Tag Archives: Terry Hope Romero

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Make a meal with complimentary colors? Yes please! I thought red and green might a smidge too easy, since red and green are found so easily in plants. But blue is practically impossible (and I find that orange is such a subjective color) that I went for yellow and purple. Sadly purple is kind-of a subjective color as well. I mean I find that that beets kind-of have a deep purple color, but some people will just say they look red. 

Okay I know, I’m stretching it! But the end results does look quite impressive?

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So what the heck is in my bowl? Well, clearly there is some brown rice, because I probably should be eating that right now more than white rice. Then I paired it with tandoori tofu and curried beets. I actually thought of using the recipe because of My Cat Loves Daiya, who made a batch of the tandoori tofu from Vegan Eats World cookbook. BTW she made quesadillas with them and they look AMAZING! Anyways, if you want to give this tofu a try, the recipe is available on Terry Hope Romero’s blog.

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But what did I make? Well, the curried beets were my brainchild. They are pretty easy to make, and a quick side dish to put together. The longest thing was to thinly slice the beets, but you can use machines to make it easier for you. Since the cooktime and clean up for this dish is pretty easy, it makes a perfect side dish. The garam masala and coconut milk really cuts into the earthiness of the beets for any of the haters out there ^__~

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As for nutrition? These guys are pretty awesome. Yeah sure, these numbers don’t seem impressive. I mean one thing to keep in mind is that I have the percentages set up for a pregnant woman (aka I need more of like everything) but if you look at the mg numbers you will find that get a good amount of bang for your buck. Especially for something that is just a side dish.

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I know it is only the second day of Vegan MOFO and I am taking a break from the prompts. I like using this blog sometimes as a way to remember things, so keeping up with some of my pregnancy posts is important to me. Granted, this post IS about vegan food, so it is still in the same spirit. It just doesn’t have the theme of the go-to-impressment meal. I won’t lie- you will be getting a preview of future Vegan MOFO posts. XD But let’s move on-

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As always I start my morning with a shake. Yup, I’m boring. I usually am so busy doing remaining dishes from the night before, and prepping my husband’s our lunches that I really like having quick shakes that I don’t need to think about. So this shake is one I featured before in my first and second WIAW posts. They turned out looking more brown looking. I guess it large depends on how much greens I happen to add that day. XD The photo looks extra pretty today since I was taking a photo for a Vegan MOFO prompt.

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Before heading to work I had to stop by Wegman’s to buy some peanut butter since we ran out. How will my husband live without his PB&J sandwiches?! XD So I figured I would pick up an almond milk latte as well. I am always surprised how much a latte will fill up my belly until lunch time. I figured I would take a photo of my “drink station.” Keeping my work area clean is SUPER important. Like 99% of the stuff we get at the frame shop isn’t worth much. Many things are digital photos or a $40-100 print. But some things are one of a kind- like needlepoints, old family photos, kid art. And now we are getting increasingly more and more expensive art, ranging from $1,000-80,000! No joke, the other day we got a call because a customer thought we lost his $80,000 print we framed, and I went white. I had no idea that piece was so expensive. Turns out he forgot that he brought it an appraiser to make sure it was authentic. Side note guys- if you think you have $80,000 print, get it appraised BEFORE getting it framed. They are most likely going to have to open it back up and reseal it. I know how many of my readers are sitting on expensive art ^__~

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Lunch rolled around 12:30, and I ate my cut apple and a wrap with crumbled pumpkin black bean burger, radish greens, carrot shavings, and some Just Ranch dressing. The wrap was okay, it was a little dry. I also ate a few handfuls of tortilla chips because my boss took them out while we were eating. How do people NOT eat chips when the bag is opened?

So I didn’t photograph the apple and chips (use your imagination guys). I also didn’t photograph the two rolls of smarties and one of the new Nut Filled Clif Bars. I actually had the Coconut Almond Butter, and it was pretty good. I am not sure how much of a fan I am of them. I think I will stick to the originals, but they are still worth the occasional splurge.

