Oh, My, Wedding

Have I ever learned the value of hiring a wedding planner!

As our pending nuptials draw near, I am more and more grateful that I have found the love of my life and that we are only going to get married once. There are so many things still left to be done, even though my last two weekends have been spent almost entirely devoted to “the wedding.”

A couple of weeks ago, some coworkers and I celebrated my impending nuptials by going to Painting With A Twist. We fittingly painted sugar skulls wearing bridal ecoutremant. Take a looksie.

This is my finished painting. I smudged it at the top of the skull by accident. Oops! One of my coworkers was generous enough to paint hers to match and she gave it to me as her wedding gift. It’s not identical, but we did both paint the Star Trek symbol in the center of the skull. Not our idea, lol, the instructor threw it out there during the tutorial. We both gasped and got all over that.
Here’s hers.
The two of them are gazing fondly at one another above my entertainment center now. 
Everything for the wedding has officially been taken care of. Phew! Oh, except I’m being a major bridezilla regarding my apparel. I just can’t seem to get it the way I want it. Today I’m heading to the craft store after work to get some glass pearls for jewelry and will hopefully be making something heftier than the oak leaf and vintage brass jewelry I ordered from Etsy. I just don’t feel like it matches anymore.
I abandoned the handmade photo booth after failing at my attempts to create woodland creature masks. I ordered supplies from Oriental Trading again, which is where I ordered our plates and custom napkins.

Loading

Soon!

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I think it looks pretty stellar. 
We’ve ordered three dishes from Whole Foods; wraps, pasta salad, and quinoa salad. We’ll also be getting green salad ingredients, chips and salsa, and maybe bread and hummus. We also ordered a lemon raspberry cake from Treehouse Pastry Shop in Santa Fe. I am most excited about that, lol.
I placed my order for candy through Natural Candy Shop online and was pleased with everything that came. It will be the perfect amount of candy for our 23 guests. I’ll also be making peanut butter rice crispy treats which will be served on a 3-tier dessert tray I crafted from rough cut wood and glass candlesticks.
Our Honeyfund is still not 100% funded, but we’ve garnered enough support to have a perfectly wonderful honeymoon.
I’m excited to share photos from the “big day” and from the honeymoon! Next week! Bye!

Have I ever learned the value of hiring a wedding planner!

As our pending nuptials draw near, I am more and more grateful that I have found the love of my life and that we are only going to get married once. There are so many things still left to be done, even though my last two weekends have been spent almost entirely devoted to “the wedding.”

A couple of weeks ago, some coworkers and I celebrated my impending nuptials by going to Painting With A Twist. We fittingly painted sugar skulls wearing bridal ecoutremant. Take a looksie.

This is my finished painting. I smudged it at the top of the skull by accident. Oops! One of my coworkers was generous enough to paint hers to match and she gave it to me as her wedding gift. It’s not identical, but we did both paint the Star Trek symbol in the center of the skull. Not our idea, lol, the instructor threw it out there during the tutorial. We both gasped and got all over that.
Here’s hers.
The two of them are gazing fondly at one another above my entertainment center now. 
Everything for the wedding has officially been taken care of. Phew! Oh, except I’m being a major bridezilla regarding my apparel. I just can’t seem to get it the way I want it. Today I’m heading to the craft store after work to get some glass pearls for jewelry and will hopefully be making something heftier than the oak leaf and vintage brass jewelry I ordered from Etsy. I just don’t feel like it matches anymore.
I abandoned the handmade photo booth after failing at my attempts to create woodland creature masks. I ordered supplies from Oriental Trading again, which is where I ordered our plates and custom napkins.

Loading

Soon!

@-webkit-keyframes”dkaXkpbBxI”{ 0%{opacity:0.5;} 50%{opacity:1;} 100%{opacity:0.5;} } @keyframes”dkaXkpbBxI”{ 0%{opacity:0.5;} 50%{opacity:1;} 100%{opacity:0.5;} }

I think it looks pretty stellar. 
We’ve ordered three dishes from Whole Foods; wraps, pasta salad, and quinoa salad. We’ll also be getting green salad ingredients, chips and salsa, and maybe bread and hummus. We also ordered a lemon raspberry cake from Treehouse Pastry Shop in Santa Fe. I am most excited about that, lol.
I placed my order for candy through Natural Candy Shop online and was pleased with everything that came. It will be the perfect amount of candy for our 23 guests. I’ll also be making peanut butter rice crispy treats which will be served on a 3-tier dessert tray I crafted from rough cut wood and glass candlesticks.
Our Honeyfund is still not 100% funded, but we’ve garnered enough support to have a perfectly wonderful honeymoon.
I’m excited to share photos from the “big day” and from the honeymoon! Next week! Bye!

