Archive for the ‘ Odds & Ends ’ Category

Simple Shoes

I simply love my new Simple Satire sneakers.  I went into Nordstrom’s the other day to try on Tom’s shoes.  Tom’s apparently don’t fit me well but are still great shoes from a company that built its reputation on giving back to those less fortunate.  I like that, I like that Tom’s has vegan options, they just didn’t fit.

On a display a few feet away from Tom’s were Simple’s Satire vegan sneakers.  I had read about them and found them to be an impressive company so I tried them on.  These shoes are super comfortable, have great arch support and are made by a company that cares about the planet and it’s inhabitants.  I like that.  My new sneaks are vegan, and made with sustainable materials.  Their goal is actually 100% sustainability.   The laces are recycled elastic, the bottom is from recycled car tires.  All of the supportive inside stuff is made of EVA with BIO-D to make it biodegradable.  I just hope they don’t start breaking down while I’m wearing them!  Last they actually have a nice comfy arch support.

More importantly they are actually really cute!  I had a hard time deciding which style and color to purchase.  I ended up with Charcoal because they go with pretty much anything.  My first time out in them was a work day.  I wore them with no socks all day and had no problems.  I could have bought them right from their website http://www.simpleshoes.com but decided to purchase from Zappo’s because I first heard about them there.  At http://www.zappos.com/s you can actually search for shoes under the word “vegan” and they have a lot of options.

My one issue is that Simple manufactures their shoes in China.  They say that they pay reasonable wages and overtime when appropriate.  They do not hire children under 16 years of age.  But what about the fact that these ‘eco-friendly” shoes have to be shipped halfway around the world?  I’m not sure if it’s environmentally irresponsible or just part of a global economy.  I like purchasing products made in the USA but am more concerned that the people making a product are treated fairly.

They also have some cute ballet flat styles that I’ll purchase soon.  I like that they also have mens and kids shoes so the entire family can be eco-friendly.  Check them out, they’re reasonably priced and come in many great colors and styles.

 

 

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Homemade Bisquick Recipe

For those of you who don’t know Bisquick is an all-purpose baking mix.  You can make all kinds of biscuits, pancakes and simple bread recipes by using this.  However, it’s pretty expensive for a simple baking mix.  Besides the expense, I realized at the last-minute that I did not have any in the house.

My original plan was to make Baked Quesadilla which is a favorite of my niece.  However, she will not be home for dinner so I decided to hold off on those for a day or so.  My next thought was to make Spinach Pie.  Bisquick is one of the main ingredients in this and I was out of it.  After a quick search I discovered that it’s quite simple to make.

I noticed a few different recipes, some had a little sugar some used shortening while others used butter.  The recipe claims that it can be stored airtight, in the fridge for up to 4 months.  Frankly, I don’t like the sound of that so I made 1/4 of the recipe which was exactly the amount I needed for the Spinach Pie.  Also, I used butter and whole wheat white flour for my recipe.  Nobody seemed to notice the healthier flour.

Ingredients

  • 6 cups all-purpose flour (or white whole wheat)
  • 3 tablespoons baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 cup shortening or butter (butter cut into small cubes)

Directions

Sift the dry ingredients into a bowl

Cut in the shortening or butter until the mixture is a fine crumble

If desired store in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 4 months

 

5 more questions

This seemed to be a hit last week so I decided to go for round 2.  Feel free to answer on my blog or at Vegetarilin on Facebook.

1. What is your favorite source of protein? I love tofu.  It’s so versatile and soaks up the flavor of whatever you cook it with.

2. What’s your favorite prepackaged vegetarian product? I don’t eat many of these but I enjoy Morningstar Farms Chipotle Black Bean Burgers from Costco.

3. Do you personally cook or allow meat products to be cooked in your home? Meat is almost always grilled to keep the smell out of my house.  I respect my husband’s decision to eat meat but I don’t want to smell it.

4. If you have pets are they vegetarian? Not totally, but we’re working on it.  We switched over to a veg variety but we (not me) mixed the veg variety in with the old dog.  I need to have them finish this current mixture and then buy another bag and try this again!

5. Is your entire household (humans not pets) vegetarian? As stated above no.  Currently half my household is vegetarian and I don’t see that changing anytime soon.

Peace, love & greens Lin

Break Time

For those of you who read this blog regularly I apologize for posting so little lately.  I was on a roll of cooking a lot and posting 5+ times a week.  I am finding that is pretty much impossible to keep up with so I’ve decided to scale down a bit.

There’s a couple of reasons for this.  First being my hectic home and work life.  As I’ve said before I work 4 days a week until 8pm and I absolutely don’t cook on those days.  It’s just too much.  I also seem to be so busy trying new recipes that I tend to neglect family favorites.  Last week I made Gluten Free Macaroni & Cheese with all the gluten.  Sadly 1 lb of pasta was devoured in about 36 hours.  I wasn’t counting on that!

