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Archive for October, 2009

VeganMoFo 2009

Two of my favorite things in the wintertime are chili and chocolate…so here’s a delicious way to combine the two! I don’t know if it’s purely for the love of things spicy and love of things sweet, or if it’s because in Texas we never actually had cold winters (and hot soup with windows open just seems wrong) – and here in KC I can actually use soups to warm me, cuddled up under a blanket (or dog)! This would be excellent followed up by a cup of Double Chocolate Diablo – if you’re having a wicked chocolate craving 😉 A little bit about mole (pronounced mole-ay, not like the animal or spy)… During Dia de los Muertos, mole is a popular offering to dead loved ones, because of its many ingredients. Since mole is eaten on special occasions, many see it as a fit offering – and we all know that is coming up, right after Halloween!! This recipe makes about 4 servings.

Ingredients:

4 C veggie broth
1 small can tomato sauce
2-3 TBSP canola oil
1 medium onion, diced
1 C diced golden potatoes
1.5 C cooked chickpeas (or 1 can, drained and rinsed)
1 tsp minced ginger
1 TBSP cocoa powder
2 TBSP chili powder
1/4-1/2 tsp cayenne *optional
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp coriander
1 tsp salt
fresh black pepper, to taste

Directions:

1. Warm the canola oil over medium heat, in a large stock pot. Dice the onion.
2. Add onion and minced ginger to warmed oil, and cook about 3-5 minutes, meanwhile dice the potatoes.
3. Add in spices (cocoa powder, chili powder, cayenne, cumin, coriander, salt and pepper), and stir. Add in tomato sauce, potatoes, chickpeas, and broth.
4. Bring to a boil, reduce to simmer, and cook for approximately 15-20 minutes (until potatoes are cooked through). Serve with cornbread, tortillas, or tortilla chips. Enjoy!

chili mole1

**I would also recommend adding in some diced tomatoes, just to round out the tomato flavor!

Happy Cooking!

On This Day In History: Casper the Friendly Cupcake!

ghost cupcakes

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Here’s a cute little way to make some monsters for a Halloween party – but beware..these are packed with frosting, so they may not be for the faint of sugar 😉

1. Make Jo’s chocolate chip cookies (or your favorite cookie of choice). Make Buttercream frosting. You can either choose to color the frosting, or leave it white for the face of the monster. Separate out some frosting to color for the eyes and hair.

2. Place a large dollop of frosting on top of one cookie, going heavier on one side than the other.

monsterrific1

3. Top with another cookie, so it sits at an angle.

monsterrific2

4. Using a #233 Wilton tip, make two dots for eyes. Place a chocolate chip, or white chocolate chip, in the center of the dot for the eyes.. and place another one as a nose.

monsterrific3monsterrific4

5. Using a #233 or #199 Wilton tip, make fun hair – wild and crazy, soft serve-esque, whatever tickles your monster fancy.

monsterrific5

Happy Halloween!

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Happy World Go Vegan Week!

Hello Primate followers! This is going to just be a quick post to wish you all a Happy Go Vegan Week! I’ll be posting a recipe later today…but I wanted to share these well-wishes with you now! So let’s spread the vegan love, and help others go vegan!

Happy Vegan Week!

batcakes colony

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Hello Innocent Primate readers!  I know I have taken a serious hiatus from blogging, and I’m so glad that Sara has been working hard to pick up the slack and bring y’all great recipes over the last couple of months.  I have a couple of recipes in the hopper, myself, so hopefully I can get those posted soon.

In the mean time, I just had to bring your attention to an article in the New York Times entitled “To Cut Global Warming, Swedes Study Their Plates” (cue vegan amazement that a government would act independently of the cattle lobby to help the planet).  Over the last year or two, I have noticed the NYTimes running articles promoting meat-free diets as environmentally sound and others mentioning veganism as a perfectly valid life choice (which, hey, is a pretty new concept for most people).  Then there’s E. Coli tainted beef, which is a veganism ad that writes itself.  It wasn’t that long ago that every person I met had to be told what a vegan is.  Now, it’s only about half of the people I meet.  Ten years ago, when I became just a vegetarian, it was practically impossible to eat at a restaurant when I visited my parents in Texas.  Now, there are several entirely vegetarian/vegan restaurants in Houston, and vegan dishes available at many “ordinary” restaurants, too.  So, the word seems to be getting out, and hopefully people like us at the Primate are helping to show them that being a vegan is not martyrdom.  Vegan food can just be good food.

