Orange Julius

I can feel summer slipping away already.


Back to reality soon.  It’s been an amazing summer.  We just got back from my best friend’s wedding in upstate New York where I was proud to be one of her maids of honor.  Since then we’ve been trying to fit in our final beach days, time at the pool and long walks at World’s End.  Sigh.


We are, however, looking forward to fall.  Who doesn’t enjoy the plethora of pumpkin flavored foods and scents?


But before I go into pumpkin mode I am going to soak of the last of this crazy hot and humid weather, and while I do that I’m going to enjoy a nice frozen drink.  Now, I couldn’t tell you the last time I had an orange julius but I always knew I liked them.  I finally attempted to make a vegan version of the drink and it was a hit!  Here’s what I did.


  • 12 oz Trader Joe’s organic orange juice concentrate
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups of ice

You will need a blender powerful enough to blend ice for this.  We are lucky that we have a Vitamix at home which does the job nicely.  First I blended the vanilla extra and almond milk together, then added the rest of the ingredients.  I blended until I could no long hear any ice.


I loved this drink, I only wish it was a little lower in calories.  The orange concentrate certainly packs a punch in that department.  Oh well.  This drink is perfect for a hot summer day and can be enjoyed by the whole family (except for the dog).  Cheers!

Dylan’s “Dirty” Potato Salad

Everything tastes better when someone else makes it for you right?

Well I think I’m a pretty good cook but I love when someone else cooks for me.

Farm share goodies this week!

We pick up our farm share box every Friday and this week was our best box so far.  It had peppers, tomatoes, lettuce, corn, potatoes and so on.  The potatoes were our firsts of the season and my hubby promised me that he would make potato salad.


  • 7 small potatoes
  • 1 cup vegan mayo
  • dill weed (about 1 tablespoon)
  • salt to taste

Dylan insisted I call this recipe “dirty” potatoes because when he peeled the potatoes he left some of the skin on.  I don’t know if that was to cover up some less than proficient peeling skills or on purpose but we will refer to this recipe as “dirty” potato salad.

He first peeled the potatoes and chopped them up into bite size pieces.  Next he placed the potatoes in a pot with boiling water and left them in until they were soft (15-20 minutes).  Once the potatoes were tested with a fork for appropriate softness he drained them from the pot and placed them in the fridge to cool off for about 30 minutes.


After about a half  hour he took out the potatoes and added mayo, dill, and salt.  We love dill in our house but the amount you want to use is totally up to you (same with salt).  As for vegan mayo we have a preference in our house.  We buy Just Mayo.  I’ve seen it at a few stores including Target (Target is my happy place).  It’s by far the best mayo (vegan or not) that I’ve ever had.

Just Mayo and Pepe my rooster painting.

Once Dylan added the seasonings and mayo he put the potatoes back in the fridge to continue to cool off some more.  I have to say, you could bring this to a cookout and no one would realize it wasn’t vegan unless you told them.  Super simple.  Super easy.  Even a husband could make it. 🙂

Vegan Caprese Salad

Back in the day one of my favorite summer time dishes was a caprese salad or better yet a sandwich.  My college roommate and I lived together years after college and our first place was close to a bakery that served awesome sandwiches.  We used to order the caprese sandwich served on a baguette and loaded with fresh tomato, basil and mozzarella.  I can still taste it.

I know they make vegan mozzarella cheese (that’s not shredded) but it’s either a. expensive or b. not even close to as good as real mozzarella.  I’m sure there’s some food scientist out that burning the midnight oil to create realistic nondairy mozzarella cheese balls, but for now I will opt for tofu.


I know, tofu sounds weird and it’s a little intimidating right?  Well don’t be afraid, with this recipe you don’t even have to cook it!  I’m very pro not turning my oven on right now!


  • 1 block of extra first tofu (pressed)
  • 3 cups organic grape tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup fresh chopped basil
  • 1/2 balsamic vinegar 
  • Salt and pepper to taste

I kept this recipe pretty simple.  You can play around with it all you want (added red onion, more or less balsamic, olive oil, etc.).  First step is to press your tofu to get rid of the extra water.  I have a tofu press which I love but if you don’t simply wrap your tofu in a dish towel and place something relatively heavy on top (like a tea kettle with some water).  I would press it for about 20 minutes or so.  Once your tofu is free of excess water chop it up into cubes. I halved my tomatoes and chopped the basil while I was waiting on my tofu.  Simply mix all your chopped ingredients together and add your balsamic vinegar and keep mixing.  I served this over toasted bread.  You can serve it over a salad or on a toothpick as an appetizer as well.

Now I know the tofu isn’t quite fresh mozzarella cheese.  I’ll admit that but once it is marinated with the balsamic vinegar the texture is actually pretty close.  The five year old loved his tofu so I consider it a success!

Happy summer!



My family loves cornbread.  Cornbread is great because it’s pretty much the closest thing to cake that’s acceptable to eat simultaneously with a meal.  You can eat it for breakfast or on it’s own.  Hot or cold.

In the past, I’ve bought cornbread mixes that I’ve added vegan ingredients to make cornbread.  Then I discovered…cornbread it actually super easy to make on your own!  You probably already have the ingredients you need in your cabinet.

Here’s my vegan cornbread recipe…


  • 2 flax eggs (1 tablespoon flax seed meal mix with 3 tablespoons water = 1 egg)
  • 2/3 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/3 vegetable oil
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 cup four
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup drained canned corn (optional but highly recommend as it adds a nice texture!)

First step is to preheat your oven to 400 degrees and have a greased 9×9 pan ready.

Prepare your flax eggs and let them set for about 5 minutes.  In a large bowl I mixed my flour, cornmeal, sugar, salt and baking powder together. Next I added my flax eggs, almond milk, corn and vegetable oil  and stirred together.  Pour your batter into the greased pan.

I baked my cornbread for 25 minutes and that was perfect.  Test your cornbread with a toothpick to see if it comes out clean if you’re uncertain.


I took this out of the oven about 20 minutes ago and it’s already half gone, I didn’t even get a picture in of the pan as you can see.  I hope you enjoy!