Wednesday, February 27, 2013


Someone near and dear to me went missing. Someone who’s instability and struggles were never hidden, but never cared for either.

When I got the call that she was missing, the first thing I felt was terror.
Then anger.
Then guilt.
Then agony.
Then denial.
Then comfort in my denial.
Then guilt.
Then agony.
Then anger.
Then terror.
Then guilt.

Put this on repeat for days.

There’s nothing more surreal than putting a Missing flyer up in bar bathroom while strangers offer sad looks and kind words. I couldn’t even look at the flyer. I had to look around the edges. I couldn’t read the Facebook post being shared around this half of the country. I couldn’t read the prayers and well wishes. All I could do was go through the motions of my day.

Then someone called. They saw the Facebook post going around and recognized the picture as someone he met the night before. She wasn’t in danger. She just wasn’t home.

The first thing I felt was relief.
Then anger.
Then disbelief.
Then sadness.
Then anger.
Then anger.
Then anger.
Then relief.
Then joy.
Then a relieved, frustrating and saddening anger.

And that’s where I still am. She came home. She’s safe. She’s fine. But I still feel a void where she should be.

The healing process has already begun. I’ve never been more grateful for my husband and our Tiny Home. I’m back to working and cooking and cleaning and exercising. All the things I love. I feel happy and content in my life and gratitude that it offers me the opportunity to breathe and count my blessings. I’ll need all the time I can get isolated from my family to recharge. Lord knows the family wide toll this has taken is going to be difficult to mend. But it will mend. Not only will it mend, but we now have an even deeper appreciation and love for each other.

Love and appreciation aside, I never want to experience that again.


Thursday, February 21, 2013

Vegan King Cake

Mardi Gras is long and gone, but I made a King Cake anyway. Honestly, I don’t believe I’ve ever had King Cake, but they look so amazing and I’ve always wanted to make one. When a friend decided to throw a New Orleans themed pot luck dinner party, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to give King Cake a whirl.

I ended up choosing a recipe with a brown sugar filling as instead of a cream cheese filling. Because of this, I was concerned about the authenticity of the dessert. When I do something, I wanna do it right. Especially if I’m altering a recipe to meet my dietary standards. However, I wanted make the cake a little more accessible to any party guests who may be skeptical of dairy/egg free desserts (in this day and age??) so I went with a less traditional filling. The result was still delicious and recognizable as a King Cake. Even better than your run of the mill store bought King Cake, so I was told. Hooray!

Vegan King Cake
Adapted from Mardi Gras King Cake on


  • 1/2 cup non-dairy milk
  • 2 tablespoons Earth Balance
  • 1 packet (.25 oz) of active dry yeast
  • 1/3 cup hot water (heated to 110 degrees F) 
  • 1 tablespoon ground flax seeds
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 2 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/3 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup Earth Balance, melted
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons water
  • gold (or yellow), green and purple colored granulated sugar (I made my own with sugar and food coloring)

1. Scald the non-dairy milk. Remove from the heat and stir in the Earth Balance. Set this aside. 
2. In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast in the hot water with 1 1/2 teaspoons of the sugar. Let this sit for a about 10 minutes. While the yeast is sitting, whisk together the flax seeds and 3 tablespoons of water.
3. When the yeast is bubbly, stir in the milk and Earth Balance. Stir in the flax seeds and water, remaining sugar, salt and nutmeg. Stir the flour into the milk and flax  mixture 1 cup at a time. When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic.
4. Place the dough in a bowl, cover with a cloth and let this rise for 2 hours, until doubled.
5. While the dough rises, make the filling by stirring together the sugar, cinnamon, pecans and flour until combined. Drizzle the melted Earth Balance over the sugar mixture and stir until it’s all combined and crumbly.
6. When the dough has doubled in size, punch it down. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and spray a baking sheet lightly with cooking spray.
5. Roll dough into a large rectangle and sprinkle the filling evenly over the dough. Roll the cake up tightly, beginning at the wide side. Bring the ends of the roll together to form a ring. Place the ring on the prepared baking sheet. If you have anything oven proof and round (like a ramekin), place it on the inside of the ring to help it keep it’s shape while baking. Let the cake rise until it’s doubled in size, about 30 minutes.
6. While the dough rises, make the topping glaze by combining the powdered sugar and water.
7. Bake the cake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes. 
8.Pour the glaze over the cake while it’s still a little warm and sprinkle the colored sugar over the glaze, alternating colors.
9. Involve a plastic baby somehow if you must.

She’s so helpful.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Peanut Butter Glazed Chocolate Donut Holes

Because sometimes you just need to. These are particularly great because not only are they baked, but the unglazed donut is not sweet. That means that the glaze is a welcomed partner as opposed to an intrusive, saccharine treat ruiner. If you’ve ever thought of glaze like that anyway.