But, I digress.  Back to the article at hand.  “An estimated 25 percent of the emissions produced by people in industrialized nations can be traced to the food they eat, according to recent research [in Sweden].”  Accordingly, the Swedish government, with the cooperation of many food producers and restaurant owners, have started to calculate the carbon footprint of different foods, and then (here’s the critical part) put that information on the packaging or menu.  They have even changed the dietary recommendations (equivalent to our governments food pyramid) to give “equal weight to climate and health.”  So the government is telling people, instead of eating beef, it’s better to eat chicken or beans to get your protein (yes, beans are a legitimate protein source!).  And then when they go to the grocery store or restaurant, they can make immediate comparisons of carbon emissions for different foods.  Of course, just telling people that beef is terrible for the environment will not make everyone stop eating it.  At least not right away.  But as one man, after being asked about the hamburger he was eating, said, “You feel guilty choosing red meat.”  And I am certainly not above making people feel guilty about choosing meat.  They should feel guilty.  Although that guy was a eating a burger, I bet that guilt will at least decrease his consumption over time.

Anyway, give the article a read, and pass it around.  People are frequently flummoxed when I say that 1/3 of the reason why I’m a vegan is environmental.  News like this will hopefully help them understand.

NYTimes

On This Day In History: Peanut Butter Ganache Cups

pb cup: Reece's be damned!

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VeganMoFo 2009

Thank you GoDairyFree.org (via Hannah Kaminsky of Bittersweet Blog) for declaring 2009 as the Year of the Coconut! Ok, so maybe she’s not the UN (see Year of the Potato)..but there are some health benefits to consuming coconut and coconut oil – even if this title isn’t globally recognized 😉

For one thing, coconut is rich in protein and the ‘meat’ of the coconut is excellent at destroying intestinal parasites that you get from eating infected foods. Drinking coconut water is an excellent way to cleanse the kidneys and bladder during times of infection. Additionally, coconut milk is wonderful source of iodine (to keep that thyroid in check), eases constipation and flatulence, and has been reported to soothe sore throats and intestinal ulcers. On the external side of things, coconut oil has been shown to heal cuts, scratches, burns and sunburns. You want to remove wrinkles? Coconut oil has been recommended as a facial massage to reduce those wrinkles! And the consumption of 2 TBSP virgin coconut oil each day has been reported to reduce your daily Vitamin E requirements!

As all Primate followers will know, we love us some coconut milk, coconut yogurt, coconut cocoa…anything! And it goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyway – Turtle Mountain So Delicious is one of our favorite choices for all things coconut: CM Beverage for our teas and such, CM Yogurts for our frozen treats or just for breakfast/snacks, store-bought ice creams..you name it! Here’s a run-down of our favorite coconutty-recipe goodness!

Coconut Curried Chickpea Soup

If you’re looking for a savory main entrée, check out these babies:

Coconut Curry Chickpea Soup

Vegetable Curry (similar to an Aloo Gobi)

For the sweet-tooth, try:

white chocolate gelatoPiña Colada or French Martini Frozen Yogurt

Mint-Chip Ice Cream

White Chocolate Gelato

Vegan Pastry Cream

Lemon Cream Popper Pies

And of course, some drinks include:

Devil with a Blueberry Dress On or Bananarama Smoothie

Both Iced and Hot Chai Tea

And our most recent, and quite popular, addition: Double Chocolate Diablo!

chaiteaIced ChaiDouble Cocoa Diablo

Happy Coconuts!

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VeganMoFo 2009

Sorry I don’t have anything new for you today (well, it may be new to some)…but here’s what I posted a year ago on this date: Tex-Mex Pizza Verde.  I’m working on some really nummy treats, so bear with me… For now, let’s reminisce about days of pizzas past.

texmex pizza4

Happy Cooking!

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VeganMoFo 2009As we know, maybe all too well…that Halloween can be a taunting time for vegans. With all the chocolates and various other candies swirling around in our faces (that make us go, “ugh, why can’t they be vegan?”), who could blame us for wanting candy?! Well, unless you have the wherewithal to make your own peanut butter cups (which I certainly do, mostly because they are one of my favorite chocolate treats and I’m not going to let anything get in my way of enjoying them while maintaining my compassion) and candy corn…you may wonder what candies out there pass vegan inspection! Now, if we could only get all the houses to give out only these candies – or better yet, make all the candy companies turn vegan – it might be a step towards Candyland Peace (awww…). Ok, so here’s a list that PETA has comprised of vegan-suitable mainstream candies. <– I linked to the entire list, but I’ll only list the ones that are mostly Halloween-appropriate. Enjoy!

