Friday, November 29, 2013

Vegan Everlasting Fruit Salad

I hope everyone had a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving! I have a recipe for you today that is perfect for holiday gatherings because it can feed a small army and it's delicious. When you hear fruit salad you may think of a menagerie of cut fruits, but growing up, this is what I knew it as. Of course the original recipe calls for heavy whipping cream, for which I have two different substitutes that both have the same end result. The first time I veganized this recipe of my mom's, I used silken tofu. The only drawback is that there is a slight tofu aftertaste that may not be appealing to you or your omni friends/family. 

I tried out an alfredo recipe last month that called for full fat canned coconut milk. I was a little leery that I would end up eating a tropical pasta dish rather than the salty-savory-creamy-dreamy one that I had been fantasizing about for weeks. I tried it straight out of the can and was so surprised that it tasted and felt exactly like heavy whipping cream! The special thing about whipping cream is that it coats your mouth with a delectable softness and the coconut milk did just that. It's obviously the winner in my book. [I have coconut haters that really like this.] If you decide to go that route, do make sure that you get the canned full fat stuff. Boxed coconut milk is not the same. You can generally find this in the Asian aisle of the market and there is a reduced fat version- so be careful of what you pick up. Also, this is a recipe that you'll want to make a day in advance to let all the flavors settle and mix together.

Ever Lasting Fruit Salad


  • 1-16 oz box of large ring noodles
  • Grapes [I like a lot!]
  • 1-2 large apples depending on preference, cut into chunks
  • 1 can of crushed pineapple, drained
  • 2 cans full fat coconut milk or 1 pint heavy cream substitute [recipe to follow]


  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons all purpose flour
  • Juice of 2 lemons (5 Tablespoons)
  • Egg Replacer  equivalent to 4 eggs [I used Ener-G Egg Replacer: 8 T of warm water + 2 T of replacer]

Heavy Cream Subsitute

  • 1/2 block silken tofu (extra firm)
  • 1/2 cup soy milk

Blend all ingredients in a blender (do not use a hand mixer) until thick and creamy and there are no more lumps.


Cook noodles according to package directions

Add all dressing ingredients to a medium sized pot and cook over medium heat until thick, stirring constantly (about 10 minutes.) Make sure not to let it burn.

Drain noodles when done. Put in extra large bowl. Add fruit. Toss with dressing once cooled. Add coconut milk or heavy cream substitute to salad, mix, and refrigerate overnight to meld flavors. It may seem runny, but it will all thicken up once settled in fridge.


Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Occasional Scores

I'm finally almost done with all my crochet Christmas presents. I'm quite pleased with how they all turned out so far and can't wait to post pictures of everything! Since I mentioned it last time, I decided to do a post on my recent scores from the occasional sales. If you've looked at my Instagram, then you've seen the picture of the lovely dishes I got at Flamingos. It was an awesome deal at only $28 for 20 assorted sizes of plates. I saw them, passed up on them, thought about it, and went back. I didn't see them at first, but BJ caught a glimpse out of the corner of his eye and they were mine for the taking! I have a couple of TV trays that I found at Arc's about a year ago that match nicely. I'm sort of obsessed with sputnik/atomic bursts right now. 

On my first go around there, I found the two ornaments in the middle of that picture. I'd never seen one of those plastic case ornaments and decided it was so-ugly-it's-cute enough to be welcome on my tree. There aren't any markings on the green ball, but it's sparkly and I had to have it!

Urban Cottage opened a week later and I found a cute little postcard with gnome santas in a forest with mushrooms. Perfect? My most favorite ornament of all time is one that belonged to my sister's grandma. It has a little scene set inside it with an ugly little humanoid. It's so precious. I'm always on the lookout for something similar and I finally found one by Shiny Brite, and it has a mushroom in it! The top where the cap and hook connect is a little broken off, but it doesn't change how it hangs. I also found something special for my mom that I can't reveal, but it's neat-o!

