Friday, December 28, 2012

And Now For Something Completely Different...

I usually have a Quorn roast vegetarian option at Christmas.  This year we tried this one and really liked it.  However, if you're finally tired of turkey, or turk'y, in my case, here are some ideas...

Tonight we're having P.F. Chang's vegetarian lettuce wraps. Yummy tofu goodness! We are ordering them from the restaurant since we have one nearby but you can find a recipe to make them here.

P.F. Chang's also has brussel sprouts that are crazy-good. Yes, you do like brussel sprouts. Trust me.


I know you'd never buy prepared noodles from a package - make these spicy Thai noodles.

I'm also going to make some vegetarian hot and sour soup.  I love soup on a chilly night!  We're on an Asian theme tonight but...
 My absolute favorite that we have often and never seem to get tired of is an old-fashioned vegetable soup.

It's from this little book I got in Scotland.  Called, in an unassuming Scottish fashion, 'Vegetable Broth', it's delicious!  Try this...

Melt 1oz of butter in a large-ish pot.  Earth Balance works great.  Add 1 diced carrot, 1 diced onion, 1 small diced turnip, 1 chopped leek and 1 chopped celery stick.  Cover and allow to sweat gently, shaking the pan to make sure the veggies are well coated with the butter.  After 5 or 6 minutes pour in 1.5 pints of vegetable stock.  Simmer for a bit and then add some barley - maybe 1/4 of a cup.  Cook until the barley is soft. Season with lots of salt and pepper.  Serve with some fantastic bread.  Perfect!

Friday, December 21, 2012

Christmas Traditions

A few of my favorite things for Christmas -

Our family loves layered shrimp dip for special occasions.  We'll have this Christmas Eve at my daughter's house so she can tuck the little kids in and read "The Night Before Christmas".  We ALL believe in Santa!
Turkey dinner.  Yes, even though I haven't eaten meat in YEARS, I still cook a traditional turkey dinner for my family.  They have humored me in the past and had the vegan dinner ordered from Whole Foods.  Now, I keep some of my mother's fantastic stuffing recipe out of the turkey and make some vegetarian Bisto for our friend Nate and I to have with our gorgeous veggies and everyone's happy.
Board games.  We've had hilarious hours of Trivial Pursuit and epic battles of Monopoly.  Our current favorite is "Cranium".
A jigsaw puzzle for everyone to take shifts at until we get it.  Quiet fun...
Christmas music.  Full on.  Nothing is too corny - we embrace corny!
Christmas cards.  My husband is from England and I'm from Nova Scotia so we send (and are happy to receive) lots of holiday mail.
Chocolate mint squares.  If you don't like them, that's fine.  More for those of us who do...
“In the end, though, maybe we must all give up trying to pay back the people in this world who sustain our lives. In the end, maybe it's wiser to surrender before the miraculous scope of human generosity and to just keep saying thank you, forever and sincerely, for as long as we have voices.”
Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Keeping Warm...

It's chilly in Houston today - let's keep warm by the fireplace!

Have a cozy day!