Due to the many wonderful responses regarding the hazelnut coffee (chickpea!) fudge
, I take it you guys like coffee. I have a quick post today for a decadent vegan coffee creamer that I've been enjoying this week. If you don't drink coffee, this also works in black tea, especially earl grey -it's a similar taste to a London Fog, if you've ever had one of those. Coffee, herbal "coffee,"
tea, whatever you poison, you can use this. It also makes a fantastic addition to iced coffee, if you prefer your coffee cold during these warmer months.
Since there's not much to talk about in the way of coffee creamers (or is there?), I thought I'd share with you some of the things I'm currently enamoured with in my kitchen and beyond.
I put these in smoothies, salads, soups... everything, really. They're a taste-free way to get more sea vegetables in your life. I use this as a source of iodine. It's also packed with iron, which I'm always searching for ways to get more of.
Salad for Dinner, by Jeanne Kelley:
I don't remember if I bought this book one year ago or two years ago, but it's become a staple in my kitchen. It's not aimed at summer salads only, but I find that I use it more in the spring and summer than I do in the winter months. The combinations are inspiring and fresh. I also love the layout of the book. It has something for every taste, and I like to mix and match her salad ideas. See all the post-it notes? I want it all!
I add a scoop of this vegan protein powder to my daily green smoothie. It's packed with greens, vitamins, minerals, probiotics, omega-3s, fibre, and antioxidants. Since I don't take a multivitamin, I use this as an "insurance policy," even though I'd like to think that I eat well-balanced most days... I enjoy the vanilla flavour because it's a more neutral taste for any smoothie I'm in the mood for. If I feel like chocolate, I just add some cocoa or cacao powder
. It's something that I really can't say enough good things about. I also have way more energy when I'm taking it. Score!
St. Francis Herb Farm Canadian Bitters:
This is a digestive bitters tincture. It has nasty-tasting things in it like dandelion and turmeric, but it's very helpful for my digestion, so I plug my nose and take it. Since I'm new at adjusting to life without a gallbladder, I'm finding that my digestion is a bit off. Anyways, these herbs help to stimulate bile production in the liver. I figured I'd give my liver a helping hand because it's working a bit harder these days.
Just a warning, herbs can be dangerous, so this is definitely not for everyone. Many herbs can have interactions with medications and/or health conditions. The A-Z Guide to Drug-Herb-Vitamin Interactions
is a good resource if your worried about complication -and so are your doctor and pharmacist, so always see them first. I clear everything with my GP, and I mean everything!
Bragg Nutritional Yeast:
You haven't lived until you've made a kale salad with the "cheesiest" nutritional yeast in all the world. Packed with B-vitamins, this is delicious and nutritious. It makes me sad that I lived a quarter of a century without nutritional yeast in my life. It pretty much makes everything better-tasting, and better for you. Win-win.
Yummy Sushi Pajamas from The Cat's Pajamas:
I am a HUGE fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer
, and in one of the episodes she wears her yummy sushi pajamas and
mentions that she's wearing her yummy sushi pajamas. I needed them, of course. These were a get-well gift from my dad after my surgery. And yes, I watch Buffy in my yummy sushi pajamas -that's how cool I am (not). Comic-Con
, here I come (nerd alert, nerd alert)! Oh, and I figured these were food-related, so I snuck them in the list.
So there you have it, from nutritional yeast, to designer pajamas, that's the stuff that's floating my boat.
Vegan Coffee Creamer
1/3 cup raw cashews or raw macadamia nuts or blanched almonds, soaked in water for a minimum of 4 hours, drained and rinsed
1 cup fresh water, room temperature
2 tbsp coconut oil, melted (optional, see notes)
1 tsp pure maple syrup
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/8 tsp sea salt Directions:
Place everything in a Blendtec or other high-speed blender, and puree until smooth (don't over-blend or you'll risk causing the coconut oil to separate). No straining required. Store in a covered jar in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 weeks. Shake gently before using. If you don't have a super high-speed blender, just make sure you strain it through a nut milk bag or fine sieve.
Use in hot coffee, iced coffee, herbal coffee (I like Teeccino for this), or black tea. You can also use this as pouring "cream" over crisps, crumbles, cakes, oatmeal, etc. Notes: 1. I tried making this without the coconut oil and it still worked out very well. If you leave it out, I recommend increasing the nut amount by 1 or 2 tbsp for added thickness.