Power of the Pantry! Vegan Pumpkin Seed Socca with Pickled Beets

I promised I would post more recipes utilizing only ingredients that I stock every day in my pantry. And here it is! This has quickly become a staple recipe in our house since I used a larger version on one of our recent brunch menus! The brunch socca turned out rather dry though, and when I saw Heidi Swanson post THIS post about mini socca’s that included yogurt, I figured I should try a vegan version! And oh man am I glad I did. This recipe is super simple to make, versatile, easily adaptable and incredibly yummy! I’ve prepared it for breakfast, lunch AND dinner and Harriet has gobbled it up each and every time! SCORE! Here I’ve paired it with pumpkin seeds, marinated beets from our local jewish deli and bottled poppyseed dressing. Feel free to pair with with all sorts of things though! Harriet’s favorite was when I put raisins in the batter for breakfast.

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Vegan Pumpin Seed Socca – Serves 2

1/2 cup garbanzo bean flour
2 tbs plain almond/soy yogurt
5 tbs milk substitute or water
salt to taste
sprinkle of cumin
1 small handful pumpkin seeds
1 tbs earth’s balance buttery spread or spray oil

COMBINE first five ingredients in a small bowl – mix well
HEAT nonstick or cast iron skillet over medium flame and melt earth’s balance or spray skillet with oil
SPOON heaping spoonfuls into little dollops onto skillet once it is hot enough and buttery spread is melted
TOP each round with a sprinkling of pepitas/pumpkin seeds – i like to make a little mandala design with mine
COOK until the edges of hte patties look “done” and are pulling up slightly, then flip them and cook for a minute more.
SERVE with poppyseed dressing, pickles, beets, kraut, yogurt, raisins, etc. whatever your heart desires!

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soccaLet me know how you prepared them! Did you make them into little tacos filled with sauted greens and sesame seeds? Did you eat them covered in stewed grapes and vanilla almond yogurt? The possibilities are endless with these little patties!

xoxo – grace

Wedding Sneak Peak!

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Just a taste!

This is the first in a series of posts about our wedding! I plan to post about our altar and ceremony, as well as our amazing wedding party! We had many amazing events leading up to and after our ceremony that I want to share with you also!

feet portrait**photos by chrissy piper**

we had a magical weekend spent with all our most treasured family and friends. I couldn’t have asked for a better day! The sun was shining and the air was cool. And our love for each other and our little lady permeated the air. Sweet sweet lingering creative days are ahead for us.

xoxo – grace

Action Kid Style – Garlic & Veggie Stir Fry

stir fry 3

Heeey! Action Kid Style #1 came with a 3 Day Vegan Meal Plan that is perfect for families with little eaters! I designed the meal plan to be budget friendly and to utilize as many pantry items as possible so only one quick trip to the market would be necessary. The meals are quick and easy, healthful and nutritious! The plan is heavy in fresh veggies and whole grains but will totally hold your kiddos attention at the dinner table! One of the recipes included is the above stir fry, which is inspired by a meal my sister-in-law Katie made last week. You can use whatever veggies and type of noodle you have on hand so it’s a great way to use up all those veggies in the fridge before they go bad. Bonus! Also, I generally choose noodles that use whole grains rather than processed flour. Quinoa noodles would be killer in this and are excellent in the “good-for-you” department! The recipe below is as printed in Action Kid Style #1

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I used slivered red pepper and chopped curly kale in the above photo and I left out the tempeh because I just didn’t have it on hand. I added some chopped chives at the very end just before we gobbled it all up! You could also add nuts or seeds to make it a little heartier if that’s what you want! Throw in some slivered onion or frozen edamame. It’s totally up to you how you customize this hearty lunch or dinner! It’s super simple, totally vegan and your kids will love it!

xoxo – grace

Re-entering the Zine World – Action Kid Style!

Years ago I would spend day after day, night after night, cutting and pasting photocopied strips of paper together to make little zines about being a queer punk grrrl. I haven’t diviated far from that description except that I’ve become a parent and oodles more responsible since that time in my life! Action Kid Style (title taken from the Huggy Bear/Bikini Kill split 12″ liner notes) seems like the natural progression from then to now! It reflects my long time perspective on how I try to live my own life and that of being a parent! It’s been 12+ years since I published a zine and it feels oh so right! The zine I did throughout the 90’s, Girlwonder, is something I am desperately proud of — it helped me to feel like a productive member of my community and gave me a way to give back. And so it also is now, with Action Kid Style!

Action Kid Style: A Zine About DIY Ethics, Sustainability, Radical Parenting, Community Building, Healthful Eating, Earth Magic and more!

action kid style zine

Here it is! The first issue of Action Kid Style, printed with love at Kinkos the night before the SF Zine Fest. AKS is a compilation of ideas I have been wanting to put out into the world for quite some time now and is a reflection of my own parenting “techniques & strategies”!

