Who’s thirsty for tea that tastes good and does good!? I am always so excited to find a quality product that is doing so much good in the word. I hope you will check out this post and support a brand that is doing so many amazing things.Read More
I love food. I love Mexican food. I love tacos. I LOVE nachos. I love nachos so much that I eat them multiple times a week. I eat them for lunch, dinner, second dinner… And I have no shame because my queso is a made from potatoes and carrots. Be sure to check out this post.Read More
And by wrap, I mean lettuce wraps, duh. I'm hungry all the time. Like all the time. Every damn thing I eat gives me some level of heart burn and acid reflux, but magically this meal gives me none of the painful affliction. Also, it tastes good as hell!! I'm a huge fan of all things Minimalist Baker and I love all of her spring roll recipes, but on this particular night I was too lazy to deal with rice wrappers. I thought, ya know what, this would taste delish in some yummy butter lettuce. And it was. It was delish. Here's whatcha gotta do to make these tasty suckers. Step one. Preheat oven to 450. Place sliced, pressed tofu on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet. Cook for 25-20 minutes. This is a Minimalist Baker technique and it turns out crispy and perfect. You would swear that it was deep fried.
Step two. Cook up thin rice noodles via package instructions. Drain and set aside to cool.
Step four. Pull off lettuce leaves, wash, and dry.
Step five. Make THIS dipping sauce. I make a ton and use a tablespoon or so to toss the crispy tofu in just to coat.
Hello loves!! We are back with another installation of Feeding Rocco! Hooray!! I love sharing all the fun, and sometimes not so fun, things we feed our mostly vegan toddler. With the exception of organic eggs and some fish we are raising this boy as a mostly plant-based nugget. I know a lot of people wonder if I'm some crazy controlling food mom and I guess the answer is yes… to a certain extent… At this stage in the game I feel I'm allowed to be! My 18 month old doesn't have the control over what's being cooked and served in our household, just the same as the toddler of a meat eating family! He only knows what Mommy and Babbo feed him. Now I know this will change eventually and he will possibly want to try non-vegan foods and all I can do is support him and help him make well informed choices about his food. But if you're asking if I'm gonna ever get him a happy meal the answer is a resounding hell no! But at some point, if he wants some birthday cake or to try meat I will do my best to keep my emotions out of it. On to the food, you will notice there was a theme going on this week: starch and peas. He likes what he likes.Jimbo's Macaroni Salad with added Peas. This pasta salad was meant for The Captain, Rocco ate all of it for lunch! I added some extra peas and he went to town.
Mashed Potatoes with Gravy, Green Beans, and Corn. Shockingly he ate most of this! Towards the end the green beans were more fun to throw, but he loved the mashed potatoes and corn mixed together, just like his Nana! Note: I tried to give him leftovers the next day for lunch and he wanted nothing to do with it. Oy vey!
Daiya Mac n Cheese with Peas: My personal favorite boxed vegan mac n cheese. Tastes a bit like old school Velveeta without all the dairy and questionable ingredients. Loaded it up with frozen peas and boom. Dinner.
Fried Rice with Peas and Avocado: Rocco probably eats this a few times a week. Kid LOVES rice. So we fry it up with a touch of coconut oil and a splash of tamari, mix in frozen peas, and top with avocado. Sometimes I'll put in some onion chopped finely.
Annie's Mac n Cheese with Peas: This is my least favorite boxed mac n cheese, luckily Rocco could care less. It's a carb covered in a sauce. That's all he needs to know. Again, more peas. I usually alternate with broccoli, but right before the move I didn't want to buy more groceries, so using what I had!!
2 Eggs Over-Hard, Avocado, and Tortillas: At our favorite restaurant in SD, Coffee Cup! We both got the same order every time and our favorite waitress knew it by heart. Rocco kills this breakfast which is a common one at home too! Sometimes instead of tortillas, I will make him toast with a bit of coconut oil on it!! But he usually always starts the day with a banana as soon as he wakes up, I swear this kid is part monkey! We buy bananas by the case load!
Well, there you have it folks another week of Feeding Rocco! Stay tuned for more posts as we really test what this kid will eat, it's amazing what, even in a few weeks, can develop in a child's palate and what they are willing to try!
