Thursday, May 30, 2013

Avocado Tea Tree Oil Creme Deep Conditioner Treatment

Tea tree oil massaged hair pre-shampoo & conditioning treatment.
Scratch. Scratch. Scratch!
I hate that flaky irritation caused by dandruff and cannot always wear black.
Those nasty little white are specks garnish every blouse and dress top! So alas, I conducted research to dispose of my treacherous foe and discovered that some essential oils can get rid of the problem over time- tea tree oil for one.
I ordered a ml from eBay and waited for the vial's arrival, knowing exactly what to do with it. I massaged it into my scalp, added a few drops to my shampoo, and concocted homemade conditioning treatment to be made twice a month.
Avocados are not just good for eating! Their rich, fatty contents are pretty great for skin and hair. I've actually made a lovely conditioner months ago and decided to use it again, but amped it up with tea tree oil's beneficial rewards for dandruff and olive and jojoba oils for soft manageability.
The results were terrific!

Avocado Tea Tree Oil Creme Deep Conditioner Treatment Ingredients (keep in mind this is for short hair length, double recipe if needed)

1 half avocado
1/3 cup olive oil
10 drops tea tree oil
3 drops jojoba oil

Blend all ingredients together.
After shampooing hair and drying (I always use an old t-shirt-absorbs wetness quicker), massage in ample amounts of conditioner.
Proof that I could never look good as a blond or greenette. 
Once it's all in, put on a plastic cap & leave conditioner in for 30-45 minutes. One can opt to sit under hooded dryer, but I chose no heat. Rinse & dry.
Used my homemade hair cream & extra Jamaican Black Castor oil for styling very soft hair. No flakiness in sight!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Vegan Miniature Broccoli & Cashew Cream Pizzas

Small, but filled with humongous broccoli taste in every bite!
Little pizzas make life less guilty at meal time!
Incredibly yummy and cute, I had an idea for weeks to craft mini pizzas as to save myself from grabbing more than needed triangular slices.
Crisp exterior and soft, chewy center, layered with freshly homemade cashew cream, broccoli, and red onion pieces, miniature pizzas would be pleasing for four friends to enjoy as an appetizer or for the lonely woman to have alongside her staring cat companion.
With my leftovers, I plan on packing them up for a lovely Saturday picnic- weather permitting! :)

Vegan Miniature Broccoli & Cashew Cream Pizzas Ingredients and Preparation

Cashew Cream

2 cup cashews, soaked overnight
3 tablespoon nutritional yeast
2 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 teaspoon garlic, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon white pepper

Drain only a little of the cashew water & puree with all the listed ingredients in a blender/food processor.

pizza dough, cut into four sections
1 cup cashew cream
1 cup broccoli, cooked and diced (used frozen here)
1/4 cup red onion, diced
1 teaspoon Italian seasonings
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon paprika

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper or olive oil.

Flatten four dough sections into pancake shape & rest on baking sheet.
Top with about 1/4 cup cashew cream each.
Sprinkle Italian seasonings and paprika!
Bake for 20-23 minutes.
Slice & serve!

Monday, May 20, 2013

Portobello Mushroom, Red Onion, & Jalapeno Garlic Havarti Quesadillas

A few ingredients & a short amount of time to make these incredible quesadillas!
When lunch break is a short thirty minutes, what does one create?
Easy quesadillas that take less than ten!
Thinner than grilled cheese sandwiches and just as flavorful, these crisp, delicate tortilla triangles are stuffed with portobello mushrooms, red onions, and Daiya's delicious Jalapeno Garlic Havarti and are so irresistible it's difficult to stop at one!
I thoroughly enjoyed them and will definitely craft other fillings- colorful bell peppers, spinach greens, zucchini, ah, endless possibilities! Heck, maybe even peanut butter and bananas sound plausible! :D

Portobello Mushroom, Red Onion, & Jalapeno Garlic Havarti Quesadillas Ingredients and Preparation

2 tablespoon olive oil
2 teaspoon minced garlic
3 large portobello mushrooms, thinly sliced
1/4 cup red onion, chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
slices Daiya Jalapeno Garlic Havarti Wedges
whole wheat flour tortillas

Sauté garlic, mushrooms, & onions in olive oil.  
In a separate skillet, lightly oil & warm each tortilla side for 3 minutes.
Layer with mushrooms & onions.
Melt cheese on another tortilla & top the mushrooms with this side. Repeat all steps.
Very quick & simple.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Raw Crustless Beet & Avocado "Cheesecake"

