Web Feast Friday: Rawmageddon Begins


Friday the First can mean only one thing:  RAWMAGEDDON has begun!  Our first 30 Day Challenge went surprising well as we managed to post almost every day during January.  We missed a couple of days, but definitely feel pretty confident that we can continue our streak.  Now that February has begun, 30 Day Challenge #2 has begun in which we eat raw every meal, every day.  Day 1 is in the books with juices, smoothies, nuts, and salads dominating the menu.  We have some interesting recipes queued up for a few occasions and look forward to sharing some of these with our faithful readers.  In the meantime, we leave you with some great ideas for your Super Bowl Sunday festivities!

Anything that’s vegan AND fully loaded has to be good.  Right?

Sunday brunch idea to get primed for the big game!

CUPCAKES!!

For those of you taking on Rawmageddon with us, add this to your Big Game must-cook list.

I’ve ask myself this question so many times.  Now I have an answer.

If you haven’t liked any ideas thus far, here’s a whole list of ideas to help you write your Super Bowl menu.

Here’s the “big game” I’m really looking forward to this weekend.  J-Pow!!

I couldn’t help myself.  I had to end things with some more BTnH.

Web Feast Friday


It finally feels like winter here in the Pacific NW, and we have a brand new dusting of snow on  the hills throughout the valley.  We’re eleven days into the year, and still holding strong to our commitment/resolution of blogging every day!  We have lots of great ideas for posts, and lots of great recipes and stories to share.  We also have some exciting adventures on the horizon that are sure to create even more blog fodder. Snowshoeing is on the agenda this weekend, along with a little wine tour.  In the meantime, sit back and relax the second installment of Web Feast Friday for 2013!

Simple.  Easy.  Indian flavors.  Love it!

For those of you who want to go raw with us next month, here’s a recipe to bookmark.

The EPL household is a big fan of savory waffles.  These just made the cut for Sunday brunch.

Health vegan Twix bars?

We’re everywhere!!!!

We’re hosting a vegan Super Bowl party this year, and you KNOW this will be served!

Lot’s of recipes this week means lots of cooking and baking is taking place.  One such cooking escapade involves a shopping trip to the Asian market, no real plan, and $100 in groceries.  Stay tuned for that story!

We leave you with some winter running inspiration and motivation.  Play outside this weekend and cook some good food.

Monday Meal Planz

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The first Monday of 2013 got us thinking about some kind of themed day.  We already have Web Feast Fridays, and from time to time, we’ll post on Souper Sunday.  Why not add another topic to provide us with a little guidance and inspiration while tackling our “365 Days of Blogging” goal.

Actually, I am pretty sure that some of our favorite blogs actually post meal and menu planning-style posts on Mondays, and I’m confident that ours will absolutely reflect our current cooking passions/interests/obsessions.  Whether you end up planning your weekly menu around this post or not is entirely up to you.  At the very least, we hope you find something interestingly tasty to share with friends and family at some point during the week.

Those of you still in detox mode will love this!  I never thought of this combination, but I love all these ingredients equally on their own!

Our raw adventure begins next month, so in the meantime, I plan on preparing this at least once before then.

Anything hickory-smoked served with tator tots will ALWAYS earn a spot on the blog!

We love this blog and you will love this recipe!

Easy + Glazed = Mealtime

What would a Meal Plan be without ‘zerts!

Keep the comments and feedback coming!  We appreciate everything you are willing to share with us.  Since we plan on posting each and every day of 2013, we will present you with plenty of chances!  Thanks for reading!

 

A Spooktacular Vegan Mofo 2012

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After the many sugar peaks and valley’s of eating my weight in Twizzlers (we didn’t have many trick or treaters), I have those same bags under my eyes.

It’s been an amazing Vegan Mofo 2012 – so much has happened! Let’s recap:

We also hosted the 1st annual vegan/vegetarian Meetup group Halloween potluck at our casa. As usual, we brought the deliciousness via Ulimate Vegan Chili (recipe coming) and VegNews Spooky Eyeball CupcakesNext up….VEGAN THANKGIVING!!! Thanks for an amazing Vegan Mofo!

I’ve never worked so hard to get bloodshot eyes. In college, it seemed so much easier!

 

And don’t forget that tomorrow, November 1st, is World Vegan Day! How will you celebrate?

