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Iron Chef Roundup – Mint

Iron Chef Roundup – Mint

It’s a small roundup this week, but as always, I am impressed! Mint isn’t something that I use a whole lot outside of chocolate pairings (and the several gallons of green mint tea I drink a week) so if I had done the challenge myself, I probably would’ve been stuck.

First we have Rolled Focaccia with Garlic and Herbs from Julia, one of the herbs being mint obviously. Perfect for those of us whose kitchens are too cold to be in unless we’re baking something!

Tiffany made Mint Tea Whole Wheat Couscous, which brings to mind some many nice adjectives. Like: fast, easy, pretty, delicious, and simple-yet-interesting.

And to fill that cookie-shaped hole in your heart, Danni gives us Chocolate Mint Cookies, which she based on a veganized recipe of her mom’s pinwheel cookies.

So you could put those three things together and pretty much have a complete meal. Or. OR. You could head on over and check out Cara’s entry because she made three minty dishes (Tabouleh inspired Bulgur Veggie Tower on a Bed of Mint Sauce, Mushroom Cannelloni on Bed of Lettuce and Garlicky Button Mushrooms, and Minty Pancakes with Chocolate and Strawberry Jam) and she doesn’t even like mint! Watch out, Morimorto.

Thanks for playing, guys! Next month’s ingredient has already been picked out, and I promise that it’ll be perfect for the cozy kinds of food we all need in January. See you January 13th!

Iron Chef Challenge for December

Iron Chef Challenge for December

Happy December everyone! A lot of people in the US are experiencing their first snow today, so it’s a good day to hit up the grocery store on your way home from work, and then hole up in the kitchen all weekend where you can bake and stay warm.

A quick review of our few simple rules/guidelines:

1. Whatever you come up with has to be new, nothing from a cookbook or a blog, not something you posted last week that happens to involve the secret ingredient. It’s fine to use a recipe for a jump-off point, but make it your own!
2. Entries are due at 3 pm CST on Sunday (but it takes me awhile to read all of the entries so if you’re a little late it’s no big).
3. Have fun and be creative!

And the secret ingredient is…


Now, if you have mint in your yard like I do (so, so much mint), you might think that this is more appropriate for spring when you can use fresh leaves. But maybe you still do have fresh available, and there are extracts and teas and just so many mediums of mint that can be used. And while this will be a great way for all of us to figure out some new holiday treats to make, don’t forget that mint can be savory too!

Allez Végétalien Cuisine!

Iron Chef Roundup – Breadcrumbs

Iron Chef Roundup – Breadcrumbs

The amount of entries for this was smaller than usual, but everything was impressive! Two people even turned other recipe failures into new meals for the challenge. Mark your calendars for the next challenge, which will be posted December 9th!

Zoa took a failed batch of seitan and turned it into Seitan-stuffed Tomatoes with Moroccan Spices.

Richa turned some leftover Chana Masala into these cute little Baked Potato Tikkis.

Cara took her favorite elements of a popular Georgian recipe and turned it into Breaded Nutty Tofu Balls en croûte and Nutty Breaded Eggplant Slices with Walnut Parsley Cream Sauce.

Danni made a pantry-friendly bean loaf, and included recipes for Cauli-tatoes and a Butternut Squash cake!

Corrina went old school with Butternut Squash Tofu Balls, that are based on a Dreena Burton recipe that I love! Tofu balls forever.

I love it when people aren’t too proud to talk about their baking/cooking failures, I think it’s educational. I love it even more when they are able to turn their failures into something new, waste not and all that. If you feel the same way, you’ll enjoy this epic tale of Tiffany’s Autumn Fruit Strudel Rolls.

Cadry made Cashew-Cheese Stuffed Jalapeno Poppers, I can practically taste the combination of cashews and miso in the filling.

Kristen made Panko-Encrusted Ginger-Wasabi Brownies, which she says is ‘not very original’, but I say: whaaaaaaaaaat?!

Iron Chef Challenge for November

Iron Chef Challenge for November

Hey hey!  Did you enjoy your two week break for blogging and cooking like mad people?  I know I did!  I got so many episodes of Teen Mom and Supernatural watched.  It was nice.  This month’s challenge was Isa’s idea, so you can thank her (or blame her if you hate it).  In case you missed the tweet, the second Friday of every month will be the Iron Chef weekend here on MoFo.

