Raw Vegan Chocolate Mousse

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For my friend Vivian.  :)

I haven’t made this in a while and today I was really craving for some chocolate.  So, I had some mousse for dessert!

Ingredients:

  • 2 pitted ripe avocados
  • 9 pitted medjool dates
  • 3 tablespoons of raw agave
  • 4 to 5 tablespoons of raw cacao
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla
  • 3 tablespoons of coconut oil

Directions:

Throw all ingredients in your Vitamix or food processor and blend until smooth.  Refrigerate for a couple of hours before serving.

You an also use this recipe as “frosting” for a raw vegan “un-bake” cake.  See below.

 

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Raw Vegan “CHEESY” Noodles

 

Raw Vegan CHEESY noodles

 

Last year we went to a restaurant in Playa Del Carmen called “La Senda“.  I had some delicious “cheesy” noodles made out of camote (sweet potatoes).  It was very filling and healthy.  Lately, I have been craving it.  So, I decided to experiment and try to replicate their “cheesy” noodles.  It turned out pretty good!  Both my daughter and I stuffed our faces!  :)

Note:  you will need a spiralizer for this one.  

Ingredients for “noodles”:

  • 2 medium-sized peeled and spiralized raw sweet potatoes

Ingredients for “cheesy” sauce:

  • 1 cup of raw cashews
  • 2/3 cup of water
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 6 tablespoons of nutritional yeast
  • salt to taste

Directions for sauce:  throw all of the sauce ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

Note: I added some cilantro from my garden to top it off.  You can also use raw basil or just leave it plain.

Enjoy!

 

Benefits of sweet potatoes: vitamin B6, Vitamin C, iron, Vitamin D, magnesium, potassium, fiber, and more.

Benefits of this “cheesy” sauce: 50-60 grams of protein, lots of b12, calcium, and more.

 

 

Being Vegan in the Riviera Maya

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Chichen Itza

In October, my husband, child and I flew down to Mexico to spend a little time in a wonderful little city called Playa del Carmen.  I have to say that this trip was one of the best trips ever!  As soon as we landed, we were greeted by some very friendly people to drive us from Cancun to the condo in Playa del Carmen.   When we arrived at our condo, my daughter and I looked up at the sky and saw a beautiful shooting star.  We looked at each other in excitement and smiled.  I knew it was going to be an awesome trip!

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Beautiful sunset after dinner.

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Early morning.

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<3 Playa Del Carmen.  Playtime before dinner.

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Husband kite boarding with Playa Board Sports.

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My daughter and her daddy.

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Cancun

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After our home school sessions, we would either swim at the condo or go to the beach club.

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Enjoying the view!

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My child and husband kayaking.

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Taking a walk after dinner.

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My husband and child playing.

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Art class.

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Beach club

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Paddle boarding

It is easy being vegan in Playa Del Carmen!

Here are some of the dishes I made during our vacation:

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Almond-crusted tofu with brown rice pilaf.

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Raw-vegan brownies

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Amaranth pancakes

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Beans, guacamole, seitan, and rice.

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Creamy (nut-based cream) pasta with oyster mushrooms.

It wasn’t difficult to find places that carried specialty items and served vegan-friendly food.  I wanted to share these places with you so, if  ever you are in the area, you know where to go!  :)

Grocery Shopping:

1.  BIO NATURAL

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2.  We shopped at Mega (the Mexican Walmart is what people reffered to it) when we needed tools, kitchen utensils, toiletries, local fruits and veggies, etc.

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3.  DAQ FRUTERIA:  I don’t have a photo of their store, but it is about 60 steps away from MEGA.  They have everything from vegan “carne” asada, pasta, beans, quinoa, organic/local fruits and veggies to soaps and shampoos.  And, there is a restaurant right next to them that serve yummy lentil burgers and awesome smoothies.

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lentil burgers from La Cieba (next to DAQ)

Here are some of the restaurants we went to:

1. 100% Natural

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100% Natural on 5th St

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Delicious mushroom ceviche at 100% Natural

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Vegan burger at 100% Natural

2.  BIO NATURAL:  We loved their falafel pita sandwiches and bbq tofu.
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3.  AH CACAO:  I love their hot chocolate!  And t even says VEGAN hot chocolate on their menu.