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Before work I took some photos of the Pumpkin Black Bean Burgers (will be posted tomorrow) so I figured I would wrap up one of them and eat it as a mid-day snack. It was actually a pretty nutritious snack- gots some extra beans, pumpkin, and radish greens! I added some roasted garlic hummus to the bun, but I wish I could of added more since it was a little dry… and cold. 

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Dinner is going to be featured in an upcoming Vegan MOFO, I wonder if anyone will be able to guess from the photo? It is kind-of a stretch for the prompt. XD I rarely make meals like this, but I know I should start getting use to it as I plan to have kids. It isn’t too hard to make three separate things, especially when you can just shove the tofu in the oven. I had a little brown rice, curried beets, and tandoori tofu from Vegan Eats World. I saw that My Cat Loves Daiya tried it out and it just looked so yummy I had to do the same. 

Then I wrapped up the night with a Pumpkin Spice Macaccino Cupcake. Again, something I will post on the blog for Vegan MOFO. I didn’t take a photo since I ate one of the first batches where I mixed in chocolate chips and had a crumb topping. The topping- uh…. melted. So they looked pretty nasty before I took any photos. So I made a second batch without those add ins. Baking is never perfect the first time right?

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So how did I do? Well, I ALWAYS point out, everyone is different, and needs different amount of calories. I am 8 1/2 months pregnant, so yeah, I’m eating a lot XD Just click the chart to enlarge it if you can’t read it. Out of all the days I think I hit the most of the nutritional goals. As always, the packaged goods aren’t very accurate, I mean the clif bar didn’t register most of the vitamins and minerals, which is a bummer since the regular clif bars usually show up. 

I know it looks like I ate A LOT of sugar, but I have my specs registered for 50 grams of sugar, the suggested amount. About half of the sugar that is being registered are naturally occurring from the banana, apple, beets, and carrot that I ate. Yeah, not the greatest that I have doubled the amount from smarties, clif bar, latte, and a muffin/cupcake. And let’s not forget all those sneaky added in sugars in dressings and breads and such.

I can’t believe I am getting to the end. There might be ONE more of these What I Ate Wednesdays before the baby comes. And if I try hard, I might do a few more to show the food recommendations for breast feeding. The good news is that I can freak out a lot less about iron! YEY!

What are you guys eating today?


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It is no secret I really like Terry Hope Romero and Isa Chandra Moskowitz. Sometimes I feel like the vegan world is crammed with feel good Californians, so having some snarky New Yorkers with killer food makes me happy. Since Terry and Isa both started to write their own cookbooks, it has always been interesting to see how each person cooks. Romero seems to write about specific topics- whether it is a specific world cuisine, salads, or in this case- protein.

Photos

There isn’t a photo for every recipe, but then again, do we need that? Answer- probably not. I mean we don’t need to see what a smoothie bowl looks like more than once. But the photos that are in the book are beautiful and fun. Instead of JUST featuring the recipe, the photographer arranges the recipe as if it is just being arranged in the kitchen.

The photographer worked with Terry Hope Romero for her sister book Salad Samurai and for Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s book Isa Does It. As I praised with Isa Does It, the photos look as if you walked into a working kitchen, but somehow with the perfect lighting and the perfect amount of mess. Although the photos are clearly staged, it does give the recipes a sense of approachability that encourages people to make them everyday.

Set-up

Romero takes a quick approach, giving you an introduction and some protein basics. This is probably a good thing since she uses protein powders in so many of the recipes. She talks about the basic different powders and why she chooses to use one in a certain recipe and not another. I am a little disappointed that she doesn’t include soy protein isolate, or at least explain why she doesn’t like it. It use to be THE protein for vegans.

She then touches base for other common ingredients she uses and talks about some cooking basics. Most people can skip this section but if you never cooked brown rice before? Well Romero has you covered so you don’t have to pause that podcast to google “how to cook brown rice.” Heck I even used her coconut bacon recipe in that section.

Recipe categories? I liked how she divided them up: Unstoppable Smoothie Bowls and Granola; Stealthy Protein Pancakes, Waffles, and Much Much More; The Protein Bakery Basket; Super Toast: Savory and Sweet; Protein-Packed Patties and Burgers; Better Than Ever Burger Bowls; Grain and Noodles Bowls; and finally Sweet Treats.