Thai Hummus Pizzas , Springtime Pasta Primavera, French Toast Nachos, Sloppy Srirachies & more!

Are you looking for LESS work in the kitchen…but don’t want to sacrifice nutrition?

This week’s meal plan is ULTRA Fast with MINIMAL prep work.

Thai Hummus Pizza (NEW!), Sloppy Srirachies (NEW!), French Toast Nachos (NEW!), Casablanca Fajitas (NEW!) and 4 more recipes come together in 15 minute or LESS!

Thai Hummus Pizza

Individual Highlights

  • Sloppy Srirachies (NEW!)
  • Red Pesto Pasta
  • Thai Hummus (NEW!)
  • Mexicali Green Bowls (NEW!)
  • Ultimate Strawberry Salad
  • Casablanca Fajitas (NEW!)
  • Bistro Beet Burgers
  • Brazilian (Mango & Lime) Rice
  • French Toast Nachos (NEW!)

Make it easy on yourself this summer and join Meal Mentor!

Sloppy Srirachies

Family Highlights

  • Caponata Polenta Stacks (NEW!)
  • Sloppy Srirachies (NEW!)
  • Big Banana Parfaits (NEW!)
  • Red Pesto Pasta
  • Thai Hummus Pizza (NEW!)
  • Bistro Beet Burgers
  • Mexicali Green Bowls (NEW!)
  • Springtime Pasta Primavera (NEW!)
  • Casablanca Fajitas (NEW!)

Enjoy more play and less cooking with the meal plans!

Caponata Polenta Stacks

Testimonials

I love the meal plans! Has really changed our spending, no extraneous grocery expenses, lots of savings, not wasting food the way we did previously. Well worth it! More time with my family.“- Ashley B

“The meal plans make cooking so easy so you have more time to enjoy life, plus knowing in the back of your mind you are being good to your body so life is more enjoyable!!”- Angela E

Get these recipes delivered to your inbox NOW!

Are you looking for LESS work in the kitchen…but don’t want to sacrifice nutrition?

This week’s meal plan is ULTRA Fast with MINIMAL prep work.

Thai Hummus Pizza (NEW!), Sloppy Srirachies (NEW!), French Toast Nachos (NEW!), Casablanca Fajitas (NEW!) and 4 more recipes come together in 15 minute or LESS!

Thai Hummus Pizza

Individual Highlights

  • Sloppy Srirachies (NEW!)
  • Red Pesto Pasta
  • Thai Hummus (NEW!)
  • Mexicali Green Bowls (NEW!)
  • Ultimate Strawberry Salad
  • Casablanca Fajitas (NEW!)
  • Bistro Beet Burgers
  • Brazilian (Mango & Lime) Rice
  • French Toast Nachos (NEW!)

Make it easy on yourself this summer and join Meal Mentor!

Sloppy Srirachies

Family Highlights

  • Caponata Polenta Stacks (NEW!)
  • Sloppy Srirachies (NEW!)
  • Big Banana Parfaits (NEW!)
  • Red Pesto Pasta
  • Thai Hummus Pizza (NEW!)
  • Bistro Beet Burgers
  • Mexicali Green Bowls (NEW!)
  • Springtime Pasta Primavera (NEW!)
  • Casablanca Fajitas (NEW!)

Enjoy more play and less cooking with the meal plans!

Caponata Polenta Stacks

Testimonials

I love the meal plans! Has really changed our spending, no extraneous grocery expenses, lots of savings, not wasting food the way we did previously. Well worth it! More time with my family.“- Ashley B

“The meal plans make cooking so easy so you have more time to enjoy life, plus knowing in the back of your mind you are being good to your body so life is more enjoyable!!”- Angela E

Get these recipes delivered to your inbox NOW!

Small Wedding, Big Post

My brother snapped this shot. Live long and prosper, my friends.

It’s closing in on one month since I married my partner of 6 years, Christine.

