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Mint Chocolate Chia Parfait

Vegan Mint Chocolate Chia Parfait

Now that all of the high-pressure holidays are over (ha!), it’s onto the Spring-y “holidays”! St. Patrick’s day will be here soon, so we can celebrate all things green, boozy, potato-y and mint chocolate! This time, I have a treat that is healthy, delicious and celebratory; so, you can serve it up as dessert or maybe a brunch-bite and not worry about crazy ingredients. Before we get into that, there are some fun things going on over here.

fresh mint

It’s the weekend! Yay, right? Today and tomorrow are especially awesome because Vegan Street Fair is happening in North Hollywood on Sunday and it is going to be freakin’ bonkers. I’m an official blogger of the event so if you want to follow all of the awesome food happenings, check out my Instagram or Facebook! Today, I’m meeting up with some local bloggers/amazing people for a potluck/prop-swap get together and I can’t wait to socialize. Another massive event that I’m looking forward to is Natural Products Expo West, March 5-8! SO many awesome vegan products and companies will be there, along with vegan bloggers from all over the country to cover it. Will any of you be there? Let me know so that we can meet up!

Chocolate Chia Pudding

I’ve been shooting photos for Jess Nadel’s second cookbook, while gearing up to start the photos for Jason Wrobel’s cookbook simultaneously! This means even more time in the kitchen, but also less time for the blog. I’m very excited about these two books and have two others that I tentatively be shooting later this year. Hopefully, I get to actually do my own? I’ll let you know when that comes to fruition!

mint chia pudding vegan

Back to the recipe, which was seriously yummy. There are no dyes, nor highly-processed sugars, plus there’s an actual vegetable (spinach) in it! As always, there are the nutritional benefits from chia seeds, being that they are high in fiber, omegas and protein. Most of my readers know that I’m a huge fan of chia puddings/parfaits, as I’ve made quite a few of them for the blog. There’s the Blueberry Peach Parfait, Peanut Butter Banana ParfaitBanana Cream Pudding, Vanilla Latte Parfait, Pumpkin Pie Pudding, Apple Pie Pudding and Mixed Berry Pudding. Holy crap, that’s a lot of chia!

Vegan Mint Chocolate Chia Pudding

This recipe makes two full-sized servings, but you could also divide the parfaits between 8 small glasses for brunch hors d’oeuvres or post-colcannon dessert. Since this is St. Patty-themed and all. ;)

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Filed under Healthy Recipes, Holidays, Sweet Recipes

Vegan Kluski for Grandma

Vegan Kluski Polish Food

As some of you may know, half of my family is Polish, so certain Polish/Eastern European food is special to me. One dish in particular is Golabki, which I’ve veganized before for Rika’s beautiful blog Vegan Miam. So, when Rika asked if I could do a guest blog for her this month, we both agreed that another vegan Polish recipe was in order!

Me and My Grandma

Let me give you a little background on this recipe: Kluski is really just a simple noodle/dumpling that is boiled and then traditionally served with a meat sauce; for a low-cost, filling meal. When my family and I would visit my grandparents in Michigan, this dish was made for us by my grandmother almost every trip. She would always serve it with a side of sliced tomatoes and maybe some corn or peas. Really colorful meal, right?

Well, one of the last times that I saw my grandmother, it was actually for my grandfather’s funeral. She was suffering from dementia, almost to full-blown Alzheimer’s at that point, she had macular degeneration (terrible vision) and couldn’t hear too well. It was nice to spend time with her, even though there were some rough moments. During that visit, I followed her around in the kitchen, helping her make Kluski for everyone and jotting down a recipe so that I could recreate it later on (this was a few months before I went vegan).

As you can see, I took some photos of her doing her thing, and I’ve always kept those memories near to my heart when I think about her. Clearly, it was time to find that scribbled mess of a recipe and veganize it for everyone! It was much easier to do than I had originally thought and the final product was seriously dead-on. I even had my parents try it to verify authenticity and they both are really excited about how it turned out.

To be honest, after getting the thumbs up from everyone and while I was taking the photos, it all felt a little bittersweet. I was stoked that I had recreated this recipe successfully, but it also made me miss my grandparents immensely. My dad now owns their property, so I’ll be happy if I get to go out to Michigan this year and go to their old house to get a little nostalgic while being amongst beautiful scenery.

Sorry for the long post, but I thought I’d share a little bit of why this simple dish means so much to me. You can find the recipe over at Vegan Miam, and while your there check out her entrancing photos from traveling all over the world!

Vegan Kluski

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Filed under Holidays, Personal, Savory Recipes

YumUniverse Giveaway and Super-Veggie Pot Pies!

I’ll get right to the point: today and for the following week, you’ll have a chance to win your own copy of YumUniverse: Infinite Possibilities for a Gluten-Free, Plant-Powerful, Whole-Food Lifestyle by Heather Crosby, of YumUniverse! Exciting, right? The answer you’re looking for is, “Hell yeah!”

This book is more than a colorful and eye-catching cookbook, it is a thorough guide to gluten-free, plant-based eating. Heather starts out with explaining WHY you should try out a plant-based diet, listing off the benefits (there are many!) then spends a while teaching you HOW to achieve it talking about pantry staples, prep, appliances and social situations. 

After all of that comes the stuff that I’m into, beautiful breakfasts (banana pancakes!), baked goods, toppings/sauces/spreads, entrees (fig & caramelized onion tart!), desserts (Mexican unfried ice cream!), and more. You may want to grab a napkin or bib before looking through this book, because I’m pretty sure that you’re going to drool on it.

I do have to point out that there are a few recipes where she uses honey, and I’m sure that’s why they call this book “plant-based” instead of “vegan”, just make sure to use agave nectar or maple syrup instead!

Now, you lucky readers get to see one of the tasty recipes that I made from the book, the Super-Veggie Pot Pies! I made these into larger containers than listed in the recipe and they came out to a perfect 4, filling, servings. Making gluten-free crust was fun and I’ll definitely have to try it out again. After the recipe, you’ll find where to enter the giveaway for a copy of YumUniverse! (US residents only, sorry!)

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Filed under Giveaways!, Healthy Recipes, Holidays, Savory Recipes

Sriracha-Cauliflower Mac ‘n’ Cheeze

Some of you may be familiar with Randy Clemens as the author of The Sriracha Cookbook as well as the even better Veggie-Lover’s Sriracha Cookbook. Not only that, he is a chef, craft beer nerd and has helped put together the Sriracha Festivals in LA and SD, and taken part in the documentary on sriracha. You could certainly say he knows his shit.

I’ve also mentioned Randy a couple of times on the blog before, like when he had his book release party at Golden Road Brewing in July of 2013 and we got to hang out and take goofy pictures, plus sample some dishes from the Veggie-Lover’s Sriracha Cookbook. Almost a year later, he participated in Authors Worth Celebrating at Mohawk Bend where we got to have a 4-course meal made up of even more dishes from his book.

Needless to say, I’ve had my fair share of his dishes and they are damn good. That being said, I just had to get him involved with #ReturnoftheMacMoFo, because I have been eyeing his recipe for Sriracha-Cauliflower Mac for over a year now. Randy has been so awesome as to not only let me share this delicious recipe, but to also give THREE SIGNED COPIES of his Veggie-Lover’s cookbook away! YAY!

Go ahead, check out the yumminess that this spicy, noodle-free, Mac!

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Filed under Giveaways!, Healthy Recipes, Savory Recipes, Vegan MOFO!