Monday, October 23, 2017

More Stuff I Ate

After last Wednesday's crazy Imagine Vegan Cafe all-you-can-eat dessert buffet, I was feeling pretty gross. I'm sure I ate enough dessert to meet a month's sugar quota, so I skipped my usual post-run smoothie the next day in favor of a savory breakfast of Tofu Scramble & Toast with Onion Butter. I couldn't even handle fruit! This scramble had mushrooms, bell pepper, and carrot.

Now that it's getting cooler out, I'm bringing back a Lacy Davis-inspired breakfast standard — Warm Oats with Banana Protein N'ice Cream! This was warm oats with maple syrup topped with banana-strawberry n'ice cream with added protein powder. I love how the oats make the n'ice cream all melty.

My mom made vegan chili last weekend to top our birthday totchos! And she sent me home with the leftovers. Paul and I have been eating it atop air-fried potatoes for Chili Cheese Fries.

And over frozen's Amy's Gluten-Free Bean & Rice Burritos. On the side, I made some quick microwave nachos with Que Pasa Red Corn Tortilla Chips with Follow Your Heart cheddar shreds (review of those chips coming soon!).

I've also been loving Amy's Black Bean Burritos with melted vegan cheese and a healthy side (like the salad pictured here). These burritos have become standard lunches for us both lately!

One day last week, I grabbed the Superfood Salad (a kale salad with dried cranberries, pecans, beets,  nooch, and tahini dressing) from Farm Burger in Crosstown Concourse for a quick working lunch. I brought my laptop down there (it's downstairs from my office) and worked at the bar.

And a couple weeks back, I made the Seitan Beef Stew from my cookbook, Cookin' Crunk. I'm always trying to find vegan meal ideas that Paul will like since he's eating (mostly) vegan at home now. He always loved that nasty Dinty Moore beef stew in a can, so I figured he'd like this. And he did! Win! This was a great way for me to sneak some kale into his diet. I typically make my own seitan for this recipe, but this time, I used the No Evil Foods plain seitan.

Even more random meals coming at ya tomorrow!

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Stuff I Ate: Breakfast Edition

Here's some stuff I've been eating for breakfast lately!

I've been getting a little bored with having FitQuick protein waffles all the time, so I've gone back to some old FitQuick recipes that I first heard about on the now-defunct Rise & Resist podcast. One was for a FitQuick coffee cake, and I used that to make a Raspberry Chocolate FitQuick Coffee Cake. Yummy way to get 22 grams of post-run protein! Here's the recipe.

I also went back and found the instructions for a FitQuick mug cake that I also heard about on that podcast. It's super-simple. You just cook the FitQuick batter in a mug in the microwave. This is an Orange Dream Bar FitQuick Mug Cake with Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting. Here's that recipe! Also, can we talk about how gigantic these blackberries are??

I finally bought some more Marmite so I could make one of my fave breakfasts — Marmite Cottage Cheese Toast. I made the Tofu Cottage Cheese recipe from Cookin' Crunk, but basically, it's just plain, crumbled tofu with plain, unsweetened vegan yogurt and a little vegan mayo.

I've also been eating lots of Dave's Bagels! I'll never get tired of bagels. These are his Italian Herb Bagels, one half with vegan cream cheese and the other with hummus. Both have Trader Joe's Everything But the Bagel Seasoning.

And finally, here's a fun breakfast that I picked up at Crosstown Concourse one morning after my weightlifting class at the YMCA. It's the We Got the Beet Juice from Juice Bar and the Avocado Toast from French Truck Coffee. I got everything to go and ate it at home while I got ready for work.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Imagine Vegan Cafe's Dessert Party!

My home away from home — Imagine Vegan Cafe — typically has some sort of Halloween/fall party. It often involves a buffet of savory apps, like dogs in blankets, quesadillas, a nacho or taco bar, and other treats. But this year, for their Fall-O-Ween party, they went all out with dessert buffet. That's right. A buffet of sweets. Not a single savory item in the spread!

I typically prefer savory over sweet, but I do love a good pie slice or a cupcake. And more than anything, I just adore gluttony. The thought of eating until I pop makes me giddy. So course, I bought a ticket! For $20, you got unlimited access to the dessert and unlimited beer. My friend/brunch bitch Megan joined me.

