Vegan isn’t healthy.

Ok, I admit, that statement was meant to jerk you wide awake.  Did it work?  I do have to tell you though, that I have had people tell me that.  They say, “You don’t plan on doing this long term, right?  Caz I had a ______ (friend, cousin, co-worker) who was vegan and they were way too skinny and not healthy at all.”  Hmmmmm.  Listen to me very carefully:  If I ever get way too skinny, I will have an all week cookie-eat-athon and fix it.  Don’t worry.

Yesterday I made vegan sugar cookies.  Pretty simple actually.  I always use All Recipe’s Easy Sugar Cookies Recipe. (They really ought to start paying me for all the times I accidentally advertise for them.   I guess I just love their recipes!)  I use brown sugar rather than white sugar.  This time instead of the egg I used 1 Tbsp flax meal soaked in 3 Tbsp water.  Instead of butter I used coconut oil and a splash of olive oil.  I added just a little bit of salt.  They were pretty good.  Absolutely not healthy, but really good.

I was pretty sure I knew how to turn my favorite sugar cookie recipe into a vegan recipe, but just to be safe, before I made the cookies I googled “Vegan Sugar Cookies.” Guess what I found out from this search…  Most Pillsburry frosting is vegan.  So obviously being vegan in and of its self is not necessarily healthy.

The real reason I am doing this journey is to kick start my health. (Guess I should have skipped those sugar cookies…) This journey has nothing to do with being “vegan” and everything to do with a plant based diet.   Eating with this mindset changes you from thinking about what you can’t eat to what you can put in your body that will make you strong.  I find myself making meals and thinking, “What could I put in this that will make it even better for me?”  Then I end up adding more vegetables, more seeds, ect.  The other thing that is great is that I get full quicker. Plants take up a lot more room in your stomach than processed food does.   So I actually find myself feeling amazingly full.

On to the recipes!
What would you do if I told you that I found the cure for the terrible twos, grumpy old men, and PMS? Well I did.  It’s Chocolate (Avocado) Pudding!

Chocolate Pudding!
The original recipe is from Deceptively Delicious by Jessica Seinfeld.  As you may know, I have problems with actually following recipes,  so here is what my recipe looked like:

One avocado, pureed with a tablespoon of water (almost a full cup of avocado puree.)
One overflowing tablespoon of coconut oil
Just over a half cup of coco powder
1 cup brown sugar  (I ground it in the coffee grinder so it was more fine. )
1 teaspoon Vanilla
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 Tablespoons water  (maybe four)

I cooked it all on the stove and added water until it was a good consistency.   I served it warm, and the only complaint anyone in the house had was that it was gone too fast.  As weird as this may look or sound, it was tasty!  I forgot to take a picture of the finished product.  I was too busy eating.

I Wanna Eat Cilantro!

This is my own original recipe, which I made on a carefully calculated whim yesterday.  I just wanted to eat some cilantro!  So I made this dish to fill that wish. This recipe is for one serving.  You’ll want to make more.

1/2- 3/4 cup cooked brown rice.
20 cooked (or canned) chickpeas, halved

1/2 of a roma tomato, chopped
The juice from 1/2 of a lime
1 Tbsp chopped onion
3 slices of a green bell pepper, chopped
slightly less than a 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
3-4 Tbsp chopped cilantro
1 garlic clove, chopped

Heat the rice and chickpeas.  Add a Tablespoon of water or so, to keep the rice from sticking to the bottom and stir often! In the meantime, chop up the veggies. Mix all the raw stuff in a bowl with the lime juice.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Various Variations: 
 Swap the chickpeas for black beans
Swap the tomato for Pineapple chunks
Serve baked in a bell pepper
I hope you have a great weekend!  I hope you try these recipes, because they made me really happy.