots 6. Ingenious teapot via Seven Bowls of Tea

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Music To Draw To

To celebrate Valentines day P and I and some friends went to a little theatre near us for "Music to draw to". It is this really cool evening put on by Kid Koala and his peeps. 5 bucks gets you in the door and includes a pencil and a hot chocolate. Kid Koala spins tunes all night and everyone comes to work on art. At our table there was knitting, cross stitching, drawing, book editing and video game designing. Plus they sell all these really darling treats and the atmosphere is just lovely. Very nice way to spend valentines.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Layered Potato Cake

Made this potato cake with the potatoes that came in our CSA basket this week. I love how the inside is soft and almost creamy and the top is crisp and crunchy. P and I just starting eating dairy again so I added a little cheese to the top but it would be just as tasty without.

Layered Potato Cake

3 - 4 medium potatoes
1/2 onion
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 Tbsp olive oil
2 - 3 Tbsp water
1 tsp nutmeg
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup goat cheese (optional)

Slice the potatoes and onion thinly on a mandolin. Use 1 Tbsp of olive oil to coat an 8 inch pie plate. Place one layer of potatoes in the bottom of the pie plate. Add a few slices of onion and some garlic. Add a little nutmeg, salt and pepper. Repeat layers finishing with a layer of potato, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Add water and then pour remaining olive oil on top of potatoes. Top with goat cheese. Bake covered in a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes then bake uncovered for another 30 minutes.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Valentine's Day Chai and Chocolate Cookies

I made these little babies for everyone at the office. I used a regular sugar cookie recipe (not one that I was impressed with - so I won't post it) and just added my own spice mix. You could do the same spice mix with a sugar cookie recipe you like. Then I used some fun new cookie cutters to make cute little heart shaped cookies. Baked these and then filled them with the best chocolate icing. Happy Valentine's day!

Chai Sugar Cookie Spice Mix
20 cardamom pods opened and seeds removed
3 cloves
1/2 tsp star anise
1 Tbsp cinnamon
2 tsp nutmeg
2 - 3 Tbsp loose green or black tea (optional)

Grind cardamom seeds, cloves and star anise with mortar and pestle or in a spice grinder. Add this plus the cinnamon and nutmeg to your dry ingredients. Crush tea in mortar and pestle until the leaves are ground. Add to wet ingredients.

Vegan Chocolate Frosting
3/4 cup Earth Balance, soften to room temperature
1/2 cup maple syrup
3/4 - 1 cup cocoa powder

Mix earth balance, maple syrup, and 3/4 cup of cocoa powder with hand mixer until smooth. Check consistency and add more cocoa powder if needed.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Sweet Heart Shaped Cakes

Another Valentine's day related post. This one is for your sweet tooth.
1. Sweeny's Bakery 2. Amazing anatomical heart cupcake by Lili Vanilli 3. Chocolate covered pretzels from Make and Takes 4. Cupcakes by Get off you butt and Bake 5. Mini cakes from Zoe Bakes 6. Amazing set of vintage heart shaped cake pans from Tara Bradford (I must have them)

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Pretty Stuff for Valentines Day

Here is some cute love related stuff.
1. Prince Design UK (I want these so bad!) 2. Art Fire 3. Chrissy Ann Ceramics 4. Super cute pillow cases from Mengsel Design 5. Hot chocolate from Martha Stewart 6. Flickr Oh hello Friend

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Lazy Dinner

This was a quick fix dinner that turned out really pretty so I thought I would share.
1. Amy's no cheese pizza (super tasty) 2. Marinated mushrooms 3. Yellow cherry tomatoes 4. Roasted red peppers 5. Goat cheese made in Quebec (P and I are eating a bit of dairy now) 6. Dolmades

Afternoon Coffee

Flower topped latte & coconut cookie from Fuchsia

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Pumpkin Curry and Cabbage

I made this very yummy curry the other night. I had a bunch of purple cabbage which I thought would look nice on top.  I served this with a bit of rice and some roasted jerusalem artichoke pieces.

