Whole foods and nothing but the whole foods.

So, the Whole Food Market is something I’m very familiar with from my US friends. But, you don’t hear a lot of people in the UK talking about this store.

Thankfully…those of us lucky enough to live in the general vicinity of Giffnock have the pleasure of being able to visit this gem of a store.

Now, before you enter you should know that you’ll need to remortgage your house if you’re planning on doing a full shop here. Also, as good as some of it is…and my gosh so much of it is so good…a lot of it is overpriced pompous pish!

The things I love about it….

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The loose aisle….

I love being able to buy my pulses, oats, grains, nuts and fruit loose. I adore using the little brown paper bags and buying only what I need. I love the absence of plastic bags and tubs. Unnecessary plastic! Plus, overall….it IS cheaper!

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Nuts…nuts….nuts….

Peanut butter on mass!!!! Anyone who knows me knows I LOVE peanut butter….and at wholefoods you can make your own, and bulk buy really good natural peanut butter!

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Salted broad beans!!!

I also love that you can refill your washing liquids and fabric conditioner….so you can reuse your bottles. Again, reducing your environmental impact. It’s not any more expensive than the mass produced supermarket brands either!

The utter pish part, for me…is their fruit and vegetables. Yeah, they’re organic but they’re no more locally sourced than any other veg. And…they’re silly expensive. So, I bypass the pretty displays of vegetables and fruit and go straight to my favourite areas.

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Behold…..2 bags of vegan goodies for a whopping Β£56!

I’ll continue to visit this shop to get the things I love….but will favour the good ol’ supermarket for my weekly shop! Unless I win the lottery (which considering I don’t do it, the odds aren’t in my favour!) if I win the jackpot, I’ll throw caution to the wind and do my full bi-weekly (I’m rich, it’s my duty!) shop in wholefoods. I may even splurge and buy myself 2 or 3 canvas bags for life! 🀣

On another note….we have our first house valuation next week. Exciting!

It wouldn’t take a Philadelphia lawyer to work out what I made for dinner…

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My spicy peanut tofu was, as usual, amazing. But, the tofu I used tonight was BY FAR the nicest tofu I have ever made. It was actually chewy, rather than just soft. It has the same texture as paneer (from what I can remember), for those of you who can remember what non vegan food tastes like. I loved it and would highly recommend it.

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Go out and buy all the tofu!

Enjoy! πŸ‘Œ

Friday! My second favourite F word. πŸ˜‰

TGI Friday, right?

That shit doesn’t fly with me. I don’t work Monday – Friday 9-5. So, your Friday feeling today is my Tuesday feeling. I have another 6 days at work to go before I get a single day off. πŸ™ˆ

Anyway, enough about my off duty.

Today has been a pretty good day. I haven’t had a chance to take a lot of photos of food, mainly because I’ve been working.

I started the day off with a slice of rye bread, with some peanut butter and chia seeds. Absolutely gorgeous, highly recommend it.

Lunch was the sandwich I posted about last night…with the addition of an apple, banana and a TREK bar.

But dinner….dinner was a new one for me. Tonight I made scrambled tofu!!

Now…tofu is never going to be scrambled egg, let’s get that clear from the onset. But…it’s got similar features. The texture is the same and if you pop it on a bit of toast or bread with a wee dollop (that’s a great word….dollop!) of ketchup it’s a bit of a mind twister. My brain was VERY confused!

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Scrambled tofu, rosemary & red onion sausages, grilled mushrooms and tomatoes.Β 

We served it all with a slice of carrot and pumpkin seed bread. It was absolutely gorgeous.

I’d definitely say that scrambled tofu will not be everyone’s idea of heaven, but I enjoyed it.

If you’re brave….and feel ready….have a go!

Let me know how you get on and if you enjoyed it.

Some people are so poor all they have is money…

Nobody said it was cheap being a vegan. We don’t eat processed food (as a general rule), we use fresh plant based ingredients for every meal. Our shopping usually consists of 80% fruit and vegetables, 10% grains/pasta etc and 10% other items (coffee, sauces, etc). Today….we went equipped with a VERY detailed list and we came home with Β£105 worth of delicious vegan goodies.

