This delectable dessert can be made with plums, or with berries. We’ve found it to be the most delicious with blackberries! For our vegan friends, substitute the butter with vegan butter spread and use an egg replacer, such as flax egg or Ener-G Egg Replacer.
- 2 Cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 Cups walnuts, finely chopped
- 3/4 Cup brown sugar
- 1 1/2 Sticks butter, very cold
- 1 Egg yolk2 lb. Plums, pitted and quartered lengthwise, (or equivalent of another fruit or berry)
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Dice the butter. Make sure it’s very cold and straight out of the fridge.
- Combine the flour, walnuts, and sugar in a food processor or mixer. Add the butter and the egg yolk. Pulse in food processor, or mix with an electric mixer, until crumbly.
- Press 1 1/2 cups of the crumb mixture in an even layer into the bottom of a 9 1/2-inch springform or tart pan.
- Arrange the plums in the pan, skin side down, to form a flower pattern; begin at the outside and work your way in.
- sprinkle the rest of the crumb mixture evenly over the fruit. Bake the tart for 40 to 50 minutes, or until it’s lightly browned and the plum juices are bubbling.
- Remove from the oven and cool for 10 minutes.
- Remove from the pan and transfer the tart to a flat plate. Serve warm.
Note: Adjust amount of sugar according to tartness of the fruit that is being used. This dessert can also be cooked in a brownie pan instead of a tart pan.
This cool and refreshing gin cocktail recipe was created by a dear friend, and it has become a summertime favorite!
- 2 oz gin (Preferably Hendricks)
- 2 oz tonic
- 4 oz soda
- 2 lime wedges
- 1-2 Cucumber slices
Combine gin, tonic, and soda. Gently squeeze a lime wedge into the glass. Add both lime wedges and cucumber slices. Mix well and enjoy!
I have heard from several friends, and have read on several web sites, that stove top popcorn made with coconut oil is delicious and easy. I’ve always been interested in trying it for myself, but for some reason, never got around to it until now. I have an air popper, and I usually add butter and salt to my popcorn after it’s popped. After being recommended the coconut oil version once again just last week, I decided to finally give it a try.
Adventures in Vegan Baking: Testing My Talents with a Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe
This week, I decided to partake in a little vegan baking. After seeing many vegan cookie recipes, I decided on this Peanut Butter Cookie recipe from Refinery29.
It’s a dream of mine to have a big garden with many rows full of wonderful produce, and maybe even a greenhouse. Currently, I have a limited amount of space in my backyard in which I can grow food. Thankfully, there are many options for growing gardens in small spaces.
Not for the faint of heart, this recipe is for those with a serious sweet tooth and a disregard for calories! I have been pretty obsessed with french toast for most of my life, always on the hunt for that perfect one. Since going vegan, I really wanted to find an tasty alternative to the traditional egg batter. My goal was to retain the perfectly balanced soft-on-the-inside, crunchy-on-the-outside texture. I have succeeded, ahahahaha, taking over the world, one vegan slice of french toast at a time. Enjoy…and my apologies (not really) for any subliminal messaging about saving animals you may experience while in the glorious vegan sugar coma.
Ingredients (these are guesstimate measurements so please feel free to tweak):
- 1 loaf ciabatta bread (Trader Joe’s makes a great one)
- 1 cup almond or soy milk (original sweet)
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- ¼ cup light brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon (to start then add to taste)
- ¼ -½ stick Earth Balance vegan butter (or just use Earth Balance original vegan spread)
- maple syrup: same amount you would usually pour over pancakes or waffles (¼ cup should be plenty)
- coconut oil cooking spray (or you can try an alternative)
Since moving to Southern California last August, I’ve been exploring some of the local beers and breweries in our area. As a fan of craft beer, I have been pleasantly surprised at how many different breweries there are nearby. Although I’m not sure how widely available most of these beers are, I definitely encourage any beer fans traveling to SoCal to check out these fun drinking spots, (and perhaps take a brewery tour)!
Some New-to-Me Beers & Breweries
- Boo Koo IPA by Mother Earth Brewing CO – My first encounter with this beer was on tap, but I picked up a couple bottles as soon as I was able to find them. This mosaic IPA is refreshing, with a hoppy pine aroma that is perfect for a beautiful spring or summer day. This beer would be great for a backyard barbecue, (depending on your dish, I suppose). I’ve also had their Double IPA, which was great. I haven’t been able to visit Mother Earth Brewing Co because it isn’t located in my area, but I’m a fan of their work so far!
Personalized, handmade party decorations may seem intimidating at first, but there are fun and frugal ways to pull it all off. One of the great things about handmade party décor is that it can be as simple or as elaborate as you choose. Ordinary items can be transformed into something new and charming. Continue reading