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VEGAN HOT CHOCOLATE at Ah Cacao.

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Vegan chocolate from Ah Cacao eaten with some delicious organic Goji Berries you can get at La Senda or Bio Natural.

 

4.  LA SENDA

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Eating some raw-vegan camote “cheesy” noodles.

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Raw-vegan berry banana ice-cream at La Senda.

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5.  MOYO on 5th Street

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They serve delicious soy yogurt!
I contacted MOYO to make sure they were vegan.

6.    CURRY OMM

Vegan food at Curry Omm

Vegan food at Curry Omm

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vegan dessert at Curry Omm
Delicious!

7.  LA FRUTA MADRE

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FRUSHI at La Fruta Madre

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8.  One of my favorite restaurants EVER (not in Playa del Carmen, but in Cancun), is VEGAN PLANET (please refer to my “raw vegan pizza” post).  They had awesome raw vegan dishes, desserts, candies, kombucha, clothing, nuts, and more!

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9.  We would also eat at random restaurants that would have meat-less beans, hot sauce, guacamole, tortillas and chips.

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At the beach club:
Chips, guacamole, beans, and carrot/habanero hot sauce (yellow dip in the middle).

TOURS:

Here are some pictures of the places we visited:

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COBA ruins

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TULUM ruins

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Chichen Itza

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Akumal

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Turtle in Akumal beach

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Ray in Akumal beach

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My daughter snorkeling in Akumal.

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Amazing Cenotes near Akumal

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My husband and child exploring.DSCF0496

Playa Paraiso

Playa Paraiso

Another cenote.

Another cenote.

On top of Coba

On top of Coba

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Cenote near Chichenitza

Cenote near Chichen Itza

I also want to add, one can never be too careful when using their ATM cards.   Someone had “skimmed” our card and stole $3,000 within just a couple of days.  Luckily, we got it all back through our bank.

Also, I wish tourists would watch THE COVE before going to the Riviera Mayas.  There seems to be a few dolphin shows out there.

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One of the last days before we went back to the U.S.
(walk after dinner)

Luckily, our trip was not dampened despite the whole “ATM card skimming” situation. 

We left in December but are planning to return very soon!  I can’t wait to go back!  I am in love with Mexico.  And, I am especially in love with Playa Del Carmen.

For more information on VEGAN-FRIENDLY places, you can also check out:  http://www.happycow.net/north_america/mexico/playa_del_carmen/

Vegan Quiche

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This is what we had for dinner last night!  I got the recipe from here:  http://allrecipes.com/recipe/tofu-quiche-with-broccoli/

I changed it up a bit because I didn’t have vegan parmesan and I also added some sweet peppers.  It was yummy!

Ingredients:

  • 1 vegan pie crust
  • 1 pound of broccoli (chopped)
  • 1 package of firm tofu
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 medium-sized red onion (chopped)
  • 4 small sweet peppers (chopped)
  • 1/2 cup of plain soy milk
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon of mustard
  • 3/4 teaspoon of salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon of red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon of dried parsley
  • 1/3 cup of nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 cup of Daiya “cheese”
  • pepper to taste

Directions:

  • Prepare pie crust according to directions and then set aside.  (I just bought a vegan pie crust from our local health food store)
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  • Steam the broccoli for about 5 minutes and set aside.
  • Heat the oil on another pan and add onions and sweet peppers.  Cook for a few minutes and set aside.
  • Throw the rest of the ingredients in a blender or food processor (tofu, garlic, red pepper flakes, parsley, salt, nutritional yeast, Daiya “cheese”, nutmeg, mustard and soy milk) and blend.
  • In a large bowl, mix the tofu blend, onions, peppers, and broccoli together.
  • Pour the mixture into your prepared pie crust.
  • Bake for 35 minutes
  • Let cool for 5 minutes before serving.

Original recipe here:  http://allrecipes.com/recipe/tofu-quiche-with-broccoli/

Enjoy!!!

Raw-vegan “Cheesy” Tacos

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I wanted to make a raw-vegan dish for lunch today, and because I was craving Mexican food, I decided to make walnut crumbles with carne-asada seasoning.  I used Romaine lettuce (as shown) and red cabbage for “taco shells” and both worked and tasted great (sorry I didn’t take pictures of the red-cabbage tacos).  I also tried to replicate the Wayfare “cheese” for our “cheese sauce”.  And, after playing around with all the ingredients for the taco “meat” and “cheese sauce” for an hour, I finally got it right.

