I came. I blogged. I ate. I conquered…well, ok. Maybe I didn’t conquer. But 15 out of 20 Vegan MoFo posts ain’t too shabby. Not to mention that during MoFo I discovered so many new bloggers and was constantly inspired by other’s posts. These are just a few highlights from Vegan MoFo (and I really want to stress the word–few. I could probably fill a tome with the amount of vegan amazingness that I discovered this month).
So at first glance it seems that Vegan MoFo is really a month about food. But underneath it all, it’s really about the animals. The focus is on the food because usually that’s the only thing that stands between a person and a compassionate lifestyle. But we’ve shown and continue to show that good food doesn’t have to involve suffering or dominion over another being’s life.
I am vegan for the animals. If it’s possible to live my life without causing them harm or suffering, then I would be remiss not to. After all, we share the same planet. Breathe the same air and come from the same stars. We’re all just here trying to live our lives, day by day, doing our thing.
How was your Vegan MoFo?
*the photos corresponding to the recipes belong to the linked bloggers.
I was so thrilled when one of my all time favorite bloggers, Cadry from Cadry’s Kitchen asked to interview me for this year’s Vegan MoFo. I met Cadry (and her lovely husband, David) after her presentation at Vida Vegan Con this past May. She was so inspiring and her message of “being authentic” is something that I strive for every day in every facet of my life.
So of course, I immediately accepted the interview invitation momentarily forgetting that I am extremely camera-shy and mostly awkward when it comes to public speaking. But hey, awkward and weird..that’s authentically me. So hop on over to Cadry’s Kitchen by clickin’ on my mug if you wanna see the interview!
PS Thanks Cadry for being such an inspiration. And for giving me a cheat post for Vegan MoFo!
This year’s Vegan Month of Food (or Vegan MoFo) is officially here. If you don’t know what Vegan MoFo is, it’s basically vegan-food-blogging on crack. Bloggers all over the world commit to posting about vegan food at least 20 times in one month. TWENTY times!! If you’re a blogger, or anyone who has ever felt that there’s not enough time in a day, then you realize how intimidating this can be.
I wasn’t initially planning on participating but somehow I ended up on the official list. I have no theme. I have no plan. Unless flyin’ by the seat of my pants is considered a plan. I figure I’ll just do what I normally do but more of it. There. Plan done.
To start off my first EVER official Vegan MoFo post, I thought I would talk about one of my favorite recipes here at Luminous Vegans. One that I go back to all the time because it’s so tasty, easy and versatile…..cashew cheese!
I’m a big vegan cheese lush but I can’t afford to always have Daiya around. So I usually keep a batch of this savory cheese spread in the fridge to use throughout the week and it satisfies my cheesy cravings. It can be eaten alone, on bread, with veggies or in other dishes (like mashed cauliflower or stuffed shells).
It’s quick and easy to make and ready to eat right away. The only part that takes planning is remembering to soak the cashews before hand. It’s softer and more spread-y immediately after blending, but firms up some in the fridge. These pics were taken right after blending it.
2 cups soaked raw cashews, drained (A couple of hours or overnight soaking is best. But it works just as well if you soak it in hot water for 30 minutes and use a high speed blender. I use my Vitamix)
2 tbs nutritional yeast
2 tbs lemon juice
2 tbs almond milk
1 tsp tahini
1/2 tbs onion powder
1 tsp salt
Throw everything in a food processor or high-speed blender and blend until smooth. Store it in an air tight container for up to a week in the fridge.
We just got back from our little tour of the Pacific Northwest and I’m dying crying a little inside as I scan through my pictures. Oh Portland, how I miss you already!
There’s no way to capture this magical fantasy-land all at once so I’ll start with the main attraction, the Vida Vegan Conference 2013. Most of which took place in the Mark Building of the classy Portland Art Museum.
Right outside the art museum was a large span of green space where I could sit and chill with Abe while basking in the Portland sun (yes, the sun did come out!).
I could probably write a tome about all the wonderful talks that took place at Vida Vegan Con, but I’m just gonna highlight a few of my favorite tidbits. For a full play-by-play, visit Sews Before Bros.
To take vegan ethics beyond the plate, it’s good to seize intersectional opportunities. For example, the fire at the Bangladesh factory was a good way to introduce the idea of ethically sourced products.
There’s always something I can do better in my veganism. The point is to do the very best that I can.
Filter amazon searches for vegan cookbooks by “publication date” and request review copies in advance…who knew?!
