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Jamaican Pumpkin and Seitan Stew

Jamaican Pumpkin and Seitan Stew is a wonderful main dish. As the weather cools down, stews are so satisfying, and easy to throw together. Wondering what seitan is? It’s made out of wheat gluten, and it is a nutritional powerhouse: 16 grams of protein, per 3.5 oz, which is 25% of the US Daily reference intake requirement (pretty much the protein as meat, and a much healthier alternative). Another example to hit the point home: Seitan has 40% more protein than 2 eggs! Think about that when you’re looking to cut down on fat intake. For all my friends that are making the transition to a vegetarian diet,  seitan’s texture is very similar to meat, and take flavor so well. Find it in 8 0z packs in the cold section at your nearest health food store. I like The Eden Brand.  Enjoy the West Indian flavors of curry powder, fresh ginger, cinnamon, with a splash of coconut giving the stew a mellow, sweet spiciness that is irresistible. Serve this dish with my Caribbean Rice and Peas, and your taste buds will be rockin’ and rollin’ all through dinner.     Pumpkin and Seitan Stew 3 tablespoons good olive oil 2 lbs [...]

Vegan Sweet Potato and Cranberry Muffins

Perfect for breakfast or teatime, Vegan Sweet Potato and Cranberry Muffins are moist and naturally sweetened with agave nectar. Cinnamon, Madagascar cloves, and ginger are distinctly autumnal spices that warm the soul. I have never been much of a sun bunny, so each year I look forward to cooler days, wrapping up for overcast beach walks and misty hikes in Laurel Canyon. My Mother in Law, Judy hand knit a beautiful pair of fingerless gloves for my birthday recently (do I frame them or wear them Juds?), and I will wear them with pride on these days. Yes, I will also join the notorious tribe of L.A. girls that wear wintry scarves with a t-shirt, jeans, and a pair of Vans (or worse: flip flops) when it’s 50 degrees outside. That’s a Southern California winter for ya folks. I’ll be sporting my new fingerless gloves, and snacking on spiced sweet potato muffins.  Vegan Sweet Potato and Cranberry Muffins 1 1/2 cup baked sweet potatoes, mashed and cooled 3/4 cup almond milk (rice milk or organic soy milk also work well) 1/3 cup water 1/2 cup agave nectar 1/4 cup canola oil 2 cups organic unbleached flour (delicious alternative: 1 cup of whole wheat [...]

Omusubi

My life is incredibly busy at the moment. In addition to being a Mom, my husband and I are renovating a house (our job. construction is going on as I write. Even on a Sunday), a student (Contemporary Literature, Ethnic Literature, and Political Science), a food blogger, and I have been chosen to be a leader in my Buddhist district. We wear so many hats in life, its no wonder taking care of ourselves can fall by the wayside. The best thing to do is plan ahead, making something delicious at home to take with you, or risk spending big bucks eating out. There are so many cool glass containers and funky flasks at health food stores at the moment. Consider yourself an eco-minded recessionista. Here’s another nutritious “on the go” recipe. Omusubi means “riceball” in Japanese. Our omusubi today is a mixture of short grain brown rice, hijiki seaweed, diced carrots, umeboshi paste, and sprinkling of Furikake, wrapped in a sheet of nori. Omusubi is perfect for a quick and healthy snack, or enjoy it with hot or cold edamame and a cup of miso soup for a nourishing meal. You can eat it open, taco style, like the photo [...]

The Hippy Shake

If you’re in a rush, the Hippy Shake beats sugar-laden food bars any day of  the week. Just blend and pour into a flask, and drink it on your way to work. There are 7 anti-aging, high energy superfoods that will keep you going all the way until lunch. You can find these superfoods at your local health food store or online. Just google “superfoods.” There are a whole host of companies that sell them.Navitas Naturals sell high quality superfoods, where you can buy them all in one swoop. Buy them as you would spices. It’s only a teaspoon of this or a tablespoon of that, so you will have the ingredients for months. Store the cacao powder, cacao nibs, and hemp seeds in the fridge, and the rest can be stored in a cool, dry place on the shelf. Enjoy! The Hippie Shake 1 1/2 cup almond milk (rice milk, thai coconut water, hemp milk, or oat milk are great options) 1 banana 2 tablespoons cacao powder 1/2 teaspoon cacao nibs 1 tablespoon raw cashews 1 tablespoon unrefined coconut oil 2-3 pitted medjool dates 1 tablespoon goji berries 1 teaspoon hemp seeds 1 teaspon lucuma powder 1 tablesoon maca powder 1 [...]

Curried Chickpeas

I would like to start off this week by thanking Genie Gratto, the Food Editor of BlogHer, for featuring Food For Vitality. Genie, you have no idea how grateful I am for your support! I cook, write, and take photos for the pure love of it all, but heck, it’s nice to be noticed once in a while. As a new food blogger, I often wonder, “will anyone find me out there in the vast world of cyberspace?” I absolutely cherish each new Facebook “like” and am thankful for any comments that come through. Thanks again to Genie and the team at BlogHer for being so helpful and making me feel welcome. I simply cannot wait to meet you all at BlogHer 2012 in New York City. It’s going to be amazing! Hankering for a quick and easy Indian dish that is so authentic your friends will think you ordered a take away? Look no further. Whizz up the spices of India: Black peppercorn, cardamom, cinnamon stick, cloves, and cumin seeds into a powder, then quickly fry them with the chickpeas along with fresh ginger, red chili pepper, and turmeric. Serve this with steamed Basmati rice and salad, lime pickle [...]