Almost at the Finish Line

2014-02-05 13.41.41

March 1, the deadline for my new book, fast approaches! Yes, I’m getting a little nervous and stressed, even though the book is in fairly good shape. Still, there’s a lot of tweaking and refining to do to bring it to fruition. The Vegan Pantry: The Art of Making Your Own Staples (Ten Speed Press, 2015) has been a marvelous book to write, and a big chunk of the reason is because I’ve had a lot of help. This “help” comes in the form of my kitchen angels. In early November, I realized that I had a lot of ground to cover in testing recipes, sometimes multiple times, to complete the book. While I have some wonderful folks around the continent testing recipes, I realized that I […]

  Read More

The Best Little VegFest in Texas

2014-01-19 17.55.06

I had one of those “who’d have thunk?” weekends. I presented at a vegfest in a little town in Texas no one has ever heard of. When Chef AJ first told me about the goings-on in Marshall, Texas, my first reaction was, “Where?” And that’s the reaction of everyone I told, too. Well, you can blame it on the mayor of Marshall – the Honorable Ed Smith – and his lovely, vivacious, smart-as-a-whip wife, Amanda. They got it into their heads that since this vegan thing was so great for them, they’d tell everyone else about it, too, and maybe get the whole town to go vegan. So they created this thing called “Get Healthy, Marshall.” Well, what they’ve done […]

  Read More

What the Heck Have I Been Up To?

1404712_10151634621166432_956364265_o

I have never been accused of bombarding people’s mailboxes with too many newsletters or blog posts. In this day and age when we are supposed to be digitally connected 24/7, I am a social media party pooper. It isn’t that I don’t love seeing what others do on Facebook – in fact,  the connection it brings with people around the world is what I love most about it. But otherwise, I prefer tinkering in my kitchen, teaching, engaging with a live audience, or otherwise doing the real stuff my work involves, rather than reporting to the world about what I’m up to every ten minutes.  On the home front, my kids have berated me over the years for not snapping […]

  Read More

Spanish Chickpeas with Saffron and Smoked Paprika

spanish chickpea stew

I am looking forward to a fun-filled weekend in Hood River, Oregon, home of Tofurky. No, there’s no Tofurky in the chickpea stew, but I cooked up a pot just now so that I can leave my family with something to eat while I’m away enjoying the revelries during their grand opening celebration of their new plant. And yes, I’ll be teaching a couple of classes as part of the festivities, as well as serving up a platter or two of my cheeses. But looking around in my fridge for something quick to cook up before I get on a plane later today, I found some chickpeas I had cooked up a few days ago. And my husband’s beautiful tomato vines […]

  Read More

Handcrafting Food and Music – One Man’s Rendition

9034_148506404281_630113_n

Recently, I was given a precious gift – homemade tempeh – by a Bay Area chef, Philip Gelb. I was introduced to Philip several years ago and immediately knew we had a connection. First of all, we both often eschew processed vegan staples for the homemade version. Secondly, Philip plays a Japanese flute called the shakuhachi (if you’ve seen Kurosawa films, you’ve heard the eerie-sounding bamboo instrument), something that I myself studied for several years in Japan. Visit Philip’s Oakland loft, where he regularly presents underground restaurant dinners, and you won’t find jars, bottles, and packages of store-bought goods, but fresh, handcrafted tofu, tempeh, pickles, and bread. We’ve had a connection based on our respect for the handcrafted and homemade (and […]

  Read More

Sukiyaki on National Television – Watch Vegan Mashup!

Screen shot 2013-07-16 at 2.57.30 PM

How do you like my new “do”? Okay, so it’s a wig. But filming Season 1 of Vegan Mashup put me in such a happy mood that I literally burst into song and dance. And then I got hungry, so I made some Japanese comfort food, sukiyaki. Of course, all of this was done on set. Sukiyaki is a savory concoction invented after the Japanese figured it was okay to eat cows (for centuries, it was considered savage to eat 4-legged creatures, almost as uncivilized as wearing shoes in your house). Traditionally, it features thinly sliced beef simmered in a sweet soy broth with tofu, vegetables, and that miracle zero-calorie noodle, shirataki. Luckily, it’s not really about the beef, and a […]

  Read More

Homemade Vanilla

Homemade vanilla June 9

No, I don’t just make cheese. I began my culinary journey long before I was anointed the Queen of Vegan Cheese.  I relish making all sorts of fancy things. And I make everything from scratch. Really from scratch. Even the things you would normally buy at the store, I generally make from scratch. Take vanilla. Why spend $15 for a little bottle when you can make a quart from some leftover vodka and some vanilla beans? Leftover vodka? I don’t know about your house, but at mine there’s always some hanging around after a party. And fear not the price of vanilla beans. Buy grade B in bulk online (on Amazon, or a host of vanilla sites), and you’ll be in the vanilla business […]

  Read More

Can You Get Younger? A Personal Journey.

Miyoko with Mojito

Reader Beware: This post is not meant to be judgmental about anyone’s fitness level, size, weight, or shape! It is simply a personal way I have connected the dots about eating, exercise, fitness, overall health, and my own body size. I’m frequently asked, “How do you stay so fit and eat so much vegan cheese?” (Read on and you’ll learn the truth!)  The fact is, I wasn’t always so fit. Yes, I’d been vegan for decades, always exercised some, and probably ate better than the average person. But this is a post about personal honesty. Right now, I have an image in my head of the timeline of my life after age fifty, a milestone I hit almost 6 years ago.  I see […]

  Read More

Gloria, the Chicken Who Wouldn’t Give Up

Gloria in basket in kitchen

Books on dogs are a dime a dozen. Dogs as companions. Dogs as amazing creatures that rescue. Dogs as goofy creatures that bring joy to our lives. Not to belittle canines, because I love them, too. But what about books on chickens, not as commodities but feathered friends? Haven’t seen too many titles. It’s not often you walk into someone’s house and find a chicken running around. (They poop everywhere, so if you’re going to do this, invest in some chicken diapers.) Or one in a basket. The one I had in a basket would gently kiss me on the nose with her chopped-off beak when I leaned toward her. That was Gloria. Alas, she is no longer with us. […]

  Read More

Getting a Charge

My daughter off to the prom!

I know people expect me to write about food. But this is related – because everything is. Honestly. This is a tale of how a jam-packed day starting with my son’s college graduation in one town was supposed to end with me hosting my youngest daughter’s pre-prom party at our home 150 miles away, and how I missed my own party. It’s also about my new and wonderful all-electric car, Tesla’s Model S. And my first “I knew-it-was-coming” moments of being an early adopter. You know what I’m talking about. The day before starting out promising. We opted to take the Tesla to Merced, a cow-poke town in central California where the newest University of California, in its 8th year […]

  Read More