Visitors from Sydney! What We Ate: Weekend Edition

Took a long weekend. Ate a lot of food. Kept rather busy. I photographed but a mere fraction of it.

My friends from Sydney introduced us to their super-happy 7-month-old vegan baby. Extra cute-splosions all weekend. Also, Fuji the 7kg cat.

Our housemate Angela made her amazing dumplings (from scratch! pastry and all!) and a salad from greens and herbs from our garden, my husband made Burmese-style mixed potato curry.

We went to Kuan Yin Teahouse and ate ALL THE THINGS. These were a few of our favourites (not including the tofu salad, which always gets eaten before it can be photographed in my experience).

Taro soymilk bubble tea, bento box salt & pepper faux-fish meal, noodles, purple yam spring rolls, sweet potato wedges in fluffy cinnamon batter that tasted exactly, freakishly like cinnamon donuts!

Mr Chuckles atop a rather excellent gecko statue pile.

Ms Moppet and a new friend playing on a rather cool jumping castle in a sandpit

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Exploring Cookbooks + A Book Giveaway!

I've been trying out more recipes from my extensive book collection - new and old. My breakfasts were getting dull, so I've upped the variety there... and at every meal!

Apple Pie Pancakes

I usually go with Banana & Brazil nut pancakes from Ani's Raw Food Essentials, but without access to a dehydrator and a hankering for something different, I found these marvellous cake-pie hybrids from Sarah Kramer's La Dolce Vegan! and put sliced banana and date syrup on top. Epic nom. They were rather huge and filling. Next time I'd make tiny pikelet-sized cakes.

Lemon Cranberry Poppyseed Muffins

Another recipe from Sarah Kramer's La Dolce Vegan!. I'm more of a raw/flourless cake fan, but I made these for a friend who had a birthday last week. He doesn't like chocolate, but likes orange and poppyseed cake, so I went with something similar, yet different! Lemon and cranberry is a great combination of flavours. The recipe only called for

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My Favourite Travelling Vegan Anthropologist

The second interview of the new My Favourite Vegan series is the first vegan I ever met: Nicole, who has been vegan for around 10 years now! In fact, I'm pretty sure I never even heard the word "vegan" until I stumbled across her Livejournal back in ye olden days when LJ was still sexily Russian-spam-free and cool...

I always admired vegetarians, and intended to go veg as soon as I could figure out how, and Nicole went a looooong way to helping me figure that out! Although I never really did until I went vegan. There were too many ethical compromises as a vegetarian, whereas veganism was consistent, healthier, and actually turned out to be easier...


Nicole has been travelling for many years, and currently resides in Canada! A long way from ye olde home...

Okay let's get this mofo on the road!!

How long have you been vegan?

Since February 2002! (And I went vegetarian before that

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Recipe: Tri-Dofu to Ninjin - Japanese Carrot, Tofu, Sesame Scramble/Salad

My sister-in-law from Japan likes to make us filthy vegan relations this very nommy-yet-simple dish when she visits Australia (along with natto sushi rolls - erk! But the kids - and my husband, har - love natto). She serves it as a cold salad with the carrots julienned. Grated carrot is quicker and great if you're cooking and serving warm, and is closer the the recipe in Japanese Cooking by Miyoko Nishimoto Schinner. In the (blurry - remind me to turn on the lights before I take pics of dinner! oops) photos below, you'll see some grated orange carrot, but also some julienned purple carrot I found at the produce market on the weekend. I served over a combo of quinoa and rice, with wilted sesame-dressed broccoli greens on the side.

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="400" caption="Blurry Tri-Dofu to Ninjin dinner."]Blurry dinner[/caption]

300g firm or hard tofu, cubed (small, 1cm) or crumbled 1 tablespoon cooking oil (optional) 400g
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Japanese Wakame Salad

This tasty salad is full of B-vitamins! Serve as a side salad, or just chow through the whole lot for a big, tasty hit of minerals & iodine - which is important for breastfeeding mamas. YUMMY. Apologies for the blurry picture. iPhones are slackers.

Wakame Salad

Serves 4

22g / ¾oz dried wakame (whole, cut, whatevs! 22g was half the packet) 1 cup carrot, shredded (or spiralised or julienne, if you like) 2 shallots, finely sliced 3 tbsp coriander (cilantro), finely chopped 3 tbsp mirin (sweet Japanese rice wine vinegar) 2-3 tbsp soy sauce (salt to your taste; use Japanese soy, not light) 1 tbsp sesame oil 1 banana/Hungarian chilli pepper, finely sliced (medium chilli) 1 tsp ginger, finely chopped ½ tsp garlic, de-veined & minced 2 tbsp sesame seeds (toasted or untoasted, as you like)
  1. Soak the dried wakame in warm water for around 5 minutes. Drain, rinse, then squeeze out the excess water. If using whole or large pieces of wakame
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