Say hello to my new (totally vegan) friend, Cake! This bebe has two layers - the bottom is cacao and raspberry, and the top is coconut, vanilla bean, and raspberry. Cake is wearing chocolate mousse frosting, a dark chocolate drizzle, a dusting of dark chocolate shavings, and a crown of raspberries, with a sprinkling of raspberry jewels on top. Recipes modified from @thecakernz’s amazing creations, and decoration inspired by @ameliaferrier1’s wonderful masterpieces. Ah, if only I had some vegan friends to share him with… 🍫👋

Say hello to my new (totally vegan) friend, Cake! This bebe has two layers - the bottom is cacao and raspberry, and the top is coconut, vanilla bean, and raspberry. Cake is wearing chocolate mousse frosting, a dark chocolate drizzle, a dusting of dark chocolate shavings, and a crown of raspberries, with a sprinkling of raspberry jewels on top. Recipes modified from @thecakernz’s amazing creations, and decoration inspired by @ameliaferrier1’s wonderful masterpieces. Ah, if only I had some vegan friends to share him with… 🍫👋

Anonymous said: where is the recipe for the vegan brownies? ;)

My favourite vegan brownie is the following by the lovely folk at www.minimalistbaker.com. It’s beautiful and exceptionally rich, plus has all the added goodness of cacao - mmm! Particularly delicious when served with coconut yoghurt and fresh berries.

Ingredients
  • 1 15 oz. can (~ 1 3/4 cups) black beans, well rinsed and drained
  • 2 large flax eggs (2.5 T flaxseed meal + 6 T water)
  • 3 T coconut oil, melted (or sub other oil of choice)
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder (the higher quality the better)
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • heaping 1/2 cup raw sugar, slightly ground or pulsed in a food processor or coffee grinder for refined texture
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • Optional toppings: crush walnuts, pecans or semisweet chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Lightly grease a 12-slot standard size muffin pan (not mini). Make sure you’ve rinsed and thoroughly drained your black beans at this point.
  3. Prepare flax egg by combining flax and water in the bowl of the food processor. Pulse a couple times and then let rest for a few minutes.
  4. Add remaining ingredients (besides walnuts or other toppings) and puree - about 3 minutes - scraping down sides as needed. You want it pretty smooth.
  5. If the batter appears too thick, add a Tbsp or two of water and pulse again. It should be slightly less thick than chocolate frosting but nowhere close to runny.
  6. Evenly distribute the batter into the muffin tin and smooth the tops with a spoon or your finger.
  7. Optional: Sprinkle with crushed walnuts, pecans or chocolate chips.
  8. Bake for 20-26 minutes or until the tops are dry and the edges start to pull away from the sides. I found mine took about 25.
  9. Remove from oven and let cool for 30 minutes before removing from pan. They will be tender, so remove gently with a fork. The insides are meant to be very fudgy, so don’t be concerned if they seem too moist - that’s the point. Plus, they’re vegan so it doesn’t really matter.
  10. Store in an airtight container for up to a few days. Refrigerate to keep longer.

Anonymous said: What would be a basic grocery list to go by? I've just started out on my own and am kind of struggling on what to buy. Thank you!!

Here’s what I always love to have stored away in my refrigerator, freezer, and pantry, but it’s by no means a definitive list! Think of it as a little starter (I’m almost entirely sure that I’ve left out many of my favourites - oops).

Refrigerator

Freezer

Pantry

Tip of the day: don’t make a stirfry with chilli then proceed to squish your finger around your eye. It burns!

Came home from work to find these two @niceblocks Nice Creams hanging out in my freezer thanks to my amazing Ma - so happy with life right now! If you live in New Zealand you’ve gotta track one of these bebs down as soon as you can; they’re so darn good. Pictured are the chocolate and vanilla bean flavours, but they are also have banana bean, mango, and a range of ice blocks  👋🌿

Came home from work to find these two @niceblocks Nice Creams hanging out in my freezer thanks to my amazing Ma - so happy with life right now! If you live in New Zealand you’ve gotta track one of these bebs down as soon as you can; they’re so darn good. Pictured are the chocolate and vanilla bean flavours, but they are also have banana bean, mango, and a range of ice blocks 👋🌿

Was inspired by the amazing and lovely @tumblinbumblincrumblincookie to do something a little different for breakfast this morning, so behold the raspberry pudding plate with rosewater compote and crushed pistachios! Not a bad start to the week if you ask me (neither is 26k followers - thanks friends!) 👋

To make the raspberry pudding place 1/2 a cup of rice flakes, 1/2 a cup of unsweetened plant milk (I used rice milk), and 1/4 of a cup of frozen raspberries into a saucepan with a pinch of coconut sugar if so desired. Bring to a gentle boil, then simmer for 3-4 minutes or until softened and a little thicker. Spread the raspberry pudding mixture onto a pretty plate, then make the rosewater compote by heating 1/4 of a cup of frozen raspberries in a small saucepan with 1 tablespoon of rosewater and 1 teaspoon of coconut sugar. Drizzle over the raspberry pudding, then sprinkle with crushed pistachios and serve! Watching Pretty in Pink whilst devouring this is highly recommended.

