A Fresh Dille

getting back to it all

Posted in FOOD, MAGAZINES, SHOPPING, VEGAN, WORK by clairedille on September 30, 2010

It seems like there is a lot of catching up to do these days. I don’t just mean within the blog world, but also getting back to things I love. I have a pile of unread magazine issues that I am beginning to tackle. It is quite overwhelming.

This morning, I made scottish oats (always make these over steel-cut oats when I want to eat sooner rather than later) my usual way. Miss Mandiee asked me about my cooking method and it is really similar to the method of preparing my steel-cut oats.

First, I add one cup water  and a sprinkling of salt to a small saucepan and cover it to boil on medium high heat. Once boiling, I add 1/4 cup scottish oats and lower the heat to very very low. Then I add in 1/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or another plant milk like coconut) and cover it for five minutes. Scottish oats take 20 minutes to cook compared to the thirty minutes it takes to prepare steel-cut. I add in thin slices of banana, chia seeds (1 Tablespoon), cinnamon (1/2 teaspoon), and a splash of vanilla extract throughout the twenty minutes. If I feel the oats thicken too much, I add up to 1/4 cup more of water. In the last five minutes of cooking on low heat, I chop the fruit of choice. Today I added 1/4 cup of pumpkin instead of water to my scottish oats and then added some stevia in the last few minutes of cooking. I then poured it into my bowl and topped it with strawberries, a chopped fig, and some raw almond butter. Honestly, oats really are the breakfast that keep me satisfied all morning. On days I go without for fun meals like pancakes and waffles, I become hungry much sooner. At least we can have a little excitement with all the add-ins to our morning bowl (cup, plate, mug) of oats.

I promise I don’t only eat bowls of oatmeal.

Falafel is one of my favorite foods, and I used an epicurious recipe earlier in the week to prepare a lot of mini falafel.

Although they may have baked a little too long, they were still delicious. In the last few days, I have eaten them both in wraps and topped on salads.

The shot above may give you a (big) hint to the movie that took over my man’s life all summer.

I made stuffed peppers utilizing a few leftovers, particularly butternut squash and whole wheat couscous.

One of my favorite blog ladies, miss Ashley at edible perspective has a great looking recipe here for stuffed peppers. I followed her method for the peppers and then stuffed them with cumin, coriander, cayenne spiced scallion couscous, red onion, butternut squash, and tomato paste.

Surprisingly, V doesn’t love peppers and I ate these alone. Even garnishing them with avocado, his favorite food, couldn’t get him to eat one. He did eat these though.

Kale chips are quite addicting and he has been known to eat a whole bunch himself with little to no help from myself. Notice the charming item in the background of that photo? Yes, that is movie “blood”  on our table. We eat on a kitchen island in our apartment but the only place with light after 7 p.m. (other than the roof deck) is the table against the window that has been covered with all our work items.

Rather charming, eh? Really, “blood” is one of the main reasons I say our jobs are far from glamorous. Although I love working with clothing, covering them with blood is one of my least favorite parts. I just did three days as an additional costumer on a horror film and there was a little too much time spent in an incinerator room around “bloody body part” props for my liking.

Getting back to some savory eats…

Last night I made Kathy’s Smoky, Sticky, Sweet BBQ Sauce. This stuff was good, finger-lickin’ good. Although the sun had gone by the time we ate, I managed to shoot one photo of the covered tempeh.

On the side, we had Kathy’s Quick Sweet Potato Mash, switching in our chives for the onion. The cayenne added a lovely kick we both enjoyed. There was a simple salad consumed as well.

Since this is such a photo heavy post, I will show one last meal. Today I made a spinach salad topped with bbq tempeh, our tomatoes, avocado, mung sprouts, leftover butternut squash, and radishes from our neighbors garden.

This is a perfect example of a meal featuring local greens and veggies that will make me miss summer produce so much.

Oh, and one last shot of something I am getting back to…

My fashionable self has definitely gone to the wayside and a few new purchases have been made to make up for the lack of shopping for myself in the last few months. Shoes are definitely one of my fetishes and I apologize if you are not into feet. Wedges are ideal for days I want the height but don’t want the discomfort from wearing heels. I am limited to flat closed toe shoes when on set, so I tend to stray from my flat boots and vans when not working. Yesterday I hit up the mall in these and was felt 100% myself. I got a nice new blazer (by one of my favorite simple lines, T by Alexander Wang) to dress up jeans and my favorite skinny cargos.

Tomorrow I hope to be back after some baking therapy, now that I got in some good ole’ retail therapy.

produce & peanut butter.