Issue 1 includes:

~Simple DIY’s for recycling household items (what some might consider trash) into toys.

~3 day vegan meal plan that your family will love, that is budget friendly and utilizes pantry items as well as fresh produce! These are meal ideas and recipes that my family really uses!

~An informative Labyrinth Drawing how-to.

~Hand illustrated pictograph scavenger hunt and coloring page for the little ones

~and more!

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I WANT YOUR INPUT!!! I’m looking for contributions for Issue #2 which will be out in late October. If you think your content would be a nice fit, and we share similar world view, please shout at me for more information, submission guidelines and the looming deadline!

And of course, you can get a copy of Issue #1 HERE on Etsy for $3! I’ll be re-printing it with a heavier stock paper soon, so get it now while it’s CHEAP!

xoxo – grace

Vegan In the Raw – Nut, Seed & Cacao Tart Recipe

Yep, a I’ve done it! This chocolate tart is sweet and salty, yet unprocessed and high in protein! You’ll never know you’re eating something raw because the crust is fudgy and the filling is creamy and the entire thing is as rich as it gets! I don’t suggest eating an entire one yourself, just cut one into nice little slices and go to town bit by bit, with a glass of almond milk on the side to wash it down.

Maybe you remember my why vegan? post from a few weeks back, maybe you don’t. In it I talked about how I try to eat as much whole, raw, unprocessed foods as I can. This philosophy about food doesn’t really go hand in hand with my sweets addiction though! So I’ve challenged myself to create more sweet snacks and desserts from raw whole foods. The following is a creation adapted from a grocery store tart I got last week that was SPECTACULAR! I checked out the ingredients list and guessed on proportions and adapted the recipe from there. It turned out amazingly, so I hope you’ll give it a try! The result isn’t necessarily low in sugar content, but at least it’s a step in the right direction right?

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Prep: 15 minutes

Chill: 30 minutes

Makes: 2 4″ tarts

RECIPE

For Crust:

1/2 cup sunflower seeds

1/4 cup hemp seeds

1/4 cup sliced almonds

1/4 cup raisins

2 Tbs cacao nibs

2 Tbs dark cocoa powder

1 Tbs Pure Maple Syrup

pinch salt

For Filling:

2 Chunks Raw Cacao Butter (melted)

1/2 cup Pure Maple Syrup

3 Tbs Dark Cocoa Powder

pinch salt

PROCESS the nuts, seeds, and cacao nibs in a food processor until it becomes a fine sandy texture.

ADD the cocoa powder, raisins, and 1 Tbs maple syrup and process again until mixture comes together into a ball.

PRESS the crust mixture into 2 4″ tart forms (or one large one) to about a 1/8-1/4″ thickness.

COMBINE the melted cacao butter with the remaining cocoa powder, maple syrup and salt – mixing well with a whisk.

POUR the mixture into the tart shell

SPRINKLE the top with a few extra cacao nibs, candied orange peel, sunflower seeds, sea salt, or other toppings of your choosing! Get creative with it!

CHILL in the fridge until set.

EAT cold or leave at room temperature for a more melty experience.

tart7xoxo – grace

Holistic Mornings Challenge – Guest Post with Jessikat

I was NOT a morning person before I became a parent. Now I get up before 9am every day! That’s HUGE for me! What I would really love is to get up before my little one and have a little time for myself but of course a challenge like that begs for support, a circle of peers, something to look forward to every day, a set of goals. Jessica of Jessikat’s Holistic Mornings Challenge couldn’t have come at a better time for me!

Jessica has partnered up with Marissa Moondaughter’s Moon Rhythms Group which has been a huge inspiration to me lately. This group of women has fueled a fire in me that I thought I had lost decades ago and I highly recommend the group to anyone who is looking to connect with the moon, the metaphysical world and their witchy earth mama side.

xoxo – grace

morning tea
Is it storming outside? Groggy thoughts slowly invade my dreamspace. No, that’s my alarm… Peeking out of my nest of blankets with one eye open, I see that it’s 0530. Another dawn, another day. Open your other eye. That’s good. Now move your legs.

Okay, I can do this. Waking up early is not an easy task for me, night owl that I am. But it’s worth it, I remind myself. I wrap myself in my cozy robe and go retrieve my partner’s coffee. The house is totally silent. I bask in the stillness. I heat up some water for my morning tea, and as I wait I think about the day ahead. What is my intention? What do I want the theme of my day to be? Balance is a good word for today. Balance. A mug in each hand, I return to my bedroom. Ignoring how absolutely delightfully comfortable my bed looks, I stretch with my boyfriend. We sip our warm drinks together, watching the news, then set about getting ready for our day.

