Thursday, January 1, 2009

Dates in the New Years

Granola-Date Cups

I couldn't be happier it is 2009.  I tried really hard not to be despondent about 2008, but my husband being deployed really didn't make for an awesome year.  Considering how much I wasn't looking forward to it though, it wasn't all bad, but this year, I have tons of stuff going on:   
1.  Graduating with my Master's
2.  Husband coming home from Iraq
3.  Getting a job (hopefully)
4.  Husband getting a new job (also hopefully)
5.  Buying a house
6.  Moving
7.  Having my refrigerator to myself instead of just a shelf.
8.  Getting a kitten!`(Zoe will probably not like this, but my husband thinks that she doesn't like him because we got her when she was already a year old.  So he wants to get a baby so he can brainwash it into liking him when it is young and impressionable, haha).

I'll also be cooking a lot of food, of course!  One of my challenges for the year is going to be perfecting the lunchbox meal, so that will be interesting.  I got a bunch of lunchbox/travelware for Christmas, so I'm well on my way, I think.

Luckily, 2009 started out with some good food.  I stayed at my friend's house last night and wanted to bring a healthy breakfast, because I wanted to go straight to the gym (exercise does help a mild hangover in case anyone was wondering).  A few days ago I made the Power Hungry Granola from My Sweet Vegan.  While I was entering the information into the nutrition calculator though, I realized that I'm pretty sure I forgot the brown sugar.  It came out fine anyway, I didn't even realize it until now.  I did not add the fruit or nuts and the recipe made about 3 cups of granola.
Makes 12, 1/4 cup servings (calculated with brown sugar)
Nutrition Information:  121.9 Calories;  1.8g Total Fat;  0.2g Saturated Fat;  0.0mg Cholesterol;  21.3g Carbohydrates;  2.4g Fiber;  5.3g Protein.

I found it an ingenious idea to put TVP in granola.  I really like this stuff, although I'm not really a cereal person, so I've just been eating it straight.  It can be kind of hard to transport.  So I made a chunky date paste in my food processor and mixed the granola in with it.  The picture you see at the top of the post, for the Granola-Date Cups is what it looked like after I pressed it into a silicon baking cup and let it chill.  Next time, I will probably soak the dates first, I just didn't have time last night.    

You could obviously do this with any granola, but I really like this one because it has fewer calories and more protein than any commercial granola I have found.  I used 1/2 cup of granola, and 12 dates (my dates are fairly small), and made 2 cups.

One Granola-Date Cup
Nutrition Information:  250.3 Calories;  2.0g Total Fat;  0.2g Saturated Fat;  0.0mg Cholesterol;  55.5g Carbohydrates;  6.0g Fiber;  6.4g Protein 

Someone told me once that it wasn't a good idea to have a picture of my cat on a food blog.  I think that, as this is a vegan food blog, it is pretty obvious that a.) I am not going to eat my cat, and b.) She doesn't want to eat the food I am making.  So I am unsure why this advice was given (and I clearly didn't take it anyway).  Anyway, I just wanted to let you know that one of the only things she does like is TVP.  She really likes it.  So much so that she wanted to take a nibble of my granola.     
Don't worry, I am not going to start feeding my cat vegan granola, in fact, I was a mean mommy and didn't even let her taste it.  

Anyway, I had a trial run last night, and packed dinner to eat at my friend's house.  My family went for Chinese, the friends had sushi, so I just tagged along with my family and then ate at her house.  For dessert I made the Strawberry Mousse from Vegan Express.  I think I kind of messed it up because I only had frozen strawberries.  I put some agar powder in it, and it did thicken up, but it was much better today, after having awhile to set.  

Serves 6
Nutrition Information:  93.9 Calories;  0.8g Total Fat;  0.0g Saturated Fat;  0.0mg Cholesterol;  18.0g Carbohydrates;  3.1g Fiber;  4.4g Protein

I hope that everyone else had a fabulous New Year's Eve and is starting 2009 on the right foot!  


  1. I've been wanting to try that granola since I got the book but there's just some things I never get around to. Your version looks yummy and I love the kitty picture.

    I LOVE that mousse recipe! I've made it so many times I lost count (this was all pre-blog mind you), I have no idea why I haven't made this recently.

  2. Wishing you and your family health, wealth, and happiness in 2009!

  3. mm the mousse seems so good! happy 2009!

  4. Mmmm, so many tasty treats tonight. I would have never thought to put TVP in granola - good idea! Plus, the strawberry mousse looks like a bowl of sweet pink goodness!

    I tried to talk my husband into game night with Apples to Apples, but he wouldn't give in. Still working on him. :)

    Wow, 2009 is going to be quite a year for you Gina. Can't wait to read all about it...Oh, and there is no reason not to showcase your cat!

  5. Shelby, I'm glad to hear you like the mousse so much...I really want to try it again, because I know I didn't do it justice!

    Heather, has he ever played Apples to Apples? I have yet to meet someone who doesn't like it, its so fun!

    Happy New Year Larisa, thanks for coming by!

  6. Happy New Year, Gina! You have a lot to look forward to this year.

    No cats on blogs? I don't get it either. I love kitty pics!