Category Archives: vegan

One Year Vegan

VeganI passed my one year on a vegan diet anniversary about a month ago. Yay!
I have been a vegetarian for many years, but suddenly, and I don’t know what took me so long, it totally didn’t make sense to consume dairy and eggs when I was shunning meat.
I thought it was going to be way harder than it was, but no, just felt right.

So what are some of the things I have experienced on this vegan year of mine?

One milestones were to find a dairy substitute that I really liked (Oatly ikaffe). I tested my way through the grocery store’s plant milks and I even did some of my own. I like oat milk the best and soy milk comes in as a close runner-up.
I’m not so into the nut ones, which is not so terribly surprising since Im not that into nuts.
And yogurt products are best made on soy!plantmilksUPp

Realising that mostly just skipping the substitute meat parts, was a big one. You really don’t need the soy nuggets and chickpea-hotdogs. I started making great meals using fruit, veggies, cereal and all those good “nature” made things.hot-dog

After a few months I started noticing that my period was getting shorter and different… unpredictable. I believe this was from all the hormones and stuff that is present in milk products that I was no longer consuming. My period has now stabilised into the same length as before but with fewer days of bleeding. Score!instagramperiodarticle_1ah9mdh-1ah9me5

I am also feeling lighter, fresher, its hard to explain. Of course I still eat candy, chocolate and sometimes junk food, but mostly its easy to be healthy on a vegan diet, and I have lost a few pounds without even trying. And I am pooping more regularly, yes I went there.vegan dish

A negative thing is being social. You can’t have a fika (coffee and a cake) at a café if they don’t serve vegan stuff and have alternative milks, (I need milk in my coffee) you can just awkwardly sit there watching.
When you get invited for dinner or a birthday party, I always ask if I should bring something, and I always feel like I am such a bother, not just eating what everyone else is having. It makes social gatherings a bit les fun. Usually though everything works out fine, its just me feeling awkward.coffee

I don’t know if you noticed, but in the first sentence of the blog I said that I had been one year of a vegan diet, not that I had been vegan for one year. A full/real/hardcore vegan, or whatever you want to call him or her, does not use any animal products at all.
And I still do. I do knit with wool, but I know exactly where the wool is from, I eat locally (guy down the road) harvested honey, and I still use my leather shoes, belts and bags.
I am trying though, I do my best to make the smartest decision in every situation, and I am getting further and further, but most important I am getting more and more educated about all things vegan, and I do think I inspire and influece the people around me.

This has been a good year! Veganism gets five out of five radishes!

Here are links to some of my vegan recipes:

  1. Vegan Overnight Oats
  2. Vegan Chocolat Birthday Cake
  3. Asian Inspired Vedgetble Stew
  4. Soba Noodles

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Vegan Overnight Oats

Overnight oats are a great way for us that are reeeeealy tried in the morning, like

“stir oatmeal for five minutes is too much”
tired, and
“I forgot to heat the water before I poured it over my tea”
tired, to get a good healthy, hearty breakfast.

owl
It’s a lot like uncooked, cold, slightly slimy, flavoured oatmeal, mainly because that is what it is.
I’m really selling it here, I can feel it.
Seriously its tasty! I like it and I’m a picky eater, and you can do like a million variations of it all to you liking, here are three of my favourites.

I found this first recipe for vegan chocolate banana overnight oats, but I lost the source! I have the recipe on a pice of paper but no idea where I got it from. Well not much I can do about that now. (I really looked for it)
Hint: The banana goes in the next morning!!

Chocolate Banana Overnight Oats

  • Servings: 1
  • Time: 5 mins
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Perfect for us non morning people.


Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 dl rolled oats
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp flax seeds
  • 1 tsp sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 dl dried cranberries
  • 1 to 1 1/2 tbsp of honey
  • 2 1/2 dl of your favourite plant milk
  • 1 ripe banana, mashed

Directions

  1. Start preparing the night before. In a fridge safe container mix the oats and cocoa powder, then add everything else, except the banana. Mix well, cover and leave in the fridge overnight.
  2. Next morning, take out your container, stir everything a bit, mash a banana and stir it in.
  3. Eat and enjoy.

