sunny vegan » food, photography, and fun

vegan caprese skewers

tofu heirloom tomato basil vegan caprese skewers

 

I love capreses. Caprese salad, caprese sandwich and the appetizer version. Unfortunately, I haven’t found a vegan mozzarella I love yet. But I wasn’t going to let that stop me from enjoying a caprese. Really, most of the flavor comes from the basil, tomato and balsamic so I skipped the fake cheese and used lightly flavored tofu instead.

So if you are looking for an easy, elegant and delicious appetizer, I highly recommend this one. Ella and I ate the whole plate full ourselves, so my only suggestion would be to make extras. lots of extras.

 

Ingredients:

1 pint heirloom cherry tomatoes
fresh basil
6 ounces tofu- organic extra firm
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoon olive oil- divided
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

toothpicks or small skewers

Method:

carefully slice tofu into 1/2 inch slices, then slice again creating small squares. place tofu in large bowl, drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil and then lemon juice. allow to stand for 20-30 minutes, occasionally tossing to coat evenly. slice tomatoes in half, roll a basil leaf and place on top. add a square of tofu and secure with toothpick. once plated, drizzle olive oil and balsamic over plate. serve immediately.

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the new ubokia marketplace

I have always been a fan of online shopping. I rarely step foot into retail stores anymore since I can search, compare and order everything any time I want to!
What if this online shopping were suddenly more interactive? as in, you could post what it is you are looking for and others can reply? Or maybe just browsing through certain items available in your target area and location. Now I know there are some other sites which allow people to post items for sale, but ubokia has one HUGE difference. Everyone on the site has been verified. They are who they say they are, cool huh!?!
Launching in November of 2011, ubokia has quickly grown into the “want-centric” shopping platform. Simply ask for what you want, and you shall receive. The best part, at least for me, is that it’s about connecting people to people, not just people to things for sale. The more people who join, the more things you can find. It’s internet based up-cycling and recycling at it’s best. I talk to my girls about the reduce, reuse, recycle concept almost daily. We do our best to pass things along to others who may be able to use them. Think of the ubokia marketplace as a great way to join in on a virtual garage sale potluck style and give your items a new life, keeping them out of the landfills.
So, maybe you have a some things you are ready to pass along, check out my new ubokia marketplace here, joining takes a few minutes and then you can browse thousands of items with me. You may be wondering how much it costs to list items, it’s nothing, not one cent! I seriously have quite a few things lying around that I don’t use as much anymore, I just need to decide what to list first.

 

I was compensated for this post.  All opinions expressed are my own.

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simply delicious detox salad

 

Detox.

It can be an intimidating concept, and what does it mean exactly? Do I stop eating all together, or eat certain things and avoid others, or only drink juice, or fast, or WHAT?

Detox and cleanse are often used interchangeably which also adds to the confusion. Lets break it down into the most simple of terms and concepts.
A detox or cleanse is meant to remove toxins and poisons from your body by only consuming pure whole foods.  From that basic concept come many variations, but a few things are constant through all of them and that is what we are going to look at.
* avoid processed foods
* avoid caffeine
* avoid alcohol
* avoid sugar
* avoid preservatives and artificial colors
* eat organic whenever possible
* drink plenty of water
* avoid dairy
* avoid wheat

and now for what to include:  I will add a full list on another page, but here are a few of the best items to include, also used in this salad.
broccoli – touted by many as one of the healthiest foods on the planet, it is rich in vitamin C, fiber and calcium. broccoli also helps to control liver enzymes aiding in liver detoxification.
lemons- high in vitamins C and A, potassium, calcium and amino acids.
garlic- provides vitamins C and B, selenium and manganese.  stimulates the immune system, removes toxins while providing antioxidants.
lentils and legumes- provide folate, protein, B6, magnesium, and fiber to cleanse the digestive tract.
leafy greens- such as spinach and romaine lettuce. romaine lettuce provides vitamins A and C, calcium and protein.

So wanting to detox doesn’t have to be a tortuous thing, stick to whole natural foods packed with nutrition to make your body strong and foods known to aid in the elimination of the bad stuff. Weather or not you believe all the detox hype, filling your body with beautiful, delicious and nutritious food surely isn’t a bad idea.

Ingredients: 2 servings

1 head romaine lettuce
1 cup broccoli- finely chopped
1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes – halved
1/2 cup dry lentils – prepare following package directions

dressing:

juice of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon aple cider vinegar
1/4 teaspoon diced garlic
3/4 – 1 cup olive oil
salt
pepper
1 tablespoon agave – optional

Method:

divide lettuce, broccoli and tomatoes onto 2 plates. top with cooked and cooled lentils. in a small jar or blender, combine dressing ingredients, top salad with dressing and serve immediately.

 

 

 

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strawberry and lime smoothie, a la sunny vegan

strawberry lime smoothie, vegan healthy and easy

 

It’s no secret I love strawberries.
It’s also no secret that I love limes.

So, yes YES yes, a strawberry and lime smoothie was only a matter of time. and yes YES yes, this is my new favorite!!

My girl is home sick today and getting fluids and nutrition into her is a top priority. Strawberries are loaded with vitamin c, fiber, antioxidants, but did you know that one serving of strawberries has more vitamin c than an orange? While limes are also full of vitamin c, they have the added benefit of a flavenoid called  flavonol glycosides which may help to fight cancer as well as have a natural antibiotic affect.
And to top all of that nutrition off, it’s a darn pretty drink!

Out of fresh berries? Frozen work just as well so you can enjoy this any time of the year.

Ingredients:    for 2 approximately 1 cup servings

2 cups fresh strawberries, cleaned and hulled
juice of 1 -2 limes   * adjust to taste*
1/2 cup vegan yogurt
3/4-1 cup vegan milk

 

Method:

place all ingredients in to blender and mix well. garnish with fresh lime and strawberry, serve immediately.

 

vegan strawberry lime smoothie recipe, easy and healthy

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Trust Your Eyes ~ a book review

Trust Your Eyes. Linwood Barclay. New York, New York: New American Library

 

I wish I had discovered Linwood Barclay year ago! Trust Your Eyes had me hooked with the first page, and that doesn’t happen very often.  Thomas Kilbride is a schizophrenic patient who is completely obsessed with maps. Specifically with Whirl360, a website  which allows you to walk the streets as with google earth. Thomas believes he has a special gift which the CIA needs. As the world will soon be under attack and all maps will gone, Thomas has memorized them all and can help them get anywhere the need. When his father and caretaker dies suddenly in a lawnmower accident, his brother Ray moves in and is forced to figure out what to do with him.  From the beginning, you are drawn to the brothers and their unusual circumstances.

So… I freaking LOVED this book! The unexpected twists, turns and shocking surprises make it impossible to put down. Just when I thought I had things figured out, Barclay interjects some new far-fetched, yet somehow completely believable, twist. I gasped out loud quite a few times with this book and I can’t wait to read more from Linwood Barclay.

Join us on the BlogHer book club page  to share your thoughts on this and other great reads.

 

This is a paid review for BlogHer Book Club but the opinions expressed are my own.

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