9/27/12

Vegan Chunky Apple Quickbread Recipe

The cute PA Dutch picnic basket tin will be in the Scissors & Spice Etsy shop soon!

Yesterday, my daughter came home from school with a recipe for apple bread, which, coincidentally, I had been really wanting to make. As it turns out, her class all took turns making the batter and her teacher would bake the loaves at home. The group of children would then try their creation today and write a report on it.

Not wanting her to feel left out, we made a couple of loaves using my vegan adaptation of the class's recipe. I cut back on some of the sugar, added some more spice and vanilla, and added coconut oil. The original recipe was fat free, but I believe in good, healthy fats, specially when sugar is involved!

I'm still waiting to hear her report on the bread when she gets home from school, but Mr. Scissors and I loved it. Schmear it with your favorite topping like peanut butter or Earth Balance.

Happy birthday, Johnny Appleseed!


Chunky Apple Quickbread Recipe (vegan) (eggless)
makes 2 loaves 

Ingredients

  • 3 cups of flour
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 TB cornstarch
  • 1 cup applesauce
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup yogurt (I used vanilla coconut yogurt.)
  • 1/4 cup of coconut oil (You could also use melted margarine or oil.)
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cups of peeled, cored, and chopped apple


Directions

  • Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees and grease two loaf pans. Set pans aside.
  • In a large bowl, sift together dry ingredients.
  • In another bowl, mix together applesauce, sugars, yogurt, oil, and vanilla. Add chopped apples and stir.
  • Add wet to dry ingredients and mix well with spoon.
  • Divide mixture into the two loaf pans,
  • Bake for 40-45 minutes. Let cool on wired rack.

9/25/12

New Listings: UK Men in Uniform


A UK-realted guard (I think he's a Scots guard) vintage desk organizer. A perfect gift for a friend with a new job, a college student, a teacher, or for a housewarming. He looks so handsome carrying my Sharpie and guarding a stash of Scissors and Spice postcards! Take him home by clicking here!


This Bobby coin bank is also rather dashing and will protect your hard earned savings. Just don't cross him or he may give you a good whack with his billy club.

9/23/12

New Beginnings


Right now, as I gather the photos for this post, the air coming through the windows is cool and there is a scent of burning wood. It's officially fall, and officially, my favorite time of the year!

The past week has been super busy photographing, editing and listing items, and mailing a ton of shipments for the Etsy shop. I had some really great pieces for sale that sold in less than 12 hours of being listed. I thought about saving all the listings as drafts and do a grand-reopening of the shop once it was fully stocked, but, hey, a sale is a sale, and as they say, time is money!

Thanks to everyone who has supported me and purchased items from the shop. It's really a labor of love and I really appreciate your patronage.

Even though so many pieces have sold the past week, there are some great items still for sale like this set of vintage orange and yellow Pyrex Daisy nesting cinderella bowls.

On Saturday, we kicked off the autumnal equinox by taking part in an Indian festival in Philadelphia called Ratha Yatra. Three large, brightly colored chariots paraded down the Ben Franklin Parkway form city hall to the art museum. We had some yummy vegan Indian food and were able to watch my bff's super talented daughter dance at the festival site.

Now that the weather is getting cooler, I can get back to baking! I made vegan chocolate chip cookies from The Joy of Vegan Baking (I added dried cherries and almonds) and donuts from Vegan Yum Yum for friends (I forgot to photograph those; very unlike me!). I didn't even taste one of the donuts, but one of the friends said, "Seriously, those were some f'in righteous donuts." I'll have to make a batch for the kids so I can try them for myself.

On Sunday morning, we did our fall weekend morning favorites: drank coffee, listened to jazz, read The New York Times, and played bocce ball. In The New York Times Magazine, there was an article by Mark Bittman about the the ancient food of Mexico. This recipe for polkanes (a fried corn fritter) was included and is now on my list of new foods to make.

We concluded the weekend with a stroll through lovely downtown Media, PA where I saw this candy shop sign. They have been in business for over 50 years! I love the wording, "own make candy." Overall, it was a pretty sweet weekend.

9/20/12

Peach Cobbler Smoothie Recipe

Don't leave me alone with a blender.
The kids wanted oatmeal for breakfast. Mommy thought their Earth's Best organic Sesame Street maple and brown sugar oatmeal looked good, but Mommy wanted a smoothie for breakfast... so Mommy got creative. Result: Oatmeal you can drink while waiting in the preschool carline!

This mason jar glass is a souvenir from a really fun vegan BBQ party we had at my former place of employment.


