i work in a library. my favorite activities include running, baking, cooking, taking photos, writing, reading, and making crafty things.

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  • Favorite foods: vegetarian, vegan, cookies, chocolate, cupcakes, tofu, apples, thai food, curry
  • Last bite on earth: . . . a REALLY great slice of pizza. thin crust. fresh mozzarella. garlic, and lots of it. and perhaps some olives and mushrooms. or not. with a generous glass of dry champagne. and a tall slice of chocolate cake with thick peanut butter frosting.

Bread machine ... Can you help?!

I second (or third, etc.) the Cuisinart suggestion. I love baking bread . . . but sometimes it's just nice to have the work done for me! Good luck with your search.

-- Ashley

leftover phyllo - help

I was watching Paula Deen the other day -- and she had this awesome recipe for Phyllo-Wrapped Asparagus ( You should make that!!! It looks healthy, but also very tasty.

-- Ashley

What kind of Candy or Cookies do you make for Christmas

Always, always peanut butter blossoms. They're my favorite! And fudge. Sugar cookies with lots of frosting. This weekend I'm also making gingerbread snowflakes.

-- Ashley

The best think about knowing how to cook is _______.

When I was growing up, my mom never cooked that much. And she rarely baked from scratch. Neither did her mother. Or her mother's mother. So, at least for me -- knowing how to cook and bake is something important. I truly value the ability and enjoy developing it more each time I made something. And I want to pass the love of home-cooked food onto my kids (someday -- I don't have any little ones yet).

I think cooking is a fantastic way to bond & have fun!

Plus, knowing how to bake especially means knowing how to whip-up something to calm my multiple cravings.

Ashley M.

I don't like cookies made with _______!

raisins. white chocolate. bananas. ew.

Have you stocked up on anything for holiday cooking/baking?

lots of hazelnuts. lots of cinnamon. lots and lots of unsalted butter. and even more wheat pastry flour. i'm a baking machine!!!

-- Ashley

advice on sugar subs!

hey -- a while back, i posted to this forum to get opinions on the best vegan sugar substitutes. not sure about the calorie content, but these might be worth looking into:

-- Ashley

Christmas Tree

The Weirdest Thing I've Ever Made

The strangest thing I've ever made by far are apple-beet muffins. At first, I just wanted to create something funny to eat while watching The Office . . . the whole Schrute Farms/Beets thing.

Sounds totally awful, right? WRONG. They're really sweet and delicious; moist and apple-y.

I posted the recipe on my blog today. If you're at all interested, it's worth a look. Instructions are for a half batch. But, indeed, the weirdest thing I've ever made.

-- Ashley M

Now that I know how to make ___ I will never buy it again.

Hummus -- roasted red pepper and garlic varieties.

so easy.
so tasty!

-- Ashley

Cooking/Baking with BEER

joanpieroni2: THANK YOU! I posted this whole thread a.) because I love beer in food . . . but b.) because I was looking for a recipe exactly like stout cake one you provided :)


I can make ___ but I almost always buy it.

I can totally make good pizza. But seriously NOTHING is better than Nick's a few towns over. I'll never be able to replicate that beautiful brick-oven taste.

Also glazed donuts.

-- Ashley

Christmas dessert

Hillary -- those peanut butter bars sound DELISH. I'll have to try them.

As for my x-mas dessert suggestion . . . I'm planning to make rich, dark chocolate cupcakes -- some with a fluffy peppermint frosting, some with chocolate-cinnamon frosting. Of course, they will be decorated with sugar crystals, candy canes, etc.

I just think cupcakes are great because it's an individual treat for each person.

But basically, anything fun and festive will be perfect. And I'm sure his family will appreciate your efforts tremendously :)

-- Ashley

Great dessert to bring to work?

I once brought in these delicious chocolate cupcakes with banana-coconut frosting . . . it was a BIG hit.

-- Ashley

Do you have a REALLY good lasagna recipe?

This one's vegan, but can be altered by using ricotta instead of tofu . . . and mozzarella cheese on top instead of bread crumbs. It's seriously delicious and has PUMPKIN in it!

no-bake dessert ideas?

Do you still have a working range? If so, this recipe is AMAZING, though I am a bit biased . . . it's for mint & chocolate "cupcakes" -- and actually, if you aren't vegan (the recipe is) -- you can just substitute "regular" pudding and use instant . . .

Basically, it's an oreo crust with mint-chocolate pudding inside . . . shaped like a little cupcake.

Here's the recipe:

Foodie Sins

My favorite dessert is Nutella straight from the jar.

Hands down my favorite.

In fact, in an effort to class up my act, I made some delicious Nutella-Hazelnut Crunch Cookies recently . . .

. . . but, alas, I still prefer to lick the stuff right off the spoon.

a very veggie thanksgiving

re: Winter Squash with Apricot Stuffing

definitely making this! thank you!

a very veggie thanksgiving

thanks, everyone! great ideas! :)

Root beer is the secret ingredient in the cake and frosting.

beautiful photo! i have those same plates :) and AMAZING looking cake!

a very veggie thanksgiving

ooo! i might steal your sauted kale idea -- my husband loves the stuff. :) sounds yummy! thanks for sharing!

Vegan Crepes for Breakfast

They were amazing . . . try them out!

Vegan Crepes for Breakfast

Hey! I made these, so thanks for posting them! . . . and I know . . . the vegan police wouldn't agree with my inclusion of honey (I'm not currently vegan, but when I was -- I did eat honey).

However, maple syrup would be a fine substitute (I just didn't have any on hand).

Avocado anyone!

I absolutely adore avocados. One day for lunch, I just combined fresh avocado chunks with banana chunks. Mixed together for a little fruit salad. Very tasty! Thanks for sharing your fav. recipe. :)

Sweet Potato Dishes?

I just made sweet potato ravioli with tofu ricotta. HOWEVER, if you're not into tofu, just use regular ricotta.

The sweet potato pasta is AMAZING.

Here's the recipe:

Cooking/Baking with BEER

So, I have this thing . . . I like to incorporate beer into my food. I just posted a stew today that includes a generous cup of Sam Adams Cranberry Lambic . . . and I was wondering if anyone else likes adding beer to their cooking & baked goods.

If so, I'd love to see more recipes!

Here's my Coconut-Cranberry Stew (with Sam Adams):



a very veggie thanksgiving

All you veggies and vegans out there -- what are your favorite Thanksgiving foods? I read this month's issue of Vegetarian Times, and their holiday menu is great . . . but I'm looking for more!

I'm making these Spicy Cheddar Biscuits for my family. But I like to completely stuff myself . . . what are YOU all making on Thursday?

(And I'm not a fan of tofurkey.)

Fun Flours

I've started branching out in my baking . . . and, as a result, have been exploring various kinds of flours. What kinds are your favorite to bake with, and why?

My favorites? Coconut flour -- gives a sweet taste and has as much protein as wheat flour. I even put it in a soup! As well, I love oat flour in cookies. It just helps them reach a good consistency.

I've also used spelt flour, which I really enjoyed in a recent cornbread experiment.

But I'm looking to try MORE! Please share :)

Best Vegan Sugars/Substitutes

So. I like to bake. A lot. And I try my very best to make everything as vegan as possible (for health reasons, but also because I like to experiment).

I use a lot of Sugar in the Raw, which I've heard is vegan. But what other strictly-vegan sugars have you had the best results with specifically for baking?

AND what about brown sugar?

. . . and confectioners' sugar?

Any suggestions are greatly appreciated! If it helps, the kinds of things I like to bake are on my blog (METHOD).

Thank you, and happy Friday! :)

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