Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Vive Casserole, etc.

Cedar fever has a death grip on me, which I'm told I must endure for another 2 weeks. They say if you live in Austin long enough, the cedar pollen will eventually get to you. Sneezing, coughing, sore throat, fever... I'm so sick of being sick.

Now that that's out of the way, here's what's been cooking the past week. I had a huge batch of chickpeas to use, so I decided to make Sweet Curry Chickpea Casserole from Dreena's book Vive le Vegan. I don't like sweet dinners or celery, so I substituted green peppers for the celery, and mushrooms for the apples. I made mine pretty spicy with lots of curry paste, and I didn't really enjoy it until I mixed in my jasmine rice with it one night, and left over cornbread another night. Then it was fantastic! And it made a ton. I have eaten it 3 nights for dinner, once for a snack, and gave away a bunch to Chase, who also thought it was superb with the rice.

Monday night I opened the fridge and those radishes, which were double wrapped, were stinking up my whole fridge and freezer! So I chopped up an onion, green pepper, and a few leftover mushrooms, threw in the radishes, and stirfried it. They smelled much better and were quite tasty.

The first night I made jasmine rice, I also made some miso mushrooms and broccoli to have with it. I went a little miso crazy for a while.

Another night I decided that mung bean sprouts were going to be my new "diet" pasta. Yes, it looks and tastes like a stirfry, but I actually made a veggie tomato sauce, then added in the sprouts and let it simmer a LONG time. They never did soften up or lose their sprout taste. My tastebuds were confused. I'll still eat it, but you can't call it pasta. Oh, well.....

I went to Whole Foods Saturday morning and picked up a few veggies from the salad bar to put over my salad for lunch, which I did as soon as I got home. They were so good. I got all kinds of marinated veggies, roasted edamame, and a little tabouli. Now I've got to try my own roasted edamame.

This next dish is simply one chopped apple that I put in the microwave for 20 seconds, then put some cinnamon and granola on top, and poured in a little vanilla rice milk. What's great about this is that the next day at the office, a friend who needs to lose 100 pounds, has terrible eating habits, and to top it off also has terrible teeth, told me she really missed being able to eat apples. So I told her about microwaving them and she said she would try it. I hope she did. It's sure better than putting a frozen burrito in the microwave and eating it!

Here's a few things I picked up at the asian market. NEVER BUY DRIED LONGAN! I popped one in my mouth. It was rock hard because it was the dirty shell! I was so disgusted I immediately spit it out. If there was a berry in there, it wasn't worth eating. I have not yet tried the kung pao "chicken," and my first bean curd pouch split all the way open. But I'll work with those another day.

When I had the blues last week, I decided a trip to our new IKEA store would make me feel better. I was looking for a wall piece to put on a huge space in my living room. I'm pretty eclectic in that I really like modern things, but I still love my antique things. Here's what I bought. I'm still trying to decide if I like it and accomplished tying together all my colors and my old and new pieces. What do you think?


Judy said...

All of your food looks fantastic.

I guess you can't fool your tastebuds with 'diet' things sometimes. Worth a try anyway.

I like the IKEA prints, but I love bright colours and graphic prints, and I usually like most of their modern stuff. It co-ordinates nicely with the flowers below too.

Vivacious Vegan said...

I just found the Asian grocery store here and I'm so excited. I walked out with 2 huge bags of food for only $27. Score!! I like those prints - especially with the funky lamp. I used to love to go to Ikea and just browse around. We don't have one near us anymore.

Jody from VegChic said...

Cool recipes. I dig the prints as well. I've been to Ikea twice. The one near us is so crowded, it makes me want to run away every time I go inside.

Longan berries... I picked up a carton of fresh ones at Trader Joes awhile back. I think they may be related to lychees. There is tough outer shell that you peel off. Inside is a strange clear slimy fruit with a large seed. I'm a fan of lychees, but didn't care for longan. There was so little fresh fruit in the longan, I can't imagine what would be left with a dried one.

erica said...

We get an Ikea here in Portland next year, I'm so excited! (we have to go all the way up to Tacoma right now, about 3 hour drive). The prints looks nice, especially with the orange wall in the background, and (this is going to betray my background as an illustrator) the blue makes the eye bounce around from the blue in the prints to the blue lampshade to the blue vase and back. Now that I think about it, same with the reds. Nice composition!

bazu said...

