The Best Vegan Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

The Best Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins from Mommy Doesn't Share FoodHello friends! It’s been awhile since I’ve checked in. Life has been as life usually is this time of year…busy! All the blogs I’ve been reading have been sharing their favourite holiday recipes but I’m grounded in reality lately, with no extra time to focus on holiday treats and eats. To be honest it’s probably for the best…my waistline is becoming sensitive as I get older. And so, muffins.

I was doing a much needed freezer clear out recently and noticed that I had enough bananas to make muffins!! We buy bananas at least three times a week. Isn’t that crazy? But I don’t like them with even a speck of brown and they turn so fast. Still, the kids will eat them at any phase of ripeness so it’s rare to have any left to freeze.

dsc_1196These are the best muffins you guys. Seriously. The Best. I always double the recipe because they don’t last long around our house. And they’re healthy!! There’s no oil or butter to be seen! This recipe is adapted from one my mom has been using for years, from the now defunct Homemakers magazine. It was super easy to veganize and the result doesn’t differ much in texture from the original. Brilliant!

dsc_1168-copy

Vegan baking can be quite easy. Take a look at your favourite recipe and swap out the eggs and dairy for vegan alternatives. Buttermilk can be substituted with non-dairy milk and a splash of vinegar (I use rice milk so that Molly can take baked goods to school). Vegan butter/margarine or coconut oil can be used in place of butter and as for eggs? There are so many options, but flax or chia eggs are my favourite. For every egg the recipe calls for, mix 1 tbsp of ground flax or ground chia seed with 3 tbsp of water. Let it sit for 5-10 minutes and voila! The consistency mimics a real egg perfectly. For this recipe, since it calls for ground flax seed as one of the main ingredients, I used ground chia seed. I could have just added a bit more flax seed but I liked the nutritional addition of the chia seed.

dsc_1158 dsc_1163

Enjoy!

dsc_1201

The Best Vegan Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins
Author: 
Recipe type: Breakfast, Snack
Cuisine: Vegan, Vegetarian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12 muffins
 
Ingredients
  • 1 tbsp ground chia seed
  • 3 tbsp water
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • ¾ cup wheat bran
  • ¾ cup ground flax seed
  • ¼ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (look for a brand that doesn't use milk ingredients)
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 4 very ripe bananas
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • ¾ cup rice milk
  • 1 tbsp vinegar (I like to use apple cider vinegar)
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Prepare a muffin tin with paper liners.
  2. In a small bowl, mix ground chia seed and water. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, combine flour, wheat bran, flax seed, chocolate chips, baking powder, baking soda and cinnamon. Set aside.
  4. In a medium bowl, add rice milk and vinegar. Add ripened bananas, brown sugar and chia seed egg and blend well.
  5. Add wet ingredients to dry and blend until they're just combined.
  6. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tin. I find it will fill the liners all the way.
  7. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until a toothpick comes clean when inserted.
  8. Cool and enjoy! If they manage to last in your hungry house, they'll be good for 3-4 days. They also freeze well and I always make a double batch.

 

Vegan “Pulled Pork”

Earlier this year, when we were new at making vegan meals around our house, I decided to try and make vegan pulled pork. I had seen a few recipes floating around Pinterest, and decided to go with one that used jackfruit.

vegan-pulled-pork_edited-1

In case you’re not in the know (which I wasn’t until that moment in time), jackfruit is related to figs and comes from the jackfruit tree, which is native to South and Southeast Asia. It’s apparently quite popular in vegan cuisine because it pulls apart in a similar way that some cuts of pork do when they’re cooked.

It took me forever to find it, but I finally came across a can and set to work making vegan pulled pork.

It was a disaster. Apparently there are different kinds of jackfruit you can buy and this one was sweetened. Mixed with a BBQ sauce, the result was nothing short of disgusting. We ended up getting pizza for dinner.

I was reluctant for a long time after that to try making vegan pulled pork again, but then I started coming across recipes that used grated vegetables (carrots, butternut squash, sweet potato) instead. Huh. That, I could handle. The grated veggies are intended to mimic shredded pork. It’s not EXACTLY the same, but it’s definitely a tasty (and healthy) alternative!

And so was born this recipe for vegan pulled pork, using my favourite sauce recipe from Canadian Living. I’ve made it a few times now and haven’t been disappointed. Most recently I topped it with the Sesame Ginger Coleslaw I made and it was delicious! Enjoy!

