Jour 8

FRIYAYYYYYYYYY

Ou who doesn’t love a cozy fun Friday after a long week?? I know I do.

Fridays as a kid were cheat days, my mom always cooked a delicious fresh meal every night BUT Friyays were 99% of the time restaurant dinner. (I’m not complaining, I was always allowed to order whatever I wanted so Friday dinners were always a treat!)

Even though I’ve decided switch to a plant based lifestyle I still want fridays to consist of a little less healthy alternative to my weekly dinners. I want to some of the less healthy ingredients, like pastry or bread because quite honestly I love a good carb dinner once in a while.

DAILY TIPS

Don’t push your choices down anyones throat… Nobody likes the pushy vegan who points out every reason they’re vegetarian/ vegan. Let the results do the talking. When someones asks you how you cleared up your skin- Plant based lifestyle. When someone asks how you have so much energy- Plant based life style. When someone asks how you’ve lost that extra 10 pounds you just couldn’t shake off- Plant based lifestyle.

Someone recently said to me: “You never meet a vegetarian/vegan without knowing they are.” Unless you’re at a restaurant and you need to clarify the ingredients in a dish DON’T say anything. I’m not saying you should be ashamed of the lifestyle you’ve chosen but, you can’t force anyone to be or do what you want them to.

DAILY RECIPE(S)

Puff Pastry veggie triangles
(A me recipe)
4 triangles + leftover filling for another 4 (I always freeze leftovers)

  • 1 cooking onion diced
  • 3 carrots shredded
  • 5 mushrooms blended
  • 1 zucchini blended
  • 1 head of broccoli crumbled
  • 1 tomato diced
  • 4 kale stocks (leaves only) cut into small pieces
  • 1 can of red kidney beans blended
  • 1/4 cup of vegetable broth or water
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 4 basil leaves
  • 1 tsp of dried or fresh thyme
  • 1 tsp of dried or fresh oregano
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp of butter
  • 1tsp of vegetable oil
  • 1 sheet of puff pastry (or homemade pastry)
  • 1 egg
  1. Preheat oven at 400 F
  2. Blend mushrooms, zucchini, red kidney beans and vegetable broth together- set aside.
  3. In a medium size saucepan (on medium heat) add butter, oil, garlic, onion and all other spices until fragrant.
  4. Once fragrant, add blended mixture to the pan and cook over medium heat.
  5. Once hot add the shredded carrot, crumbled broccoli and tomato.
  6. Once the mixture is hot, let cool before rolling the triangles. *If you’re in a rush to eat like me 99% of the time the rolls can be rolled while the mixture is still hot but the texture of the pastry isn’t quite as fluffy.*
  7. Once the triangles are folded, squish the edges to insure the mixture stays inside. (I use a fork.)
  8. Cook the triangles until golden brown. *Approximately 40 minutes*
  9. Pair with your fav sauce and/or garnish with cheese (mine is hot sauce yum yum)

DAILY MEALS

Breakfast

Veggie nuggets- recipe will be featured within the next few days. (Weird I know but I woke up wanting them lol)

Lunch

Leftover white kidney bean, chickpea and spinach curry.

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Dinner

Veggie pastry featured in daily recipe.

Snacks

Chia seed pudding, chocolate zucchini muffin, grapes and some raw nuts.

Drinks

Water and half a can of coke

Xo

Jour 4 et Jour 5

JOUR 4

Eeek l know l said l’d post a blog a day but yesterday was a little crazy! l didn’t get home until 11:30 and l just couldn’t be bothered to post (bad l know, but my bed was just calling my name.)

l did a HUGE grocery shop, l bought so many vegetables, l think people thought l bought half the produce section lol

l find that l need to eat larger quantities now that my diet is 80% veggies.

JOUR 5

Today was another hospital day: appointments & scans- the usual.

My biggest challenge so far with this lifestyle is finding delicious AND nutritious meals when I’m out & about.

I actually ate at Spring Rolls and was impressed with their vegetarian dishes. They used numerous vegetables to dress up the plate. I appreciate a variety of vegetables instead of just the typical carrots and broccoli (boringggggg.) *Pictures are posted under lunch*

DAILY TIP(S)

I had a few hours in-between hospital appointments so we decided to grab some food. I have my favourite restaurants around the hospital, that I ate more meals at than I can remember. That being said, my favourite meals at those restaurants include meat and are not plant based meals.