I had been working on a post to share with readers for weeks and ultimately decided to trash the whole thing. Why? Because there doesn’t seem to be a way for me to describe what it felt like to marry the love of my life, surrounded by friends and family, and during one of the most emotional weeks of my life. A blog post just could not do that justice.

So, the long and short of it is that Chris and I were married, legally, in the state of New Mexico and in the eyes of the federal government, on October 12, 2014, at Hyde Memorial State Park in Santa Fe, NM. The setting was beautiful. The weather, not so much. After putting out decorations, food, etc., the skies opened up and rain came down, wetting our chairs and arbor and forcing us to relocate to inside of the lodge that we rented.

No biggie. It worked out just fine.

Family portraits suffered a tad. We weren’t able to get a good one with Chris’s mom. It was too cold to stay outside for any period of time. So cold it hailed! Look at me, trying not to look like I’m grimacing!

The two of us as newlyweds.

A number of other challenges presented themselves to us that weekend. In no particular order, there was:

  • The rain, obviously.
  • Running out of setup time. We didn’t hang our lanterns or put our favors out on tables. We had to walk our seedlings around out of the box.
  • Chris’s uncle, aunt, and grandmother were unable to attend due to illness. Grandma actually had to be admitted to the hospital for an infection and after a very long week ended up passing away the following Saturday.
  • And Whole Foods, despite saying our catering order would be prepared by 10am, did not have our food prepared when we went to retrieve it at 11:30. In fact, the woman who informed us just said, “no one made it,” like this sort of thing happens all the time. I was so mad that I couldn’t talk, but my mother took care of it and ended up getting everything for free. Even though when she went to get it the order WAS STILL INCORRECT. Stay classy, WF.

However, the pros outweighed these few cons. Here are some of my favorite photos.

Marshmallow-free crispy treats I whipped up before we left.
Our lemon-raspberry cake created by Tree House Pastry Shop.

My brother and his girlfriend posing at our photo booth.

Richard, my stepfather, instructing everyone on how to do the electric slide.
Me and my dad, shortly after the ceremony.

I couldn’t resist being adorable. It’s inevitable.

Mom insisted we get a group photo. I thought it was silly, but in the end it looks great.

Ultimately, I found myself very pleased with everything. I am definitely glad we did things the way we did. Some of my favorite moments included:

  • My brother’s heartfelt speech. He told a story about the first time he spent time with Chris and I. He visited for Christmas and was prepared to give her some sort of talk about not hurting me, but after witnessing the two of us together he realized we were perfect for one another.
  • My mother creating Chris and I a romantic table for two, complete with extravagant flower arrangement; and photos of our fur-babies! Such a pleasant and heartwarming surprise.
  • After a heated dance-off between younger guests we awarded my grandmother with our wedding dance-off trophy.
  • And then grandma apparently felt so full of confidence upon securing her new title that she dragged my reluctant father out for a little dance.

The honeymoon began the very next day. I’ll share photos and stories from select portions of that later. Of course, we had grandma in our thoughts 100% of the time. We were fortunate enough to be able to go to her funeral the week after we arrived home. Chris adored her grandmother and once we arrived all of her relatives and her uncle’s friends shared stories with us about how disappointed she was to have missed it.

Being in California that weekend felt pretty surreal. We spent so much time with her family during our last visit. It didn’t seem right that grandma wasn’t there…

Until next time,
With love,
Mrs. and Mrs. Clements

My brother snapped this shot. Live long and prosper, my friends.

It’s closing in on one month since I married my partner of 6 years, Christine.

I had been working on a post to share with readers for weeks and ultimately decided to trash the whole thing. Why? Because there doesn’t seem to be a way for me to describe what it felt like to marry the love of my life, surrounded by friends and family, and during one of the most emotional weeks of my life. A blog post just could not do that justice.

So, the long and short of it is that Chris and I were married, legally, in the state of New Mexico and in the eyes of the federal government, on October 12, 2014, at Hyde Memorial State Park in Santa Fe, NM. The setting was beautiful. The weather, not so much. After putting out decorations, food, etc., the skies opened up and rain came down, wetting our chairs and arbor and forcing us to relocate to inside of the lodge that we rented.

No biggie. It worked out just fine.

Family portraits suffered a tad. We weren’t able to get a good one with Chris’s mom. It was too cold to stay outside for any period of time. So cold it hailed! Look at me, trying not to look like I’m grimacing!

The two of us as newlyweds.

