Hello! How are you? I’ve been MIA for a while, even though I promised not to drop off the blog space no matter what.
Well, here’s what happened: I ended up getting screwed over a bunch by a management company and got my keys September 12 even though I paid all September rent up-front. Then I moved in finally and got sick. Long story short there was a serious mold issue in the unit that the management refused to take care of and I proceeded to couch surf for about 5 weeks while in a legal battle trying to break my lease and move.
Eventually, everything settled. I lost some money, endured a TON of stress, and was reminded just how harsh and unforgiving renting in NYC can be. I had a lot of low points, tears, and was at times completely and utterly overwhelmed.
I know many people have it far worse than I did and face housing insecurity on a daily basis, but to me, figuring out where I was sleeping on a nightly basis, half-resting on couches through nights filled with tossing and turning, and trying to stay on top of my health, legal battles, and full-time grad program proved wearing.
The hardest part for me was that Millie was in Wisconsin for 9 weeks while I tried to resolve things. It was so so hard to be away from my rock. She is my joy and I really questioned if I truly wanted to do this. Honestly, I still do sometimes, but that’s another story.
On top of that, my mom’s health is really not in a good place, so I felt an additional layer of stress from that.
I have emerged from the whole situation a bit wiser and more wrinkled (from stress lol) but relocated to New Jersey (view from Jersey City above) to a mold-free apartment with my doggo back at my side and feel marginally better about life and much more appreciative of what I have.
I’m going back to a regular posting schedule now that I’m settled and have some projects on my horizon. I’ll spare you promises about frequency of posting since I failed you last time I did.
On a lighter note, I thought I’d share some eats lately. These are all random but hopefully may give you some mealtime and snack inspiration. Hope you enjoy!
Baked Pumpkin with Sea Salt
And a dash of cumin and cayenne pepper. I bought my first ever sugar pumpkin to make a pumpkin pie from scratch on Thanksgiving and ate the leftover cooked pumpkin which triggered a new appreciation of the fruit.
I feel like we (at least I personally) often forget that pumpkins are another squash you can eat. And now I feel like I should make up for lost time. So roasted pumpkin has been a thing lately.
To cook I just halved the pumpkin and roasted at 425 for about 45 minutes until it was soft.
Pumpkin Oatmeal Waffles
To make these I googled “pumpkin vegan waffles,” found this recipe, and replaced the flour with oat flour since that’s what I had (and also I love the texture and flavor of oat flour). Paired with pecans and real maple syrup.
Van Leeuwan Ice Cream
The best non-dairy. The above is “one scoop” peanut butter cherry bon bon and “one scoop” cookie crumble strawberry jam. I use quotes because each scoop was like 8 scoops.
So rich. Left me very very full lol.
Vegan Halo Top
Okay hear me out on this one. I have long disapproved if Halo Top’s marketing strategies and am a fan of eating full-fat full-sugar over artistical ‘light’ versions when a craving hits.
That said, I was curious when vegan Halo Top hit the shelves and bought a few under the impression that I would be reimbursed to review it for a Spoon post. The post fell through, but I ended up liking the Halo Top a whole lot more than I thought I would. Not as ice cream, but more as a substitute for cool whip, which is really more what it tastes and feels like to my palate.
I’m going to write a full review on them later today which I will link here when it’s finished. But yeah, I kinda dig it lol.
This brand sent some samples and HOLY yum. It’s like a chewy granola top muffin. My favorite flavors are almond coconut and cinnamon banana chip. DELISH plain, dipped in almond milk, or in yogurt. I’m obsessed. You can get them on Amazon and probably in some health food stores.
(Please note for strict vegans some flavors do contain honey).
What do vegans eat on Thanksgiving you ask? All of the sides, of course! I made two kinds of sweet potatoes, soy ginger glazed shishitto peppers, vegan stuffing (which turned it SO good), roasted delicata squash with pecans and pomegranate seeds, a green salad, rolls, baked tempeh, Lemon broccoli salad, and of course….
Pumpkin Pie from Scratch
Using a sugar pumpkin. I adapted this recipe and it turned out fab. I made half with regular crust for my mom and half with walnut-date crust for me, since regular pie crust does not and never has done anything for my taste buds and I much prefer other kinds of crusts, like graham, cookie, or nut crusts.
Muraski Sweet Potatoes
Anyone else love these purple-on-the-outside, white-on-the-inside potatoes from Tjs?! To me they taste like chestnuts and this potato gal can’t get enough.
Also I’m p sure they are the potato behind this emoji: 🍠🍠🍠🍠
Banana Bread Oatmeal Bites
I made these on Vegan Bites (which is back, btw! Now on Thursday nights) and they’ve been a good easy snack lately. Will post recipe later today/ this week.
Salted Chocolate PB Cup Brownies
Same caption as above lol.
Roasted with a drizzle of olive oil, maple syrup, salt and pepper and served with pecans and pomegranate perils.
That’s all for now but I will share more soon! Sorry for the CRAPPY quality phone pics. My phone is on it’s way out and barely works.
If you read this, I’d appreciate if you commented and said hello! And let me know what kind of content you like seeing (day in the life, recipes, nutrition/health).
Signing off for now; I’ve got recipes to post and homework to do. Missed y’all!! Now go eat something yummy for me. 🤗