I sit before my altar and pull several tarot cards to help guide my thoughts and actions for the day. This practice has become a ritual, something I look forward to every morning and feel lost without. It’s my grounding place. Afterward I email my gratitude buddy:
Today I’m grateful for:
-slacklining
-my inner wild woman
-ear plugs

Grabbing my planning binder, I recall my daily intention. Balance. I write this down, along with my gratitude list. What energies will be at work today? Where am I in my cycle? The second week, I should be feeling a new surge of creativity, drive and flirtiness. Maybe I should set aside some time this evening to connect with my partner. I should also plan a date for Friday. Summer is waning, the weather is feeling more like Autumn lately. It’s a perfect day to get outside with the kids. The moon is waxing crescent, I should light some incense for Artemis today to help me channel some energy toward work. I jot down a quick to do list and start thinking about what meals I will cook today. Work, relationship, kids, house… What can I do for myself today? What would make me feel really nurtured? I want to do some journaling today. Perfect.

Glancing at the clock, I realize the kids will be awake soon and I should start cooking breakfast for my boyfriend. I am flooded with a sense of gratitude. I am so thankful for this time, my quiet routine. I am ready to face the day. I am grounded. I am fulfilled. And I want to share this feeling with other women. The power of my morning time can be multiplied with every heart that joins me. Enter the Holistic Mornings Challenge.

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What: Holistic Mornings is a challenge that will address each of the aspects of your holistic health, and help you to start your day off on the right foot by doing so. Can you imagine how much better you would feel, how much healthier and happier, if you gave yourself some time every morning to focus on your whole health? Every morning I will have a post up with some inspiration and guidance for starting your day. Some days we will focus on individual aspects of your health, and others we’ll have a wider gaze. There will be activities, meditations, journal prompts, tips and suggestions for exercises. This challenge is Spirit-focused, so we will talk about energy, herbs, stones, elements, divination, manifesting abundance, creating miracles, and, most excitingly, real magic. There are two challenges per season. We will focus on the season we are in because the cycles of the seasons reflect the cycles we go through in life. When we take the time to consciously go through each cycle, we can grow in ways we never imagined possible.

Who: This challenge is open to all women who are open-minded, loving, and excited about starting their day off on the right foot. Women of all ages are invited to join us. We need to create communities in which our maidens, mothers and crones are meeting in a spirit of sharing knowledge and helping each other to grow. Women of all spiritual backgrounds are welcome to join, but having an open mind about things you might not be familiar with is an absolute must.

Where: This challenge is being hosted within the Moon Rhythms community. Every morning, you will wake to a new email. Everyone in the challenge will also be invited to join the Facebook community, where we will meet virtually to support each other and share our progress. There will also be a central, password-protected page where you will have access to information about the challenge and resources created just for you.

When: Registration for the first Autumn session closes on Monday, September 16. You can register for the first Autumn session, the second, or both. The official start of the first Autumn challenge is Monday, September 23. It will run until Saturday, November 2.

Registration for the second Autumn session ends November 4. The second session begins on Monday, November 11 and will run until Saturday, December 21. Each session is six weeks long.

How: To participate in this challenge, all you have to do is register for one of the sessions, or both. If you are a Moon Rhythms member, registration is $40 per participant. Seriously, $40 for 6 weeks of awesomeness. If you register for both sessions, it’s only $75. If you aren’t a part of Moon Rhythms, registration is $55 per session, or $105 for both. Access to Moon Rhythms for a year is $15 (so you are really better off joining Moon Rhythms first!)

I don’t want finances to hold you back from making a serious life change. I am willing to work something out in trade for those lovely ladies who are in a financial position that would not allow them to participate in this challenge otherwise. When you register, you are making a commitment to yourself and all the women in this community that you will do your best to work toward your goals and offer support and encouragement to the other participants. You will do your best to check in daily and update us on your progress. Nobody expects perfection; openness, honesty and willingness are the only requirements.

Why: The Holistic Mornings Challenge will help you to start your days off on the right foot. Can I guarantee that you’ll never have another bad day? Absolutely not. But I do promise that the tools I show you will make so many more of your days pleasant and fulfilling. If you’re still questioning whether or not this challenge is for you, I encourage you to check my blog for another week or two. I will be running a few mini-series to gear us up for Holistic Mornings. If you’re not totally convinced, you can get a taste of what’s to come.