I believe it to be more promising if you go to new plant based restaurants OR restaurants you have never been to- this way you’ll discover new favourites instead of relying on your old meat based favourites.

The comfort in knowing you like a dish is great but when you order it meatless it might not be quite the same.

DAILY RECIPE(S)

Zucchini Chocolate Muffins
(My good friend Google- I altered the recipe to my liking)
12 medium size muffins

  • 1 1/4 cup of whole wheat flour
  • 1/3 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder or cacao powder (I mixed them)
  • 1 tsp of baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp of salt
  • 2 melted tbsp of coconut oil (be sure to let it cool a little bit)
  • 1 egg (or flaxseed meal substitute)
  • 1 tsp of pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup of agave
  • 1 cup of shredded zucchini
  • 1 ripe banana mushed (you can also use a 1/4 cup of applesauce works just the same)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 of you fav chocolate chips (I like semi sweet)
  1. Preheat oven at 350 F
  2. In a medium size bowl whisk together ALL dry ingredients (except the chocolate chips)
  3. In another bowl, whisk together ALL wet ingredients (this includes the zucchini)
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix.
  5. Once mixed, add the chocolate chips.
  6. Bake for approximately 25 minutes (the time varies depending on the size of your muffins.)

DAILY MEALS

Breakfast

My fav- Chia seed pudding with blueberries and almond slices!img_0507.jpg

Lunch

I had two appetizers and one main (I promise I didn’t eat all of the food- there was SO much!)

Mango salad (bottom left), veggie rice cold wraps (to the right) & vegetarian pad thai (top left).

Dinner

Dinner was a late one, so I had some left over homemade chilli I had frozen. I defrosted it in the pan and put it on top of some rice. As the chilli was defrosting I roasted some veggies (sweet potatoes, brussel sprouts and asparagus.) I tossed them in some olive oil and put a medium amount of pepper. I baked the veggies at 380 F for 45 minutes. They were so good, even my boyfriend who is not a fan of those veggies loved them!

Rookie me forgot to take a picture of my roasted veggies- next time I promise.

Snacks 

Apple and some peanut butter.

Crackers and some cheese (my first time having cheese in almost a week.)

A freshly baked croissant (gosh darn I love pastries.)

Fresh Mango

Blue grapes

Drinks

Water

Chai latte from Starbs made with coconut milk. Honestly, I can’t do the almond milk in my lattes but the coconut milk taste the same as regular milk!

Xo

*Jour 6 will be posted tonight- February 28th*

Jour 3

Sundayyy Fundayyyy! Today wasn’t your typical lazy Sunday seeing I had to leave the house by 7 to make my 9:30 appointment at Sick Kids.

Before hitting the road I had some chia seed pudding with fresh strawberries and almonds slices on top. Honestly before I even started this journey it was one of my favs. Theres two reasons I love it: the flavour (yum yum yum) and how filling it actually is.

After the head and neck MRI, I grabbed some water and a treat from Starbs since my stomach was a little uneasy from the contrast. An upset stomach inevitably calls for some carbs, they always seem to help.

The weather was beautiful but I was so tired after spending a good portion of my day at the hospital, that I wasn’t all that productive once I got home. I managed to clean out my car (well my bf managed to clean out my car) but who wants to know the details anyways?? lol

DAILY TIP(S)

It’s important to meal prep, don’t get me wrong, but sometimes life happens. If you’re having a crazy morning and you need to grab breakfast on the run… THAT’S OKAY! Just remember to pick something that won’t have you feeling crummy afterwards.

This doesn’t mean you need to pick the spinach salad when it’s 9am and you really want the bagel. It means pick a bagel but throw some peanut butter on it or drink a less calorie  dense drink. It’s important to enjoy at least some of the stuff you eat, just be mindful of the ingredients and the effects on your body.