In fairness, this haul will last us for 10-12 days. So it’s not a huge amount per day, but I did watch people go through the checkout with trolleys packed with frozen, processed rubbish; loads of animal proteins/products; alcohol and their trolley came to less than ours!

There is something fundamentally wrong with this! It should not be cheaper to buy rubbish and flesh of a being, than it is to buy plant based fresh food.

I’m forever impressed with Aldi. As well as having fab veg at fab prices, it has now started doing some powders and supplements to add into your diet. I normally buy all of these things from Holland and Barrett, but decided I’d give these a go. They were super cheap, so I’ll use them in my smoothies and let you all know how the fair with their extortionate counterparts.

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Dinner tonight was a new dish for me. I decided to try a West African Peanut ‘soup’.

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Very few ingredients required.

This recipe was super easy to follow. You literally just throw everything into the stock and let it cook down. (I’ll post a separate recipe later, for those interested).

The end result was DELICIOUS!

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West African Peanut ‘soup’ with kale and sweet potatoes. Served with bulgar wheat and roasted cauliflower.

I’d say this has shot to the top of my favourite meals list. It’s actually heaven in a bowl!!! And to think people actually believe vegans have a boring diet and struggle to eat ‘anything’. Pffftttt!! 🀣

Before we left today we had a real lunch of champions. I skipped breakfast, which is rare, but made up for it with an extra half of bagel.

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Bagel with houmous, avocado, tomato and seeds. πŸ’—

Liz is in to marmite in a HUGE way right now, so she swapped the houmous for vegan cream cheese and the seeds for marmite.

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Marmite, do you love it or hate it?

Plan for tonight is to relax (perhaps enjoy a wee coconut cappuccino and some alpro chocolate over fruit later) and watch a movie.

We have been trying to watch more movies recently. If you haven’t seen ‘I, Daniel Blake…’ I urge you all to watch it before you go down to cast your vote. It really is an emotive and informative movie, about the reality of our benefits system. Referring to state assistance as ‘benefits’ is absurd. They make it sound like a luxury, like you’re really hitting the big-time if you’re lucky enough to be in receipt of it. 🀣

Hope you’ve had a good day, whatever you’ve been up to. ✌

Comfort food & chocolate ! πŸ˜Š

Working nights….haven’t had an actual day off since last Thursday. So, this will be brief.

The palm oil in our hazelnut spread bothered me, so I’ve been searching for an alternative.

Finally, I found something.

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Sweet Freedom chocolate spread.Β 

This particular brand is all natural, uses fruit sugars for sweetness and best of all…doesn’t contain any palm oil.

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Ticks a lot of boxes that matter to me!

Truth is….jury is out on the taste. It has a bitterness that isn’t there with the other spread. It has an almost coffee taste at the end. It’s nice….but not comparible with the hazelnut spread.

I’ve slept all day and feel like I’m maybe getting the cold. So, it had to be comfort food for us tonight . What’s the best comfort food??

Macaroni cheese ✌

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The ‘cheese’ sauce blitzed and ready to be added to the pasta!

Tonight we had it with frozen chips and peas . I’m so full now I could burst!!

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Creamy, gooey gorgeousness.

Heading to work now. Would rather stay home and snuggle on the sofa, but such is life.

The F*cking Friday Feeling (TFFF).

Back to work today. 😨

It’s always sore going back to work after annual leave. Today was busy…manic busy…and despite my holiday, I’d say I was more tired than usual. 😩

Nevertheless, I made it through the day…! πŸ‘

I’m a bit perplexed. I started on this vegan journey on the 10th April. Initially I was eating a fair deal of soya and substitutes, but for the last 3 weeks I’ve eaten plant based….! I’ve been vegetarian for years, so have always eaten lots of fruit, veg and wholegrains. That part of my diet is not new. However, I’d say the quantity of the fruit/veg has increased 5 fold.

