Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Sweet and Savoury Lentil Cranberry Salad

Hey everyone! So this is my last full week of classes this semester! (That went by fast) so I will not be blogging from December 12th-15th due to a hectic exam schedule but other than that I will follow my regular schedule of posting on Tuesdays and Fridays so come back here on Friday!)

Now onto the recipe...

Sweet and Savoury Lentil Cranberry Salad
I forgot to take a picture so this is what it looked like (pic from google... click on pic for link)
1/2 cup green lentils
2/3 cup red lentils
2 1/2 cup water
1/4 cup chopped/sliced almonds
1/3 cup dried cranberries (I threw in a little extra :) )
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp fresh parsley
1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
juice of 1 small lemon
1 tsp salt

1. Place lentils and water in pot and bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover pot with lid, and simmer for 30 mins. (Or you can take the easy way out and used canned lentils)
2. Pour lentils into strainer and rinse with cold water.
3. Add all the remaining above ingredients into a bowl/container, add the lentils, mix to combine.

Friday, 25 November 2011

Gingersnaps and other goods :)

Good Morning everyone! So for those of you who don't know every year when we have our first significant snowfall I make gingersnaps. It's a pretty simple recipe and marks my transition from pumpkin and fall flavours to winter and christmas cooking. So here it is...

Gingersnap Cookies
  • 2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
  • 1.5 tablespoons ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup vegetable shortening
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup applesauce
  • 1/4 cup dark molasses
  • cinnamon sugar

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. Sift the flour, ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt into a mixing bowl. Stir the mixture to blend evenly.
  3. Place the shortening into a mixing bowl and beat until creamy. Gradually beat in the white sugar. Beat in the applesauce, and dark molasses. Sift in the flour mixture, and mix together until a soft dough forms. Pinch off small amounts of dough and roll into 1 inch diameter balls between your hands. Roll each ball in cinnamon sugar, and place 2 inches apart on an ungreased baking sheet.
  4. Bake in preheated oven until the tops are rounded and slightly cracked, about 8 minutes.
  5. ENJOY!

also since I was in the baking mood (aka. couldn't concentrate on studying anymore) I also decided to make chocolate chip banana bread. Not as big an event to me as making gingersnaps but still this recipe always gets great reviews so here it is:

Chocolate Chip Banana Bread
 3 very ripe bananas
1/4 cup applesauce
1/4 cup canola oil
1/2 cup sugar (I used brown sugar)
2 tablespoons molasses
2 cup flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon salt
as many vegan chocolate chips as you want 

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, mash the bananas really well. Add the sugar, applesauce, oil, and molasses, and mix.
  3. Sift in the flour, baking soda, spices, and salt. Use a wooden spoon to mix until the wet and dry ingredients are just combined. 
  4. Add chocolate chips!
  5. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes. (The top should be lightly browned and a knife inserted through the center should come out clean.)
  6. ENJOY!

I hope you guys enjoyed this post and for those of you in Montreal who know me if you want any of my baked goods let me know! (I have more then my roommate and I can consume)... Next blog post will be a coconut curry recipe so make sure to come back on Tuesday and check it out!

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Recipe Love

Hey everyone! So for this post I wanted to take the opportunity to introduce all of you the various vegan blogs that I love to follow and some of my favourite recipes from them! So below you will find a link to their blogs and a picture of what I consider their highlight recipe... enjoy!

Deep Dish Cookie Pie from Chocolate Covered Katie

Apple Pie Cheesecake from Manifest Vegan

Maple Baked Beans from OhSheGlows

Mediterranean Bean Burgers from Vive Le Vegan

Rustic Bread & Eggplant Lasagna from Vegan YumYum

Stuffed Squash from BitterSweet

I hope you guys enjoy seeing and exploring some of the blogs I like to check out! Please leave me some feed back about what else you want to see on this blog. Have a wonderful day and thanks for taking the time to come here!

Friday, 18 November 2011

Guest Post: Vegan Chocolate Quinoa Cake

Hey everyone so I recieved a great response from the last time there was a guest blog post so I decided to ask my friend Gail to talk to you guys today... enjoy!

Hello everyone, my name is Gail and Justine has asked me to guest blog for today. I met Justine in the summer time after I moved to Montreal to work as an au pair. How unsettled my stomach felt afterward and I realized that is how dairy reacts in me, and the food containing dairy isn’t that nutritious- thus, I have been a vegan for four months and I’ve never felt healthier.
             The family I live with are five guys but they are always happy to try something new and healthy. The first cake I made for them will always be remembered as the ‘fish cake’ but since then I have had quite a few successes. One being Justine's Vegan Carrot Cake,  which they were not completely excited about at first but nonetheless it was devoured within the day, followed by the eldest child saying ‘Gail, your cakes aren’t so bad any more, you should probably start making them bigger’. Vegans:1 – Dairy Farmers: 0.
            So the original of this recipe is from a cookbook called Quinoa 365 and it is the only cake recipe that actually uses cooked quinoa (opposed to quinoa flour) which gives the cake a deliciously moist and puffy texture. In the past I made it for the boys and it was a huge success and they couldn’t even guess that it was made with quinoa! This is my first time veganizing the recipe and the batter seems to have a much nicer hold as the quinoa wasn’t falling to the bottom as it did with the previous non-vegan version.

