Monday, January 26

'I Need to Eat More Vegetables' Curry Recipe

You'd think that being vegan it would be easy to eat fruit and vegetables everyday. Well, it is, but sometimes nutrition does fall by the wayside and you realise with a shock that you have only eaten vegetables twice in the past week and you start checking your gums for signs of scurvy. Never fear, this curry will replenish your poor neglected body! Also, you don't have to wait until you're in the early stages of scurvy to make this, you could just, you know, make it because it's delicious.

Serves 4

2 tbsp coconut oil
2 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp ginger
2 onions, sliced
2 carrots, sliced
3 potatoes, cut into 2cm chunks
A large handful of green beans, cut in half
400g tin kidney beans
3/4 cup peas
400g tin chopped tomatoes
500ml water
1tsp salt
2 large handfuls of baby spinach leaves

1. In a large saucepan over medium heat, heat the oil, then add coriander, cumin, turmeric, and ginger and fry for 30 seconds. Next add onion and fry for 3-5 minutes, until softened.

2. Add potato, carrot, and green beans, and fry for 5-10 minutes (I usually do it until the spices start to stick to the bottom of the pot).

3. Add kidney beans and peas, and stir to coat. Next add tomatoes, water, and salt. Bring to the boil.

5. Add spinach and stir to combine well. Reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Then cover and simmer for a further 30 minutes.

Serve with rice.

Happy eating! :)

Peanut Butter Cookies Recipe

This recipe is one of my favourites and is slightly adapted from the one in Colleen Patrick-Goudreau's cookbook, The Joy of Vegan Baking. If you don't already have a copy, you should feel ashamed and quickly walk down to the bookshop and get one (or, more likely, click around to find the best price online). This book is fabulous, and so are these cookies.

1 3/4 cup plain flour
3/4 tsp bi-carb soda
3/4 tsp salt
Egg replacer made up to the equivalent of 1 egg (I use Ogran brand)
2 tbsp water
1 1/4 cups firmly packed brown sugar
3/4 cup smooth peanut butter
1/2 cup Nuttelex
3 tbsp soy milk
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup crushed peanuts

1. Preheat oven to 190 degrees C and line baking trays with baking paper. Trust me on the baking paper.

2. In a small bowl, combine flour, bi-carb, and salt.

3. Next, in a large bowl, combine brown sugar, peanut butter, soy milk, and vanilla extract using an electric hand mixer. Beat until well blended.

4. Add the egg replacer to the peanut butter mixture and beat until just combined. Next, add the flour mixture and peanuts and mix until just blended.

5. Drop rounded tablespoonfuls 5cm apart on the baking trays, and flatten slightly with a fork.

6. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until set and just beginning to brown. Leave to cool on tray for 3-5 minutes before removing to let cool on a wire rack.

Happy eating! :)

Sunday, January 25


This morning I started off my day in a beautiful way, with a two hour yoga and meditation session with beautiful people in the beautiful Adelaide Botanic Park. Thanks to the Adelaide Yoga Community and Breathe In Peace initiatives, these free sessions are run on the last Sunday of the month (for more details see the Adelaide Yoga Community Facebook page). Basically the aim is to create a collective consciousness and spreading of kindness, gratitude, and peace throughout the community and the world. It is also about nurturing kindness and gratitude within ourselves, towards our bodies, our rhythms, our lives, and creating inner peace.

Filled with this positive energy I came home feeling very calm and relaxed. I feel that an important part of establishing inner peace is surround ourselves with environments that create peace within us. For me, this means a clean and tidy environment, so I burnt some incense and straightened my house. I stripped the bed and put on my yellow quilt cover, because it makes me feel happy. Then I put on some classical music and baked some biscuits for an afternoon tea I was having with a friend (you can find the recipe here). Ahh the peace!

However, we are all different, I know that for a lot of people clean and tidy spaces make them feel anxious. This is ok, we are all unique and we all require unique energies. Something that we all have in common though, I think, is that all too often we find ourselves drawn to thinking about what isn't, instead of what is. I really enjoyed talking with my friend over afternoon tea, and something that was talked of a lot (and even visited) was the house she is building. It would be easy to fall victim to feelings of envy and self pity, but instead I only felt excitement and gratitude that this wonderful thing was happening to a most deserving friend. It is so liberating to experience positive vibes over negative ones, if only we all lived with more gratitude, respect, and love in our hearts.

It was at this point in my day that I was truly overwhelmed with gratitude. Things have been tough for a long time, but I recently confided in my mum that I have been skipping meals because I can't afford to buy enough food for a whole week. This afternoon, she showed up at my door with boxes of food that she had bought for me, as well as a posy of herbs and flowers to brighten my day.

Tears were shed. There are just no words to describe how thankful I am for the kindness and generosity of this woman and how much she has helped me over the years, but particularly over this past year.

Having so many options for dinner was slightly overwhelming, but I eventually decided to make a curry filled with HEAPS of vegetables, because vegetables have been scarily lacking in my diet of late, what with my diet mostly consisting of rice, toast, and breakfast cereal. Instead of eating in front of the computer like I usually do, I made dinner a special event, a special time for me to just spend time on me.

The curry was amazing, so delicious, colourful, and nourishing, and you can find the recipe hereUnfortunately I began to feel a bit ill while eating dinner, I'm not used to eating a normal amount of food or eating food of actual substance. But still, I was thankful that my body was finally receiving the nutrition it needed.

Part of embracing gratitude, love, and peace, is being kind to ourselves, and taking the time to nurture ourselves. So often we are caught up in the business of life that we overlook this. Stop and take a moment to truly love yourself. To acknowledge your amazing body and the way it keeps you alive and makes you who you are. Take that moment to respect yourself and thank yourself for being awesome. Then give yourself an internal self-hug (or, hell, an actual self-hug). You could even nurture your body and soul with a warm candle-lit bath and the best of Tchaikovsky, as I did.

'I just love this day I just feel that we're blessed' - DNA (from the song Life As It Is)

Happy living! :)

Tuesday, January 20

Growing and changing: less salad, more life

So I haven't posted in a while and the reason is that I was just too flat out doing other things and something had to give! I did my final student teaching placement, finished my university degree, loved and lost, and started my career as an actual qualified teacher (finally!).

Also, I wanted a little break because I wanted some time and space to think, and I have been thinking a lot. Because increasingly I was wanting to post about things that weren't necessarily about veganism, they were just about my own life and things that I was doing that I wanted to share. But this didn't really fit with the focus of 'So Do You Just, Like, Eat Salad?'

I feel that it is time for a direction change, and as as I said, this is something I have been mulling over for a long time. Over time, I have been growing and changing and the things I want to share have been moving beyond 'So You You Just, Like, Eat Salad?', and something else has been taking shape in my head. Something called Little Vegan Life.

Now don't fret lovers of 'So Do You Just, Like, Eat Salad?', because Salad will still be here in spirit! All of the yummy recipes, the food product reviews, the reporting on what I ate at various events, and the thoughts and ponderings will continue, there will just be more... other stuff! Also, all of the old posts are still here to rummage through. I've even kept the URL the same so that links to this blog on other sites will still work.

Things grow and change, people grow and change, ideas grow and change, that is nature and that is wonderful. Think of this as 'So Do You Just, Like, Eat Salad?' growing and changing, dying its hair, listening to different music and wearing different clothes, but still being the same blog underneath.

I am really excited to be sharing more of my little vegan life with you, and as always I would love for you to share your life and thoughts with me as well as we go. Here's to a new chapter!

Happy reading! :)