The first 10 days of veganism I lost 9lbs. I was eating a lot of food and eating well, but I lost weight quickly. It felt fabulous. I really felt the difference in my clothes as well as on the scales.

However, I feel I’m now putting weight on again. I feel bloated, like my jeans are getting tighter etc. I dont understand why, truly. I eat 2-3 meals a day, the bulk of my meal is vegetables with some carbs on the side.

Is this weight fluctuation something other people have experienced?

I also had a REALLY bad break out of hayfever and the skin on my face was ridiculousmy sore and dry. I put it all down to the hayfever, however I’m now beginning to think it was my body detoxing from the hormones and antibiotics in dairy?? Is that a common thing?

Anyway, some places I’ve read about it say that your body takes time to adjust to the change. I just didn’t realise my body would be quite as shocked given the fact it’s been veggie for so long.

Today I had my smoothie for breakfast, because I never have enough time to make food. I love a breakfast smoothie and although I know they can/are calorific, I find without them I’m super hungry and feel sluggish . Today I was powered by kale, protein powder (it’s all natural and full of essential nutrients, with only 130kcals), mango, raspberries, blueberries and 100mls of koko milk.

Lunch was a rushed afair. Literally crammed it into my mouth between two stops. I didn’t really taste it, but know i consumed a hummus and avocado sandwich, with a NAKD bar, because my lunch bag was empty! 😭

Liz made a gorgeous spicy chilli for tea. We had a tiny portion of wholegrain rice, loads of the chilli and an avocado blended with lemon juice and salt. Yummmmmmmarraaammmaaa!

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I have also been a super good lassie and Β drank lots of water today, which is something I’ve neglected whilst on holiday, if I’m being honest.

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After dinner I had some fruit with a soya chocolate pot thing. (Gorgeous!!) A green tea and an extra glass of water.

I’m working nights as of tomorrow. Blog posts might get a bit screwed up, but you’ll get something!

Peace out! πŸ‘ŒβœŒ

Day 32….Surely when you know better, you’ll do better?

Enjoying the last few days of annual leave by staying home and cooking. Bette has been tired since Sunday, I think the birthday week of fun has finally caught up with her.

Today my little love and I stayed home and watched TV and played. Liz did the gardening Β (I honestly can’t, my hayfever is super bad! – that’s my story and I’m sticking to It! 🀣).

I did do other things, for example….I ironed a pair of jeans!!! I haven’t done that in a long time, but I truly believe you should do something every day that frightens you. So, I did It!

Tonight I decided to make a Buddha bowl for us. I love picky bowls and thought this one would be a winner.

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Powered by plants!

Even just looking at the ingredients makes you feel healthier. The bowl I chose was creamy sweet potato and chick pea, with kale, broccoli, red onion and crispy baked tofu. I served it with a tiny amount of wholewheat rice and nutritional yeast.

It was absolutely amazing. I’m not going to lie. It ticked every box on my foodie wishlist. Creamy, tasty and fresh! Real plant based goodness. Free from all cruelty and death!

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NOTHING tastes as good as compassion feels. I truly believe this.

We followed our dinner with a lovely wee pudding of soya chocolate pot and fresh fruit. I washed it all down with green tea, whilst Liz had a coconut cappuccino.

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We decided to watch an old classic movie tonight. One of my absolute favourites….’Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?’. If you’ve never seen it I highly recommend it. Bette Davis with her rival; Joan Crawford.

On another note, I watched a bit of ‘Earthlings’ this afternoon. I managed 20 minutes and in that time I was crying like a baby. It’s absolutely abhorrent to see how we treat animals. I honestly felt distraught and now find it hard to comprehend how people can know the things I know and still choose to eat meat, drink milk, etc.

My motto has always been ‘you do the best you can…and when you know better, you do better.’

I find it deplorable that people find it easier to bury their head and not learn about the truth, just to allow them to continue living their life trouble free.