Peanut Butter Glazed Chocolate Donut Holes

  • 1/2 cup non-dairy milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon vinegar
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup Earth Balance, melted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons peanut butter
  • 3 tablespoons non-dairy milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1. Spray a 12 cup mini muffin tin with oil and turn your oven to 375 degrees.
2. In a medium sized bowl, combine the 1/2 cup of milk with the vinegar. Set this aside.
3. In a large bowl, combine the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking powder and salt. Set this aside.
4. Add the Earth Balance and vanilla to the milk and vinegar and stir to combine. Pour this into the flour mixture and fold the batter with a spatula to combine. It may seem a little dry. Just keep folding until it’s just come together.
5. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tin, filling them about 3/4 full.
6. Bake the donut holes for 10-12 minutes. Definitely check on them after 10. Just in case.
7. While these are baking, make the glaze: Whisk together the powdered sugar, peanut butter, milk and vanilla.
8. When the donut holes are finished baking, let them sit for a couple of minutes before putting them on a baking rack to finish cooling.
9. When the donuts are completely cool, place them in the bowl with the glaze and carefully stir (or shake) to coat. Shake the excess glaze off each donut hole before placing them back on the baking rack to set. The glaze should be set after about 10-15 minutes.


Sunday, February 10, 2013

Churro Waffles

A delicious dairy free and egg free version of the recent internet sensation, Churro Waffles. They are incredibly decadent and very reminiscent of the churros that my husband and I would eat while strolling around Disneyland. A very sweet memory!

Churro Waffles
Recipe adapted from Churro Waffles @ Chica Chocolatina and Old Fashioned Chelsea Waffles from Vegan Brunch.
Churro Topping
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup non-dairy margarine (I use Earth Balance)


  • 2 cups non-dairy milk
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 3 tablespoons maple syrup (I love the Organic Maple Agave blend from Trader Joes)
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch

1. Preheat your waffle iron.
2. In a bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon. Set aside.
3. Melt the margarine and set aside. It doesn’t matter how you melt it, just get it liquefied.
4. In a large bowl, whisk together the milk, vinegar, oil and maple syrup.
5. Add the flour, salt, baking powder and cornstarch to the milk mixture and mix until the batter is smooth.
6. Spray the waffle iron with cooking spray and cook the waffles according to the manufacturer’s directions. 
7. As soon as your waffle is done, dip both sides of it in the melted margarine, then dip both sides of it in the cinnamon mixture. Continue this process until you run out of batter.
8. Try not to eat them all. 

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Chocolate Covered Strawberry Muddy Buddies

A romantic and Valentine’s Day inspired take on Muddy Buddies!

Chocolate Covered Strawberry Muddy Buddies
Recipe adapted from Strawberry Cupcake Puppy Chow from


  • 4 1/2 cups rice chex 
  • 2 Tablespoons Organic Earth Balance
  • 3/4 cup chocolate chips 
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla 
  • 1 cup strawberry cake mix (Duncan Hines Strawberry Supreme is vegan*) 
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar 

1.In a saucepan over low heat, melt the margarine and chocolate chips. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract. 
2. Pour the chex in a paper bag. Pour the melted chocolate over the chex, seal the bag and shake shake shake to coat. 
3. Pour the cake mix and powdered sugar over the chocolate coated chex and shake shake shake to coat again. 
4. Pour your Chocolate Covered Strawberry Muddy Buddies in a bowl and try not to eat them all. And then promise yourself that you’ll only make these once a year because they’re highly addictive and extremely bad for you. 
5. If you get around to storing these, store them in an airtight container.

*Here’s an article regarding the vegan cred of Duncan Hines’ cake mixes.


Saturday: Get Schooled SaturdaySweet Saturday Sunday: Linky Party Sundays @ Petite Hermine Wednesday: Whimsy Wednesday

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Vegan Oreo Brownies

I made these for my Grandma’s Super Bowl party and they vanished almost instantly. Oreos and brownies were made for each other! 

Vegan Oreo Brownies
Adapted from The Ultimate Brownies on

  • 3 Tbls. water
  • 2 Tbls. flax meal
  • 1 3/4 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 7 Tbls. cocoa powder
  • 4 oz semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup boiling water
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 6 Tbls Earth Balance
  • 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 16 Oreos, crushed

1. Preheat your oven to 350 and grease and flour an 8×8 inch baking dish.
2. Whisk together the water and flax meal. Set aside. 
3. In a bowl, combine the flour and baking soda. Set aside.
4. In another bowl, combine the cocoa powder, chocolate and salt. Add the boiling water and stir thoroughly until the chocolate is melted and a paste is formed.
5. Add the sugar, earth balance and vanilla to the chocolate paste and stir to combine.
6. Add the flour to the chocolate mixture and stir to combine. It’s going to be very thick and seem dry. Just keep stirring. It will come together.
7. Fold in half of the crushed Oreos. 
8. Pour the batter into the prepared baking dish. Evenly distribute the rest of the Oreos onto the brownies and push them partially into the batter.
9. Bake the brownies for 25-30 minutes. Let them sit for an hour before cutting into them. They will need time to cool down and settle!