Archive for March, 2008

Creamy Polenta with a Butternut Squash-Chickpea Stew

While in the airplane yesterday, I read the Vegetarian Times Magazine and saw their Butternut Squash Chickpea stew with Couscous and knew I had to make a version of it.  For my version, I made a fresh, soft polenta.  I seasoned my polenta with sea salt, mint, curry powder, pepper, and cinnamon.  The polenta itself was delicious enough to be a main course!  I really just messed around the spices so I am glad that worked out well!

The Butternut Squash-Chickpea stew consisted of soaked chickpeas, 5 oz creamy organic butternut squash, bell peppers, and carrots.  This stew was sweet AND savory.  When paired with the polenta, it was a steaming bowl of pure delight.  I made this in single serving form but I will most definitely make a bigger version in the future!

It was great making polenta and using dried chickpeas, I really don’t think i’ll ever go back to the store made polenta!  Dinner was a satisfying   305 calories, 10 grams of protein, and 11 grams of fiber.

My calories are quite low today so i’ll most likely have something before nine o’clock tonight!

Edit:  I ended up making a mini bowl of flax-pumpkin oatmeal with 1 tbs of almond butter

245 calories, 9 grams of protein, and 11 grams of fiber


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A Stab at Sweet Hummus

Since it’s so dreary out today, I stayed inside and worked out on the Elliptical.  I exercised for 45 minutes while watching Top Chef!  I love that show so much! 

For my afternoon snack, I was really craving that lemon ‘yogurt’ hummus from last week but I opened up my Silk Yogurt and it was runny!  I’m not going to let it go to waste so I’m going to attempt homemade soy yogurt tonight.  Since I was really craving a sweeter hummus, I decided to whip up something to see what I could do. 

  • Can of rinsed Chickpeas
  • Tiny bit of lemon zest
  • Juice of one lemon
  • 1 tbs tahini
  • Cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup almond milk

It’s a little thick and not quite as good as the lemon-yogurt hummus but it is still a fresh take on hummus and i’ll mess around the ingredients in the future!

I had 50 grams of Sweet Hummus, A Carrot, Celery, and some cinnamon dusted apple slices.

This tasty snack was just 186 calories, 6 grams of protein, and 10 grams of fiber!

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Shopping Trip and Crispy Tempeh Salad

Despite the slight drizzle, I decided to walk to the groccery store to pick up a few items.  I should be in school but yesterday was pretty long so my parents decided to let me stay home.   The walk wasn’t too bad, about ten minutes each way.   I spent $20.03 without even thinking, what am I going to do in college?

  • Fuze
  • Zucchini
  • Yellow Squash
  • Leek
  • Mango
  • Avocado
  • Spinach
  • Smart Deli Turkey Slices
  • Bananas
  • Bag of Garbanzo Beans
  • Vegan Butternut Squash Soup

After walking in the cold, I was pretty hungry but wanted something I could just throw together.  Hence my Crispy Tempeh Salad.

Carrots, Raisins, Lettuce, Avocado, Tempeh

Dipped into 1 tbs Annie’s Goddess Dressing and a Wasa Cracker on the side.  I also had a cup of coffee with silk creamer.

Lunch comes out to be 390 calories, 15 grams of protein, and 14 grams of fiber!

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Final NYC Meal

For our final meal, we stopped by Whole Foods for their salad bar.  I went through the line and basically if it was vegan, I got it!  I had lemon baked tofu, baked tofu, forbidden rice, edamame, soy-tein, sesame tofu, sesame broccoli, shredded carrots, artichokes, black beans, Okra Massala, pita bread, cucumbers, peppadew, and plenty of other dishes including a vegan dumpling!  I counted 15 components all together!  It was really tasty, I wish we had a Whole Foods near by!  I’m glad I ate this since our flight was delayed and I was stuck with a Luna Bar and Coffee for dinner!


I would have to say that New York City was a success, both entertainment wise and culinary wise!  I do miss cooking for myself though! Oh, I also snacked on Cheese Quackers from PF&W!

NYC has brought on some changes… first off, I will be walking a lot more at home.  Instead of hopping in the car to pick up ingredients, I am going to walk to our local Harris Teeter instead!  I’m also going to be a full-time blogger.  Basically, I’ll blog everything I eat.  Before, I wouldn’t post if I had a grape or two.  Now, I’ll post my structured meals and even if I nibble you guys will hear about it!  I’m not changing really, I am just building on myself.

Good Night Everyone 🙂

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Zen Palate!

