Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Happy Cherry Cheesecake Day!

Blogger of the Day: Lisa at Raw on $10 a Day (or Less!)
Pubs: Easy Affordable Raw...coming soon!

You can tell from Lisa's beautiful blog that she's an artist...and that she's extraclever when it comes to devising dishes with minimal funds. Not just noodles in a bowl or pb&j on a plate, but vibrantly healthy and soulfilling and dizzying delicious! All of her ingredients are easily sourced so you don't have to mount an expedition into the wilds of primitive Borneo to find some exotic truffley thing...just walk to the store or farmers' market or better yet, into your garden. If you need a little guidance on the ABC's of raw eating, she offers meal planning services and shopping lists too! She keeps everything blissfully simple, including her version of the classic Cherry much luscious goodness in each easy slice!  :)

Note...Lisa isn't 100% raw so a few recipes use the stove or oven

Along with your trusty veggie peeler, Lisa recommends...
Hamilton Beach Blenders...prices start at $19.99
Bullet Style Blenders...prices vary by maker
Cuisinart Food Processors...prices start at $29.95
Excalibur Dehydrators...prices start at $129.95
Paderno Spiral Slicer...on sale now for $33.59!
Microplane Coarse Grater...$16.95
Cuisinart Set of 3 Mesh Strainers...$12.99
Mirro Jelly Strainer Bags...$6.27
Wusthof Classic 8-Inch Cook's Knife...prices start at $128.00

How do you celebrate Cherry Cheesecake Day? Have you tried a raw vegan cheesecake? What's your favorite kitchen tool? What tools are on your wish list?  ;)

Find more feasts in our 2014 Daily Food Holiday and Featured Blogger Series!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Happy Bejeweled Vegan Earth Day!

Blogger of the Day: Tamara at McFarland Designs

Tamara is a marvelous vegan cook but another reason to know and love her is because she's a fabulous Earthloving jeweler too! Her handmade designs are simple and stunning, and made from 100% recycled silver and gold using only fair trade gems (obtained from companies that promote environmental health, ensure worker safety, and preserve local communities). Her spinningly cool rings are my favorite and her White Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies are too...I'll take a stack of each!  :)

Fair Trade Blue Sapphire and Recycled 18K Yellow Gold Ring

Forever Brilliant Moissanite and Recycled 14K Rose Gold Ring

Forever Brilliant Moissanite and Recycled 950 Palladium Ring

Moissanite and Recycled 14K Yellow Gold Ring

Forever Brilliant Moissanite and Recycled 14K Rose Gold Ring

Forever Brilliant Moissanite and Recycled 950 Palladium Wedding and Engagement Set

Recycled 14K White and Rose Gold Two-Tone Wedding Bands

Chatham Lab-created Ruby and Recycled 950 Palladium and 14K Yellow Gold Ring

Forever Brilliant Moissanite and Recycled 950 Palladium Engagement and Wedding Ring Set

Fair Trade Pink Sapphire, Recycled Sterling Silver and Recycled 14K Yellow Gold Ring

Forever Brilliant Moissanite and Recycled 14K Rose Gold Wedding Set

A few more treats...
Strawberry Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing and Pasta Fagiole
Lemon-Basil Kale Salad and and Potato Broccoli Chowder
Artichoke Tapenade, Spinach & Artichoke Dip, Teatime Cucumber Sandwiches and Apple Cream Cheese Coffee Cake
Amazing Coconutty Brownies
Badass Berry Muffins
Strawberry Streusel Pie

And precious trinkets...

Another reason to love Tamara...every month she donates 5% of her sales to a compassionate charity. Her April donation goes to Vegan Outreach...yay!  :)

Bonus...a 50% off sale!

Do you pay attention to things like sustainability and fair trade when you shop? Have you ever bought handmade jewelry? If you could have any piece of Tamara's beautiful jewels, which would it be?  ;)

Check out the rest of our 2014 Daily Food Holiday and Featured Blogger Series!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Happy Chocolate-Covered Cashew Truffle Day!

Blogger of the Day: Jen at Wholly Vegan

ohgoodgolly I couldn't eat one more microminimolecule of chocolate covered anything...waaaay to many sugarshocking sweets lately! Besides it's finally warming up so how about a healthified version of a chocolatey cashewy treat?

Clever Jen comes through with her supernutritious and richly flavorful Chocolate Hemp Seed Balls and Cashew Cream Thumbprints! Just one of many deliciously imaginative recipes from this incredibly creative girl! Take a tour through the world with dishes from Mexico, the South Pacific, Italy, many cuisines to explore! Bon voyage and bon appetit!  :)

Have you filled your chocolate quota for the season? Are you starting any new healthy diets or exercise programs now that beach season is approaching? If you could cruise to anywhere in the world right now, where would it be?  :)

Celebrate some more with our 2014 Daily Food Holiday and Featured Blogger Series!

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Artichoke Day!

