Cool vegan recipes for a hot summer

June 11, 2020 by  
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What makes food summery? Our top summer food picks are lighter than winter meals. They’re unfussy dishes that won’t have you standing inside for hours over a hot stove when you could be enjoying a summer evening. Better yet, some are foods that you can cook outside on a grill. Vital tips for summer recipes include using fresh seasonal fruits and  vegetables , incorporating more raw ingredients and trying some dishes that you eat at cooler temperatures. Dust off the patio furniture and get ready for summer dining! Fresh and delicious summer salads You can get endlessly creative with salads as a main course. Even if you ate salad every day for a week, you could vary the ingredients enough that you wouldn’t get bored. Start with fresh, crisp greens.  Everyday Health  ranked the five most nutritious: kale, spinach, beet greens, Swiss chard and dandelion greens. Each will give your salad a distinctive flavor. If you’re planning salad as a meal, you’ll want to include  protein  in the way of lentils, garbanzo beans, quinoa, black-eyed peas, nuts, seeds, chunks of tempeh or similar. Adding pasta, or whole grains like millet or brown rice, will provide energy and give that salad more staying power. Find your salad inspiration in these 25 recipes from  It Doesn’t Taste Like Chicken . Related: Wonderful recipes for all the weird veggies in your CSA box Gazpacho — the summer soup This chilled Spanish soup has a long and intriguing history. You can find mentions of gazpacho all the way back in Greek and Roman literature. But the recipe must have been different then, as  tomatoes  and green peppers, two of the soup’s now standard ingredients, came from Central and South America. Gazpacho recipes vary regionally, but usually include tomatoes, cucumbers, green peppers, garlic, olive oil, onions and breadcrumbs. This gazpacho recipe from  The Spruce Eats  only takes 20 minutes to prepare and is perfect to eat outside on a summer evening. For an extra summery recipe, try basing your gazpacho on watermelon rather than tomatoes. This watermelon gazpacho recipe from  Forks Over Knives  spices things up with jalapeño, jicama and chili powder. Endless taco variations Tacos are another easy and highly adaptable dish. It all starts with the tortillas. Most store-bought tortillas seem to be vegan these days, but double-check to be sure you’re not buying ultra-traditional tortillas made with lard. Or buy a bag of masa harina and make fresh corn tortillas with this recipe from  Mexican Please . It’s easy, if a little messy. For a balanced taco meal, choose a protein like tempeh, tofu or walnut taco meat like this recipe from  Make it Dairy Free . Topping choices are endless. Add some sautéed fajita veggies like mushrooms, peppers and zucchini, or choose raw toppings like shredded red cabbage and diced tomatoes. Cauliflower is especially trendy this year.  Brand New Vegan  has a recipe for cauliflower-mushroom taco “meat.” What vegans grill Backyard dining often calls for the grill. Red peppers, zucchini strips and onions are grilling standbys. But you can get creative. The folks at  Meatless Mondays  have crazy tips for grilling cucumbers, kale,  avocados , romaine lettuce, watermelon and grapes. Vegans also like veggie burgers. If you’re in a hurry, pick up frozen patties from the store. Otherwise, you can craft your own. This innovative mushroom-based veggie burger from  Love and Lemons  incorporates short-grained rice, paprika, walnuts, breadcrumbs and other good stuff for a thick burger that will put most frozen patties to shame. It’s berry time Summer is time for fresh berries. If they’re perfectly ripe, they need no accompaniment. You can also mix your fruit and veggies by adding fresh raspberries to vinaigrette  salad  dressing. This recipe from  The Spruce Eats  adds the oomph of Dijon mustard. Of course, lots of us with a sweet tooth like berries even better when they’re in a pie.  Feasting on Fruit  meets all your blueberry needs with thirty recipes. Homemade vegan ice cream If you have an ice cream maker, you might have already dusted it off for your summer frozen treat needs. But even if you don’t want to acquire yet another appliance, you can still make vegan ice cream at home. For the lightest indulgence, try a two-ingredient ice cream made from frozen bananas and cocoa powder with this recipe from  Bowl of Delicious . Those who crave something creamier can use coconut milk,  coconut  cream, avocados or nuts as a base. Once you get the hang of making homemade ice cream, it’s endlessly adaptable. You can add peanut butter, vegan chocolate chips, fresh fruit or spices. Related: Easy vegan ice cream recipes to enjoy all summer long Vegan lemon bundt cake Citrus fruits are so summery. This vegan lemon bundt cake from  Vegan Yumminess  has been a huge hit at my  house , already showing up for a birthday and an anniversary celebration. The key is the glaze, which goes on before the frosting. It moistens the cake so nicely. Use a combination of fresh lemon juice, lemon zest and lemon extract, and all tasters will know this cake means serious citrus business. Images via Teresa Bergen

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Cool vegan recipes for a hot summer

10 Delicious Vegan Slow Cooker Dishes

January 10, 2019 by  
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Vegan slow cooker meals have a positive one-two punch on … The post 10 Delicious Vegan Slow Cooker Dishes appeared first on Earth911.com.