My first successful raw "cheesecake" was worth the hours of preparation.
I have been working on raw "cheesecake" for a while now and kept using Trader Joe's Roasted Cashews. But after hours of soaking, they never quite captured smooth, desired consistency. Alas, I found their Raw Cashews and voila- achieved creaminess!
Yes, it takes me a moment to catch on, but I got it!
Beets and avocados seemed natural choice- all unorthodox and unique a pairing.
The cake originally did have a crust. It just didn't hold together properly.
There's no need to mourn loss. This yummy "cheesecake" definitely tastes wonderful- the avocado lime a perfect bottom of firmer stout and vivacious flavor. Its creamy richness is especially telling that it would make for a divine alone cheesecake. The beet portion was satisfying and greatly inspired by Vanilla & Spice's Raw Beet Cheesecake which contained adorable candied beet hearts adorning the top of her beautiful creation.

Raw Crustless Beet & Avocado "Cheesecake" Ingredients and Preparation

Beet Part

1 cup cashews, soaked overnight
1 beet, pureed
2 tablespoon agave nectar
2 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon melted coconut oil
1 teaspoon vanilla

Blend cashews with some of the water its been soaked in and once smooth blend beet puree.
Add agave nectar, lemon juice, and vanilla.
Pour this mixture into a desired mold. (I used an 8' inch plastic bowl)

Avocado Part

1 cup cashews, soaked overnight
1 ripened avocado
1 tablespoon agave nectar
1 teaspoon melted coconut oil
juice and zest from one lime
1 teaspoon vanilla

Swirl avocado portion on top of beet & cover with plastic wrap. Freeze for four hours. Carefully scrap sides with a knife & gently turn bowl around onto a plate to release "cheesecake."
Raw jagged heart shaped beet slices & lime slice garnish the top.
Place back into the freezer for 10 minutes.
Thaw for about 5-10 minutes before slicing.
Very delicious! Personally quite enjoy the avocado section the best!

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Vegan Lemon Muffins

These lemon muffins were a bonafide hit with non-vegan friends!
Lemon. Lemon. Lemon.
From rich, savory dishes to the most decadent dessert, many of my most memorable recipe disasters were saved by the teeny tiny drips of a fresh squeezed lemon or yellow rind scraps hot off the grater. So I always keep lemons in the fridge, little bottles of lemon juice, lemon extract, and lemon pepper on hand. Never know when the next catastrophe will occur!
But lemons aren't just an ingredient to be solely used for hero worship.
It can be great alone.
Not alone as in, drinking straight up lemon juice and getting the sour, pinched up cheeks face, lol.
 This is first of two lemon centric sweet breads- (May 24th is Mom, the world's biggest lemon fan's birthday and I'm making specialty lemonade cupcakes for her).
In these moist, delicious muffins, I made sure not to add vanilla extract which typically is included in every dessert and allowed lemon to rule taste of firm and golden treats with lovely browned bottoms. Though lacking springy sponge texture, it is still a definite must for any lemon fanatic- it hits all the right citrus notes!

Lemon Muffins Ingredients and Preparation

2 cup bread flour
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
1 cup almond milk
1/4 cup lemon juice
zest from two lemons
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
pinch of salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease/flour muffin tin.
Separately mix bread flour, sugar, and baking powder.
Blend coconut oil, almond milk, lemon juice, and zest.
Combine wet and dry.
Add apple cider vinegar and salt.
Fill muffin tin with about 1/4 cup batter.
Bake for 25-30 minutes.

Light, fluffy lemon muffins are bursting with zesty flavor.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Vegan Baked Lemon Gardein Chick'in

Baked lemon infused chick'in filets on a bed of ramen noodles & spinach.
Back in the chicken days- soooooo long ago at age 13, my family dinners occasionally featured fried greasy takeout buckets from That Must Not Be Named Colonel Sander's Murder Hut or from the grocery store deli once a week. Rarely had we actually baked this (which is considered "healthier").
Now I never was the biggest chicken fan. but the alternatives have been generally pleasing.
My salvation in disguise- Gardein once again became basis for perfect vegan meal. Lemon was the ingredient of choice to marinade. This yellow squeezed citrus fruit provides a light taste to tender filets and complement modest seasonings, especially that burst of crushed red pepper that gives a lovely flare and teasing red color.
This delicious lemon chick'in can be a side for any dish- brown rice, quinoa. Here I prepared Hakubaku's Organic Ramen Noodles and added fresh spinach and chopped white onion.

