Thursday, October 7, 2010

I LOVE Bento

As a vegan you realize you can't always easily grab a snack or bite to eat when your out and about. Packing food is a necessity when you're not sure what your options will be when it comes to meal time. I've noticed that bento lunches seem to becoming more popular, especially to blog about. I got into it a couple years ago when I discovered Vegan Lunch Box, which led me to the wonders of bento. Funny how when I was younger I was obsessed with anime and Japan (where bento originates) yet I discovered bento long after. To the Japanese packing a lunch box (or "bento") is much more than a pb&j with chips, its much more creative and thought out. Although I've had my fancy little bento lunch box for awhile now, I haven't been able to use it lately. The fact of the matter is, I have no real need to make lunches recently. I'm not usually out of the house long enough to merit packing a lunch, but I've missed packing my vegan bento's. So after an absolutely horrible day yesterday I decided to raise my spirits by packing a bento just for the fun of it. But now, I don't think I'll be able to stop. After all I am flying to California this weekend for my brothers wedding. But my amazing bento box has a freezable gel-filled lid which I doubt I will be able to bring on the plane. What a pity the airlines wont let me bring more than 3 ounces of liquid or "non-solid" foods. But I've decided that with my love for bento I'm going to start blogging my creations and posting them on this blog, along with my regular posts. After all they are always vegan and like I said earlier the concept of packing lunch is not only smart for a vegan on the go, but economical and environmental. While you can find some pretty amazing bento's out there, mine aren't usually that fancy (as you can see in above photo) but since I'll be trying to blog them from now on, I'll be trying harder. Hope you enjoy!

My Feel Better Bento:

white container
-apple "bunnies"
-"ants on a log"
pink container
-mini daiya "cheese" quesadillas
-mini home-made chocolate chip cookies
-rolled tofurky slices

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Scott Pilgrim

It seems like veganism is starting to pop up everywhere in the media. Usually it's referred to mockingly, and I have to admit the fact that there aren't any cool vegan images in the media is what first made me wary when I saw Scott Pilgrim. Spoiler alert, if you haven't seen the movie don't blame me if you continue reading this and I reveal anything that you would otherwise prefer to learn on your own about the film. You are warned. Speaking of warnings, despite seeing the film with several people who had already seen it, I didn't get any warning for all the "vegan content." That is if you don't count my friend leaning over and saying "You're really going to like this part. . . . or not" which I don't. But I don't like spoilers so I'm glad no one spilled the beans about the vegan "evil ex" in the film. While I admittedly cackled at the vegan jokes, initially I was concerned about the portrayal of vegans. Like I said earlier, there aren't many positive portrayals and this was no exception. But I couldn't deny how hilarious the character was, granted I think I may have been the only one laughing in the theater at this point in the film. Yes, Todd "the vegan" is stupid and of course in the end thwarted by his own arrogance but he has SUPER POWERS, that is vegan super powers. Because in Scott Pilgrim's world abstaining from dairy, meat, and other animal products apparently grants you super powers, but you have to go to "vegan academy" and live in fear of the "vegan police" taking said powers away if you aren't vegan enough. I couldn't honestly take offense to this character, his stupidity and pretentiousness is over the top, but all of the characters are in this movie. Just like you shouldn't get your panties in a bunch when South Park makes fun of a specific religion or ideals because its not like South Park singles anyone out, everyone is put on the chopping block. So I couldn't help but think the whole vegan portrayal endlessly entertaining, as well as the rest of the movie for that matter. If you haven't seen it, I ruined some parts for you but you should still see it, its a riot all the way through. With that I'll leave you with a quote from the movie, "MILK AND EGGS BITCH!"

Wedding & Honeymoon

I know I haven't been blogging lately. I could say I've been busy out of my mind but lets face it, in reality I've just turned into a lazy slob who feels way too overwhelmed with school and future prospects to do anything important lately. (Still haven't legally changed my last name oops!) The big news since my last post was *suprise* I got married! (Hence above wedding photo) Honestly the wedding was amazing, I was really disappointed with the DJ my dad had picked (picked on the basis that he is a friend of my dad) but he played weird music, and even though I gave him a list of music to go with he didn't use it at all. Also it seemed like Greg's side of the family didn't like to dance too much but I had fun dancing with my family and the in-laws! The food was good but as most of my guests realized in horror, all the food at the wedding was vegan. The venue didn't allow for an outside vegan caterer so they made the vegan food there. And although I thought they did a pretty good job, I still wish we could have gone with a vender that specialized in vegan food like we did with the wedding cake. Ok, ok no one hissed and moaned (to me anyways) about it and from what I gathered from second hand gossip no one hated the food. I have to admit though I wasn't entirely convinced all of the food actually WAS vegan. I noticed that the food on the guests tables looked different than the food at the head table, but I wasn't going to make a fuss over something that already over and done with. I was distracted with other things anyways , which I'm not going to get into (*cough* someone had smoked pot in the bridal dressing room *cough*) because as to who did it is a mystery that will never be solved and I'm tired of being sore over it. Honestly though most of the night is a blur from all the rushing and running around from pictures to people, I barely had time to dance or eat.

