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Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Vegan Diet and Nutrition Information

I am posting a link to a brochure I have which is a nice overview on the vegan diet and nutrients.

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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Tofu Scramble with Spinach, Peppers and Sausage

Here is my recipe for a tasty tofu scramble.

Scramble Tofu with Spinach, Peppers and Sausage

Serves 1 to 2

1 small potato (approximate 5 oz), peeled, rinsed, diced

4 oz block of tofu (1/4 of a 14 oz tub) firm or extra firm tofu

1 Tofurkey Kielbasa or Italian sausage, sliced into about ¼ “thick pieces

3 oz roasted red and yellow peppers (or just red) from a jar, finely chopped

4 tablespoons frozen chopped spinach, thawed (put it in a small bowl , like a ramekin, with warm water then drain in small colander when thawed or put in a small colander and run warm to hot water over it until thawed, a few minutes)

1 tablespoon store bought sofrito*

¼ teaspoon sazon goya con culantro y achiote (the orange packet)

1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil

1- In a bowl place the tofu in between a few paper towels and press out excess water. Drain the water and then mash the tofu with a potato masher.

2- Heat a 9 to 10” non stick pan for 1 minute. Then heat the oil for 30 seconds to 1 minute. (When heating oil to make sure the oil is ready, flick a small sprinkle of water into pan with oil. If you hear a sizzle then it is ready. )

3- Add the potatoes to the pan and on a low to medium flame stir occasionally for 10 minutes.

4- Mix in the tofu and continue to stir occasional for 3 more minutes.

5- Mix in the peppers, sofrito and sazon. Continue to cook on a low to medium flame stirring occasional for 5 minutes.

6- Then mix in the spinach and sausage. Cook about 3 minutes more until the spinach is cooked and sausage is heated through.

Serving ideas- This can be a main meal for one saving leftovers for another meal. If you have leftovers store in a sealed container and reheat in the microwave about 1 minute and 30 to 40 seconds with the cover off. This can also serve two people with a side of toast for breakfast.

* Sofrito is a Spanish cooking sauce with a mixture of tomatoes, peppers, onion, cilantro and garlic. Goya makes this and can be found in supermarkets. There is Sofrito in the jar and in the frozen section. I used the one in the Jar for this recipe.

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Saturday, March 27, 2010

Annisette Toast (Biscotti)

Recently I veganized this recipe that my nan had. I just love cooking, creating my own recipes and veganizing the recipes we know and love. I had this for breakfast this morning along with my coffee. They will be eaten tonight at earth hour.

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Friday, March 26, 2010

Sweet and Sour Seitan

I made a recipe tonight for Sweet and Sour Seitan over Rice.. It was yummy. Here is a photo.

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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Vegetable Shortening

I was going through old recipes of my Nan and saw recipes with Crisco as an ingredient needed. I had a feeling it was vegan because it is vegetable shortening but went online to find out for sure. From what I read it appears it is vegan. However, because I also remember a cooking show saying to use non-hydrogenated vegetable shortening I read further. When researching this I read that hydrogenated shortening is not good for you related to the trans. fats. I saw on line there is a product by Spectrum that could be found in an organic or health food store. Here is the link for that product:

I also saw non hydrogenated butter as a suggestion. Earth Balance makes vegan butters and margarines that are free of trans fats and hydrogenated oils. I use this product and have never been disappointed. I really do not use vegetable shortening but I thought this would be good information in case I needed to or if anyone else had this question.

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Sunday, March 14, 2010

Recap of previous Easter Posts....

With Easter approaching I thought I would do a recap of previous posts that I did pertaining to the holiday. I am reposting them all here. They are: Are Food Colorings vegan, Easter Candy, My first Easter as a Vegan, and It's Cookie time..

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Are food colorings vegan?

