Friday, July 20, 2018

Bonus Haul & More Stuff I Ate

Hey everyone! I hope you are all doing well and that you had a great week! I'm excited about today's post because I have a long overdue haul from one of my favorite places! I went to the Sweet To Lick Vegan Market a few weeks ago and I wanted to wait until I tried a few of the products to share the haul. I also have a few things that I ate this week to share as well :)

So as is the case with every other time I visited the market, I went in for one thing (the jerky) and came out with all the things. This time I wanted to try the Earth Balance Buttery popcorn (SO GOOD!!!), the goodpop Cookies N' Cream bars (sadly just ok for me - I love that they have this flavor but I found it a bit bland and underwhelming), the primal strips (you know I love these), some chocolate brownie cookie dough made out of black beans (still need to try this), my beloved Field Roast mini Corn Dogs and the WayFare Vanilla Pudding (AMAZING!! I liked it even better than the chocolate!).

I have been loving my avocado toast lately. I had it with a delicious peach and some coffee in my amazing mermaid mug gifted to me by the lovely Beverlee!!

This is some Mujadara (rice with lentils and caramelized onions) from the Israeli Market. I seriously love this stuff so much. 

One night I had breakfast for dinner and made some of the Trader Joe's gluten free waffles with syrup (yup, I like a lot of syrup… sorry not sorry) and a delicious plum.

I made this beautiful salad to enjoy for lunch today. I am super excited about it even though it is a simple salad of butter lettuce, shredded carrots, grape tomatoes and chick'n strips. Topped with Just Ranch, of course.

That's all I have for you today. I hope that your week has gone well and that you have an amazing weekend! Any fun plans? I have a staycation planned for next weekend (I will be off from Friday-Monday) and I'm so excited about it. Part of me wants to get out and do stuff and part of me wants to just relax and recharge. I'm guessing it'll be a combination of both. What do you like to do during a staycation?

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Grocery Haul, Meal Prep and Meals... Oh My!

Hey everyone! I hope that you are all doing well, had a great weekend and are staying cool. I really enjoyed this weekend as I was able to see one of my best friends for the first time since December. We've been friends for almost 20 years and she is one of my favorite people on earth and I miss her all the time. We were also joined by her husband who is also wonderful and we had a great time. I'll share a little more on this later.

Today's post has a lot going on! Of course I have my (small) Trader Joe's grocery haul to share. I also got some meal prep done as well as some meals I ate over the past week to share with you. I also have the delicious meal I enjoyed with my friends to share as well.

Let's get into it!

First is the produce portion of my grocery haul. I got two bags of butter lettuce, some shredded carrots, asparagus, portabella mushroom caps, grape tomatoes, an avocado and an onion.

My grocery portion of the haul was quite small and contained two delicious treats: Crunchy Curls and Soy Creamy mini ice cream sandwiches.

Next up we have some minimal meal prep:

The timing could not have been more perfect to make these banana muffins. I have been craving banana muffins for a while and I happened to have some very ripe bananas that needed to be used so I got to work using my very favorite recipe: Chocolate Covered Katie's Fat Free Banana Bread recipe. Instead of strawberries I used walnuts and chocolate chips and I made them into muffins. Of course it can't be a Sarah muffin making experience without some sort of issue (seriously, why can't I just make a batch of muffins without incident?). This one was minor but I completely forgot that since these are fat free they would stick to the paper... seriously that's amateur hour on my part. Luckily it's not too bad and I was able to rescue my muffin from the paper (in a few pieces) but next time I'll just make the loaf like I normally would.

Of course I made a batch of my favorite pasta salad for the week. I usually get 3-4 servings from the batch (I usually use a half of a bag of pasta at a time and add tons of veggies) so lunches are pretty well set for the week.

And here is some stuff I ate:

Of course you know I have to have my watermelon!

This was a lazy yet delicious meal of mini Field Roast corn dogs with some roasted potatoes and obviously a lot of ketchup... because I love ketchup on everything.

A quick lunch of rice and beans and broccoli. Very delicious.

This was the amazing meal I enjoyed when I went out for lunch with my friends on Sunday! We had Thai food and I enjoyed this dish of spicy eggplant, tofu, broccoli, onion and green beans with a spring roll and some rice. So so delicious and the leftovers were devoured the next day.

We also went for some bubble tea and I had my usual Peach Pulp tea with boba. I thought I'd take a picture of the top before I punctured it with my straw because I thought it was so cute! You know I love my skulls so combine them with bubble tea and I'm a happy girl.

So there you have it! A little bit of everything to start off the week :) I hope that you all have a great week and I'll be back here on Friday with another post to welcome the weekend (well for you guys, not for me since I still work Saturdays). I hope that you are all enjoying your summer! What fun summer things have you been up to? 

