Sunday, June 28, 2009


You probably figured this out from my last post but my diet leans towards the vegan side. I still indulge in eggs now and then (how sad, who indulges in eggs?) but because of a supposed egg white allergy, I am not really supposed to. Six years of being a vegetarian, was easy, but a new old lady lactose intolerance shot me towards the vegan side. Anyway, I'm not posting about this for pity. I'm posting about this to make a point, and that point is, if I make some yummy treat that I can't eat myself, I must really like you or I am bored and I need a creative outlet.

Case in point:

Cake balls.

What are cake balls you ask? Well, a mixture of cake and frosting rolled into a ball and dipped in chocolate. The ones shown above are chocolate frosting, chocolate cake, and chocolate coating. I've also done red velvet balls with cream cheese frosting dipped in white chocolate. You can buy virtually any mix, any frosting and any kind of candy coating for these babies. I've also done them on sticks in mini cupcake wrappers. Now, they are not my idea. The credit for this genius invention is Bakerella. She's like my blog idol. Seriously, browse her site and you will need a towel to mop up the drool on your keyboard.

But anyway, ignoring the glare (I REALLY need to work on my food photography skills, like, hey maybe removing the plastic wrap from the photo subject maybe?) they look cute right? So simple. Make a box cake, mix in frosting, make the balls, dip and you are done. Well, kind of but no. These suckers take at least 4 hours each time. Very sore legs. Baking? Easy. Mixing? Easy. Melting? Easy. Dipping? Tricky. And time consuming. The results are worth it though, and I am almost always happy with the results.

So after 4 hours of standing over a double boiler in a hot sweaty kitchen, I can relax and sample my fruits of my labor, right?


Chocolate coating? Milk.
Cake mix? Milk and Eggs.

Oh well. One day I will make a vegan chocolate cake, vegan frosting, and coat it with dark chocolate and just indulge. Oh, and if you were wondering why I made them, it was a boss' birthday at work and I had nothing else to do the day before. It was a fun day to spend the afternoon.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Comfort food, vegan style.

This morning, I woke up with a runny nose, a sore throat, and an achy body. Being the little (whiny) trooper that I am, I trudged off to work at 6:45am, leaving my husband to recover from his Vegas vacation all cozy in our warm bed.

Life is so unfair.

So after a miserable 8 hours at my boring job, I decided I needed some comfort food. I had bought asparagus on Sunday and half was still in the fridge, so I thought cream of veggie soup would be perfect. I had made it on Sunday and loved it enough to make it again in the same week.

I probably should have bought a better camera before starting a blog. Huh. Whatevs yo. Yet another thing I am not very fabulous at: food photography.

Anyway, for those interested enough, here's what goes into making vegan cream of veggie soup. I improvised it after reading a bunch of other recipes. It's easy enough that I can do it. That's pretty easy.

Liz's Cream of Veggie Soup
  • 1 c water + 1 can swansons vegetarian broth OR 2 1/2 c water and 1 1/2 vegetarian bouillon cubes
  • Half a bag of frozen veggies. Mine was a "california mix" so it was broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots
  • Half a 1 pound bunch of fresh asparagus
  • a few cloves of garlic
  • 3-4 medium potatoes
  • 2 tablespoons of flour
  • 2 cups of soymilk or soy creamer, or regular whole milk.
  • 3 tablespoons of margarine (you can probably omit this if you want, I just love the buttery taste)
  • seasonings to taste. I used salt, pepper, and onion powder. If you use fancy seasonings like thyme or rosemary or whatever, more power to ya.
Add the broth and water to your soup pot. Bring to a boil. Throw in your frozen veggies. Dice up your asparagus, tossing the non edible bits and saving the tips aside. Throw the diced up asparagus into the broth.

In a separate pot, boil water and salt for the potatoes. Peel the taters and slice them kind of thin so they cook quickly. Let them boil for 15 minutes or so while the broth simmers the asparagus and veggies.

Once the taters and veggies are soft, drain the taters and add them to the broth. Take a few scoops of the veggies and set them aside to add back in later. Add the flour to the broth and let it simmer for another minute or 2, stirring it around.

Pour the contents of the pot and puree it in the blender until it's nice and smooth. At this point, it will probably look like baby food. Return the puree to the pot and add your soymilk, margarine, and reserved veggies and asparagus tips. Stir and simmer to warm up the soup again and season to taste. You are done :)

So yeah, so not fancy, but it's comfort food for me. I don't use many fancy spices and I rarely buy fresh produce, so I'm kinda happy with how it turned out. For clarification, fancy spices are any seasoning that isn't salt, pepper, onion powder, seasoning salt, or garlic salt. I have some ginger and cloves, but I only bought those for pumpkin bread. I must confess though, I saved the non edible ends of asparagus, because I heard you can make your own vegetable broth with the "throwaway" parts of veggies. They are sitting in my freezer. A project for the future I suppose. Oh and for those who may be concerned, I am feeling better now :)

Monday, June 22, 2009

Trying again

What you see here is me trying again. Me trying again to keep a blog, me trying again to put a picture of my life on the web for those interested enough to read it, and me trying yet again to learn to knit. Debbie Stroller will help me with the latter, but for the first two, that will be all me.

I am a self proclaimed disaster of domestication. I like a clean house, I like to bake, sew, cook, and crochet, knit and do creative things. However, liking something does not always mean I am good at it. Don't get me wrong, I have some success to an extent, but I'm not particularly fabulous at any of those things, especially the cleaning part. That part of my brain doesn't click on, the part that says "the carpet doesn't get cleaner until you vacuum it. You should vacuum it." The other 1950's housewives would have burnt me at the stake. Luckily, I have a very understanding husband who puts up with my trials and errors.

So here we go. A messy apartment, 3 dogs, 2 cats, a husband, a sister and me. Add baking supplies, craft supplies, video games and a lack of paper towels and that's my life.

As for the knitting, I managed to make a nice knit swatch. Funky colored yarn, I know. It will be useful for dusting off the tv or something. Which reminds me, I should probably dust off the TV.