Happy Christmas

It’s Christmas Eve! While I’m not a religious person, nor do I particularly care for what Christmas has evolved into, but I am a huge fan of holidays. I love the excitement, the festivities, the specialness that holidays bring about. I feel that Christmas time has this feeling tenfold.

christmas branch

We tried to get a tree this year. It was a fake one, flocked and pre-lit. It was also the saddest Charlie Brown Christmas tree you’ve ever seen. But upon trying to actually purchase it, we were told it was not for sale. Major holiday let down.

christmas branch

Instead I decorated a branch I found by wrapping it in twinkle lights and hanging tiny glittered blue and silver bulbs. It was supposed to be hung from the ceiling but in the pre-holiday haste, it is merely dangling from a curtain rod.

christmas branch

It’s sweet and gives our living room a warm glow at night. Next year when we have our first home chosen together we’ll have a tree I’m sure.

christmas branch

Here is to putting away daily stresses, forgetting about emotional drama and being grateful for what you have. Here is to being present and appreciating your life for what it is today, not just what it will be or what it was. Here is to relaxing.

I hope your Christmas is filled with love and magic.

Thanksgiving leftover hot pockets

It may seem like I’m a little obsessed with leftovers. It’s true. But Thanksgiving always leaves you with so many of them. Even though we didn’t cook this year, we still ended up with a few nights worth of holiday food. I wanted to spice things up a little bit, just so we weren’t having exactly the same meal over and over. Hence the creation of the Thanksgiving leftover hot pocket.

thanksgiving leftover hot pockets

All you have to do to make these is make some pastry crust (I used the flakey pie crust recipe from The Joy of Vegan Baking
) and assemble as if you were making ravioli. You could easily use puff pastry if you didn’t feel like making a crust.

Start by preheating your oven to 425° F. Roll out your crust (or one sheet of  puff pastry) and set aside one half. Put a few tablespoons of stuffing or tofurky or whatever leftover you want in a grid on the dough, leaving about an inch between each filling. The next part is really important, you must drizzle a little bit of gravy over your filling. Make sure the filling isn’t piled too high or your crust may crack.

Carefully lay the other half of the crust over the prepared fillings. Press the spaces between each filling together with your fingers, starting in the center and working your way out. It’s ok if a little bit of gravy or whatever leaks out the side, but try to seal it best you can around the edges. Using a pizza cutter or a pastry cutter, cut the hot pockets into individual pies. Slice a few diagonal slits in the top of each. Transfer to a baking sheet and cook for 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown.

thanksgiving leftover hot pockets

These would also be great with your holiday meal, they’re not just good for leftovers. Let’s face it, everything is better in a pie crust. We had ours with some celebration field roast, more stuffing and some kale.

The bottom line is that pretty much anything is good in these. Get creative. If you want them filled with sweet potatoes and dandies, I’m sure they’d be extra awesome. Feel free to keep them simple or get crazy.

Vegan waffles x3

You know what is great about long weekends? Making breakfast. You know what is the best? Making waffles for breakfast three days in a row.

I’ve had a waffle maker since I was in high school, but I’ve never made as lovely waffles as this weekend. Thanks in large part, I believe to a few awesome recipes from Vegan Brunch.

On Saturday we had the gingerbread waffles (seen half eaten above). Sunday we had raised waffles, my absolute favorite, eaten with no toppings, perfect on their own. This morning we had kamut waffles. These were the saddest of the bunch, but still pretty good. Kamut is great for pancakes but not as nice for waffles. I added even more syrup after the first photo was taken. Mmmm waffles. I see more waffles in my future.

Easter bunny cake

Hope everyone had a delicious Easter!

St. Patty’s treats

Saint Patrick’s day is upon us again and I wanted to get in a quick post to honor it, and also to reflect on the feasting Shawn and I did last year. This year we won’t be feasting for every meal, but we’ll try to squeeze in a few Irish themed dishes. We started early by having some beans and toast tonight, with some apple sage field roast sausage. I’ll try out some new recipes for tomorrow, but why mess with something that is amazingly delicious as it is?

Now, back in February, I mentioned I had a few knitting projects going and that I might just share one for Saint Patrick’s if I finished in time. Guess what…I did! Even with making a million mistakes and having to undo hours of work, I managed to complete the above pictured fingerless gloves. They’re made with organic cotton yarn (in green of course!) that I love. It’s so easy to work with and softer than any not-so animal friendly wool. If you were so inclined, you could knit these yourself as there is a free pattern available, which I’m always appreciative of. These guys are so comfy and also great for keeping warm on a bike ride without losing your grip.

Part of the reason there won’t be extensive feasting this year, is because I’ve been rather busy baking away. I did manage to get some special St. Patrick’s day cupcakes over to Meet Market, so if you need some Saint Patrick’s day treats you can get your own lucky shamrock vanilla cupcake, or some Peppermint Patty cupcakes or even a special green themed “hostess” cupcake with marshmallow cream filling. Get them before they’re gone though, they’ve been selling out awfully quick.

Hope everyone has a lovely Saint Patrick’s day. Eat something delicious. Don’t forget to wear green (or orange). Try not to drink too much. 🙂