One Crazy April

Well, the weather here in Portland, OR has been a blend of four seasons over the last few days. This seems to be a worldwide trend, and I kinda like it…I know, I know, who likes hail, snow, rain, sun, wind, and cold all in one day? I do. I grew up less than a mile away from Lake Erie in Pennsylvania, and this is a welcoming memory of childhood…Anyway, weather that is as temperamental as my mood leads to lots of fun in the kitchen! So that’s good…

First up, I made a huge batch of granola. The recipe is adapted from The Big Book of Vegetarian, which happens to have a ton of yummy vegan recipes (and veganizable vegetarian recipes). This is the Spiced Vanilla Granola, made with considerably less sugar than the recipe calls for. This is a very versatile granola, you can add any combination of nuts and dried fruit, and it still turns out perfect every time!

After the granola, I made pita dough (again). I think I’ve become a pita fanatic. Pita is awesome because one batch makes enough dough for at least 16 pitas, and you can freeze the unbaked dough balls for later! This pita dough is for tomorrow night’s dinner: FALAFEL!!!! My favorite part of making any yeast dough is watching the yeast get all foamy! As I have mentioned in a previous post, talk to your yeast! Say things like “Hey lil’ yeasties, it’s time to go for a swim!”…

Once the pitas were finished baking, I was hungry. So, I made a snack with a chickpea spread from The Ultimate Uncheese Cookbook (my very first vegan cookbook!), and cut a pita into triangles. This is one of the most addictive spreads around, and my pita was psyched to not be naked anymore.

Once I finished my snack, I went on to making more jam, with the last of my berries in the freezer (picked…2 summers ago!!!!). Lemon juice is essential to jam-making.

A Strawberry-Raspberry Jam:

Next up: Tuscan White Bean Soup, also from The Big Book of Vegetarian. This is a hearty, healthy, delicious soup (especially on a day when the weather keeps you indoors).

Maybe you are wondering, where’s the dessert?! Well, I can’t go a day without some sort of tasty treat, so today (and many days) I made Chocolate Pudding, courtesy of Fat Free Vegan (my oh my, this is sooooo gooood!!!!).

And lastly, on Wednesday I received a little package in the mail from Hannah (aka Bittersweet). I was lucky enough to be one of the winners in her bunny contest. So, you don’t have to guess who was hiding in the envelope! That’s right! A sweet little pink bunny, who I have named Krames (after a sneaky spider who lived in the hallway of my building, until he ran off with another spider named Willis, who lived in my apartment…). Thank you Hannah! As it turns out, Krames loves vegan cupcakes (go figure!). On Friday night, my boyfriend and I were desperate for a treat, but I had no sugar anywhere! I did have some soy sweetened condensed milk. I ended up making vanilla cupcakes without a recipe (a little of this and a little of that), and topping them with some homemade hot cocoa mix I had in the cupboard. They actually turned out very well, not too sweet, with a lovely texture and crumb. But the “recipe” only made three cupcakes. One for me, one for Tim (my boyfriend), and one for Krames. Perfect!

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8 thoughts on “One Crazy April

  1. Haha yes, it’s definitely been a mix of all 4 seasons here, as well. Crazy weather we’re having this year!

    Okay, where do I begin: the Spiced Vanilla Granola, pitas (I just made some baked falafel the other day – hope you enjoy YOUR falafel for your dinner, for sure!), chickpea spread, pudding, muffins, soup, and ESPECIALLY that strawberry-raspberry jam (you seriously need to sell that stuff, girl – it looks so luscious and enticing!!!), look FABULOUS; and how lucky that you got to keep one of Hannah’s cute bunnies!! :0)

  2. Amazing! Those pita look so good, and falafel, I’d LOVE some thank you! I live in Missouri so understand the tempermental weather completely. I can’t say I necessarily like it, but I am USED to it. :-)

    That jam! Wow, you are amazing!

  3. I think watching yeast get foamy is exciting too! I haven’t made pitas yet, but I definitely want to soon. I can’t wait to see your homemade falafels. That’s one of my favorite things to make.

    Your jam and granola look wonderful. I wish there was a lemon jam – I know there’s curd, but why isn’t there a jam? I just bought some lemon currant granola and I love it. Warm weather puts me in a lemony mood.

  4. A: Krames is adorable! you lucky. :D

    B: that jam looks incredible.

    C: congratulations on the mini-batch of cupcakes!! isn’t that the best thing about vegan cooking? I don’t know what it is, but there’s something so gratifying about making a cake the size of a saucer, or a handful of cupcakes or whatever. They sound really yummy too!

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