Writing

As with all Terry Hope Romero’s book, I am always impressed with her writing. It is always open and very relatable. She more or less mocks the pseudo-enlightened statements that are the so common ever since M.F.K. Fisher. She also has no visible typos or issues with the recipes- oh wait except for one. Her chickpea eggplant hemp veggieballs have no hemp in them. It bothers me endlessly. But truthfully, this is the least amount of issues I’ve seen in a cookbook where there is always one or two ingredients out of place or letters missing.

Overview

It seems there is a divide in the vegan world over this cookbook. A lot of vegans complain that it feeds into the “protein complex” that America has. Which is sad because Terry Hope Romero addresses this in the introduction. She, for the most part, wrote this book for weight lifting vegans. And I have to say, I think this is super helpful. I know Alexa would love this book since she is a big crossfitter, and is a flexitarian. She would like to avoid dairy and eggs, but when you are surrounded by a world that loves the paleo diet, it is hard to learn about vegan protein. This book would be perfect for her. Terry’s recipes recommends cheap protein powder, aka not to use Vega (though some recipes need that, like the smoothie bowls)

What I also love about this book is that there are lots of tips to save your recipes. Many people don’t live with their significant other, or eat the same thing as each other. So I hear lots of vegans say that they can’t make a full recipe because it will go to waste. Romero gives lots of notes on which recipes you can double and freeze. This has been nice for me since I am expecting so I am stocking my freezer up for sleep deprived post baby me. 

Right now, protein isn’t on my list of things to pay attention to. I’ve been getting what I need, and probably should be eating more whole grains (as a pregnant lady that is) But once I deliver I probably going to dive into this cookbook. I find that this has lots of recipes that are very warming, and don’t use as much fresh produce. So testing out these recipes while I have my CSA is a little bit of a struggle.

Otherwise I love this book. I will be using it a bunch in the future. If anyone is a vegan weight lifter, even with light weights, they will probably want to pick up this book. Terry Hope Romero uses protein powder, yes, but I think she varies the types making it friendly for lots of vegans. I am still a little sad she ignore soy protein, but hey, she likes to use tofu so that’s okay.

Wanna Skip the Protein Powder?

As mentioned above, some of the biggest critizism has been how much the recipes use protein powders. I have to point out a few things if people want to save some cash. One tip would be to skip the hemp protein powder and only get the rice and pea protein powders. I got NOW protein, which isn’t the best for smoothies, but works well with these recipes. You can get most of the rice and pea proteins for $6-10 per pound depending on the size you buy. I super recommend getting these for the baked goods and burgers as the protein powders help with binding (think of eggs and how their proteins work in traditional baked goods)

Wanna skip protein powders overall? Well, some of the recipes aren’t going to be high in protein, but you can do almost everything in the first chapter with the smoothies bowls. But there is almost always a non-protein powder recipe in each chapter. Quick way to find them is to look at the savory recipes over sweet. So you want to check out the end of Stealthy Protein Pancakes, Waffles, and Much Much More, and almost all recipes are protein powder free in Super Toast: Savory and Sweet and Grain and Noodles Bowls.

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With the Christmas season here, there is a good chance you are making cookies. And I thought it would be a good time to try out a bunch of recipes from Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar. It is a classic vegan cookbook that covers the topic of… well… cookies. It goes a little further covering bar cookies, brownies, and biscotti. Some of the cookies I made for christmas, and some I’ve made in the past for daily eating.

Photos

There are lots of photos in this book, I would say about half of the cookies have a photo. All are well lit and beautifully photographed. All the cookie photos are places on brightly colored backgrounds, making the photos very kid friendly (which let’s face it, we all remember the joys of cookies as kids.) There are enough photos to spark the reader in making new cookies, but I do have a problem. There are a few cookies that are nicely clipped to have white backgrounds and randomly show up in recipes. For example the Mexican Snickerdoodles show up in the recipe for Chocolate Marmalade Sandwich Cookies. At first I found this confusing, until I noticed the same cookies photo appearing over and over again.

