Saturday, November 24, 2012

Happy Vegan Thanksgiving!

This year it was just my girlfriend and me at home on Thanksgiving, so I got to enjoy a quiet, simple-yet-festive all-vegan, salt-free, sugar-free meal.

First I made Cabbage Rolls, a recipe from my second cookbook that I still come back to over and over when I'm looking for a hearty holiday main dish. The rolls are filled with a vegan loaf made from walnuts, brown rice, and garbanzo beans.

Our side dishes were baked sweet potatoes and Green Beans with Walnuts and Pomegranate Seeds.  This was a recipe I saved from an old Martha Stewart Living magazine, sorry I can't find it online; the dressing is made from champagne vinegar, mustard, and shallot and a drizzle of walnut oil (my only non-nutritarian concession to the holiday).

For dessert I made sugar-, salt-, and fat-free Pear Ginger Cookies (sorry, not pictured), a recipe I picked up during our recent stay at TrueNorth Health Center.

So that was it -- no dead turkey, no sugar, no salt, no temptations to deal with. Best of all, no food coma afterwards! This was my favorite Thanksgiving ever!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Mango & Grape Tomato Salad

When you eat like a nutritarian "salad is the main dish".  I eat salad at least once or twice every day, and I  have to keep coming up with new salad recipes, or I get bored! Here's another healthy, nutritarian-style salad I've been enjoying lately: Mango & Grape Tomato Salad.

The flavors here are bright and sweet, and the recipe is simple. For the dressing, whisk together 1/2 cup mango juice (I used a mango-peach blend with no added sugar, but I bet you could easily put chopped mango into a blender with water and strain to make your own mango juice), 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, 2 tablespoons minced fresh mint, a pinch of clove and a pinch of coriander.

For the salad, cut a pint of grape tomatoes in half, dice two ripe mangoes (I like Ataulfo mangoes, they're so creamy), slice or dice 1/4 of a small red onion, and toss with the dressing. Serve on a bed of lettuce with black beans and diced avocado.

For my lunch I wrapped my avocado on the side to dice at lunchtime, so it stayed fresh.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Just a reminder that John Robbin’s Food Revolution Summit starts tomorrow (see my blog post below for more details).

Saturday starts out with interviews of Dr. Dean Ornish, Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn, and Dr. Joel Fuhrman. The interviews are broadcast for free in the morning and again in the evening. Register to access the broadcasts and see the full schedule.

I’ll be tuning in at 10:00am my time for the interview with Dr. Fuhrman!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Lentil Beet Orange Salad

This was a great salad! I was looking for something fun to do with leftover cooked lentils when I came up with the idea for a Lentil Beet Orange Salad.

I baked whole beets the night before: scrub whole beets without peeling, wrap them in foil, and bake at 400F for about 45 minutes, until easily pierced with a knife. After they cool down the skins slip off easily when rubbed with the back of a paring knife.

In the morning I tossed diced beets, orange segments, and lentils on a bed of lettuce and packed the salad with Orange Sesame Cashew Dressing. The combination of sweet beets, earthy lentils, and bright citrus was amazing!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Food Revolution Virtual Summit

John Robbins was one of the first inspirational figures in my young adult life. His book Diet for a New Americahelped shape me into a young vegetarian and environmental activist, and as I've continued on through my life, his light has continued to shine and point me towards a life of greater compassion and kindness. Most recently, his books Healthy at 100and The New Good Life, have helped me to believe that it is possible to live a life of simplicity, purpose, health, and joy well into your later years.

So I was excited to hear about the free Food Revolution Summit happening this month, where John Robbins will be personally interviewing 21 people who are "leaders in movements for healthy, sustainable, humane and delicious food". The guests include a bunch of names I'm sure you'll recognize if you're part of the vegan/plant-based movement: Dr. Joel Fuhrman (one of my heroes interviewing another one of my heroes, I can't wait!), Dr. T. Colin Campbell, Dr. Neal Barnard, Dr. Dean Ornish, Morgan Spurlock, Gene Baur, Rory Freedman, and more.

From April 28-May 6 there will be three interviews broadcast daily, and you can listen for free. You can get more info on the summit speakers and register at

Here's some more info from their website:
The Summit offers training, inspiration and practical know-how from modern day heroes of health and sustainability. Participants are promised answers to burning questions, tools for dealing with family and peers, and practically useful insights, ideas, motivation and tips, all from the comfort and convenience of your phone and computer.