Here's my first plate!

And my second plate (the pudding/cobbler/brownie plate — they don't photograph well)!

Whew. This was insane, y'all! Here's what was on offer. All manner of mini cupcakes — coconut, lemon, orange dreamsicle, and chocolate. I went with orange dreamsicle but skipped the rest because there was so much more to try.

There were also tiny cheesecake slivers and cinnamon bun cookies. Plus, one of my favorite desserts — chess bars!! These are ooey, gooey, sweet butter bars.

There were mini apple pies and mini cherry pies. I chose apple.

These cake balls were one of Megan's faves. They were so good!

My fave thing was the banana puddin'!! It's on the left here with the whipped cream on top. Under that was a layer of banana puddin' and vegan wafer cookies. Beside that were the Bianca Brownies (named after me!) that they typically serve in their Bianca Brownie dessert (PB chocolate brownies topped with vegan soft serve and chocolate syrup). And on the right was a warm, comfy peach cobbler. There was also a (not pictured) awesome homemade graham cracker toffee with pecans!

The most exciting thing, though, was the chocolate fountain! I've never experienced a chocolate fountain because they're never vegan when I see them at events. They had Dandies vegan marshmallows, strawberries, and pretzel rods for dipping.

I finished both of my plates, plus a Ghost River Golden Ale.

But after that, I was pretty much in a sugar coma. I was craving something salty, but I was also too full to eat another bite. So I just went home and went to bed early. Ha! This morning, I had green juice from Juice Bar and a homemade tofu scramble in lieu of my usual post-run smoothie. I just couldn't handle anything sweet today. I may have reached my sugar quota for the month!

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Goddess Provisions Box: Under the Moonlight!

My October Goddess Provisions box arrived about a week ago! It's hard to believe this awesome vegan subscription service has been around for two years now! I subscribed from the very beginning, and I remember that first October box so fondly. What a treat to get to a mystery box of witchy, vegan things in the mail — crystals, teas, candles, oils, etc.

This month's box was perfect for its 2-year anniversary. The theme was Under the Moonlight, and the box was packed with things to help you sleep soundly and dream deeply.

There's a moon phase bracelet, sleepytime bath salts, moontime chocolate, a sleep perfume, sleep drops, and a Lucid Dreamer iron-on patch. There was also supposed to be a rhodonite crystal in the box, but they accidentally left it out. That's okay though because Goddess Provisions is excellent about replacing left-out or broken merch. I put in a "missing item" order, and my rhodonite arrived in the mail a couple days later.

It's a lovely chunk of rhondonite, a heart chakra stone that can heal past traumas. I love rhondonite because it's a stone of compassion, which is by far my most important guiding principle.

The Zenned Out moon phase cuff is my favorite item. It's made from aluminum, and it matches almost everything I wear!

I haven't gotten a chance to try the Little Moon Essentials Sleep Comes Easy bath salts yet since the squirrels have taken over my bathroom. But they'll be released soon, and I'll have my tub back. These are made with essential oils of bergamot, chamomile, lavender, and lemon, and I'm sure they smell heavenly.

I have, however, been making nightly use of the Soapylane Peace Perfume and the Calm-a-Mama Sleep Drops. The perfume is made with rose, chamomile, ylang ylang, and lavender, and you apply to your pulse points before drifting off to sleep. That in combination with the Sleep Drops (an elixir of chamomile, mugwort, lavender, and lemon) have been sending me straight to sleep every night!

The Chocolita Moontime Rose Chocolate is said to balance hormones during your moontime, so I'll wait for that to try it. But I've long been a fan of Chocolita's raw chocolate, so I know I'll like this.

My Lucid Dreamer patch has already found a home — on the arm of my new jean jacket! YAY!

Love this box! By the way, I'm a Goddess Provisions ambassador, which means I make a couple bucks if anyone signs up using this link. I don't get my boxes free though, just to be clear. I subscribe and pay the $33 a month, and it's totally worth it. It's a great deal, and the boxes are so much fun!

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

37th Birthday Weekend, Day 3!