I was also really amazed at my kick-ass bachelorette party. My friends went out of their way to put together some vegan treats for me and then took me out for an awesome night on the town. I can't go into more detail because no matter how hard I try I couldn't capture the amazing-ness of the night in words.

The bridal shower was somewhat of a "problem" My aunt did an amazing job putting everything together, lord knows my mom wasn't going to be bothered with ANY wedding stuff. But thats a whole other story. I was stressed out and under the impression there would be more vegan options instead of just a special plate made just for me. So I probably was more upset about it than I should have been (wedding preparations are very stress inducing and I was already going a little mad) but when I brought it up I was called an "ungrateful bitch" by my aunt and nanny (my grandmother) This caused me to be an emotional wreck the whole time. I know my aunt has to have things her way, she has to be "the queen" but in my defense it was my day not hers and while I was grateful with the great job she did I would have liked to have been considered seeing as how it was a party for me. But its all in the past, and she did throw a nice party. . .

As for the honeymoon, we went on a Carnival Cruise to the Caribbean and while it was a BLAST the whole vegan issue was a total fiasco. When I got on board the first thing I did was talk to the wait staff and ask for whoever I needed to talk to about dietary needs. (I had called ahead of time but they told me they couldn't do anything for me and that I would need to talk to the wait staff directly) I was blown away when they provided me with a menu for the whole week of my on-board options, but when I went to dinner that night they looked at me quizzically (and the menu they gave me) and said "umm what is that? I don't know what I'm supposed to do with this" It was a hassle the WHOLE trip. To be honest I don't think the cooks really knew how to accommodate a vegan diet despite the menu they initially provided (and didn't know what to do with) Lunch was completely out of the question because they only served buffet lunches so I was stuck eating chips, salsa and fries for lunch for a whole week straight. Everything else was fabulous, the destinations, the shows, the services. I mean we did kinda get stuck in a hurricane for a little bit of the trip but it only really caused a problem at night when we were trying to sleep and when we tried to snorkel on the first day (I must have swallowed a gallon of salt water) The fact that it was the first time I was on a cruise I didn't know what to expect, but now I know I need to be better prepared when it comes to food etc.

I'm not saying I want to convert everyone to be vegan, but it is a large part of me now and it is something important to me, so I would hope people would be accepting and understanding of me. Thats the reason why I may make a fuss about something like food for a party meant for me or my wedding, but I want people to be more accepting of the idea and unless people start to try vegan food and open their minds how will they do that? So while I might sound like a whiny bitch, its just that I want people to consider me and my wants when it comes to things that involve me. Too much to ask? I hope not.

Monday, May 24, 2010


There are a few things that I really relied on to remain sane as a vegan. I never grew up with a good background of cooking and food. So the sudden need to prepare vegan foods was a huge wake up call for me. Unfortunately the first vegan cookbook I bought was "Skinny Bitch in the Kitch" because of its rave reviews, but its not the easiest guide for the newly turned vegan. I couldn't cook to begin with, so using "chickpea flour" and "kelp powder" were too advanced for me, and I imagine a lot of other people too. I don't think I would have survived if I didn't have all the help from online. Not only are there tons of amazing blogs out there that gave me hope, but tons of great easy vegan recipes. There are countless websites I could list but one that I really love is Like everything on my blog I am not paid to say anything, I just appreciate the large database of recipes from beginner to pro. And although I've found some fantastic vegan cookbooks out there (Vegan Table is amazing) I still fall back on VegWeb because it offers something cookbooks can't; feedback. The comments on VegWeb have saved me from not adding enough of a certain spice, or to clarify what the heck some ingredients even are. Lately I've been in a bind because I don't have extra money to spare on anything, not even food. So I've been able to find recipes online that can accommodate my short supply. It always much harder to do anything alone, and thankfully because of the countless other people out there who have shared their stories online I don't have to.