Vegan "Pulled Pork" w/ Sesame Ginger Coleslaw
Author: 
Recipe type: Lunch, Dinner
Cuisine: Vegan, Vegetarian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6-8 servings
 
A delicious vegan version of pulled pork. You could probably also call it a sloppy joe. The key to this recipe is advanced preparation!
Ingredients
  • 1 cup green lentils, rinsed
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 2 tsp ground corriander
  • 2 bay leaves
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • 1 can (398 ml) tomato paste
  • 2 tbsp backed brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp vegan worcestershire sauce
  • 2 cups shredded carrots
  • Buns or wraps to serve
  • Sesame Ginger Coleslaw (link above)
  • Vegan mayonnaise
Instructions
  1. Bring water to a boil and add lentils. Cook until firm and set aside.
  2. While lentils are cooking, grate carrots. Set aside.
  3. Combine tomato sauce, brown sugar, apple cider vinegar and worcestershire sauce. Set aside.
  4. Heat oil in dutch oven. Add onion, garlic, chili powder, coriander and bay leaf. Cook for 5 minutes, until onion is soft, stirring frequently. Don't worry about bits that stick; this adds flavour!
  5. Add tomato paste and cook 2-3 minutes.
  6. Add the tomato sauce mixture you prepared earlier to the onion mixture.
  7. Add lentils and grated carrots. Cook 10-15 minutes.
  8. Serve on buns prepared with vegan mayonnaise and top with Sesame Ginger Coleslaw

 

Sesame Ginger Coleslaw

Sesame Ginger Coleslaw (Vegan, Gluten-free)

The other day I asked Google “what’s the difference between a slaw and a salad” and then “coleslaw vs slaw”?

Other people are worried about the American election, I’m worried about proper use of the word slaw.

Slaw is a funny word.

SLAW.

Slaw.

Slaaaawwwww.

dsc_1120

I learned that a coleslaw is a mix of finely chopped cabbage and other vegetables. A slaw without the cole is finely chopped vegetables without the cabbage. Typically they have a vinegar based dressing.

A salad, on the other hand, is chopped vegetables topped with a dressing (not necessarily vinegar based, but it can be).dsc_1127

dsc_1129

It didn’t really clear things up for me either. I think, when it comes down to it, it’s somewhat regional. As I move forward in the cooking world, I’m going to define a slaw (or coleslaw), as a mixture of grated or finely sliced vegetables with a vinegar based dressing.

dsc_1138

I was inspired to make this coleslaw by a recipe I made a few weeks ago, a Daikon-Carrot Salad from the Food Network. I LOVED the dressing but felt it needed a bit more vinegar, so I tweaked it a bit. The result is delicious! I love eating coleslaw on it’s own, but I have a few ideas as far as entrees to pair it with. Stay tuned!

dsc_1141

Sesame Ginger Coleslaw
Author: 
Recipe type: Vegetables, Salad, Coleslaw, Side
Cuisine: Vegan, Vegetarian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8 servings
 
A ginger-y, tangy coleslaw that is delicious on its own or as a side. Tip: I just happened to have a yellow carrot on hand; try using other coloured carrots for for a bright and colourful look! Tip: Do you find yourself buying too much ginger and it does bad? Try grating the whole thing, freeze in tbsp amounts on a plate, then store in a bag in the freezer. Pop out single portions as you need them!
Ingredients
  • Two carrots, peeled and grated
  • ¼ red cabbage, chopped into slices
  • 1 tbsp ginger, grated
  • 4 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 2 tsp lime juice
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, mix grated carrots and sliced cabbage
  2. In a separate bowl, combine ginger, rice vinegar, lime juice, olive oil, and sesame oil. Set aside.
  3. In a small skillet on medium heat, toast sesame seeds to a light brown. Be careful, they'll burn quickly!
  4. Add sesame seeds to dressing, then add to vegetables. Mix well, then refridgerate for at least an hour to let the flavours meld together. Enjoy!

 

Happy Friday, Be Back Soon!

The past couple of weeks have been rough. My sister’s father-in-law, one of the most wonderful men in my life, passed away last week after an 18 month battle with cancer. I would love to tell you more about him, but I have had a head cold for the past week that won’t go away and every time I start to type something I start to cry, which makes me feel worse, so I’ll save it for another time.