Moist Vegan Chocolate Quinoa Cake

You will need:

2/3 cup quinoa (uncooked)
1 1/3 cups water
1/3 cups soy/almond milk
4 eggs (I made flaxseed eggs; which is 1 tablespoon ground flaxseeds, and 3 tablespoons water)
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
¾ cup margarine/ earth balance (melted and cooled)
1 ½ cups white or cane sugar
1 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder
1 ½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt

To start bring your quinoa and water to boil in a medium pot. Cover and reduce to a simmer cooking for ten minutes (or until all the water is absorbed). Turn off heat and leave covered for another ten minutes. Fluff with a fork and allow to cool. If you are making flaxseed eggs you should also prepare this as well at this time.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly greese two 8-inch round or square cake pans lining the bottoms of the pans with parchment paper.

Combine: ‘Milk’, ‘Eggs’ and vanilla in a blender. Add two cups of cooked quinoa and the margarine and continue to blend until smooth. Whisk together dry ingredients in a medium bowl and then add the wet ingredients and mix well. Divide the batter evenly between the two pans. FYI: It does not rise very much so I am trying a 10x10 dish and I’ll see how that works out.
Leave in the oven for 40-45 minutes or until you can stick a knife in the centre and it comes out dry.

I was going to put some of my vegan chocolate chips on top, but after I licked the batter I knew that there was no need. That has to be one of my favorite parts about baking vegan is being able to lick the batter without feeling sick after.

So I was planning on taking a picture of the finished product… but yet again… when I got back from class there seems to be no more cake. I will take a picture from the book though :) 

p.s. Hey I'm back (Justine), I hope you guys enjoyed the post! Just a reminder I am now following a posting schedule of posting every Tuesdays and Fridays. So my next post is going to contain a bunch of recipes and i'm really excited to share it with you so make sure you come back here on Tuesday!!!!

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Raw Apple Crisp

In light of my blogpost on Raw food I have decided to post a recipe that encompasses raw 'baking'... please let me know what you think in the comment section below and tell me what type of recipes you want to see on my blog!!!!

Raw Apple Crisp
easy and delicious!!! (the recipe below serves 8)
 4 of your favourite type of apples, cored and chopped 
1/4 cup orange juice (freshly squeezed oranges is better)
3/4 cup pecan halves 
3/4 cup hazelnuts 
3/4 cup raisins 
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger 
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 lemon

1) Put apples in an 8-inch square baking dish 
2) Drizzle with orange juice, and lemon juice, toss until the fruit is coated and smooth the top.
3) In a food processor, combine pecans, hazelnuts, raisins, ginger and cinnamon and pulse just until chopped.
4) Spoon the nut mixture over the apple mixture and serve.

Friday, 11 November 2011


Hello everyone! I know that everyone else out there is getting into the christmas season (I mean just walking along Saint Catherine's the street store fronts just scream "BUY PRESENTS FOR EVERYONE SO YOU DONT GET STUCK SCRAMBLING AT THE LAST MINUTE, like you did last year"!!!!!) right? But for some reason I can't get pumpkin off my mind!

I don't know why... maybe it's a childhood thing... but when the leaves start to change colours and the temperature starts to drop I think 'now I can start baking and cooking with pumpkin again!' (until the first snowfall and then its all gingersnap, cinnamon, and nutmeg.)

So I bring you Chocolate Pumpkin Cookies (while pumpkin is still on my mind)

1 cup of canned pumpkin
1 cup of natural sugar (or just white sugar)
1/2 cup of apple sauce
1 "egg" (I made a flax egg, which is 1 tablespoon ground flaxseeds, and 3 tablespoons water)
2 cups whole wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon each of nutmeg, and allspice
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 teaspoon of almond milk
1 Tablespoon of vanilla extract
2 cups of carob chips (vegan chocolate chips)

  1. Combine pumpkin, sugar, apple sauce, and 'egg'. In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, spices, and salt. Dissolve the baking soda with the 'milk' and stir in. Add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture and mix well.
  2. Add vanilla, and carob chips.
  3. Drop by spoonful on greased cookie sheet and bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for approximately 8-10 minutes or until lightly brown.
  4. ENJOY!!!!

P.S. Please go vote for Suki at http://www.fidocastingcall.ca/dogs/16125 and tell others to do so as well!!!

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

What is Raw Food?