CARB-O-LOAD!!!

 

Lazy Kermit & Hot Mess/Methadone Miss Piggy

(and the shamelessness continues)

Evan realized really quickly…fleece in a hot house means serious jungle crotch environments. Happy Halloween!

Yikes.

Nothing says sexy like a dude in fleece capris

 

 

Our Storm Kit

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We’ve been watching our fair share of the super storm coverage out east, and can’t help but think about what we would do if we knew a massive storm was barreling our way.  We were used to the occasional snow day back in Iowa, where we typically spent the day at home cooking, baking, and watching movie trilogies.  We would watch the weather the night before, track the storm path, and secretly hope we would get dumped on.

Apparently Southern Oregon doesn’t have to deal with any kind of weather phenomenon like that.  It still got us thinking:  What if we knew we would be “stormed” in and needed to stock up on necessary provisions to wait out the weather.  Here is our top 5 list of shitty weather must-haves.

1)  Some sort of non-dairy milk.  Assuming we have power, baking WILL happen and all our favorite recipes call for some sort of rice, almond, or hemp milk.

2)  Daiya cheese.  We consider ourselves chili connoisseurs and tend to fire up the slow cooker when the weather turns sour.  Daiya tends to be the go-to toppin’ for chili.

3)  Beans, beans, all types of beans.  Whether it be hummus, soup, chili, salads, or burgers, having a selection of beans makes all of these possible.

4)  Bananas.  We are big smoothie fans, and also like freezing bananas and blending them in the Vitamix to create a sorbet/ice cream concoction.

5)  Beer or wine.  No good reason other than Southern Oregon produces some of the best craft beer and wine in the country.  Nothing says snow/storm-day like doing some cooking, drinking, and movie watching.

After going back and reading this list, it’s fair to say that we might actually miss our Midwest snow days.

After going back and reading that last sentence, it’s fair to say that’s effin’ crazy!

Vegan MoFo 27: German Apple Cake


If you ask me, this is a single serving.

You know those times when you make a cake for someone’s birthday at work and then you forget to take the cake and have to decide once you arrive at work whether you will tell the person that you slaved away on a Tuesday night to make their favorite German apple cake especially for them because you know it’s their favorite or not tell them you made the cake at all so you can have the cake all to yourself when you get home? Yeah, me either. But I do know this…the answer is and always will be eat the cake.

And this cake is especially worth hoarding, mainly because of it’s versatility. I’m rather confident in the event of a nuclear disaster, this cake could be used in any of the following ways:

  1. Insulation for packing dynamite
  2. Replacement for clay in making seed bombs
  3. A weapon (I have a theory that, when thrown correctly, it will act much like a boomerang)
  4. Food for a village – one bite could sustain a person for a full day (those Germans know how to live ya’ll!)

The possibilities are endless. Where the German’s missed the mark with lederhosen,  David Hasselhoff, and that whole ‘European domination’ icky stereotype, they definitely earned my love with this cake…and Octoberfest.

Enjoy the cake all to yourself my friends – and also enjoy this video of what I believe to be the brother of Milton from Officespace housing some funnel cakes as inspiration.

GERMAN APPLE CAKE

Apfelkuchen. Translated as “edible apple pinwheel”.

Ingredients – Cake:

  • 3 apples, peeled and cut into slices
  • 1/2 cup non-hydrogenated, nondairy butter (i.e. Earth Balance)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 tbsp nondairy milk
  • 1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/2 tsp baking powder

Ingredients – Topping:

  • 1/4 cup firmly packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 9-inch springform pan.

To make the cake, cook the apples in a little bit of water on the stove or in the microwave until they’re just a little soft but not mushy. (Put them in the microwave for no longer than 90 seconds). Set aside.

With an electric hand mixer or by hand using a wooden spoon, cream together the butter and sugar. Add the applesauce and milk. Finally, add the flour and baking powder, and stir until just combined.

Add the batter to the prepared pan, and arrange the apple slices in a circle on top of the cake.

To make the topping, mix together the brown sugar, cinnamon, and ginger and sprinkle over the apples, covering the top of the cake.

Bake for 30 – 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool for 15 minutes before unmolding from the cake pan.

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cupcakes ‘n Puns

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If I drove by a house with this pumpkin I would assume two things about the homeowner: 1. They are huge nerds with a lot of free time and 2. They will be too busy dressing up like Frodo or Lord Voldemort to hand out candy. 