A quick review of our few simple rules/guidelines:

1. Whatever you come up with has to be new, nothing from a cookbook or a blog, not something you posted last week that happens to involve the secret ingredient. It’s fine to use a recipe for a jump-off point, but make it your own!
2. Entries are due at 5 pm CST on Sunday (but it takes me awhile to read all of the entries so if you’re a little late it’s no big).  Note, i’m extending the deadline a little bit since i’m posting this later than I usually like to.
3. Have fun and be creative!

And the secret ingredient is…


It doesn’t matter if you’re coating something with them or binding something with them, if you use a wheat bread or a gluten-free bread.  Maybe even crumbs made from carrot or banana bread?  Since the US Thanksgiving is coming up, and some of us will be stuck with a few extra rolls or half a banana bread (does anyone else have a family where everyone shows up with an unannounced dessert or is that just me?).  I think this will be a great way to compile recipes for using up those leftovers.

Allez Végétalien Cuisine!

Happy World Vegan Day!

Happy World Vegan Day!

A lot of people have said that they don’t want MoFo to end…so you will be pleased to know that we are going to keep the blog going all year now! We haven’t worked out all of the details/schedules yet, but we should have a few posts a week comprising of round-ups, blogger features, and giveaways.

Since today is World Vegan Day, and i’ve seen how much effort so many people put into MoFo, I think we should all treat ourselves! The best way to treat yourself today is obviously to support vegan businesses!

If you’re in the US, go over to Cosmo’s (Georgia), Food Fight (Oregon), Vegan Essentials (Wisconsin) or Pangea (Maryland) and get yourself darn near anything, from chocolate to vitamins to clothing to stickers. The easiest way to pick a store is to pick the one closest to you, which is easy since they’re all over the country. In the UK, try Vegan Store. Australia, The Cruelty Free Shop. Canada, Boutique Viva Vegan or Karmavore.

If you want vegan beauty items, check out Vegan Beauty Market, no guesswork or reading labels because everything is vegan!
And here are some favorite items that I dug up today!

I found these adorable reusable sandwich bags via Vegan Etsy, they are so cute and useful! The Johnson Family Zoo also sells reusable produce bags and a few things for babies too.

Herbivore has two new shirts that are super-stylish and long sleeved, which is important because it’s getting cold. I love the cut of the Wings shirt, and the Kale thermal is unisexy!

It’s No-Shave November, which for me means that I will spend the month watching my husband’s beard get ridiculous and wild. If you or someone you know has wild facial hair that needs to be tamed, get some vegan mustache wax!

Christy has been making and selling her adorable handstamped necklaces for awhile, but they are still perfect for a pretty, subtle, animal-friendly message.

For a cozy accessory, check out Treewool Knits, all handmade and vegan knitwear! A lot of stuff is on sale too, I personally like this Afternoon Tea Cowl.

Now go out and buy yourself something nice! What did you do today to celebrate World Vegan Day?

Iron Chef #4 Roundup: Carrots and Oats

Iron Chef #4 Roundup: Carrots and Oats

Here in the states, pretty much everyone is dealing with being cold/snowed on/wet, so this cozy roundup is a perfect read for your Sunday evening! Not only do we have lots of warm, inviting foods, but the carrots make for some bright dishes to help fight the gloomy feelings you might be having.

As if you need another reason to bake cinnamon rolls, Danni came up with these Sweet Surprise Cinnamon Rolls…the surprise being that they’re full of carrots and oats!

Cara made a burger and carrot fries, both the burger and the buns both contain carrots and oats as well!

If you want something quick, light, and drinkable, go over to My Munchable Musings and try this Carrot Oat Shake.

Latkes are another food that I think you can never have too many variations on, so I was happy to see Farrah made Curry Carrot Oat Latkes!

Savannah made a 3 Layer Carrot Coconut Crumble, which not only looks delicious but sneaks another vegetable in!

Zoa used the Magical Loaf Studio as a jumping-off point to create Carrot-Oatmeal Balls.

Kristen made cute little Carrot & Chickpea Sliders with pesto mayo.

The recipe name really speaks for itself: Choc-Carrot-Chai Spice Pudding Pie With Oat-Carrot Cookie Crust by Munchin’ Mochi!

JL is bummed because of the snow on her porch, luckily she has this Oat, Amaranth & Carrot Porridge to keep her warm, made in a rice cooker for a ‘set it and forget it’ meal.