I agree, I was attracted to the photo with your prints, they really are eye-catching. I used to live in Southern California, land of the Ikeas (I could drive by 3-4 different ones on a 1 hour drive!) and I seriously love the place. Like yours, our house is a mixture of mid-century modern furniture and more traditional stuff. I'd love to convert to something much more industrial though... why am I rambling??

Your food looks great- pasta or not, I love the idea of a sprout stir-fry.

Veg-a-Nut said...

Great blog. You have some many yummy looking things I can't decide what to try first. Yes I am new to blogger land and have not updated my site for 5 or 6 days, but wanted to visit everyone. Your pictures are mouthwatering. Enjoy those meyer lemons. I tried them this year for the first time. Love them

Harmonia said...

The wall looks neat...the food amazing...WOW! I just posted the "raw" Hearty Sprouted Lentil Soup on my blog...

laura jesser said...

I love the artwork--it's so cheerful and eye-catching! I have never been to Ikea, even though there's one in Atlanta, not that far from here. I'll have to make a point to go sometime.

I'm sorry you've been so sick! Hoping your symptoms don't actually last two more weeks.

Well... all your food looks great--what else can I say? Oh, I like the subs you made in the Vive! casserole, and I think the idea of using mung bean sprouts as pasta is innovative and cool. And tasty.

Candi said...

Yum! Looks like the trip to WF paid off nicely! I am envious of all the beautiful dishes you've made! (Not envious of those dried longans though! Lol!)

I LOVE the IKEA prints! How could that not cheer anyone up?! IKEA is such a great place, I have to get there soon since my walls are bare and are hoping for pretty and happy prints like yours!

Thanks for the offer on the muffin recipe!! I'd love to try it!! (such will power, huh?) Lol! Thanks so much for offering. I'm really going to cut back on wheat flour and other gluten-ingredients, since I'm shocked at how much my stomach is not happy with all the starches and wheat I've been eating. Thanks for the offer and here's my email:


Brooke said...

I dig your IKEA prints! They remind me of jellybeans. You know, I have never ever been to a IKEA store. I'm scared we would go broke if I did. :-)

Ruthie said...

I like your IKEA prints, too! :) Very colorful and cheery, I also dig the color of your walls and your stylish lamp and vases. :)

That is such a great casserole picture! It looks scrumptious.

I really enjoyed your radish story. I have a really sensetive nose and can't stand really smelly foods in my fridge (even things like leftover chopped onions and curry bother me sometimes!), so I can relate to your delimma. Radish smell everywhere, gaa! At least you didn't toss them!

Fairly Odd Tofu Mom said...

How wonderful everything looks! You are so lucky to have access to a Farmer's Market in mid-winter! About all we have around here (local and fresh at least) is cabbage, brocolli :) and kale, kale, kale. Fortunately I love kale.

I do love my asian market too, there are so many yummy types of rice and yam noodles to try, as well as the fresh tofu and weirdly realistic looking (but tasty) mock meats.

Everything looks so YUMMY that You've posted, keep it up!

Webly said...

I love how you document your posts!

Urban Vegan said...

That casserole looks so creamy and satisfying. You can't help but feel good looking at those colorful prints [I love IKEA, too]. Hope your allergies are improving.

Emmy said...

Ugh, sorry to hear about the cedar pollen. I have allergies to pollen so I feel for you!!!

Your Curry Chickpea Casserole looks yummy. I haven't tried that recipe yet. I like to make my food nice and spicy too :)

I like your nifty bean sprout "pasta dish". That's great you're helping to encourage your office friend. I hope she tries the apples.

Once again, I'm super jealous of your cool asian market. You always find such neat things there. Thanks fro the heads up about dried longan. I'll make sure to avoid it if I see it :)

Yay for Ikea and yay for eclectic decorating tastes :) I like the fun colors of your artwork. I've also had good luck looking at Ebay's Self-Representing Artists category. I've bought quite a few art pieces that way directly from the artists.

Johanna3 said...

i love the wall piece ! and the post too!