Tips

You have to test around a bit with the amount of plant milk to get the consistency you like. And also maybe a bit of peanut butter wouldn’t go amiss in this one, you could mash it up with the banana. You can of course change the seeds to anything you like and add the sweetener of your choice.

But I am not really a “chocolate first thing in the morning” kind of gal, so I came up with this raisin cinnamon version.

Cinnamon Raisin Overnight Oats

  • Servings: 1
  • Time: 5 mins
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Cinnamon always works in the morning


Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 dl rolled oats
  • 1/2 to 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp flax seeds
  • 1 tsp sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 dl raisins
  • 1 to 1 1/2 tbsp of coconut sugar
  • 2 1/2 dl of your favourite plant milk
  • 1 ripe banana, mashed

Directions

  1. Start preparing the night before. In a fridge safe container mix everything together, except the banana. Cover and leave in the fridge overnight.
  2. Next morning, take out your container, stir everything a bit, mash a banana and stir it in.
  3. Eat and enjoy.

Tips


You have to test around a bit with the amount of plant milk to get the consistency you like.
Start with the smaller amount of cinnamon you can always add more later.
You can of course change the seeds to anything you like and add the sweetener of your choice.

And this Blueberry Vanilla one.

Blueberry Vanilla Overnight Oats

  • Servings: 1
  • Time: 5 mins
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

This one turns purple!


Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 dl rolled oats
  • 1/4 tsp of pure ground vanilla, or splash of vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp flax seeds
  • 1 tsp sunflower seeds
  • 1 dl of frozen blueberries, or fresh if you have them
  • 1 to 1 1/2 tbsp of coconut sugar
  • 2 1/2 dl of your favourite plant milk, maybe go a little light on the milk here since the blueberries ad moisture
  • 1 ripe banana, mashed

Directions

  1. Start preparing the night before. In a fridge safe container mix everything together, except the banana. Cover and leave in the fridge overnight.
  2. Next morning, take out your container, stir everything a bit, mash a banana and and stir it in.
  3. Eat and enjoy.

Tips


You have to test around a bit with the amount of plant milk to get the consistency you like.
You can of course change the seeds to anything you like and ad the sweetener of your choice.


Vegan Overnight OatsI got some more Ideas while writing..

  • how about a chocolate cherry one
  • or chocolate mint
  • maybe cinnamon orange
  • I mean almost any berry or fruit would probably be tasty

I spent the whole week trying and tasting. 🙂 I hope I gave you some breakfast inspiration and if you haven’t tried overnight oats you should definetly give it a go.


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6 Easy Tips to Becoming Vegan

Are you thinking about becoming a vegetarian or a vegan? Are you wondering what that would entail and if you could do it, or want to do it? Here are 6 of my best tips for making it easier to become vegan.

TV1.  Start by watching these documentaries, or one of them, to understand what impact the meat and dairy industry has on the environment, our bodies and how the animals are treated.

And “The best speech you will ever hear” by Gary Yourofsky.
I have linked the titles to their corresponding trailer on YouTube. You can find some of them on Netflix, or free on YouTube.

How do you feel about veganism now?

plantmilksUPp2. Ok, milk. I did a test when I began being vegan.
I love lattes, that’s how I drink my coffee, and I love it, and need at least one a day. So if I was not able to find a milk substitute that I liked, then I was sort of screwed.
I changed to one of the favourite plant milks I had tried, Oatly’s oat milk especially for coffee, called ikaffe = incoffee, for one whole week. Then I made myself a cow milk latte and an oat milk latte and tried both.
The result was that they both tasted funny, the oat one tasted, not surprisingly slightly of oat, and the cow milk one had a weird metallic meaty taste.
I had no problem switching to plant milk after that.
It’s worth a try, right.

vegetables-knife-paprika-traffic-light-vegetable-40191
3.
 My third tip is, skip the meat/dairy substitutes to begin with. They won’t taste like “hotdog” or “parmesan”, not while the real taste is fresh in you mind. Go for the vegetables, grains and fruits.
Then after a while, you can try the substitutes and see if you like them for their own taste and not what they are trying to taste like.