Peach Cobbler Smoothie Recipe 

Ingredients

  • 1/2 -3/4 cup almond milk (depending on how thick you want the smoothie)
  • 1 package of Earth's Best organic Sesame Street maple and brown sugar oatmeal 
  • 1 cup frozen peaches
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp sweetener (I used a dash of stevia.)
  • dash sea salt
  • 1 tsp virgin, raw coconut oil (Optional: I do this for the health benefits.)


Directions
Add everything to blender and blend until smooth. You may need to add more almond milk if it is too hard to blend.

9/19/12

Lotus & Artichoke's Recipe for Vegan Dum Aloo (Tomato Potato Curry)

Justin cooks and does awesome lino cuts!

Guest post time! I would like to introduce to you, my dear readers, my blogging friend, Justin, from The Lotus and The Artichoke. He lives in Germany, has an awesome vegan cookbook coming out with beautiful photography (pre-order yours today!), travels the world (I'm jealous!), and makes some pretty cool art while he is at it! Thanks for the colorful and tasty post, Justin!

Justin with a group of friends in India.

Hi, This is Justin, the author and artist of The Lotus and the Artichoke - Vegan Recipes from World Adventures, a new vegan cookbook of recipes inspired by my years of travel and experiments in kitchens around the world.

First off, thank you, Lynn, for the invitation to write this guest post and share one of my favorite recipes I learned while living in India. (You're most certainly welcome!)

If you'd like to find out more about the cookbook, and get involved in the fundraising and pre-orders for the first printing, please visit Kickstarter and lotusartichoke.com. The Lotus and the Artichoke Facebook Page is also a great place to follow the cookbook development, check out dozens of food photos, see artwork for the project, and interact with my other friends and followers.
All these recipes await you in The Lotus and the Artichoke - Vegan Recipes from Around the World!

Ready for the recipe?

Dum Aloo is one of many unsung heroes of Indian vegetarian cooking, with paneer, kofta, and mixed veg dishes usually stealing the spotlight. If you like potatoes and enjoy creamy, tomato-based curries, this delicious wonder will win you over. Soon you'll be cooking it regularly and looking out for it on menus.

Justin and friend in India during the festival of Holi.

When I lived in Amravati, India, teaching Art and English for a year at a Cambridge International School, I quickly made friends with much of the neighborhood. From the first day, I was invited to family meals and constantly got amazing offers of home-cooked lunches. It was culinary heaven!

I learned so much about traditional Indian cooking (and a lot of Hindi) from the family of one of the local vegetable cart vendors who lived down the street. In the evenings, I'd often hear a knock at the door or get a short text message, and within minutes the kitchen was alive: full of cheery voices, sizzling sounds, amazing smells, and the incredible, vivid colors of spices and fresh vegetables.
When Vaishu showed up one evening with a bag of potatoes and tomatoes, I admit, I was a bit skeptical. We'd been focusing on Marathi, Sindhi, and Gujarati knock-out dishes for a few weeks with her best friend, who often led the cooking lessons. They promised to teach me something fantastic that night, and my doubts quickly vanished. I watched anxiously, taking notes and asking questions. I cut vegetables and they worked the two burners of the propane stove with expertise, speed, and agility that was breathtaking. The dinner was incredible. I was invited for lunch a few days later and Vaishu cooked it again in her most basic of kitchens. Once more, I was blown away, and felt mildly guilty packing my lunchbox tiffin with the leftover curry and wholewheat chapatti. She insisted!

The next week, I took my first crack at it. Using notes, memory, and a bit of luck, I managed to re-create the dish on my own. When it was almost done, I turned off the burners, covered the pots and texted Vaishu. She came directly over with her friend. We sat down on the floor with the hot Dum Aloo and turmeric-yellow basmati rice steaming away on the shiny, stainless steel plates. After some brief catch-up and the usual laughter, we began to eat. With our hands, of course.

Licking the last remnants of spicy curry off her fingers, Vaishu turned to her friend and said, "He asked the neighbors for help, it was too good!" I smiled, and with my best Hindi replied, "No, no! I made it! You taught me well!" And we laughed some more.

Dum Aloo, looking all sortsa gorgeous! Thanks, Justin, now I'm hungry! 