Friday, July 13, 2018

Stuff I Want To Make

Hey you guys! I hope that you are all doing well. I thought it would be fun to put together a list of things that I want to try to make in my own kitchen. I tend to get into patterns with what I eat and I want to break out of that a little bit and make some yummy food that I have either always wanted to try, dishes that I've had and miss/haven't had in a while or restaurant meals I want to recreate. Of course I'll be including source links for the images since most of these are not mine so feel free to check theirs out!

The first dish I have been wanting to make for the longest time but never have is called Swimming Rama. When I lived in Seattle I would go to an AMAZING Thai place called Thai Tom in the University District. My friend got this dish called Swimming Rama with Tofu and let me try it. OMG you guys. It's amazing. It's a bed of rice topped with lightly sautéed spinach, bean sprouts and tofu smothered in the most delicious spicy peanut sauce. And without fail I got it every single time I went after that (I was vegetarian at the time so I was mostly concerned with fish sauce but I think the sauce is otherwise vegan?). Anyway, I have been craving this for the longest time and have not ever taken the time to make it. That's totally going to change because I really want it 😂 The picture above is actually the Swimming Rama with Tofu from Thai Tom (I grabbed it from their Yelp page, gave source credit as best as I could).

I've heard really amazing things about the Eggplant Hummus from Trader Joe's. Sadly I've never been able to try it because mine just doesn't carry it ever. I've never seen it there. From what I've seen and heard, it kind of looks like and oil free combination of hummus and babaganoush and it sounds pretty damn awesome. I've decided it's now my mission to make it myself at home. I won't be able to tell how close I come but I have a feeling it's going to be pretty damn delicious whether or not it tastes like the original. 

I know you're probably thinking what the hell does this New Yorker know about biscuits and gravy? Well, I know that they are freaking delicious and I want them in my face hole. Sadly I don't really have access to them here but I'm determined to make them some day. I don't know how authentic they are but the Buttermilk Biscuits and Country Gravy by The Simple Veganista sound pretty awesome. I think this will have to be something to try in the fall and/or winter when I'm in need of some warm comfort food on a cold day.

This is a little similar to the biscuits and gravy but omg it's too good not to include here. Every time I visit my best friend in Florida we go for brunch at Ethos Vegan Kitchen and EVERY TIME I get this amazing Breakfast Burrito. It is stuffed with faux sausage, tofu scramble, giant chunks of roasted potato and then wrapped up in a tortilla and smothered in sausage gravy. It is freaking delicious and I need it in my life way more often. It seems easy enough to make. I'm sure the spices will be off a bit but I definitely think I could come close to this in my kitchen and I will definitely be giving it a shot! I also think it would be awesome as a breakfast burrito bowl with just the potatoes, scramble, sausage and gravy in a bowl.

I figured I'd bring it back to summertime treats and mention that I really want to make a Chocolate Chip Cookie Ice Cream Sandwich before the summer ends. It couldn't be easier... make a batch of your favorite chocolate chip cookies and stuff it with your favorite vegan ice cream (there is so much to choose from now!). You can bet that mine will have sprinkles around the outside because sprinkles are so festive and delightful.

The last thing that I really want to make is a proper Baked Vegan Mac and Cheese. I'm sorry but the crap you buy in the package in the store is gross. All of them. I've never tried one that I like. So the only way to resolve that is to make my own the proper way. It will be incredibly unhealthy but damn will it be good. It's not something I will eat every day but sometimes you just want a proper mac and cheese and that means finding a good mac and cheese recipe where you veganize the dairy, make the cheese sauce and then bake it off in the oven. That will definitely be happening because it has been entirely too long since I've had a proper mac and cheese.

So these are some of the things that I want to try to make in the upcoming months. As I mentioned, some of these recipes will be better in the fall or winter when warm comfort food is definitely more appropriate. As I try to make these recipes I will definitely show you how they come out and I'll share how I made them. I'm especially excited about the Swimming Rama and hope to try that soon!

What are some foods that you want to make? Any restaurant meals that you want to recreate? Let me know!

I hope that you enjoy your weekend and I'll see you on Tuesday!! ❤

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

What I'm Into Lately

Hey everyone! I hope that you are all doing well! I thought it would be fun to change things up a little bit and do a post about vegan things I've been loving lately. I think we all go through phases and have changing tastes and preferences so it's fun to check in and see what we've been up to lately. I'll be sharing products but also some podcasts I've been listening to and some other fun things.