Be authentic! There’s only one me who can tell my story in my voice. This tidbit came from Cadry from Cadry’s Kitchen who I got the pleasure of meeting. She is just as luminous in real life as she is on her blog and videos.
Do the things that bring me joy and my passion for these things will translate easily to readers. More words of wisdom from Cadry.
I gotta get Adobe lightroom, which surprisingly works with jpeg files, to post process my food photos. Susan Voisin from Fat Free Vegan Kitchen gave a real time lightroom demo and wowee! Her entire presentation on food photography is here.
Stop self editing myself while I write blog posts. That is what second and third edits are for. Free writing is where the magic happens. This advice came from none other than Isa Chandra Moskowitz herself in an intimate writing workshop.
In addition to the treasure trove of talks, I got to hobnob with other vegans like Kylie from Life of Kylie and of course stuff mah face silly with all the vegan foods. Everyday the exhibitors in the ballroom tempted me with their vegan eats. And I succumbed to the temptation. every. single. time.
Veggie Grill fed the VVC participants the first night of the conference with a kale salad marinated in their ginger-papaya vinaigrette, chickin’ wings and a chicken’ wrap served with ranch and buffalo wing sauce.
It was so tasty that Neal and I ate there later that night. He got the Chipotle BBQ burger and mac and cheese.
I had the Baja Fiesta salad which had papayas and was served with that delicious ginger-papaya vinaigratte.
Portland, I may not be able to live with you just yet, but the dream is still alive.
Oh hey. I’m just gonna be chillin’ at Vida Vegan Con (VVC) this weekend, no bigs. No, but seriously it is bigs!! Vegan blogging super stars everywhere! I don’t plan on blogging “live” for the rest of our trip, though I will be using instagram, twitter and facebook. Stay tuned for VVC/Portland/Seattle blog posts in the near future.
A few vegangrams of some of the vegan swag I got today:
Neal had to deliver some screen printed posters to a band in Athens, GA Saturday night, so I went with him and we ate at The Grit– an all vegetarian diner with vegan options.
I got the vegan Bahn Mi with wasabi mayo, pickled veggies and hoisin seared seitan,
while Neal got the deluxe grilled sandwich with grilled seitan, and sautéed onions, mushrooms and peppers. And we both got sweet potato fries.
We were stuffed but we couldn’t leave without dessert. We got the grasshopper cake (chocolate mint) and chocolate cake to go!
I was so pleased to receive an award from The Vegan Kat this weekend alongside some purty fabulous bloggers! So this is how this award works:
Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award
Visit and thank the blogger who nominated you.
Acknowledge that blogger on your blog and a link back.
Answer 10 questions given.
Nominate up to 12 bloggers for Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award, provide a link to their blogs in your post, and notify them on their blogs.
Copy and paste the award somewhere on your blog.
What is your favorite color? orange
Your favorite animal? hard to choose…I like all animals
Your favorite non-alcoholic drinks? tea! any kind of tea…I’m addicted!
Facebook or Twitter? going rogue here, instagram!
Your favorite pattern? stripes a la Jean Seberg in Breathless
Do you prefer getting or giving presents? giving
Your favorite number? 44
Your favorite day of the week? Any day I don’t have to go to work!
Your favorite flower? orchids
What is your passion? creating
This Saturday marks the third Virtual Vegan Potluck! I’ve participated since its inception by the amazing Ann over at An Unrefined Vegan. This year I intend to visit each and every blog which is going to be crazy because the list of participants is growing! In fact, enrollment goes through May 6.
I registered for the 2013 Vida Vegan Con in Portland along with my pal Rachel over at Former Fish Taco Fanatic. Never mind that nearly 10 pages of stuff came up on Google-places search when I looked for “vegan Portland”, I get to spend 3 days surrounded by cool vegan bloggers! I feel like Dorothy going to meet the Wizard of Oz. Based on old VVC posts from other vegan bloggers, it’s going to blow my mind.
I’m excited to get the chance to meet the masterminds behind some spectacular blogs. Bloggers that are all Mr. Miyagi, while I’m just Danny Larusso…I’ll wax on wax off all day if they’ll be my vegan blogger sensei. I just hope if I do get a chance to meet these talented ladies and gents, I don’t pull a Shy Ronnie.
video still courtesy of NBC.
There’s still time to register I think, so I hope to see you fabulous vegan bloggers there.
See you soon Portland. Only 301 days and 23 hours to go.