DAILY RECIPE(S)

Chia Seed Pudding 
(“Feel Good Food” cookbook by Giada)
4 servings

  • 1 cup of vanilla- flavoured unsweetened almond milk (I tend to use unsweetened regular almond milk it tastes just as yummy)
  • 1 cup of plain low fat (2%) Greek yogurt (I use coconut milk in the can- the thick stuff I put in about half the amount of yogurt it requires because the consists is much thicker)
  • 2 tbsp of maple syrup (alter to sweetness level desired)
  • 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract (I tend to put more since I don’t use vanilla-flavoured almond milk)
  • 1/8 tsp of kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup of chia seeds (I use organic and throw in an extra 2 tbsp)
  • 1 pint of strawberries
  • 1/4 cup of sliced almonds (or nuts of choice)
  1. In a medium size bowl whisk together the almond milk, yogurt *or coconut milk*, maple syrup, vanilla and salt until just blended.
  2. Add chia seeds and let stand for 30 minutes.
  3. Stir to distribute seeds if they have settles and refrigerate overnight.
  4. When ready to serve at strawberries and almond slices. (If you desire a sweeter pudding, drizzle maple syrup on top of the strawberries)

*I forgot to take a picture so the next time I make it, I will include a picture in my blog post.*

DAILY MEALS

Breakfast

My fav- Chia seed pudding and half a jalapeño bagel (actually one of the best bagels I’ve ever had.)

Lunch

I had leftover vegan meatloaf but fried it. It was 100% better. I cut individual pieces and squished them into a flat rectangle before frying them with a little olive oil. The outside was really crunchy, it resembled a hash brown. I had two pieces and dipped them in hot sauce… They were delicious.

I would totally make the vegan loaf again as long as I fried it after baking.

{I would even freeze some slices to fry up in the morning for a healthy fast breakfast.}

*Photo is featured image*

Dinner

Dinner was a late one, so I made a simple cashew pasta sauce with broccoli and a side salad.

The cashew recipe I use is easy and really filling. If you prefer a heavy quantity of vegetables the recipe can be altered to your liking by adding extra veggies and spices.

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Snacks

I don’t if it was because I wasn’t feeling great or the anxiety from having a scan but, I really didn’t snack much.

I had a treat at Starbs after my MRI (it was almost like a cinnamon bun).

Some leftover bruschetta (this was more like a meal because I ate so much- oops)

Also had a handful of homemade trail mix (cashews, peanuts, walnuts, semi sweet chocolate chips, sunflower seeds & pumpkin seeds- the seeds and nuts were all unsalted & raw)

Raw veggies.

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Drinks 

Water, water, water & more water.

Ou also a cup of grapefruit perrier with lunch.

Xo

Jour 2

Saturday is probably one of my fav days but I mean they’re all pretty great, especially since it’s light out by 7am now. YAYAYAYA spring is in the air. Nevertheless, it was a busy morning! I was up at 6 to make lunches, make breakfast, to then head to the gym for 8. After the gym, I visited with a friend before heading to work for 11.

Days like today are the reason meal prep is so important. If you lack organization, the likelihood of you sticking to a diet, or in my case a lifestyle, is very slim. Planning may take time and effort but it’s ALWAYS worth it. Opening a delicious lunch is always fulfilling.

If you find this task overwhelming or just straight up annoying make it into a weekly ritual. Pick one day to discover new recipes, one day to grocery shop & one day to prep.

Meal prep varies depending on your nutritional needs. If you’re making a new meal everyday, meal prep may just consist of cutting up your fruits and vegetables so when you go to use them they’re all ready to go. I’m lucky enough to have the time to make a new meal everyday (as long as I’m not too busy) seeing I’m still recovering from treatment and enjoying the time I have to do stuff I love

Certain foods like rice and pasta can be cooked a couple days in advance but I would recommend holding off on cooking your vegetables, because they’re always better and crispier fresh. I would also suggest you hold off on washing your berries. When you wash berries they tend to go bad faster from the moisture.

Dry snacks can be packed numerous days in advanced that way, it’s one last task in the morning (especially if you’re on the go for lunch.)

DAILY TIP(S)

It’s much easier to cook all at once- the kitchen is already a mess you might as well get everything done. 