Much Love and Thanks

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Super Morbidly Obese

I know its been awhile since my last post, but with finals just ending and the wedding right around the corner, I've been going a tad crazy. I'm not going to lie, no matter what I'm busy with, my vice has always been television. Flipping through the channels I started watching "Half-Ton Dad." At first I wanted to find another show, because honestly I was really disgusted. The man in the show is classified as "Super Morbidly Obese," and at the start of his medical treatments weighs in over 1030 lbs. I know that America is full of obese people, but shouldn't stories like this be a real wake up call to people? I've talked about the show Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution before, and love the fact that is shows that change is possible. But the change needs to happen, on more levels than just switching out sugar filled strawberry flavor milk for regular milk. The REAL problem is how we view food as a whole. If you look at a bowl of salad and groan, either you don't know how to make a good salad or there is a real problem with how we view food.

One of the doctors on the show "Half-Ton Dad" says, in my opinion naively, that "children will always pick fast food over healthy food." Growing up and "working" in a home that doubled as a day care, I would like to think I'm not a total dummy when it comes to children. The real reason kids want fast food over healthy food is the way we represent fast food or unhealthy food to them. If we rewarded kids with a slice of frozen watermelon (watermelon popsicle yum) or other healthy treats instead of chocolate or candy, they are going to crave healthier foods. Kids rely on their parents and elders to develop their tastes. Of course we do crave fats and salts on a primal level as well but if we are "primed" to get these fats, salt and sugars from healthier sources we are more likely to eat greasy fast food more sparingly. So we need to man up and realize our youth is not doomed just because there is McDonald's. But if we don't cultivate healthy eating habits at home we are setting our youth up to be over weight and unhealthy.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Earth Day!

If anyone watched Oprah today, you would be reminded of the fact that today was indeed Earth Day. Now I actually really enjoy watching Oprah, despite the fact that she has a spotted history with vegans. Her free KFC extravaganza and mockery of the vegan diet on her 30 day cleanse episodes has made me much more critical of her. But Oprah does have a huge appeal and thus audience. Today, in honor of the 40th Anniversary of Earth Day she discussed environmentalism and the brilliant award winning movie "The Cove." For those of you who haven't seen this film, it really speaks for itself and I implore you to watch this life changing documentary. If you want to learn more visit their website here. But please remember that there are still other animals suffering who are searching for a voice of their own, such as this movie presents for dolphins.

The first half of the show highlighted an "environmentalist's nightmare" family pinned against an uber "green" family in a switch-a-roo kind of scheme. Taking the "Wife Swap" television show ideals, the mother from each family goes to the polar opposite family's home and goes a little nutzo. The problem with this is that both families are made to look like total extremes on the environmental spectrum, but in actuality the first family is a totally average home. The "environmentalist's nightmare" family is really just the "average joe" family, with the "what can one person really do to make a change?" mentality. The problem is, everyone seems to have this mentality. As a vegan it's one of the most frequent arguments I get, "So what? Your not doing anything your just one person." It's so depressing when people don't realize that this thought process is the real problem. Because of course as a human race, one person has never made a difference. I mean who has heard of Martin Luther, Martin Luther King Jr., or Gandhi? *note sarcasm* I mean these people started out as nobodies but somehow they made a difference. I'm in no way relating myself to these men, but I am stressing the point that change is of course possible. Here is a youtube video I found that really illustrates my point:

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The Double Down

I really didn't want to further publicize this new product from KFC, but I just couldn't hold back when I learned that a lot of people on the interwebs are actually touting this as a healthy sandwich. These people have the audacity to refer to it as the "the dieters dream." I'm almost at a loss for words. Lets forget the fact that the sandwich discards the lettuce, tomatoes and onion, the only components that might be considered healthy. This sandwich is jam packed with saturated fats, cholesterol and a whopping 1,380 grams of sodium. But all we Americans can think about is that its got 53 grams of muscle pumping protein. I'm sure KFC's key demographic is weight lifters and dieters (note sarcasm) but the fact that KFC wants its customers to be stupid enough to believe this is a healthy meal isn't remotely disguised. KFC has an "unthink" ad campaign, that urges customers to rethink what KFC means, because under no circumstances do they want you to actually "think" about what your putting into your body.

But lets face it, a lot of people who are duped into eating this aren't eating it to be health conscious. The shear greasy Everest that is the Double Down becomes an obstacle that needs to be overcome. I'm ashamed to say that even my fiance has fallen prey to this compulsion. Something about taking your life into your own hands and defeating death (albeit momentarily) is all too alluring for some. And its a (relatively) easy feat when all you have to do is choke down a heart clogging sandwich.

Alas even vegans have found this culinary abomination intriguing. If you really want to partake in the "Double Down" without the double bypass you can construct your own vegan double down.