Thursday, December 20, 2007

Okay so, I took quite an extended hiatus from blogging (after only 3 posts.. goodness) due to simply being lazy. Recently, however, I've decided that I want to restart my blogging adventures, mostly because I have pictures of delicious cakes that I can't wait to share!

That's right, cakes. Every senior at my high school has to complete what we call a "senior project". Its basically a learning experience in which seniors work at something they've never done before, we have a mentor who has experience in the particular project area and a coach who keeps us on track as far as deadlines and such are concerned. I have chosen to do cake decorating for my project and my mentor is my friend Kate who works at the bakery with me.

Being in the kitchen is quite a stress reliever for me. I enjoy the whole process of baking, mixing the flour and the sugar, then smelling the sweet aroma of whatever I'm making once I pull it out of the oven. Mostly though, cakes have been my passion lately. And so, when I came home from a very long day at school yesterday what else could I do but bake cupcakes? I wanted to try out my mini cupcake pan and get to use some of the Wilton colors that I hadn't yet so it was the perfect situation. I did my homework and didn't get to start baking until 11. I worked until 3am on these babies, not even tired by the time I hit my bed. I was so into the process, I didn't even notice how late it was until I got done.

Here we have all the cupcakes cooling, waiting to be piped. The chocolate are chocolate mint and they already have their layer of chocolate ganache here. (I used the basic chocolate recipe from VCTOTW but changed it a little bit to accomodate for the peppermint) The golden are Vanilla Raspberry cupcakes. (Like the chocolate, these were based off the Golden recipe from VCTOTW)

On the left are the chocolate cupcakes with ganache. On the left is a chocolate cupcake with a delicious swirl of red and white striped peppermint frosting on top of the layer of ganache.

These vanilla raspberry cupcakes were kind of dissapointing, not because they didn't taste good or look good, just because the last time I made them I altered the Simple Agave recipe from VCTOTW and it held the raspberry flavor much better than these did. However I didn't have enough agave to make the cupcakes so I opted for using just the regular golden recipe. I'll just have to remember it for next time though :)

Hope you all have a wonderful holiday,

Monday, May 28, 2007

A memorial day feast of wonderful colors

Happy memorial day :)

Today is my sister's birthday so we had a party at my house with all the aunts and cousins and such. And lots of good food. I ate homemade pesto (with basil fresh from the garden), whole wheat spaghetti, an olive garden breadstick and some veggies.

We went to THREE different stores yesterday looking for basil and couldn't find any so finally we just bought some pots of basil from my neighbors and used it. Following the VWaV recipe for "Classic Pesto" I created the following beautiful, green, flavorful pesto.

I highly recomend this pesto as it is DELISH. It has quite a strong flavor, however, and so I suggest that you taste it before serving to see if you want to add more olive oil or adjust the amounts called for.

We had planned on using this for pasta, however, it was very good as a dip for the pita bread I made last night and I'm planning on spreading it on the oat bread which I also made last night. Last night I was in a bread mood, what can I say? :)

I ended up making the Pita Bread recipe from GoV and the Oat Bread recipe from How it All Vegan. I was very pleased with how EASY the pita bread was to whip up and it entertained my brothers to watch it puffing up in the oven. The oat bread recipe was very easy as well and tastes absolutely delish. It is a very soft bread. Not hard or dense just perfect:).

Here's the pesto flanked by the pita pockets on the left and the oat bread loaf and slices on the right. They look so happy together:)

And below is a close up of the oat bread. As I pulled it out of the oven I proclaimed "IT'S BEAUTIFUL!" Because really, I think it made quite a nice looking loaf.

This morning I knew I would be having a large lunch so I wanted something light and summery for breakfast and I opted to use up some stuff I had leftover from last week's baking endeavors to make a smoothie.
The deep purple of the smoothie paired with the green of the pesto was just absolutely gorgeous. The basic recipe follows but for smoothies it is so much more fun to just throw things in a blender and hope for the best:)

Raspberry-Coconut smoothie
-3 tbsp organic coconut milk
-3/4 cup frozen raspberries
-4-7 ice cubes
-1/2 cup pineapple juice (NOT cocktail)
-1/2 cup water (or more depending on how you like your smoothies)
Combine all ingredients in blender and mix until all ice cubes completely crushed and raspberries are mixed with everything else. Enjoy :)

Whew. Sorry for the long post today. It felt good to get some cooking in this weekend. Hope you all had a wonderful memorial day and took a moment to reflect on the sacrifices that so many have made, even if you might not agree with the rationale.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Mothers' Day food :)

So yesterday was Mothers' Day as I'm sure we all know. Dad bought lobsters for the family and so, instead, I decided to make some of Jana's Healthy Rice from How It all Vegan however, I had no chili paste but it was still delish and it should serve as lunch for a few days. If you don't have this book I highly reccomend it. I have two of Sarah Kramer's books, the ones she co-wrote with Tanya Barnard, and her third is on my list to buy from New and Used on

For dinner I volunteered to make pancakes (because really, what's better than breakfast for dinner?!) So I used the basic pancake recipe from Vegan with a Vengeance which are great for my dad since the only sweetener in them is 2 tbsp of maple syrup (he's diabetic).
Everyone loved them and mom especially loved the ones I added chocolate chips and pecans to. I topped mine with thawed raspberries.
I appologize for the picture quality but, you get the idea :).
At Cafe today I had a taste of BBQ rib seitan which tasted and felt (texture wise) scarily like the real stuff. It was so good though. Seitan has become my new favorite and I eat it almost every day I'm at work.
So question of the day is what cookbooks are on your must-buy-as-soon-as-i-have-the-money list? I know I can't be the only cookbook junkie out there. I have a list on my bulletin board of 5 right now and I'm sure there will be more :)

Sunday, May 13, 2007

My introduction to the blogging world

Hello blogging world :)

I've been a devout reader of blogs from all over, mostly ones which deal with being vegan or other food related topics, for a good amount of time and I decided recently that it's time that I join the ranks :).

I'm a 16 year old female vegan from New England, I drive a Caravan which is most likely as old as I am, I am a junior and my favorite foods are black olives, fresh basil, apple cinnamon cheerios and cheesecake. I work at the ONLY vegan/vegetarian restaurant within 50 miles of my house and I absolutely love the people that I work with and the food we serve.

I've entitled this blog "Green Believer" because a. my favorite color has always been, will always be and is, green. And b. because the only thing that I really truly believe in is the idea that we, as individuals and as a whole can change the shape of our world by living lives which are respectful to the world we live in and the people in it. Now, that said, you must understand that I am not a tree-hugging hippie. I don't have eighteen cats or three hundred fish. In fact, I'm not a huge fan of having pets at all. I don't have a beautiful and elegant garden nor do I wear tie-dye and have dreadlocks. Not to be stereotypical. However, I do feel that it is our job, as the human race and especially as teenagers, to "be the change we wish to see in the world" as a famous mouth once said.

I'll try to keep this strictly food related however, no promises. Please don't hesitate to talk to me. I love meeting new people!