First up we have a podcast that I've been binge listening lately. You know I'm a big fan of True Crime podcasts but I decided to take a little bit of a break and listen to some lighter material. I came across Anna Faris is Unqualified and I was hooked after the first episode I listened to. I love Anna Faris, I think she is hilarious and I love how she interacts with her guests. The super unique thing that they do is actually call up listeners and Anna, her producer Sim and her celebrity guest will offer relationship advice about the issue that the caller is inquiring about. It's such a fun podcast to listen to and I definitely recommend it.

I am currently OBSESSED with this adorable Tote Bag and Grocery List Notepad that I purchased from my friend's shop called Creating & Co. She sells planner stickers but has recently branched out into selling merch such as tumblers, totes, notepads, bookish type items (Kindle cases for example), journals (I have one and it's stunning), apparel and tons of other stuff. I was eagerly awaiting the release of these adorable veggie themed totes and had to pick up the Everyday I'm Brusselin' tote along with the note pad. I love the notepad for my grocery lists and meal prep lists. As I have mentioned, Paige (the shop owner) is a friend of mine and I do promote her shop but I am sharing this with you because I sincerely love everything she makes and I would still purchase from her if she was not a friend of mine.

I've mentioned this in my past Trader Joe's hauls but I have been addicted to these Trader Joe's Crunchy Curls. They are a lentil and potato curl that are super crispy and delicious. I'm a little bit weird and I love things with a cardboard texture and these kind of have a cardboard texture. They are delicious and are now a staple on my Trader Joe's shopping list.

I'm sure this is not a surprise but I'm currently loving this Vegan Ranch Chick'n Pasta Salad that I've been making a lot lately. It's really easy to make, super filling and super super delicious. To make it all you do is mix together cooked pasta (the rotini shape works best in my opinion) that I rinse with cold water to get to room temperature with some butter lettuce, quartered grape tomatoes, some room temperature corn and your favorite vegan chick'n strips and then you douse it all in Just Ranch and mix it all up. It's really simple, makes a lot and tastes really amazing. I guarantee you it will be a hit with both vegans and omnis.

It has been a while since I've gotten bubble tea but now since it is scorching hot I figured it would be the perfect time to continue my tradition of a weekly trip to the bubble tea shop and treat myself to my favorite drink. I also follow it up with a leisurely and peaceful drive to my favorite spot on earth where I am treated to the most amazing view of the NYC skyline. This is my version of self care and it is the part of my week that I look forward to most.

These are a few things that I've been into lately! What have you been enjoying? I would love some podcast and book recommendations as well as some yummy vegan food recommendations. I still have a bunch of places here on Long Island that I would like to try but I'm still working on my social anxiety issues in therapy but hopefully that'll happen sooner rather than later.

I hope you all have a great week! See you back here on Friday!

Friday, July 6, 2018

Stuff I Ate!

Hey you guys! I hope you are well and enjoyed your 4th of July! I had a pretty mellow day, I didn't really do anything fun but was pretty productive. I just tried to stay cool and I worked on a few projects that I have going on now. It was nice to have a random day off in the middle of the week and I'm getting close to my weekend so that's always a good thing. It's been very hot here so I haven't really wanted to do much of anything but I'm trying to get out a little bit.

I figured I'd try to take some pictures of the stuff I've been eating to share with you. I have been eating a lot of the same things lately so I'm definitely looking to branch out and try some new things. But for now, here is some stuff I've been eating this week.

On the 4th of July I made another large batch of my Vegan Ranch Chick'n Pasta Salad and decided to add some corn to this one and it was amazing, of course. It lasted a few meals so I had that for lunch at work as well. I just didn't find it necessary to photograph it again and again and I have a little left for dinner or lunch tomorrow.

For dinner on the 4th of July I decided to be a little festive-ish. I figured a Boca Burger with some pasta salad would be passable for a festive meal and it was really good. The burger was just a plain Boca Burger with some shredded lettuce and ketchup. It was delicious and super filling.

Of course we have some avocado toast on sourdough bread. I know they look huge but this is a salad plate. This white plate I always use is a salad plate so it's not ginormous. Although to be fair, I'd love to eat avocado toast the size of a giant dinner plate. 

In my never ending quest to find a vegan yogurt that I like I decided it was time to try the Silk brand yogurts. The first one I came across was the Almond Milk Yogurt so I got it in the vanilla flavor. I had it for breakfast at work with a peach and a plum because you know I love my summer fruit. The yogurt is ok. It's one of the best vegan yogurts I've tried but I definitely won't be craving it. I may just have to accept that yogurt just isn't going to be a thing for me.

Another snack I've been enjoying are granny smith apples with Justin's vanilla almond butter. I love the vanilla almond butter, the hint of vanilla and sweetness are so satisfying for the sweet tooth!

