Thursday, December 31, 2009

Final Blogging Blitz of 2009

I decided, at the last minute, to clear out my memory card of all these holiday treats and recent eats... so I can start 2010 with a fresh menu and a fresh eye to blogging! I didn't want you all looking at my Christmas pies and saying "Oh, that's SO last year..." ! So, starting from Christmas Eve onward, here goes nothing:

Pumpkin Pie! I used my new letter cookie cutters! We had a big family dinner on Christmas Eve, and I made dessert, plus the totally amazing Caramelized Onion, Chestnut & Butternut Squash Casserole from Veganomicon... which came and went without photo-documentation. Highly recommended though!

Apple-Pear Pie!! A little less beautiful than its pumpkiny cousin, but still sooooo good.

One of my dad's Christmas presents! A few months back, my dad went to Boston for an astronomy conference (he's an astrophysicist! Hi Daddy!), and when he came home, he was telling me all about some amazing sweet potato & apple sandwich he'd had. So, I asked "What was the name of the restaurant?" He did some research, figured it out, and printed out the menu. All vegan! So, then, with the investigative help of some Boston-based PPKers, I had a local vegan go and eat and photo document the sandwich... she gave great detailed information for each aspect of the sandwich. So, I recreated it, tested it out for ourselves... and gave my dad the recipe and photos for Christmas, with a promise to make it for him whenever he wants! Once I get his seal of approval, I promise to also share it with all of you!

ps. coincidentally, my parents got me a panino press for christmas! I'm so stoked!!

For Christmas Day, we had a nice little mellow family lunch, with some leftovers and some new goodies. My mom made a huge batch of her totally STELLAR minestrone soup. Damn, that stuff is GOOD!

The meaties had turkey sandwiches, so I made some of Bryanna Clark Grogan's delicious "Breast of Tofu" slices for us veggies. Mmmm... they are so good. As I was driving across town to my aunt's house, these little tofu babies made my whole car smell like holiday heaven.

I also made a panforte for xmas day, which I've done for a few years now. I use the recipe in Donna Klien's book "Vegan Mediterranean Kitchen," and I've had great luck with it. It's a crummy picture, but such a delicious holiday treat that I didn't want to leave it out of the line up!

The day after xmas some of my oldest friends (read: friends I've known the longest, not the OLDEST!) and I had a nice little brunch get-together. As a the most happy recipient of Swell Zine in Bazu's recent giveaway, I made the Sweet Potato Cranberry Scones. What a score! I halved the glaze recipe and it was a perfect amount for me. These were a big hit with everyone, and they were so gorgeously pretty. Oh, and also, they were HUGE HUGE HUGE. Mmmm.

I was up in San Francisco recently, and FINALLY got my hands on some of these vegan cheeses I've been hearing so much about. So, a couple nights after xmas, my vegan auntie L & her also-vegan boyfriend came over for some seriously fun vegan pizza night! This pizza used Teese brand "cheeze", with fresh tomatoes, bell peppers, and olives. I liked the mild flavor of this cheeze, but it TOTALLY melted - like liquified. As I cut the pizza, there was just a huge puddle of cheeze all over the cutting board. I found that a bit weird, and un-food-like.

Meanwhile, this winner was made with Italian-Style Daiya-brand cheeze, sundried tomatoes, and fresh bell peppers. Yum! Perfect meltage! Crispy cheezy bits on the crust! I think I put a little too much on, and I've since experimented a little and realized that I prefer a light touch... but suffice it to say that I'm totally stoked to have another whole tub of it in the freezer! Pizzas! Quesadillas! Nachos! OMG!

Lastly, I leave you some of my last great pics of the 2009 memory card. Yes, I'll admit it... I bought Snoopy a Santa outfit. Dude, it's so freaking cute!! Funny enough, that crazy little dog really, really loves wearing jackets...

...but he's not really so crazy about the hat, truth be told.

I can't believe sweet, sweet Yummers Potatoes let me do this to him and take this picture. I love him so much!
Here's our doggie line up: Dottie Bonkers, Stevie Wonder, and Snoopy Snoppy... our sweet little canine buddies. They are wonderful!