A number of other challenges presented themselves to us that weekend. In no particular order, there was:

  • The rain, obviously.
  • Running out of setup time. We didn’t hang our lanterns or put our favors out on tables. We had to walk our seedlings around out of the box.
  • Chris’s uncle, aunt, and grandmother were unable to attend due to illness. Grandma actually had to be admitted to the hospital for an infection and after a very long week ended up passing away the following Saturday.
  • And Whole Foods, despite saying our catering order would be prepared by 10am, did not have our food prepared when we went to retrieve it at 11:30. In fact, the woman who informed us just said, “no one made it,” like this sort of thing happens all the time. I was so mad that I couldn’t talk, but my mother took care of it and ended up getting everything for free. Even though when she went to get it the order WAS STILL INCORRECT. Stay classy, WF.

However, the pros outweighed these few cons. Here are some of my favorite photos.

Marshmallow-free crispy treats I whipped up before we left.
Our lemon-raspberry cake created by Tree House Pastry Shop.

My brother and his girlfriend posing at our photo booth.

Richard, my stepfather, instructing everyone on how to do the electric slide.
Me and my dad, shortly after the ceremony.

I couldn’t resist being adorable. It’s inevitable.

Mom insisted we get a group photo. I thought it was silly, but in the end it looks great.

Ultimately, I found myself very pleased with everything. I am definitely glad we did things the way we did. Some of my favorite moments included:

  • My brother’s heartfelt speech. He told a story about the first time he spent time with Chris and I. He visited for Christmas and was prepared to give her some sort of talk about not hurting me, but after witnessing the two of us together he realized we were perfect for one another.
  • My mother creating Chris and I a romantic table for two, complete with extravagant flower arrangement; and photos of our fur-babies! Such a pleasant and heartwarming surprise.
  • After a heated dance-off between younger guests we awarded my grandmother with our wedding dance-off trophy.
  • And then grandma apparently felt so full of confidence upon securing her new title that she dragged my reluctant father out for a little dance.

The honeymoon began the very next day. I’ll share photos and stories from select portions of that later. Of course, we had grandma in our thoughts 100% of the time. We were fortunate enough to be able to go to her funeral the week after we arrived home. Chris adored her grandmother and once we arrived all of her relatives and her uncle’s friends shared stories with us about how disappointed she was to have missed it.

Being in California that weekend felt pretty surreal. We spent so much time with her family during our last visit. It didn’t seem right that grandma wasn’t there…

Until next time,
With love,
Mrs. and Mrs. Clements

Quarterly Bites: Winter 2014

As 2014 draws to a close more and more of our time is spent indoors, reflecting on the past 12 months and preparing for a new year full of new opportunities.

Lizz Delicious is officially 3 years old! I began my food blog in December of 2011 after receiving nearly 100% food-related gifts for Christmas. It has been a wonderful and fulfilling journey though not without its challenges.

For 2015, you’ll notice a few changes. To start, let me introduce to you my “Quarterly Bites.” On the 1st day of February, May, August, and November I will be publishing what most people will refer to as blog posts. Mine, however, will be constructed like newsletters. They will include relevant information concerning the goings-on at the Lizz Delicious homestead as well as seasonal inspirations and recipes, product recommendations, promotions, and the like. You’ll be receiving the same great information that you would via weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly blog posts but more concentrated and useful. To sign up via email, click here. Otherwise, be sure that you’re following Lizz Delicious on Facebook or Google+ as the newsletter links will be shared on those pages automatically.

The rest of the site will become more developed with helpful resources and guides and will be geared more toward helping you on your vegan or plant-based journey. I’m really looking forward to it!

What’s New With Lizz
Married life has been great so far! It has been over 2 months and the only thing that’s changed is how much my love for my wife has grown. The two of us have set a goal for ourselves for the coming year; we’re going to go backpacking. It’s going to require some training on our part but it will be well worth the hard work. In fact, if you’d like to follow us on our progress you can do so by subscribing to a blog I created to share our adventures called Expedition Me & You.