If you’re making chia seed pudding for breakfast make enough for the week. That way you aren’t making the same mess twice. The less stress a meal/snack caused the better it tastes- am I right??

I think I’m right haha

DAILY RECIPE(S)

Vegan Lentil Loaf
(“Yummy Mummy Kitchen” blog altered a little)
Serves about 7

  • 2 cups of cooked french lentils (I cooked my own. Just make sure they aren’t too wet or they will make your loaf soggy.)
  • 1/2 yellow onion diced (I added a full onion- I love onion)
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 1/2 cup of diced red bell peppers
  • 1 1/4 cup of mushrooms cut (once again I blended mine- seeing me & the bf aren’t a fan)
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp of tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp of BBQ sauce
  • 2 tbsp of flax meal
  • 1 tbsp of dried parsley (I added a little extra)
  • 1/4 tsp of salt
  • 1/4 tsp of pepper
  • 1/2 cup of oats
  • 1/2 cup of breadcrumbs
  • 1/3 cup of ketchup (I REALLY dislike ketchup so I bought the natural one with no sugar so it wasn’t quite as gross lol)
  • pinch of brown sugar (to be more precise I added about 1 tsp)
  1. Preheat the oven at 350 degrees F. Line the baking sheet with parchment paper OR oil it a little if you know the pan doesn’t tend to stick.
  2. In a large pan over medium heat, sauté the onion , carrots, celery, pepper, and mushrooms with a pinch of salt and pepper. Once softened, add the garlic and cook for another minute or so.
  3. In a food processor or blender (I used my ninja blender) pulse together the lentils, cooked vegetables, tomato paste, bbq sauce, flax meal, parsley, salt, pepper, oats and breadcrumbs. DO NOT PUREE but blend into a chunky dough. This step is essential if you want the loaf to resemble one of a meat texture. If you puree it, there is little texture.
  4. Shape the dough into a ball and place in the baking sheet (I used a loaf pan to ensure the shape was ecstatically pleasing).
  5. Bake for 35 minutes. Remove from the oven, add the ketchup & sprinkle with sugar before returning it to the oven for 10 minutes. Let the loaf firm up once you remove it from the oven for 10 minutes.

*Be sure to read the outcome/review in Daily meals… this wasn’t amazing*

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DAILY MEALS

Breakfast

This morning was an early one like mentioned above. Early mornings call for pre made breakfasts! I made chia seed pudding last night and just topped it with some fresh strawberries and almond slices before devouring.

Chia seed pudding is probably my FAV breakfast & snack right now.

*Tomorrow my daily recipe will be my vegan chia seed pudding- stay tuned*

Lunch

I had leftover chickpea pasta and immune boosting pasta sauce. You already know how I feel about this recipe (posted in yesterdays blog.) With a homemade chocolate chip cookie to finish off.

I love a little something sweet after lunch yum yummmm

Dinner

Today I had some extra time so I threw together my fav bruschetta. I promise to feature that recipe in the upcoming days. It’s my moms recipe and honestly I’ve never had better. The balsamic reduction on top is SO delicious omg. I could eat just these for dinner!

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I made the vegan loaf featured in my “Daily Recipes.” The odds of me making it again are slim but it was worth a shot. The flavours were great but the texture was too baby food like for me. I think pan frying each piece (in a little olive oil) individually would be more appealing to me. The outside would be a little crustier and less moist. The sauce wasn’t bad, I like a good classic tomato sauce with my loaf.

Snacks

It was another busy day but I managed to feed the hunger a little more today.

I had fresh fruit throughout the day: strawberries, raspberries, blackberries & grapes. Along with half a Plant protein bar!

Drinks 

Started the day with a nice cup of coffee. I usually add agave and no milk but, today was Saturday so I treated myself: cream & agave.

Water, water, water & more water.

Ou also a cup of grapefruit perrier with dinner.


I just want to mention that my goal is to include more fresh raw veggies as snack options. My next grocery shop will feature new & exotic veggies.

Xo

 

Jour 1

So if I’m being completely honest, I started the vegetarian diet February 14th. I wanted to make sure it was something I was going to stick too, before I decided to share my journey.