  • Airheads Taffy
  • Big League Chew Gum
  • Blow Pops
  • Brach’s Cinnamon Hard Candy
  • Brach’s Cinnamon Hard Candy
  • Brach’s Orange Slices
  • Brach’s Root Beer Barrels
  • Brach’s Star Brites
  • Bubble Tape Gum
  • Charms lollipops
  • Chew-ets Peanut Chews (Original)
  • Chick-o-Sticks
  • Chocolove Dark Chocolate bar
  • Chocolove Orange Peel (Dark Chocolate Bar)
  • Cracker Jacks
  • Cry Babies
  • Dem Bones
  • Dole Madarin Orange Fruit Gels
  • Dots
  • Dum Dums (these are my candy of choice to hand out at Halloween…and eat myself!)
  • Entenmann’s Fudge Delights Fudge & Mint Cookies
  • Everest Gum
  • Famous Amos Sandwich Cookies (Chocolate)
  • Famous Amos Sandwich Cookies (Oatmeal Macaroon)
  • Famous Amos Sandwich Cookies (Peanut Butter)
  • Famous Amos Sandwich Cookies (Vanilla)
  • Ferrara Wafer Swirls With Chocolate
  • Fireballs
  • Food Lion Animal Cookies
  • Food Lion Ginger Snaps
  • Food Lion Oatmeal Cookies
  • Food Lion Sandwich Cookies (Assorted)
  • Food Lion Sandwich Cookies (Chocolate Creme)
  • Food Lion Sandwich Cookies (Chocolate Fudge)
  • Food Lion Sandwich Cookies (Double Creme-O’s)
  • Food Lion Sandwich Cookies (Duplex)
  • Food Lion Sandwich Cookies (Mini Chocolate & Vanilla Cremes)
  • Food Lion Sandwich Cookies (Peanut Butter)
  • Food Lion Sandwich Cookies (Vanilla)
  • Food Lion Snack Crackers
  • Food Lion Sugar Cookies
  • Fruit By the Foot
  • Ghirardelli Twilight Delight Intense Dark
  • Goldenberg’s Peanut Chews (Original)
  • Grandma’s Peanut Butter Sandwich Cremes
  • Hubba Bubba Bubblegum
  • Hubba Bubba Gum
  • Jolly Ranchers (lollipops and hard candy)
  • Jujubees
  • Jujyfruits
  • Keebler Animal Crackers
  • Kool-Aid Gels
  • Kozy Shack Jammin’ Gels
  • Krispy Kreme Fruit Pies
  • Lance Choc-O Cookies
  • Lance Sugar Wafers (Strawberry Creme)
  • Lance Sugar Wafers (Vanilla Creme)
  • Lance Toasty Crackers With Peanut Butter
  • Lance Van-O Lunch Cookies
  • Mambas
  • Mary Janes (regular and peanut butter kisses)
  • Munchos
  • Murray Butter Cookies
  • Murray Cinnamon Grahams
  • Murray Coconut Bars
  • Murray Southern Kitchen Iced Oatmeal Cookies
  • Murray Sugar-Free Vanilla Wafers
  • Nabisco Double Delight Mint’n Creme Oreos
  • Nabisco Ginger Snaps
  • Nabisco Halloween Oreos
  • Nabisco Iced Oatmeal Cookies
  • Nabisco Oatmeal Cookies
  • Nabisco Oreo Chocolate Ice Cream Cones
  • Nabisco Oreo Cookies
  • Nabisco Oreo Thin Crisps
  • Nabisco Original Graham Crackers
  • Nabisco Teddy Grahams (Chocolate and Cinnamon)
  • Nabisco Uh-oh Oreos, Spring Oreos, Chocolate Creme Oreos
  • Nature’s Path Deep Chocolate Cookies
  • Nature’s Path Ginger Spice Cookies
  • Nature’s Path Lemon Poppy Seed Cookies
  • Nestle Double Chocolate Thin Mints
  • Now and Later
  • Orbitz Gum
  • Pure De-Lite Coconut Bars
  • Ring Pop lollipops
  • Smarties (U.S. version only) – another personal fav
  • Sour Patch Kids
  • Super Bubble
  • Tropical Source mini chocolate bags
  • Utz Puffed Caramel Corn
  • VeganSweets marshmallows
  • Velamints Mints
  • Zotz

Happy Halloween!

Update: I found another list of vegan-friendly candies through Farm Sanctuary…check it out at Veg For Life! It’s got some repeats, but also some that aren’t on PETAs list.. 🙂

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VeganMoFo 2009This chili recipe is known throughout the Underworld, and revered as the quintessential ‘Red Ribbon’ (since it’s hot down there, they don’t have blues..they have reds) Chili – and would you expect anything less from Persephone – the wife and Queen of the big man himself, Hades!? Of course not.. So here is a chili that is hot enough to burn the tongues of those banished to the Underworld, such as The Titans or Tantalus, not to mention those who choose to inhabit it, such as Charon or Cerberus. So take a temporary little trip to fiery hell, without actually going there 😉 The heat of the jalapeños won’t linger, so don’t be afraid. However, if you can’t take the heat….reduce it to 1 jalapeno. And only for the bravest of souls, adding a bit of cayenne will banish all those demons back to the hell they came from…

Ingredients:

1/3 dry C each of 4 beans, soaked overnight and cooked (or use about 3 cans of beans: black, pinto, and kidney or cannellini)
1 med onion, minced
4-6 cloves garlic, minced
2-3 jalapeños, minced
2 TBSP chili powder
1tsp each garlic powder, cumin, oregano, salt
1 8oz can tomato sauce
4 C broth

Directions:

1. Soak and cook the beans.
2. When ready to make the chili, heat 2 TBSP canola oil in a large stockpot over medium heat. Mince the onion, garlic, and jalapenos. Add to the hot oil, and reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook about 8 minutes, until the onions begin to soften.
3. Add chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, oregano, and salt. Stir to combine (it will become very dry at this point). Add the tomato sauce and broth. Stir to combine, and bring to a simmer.
4. Simmer for 30 minutes, serve sprinkled with cornbread, and enjoy!

Persephone's Chili

**I’ve been known to serve my chili with cornbread (as above) or tortilla chips, but my personal all-time favorite accompaniment to chili is a flour tortilla, rolled up so I can dip it into the chili! Oh, it’s sooooo good!

Happy Cooking!

On This Day In History: Veggie Sushi

sushi5

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VeganMoFo 2009As I sit here at the local Barnes & Noble (free wi-fi) in my chair that is so big my feet don’t reach the ground, I feel that childish giddy that comes with the cold weather and its natural companion, hot chocolate! I used So Delicious Coconut Milk beverage in this recipe, but any milk will do… it’s just that the CM beverage is slightly thicker, giving the cocoa a more rich and velvety texture – which I love! I feel like this drink is best summed up in the song, Hot Child In The City by Nick Gilder…. 😉 though this cocoa is NOT for kiddos! So enjoy your “danger in the shape of somethin’ wild” and who cares “where she came from or what her game is….”

Ingredients:

2 C So Delicious coconut milk beverage
hot cocoa amount per directions on package for 2 C
4 squares Maya Gold Green&Black chocolate (or any other chocolate bar with spice, about 2 TBSP if using chocolate chips)
1/4 tsp cayenne (if you want it spicy spicy, add in more pinches until desired heat)
1 TBSP Amaretto or Cointreau

Directions:

1. Fill your mug with hot water and let sit while you make the cocoa, so the cup gets warm – keeping your cocoa warmer just a little bit longer.
2. In a small saucepan, heat 2 C CM beverage (or other milk) over medium-low heat. Add cocoa powder (for 2 C/16 oz), 1/4 tsp cayenne, and the 4 small squares of Maya Gold (or about 2 TBSP chocolate chips).
3. Whisk until chocolate is melted, and the mixture is steaming but not boiling. Remove from heat, add Amaretto or Cointreau.
4. Pour into warmed mug, top with a Sweet & Sara marshmallow and enjoy!!

Double Cocoa Diablo

Happy Drinking!

On This Day In History: Sopapillas

sopa10

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welcome to the boneyard mini“…We’ve got fun ‘n’ games!” Here’s a treat for the evil sidekick that helps you pull off all your sinister plans without foil. For your ever-loving pooch, some peanut butter and flax cookie/biscuits is just what Dr. Evil ordered! These are simple enough to make quickly, leaving plenty of time to plot against your nemesis…. This recipe made 11 big ones, and 12 mini’s – but I could’ve made 12 big ones if Mocha and I hadn’t nibbled on so much dough. 😉

Ingredients:

2 TBSP ground flaxseed in 4 TBSP warm water
1/2 C peanut butter – crunchy or creamywelcome to the boneyard cutter
1/4 C agave nectar
1 tsp vanilla
1 TBSP hemp milk
1.5 C oat flour
1/8 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt

Directions:

1. Place ground flax in the warm water, set aside. In an electric mixer, mix the peanut butter, nectar, vanilla, and hemp milk until combined.
2. Add in the dry ingredients and mix until it becomes a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap, in the shape of a disc, and let chill 20 minutes.
3. Roll out on lightly floured, or plastic-wrapped, surface to about 1/8-1/4 inch thick. Cut out bones with a floured cookie cutter, and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Place in fridge to chill while oven preheats to 350°F.

welcome to the boneyard1welcome to the boneyard2
4. Bake at 350°F for 20-30 minutes (depending on how crunchy your pooch prefers). Store in an airtight container – and they’ll last a couple weeks (I’ve had mine for at least a week now, and they are still perfectly fine).

welcome to the boneyard3

*For human consumption, you may want to glaze them with a simple powdered sugar and milk glaze to up the sweetness factor. They taste decent (and the dough is good, approved by both me AND Mocha), but not as sweet as I would prefer for myself. However, I wouldn’t want to give Mocha too much sweet/sugar.

Happy Baking!

VeganMoFo 2009

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