I've been enjoying simple salads lately. This one is kind of a vegan chick'n "caesar" salad except it's Just Ranch and not Just Caesar 😂 It's really easy to throw together and bring to work and it's delicious. I've been enjoying simple salads most days this week.

So that's another installment of what I've been eating! I hope that you all had a great week and I'll be back on Tuesday to share some stuff I've been into lately!

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Grocery Haul and A Few Meals

Hey everyone! I hope that you are well! Are you ready for 4th of July festivities? I don't really have anything planned but it certainly will be nice to have a day off during the week. I may try to get some work done on some projects I have going on but we'll see. I also want to see if I can get in a mellow workout. My sciatic nerve pain got worse before it got better but it seems to be improving a bit in the past few days. I may give it a try but we'll see how I feel when I wake up.

So for today's post I have a small Trader Joe's haul and my breakfast and lunch from today (spoiler alert, both are glorious 😂).

So for my groceries I got some butter lettuce and spring mix (I like mixing lettuce in my salads), a few Granny Smith apples, two giant sweet potatoes, tofu and shredded carrots.

I also got more of the Crunchy Curls, a loaf of Sourdough Bread and some gluten free frozen waffles.

Ok let's get into the goods. I had this amazing avocado toast on sourdough bread with two small plums for breakfast. It was so delicious and a perfect summer breakfast.

You guys. This salad though. It is currently sitting in the fridge waiting to be devoured for lunch. I have a mixture of spring mix and butter lettuce on the bottom with some shredded carrots, grape tomatoes, corn and vegan chicken strips with some Just Ranch dressing. It is going to be so damn good and I can't wait to enjoy this for lunch. And yes, I put my dressing on when I make it because I kind of don't mind my lettuce being a little soggy. 😳

So that's my short update for today! I can't wait to see all of your 4th of July noms. I don't have anything special planned, maybe a boca burger with some sweet potato and salad? We'll see.

I hope you all have a happy and SAFE 4th of July! See you on Friday!

Friday, June 29, 2018

Stuff I Ate

Hey everyone! I hope that you are well! I'm sitting tight over here. I have to say that getting back to the gym has definitely be so amazing and I always feel better after a workout. Sadly I have had to take two of my scheduled days off because I have a sciatica flare up which makes all kinds of movement an issue so I'm just trying to deal with that and then I can get back to it. Does anyone have any tips for sciatica pain? This is the worst flare up I've ever had and I'm just trying to be as still as possible while siting or laying but also trying to get up and move around to stretch out while I can. Anti inflammatories are hard for me since they are so harsh on your stomach and mine is already so sensitive. I'd appreciate any tips you may have.

Otherwise things have been the same. Summer and fall is our super busy season at work so I'm staying busy there. I've been trying to capture as many of my meals this week as possible to make up for the lack of them lately. I have been eating and enjoying some yummy food!

This was a random snack I had one day. I really wanted some carrots and hummus and of course you know I love my stuffed grape leaves. Such a yummy and satisfying snack.

For breakfast one day I was really craving some delicious fruit so I had a bunch of cherries and three plums. The plums were so sweet and juicy. I am so happy to have summer produce back in my life.

I've been having some chocolate cravings so I made up this container to bring to work with me. It is a serving of the Trader Joe's just a handful Almonds and about 2 tbsp of Trader Joe's chocolate chips. I keep them on my desk if I want a quick snack.

I call this my third grade lunch, ha! It felt very reminiscent of a packed elementary school lunch (before nuts were banned). It is a peanut butter sandwich on wheat bread with some baby carrots and two small peaches. So yummy and exactly what I wanted.

I used about 2/3 of the bag of gluten free pasta to make a big batch of my favorite Vegan Chick'n Ranch Pasta Salad that I started making last year. It is so good but I don't eat it often because I just don't crave pasta that much. Well the craving hit and I made a big batch. It was delicious for dinner last night and I will be eating it for lunch today and tomorrow at work as well. It's so easy to make. I just mix up some of my favorite pasta (I use gluten free) with some lettuce or greens of choice (this is butter lettuce), some quartered grape tomatoes, vegan grilled chicken strips of choice (I use Morningstar vegan strips) and mix it all together with Just Ranch. It's so easy and I highly recommend it. It would be perfect for a summer BBQ too!

So this is some of the stuff I've been eating this week. I've been getting better about photographing but I still need to try and be more diligent. I hope that you all had a great week and that you enjoy your weekend! Any fun plans? It's going to be in the 90s here so I'm probably not going to be doing all that much 😂

Have a great weekend!