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!


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: Sunday Edition

As you may or may not have noticed, our streak of blogging came to an end on Friday, January 25.  I am actually impressed that we made it that long considering the whirlwind of adventures and funtivities we have been engaging in over the last couple of weeks. We spent this past weekend relaxing, skiing, cooking, and imbibing with our dear friends in Sunriver, Oregon.  I’m blaming our streak coming to an end on a fun-friend-filled weekend.  Best.Excuse.Ever.


Mountains, outdoor activities, and wildlife. Sounds like a damn good time to me!


We forgot our camera back at the cabin, so this isn’t actually depicting our day. Add in icy snow and 25 mph winds, and you get the idea.

We had actually been saving up lots of great links to share on Friday, so we figured why not get “caught up” with our blog posts by cranking out some bonus posts on Sunday.  This Webfeast is dedicated to our weekend in Sunriver and will definitely get us back on track and prep us for our next 30 Day Challenge which is our Raw February!

After this past weekend, a detox is definitely in order!

Feeling a little acidic?  We definitely are.

We’re in the process of writing our Super Bowl party menu.  These might make the cut.

A new obsession.

We’re in the market.  Anyone have any recommendations or reviews to share?

This came in handy after a long day on the hill.  Vegan and GF!!

Kickstart my Vegan Heart


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

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.

Web Feast Friday


Welcome to the final Web Feast Friday of Vegan Mofo!  Getting involved with Vegan Mofo, and participating along side some of our vegan blogger role models/celebrities has been a tremendous honor and inspirational experience.  Instead of posting random bits from around the internets, I thought I would post some recent highlights from some of our most favorite vegan bloggers.  The following peeps provide us with many recipes, much inspiration, and a network of passionate and enthusiastic advocates for all things vegan.  If you don’t have these folks bookmarked or queued up on your RSS feed, start clickin’!!!!!

–  Post Punk Kitchen was one of the first vegan blogs we started following.  Their forum alone is a great resource for recipes and menu ideas.

–  Vegansaurus single handedly planned the eating/dining schedule for our recent San Fran vaca.  This is a great blog for news, reviews, and the occasional profanity-laced post.  A true inspiration!

–  Will Travel for Vegan Food started out as a Kickstarter campaign, and is now a favorite read of EPL.  Who wouldn’t want to just travel around the U.S., eat vegan food in new and interesting places, and write about it.  That what dreams are made of folks.

–  Hipsterfood combines vegan food with artsy pics and Wes Anderson-ish fonts to create one of our favorite food photography sites.  They also publish Chickpea Vegan Quarterly which is our favorite quarterly vegan publication.

–  Nobody does vegan dessert quite like Chocolate Covered Katie!

–  For those of you who dabble in the raw vegan lifestyle, I give you Choosing Raw.  Plenty of great salad, juice, and smoothie recipes to help you get your raw on!

–  Last but certainly not least, Happy Herbivore.  Lindsay and Happy Herbivore are an institution when it comes to cooking, eating, and living a vegan lifestyle.  Her blog, along with the HH cookbooks, will continue to be an inspirational guide for our Sunday brunches, holiday dinners, and blogging exploits.

In true Web Feast fashion, we leave you with this Black Lips/Rza from Wu Tang Clan gem:

BFD Best Ever Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookies


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!


Plant your face in this plate.


  • 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


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


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


  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

Cooking with Coconut Oil: Zucchini Bread & Quinoa Pilaf with “Chicken”

If the Case for Coconut Oil post didn’t convince you of the magic of coconut oil, these tasty examples of sweet and savory uses of it will.


Okay, so it may not be the healthiest options for a meal replacement, but this slight adaptation on Colleen Patrick-Goudreau’s version from The Joy of Vegan Baking (my all time fav vegan baking cookbook) is so hearty and irresistible, you can easily fill up on accident. This is an example of replacing canola oil in a recipe with the healthier coconut oil without compromising texture or taste.

Best eaten with a glass of coconut milk, a bib, and an elastic waistband.


  • 3 tbsp ground flaxseed or 4 1/2 tsp Ener-G egg replacer (equivalent to 3 eggs)
  • 1/2 cup water (6 tbsp if using Ener-G)
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 tbsp white distilled vinegar
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 cups grated zucchini
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 cups whole wheat pastry flour
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
  • 1/2 cup raisins (optional)


  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 brown sugar
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp maple extract
  • 2 tbsp Earth Balance

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly grease two 8 x 4 x 2 inch loaf pans, 4 mini loaf pans, or 24 muffin tins (use coconut oil!)

In a mixer or food processor, combine the flaxseed and water (or Ener-G and water) and whip until thick and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the oil, vinegar, and sugar, and combine. Stir in the zucchini and vanilla. If using a food processor, transfer the oil/vinegar/sugar combination to a large bowl with zucchini/vanilla.

