Sunday, January 20, 2013

Project Plant Based Update

One of my new years resolutions is to start being better prepared and organized.

By the looks of this blog it may not appear as if I've been succeeding but just as any life change it takes time and dedication to make commitments.  Especially for a procrastinator like me.  

The updates of the blog may not be happening but I can assure you that Abel and I are following our plant based month quite well.  The holiday weight gain I seemed to have accumulated (more from stress rather than holidays) is slowly trickling back off and Abel is melting away right before my very eyes.  

So far this month we've tried the following new-to-us items:

Coconut Milk -*my personal favorite 
Almond Milk-* a close second
Oat Milk- *made from Angelas site -- not my favorite of the non dairy milks BUT I like it enough to make it again when I'm out of other milks.  Super easy, super cheap!
Soy yogurt- * not very crazy about and I probably can do without it
and
Silken Tofu - read on for THAT experience....

I have to admit eliminating the diary has done absolute wonders for me already.  My rosacea is so much more toned down, my skin has never been clearer and though I fear this may be too much information -- my digestive system is finally ... how you say....

...regulating?

Thats qutie a big deal for me as it's been an issue for years.  Not a terrible life altering medical issue, mind you... just something that never seemed to work consistently.  These days things are a little more clockwork and though I'm sure not many people are interested in hearing such a thing, I for one am relieved.  No pun intended.

As for the tofu.... well we're almost at the end of our project month and its taken this long for me to bite the bullet and give tofu another chance.  Everywhere I turn I read the best meal to introduce someone to tofu is a simple tofu scramble.   Considering I introduced myself to tofu last year and nearly gagged at my attempt to make buffalo tofu, I seriously needed a  recipe with a surefire guaranteed satisfaction. 

In defense of the initial tofu I first bought last year, it I had no idea of the differences in textures or that it often times needs to be pressed to get a desired consistency depending on how it is to be prepped.  

Even now I'm in the dark when it comes to all of this as I accidentally bought the wrong tofu for our scramble.  Taking a cue from The Happy Herbivore, I picked up what I thought was extra firm tofu but it ended up being extra firm SILKEN tofu -- which Lindsay says is a no-no for this recipe. 

At the risk of already messing up the ingredients Abel and I decided the mushiness of the tofu may actually be ok considering scrambled eggs are textured similarly. My worst fear was that they would be watery though.  I did come across a few recipes online that actually call for silken tofu in scrambles and though none of them said to press this particular tofu my fear of a watery mess told me to press it anyway.  Just in case.

Due to time constraints though I probably only left it pressing for about 5 minutes as we prepped the rest of our breakfast.  It wasn't just the scramble we were eating, we were putting it into tacos with guacamole and a side of orange wedges --  this was another safety net for me.  Surely the tofu couldn't taste TOO bad paired with tortillas and avocado, correct?  

So we went ahead and followed through with the recipe. We seasoned the tofu, tossed it around the pan a bit and though it did stay a bit of a mushy mess I was quite surprised at the overall look once it was all heated through and ready: 

This is what our scrambled tofu looked like in the pan: 


I realize a pic of them plated as tacos with a side of orange wedges would have probably made more of an appetizing photo, but my stomach was demanding food and we had grocery shopping to do before Abel went into work so there was just no time to get all martha stewart with our plate settings.  So little time, and so little (hunger) patience!

In the end, the meal got 4 thumbs up and we would definitely make it again the next time we're hankering for breakfast tacos.  

Round two with Tofu will come on Wednesday when we make "BLT"s.   Can it be that tofu can make a tasty stand in for Bacon?   We'll be using the recipe from Vegan Mashup  and I promise I'll have better photos to document the experience ;) 

Tofu may just be redeeming itself in my book but it may be too soon to make such a bold prediction.  

I'll have to work on making a time block for myself to update this blog more consistently as the change alone in dropping dairy from my personal diet has made more than enough of an impact for me to continue this experience after the month is up.  

I'll also get a separate post up with Abels feedback and any changes he may be noticing while undergoing this project.  For now I just wanna throw out a quick thanks to those who have offered their advice and suggestions on our initial blog post of this experiment.  And also for sticking around even with the huge lapse of blog updates!!

Changes, they are a'happening!