Top o’ the evenin’ to ya! You have to say that like a leprechaun for it to sound cool. How has your weekend been? I still have an entire week before I start my internship! That’s a very good thing, because I have a ton of stuff to do in preparation. E starts 1st grade in a week as well, and I need to get that boy a new backpack, lunch box, school supplies and some clothes and shoes. He is SO excited about going back to school. He loves to learn and I hope to keep that spark alive for as long as possible. He is such a sweet kid. Makes my heart melt.
Anyway, I have a bunch of food pics for you but first I wanted to share this week’s menu. I’ll make two meals and eat leftovers the rest of the week:
Meal 2) Lemon-scented Quinoa with chickpeas plus a side of this gorgeous Roasted Beet & Walnut Salad. I’ve gone beet crazy! Seriously mad, I tell ya. I’m really excited about this meal. I imagine that the combination of sweet caramelized red onion with the soft, silky roasted beets and crunch from the walnuts is going to be out-of-control delicious. Yup.
I don’t need to make anything sweet this week, because I baked approximately 6 billion cupcakes on Friday for E’s birthday party yesterday. We had so many left over that I wrapped up platefuls to pawn off on my sisters, Gram, aunt and uncle tonight when they came over for dinner. I love cupcakes, but this was kind of ridiculous. I used this recipe and they turned out fantastic! They went over well with the kids, too.
These suckers are moist!
I was quite proud of my cupcakes. I think this may have been the first time I’d ever made them from scratch.
Tasty Town, oh yes.
This afternoon I made Eggplant Lasagna for my Gram’s birthday dinner. It turned out fabulous, I was really very surprised. Tender baked eggplant layered with tomato sauce, thyme-infused sautéed mushrooms and a spinach and onion mixture with basil, oregano and nutmeg (if you’ve never had a dash of nutmeg in cooked spinach, you are missing out!)…
Seriously, this was so good.
There were two lasagnas at the dinner (my brothers made a classic meat-and-cheese version), and even the meat-eaters raved about this one.
It may not be the most photogenic dish in the world, but trust me when I say that this was rockin’. Makes me want to check out more PCRM recipes in the future!
My plate, with a mixed greens salad with grape tomatoes, sunflower seeds and homemade balsamic vinaigrette + a chunk of crusty rosemary sourdough bread.
So how about some more cake? My Mom made a vegan version of my Gram’s all-time favorite, Italian Cream Cake.
Happy Birthday, Gram! <3
So nice of O to help
spit all over the cake blow out the candles.
This was the best cake I have ever tasted. Yeah, I said it.
No one knew it was vegan until we told them. SHOCKER!
I’m going to request this for my birthday in February.
Which reminds me… this month marks my 1 Year Veganniversary! I spent a little time reading through some blog posts from this time last year, when I was weeding the final animal food products out of my life- Greek yogurt was the last to go. It has only been a year but I really feel like I’ve been eating a plant-based diet forever. It all became second nature so easily, like it was just meant to be for me. Switching to a vegan lifestyle has made me a more aware, confident, mindful and compassionate person. I’m also in the best health and shape of my life! I definitely want to do a little something to celebrate this milestone, but I’m not sure what just yet. A dinner at one of my favorite vegan restaurants, perhaps? More vegan cake? A dinner party with my closest friends?
If you’re vegan or vegetarian, do you celebrate another plant-based year gone by?
I’m getting up early tomorrow to work out before the kids get up. Basically because I’m insane. Have a great Sunday night and a marvelous week ahead, y’all.