In regards to recipe and book development, I am collecting most of my plant-based recipes in a manuscript that I intend to publish some time next year. This will be a print cookbook targeted toward those vegans who want to eat healthier but may not be 100% oil free or gluten free, for instance, though most of the recipes so far are oil-free. I’m having great fun with this one! It will consist primarily of quick, healthy meals for every skill level but will also contain healthier desserts and weekend baking for those who may be interested. Also, I am developing another e-book for vegan pizza fiends. This one will also be geared toward those of us who want to eat healthier but who also want our food to taste good and not necessarily like cardboard! You’ll find recipes in it for whole grain crusts, homemade sauces, faux meats, and nut based cheeses. More details will come after the beginning of the year. To help me with developing recipes, though, I would love to hear about what your favorite pizza is. Making pizza is a personal thing, so if you have recommendations for the best. Pizza. Ever. I really would love to hear about it. Comment on this post or reach out to me via Facebook.

Seasonal Inspiration

For those of you looking to add some more holiday flavor into your menu this week, take a gander at these recipes I’ve previously published on Lizz Delicious. They may just be what you’re looking for!

When it comes to gifts, shopping for vegans can be a bit tricky. Take a look at my list of 15 Great Vegan Stocking Stuffer Ideas for starters. Then, if you’re on the crafty side, don’t forget to check out my e-book of vegan “gifts in a jar.” Vegan Glass Jar Goodies shows you how to make 10 different recipes for layered mixes in jars that can be made for absolutely any occasion. Click here for 3 free recipes from the book!

Frothy Hot Cocoa
This issue’s recipe is for a thick, sweet, chocolatey vegan hot cocoa. It’s warming, filling, and very easy to make.

Ingredients
2 cups plain, unsweetened soymilk
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup evaporated cane juice or sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Pinch of salt

Directions
In a medium saucepan combine all ingredients. Set to medium heat. Whisk frequently until the mixture starts to bubble. At the first sign of bubbles, whisk constantly for 5 minutes until all ingredients are fully incorporated and heated through. If desired, top with homemade coconut whipped cream or serve with vegan marshmallows, a cinnamon stick, or a candy cane.

Makes 2 servings.

Product Recommendations
The lovely folks at Lilly’s Sweets sent me a couple of bags of their vegan dark chocolate baking chips in November. They are not only dairy-free but are also sugar-free, sweetened with stevia. I actually really like stevia as a sweetener, but my wife does not. When I used the baking chips in a batch of blondies, she was absolutely amazed at how similar they tasted to regular baking chips. Yum! They made an excellent addition to my black bean brownies, too, as well as to an oatmeal breakfast cookie (scone) I whipped up, too. If you’re a health-conscious individual looking to cut out a few calories, you should give them a try.

In Closing
Don’t forget to take a break this holiday season. So many of us rush around trying to do everything when we all know that it just isn’t possible. The less happy you are the less happy you’ll be able to make anyone else! Disconnect from the internet for a few minutes each night. Read a relaxing book. Take up a new hobby. Just remember, if you don’t feel like you can get everything done, you probably can’t. Ask for help or just save your ideas for next year instead.

Happy holidays! See you next year!

(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});

As 2014 draws to a close more and more of our time is spent indoors, reflecting on the past 12 months and preparing for a new year full of new opportunities.

Lizz Delicious is officially 3 years old! I began my food blog in December of 2011 after receiving nearly 100% food-related gifts for Christmas. It has been a wonderful and fulfilling journey though not without its challenges.

For 2015, you’ll notice a few changes. To start, let me introduce to you my “Quarterly Bites.” On the 1st day of February, May, August, and November I will be publishing what most people will refer to as blog posts. Mine, however, will be constructed like newsletters. They will include relevant information concerning the goings-on at the Lizz Delicious homestead as well as seasonal inspirations and recipes, product recommendations, promotions, and the like. You’ll be receiving the same great information that you would via weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly blog posts but more concentrated and useful. To sign up via email, click here. Otherwise, be sure that you’re following Lizz Delicious on Facebook or Google+ as the newsletter links will be shared on those pages automatically.

The rest of the site will become more developed with helpful resources and guides and will be geared more toward helping you on your vegan or plant-based journey. I’m really looking forward to it!

What’s New With Lizz
Married life has been great so far! It has been over 2 months and the only thing that’s changed is how much my love for my wife has grown. The two of us have set a goal for ourselves for the coming year; we’re going to go backpacking. It’s going to require some training on our part but it will be well worth the hard work. In fact, if you’d like to follow us on our progress you can do so by subscribing to a blog I created to share our adventures called Expedition Me & You.