Was inspired by the amazing and lovely @tumblinbumblincrumblincookie to do something a little different for breakfast this morning, so behold the raspberry pudding plate with rosewater compote and crushed pistachios! Not a bad start to the week if you ask me (neither is 26k followers - thanks friends!) 👋

To make the raspberry pudding place 1/2 a cup of rice flakes, 1/2 a cup of unsweetened plant milk (I used rice milk), and 1/4 of a cup of frozen raspberries into a saucepan with a pinch of coconut sugar if so desired. Bring to a gentle boil, then simmer for 3-4 minutes or until softened and a little thicker. Spread the raspberry pudding mixture onto a pretty plate, then make the rosewater compote by heating 1/4 of a cup of frozen raspberries in a small saucepan with 1 tablespoon of rosewater and 1 teaspoon of coconut sugar. Drizzle over the raspberry pudding, then sprinkle with crushed pistachios and serve! Watching Pretty in Pink whilst devouring this is highly recommended.

Anonymous said: Hey beautiful soul! Just wondering, do you drink alcohol? And if so what sort of awesome vegan (and gluten free!) options have you found? I have you're having a good day x

Hey pal! I tend to avoid alcohol because I’ve read a number of health books and therefore know the detrimental effects that regular consumption of it has on the body (the liver and brain in particular, which in turn effects other regions of the body). When I do feel like drinking, I always always check for my alcohol on www.barnivore.com. It’s a website that lists most common alcohol brands and their use of animal products - it sounds funny, but there are often dairy products and honey in alcohol, and a number of other animal byproducts making of it e.g. Rekorderlig cider is not vegan as they use gelatin in the brewing process. My favourite drink is Midori (a Japanese melon liqueur) with sparkling lemon soda water or dry ginger ale, although I also don’t mind Smirnoff vodka with lots of juice - my favourite is pineapple or guava! As for gluten-free drinks, I found this handy-dandy summary:

"Many alcoholic beverages are gluten free but some are not. Alcoholic drinks are not required to be labelled in the same way that foods are. Unless marked as gluten free, beer should be assumed to contain gluten. Wine and cider are naturally gluten free. Spirits are almost always gluten free. Wines, sherry, port and ciders are all made from fruit and do not contain gluten. Gin, brandy, vodka, bourbon, rum and tequila are made from gluten free ingredients. Whiskey is made from rye or barley, but the distillation process means no proteins (gluten) are in the final product so they are safe to consume. Liqueurs are usually gluten free but check the label if in doubt. "

Hope you’re having a beautiful day too, and I hope that the website and that information helps you for your next party/outing. If in doubt, check Barnivore before you purchase x

angelaltar1 said: is that Adele in your icon photo? whoever it is they are super pretty! :) <3

It’s actually just little old me, but thank you very much! You’re very kind!

This peanut butter cup banana mylkshake was the bomb dot com ,if I do say so myself! Not too sweet or salty, packed with loads of superfood goodies, and filling thanks to the healthy fats in the peanut butter, it&#8217;s the perfect breakfast or lunch smoothie 🐒👋

PEANUT BUTTER LAYER
Place one previously chopped and frozen banana, one and a half tablespoons of peanut butter, and half a cup of crushed ice into a food processor and blend until smooth. Whilst the processor is still running, add half a cup of unsweetened plant milk (I used rice milk) and blend for a further 30 seconds or until totally smooth. Pour into a large jar.

CHOCOLATE LAYER
Place one previously chopped and frozen banana, two to three teaspoons of raw cacao powder, one teaspoon of lucuma powder, one teaspoon of mesquite powder and half a cup of crushed ice into a food processor. Blend until smooth, then whilst the processor is still running add half a cup of unsweetened plant milk and blend for a further 30 seconds, or until smooth and creamy. Pour on top of the peanut butter layer in the jar, then swirl with a knife or straw to make a marbled effect. Top with additional peanut butter, and a sprinkling of cacao nibs.

