birthday cake

This weekend I got to be a part of a cake and ice cream birthday party with two lovely ladies, Tara and Gen. I would say that we outdid any other party I’ve been a part of with mere quantity of delicious cake and ice cream.

We had 3 cakes, more than a dozen cupcakes and two ice cream cakes from Scoops.

cakes and cupcakes

I made a chocolate covered vanilla cake and a red velvet cake. There were chocolate cupcakes too.

But my absolute favorite part…

brown bread ice cream cake

…was the brown bread ice cream cake. Heaven on a plate. I’ve always wanted to have vegan brown bread ice cream. It was exactly as I imagined it would be. Amazing!

happy birthday

We all wore fluffy tiaras and sang happy birthday and ate loads of cake and ice cream. I had a major sugar overload but it was well worth it.

Oh, and I kind of fell in love with Tara’s cat Lucky.

lucky cat

How cute is she?

Harry Potter Day

Today is the day that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part I comes out. I’m so freaking excited. I would have gone at midnight but I’m planning to go with a group of friends. I really can’t wait. I’ve actually had a countdown until today.

I wanted to do a something a little extra special, and since I didn’t have time to make myself a scarf, so I decided to make some Gryffindor scarf cupcakes. I took my cue from the knit night cupcakes over on Vegan Yum Yum. Unfortunately, with my late night baking, I didn’t have any marzipan to sculpt with. I used a bit of rolled fondant instead. It didn’t quite have the materiality of the marzipan, but still looked cute.

harry potter scarf cupcake

It was a fun little project, it would be fun to make some for all the houses for a Harry Potter party. I think when Deathly Hallows Part II comes out, I’ll throw a huge festive event. Oh gosh, I can’t wait to go see the movie.

I’m excited for Thanksgiving next week, I’ve got a few exciting recipes to planned out, I can’t wait to make.

Last but not least, today is officially 3 months until our wedding. There is so much left to do before then! It’s time to really get cracking on that list. I think we have quite a few of our major decisions figured out, but still have some tough choices to make. Not to mention a lot of projects to complete. This weekend I’m going to have my first dress dress fitting. I’m nervous and excited all at once. I hope it goes well.

Peanut Butter Cream Pie

I’m super excited  that my recipe for this wonderful Peanut Butter Cream Pie was featured on PETA’s Vegetarian Living Blog. I’m so happy to be able to share with so many people who are looking to know more about veganism.

I’m reproducing the recipe here for posterity, and of course to not leave out my dear readers who definitely need to know how to make this super sweet pie.

This peanut butter cream pie is a lovely balance of a flaky crust, a sweet peanut-butter filling, and a fluffy coconut-cream topping.

It takes a bit of advanced preparation but nothing more than putting a few cans of coconut milk in the fridge the night before. You’ll want to make sure that you use the full-fat coconut milk, as this is what makes the dense coconut cream topping. It’s my favorite. In fact, you can use it as a topping on just about any cake, ice cream, or pie. Trust me when I say that you’ll want to.

pie crust

Let’s start with the crust, shall we? This is a versatile crust that you can use for any sort of pie, either savory or sweet.

Vegan Pastry Crust
1 1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup nondairy butter
2-3 Tbsp. ice water

  • Mix the flour and the salt together. Cut together the flour mixture with the nondairy butter using a fork, two knives, or a pastry cutter. Combine until the mixture resembles crumbs. Slowly incorporate the ice water until the dough just starts to hold together when pressed between your fingers.
  • Shape the dough into a disk and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 425°F.
  • Lightly dust your work surface and rolling pin with flour. Roll out the pie crust until the dough is about 1/4 inch thick. Roll from the center out so that it’s even.
  • Drape the dough over your rolling pin and transfer to a pie dish. Press the dough into the corners and trim off any excess hanging over the dish. Using a fork, poke a few holes in the bottom of the crust to prevent air bubbles.
  • Bake for 15 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown.
  • Set aside to cool. Make sure it cools completely before you assemble the pie.

peanut butter cream pie mixins

Next, we’ll put together the filling. It is essentially two layers, but we start with the coconut cream, as it is the base for the whole thing. Ideally, it should be made in a stand mixer, if you have one, as this allows the cream to become extra fluffy. If you don’t have a stand mixer, you can still make it with an electric hand mixer; just be sure to at least double the beating time. You want to incorporate as much air as possible into the mix. Also, I recommend using a metal bowl if possible.