In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.  Add the nuts and raisins to sifted ingredients. Stir the dry mixture into the wet  until just combined. Divide the batter into the pans.

To make topping, combine the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and maple extract in a small bowl and stir to combine. Use pastry cutter or fork and cut earth balance into mix until crumbly texture. Sprinkle topping evenly across the top of each pan. Bake for 60-70 minutes for stand loaves, 40-55 minutes for mini loaves, or 30-35 minutes for muffins.  Check for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the center.

ZUCCHINI BREAD NUTRITION (1/9 of loaf): 288 calories – 10 g total fat – 0 cholesterol – 16 mg sodium– 47 g carbs – 3 g fiber – 29 g sugar – 3 g protein- 6 WW points


Evan took one bite and said, “this stuff tastes just like Rice-a-Roni with chicken.” In our world, that is a complement. Not only is this meal packed with protein, healthy fats, essntial vitamins and amino acids, it is super easy to make and crazy inexpensive (around $2/serving).

Your mind will think it's a cheat day...your body will whoop it up.


  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • 4 carrots, diced
  • 1 medium zucchini, chopped
  • 1 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 tbsp italian seasoning
  • 1 tsp fresh sage
  • 6-10 oz seitan or tofu, cubed
  • 4 cups kale
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Heat the coconut oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Saute onion, celery, and carrot in hot oil until tender (about 5-7 minutes). Add the zucchini, quinoa, broth, seasoning, and sage. Bring to a boil, then reduce to medium-low heat and cover until liquid has absorbed, about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, de-stem the kale and tear/chop the leaves into bite sized pieces. Add to skillet or wok with either cooking spray or 1/2 tsp oil. Cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring constantly, until kale is tender. Do not overcook.

Stir in the seitan or tofu and stir into the quinoa mix.  Serve pilaf on a bed of kale, makes 4 servings.

QUINOA PILAF NUTRITION: 367 calories – 11 g total fat – 0 cholesterol – 748 mg sodium– 49 g carbs – 7 g fiber – 7 g sugar – 21 g protein- 7 WW points

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Vegan 101: How Samoas and Thin Mints can make you friends.

It can be tough to make friends as an adult. As we get older, it seems that time becomes more elusive, leaving many people to settle for the friends they already know from work or high school or beer league softball or yoga class. I’m not insinuating there is no value to long-term, meaningful relationships – just that there can be life-enhancing value in engaging with the unfamiliar – and that goes for anything in life. I have found that with every new experience my mind opens up, my creativity is stimulated, and there exists new things to learn about myself (not to mention new memories to laugh at that don’t include the same mishaps from high school…what a relief!)

Moving to Oregon we made a ‘brave new world’ list with ‘make friends’ at the very top.  And what better way to make these friends in a new world then looking for love on the internet?!  Thankfully there is Meetup, an online matchmaking site for all the shit you love to do.  Are you plus sized AND into playing sports? There is a meetup group in Virginia for you. Obsessed with your bearded dog? There is a meetup specifically for bearded dog owners to socialize called ‘The Dirty Beards’. As much fun as it would be to forego cultivating meaningful friendships for time alone laughing at peculiar meetup groups, we figured that the Southern Oregon Vegetarian/Vegan group would be a great place to start.

While I’m a little too curious about the members of The Dirty Beards meetup, it would be tough to beat the group of folks that we met during the last potluck of our new Southern Oregon meetup group.  The people were relaxed, loved talking about obscure kitchen gadgets and ingredients, and were as equally self-deprecating about the life of a vegan as we claim to be. What can I say, I dig talking about frequent bowel movements with strangers.

Onto the foods (great segway, I know). The pressure was on to represent who we were as people through our food – so Evan the Athlete prepared a protein power salad with lemon-tahini dressing and Hayley the Nostalgic-Sugar-Junkie celebrated the seasons with two kinds of vegan Samoas (one with shortbread, one without) and vegan/gluten-free Thin Mints.  We made our own touches to these recipes, but much of my help came from one of my favorite cookbooks, Babycakes Covers the Classics.  Now go out there with confidence adults, and make some friends!

Earn yourself a merit badge for being awesome.

VEGAN SAMOAS (with shortbread)


  • 1/2 cup Earth Balance (melted, slightly cooled)
  • 1 1/4 cup cake flour (make w/ 1 cup all-purpose flour to 2 tbsp cornstarch)
  • 1/4 cup vegan sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 pans with parchment paper, and set aside.

Mix everything, knead into a cohesive lump. On a floured surface, roll dough to a 3/8″ thickness, cut into rounds (I used a biscuit cutter).  Cut out the middle to resemble the Girl Scout kind (I used the back side of a pastry tip, but you can even use a marker top or anything lil.)

Bake 15-20 min, or when the edges begin to brown.