I love to cook, but for some reason the first few days seemed like all my culinary skills were no longer useful. (For my vegan/vegetarian followers– think about it, you’ve been eating vegetables for years and all of sudden you’re told to cook with numerous meats you’ve never even tasted.) I felt like the recipes I had grown to love didn’t have the necessary nutritious (especially protein) if  I didn’t include meat.

As the days went on I decided that if I was going to make my vegetarian diet into a lifestyle I needed to accept that it would take time and practice.

I needed to put effort into finding new recipes that offered my body all the nutrients, minerals & vitamins it needed.

I decided to embrace it by jumping in the car and heading to the nearest book store. I spent hours looking at all the different plant based vegan/vegetarian cook books. The more I began to read, the more I was inspired by the lifestyle. Being a real foody,  I was scared that I would have to eat things that may not necessarily please my palate. The more I read, the more I realized just how delicious plant based meals could be.

DAILY TIP(S)

I think discovering new recipes that taste good in addition to make you feel good, are the ones that are going to make the transition easier. I think it’s unfair to expect your body and mind to embrace every raw flavour overnight. The journey takes time- keep some sort of comfort food in your diet to make the journey easier.

If pasta sauce is your go to (it’s probably one of my favs) find one that is better & more nutrient dense but that offers the same great comfort.

I think its also SUPER important to plan before going grocery shopping. The first few days, I thought going to the grocery store would inspire me but it actually ended up doing the complete opposite. I felt frustrated and discouraged by all the meat products and byproducts. When I began to pick recipes and shop based on the ingredients I needed for the week, I began to enjoy grocery shopping again. I discovered items I had never purchased before; it almost felt like a new adventure.

DAILY RECIPE(S)

Immunity boosting tomato sauce with mushrooms
(“Oh She Glows” Cookbook I’ve modified it to my liking)
Makes 5 to 6 cups

  • 1 tbsp (15mL) extra virgin olive oil (I used avocado oil because I ran out of olive oil)
  • 1 sweet onion, diced
  • 5 cloves of garlic (I love garlic so modify to taste)
  • 3 cups of mushrooms (I don’t love mushrooms so I blended mine on high for about
  • 20 seconds- the mushrooms turned into a ground beef texture)
  • 1/2 cup of basil leaves (I threw mine in the blender with the mushrooms)
  • 1  (28 ounce) can of diced tomatoes (I had a bunch of left over fresh tomatoes so I used those and they worked just fine)
  • 8 tbsp of tomato paste (I like my sauce a little thicker so I used the whole can)
  • 1/2 tsp of salt
  • 1/2 tsp of pepper (I added more before I served it)
  • 2 tsp of dried oregano
  • 1 tsp of thyme
  • 2 tsp of red pepper flakes (If spice isn’t your thing- put less or none at all)
  • 2 tbsp of chia seeds (optional- I put more because I didn’t have any lentils)
  • 1 cup of lentils (optional- I didn’t include any)
  1. In a large sauce pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, stir and combine. Sauté for 5 minutes or until the onion is translucent. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  2. Stir in the *blended mushrooms and basil leaves* and raise the heat to medium-high. Cook for 10 minutes or so. Let the mixture cook until most of the liquid released by the mushrooms has cooked off.
  3. Stir in the diced tomatoes, tomato paste, oregano, thyme and red pepper flakes if desired, and stir to combine.
  4. Stir in the chia seeds along with lentils, if desired.
  5. Enjoy on top of your fav noodles (zucchini, spelt, GF, chickpea, etc)

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DAILY MEALS

Breakfast

So I kinda slacked this morning. I wasn’t really hungry so I had a green juice. I mixed a couple handfuls of kale, about a cup of pineapple, a cup of water and a sprinkle of chia seeds. I blended it for about 30 secondes, since the pineapple was fresh it was very liquidly.

I had about 10 raw almonds before heading out to run a few errands.

Lunch

I had leftover chickpea curry and green beans. After I reheated it, I added some fresh sprouts for some extra crunch and nutrients.

I was feeling some sweet so I had a couple tbsp of sea sweet chocolate chips.

Dinner

I made the pasta sauce featured in my “Daily Recipes.” Honestly, I think I like it more than my old go to ground beef one. My non-vegetarian followers should even give it a try. The mushrooms give the sauce a great flavour (and I do not like mushrooms.)