Vegan Baked Lemon Chicken

Ramen of choice.
2 slices Gardein Chick'in Filets
1/2 cup lemon juice
3 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper

Preheat oven to 425 degrees and grease a baking sheet.
Mix lemon juice, olive oil, black pepper, and red pepper together.
Coat and soak both chick'in slices evenly.
Bake these for 30 minutes- 15 minutes each side.

Dinner is served.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Vegan Red Velvet Cheesecake Milkshake

A very yummy sin filled dessert with a tongue stepping beet!
Hot weather is already here!
And that means ice creams, popsicles, smoothies, and all other kinds of sweet treats to cool down the blistering hot sweat scorching days of preemptive summer. Though we're still in the heart of thunderstorms and evening showers, afternoons have taken a beating from the sun.
Today, I'm chilling out in front of the fan and having red velvet in mind.
I am a full fledged chocoholic through and through, but have a soft spot for red velvet. It's a cake that is traditionally a very alluring, rather intense red shade. It's not a chocolate cake, but always has a pinch of the cocoa note.
This milkshake made with an infectious beet has that that same flare and the taste is surprisingly unique!

Vegan Red Velvet Cheesecake Milkshake Ingredients and Preparation

Be careful- beets stain everything in sight!
1 beet, sliced
1 frozen banana
1/2 cup Tofutti cream cheese
1/4 cup lite coconut milk, canned
3 tablespoon cocoa powder
1 tablespoon agave nectar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice

It comes out all nice & pretty!
Try it in its beautiful sweet glory.
Or add coconut flakes & mini chocolate chips!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Almost Raw Mango Side Salad

Sweet mangoes & acidic onions are kissed with lime & coconut  flavor!
One of my favorite restaurants in the city is Thai 9- a little too expensive to eat at everyday unfortunately.  For lunch, they serve this amazing seasonal Mango Salad. When I first saw it on the menu, it took me by surprise that it included red onion. Really? Red onions and mango..... together?
But eventually I gave in to gnawing curiosity. Let me tell you- it was incredibly delicious! From that day forth, I always ordered it instead of their  usual side salad as an appetizer.
I craved it hard today and decided to create my own version. The mango isn't sliced as thinly as the Thai 9's(theirs have a rice noodle quality) and they use toasted coconut.
This is just as tasty and surprising as that first bite! Juicy sweet mangoes, textured coconut flakes, and delightful cashews taking on the acidic raw red onions and citrus lime element.

Almost Raw Mango Salad Side Salad Ingredients and Preparation
My mango is ripe & ready! FYI: Always buy fruit & veggies that start with a 9 peeps! :)
1 mango, ripened
1/8 cup red onion, chopped
1/4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
juice and zest from 1 lime
handful crushed raw cashews

Peel off the mango skin and finely dice long ways.
Hand mix with red onion, coconut flakes, lime zest, and lime juice.
Top with crushed cashews!

Lime wedges to make a beautiful presentation even more eye pleasing.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Ramen Noodles With Wilted Beet Greens & Tempeh

Beet greens, tempeh, & crushed walnuts top naked ramen noodles.
I bought beets for the first time- excited to make red velvet goodies and smoothies.
But lovely red bulbs were surrounded by leafy lettuce madness. Was this edible?
I had to admit, they looked to be garbage fodder. So I asked around and discovered that they were safe to consume and had similar tastes to kale and spinach, but one had to be very careful because beet greens can easily be overcooked.
In dish comprised of plain ramen noodles and my traditionally seasoned tempeh, beet greens dressed in olive oil and garlic provided a rich, robust flavor and doesn't have bitterness like some greens. Topped with crunchy walnuts, everything came alive on taste buds harmoniously.
I definitely see beet greens happening frequently on the future menu.
Altogether, a hearty rustic meal that takes less than 15 minutes to create, especially if three burners are hopping at once. It's delicious!

Ramen Noodles With Wilted Beet Greens and Tempeh Ingredients and Preparation

1/2 package ramen noodles
bunch beet greens
1 teaspoon garlic
2 tablespoon olive oil
4 oz. tempeh, cubed
1/4 cup red onions, sliced
2 teaspoon Simply Asia Sweet Ginger Garlic Seasoning
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup crushed walnuts

Rinse beet greens and slightly dry.
Sauté in olive oil and garlic, continuing to stir and wilt for 5-7 minutes.
In a separate skillet, heat another tablespoon olive oil and toss in red onions.
Hand mix tempeh with sweet ginger garlic seasoning, turmeric, and black pepper and add to skillet- turn every few minutes.
Bring boiling water to a boil and add ramen noodles. Cook for 5 minutes.
Layer ramen noodles atop a plate with beet greens and tempeh piled on top.
Add crushed walnuts.

