I just finished watching the most disgusting video (I didn’t embed it it’s so violent) regarding the treatment of pigs and piglets on a large factory farm in Pennsylvania, seriously don’t watch it if you aren’t ready to make a lifestyle change. Suddenly I don’t miss bacon anymore. Which then made me again question why it is I’m NOT vegan. All I can come back to is cheese, which is lame because I can find a sub for that.
Today I decided it’s time to embrace faux cheese and gradually veganize my kitchen, and make a bigger attempt at exempting animal products one at a time. Recently I stopped in at Saffrons-A Gluten Free Marketplace which is a local (to West Michigan) place and to my surprise ended up speaking with the owner for a while. In addition to the ENTIRE store being Gluten Free, he has a delightful array of vegan food products. I bought some Daiya which I’ve had before and liked as far as faux cheese goes; I also got some coconut milk, coconut milk ice cream (which frankly tastes better than regular ice cream to me), quinoa pasta, “chicken less” vegan cubes of lower sodium bouillon for soups (it’s not soup season but it’s hard to find this stuff in the winter), an egg replacement (to see how it tastes) and Vegenaise. The owner and I had a conversation about the varying Vegenaise types (he carries the hard-to-find Soy Free variety ), I settled on the reduced fat variety. He mentioned how excited he was to attend a food show recently, and had the opportunity to sample a new Follow Your Heart product: block cheese. We talked fake cheese for a while and I mentioned he should carry Teese, from Chicago Soy Dairy our neighbors to the West, it’s amazing and used widely in even the most traditional deep dish pizza joints to help their vegan customers stay loyal. He noted the name brand and said he’d try to get some in soon. Talk about a delightful shopping experience. Not only did I get to meet the OWNER, but he is going to look into one of my suggestions for a product to carry in his store? Nice.
So what’s the point Adrienne? Oh, yes…the point is today, I veganized my pancake recipe using coconut milk, earth balance, and ground flax seeds in place of cow milk, butter and eggs, and here it is for your animal-cruelty free enjoyment.
Vegan Pancake Batter
- 1 1/2 C all-purpose whole grain flour
- 3 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 T sugar (optional)
- 1 tsp vanilla (optional)
- 1 1/4 C reduced calorie coconut milk
- 1T ground flax seed and 2T hot water, mixed together and let set for about a minute or longer
- 3 T melted Earth Balance spread
Whisk together the dry ingredients, make a well for the wet ones, and then incorporate them all to make a batter. Pour by 1/4 C onto a griddle you have preheated to 350-365 degrees. Flip when the pancakes rise and bubble let cook for about a minute more and then serve.
If you want to add fruit to your pancakes like I have done in the photo. After you pour the batter onto the hot pan, wait until it rises slightly to put a handful of fresh but dry (not DRIED, just not wet) fruit onto the cake. I have found this helps them cook through better than adding right after you drop the batter. Keeps them looking like pancakes and less like sloppy pancakes.
Posted in Breakfast, Brunch, Gluten Free, Michigan, Product Review, Recipes, Vegan, Vegetarian
Tagged animal cruelty, block cheese, cheese, Chicago Soy Diary, coconut milk, Daiya, Earth Balance Spread, egg-free, faux cheese, Flax Seed, follow your heart, ground flax seed, luna and larry's coconut ice cream, pigs, Saffrons, Saffrons-A Gluten Free Marketplace, shefl stable coconut milk, Teese, vegan, Vegenaise, vegetarian
I’ve been a vegetarian for quite some time now, and I have always had strong feelings about going vegan, as in, I’d really love to and then I start thinking…of cheese, eggs and Greek yogurt.
Confession: I am a dairy whore. The thought of not eating Habanero Mango Cheese from Horrocks ever again frankly makes me nearly faint. Like most things, jumping in to a vegan lifestyle with both feet is so scary, so I will make small changes where possible and hopefully will get there someday.
My friends Kolene (@suckahpunch) and Jon (@jon_dunn) however, have basically jumped in head first. I’m so proud of them. They began a Twitter group Vegan GR (@vegangr) and a website where they scope out vegan friendly restaurants and vendors around GR and basically run around doing good all day long. I’m serious. Case in point, Kolene’s birthday wish is raising money for Carol’s Ferals a non-profit feline organization which performs TNR (Trap-Neuter-Return) services in Western Michigan and Jon works for Best Friends Animal Society where he is the wizard behind their online presence. I know, right? You want to hate them, but you cannot help but love these people! I don’t even LIKE cats and I gave to Kolene’s birthday wish. They are compelling people for the case of a vegan lifestyle. Lots of give in those two. They inspire me to try, at least sometimes, to foster a vegan diet and so perhaps with their help, I will kick my dairy habit and become a vegan too.
I’ve posted vegan baked goods on this blog in the past (Mexican Hot Chocolate Snickerdoodles) from PPK’s Isa Chandra, but this recipe I took from this little cutie named Claire who runs this blog called Vegan Cooking. Check her out and while you are at it, bake a vegan dessert like this one I’m giving to Kolene for her birthday.
Vegan Banana Nut Bread
- 1 3/4 Cups All Purpose Flour
- 2 tsp Baking Powder
- 1/4 tsp Baking Soda
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 1 Cup Demerera Sugar (I subbed brown sugar)
- 1/2 Cup Chopped Pecans or Walnuts
- Equivalent of 2 Eggs Using Egg Replacer (I used 1T Golden Ground Flax Seed Sprinkles which I picked up at TJ Maxx of all places for about $3, mixed with 3T tap water)
- 2-3 Ripe Bananas Mashed
- 1/2 Cup Vegetable Oil
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 1/2 tsp Fresh Ground Nutmeg
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Sift together dry ingredients. Stir in nuts, egg replacer, bananas, oil and vanilla. Mix well.
Pour into greased loaf pan and bake for 45-60 mins (until knife comes out clean). Cool for 5 mins before removing from pan. Cool on wire rack.
Posted in Baking, Bread, Breakfast, Brunch, Dessert, Make Ahead, Product Review, Recipes, Vegan
Tagged @jon_dunn, @suckahpunch, @VeganGr, baking, banana, banana bread, banana walnut bread recipe, Best Friends Animal Society, bread, Carol's Ferals, claire, create, dairy whore, delish, egg replacement, Flax Seed, flax sprinkles, fruit, greek yogurt, Habanero Mango Cheese, Horrocks, isa chandra moskowitz, Jon, Kolene, Non-Profits, quick bread, recipe, Stober Farms, sweet bread, Twitter, veg, vegan, Vegan GR, vegancooking.com, vegangr.com, vegetarian, walnuts, yum