Cookbook Review: The Homemade Vegan Pantry

Hello everyone,

And happy long weekend! How are you spending it? Finally getting that household project done? Relaxing? Visiting with friends? I’ve been in cleaning mode, but it inspired me to rearrange my dining room and break out my sewing machine. I’m so excited to finally make something with the most adorable cat fabric I found at a small shop in Denver last fall. Wish me luck. One other thing Cory and I have been up to—making crackers! In the past we’ve made homemade pita bread and a simple crusty bread. Those are both wonderful recipes, but when you’re looking for something to go with your fresh bruschetta or faux cheese, nothing beats a crunchy cracker.

Last summer, I attended the Cleveland Vegan Festival. Not only was it an amazing day filled with food demos, vegan treats and free swag, but I also got to meet Miyoko Schinner! If this name is new to you, you are missing out. She is the queen of vegan cheese and even wrote the book on it!

I absolutely love her vegan butter and rustic “cheese” wheels. They are so good it will fool all of your non-vegan friends and family members! I was so excited to see Miyoko’s cheese demo and to meet her afterwards. Admittedly, I actually went a little speechless.

Once I snapped out of it, I purchased her classic book, The Homemade Vegan Pantry: The Art of Making Your Own Staples.” This book is the perfect “how to” guide for anyone seeking to learn how to make classic staples right at home. I know, I know. Why make pantry staples at home? Especially, when you can go to the store and buy them for reasonable prices. But I have to tell you, it just isn’t the same. Homemade food is fresher, healthier, and you know exactly what you’re eating! Plus, Miyoko’s book is proof that homemade, rustic staples don’t have to be a pain. Anyone can make them with a little time and practice.

This  book is chock full of thick, smooth paper with beautiful color photos to accompany many of the recipes which will inspire you to get ready to roll up your sleeves and cook. The Homemade Vegan Pantry: The Art of Making Your Own Staples includes everything from homemade vegan butter or mayo to pizza dough or other breads, to granola and breakfast sausage. These recipes pack a punch, but don’t require a chef’s expertise. Most ingredients are common and can be found in your local grocery store, but a handful of recipes require some more unique finds like yuba, aka tofu skin.

Cory and I have made Miyoku’s cracker recipe no less than four times the past month! It’s so simple, with just five required ingredients! Plus, you can customize it according to your own taste preference. The first batch we made was spiced with oregano and thyme. For the next batch we went with a slightly cheesy taste by using nutritional yeast. The best part—this recipe takes under an hour to make from start to finish.

Vegan Pantry

Why not check out The Homemade Vegan Pantry: The Art of Making Your Own Staples the next time you’re in the market for a cookbook? You won’t regret it!

In the mean time, what’s your favorite staple to make at home?

Cheers!

Jocelyn

* Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate and referral links. I may earn a commission or bonus if you click through to make a purchase.  All opinions are my own. I only work with companies and brands I personally support.

 

February Savings Round Up

Hello everyone,

Brrr! It’s always a long winter in Cleveland. So how am I spending it? Well I’m planning summer trips, thinking about my garden, and getting cozy by the fire. Oh, and doing my usual coupon and rebate savings round ups! I’ve got a hearty list of both “stand by” and new/ rare coupons below in my February Savings Round Up.

I also want to call your attention to three new ways that i’m saving this year:

1. Dosh – Have you heard of Dosh? It’s one of the “newer” rebate apps—similar to Ebates or Swagbucks, but it’s actually a lot easier and has some added benefits. There are three primary ways to get cash back with the app: (1) In-store shopping (and this is my favorite feature); (2) Online Shopping; and (3) Travel.

To earn cash back from in-store shopping, you simply need to link credit or debit cards to your account. As an added bonus, you’ll get $5 for linking your first card. Once you’ve done this, Dosh automatically scans your purchases for savings from Dosh affiliated establishments. That’s it. You read that right. No scanning receipts, snapping photos, or scanning barcodes. It’s automatic! How cool is that?