Mandy made these beautiful Carrot Curry Puffs, and I agree that everything is better wrapped in puff pasty.

Missy was absent for pretty much all of MoFo due to computer problems, but she makes up for it with this Carrot Crisp.

I try not to play obvious favorites, but this recipe for Carrot Furikake Granola Clusters is interesting and pretty! A savory granola, that has with Japanese flavors by Tiffany.

Rachel made homemade Carrot Cake Larabars, using raisins instead of dates which makes them even more affordable to make.

Over at The Crabby Crafter, not only do we get a recipe for Carrot Cake Waffles, but a lesson on how to tweak the recipe to make baby food!

Ali made Spiced Carrot-Pumpkin 3-Grain-ola that utilizes popped amaranth, something I had never heard of (insert ‘The More You Know’ rainbow here)!

Annie decided to really go all Iron Chef and make three dishes: Meatless Loaf, Mixed Grain Mushroom Pilaf with Glazed Vegetables and Oatmeal Carrot Cake Ice Cream Sandwiches. Impressive!

Kelly lives up to her book/blog name with Carrot Cake Oatmeal Cream Pies. Daaaaaaaaaaang.

Jackie also made waffles, but these are gluten-free and topped with a pretty red grape compote!

Gigi made a short video, a song, and Tropical Voopee Pies!

And finally, Kelly did double duty with savory Quick Oat & Veggie Pancakes for her and Cinnamon Cranberry Carrot Oatmeal for her dog, after Kaylee had some teeth pulled. What a lucky dog! For getting oatmeal, not for having teeth pulled and surgery.

Thanks so much to everyone who participated, and for those of you asking about challenges continuing throughout the year…you might see us again soon. Wink.

Go Max Go Giveaway

Go Max Go Giveaway

Winners! You will be emailed soon.

Thom, “I [cuss]ing love the Go Max! TWILIGHT bar. I would [cuss] a [cuss] for one right now, no lie!” (editing is theirs)
Dalila, “I just realized I haven’t had a candy bar since I went vegan! It’s been over two months, no wonder I’m craving some chocolatey and peanut buttery goodness. I have a feeling Cleo’s is right up my alley!”
Mandiee, “My favorite pre-vegan candy bar was crunch. I still loved puffed rice and chocolate to this day!”
choirqueer, “I think the Mahalo was the one I tried, and it was so good! I would love to try them all.”

I have been a chocolate girl my whole life – sometimes in grade school, I would turn down fruity candy from the teacher because I wasn’t that into it. And as much as I love a nice dark chocolate, sometimes I really just want a candy bar, full of nuts and caramel. But not only are standard candy bars not vegan, but they’re just not very good! So it’s a good thing Go Max Go came along to fill that nougat shaped hole in our hearts, right? Their original line had a version of four very popular candy bars, and they’ve recently added a crisped rice bar and peanut butter cups.

Not only is it great to have vegan candy bars to munch on, but you can put them in desserts to easily elevate them to delicious new heights. Have you ever seen Celine’s Jokerz cheesecake?

The fine folks over at Go Max Go are offering to send four lucky winners one of each flavor of their bars – that’s six bars per winner, two fistfuls of chocolatey goodness!

All you have to do is leave a comment here, telling us what your favorite kind of candy bar is (if you’ve never had a Go Max Go bar, you can tell us your favorite pre-vegan candy bar. US only, four winners will be chosen at random tomorrow morning around 10 am CST.

Iron Chef Challenge #4

Iron Chef Challenge #4

It’s the last Iron Chef Challenge of MoFo, are you guys pumped? If not, go listen to Eye of the Tiger and then come back to make sure you’re in the right frame of mind. We’re going for a combo again!

A quick review of our few simple rules/guidelines:

1. Whatever you come up with has to be new, nothing from a cookbook or a blog, not something you posted last week that happens to involve the secret ingredient. It’s fine to use a recipe for a jump-off point, but make it your own!
2. Entries are due at 3 pm CST on Sunday (but it takes me awhile to read all of the entries so if you’re a little late it’s no big).
3. Have fun and be creative!

And the secret ingredients are…


Carrots paired with oats still isn’t too difficult, but hopefully I will not be doing an Iron Chef Carrot Muffin Round-up on Sunday! Both ingredients are so easy to make either sweet or savory, so you can really do almost anything. Put on your thinking caps and bring it!

