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Vegan “steak” sandwich…

I’m not crazy about “fake meats”. I love my raw veggies and I tend to feel a little bit seedy after having meat substitutes because, well, they don’t tend to be very useful nutritionally and are often loaded with salt and/or fat. With that said, every now and then I like to have a comparable alternative to my omni-eating family’s meals, so faux meat still has a place in my diet for now.

Fry's Burgers

These patties are by Fry’s Vegetarian, and are 100% vegan. They smell pretty good (not like actual steak, thankfully, because that smell now makes me feel ill) and look quite like actual hamburger patties. I’d go so far as to wager I could probably get away with blind-testing these on an omni and not having them notice they’re not eating actual meat. They’re not healthy, but they’re a good sometimes treat and one of my favourite faux options.

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I now have caramelised onions down to a fine art. The secret, it turns out, is agave nectar. First, I fry them and get them soft and slightly seared in virgin organic coconut oil. Once they’re really starting to brown, I throw in a generous dash of dark agave nectar and I swear it results in perfect caramelised onions every time… and I love caramelised onions. Probably to an antisocial extent.

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This appliance has been an absolute godsend. I didn’t even know of the Ninja’s existence until I wandered into Big W when killing time before my eye test. They had the three container set on their specials display for $148 and, as I’d been having severe blender angst, I impulse-bought the Master Prep Professional set.

Oh.my.gosh. Best thing I’ve ever done. It takes me about three seconds to dice carrots (like the purple ones pictured above) into teenie tiny pieces ready for salads and sandwiches. If I could be in love with an appliance, this would be it.

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This bread was incredible. I slapped some Nuttlex on it which, again, isn’t healthy but the intent of this sandwich is not to be particularly healthy.

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Each sandwich has one patty on it. I cut about 1/4 of it off the side and lay it along the top of the sandwich, but that’s due mostly to the weird shape of this bread. I was super generous with the barbecue sauce because, hey, I love barbecue sauce! Then the onions. Oh, the onions!

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…and some tasty purple carrot…

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Add tomato…

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Throw some greens on and pop the top on the sandwich and viola! Probably the best “steak” sandwich I’ve ever had – meat or otherwise, this trumped everything.

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LOOK AT THAT THING!

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Recipe – Potato and Leek Soup

I finally got around to trying my hand at potato and leek soup this weekend. Usually I just throw things in a pot and see what happens, but I thought in this instance I’d follow a recipe seeing as it was my first time and all.

MADONNA BREAK!

The recipe I decided on was by Steph Davis at High Infatuation. I didn’t have everything she listed in her recipe (no white wine anywhere and apparently I’d already used all of my rosemary) so I improvised a little and this is the recipe I ended up rolling with:

8 medium white potatoes, washed and diced
2 large leeks, both white and most of the green parts
1/2 yellow onion
2 cloves garlic (I used two spoonfulls of crushed garlic)
2 Tablespoons coconut oil oil
Splash of red wine (who’s counting how much?)
1/2 tsp thyme
1/2 tsp oregano (rosemary in the original recipe, but I didn’t have any)
1 tbsp chives (my addition)
4 cups vegan stock (I used vegetable)
2 cups water
1 tsp salt, or to taste
fresh black pepper to taste
1 cup coconut milk

As instructed in the original, I sauteed the leeks, then the potatoes, onions, garlic, chives, thyme, oregano and wine in coconut oil.

Threw the stock, water, salt and pepper in there. Let it simmer for about 20 minutes. Mushed it up with my hand mixer, added coconut milk and mushed that in too…

DELICIOUS.

It’s insanely easy and the taste is amazing!

Day4

Fox in Flats Style Dare – March 1-7

As anyone who follows me on Instagram knows, I LOVE the Fox in Flats style dares! They get me to be more creative with my fashion, makeup and hair styling, they’re a LOT of fun, and they take some of the struggle out of deciding what to wear each day. In February, we had FABruary, and as February drew to an end I was rapidly becoming bereft – what would I do without the Foxy challenges each day to inspire me?

I did consider devising my own style dare but luckily, I didn’t have to! Presenting: the March series of the Fox in Flats Style Dare!

It’s a great challenge and you can join in at any time so if you haven’t, I encourage you to! Here’s my first week of the challenge:

March 1: Grrr! This one was animal print inspired, so I got a little wild (for me) with a cute leopard print high-low shirt and my favourite elephant necklace. Queen of the jungle, baby.

March 2: Black and White. Pretty straight forward, haha! I paired my favourite non-pants with a white T, black vest, long black cardigan, and black and white checked scarf. I threw a splash of red in there too, because I’m a rebel that way.

March 3: Combat. I had to borrow some pants for this one, as I think the last camouflage I had in my wardrobe was circa 1999 when I was thirteen! I have a deep love affair with these boots, uncomfortable as they are, because they make me feel like Lara Croft, and doesn’t every little girl want to be Lara Croft when she grows up? No, just me? Eh.

March 4: French. I had a lot of fun with this one, including finally conquering my first French twist! Good practice for my trip to France this coming September. Très bien!

March 5: Cuff ‘Em. I didn’t read up on this dare before doing it, so when I read “cuffs” I thought of pants and shirts, not jewellery cuffs. Consequently, I wore my too-big jeans with the cuffs rolled up to show off my cute little pink boat shoes. Probably would have worked better with jeans that weren’t bootleg!

March 6: Twist and Pin. I love this hairstyle, and it is SO simple. It’s just two two-strand twisty braids wrapped around my head, but the result is so dreamy and feminine. It’s also a great go-to for not-so-clean hair.

March 7: Ruffles. Every time I wear this shirt, someone makes a “Which airline do you work for” quip. They be hatin’ on the cravat, yo.

So there you have it, my first week of March in fashion challenges. Join in and don’t forget to follow me on Instagram @amyboulevard!

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RECIPE: Crepes!

As the child of an American father with a love for big, fluffy, dense American-style pancakes, I never really gave crepes much thought. Almost every weekend this year, I’ve made pancakes in similar fashion, experimenting with flavours and textures and trying to get the hang of the perfect pancake.

The problem with pancakes, while they certainly have a place in my heart forever, is that they are so dense. I get the most monstrous carb hangovers from pancakes haha! I almost always need a nap after I have pancakes, so I went looking for a lighter alternative. Enter my gorgeous friend, Tammi, who posted a photo of some delicious looking passionfruit crepes the other day:

(Photo by Tammi T – @rockitqueen)

So I thought to myself… crepes are pancakes’ skinny cousins, right? Right!

INGREDIENTS

1/2 cup oat milk
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup organic coconut oil
1 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp dark agave syrup
1 cup plain flour
Pinch of salt
Splash of vanilla essence

Lime juice and icing sugar to serve

METHOD

  1. Mix everything together. Original recipe said to leave it sit for two hours. I didn’t. I was hungry THEN, damn it.
  2. Cook into cute little circles. Like pancakes, wait for bubbles to appear and then flip.
  3. Roll up, with three on a plate.
  4. Drizzle with lime juice and sprinkle with icing sugar.
  5. Serve

Delicious!