Holy-Nut-vegan-treats-450x5504. Your favourite treats. Try to find a vegan alternative to your favourite treats.
There are lots of great vegan chocolate out there.
Cookies, Oreos are vegan in some countries.
Vegan ice cream is usually just as good as other prepackaged ice cream.
Chips often have milk powder on them, but if you go for a “rustic” kind they are usually good, and Pringles have a “vegan” sign on their vegan chips. Yay Pringles!
Nuts and seeds are tasty and so are fruit, but never, ever let anyone tell you that fruit is candy! It’s not, its fruit! But try nice cream, its fruit and yummy!
If you can’t find anything good in you local grocery store, try searching on the internet. I have heard that iHearb is good, but I have never ordered from there myself.

Becoming Vegan

5. Find a community of fellow vegans, whether it’s on Facebook,  Instagram or any other place you feel comfortable, dare I say it, maybe not even a virtual one! A place to swap recipes and get motivated. Maybe someone has found the most gorgeous vegan ice-cream in you area, you would want to know about that right! And the same for knowing about that totally disgusting power bar popping up in the shops.

apples6. Ha, you thought I would stop at five! No, I have Aspergers I don’t like fives. 😀
Important tip number six is; be prepared, have a nut bar or a pice of fruit with you, because you might just find yourself hungry and in a place without vegan options.
Not to say It has to be hard eating out. You can use you vegan community to help you find great eating spots almost everywhere.

Oh, quick tips:

  • you are going to eat a lot of bananas
  • no, you are not going to die from protein deficiency
  • b12 is a good idea
  • learn to read on the back of Everything
  • Why not do some vegan cross stitch, download for free herekrosstitsh

I sincerely hope this helps you who want to go vegan and make the rest of you think about it. 🙂
Love to everyone, even the animals!


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Vegan Chocolate Birthday Cake

Vegan Chocolate CakeI love baking, a bit to much, because someone has to eat it all. But since I became vegan I had to redo or find new recipes to fill in the gaps of old favourites.
I have a good vanilla sponge cake covered, but for my birthday, today when this is published 🙂 , I wanted chocolate! Yum!

The best base for my chocolate cake that I found was a “depression” or “crazy” cake, which I tweaked a bit to fit my needs.

Vegan Chocolate Cake

Its called a depression cake because it was invented by crafty housewives during the depression in the United States when there was no eggs, butter or milk, instead it uses vinegar and baking soda to make the batter rise.

Vegan Chocolate Birthday Cake

I aded a shot of espresso and a generous amount of vanilla.

Vegan Chocolate Birthday Cake

The frosting was tricky. I tried ganache, turns out I’m not that fond of ganache. I didn’t want a buttercream, or a chocolate buttercream. So I turned to an old favourite again and made it vegan.
Its the frosting for a Swedish classic cake called “kärleksmums” roughly translated, with the help from my Swedish vegan friends, Loveyums!

Vegan Chocolate Birthday Cake
Kärleksmums – Loveyums

Its a chocolate cake you make a big batch of in a pan, drizzle this lovely chocolate/coffee icing on, and then sprinkle it with shaved coconut. The icing is the best part.
Its served in squares with traditional strong Swedish coffee, if you can see through it, its not coffee.

Its always a good idea to line your cake pan with parchment paper.

I made two separate cakes and layered them with frosting in the middle. And I artistically chose to just ad coconut to the edges.

Vegan Chocolate Cake, with Coffee Frosting

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Time: 40 min
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Perfect for a birthday cake or when you just need that chocolate kick.