The summit will include focus on the latest thinking on preventing and reversing heart disease, cancer and diabetes; the truth about GMOs, soy, raw foods, and grass-fed beef; the social, ethical and environmental impact of what you eat; and how to inspire your family to join you in making healthy choices.
I'm going to go register!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Confetti Salad

Confetti Salads are the newest addition to my diet! They're a great way to get a higher volume of raw vegetables and fruits packed into a small serving that's easy to eat. They also travel well and make great lunches!

The idea is simple: pulse vegetables, fruits, and nuts/seeds together for a few seconds in a food processor. The softer fruits, like oranges, lemons, or pears, dissolve into the mix making a built-in dressing!

Confetti Salads are also called "microsalads", but that makes me think of microgreens. Also Confetti sounds cuter. I first heard about them at Dr. Fuhrman's Member Center forum. You can also read more about them and get lots of great ideas for them at Food = Health.

Today I made my current favorite: a few big handfuls of bagged coleslaw mix (shredded green and red cabbage and carrots), a handful of raisins, one apple peeled and chopped, one orange peeled and segmented, a handful of raw slivered almonds, a handful of raw sunflower seeds, 1/4 lemon peeled, and a big splash of Blood Orange Vinegar (you can leave this out if you don't have it). Pulse for just a few seconds to get to a coleslaw consistency.

I packed my Confetti on a bed of romaine and cucumber slices with a sprinkle of garbanzo beans.

Thursday, December 01, 2011


How cool is this?? I just found out about PlanetBox, a stainless steel lunch box for kids, and I'm so excited I just had to break my bloggy silence and post something about it! Finally, it looks like someone's getting it just right!

If I had to design a lunch box, this is what I would create -- it's got the bento-style compartments I love so much in the Laptop Lunch System, but in food-safe, eco-friendly stainless steel, and without so many separate containers to keep track of. One section is the perfect size for a sandwich or bagel, it's got lidded containers for messier items, and the portion sizes look perfect for kids and maybe even some adults (not me, though -- I gotta stick with To Go Ware for my big, big salads!)

If you visit their website, watch the video and note the spiffy magnets for decorating, and how the carrying case includes outside compartments for a water bottle and snack (I would have loved a separate place for a snack when my son was in first grade and had snack and lunchtime).

The potential drawbacks I see are dings and dents in the stainless steel(remind your kids to keep it in the carrying case), potential leaks around the edges (not sure how fruits like melon will keep from leaking into the other sections), and the considerable cost. If anyone wants to get one and try it out, let us know how it goes!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Bean Chili with Zucchini

I'm having fun with my new lunch boxes. The insulated stainless steel bowl is topped by a small plate before you put the lid on -- just the perfect size for freshly-made corn tortillas from the Mexican grocery!

I warmed the tortillas and layered them with damp paper towels, then filled the bowls with two hot servings of Bean and Vegetable Chili made with extra zucchini and sprinkled with fresh cilantro.

I brought this lunch to my girlfriend who was reading palms at the psychic fair and we ate our little picnic together. We got lots of ooh and aahs at the cuteness of our lunch boxes and how yummy our healthy lunches looked!

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Broccoli Piccata

I never thought I would actually CRAVE broccoli, but it's true! I've been craving Broccoli Piccata, steamed broccoli with lemon and capers from my first book. I made it more "Fuhrman-Friendly" by leaving out the oil and salt.

At mealtime I tossed the broccoli with my salad, hummus, and crunchy walnuts.

Sunday, April 03, 2011

Golden Austrian Cauliflower Soup

One of my favorite soups of all times! I first heard about Golden Austrian Cauliflower Soup on Dr. Fuhrman's Member Center Forum, where people were raving so much I just had to try it. I've been making it ever since; it's creamy and cauliflowery, with a touch of sweetness from carrot juice so you really don't miss the salt at all.

I like to sprinkle my soup with Perfect Pepitas, a recipe from my first book Vegan Lunch Box. I packed my pumpkin seeds in the plate that fits on top of the bowl in my new lunch box, with fresh pineapple on the side.