  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 3 tbsp Earth Balance (melted)
  • 1/2 cup non-dairy milk
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup shredded coconut

In a small pan over medium heat, melt the sugar, stirring constantly.  The sugar will caramelize, and once it’s a deep copper color and begins to smoke, slowly add the Earth Balance and milk while stirring rapidly. Cook until there are no clumps of caramel and you can see the bottom of the pan when sliding the spatula across. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla and coconut.

To assemble: once coconut topping is cool enough to handle, spread evenly on cookies top. Once completely cool, you can use wet fingers to make hale in the middle and even out for esthetics.


  • 1 cup vegan chocolate chips
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil

Line pans that will fit into fridge/ freezer covered with wax paper. Use a double broiler to melt chocolate chips, then stir in coconut oil.  Allow chocolate to cool for 5-10 minutes, then dip bottoms of cookies into chocolate and set onto wax paper. Drizzle remaining chocolate over the top of cookies using a fork or pastry bag with a round tip. Chill for at least 30 minutes to set.

Makes 2 dozen cookies.

NUTRITION IN SHORTBREAD SAMOAS: 153 calories – 9 g total fat – 0 cholesterol – 48 mg sodium– 17 g carbs – 1 g fiber – 11 g sugar – 1 g protein- 4 WW points

VEGAN SAMOAS (*see notes for gluten-free) 



  • 1 cup vegan chocolate chips
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line two pans with parchment paper, set aside.

Pour coconut into skillet and toast on medium-low heat until golden brown. Remove from heat into dish to stop cooking and cool down.

In large bowl, combine coconut oil, brown sugar, milk, flaxseed, and vanilla until smooth. Sift in flour, baking soda, and salt, and mix together to form thick batter. Fold in coconut until combined.

Scoop 1 tbsp dough, 2 inches apart on sheets. Flatten with back of measuring cup and use your (or someone else’s) finger to work hole in center to look like Girl Scout kind. Bake 8 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Let cookies cool 5 minutes on sheet, then transfer to cooling rack. After cooling, transfer cookies onto wax paper surface for easy refrigerator storage.

Decorating: Melt chocolate chips in double broiler, then stir in melted coconut oil. Allow chocolate to cool for 5-10 minutes to thicken. Dip bottoms into chocolate and return to wax paper. Now, drizzle remaining chocolate over cooking using a fork or pastry bag with small, round tip. Chill cookies for at least 30 minutes to firm chocolate, then store in cool place in a tight container.

Makes 2 dozen cookies.

NUTRITION IN VEGAN SAMOAS: 182 calories – 12 g total fat – 0 cholesterol – 6 mg sodium– 19 g carbs – 2 g fiber – 13 g sugar – 2 g protein- 4 WW points




  • 1 1/2 cup Bob’s Red Mill all-purpose baking flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup arrowroot powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp xanthan gum 
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 2 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup vegan chocolate chips
  • 3 tbsp mint extract

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper, set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, arrowroot, xanthan gum, baking sode, and salt. Add the melted coconut oil, applesauce, and vanilla and mix until thick dough forms.

Drop dough by tsp onto sheets, 1 1/2 inches apart. Flatten each mound and smooth edges. Bake 7 minutes, rotate sheets in oven, bake for 7 more minutes. Leave on sheets 15 minutes before transferring to cooling racks.

After cooling cookies for 15 minutes, combine chocolate chips and mint in sauce pan or double broiler over medium heat. Stir until just melted, then remove from heat. Dunk the top of each cookie and smooth out with finger. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow the chocolate to set before eating the shit out of them.

Makes 30 cookies.

NUTRITION IN VEGAN THIN MINTS: 129 calories – 7 g total fat – 0 cholesterol – 1 mg sodium– 16 g carbs – 2 g fiber – 10 g sugar – 1 g protein- 3 WW points


Thanks to www.ohsheglows.com for the template to this great dish (and the pic since we forgot to take one.)

Ingredients for salad:

  • 1 cup green lentils (uncooked)
  • 1 cup kamut berries (uncooked)
  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil, for sauteing
  • 1/2 red onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 large red pepper, chopped
  • 1 large tomato, chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, minced
  • salt & pepper

Cook lentils and cook grains in separate saucepans or separately in a rice cooker.

Saute together onion, garlic, red pepper, and tomato for approx. 5 minutes. Add kale, then cook until kale is soft.  Stir in dressing (see below), then add lentils and grains – stirring until combined.

Remove from heat, add parsley.

Serves 6.

Ingredients for dressing:

  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 + 2 tbsp cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast 
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 4 tbsp water

All all ingredients together in food processor and process until smooth.

Yields 1 cup.

NUTRITION IN PROTEIN SALAD W/ DRESSING: 323 calories – 13 g total fat – 0 cholesterol – 32 mg sodium– 44 g carbs – 13 g fiber – 4 g sugar – 17 g protein- 7 WW points

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