Posts filed under ‘vegan’

Cookies Make it Better (a review)

Anyone who has read this blog knows that I spend a lot of time talking about how great and talented my friends are. This is because I have an upsettingly large number of people in my life who are exceptionally good at what they do. One of those people is my friend Rosemary. She is a baker, and makes some of the best vegan sweets I have ever had.

So when she called and asked me to review her new line of cookies I jumped at the chance. I get to eat cookies and talk about my friends? Seriously, is there a downside to this situation? Is someone going to jump out from behind me and punch me in the neck? Why is this even a question?

Cookies Make it Better
all of these cookies are all dairy-free, egg-free, vegan. they are made with all-natural ingredients, organic whenever possible (includes the evaporated cane juice and palm shortening) and chocolate items contain soy.

First, I just have to talk about the packaging. The Martha Stewart colors and the clean mod pattern serves as a perfect juxtaposition to the concept of these cookies.

The idea of the Cookies Make it Better line is to help you say those things you want/need to say to your friend / lover / significant other / co-worker / parent / classmate / cat / stranger on the subway, while softening the blow with a delicious cookie.

You can also use them if you want to be a dick, but an endearing dick. Thats what I would do.

Just kidding– I’m going to start with the meanest cookie in the bunch because it is also the most awesome. Imagine it, you hand this lovely heart-shaped cookie to the lady / gentleman / person / cat / timelord of your choosing.  They are momentarily filled with either  joy or anxiety and then they read it and react accordingly. With one simple cookie you have sent this person on an emotional roller coaster ride and you have given them the gift of either humor, or (if they cry) catharsis. This shortbread heart dipped in semi-sweet chocolate is not overly sweet, and has a delicate flavor. Perfect for whomever you choose, to choke down while crying in the bathroom, putting a sweet flaky band-aid on that emotional wound.

I hate your new haircut– I can’t hide it any more. Your Dorothy Hamill with permed  bangs just does NOT work for you! Here, have a Peanut butter sandwich cookie with organic raspberry jam center. This cookie is seriously good, the cookie is strong enough in flavor that the sweet jam doesn’t overpower it and they work together harmoniously, unlike that new weave and your  orange highlights.

You’re sweaty– We all know that feeling of being touched by someone who is overly sweaty. Whether it was your friend, having just run a mile in august, or just a stranger in an elevator trying to reach for the button. How about next time you see that arm coming at you, skin glistening with perspiration, you hand them this chocolate-chocolate chip-pecan sandwich cookie with DELICIOUS AS FUCK ganache center and let it tell them what you are too grossed out to say.

My food is my food, not yours

Honestly, I wouldn’t share this oatmeal raisin sandwich cookie with caramel filling either, I would probably punch anyone who wanted to take it away from me.

Stop wearing so much body spray–  Here, maybe the smell of this chocolate chip cookie with chocolate gnache centre will over power the scent of that… what is that? A chemical treatment plant? a flower grown in a caustic garden? The spray you use to make bathrooms smell like toxic potpourri ? Why would you want to smell like that?

You own several pairs of ugly shoes– It just needs to be addressed. Those went out of style before shoes were invented. This cookie will never go out of style. a light flavored sugar cookie with lemon curd filling. This flavor is timeless, those sneakers that your 7th grade boyfriend drew a lopsided skull and crossbones on are not.

Don’t you feel better now that all of that is out in the open? no? Here, have a cookie, it’ll make it better

These cookies can also be made gluten free, and gluten free vegan on request, and for those of you who have allergies, complete ingredient lists are available by request and can be included in the box.

Want to buy some? HELL YEAH YOU DO. There will be information about how to purchase on the Virago website by monday. They’re the perfect antidote or addition to valentines day.


January 29, 2011 at 10:24 pm 2 comments

Starter kit for new vegans: Up the Folks style.

Today’s post was inspired by Mama Pea’s Employees Pick post over at Peas and Thank You

I feel like I talk a lot more about veganism than most of my friends and acquaintances would like. This would normally bother me, as I try to live my life in a way that offends as few people as possible. However, with veganism I usually throw caution to the wind, state my opinion, and encourage others to look in to changing their habits in a similar way. It is one of the only things about which I am unabashedly an activist.

I was recently able to see a whole new crop of vegetarian college students come in to being during an english 101 class where we read Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer. I watched them beginning this journey and I felt old. They were worrying about things like protein and family dinners and all the things that I had to deal with when I first switched to a vegetarian lifestyle at 12 years old. 8 years later,  because of my years of experience, I want to offer a list of the resources, cookbooks, and reading materials that helped me when I was first starting out and have continued to use as I have been living my vegan life. I hope that if you (a theoretical stranger considering veganism) stumble on to this site, this list may help you with this process.