Set-up

The book starts with some cookie basics which truthfully I skipped. I started to read it, but it can be painfully boring to the seasoned vegan baker. BUT it is filled with important information to a new baker. For example, I think my husband could read it and feel more confident about the different flours out there. There is even a section that have various troubleshooting situations. So if your cookie doesn’t turn out right, you can fix it.

They divide the cookies up by drop cookies, wholesome cookies, bar cookies, fancy cookies, and roll and cut cookies. When flipping through, it is easy to go from one section to another without ever noticing. I think this is true for all of their baking books. I am not really sure if I care too much about having “sections” or not. 

Writing

The book has the usual fun writing styles of Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero. They really make you feel comfortable with baking, and make veganism seem less exclusive. They also make you smile for the “fancier” cookies, they aren’t that hard, you got this. The directions are easy and to the point, making it easy to tell if I need a stand up/hand mixer or just a big wooden spoon.

Overview

I love this cookbook. All these cookies have been winners, though I wish or rather could see this book being much bigger. Compared to the vegan pie in the sky and the cupcake take over the world, I feel like there are SO many types of cookies that I wish this book could be just a little bit bigger. There seem to be a large amount of drop cookies that used oatmeal. There also aren’t many of the classic Christmas cookies that you might find with Christmas tree decorations, or other classic cookies I grew up with. I know they can’t cover ALL cookies ever made, but I feel like there are so many that aren’t easily interchangeable like how a cupcake can be paired with different frosting to make a new flavor.

But everyone loves the cookies I’ve been making, and there are so many new inventive flavors. Carrot cake cookies? Grapefruit? Tahini lime? And out of all the cookbooks there are the least amount of “weird” vegan ingredients. Meaning I would feel pretty comfortable giving these recipes to an omni baker, who wouldn’t have to go out and buy new ingredients.

Below are all the cookies I made from the book- which is a lot. They are so good, and I recommend buying this book for any vegan who needs to make cookies from time to time.

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Some of the problems with Christmas shopping as a vegan you kind-of get stuck with the issue of how “vegan” does my gift need to be? I am always grappled with the problem of balancing ethics with what other people want. If my sister wants leather shoes, do I get it? What about a BBQ cookbook? I don’t try and SELL veganism with my gifts, but I try and make sure all my gifts are vegan themselves.

Well, I am working on a gift giving guide, and this time I focus on BOOKS! Some books are pretty good for people who aren’t vegan themselves, but may have a little bit of a vegan agenda to them. Hopefully you might end up solving one of your gift problems with this list.

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Do Unto Animals – $14

This is definitely the book for your animal loving friend. When I first heard of this book I knew I had to own it. Your friend might not be vegan, but maybe they work at a stable, take of animals on a farm, volunteer at a shelter, work at a zoo, or is that crazy cat lady. Hopefully these passionate passages will inspire your friend to get rid of meat and dairy from their diet.

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Vegan Tacos – $16

I recommended this book since it actually made it on my sister’s wishlist on it’s own! This is a great way to get people to go vegan since it provides a hearty medium to eat vegan food (a taco shell!). Let’s face it, when people first go vegan, they don’t know what to eat, so they think salads. These tacos are fairly omni-friendly, though there are some recipes for fake meats and cheeses.

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The Taco Cleanse – $13

Got a friend who won’t stop dieting? Well hopefully most of my readers know that diet culture is a sham, and that’s why I LOVE this cookbook poking some fun at this whole detox culture trying to hide healthy with loosing weight. All recipes are vegan and are great for your body. And I can assure you this will be a much more fun detox than a juicing cleanse.

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Eating Animals – $12

Do you have a friend who is waffling between being vegetarian or eating meat? Or maybe your friend has taken up the habit of buying only organic, free-range, ethically killed meat? Well Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer might be the book for them. Jonathan Safran Foer explores the meat industry, but not as much of factory farming as the smaller farms that are trying to treat animals well. It is a great book about veganism, but is written by a fiction writer, giving people the chance to read the book openly.

