Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Homemade Vegan Dog Cookies!

I joked in the Christmas cookie post that even though the cookies were explicitly gifted to myself and 89, "dogs can't eat cookies"!  Well, fear not; 89 did get her own special cookies, and so did some of her friends.

Last year, a friend of a friend was talking about her intended homemade gifts and it sounded like such a lovely idea that I filed it away so that this year I'd be ready.

I chose this recipe for vegan peanut butter carrot puppy biscuits from VegWeb and gathered the ingredients (and, by default, 89).


I stole borrowed VM's rolling pin even though I'm allergic, and got to work.  89's mouth is already covered with carrot juice here, from the prep.

She makes a great sous chef, pre-rinsing all the silverware before it heads to the dishwasher.

I cooked the treats in batches while I continued to roll the dough and cut it into bones, stars, cats, and fire hydrants.  Repeat infinity.


The recipe worked great as stated, but I would recommend finely chopping the shredded carrot, as my rough chops made for a bit of a whimsical look of escaping carrot.

Also note that I halved the recipe, and- with my mini cookie cutters, still wound up with about 70 cookies.


I let them cool for as long as I could hold 89 off...but was horrified when, at first, it seemed like she didn't like them: rolling the pieces around but not eating them.

However, once she started she couldn't stop; she enjoyed every morsel of the soft cookies (I also tried a piece and it was pretty good!).

Then it was time to wrap 'em up.  A little personalization:


Vegans love ingredient labels:

And, voila:

A few more off the assembly line:

With plenty left over for a certain numbered dog.

Because 89 liked the cookies so much, I was able to get her to wear this in exchange for a few.

Also, more of this.

I highly recommend this recipe and the idea of useful, homemade gifts.  I hope everyone who received them enjoyed as much as 89 did.  Happy new year!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Stuff I Ate Yesterday (Mostly Vegan Treats Christmas Cookies)

You may have heard that Vegan Treats offers traditional cookie assortments around the holidays; this year they were available for delivery!  If you took advantage of the opportunity, I salute you.  If you missed it, this post is for you; make a note for next year.

"Peace to all beings this holiday season"

This was the box that was waiting for me at my parents' house a few days before Christmas.

And this was the box that was waiting for me at home!  Such a shame that dogs can't eat cookies…

Now I'm just going to bombard you with individual photos; trust that one was more delicious than the next.

Snowflake sugar cookies:

Chocolate Krinkles:

Maple logs:

Red velvet cookie sandwiches:

Samoa: this one was a new one for me, but it was definitely a new favorite.  Yes, that's caramel in the center!

Pecan snowballs:

Festive sugar cookies:

Marzipan bon-bons:

Classic chocolate chip:

Peanut butter truffles:

Strawberry cream cheese empanadas:


Hazelnut praline chocolate cookie wafers:

and raspberry thumbprints:

Because it's hard to go into Vegan Treats and resist buying everything, they also got a few other things.

Raspberry kiffles:

Chocolate-encased angel's food cake donut:

Triple chocolate donut:

Raspberry jelly donut:

Pecan bun:

Lest you think I didn't make sure to fit dinner in as well, behold VM's macaroni:

My garlic bread:

And: because if one pasta dish is good, two are better:

More on this later, but note the festive coloration.

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!

At this time of year when we spoil our pets even more than usual, please remember those that are not so lucky. Donate your time or goods to shelter animals and foster or adopt if possible; it will be the best gift you give yourself. 

**Always keep your eyes open for animals in need of your help**

Monday, December 23, 2013

Earth Balance Holiday Popps- Quick Review

In light of the recent VeganSaurus post on the subject, I wanted to check in regarding the Earth Balance Holiday Popps, which I found at Whole Foods.


I had the highest of hopes for these popps, as did the vegan cashier who rang up my sale.  Unfortunately, I'm here to tell you that they were dashed.  DASHED!  These popps are VERY cinnamony.  Not to put too fine a point on it, know that they're entirely TOO cinnamony; and this is coming from someone who really likes cinnamon. To add insult to injury, what they make up in cinnamon, they severely lack in chocolate.  In other words, they are NOT very chocolatey.  I love chocolate and there's not nearly enough!  And, finally: almonds instead of peanuts?  I call foul.

Because I'm a huge fan of Earth Balance's palm-free, aged white cheddar puffs, I had no idea to expect that the Popps would contain palm oil- but they do.  The production of palm oil is destroying rainforests and brutally maiming and killing the orangutans and other animals that inhabit them, not to mention displacing indigenous people and having a wholly negative impact on the environment.  The term "sustainable palm oil" is as-yet unverifiable, so I do my best to avoid it.

Bottom line: the Holiday Popps were a disappointment in every respect.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

One More Vegan Shop-Up left in 2013!

You guys, you know I love the Vegan Shop-Ups; this Saturday is the last one of 2013!  Here's a little recap of my November shop-up festivities to get you in the mood.

I started the day pretty early with a friend at The Bean for chamomile tea and a toasted poppy flagel with vegan cream cheese.

Then it was off to the Shop-Up for some cereal donuts from Cake Thieves:

Gone Pie Vegan Bakery had a new item: chocolate chip cookie sandwiches!  What more is there to say? 

This was also when I had my first taste of their incredible pumpkin snickerdoodles.

Some Snail food was in order for lunch: the week's special red curry grilled tofu banh mi: with pickled onions & basil, arugula, kimchi, and sriracha mayo on a chili oil grilled baguette.  I apologize, but it was way too crowded to photograph this loaded sammie; two hands were necessary at all times.

Washed it down with one of Pine Box's unmatched Bloody Mary's. Yes; that's a pickled Brussels sprout.


And some salt & vinegar potato chips.

There was a new vendor at the shop-up: By Rye.  She had a bunch of warm, soft, and beautiful knits (she was even knitting during the event) to keep us toasty without harming any animals (it's not just leather and fur that's cruel; don't forget wool, down, and silk).

There was a flurry of excitement at her table as a few of us tried on a bunch of things and coveted each others choices.  I've been enjoying my new, cozy scarf ever since.

Thanks, Ryder!

I couldn't resist one of the seasonal drinks, so I took respite from the busy and crowded thoroughfare  by snagging a seat at the end of the bar to relax and enjoy.  I don't remember the specifics, but there was chai, almond milk, booze, and imported brandied cherries involved.

Next up, drinks for a friend's birthday elsewhere in Brooklyn (I'd had enough by then, thankyouverymuch), followed by a couple of slices from Vinnie's (1 each!). 


My veggie-laden, Daiya-fied, hot-sauced slice up close:


Vinnie's art:


Then it was a mad dash (the L wasn't running) back to Manhattan for treats from The Best Ice Cream Shop in the Universe.  A friend got this strawberry, walnut, cookie flurry that looked pretty impressive.

While I stuck with a carob ice cream root beer float because I still wasn't convinced winter was around the corner (sundaes are vastly more appropriate in winter).

Looking forward to another fun day this Saturday; see ya there and everywhere.