Friday, November 17, 2006

Taking Time Off

I just wanted to let y'all know that I'll probably be away from my bloggy for a few days--probably until after Thanksgiving. I've recently enabled comment moderation to deal with comment spam and unhelpful/rude comments. So if you try to post a comment and it doesn't appear, it's either because:

1) you are a jerk who wants to link to your white power website;
2) you want to insult me or my beliefs, rather than engage in intelligent conversation;
3) you're spamming me;
4) you have more misspelled than correctly spelled words in your comment;
5) I accidentally hit "reject" instead of "publish" (crap!);
6) yo momma;

or -- drum roll please--

7) I'm away from my bloggy over the holiday and will get to it all later.

In the meantime, I wish you all a peaceful Thanksgiving. I'd also like to introduce you to our adopted Thanksgiving turkey, Gideon. He lives at Farm Sanctuary, and is a very handsome gentleman, no? We are visiting Farm Sanctuary tomorrow for their annual Celebration for the Turkeys. I hope I get a chance to say hello to Gideon! Don't forget: you, too, can adopt a turkey!

And if you're still trying to figure out what to cook this year, I recommend checking out this site. For dessert, you can also add Pumpkin Ice Cream to the menu! It's like pie in ice cream form.


  1. Humm-your recipes look delicious. I am not a totally in your area of cuisine, but it might encourage to do so. Thanks for sharing all your fun in the kitchen

  2. Hi Agnes - I came across your blog on Blogger's Blog's of Note and was wondering what the heck a vegan is. So, i did a quick Google search and came across the following website...
    (Also, it's not my site :-) God bless!

  3. As someone who has been a vegetarian for 11 years, 2 of those vegan (when I was younger...I've since gone back to milk and cheese products), I can say that I am glad to have stumbled across your recipes on blogger. Keep up the good work! :)

  4. Hi, I think your blog is really cool, its nice to see people with similar values, you go girl! Alex

  5. These foods look GOOOOOOOOOD!!

  6. i have a question what can you substitute eggs and milk for in a recipe when you don't have a lot of money? And do you know any recipes for Yucca/yuca roots?

  7. I like your blog. Very funny!

  8. To Kora--

    You ask a great question: "What can you substitute eggs and milk for in a recipe when you don't have a lot of money?"

    I'm a budget shopper, so I'm always looking for the cheapest way to do things. So I've given this a lot of thought!

    For cow's milk, you can use soy, rice, oat, or any other plant-based milk. Soy milk is usually the easiest to find, and is also typically the cheapest. Many stores now have generic-brand soy milk, which will be cheaper than brand-name varities. I think even Wal-Mart is carrying soy milk now!

    You can also often find cases of aseptically packaged soy milk at places like Costco. These packages do not require refrigeration until they have been opened, so you can buy a bunch and just store it in your pantry until you need it. I actually know someone who switched to soy milk because it was so much cheaper than cow's milk when purchased this way.

    Finally, if you have an Asian grocery store near you, check for soy milk there. It's usually much cheaper than the Western brands you'll find at Safeway.

    As for eggs, there are many cheap ways to substitute in baking. My personal favorite baking egg substitution are "flax eggs," made from flax seeds. (You can see a description under the "note" at the end of the chocolate chip or brownie recipes.)

    You can usually find flax seeds for less than $3/pound (either in the bulk section of natural food stores or in bags in the "health food" section of regular grocery stores). One pound of flax seeds will last a long time (I keep mine in the freezer), since every batch of "flax eggs" uses 1/3 cup seeds and makes several eggs' worth of substitution.

    You can also try using 1/4 cup applesauce or a mashed banana, plus 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, to replace each egg.

    There is also a product found in health food stores called Ener-G Egg Replacer. It's a mix of starches and leaveners, and one box will cost about $5 - 6. That sounds like a lot until you realize that one box equals well over 100 eggs.

    Finally, if the recipe in question only calls for one egg and you're feeling lazy, you can just leave the egg out entirely. Add one extra tablespoon oil and two or three tablespoons water. The finished product will be more crumbly and less rich, but I've done this when I'm out of "flax eggs" and I'm in a big hurry.

