Yoshi Birthday Cake

17 Nov

Today my good friend Steven turned 24, so to celebrate I of course baked him a birthday cake! He requested vanilla cake with vanilla frosting, so I used Isa & Terry’s recipes for golden vanilla cupcakes and fluffy buttercream frosting from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World. This cake has three layers (1 batch of cupcake batter per layer), with 2 batches of buttercream frosting as filling and icing. I then used green, red, and white confetti sprinkles to decorate it and topped it with an adorable Yoshi figurine.

It turned out very rich, and super yummy! VCTOTW never fails me. Next up is Kevin’s birthday, and he’s requested a chocolate cake… I’m definitely looking forward to baking that!

Thanksgiving Menu

17 Nov

Happy fall, y’all – it’s almost Thanksgiving! This is one of my favorite holidays – I love having a whole day centered on being grateful for our blessed we are, and spending time with family. The fact that I get to cook and eat scrumptious fall food doesn’t hurt, either!

For Thanksgiving this year, Jarrod and I are driving to Eau Claire to spend the holiday at his sister’s house. This is the first holiday I’m spending with his family, it should be fun! Nobody in Jarrod’s family is vegan (or even vegetarian), so we’re bringing our own food to cook.

Our Thanksgiving Menu:

I’m very excited to make all of this, and I’m hoping we can convince Jarrod’s family to try some of our vegan Thanksgiving food!

11/11/11

11 Nov

Today is brought to you by the number 11.

Baked Ziti

31 Oct

Happy Halloween, and happy last day of MoFo! For dinner tonight I made a quick, but delicious, staple – baked ziti! It’s a hearty, filling meal that’s so much easier than lasagna, but just as yummy!

Baked Ziti

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb ziti
  • 1 jar Newman’s Own Tomato Basil sauce
  • 1 batch tofu ricotta (any version will do)
  • 1 cup chopped kale, marinated overnight in garlic and olive oil
  • Gimme Lean sausage, crumbled and browned
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella Daiya

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 325°.
  • Cook ziti according to directions on package. Drain and set aside.
  • While ziti is cooking, prepare tofu ricotta.
  • Combine cooked ziti, tofu ricotta, kale, sausage, and marinara in a 9×13 baking dish. Stir to mix well.
  • Sprinkle mozzarella on top and bake for 20 minutes.

Halloween Donuts

30 Oct

Today for breakfast I made Halloween donuts, using Lolo’s mini donut recipe. They turned out super cute! I used orange/black, purple, and black sprinkles for decorating.

Vegan Pizza Night

26 Oct

Vegan pizza for dinner tonight! This is my go-to pizza crust recipe – it’s quick, easy, and delicious! I made my own pizza sauce with a large can of crushed tomatoes and generous amounts of garlic powder, onion powder, basil, and oregano. We topped our pizza with pepperjack Daiya, Gimme Lean sausage, and kale. Yum!

Restaurant Review: The Green Owl

25 Oct

As part of World Go Vegan Week, Alliance for Animals here in Madison, WI is hosting a city-wide vegan scavenger hunt! Vegan-friendly businesses around the city each have a code, and by visiting each business and obtaining a code you can enter to win an autographed copy of Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero. Exciting, and tasty!

The Green Owl is Madison’s only all-vegetarian (and vegan!) restaurant, so of course they’re participating in the scavenger hunt. This was the second time Jarrod & I have eaten here. It’s a super cute restaurant with adorable owls (of course!) all over. The picture below is from mtbVegan.com, as it was too dark for me to take a good picture outside by the time we got there!

Photo by mtbVegan

We of course ordered only vegan menu items. I ordered the crabby cake po’boy with a side of kale crisps, and Jarrod got the BBQ jackfruit sandwich with roasted red potatoes. We split them, so we each had half of each. I just had water with my meal, but Jarrod splurged and ordered the orange blossom lemonade. For dessert we had roasted pineapple cheesecake!

On the left is the BBQ jackfruit sandwich, and on the right is the crabby cake po’boy sandwich. Accompanied by a huge pile of kale crisps! The BBQ jackfruit sandwich consists of jackfruit strands cooked in BBQ sauce with dill pickle slices and vegan coleslaw, all on a tasty ciabatta roll. This sandwich was very good, and Jarrod & I both thought the jackfruit was a very creative approach to a vegan chopped/pulled BBQ sandwich. The crabby cake po’boy is 2 of their “crabby cakes” (tofu and mushroom based) topped with lettuce, tomato, and a vegan chipotle rémoulade. I thought the crabby cakes themselves were alright, but the sauce was not as flavorful as I was expecting. I was also disappointed by the use of iceberg lettuce – I would have preferred more substantial and nutritious greens. Overall the sandwich was okay, but nothing special and probably not something I would order again. The kale crisps and potatoes were both good, although I had to have Jarrod finish about half of my crisps as I was getting too full!

Pardon my ugly picture - I promise this vegan cheesecake was fabulous.

The orange blossom lemonade and roasted pineapple cheesecake were both fantastic! I’d never thought to put orange blossom into lemonade, but it was a delicious combination. I’ve already looked up a recipe, and I’m excited to try my hand at making it. The cheesecake was also fabulous – very light and creamy.

Overall, I’m excited that Madison has a restaurant that is all vegetarian and vegan, although I feel that the menu could stand to be expanded. I also think that a few of the menu items could be tweaked to be more flavorful. I will eat at The Green Owl again, although I’d probably find myself more likely to come during happy hour for some drinks and cheesecake!

Full disclosure: I will admit that I’m a bit spoiled, as I used to live a mere 10 minutes from my absolute favorite (all vegan!) restaurant in the whole entire world, Spiral Diner. Any veg restaurant that I try will automatically be compared to Spiral, and that’s definitely tough competition!

Put a bird on it.

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