Last birthday post, I swear! Well, until next year when I do it all over again. But as I mentioned over the past couple posts, I stretched my 37th birthday (which was yesterday) out for 3 days with fun celebrations every day. My big friend gathering with dinner and a night out was Saturday. Sunday, we did birthday brunch and a celebration with my family.

Here's my 37th birthday selfie! I take one every year.

On Monday — my actual birthday — I took off work for a stay-cay day with Paul. I slept in until 7:30 (omg!) and then had Ramen Noodles with Tofu & Veggies in my PJs while I watched The Walking Dead on Netflix (I'm a season behind — no spoilers, please!).

I also had some coffee in a new mug that my mom had made for me. It has Maynard on it! He was impressed.

After breakfast, Paul and I went for an easy 3-mile run on the V&E Greenline by our house in Crosstown.

Typically, after a run, I have a protein shake or protein waffle. But I skipped that in favor of leftover Fried Vegan Drumsticks from Imagine Vegan Cafe. We'd eaten brunch there on Sunday, so I had some left, plus leftover mac and collards. Paul had some leftover biscuits and gravy and a piece of a waffle, also from Imagine. So I just made a giant plate!

My parents gave me birthday money to buy new running shoes, so we went to Breakaway Running for a little shopping time in the afternoon. I went back to Brooks Ghosts after a year-long break from them. Last year's model had a weird, hard plastic toe box that made my big toes go numb, but that's gone from the Ghost 10s. Can't wait to try them out after work today!

I also decided to buy myself a jean jacket as a birthday gift to myself. I've gotten so many patches and pins from Goddess Provisions boxes, plus other places. I put ALL of my patches and pins on my jacket. Maybe it's a little busy, but I don't care! Love it!

Around 4 pm, we headed to Alchemy for happy hour cocktails. They have half-off all cocktails and appetizers! I started with a Dirty Martini.

And Paul had a (not vegan) White Russian.

We also ordered an appetizer of Edamame Hummus to share. The hummus was fantastic, but those roasted chickpeas stole the show. They were so crunchy and perfect.

Then it was time for dinner! We drove out east to City Silo Table + Pantry — a super vegan-friendly place with bowls and sandwiches — to meet Mike, Andy, and Tyler.

After a weekend of fried craziness and booze, it felt really awesome to be eating such a healthy dinner. The El Goodo Bowl had buffalo tempeh, brown rice, quinoa, garlic greens, black beans, corn, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, and a serrano-avocado sauce. YUM!

I had such an amazing 37th birthday weekend! Thanks for all the birthday wishes (and thanks for putting up with my many birthday posts!).

Monday, October 16, 2017

37th Birthday Weekend, Day 2!

Today is my birthday! Yay! But since it was a Monday birthday (and real talk, because I'm a Libra), I made this a 3-day birthday weekend! Last night, I posted about my birthday party with friends on Saturday night. And tonight, I'll post about my Sunday pre-birthday brunch and family dinner. I'll save the actual birthday pics for tomorrow night.

My BFF Sheridan and her partner Drew spent the night at my house on Saturday night since they live in Little Rock. So on Sunday morning, we woke up and went to brunch before they hit the road back home. Of course we went to Imagine Vegan Cafe! They had Fried Pickles with Ranch on special, so we started with that. Y'all know I love some fried pickles!

For my entree, I went with Vegan Fried Drumsticks with Ranch & BBQ Sauce, Vegan Mac & Cheese, & Collard Greens. BEST FRIED BRUNCH!!

Here's a pic of me and Sheridan at my house before they left town. We're both wearing Herbivore shirts!

Drew always makes the best videos when they come to visit, and he created this awesome birthday video from our Saturday and Sunday adventures.

After they left, Paul and I drove to Jonesboro, Arkansas for a birthday dinner with my parents.

I requested Totchos! So my mom made vegan chili, and she had vegan cheddar, sour cream, homemade guac, pickled jalapenos, and scallions. So good!

For dinner, she drizzled a Daiya New York Style Cheesecake with chocolate syrup and crumbled Oreos on top. We enjoyed this with Ben & Jerry's vegan Cherry Garcia. Yay birthday!

Okay, one more birthday post tomorrow, and I promise I'll stop with the birthday stuff — until next year!