A really slack “What I Ate” moment

I’ve been slack AGAIN with my ‘what I ate this week’ posts.  Meal planning has gone out the window for another week because of Husband’s unpredictable work schedule.  I did manage to take some pics of various this-and-thats!

Kale and chickpeas dressed with lemon juice and nooch:


I can’t tell you how happy I am that Arthur and DeeW are eating porridge.  I get to cook ONE BIG BOWL then serve it out.  Bliss!  I had some with currants and golden syrup.  With toasted coconut, I call it ‘ANZAC Biscuit Porridge’:


Bad photo of the vegan packet rendang mix with leftover potato and sweet potato mixed in:


In the week before Greek Orthodox Easter my mum made vegan ‘koulourakia’.  Koulourakia are bready-biscuitty things served alongside coffee and tea.  Mum’s usual recipe has butter or cream but this version is made with oil.  Everyone makes their koulourakia differently.  My maternal grandmother made big hearty versions but my paternal grandma made hers sweeter and heavier.  My mum makes hers somewhere in between:


Speaking of Easter, here are the flowers Mum had on the table for Easter Sunday lunch:


For lunch Mum made rice with veg.  My sister made the roast veg and a leek potato soup.  Due to an unfortunate miscommunication, there was no vegan dessert.  It didn’t matter though as I was pretty full anyway:


One of my favourite smoothies is made with orange, lemon and frozen bananas:


I made a walnut basil pesto which was delicious.  I tried some gluten free rice macaroni.  The first time I cooked it according to the instructions.  Sat down to eat and the pasta was still hard (yes I’d tried a piece before turning the stove off!).  It was so hard I threw everything away and made a second batch.  I had to cook the second batch for double the amount of time stated on the packet and the piece I tested had turned to moosh.  Sat down to eat the second time and some of the pieces were still too tough and I’m not talking al dente!  I ate it  because I was starving but I’m never buying it again:


A Lebanese zaatar bread from Zaatar on Sydney Road in Coburg:


I went to lunch at Zaatar and ordered their falafel zaatar focaccia, which they assure me has no animal content at all.  It was delicious and I could barely finish it all:


My mum’s vegan ‘yemista’, which are Greek stuffed vegies.  Mum always uses rice but this time she used burghul:


I had a voucher for Lord of the Fries so I treated myself to their Spicy burger.  I forgot to take a photo until I’d demolished it:


…and this was my view as I ate my burger at LotF near Flinders Street Station:



It was a beautiful day and I had my camera with me, so I’ll leave you with some snaps of my super home town  🙂











And home again:



Meal planning: Week 1 that was

My weekly meal planning plan, which I discussed here, has gone mostly pretty well.  More veggies were consumed by the family (unknowingly in some cases) and I felt so much more organised.  I love not having to stress out about what I’m going to make.

On Monday the kids had sausage rolls.  Husband and I had black pepper sneaky tofu and veg on plain steamed rice.  Arthur’s snack was a smoothie made with non dairy milk, cinnamon, Udo’s Choice Essential Oil Blend, overripe banana, baby spinach and cooked pumpkin.  He didn’t know about the veg.  I made him these smoothies throughout the week.  I also made a banana bread based on the recipe by Joann over at Woman In Real Life.  I had some passionfruit to use up so I had a bit of vegan margarine on my slice of banana bread, topped with passionfruit:






For Tuesday’s breakfast Arthur had asked for toast and hazelnut milk.  Lunch for Husband was the leftover rice and black pepper veg.  The kids had a sausage roll and the sausage roll filling made in to a burger (baked along with the sausage rolls).  Ultimately I want the kids to move away from the puff pastry and just eat the filling although a once in a while sausage roll is fine by me.  My lunch was packet mix falafel (just add water and cook) on a bed of salad greens and tomato, with homemade hummus to help wash it down.  Those packet mix falafel are really dry.  Dinner plans were leftovers but Husband had stopped at a Lebanese bakery and got me some zaatar bread so I had that instead:



Wednesday’s breakfast was just fruit, it was more a brunch as we all woke up late.  For lunch we made vegan Hawaiian/Tropical pizza.  In Australia this pizza is topped with ham, cheese and pineapple.  I used a vegan bbq ham and the pale Tofutti cheese slices with a tin of sliced pineapple.  They turned out okay but they weren’t great enough to repeat.  Dinner was kritharaki and some veg:



Thursday’s breakfast was supposed to be ‘breakfast crumble’ which is more healthy than your traditional crumble.  The fruit layer was made up of apples, sweet potato, rhubarb (these three finely chopped in the food processor), currants, cranberries and frozen blueberries.  The topping was a mix of oats, ground pecans and walnuts, a flour made from a five-grain porridge mix, a little brown sugar (not much), cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves (ground), coconut oil and some vegan margarine.  Dinner for me was supposed to be falafel, hummus and veg sticks but I had an ulcer in my mouth which made it painful to eat foods with a crunch, or falafel.

I had a nice unexpected treat (well, as unexpected as you can get with “Husband, you’ll be driving within a 50 kilometre radius of Mr Nice Guy’s and I see he has the peanut butter brownie cheesecake today, you know what you have to do”).  This is the first time I’ve tried a peanut butter chocolate version of a cheesecake and it was lovely.  The base is chocolate and the filling isn’t, so there was no overpowering chocolatyness for me, yay.  I wanted to photograph it in suitable surroundings, like a glorious field full of lavender with humming bees and fluttering butterflies but all I had were the lavender bushes in my front yard.  And I had to zoom in so you wouldn’t see my rubbish bins.  Anyway I had half the cheesecake and put the other half aside for my mum.  Arthur had his usual cinnamon bun.  Mr Nice Guy’s told Husband to inform Arthur that the recipe had changed.  Arthur’s verdict? “This new cinnamon bun version 2 is even better than version 1, HOW IS THAT POSSIBLE?”  Geez he cracks me up:


For Friday, I hadn’t filled in my meal planner as I wanted to see how I would go with leftovers.  As expected, this was a more disorganised day in the kitchen.  I took note of the things in the fridge that needed to be used up: the mushrooms, coriander, dill and wonton wrappers (or wanton wrappers as we call them in my fam, I went to Costco with my mum once and she was asking the staff for the ‘wanton soup’, I just stood by and let her keep on askin’).  I’d been leafing through ‘Vegan Brunch’ and noted the pierogi.  So  I made two fillings, one with mashed potato, onions and dill.  The other was food processor-chopped mushrooms and coriander.  They were okay but too fiddly and time consuming for me to repeat again, unless I had fifty hands on deck:


On Saturday I made up this monkey platter of fruit for the kids which, mercifully, they ate most of.  What didn’t get eaten made it in to a banana bread cake (leftover zucchini and broccoli also disappeared in to the cake, ssshhh.  Yay for blenders). Dinner was again unplanned so I made some packaged chickpea-sunflower seed burgers and packaged curried pumpkin-corn balls, served with veggies.  As expected the kids didn’t like the burgers but Arthur scoffed down the pumpkin corn balls so hallelujah, I now have something else he will eat and I will try to make my own version.    I also made myself some cheezy coconutty chickpeas and kale, one of my favourite quick kale recipes:




Here’s a closer look at my kitchen cooking area:


My house was built in 1930 and this is the original cooking alcove.  Now, I found that people who have never used a little alcove like this often say oh how gorgeous!  People who have experience cooking in an alcove often say “when are you getting rid of it”.  Our last house had an alcove too and when we were buying this house I inwardly groaned.  I love original features of homes but cooking this way is a complete pain.  I can’t see the contents of pots on the rear burners properly.  Husband is really tall and has banged his head too many times.  One time I was sticking my head in the alcove to see what was in the rear pan and oil splattered in my eye.  My instant reaction was jumping back and I banged my head hard.  Not only that, the mortar from inside the chimney keeps falling off in chunks so my pots and pans must always be covered.  And that little window doesn’t let much light in, at least not where I need it.  I love the white tiles though and the new kitchen will have the same. We’re hoping to renovate this year and I am getting a much bigger stove-oven setup, this one is way too small and I can’t fit larger pots and pans together.

Tomorrow (Sunday) will just be leftovers.  Must admit I get sick of leftovers.  For next week I’ll try spaghetti for the kids (I’ll use buckwheat noodles) with some kind of healthy veg-lentil sauce sweetened with roast sweet potato.  I’m also hoping to try a lasagna where the ‘meat’ sauce is made from cauliflower and walnuts.  See you then!