Pumpkin Curry
1 onion, chopped
2 - 3 cloves garlic, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
1 tsp dried ginger
1 tsp chili flakes
1 tsp dried tamarind
1 Tbsp curry powder
2 Tbsp pickled mango 
3/4 cup red lentils
1 1/2 cups stock
1 14 oz can of pumpkin puree
1 cup soy milk (coconut would also be delicious)
1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut

Cook onions, carrots and garlic over low medium heat until softened. Add the spices and cook for a few more minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and cook over low heat for 30 minutes. Stir often and make sure you add water if needed so lentils don't burn. Once ready you may want to add salt and a bit of lime juice.

Shredded Cabbage
1/2 small purple cabbage
2 tsp maple syrup

Using a mandolin shred cabbage very thinly. With a bit of oil cook over medium heat until softened. Add maple syrup. Cook for two more minutes and use to top curry.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Tuesday Food Basket

Our CSA share this week.

It included onions, garlic, mini pumpkin, green cabbage, carrots, parsnips, potatoes, rutabaga, jerusalem artichokes ans sprouts (amazing no?).

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Heart and Star Linzer Cookies

I am still in cookie cutter mode and thought these linzer cookies from Hell Yeah It's Vegan looked great. They turned out really nice. I used hazelnuts instead of almonds, added some vanilla extract to the dough and used cherry jam to fill them. I also had to add an extra 1/2 of flour before the dough formed properly. Time consuming but so cute!

 1. Cherry Jam 2. Heart shaped linzer 3. Pre-assembled cookies

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Onion Tart

We got a huge bag of onions in our CSA share this week so I decided to make onion pie.

I am still on the lookout for an amazing pie crust (not really my forte) but this one was okay.

The filling was my own invention. The whole thing turned out great - but I recommend eating it as an appetizer as the flavour is really strong and better suited to smaller servings. But that's just me P basically ate the whole pie for dinner and lunch the next day.

Pie Crust

2 cups whole wheat flour               
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup Earth Balance
1/4 cup soy milk

Mixed flour and salt. Cut in butter until chunks are about pea size and thoroughly mixed in. Add milk and stir until dough forms. Form into a round disk, cover with plastic and refrigerate for a least one hour.

Onion Filling
4-5 medium onions, sliced thinly on a mandolin
2 cloves garlic, minced
2- 3 Tbsp mustard (Dijon if you have it)
1-2 Tbsp honey
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tsp lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste

Cook the onions over medium low heat for 15 minutes until they start to soften. Add the garlic and cook another 5 minutes. Add remaining ingredients - but adjust according to your own taste (maybe you want more honey and less vinegar - it's cool it's your pie). Raise the heat and continue to cook until onions are soft, caramelized and delicious.

Roll out pie crust and place into an 8 inch tart pan ( you will have a bit of left over dough). Fill with onion mixture and put into oven immediately. Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Berry Galette

I got the idea for this out of The Dolce Vegan where she calls galette "fruit pizza". Anyway it piqued my interest because I love how rustic free form pie looks. Although I didn't have any peaches so I made my own berry concoction. 

Pie Crust

2 cups whole wheat flour               
1 Tbsp sugar
3/4 cup Earth Balance
1/4 soy milk

Mixed flour and sugar. Cut in butter until chunks are about pea size and thoroughly mixed in. Add milk and stir until dough forms. Form into a round disk, cover with plastic and refrigerate for a least one hour.

2 cups frozen berries
1/4 cup slivered almonds 
2-3 Tbsp flour
3 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp cinnamon

Mix all ingredients together.

Roll out dough onto a floured cookie sheet. Spread filling onto dough leaving a 1 inch border all around. Fold edges up and over filling. It shouldn't look perfect!

Bake in a 350 degree oven for 35 minutes.