In general, the cash back for both in-store and online purchases is 3-7%, very similar to Ebates and Swagbucks. For example, right now you can currently pocket 10% back from Denny’s, 7.5% Bed, Bath, and so on. Aside from big name retailers, you might even be bale to earn some cash back at local coffee shops or breweries. 

It’s pretty simple to sign up, and you can cash out for Paypal or donate to charity once you reach $15. Only one catch – you can’t use Dosh in conjunction with any other rebate program, but that’s fairly common.

Right now you can even earn a $25 bonus for booking your first hotel room through the app! Plus, their referral program is the best I’ve ever seen. You can earn $5 for each friend that signs up with your link, but they do frequest specials where the rate jumps to $15. A-mazing! What are you waiting for? Give it a try! *Note, due to popularity, you might encounter a waitlist.

2. Drop – Drop is a free mobile rewards app that allows consumers to collect points on top of their existing rewards programs on everyday spending. You simply link your debit and credit cards and seamlessly earn Drop points at your favorite brands, then redeem them instantly at major retailers like Amazon, Starbucks, and Apple. If you sign up and use my code – g0wex – you’ll get 1,000 free drop points on me. That’s essentially $1.00 in rewards just for joining!

  • Earning rewards with Drop (code – g0wex) is easy:
    • Download the app: www.earnwithdrop.com
    • Link any Debit and/or Credit cards.
    • Select your favorite stores to earn points with. Options currently include Target, Trader Joes, Whole Foods, Sephora, Uber, Starbucks, McDonald’s, Walmart, and more.
    • Earn Drop points every time you make a purchase at any of the selected retailers by spending with your linked Debit or Credit cards.
    • Earn additional Drop points by redeeming limited time offers when spending at rotating brands.
    • Unlock rewards when a certain amount of points are collected. Users can redeem their Drop points instantly for giftcards at places like Amazon, Starbucks, Apple, and many other retailers.

3. SpotHero – Last, but certainly not least−I’ve been reserving parking spots a lot more than usual. I’ve needed to do so when I didn’t want to pay $25-35/night at the hotel, as well as, when I’ve gone downtown for an event. I stumbled on SpotHero which let’s you reserve your spot online or via their app. It’s quick, easy, and lets you park for cheaper than you would otherwise. If you use my link, we’ll both get $7.00 off our next reservation!

Cheers and happy shopping!

Jocelyn

PS – As always, in case you missed them, check out my top ways to save and other recent savings posts.

* Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. As always, all opinions are my own!

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Game Day Treats: Vegan Pigs in a Blanket & more

Hello everyone!

Whether or not you like football, you probably like getting together with friends to snack and halfheartedly watch the halftime show. Or maybe you just watch it for the ads. Either way, if you’re hosting a party for the big day, you’re probably already thinking about what to serve your guests. Is it an all vegan crowd? Do you need to please vegans and omnivores alike? Looking for an easy meal or appetizer to satisfy everyone on Superbowl Sunday? Don’t want to make something homemade? Don’t worry—I’ve got you covered. Today I’m bringing you Game Day Treats: Vegan Pigs in a Blanket & more! 

If you read my Vegan Cinnamon Rolls post, you know that I’ve been coming up with some unique uses for the Pillsbury® Recipe Creations Seamless Dough Sheet. I found the perfect game day, two-ingredient recipe—Vegan Pigs in a Blanket. Anyone could make this recipe. It’s simply foolproof, but it doesn’t taste like it! It’s the perfect party food, clocking in at just 15 minutes of cook time, and easily customizable from the size of the serving to the taste. If you want something delicious that will satisfy your craving plus make you reminisce about childhood, check out my complete recipe below!

Okay, maybe you’re looking also for some “just buy it and you’re done” items? I’ve got you covered on those, too. How about getting a few packs of Louisville Vegan Jerky to display in a serving dish? This jerky packs a punch with flavors ranging from Smoked Black Pepper to Smokey Carolina BBQ or my favorited Smoke Chipotle.

