What a way to start a New Year, surrounded by delicious food, conversation you can sink your teeth into and a few much needed embraces. Actually, that’s the same way I started this blog -my first post recounted a January vegan brunch with many of the same guests in attendance.
We had tried to get together over the last month and were never able to find a time that worked for a majority of the group. But when I relized that New Years Day meant most work places would be closed I quickly sent out an invitation. Finally, success!
To start the year off right we discussed our resolutions and decided that 2010 is the year of:
-not breaking commitments to see friends (so commit carefully)
-trying a new recipe a week from cookbooks we already own
-inventing the root-beer-float-pie (what a flavourful accomplishment that would be.)
To make sure we were in good spirits to start the year off, I created a station for tea and coffee.
Utensils and plates were set out. You can see that I live right downtown Toronto with a view of our sports stadium from my window.
To conjure up the energy to accomplish the challenges we had outlined, we all enjoyed big plates of:
Home Fries supplied by the couple who brings you TasteBetter.com
Tofu Roast (made by Ying Ying Soy Food). Check out the articlein the Toronto Star about this dish.
A Tofu, Olive, Red Pepper dish provided by my favourite Kiwi Couple.
Amazing array of fresh fruit including papaya, pineapple and bananas. With this spread you could almost forget the frigid temperatures outside. Thank you Kim.
Gluten-free, Lemon-Blueberry muffins
from podcast superstar Colleen
. I was really impressed with the rise and texture she achieved.
Colleen also whipped up this amazing Frittata
. She used the shiitake dill recipe in Vegan Brunch.
I made a raw crepe that could be filled with strawberry compote and chocolate-avocado mousse.
Raw Pear-Ginger Crepes
The crepes were inspired by swell vegan’s recipe. I adjusted her recipe to create this pear-ginger version.
5 small pears
1 1/2 cup ground golden flax seed
3/4 cup shredded coconut
1 tsp ground ginger
I pureed the pears in a food processor until they turned into a smooth sauce. In a bowl I combined the pears with the other ingredients. Then I scooped a heaping tbsp onto a teflex sheet and spread it out into a thin circle with the back of a spoon. I repeated that 12 times. I dehydrated the crepes for three hours at 110 degrees. I then flipped the sheets and removed the teflex layer. I then dehydrated the crepes for an additional 2 hours. They were still pliable but firm when I removed them from the dehydrator.
The strawberry compote was simply made by defrosting two cups of local berries picked fresh in June. I added about a tbsp of agave syrup and the zest of one orange. I put the bowl into the dehydrator for the last two hours of the crepes drying time-just to warm it up.
Once we were all fully satiated, we agreed that keeping our gatherings casual will allow them to happen with greater regularity. I can’t imagine a better plan for the new year-finding more time to relax in the company of friends.