Blogger of the Day: Rhea at The "V" Word
Pubs: Rhea's eBooks include:
The “V” Word Cookbook: Vegan Desserts
The “V” Word Cookbook: Party Foods
The “V” Word Cookbook: Holiday Edition
The “V” Word Cookbook Preview

The famous quote "Be the change you wish to see in the world" embodies Rhea's vegan philosophy, though she cheerfully changes it up...The “V” Word: Say it. Eat it. Live it. A teacher by nature and profession, she generously educates, encourages and inspires people to explore vegan life in all its compassionate goodness. She won me over long ago with her gentle dedication and peaceful passionate approach and of course, through her cooking. Traditional American fare, spicy exotic delicacies and favorite holiday delights get The “V” Treatment, and deliciously so! Vegan Challah and Struffoli? ohgoodgollyYES thank you!  :)

Rhea's vegan, mostly gluten-free recipes are indeed a slice of heaven and her website and eBooks are some of the funds from her sales help support important animal advocacy causes. Rhea is a big supporter of Leave No Paws Behind, which provides foster homes for animal companions at the end of their lives, and the worldfamous Woodstock Animal Sanctuary. She truly walks her talk. All that plus she's so clever with veggies...check out her chokes and don't miss her frittata too!

The secret to making the perfect artichoke is that there is no secret. It can be as minimally simple as cutting and steaming, or as artfully abundant as a fullycrumbed choke. Get creative...use whatever herbs and spices you like, cheeze it lightly or supergoopy, add seeds or finely chopped nuts, tomato sauce, minced chilis...anything that spins you happy! If you've never prepped artichokes before, scroll down to the YouTube links to learn what parts to eat/not eat, how to cut them up, etc. Then treat yourself to a deluxe stuff with Rhea's delicious masterpieces!  :)

YouTube features dozens of videos by artichoke makers that are easy to veganize, and cover a surprisingly wide range of techniques and tips. Everyone does it differently so there's no "right" or "wrong" way to make them. Try different versions as a starting point, experiment and create your own artichoke style!  :)
Artichoke 101 from Dani Spies...basic facts, choosing, cleaning, cutting, steaming, eating
How to Eat and Prepare Artichokes (for Beginners :) from shadowofjuniperhill...steaming or roasting, dipping and eating
Italian Stuffed Artichokes -- Sicilian Style from bowhunter2439...full on stuffapalooza! (this guy's super enthused about his chokes!)
How to Make Stuffed Artichokes from Chef Gino Barbaro...stuffed restaurant style (the video is a bit hard to hear but he's got valuable info and tips!)
Pepin Artichoke from famous French Chef Jacques Pépin...for those dream about going pro, interesting info and advanced techniques
How Not to Roast Stuffed Artichokes from Food Wishes...sometimes you just gotta learn from your mistakes.  ;)
Artichokes Jewish-style (carciofi alla giudia) from Rome from yellowsaffron...double deep-fried indulgence!
• And Grilled Artichokes from Chef Tips and How to Make a Killer Grilled Artichoke from John Keltner for those who like charmarked chokes!

Share the artichoke love...visit the Castroville Artichoke Festival May 31 & June 1, 2014 at the Monterey County Fair and Event Center in Castroville, CA!

What's your favorite way to make artichokes? Have you tried a stuffed choke? Are there any veggies you're shy to try? Which animal advocacy groups are important to you?  :)

Find more feasts in our 2014 Daily Food Holiday and Featured Blogger Series!

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Happy Garlic Day and National Garlic Month!

Blogger of the Day: Brandi at The Vegan 8

One of my favorite food holidays of the year...I come from an Italian family so everyday is Garlic Day but I feel compelled to celebrate the glories of garlic in a big way today. I love the bulb!  ;)

First a few facts...according to the Hudson Valley Garlic Festival folks, garlic comes in five basic varieties:
• Softneck Silverskin "has a strong flavor and stores well when dried".
• Softneck Artichoke "has a milder flavor and may have fewer and larger cloves than silverskin".
• Hardneck Rocambole "has a rich, full-bodied taste. It peels easily and typically has just one set of cloves around the woody stalk".
• Hardneck Porcelain "is similar to rocambole in flavor and typically contains about four large cloves wrapped in a very smooth, white, papery sheath". It's often mistaken for elephant garlic.
• Hardneck Purple Stripe "is famous for making the best baked garlic. There are several types of purple stripe, all with distinctive bright purple streaks on their papery sheaths".
Visit Garlic Guru Bob's incredibly helpful website Gourmet Garlic Gardens for more about each variety and how to choose between milder, medium and hotter subvarieties.  :)

Today's the perfect day to visit Brandi's brilliant website. Gorgeous weather and lots of family activities leave little time for multistep meals. The genius of The Vegan 8 is that virtually all of Brandi's recipes use 8 ingredients or less (other than water and salt) so everything is easy and accessible and absolutely delicious. Nothing is boring or bland...Brandi layers in flavors in every dish she creates. It's a challenge to stick to a limited list but she comes through everytime with a beautifully healthy plate of vegan yumfulness! And fortunately for garlic lovers like me, she's got plenty of garlic-tinged goodness to go around!  :)

Garlic love spreads coast to coast...
Gilroy Garlic Festival  July 25-27, 2014  Gilroy, CA
(Gilroy's 2014 Great Garlic Cook-Off is currently accepting submissions through May 1, 2014!)
Hudson Valley Garlic Festival   Sept 27-28, 2014   Saugerties, NY

Are you a big bulb fan? Do you have a favorite variety to cook with or grow? Have you been to a garlic festival? What's your favorite gourmet garlicky dish?  :)

Check out the rest of our 2014 Daily Food Holiday and Featured Blogger Series!