Beans and Japanese Rice on Laundry Day

In Louisiana, red beans and rice is traditionally served on Mondays. This tradition dates back to a time in New Orleans when Mondays was the day that laundry was done. Laundry was an all day event filling with scrubbing, washing, rinsing, drying, and folding. Since there wouldn’t be time to actually be in the kitchen to oversee pots and pans, a pot of beans cooking for two hours or more was ideal. The results produce a creamy flavorful pot of beans.

Beans and Japanese Rice

Cook Time: 3 hours

Total Time: 3 hours


  • 1 1/2 cups dried pinto beans
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 med bell pepper
  • 1 med onion
  • 2 stalks or ribs celery
  • 3 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 teaspoons tamari
  • Sriracha


    Japanese Rice
  1. Prepare according to package.
  2. Beans
  3. Place all ingredients except Siriracha into a pot.
  4. Cook for 2-3 hours, until beans start to fall apart, stirring occasionally.
  5. Serve over rice.

Can You Be Addicted to Bread?


My daughter’s father has been in the kitchen hard at work experimenting with making bread. Some of his test subjects have not been too successful, yet MOST have been incredibly tasty!

Whenever I hear the running of the mixer and the clinging and banging of measuring instruments, I know he’s at it again as I wait in anticipation for the bread. He doesn’t make that quick stuff. Nope. He makes us wait a day for that chewy goodness by letting the dough age and rise slowly, sort of like sourdough.

Then when the sound of the oven’s alert alarm goes off, I know that it’s time to make the bread! Slowly the smell begins to permeate each room in the house. Then it happens! The bread is out of the oven. We stand over it like animals salivating over its meal. The smell is intoxicating. The crust keeps us transfixed just waiting for the cooling period to be over. Then the moment arrives when I hear the sound of crust giving way to the knife.

That first taste of the beautiful crumb in my mouth brings memories of San Francisco sitting in Boudin having that first taste of San Francisco sourdough. I’m not saying it’s better, it just gives me a taste memory of a bread I love so much.

He’s been chronicling his journey with baking bread and I’m glad that he’s taken up this new hobby. I wonder what he’ll make next. Okay, let me be honest, who cares. Just keep the bread coming! I need my daily fix! I mean bread. That’s what I said, bread.

My Love Affair with a Dandy Avocado Salad

I love avocados. I crave avocados. I MUST have avocados often. Yet, the opportunity doesn’t present itself  for me to have avocados every day. So when the opportunity does come around for me to go to Dandelion Communitea Cafe to enjoy a salad maybe even some soup with a mug of hot tea. I jump at the chance.

Each time, I take a glance at the daily specials just to see if my favorite is there. When I don’t see it I grab a menu and slowly open it knowing that it really doesn’t change except for more special items that have graduated to the menu. Like a sweet potato burrito I have yet to try.

I continue to turn the page and there it was, my beloved Avocado Fetish! I LOVE this salad. the lettuce is so fresh and crisp as if they walked outside to their lovely garden and picked each leaf to prepare your salad. The tomatoes actually taste like a tomato. The avocados are so creamy and rich with flavor especially when paired with the whirred peas. The whirred peas are just one of a selection of sides that come with the salad. I love the combination of the avocados and pea guacamole and a touch of balsamic vinaigrette is amazing. Now I am very light on the balsamic because really the avocados and whirred peas I order as my side work well together.

So whenever you get a chance to or want to give your body a wonderful treat in the way of a salad, go in, cross your fingers and hope that the salad is available to order. If it isn’t, there are plenty of other salads, great chili, nachos, soups, excellent teas, and desserts.

Happy Eating!


The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap – Vegan Cookies

I can not believe that I forget to post about the WONDERFUL cookies I received in The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap!

They all came on the same day! Oh joy!

We gathered around our goodies ready to taste each cookie and taste we did!

The first cookie package we opened came in a beautifully decorated container of different shades of gold. We lifted the lid and there inside were “Maple- Frosted Pumpkin Spice” Cookies!

These cookies had a deep spicy pumpkin flavor that was soft like pillows when you bit into them. The frosting added to that softness with just a kiss of maple.

The next cookie we dove into were “Vegan Nog” Cookies!

These also were soft and frosted. a wonderful warming spicy nog flavor that complimented my nog, cider, and hot chocolate.

The final package of cookies were “What the He$%!” Cookies! Yes, you read that right. You read “What the Hell!” And that is exactly what I said when I opened them.

These had so many flavor nodes that blended so well that all I needed was a glass of almond milk.

None of the cookies lasted longer than a few days, if that. We gobbled them up real quick and brought smiles to our faces.

We are so ready the next cookie swap!

Cranberry Macadamia Buttons

When I first read about The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap of 2011, I imagined not receiving any cookies simply because I am vegan. No animal products and by-products. The way I eat is not about diet, it is a lifestyle. It touches every area of your life.

