5/26 – Happy Birthday Jasmine!

5/26/15 – Happy Birthday Jasmine!
Wow!… Isn’t it crazy how time flies by? Lately the years just seem to be falling off the calendar. In April we celebrated Megan’s 21st Birthday and now Jasmine turns 11, there are no babies here :0…but they’ll always be our babies.
Jasmine my peanut…may you always continue to be blessed. You are a beautiful young little lady. Continue to be my kind-hearted, helpful and brilliant little girl. Always seek knowledge and maintain your eagerness to learn. I relish your passion for veganism and your enthusiasm in the kitchen as my Sous Chef. I love you so very much. We love you so very much!

On Birthdays I always take requests from my family. What would you like for your special birthday dinner? or what kind of birthday cake/dessert would you like? I’m always cooking up something. Definitely just simply being vegan for so many years now I’ve grown accustomed to making the birthday cake instead of buying (which would mean traveling to the one of about two vegan bakeries – not quite close by)…so it is much easier to make it and it doesn’t hurt that I love cooking/baking. It is definitely stimulating to create in person a dish/dessert that my hubby or kids created in their minds – like my husband’s taste for Banana Pudding with Vanilla Wafers. Now there is sometimes a misconception that all Vegans eat healthy all the time. Truth be told there are vegan junk food items just the same as non-vegan…Whoa…I know right. Yup, you have Chocolate Cake, Cookies, Cheesecake, Pudding…etc. and so do Vegans. Hey I’ve made my share of some sinful desserts in the past – I don’t want to talk about my son’s birthday cake request from November…I won’t mention the Vegan Cookie Dough filling cake that was sandwiched between Vanilla Cake with a layer of Chocolate icing then topped Chocolate and Vanilla icing that I created…all vegan with all the guilt too. : -/
Jasmine’s birthday request this week was my Smoked Corn Chowder (she LOVES it) and Chocolate Cake with Chocolate filling and icing. I always have a stash of Endangered Species Chocolate around (mommy’s chocolate emergency stash), so I sacrificed one of my bars and shaved some chocolate to top Jasmine’s all chocolate cake. 🙂
Despite what feels like every other thought being that of food (I’m sure I’m exaggerating…maybe? Okay okay it is admittedly excessive) but there is a balance and that balance is my family. I love these guys, they truly keep me going.

Happy Birthday my little angel! Mommy loves you always.

Corn Chowder – I smoked it!

Vegan Corn Chowder
(Serves 6-8) – Vegan, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free

My husband and daughter both especially enjoyed this soup. He said, “Best corn chowder ever” and she just devoured it. Towards the end Jasmine tipped that bowl to get the last drop and when she came up for air she asked for more. My son enjoyed it also but it was a little too kicked up for him. You can certainly tone down the spice level to your liking. The smoked paprika and liquid smoke in this soup take it to another level and compliments well with the heat which is tamed by the coconut milk, in my opinion. You can enjoy this soup year-round with frozen organic corn or try fresh local corn when it’s in season (I would use 8-10 ears).

Smoked Corn Chowder

  • Servings: 6-8 ~ Vegan, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free
  • Difficulty: easy
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Credit: VeganRescue.com

2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Large Sweet Onion
4 Garlic cloves, chopped
¼ Tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
2 Quarts Vegetable Broth
2 Tsp Liquid Smoke (vegan friendly)
2 (16oz pkgs) frozen Sweet Corn
½ Tsp Smoke Paprika
¼ Tsp Curry Powder
½ Tbsp Salt
1 Scallion (Green Onion), chopped
¼ Cup Nutritional Yeast
½ Cup Coconut Milk


-In a large stockpot heat olive oil and sauté onions a few minutes until translucent.
-Add garlic cloves and red pepper flakes heat through just for another minute.
-Add vegetable broth, liquid smoke, paprika, curry, salt and corn, bring to a boil and them simmer until corn is tender about 8-10 minutes.
-Add scallion, nutritional yeast and coconut milk then simmer for 5 minutes.
-Pour half the soup into a blender or use stick/immersion blender and puree until smooth yet chunky.
-Add a little sprinkle of smoked paprika before serving. Enjoy!