The goal of this post is to use as many Halloween puns as possible.

It’s frightening to imagine how many calories I’m about to consume in the next 60 days. In an effort to actually lose weight this holiday season, Evan and I have signed up for several races before the New Year including the Monster Dash in Ashland and an 8-mile Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving morning, both should be a wicked good time. I did NOT know the run was 8 miles when I was volun-told I was doing the Trot, so when the screaming began I wasn’t going to be ready for that distance Evan said of corpse you will be! (okay, so that didn’t happen – but I didn’t know how to work that pun in organically. If there is anything to lie for, a good use of a pun has to be among the top good reasons).

Monster Dash 2011 – Just when I began to feel self conscious about looking disheveled in a ladybug costume, I saw a superwoman wearing 1980’s snow boots fall into a bush. Thanks universe!

“Don’t worry…we are vegan” I whispered gently into the Turkey’s ear. Somehow that made things MORE awkward.

For all my complaining, this really is my favorite time of year. It rained in Medford today for the first time since July 18th and brought with it a ghostly chill, perfect for running then feeling justified for being lazy on the couch. Luckily, the Ironman World Championships were today, so we could feel somewhat productive watching TV despite our lack of general hygiene and dumpy sweatpants.

It’s also a good thing we like pumpkin, cause that shit is EVERYWHERE! This is one bandwagon (or should I say hayride) that we hop on as we be goblin down pumpkin like a mofo. A shout-out to Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World for these amazing treats. 

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cupcakes w/ Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

CUPCAKES


INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup soy (or other alt) milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line muffin pan with cupcake liners.

In a medium bowl, stir together pumpkin, oil, sugar, milk, and vanilla. Sift in flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, salt. Stir together with a fork – don’t use a mixer or the batter will be gummy. Once combined, fold in chocolate chips.

Fill liners two-thirds full and bake 22-24 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool fully before frosting.

Frosting

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/4 cup margarine, softened
  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (sifted if there are clumps)
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 3 tbsp soy milk
  • 1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

Cream together the margarine and the shortening until well combined. Add the cocoa powder and incorporate well. Add the powdered sugar in about 1/2 cup batches and beat well, adding a splash of soy milk after each addition. When all the ingredients have been well incorporated, add the vanilla and beat until light and fluffy (about 3 minutes with a hand mixer, 7 minutes with a fork).

Enjoy!

Buckteeth: my signature on carved pumpkins since 1987.

Web Feast Friday


Welcome to another edition of Web Feast Friday!  Nothing like a three and a half day work week to make Friday feel soooo damn good!  We finally recovered from a Labor Day weekend trip to Portland, OR where we may have caved to many of our “bad” vegan vices (read Voodoo apple fritters and Cornbread Cafe phish sticks).  This week has been filled with copious amounts of kale and quinoa in hopes of neutralizing the massive amounts of delicious baked goods and mock meats that were consumed in PDX.  We have pics and stories to share, but in the meantime, we will be enjoying a buck-standard EPL weekend.  Get your feast on!

I tried to find some kind of Friday-ish song, and this kept popping into my head.

Fall is right around the corner which means it’s time to cook with sqaush!

Popcorn is a staple around the EPL house.  This might be the new go-to recipe.

Any time the vegan baked goods get the best of us, juice always seems to balance us out.

Did I mention we are squash, soup, and squash soup fans?

These will be made this weekend.  Review to follow.

The John Muir Trail is on our short list for must-do hikes.  Help get this documentary made!

This video showed up on the same page as the Dr. Dre video, so I was obligated to post it as well.  You know you at least owned this tape.

BFD Best Ever Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies

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I want to go to there.

I was once accused by a boss that I celebrate other’s actions too much and that no one deserves to “have a parade for every damn thing they do.” First of all, if you know me at all, you know that I value parades in general the same way that homeless people value Occupy camps – they are the perfect alibi for my socially taboo lifestyle to seem totally normal.  Secondly, not gleefully celebrating the mundane is just another example of adult-onset bullshit. Remember how good you would feel when that picture you drew of stick people sitting under a rainbow at age six earned huge praise and was framed on the fridge? When did we start getting all judgey and critical about doing things that make people feel good? I happen to think making a BFD (big – effing – deal) about the littlest things keeps me sane, grounded in the moment, and excited about life…and don’t worry about celebrating subtly, let it shine through that face, yo!