Posted in FAMILY, FOOD, VEGAN by clairedille on June 21, 2010

The small local Farmer’s Market I went to today near my parents house has to be one of my favorites because of one farmer. After picking up my bounty of organic vegetables from him, I wished I had snapped a photo of him. He is everything you would imagine a farmer to look like. He is overly tan with a scruffy beard, and wears cutoff shirts when it is stifling and flannel on the chilly mornings. His stand is the last on my route around the market, and today I only had a few peppers before making my way to his station. Upon reaching his veggies, I noticed he was nowhere to be found. After a quick glance around the market, I saw him running toward me with a big smile on his face. This guy knows how much I love my greens. There were garlic scapes, romaine, kale, collards, chard, radishes, and snap peas. Since V and I are working a lot and moving towards the end of this week, I made sure to not go overboard.

My fondness of peas is because of my father’s influence, without a doubt. I have delightful memories of sitting next to him shelling english peas from their fibrous pods at our summer home. Snap peas, the less fibrous variety, are a vegetable I prefer to eat raw. They do make a great addition to a simple stir fry, but eating them fresh is especially refreshing.

Oh, radishes… what an awfully beautiful vegetable with the perfect crunch for summer salads.

Kale is a vegetable that I just can’t say no to. I adore it almost always. In fact, my mother once asked me which foods I could eat daily and kale was one. Chocolate was another, of course. The small bell peppers were too adorable to pass up.

These warm days are upping my raw veggie consumption and everyone around me is always amazed when they see me make massive salads only to claim them as my own.

This showcased the farmer’s market romaine, radishes, and snap peas. Cherry tomatoes and cucumber were also thrown in there before it was tossed with Goddess Dressing. Leftover Indian from our early Father’s Day dinner was served on the side for lunch. Last night, I ordered Chana Saag (chickpeas and spinach) instead of my usual, Channa Masala. Although it was tasty, it didn’t compare to my favorite. Dal was also ordered and I used a brown rice tortilla to scoop up the two Indian dishes and eat with my hands.

Although not incredibly photogenic, the Indian dishes were better than the night before. The spices seem to become more pronounced after a night left in the fridge.

Since my family proclaimed there would be “no more cookies” allowed in their house, I was weary of baking but the craving was there. Let’s just say, I went for it. A new recipe was tried for Peanut Butter Cookies and everyone seemed to forget the ban they had made on these little delicious treats. Heidi Swanson’s blog, 101 Cookbooks, was one of the first I stumbled upon when entering the online foodie world. I have yet to buy her beautiful book, but have tried many of her recipes with much success and rave reviews all around.

Before baking, I made sure to use a large fork to create the criss-cross that makes a typical peanut butter cookie appear different from all other cookies. The recipe was one of the simplest cookie recipes I’ve found, containing spelt flour, maple syrup, baking soda, peanut butter, olive oil, vanilla, and salt.

For an afternoon snack, we ate them with the delectable So Delicious Coconut Milk.

Watching the World Cup with my father, combined with baking, didn’t leave much time for dinner. The recent sale on Rising Moon pastas at Whole Foods made for an easy dinner. Many of the Ravioli’s are vegan, and my weird desire for warming winter squash meant that the Butternut Squash would be the ravioli of choice. Kale and orange bell pepper were cooked with some basil, olive oil, tomato sauce, and garlic and then poured onto the pasta.

‘Twas a scrumptious meal.

Thanks so much for the kind words about the photos I included in my last post of my father. It is funny that a few mentioned he looked like Steven Spielburg since he is a director for commercials, not film. He is such a creative individual and aspire to be like him everyday. His stubbornness and drive are two things that have rubbed off on me tremendously throughout my life. I only hope to be as happy as he has been with his choice in line of work. He always told us growing up that he just wants us to be happy in all aspects of our lives, and I am unwilling to stay in any situation where I don’t feel content. He makes sure to travel abroad each year, even with his busy schedule, because he knows it is one thing that has made him most happy throughout his life. I can only dream that will be possible in my future because I miss it dearly.

Other things:

-A delicious looking Radish Salad recipe on Tartelette.

-This Chilled Soba with Tofu and Sugar Snap Peas recipe sounds absolutely delicious.

-These two raw recipes using bell peppers are wonderful: Gena’s “Cheese” Sauce and Averie’s Raw Vegan Kale Chips (you can bake them too).

-Make your own Chana Saag from Vegan Dad’s blog or some delicious Channa Masala.