Fun Days with Food!

Most of my bad mood is gone!  Working from home yesterday helped, so that’s totally wonderful.  I had several conference calls and webex’s (virtual meetings), but did it all in the comfort and happiness of my jammies.  The kids were off school, but R wanted to go to her daycare to play, so I took her in the morning before my first meeting started.  A and M were on house cleaning duty while I stayed in the green room (it’s the color of the walls…) and worked. 

Between meetings I made a vegan pumpkin pie.  Pumpkin pie has always been my very favorite, and one of the few dessert items I missed after going vegan 4 years ago.  But…as time has gone by, my cooking skill have gotten even better, and I’ve learned how to make baked goods with no animal products.  Of course one of the first things I had to do was re-create pumpkin pie!
Because it’s made with silken tofu, it has virtually NO fat, but tastes as I remember pumpkin pie to taste.  After blending canned pumpkin, tofu, and spices, I poured it into the crust and baked for 45 minutes.  It had to cool and set in the fridge for a couple of hours, but what I ended up with was very tasty.  A had a slice too (with whipped cream), and we were in heaven!
  I was too lazy to take it out of the fridge after my daughter and I ate some….
M had a friend come over and spend the night.  Since I took the day off for Friday, I wasn’t concerned about it being a week night.  Since D didn’t care (and he had to work), M’s friend came over.  D took them to Buffalo Wild Wing for dinner as I drove down to Nags Head, NC to attend the volunteer orientation for the OBX marathon weekend.  It was a quick and easy trip, and when I got back into town, I met up with my friend S at Wild Wing Cafe for a spicy vegan wrap and a beer. 
Today was simply a day off, and I enjoyed it quite a bit.  I woke up with D to see him off to work, and while the kids were asleep, I made some cinnamon rolls and banana muffins.  They all were up by 830 am, ate, and goofed off all day.  I took M’s friend home at noon, and ran some errands.  One of them was to stop at D’s office and unlock his car because he locked the keys in it.  It was funny, because I can’t remember the last time either one of us did that.
After running a few errands, I got home and started cooking.  I made a crock pot dinner of a Moroccan Chickpea and Lentil stew.  It’s one of my favorites that you can add a hot sauce to at the end in the to taste.  I like my uber spicy, but the two younger kids don’t.  I make the hot sauce in a separate batch so each person can use it at will.  It’s also fabulous on other things, and I’m thinking of canning a bunch soon to share.
For Christmas either last year or the year before, I got R a traveler’s kit from National Geographic.  It came with a travel bag, “passport”, maps, etc.  She got really creative today and packed her bag and played “safari”.  At first she said she wanted to go to Egypt – which I thought was awesome considering how much I’ve always wanted to go there (my eldest is named after Egyptian history, and I have two Egyptian tattoos).  Then she said England seemed cool.  Nice, that would be an awesome adventure for her too.  In the end…she settled on South Dakota.  Strange, strange little girl.
I also decided to make a vegan Shepard’s Pie.  It’s made with white potato, sweet potato, onion, garlic, mushrooms, tofu, spices, and a veggie broth.  I poured it into a pie crust, topped with another layer of crust, cut some holes in it, and baked for a half hour.  I’ve never made it before…but it was ridiculously incredible.  I could eat this all day, and will definitely make it again.  Wow. 
  Don’t let the color fool you.  It’s HOT.  It’s middle eastern inspired, with chilies, caraway seeds, coriander, olive oil, and lots of garlic.  It’s called Harrisa, and it rocks. 

This is the stew with the hot sauce added.  It’s amazing, but will burn your lips right off if you’re not careful!
  My Shepard’s Pie of Amazement.  I took a bunch of different recipes to build it, but it’s something I’ll have to make again.

This is my little girl just before she departs the green room for South Dakota.  Apparently wearing a hat makes it an adventure.

This is the medal M and I got for volunteering at the OBX marathon this weekend!  OBSE = Outer Banks Sporting Events.  We got some green Race Crew t-shirts too.  We’re leaving at 6 tomorrow morning, and I’m really excited!  I hope to have a bunch of cool pictures of the weekend to share.
So that has been the past two days.  I’m looking forward to this weekend very much.  M and I are working the Expo tomorrow morning, and the race finish line on Sunday.  I’m hoping to do some fun stuff with him while we’re down there too.  I’ve been looking for a head boat to go out and take him fishing possibly, and also found a shipwreck museum.  If that doesn’t work since it’s the winter season, there’s Roanoke Island Festival Park, where you can learn about the lost tribe first hand (or as first hand as you can get now), and since he’s a big history buff, that may be pretty cool too.  Or we’ll just tool around and explore someplace we’ve never been.  Either way…I’m really looking forward to it.

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I am a 45 yo busy career single mom and doctoral student attempting to find her inner athlete, be a gluten-free(ish) vegan, and find a way to balance it all without going crazy! I love to cook, read, run, box, do yoga, dance, travel, and learn as many new things as I can - which often gets me in trouble.... I am passionate about life in general, and if I didn't write about it, I'd probably implode.

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