In regards to recipe and book development, I am collecting most of my plant-based recipes in a manuscript that I intend to publish some time next year. This will be a print cookbook targeted toward those vegans who want to eat healthier but may not be 100% oil free or gluten free, for instance, though most of the recipes so far are oil-free. I’m having great fun with this one! It will consist primarily of quick, healthy meals for every skill level but will also contain healthier desserts and weekend baking for those who may be interested. Also, I am developing another e-book for vegan pizza fiends. This one will also be geared toward those of us who want to eat healthier but who also want our food to taste good and not necessarily like cardboard! You’ll find recipes in it for whole grain crusts, homemade sauces, faux meats, and nut based cheeses. More details will come after the beginning of the year. To help me with developing recipes, though, I would love to hear about what your favorite pizza is. Making pizza is a personal thing, so if you have recommendations for the best. Pizza. Ever. I really would love to hear about it. Comment on this post or reach out to me via Facebook.

Seasonal Inspiration

For those of you looking to add some more holiday flavor into your menu this week, take a gander at these recipes I’ve previously published on Lizz Delicious. They may just be what you’re looking for!

When it comes to gifts, shopping for vegans can be a bit tricky. Take a look at my list of 15 Great Vegan Stocking Stuffer Ideas for starters. Then, if you’re on the crafty side, don’t forget to check out my e-book of vegan “gifts in a jar.” Vegan Glass Jar Goodies shows you how to make 10 different recipes for layered mixes in jars that can be made for absolutely any occasion. Click here for 3 free recipes from the book!

Frothy Hot Cocoa
This issue’s recipe is for a thick, sweet, chocolatey vegan hot cocoa. It’s warming, filling, and very easy to make.

Ingredients
2 cups plain, unsweetened soymilk
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup evaporated cane juice or sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Pinch of salt

Directions
In a medium saucepan combine all ingredients. Set to medium heat. Whisk frequently until the mixture starts to bubble. At the first sign of bubbles, whisk constantly for 5 minutes until all ingredients are fully incorporated and heated through. If desired, top with homemade coconut whipped cream or serve with vegan marshmallows, a cinnamon stick, or a candy cane.

Makes 2 servings.

Product Recommendations
The lovely folks at Lilly’s Sweets sent me a couple of bags of their vegan dark chocolate baking chips in November. They are not only dairy-free but are also sugar-free, sweetened with stevia. I actually really like stevia as a sweetener, but my wife does not. When I used the baking chips in a batch of blondies, she was absolutely amazed at how similar they tasted to regular baking chips. Yum! They made an excellent addition to my black bean brownies, too, as well as to an oatmeal breakfast cookie (scone) I whipped up, too. If you’re a health-conscious individual looking to cut out a few calories, you should give them a try.

In Closing
Don’t forget to take a break this holiday season. So many of us rush around trying to do everything when we all know that it just isn’t possible. The less happy you are the less happy you’ll be able to make anyone else! Disconnect from the internet for a few minutes each night. Read a relaxing book. Take up a new hobby. Just remember, if you don’t feel like you can get everything done, you probably can’t. Ask for help or just save your ideas for next year instead.

Happy holidays! See you next year!

(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});

Sesame Za’atar Pepper Soup and Other News

I’ve taken such a liking to gardening since we moved in that I have a hard time tearing myself away from the tiny backyard at all anymore. If it wasn’t for the paper wasps, I’d probably set up a tent there.
My parents visited us for a couple of months (we even got to spend the holidays together for the first time in well over a decade, yay!) and introduced me to the joy of growing my own stuff. I can’t stop planting vegetables, citrus trees (because California), berries, and more. Not to mention scrubbing dirt out from under my fingernails. So far, my thumbs are greener than I feared. Flashbacks to those dreadful moments when all my succulents moved on to a hopefully better life.

Here are a few updates in the form of a bullet-pointy list because you know those are the best kinds of lists.

• My pal Joni and I have a new cookbook coming out in the summer, Vegans Go Nuts. It’s already available for preorder with a publication date of June 2016. I’ve been turning to it repeatedly for quick, healthy, super tasty meals and am quite excited for this title to be hitting the shelves soon. I’ll keep you posted with upcoming developments and events surrounding its release.
In the meantime, please enjoy the sneak peek recipe below with crunchy tortilla chips or pita chips on the side. Considering it’s only Chaz and me versus the world, we generally tend to appreciate smaller yields. If you have more mouths to feed than we do, thumbs up to doubling the recipe. Plus if you like milder foods, either halve the amount of jalapeño or nix it completely.