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People should not be shielded from the processes behind the creation of their foodstuffs. I won’t scare people into becoming vegan, but I wont shield people from reality either. We need to work together to drive change….because goodness knows, change is long overdue!

I’m perplexed how society find it so easy to separate their food from animals. We claim to be a nation of animal lovers, yet have no problem with the exploitation and abuse of billions of animals every year, for little more than a steak…a sandwich….a sweetie….a yoghurt. Why do people relate to dogs/cats…but not to cows, pigs, sheep etc?

An example of this is the current media surrounding fox hunting. I literally see people up in arms about the prospect of fox hunting being legalised again. Yet not one of these people think twice about posting the ‘ban hunting’ memes whilst bailing into their steak pie or bacon sandwich. What’s wrong with that picture??? I’m genuinely asking!

I’m heading to bed. I have a date with a gorgeous little four year old tomorrow. She finally wants to see ‘Beauty and the Beast’.

I’ll do a wee recipe blog for the Buddha bowl. Should anyone be interested.

✌

Black Bean Burgers

I really fancied a burger today, but really do try to avoid processed things as much as possible. So, I decided I’d attempt to make a nice vegan burger. I read a few different recipes and then decided to make my own version.

So, it’s super simple. All you need is…

  • Oil (for frying)
  • 1/2 large onion chopped finely.
  • 1 shredded carrot.
  • 1 tin of black beans, drained.
  • 6tbs flour, of your choice.
  • 2 slices of bread, made into crumb.
  • 1tsp onion granules.
  • 1tsp garlic granules.
  • Salt & Pepper, to season.

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It really is simple….oil your pan, throw your onion and carrot into it and fry them slowly until they’re soft.

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Meanwhile, fire your drained black beans into a tub/dish and mash the shit outta them. Go crazy on them until they’re nearly mush!

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Now…this is where it gets complex. Try and keep up….

Throw all the other stuff in with the mushed black beans. Mix, mix, mix. I took my jewellery off and got right in about it with my hands.

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Once it’s all combined. Shape into burger shapes. I got 4 out of these quantities. Chill burgers in fridge for a while.

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Once they’re chilled. Oil your pan and fry your burgers on a very low heat (you want them heated through) and turn them often.

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They’re surprisingly meaty looking in the pan….and hold their shape perfectly.

I served mine with chunky chips, tossed in oil and garlic and cooked in actifry.

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Once cooked I added some vegan cheese, egg free garlic mayo, tomatoes and salad on a warm bun…and served!

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If I do say so myself. It was really good!!

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For pudding we had passion fruit nicecream with cacao nibs and unsweetened coconut flakes.

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Gorgeous dinner! If you fancy a burger you should definitely try this one!

Food shop day…!

We’ve had a super busy week (with Bette’s multiple birthday celebrations), so it’s been some time since I did an actual shop.

I wrote a menu planner and made an extensive shopping list, as I always do. I’m very anal about my shopping lists.

After visiting Holland and Barrett for my protein powder, B12 supplements, Bette’s multivitamins and some nooch, etc. We headed to three other supermarkets: Morrisons for the bulk of our shopping, Aldi for avocados and vegan chocolate (It’s on offer this week) and finally Sainsburys for bread and juice, etc.

It is definitely more expensive to shop vegan, as they know they have you by the short and curlies and as such whack you with silly prices….but….the selection of produce is gorgeous. You almost feel happier and healthier just looking at it.

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Anyone with a keen eye will spot two non vegan foods (they contain milk) but you’ve got to remember I’m the only vegan in this household. My wife is almost vegan and my daughter is a vegetarian. So…considering they eat vegan with me as a general rule. I think it’s a pretty impressive shopping trolley.Β 

I’m enjoying the last few days off my annual leave, before returning to work on Friday.

I’m suffering terribly from hay fever, which is entirely new for me. It’s so bad though that my eyes are swelling and my face is breaking out. Pain is awful, I’ve tried natural remedies and over the counter…but it’s looking like I’ll need something from the doctor.

Hope you have a lovely night, whatever you’re doing.

✌