As much as the heat can tire me, I love summer. The sunshine, birds hopping about, squirrels lazing on the top of our fence with their little, furry thighs slung over the wood as they snooze sprawled out in the midday heat. What’s not to love? Sure you sweat, but that’s healthy and good to help detox your body.
While the squirrels lounge around on the fence, I like to lounge around too, but human-style.
Popcorn sprinkled with Parma and some added sea salt, enjoyed with a Zevia stevia root beer and my summer passion, Harry Potter. Yes, I have somehow managed to live for over a decade without reading these books and have been pouring through them as my summer reading. I’m a bit embarrassed to admit how much I’ve been enjoying them… but I’m certainly not the only grown-up to pepper their conversations with what Jim is calling “Potter-speak”.
I have been cooking! Real food! I know the sadness that will come as summer begins to wane and fall and winter produce appears. Not that I don’t like fall or winter, don’t get me wrong, but the colors and flavors of summer are fleeting, so I’m trying to indulge as much as possible while it’s here.
Garlic sauteed cannellini beans with two kinds of kale (purple and dinosaur) and some chopped kalamata olives, topped with marinated and grilled portobella mushrooms. Oh boy, this was a heck of a meal. It was kind of thrown together with the “we need to use this stuff up” mindset and came together in some sort of foodie fantasy. Then again, I’m always a pushover because kale + garlic + mushrooms + kalamata = love.
I recently joined the rest of veg world and tried Sunshine Burgers for the first time. Have I been a fool for holding out this long! They are truly delicious and the most wholesome veggie burger that I have seen. There are some great veggie burgers out there and this isn’t about to fool any omnis, like Morningstar’s Vegan Grillers may, but every ingredient is something you could find at the grocery store. No mystery isolate protein whichamados and defatted soy thingsmajigs. The lovely burger itself is pictured above in a summery romaine lettuce leaf bun rather than bread, with Vegenaise, mustard, pickle, sauteed mushrooms and sauteed Walla Walla onions. Some garlic roasted brussel sprouts, a pickle and blueberries accompanied the meal, with a cool cup of Del’s lemonade (courtesy of a friend’s recent trip to Rhode Island) which we whipped up in the Vita-Mix.
I love how people like to complain that making whole food or food from scratch takes too long as their way of justifying convenience junk food. The above meal took me under 30 minutes to make. I preheated the oven while chopping the brussels and tossing them in olive oil and garlic. Tossed them in the oven and in one skillet sauteed onions while I sauteed mushrooms in another. You could sautee them together, but I think the juices from the mushrooms do something weird to the onions. Just my personal thing. Once the mushrooms were done, I set them aside and used the same pan to lightly fry the defrosted patties until warm and a little browned. Assembled, served and on the couch watching Seinfeld on DVD not 30 minutes later. Beat that Pizza Hut!
Of course, the warm weather invites Edgar, the Vita-Mix, out to play quite often.
Other than our first smoothie the night Edgar joined the family, this was the first non-green smoothie we’ve had. Just some regular old fruit and almond milk. I was expecting a big difference, but it was pleasantly surprising to see that we aren’t missing much sweetness by adding the greens. Sure, the colors aren’t always the best (army green glop, anyone?) but they taste good. This one contained some banana, bing cherries, marionberries, raspberries and almond milk. Now that’s what I call dessert!
Squirrel’s Vegan KitchenGo back in time to my original blog: Squirrel’s Vegan Kitchen!
Tags21.5.800 baking banana beans berries birthday breakfast brownies cakes canning chocolate cookbook cookies cooking cooking show cupcakes give away gluten free greens harry potter health holiday baking holiday meals kittehs muffins nostalgia nuts oatmeal peanut butter pie pumpkin quick eats quinoa real food recipe resolutions review soup summer TJs treat of the week vegan mofo vegan mofo 2009 video vita-mix