    I really do recommend "flax eggs" as the ultimate egg-replacer in baking, though. Flax is so good for you, and the results are excellent. One non-veg friend of mine has started using flax instead of eggs in all her baking because it produces a superior result!

    Finally, I'd also like to note that there are two main reasons dairy milk and eggs are so cheap in this country:

    1) The government heavily subsidizes these products, so we're actually paying a lot more for them; we just don't see that in the check-out lines.

    2) The animals used in milk and egg production are treated as nothing more than food machines. Egg-laying chickens, for example, are crammed together in a cage so tightly that they cannot spread their wings. Some become trapped in the wires and die from thirst or starvation; they are then left to rot amongst their cagemates. After a couple of years of egg production, these birds are killed. Some are sent to slaughterhouses where they might be scalded alive due to outdated slaughter practices. Others are ground up alive in wood chippers. Then another batch of hens take their place. The cycle continues, as the industry feeds our demand for cheap eggs.

    Luckily, there are many affordable alternatives to milk and eggs. If you've got other questions about recipe substitutions, just ask!

  9. I am thrilled to have found your site. I don't do wheat or dairy and have been searching for good recipes for ice creams and sorbets. I am looking forward to digging much deeper in your site. Thanks for all of your hard work. Can't wait to try your recipes!

  10. Anonymous8:39 AM

    I am really glad, after reading the rude and especially unnecessary comments that you have received, that you are enabling moderation. Your blog should not be an outlet for omni apologists, with all of the ice cream here! :) It's a happy place. Have a good holiday.

  11. Hi Agnes,
    I was shopping today and I saw a pet shop and it got me thinking, being a vegan what do you think about keeping animals as pets? I was just curious.
    The other thin is that you can get free range hens that lay free range eggs wouldn't it be ok to eat them.
    I'm not a vegan or even a vegetarian myself but I find your blog very interesting.

  12. To Crazyjedidiah,

    Those are good questions you ask.

    Having a rescued (as opposed to purchased, which would support the breeding industry) pet hen and eating her eggs is much different than eating eggs from a commercial farm. If the chicken is allowed to live out her life and is treated as kindly as I treat my (adopted!) cats, then I would have little problem with it. I don’t seek out such a situation because I have no need to eat eggs.

    You also mention free-range eggs. Unfortunately, commercially available eggs, whether caged or from "free-range" hens, come from birds who are not treated kindly. Free-range birds have their beaks cut off, and the baby male chicks are killed (sometimes by being ground up alive)--just as happens with conventional egg farms. The birds live in a large warehouse, with only a small door leading to a tiny yard. They are not guaranteed to ever see the sun or breathe fresh air. Also, like their conventional counterparts, they are killed at one or two years of age, after egg production drops to an "unacceptable" level.

    While "free-range" is less inhumane than caged egg production, it is far from anyone's standard of humane. Dr. Charles Olentine, editor of Egg Industry magazine, stated clearly, "Just because it says free-range does not mean that it is welfare-friendly."

    You can learn more about "free-range" policies for farmed animals at this website.

  13. i did some research into free range eggs and I found the regulations for free range eggs in New South Wales, Australia, (where I live) and according to these regs they're not allowed to trim the beaks, and only 5 birds per small shed thingy. Any way if you want to check it out the address is

  14. To Crazyjedidiah:

    Australia, like Europe, is ahead of the U.S. when it comes to farmed animal regulations. Unfortunately, I couldn't follow the link you didn't work.

    However, I'm very happy to hear that debeaking is prohibited in Australia for free-range hens. Sadly, though, many of the other abuses I mentioned still occur. (I checked some other Australian sites.) For example, the baby male chicks are still killed shortly after birth since they have no value to the industry. And the hens themselves are still packed up and crated off to be killed after a year or so. (This site provides lots of info about the Australian egg industry.)

    Since we don't need to eat eggs to be healthy, it's much simpler to eat other foods rather than split hairs (feathers?) about how "humane" (or inhumane) various commerical operations are, and what abuses our consciences will permit us to tolerate.

    After all, whenever we look at an animal as a product and profit source, the overwhelming temptation is to squeeze out more profit and product. The desires of the animal to live for him- or herself and fulfill his or her needs are placed as secondary to the desire of the industry to make money. If we turn animals into a commodity, they will be treated as such--and the results are rarely pleasant.