…still baking…

I have a couple friends, and this probably goes for a lot of people out there, who think that getting broken hearted is just part of the cycle of love and they would rather have loved and lost than not to have loved at all.

I suppose it would be responsible for me to encourage this kind of thinking, but frankly I don’t believe it. At least it doesn’t work for me.

For me, the broken hearts hurt so bad I don’t want the love anymore.

I guess I should halt all this right now and make sure that everyone knows I am a 37 year old woman. Sometimes I re-read my writing and get a little twinge – the twinge that I get when I read heartbroken posts from 18 year old girls. They are in such pain, but I know the pain will go and they will find peace and happiness again – because they are young. Well, I can’t be fit into that category. I have enough “wisdom” by now to know what’s what and who I am.

Anyway, for a few months I have seen flyers on light polls advertising hypnotherapy. I started wondering if I could get hypnotized not to need love. I’m supposing it is possible, but that ethically a hypnotherapist would never do it. It’s probably extremely unethical… and yet  for some of us it would do a world of good.

Now on t the sweet stuff. Baking away. And I LOVE cookies. So of course when Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar finally came to my end of the world I hungrily snatched it up.

There are so many to try (although a lot would probably make me gag. I was never a fan of Pepperidge Farms and that sort of “middle class” lacking – flavour – cookie. And off topic even more – why perpetuate the “Lazy Samoa” racist cookie name? Even the Girl Scouts have at least officially taken the “lazy” part out.) Where to start?

I’ve made three so far: key lime shortbread, Mexican chocolate snickerdoodles and peanut butter blondies. I’ve loved blondies ever since I moved to Toronto. I have this vague memory of a blondie that use to knock my socks off -but I can’t remember what it was. It could have been Glenny’s – but I know their blondies are no longer vegan.

I definitely wasn’t disappointed with the peanut butter added to the blondies. The richness goes through the roof.  For the key lime shortbread I used my authentic key lime juice I got in Key West (although it disturbs me to no end wondering if it really came from Florida or somewhere else!) – tangy little suckers they are!


Peanut Butter Blondies and Mexican Chocolate Snickerdoodles

Key Lime Shortbread Rounds

1/2 c vegetable shortening

1/3 c margarine

1 c plus 2 tb powdered sugar, sifted (aka icing sugar)

1/4 c lime juice

1/2 tsp vanilla

2 rounded teaspoons finely grated lime zest (about 2 limes)

2 c all purpose flour

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1. In a large bowl use electric beaters and cream together the shortening and margarine until fluffy. Beat in powdered sugar. Add lime juice, vanilla, zest and beat about 30 seconds to mix, scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally.

2. In a medium bow, sift together the flour, baking soda and salt. Add half of this to the other bowl and beat to moisten. Add remaining flour and beat about 1 minute until soft ball of dough forms.

3. Divide the dough in half and place each half on a separate large sheet of wax paper. Roll each into a 7 to 8 inch long by 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 inch thick log. Wrap each tightly in wax paper and chill for about an hour until very firm.

4. Preheat oven to 350. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. With a sharp thin knife cut the logs into 1/2 inch slices. Place on baking sheet 1/2 inch between each cookie. Bake 10 to 12 min until slightly puffed and edges are turning golden. Cool for 5 min before transferring to rack to cool completely.

Broken Heart Vegan Tip #17: Be honest. Just be honest.

Broken Heart Song #17

November 1, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , . dessert. 3 comments.

Baking the Blues Away

There’s nothing like the smell of cinnamon or chocolate coming from your kitchen. It’s especially useful if you are suffering from a broken heart. You’re feeling useless and pitiful but you have the strength to be amazing despite your blues! Get out your favourite vegan baking book and go buy the best baking ingredients you can find. If you live in Toronto I recommend Panacea Eco Shop. Organic and fair trade ingredients galore. And it’s Toronto’s only all vegan grocery store!

Here’s two recipes to get you started.

Cinnamon Chocolate Sour Creem Cake

Yield: 10 – 12-inch bundt pan

This cake is really nice. The cinnamon adds a little surprise to people just expecting regular chocolate cake.