I ate it with some chickpea pasta since I didn’t add any lentils to the sauce. I think it would also be good with zucchini noodles just make sure your noodles aren’t too wet. After I spiral them I always throw them in a hot pan to cook some of the moisture off of them.

Snacks

I was kinda busy today so my snack game was not very strong. I ate an apple with some PB2 powder peanut butter (sometimes I mix it with a little honey if I’m feeling sweet.)

I was in a coffee shop and the smell of the donuts got to me… I couldn’t resist, fresh donuts are a weakness. I had a chocolate donut. *I just want you to know a treat here and there is okay- don’t let food become a thing of anxiety. It is important not to use food as a reward or punishment. When I put on nearly 30 pounds do to cancer treatments I began to hate food. It became a source of anxiety and frustrations. I was lucky enough to lose the liquid weight I had gain. I still have a few extra pounds but with good diet and frequent exercise I know it will come off. *

“FOOD IS NOT THE PROBLEM- FOOD IS THE SOLUTION” -The Girl in Pink

Xo

Health is Wealth

There’s few things in life that can’t be bought, health being one of them. No one decides if or when they’re going to fall ill- it just happens. As my 7 year old sister would say “you get what you get and you don’t get upset.”

For the majority of us it’s unexpected and terrifying.

When you become sick, especially with a life threatening disease, you realize just how crucial a healthy body is. Life’s obstacles become far greater when you have a body that is only working at half capacity.

That being said, shouldn’t your health be your greatest concern?

Perhaps we’re searching for something that we already know the answer to… Instead of looking for cures, we should focus our energy on not becoming ill in the first place.

l have put a lot of thought and research into moving forward with a plant based vegetarian diet.

Join me on my journey towards a healthier & happier me.

(Psst l am going to be posting a blog everyday for the next 30 days with my experiences, likes, dislikes, recipes & tips.)

Xo

 

 

Acknowledge the feeling, Share the feeling & Accept the feeling 

l thought since I preach it, I should live by it
 fdfsf
The last couple days have been a little challenging for me. My chronic headaches haven’t changed (whether that’s a good thing or not I’m not really sure.)
 ddd
I’ve tried to keep my mind busy, that’s usually how I deal with stressful/anxious situations. I’ve been trying to talk myself out of feeling this way because one should NOT (or at least try not) to worry about things they cannot change.
 ddd
The idea of starting treatment again is extremely frustrating. I’m starting to feel like the Anyse I was before this whole thing started.
 ddd
As I’m watching the world junior hockey game (like every other person who doesn’t like to watch professional sports on tv lol) I begin to scroll through my instagram feed and all these stories of relapsing catch my eye. The little pictures on the explore page seem to stick out like a sore thumb.
 ddd
I can’t help but read each and everyone of them. As I read one after the other, this darkness seems to almost consume me. As I try to ignore the feeling, it seems to reach my stomach. It feels like my heart is slowly making its way to my feet.
 ddd
I realize it was easier to deal with the cancer when I knew it was being monitored daily by specialists and medical professionals who’s end goal was to “cure” me. Now that I’m living without the ease of knowing I’m being monitored cancer seems to be a scarier thought.
 dd
As I try to understand where this feeling of anxiety arose from, I can’t help but link it back to the reactions of those around me when I told them that I had been experiencing chronic headaches (on the left side of my face where the tumour had been just months ago).
 dd
“Actions speak louder than words”
“Actions speak louder than words”
“ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS”.                           
 ddd
(If your best friend, sister, boyfriend, girlfriend, brother, mother, cousin, etc have/had cancer remember to always look on the bright side of things even if it’s not how you feel. This is the only time I accept and ENCOURAGE you to tell a little white lie. It could help relieve the anxiety and distress they are feeling.)
 dd
As my blog post comes to an end I can’t help but feel a sense of relief because I’ve:
  1. Acknowledged– that the cancer may come back
  2. Shared– my feelings with those who are ready to listen
  3. Accepted– that l only have so much power over the relapse rate of the awful disease we all know as cancer
ccc
Psst…
Need someone to talk to? I’m here
Xo Anyse