Fail #1. I forgot Dijon mustard and The Captain had to do a 9 o'clock grocery run. He got himself a boozy reward, so don't feel bad for him.
Fail #2. As I gathered ingredients on Easter Sunday I realized I had forgotten THE most major ingredient when making hummus. Chickpeas. I forgot the mother flippin garbanzo beans. What. The. Crap. I did, however, have a can of great northern beans, so I crossed my fingers that they would work.
Fail #3. I completely misread didn't read the instructions for the hummus at all... I threw everything in my vitamix and started blending. I wasn't supposed to add everything. The green onion were supposed to be mixed in after the hummus was smooth.
Fail #4. I added water too quickly after I got impatient adding a tablespoons at a time and I ended up with white bean hummus soup. COME. ON.
Sooooo I went and sat on the couch. Maybe I cried a little, so what?! I'm pregnant I cry 2-3 times an hour. Hormones. Am I right??? And I thought "okay how can I turn this around??" I had baby red potatoes and a delicious white bean green onion "Hummus" with a dressing-like consistency... And it came to me. Potato Salad. Boom.
So here's what I did oh-so-wrong, but tastes oh-so-right!
1 (15-ounce) can no-salt-added white beans, drained and rinsed
2 large cloves garlic
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup chopped green onions (4 to 5)
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
Zest of 1 lemon
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
6 tablespoons water
Throw it all in the blender until pretty and smooth.
12 small red potatoes, diced
Pinch of smoked paprika, for garnish
1 green onion, finely sliced, for garnish
Boil potatoes until fork tender and drain. Once dry, mix with hummus and garnish with paprika and green onion!
Hope you enjoy my fail!!!!!
As a mom, I'm amazed how obsessed I am with what I feed my kid. I guess it shouldn't come as a surprise as I'm obsessed with what I feed myself! But when researching meals for a mostly vegan [with the exception of organic eggs and some fish] toddler the information out in the world isn't overwhelming. I've had to strip it back to what I know about food and what it's important nutrition for a child, or any human really, to eat! I know people have so many questions on the matter, but I assure you it is a healthy diet for a growing kiddo as well as doctor approved. If you ever have any questions I'd be happy to answer them for you!! But here's a list of some of the things we feed Rocco. Veggie Calzone. Filled with chopped spinach, onions, red bell peppers and mushrooms. We dip it it marinara sauce and he devours it!! Seriously, he ate the whole thing. **Tip: Leafy greens are not the easiest thing for a little to chew up, so we prefer organic frozen chopped spinach which we simply defrost in use in calzones, soups, chili, etc and it's loads easier for the kiddos to eat. I also dump frozen spinach into fruit smoothies**
Whole Foods Sesame Tofu, Beet Salad, Back to Nature Wheat Crackers, and Trader Joes Edamame Hummus: This was a snack for me, that ended up being a snack for Rocco. I ate all the beet salad and he ate everything else.
Whole Wheat Elbow Macaroni in Marinara with Spinach and Veggie Meatballs and Nutritional Yeast. Rocco will eat anything if it's covered in red sauce! This is the most basic of meals. We add the nutritional yeast for a pop of b-12.
Veggie Patty with Organic Ketchup and Whole Wheat Pita with Hummus. The Patty was iffy, he ate about 1/3 of it and threw the rest on the ground. He is obsessed with hummus and pita and literally ate 2 pitas.
Native Foods Mac n Cheese Kids Meal with Steamed Zucchini. I'm missing Cali pretty fiercely because this was the easiest quick meal. I would cut up the steamed veggies and put them in the mac n cheese. He tears through this like a boss.
For those who are wondering, Roc drinks unsweetened, unflavored almond milk. I look for the cleanest option I can find, Silk brand is usually our go-to. Other than that he drinks water and on occasion raw coconut water cut with regular water. He absolutely loves it!!!
I hope you enjoyed this post! Again, if you have any questions please ask! I'm not a doctor or a food expert, but I do know a bit about being a healthy plant-based momma! I am passionate about raising a mostly vegan baby, stay tuned for more Feeding Rocco!
