Hi everybody! I just uploaded a new YouTube video! Woohoo!
Vlog #3 essentially captures everything that I did and ate leading up to my one-year vegan anniversary, which was Friday, August 24th, the official day I became vegan and the start of not eating anymore animal products for good! Just to clarify, vegan anniversaries are a special commencement that vegans alike love to celebrate annually. The first day of being a vegan is very important to us because it marks such a wonderful life change!
This video really highlights the food and includes some bits and pieces of my potato face and awkward personality, so you can enjoy that too. Oh yes, and I’ll admit that lately I have been obsessed with Luis Fonsi’s music. No shame! 😉 I highly encourage you to watch the video, but if you want a more in-depth peek into my week, then keep scrolling down (fortunately for you all, there won’t be any cringey dancing involved)!
AUGUST 22ND 2017
Wednesday started off perfectly with two juicy nectarines and an incredible workout that followed this snack! I have been hooked on peaches and nectarines lately, and I will be devastated when they go out of season! I might miss them even more than figs, which says a LOT!
Post-workout munchies really started to kick in around four hours later and I wanted something really quick and easy. This meal took less than ten minutes to make! Everything is basically cooked edamame spaghetti that I sauteed with two LARGE handfuls of spinach, a bit of curry powder, and a splash of low sodium organic soy sauce! Even though this dish is really simple, it’s going to get its own recipe post because it’s insanely delicious! This kept me so satiated until I headed out to hang out with Cory (follow him on Instagram too!)!
Just HAD to sneak in another nectarine. Yep, I’m addicted.
Pomegranate was the main destination my dad dropped me off at so I could see my vegan Instagram pal Cory! Basically, Pomegranate is a completely plant-based cafe that serves deli and hot-bar items, as well as a small selection of desserts! Unfortunately, Cory and I were under the impression that Pomegranate was mainly a bakery, not a cafe, hence we were very underwhelmed with the array of desserts provided. However, we did not leave empty-handed–I bought this “sweet” chocolate cake that happens to be completely sugar free! WHAT?! Anyways, overall, had I known that this cafe serves more lunch-based items than desserts, I would probably have had a better experience. I will definitely come back to try more, but because we were disappointed with the small selection that day, we hopped in Cory’s vehicle and drove to an old favorite, Pressed Juicery.
On the way to Pressed, Cory and I tried some of the miso almond cookies that he bought from Pomegranate! This cookie was absolutely to die for–slightly salty and tangy from the miso, but sweet and mild with a nutty aftertaste as well. Definitely on the smaller side for a cookie, but it’s totally worth a try!
Looks like we were made to come to Pressed Juicery, because it had this amazing $1 deal for their smallest size (they only have two sizes: one is 4-6 ounces and the other is 8-10) that day! My first size 1 consisted of their vanilla freeze with strawberries and a little pink sea salt, which I paired with the sugar free chocolate cake!
Combination-wise? Oh. My. Goodness. The cake was really creamy and slightly firm from its different layers of goodness! It’s definitely richer than sweetener, so if you are sensitive to bitterness, this is not the cake for you. However, the sweetness from the dates in the vanilla freeze balances out the bitter chocolate in the cake, so do have the cake with something sweet!
Had a lot of fun topping everything off!
Ever tried leave-in-the-oven-and-go-do-something-else-while-it-bakes meals? Well, this is exactly what those meals are! Anyways, I roasted some organic firm tofu and heaps of Brussels sprouts at 450F for around forty minutes, and then paired everything with organic and low sugar sweet and sour sauce. This was absolutely to die for, even though this dish is incredibly simple! Problem is, the Brussels sprouts left quite a stench in the kitchen. Remember: roasted Brussels sprouts are parent-disapproved.
AUGUST 23RD, 2017
Farewell, nectarine. Hello, workout! As a quick pre-workout snack, I demolished the last nectarine in our fridge! As you can see, I’m absolutely obsessed with stone fruits. My workout went really well as always. I haven’t had a sucky workout in a long time, and I think having a little fruit or carby snack really helps! (Obviously, everyone works differently. You might need more or less food!)
Talk about EPICNESS here. I made this AMAZING chocolate cake made with oat flour and butternut squash! No egg substitute, oil, nor gluten necessary! But yes, the chocolate is necessary. Otherwise, it’s not a chocolate cake. 😉
To frost the cake, I used one packet of Nutiva chocolate plant protein with 30 superfoods! With an amazing nutritional profile, this protein tastes wonderful! It’s definitely not very sweet, so you will have to add some Stevia or any kind of sweetener to taste. Texture-wise, it’s in between creamy and downright grassy, so I would say it’s around average when weighing in for vegan protein. Not my favorite in terms of palatable-ness, but the ingredients and macronutrients are A+!
