Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Vegan MOFO... The Countdown is on!

What have I done? In just a few days Vegan MOFO begins! Vegan Bloggers all over the world have committed to blogging at least 20 times for the month of September. So here I am, preparing for  school to open (NOT READY!), starting a Master's Degree program and gearing up for blogging at least four times a week.

I have chosen the theme.... No Failure to Lunch. Lunch is the one meal that I prepare pretty much everyday for every member of my family. "Fail to Plan, Plan to Fail." This is my philosophy about lunch and I have proven it again and again. On the days when I fail to pack lunch, I am ravenous- and end up buying something that is usually unhealthy. So in an effort to save money and trim down, I will be packing lunch EVERYDAY and blogging about it.

Wish me luck!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Cookbook Review-VB6 by Mark Bittman

I find myself very conflicted about The VB6 Cookbook by Mark Bittman. The author is a very popular writer who writes regularly for The NY Times, I even have his How to Cook Everything Vegetarian from my earlier vegetarian years. The reason I am so conflicted is this cookbook advocates eating vegan except for dinner. All of the recipes in this book are designed to help a person get healthier (?) and lose weight. Mark Bittman advocates a vegan diet for health and describes how a compromise between vegan and meat-eating helped him to reverse high cholesterol and other weight-related issues.

But, how do I as a vegan feel about this book? The author mentions that veganism just isn't an option for him, because he likes a wide variety of foods. I cannot agree with this at all. When I ate meat, I pretty much ate the same things all the time. Being vegan, opened me up to a wide variety of foods that I would have never heard of, much less have tried. I wonder if this book would lead someone to consider a vegan lifestyle or convince them that it is not necessary.

There are many differing views in the vegan community; I guess it will boil down to whether you choose this lifestyle for diet or the animals. I think that anyone who is exposed to animal suffering will ultimately make a different choice from Mr. Bittman.

Okay, I did try two recipes from this book- Mushroom Nut Burgers which were very good. I was prepared to not like these, but surprise! Very flavorful and satisfying. I also tried the Decadent Oatmeal Cookies- I liked them, but I do not think they were decadent at all. It tasted like an healthy cookie.

I plan to pass this book on to a family member that wants to explore veganism, but has found it challenging. I hope that this idea (VB6) will spur him to improve his health and transition to a new lifestyle.

A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange for this review.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Christian Book Review- Miracle in Dry Season

After reading the prequel to this book- Appalachian Serenade, I was anxious to read this book. I must say though that this book was not what I expected, AT ALL!

Perla Long arrives in Wise with no husband and her daughter. Of course, this gets the gossips talking. Especially when she stirs the interests of Casewell. This could have been a predictable love story, but it definitely is not. There are many sub-plots- Casewell's parents, A drought, conflict with the pastor and a love triangle. Perla stirs up mistrust and fear with the use of her gift which some called a miracle and some called a sign of something sinister. Despite all that was going on in this book, the true themes were forgiveness and acceptance. Sarah Loudin Thomas resolved each sub-plot, though I still felt as if something was missing. I wanted to know about the father of Sadie, Perla's possible reconciliation with her parents and the whereabouts of Pastor Longbourne. I didn't feel satisfied after reading this book and was disappointed after finding Appalachian Serenade to be such a delight.

A copy of this book was provided by Bethany House Publishers in exchange for this review.


Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Traveling While Vegan- Grand Bahama

Recently, I had the pleasure of visiting the island of Grand Bahama to visit a family member. I must note that finding vegan food in Sir Lynden Pindling International Airport is pretty much impossible. Is it too much to ask that Dunkin Donuts stock non-dairy milk? I resolve to ask for soy milk every time I pass through LPIA, eventually they will get the message.

There were a few places in Grand Bahama that I was looking forward to visiting:

Livity Vegetarian Take-Out - This place definitely had an eclectic "Rasta" vibe going on, with lots of artwork on the walls and music playing in the background. Better than the atmosphere was the food, I ordered a "Rasta Pasta" which was good. The highlight of the dish was something I would not usually try- Apple Cucumber Salad. I need to determine what was in the dressing, that was delicious! I also had a Peanut Smoothie, that actually used peanuts. I don't know why it never occurred to me to use actual nuts in a smoothie, I have always only used nut butters.

Its About Time Vegetarian Food Store is a few minutes away from Livity and has a full stock of vegan items. I was so surprised to see items that I cannot find in Nassau. I was able to get some Field Roast Sausages. I have heard about these sausages, but have never had the opportunity to taste. They were O.K. I know right, but they didn't blow my mind or anything. I also got some Almond Butter that was absolutely delish! The prices at Its About Time were reasonable for the Bahamas and the owner was great.

My favorite vegan meal in Grand Bahama was at......... Pollo Tropical! I have actually never eaten at Pollo Tropical, but gave it a try. Their vegetarian bowl is sooo good. Black beans, Romaine and tomatoes over yellow rice. I will definitely have this again.

So if you are a vegan visiting Freeport, Grand Bahama, you will find options for great food and remember planning is the key to success for traveling while vegan.