Saturday, November 22, 2008

Miserable Melbourne!

It's almost 3am and I'm still up. Not that it matters anyway, because I don't have a job and I doubt I'll be doing anything tomorrow (though I am meant to be meeting up with a friend for dinner.. but we'll see what the weather's like first!).

Today I did a bit of cooking. First off I was craving some chickpea cutlets from VCON. But wouldn't ya know, I had no chickpeas. BUT, I had a tin of white (cannaleni?) beans. I did a quick Google to see if anyone else had subbed the chickpeas for white beans successfully and, lo and behold, Virginia from Vegetation appeared with her amended recipe. I didn't have sage leaves or vege broth, so I omitted the leaves and mixed a few squirts of Bragg's in a 1/4 cup of water instead. This was also my first time baking the cutlets and they came out super nice. This was my lunch:
2 white bean cutlets, pesto pearl couscous and a side salad of cos, tomato, avocado and a few dollops of pesto to dress. Pure yum. I had my barbeque sauce at hand to add to the cutlets, but the meal had enough flavour too it as it was. I actually think the cutlets were a bit too salty - I might cut down on the soy sauce next time. Still amazing though.

Later in the day I tried my hand at making my own cinnamon sugar pita chips. They ended up a lot greasier than I intended but were still good. Didn't take a picture unfortunately.

Because I'd had a big lunch, I planned on having a small dinner, like soup and salad. But I was cruising through my bookmarks on Firefox, and came across this vegan corn bread recipe I hadn't yet tried. I had just under a cup of polenta in the cupboard, so I made a slightly smaller batch (which was also a little flat due to me using self-raising, and omitting the salt and baking powder) and added a drizzle of agave. But wow, I can see why it's award winning. It was amazing on the side of some of Amy's organic vege and barley soup, slathered with avocado or a bit of vegan margarine (or both). I ate at least half the cornbread - so much for a small dinner!

In other news, after me talking about the thousands of calories I consumed today - I need to try to lose some weight! I went great for a couple of weeks.. did 10 days of the master cleanse and exercised every day, but now I've gone back into carb loving mode. I just love bagels and pasta and cornbread too much!! I guess once I'm working it'll regulate my eating a bit (I hope!).

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Yeah I know, what a terrible blogger I am. But I will get back into the swing of things, I promise! I am currently unemployed so I have lots of time on my hands. To start off is a pic above of some cinnamon and sugar pita crisps made by 'Ricci's Bikkies'. I was really craving some of Stacy's Tuscan pita chips (which also come in a cinnamon sugar flavour that I never tried). Fresh & Wild in Stoke Newington, London, stocked them for a short while back in 2006-2007, and they were AMAZING (albeit imported and expensive, as is most things at F&W). I spotted the kind of similar version of Ricci's a couple of days ago at the supermarket, and figured it was the closest thing I was going to find (although I wanted savoury, not sweet!). I'm sure I can easily recreate the cinnamon/sugar flavoured ones, but I would have to work pretty hard to recreate the pesto and dried tomato-ey goodness of Stacey's. And as yet I can't find anywhere that sells them online who will post to Australia. Le sigh.

What I liked about Ricci's baggie of pitas is that on the nutritional label it said there was 2 servings per pack. I'm getting so used to seeing packs suggest that half a biscuit or something is one serving, so it was a relief to see something suggesting 3 or 4 slices as the serving - that's MY kind of snack! And right they were - they were gone in 2 sittings.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

A Day in the Life of my Belly

Alright, so here's a fairly average day of food for me. Hopefully as the weeks/months go by, a lot more of this will be things I have prepared myself. Sorry for the bad camera phone pics!

An organic, soy vanilla latte. I have been weaning myself off the ridiculously expensive Starbucks, but I do love their chai lattes. This morning I had to fight for my coffee because most peoples' regular place had a broken coffee machine.

A pear and a banana, both polished off by 10:30am. Sometimes I sneak in a peach too, depending on how quick I am to the fruit box that's delivered to my work!

Lunch: usually something store bought these days, like sushi, rice paper rolls, salad or a sandwich of sorts. Today it was baked veges from an Italian place. It didn't agree with me greatly, and although it was all vegetable, it was probably just reheated and chucked in the display so there was little to no nutritional value left. And I ended up feeling hungry within a couple of hours, so I had a pear at around 4pm (not pictured because I was so eager to eat it that I forgot! But it looked much like most pears do so you're not really missing out).

I never usually do this but I was so hungry when I left work at 6pm, and I didn't want to work out with no energy (tried this last night and it wasn't fun at all), so I ended up getting a vegetable sushi roll (sans mayo). A banana would have been perfect but there was none left in the fruit boxes and all the shops were closing up, so it was the best I could do. Thankfully it helped a lot in terms of my stamina. And I wasn't almost nauseous with hunger when I got home just before 8pm, like I usually am.

This is my meal that I dream about all day. My wonderful salad. I made a much smaller one than usual, I normally fill up a large mixing bowl. I also omitted a few of the more calorific items in the salad due to the sushi roll and not being quite so hungry (ie sunflower seeds, flaxseed oil, olives and sundried tomatos). But it was still perfect. It includes mixed leaves, baby spinach, sprouted mung beans, alfalfa sprouts, fresh tomato, cucumber, avocado, mushroom, raw brocolli, dulse flakes, balsamic vinegar and tahini. Believe it or not, there were no carrots at the supermarket yesterday so they're missing too. I grated some sweet potato over it last night to compensate. The whole thing is just a million kinds of YUM.

I bought myself a nifty little lunch pack today, and I tried my hand at some rice paper rolls of my own. I'll see how they stand up tomorrow and get my blog on!

Monday, February 18, 2008

Biting the Bullet

Okay okay, I know the first post is the hardest so I'm just going to get it over with. Hi, I'm Alison. I've finally decided to try my hand at some vegan blogging. I tend to go off on tangents fairly quickly, so I wouldn't be surprised if I talk 20% vegan, 80% random crap. But I'll try my best to stay focused. Oooh, look, a water bottle!! Oh, sorry.

I feel kind of bad for starting this blog out with a horrible, overexposed, no-natural-light photo of a fairly bland meal, but I guess it's better than nothing for now. This was my early dinner last night after my 2 hour bus ride from my mum's house in the Central Coast, back to my house in central Sydney (trains weren't working on the weekend, which is nothing unusual!).

Wholemeal penne pasta with vegan coriander pesto (psst, that's cilantro for pretty much every one else).

I used to buy the most amazing vegan pesto in North London when I was living there, and it took me quite a while to find any when I moved back to Australia. Finally I found this at a supermarket in Newtown and nearly cried from happiness. I also like to use it as a base for pita bread pizzas. I will post the brand name when I manage to get close to the fridge again.

Anyway, looks aside, it was yum, so much so that I ate all of what I cooked, even though the plan was to have leftover to take to work today (thought I must admit, I don't think there was quite enough for 2 serves there).

Generally, my night meal is a big salad. And I do mean BIG. I will have to take a photo one night just to demonstrate. I have been spending my evenings after work at the gym, and it's such an awesome thing to chow down on after a work out.

Anyway, I actually do have some real nice photos from some desserts my mum and I tried out this weekend, and I am itching to start doing more cooking of my own. Hope you'll come back to read my rambles about it!