PS: I highly recommend the 101 Cookbooks za’atar blend, made from scratch with fresh herbs. I often use thyme and oregano in combination.

And just because it’s a question I frequently get asked, I’m adding a tiny list of personal favorite recipes from each book mentioned in this post. Sounds terribly self-absorbed, I know.

Current Top Five Go-To Recipes from Vegan Go Nuts:
1. Vietnamese Peanut Tacos
2. Creamy Cashew Miso Oats
3. Moroccan Pilaf with Pomegranate Walnuts
4. Pad Tahini
5. Thai Fried Wild Rice with Sriracha Lime Cashews

• We’ve also been in a frantic sandwich mood lately over here, so my poor copy of Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day! looks like it needs to retire somewhere peaceful, and take comfort in the fact that its Amazon Kindle ebook alter ego is on sale throughout the month of March for $2.99.

Current Top Five Go-To Recipes from Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day:
1. Carnitas Sandwiches
2. Chazwich
3. Pav Bhaji
4. Chickpea Shawarma
5. Razz-elnut Spinach Sandwiches

• Speaking of books that I constantly turn to for recipes: I had the pleasure (and anxiety, because me + interviews = yikes) of chatting with Brian Patton about The Great Vegan Grains Book on his Sexy Vegan Radidio show. Note that I’ve used my pressure cooker again after recording this interview, and I live to tell the tale. Thanks for the impetus to get over my pressure cooking qualms, Mister Patton.

Current Top Five Go-To Recipes from Great Vegan Grains:
1. Split Pea and Artichoke Rice Mujaddara
2. Einkorn Paella
3. Creamy Amaranth Polenta with Marinara
4. Ras el Hanout Millet
5. Cracked Wheat Koftas

Sesame Za’atar Pepper Soup with Roasted Pepitas
From the upcoming Vegans Go Nuts, published by Fair Winds Press
Gluten-Free Potential
Soy-Free Potential

1 large red bell pepper
1 poblano pepper
1 small jalapeño pepper
1 generous cup (157 g) frozen corn
3 tablespoons (48 g) tahini paste
3 tablespoons (45 ml) water
2 3/4 cups (650 ml) vegetable broth
1 1/2 teaspoons grapeseed oil
Scant 3/4 cup (110 g) diced red onion
1 tablespoon (10 g) za’atar blend
1 tablespoon (15 ml) fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons (11 g) tomato paste
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup (110 g) drained fire-roasted diced tomatoes or any diced tomato
Garnishes: Dry roasted pepitas, fresh cilantro leaves, tortilla chips or pita chips.

Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C, or gas mark 7). Place the whole peppers on a medium rimmed baking sheet. Roast until soft and slightly charred, about 25 minutes. Check every 10 minutes to make sure the peppers don’t burn, and flip to char both sides.

At the same time, place the frozen corn in an 8-inch (20 cm) square baking pan, and roast until lightly browned for about 25 minutes, stirring once halfway through.
When done, place the peppers in a glass bowl fitted with a lid to steam for about 10 minutes. Once cool enough to handle, peel the peppers and discard their seeds and core. Mince the jalapeño, and chop the other peppers into bite-size pieces.
While the peppers and corn are roasting, whisk the tahini with the water in a small bowl. Whisk into the broth.

Place the oil and onions in a large pot. Sauté on medium-high heat until quite fragrant and lightly browned, about 4 minutes. Lower the heat to medium, and add the za’atar, tomato paste, and garlic, toasting for 30 seconds. Deglaze with the lemon juice. Add the peppers and corn, broth, and tomatoes. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer uncovered 15 minutes until slightly thickened, stirring occasionally. Serve topped with garnishes of choice.

Yield: 4 servings

I’ve taken such a liking to gardening since we moved in that I have a hard time tearing myself away from the tiny backyard at all anymore. If it wasn’t for the paper wasps, I’d probably set up a tent there.
My parents visited us for a couple of months (we even got to spend the holidays together for the first time in well over a decade, yay!) and introduced me to the joy of growing my own stuff. I can’t stop planting vegetables, citrus trees (because California), berries, and more. Not to mention scrubbing dirt out from under my fingernails. So far, my thumbs are greener than I feared. Flashbacks to those dreadful moments when all my succulents moved on to a hopefully better life.

Here are a few updates in the form of a bullet-pointy list because you know those are the best kinds of lists.