This peanut butter cup banana mylkshake was the bomb dot com ,if I do say so myself! Not too sweet or salty, packed with loads of superfood goodies, and filling thanks to the healthy fats in the peanut butter, it’s the perfect breakfast or lunch smoothie 🐒👋

PEANUT BUTTER LAYER
Place one previously chopped and frozen banana, one and a half tablespoons of peanut butter, and half a cup of crushed ice into a food processor and blend until smooth. Whilst the processor is still running, add half a cup of unsweetened plant milk (I used rice milk) and blend for a further 30 seconds or until totally smooth. Pour into a large jar.

CHOCOLATE LAYER
Place one previously chopped and frozen banana, two to three teaspoons of raw cacao powder, one teaspoon of lucuma powder, one teaspoon of mesquite powder and half a cup of crushed ice into a food processor. Blend until smooth, then whilst the processor is still running add half a cup of unsweetened plant milk and blend for a further 30 seconds, or until smooth and creamy. Pour on top of the peanut butter layer in the jar, then swirl with a knife or straw to make a marbled effect. Top with additional peanut butter, and a sprinkling of cacao nibs.

The Self-Service Epidemic

Walking through the supermarket is like navigating your way through a minefield. There’s a child having a watery tantrum on aisle five; two elderly women blocking the next with their trolleys; and an enormous ladder right in front of the chocolate biscuits - enough to make anybody roll their eyes in exasperation. All we want is a little peace in order to decide on what to have for dinner next Friday night, but seems that our only solace is the thought of the clean, lonely self-service checkout machine at the end of the maze. It’s all shiny surfaces, gleaming lights, and a soft, electronic voice purring away as each item is scanned. ‘Would you like a receipt?’ ‘Please place the item in the bag.’ There is no more need for real humans to weigh our bananas or to hand us thick wads of five dollar bills - we now have an automated computer system to do it for us, guiding us along our own path to becoming fully fledged checkout operators. 

As a past cashier at a supermarket, I do find these contraptions quite a marvellous concept. Not only does it allow a reduction in the number of employees necessary to keep the queues flowing, but it also lessens wait times and allows customers to avoid face-to-face interaction. This is particularly useful if we’re looking a little worse for wear, or wanting to purchase objects that could raise an eyebrow or two. Perhaps the absence of human interaction has its benefits? For one, who wants bruised peaches and crushed tissue boxes? Not I. Each time we are served we put our faith in the checkout assistant to make the most sensible decision when it comes to arranging our purchases. However, ninety-nine percent of the time they will proceed to place your toilet cleaner in a bag with your broccoli, no matter how lengthily or politely you request them to keep the rather opposite products, well, opposite. We must thank these self-service lanes for the luxury of bagging our own goods.

However, the sudden influx of self-service machines in grocery establishments over the past few years hasn’t come without its downfalls. At the beginning of the year a Napier woman managed to steal a collective $1053.42 dollars worth of groceries by using the self-service checkout at a Pak’nSave store; a feat that would’ve been almost impossible via the traditional checkout system. This is nothing in comparison to looking at the effects that our light-fingered friends have had on a greater scale - British supermarket chains have lost a collective £1.6 billion within the past year as a result of misconduct due to a lack of supervision at the checkout. When pondering this occurrence, a thought comes to mind - who thought it a good idea to put society’s delinquents in charge of a beeping, blooping, money dispensing machine? It appears that these personified machines, and the people behind them, perhaps aren’t as clever as they appear.

This growing issue is not just occurring in supermarkets - the self-service fad is ironically taking over at service stations, too. ‘You’ve got slimy, screechy, impatient little sods in the backseat? Perfect - you won’t have to venture more than two steps from your car to fill your tank!’ Yet again, children are the ideal target for advertising moguls. It takes little strenuousness to imagine them in their business suits, sitting in their high-rise offices, licking their chops at the mere prospect. Not only do they not have to pay for human labour, they can now benefit from increased clientele, most of whom perceive the prospect of not having to enter the service station itself very enticing indeed. This heeds the question: just who is this self-service revolution benefitting? The customer? The business-owner? Both? Or perhaps neither?

We would be kidding ourselves if we didn’t think that this is somewhat indicative of our increasingly introverted society. The minimisation of face-to-face interaction at these food and petrol outlets (of which visiting both are a weekly necessity for most people) is just another testament to the theory that ‘technology is replacing humans’. Perhaps this is true, but at least with the self-service checkouts there’s a chance that we can get cake home from the supermarket without being squished by our shampoo bottles, and then eat it too.