I made two of these cakes to get the double layer cake I made here, the frosting recipe was enough for the whole thing, but if you want a lot of frosting or be really sure you wont run out, make a double batch. Then it serves at least 15.

Chocolate Cake

  • 1 1/2 cups of flour
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 3 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp pure ground vanilla powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 shot of espresso plus water to make 1 cup
  • 5 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp white vinegar

Directions

  1. Set oven to 350F or 175C.
  2. Butter and line you baking pan with parchment paper.
  3. Whisk the cake ingredients together, sift the flower if you feel like it, and spread/pour the batter in an about 28 cm baking pan.
  4. Bake for 30 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
  5. Let cool before frosting and decorating.

Coffee Frosting

  • 60 g vegan butter
  • 5 tbsp strong coffee, start with four, and ad the fifth if needed
  • 6 dl confectioners sugar, adjust to get the consistency you want
  • 3 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp pure ground vanilla powder

Decoration

  • shredded coconut

Directions

  1. Melt vegan butter.
  2. Mix with the rest of the frosting ingredients.
  3. Spread between the layers, if you are doing layers, and on the cooled cake.
  4. Decorate with shaved coconut in any way you want, let your creativity loose!


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What is Veganism?

Cover photo by John Towner.


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The hunt for a Camera Bag!

I am so tired of bad photos! Usually I only carry my Iphone out and about with me and though the built-in cameras has improved hugely through the models they are still not that great.

canon1So I have decided its time to get used to carry around the “big” DSLR camera my dear father in law gave me, it’s a Canon EOS 40D, and obviously significantly larger than an Iphone which it makes up by taking significantly better photos than an Iphone.

I am also trying to get the hang of using the manual settings. But I think I have to get out and about in different light and motif situations to get a better understanding of them. And to do that we need to make a few changes.

First I don’t have a bag, and I don’t want to break it! So I’m looking into getting a bag that I will like carrying around, that is pretty, that is not one that looks like “hey I have a big expensive camera in here”, and one that I can also put my “stuff” in, not huge, just a little bigger than just for the camera.
I have found “The” bag, that obviously is a designer bag and I can not, nor do I want to spend that kind of money on a bag.

This is the “Austin” bag from Kelly Moore. thebag1

It costs $199, but is currently on sale for $99, that doesn’t really help, especially when there is an additional $50 for shipping to Sweden.


Gorgeous bucket bag, vegan too!

I have also found some nice ones in my price range, all have to be ordered via the internet of course.

The “Manfrotto Stile 35 Diva Sholder Bag” in Dove, from Manfrotto. I love all the pockets! But I wish the shoulder straps were adjustable. £35.22 from Amazon.co.uk, and there will of corse be a shipping cost added on that too.

Or the “Olive” DLSR Camera Bag in Blue and Beige from Lencca.olive7

£24.95 on Amazon.co.uk I love this little chic but fun and colorful bag with lots of hidden pockets. Vegan leather!

Maybe you can see on the amount of pictures wich one I have chosen. 😉

I thought I would sew a temporary/light case to use while the bag gets here. And I found some great patterns for that depending on what function you want it to serve.

Top left Camera case by Froo and Boo, Bottom left How to make a camera case from a handbag by Handbag Heaven, Right Camera Slip for your purse by Handmade by Sarakim

 

And then we have to do something about the neckband. Its ugly, uncomfortable and on top of that it’s getting a bit old and is showing some wear and tear. So, either I make a cover for it and keep the original strap inside, or I sew a whole new one. Both good solutions, each with its pros and cons. Here are some tutorials for that.

Left “Camera Strap with lens cap pocket” by Bue Bonnet Acres, Middle “Scarf Camera Strap” by The Thinking Closet and Right “How to make a Camera Strap” By Ikat Bag.

 

If you don’t want to buy a camera bag at all there are some great tutorials on how to make inserts to fit your usual bag or purse. Also a great idea! Check my Pinterest board “Camera Stuff” for more ideas.
Stay tuned to see what I end up doing. 😀


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