What I Ate Wednesday

As a food blogger, I read a lot of food blogs, food magazines and cookbooks, and watch a lot of cooking shows and Youtube channels. All of that information, though, can leave me a little paralyzed. If you don't make something intricate or "epic" you can feel like what you're eating isn't up to par or isn't share-worthy. Back when I started this blog, almost four years ago, I ended up not even cooking (or eating) at all because I felt so defeated when looking at others' high level of work.

Today, I'm happy that I feel so strongly the opposite of this. Food shouldn't have to have chef-like perfection, Pinterest-worthy visuals, or Youtube "epic" intricacy to be nourishing to your mind & stomach. Instead, I think it's important to celebrate our most everyday meals, especially as vegans. It shows others exactly how we're eating, making it easy for them to imagine themselves doing it too. It helps give us a sense of community on Instagram, through tag searches and following others' journeys.

It's easy to make the most basic food look beautiful, and in doing so we showcase the potential of vegan-friendly foods as well as find the beauty in our own daily routines. Instead of holding ourselves to this over-the-top standard of food/lifestyle excellence, we can create our own standard with intention.

mid-morning pick-me-up: grapefruit juiced with seltzer

mid-morning pick-me-up: grapefruit juiced with seltzer

takeout lunch: coconut bacon BLT (the best!) & bbq fried tofu with fries

takeout lunch: coconut bacon BLT (the best!) & bbq fried tofu with fries

our roommates got a new waffle maker, so we celebrated with waffles & potato cakes made from leftover mashed potatoes

our roommates got a new waffle maker, so we celebrated with waffles & potato cakes made from leftover mashed potatoes

pretty much my breakfast every morning: unsweetened bran flakes & raisins

pretty much my breakfast every morning: unsweetened bran flakes & raisins

breakfast at home: grapefruit, toast with peanut butter, black tea

breakfast at home: grapefruit, toast with peanut butter, black tea

I've really enjoyed documenting most of my meals this past week. I used to use calorie-counting apps to keep my health in check, but this is even better in my eyes. There's no tedious ingredient-searching/recipe building, and I love seeing gorgeous meals rather than reading numbers. It's helped me see where I can improve my diet (and my food photography) and helped me become more intentional in my everyday routine.

So, I'm starting a little series: each Wednesday I'm going to compile a short grouping of what I ate in the past week. For you and for me. If you're trying something similar, comment below and link it so I can see! I love checking out what other people eat on a daily basis, it's come to be very inspiring. :)

lunch made in bulk for the week: fried rice with chopped carrots, peas, and thin-sliced seitan crisped with onion

lunch made in bulk for the week: fried rice with chopped carrots, peas, and thin-sliced seitan crisped with onion

my favorite summer breakfast: cantaloupe

my favorite summer breakfast: cantaloupe

dinner in nyc at wild ginger! i got crispy seitan & mint lemonade

dinner in nyc at wild ginger! i got crispy seitan & mint lemonade

sunday night dinner at home: lasagne with brussels sprouts & garlic bread

sunday night dinner at home: lasagne with brussels sprouts & garlic bread

another meal made in bulk for lunches & dinners: super slow-cooked indian-spiced red lentils and roasted tomatoes, served here with garlic bread

another meal made in bulk for lunches & dinners: super slow-cooked indian-spiced red lentils and roasted tomatoes, served here with garlic bread

what i got from this weekend's vegan shopup we tabled at at mooshoes: vegan macarons & super gooey peanut butter cups

what i got from this weekend's vegan shopup we tabled at at mooshoes: vegan macarons & super gooey peanut butter cups

while in nyc we stopped at babycakes: chocolate chip cookie sandwich, pumpkin eclair, monster cookie, mint chocolate cupcake

while in nyc we stopped at babycakes: chocolate chip cookie sandwich, pumpkin eclair, monster cookie, mint chocolate cupcake

Daily Smoothie: Green Cantaloupe

daily smoothie: green cantaloupe

Cantaloupe is my favorite summer breakfast. I'd eat a whole half every day if I could afford it. I've been looking for a good way to use that other half, and a green smoothie sounded so perfect for it today. This smoothie is sweet and refreshing and so amazing for a hot day. 

A side note/tip that I've been loving lately: I love to freeze juices in ice cube trays in bulk at the peak of summer. I juice oranges, limes, lemons, strawberries, grapefruits, cranberries, blueberries, raspberries, cucumbers and way more and fill up those trays. That way when I make smoothies, I have pre-frozen (and already prepped!) ingredients that'll help make my drink cold & flavorful. Here I used those lemon, orange, and cucumber cubes. Try that out and see how you like it in your future drinks!

Serves 1

Ingredients

  • 1 cup shredded kale
  • 1/2 cup cubed cucumber
  • 2 cups cubed cantaloupe
  • 1/8-1/4 cup unsweetened rice milk (or other unsweetened non-dairy milk)
  • 1 tbsp strawberry jam
  • 1/2 a lemon, juiced
  • 1/2 an orange, juiced

Instructions

  1. Either chill or freeze all of the ingredients beforehand.
  2. To make a smoothie that won't hurt your blender, layer the ingredients in liquid first, then soft pieces, then harder pieces and greens on top.
  3. Blend everything until consistently smooth, then taste and add more of anything to taste. If you want it to be thinner, add in more milk; if you want it to be more earthy add more kale.
  4. Enjoy!

Kale & Orange Salad

kale & orange salad // hipsterfood

Let's talk about salad. Salad is all about texture & flavor (like most foods) and a lot of people have a skewed view of it. They start out with white iceburg lettuce mix and dump lots of ranch dressing on top, and feel unsatisfied when they (maybe) finish it. Like mushrooms, tofu, and many other foods that have been dragged through the mud, let's change our minds about salad.

Try to make the best possible salad you can without dressing, first. Mix in grains, nuts, seeds, green & colorful vegetables, and a little fruit, before you even start adding in greens. Make it colorful and flavorful. Treat it like you would any other meal, except this one is fresh and bright. Use dressings like you would perfume after putting on a gorgeous outfit & accessories.

Now, this isn't what you'd call a rainbow salad - it's extremely simple. And despite what you might've heard about kale salads, this absolutely my favorite recipe that uses kale. The tangy mustard dressing softens the kale, but still keeps it a little crunchy to contrast against the sweet orange segments. Breaking the kale up into small bits makes it so great to eat. It also only takes a few minutes to make, and can be stored in a mason jar for lunches for the next few days. Try this out for a new take on a classic kale salad.

kale & orange salad
kale & orange salad
kale & orange salad

Serves one hungry person or two as a side dish.

Ingredients

dressing

  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 1/8 cup vegenaise (vegan mayo)
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp liquid sweetener (maple syrup, agave, honee)

salad

  • 3-4 cups kale
  • two handfuls orange segments
  • 1/8 cup slivered almonds
  • salt & pepper

Instructions

  1. Whisk/fork together all of the dressing ingredients.
  2. Clean the kale and break it into bite-sized pieces. Toss in the dressing and put it on your plate.
  3. Break apart the orange(s), toss on the salad along with the almonds.
  4. Crack salt & pepper over top of the salad, to taste. Enjoy!
kale & orange salad // hipsterfood