Oatmeal and Potatoes

Between lessons today I actually made it to the grocery store.  This means I also made it to the recycling center since it’s on the way; I recycle everything to the point that I don’t have trash service, but that’s a story for another time.

I actually have always loved going to the grocery store but in the past few years only enjoy going to Whole Foods, though it’s about 20-30 minutes away.  I do succeed in my goal of buying almost everything organic, and hardly anything pre-made — the latter for economical reasons.  Even so, today I spent $125 and tried not to panic.  I rationalized the amount by reminding myself I close-to-never eat out, and can usually go about ten days between grocery store runs.  I have not, however, figured out how to make my dark chocolate purchase last that long.  I really have no idea how this measures up to others’ grocery bills — how much are you comfortable spending per grocery trip?

Above = oatmeal with raisins, whole raw almonds (because I don’t want to chop them), agave, and cinnamon in my favorite container because its big glass handle doesn’t get hot and that enables me to carry it all around the house while I’m getting ready.  If I’m lucky, I can eat all of it before my student arrives early (not the case today).  I’ve even taken the whole shebang with me in the car while running morning errands.

I agree the shot above is terrible but my night lighting isn’t perfect (but hey, my electricity bill is lower) and I ate this before I knew I needed another photo.  I adore roasted potatoes, especially red — here they are mixed with a saute of Swiss chard, onions, garlic, white mushrooms (this shitakes at the store looked horrible today!), and peas, and then topped with olives and a tahini-based dressing.  At the point I realized it really needed more fresh lemon, I determined I really only wanted tahini after all so just added more of that.

What isn’t pictured here is the disastrous-looking chocolate cake I made last night.  I used Isa’s chocolate cupcake recipe (from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World) in an 8×8″ pan, substituting whole wheat pastry flour for white and brown sugar for regular.  I then improvised a frosting made from melted chocolate chips, peanut butter, vanilla, and agave, but the chocolate seized up and created a non-spreadable consistency– spread it I did anyway and basically tore up the cake.

Since I bought coconut oil today, I put some in the mixer and removed the frosting from the cake (yep, that’s what you read) and reblended.  After some other adjustments, it’s much smoother now but still looks like hell.  You know I’ll still be eating it even when I have other choices like chocolate Halloween candy a student brought me from her personal stash sitting there right beside it.

I hit a wrong button here and basically just spent too much time undoing the damage; the WordPress learning curve continues its high and lofty arc while the garbanzo beans simmer away on the stove.

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Not-So-New Beginnings

So I decided to participate in Vegan MoFo this year though on the surface, it doesn’t fit into my schedule  nor line up with any immediate goals.  Yet, I’ve been wanting to experiment with WordPress, am trying to revive my blogging habits that seemingly died on my other blog, and have basically been a food documenter and enthusiast for most of my life.    I am mostly vegan in that I don’t purchase dairy products anymore, but I don’t exactly turn away food that may contain dairy or eggs that presents itself when I am particularly starving and not anywhere near my typical food of choice.

I have an active teaching studio and sporadic performance schedule, so eating, acquiring and making food isn’t typical around here.  Today I taught 10 harp and piano lessons — some one hour, others one half hour — and ate when I could in between.  This meant a stew/soup in a small bowl quickly heated up in the microwave and eaten three separate  times throughout the day.  This was the first serving, for breakfast.

It’s one of my basic stews:  saute in a large soup pot garlic, onion, carrots, mushroom, and salt in olive oil until starting to brown.  Add one can unsalted diced tomatoes, water to fill up the pot to halfway, italian seasoning, and black pepper.  Add a few handfuls of grain.  When the grain has cooked through, add some frozen corn, cooked beans, and chopped greens.  Grain this time  was quinoa, beans were my remaining garbanzos, mushroom was my one last remaining shitake, and the last of the baby bok choy was sliced up and added at the saute stage for the greens.

Can you tell I need to get to the grocery store?

So it’s after 10 PM and I still haven’t figured out the widgets and whatnot on WordPress, even though I spent a good amount of time researching while eating this quick stir fry after lessons.  Yes, all of it.

And I still need to practice harp, do yoga, and complete the daily 10 rows of crochet required to get a commissioned project done on time.  Happy Vegan MoFo!!