Sunday, February 20, 2011

Menu Planning

I keep hearing it is cheaper to eat vegan. Not the way I cook. It has been nothing short of a fiesta every day. So this week, I sat down with two of my simpler cookbooks: Supermarket Vegan by Donna Klein and Appetite for Reduction by Isa Chandra Moskowitz. I also came to the conclusion that cruise ship quantities with Bon Appetite intricacies does not mean I'm going to lose the last few pounds any time soon.

So down I sit and pick out a week's worth of recipes and make my shopping list. Granted, doing 90% of our shopping at our locally-owned health market, Cid's is not a recipe for frugality either. However, as most of what we eat is organic produce, it is what it is.

In the spirit of "Eat dessert first, life is uncertain" I'll start with the cake. Ah yes, chocolate raspberry cake. Now in full disclosure, I have up until recently been a pretty crappy baker. But I am slowly mastering the quirkiness of baking at altitude without a net.

I've been burned before with non-hydrogenated based frosting. Last time it destabilized and became watery. Looking back, I think the directions had me overmix it. This time I would go with what I saw in my mixing bowl. What I saw was very, very yummy: Earth balance, powdered sugar and melted dark chocolate.
Batter, batter, batter
Raspberry preserves on one layer. Hint: use the good stuff.
Frosting on the other layer 
The finished cake - best damn cake I've ever had

For lunch yesterday, we had the Mexican Salad from Supermarket Vegan. It contains black beans, corn, tomatoes, scallions, avocado, red pepper, cilantro and a fabulous Lime Dressing. Best to let it sit for a couple of hours or overnight in the fridge for optimum taste.

Mexican Salad


  1. It's so not cheaper to eat vegan, which is why our tax guy told us we spend more on food than any family of four he's ever seen.

    At first, this really made my husband angry and I was under strict orders to bring our bill down, and I did, but sorry, the stuff we use is simply more expensive. Alternative ingredients like Earth Balance, Tofutti cream cheese, soy milk, almond milk, etc., are just more pricey, and that's just that.

    As for your Mexican salad, it looks so good. Mmm.

  2. So true - we also have an astronomically high food bill - but that is the price for eating well and that's the one area we don't skimp on. The salad is from Supermarket Vegan by Donna Klein - I highly recommend as it is comparatively cost effective.