Happy Herbivore Blog

Guest Blogger: Kristina B.

Posted by: Lindsay S. Nixon |

Category: Guests

My family is Italian, so lasagna has always been a comfort food for us. It's also one of my standby dishes when we're having company over for dinner because everyone likes lasagna and it presents beautifully. 

The nice thing about my recipe for vegan lasagna is that it also tends to be a balanced meal: complex carbohydrates in the pasta, protein from the tofu ricotta and vegetables like spinach in the lasagna roll up, plus a side serving. 

Lasagna roll ups also whip up easily and makes enough for leftovers (that store beautifully in the freezer)! but don't just take my word for it! Introducing Kristina, this week's guest blogger and lover of HH's Lasagna Rolls:

HH: The lasagna rolls sure look tasty! 

Kristina: The lasagna rolls were fantastic tasting and so easy to prepare. It took no time at all. While I boiled the noodles I prepared the filling. 

HH: Did your family like the recipe?

Kristina: Yes! Even my non vegan husband willingly ate them! The recipe also made enough to share with a new mom and her husband.  

HH: Random story: I once made a double batch of the rolls for friends of mine when they became new parents! It was an easy meal for them, all they had to do was reheat. So sweet of you to share with your friends!

HH: Have you found other HH recipes just as easy?

Kristina: All of your recipes are extremely easy and quick to prepare. Once I bought a few ingredients, I was able to make every recipe in your cookbook.  The Happy Herbivore Cookbook has made vegan cooking easy and quick! What a breath of fresh air!

HH: Aww Thanks Kristina! You're so sweet! I'm thrilled you liked the lasagna rolls!

Have you made HH's lasagna rolls? Do you have a standby recipe for when guests come over for dinner?

Vegetarian Summerfest Demo

Posted by: Lindsay S. Nixon |

Category: Travel

I was a speaker/demonstrator at Vegetarian Summerfest this year and wow--it was so much fun! Summerfest is like "camp" for adults--except totally veg! My cooking class "Low Fat Vegan: All the Flavor without the Fat!" was a huge success! I had a blast demonstrating my recipes and several of my "students" came up to me afterward thanking me for such a great class. It made me feel really good! 

Funny side story: Minutes before my demonstration, I bumped into T. Colin Campbell in the hallway. I've always been a huge fan of his and since we have the same publisher (and he endorsed my cookbook) I just *had* to say hello. 

Right off the bat I said who I was and that we had the same publisher. Dr. Campbell looked very pensive so I thought, oh! I have a copy of my book on me for class, I'll just pull it out to help jog his memory!!

As soon as I did, however, he says "oh this is very nice, is this for me?"

And who says no to T. Colin Campbell? Right. So I gave him my book (my only first edition no less!) and then he asked me to sign it, which was beyond awesome!! I also managed to convince him to snap this pic:

Of course, this left me with no book for my class (that was starting in just a few minutes!!) so I sent my friend (and lovely new assistant, Nichelle) sprinting down the hallway to the bookstore to buy another copy of my book for class. At least it makes a great story!

Nichelle & I at our last Summerfest breakfast!

Here are some of the pictures from my demonstration, more are on HH's Facebook (album here).

[By the way I'm totally aware some of these pictures are sideways. I tried to get them to show up properly for over an hour and then ultimately gave up! Technology is a beast sometimes!]

I made the Nutty Spread (p. 253), Teriyaki Chickpeas (p. 127), Potato Salad (p. 189) & Black Bean Brownies (p. 209). 

Preparing the salsa for Teriyaki Chickpeas

Zesting the lemon for the potato salad.

Thumbs up for the Nutty Spread

My wonderful audience sampling my recipes!

With fellow vegan authors at our joint book signing! so fun!

Signing. Signing. Signing. I really need to adopt a signature sharpie color.

I really love cooking for others and showing them how to cook at home --- it's always a real treat when I get the opportunity... perhaps I need to get the webcam out and tape more cooking webisodes! 

Minimalist Monday: How to Declutter and Prevent Stockpiling

Posted by: Lindsay S. Nixon |

Category: Minimalist

The deeper I dive into minimalism, the more I realize I've always had an inner minimalist trying to push her way out. 

About two years ago I adopted the practice that something new must truly replace something old. That is, every time I buy something, I have to get rid of something else. 

This all started when Scott's T-shirt collection was getting a bit out of hand and I told him for every new T-shirt he buys, he has to donate one he already has to Goodwill.

Scott wasn't thrilled with my new rule and asked if it applied to me too. At first I resisted, noting that my clothing situation was under control but I ultimately accepted the rule is a good rule and I should follow it too. So, the rule applied to all clothes, though we allow for some flexibility. 

For example, if I bought a new skirt, I didn't have to get rid of an old skirt per se, but I did have to get rid of some other piece of clothing. Or if Scott bought a new pair of shoes, he did not necessarily have to get rid of a pair of shoes, but perhaps a pair of pants or a shirt he hadn't worn in ages.

This practice helped keep our closet under control, but I noticed it didn't prevent stockpiling in other areas.

Books, DVDs and other media were exempt from our "out with the old" rule. At first it never occurred to me that I should cycle them out as well. I mean, these items are an exception, right? because I still use and reference books and I may want to watch that DVD again?

When our once mostly empty bookshelf started to overflow, however, I took a good, long look at all of my accumulated media. Except for a handful of DVDs and about a dozen technical books and cookbooks, I really hadn't picked up or used any of the books, DVDs, etc that I owned since I first used them.

At that point, I realized that rule had to apply to everything in my apartment. If I bring anything in (except for food) something else has to leave. 

My kindle and iPod have provided a sort of loophole to the system, but I'm still trying to remove something even when I merely download a CD, book or movie. It's just a great practice to have. 

Also, when Scott and I moved to St. Maarten, we had to put all of our stuff in a storage unit. We also had to use this same storage unit when we moved across the United States twice. Having to put all of your belongings into a container suddenly puts the importance of "things" in perspective. After getting in our furniture, there wasn't much room left. Clothes, athletic equipment and then kitchen things filled up the last of the space, leaving no room for anything else. 

All those books and DVD's I'd accumulated didn't make the cut and found their way to a donation center. It was an "aha" moment for me -- a moment where I realized I really do need to "rent" more than "buy" when possible (i.e. rent the movie rather than buy it) and that if I'm going to bring something in, something else has to go. Otherwise I'll just accumulate too much, and that's not very minimalist.

Do you practice out with the old, in with the new?