Zen Palate, a vegetarian and vegan friendly restaurant, was our stop before our Saturday night play.  The restaurant labeled if dishes contained dairy or eggs so it’s great for a traveling vegan.  We called earlier in the day to get a reservation and they told us it wouldn’t be necessary.  Well, if you are heading over to Zen Palate, I would recommend reserving a table- they were packed!


For appetizers, my mother and I decided to split two starters.  First up we have the grilled and marinated Seitan.  This seitan was so chewy and crispy.  I really loved the flavors of the marinade and my mom and I actually finished the dish!  (sorry it’s out of focus, it’s hard secretly taking pictures!)


Second up, we had the Sweet Yam Fries.  These were basically French fries but using sweet potatoes as the base.  They were so crispy and fun to eat with chop sticks!


My main dish was the Curry Power.  Described as a spicy combination of fresh zucchini, snap peas, carrots, onions, peppers, tofu puffs, all in a wheat basket.  The tofu puffs sold me but those ended up just being plain tofu.  The dish was wonderful and I only ate a fourth of the bread basket since it seemed to be a bit deadly!  The sauce was also deadly, a mix of peanut oil, curry, and some other spices.  I really didn’t mind though since I’m on vacation.


Dinner was filling and was a great way to get ready for the play because of it’s great location.  We ended up seeing Wicked and walking around Times Square afterwards.  I took some great pictures but I’ll spare you and only post one!  I would have to say that New York City was a success, both entertainment wise and culinary wise!  I do miss cooking for myself though!

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I know it’s a bit late but my flight was delayed so I’m just settling down.  Instead of sleeping at the airport, I pre wrote some blog entries! Blossom 

After a long Friday evening in the city, we headed out to Blossom, another Vegan Restaurant.  I went in with a growling stomach since I knew I could eat anything I wanted and not really worry about it.  Having true vegan options was so easy; it was a great change from restaurants at home.


To start off the night, my mother and I split the stuffed ravioli.  The ravioli was drenched with a cashew cream sauce, the high light of the dish.  The raviolis themselves were a little bland but when paired with the cashew cream sauce, it really was an explosion of taste!  The dish was topped with small grape tomatoes.


My main dish was a Stuffed Portobello Dish.  With three asparagus spears on the side, this Portobello was stuffed with a mixture of protein, caramelized onions, and some sort of sauce.  The Portobello was laying on a bed of Apricot Couscous.  I wish the lighting had been better here because this dish was gorgeous.  I guess you guys will just have to take my word for it!  I know dim lighting is visibly appealing and makes you eat more but us bloggers need some light!  I tried to be discrete but in the end I was actually holding a candle in the air to try and get some light! 😛


For my mother’s main course, she chose to eat the Spinach Risotto with Shitaki Crusted Tofu.  Her risotto was simply amazing, it had mushrooms, onions, and even a balsamic reduction on the side.  If my Portobello dish hadn’t been so good I would have ordered this!  It was bright green in color and with the slices of tofu, it was really visually appealing. 


This meal wouldn’t be complete without another Vegan Dessert.  The one item that jumped out to both of us was the Strawberry Cheesecake.  A sweet, rich cheesecake topped with a sweet strawberry sauce.  My mom claimed the dessert was better than other ‘regular’ cheesecake she has had in the past!


We ended the night with a pot of freshly steeped Peppermint tea.  Such a relaxing end to a great meal!

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The Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon

Our checkout time is noon so I figured I would use our last bit of wireless internet!  I have so much to blog about!

To start off, I will post our second course from Pure Food and Wine.  I got the Chili Lime Tortilla Wraps.  This was an explosion of flavor!!   My best meal turns out to be the worst photo of the trip but I have to blog about this!

My tortillas, which were chewy and not crunchy, were stuffed with avocados, onions, tomatos, and a brown sauce on the inside which I believe was a lime sauce of some type.  On the side, I had a Cashew Sour Cream which was gone after eating just one tortilla! 

My mom’s second course was Corn Tamales.  I had a fair share of this dish and it was amazing!  On the side was a different Sour Cream and my favorite, avocado!  The brown sauce is a Cocoa Mole.  Every part of this dish tied together perfectly, I wish I knew how to cook like this!

So that ends second course at Pure Food and Wine.  With so many raw AND vegan desserts on the menu, we had to have one… you know, to blog about 😛

Thin Mint Ice Cream!  Mint ice cream with chunks of dark chocolate, chocolate sauce, vanilla bean cream, and a giant thin mint on the bottom!

I think this picture describes how great it was!

While leaving PF&W, I looked up and locked eyes with someone who looked familiar.  Walking out, it hit me- It was Kevin Bacon!  We walked out at the same time and he agreed with my mother that he thought the food was great as well.  We giggled like little school girls for the next thirty minutes!


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