Lastly, but not leastly, we were so lucky to have one of the lowest low tides of the year this week, especially today. With good weather and a quiet day... the doggies and I have enjoyed some long walks at beaches that are underwater most of the time. Today we had a long, luxurious walk and saw sea otters, herons, egrets, pelicans, seabirds, starfish, and thousands and thousands of lovely sea anenomes (sp!?). Most exciting of all, I got to check in on My Favorite Sea Anenome. I know you all must be thinking, "really, who has a favorite sea anenome?!" Well, I do. All Sea Anenomes are beautiful and amazing, and mostly they have this neat purply-fading-into-turquoise coloring. Last year, at the farthest end of the beach, at the lowest of low tides, on the underside of a big rock, I discovered this glorious lime-green beauty and fell in love. I was so happy to see it's still there, thriving and glowing and looking cool!

Here was tonight's sunset. So beautiful. Good bye 2009, welcome 2010!


  1. Happy New Year! I love that sunset picture. The pizza with Daiya looks amazing, I'm so excited they're planning on selling it in the UK this year, also I really need to try that tofu turkey breast recipe, it looks delicious.

  2. man, your food all looks so delicious. i love the look of those scones, and i can't wait to hear about the sweet potato-apple sandwich, how cool.

    i'm really glad you have a favorite sea anemone, amey! happy new year!

  3. Anonymous2:09 PM

    Happy New Year!

    I know this is going to sound crazy, but I swear I had that sandwich last time I was in Boston, lol. Did he have it at Cafe Crema in Harvard Square?!?! If not, they have a scarily similar sandwich on their menu...
    Can't wait to see what he thought of your version and to see the recipe!


  4. Anonymous2:35 PM

    everything looks delicious! Happy New Year


  5. Your soup looks incredible.. so hearty and healthy!! :)

  6. Courtney!
    YES! It was from Cafe Crema! Did you like it? Any tips on reproducing it?

  7. You've had some great eats recently! Yum! I'd love the recipe to the minestrone soup, sweet potato apple sandwich, sweet potato scones, and panforte!

    Your pets are so adorable in those outfits--our cats would never allow any clothing on them.

    And your sunset is beautiful, especially in such a gloomy winter season!

  8. happy new year! your anemone friend is a beaut! And the breast of tofu looks incredible.

  9. Anonymous8:15 AM

    I love the present you gave your Dad--so sweet!
    And oh my gosh, your pets are the cutest.
    Your beautiful super-fantastic recipe booklet arrived this week, thank you so much! I am especially in love with the illustrations.

    Hope your 2010 rocks big time!
    x Christabel

  10. Anonymous1:47 PM

    That is too funny! What are the chances, huh?! It has been a while since I had it, so I am afraid I won't be too much help on reproducing it...I am sorry! But both my friend and I ordered the same sandwich, and we both LOVED was really really delicious. I am always in awe of your cooking on the blog, so I am sure whatever you came up with will be fabulous. What did your dad think?


  11. I am so glad you posted these wonderful food pictures, especially those of the pies! And happy new year!

  12. Happy New Year, Amey! You spoiled your family with food, as usual. I LOVE the doggie photos, Strummer had a Santa suit too! Also, the sea anemone is gorgeous!

  13. Gaaaah, everything looks so delicious! And that sandwhich looks very intriguing...

    Thanks again for the cookbook-lette, it was so great to get and wonderful to cook from!

  14. I nominated you for an award!
    Go to my blog for details.

  15. Oh my god, Yummers with the Santa hat - too funny! I love that green sea anenome, too - you're so lucky to live so close to the ocean!

    Thanks so much for the cookbooklette! As usual, your drawings brought a big smile to my face as soon as I saw the cover. Can't wait to try out some of the recipes!

    Hope you have a great 2010!

  16. Anonymous1:13 PM

    What a way to end the year. cookie cutters! sea anemones and shore birds! cute doggies and kitty! A very fun post indeed.

    Thanks also for sharing the cheeze experiment results. The Daiya ingredients look better than Teese, so glad that was the winner.

    jen e.

  17. I love the photos of your pets! They are so cool with those Santa hats! And the sunset was amazing!

  18. The cat photo is hilarious!!!!! He is soooo not impressed! Love it!


  19. Whoa! How did I miss this post! It is filled with SO much greatness. I LOVE those pies and how you spelled out holiday wishes with pie crust letters. That is pure, adorable, genius.

    And those tofu slices? YUM!

    But best of all was the pup pictures, always a favorite for me.

  20. Happy New Year Amey! I love this post, and I especially love Santa Snoopy.

    That's funny about the Teese - Teese has a very fine line between cheese-like melting and liquid cheese pooling all over the place.

  21. So much dog and cat CUTENESS!


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