Review Category : Food

It’s official! The advanced copies of The Lusty Vegan book are here! Right this second, I have a fresh copy nestled into my lap, and I’m petting it like a kitten.

Even more exciting is the fantastic tour Ayinde and I are rolling out this fall. Our first stop? New York City of course.

On October 15 and 16—yep, that’s right, two nights!–we will be hosting a culinary art installation at Suite ThreeOhSix at 7:30 pm.

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Summer is the season of guacamole. Well, it certainly feels like it, with all the barbecues and al-fresco parties serving up the great green dip. I mean, what says summer louder than a big bowl o’ guac? Nothin, that’s what. But as much as I love the creamy, satisfying goodness of guac, I also like to spice it up a bit sometimes. One addition I really love is lilikoi, also known as passionfruit, which is packed with vitamin C and A. When eaten alone, lilikoi is a bit too tart for most, but when added to drinks, dips and dressings, it’s fan-fucking-tastic. For those of you who don’t live in a place where passionfruit is literally growing on the side of the road, you can usually find it at an asian grocer or specialty market.

Behold, this kick-ass recipe for a tropical guacamole that will have you licking the bowl.

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So you’re vegan, and your partner isn’t. Or maybe your an omnivore, or a vegetarian, and your partner is a vegan. Or maybe you’re an everything eater and your partner is gluten-free. Or maybe you’re gluten-free and your partner is allergic to nuts, or soy, or dairy, or…

See where I’m going with this? Sometimes our dietary restrictions (and ethical POVs) just don’t match up with the views of the people we like to spend our time with.

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I ate mine over greens. Manfriend had pasta.

I ate mine over greens. Manfriend had pasta.

Fall is nearly here. While it’s still balmy in Hawai’i, my East Coast heart must be able to feel the chill from 5000 miles away. Last week I was craving something hearty. Something…stewy. Something tomatoey. Here is what I came up with!

Lentil Bolognese

  • 1 cup uncooked green lentils
  • 2 cups veggie stock or water
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced small
  • 1 small carrot, diced small
  • 1 stalk celery, diced small
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 8 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup good red wine. (If you wouldn’t drink it, don’t cook with it.)
  • 8 oz pasta. Choose your fav!
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securedownload-7Aloha friends. We are currently 2 days into production of Courtesy Flush, and things have been crazy around here. Luckily, we have an awesome vegan chef on board—Andrew Johnson aka the Vegan Giant—so we all have been munching well. I have been reveling in my lack of dishes.

However, I would like to share with you one of the last things I whipped up before my cast and crew arrived and things got so nutty: Island-Style Purple Sweet Potato Salad. We went to a BBQ at our neighbor’s, and they made an awesome Okinawan potato salad using avocado. It was so delicious, and the color of the Okinawan potatoes made it just as beautiful as it was tasty. This is my rendition. Did I mention how healthy it is?

Island-Style Purple Sweet Potato Salad

Serves 6

  • 2 pounds Okinawan sweet potatoes, scrubbed
  • 1 large ripe avocado
  • 2 tablespoons vegan mayonnaise
  • ½ cup shredded coconut
  • ¼ cup raisins (optional)
  • Juice of 1 lime

 To make:

1. Boil sweet potatoes for 15 minutes or until tender. Stick in fridge for 1 hour to cool.
2. Cube potatoes. Add avocado, mayo, and lime juice. Mix well.
3. Add shredded coconut and raisins.

Enjoy!

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securedownload-3Summer is the time for smoothies. This one is a recent creation, and offers a new twist on a childhood favorite. PB & J in a glass? Yes please! The key ingredient that makes it taste like peanut butter and jelly is using salted peanuts instead of peanut butter. Go figure.

 

Peanut Butter and Jelly Smoothie

Serves 2

 You Will Need

- 1 large frozen banana
- 1 cup frozen mixed berries (strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, etc)
- 1 cup vanilla non-dairy milk ( I like hemp or almond for this one)
- ½ cup salted dry roasted peanuts

Optionals:
- 1 tsp of spirulina. This will negate the lovely purple color of your drink, but it will give you some iron and b12. Decide how important it is for your smoothie to be aesthetically alluring.

- 1 scoop of vanilla protein powder. Protein powders are a slippery slope, as most of them contain all kinds of crazy weird junk and GMOs and a zillion grams of sugar. I do, however, like Sunwarrior Classic Raw Protein in vanilla. It is naturally sweetened, and doesn’t have a weird chalky flavor because it’s soy-free. Also, my boyfriend says it makes smoothies “taste like donuts.”
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To Make

Put it all in a blender and have at it. Add a bit more non-dairy milk if needed, depending on how thick you like it, and how good of a blender you have.
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See what I did there? Like Piña colada. We had a slew of fresh pineapples this past week, so I have been experimenting with smoothie creations. In this recipe, the already blissful blend of pineapple and coconut is made even better with the addition of banana and spirulina, that glorious sea algae full of iron, b12 and protein. It’s so delish, it’s worth using up a bit of our solar power first thing in the morning to run the Vitamix, and I wont judge you if you add a splash of rum…just sayin’!

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securedownload-11Today is my second day in Hawaii! In case you’re out of the loop, I have relocated here, where I will be working remotely and producing a feature film I wrote the screenplay for. Now that you’re all caught up, I need to thank you all again for bearing with me during my lapse of posts on SexyTofu! Writing a screenplay and collecting funds via Kickstarter is exhausting and stressful and that’s before you add the whole “move to Hawaii” element in. However, I am not complaining, as this has been a magical journey and I have enjoyed every bit of it. Okay maybe not the packing. I loathe packing. Again, thanks for sticking it out with me, and for all of your support with my Kickstarter campaign. I will be writing more about the trials of a crowd funding campaign later, but for now, some recipe action…

My new place in Hawaii already has a garden started up, so that’s exciting. We are already producing eggplant, avocado, papaya, pineapple (yes, pineapple), sweet potato, a plethora of greens and an abundance of fresh herbs! I am in paradise. No really. Paradise. In addition to learning my garden, I have been trying to learn how to hula hoop, which has been fun and very embarrassing. Don’t say it’s just like riding a bike, because I actually don’t know how to do that either. I know, I know!

Backyard papayas! At first glance I thought they were avocados because I'm ignant and shit.

Backyard papayas! At first I thought they were roided out avocados because I’m ignant and shit.

At least I knew what this once was.

At least I knew what this one was.

Now that I am a bit more mellow (well, at least until we begin shooting in July) you can look forward to recipes featuring ingredients I am plucking from my own backyard. But if you don’t happen to have access to some of the more unique ingredients, like the mamey sapote in the below recipe, I will try and add subsititions so you can still enjoy.

Thank you! Er, I mean, mahalo.

Mamey Sapote and Avocado Salsa

Serves 5

1 medium mamey sapote (if not available, use 1 large sweet potato, baked.)

1 large avocado

juice of 2 limes

3 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro

½ fresh jalapeno or serrano pepper, seeds removed and diced. More or less to taste.

Sprinkle of salt (optional)

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securedownload-15Cut both your avocado and mamey sapote into large chunks. Place in bowl, add lime juice, cilantro, hot pepper and optional salt to bowl and mix with a spoon. Use to top something delicious or eat on its own, like I did.

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Hot off the plane on Friday, but happy.

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