Vegan Super Bowl Menu

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superbowl

For the most part, I enjoy having a food blog (‘food blog’ is used in the most liberal sense considering there are more links to 90’s hip-hop music videos, lists of my favorite ways to be lazy, and my social commentary on shameful behavior than actual recipes). But there are some elements of maintaining a food blog that are not talked about enough and go against my pragmatic sense of how a life should be lived and documented, unless of course you are a professional food blogger who gets paid to do shit like stage pictures in perfect 3:00 PM lighting and lay awake at night thinking up new ways to reinvent the donut.

For example, tomorrow is the Super Bowl and there is nothing more I want to do then share with you our amazing menu and sell you in tantalizing words and mouthwatering pictures that demonstrate the fact that veganizing food-centric events/holidays doesn’t always have to include chickpeas, quinoa, beets, or raw lettuce.  But here’s the non-sequitur of this whole food blogging racket – I can’t hype you up in pictures because I’m not making this epic meal until tomorrow, thus not giving you enough time to hype yourself up via purchasing ingredients and bragging to friends about your spread. It’s bullcrap, I know – but I’m saying screw it and at least sharing our menu with link and old pics from other times we prepared said menu items.

Anyway, we may have just found out who was playing in the Super Bowl a few days ago and I may have thought the 49ers were a baseball team, but I was raised right to leverage every event possible into a good excuse to overeat food and hang out with my friends. If our menu isn’t doing it for you, check out these 19 Delicious Vegan Superbowl Recipes.

SOUP – The Best Ever Chili 

superbowlchili

DIP – Guacamole

guacamole

SANDWICH – BBQ Jackfruit 

jackfruit

SIDE – Vegan Buffalo Wings

superbowl_hotwings

with a side of vegan ranch

TREATS

Ultimate Brownies 

Peanut Butter Popcorn Fudge 

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.

Kickstart my Vegan Heart

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Being huge fans of the website Kickstarter, we find ourselves constantly looking for independent businesses, projects, and ideas to support in hopes of expanding the ever-growing world of vegan commerce.  When you add in our passion for cookbooks, new and old, it’s no surprise that we jumped at the opportunity to fund an all-vegan cookbook inspired by the author’s world travels and culinary adventures.  This project was met its funding goal last October, and we have been anxiously awaiting the arrival of the finished product.  The authors have done a great job of keeping us posted on the progress, sharing additional recipes and thoughts along the way, and building the excitement up to the release date.

We recently received our copy of The Lotus and Artichoke and couldn’t wait to crack it open and start cookin’!  Along with the author’s story and pictures of adventures, the book features amazing recipes from all over the globe representing multiple cuisines and ethnic fare.  We’ve already “tested” a couple recipes, and have several more on our growing list to try out over the course of the next month or so.  They will definitely make an appearance on the blog, and we are looking forward to sharing these with all you in.  In the meantime, check out the official website for the Lotus and the Artichoke, and head on over to their Facebook page and give them some love.  If you feel inspired enough, pick up a copy or three for yourself and two of your best friends and get cookin’ yourself!

If you need some extra inspiration or a soundtrack for your cooking, we leave you with this gem.

Web Feast Friday


I don’t mean to toot our own horn, but we are on 18 days and counting on our 2013 resolution to blog every day. We’ve even accomplished one of our 2013 resolutions by hitting the 100 post mark on the blog.  This may not seem like a great feat to those seasoned bloggers,  but coming from a couple folks who can justify doing/not doing many things, we continue to amaze ourselves!  We’ve found a routine that is keeping us on track, and we are definitely taking plenty of pictures and cooking delicious foods that will definitely make an appearance on the blog.  This weeks Feast includes links and lists that can help create routines, or provide ideas to incorporate into your current routine.

Kick your morning off with any and all of these AM activities.

Let’s all commit to this list for 2013!

Lot’s of Top 10 lists always get kicked around this time of year.  This top 15 list is 5 better.

So true.  So true.

For those of you joining us for “Raw February,” here’s some helpful tools.

For those of you still looking to detox from the holidays, or adopting a more detoxifying lifestyle, here’s some tips.

This recipe has Sunday dinner written all over it!

Actually, I’m making this on Sunday.  This too.

This song just popped up while we were watching Girls, and I totally forgot how great of a jam it is!

Souper Sunday – Asian Persuasion Edition: Lotus Root


Any way you plate lotus root, it looks beautiful.

Any way you plate lotus root, it looks beautiful.

There are a few things that I like to do when I’m feeling blue:

  1. Look at this picture of Burglekutt from the 1988 movie gem Willow 

    He totally deserved it.