Needless to say, I haven’t been cooking much lately. I hope to be back in the kitchen soon!

Happy Friday!

Strawberry Pecan Salad with Easy Balsamic Vinaigrette 

Strawberry Pecan Salad with EASY Balsamic Vinaigrette (Vegetarian)
Strawberry Pecan Salad with EASY Balsamic Vinaigrette (Vegetarian)

This will be somewhat short and sweet folks! Both the post and the recipe 🙂

It’s been a crazy few weeks with a sick husband and a sick daughter, a very busy time at work and continuing to adjust to Molly being in Kindergarten (both her and me LOL). I’ve been going easy on myself when it comes to meal planning, sticking with simple and easy recipes and cooking whatever I think my family will eat, even if that means multiple dishes at one time (something I’ve been against for the past few years). This salad was made just for me on a night when I made the kids Daiya mac and cheese (I’m not a fan but the kids love it and since Oliver is lactose intolerant, it works for him) and A made himself a sandwich. I was craving the balsamic vinegar and strawberry combo, and it never hurts to add goat cheese (unless you’re vegan, in which case, just leave it off!). For the sake of preparing meals quickly, I either buy my greens pre-washed and packaged up, or I chop them up at the beginning of the week and toss them in a container with a wet paper towel to keep them crisp. I also try and cut up fruit so that it’s all ready to go to toss in with Molly’s lunch or serve for dessert.

And now I’m off to get ourselves ready for the long weekend! It’s Thanksgiving here on Monday and we’re heading to my in-laws for a few days. If you’re celebrating Thanksgiving this weekend, what are you up to?

Strawberry Pecan Salad with Easy Balsamic Vinaigrette
Author: 
Recipe type: Salad
Cuisine: Vegetarian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1 serving
 
A light salad for one person, easily made vegan by omitting the goat cheese and using agave syrup instead of honey in the vinaigrette
Ingredients
  • 2-3 handfuls salad greens
  • ½ cup strawberries, chopped
  • ¼ cup pecans, chopped (and toasted if you prefer)
  • 2-3 tbsp crumbled goat cheese (omit if vegan)
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp honey (use agave syrup for a vegan dressing)
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
Instructions
  1. In a larger bowl, add salad greens and strawberries.
  2. In a small bowl, mix olive oil, balsamic vinegar, honey and mustard. Add to salad and mix well.
  3. Top with pecans and goat cheese. Enjoy!

 

Autumn Black Bean and Quinoa Salad with Maple Dijon Vinaigrette

For the first time this year, we subscribed to a CSA. If you’re not familiar, CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture. Basically you buy a share of fruits and vegetables from a local farm at the beginning of the summer and for 20 weeks you’re supplied weekly with fresh, local produce. Our day care has an agreement with a nearby farm to have CSA shares dropped off at their facility and we can pick it up there when we get the kids. It saves me the delivery fee!


Combined with what we grew ourselves, we haven’t really had to buy much produce other than fruits that don’t grow locally (bananas!) or things that we go through quickly (you would not believe how fast my kids can go through a pint of berries). And because I don’t do much cooking feom scratch during the week (frozen veggies are a gift from the Gods), I often find myself with a surplus to use up over the weekend.  

Enter this salad!  I had an acorn squash from the CSA, kale from our garden, and I hadn’t yet found a use for some tri-coloured quinoa I bought at Bulk Barn a few weeks ago. 


Pause for confession: I have a slight addiction to bulk food stores. My pantry is overflowing with plastic bags filled with all sorts of goodies: Quinoa, lentils, and dried beans; various types of flours and grains; several kinds of salts and sugars; nuts and seeds. I try to store them in Mason jars, but there’s definitely a back log. The last time I was there I saw some interesting looking pastas that will soon be making their way home with me. 


I bought the tri-coloured quinoa because it was so pretty!  The black beans aren’t necessary but added another punch of protein and fibre. 

