Vegan Sauerkraut Potato Bake!

Happy Sunday friends!

Today, I’m sharing with you an original recipe I got from my lovely mother-in-law, but with my own twist.  I was inspired to make this after she told me about how simple and delicious this recipe is, and how the potatoes take on all the flavors of the sauerkraut.  It’s a perfect recipe for St. Patrick’s Day (if you celebrate), and so easy to throw together after a long day of work.  Let me know if you try the recipe and what you think!

Ingredients:

6 red skin potatoes

1 1/2 – 2 cups of sauerkraut (I used Farmhouse Culture’s Garlic Dill pickle flavor)

1 1/2 – 2 cups meatless crumbles (I used Gardein brand)

2 slices vegan cheese (I used Follow Your Heart’s Gouda “cheese”)

2 Tbsp garlic powder

1 Tbsp turmeric powder

salt & pepper (to taste)

Directions:

*preheat oven to 375 degrees fahrenheit*

1. Chop potatoes into quarters. Put at the bottom of a 4×6 inch baking pan.

2. Add garlic powder, turmeric powder, salt & pepper to potatoes and mix until coated.

3. Add sauerkraut and meatless crumbles and mix in with potatoes.

4. Add vegan cheese on top.

5. Cover with tin foil & bake for about 40 minutes or until potatoes are cooked all the way through.

6. Remove from the oven and let sit for about 10 minutes.

7. Dish up and enjoy!

Interview with Mo Speer!

March’s interview is with the awesome and talented Mo Speer! I spoke with her in January and am excited to share her vegan journey and evolution with you.  I hope it brings you some inspiration!

My name is Mo Speer. I have been OFFICIALLY vegan for a month [almost 3, now! :D]. While I tried to jump into the lifestyle in 2017, it just wasn’t my year (I was more vegetarian than anything). For the last month though, I have been committed to eating a completely vegan diet.
 

I decided to go vegetarian on a whim in November of 2016, without much rhyme or reason behind it (but I do admit to watching a few scary documentaries about heart disease and diabetes). When I woke up January 1st of this year and everyone was talking about their new year’s resolutions I realized I had never made one, so I thought, well, this is the time to try it. Going to Luther College I had a lot of run-ins with research projects on food sustainability and food security and how the United States can do a better job of both. I feel like this is my contribution to all the food issues going on in the world right now. The main reason, which is mostly selfish :), is being better to my body and putting things in it that are going to serve me well. Since I’ve started eating vegan I have found tastier and healthier recipes and started to learn more about what is actually in the things we are eating. Nothing like label checking in the grocery store to really make you realize how many chemicals there are in the foods we eat all the time.

My favorite vegan food… I would have to say is curry or stirfry.  I love a simple veggie stir-fry either paired with couscous, quinoa or brown rice. All topped off with peanuts of course!! I have made it in so many different ways (and eaten it at Koreana, YUM) that I never get sick of it. I can’t live without… brown rice probably. And mushrooms. Mushrooms have been my saving grace, some types of mushrooms have a consistency close to meat!

Being in the company of a vegan might annoy you, but remember that when you ask them if they want a (fill in food here) and say “no, I’m vegan” that is just like saying “no I am lactose intolerant” or “no I’m allergic to peanuts.” Just because we chose this diet for ourselves does not mean we think we are better than non-vegan eaters [Yes! Amen!]. We are simply explaining in the simplest way we can that we cannot eat what you are offering because of a life choice we have made. I try to find other ways to ask about foods at restaurants, like, “Does this contain dairy products?” so I don’t lead with, “I am vegan” and immediately get nasty glares.

If you are just starting out, and I am not saying it can’t be done, but I highly encourage just starting on a vegetarian diet. While quitting cold-turkey [pun intended? ;)] can be done, most people I have talked to found it immensely less traumatizing to ease into it. After a year of being vegetarian, I had already learned tricks and tips on avoiding meat. I made the transition step-by-step. First I cut out meat, then seafood, then milk and yogurt (which I never consumed much of anyway) then this year, I finally cut out cheese and eggs (RIP breakfast burritos — I FEEL YOU!). BUT there are so many ways to make so many of your favorite foods. I have found an even better vegan version of a breakfast burrito that contains hummus, scrambled tofu and vegetables and it’s AMAZING. [Going to try this ASAP!!!]

I haven’t really been to any exclusive vegan restaurants (yet) I’ll keep you updated. I do however have a favorite website that has the best vegan recipes https://minimalistbaker.com/

The BEST thing about being vegan is slowly learning recipes that are simple yet healthy and don’t make you want to break down crying in the grocery store. It wasn’t the easiest transition to make, and meals don’t come as easy, but I find that now when I’m eating, it’s with a purpose and not just to snack on the nearest bag of sour cream and onion lays. HOWEVER, let it be known that you can still find ways to binge eat your favorite foods (even if they’re in different forms), and because it’s likely that they’re made of vegetables, you won’t feel as terrible after!

[photographs by Mo Speer]

I’m writing for Raise Vegan!

Hello friends! Sorry I’ve been M.I.A. the last month.  The universe has brought me new opportunities which has become my main focus outside of motherhood and The Vegan Steven.  In a series of fortunate events, I’ve been invited to write for an amazing website and magazine (the #1 vegan pregnancy and parenting website in the world!) called Raise Vegan. Quite honestly, I feel so fortunate and grateful to have to opportunity to write for such a large audience and use my degree in English for the first time! It has taken up a lot of my time (as I will be writing two articles per week for the website and one article for the monthly magazine), but it’s truly a joy, and all I can do is say thank you to Janet Kearney from Raise Vegan for including me on her amazing team of writers!

I’m also still trying to figure out what content to include on The Vegan Steven.  While I love vegan food, I feel that veganism can encompass so much more than just recipes.  I am entertaining the idea of showing our food forest garden journey, vegan friendly hair care and beauty products and maybe even our minimizing journey.  Are those things that interest you, or would you rather see recipes and food ideas?

Thank you for your support, encouragement and for sharing your journey with me.  Nothing makes me happier!  If I can influence even one person to eat more fruits and veggies, I will feel fulfilled.  Sending you all love and light!

~Siri Steven