So I gave The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap another look. I decided that what was really important was to give and share than to be selfish and just want to receive.

Now in my excitement, I half read everything. I am not a baker; cooking is more my speed. The blending of herbs and spices, dreaming up dishes, even creating teas is an adventure of pure culinary delights. All of my cookbooks, magazines, recipe cards, and booklets came out to dream about anything and everything Christmas cookies and bars until I could not look at another treat. Then it hit me! I’ll create my own cookie with elements from cookies that I love. The result?

Cranberry Macadamia Buttons!

In creating these cookies, I wanted to do something just a bit different. Instead of using a non-dairy butter or oil, I chose to use a buttery nut – the macadamia nut. Instead of unbleached granulated sugar, I chose to use agave. To replace the egg, I used Ener-G egg replacer, yet you can use a flax seed or chia seed egg replacement. Just know that flax will add flavor, whereas the chia seeds will not.

The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap 2011 Cranberry Macadamia Buttons

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 12 minutes

Total Time: 22 minutes

Yield: 30-36 cookies


  • 3/4 cup macadamia nuts
  • 1/2 cup agave
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg replacer ( 1 1/2 teaspoon Ener-G egg replacer & 2 tablespoons water)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries, chopped
  • 1/4 cup pistachios, chopped (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  2. Cookies
  3. Place macadamia nuts into food processor.
  4. Process until smooth.
  5. Remove macadamia nut butter from processor.
  6. Place into mixing bowl.
  7. Add agave and salt.
  8. Whip.
  9. Add egg replacer and vanilla.
  10. Mix.
  11. In a separate bowl mix together baking soda, all-purpose flour, and dried cranberries.
  12. Add flour mixture to macadamia nut butter mixture.
  13. Mix until combined.
  14. With a teaspoon measuring spoon, scoop dough.
  15. Oil hands with non-dairy butter.
  16. Roll dough into balls and press slightly with hands, fingers, or oiled glass.
  17. Or roll dough balls into sugar.
  18. Press with a glass.
  19. Bake for 8-12 minutes, check after 10 minutes.
  20. Cool for 10 minutes.
  21. Enjoy!


The batter will be a stiff, there is not a need to refrigerate. You can bake them right away. Once cookies are in the oven, check them after 10 minutes of baking. They may bee ready. Bake cookies to your liking.

Happy Holidays!





Vegan Fall Harvest Meal (Vegan Thanksgiving)

Thanksgiving Day! Oh the day we celebrate by giving thanks for all that we have and counting our blessings with turkey, giblet gravy, bacon ladened green beans, sausage stuffing, butter cream cheese mashed potatoes, and honey citrus zested cranberry sauce. Blah, blah, blah. Does that sound good to you? For most people, it is pure heaven on a plate.

For a vegan, thanksgiving can be a time that just seems better to stay in bed and sleep the day away. however with the right kind of planning, all can be heaven on a vegan plate.

I chose to get a Field Roast Celebration Roast. I made a plan for multiple side dishes. However, once I got in the kitchen and began preparing food, I realized that what I had was enough. Along with the roast, I prepared a simple dressing (stuffing depending on where you are from), mashed potatoes, garlic sauteed kale, steamed haricot verts and carrots with herbs, cranberry sauce made from sweetened dried cranberries, and homemade dinner rolls, all soft and lite.

So what was I thankful for? My grateful list is, yes I said list, is short. The biggest thing I am most grateful for is being with family.



Vegan Mofo #28 Tofu Vegetable Saute


There is nothing more comforting than roasted vegetables or vegetables sauteed then gently simmered in a skillet until the potatoes soften and release their starch to thicken the mixture.

I baked the tofu in this, yet you can always saute them in a skillet on the stovetop before adding potatoes, carrots, onion, haricot vert, herbs, spices, and vegetable broth.



You can eat this as is or you can have it with rice, noodles, couscous, whatever makes your heart beat happily faster.


Vegan Mofo #28 Tofu Vegetable Saute

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 35 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Yield: Serves 4


  • 1 14 ounce package extra-firm water packed tofu, drained, cut, and baked
  • 2 medium red or yukon gold potatoes, diced
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 1/2 cup onions, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups haricot vert (about a handful), cut in 2 inch pieces
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 teaspoon tamari
  • 1 teaspoon rosemary, ground (1 tablespoon fresh)
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon paprika


  1. Preheat oven to 400
  2. Tofu
  3. Remove tofu from package.
  4. Rinse.
  5. Cut.
  6. Bake for 30 minutes or until lightly browned.
  7. Place all the vegetables including the garlic into the skillet.
  8. Saute for 10 minutes.
  9. Add vegetable broth, tamari, rosemary, paprika, and pepper.
  10. Cook on med for 30 minutes.
  11. Stir in tofu.
  12. Serve with rice or noodle.