So here it is folks… My giant list of all things food in San Diego! The Captain and I are passionate about food and we pride ourselves on being the people you text when you are looking for a new spot to eat! Note: I should say I am a vegan, so every single restaurant on the list, while it might not be a vegan establishment, does offer vegan options! But I assure you, this is not just a list for veggies!!! In fact, out of the 26 spots listed, only 5 are entirely vegan or plant based! Meat eaters, rejoice! I have been compiling this list for weeks!! I am actually salivating after editing this post… I need some tacos… or noodles… or pizza… or falafel… or sheesh, I don't know, for love of GOD GET ME SOME FOOD! Best Coffee Drinks: Cafe Gratitude
Weird answer, I know, but the coffee beverages at CG are among the most original and delicious I’ve ever tried. Their Mocha!? Shut. Your. Face. Their teas and other libations are equally tasty!!
Best Breakfast: Coffee Cup
Not only is the best breakfast in San Diego, but also my favorite restaurant. The rosemary potatoes will change your life. I order the Papas Loco, no diary, add tofu, with corn tortillas. EVERY. TIME. I ate here the day I went into labor and I’m pretty sure it was the jalapeños that did the trick... We eat here... A LOT. Needless to say, the servers have my order memorized and I love them and I will miss them.
Best Pancakes: Moncai Vegan
These pancakes will change your life. Change it. The Captain stands firm that these are the BEST pancakes he's ever eaten in his life!! HIS ENTIRE LIFE!!! You non-vegans will be like WHAT THE HELL!?! I don't know how it's possible to get such giant, fluffy pancakes with no milk or eggs… I don't know how the chef does it, but he does and it is spectacular.
Best Vegan Breakfast: OB's People Co-op
Not only is this the best value in town, these biscuits and gravy are the things dreams are made of! With an entirely vegetarian market beneath, this small kitchen whips up some tasty and simple food that will leave you satisfied and happy! I wish I lived closer to it because I would eat there daily… seriously, I'd do it.
Best Sushi: Ebisu Sushi Lounge
I love this place. We found this when we first moved out because they had a small, but interesting vegan sushi list, but we quickly became regulars. Their fish is always fresh and prepared in unique ways! The place is rarely packed, but always buzzing and they serve food way past your bed time. [special shout out to Little Tokyo in Carmel Mountain, this place makes me happy. Nothing super special, but it's yummy]
Best Cocktails: WhisknLadle
Fancy and unique cocktails in a fancy and unique setting. Boom.
Best Chinese: Golden City
So after years of looking for a decent Chinese restaurant we stumbled upon Golden City and it is authentic and delish! With a completely separate veggie menu, it was a clear winner for me! Their salted garlic string beans are a thing of beauty!! Note: the portions are MASSIVE and definitely for sharing!
Best Döner: The Kebab Shop
Now, maybe you are thinking, come again!?! But if you have never had a döner you are in for quite a thrill! It's like a Mediterranean burrito and it tastes like heaven! I order the falafel diner, no garlic sauce, add spicy hummus, add fries
or rice depending on my mood. [3/19/18 I've been informed that the rice is loaded with butter. True Vegans, skip the rice!] The wrap is soft, almost like a thin naan bread… It is delicious! There are now locations all over San Diego, so no excuses get thee to The Kebab Shop!
Best Salad: NaPizza
The superfood me salad with tahini dressing is literally a thing of the gods!! Their pizza and [always vegan] soup are both magic, but I don't stray from my favorite salad! With locations in Little Italy, Hillcrest, and 4S you are covered!
Cafe Gratitude makes the list twice. I've eaten at the LA eatery a handful of times and at the recently opened San Diego locale 23,293,090 times. Slight exeggeration. I love love love everything on the menu. It's vegan plant based goodness and I'm gonna miss them like WHOA. And then there's Trilogy, a newer find, located in La Jolla on a rooftop with angels and fairies. OR flying aerobatic yogis. Close enough. The menu is small, but heavenly. I love their buckwheat crepes and the nachos!! OH THE NACHOS!!! Both of these spots are winners, for vegans and non-vegans alike!
Best Thai: Amarin Thai
My buddy Christina took me to this restaurant years ago and I fell... hard. Their Tom Yum Soup is AMAZING. They have an entire separate veggie menu that’s even fish sauce free! And good news North County, Siam Nara in Mira Mesa and Nok in Scripps Ranch are pretty much the same menu from owner Suree! Winning.