And the vinaigrette!  Sweet and tangy with just enough hint of garlic. Yum! It makes a ton, so I gave some to my sister and took the remainder to work to eat during the week. It’s not a dish the rest of my family was interested in 🙂 

dsc_1054

 

Autumn Black Bean and Quinoa Salad with Maple Dijon Vinaigrette

Recipe Type: Lunch, Dinner

Cuisine: Vegan, Vegetarian

Author: Christina

Prep time:

Cook time:

Total time:

Serves: 6 servings

A hearty and delicious salad that can be served warm or cold

Ingredients

Salad

  • 1 acorn squash, diced
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 cup tri-coloured quinoa (or regular if that’s what you have)
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 4 cups kale, chopped
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds, toasted
  • 1 15 oz can black beans, rinsed

Vinaigrette:

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F
  2. Bring 2 cups of vegetable broth to a boil. Rinse quinoa thoroughly and add to boiling water. Reduce to a simmer and cook until the broth is absorbed.
  3. Put the chopped kale into a bowl and add the lemon juice and 1 tbsp of olive oil. Using your hands, massage the lemon juice and oil into the kale to soften it
  4. At medium-high heat, add remaining oil to a non-stick pan. Add squash and brown sugar and cook, stirring occasionally, until squash starts to brown and can be easily pierced with a fork.
  5. To make the vinaigrette, combine olive oil, balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, dijon mustard, garlic and salt and pepper and mix well.
  6. In a large bowl, mix quinoa, black beans, squash, kale and pumpkin seeds. Add Maple Dijon dressing and mix.
  7. Enjoy warm or cold

 

Open-Faced Smoked Tofu “BLT”

Vegan Open-Faced Smoked Tofu "BLT" from Mommy Doesn't Share Food.

“I don’t want to-poo!!”

This from Molly, one day a few months back, on the drive home from day care.

I can’t remember exactly what I’d had planned for dinner, but tofu obviously wasn’t what she’d had in mind. Her reaction though, perfectly sums up the attitude most of the general public has about tofu.

Tofu has a bad rep. I suppose it’s the spongy, moist texture and the bland taste that turns people off.

I love it!

When A became vegan, I jumped on the chance to use more tofu in our meals. It’s a good source of protein, calcium and iron and I love how it absorbs the flavours you cook it with. I’ve tried cooking with it several ways and will share my faves with you in the future, but I still haven’t found any way of cooking it that the kids will enjoy.

That is, until smoked tofu. 

Smoked tofu is the answer to the tofu blahs. It has a mild smokey flavour, which gives it a lovely bacon quality without getting Babe involved. Colour me surprised when my kids were not only willing to try it, but were eating slices right out of the package and actually asking for more! I find it to be quite versatile and have used it in a few different ways, but this open faced sandwich is my favourite. It’s my go-to lunch on the days when I’m home with the kids!

20160916_110928

20160916_111032

20160916_111202

20160916_111424

20160916_111532

You can certainly try and make your own smoked tofu, but these days I have an “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” mentality when it comes to some foods, and this would be one of them. Veggie burgers are another. Smoked tofu is readily available in most grocery stores and is quite inexpensive. I like the Soyganic brand, mostly because it’s the only one I see in the stores I go to, but also because they use organic soy.

And can we have a quick chat about English muffins?? I have a slight obsession with them right now. The holes are pockets of flavourful goodness and offer a lovely surprise when you bite into one. A toasted English muffin with just butter?? Bliss. In this case you get a little dollop of tangy vegan mayo and it’s just the best!

I hope you enjoy!

Side Note: Of course the battery in my DSLR was dead when I went to take these pics. Of course. So I used my phone. Not how I wanted to start out my first food post on here, but they aren’t too bad! That’s what Photoshop Elements is for 🙂

Open-faced Smoked Tofu "BLT" Sandwich20160916_112647
Author: 
Recipe type: Lunch, Dinner
Cuisine: Vegan, Vegetarian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 1 serving
 
Ingredients
  • English muffin or bread of your choice
  • 2 TBSP vegan mayo (I like Veganaise)
  • 4 slices of smoked tofu, about ⅛ inch thick
  • A few pieces of lettuce or other greens (basil is delicious!)
  • 2 slices of tomato
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  2. Break apart the english muffin and place on a baking tray.
  3. Spread 1 TBSP of vegan mayo onto each muffin piece.
  4. Place two slices of smoked tofu on each muffin piece and top with lettuce and a tomato slice.
  5. Season with salt and pepper
  6. Heat up in the oven for 5 minutes or so and enjoy!

Hello to the Blogging Side!

Oh My.

I`m in a whole new world here folks.