Sour Creem:

1 cup firm silken tofu

1/4 cup lemon juice

1/4 cup oil

dash of salt

Cake:

1/2 cup margarine

1/2 cup oil

2 cups sugar

1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons ground flax mixed with 1 cup water

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 3/4 cups flour

1/2 cup cocoa

3 teaspoons cinnamon

1. Preheat oven to 325 F. Grease a 10” or 12” tube (bundt) pan.

2. In a large bowl cream the margarine, oil and sugar until fluffy. Add the flax/water mixture and vanilla, mixing well.

3. In another large bowl sift and mix the dry ingredients.

4. Add the dry mix to the wet bowl, alternately with the sour creem and beating after each addition.

5. Pour into pan and bake approximately 1 hour and 5 minutes. Cool for about 15 minutes in the pan, then turn out onto a wrack for cooling completely.

Next is something savory, because you shouldn’t eat too much sugar when you have a broken heart. This is a healthy yet really scrumptious and feel good way to get some protein and veggies:

Broccoli, Ham and Cheeze Buns

1 pack yeast

1 c warm water

1/4 c sugar

1 tsp salt

3 c all purpose flour (sift before measure)

1/4 c olive or sunflower oil

1 c steamed broccoli pieces

1/2 c daiya or other cheeze

1/2 c soy ham pieces, fried

1. Dissolve yeast in warm water with sugar and salt.

2.  Add oil and half of the flour. Beat until very smooth

3. Add remaining flour to mixture and blend well.

4. Add the broccoli, cheeze and soy ham.

5. Let dough rise in a greased bowl, with a damp towel on top. Rise until about double in bulk, about 30 min.

6. Drop dough into greased muffin tins, filling each half way. Let rise again for 30 min. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

7. Bake for 15 min.

Broccoli, Ham, Cheeze Dough

Just make sure you choose a bigger bowl to fit your dough that I did. OOPS! I was making a crap load for anti-G20 eaters… so that’s my excuse. 🙂

Broken Heart Vegan Tip #16: Write your thoughts down, diary style. You don’t ever need to show anyone if you don’t want. It’ll help get your emotions out, if you are the kind that tends to hide them, and it’ll help you figure things out, if you are confused. You can look back months later and gather info that will make you get a better idea of who you are, or just look at your emotional progress.

Broken Heart Song #16 (This one is for all those who read the last post and wish I had written about girls breaking hearts)

September 25, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , . snax. 3 comments.

Creamy Brown Goop

Is it weird that I had a craving for a recipe from my first book  that was written by my ex’s mom?

Yeah Probably. But I really do love pudding and I love rice pudding with lots of cinnamon.

So I made some and garnished with FRESH DATES! I didn’t even know you could get fresh dates in Toronto. I am also ashamed to admit I wasn’t even sure if there was a thing as edible fresh dates ;P But when I went to the farmers market in my neighborhood and saw an interesting package of sort of expensive dates from Iran I thought  “Well I need to try this”. When I got them home I noticed they were not DRIED. And suddenly everything made sense. All those raw desserts I was making using dried dates, that didn’t quite turn out the way they should… I was using the wrong thing!

Fresh dates, by the way, are really really good.

and, er, I guess so are Fresh Dates too… but I’m too broken hearted at this moment 😦

Slow cooked rice pudding and creamy fresh dates.

Creamy Rice Pudding

1/2 c short grain rice (sweet brown stikky rice is great)

1 c boiling water

1/3 c sugar

1 tsp cornstarch

pinch salt

5 c soymilk

1 tb cinnamon

1/4 c raisins (optional. I would never put them in)

1 tsp vanilla

1. Put rice and boiling water in a large pot. Bring to boil and simmer 15 min (or less. Do not let rice soak up all the water as it will stick and burn!)

2. Combine sugar, cornstarch  and salt. Whisk in a cup of soymilk.

3. Add sugar mixture and remaining milk to pot. Add cinnamon and raisins, if using (gross. why?) Bring to a boil.

4. Cover and reduce heat until barely simmering. Cook for 1 1/2 – 2 hours, stirring occasionally.

5. Stir in vanilla.

Broken Heart Vegan Tip #4:I haven’t figured out the universe yet. I don’t really know what “exists” and what doesn’t. But I do believe this – everything happens for a reason. The reason might not be apparent as soon as bad things happen. But look back a few months, a year, a decade and you’ll probably either say “Wow. Glad that happened.” or “Gosh. I did ok in that situation. It really gave me confidence to do something I didn’t think I could.” or “Geez. I really was super jerk. I’m going to make sure this doesn’t happen ever again.”

Broken Heart Song #4 (Billie Holiday is the obvious version choice, but sometimes, as hard as it might be, you have to step outside yourself Ms./Mr. Broken Hearted. Louis’ version is more light hearted. There’s some hope in it…)

May 13, 2010. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , . dessert, snax. Leave a comment.