Dum Aloo - North Indian Tomato Potato Curry Recipe (vegan)
serves 3-4 / time 45 min

Ingredients

  • 2 medium / 160 g tomatoes chopped
  • 1 small red onion*
  • 2 cloves garlic* chopped
  • 1" / 2 cm fresh ginger chopped
  • 1/3 cup cashews
  • 1 + 1/2 cup water
  • 2 Tbsn oil
  • 1 tsp coriander ground
  • 1 tsp cumin ground
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1/8 tsp asafoetida (hing)
  • 4-5 medium or 10-12 small / 1 lb / 450 g potatoes peeled, chopped in large chunks
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 Tbsn lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsn tomato paste
  • 2 Tbsn chickpea flour
  • 1 Tbsn sugar or agave syrup
  • 1 tsp salt
  • fresh coriander leaves chopped for garnish

Directions

  1. Soak cashews in 1/2 cup water, 30 min.
  2. Puree chopped tomatoes, onion, garlic, ginger, cashews + soaking water until smooth in food processor or blender.
  3. Heat oil on medium-high heat in a large pot.
  4. Add ground coriander, cumin, garam masala, asafoetida (hing) to oil. Fry, stir, for 1 min.
  5. Add chopped potatoes, turmeric, fry stirring regularly, 5-7 min.
  6. Reduce heat to medium, add lemon juice and tomato paste, stir well, continue to cook 2-3 min.
  7. Add pureed ingredients, stir well. Cook until potatoes are almost done and sauce reduces, 5-7 min.
  8. Add 1 cup water, chickpea flour, sugar, salt. Return to simmer, reduce heat to low, cover, cook for 5 min.
  9. Garnish with chopped coriander, serve with basmati rice or chapati.

Variations:
*Vedic style: omit garlic and onion, add 1 small tomato to puree, and fry 1 tsp brown mustard seeds along with other spices before adding potatoes. Rich and creamy: use 1 cup soy milk or coconut milk in place of 1 cup water. Spicy kick: Add 1 chopped red chili or 1/2 tsp red chili flakes with the other spices before adding potatoes.

_____________________
Thanks again for the awesome guest post, Justin! Please support him by pre-ordering a copy of The Lotus and the Artichoke - Vegan Recipes from World Adventures,  today! --Lynn

9/18/12

Score: Vintage Daisy Pyrex Set, Butterprint Bowl, & More!






I haven't been thrifting for the shop at all lately. There is already boatload of of great inventory in backstock, so I was trying to practice some restraint by staying away from the Goodwill, Salvation Army, and flea markets.  I didn't want to accumulate more than I can list in the next month. Too much stock stresses me out and I easily lose track of it.

Well, this all changed when my husband dropped off some donations to the Goodwill after the yard sale we had on Saturday. He informed me that the donation center was overflowing with goodies. Lots of people had yard sales in my area, and what do you do when you have a yard sale and things don't sell, you bring them to the Goodwill! I just had a feeling I would find some great stock, and I sure did.

Here are a few highlights from my trip that will be in the Etsy shop soon. If you're in a hurry and you see something here that you would like, I could always sell it to you beforehand. Just message me; my email address if off to the right in the sidebar.

Do you thrift? What was the last great thing you found?

9/17/12

A Naughty Smoothie Worth Waking Up For

I love this mug! I bought it for the shop, but decided to keep it instead.
I go through periods of a few days of not eating so well (hello, weekends!) and then feel the need to repent for my sins starting first thing Monday morning. I wanted to juice for breakfast, but the thought of drinking kale juice kept me in curled up all cozy under my blankets. Maybe I could just eat some fruit? Hmmm... not good enough, but a fruit smoothie might get me going, but I still needed a bit of naughty to get me out of bed. Chocolate! I promise you, dear body, the kale juice will start at lunch time!

Banana Raw Cacao and Chocolate Chip Smoothie Recipe (vegan)

Ingredients

  • 3/4 - 1 cup ice
  • 1 banana
  • 1/2 cup almond milk (unsweetened)
  • 2 TB raw cacao powder
  • 1 tsp stevia powder
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp raw, unfiltered coconut oil
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1-2 TB chocolate chips (My new favorite are the vegan, semi-sweet chocolate chips from Wholefoods.)

Directions

  1. In a blender, crush ice and add almond milk and banana until blended smooth.
  2. Add the other ingredients, except leave out the chocolate chip. Blend.
  3. Add chocolate chips and pulse until they are broken down into small pieces.
  4. Transfer to a fancy glass and have yourself a naughty but nice morning!




9/14/12

That's A Beautiful Cake, Sister!


When I was in junior high and high school, I was absolutely inseparable from my best fried Lee and her sister, Julie. We slept over each other's houses, skateboarded together, rode our bikes everywhere, and even went vegetarian together. Then, when we went our separate ways due to atending colleges in different states, we stayed in touch via hand written letters (in a land before the internets!), and in current life, we still email every now and then. Now, through the magic of Facebook, I have been able to keep up more regularly with them. Turns out they also love to bake and have turned that passion into a business! 