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IMG_20130619_011519Jessica is a sun-bathing, moon-howling mother, lover, mentor and healer. Her home on the Internet, jessikat.com, is all about empowering women, helping them to become more self-aware and teaching them techniques for personal growth. She describes herself as generous, excitable and amazing. She likes Chinese food, Italian food, Mexican food, food in general, drinking tea and reading tarot. Although she never got her letter to Hogwarts, she lives in a world of magic and wonder, and hopes to give her children a magical childhood. She’s not a fan of dimming her own light, being afraid to take the leap, or talking in the third person. She hopes to be a channel of power, healing and guidance for the beautiful souls she encounters. She and her boyfriend live in the heart of America, Kansas City, MO. And she loves you.

Why Vegan? Well let me tell you a thing or two about what I’ve got going on in my mind all day long…

Recently my friend Danny posed the question: “Why and when did you choose a vegan lifestyle?”.

The following is my response, totally off the cuff — beware, I say “as much as possible” way too many times for my own liking.

“I have been on again, off again vegan/vegetarian since high school. I was raised around alternative lifestyles and the veg thing never seemed different to me. So it was natural for me to choose a more compassionate way of eating when the choice was finally mine to make. I am, however, always fighting with myself and my desires. I LOVE cheese and meat. I admit it! It is so so tasty to me. But I also know what it is, and where it comes from and THAT is less tasty sounding. I have to constantly remind myself of where my food comes from in order to stay on track.

When I decided to become veg again (last summer) after years of an omni(vore) diet, I did it because I want to raise my daughter in the healthiest way possible. Healthiest for her body and mind, and healthy for the planet. I want to teach her what I believe is right and so I needed to be making those same choices for myself as well. I truly believe that it is right to teach my daughter to have compassion for ALL living creatures, to treat her own body in loving ways and to be kind to our planet. So, the two of us are vegan. But it doesn’t end there! I TRY to eat as many whole foods as possible. Whole = the closest to the earth as possible. Raw, unprocessed, non bleached, etc… I am also working to growing as much of our own food as possible. There are so many more ways to give back what we take, and I’m just now starting to find ways to do so. Veganism and gardening are just the beginning for us!”

The question isn’t new to me, I get asked this ALL THE TIME, but for some unknown reason I really felt like the answer was just right there in front of me for once. Veganism just feels right. It’s the only thing that makes sense to me on a base level and I can’t always explain it, but what it means to me is that I am one step closer to giving nourishment to my body, mind and planet.

nour•ish

v.t.

1. to sustain with food or nutriment; supply with what is necessary for life, health, and growth.
2. to cherish; keep alive: to nourish a hope.
3. to strengthen or promote; foster: to nourish the arts.
Nourishment is key to our survival — as individuals and as a human culture. When we partake in activities that take away from, and strip life from, our world we are depriving ourselves and the planet of something key and dear — life. Clear-cutting, factory farming, urban sprawl, etc…are all destroying our world. The only way I see to do my own part in combating this negative culture we are living in, is to thrive as a responsible parent, urban gardener/farmer, lover of nature, perma-culture junky, and whole foods (vegan) advocate.
Our culture have been taken over by what other people say is the right way: through government mandate, advertising, entertainment, and general popular belief.  And, to be honest, I can’t tell someone else what the right way is for them either, but what I can do is teach my own daughter what way is right for me and hope she follows in my footsteps — or at least takes some of the good things about me into her heart as she grows and not just the bad. I want to teach her that WE as a human culture, and as individuals, can make decisions for ourselves, without the rules brought down on us by those in authority (including myself). That we know ourselves better than anyone else ever could, as long as we listen to what our hearts and minds are telling us. That doctors and judges and police want to do good things, but that we need to give them the tools to help them keep us safe. That we are in charge of our own well being, no one is responsible for giving it to us. That we must treat our selves with respect, and other beings with respect, and our neighbors with respect, and other cultures with respect, and other lifestyles with respect.

re•spect

v.t.

2. to pay proper attention to; not violate
3. to show consideration for: to respect someone’s rights; treat courteously or kindly
11. to refrain from intruding upon or interfering with: to respect a person’s privacy.
We do not know the course of someone else’s life that has brought them to the conclusions they have come to about how to live their own life – and we must honor that course without judgement whether we agree or disagree with the choices that person makes. I truly believe that people (even people we feel are doing evil) are only doing what they truly believe is right. And so, I do not judge people for what they eat, who they love, what music they listen to, etc…
Am I wandering?
For me, everything is related. I respect animals and so I choose not to eat them. I respect my body, so I feed myself whole foods from the earth. I respect the earth, so I do as much as I can to limit my impact on it. I respect my daughter, so I teach her what is important to me and let her be the person she is meant to be. I respect those around me, so I attempt to give them my full attention and the benefit of the doubt. And so the story goes.
So, I have to ask, Why and when did you choose a vegan lifestyle?
xoxo – grace