Shopping for other people can be either the best thing ever, or the most confusing and frustrating thing ever. Typically, what I like to do is when I’m spending time with a close friend or family member and they mention something they like, I put it into a note in my phone to use during this time of year, or for birthdays. Now, for the others, it can be challenging; even more so if you’re not vegan and shopping for someone who is! So, here is my Vegan Gift Guide to make it a little easier on you. 😉
Now, I love making super special gifts for people, which is why I’ve included a few DIY options for those looking for a slightly cheaper/more unique gift idea. It is also why I’ve included the awesome Vegan Food Gifts book, by Joni Marie Newman. Plus, I’ll be giving a copy away to one lucky winner (at the bottom of the post); talk about happy holidays!
One vegan gift idea that I’ve been making for a couple of years now, is for flavored vodka! I make Chocolate Vodka using Fran Costigan’s recipe from her amazing Vegan Chocolate cookbook, and my boyfriend’s mom is pretty obsessed with it. This year, I branched out to try a Mocha variation (go light on the coffee beans as they are POTENT!), and a cinnamon vanilla version, with used up vanilla pods from other recipes. Then I go to World Market and buy some cute bottles to gift them in! (as pictured below)
We are nearly half way through December and in the thick of holiday celebrations. This means putting some effort into holding conversations with people you may not know, as well as the folks that you maybe know too well. And while I love bringing baked goods to parties, sometimes you need to bring a cocktail to loosen people up a bit – or just yourself. 😉 That’s where this Iced Cinnamon Whiskey Chai comes in!
This ain’t your average chai beverage for a multitude of reasons. Firstly, the base of this drink is made from the super tasty Rebbl Ashwaganda Chai Super Herb Elixir. Rebbl offers delicious beverages in the form of elixirs and protein drinks, with a variety of flavors. All except two are vegan and can be found in most natural food stores, including Whole Foods and Sprouts. (two contain honey)
While their Vanilla Protein drink would be great in this recipe, as well, I chose the Ashwaganda Chai for its aromatic spices. The creaminess of the chai beverage comes from coconut milk, and I added a little more to cut some of the super cinnamon spice from the whiskey. Adding a little stevia or maple syrup makes for a dessert-like vibe, while still being much lighter than say, vegan nog.
I will definitely be doing more experimenting with Rebbl’s other flavors, as I’m finding myself totally in love with the Maca Mocha and Maca Cold Brew drinks. What can I say? I’m a sucker for maca and coffee. A couple more things I love about these drinks is that they use organic ingredients, fair trade when possible, and that they’re ingredient lists are made up of whole foods.
I mean, if you’re going to get a lil’ boozy, why not throw some nourishing ingredients in there at the same time? And a tip for you, I used Barnivore to find a vegan cinnamon whiskey, as some brands are not. Lastly, you can use this locator to find Rebbl drinks at the store nearest you!
During the late fall and most of winter, I feel as though I go between eating awesome brunches and great dinners, for the holidays. Everything in between is mostly snacking and maybe a smoothie or two. While I’m in that mode, I’ll take advantage of coming up with tasty brunch dishes. Last week, I posted a recipe for awesome Glazed Cranberry Orange Scones, and to balance out the sweet, I made this savory Crustless Bacon Brussels Quiche!
My mom used to make Quiche for my family all of the time, when I was a kid (and not vegan). They were always so comforting, and she made several different flavors depending on everyone’s mood. Broccoli Cheese was always one of my favorites! So, I thought that revamping it with roasted brussels sprouts and tempeh bacon would be a good idea, and I certainly was not wrong.
The Quiche is crustless more-so because I am lazy and didn’t feel like making my own crust, or running out to buy one. Chickpea/Garbanzo flour makes up the base of the quiche, adding lots of plant-based protein and fiber to the dish. You can be flexible with the mix-ins, but I chose roasted brussels, homemade tempeh bacon and vegan cheese shreds. I feel like a tempeh bacon, tomato and spinach quiche would be amazing!
Black Indian Salt AKA Kala Namak adds an eggy flavor to the quiche, and can be found in almost any Indian Market or online. And, if you can’t find any vegan cheddar shreds at a store near you, leaving them out is not a big deal! Just make the recipe the same without the shreds, maybe adding a little more salt in their place.
Before I get to the recipe, I wanted to give you a heads up on the gift guide I’ll be posting later this week! So many good ideas, from DIY treats to awesome books and cool products from small, vegan companies; plus a giveaway. Stay tuned via my newsletter!
Believe it or not, even food bloggers are sometimes stumped when it comes to thinking of the next recipe to create. Since I started blogging a few years ago, I usually do a few things to help me get through these times of creator’s block. First, I’ll look through my recipe ideas notepad, in my phone. If that doesn’t get my mind going, I’ll wade around the internet (if I have the patience). Lastly, I’ll check out my stack of food magazines (typically non-veg) for inspiration on things to veganize. So, after looking at the Farmer’s Almanac Eats 2017 Edition, I decided to make these Glazed Cranberry Orange Scones!
This recipe started out as Glazed Lemon Cream Scones, that were definitely not vegan. But, they were super easy to veganize, and I adjusted/added other ingredients to fit in with this holiday/winter season, perfectly. Three of the non-vegan ingredients were an egg yolk, heavy cream and butter; which I replaced with ground flaxseed, quick homemade cashew cream and vegan butter. They turned out AMAZING!
Like, so good that I will have a hard time not making these again tomorrow, and I’m not even through the first batch. I’m thinking these will make great holiday treats for friends and family, as well. Serve with tea or coffee, for brunch, and you’ll have yourself a sweet treasure! But, not too sweet. 😉
The great thing about making these vegan is that they are now free of cholesterol, plus no animal products were necessary! These Glazed Cranberry Orange Scones turned out a lot like my favorite scones at Mead’s Green Door Cafe, much to my delight. Now, to make some other flavored versions! Maybe pumpkin, or persimmon, or even strawberries and cream? Oh! Chocolate chip, too!
Before we get to the recipe, I just wanted to say that I hope everyone has a fabulous December and end of the year! (Can you believe it’s here already?) AND, I want to let you know that there will be plenty of new recipes coming your way, this month, so stay tuned! (Either via newsletter or social media <3 )