Your friends like cheese doodles or cheetos? Well, why not get some Hippeas for them to enjoy? These cheesy puffs are derived from chick peas, but they sure don’t taste like it!

Want to throw in some healthy snacks? You can’t go wrong with a crudité platter with cauliflower, baby carrots, broccoli, cucumbers, red pepper slices, hummus, and some Just Ranch, too!

Or check out other party-ready recipes from one of my all-time favorite vegan cookbooks, “Thug Kitchen: Eat Like You Give a F*ck.”

Check out my Vegan Pigs in a Blanket recipe below! Let me know what you’re making for game day in the comments.

Happy eating!

Jocelyn

* Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate and referral links. I may earn a commission or bonus if you click through to make a purchase.  All opinions are my own. I only work with companies and brands I personally support.

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The Impossible Burger: My 5-Minute Review

Hello everyone,

Staying warm? Enjoying the snow? I don’t know about you, but when it’s cold outside I crave comfort food. One of my favorite comfort foods is a hearty vegan “burger.” That’s right—a faux meat patty topped with gooey, melty vegan cheese, Heinz ketchup, banana pepper rings, and a dollop of Just Mayo. It always hits the spot! Well, I’ve been hearing buzz about the Impossible Burger for months and months, so I finally decided to find one nearby to give a try. Today I am here to finally provide The Impossible Burger: My 5-Minute Review.  

After years of research and $180 million in funding, the Impossible Burger debuted in the summer of 2016 in NYC at Momofuku Nishi. Now, this restaurant is not a burger joint. It’s an asian fusion restaurant. Possibly an odd place to launch a veggie burger, but it worked! People were lining up hours before the restaurant opened to get a bite of the Impossible Burger.

So why was everyone in a tizzy? Well, the Impossible Burger is a plant-based burger that looks and cooks like ground beef. These qualities are supposed to make it satisfy vegans/ vegetarians and omnivores alike. How does it achieve this? It includes heme—a molecule extracted from fermented yeast that mimics the same molecule that’s found in animal blood. This enables this meatless burger to “bleed” and sear, just like animal-based burgers.

Impossible Burger

Now, these qualities are off-putting for many vegans/ vegetarians, but considering I didn’t cook the burger, I didn’t mind it. The Impossible Burger looks like a medium cooked  regular burger, but so do many other veggie burgers. In fact, I found it to be similar to Beyond Meat’s Beyond Burger in both flavor and texture. The Impossible Burger tasted juicy and a bit greasy, with a slightly crispy exterior and soft center. I ate mine topped with pickles, vegan cheese, lettuce and ketchup, and boy, did it hit the spot! Continue reading “The Impossible Burger: My 5-Minute Review”

Recipe: Vegan Cinnamon Rolls

Hello friends,

Happy New Year! What better way to ring in 2018 than with a super simple recipe for Vegan Cinnamon Rolls. I just love taking a somewhat complicated dessert and making it under an hour. For years, I’ve wanted to make vegan cinnamon rolls, but honestly, the dessert intimidated me. This holiday season I purchased several Pillsbury seamless dough sheets to play with. It’s the perfect way to take this dessert from a bit of a hassle to one of the quickest and easiest dishes to make!

These vegan cinnamon rolls will make your home smell like a Cinnabon location. They are light, airy, have just the right level of sweetness. The secret is using pumpkin puree to help get the right level of gooey sweet goodness. So why not take it easy today. Go get a cup of coffee and enjoy making these quick and easy vegan cinnamon rolls with your loved ones!

Happy eating!

Jocelyn

PS – Like this recipe? Check out my recipe for Vegan Pumpkin Roll.

* Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate and referral links. I may earn a commission or bonus if you click through to make a purchase.  All opinions are my own. I only work with companies and brands I personally support.

Continue reading “Recipe: Vegan Cinnamon Rolls”