Molly, my wee baby girl, who isn’t so wee anymore, started Junior Kindergarten this week. She just turned 4! How is it possible we’ve reached the age for school already?

I took the week off just to recover emotionally.

And also to launch my new blog! Huzzah! I’ve missed blogging like you wouldn’t believe. But I just haven’t had the time to focus on it like I used to. I’m hoping that’s going to change. My work schedule is now four days a week with Friday’s off, but with Molly starting school, our day care costs will go down a bit and we decided to put Oliver in day care five days a week, instead of just the days I’m working. I’ll have time people!! Time to do laundry (that reminds me, it needs to be switched over). Time to clean the house. Time to cook, and yes, time to blog.

I’ve decided to focus mainly on food related topics, and so I decided it was time for a name change. Mommy Doesn’t Share Food will be a space for me to explore the dynamics of feeding my family healthy, nutritious and mostly plant-based meals (see below for the scoop on that). I’ll share recipes, talk about challenges surrounding food, discuss food trends and culture, and since I also hate sharing food, it’ll be a place for me to whine now and then about my kids picking off my plate and rarely getting through a meal without a child on my lap. I was inspired by an episode of Friends, as most thirty-somethings are. The one where Joey doesn’t want to share his fries with his date? That’s totally me. JOEY MOMMY DOESN’T SHARE FOOD!

So what’s up with us? Not a whole lot. We’ve been puttering through the past year of my blogging absence without any major issues. Molly, as I mentioned, just turned 4 and is excited to be in big girl school! After a rather epic breastfeeding journey, Oliver finally weaned this past June at 27 months. Dude was attached! He’ll be 2.5 this month and has been moved to the Jr. Preschool room at day care! Next up for him: potty training. Ugh.

My hubby, A, is the notable exception to the putter. Last October he entered a weight loss contest at work. He did some research, which led to more research, and long story short, he’s vegan now. Yup! My meat-loving husband, who would begrudgingly eat the veggie meals I prepared, has given up all things animal. I haven’t switched to the V side yet, nor have the kids, but I dabbled in vegetarianism years ago so it wasn’t anything new to me. Since I respect his beliefs and also believe in the health benefits of a plant-based diet, we are pretty much vegan at home. However, the kids and I are omnivores when out and about. I’ll write more on why we haven’t made the switch another time. In the meantime, I’m finding it rather enjoyable planning vegan meals for my family and look forward to sharing them with you!

Oh, and A’s weight loss? My already handsome hubby has lost 50 pounds! I’m so proud of him!

I’m going to ease my way back into blogging. Expect probably just one post a week for a bit, as I get back into the swing of things. But I’m excited y’all! It’s time to do something for me!

 

Long Time, No Write!

*tap*tap*tap*
Is this blog on??

Hello friends! It’s been a long time! 

It wasn’t intentional. Every week for the past few months, I’ve said to myself: I need to write a post. But every time I found myself with spare time and an opportunity to write, I just couldn’t get the words out. Part of that is because the past few months have been tough. Both A and I have had major projects at work, and didn’t take any summer vacation. We’re burnt out.

The kids are wonderful; they’re constantly amazing us. But they’re a challenge. Molly turned three in August and we’re dealing with some listening issues. And Oliver…well, Oliver (now 18 months) popped out 8 new teeth over a two month time span and was sleeping like a newborn as a result. Until recently he was waking up every 1-2 hours!  Rough.

To save my sanity, I had to let go of the guilt I was feeling by not blogging. And so it’s been here languishing.

I miss it desperately.

Blogging has always been an outlet for me. From the beginning as I fumbled my way through the world of dating, then leaping into a relationship with A and finally embracing motherhood as I’ve always longed to do.
Now that I’m a few years into my roles as wife and mother, I find myself less inclined to use this space to explore those areas of my life. Part of it is that though crazy, things are safe and secure. I have no real cause to vent and don’t want this space to become a mess of complaints.

I’ve thought about shutting this site down. I’ve thought long and hard about that. But there are still areas of my life I want to share. Areas that bring me joy and happiness, but also that challenge me. I think that exploring those things are crucial to maintaining ME. Maintaining my sense of self.
I’m not ready to announce anything yet but I’m hoping that in a couple of months I’ll be able to rebrand and mould and focus According to C into something new and exciting.
I hope you’ll all be patient and join me for the ride when the time is right!