I found Dandies (vegan marshmellows) at the local coop – BFD CELEBRATION!!!

My sirius/xm radio arrived…BFD CELEBRATION!!!

I just earned my RAGBRAI patch for riding a century day – BFD CELEBRATION!

My BF bought me a mixer – BFD CELEBRATION!

This sweatsuit is comfortable and only cost me $4.00 at Goodwill – BFD CELEBRATION!

See how good that feels? I challenge you to celebrate the little things for just one day and see how much more fun life is for you and for those around you.

Today’s BFD – the doc said I have “exemplary” blood & urine!! Hey, this is a girl who used to be pre-diabetic, pushing the morbid level of obesity, and had a cholesterol level that was indicating a painful and early death. Thanks to choosing to change my life with a plant-based diet and exercise, I am now officially the healthiest I have ever been! Soooo, what better way to share that BFD with the world then finally unveiling my (up until now) secret and amazing best-you-have-every-had-and-will-make-you-beam-with-joyfulness vegan chocolate chip cookie recipe? If the cookies and faces don’t get you inspired, take it from The Monster himself:)  Share that joy my friends!

BFD VEGAN CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE RECIPE

Plant your face in this plate.

Ingredients

  • 2 1/4 cup unsifted flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup Earth Balance, softened
  • 3/4 cup cane sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • Ener-G egg substitute, equivalent to 2 eggs
  • 2 cups vegan semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup chopped nuts, optional

Cookie sandwich: Cookie with cookie in the middle topped with a cookie.

  1. Preheat oven to 375F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment and set aside.
  2. Mix Ener-G (or other substitute) and set aside.
  3. Stir (do not sift) flour, baking soda, and salt then set aside.
  4. Beat butter with sugar and brown sugar on high until creamy.
  5. Add vanilla and egg mixture to sugar/butter and mix on low until combined.
  6. Gradually add dry mixture to wet until just combined. Fold in chocolate chips and nuts (if desired).
  7. Drop by tablespoon onto cookie sheets. Bake 9-11 minutes (17-19 minutes if using Pampered Chef stone) or until golden brown.
  8. Makes 4 dozen cookies.

Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Nutrition (w/o nuts):

Calories: 127  Fat: 7   Cholesterol: 0 Sodium: 86  Carbs: 17  Fiber: 1  Sugar: 12  Protein: 1 WW points: 3

Black Bean Brownies with Strawberry Glaze

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Suped up nutrition thanks to Vitamin K mofo

I was overcome this week with an urge to bake something and eat the whole pan. It’s probably because I ran the Portland Rock ‘N Roll Half-Marathon this past weekend and I can justify that my metabolism is still amped up, so I need to fuel it…right? That’s what I get for reading too many Runner’s World and Triathlete magazines; I begin to trick myself into thinking their tips are equally useful for a runner who will sit on a curb halfway through a race to house a bag of twizzlers and pet a stray dog. But my argument will always be: why bust your ass running if not for the perverbial carrot at the finishline? It just so happens that my carrot is also deep fat fried and dipped in chocolate sauce.

Yet after a late night of watching Ironman hype-up videos and with our unexpected range of post-run mobility pumping up our egos, our newest gauntlent-off-the couch has been dropped to complete the 140.6 mile Ironman trek in 2014 and made official through our pinky sworn-in ceremony. So I guess that means we will be trading unrefined sugar and chocolate chips for black beans and bananas. But you will have to pry gooey frosting from my swampy, muscular, freakishly veiny hands because that is not making the cut!

Black Bean Brownies with

 Strawberry Glaze

*Thanks Happy Herbivore!

Black Bean Brownies

The name for these brownie poppers were going to be “Bean me up Shoties” until Evan reminded me that no one like puns. BOOOO!!!!

Strawberry Glaze

Ingredients:

  • 3 medium sized strawberries, puréed (about 2 tablespoons purée)
  • 1-2 cups powdered sugar

Instructions:

  1. Mix ingredients together.
  2. Dip brownies into the glaze.

For those people with a passion for the artistic and/or no children and too much free time otherwise spent reading gossip, add sprinkles and cut up strawberries into hearts for a special touch