Look at all the colour!
Hey everyone sorry for my sporadic posting habits... ideally I would love to be able to update this blog daily but due to differing amounts of school work it ends up that I only update when I have free time in my schedule. I feel that not having a posting schedule isn't fair to those of you who have been loyal followers and as such I have come up with the idea to set up a blogging schedule. What do you think about this? If you guys are supportive of this idea I will post twice a week on set days, most likely Tuesdays and Fridays so let me know what you think!

Now that I have addressed that topic, I have one more announcement before actually talking about what this post is all about. As most of you know, Suki is in the Fido Casting Call (it runs until November 17th) so please continue to vote at http://www.fidocastingcall.ca/dogs/16125

Now on to my post... What is Raw Food?

Raw foodism can include any diet of primarily unheated food, or food cooked to a temperature less than 40 °C (104 °F) to 46 °C (115 °F)

The most popular raw food diet is a raw vegan diet. It is believe that foods cooked above these temperatures have lost much of their nutritional value and are less healthy or even harmful to the body. Raw food advocates argue that raw or living foods have natural enzymes, which are critical in building proteins and rebuilding the body. 

Typical foods that can be found in a raw food diet are fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds and sprouted grains and legumes.

Raw foodist's typically use:
1) A food processor
2) A juicer
3) A blender (such as a Vitamix)
4) A dehydrator
To prepare their meals.

You might be asking yourself... what do raw foodist eat? One of the restaurants that I listed in my last blog post (called Crudessence) is a raw food restaurant located in Montreal. The last time I was there my friend and I ate nachos with an avocado, corn, tomato chutney, a BLT sandwich, and split a sugar pie for dessert. Of course these are not the typical nachos, sandwich, or pie that may come to your mind when you read those words but a raw food take on them. (below is a picture of our BLT and nachos)

Some basic raw food dishes include:
Soups (check out this fantastic post for ideas)
Nut pates
Zucchinis or other vegetables sliced thinly to resemble “noodles,” tossed with sauce
Nut burgers (pates shaped like burgers)
Collard roll or romaine lettuce raps
and Sushi stuffed with veggies or nut pates
If you are interested in learning more about a raw food diet feel free to leave me questions in the comment section on this post or go check out resources such as http://www.choosingraw.com , and http://goneraw.com/

Picture of Raw Raspberry Cheesecake

and let me know, what are some of your experiences with Raw food?

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Vegan/Vegetarian Restaurants in Montreal

Hey everyone! Hope you guys had a great halloween! what did you dress up as?

Sorry for my lack of posting the past two days... school assignments caught up on me and so I was hiding in the library studying.

If you don't know I have entered Suki in the Fido Casting Call contest and recently she has been stuck in the 600's so please go vote for her here: http://www.fidocastingcall.ca/dogs/16125 and spread the word!!! (NOTE: even if you have previously voted you can go vote again, its a daily thing)

I was recently asked what are some good vegan/vegetarian restaurants in Montreal so I thought for this post I would let you know about all the places I have been and if I am missing any that you liked and think I should check out please let me know!

Aux Vivres
Location: 4631 Blvd. St-Laurent
What it is: Vegan Restaurant, juice bar, and express lunch
What to get: I am more of a salad person when I go out to eat so I liked the salad du jardin with tofu but my friend who went with me loved their brunch menu which is served on the weekend from 11am - 4 pm.
Highlight: Their smoothies!!!
website: http://www.auxvivres.com/en/home/

Crispy duck
Location: 4094 Rue St-Denis
What it is: Thai vegan and vegetarian food, can order take out.
What to get: Appetizer wise there is a dish that won awards and you just mention it to them and they know what you want (sorry I can never remember the name), for the main you HAVE to try the crispy 'duck' served on a bed of spinach in a soya reduction.
Highlight: By far the Duck!

Lola Rosa Cafe

Location: 545 Rue Milton
What it is: a vegan/vegetarian bistro type restaurant situated in the student ghetto. at the tables there are little drawers you can pull out and read notes people left.
What to get: I like the salad (without feta), and my roommate likes the burrito/enchilada. 
Highlight: the atmosphere


Location: 1204 McGill College Ave
What it is: buffet style vegan/vegetarian express food
What to get: a little bit of everything!
Highlight: during the lunch hour you cannot exceed a certain price (I think its $12) so pile it on!


Location: 105 Rue Rachel Ouest
What it is: Raw food restaurant (if you don't know what this is don't worry I'm going to blog about it in my next post!)
What to get: everything is good!
Highlight: the smoothies/ juices

Bombay Mahal
Location: 1001 Rue Jean-Talon Ouest
What it is: Best Authentic (and inexpensive) Indian Food
What to get: the staff is very helpful and can give you recommendations. (anything on the vegetarian menu is simply amazing but watch out if you are spice sensitive because this food has kick!)
Highlight: Aloo Gobi

Now go, try, enjoy, and let me know what you thought of them!