Hi there! I hope this week is going well for you. I’m feeling a lot perkier this week, probably the best I’ve felt since early December so that makes me happy. In fact, yesterday was the 3-month anniversary of my surgery which marks my 90th day of being a cancer survivor. It still feels weird for me to say that, sometimes I still can’t believe I had cancer in the first place.
Yesterday was interesting, too, because when I was out yesterday afternoon for an appointment, a woman randomly asked me about my scar and I launched into the whole story about the cancer and how it was discovered. The conversation then turned to nutrition and it came up that I am vegan. After asking me where I get my protein (the famous first question, ha ha), I then had the opportunity to talk about my reasons which I said were because of my concerns about factory farming and animal welfare and then, later, because I learned all of the associated health benefits with following a plant-based diet. I watched her face carefully to see how she would react and she still seemed interested even when I talked about the animals. It made me feel good to do a little activism and built my confidence. It’s much, much easier for me to write about this stuff and talk to a sympathetic audience, but it certainly is a challenge to figure out how to connect with people in the “real world.” You can read more about my burgeoning activism here, by the way.
I was trying to capture my smoothie serving but had to zoom out to get the light, so I thought you might be interested to see the kitchen where I’ve been working for the past month or so. I’ll be here a few more weeks until Alan and I re-locate back to the coast, you can see I have quite a bit of fresh fruit to work through:
Since I was feeling good, I had a great workout at the gym after breakfast and decided to make some black bean, mushroom and collard green tacos for lunch. Here were the veggies:
I used a teeny bit of coconut oil for the greens (you could totally leave out the oil and just water-saute them instead) and then added onion, mushrooms and black beans:
I served it on a corn tortilla with my favorite no-salt salsa from Trader Joe’s:
This tasted like a restaurant meal in a good way:
You can see I served it with chopped scallions plus a Vegan Sour Cream Sauce I whipped up in the Vitamix. The ingredients for that included tofu, shallot, lime juice, garlic powder, cashews and vinegar and it was so creamy and flavorful:
Here’s the recipe:
Vegan Sour Cream Sauce
1 8-ounce container firm or extra-firm tofu
1 shallot, chopped
1/3 cup raw, unsalted cashews
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Combine ingredients in a high-speed blender and process until smooth. Note: you don’t need to worry about pressing the tofu for this recipe, just drain the liquid out of the container and pop the tofu in the blender. Also, fyi, this sauce can be used as a salad dressing.
Dinner was some leftover soup that I served over fresh salad greens to get an extra serving of veggies, plus fresh chopped red onion:
This tasted pretty good and was a nice little trick that I’ll be using in the future. Dessert last night was a bowl (make that two bowls) of Tahini Cherry Ice Cream, my absolute favorite dessert of the moment:
The dessert was indulgent and I ate a little more than I was hungry for just because it tasted so good, but sometimes that just happens.
A couple more things. My friend Jasmin suggested that I give you a peak into my smoothie cabinet where I keep all my fixings. Do you want to see that?
And, I got some really helpful comments about my post on finding vegan shoes. Turns out that even if shoes are not made directly from animal-based products like leather, they can contain glues that are made from animals. Yikes! I did not know this. Also, a reader pointed out that products made from petroleum-based sources are bad for the environment because they end up in a landfill at some point and aren’t biodegradable. I really appreciated this input because I’m learning as I go along and it made me think more about my options. I’ll definitely be posting about this in the future.
Have you downloaded my app Vegan Delish yet? I’m working my way to 75 recipes, the Vegan Sour Cream Sauce will be uploaded soon as recipe #74. Check out the iTunes preview for the app here, the website, or like the Facebook page for special updates.
Enjoy the rest of your week and see ya back here on Friday.