I made 2 batches of the walnut crumbles because I made a lot of “cheese sauce” AND so we can also we can pig out on them again tomorrow.  :)

Ingredients for taco “meat”:

  • 2 cups of walnuts
  • 3 tablespoons of lemon or lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon of onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon of garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of paprika
  • 1 teaspoon of oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon of cumin
  • 1 teaspoon of chili powder
  • a handful of cilantro

Directions:  throw all ingredients into the food processor and “pulse” for about a minute (until it looks like “crumbles”).

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Lots of vitamins, minerals, and protein. It even has lots of B12!

Ingredients for cashew “cheese”:

  • 1.25 cups of cashews
  • 1.50 cups of water
  • 3 tablespoons of sesame seeds
  • 1 cup of nutritional yeast
  • 1 teaspoon of onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon of garlic powder
  • 5 tablespoons of pimento
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt

Directions:  throw all ingredients in your high-powered blender and blend for about a minute (until it is smooth like nacho cheese).

Taco shell and topping:

  • Romaine lettuce, red cabbage, or stemmed collard greens (for taco shells)
  • Diced tomatoes
  • Chopped red onions
  • Sliced avocado

After you are finished making the taco “meat” and “cheese sauce”, prepare your toppings and build your tacos.

IMG_7520Enjoy!

Buffalo Tempeh with Cashew “Ranch” Sauce

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This is a quick post.

I am seriously addicted to this stuff!  The tempeh is full of flavor, spicy, and it goes perfectly with the cashew “ranch”.  The best part is that it is healthy and baked!

Last month we had a vegan potluck at my house and my good friend, Brenna brought these over.  I was hooked after first bite!

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She gave me this link.  This is where she got the recipe:  http://www.guygonevegan.com/original-recipe-buffalo-tempeh-wings-with-ranch-dressing/

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OH SO YUMMY!

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Raw-Vegan White Pizza

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Served with lemons and topped off with some nutritional yeast.

My family and I spent a couple of months in the Riviera Maya and was pleasantly surprised at how VEGAN-FRIENDLY the area was.  There were lots of vegan restaurants and vegan-friendly stores.  Out of all the restaurants/stores, I would have to say that my favorite was this restaurant called VEGAN PLANET.  It is nice looking, it is  in a good area, it is very clean, and most importantly, their food was amazing!

We visited Vegan Planet a couple of times and ordered LOTS of food.  I was not at all disappointed by anything.  Everything we ordered was freshly made, delicious, and pretty healthy!

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This raw-vegan chocolate brownie topped off with raw-vegan ice cream at VEGAN PLANET was ridiculously delicious! Fluffy, chocolaty, and melt-in-your-mouth awesome!

My favorite dish there would have to be their RAW VEGAN WHITE PIZZA!  It was tangy, flavorful, filling, healthy, awesome, etc.  (you get the point).  It was very good!  And, ever since we left Mexico, I have been really craving it.  So I decided to try to replicate it for myself and so that I can share it with you all.

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Raw-vegan pizza from one of my favorite restaurants on the planet, VEGAN PLANET in Cancun, Mexico.
(with macadamia nut “cheese”)

Okay, so here is what I came up with.  It isn’t EXACTLY like the Vegan Planet’s “pizza”, but it tastes pretty close.

My daughter and I are pretty addicted to these things right now.

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White Sauce:

  • Juice of 1.5 lemons
  • 1/2 cup of raw walnuts
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 3 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 4  teaspoons of dried basil
  • 1.5 teaspoons of dried parsley
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • a pinch of thyme
  • salt to taste

Directions:  Throw everything in your high-speed blender and blend until smooth.

Macadamia Nut “Cheese”

  • 1 cup of raw macadamia nuts
  • 2 teaspoons of fresh oregano (chopped) 
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 2.5 tablespoons of nutritional yeast
  • 4 tablespoons of raw kombucha
  • salt to taste

Directions:  Throw everything in your high-speed blender and blend until smooth.  Place in a container, cover and let it ferment overnight.