Walnuts add that meatier flavor that compliments savory flavors perfectly.
Pretty & fulfilling dish.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Vegan Spicy Cheesy Chick'in, Quinoa, Brown Rice, & Spinach Tacos

Cheesy sauce dreamily glistens the top of chick'in strips, quinoa & brown rice, & spinach tacos.
Tacos! Tacos!
I simply cannot get enough of stuffing those flour tortillas with all kinds of good stuff.
At Krogers, Gardein's Chick'in Filets are now discontinued (insert sad face) and I had to take advantage of the sale. Everyone knows that a budgeter always has to be appreciative for these things- no matter how traumatic it'll be to see empty space in the future.
Seeds of Change microwave rices were also fifty cents off.
I combined these two ingredients together, pan frying my chick'in filets in garlic and onions with a bed of spinach just waiting for them. With onions and garlic still simmering, almond milk, Trader Joe's mozzarella Shreds, and a smidgeon of crushed red pepper made for an oozing melted sauce draping wickedly over tops of the filled tacos.

Spicy Cheesy Chicken, Quinoa, & Spinach Tacos Ingredients and Preparation

Main ingredients for delicious taco filling!
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 teaspoon garlic
1/3 cup onion, diced
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 Gardein Chick'n Filets, cut into strips
1/2 cup Seed of Change's Quinoa & Brown Rice
2 tablespoon unsweetened almond milk
1/4 cup Trader Joe's Vegan Mozzarella Shreds
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 cup spinach
2 flour tortillas

Heat garlic and onion in olive oil.
Sprinkle in turmeric and black pepper.
Add chick'n filet strips and cover.
Cook each side for 2 minutes.
Place chick'in filet strips atop spinach and tortillas.
Add almond milk, vegan mozzarella, and crushed red pepper to skillet.
Stir until melted and pour over tacos.

The perfect yum.
Mouthwatering tacos that will satisfy any lunchtime occasion!

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Virtual Vegan Potluck: Ultimate Vegan Chocolate Chip Walnut Brownies With Avocado Cream Cheese Frosting

It's that wonderful time of the year again!
Hello all!
So excited to be included for the 3rd annual Virtual Vegan Potluck hosted by Vegan Bloggers Unite! Welcome friends and newcomers to AfroVeganChick whose in the heart of celebrating second year of veganism- a New Year's Resolution of 2012! This is my second time coming to the massive party ( a whopping 170 participants this time!) and I've brought a sweet dessert recipe combining love in a sensual threesome- aphrodisiac chocolate, decadent walnuts, and the lovely ambrosia of avocado flesh.
Embodied with ground walnuts, sweetened by medjool dates (they add a richness to chocolate) and chocolate chips, and covered in an enticing avocado cream cheese frosting, these chewy, crunchy brownies are exceptionally unique and full of diverse flavor.

Ultimate Vegan Chocolate Walnut Brownies With Avocado Cream Cheese Frosting Ingredients and Preparation

Not your average brownie!

3/4 cup flour
1 cup walnut meal (walnuts ground into a fine powder or almond meal can be used)
1/2 cup cocoa
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup chopped medjool dates, pitted
1/2 cup sugar (optional)*
1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
1 cup almond milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoon flax seed
1/4 cup unsweetened coconut
1/2 cup nuts (used walnut and pecan mixture)
1/3 chocolate chips (I used Enjoy Life Food's Mini Chocolate Chips)

* Now when I sampled the batter, it wasn't sweet enough. But after being baked, the dates overwhelmingly melted into sweetness overload. Add only if you prefer that sort of thing.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare a 9" baking pan with coconut oil.

Mix dry and wet ingredients (just coconut oil, almond milk, and vanilla) separately (dates with dry). Blend together. Add apple cider vinegar, flax seeds, nuts, coconut, and chocolate chips last.
Smooth batter into baking pan and bake for 25-30 minutes. 
Let cool before frosting.
Avocado Cream Cheese Frosting

1 ripened avocado
1/2 cup Tofutti cream cheese
1/4 cup lite coconut milk
2 tablespoon agave nectar
1 teaspoon vanilla

Whisk all ingredients together, cover, & refrigerate.
Spread layered frosting atop cooled brownies & cut into slices.
Pecans or walnuts make for a splendid topping!
Thanks for stopping by. Please follow me on Google+, Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter!
Now let's swing into VVP- right before AfroVeganChick in the desserts is Sugar Coated Vegan's Raw Chocolate "Cheesecake" and straight behind is Vegan 404 (Filet Not Found)'s Sesame Chocolate Truffles!