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Salad Samurai – $13

Omni friends and family will love this book. I originally got this book for my mother who said she wanted to eat more veggies. Being the stealthy vegan me, I got this book thinking “doesn’t have vegan in the title, and Terry Hope Romero is a great cook.” At the time my Mother lived with my sister while relocating for jobs, and my sister liked the book so much she proceeded to buy it for herself. So yeah, Terry knows how to get people pumped for salads.

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The Drunken Botanist – $14

I like to drink, I will admit that. But it actually took awhile for me to get into cocktails, it is so confusing and many places make drinks that taste more sugar than booze. The Drunken Botanist explores cocktails at their root ingredients- plants. Beer, wine, vodka, bourbon, and booze in general doesn’t come off a vegan thing, but this book makes you realize how plants shape our drinks.

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Vegan Richa’s Indian Kitchen – $14

Another cookbook for omni-people. We all know that the vegan lifestyle seems to heavily base itself on the food. It will make a bigger impact overall. But Western cuisine isn’t very vegan friendly. But getting Vegan Richa’s Indian Kitchen helps the transition. For starters, Indian cuisine can be very vegan friendly to begin with, so newbies won’t be weirded out. The food is also packed with flavors, are super easy, and doesn’t have a crazy ingredients list.

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Babe the Gallant Pig – $7

Got some grandkids? Nieces or nephews? Want to slowly brainwash them to join the vegan army? Well you can start with Babe the pig. I remember reading this in grade school and talking about how the author conveys a vegetarian message. You could buy the movie, but kids need to read more anyways, right?

 


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I start this review on a sad note- my book fell apart. No I didn’t love the book to death, though I do really love it. What did the book in was the binding was crappy construction. This makes me sad since this has NEVER happened to me before. Sure once or twice I might of had a 10 year old cookbook fall apart on me. But never a new one. What makes it more frustrating is that the publishing company has always made solid cookbooks.

And when I say the book was falling apart, I mean the pages were falling out of the glue binding. This usually happens over years, when the glue dries up. So I bought a binder and put each page into protector sleeves. I never really liked the covers so in the end I have the plus of having a sparkly and teal new book.

Am I saying YOUR future copy will fall apart? No. Probably not. As I mentioned before, I have gotten many books from the same publishing company that are very sturdy. But I probably will recommend investing in the hard cover version of the book. In the end it will last you longer anyways. With that gripe out of the way, please read all the GREAT and WONDERFUL things I have to say about Terry Hope Romero’s book.

Spoiler Alert: I think it is staple in a vegan bookshelf

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Earrings: Target | Shirt: Monteau via Modcloth | Skirt: Downeast via Modcloth | Tights: Target | Shoes: Rocket Dog via DSW

I think my blog should be called “The girl who shops at Modcloth” because it is scary how much stuff I get there. Sometimes I make delusional memories of buying my clothing from Ruche, but I seriously only made one order from there. Eek. Truth is that I like the shoppers that Modcloth has, they have great quality for whatever price range.

This outfit was for Easter dinner. I wanted something that was comfy since my husband and I were driving all the way to Long Island to visit my Grandma. To put in perspective how annoying this is, you have to know New Jersey and New York culture. Long Island is next to Manhattan (what people think of when they say New York City), and is easy to see on a map of New York state. The island is where Brooklyn and Queens are located, but if you hear someone from New York or New Jersey refer to Long Island, they mean everything east of New York City on the island. Part of the distancing of New York City and the Long Island name is probably because Long Island is so freakin long. I mean it is the same length as Connecticut state. That means it takes a long time to and from the island. Commuting to New York City from Long Island could take just as long as some of the suburbs in New Jersey. And it is one of most densely populated islands in the world, making everything congested. Probably half the time I spent in the car was just trying to get through the island. Luckily she lives in Amityville, which is less than halfway in the island. And yes, it is the town in The Amityville Horror.

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But if Long Island cultural perspective is boring to you, maybe cookies and cauliflower won’t be. I had a feeling no one would of made me a vegetarian dish, so made I made a side dish of roasted cauliflower, chickpeas, and olives. I remember making this recipe in the past so I figured I would give it a go. I also knew I should make these yummy carrot cake cookies.

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