Allez Végétalien Cuisine!

You say it’s your birthday…

You say it’s your birthday…

…it is f’reals my birthday too, yeah! When round-up days were being passed out, I only took today because I knew exactly what my subject would be, the only thing that matters. I have been bookmarking pretty pictures of cakes all month long, and here are some of the best!

Kelly has been posting fabulous looking baked things all month long, but as soon as I saw this unicorn cake, I knew this was going in my round-up! Kittycakes was a close second.

Not only did Bianca have one of the most awesome vegan bakers in the country make her TWO birthday cakes this year, but one was a surprise gay cake!

Vegan cupcakes are still taking over the world, hopefully these double chocolate mint cupcakes will realize that the world is in my stomach, and get in there toot sweet.

Maybe it’s because i’m such an adult, but peanut butter and jelly ANYTHING will send me flying towards the food in question at a million miles per hour…which is why there is now a dent in my computer screen.

Would you like to join me in seething jealousy that Lindsay lives in a place where she can get a beautiful slice of raspberry cake with her lunch?

For something different from the standard wheat-cake/buttercream combo, this couscous cake with pomegranates is so pretty!

I really want to emphasize that Kristen did not buy this shoe cake from a bakery, she MADE it. And as far as I can tell, she is not a cake decorator by trade.

And finally, because once again I am a grown-up, I really really wish someone would adopt me and make me Hello Kitty cakes for my birthday every single year.

Happy birthday to some of our MoFoers this month: Bianca, Sarah, Savannah, Carrie, and Kelly! If you were an October baby, feel free to add yourself to the list via the comments!

Upton’s t-shirt giveaway!

Upton’s t-shirt giveaway!

And our soon to be much more stylish winners are:

Benjamin, “This southern boy misses his biscuits and gravy, so the Italian style sounds perfect to me!”
Ricky Blue, “I live in Chicago so I get the wraps for lunch at one of the Lakeview Whole Foods locations at least once a week. I love those wraps. I wish they had them everywhere.”
Candace, with this epic tale, “::Setting the scene:: I was broke, I was young and a new vegetarian. What a set up for disaster. I wasn’t eating properly and didn’t know how to get a balanced meal with the foods I was supplied with. I started trying every meat substitute known to man in order to try and curve my cravings for something substantial…morningstar this.. gardein that… With many successes and failures I started getting staple ingredients to begin creating a normal eating routine and getting the adequate nutritions a vegetarian needs. I was out shopping getting my normal fresh produce, already being stocked up on frozen meat substitutes, when this little 1920’s man with a lovely mustache was staring at me. “No Candace, you don’t need anymore food,” I told myself. “But..look at that it recycled material?” My can’t-stop-won’t-stop-$11.71-account-balance self counteracted. The yellow label of the ground-beef style seitan accenting the delicious contents inside were inviting. As I stood in the aisle handling the package reading all the labels, all the ingredients, I saw my hand slowly lowering into my tiny basket filled with greens. The rest is history…”

I will email you all right now!

Upton’s Naturals has two things that make it a unique and awesome vegan company:

1. They have the coolest packaging/gimmick. Who doesn’t love mustaches?

2. They make pre-packaged seitan that is DELICIOUS.

The first time my husband spotted Upton’s in the health food store, he stopped and got really excited about seitan chorizo (and mustache packaging). Now, if you’ve tried pre-packaged seitan before you can understand why my response was, “Ugh, I can MAKE that.” Brian’s reply was narrow eyes and package clutching until I agreed that he could try it. It was love at first bite! Not only is the chorizo really good, but I quickly realized that we had finally found a replacement for Morningstar crumbles (no longer vegan) for taco nights. Now, if we don’t have some kind of Upton’s in the fridge, Brian gets cranky. We also really like the italian style for biscuits and gravy.

Not only is Upton’s tasty, but they don’t use a ton of weird ingredients, it’s just straight up seitan with spices, like you would make at home. But conveniently flavored and ground for you!

Upton’s doesn’t have free product coupons yet, so they offered to clothe three vegans with their awesome t-shirts, featuring the Upton’s logo! They are unisex Gildan shirts, sizing chart here. You pick the size so don’t worry about getting stuck with a shirt that is 18 sizes too big or small!

To enter to win, comment here and tell us which Upton’s product you like to use and for what, if you haven’t tried their products tell us what you would if you could. US only, I will pick three random winners on Friday morning.