Julie, Lee, and their friend Irene, opened up Three Sisters Artisan Bakery, a home bakery based in Mocksville, NC. They specialize in fresh home baked breads and desserts made from wholesome, all natural, quality ingredients. Though the bakery is not gluten-free or vegan, they happily accomadate special requests (like that lovely gluten-free and vegan mermaid cake above!). Check them out if you are in the Winston-Salem area!

Three Sisters Artisan Bakery
 433 N. Main St. Mocksville
North Carolina 27028

9/10/12

Reunion Cookies, Birthday Muffins, Paletas, Lovely Weather

The cooler weather means that baking is possible again! I made these chocolate chip cookies for a family reunion. I ended up being sick and not able to go, but Mr. Scissors said the cookies went really quickly despite there being tons of other cookies up for grabs. Take that, egg-cookies!

Here's the cute bird tray from Ikea they were served on. These have come in very handy since I bought them a year or so ago. I think they are still available in the stores.

I recieved an email from my daughter's teacher notifying me that they were having a birthday party at school where cupcakes would be served, so I should give my little one a non-egg substitute for her to eat. I was going to make her cupcakes, but she has declared that my muffins are her favorite, so I opted for a healthier option: banana muffins using the Post Punk Kitchen banana bread recipe. I sub in some whole wheat flour for a little added boost of nutrition. I froze the rest so that I will have some on hand for the next birthday party in her class. I learned this trick from Vegan Dad--baked goods freeze well!

On Sunday, we spent some quality time at the flea/farmer's market where we sampled some Mexican paletas (fresh made fruit pops which have large chunks of fruit in them; locally made in Wilmington, DE). I opted for the tamarindo while my husband tortured himself with the mango con chile.

I also scored lots of great stuff for the shop at the flea market; preview coming soon. There's been lots of photographing going on in my house. I can't wait to get the shop stocked again.


Are you digging this freaking gorgeous weather? It's so nice to be able to go outside and not feel like I'm being cooked and assaulted by the sun. There were these amazing cloud formations in the sky all day yesterday. It's so nice to feel the warm sun contrasted by cool breezes. I love the fall! Pumpkins and hot cocoa here we come!

9/6/12

What's on Your Pantry Shelf?





My pantry was brimming with cookbooks. I barely use them anymore though (but I probably should start again to expand my cooking repertoire), so I thinned out my collection and here's what I kept. I really need to dive into the Vegan Yum Yum cookbook; I've heard nothing but good things about it. Are there any essential cookbooks I am missing? Please give me suggestions!

Speaking of clearing out and organizing, I'm going to be taking a little bit of a break from the blog for a month or so. I'll still be sporadically posting, but now that the kids are in school (one in first and one in a few days/week of preschool),  I have to start focusing on my shop (and my new shop!) and, well, myself! Stay tuned for updates, follow me on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram! See you soon and wish me luck!

9/4/12

3x4, 6+6, 24÷2 at the Beach

This weekend, my husband and I celebrated our 12th wedding anniversary. I feel very blessed to be spending my life with such a hilarious, understanding, sensitive, rational, humble, intelligent and talented person who just happens to be devilishly handsome and an awesome father. Here's to many, many more years of wedded bliss!



Recently, we had been trying to squeeze out every last ounce of summer before the kids went back to school. Two weekends ago, we had an exciting ride on old timey steamie train on the Wilmington Western Railroad. The train stopped for a nice 30 minute picnic at a secluded spot on the White Clay Creek. Incredibly peaceful and the kids enjoyed their time throwing rocks into the stream.

For the extended Labor Day weekend and our anniversary, we headed down to the Delaware beaches. I love it down there--though only about 1.5 hours away, it feels like another world. People even have southern accents and there are tons of farms. I wish there were better options for vegetarians/vegans at restaurants, but I guess we have such great options at home. I just really dislike cooking on vacation!

 One of the best parts of the trip was night swimming in a warm pool under the huge blue moon.

 I visited a camp site that was like a living time capsule complete with a 1980s style arcade. Unfortunately, there were no cool T-shirts with their teepee logo for sale.

We also got to hit up some great book sales and thrift stores. I've discovered way more thrift stores down there that I will have to hit up next year since we ran out of time on this trip.

Labor Day weekend, so I had to sport the red, white, and blue. Ok, this was just a happy coincidence. I would never purposefully do that. I may be a mom, but I would like to think I have retained some of my punk rock coolness. Ok, maybe not. :)


And no trip to the shore would be complete without, well,  a trip to the beach and "romantic" (we were with the kids, so you know...) long anniversary walk on the beach.



One of our favorite parts of our beach trips, is that our awesome and generous hosts have one of the most mega-collection of movies! Our last night was spent watching"Fast Times at Ridgemont High." Classic coming of age story! Aloha, Mr. Hand!