Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Belated Easter Post

Our house has been a hub of activity over the last several days, and I'm only now getting around to posting about all of our delicious eats for the Easter holiday. But, before I get started, above you see pictured the lovely clay eggs that the girls and I painted. This project was a lot of fun. Much more so than dying hard boiled eggs. First we got to cook and shape the clay, then wait while they dried, and finally paint them. Plus, they'll make great decorations for years to come, and wonderful keepsakes for my girls when they get older. A fun Easter tradition, even for the non-vegans out there.

My in-laws are over from Ireland, and they spent the weekend with us. As many of you know, there's very little in the way of pre-made, pre-packaged vegan food, so this meant a lot of time in the kitchen for me. It was both fun and stressful, as I always get a little nervous about cooking for my non-veg family. Have any of you noticed that the tastes of vegetarians and non-vegetarians are quite different? Us veg-heads tend to love the "real" flavor of food, grains and tofu are fave's of vegetarians (and often snubbed by the omni's), and I don't know about you all, but I ADORE beans. So, I always find it difficult to come up with vegetarian meals to satisfy the tastes of the omnivores among us.

Our guests arrived on Saturday afternoon, so I needed to fix dinner for everyone on Saturday. Actually, I spent much of Saturday preparing things for that meal as well as for the rest of the weekend. For Saturday's dinner we had Fried Chick-un with mustard dipping sauce, Mashed Potatoes, Tantalizing Thai Slaw from Compassionate Cooks, and Vegan Cornbread. For dessert I made Dreena's Homestyle Chocolate Chip Cookies. I think the meal was a success. My in-laws really liked the "chicken", and the slaw was a great hit. One meal finished, one success under the belt!!

Sunday we had my vegan blueberry muffins for breakfast. It was quite chaotic here with 5 adults trying to shower for church, two kids going crazy over what the Easter Bunny brought, and egg hunting galore going on. I knew this would be the case, so I baked the muffins Saturday night, and breakfast was waiting for us on Sunday when we were ready.

Following church, my dad and step-mom also came to our house, as well as my brother-in-law, my sister-in-law, and my niece. For lunch we had Egg-less Egg Salad on whole wheat pita, Chipotle-Lime Two Bean Hummus with assorted chips and pita chips for dipping, and some crudites. Again, another success. I even fooled my dad, omnivore of omnivores, with the "egg" salad.

Following lunch my dad and step-mom left, and were replaced by my mother, stepfather, brother, grandmother and grandfather. So, I think for our evening meal we had a total of 12 adults and 3 children. Our dinner menu consisted of Chickpea Cutlets, grilled asparagus, Less Dressed Potato Salad,and The Dalai Mama's Mama's Baked Beans! There was also a fruit salad that my mother brought that was not vegan (it contained dairy and marshmallows), and a small ham for the omnis. For dessert I made the Pieless Apples A'la Mode from Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker. Below is a photo of my plate of yummy vegan goodness. Unfortunately by the time we got around to eating dessert I was too beat to go get the camera and take a picture, so I have no photo of that.

I made a huge batch of cutlets, and there were only 2 left. A sign of success I should think. My brother ate two of them, and skipped the ham!!! The baked beans were also great. To the ingredients listed by the Dalai Mama I also added a can of crushed pineapple. Yum!! I just finished them off for lunch today.

And finally, for breakfast Monday morning I made my Powerhouse Pancakes, and some Boca Sausages. Before departing, my father-in-law took us out for a nice lunch at California Pizza Kitchen, where I had the Grilled Vegetable Salad. And too tired to cook another thing, we had left-over cutlets, potato salad, baked beans and slaw for dinner last night.

All in all, a weekend of successful vegan cooking!! My mother-in-law even requested a few recipes. And there was a lot of reading and discussion of The China Study and Diet for a New America going on!!
***As a side note, we had some left-over Fried Chick-un, and we ate it cold dipped in the mustard sauce Sunday afternoon. That stuff is GOOD!! It's almost better cold than it is hot, it totally tastes like Chik-fil-A.***


Courtney said...

I must thank you for your blog! I've been reading for a while, I got a link off of mothering.com forums(or some roundabout way from mothering.com forums). We're vegetarians, but I've gotten some great ideas from reading your blog!

We tried the chickpea cutlets that you linked (though we've eaten ours 'chicken fried steak' style, with peppered gravy)and oh my goodness! So good!

I think we'll try the seitan fried chicken style as well.

Thanks for posting all these wonderful meals!

carrie said...

Courtney, thanks for commenting. I'm always so excited to have new readers. I'm glad I've inspired you!!

The seitan is out of this world. I use the White Wave Chicken Style Wheat Meat, and it's incredible!!

Jenny said...

Wow! All of that cooking, it all sounded so delicious! I can understand why you were nervous cooking for all of your omni family members. So many omni's snub their noses at certain foods. I think you are right that maybe our tastes are different. It sounds like you did a great job introducing them to many delicious vegan foods!

On another note, I still haven't tried the seitan yet, but your post has gotten me even more interested!

carrie said...

Jenny - The seitan is awesome, but I totally suggest buying the White Wave brand to start off, that way if you ever get brave enough to make your own you'll know what texture you are looking for.

keeta said...

OMG, you are the vegan cooking master! Way to cook for so many people (and omnis!) I would have been STRESSED. Nice work! And it all sounds delicious.