Ahhh…the wonders of vegan food, real vegan food with no artificial ingredients… delicious vegan food! I just can’t get enough of it and neither can my husband and graphic designer, Tony Perez, or my dear friend and fellow blogger/food photographer, Keturah Davis.
Hi. I’m Trisha Star. Welcome to my kitchen and welcome to Made Vegan. I’m a vegan cook with a strong passion for real food, made vegan. This means hold the maltodextrin, the FD & C Red #40s, the high fructose corn syrup, etc. etc. etc.! Please and thank you. I’ll have me some good old fashioned grains, beans, veggies, nuts and fruit prepared with love and wonderful seasoning.
My husband and I live in a super cool concrete loft in Chicago along with our four cats; Judias, Sasha, Bubbles and Evel. I am so grateful! I was vegetarian for over fifteen years and became vegan a few years back. I can’t imagine life any other way. It’s good for me and great for the animals.
About my Kitchen. It’s yellow and filled with sunshine. It’s a no meat, dairy and egg free zone. It’s filled with vegan cookbooks and awesome kitchen tools and gadgets to make my life as a vegan easy. About my recipes. They are all vegan, all the time. The recipes are made with real ingredients using organic whenever possible and packed with tons of flavor. I’m not scared! :)
I have been wanting to start a vegan food blog for some time now. My awesome friend, Keturah, knew all about it. I host vegan thanksgiving every year. I would always mention to my family and friends about how much I love my kitchen, love entertaining and love to cook vegan. It came up many times…”Guys, I wanna have a vegan food blog!”
Then, one day, Keturah says…”Let’s do it!” And so the collaboration began and Made Vegan was born.
This first blog posting is tough for me. One of my biggest problems in life is having too many ideas running through my mind and wanting to say too many things all at the same time. I love sharing information! So, when I had to gather my thoughts and focus in on the first blog posting, I have to admit, it was an overwhelming task. “I have so much info!” I thought. All my favorite vegan recipes starting rushing through my mind, Thanksgiving tips, entertaining inspiration, my vegan travels and all the personal vegan cooking insights I have learned over the years were saying, “Talk about me first!” :)
So, I cleared my mind and said to myself, “We have time. I have time.” Time to share my vegan culinary journey with you. Please enjoy this blog, please enjoy the recipes, I encourage you to voice your opinions, share your stories/best practices and most of all, to ask Keturah, Tony and I any questions you would like.
Which brings me to…the first recipe I would like to share with you. Sweet Cherry Autumn Quinoa Salad.
I know, you’re like, “It’s a salad, come on.” But wait, it’s delish. I promise and like I said…the whole overwhelming thing played a role in this recipe. Keturah and I wanted to keep the first dish light and airy. We wanted to celebrate the beginning of our new collaboration with a little vegan wine by Orleans Hill Winery and a hearty fresh salad by Yours Truly.
Without further ado, I give you…
SWEET CHERRY AUTUMN QUINOA SALAD
5 oz arugula
1/2 cup quinoa
1/3 cup chopped carrots
1/3 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup dried cranberries
1 celery chopped stalk
1 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tablespoon of sweet cherry balsamic vinegar (or you could just use balsamic vinegar)
pinch of fresh minced rosemary and thyme
salt and pepper to taste
Combine the quinoa, carrots, walnuts, dried cranberries and celery into a large salad bowl and toss real good. In a separate small bowl mix the olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Pour the olive oil/vinegar dressing over the quinoa mixture, mix well making sure to get the dressing all over the quinoa mixture. Set aside a handful of the arugula. Add the remaining arugula to the quinoa mixture and gently toss. Grab a plate, place a hearty amount of the salad in the center of the plate and top with the remaining arugula. Serve with a vegan, sulfite free, organic Zinfandel like the one Keturah and I enjoyed from Orleans Hill Winery and enjoy your salad!
Until next time…eat fresh, eat organic, eat real, eat vegan!