This blog is a celebration of the wonderful world of vegan cooking. Enjoy!

* The title of this blog refutes the dangerous idea that veganism is a weight-loss diet and that all vegans are skinny. Conversely, being a-not-so-skinny-vegan is also not the same as being overweight or unhealthy. All food intake must be part of a balanced lifestyle.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Broken vegan

If any one of my four readers is wondering why I haven't posted many recipes lately it is because I fell down some stairs in my garden and fractured a bone in my ankle. I also tore a bunch of stuff around my ankle that should generally stay untorn. As a result I've been working from home and when one works from home one tends to spend a lot of what would normally be "home time" doing work. I also can't walk so can only get around on crutches. Of course when I'm at home I spin around the place on my computer chair but have so far ended up with more food on the floor while trying to cook than in my tummy so the cooking has slowed down. I did try to make a Chai and berry muffin that failed terribly. I will adjust and try again soon.

On a brighter note I did get four cookbooks from my parents for my birthday yesterday (this, this, this and this) and another off some lovely friends (thanks Stevo, Gypsy and Kate!). Also, Chris bought me Jonathan Safran Foer's Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close: A Novel. Apparently the main character is a vegan. Foer himself is vegetarian. So I look forward to some new vegan adventures and recipes!

A very happy vegan Pie-Tart to you!

Yesterday was my birthday and, as always, I celebrated at A Night in India in Toowong. But this time there was a little surprise! My very good friends Suzi and Mezz decided to make me a vegan cake. Only it was a pie. Tart. Pie-tart. Whatever it was it was very thoughtful and actually quite tasty! I will ask for the recipe and try to bake it myself and share with you all.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009


A reader recently pointed out the error of my silk-wearing ways and I wanted to post some links to the reasons why vegans choose not to wear most silks and some options that still allow silk.

Reasons why we should not wear standard silk:
PETA's information
True Up
The Vegalitarian Society

Some nice guys who make cruelty-free (peace) silk (although I'm still a bit fuzzy as to whether it is strictly vegan or not):
Aurora Silk



I love Aveda's products. They smell absolutely wonderful and are mostly made of plant materials. Here's a list of the non-vegan products; so you know what to avoid.

lip gloss MINUS LANOLIN / discontinued
Brilliant Lip Shine
Lip Saver SPF15
Pure-Fume Candles
onecolor PLUS TWO
lip sheer PLUS FRESH ESSENCE / discontinued
lip liner PLUS URUKU / discontinued
mascara PLUS ROSE
lip satin PLUS URUKU / discontinued
lip sheer PLUS URUKU / discontinued
Uruku Lip Pigment
Lip Color Concentrate
Lip Color Sheer
Fulfillment Chakra IV Solid Pure-Fume / discontinued
Lip Tints
Plant Wax Soft Wax Hair Removal Formula
Plant Wax Hard Wax Hair Removal Formula

pressed powder PLUS ANTIOXIDANTS
lip satin PLUS FRESH ESSENCE / discontinued
lip satin PLUS URUKU / discontinued
lip sheer PLUS URUKU / discontinued

Sap Moss Nourishing Concentrate
Light Elements Mist Wax

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

How Not To Be a Smelly Vegan

Want to know "how not to be a smelly vegan"?

Finding non-food vegan products can be hard. Here are three of my favourite stores for finding vegan cosmetics:

L'Occitane: This company is great. They don't use any animal products or animal by-products in their processing or in their products (except for honey, royal jelly and other bee-related things) and they mostly use local products from Provence, France from local farmers. And their products are really lovely. If you are in west Brisbane there is a store in Indooroopilly Shopping Centre.

Perfect Potion: This is a local Brisbane company and have some great smelling products! Just ask them which products are vegan and which are not. They normally have a list under the counter. Most of the non-vegan products are labelled so because of bee's wax contents. If you are in Brisbane there is a store in the city and one in the Valley.

Lush: These guys are very anti-animal testing. None of their products are tested on animals and they make sure none of their raw materials they use in their products are tested on animals. Not all products are vegan but the ones that are are clearly marked with the sunflower vegan symbol. If you are in Brisbane a new store in Indooroopilly Shopping Centre just opened up and there is also a store in the Queen Street Mall.

Friday, October 2, 2009

When Tim Comes to Dinner

Geoff and I had Tim for dinner on Saturday night. We decided to make pizza for dinner and Sticky Date Pudding for dessert. It was the first time I'd made the pudding and also the first time I've made my own dough from scratch and both turned out quite well so I was quite proud of myself. The pizza toppings were a little on the odd side (canned corn not such a good idea after all but I liked the turnips which I fried a little in olive oil before putting them in the oven). The recipes are as follows. The pizza dough recipe is based on a recipe from (but it since seems to have disappeared) and the Sticky Date Pudding recipe is one I found somewhere on the internet but, again, altered a little.

Pizza Dough
7g sachet dry yeast
1 tsp caster sugar
2 cups plain flour
2 tbsp olive oil

Combine 3/4 cup warm water, yeast, sugar and salt (what salt?) in jug. Whisk to dissolve. Cover with cling wrap and set aside in a warm place for 5 mins or until you see bubbles on the surface.

Sift flour into a bowl. Add yeast & oil mixture to it. Mix to form a soft dough. Turn onto lightly floured surface. Knead for 10 minutes until elastic. Place in lightly greased bowl & cover with plastic wrap. Stand in warm place for 25-30 minutes or until dough has doubled size.

Use fist to punch dough down. Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth. Top with whatever you like and bake for 5-15 minutes.

Sticky Date Pudding
250mls soy milk
100mls water
200g dates (chopped in half)
1 tsp bicarb soda
115g margarine
115g brown sugar
200g white SR flour
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
100g golden syrup
200g brown sugar
150g margarine
1 tsp vanilla essence

Cake: Preheat oven to 190C. Put dates in saucepan & cover with milk & water & simmer until dates are soft. Make sure they are soft! Take off heat & stir in bicarb soda. This will froth. Leave to cool.

Beat together the margarine & sugar until pale & creamy. Add date mixture & stir. Mix spices with flour. Sieve & fold into date mixture. Put in 20x20 tin and bake for approx. 30 mins. When done prick the pudding all over and pour half the hot toffee sauce over the pudding and serve the rest with the pudding.

Topping: Melt all ingredients in saucepan & simmer for 5 mins without stirring.