• My pal Joni and I have a new cookbook coming out in the summer, Vegans Go Nuts. It’s already available for preorder with a publication date of June 2016. I’ve been turning to it repeatedly for quick, healthy, super tasty meals and am quite excited for this title to be hitting the shelves soon. I’ll keep you posted with upcoming developments and events surrounding its release.
In the meantime, please enjoy the sneak peek recipe below with crunchy tortilla chips or pita chips on the side. Considering it’s only Chaz and me versus the world, we generally tend to appreciate smaller yields. If you have more mouths to feed than we do, thumbs up to doubling the recipe. Plus if you like milder foods, either halve the amount of jalapeño or nix it completely.

PS: I highly recommend the 101 Cookbooks za’atar blend, made from scratch with fresh herbs. I often use thyme and oregano in combination.

And just because it’s a question I frequently get asked, I’m adding a tiny list of personal favorite recipes from each book mentioned in this post. Sounds terribly self-absorbed, I know.

Current Top Five Go-To Recipes from Vegan Go Nuts:
1. Vietnamese Peanut Tacos
2. Creamy Cashew Miso Oats
3. Moroccan Pilaf with Pomegranate Walnuts
4. Pad Tahini
5. Thai Fried Wild Rice with Sriracha Lime Cashews

• We’ve also been in a frantic sandwich mood lately over here, so my poor copy of Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day! looks like it needs to retire somewhere peaceful, and take comfort in the fact that its Amazon Kindle ebook alter ego is on sale throughout the month of March for $2.99.

Current Top Five Go-To Recipes from Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day:
1. Carnitas Sandwiches
2. Chazwich
3. Pav Bhaji
4. Chickpea Shawarma
5. Razz-elnut Spinach Sandwiches

• Speaking of books that I constantly turn to for recipes: I had the pleasure (and anxiety, because me + interviews = yikes) of chatting with Brian Patton about The Great Vegan Grains Book on his Sexy Vegan Radidio show. Note that I’ve used my pressure cooker again after recording this interview, and I live to tell the tale. Thanks for the impetus to get over my pressure cooking qualms, Mister Patton.

Current Top Five Go-To Recipes from Great Vegan Grains:
1. Split Pea and Artichoke Rice Mujaddara
2. Einkorn Paella
3. Creamy Amaranth Polenta with Marinara
4. Ras el Hanout Millet
5. Cracked Wheat Koftas

Sesame Za’atar Pepper Soup with Roasted Pepitas
From the upcoming Vegans Go Nuts, published by Fair Winds Press
Gluten-Free Potential
Soy-Free Potential

1 large red bell pepper
1 poblano pepper
1 small jalapeño pepper
1 generous cup (157 g) frozen corn
3 tablespoons (48 g) tahini paste
3 tablespoons (45 ml) water
2 3/4 cups (650 ml) vegetable broth
1 1/2 teaspoons grapeseed oil
Scant 3/4 cup (110 g) diced red onion
1 tablespoon (10 g) za’atar blend
1 tablespoon (15 ml) fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons (11 g) tomato paste
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup (110 g) drained fire-roasted diced tomatoes or any diced tomato
Garnishes: Dry roasted pepitas, fresh cilantro leaves, tortilla chips or pita chips.

Preheat the oven to 425°F (220°C, or gas mark 7). Place the whole peppers on a medium rimmed baking sheet. Roast until soft and slightly charred, about 25 minutes. Check every 10 minutes to make sure the peppers don’t burn, and flip to char both sides.

At the same time, place the frozen corn in an 8-inch (20 cm) square baking pan, and roast until lightly browned for about 25 minutes, stirring once halfway through.
When done, place the peppers in a glass bowl fitted with a lid to steam for about 10 minutes. Once cool enough to handle, peel the peppers and discard their seeds and core. Mince the jalapeño, and chop the other peppers into bite-size pieces.
While the peppers and corn are roasting, whisk the tahini with the water in a small bowl. Whisk into the broth.

Place the oil and onions in a large pot. Sauté on medium-high heat until quite fragrant and lightly browned, about 4 minutes. Lower the heat to medium, and add the za’atar, tomato paste, and garlic, toasting for 30 seconds. Deglaze with the lemon juice. Add the peppers and corn, broth, and tomatoes. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer uncovered 15 minutes until slightly thickened, stirring occasionally. Serve topped with garnishes of choice.

Yield: 4 servings