As for the peanut butter, choose whichever type you like best. I like a creamy pie, so I go with creamy peanut butter. If you like crunchy, though, I bet that would be great. Just be sure to skim off any excess oil at the top of your jar. You can always add it back into your peanut butter jar later or use it for cooking up some stir-fry. If you use an unsalted peanut butter, add an additional 1/4 teaspoonful of salt to the mixture if you like.

OK, now let’s get to that pie-making!

peanut butter cream pie

Pie Filling
3 cans coconut milk
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
3 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup peanut butter

  • The night before you are planning to make this pie, place the coconut milk in the fridge.
  • Open the cans of coconut milk, skim off the thick cream at the top of each jar, and put into the bowl of your stand mixer. (I’m sure there is a great use for the clear liquid at the bottom, although I haven’t figured one out yet.)
  • Beat on high until the mixture is fluffy and thick.
  • Add in 1 cup of the powdered sugar and mix until all the sugar is incorporated, scraping down the sides as necessary. Beat until fully combined. Add the vanilla extract and beat for 3 to 5 more minutes.
  • Set about 2/3 of the mixture aside in a cool place. This will be the topping.
  • Add 1/2 cup of the peanut butter to the mixer and beat until fluffy. Add the remaining 1/2 cup powdered sugar and beat until combined. Finally, beat in the last 1/2 cup of peanut butter until creamy.
  • Spread the peanut butter mixture over the bottom of your cooled pie crust. Gently spoon the remaining whipped coconut cream onto the peanut butter layer. Refrigerate for at least an hour before serving.


Green Bean Casserole

Last year we attended a mondo Thanksgiving potluck and one of the recipes we left dreaming about was for this fantastic Green Bean Casserole.

I have never particularly had very strong feelings either way about green beans but this dish will make you want to eat them day in and day out. Smothered in a flavorful and slightly cheesy sauce, these green beans will steal your heart (and your belly I suppose).

green bean casserole

Oh and did I mention, they’re topped with those awesome fried onion bits. Yum!

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, I wanted to make a few dishes early and stretch out the tastiness. Why only eat Thanksgiving food on one day a year?

That being said, I’ve eaten this dish for 3 meals in the past 2 days. It’s that good.

It’s also incredibly easy to make, almost as easy as it is to eat. I doubled the recipe to make it last even longer and just increased the cooking time a bit and it came out fantastic. Here is the recipe!

Vegan Green Bean Casserole

recipe from here

  • 1/4 cup vegan margarine
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 14 ounce cans French style green beans, well drained
  • 1 3 ounce can French-fried onions

Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a small saucepan, melt the margarine and add the flour. Add the vegetable broth, soy sauce, garlic powder and onion powder, stirring frequently, until sauce thickens. Whisk in the vegetable oil and nutritional yeast.

Toss together the sauce and green beans in a casserole dish. Bake for ten minutes. Remove and sprinkle the French fried onions on top of the casserole. Bake for another ten minutes.

Tofu Benny

After seeing two awesome bloggers post scrumptious photos of the Tofu Benny from Vegan Brunch I knew I had to make it. Not to mention I’m slightly obsessed with making tofu benedict.

I was super impressed with every detail of this recipe. It was all timed out so that you could serve it up without having to wait for one of the elements to be finished. It was particularly good for me at the moment as I am working on my mise en place in the kitchen

Mostly I was surprised at how much this sauce was like hollandaise made with real eggs. It had that stretchy elasticity of raw egg that is rare in a vegan dish. Honestly it was kind of freaky, but definitely cool.

tofu benny

I just happened to wake up particularly early this past Sunday and used the opportunity to marinate the tofu needed for the recipe so that it could all be prepared by the time everyone was awake.

I opted to use some thick toast instead of the home style potato option, mainly because I love toast. I also added in a bit of steamed spinach, just for fun. Spinach is fun, right?

tofu benny

The tofu was awesome, I was able to grill it up with breaking it or getting it stuck to the bottom of the pan (for once!). I had a nice light flavor that was complimented well by the hollandaise sauce and the hint of liquid smoke on the tomato.

I would say that this is probably the most authentic vegan tofu benedicts that I’ve had. I’d be interested to try it with some sort of vegan ham. I enjoyed the tomato, but perhaps would like to grill it up a bit. In fact, I think I’d just like to try a million different versions of vegan benedict and have it for brunch every weekend.