Summer Party Ideas & Recipes

Hello everyone,

Are you busy preparing for the long holiday weekend? If you’re like me, that means three trips to the grocery store to pick up all the items you keep forgetting and hours in the kitchen obsessing over which side salad to make for your guests. Well I’ve got a helping of 4th of July Party Ideas & Recipes ready to go. And the one thing I know I don’t have to worry about is which faux meat to grill.

LightLife Jumbo Smart Dog LightLife Jumbo Smart Dog LightLife Jumbo Smart Dog LightLife Jumbo Smart Dog

My hands down, favorite veggie dog is the LightLife Jumbo Smart Dog. This slightly larger dog actually fits the length of traditional hot dog buns, and it has the perfect texture + taste combo. Try it topped with a little mustard, ketchup, red onion and vegan cheese.

It’s so good and without the guilt—it’sonly 100 calories with 3.5g of fat and 4g carbs, plus it has 13g of protein! Even better, they are vegan and non-GMO. Healthy and hot dogs don’t exactly go together like pb&j, but this veggie dog seems to do the trick!

These veggie dogs are especially good if you lightly char them on the grill. And I do mean lightly. If you let them go too long, they’ll blacken and get a little “rubbery.” However, if you cook them just long enough, it makes for the perfect summer snack! If it’s a rainy day youcan also use a griddle. As you head to the store this weekend, remember to pick some of these up. Right now you can save $2.00 off any two LightLife products through Mambo Sprouts.

Okay. So now you know which veggie dog to cook. What else? Well for me, I’ll probably whip up a creamy, vegan old-fashioned coleslaw or maybe opt for an asian-inspired slaw. Of course, I have to make my signature macaroni salad, and maybe a summer bean salad, too. Plus, you can’t forget dessert! Perhaps I’ll go with vegan Rice Krispie Treats or maybe some melty, satisfying s’mores if the weather is just right for a fire.

Tell me, what are you planning for your holiday weekend?

Cheers!

Jocelyn

* Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. Additionally, I received Light Life coupons for free products in return for my honest review. As always, all opinions are my own!



Vegan in Warsaw

Hello fellow travelers,

In May, I was lucky enough to head to Warsaw, Poland for a few days. While I didn’t have much time to sightsee, I made sure I was able to visit a few baroque palaces and gardens, the Uprising Museum, and of course, eat at a few vegan-friendly restaurants. Being vegan in Warsaw, I was expecting to find vegan versions of Polish staples like dumplings and perogies. Instead, I found a wealth of Italian, Mediterranean, and asian vegan cuisine. And it was excellent! Below is a brief collection of restaurants and mouth watering photos to go with them!

Enjoy, fellow vegan travelers!

Jocelyn

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

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How to Use Garlic Scapes

Hello friends,

First HomeI bought my first home last summer. It just so happens that the folks who owned the home before me were avid gardeners so I inherited three raised garden beds. One day I got the bright idea to dive right into gardening. No, “let’s take it easy this year.” No, “let’s just start with tomato plants.” No. I went from zero to sixty.

I hopped online and purchased heirloom organic vegetable seeds, seed starter kits, heat mats, shelving, lights, and created a full on grow area in my basement. It looks like I am a doomsday prepper. Surprisingly, most of my seedlings are doing fairly well, and I’m not entirely overwhelmed yet. But I can feel it coming.

One of the easier things I’ve started to grow indoors is garlic. I simply purchased organic garlic and split the large bulb into pieces. Then I planted the individual garlic cloves point up in 6″ of soil, watered it, and covered the containers in plastic wrap. Who knew it could be so easy to grow? Continue reading “How to Use Garlic Scapes”

How to Make Fattoush Salad

Hello everyone,

I love Middle Eastern cuisine. Baba ghanoush, falafel, tabouli, you name it— it’s some of my favorite food. I was craving a feel good meal this weekend, so I decided to try my hand at a classic, fattoush salad.

Fattoush (فتوش) is a levantine bread salad which originated in Lebanon, but is also common in Syria and other Middle Eastern counties. Fattoush includes toasted or fried pieces of pita bread mixed with greens and fresh vegetables. It generally also includes cucumber, tomato, and other ingredients depending on season, location, taste, etc.

The dressing is slightly sour and acidic, using a healthy serving of lemon juice and sumac. Since I didn’t have sumac, I used zatar seasoning to give the salad a full flavor. I also used store bought pita chips to save time, but I’m sure this recipe would be even better if you used homemade pita bread for the crunch. This is a deceptively easy salad to make considering the robust flavor combinations. Why not give it a try?

What’s your favorite Middle Eastern recipe?

Cheers,

Jocelyn

* Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. As always, all opinions are my own! Continue reading “How to Make Fattoush Salad”

Recipe: Potato Gnocchi

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Hello everyone!

I’ve always loved Italian food. The smell of sauce cooking, the warm, filling qualities of the meals. ahhh… Pasta! Plus, I’m Italian, and I grew up eating pasta in all its forms. Since the fall, I’ve been trying to make various pastas from scratch, but one I was avoiding was gnocchi.

Why avoid gnocchi? Well, it’s hand down my favorite pasta and always has been. And I simply did not want to mess it up, or let myself down. Luckily, gnocchi is—dare I say—easy to make! And easy to make vegan!

Making gnocchi for the first time took me less than two hours, and it was absolutely scrumptious. It was probably the best gnocchi I’ve ever had. It was that good! The dough was pillowy, yet still dense enough to be chewy. The fork ‘rolling’ technique did the trick, and the pasta sauce stuck on the gnocchi in the best way.

I know spending a few hours making pasta isn’t feasible most nights of the week, but for that special occasion or on the weekend it’s well worth the effort! Give this simple three ingredient gnocchi recipe a try!

Mangia! Mangia!

Jocelyn

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

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