1.) Vegan with a Vengeance by Isa Chandra Moskowitz

I first read VwaV about 6 months after going vegan (I say read, because I sat down and read it cover to cover like a novel) and even though the recipes are great and I have used them consistently for the last 4 years, they were not the most important thing about this book to my  newly vegan, isolated self. What struck me, and helped me about this book was Isa. Her writing made me feel like this choice I had made was smart and dooable and not something outlandish like most of my family (excluding the 5 people that make up my mother and her family) and all but one of my friends were implying at the time. this book made me feel like I was normal, and more importantly it made me feel like I was super punx.

2.) Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer

I’ve talked about this book  ad nauseam, but in case you don’t feel like reading my lengthy review I’ll sum up my feelings about it in one sentence: It made me cry, and gave me hope.

3.) Earthlings
It is informative, terrifying, heartbreaking, and not something to watch if you aren’t completely ready to become a vegan. That is to say, it would be hard for the average human with even the slightest bit of empathy to watch this and not eschew all animal products and systems that allow animal abuse. I know vegans who could not watch this all the way through, but it is important. I leave the decision up to you, but suggest trying to give it a watch.

4.) Student’s Go Vegan Cookbook by Carole Raymond

This book really doesn’t have much to do with the ethics of veganism, but it does have a bunch of really delicious cheap recipes that make enough for 1 or 2 people. This works particularly well for me as a single college student. It uses simple ingredients that most starter vegans can find at a “normal” grocery store, and doesn’t require trips to specialty stores for every recipe.

5.) Vegan a Go-Go by Sarah Kramer

This is another book, much like VwaV, where the recipes are amazing but what really rules are the travel tips and stories that Sarah Kramer shares. I can relate to her stories, and she has an easy way about her writing that makes it seem like she accepts everyone. This is particularly great for new vegans who may be feeling intimidated by people in the community that may appear standoffish or superior. Sarah Kramer is neither of those things, she is awesome.

Please feel free too leave further suggestions for new vegans in the comments!

January 8, 2011 at 9:35 am 2 comments

In which I prove that my attention span is approximately the same as that of a gnat.

Well hello there,

*Giveaway announcement at the end of this  post*

Sooo, The weekly update thing was a nice laugh, but it’s not really working for me.

I believe that this is due to my intensely disorganized thoughts and my unwillingness to order said thoughts in to an easily readable, logical format.

I’ve been working on a project that I cannot show you yet. I can, however, tell you what it is and show you some heavily cropped sneak peaks of the pictures I’m working with. You ready?

Can you tell what it’s going to be?
It’s a calendar full of ATTRACTIVE VEGANS WITH GOATS. Actual title to be announced in the future.

Essentially I’m taking these pictures and making lovely little watercolors (or drawings) of them and turning those in to a 12-month calendar.

now, you may be asking yourself why I’m not just using the pictures, and am instead making them in to watercolors. I am making watercolors (or drawings) for several reasons. They are as follows,

First and most importantly: These are not my photos, and just taking a bunch of other people’s pictures and throwing them together isn’t really a thing. I mean, it’s a thing, but it’s not really a “project.”

Second reason: They are all different sizes and quality, so if I want this to be cohesive at all I’d have to alter it anyway.

Third reason: I love the shit out of watercolor.

Seriously, I love it.

When this is all done and printed, I’m going to sell them and donate all profits made (after printing) to Farm animal sanctuary . I know, I know SO VEGAN.

Unfortunately, I am currently separated from all my art supplies by about 7 hours of driving. Until I return gloriously to the cold dark north I’m just going to sit around and read this book that Jocelyn lent me (okay, in reality it will probably take me a couple hours to finish.)

It’s called The Year of Secret Assignments and it’s one of those books that is often favored by girls between the ages of 10-13. Are we re-living our adolescence? Perhaps. Who cares? Those journal-style young adult books were so great. I personally was a fan of Angus, Thongs, and Full-frontal Snogging.

Jocelyn makes music, and she is awesome. She is working on a CD right now in a real life recording studio, and you guys can expect me to pimp it really hard when she finishes it.

In honor of these horrible short days and to perhaps stave off some of the depression that comes along with the lack of light I’ve decided to do a small giveaway. Nothing too exciting, unless you live somewhere that doesn’t have… CANDY CANE JOJOS

I stole this image from click photo to get to their site.

too enter the giveaway, please write your favorite summer activity in the comments.


See you guys later!

December 29, 2010 at 10:09 pm 3 comments


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