    He totally deserved it.

  2. Watch any SNL “What Up With That” skit
  3. Wander around Asian grocery stores and buy the craziest looking things to experiment with in the kitchen

Not since my military days living in Korea have I been so emerged in the process of discovering new foods as these last few weeks, thanks to my friend Evonne who lived in Japan for 5 years. Oh man, be sure to tune in tomorrow for her guest blog post with more of the awesome (and easy) Asian market eats.

Until a few days ago we had never worked with, seen, or even heard of lotus root – so since then we learned a few things:

What is lotus root?

Looking much like a mixture of a parsnip and a sweet potato and growing up to 4 feet long, a lotus root grows underwater. It is a common food in Asian countries for both consumption and medicinal purposes in treating respiratory issues.

What does lotus root taste like? How do you cook it?

The root can be eaten either raw or cooked and has a mildly bitter, crispy taste simliar to jicama. It’s incredibly versatile and can be used raw in salads, added to soups and stews, steamed as a side dish, or pan fried (as prepared in this recipe). The older a lotus root gets, the darker it becomes – so shop for a firm, light colored root then keep refrigerator.

Much like any root vegetable, there really isn’t a WRONG way to prepare a lotus root. The most common prep is to peel, slice horizontally to show off the lace-like interior, then eaten raw or cooked to taste. Check out this website for more ideas.

Does lotus root have nutritional benefits?

Absolutely! Half a cup of lotus root contains 73% of your daily Vitamin C recommended requirements along with moderate levels of iron, b-complex, and minerals such as copper, zinc, and magnesium  All these benefits at just 40 calories per half cup serving. Check out more benefits here.

The fun part about lotus root is how BEAUTIFUL it looks! You can be a show off to friends and family while keeping to your resolutions. We served the recipe below with soba noodles and miso soup.

Stir-fried Lotus Root*

From Asian Vegan Kitchen 

asian_lotus

INGREDIENTS: 

  • 11 ounces of lotus root (You can find this in the freezer section of your local Asian market)
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 dried red chili
  • 2 tablespoons mirin
  • 1 tablespoon sake
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon toasted white sesame seeds

Heat vegetable oil in a broad sauce pan or wok, and stir-fry lotus root over high heat for 1 minute, or until glazed with oil.  Add in chili and mix together.  Turn heat to low, and add remaining ingredients except sesame seeds.  Stir-fry lotus root until most of liquid is absorbed and lotus root is cooked.  Remove from heat, sprinkle with sesame seeds, and transfer to serving dish.

We served  our lotus root with soba noodles which were prepared following the instructions on the package.

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.

Spreadable, salty, a little funky, and loaded with umami?


 

A good friend of mine sent me an article from the New York Times highlighting a food called misozuke.  I read the description from the article which mentioned three of my favorite words:  spreadable, funky, and umami.  I was instantly intrigued and consulted our in-house Japanese expert for more details and a potential recipe.  Apparently misozuke is the result of aging tofu in a “marinade” of miso anywhere from 2 months to 2 years.  It produces something that resembles cheese, but with an extremely unique flavor. I quickly followed the link from the article to Rau Om, which is an online purveyor of the product.

 

Without any hesitation, I order both original and kombu flavors and have already found myself brainstorming all the dippin’ and spreadin’ possibilities.  I also found a recipe that I intend on trying after I get a good taste of what misozuke should taste like.  A full review of the product will follow the misozuke feast.  If anyone has experience eating or making misozuke, we would love to hear from you!

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!

 

Web Feast Friday: New Year’s Edition

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Four days into 2013, and so far, our resolution to blog each day of the year is still in effect!  That means we will be treating you guys to at least 360 more posts in 2013.  Both of us have laid out a list of resolutions/goals for the year, and over the course of the next couple of months, we will be posting all the details.  In honor of 2013 and resolution season, we offer up several resolution/make-yourself-better links to assist with the process.  Feel free to share these with us, and we can all be accountabila-buddies!

These tips would easily free up a good 40 hours every week!  Just think about what you could do with 40 hours.

If you resolution is to find a nice vegan guy/gal to court, make sure you read up on these details.

Keep your feet happy and cruelty-free in 2013!

2013 is guaranteed to be BIG year for Team EPL, and it can be a BIG year for you too!

Watch this movie in 2013.

Follow this blog in 2013.

Here’s a load of links from No Meat Athlete that can help you with all your plant-based fitness needs.

Eat/drink one thing green at every meal.  Here’s some ideas!

It’s a new year, I’m glad to be here!  Happy 2013 folks!

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!