Pizza Crust:

  • 2 cups of mixed raw nuts (I used 1/4 cup sunflower, 1/4 cup walnuts, 1/4 cup cashews, and 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds)
  • 1 cup of ground flax seeds
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1.5 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of basil
  • 1 tablespoon of thyme
  • 1 tablespoon of parsley
  • 1 tablespoon of Organic No-Salt Seasoning (for added flavor)  optional
  • 1 tsp of garlic powder
  • sea salt to taste

I got the recipe for the crust from The Rawtarian’s webpage (http://www.therawtarian.com/raw-pizza-crust-recipe), I just added a few things here and there.

Directions:

  1. Place all dried ingredients in your food processor and blend until you make a “flour”.
  2. Add water.
  3. Mix together.
  4. Make little “dough” balls.
  5. Place the dough balls in between 2 parchment papers and smash with a plate to make a “disc” (refer to picture below).
  6. Dehydrate on high (150 degrees) for 1.5 hours.
  7. Dehydrate for another 7 to 10 hours.
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My daughter helping me make the the crusts.

After your “cheese” has fermented overnight and your crust has dehydrated, you are now ready to make your pizza!

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This is how they looked like before I sprinkled the nutritional yeast over them.

  1. Spread white sauce on to the crust.
  2. Add whatever fruits/veggies you want (today I used tomatoes, avocado, arugula, and onions).
  3. Top it off with the macadamia nut cheese.
  4. Sprinkle your pizza with nutritional yeast (optional).

Creamy Ginger-Lime Salad Dressing

 

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I will have to say this is my favorite salad dressing at the moment.  It is super easy and delicious.  I especially love it over kale!

Ingredients:

  • fresh lime juice (3 limes)
  • 1/3 cup of organic, cold-pressed olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh ginger
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1/4 of a large green bell pepper
  • 4.5 tablespoons of nutritional yeast
  • 1/3 teaspoon of Celtic sea salt
  • pepper

Directions:  Blend all ingredients together.

Vegan Mac and Cheese

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A few weeks ago, my daughter’s friend (a six-year-old boy). told his mother that he wanted to stop eating meat because he doesn’t like the thought of eating animals.  Since then, he has been asking about vegetarianism/veganism.  Last week, I offered to make him dinner; his favorite dish, just veganized.  And, he told me he wanted me to make macaroni and cheese.

Just then, I remembered this awesome vegan restaurant in Atlanta called, Soul Vegetarian.  They make the best macaroni and cheese!  Even regular cheese-lovers and meat-eaters love the food at this place.

So today, that little boy came over and I made Soul Vegetarian’s vegan mac and cheese, baked Brussels sprouts, and fresh-baked whole wheat bread.

Original recipe:

-16 oz. whole wheat noodles

-4 cups soy milk

-3 tablespoons of yellow mustard

-10 cloves of garlic

-2 teaspoons of paprika

-1 oz. sea salt

-2 cups of nutritional yeast

-1.5 cups of soy bean vegetable oil

-parsley flakes for garnish

For directions on how to make the vegan mac and cheese, please click on this link:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yhulOmHr3Kc

I am happy to say that no one missed the cow-milk cheese.  This cruelty-free mac and cheese is super cheesy and delicious!

 

March 21, 2014  UPDATE:

Today, I made mac and cheese but altered Soul Vegetarian’s recipe a bit.  I reduced the amount of oil and salt then added raw wheat germ, cashews and milk.

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“Cheese”

-16 oz. whole wheat noodles

-4 and 2/3 cups soy milk (plain)

-3 tablespoons of yellow mustard

-10 cloves of garlic

-2 teaspoons of paprika

-4 teaspoons of sea salt

-2 cups of nutritional yeast

-4 tablespoons of olive oil

-parsley flakes and raw wheat germ for garnish (optional)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cook noodles and set aside.
  3. Throw all “cheese” ingredients in the blender, except for the raw wheat germ and parsley flakes, then blend.
  4. In a large bowl, mix the noodles and “cheese” together.
  5. Pour your mac and cheese into a casserole dish, pan, etc.
  6. Sprinkle raw wheat germ and parsley flakes on top.
  7. Bake for 45 minutes.