So Luigi's was an early find, after watching a San Diego episode of triple D Guy Fieri swore he'd eat it off of a flip flop, we had to try it. To my delight, I found out that they will sub vegan cheese and even make vegan calzones. The calzones are AH-mazing. But even more surprising is their cheese-less salad pizza. This pizza is the bomb. And dude, all of their cheesy pizzas look amazing!! Oh, oh and when I was very pregnant and wanted to get another slice, the so sweet pizza maker gave me a slice on the house. Two thumbs up. A more recent find is San Diego Brewing! This spot has a crazy amount of vegan offerings along side all of your typical pub grub. They have vegan hot wings AND vegan pizza!!! Who knew!? It is the lightest crust and I just can't say enough good things. The marinara is delish and the toppings are fresh. It's so yummy.
Best Italian: Bencotto
Yummy, fresh Italian food in the chicest building. I love this place. Their arrabbiata sauce and zucchini soup really make me happy. A newbie that I’ve only tried twice is Civico1845, but it is really shaping up to be a winner! An entire authentic vegan menu, um dreams coming true.
Best Indian: Delhi Kitchen
This is a hole in the wall if ever there was one, but Delhi Kitchen in Carmel Mountain is a killer find! It's super inexpensive and the family who runs it is so nice!! Their Chana Masala is spicy, full of flavor, and oh-so-good.
Best Ramen: Underbelly
Holy. Giant. Bowls. of. Soup. Batman. This spot is legit. They now have 2 locations, but if you can try out the original in Lil Italy it is totally worth it for the experience. The veggie ramen with truffle oil is lip smacking good!
Best Tacos: Don Carlos Taco Shop
One of the first joints we found when arriving in San Diego. Don Carlos is a hole in the wall if ever there was one! The owner is full of personality and with a tag line like “what would Jesus eat?” this place has to rock! And with multiple vegan options this joint is sure to please. We used to pick up food and bring it to the cliffs and watch the sunset with the rich people! Highly suggest it!!
Best Frozen Yogurt: Paradise Yogurt
Best vegan yogurt ever!!! They always have at least 2 vegan flavors and it constantly rotates. Their toppings are genius and they have the chillest employees. Love this spot.
Best Vegan Junk Food: Veggie Grill
The Buffalo Bomber has comforted me many, many a night... or day... or mid-morning. I ate here, nearly, twice a week when I was pregnant. The whole menu is awesome. And I'm gonna tell you right now, you will be surprised that vegan "chicken" tastes, well, pretty much like chicken!
Best Spot for a Group who can't Decide: True Foods
This is the perfect restaurant for a group of folks who just can't get their shit together. It's deceptively healthy, but will please a variety of palates! You can get a bison burger, a seasonal squash pizza[amazing], or [my favorite] the Mediterranean chopped salad. There's an option for the gluten intolerant, vegan, or meat eater in your group. And on top of all of those reasons, simply put, it's a delish and thoughtful menu!
Best Meal with a View: Cordiano Winery
Our amazing neighbors suggested this spot a few years ago and we have been frequent visitors ever since. It's nestled atop some impressive hills in Escondido, but you feel like you are in another world. The Italian owners are the sweetest and their pizza is out of control yummy! The wine is okay, but what you are really there for is the view! I
could have sat there for hours!
Best Beach Front: Ki's Restaurant at the Beach
I love this spot in Cardiff. It's the utmost in chill dining spots! We love to go for breakfast and I just love all of their healthy options and there is nothing that can beat the view!!
Best Date Night Spot: Alexanders on 30th
Now there isn't much for a vegan to eat, but the few dishes you can have are totally delish and worth it for the wonderful and sexy atmosphere! It just feels… romantic!? The truffle mac n cheese is a favorite among my friends!
Best Brewery: Ballast Point
We’ve been to a few breweries and this is both mine and The Captain’s favorite. It’s not as touristy as Stone, but is on the larger scale. But with a super tasty menu, DELICIOUS beer, and a beautiful locale. It’s a winner.