I used yellow food coloring today and remembered that I have seen natural coloring , pretty expensive in an organic store. So I wondered is food coloring vegan? Then I thought this post would be a good one at this time because Easter is around the corner. Yes, I do not eat eggs so I do not color them anymore. But I have used food coloring in cookies. So, in case you use it in some way for Easter besides eggs I thought let me read up on this. So I did some research online and this is what I found. Some answers by some people stated that some red food coloring is made from beetles but that the other food colorings are ok. I read that yellow number 5 and 6 are vegetarian.. (yahoo) In regard to the red dye when reading another site it also stated that not all red dyes are made from bugs. It stated it would be labeled cochineal, carmine, or carminic if made from the cochineal beetle. FD and C and red number 40 are 99% coal derivatives. (Vegetarian resource group). The latter site also talks about a food guide you can order to help decipher food ingredients. Click on the link number two below in sources. As I was doing further research I began to see why a person would choose to buy natural food coloring. It seems to have to do with additives that are in some of them such as coal tar deritatives ( Spices such as turmeric, saffron, and papikra are also used for some food colorings. Some natural dyes are made of caramelized sugar, beet juice, the seed of the achiote shrub, and algae. has a table that shows you where various sources for food coloring come from. An article from the FDA has a table of the various color additives and additives which are certifiable by the FDA. These regulations have to do with the purity and safety of the substance used in the dye. Link number 7 in my list of sources is a short video telling you some of the things I mentioned about natural food coloring and that red may sometimes come from insects. Another source talks about how some people may be concerned with the health risks of certain products used, such as the color derived from coal tar. That source is number 8 on my link list. You can then read about the product that was mentioned in the latter article, FD & C yellow number 5 in the link below from the FDA which talks about that issue. I am not making any claims that I have knowledge that specific additives cause health problems in this post. I have not done the research to support or negate the comment. I just wanted to write about the various possibilities that may impact a persons decision one way or the other. I guess what it boils down to is personal preference. There was only one site I found that had a table showing that yellow may have a source of eggs, or organic meat. But I did not see that anywhere else. There is agreeement that some red comes from insects. That is very good to know so I can look at a label and make sure it does not have the words carmine, cohineal, or carminic in it indicating it came from an insect. The majority I saw was from either the natural spices or coal tar. So it appears that most of these items are vegan/ vegetarian. If one is concerned with safety of the additives that are not from natural sources such as the coal tar then maybe you may want to make sure it is all natural, for example from a spice or plant. Thank you for coming to my blog. Please come back again soon. Gnewvegan

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8- is food coloring made of.htm

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Easter Candy

With the holiday approaching I wanted to post these online stores again. Just because you are vegan does not mean you can not enjoy that Easter Bunny. The first link brings you to Easter candy. You can look through the others for their chocolate or candies. I do not remember which site I ordered from last year but the candy and chocolates I purchased were well received even by non-vegans. I also had made Easter cookies last year which I plan to do again. I used a sugar cookie recipe that I veganized by just using vegan ingredients and bought Easter cookie cutters. In my archives there are two posts, 12/17/08, and 3/26/08 where I talk about cookie making and my first Easter as a Vegan.. Hope these websites and my posts are of some help.

Online vegan stores

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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

My First Easter As A Vegan

As with my first Thanksgiving and Christmas Easter was no exception to a nice holiday. I went to a friends house for dinner and she is really great. I have known her for many years and she is like family. She so kindly told me to bring my soy milk and margarine and she would put mashed potatoes aside so I can make it my way. She liked them too when she tasted it :) I used some vegan margarine in a dish of pasta.. The sauce had meat in it so a dish was taken out for me pre the sauce added. The veggies her and her husband made were delicious and they purposely did not put anything in them I could not eat. She also made a very nice salad and put oil and vinegar on the table because the other dressings had ingredients I could not have. I made the orzo I posted in the “Thanksgiving post” and sugar cookies. I never made sugar cookies for Easter but I saw these really cute Easter cookie cutters so I decided to make cookies. I did it just like Christmas as I wrote on my post “It’s Cookie Time”. I just substituted vegan ingredients and everyone enjoyed the cookies.. As always I had my vegan sugar with me and this time I had the soy milk for my coffee. At the end of the day I was full and had a very nice Easter dinner.. It is not impossible to have a holiday dinner when you are the only vegan. It has worked out well and it always is made easier when you have wonderful friends that do what my friend's did when cooking.. I am touched at the caring and find it really wonderful when people are interested in learning about my veganism. I will be posting one of my pasta recipes in a few days.. Come back soon and maybe try it out. Thank you for coming to blog. Please come back again soon.


Monday, November 12, 2007

It is cookie time :)

I was not going to talk about sugar so soon in the blog but being that the cookie season is approaching I thought it would be a good idea. Recently I learned that sugar is not vegan. I did research and here is a website I found about this topic. It also lists brands of sugar that are non-vegan and vegan. I thought the information may be of interest especially around the holidays when sugar cookies are popular. And do not worry about finding the sugar because it is out there. I found it at an organic whole food store and the local supermarket.

When I looked into colored vegan sugar I did not find that. But I did find vegan sprinkles that one uses on ice cream on one of the web sites I listed in my previous blog for vegan groceries. I thought to myself you could probably make your own colored sugar with vegan sugar and food coloring. Well I researched it and others had the same idea. This website has a recipe for making your own colored sugar.

I also noticed that some other recipes use cinnamon plus sugar for coating. Here are some web sites I found with sugar cookie recipes that seem worth trying.