Speaking of my mom, she came up for an appointment last Tuesday and wanted to go to some antique stores. I took her down to 50th & Xerxes. It's a lucky thing I did, too. They were having their annual sale a week earlier than I expected! I found a cool old Singer Sewing Center yard stick and a beautiful Shiny Brite reflector in my fave colors at Hunt & GatherThe sparkly ornament beside it says made in Italy and comes from Arc's- .69! I didn't even have the reflector a week before BJ accidently smashed it to pieces... I'm having a hard time letting it go- the half of it that still exists is setting on the desk beside me. Any idea on how I can reuse this gorgeous piece of Christmas ornament history? 

Normally we've always gone to 50th & Xerxes for Small Business Saturday. It turned out to be this past weekend, so after we went to the Green Gifts Fair at Midtown Global Market, we hit up the shops. We got a steal of a deal at Vinaigrette on rosemary, truffle, and cinnamon(!) olive oils. Then we headed to Loft Antiques where I found a Sammy Kaye Christmas record from 1951 with art I couldn't pass up, another mushroom themed ornament, and another Shiny Brite reflector- not in my fave colors. >_< Arc's was crazy busy on Saturday as usual, but I scored a box of red Shiny Brite ornaments with an old Target sticker [I always love that!] for only .69. Unfortunately, it also took a hit in the great weighted ball accident. Only one broke though. In addition, I found a really heavy blown glass ornament with a cool design. The Shiny Brite tree topper came from eBay because I decided that my tree needs a topper this year, and I didn't want to leave finding the perfect one to chance. It came in a super awesome box. I think I'm either going to need a bigger tree or I'm going to have to purge part of my Christmas collection- maybe both!

I forgot to share this one when I got it a few months ago. I actually saw this exact  non-pierced earring tree used as a display piece at an occasional sale and I thought, "Oh man, I wish it was for sale!" Wouldn't you know, I found it at Flamingos right after! [The ring is from the Walker gift shop. The flower hair clip is from Ethique Nouveau. The bracelet is by Glitter Workshop. Earrings are thrifted from Arc's.]

One project that I can share is my Annabelle scoodie! It took a ton of yarn, but worked up quickly. I used this pattern by Dearest Debi and just changed the ears to cat ears. It is so incredibly soft and warm and it's vegan!

I finished it just in time, too, because the weather decided to become super cold. My baby Annabelle somehow got a bladder infection [which only about 4% of cats actually get] and it cost an arm and a leg at the vet. Because of that, I don't think I'll probably be doing much Black Friday shopping, but Goose's health is more important than deals that probably aren't that great anyway.

I do have other fur babies who don't seem to get as much attention. First and middle born syndrome? Don't worry, you two, the family holiday picture is coming! :)

A quick side note: Society6 has free shipping worldwide through Cyber Monday. I uploaded a couple of new designs and reworked the designs for mugs. They also now have available kids shirts and onsies! Order now for Christmas!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Fall Leaves Design + Artist Promotion

Voting is open for the leaf design contest on Spoonflower and I have a design entered called Quatrefoil Leaves. I hope you'll vote for me and pass it along! 

There is also an artist promotion going on at Society6 for free shipping on all orders from my shop. Promotion expires November 17, 2013 at Midnight Pacific Time. *Offer excludes Framed Art Prints, Stretched Canvases and Throw Pillows with insert. Just click the link for the deal!

Besides all that, can you believe that there are only 5 weeks until Christmas?! I have had goals for homemade gifts that have not been met on a weekly basis yet, which means I'm going to be preoccupied with that for the time being. I'd like to post pictures of all the fun things I'm making for people, but that will have to wait until after the holidays! In addition to gifts, I'm making a hooded scarf and matching face warmer that will hopefully look like my little Annabelle. I'd like to have it finished in time for Black Friday. Target opens at 8pm on Thanksgiving Day- this is getting ridiculous! I don't have any major purchases planned, as usual, but it's just fun to get out of the house and do something unusual. Flamingos is having a "Pink Friday" sale as well, so that is on my to-go list for some fab vintage scores. [I have to show you the incredible dishes I found there! Soon.] I think small business Saturday is even more fun- I can't wait to hit up Vinaigrette for some oh-so-tasty truffle and rosemary olive oils. 50th and Xerxes is probably one of the best places in Minneapolis. I will have to have my scoodie ready for walking to all those wonderful businesses. More soon!