My protein was used in my two-ingredient chocolate protein frosting recipe that I’m obsessed with, and went on top of the cake along with some goji berries and Nature’s Path pumpkin flax granola, which I bought in bulk at Costco!
Stay tuned, because I will be creating the recipe in a separate post very soon! But this cake was incredible–I had NO complaints whatsoever. You bet I ate the entire cake too.
Kettle corn has to be my favorite kind of popcorn! After a few hours, my mother and sisters came back from Whole Foods and bought some Boom Chicka Pop! light kettle corn and finished the last of the bag as a midday snack. This treat was really crunchy, perfectly sweetened, and had just the right amount of saltiness!
Corn-flake cravings started to really kick in, hence I made a bowl of corn flakes but mixed in some of that same Nutiva chocolate superfoods protein blended in water and liquid Stevia! Even though this snack was so simple, I absolutely love the taste of it! Crunchy with a hint of chocolate goodness–YES. That’s all I can say.
Twisted things up around dinnertime when my mother decided to boil and chill some buckwheat soba, which I paired with nori, black and white sesame seeds, and some Japanese-style spinach (unpictured). If I had to pick a favorite type of grain (or seed?) based pasta, buckwheat soba would definitely win. But I have tried quinoa pasta before, and that is also absolutely delicious!
AUGUST 24TH 2017
While protein “mylk” with cereal is much more popular as a post-workout meal among fitness influencers, I actually whipped it up half an hour before exercising! This tasted as delicious as it did the previous day. Also, is it weird that I actually like cereal that’s slightly soggy? Of course, there has to be some crunchiness, but the softness in the majority of the flakes really appeal to my tastebuds! Call me crazy, but I love soft cereal!
Rarity of a beauty. This is basically how you would describe an Okinawan purple sweet potato. Even though I didn’t have enough time to steam or bake these sweet potatoes–I just microwaved them on high power–the texture and flavor were still perfect! Okinawan purple sweet potatoes have a very dense, brownie-like texture, while the flavor is relatively rich yet naturally sweet at the same time! Why do these bad boys have to be so expensive?!
Guess where I went to next. Go on. If you watch the video, you will know that I got dropped off at the one and only…PizzaRev! For DAYS, I had to fend off a pizza craving I couldn’t satisfy because I didn’t have my car to drive anywhere nearby to buy ingredients or order one for myself! Once I peeked at the menu, I decided to create my own masterpiece. I stuck with their signature thin crust, which was spread with spicy tomato sauce, green bell peppers, red onion, spinach, pickled jalapenos, cherry tomatoes, basil, garlic, mushrooms, vegan sausage, and cilantro! Yes, I felt like eating gluten today. Yes, this pizza was SUPER spicy. No, I regretted nothing.
Fun fact: a really nice man saw me trying to take a selfie with my pizza and offered to take a picture of me with it. Hence, photo credits towards him for this shot, which I absolutely adore! The positive encounter just made my day that much brighter!
During my trip at Target in the local shopping mall, I bought a whole box of Health Warrior dark chocolate chia bars to taste! Honestly, they are now one of my favorite flavors EVER. Think of a brownie with a chia seed base. The bar is rich, fudgy, decadent, crunchy from the chia seeds and dark chocolate chips, and scantly sweet. Chocolate peanut butter probably still ranks #1, but watch out, because dark chocolate is climbing to the top fiercely!
Tofu makes a glorious appearance once again, but in the form of a lovely tomato dish! This recipe was actually inspired by the tomato fried tofu I gobbled all up back in Vietnam when we visited some family. Instead of frying the tofu, my mother and I decided to keep it plain and tossed it in a puree of tomatoes, garlic, and onions! Even though the result looks more like a stew than a stir-fry, taste and appearance are both incredible. I might like this one even more!
Got the goods paired with spinach and a cup of brown rice. Yep. Carbs after dark is happening, folks.
Dessert actually turned out to be my middle sister’s leftover vanilla Pressed Freeze! I was so grateful that she allowed me to finish it all, because I am addicted to this stuff. Everything was garnished with goji berries and more pumpkin flax granola, and I took pictures while impatiently waiting for the freeze to thaw out.
Can’t end a perfect vegan anniversary without chocolate, right? Hence, I made some more protein frosting with Nutiva chocolate protein and corn flakes to have on the side! I wouldn’t say that this protein tastes like Nutella, but hey, it does the job. I went to bed, absolutely grateful of everything I’ve had and experienced this day. Happy One-Year to me!
Do you have a perfect week or weekend of eating? What would you celebrate more than once?