Well hello there! Nice to see you! I’ve missed our little chats. Over the past 2 months I’ve spent a little a lot of time focusing on what’s important and
less no time blogging. Don’t you worry I’ve written some hella brooding and serious mommy posts that I may or may not one day share with you all. Cue unbridled excitement. Calm your pits, Becca, I probably won't… I’ve also been working on a little, nay, huge project with a few of my favorite people, can’t wait to share that with you soon! Oh yeah, and we are moving. 2 thumbs down. But mostly, I’ve been watching Rocco grow and learn and eat and sleep through the night!!! #WINNING So after many a disappearing acts, I’m back. With cake. Yes, that’s right. This sugar free health nut is back WITH CUPCAKES. A few months ago I met the lovely Cori Larsen of Heaven Cupcake at a baking lesson and I watched her make beautiful fluffy cupcakes that I couldn't eat. I was, of course, filled with sadness. We decided to have a cupcake making party and try our hand at vegan baking. We all know I'm not a baker, which Cori, a seasoned Cupcake Wars pro, can attest to but we basically filled in vegan ingredients to her perfectly delicious recipe and we arrived at a kid-approved and man-approved finished product. I call that a win. Check out our recipe!!!!! Makes 12 regular or 24 mini cupcakes.
[Cori prefers mini cupcakes, perfectly pop-able]
2.5 cups of flour
1.5 cups of sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons salt
1 1/3 cup oil
1 teaspoon vinegar
1 cup almond milk
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 teaspoons egg replacer mixed with 4 tablespoons warm water [enerG brand is the bomb]
Preheat oven to 355. Mix dry ingredients and then wet ingredients in a separate bowl. Cori is a HUGE fan of her Kitchen Aid mixer, so if you have one bust that puppy out and slowly pour the wet to the dry ingredients until well combined. Don't over mix!!!! Then [using a tiny ice cream scoop, genius!] fill the lined tin and pop in the oven for 15-18 minutes rotating the pan around 6 minutes. See!? The brilliant tips keep coming.
Our attempt to recreate her famous cream cheese frosting with vegan cream cheese was sad… I didn't think it tasted awful, but it was a pretty yuck texture, so we opted for a basic buttercream. Cori googled a few Food.com recipes and we came up with this.
Vegan Buttercream | 2 ways
4 ounces Earth Balance, softened
3 tablespoons almond milk
1 cup confectioners sugar [more if you like it super sweet, I do not]
1 teaspoon vanilla
[For a special something, something add a pinch o cinnamon and a splash of almond extract]
[Optional] 1 tablespoon of cocoa powder! We added it after we iced half of the cupcakes with the vanilla. I personally LOVE the chocolate/vanilla swirl!
Cream all ingredients together with a stand or hand mixer. To make your cupcakes look oh-so-pretty use a frosting bag and a star tip to instantly elevate your creations to PROFESH levels. It also doesn't hurt to strategically place your sprinkles… That's not at all what we did… Okay, it totally is.
As promised, here's my own little take on the lentil sloppy joe! I have been craving these suckers big time which is super weird because not only have I never had one, I thought they looked disgusting when I was a kid. I mean, have you ever seen It Takes Two!?!? They are so messy and ground beef is the worst… But alas, while cray sloppy [hardy har har] they were also quite delicious. I was going to make everything from scratch via this recipe until I realized ain't no body got time for that, so here' s my super easy recipe. [Sloppy Joe Innards]
1 cup red lentils
3 cups water
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 teaspoon of dry mustard, garlic powder, and salt
1 tablespoon brown sugar, optional [my sauce was a bit tart, so I wanted the sweetness]
1.5 cups of your favorite bbq sauce
Start with the onions and red peppers on medium heat in a dutch oven. You can use a touch of olive oil or water until soft. Once onions are translucent add mustard, garlic powder, salt, and brown sugar. Add 2 cups of the water and red lentils. Cook covered for 25 minutes. Stir add additional cup of water and bbq sauce. Cook uncovered for another 15 minutes until nice and thick!!
1 quarter of a red cabbage, shredded
1/2-3/4 cup Veganaise [personal preference]
1 tablespoon dijion mustard
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
pinch of salt
Mix all ingredients and pop in the fridge.
2 potatoes, cut into large wedges
tablespoon dried thyme
Preheat oven at 425 degrees. Drizzle with olive oil, thyme, salt and coat all of the potatoes. Make sure they are all touching the pan. Cook for 20 minutes and then flip, cook for another 15 or until crispy.
You can add Tabasco, Pickles, more BBQ, Slaw, the options are endless!!!!!!