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Friday, September 16, 2011


Happy Friday!!!

I had the day off work today and chose to spend it sitting around watching documentary films (Generation Rx was outstanding and a must must MUST see, especially for parents) and eating snacks on my couch.  In particular, a halo of raw veggies and baked potato chips encircling a bowl of AMAZING VEGAN RANCH DIP!!!!!!!!!

This is good stuff, people.  Real good stuff.  And I whipped it up in under five minutes.  It's not exactly the mayonaisey goop you get in a bottle, it's more like homemade buttermilk-style ranch with lots of dill MMMMMM!!!!  It would be great drizzled on wedges of iceberg lettuce or for dipping pizza crust in or eating with a spoon. . . :)

Vegan Buttermilk-Style Ranch Dip and Dressing
- 1 pkg soft/silken tofu
- 4 green onions, chopped
- 1 large clove of garlic (or two small), chopped
- 2 tbsp cider vinegar
- 1 tbsp grainy Dijon mustard
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp fresh or dried dill
- S&P

Put all ingredients into a blender.  Blend until smooth.  Season with S&P.  DONE!  BAM!  JUST LIKE THAT!  You can eat it now if you like buuuuuut it will be so much yummier if you let it hang out in the fridge for an hour or two. 

Happy weekend and happy snacking!

Vivacious Vegan

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Tomato Basil Soup with Rainbow Rotini

Hey Babes,

Typical Winnipeg - two days ago it was humid and and sweltering hot and today the wind is howling and the temperature barely makes it into the mid teens.

It's time for V.V. to post     yet    another  soup recipe!

Tomato soup is the easiest thing to make. EVER.

When ATM was home a couple  weeks ago, she found herself a touch under the weather (too many 'welcome home' cocktails the night before, perhaps?) and requested a bowl of tomato soup.  This is what I whipped up - I think it's my new favorite hangover cure ;)

Tomato Basil Soup with Rainbow Rotini
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 large onion, diced
- 6 - 8 cloves garlic, chopped
- pinch chili flakes
- 1 can whole tomatoes
- 2 tomato cans worth of water OR veggie stock
- S&P
- 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh basil
- 2 cups of cooked rainbow rotini
For garlic crostini garnish:
- sliced ciabatta bread
- olive oil
- 1 garlic clove sliced in half
 - S&P

Heat the olive oil in your favorite soup pot over medium heat.  Add the onions, garlic, chili flakes and a pinch of salt and saute until the onions are translucent, try not to brown 'em.

Add the can of tomatoes and two tomato cans full of water or veggie stock and bring the whole thing to a bubbling boil over medium high heat.

Once the soup reaches boiling point, reduce the heat to medium low and simmer it for ten minutes.  Puree the soup with an immersion blender (this method is waaaaay easier than doing it in a blender, go pick up an immersion blender at Superstore for just over ten bucks, it's wooorrrth it) and stir in the basil and rotini.  Season with S&P and simmer for an extra five to fifteen minutes to let all the flavours become bff's.

For the garlic crostini: Heat up your broiler and place the ciabatta slices on a baking sheet.  Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with a bit of S&P.  Toast the ciabatta slices under the broiler until they are golden brown and then rub them down with the cut side of the garlic clove.  Serve the crostini afloat your bowl of deelish tomato basil soup :)

How easy was that?



Monday, September 12, 2011


Hello my darlings,

I realized today that I haven't ever really talked a lot about why I feel passionately about a vegetarian lifestyle.  It's a really personal topic, and it can be particularily sensitive to discuss, but I feel that it is time for me to share some of the reasons I went veggie with you, my awesome V.V. readers:

Health was my number one concern when I orginally commited to this way of life.  A few years ago when I was living in Toronto, I reached for a package of *processed food product* and read the ingredients.  I found that there were a bunch that I couldn't identify (let alone pronounce) so I wikipedia'd and googled them and decided that fake, chemical food was not something I wanted to put into my body (ummmm aspartame, anyone?).  White sugar and processed foods were quickly eliminated from my diet and meat soon followed.  I can't even begin to tell you about all of the health problems caused by eating meat and dairy and the advantages of a plant based diet (they write whole books on that stuff ya know ;) ) but you can read more about it here

When I heard that it takes roughly 60 lbs of water to produce 1 lb of potatoes and about 12,000 lbs of water to produce just 1 lb of beef, I knew I wasn't doing the environment any favors by contributing to the meat industry.  The cattle industry alone is responsible for emitting 19% of global methane emissions (thats baaaaaaad stuff).  There are a toonnnnn more environmental reasons to go vegetarian, you can read about them here

More than one billion people on this planet are starving.  STARVING!  It just doesn't make sense to me that we use vast amounts of farm land to grow food. . .for our food.  When it could be grown for people.  And after we grow crops to feed our meat, the meat is consumed by less than one third of the planet's population.  That's no fair. 

Then there are the animals.  I think we as a society have completely lost the connection between animals and meat.  Animals are meat.  They feel joy and pain just as we do.  There is absolutely no beating around the bush - when you eat meat, you are eating the flesh of a dead animal.  I think that there are few people, who when faced with the task of killing their own 'meat', could actually go through it.  I realize that this issue can be particularily sensitive for some people.  But I urge you to please, watch this video and consider what you see. 

Many of you (my wonderful, wonderful, WONDERFUL V.V. readers) are not vegetarian.  That's OKAY!!!  You are still wonderful, wonderful WONDERFUL!  In the end, you have to do what you feel is best for you.  But I do urge you to question the status quo, step out of your comfort zone, and and least consider reducing your meat consumption.  You would be doing so, so, so, so many favours to animals, humanity, Mother Nature and yourself (and all will thank you!).

Big hugs and kisses,