( this person uses applesauce instead of margarine. I saw someone mention that on a website. Thought I would plug it in here for more options) If you have your own sugar cookie recipe you use either from a book or your family recipe, read through the ingredients and see what really needs to be substituted. I compared a recipe I use from a cook book to the ones in the web sites I mentioned above and it was very similar. I would only need to replace sugar with vegan sugar, the egg with an egg replacer ( see note following this paragraph), and the sour cream with tofutti’s sour supreme. I have not tried the latter product yet so I can not comment. In one of the above recipes someone uses tofutti cream cheese. And if you are not really comfortable changing things around yet then try one of the above recipes. I suggest doing a trial run before the holiday. Cut the recipe in half and then in half again if you want (depending on the yield of the original recipe) and give it a test try. You do not even have to decorate if you do not want for the trial run, just make the cookie and see if you like the dough. And then you will be on your way to a vegan holiday. Note: I bought the Ener- G egg replacer in an organic food store. It is in a box and I think it was in the baking section. You can not make scrambled eggs with it because it is for baking purposes. It is a powder that is mixed with water. I have used it in some recipes which called for egg and it worked fine. I have also seen the other products I have in bold in the organic food store/ whole food store. A note on margarine: Butter is dairy so it is not vegan. According to the PETA handout I talked about in the previous blog most margarines are vegan. In case you want to have an idea of particular brand names I have copied and pasted a paragraph on margarine from a website. The website also talks about other products and replacements.
"Butter is obviously made from milk so it is easiest to switch to margarine, many of which are vegan. Some margarines contain milk derivatives such as whey or E-numbers from an animal source, but most supermarkets stock at least one suitable own brand margarine or look for Pure’s Dairy Free Soya Spread or Dairy Free Sunflower Spread. Health food shops will also stock a selection of vegan margarines including: Granose’s Vegetable margarine; Suma’s Sunflower Spread, Organic Reduced Fat Sunflower Spread, or their Soya Spread; Biona Organic Vegetable Margarine and Organic Olive Extra Margarine – made with olive oil; Vitaquell Extra Dairy Free or Bio Organic margarine. If you like a block of ‘butter-style’ margarine for baking, try Rakusen’s Tomor, available from Sainsbury’s, Waitrose and many health food shops"

After I make the cookies I will post how they came out and any tips used to make them that I may use. I always welcome your experiences as well. Happy cookie making. :)

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Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Facial Products

Here is a link I saw on twitter and thought it would be good to share.

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Monday, March 8, 2010

Interesting article on the food pyramid

I thought I would post this article about the food pyramid. I saw the link on twitter from Vegetarian Dish whom I am following.

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Thursday, March 4, 2010

Tomato Noodle Soup With Roasted Garlic

My Nan liked Tomato soup so I came up with this to make for her. I was very happy that she enjoyed it. She also use to like to have her soup with crackers.

Tomato Noodle Soup With Roasted Garlic

Serves 4 or 2 for a main meal(Yields 4 ½ cups,1 cup equals 1 serving)

Do not let the roasted garlic deter you. In thirty minutes the soup is done because you cook the soup as the garlic is roasting.


3 to 4 cloves garlic, unpeeled, cut off tips only (* see G note)
1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
½ cup (4 oz) spaghetti, break apart with fingers into 1 inch pieces
4 cups water *
Bouillon to equal 4 cups * (see G note)
1 (8) oz can Tomato sauce
½ teaspoon dried parsley

G note- * When choosing the garlic, if one clove is large and looks like it could be two cloves then use 2 of that size. If not then use 4 average size cloves.
* For the bouillon you can use 4 cups of boxed vegetable broth instead of 4 cups water plus bouillon.


1- Preheat toaster oven to 400 degrees. Put unpeeled garlic in aluminum foil. Drizzle oil over garlic. Close foil over garlic leaving a small opening at the top to vent. Bake for 30 minutes.

2- Meanwhile in a 2 qt pot add the water plus bouillon (or boxed broth), tomato sauce and parsley. Mix, cover and bring to a boil over medium flame. Stir at least two times.

3- When soup boils, uncover and add pasta to pot. Mix well stirring occasionally on a low- medium flame and simmer for 10 minutes.

4- When the garlic is done take out of toaster oven, unwrap foil and let cool a few minutes. Peel off skin (will come right off) Mince the garlic into the tomato soup and mix well. You will notice the broth will become slightly thicker. (If you do not have a garlic press then you can use a small chopper. Put the garlic in a small chopper and add a small ladle of broth. Chop until garlic is completely chopped like a puree. Then add to the pot and stir as above)

Meal tip- This could be a light dinner for two with salad and garlic bread or a light lunch at 1 cup and 2 Tablespoons per serving for 4. Salad and bread would also go well if serving as a lunch.

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Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Vegan Tip for a Quick Chick'n Parmesan Sandwich

Chick'n Parmesan Sandwich

Preheat toaster oven to about 375 degrees. Cook one vegan chicken patty (I use Boca) per box directions in the microwave. Put the cooked patty on a slice of bread. Top it with 1 ½ Tablespoons of slightly warmed marinara sauce , spread 1 and ½ Tablespoons of shredded vegan mozzarella evenly on top of sauce (can use less if you like) and top with the other slice of bread. Put in toaster oven and bake about 4- 5 minutes until cheese is melted. Keep an eye on the bread so it does not burn. I use the brand follow your heart for Cheese. Cut on a diagonal with a serrated knife and enjoy. I made this with steamed broccoli. I am going to put the link here for an earlier post I did on steaming veggies in the microwave with the steamer I use.

This post was done on March 10, 2009. If the above link does not work right you can find it by clicking on my archives.

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