Been a while!

Phew-eeeeee! In my mind that came out in a Wild West-styled accent because I have been watching Deadwood recently. If you can stomach all of the sailor-talk, and the occasional lewd scene then I think you should check it out — the characters are great. I love me some Al Swearengen. : )

I can’t believe that so much time has gone by since I last posted anything. I sure am happy that I posted the pop-tarts recipe when I did; Otherwise, it wouldn’t have made it in time for Easter!

Sorry for such a delay in posts, but life has been quite hectic lately. Mostly for good reasons though so, I can’t complain. Due to some financial-aid confusions at the college that I attend I wasn’t going to be able to finish out my Bachelor’s degree, and it was keeping me in quite the little funk. I finally got that squared away (after months of worry), and I will be returning to school by the end of the month, hurray!

John left me alone for the last couple of days due to a business trip, and I’d like to say I accomplished a lot of exciting new recipes in his absence, but unfortunately not. One of our puppy dogs, Mochi, became pretty ill right before he was leaving for his trip, and I had to nurse her back to health the entire time he was gone. Thank goodness that some rice, bananas, and applesauce seemed to ease her tummy back to normal just in time for his return!

Come to think of it, I’m not entirely sure if I’ve made anything completely from my own jumbled mind since the pop-tarts. John’s birthday was a couple of days after my last post, and I made him the scrumptious lentil-walnut loaf, protein mashed potatoes, roasted brussels, and vegan gravy from my favorite vegan blog, Oh She Glows! He used to love meat loaf, mashed potatoes, and green beans (specifically, from the can… fancy, I know) on his birthday. I thought that this would make a wonderful new tradition, aaaaaand he loved it! For holidays I have started to always bring a savory and sweet dish for John and I to eat since other family members usually don’t understand why we would want to be vegan let alone help support it by making anything we could eat. Actually, I think it’s quite the opposite… John’s family seems to bring the fattiest most unhealthy dishes imaginable to family get-togethers, and then they look at us and give a forced little “Oh Sorry…” But, that’s ok! It just gives me more excuses to try out new recipes. This time I made the stuffed shells and raw berry crisp from the Oh She Glows blog.

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I am saddened to tell you that I don’t have a picture of the stuffed shells. A friend and I put two batches of them together the night before in order for her to bring half to her family’s house while I brought half to John’s family’s house. When I baked them the next day they just didn’t seem to share the same vibrance they did the night before so, I didn’t want to take any photos that wouldn’t do them justice. Of course, nobody at the party was into the tofu, but everyone adored the raw berry crisp.

Ah! That reminds me! I do have a recipe that I created myself! The raw berry crisp reminded me that I used the leftovers of the crisp on top of steel-cut oats the next morning (which I highly recommend.. it was phenomenal). I also used left overs from John’s birthday cake (Hummingbird cake.. *drool*) to make carrot cake oatmeal.

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I had a ton of leftover vegan cream cheese frosting, and I knew I didn’t want to waste it all. I was originally planning on making pancakes, but then oatmeal just hit me in an ah-ha moment.

Carrot Cake Oatmeal

Ingredients:

1/4 cup steel-cut oats (I soak them the night before then drain before cooking)
1/4 cup old-fashioned oats (I combine the different oats because John hates steel-cut oats, and I trick him into eating them this way, but feel free to use all steel-cut if you like : )
1 cup non-dairy milk (I used almond)
1 tbsp ground flax meal
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp ginger
1/4 cup shredded carrot
1/4 cup crushed pineapple
2 tbsp raisins
1 tbsp almonds, chopped

Directions:
1.) Add the non-dairy milk to the steel-cut oats and turn the burner on medium-high. Stir in the ground flax, and wait for the mixture to bubble. Once it begins to bubble turn down to a simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
2.) Add in your carrots, pineapple, old-fashioned oats (if using), raisins, and spices and allow to simmer for about 7 more minutes (add more liquid if necessary).
3.) Turn off the heat, scoop your oatmeal into a bowl, pipe some frosting on top, and top it off with almonds! Other nuts likes pecans or walnuts would probably be lovely here too, but I just happened to have almonds on hand that morning.

The frosting recipe that I had left over called for 16 ounces of Tofutti cream cheese, 3 cups of powdered sugar, 1 tsp of vanilla, and a splash of non-dairy milk. Since most people don’t just have all of that lying around at their disposal I would assume you could mix a few tablespoons of the vegan cream cheese with powdered sugar or probably even maple syrup to get it to a sweeter liquid consistency and then decorate the top of your oatmeal. I wouldn’t leave it off though because it really makes the dish!

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