Also, my family structure has changed and I’m still working out the kinks.  My niece recently moved in with us and I’m surprised at how much I’m loving having another female in the house again.  It’s all good but she’s not a vegetarian and she’s a picky eater.  She does not enjoy the level of spice my family is accustomed to.  It’s taking some work.  I’m also pretty sure that at this point with 2 young adults in the house they should take some of the responsibility for preparing meals.  I don’t have high hopes on this one.

I’m hoping to have 1 recipe post a week and then just post anything else of interest I find along the way.  I think my “5 Questions” post last week was a hit (minus a little animosity) so I’ll continue that.  We’ll see how it goes.  If anyone is interested in writing a guest post please let me know.  My email is linjohn65@gmail.com.

I have 2 more days of work and then I’m off to Disney for the weekend!  I’m really looking forward to it.  We’re having a girl’s weekend celebrating my mom’s birthday.  The last time we went I was pleasantly surprised that the resort we stayed at offered a reasonably good veggie lasagna with veggie sausage!  Hopefully I’ll fare as well this time.

Peace, love & greens, Lin

5 Questions

I recently saw this on an RV blog I read and found the questions and answers very interesting.  I was thinking about the questions people usually ask me about being a vegetarian as well as my own personal thoughts on the subject.  I’d love to see what you thoughts are on the subject.

1. What’s the most annoying question people ask you? “You can eat fish right?”

2. Do you miss any specific meat? At this point I don’t miss meat at all but I absolutely missed a good barbecue early on.

3. What do you order when you end up in a restaurant with no veg options? This happened to me the other day.  I had a salad and 3 sides.

4. Why or why not vegan? I have 2 reasons.  First I love cheese and it’s hard to give up.  Second, my husband is not a veg and it’s difficult enough working around our different diets.

5.  Do you ever knowingly cheat? I haven’t in over a year but I used to occasionally order vegetable pad thai which has fish sauce.  My rationalization was that it was just a minor ingredient, I wasn’t eating the entire fish or anything!

6. For the non-vegetarians: If you’re reading this you’re obviously interested in a vegetarian diet.  What stops you from going veg?  (no judgement here!)

Peace, love & greens, Lin

“Eat food, not too much, mostly plants”

The title was the premise for Michael Pollan’s book In Defense of Food.  I just read through his little hand guide Food Rules which is written with the same basic theme.  Food Rules is a well written book for those who just want a simple synopsis of all his other books.  It’s simply a list of rules to live by when eating.  These rules as based on common sense and eating like our great grandmothers did.

I loved the fact that this is a quick read.  It’s not just for vegetarians but it does state that a vegetarian diet is healthier and that people who eat far less meat than that of a typical westernized diet are healthier. Rule 22 is eat mostly plants especially leaves which is exactly what most food science is stating.  When I cook broccoli I make sure to eat the leaves it’s considered the most nutritious part.

Another rule is to eat only foods that will eventually rot.  This one  made me laugh.  Has anyone else noticed how long a packaged loaf of bread will last these days?  When I was a kid a loaf of bread was meant to last a few days and then it turned green.  I’ve thrown out bread that’s over 2 weeks old and still looks fine.  That scares me.  Bread is not supposed to last.

The book is too short to give away too many of the “rules” but you really should read it.  Personally I’m glad I read it  but am also glad I borrowed it from the library.  It was a fun read full of information that I mostly already knew but put in simple terms.  Much of this I probably knew from reading his other books but I enjoyed this regardless.

Peace, love, & greens, Lin
Vegetarilin on Facebook

Veg Updates

Here’s an interesting post on Bovine Growth Hormones in a favorite treat, ice cream: http://www.consumethisfirst.com/2010/08/23/a-good-ice-cream-is-hard-to-find/

This isn’t veg related but I enjoyed this article on positive thinking.  As part of my quest to follow a more positive path, I’ve given up the word “hate.”  It seems like a really basic step but it’s made me see many things in a more positive light.  http://www.livestrong.com/article/137643-health-effects-positive-thinking/

A review of one of the first vegetarian cookbooks that actually looks interesting to me.  Am I the only that thinks veg cookbooks all look the same?  http://www.jacksonnjonline.com/2010/08/23/the-ethnic-vegetarian-traditional-and-modern-recipes-from-africa-america-and-the-caribbean/

Last, famous chef Mario Batali is now jumping on the veg bandwagon, at least long enough to write a veg cookbook: http://www.nydailynews.com/lifestyle/2010/08/13/2010-08-13_pass_the_veggies_chef_mario_batali_confirms_that_hes_writing_a_meatless_cookbook.html