Thursday, January 26, 2012

vegan split pea soup

i've got the food blahsies. new recipes don't excite me like they used to. the kitchen's cold and i'm tired when i get home. the last time i went food shopping was before christmas.

john on the other hand has been bringing home boxes of fruit and veggies from the produce outlet. he's been making us lots of spirulina smoothies and salads with yummy dressings. he's also been doing the dishies every day, god bless him.=)

we eat most of the produce raw, but with some of the veggies i make big batches of split pea soup. i'm motivated to make soup knowing we'll get at least three meals out of it. it's a good thing when i do go to the grocery store i stock up on nuts, grains and legumes.

i've made this soup a bunch of times, this winter and last. it's the one we turned into a dahl. a few times i used potatoes instead of turnips. it's a very forgiving soup. it's also quite tasty. sometimes i like to add grains to make it heartier. below i added leftover chinese take-out rice. whatever works.

vegan split pea soup 

1 T olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 turnips, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
3 celery stalks, chopped
1 1/2 C dried split peas, green or yellow
8 C water
1 bay leaf
2 vegetable bouillon cubes
1 tsp dried sage
1 tsp dried thyme
salt and pepper, to taste

gather ingredients and prepare vegetables. in a large pot, sauté garlic and bay leaf in olive oil a minute or two. add chopped vegetables and allow to cook about five minutes. add seasonings, peas and water. bring to boil, cover and simmer until peas are tender.

the cooking time depends on your method. i soak my peas at least four hours prior and make the soup in a pressure cooker. for me the peas are done after thirty minutes or so.

after the soup has cooled a bit, puree in a food processor until smooth. serves 6-8, maybe more.

Monday, January 23, 2012

family portrait cross-stitch


for the birth of my friend missy's second baby, abigail, i made the family a cross-stitch portrait. this customizable cross-stitch project from martha stewart's website was my guide. free printable grid paper may be found here. the project was a lot of fun, especially drawing the pixel family pattern.

this is the real family last spring, minus baby abbey...

and here's abigail rose, born friday, january 20th. i met abby today and she's a sweet lil muffin. best wishes to baby abbey and her family (and happy bday to her marvelous mama, missy!) xoxo

abigail rose

Sunday, January 22, 2012

raw raspberry brownie bites

to make raw brownies you simply need five things (dates, nuts, cocoa/cacao powder, salt and a food processor) and not even five minutes. they are one of the easiest desserts to make. you blend the ingredients for about 30 seconds, press them into brownie shapes and they're ready.

this time we added raspberries to snaz them up a bit. adding berries and liquid vanilla made the batter a little wet, so we dehydrated our brownie bites a few hours.

as raw brownies are very rich, bite-sized pieces are the best way to serve them, in my opinion. (they're actually more like a delicious nutty fudge than a brownie, but a little less dense.)

raw raspberry brownie bites
(makes about 18-20)

1 C medjool dates
1 C raw nuts (walnuts, almonds, pecans, cashews, or a mixture)
1/4 C cacao powder
8-10 raspberries
3 tsp liquid vanilla*
generous pinch of salt

in a food processor, blend until batter holds together when pressed. shape into bite-sized squares.

*liquid vanilla is made by mixing three vanilla beans, chopped, with one cup water in a high speed blender. in this recipe, lv can be replaced with vanilla extract or scraped raw vanilla bean, to taste.


i hope everyone is having a nice weekend. we're snowed in (but not really) and i'm loving it.=)

Friday, January 20, 2012

today's thought

everyday is a celebration because instead of waiting for happy endings, we open our eyes to the wonder of life, to see the humour and magic in each moment. delighted in the way things turn out, amazed at the beauty of it all. - brahma kumaris, uk

photo source

Friday, January 13, 2012


i didn't intend for this to be a dahl soup. it was a vegan yellow split pea when john said "this tastes like dahl. let's put mint and indian spices in it." the soup was already flavored with sage and thyme, which we thought went surprisingly well with the curry, turmeric and spearmint we added.

dried yellow split peas

cool spearmint balances spicy red curry quite nicely. it's fun to play around with different flavors. i'd love to take a class on herbs and also add more to my garden.


what are your favorite herbs, to eat or grow (or smoke? kidding...=)

Sunday, January 8, 2012

homemade journal

with some scrapbooking paper and an old kitten calendar i made myself a little journal. the book is folded white paper bound with a few pieces of raffia.

this journal/planner will hopefully help me keep track of my schedule, weekly to do's and shopping lists, as well as serve as a space for me to be creative and document life's happenings.

i'll share more pages once it starts to fill up!

print from the lovely lift your spirit calendar by wendy bentley

Thursday, January 5, 2012

scrummy yummy

we're back to shopping at the local produce outlet. this has its pros and cons.

pros + it's so close + it's very inexpensive + i bought the most delicious pineapple there

cons - most of the produce is non-organic - it's an outlet so you're getting the bruised and battered - i bought the most horrific avocados there

yesterday we got some great deals on fresh broccoli, lettuce and raspberries, which has motivated us to get a bit more creative with our meals. (oh, dinners were sad here for a while, my friends. too shameful to divulge here. comfort food delivered to the front door. let's just leave it there.)

this week things are better. we're eating lots of fruit and veggies. our broccoli dish above was steamed in one of those neat baskets then tossed with truly raw almonds and a simple marinade: equal parts coconut oil, tamari and grated ginger. the steamed broccoli would have also been good with just olive oil and salt.

the veggie patty below (topped with hummus and raspberry vinaigrette) is a variation of the delicious "beet this burger" and black bean burger. (i have a horrible habit of tweaking recipes without noting my changes.) the patty had an incredible taste and texture, despite being almost six months old! (god bless my mini food saver and my mother for buying it for me.)

john of all people was raving over this salad. he said it was the combination of the veggie burger and the raspberry vinaigrette that made it. i'm wondering, was his enthusiasm really for the deliciousness of this dish, or was he just excited to be the one who created the scrummy yummy raspberry dressing? hmm...

(ps - i'd like to say thank you to my dad for my new nikon coolpix. i'd been in need of a new camera for quite some time, and this one is the much updated version of the camera i have now. i'm excited to see how it performs in natural light!)

happy friday, everyone!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012


"When you appreciate how much help you have received to cope with and learn from the difficulties you've had in your life, it gives you patience and trust to face whatever comes next."

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