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10 Delicious Vegan Slow Cooker Dishes

4 Simple Swaps for a Truly Sustainable Easter

April 7, 2017 by  
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Growing up, Easter was always one of my favorite holidays. There was that heady mix of the first hints of spring, the excitement of egg hunts and the delicious chocolate treats. Now that I’m a mother myself, I love seeing my own daughter…

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This Secret Garden House in Singapore is full of elegant surprises

October 27, 2016 by  
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Wallflower’s client commissioned the home design for the upscale area of Bukit Timah in central Singapore. Rising to the request for a “luxurious, tropical, contemporary family home,” the design team produced a unique, airy space with a mostly open floor plan and multiple decks and terraces to take advantage of the region’s temperate climate. The home has a sunken basement and a long swimming pool , which work together to open up the ground-level areas of the house on the sloped lot. Related: Sunny Side House transforms a narrow lot into an airy family home The home’s predominant shapes are rectangular, with an L-shaped footprint comprised of smaller boxes. Interspersed throughout the structure, though, are expansive round skylights that invite wide bright spotlights to dance around the home’s interior, adding curves to what is otherwise a very angular space. The home also features a protected interior atrium, where two-story trees grow in front of a dense privacy wall, offering the homeowners a uniquely cozy living space without sacrificing daylight or views of nature. Perhaps one of the best features about the home itself is the rooftop terrace, which stretches the length of the building’s elegant L shape. With a clear glass perimeter protecting from missteps, the deck features multiple lounging areas and plenty of greenery , a nod to the home’s lush surroundings. Just off in the distance, high-rises obscure the mountainous view, but the Secret Garden House offers plenty of other delicious sights, without the eyestrain. + Wallflower Architecture + Design Via ArchDaily Images via Marc Tey

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This Secret Garden House in Singapore is full of elegant surprises

Walmart introduces line of ugly fruit to combat food waste

July 25, 2016 by  
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The largest grocer in America is recognizing that beauty is only skin deep, even when it comes to “ugly” fruits and vegetables. Walmart will be rolling out a line of imperfect apples , aptly named “I’m Perfect,” in 300 select Florida stores. These weather-dented fruits are just as nutritious as their more beautiful counterparts and will receive their well-deserved spot at the table, instead of a landfill.

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Walmart introduces line of ugly fruit to combat food waste

Bright yellow dome home completed for Mama Dolfine’s orphanage in Kenya

July 25, 2016 by  
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Torsten told Inhabitat, “When we started this project back in January 2015 the plan was to raise funds to build a permanent school for the center. (We haven’t reached that goal yet). But quickly we had to realize that building a school cost a lot of money. I mean really A LOT. We are talking about $15-20k per classroom.” “So we changed our approach. We knew that we couldn’t do it alone and so we needed help. And the best way to get help I thought was to bring people to Kenya to see and connect with the Center themselves. That’s how the idea of a volunteer program developed.” Torsten adds that the dome home was designed to captivate an international audience and make it sustainable. A great deal of emphasis was placed on using local materials and labor, and improvising where necessary to cut costs and minimize construction waste. Nearly 100 percent of materials were sourced within a 15 kilometer radius of Kisumu, according to Torsten, except door knobs or shower taps that needed to be of a superior quality. Related: Footloose German kid builds an inspiring brick dome home for an orphanage in Kenya Large skylights and windows ensure natural light and ventilation. “It’s like a natural air conditioner,” Torsten says. “We didn’t think it would be that perfect. It’s the place everyone wants to be especially around midday when the sun is high and the other buildings are super hot.” Self-built solar water heaters , comprising nothing more than a few pipes on the roof, generates about 100 liters of boiling hot water that stays warm until about 10pm. Greywater from the two bathrooms and kitchen are funneled into the fruit and vegetable garden, according to Torsten. “The water runs into gravel holes with charcoal and cardboard to filter and to keep the moisture. We also throw other organic waste into those holes and cover them with mulch. Everything that grows around the holes is doing incredibly well,” he said. The 3 watt LED lights used indoors are incredibly powerful and super energy saving compared to local energy saver bulbs, Torsten says. The team aims to go solar eventually, when funds are available. Lastly, all 11 wooden doors were made with recycled pine wood from glass shipping boxes, and the 100 plus trees being planted around the house will further offset the impact of construction. Considering how young Torsten is, still in his early twenties, and how little building experience he had before taking on this project, this dome home marks an impressive achievement for a noteworthy cause. + A Better Me Foundation Images via Torsten Kremser

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Bright yellow dome home completed for Mama Dolfine’s orphanage in Kenya

New graphene super batteries charge up in seconds and last virtually forever

July 25, 2016 by  
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With the aid of one of the strongest materials on Earth, a researcher at Australia’s Swinburne University has created a battery that charges up super fast and can be used over and over and over again, without losing efficiency. Researcher Han Lin developed the battery using a form of carbon called graphene , which is commonly heralded as one of the strongest materials on the planet. The new supercapacitor addresses many of the shortcomings of traditional lithium ion batteries, beating them in charging time, lifespan, and also environmental impact. Researchers around the globe have worked on expanding the capabilities of supercapacitors for many years, but they are typically limited in storage capacity. Han overcame this problem by adding sheets of graphene , which have a large surface area for energy storage due to the material’s honeycomb structure. The material is also strong and flexible at the same time. The researcher used a 3D printer to create the graphene sheets, resulting in a cost-effective energy storage method that could someday replace the batteries in our cell phones and electric cars. Related: Melbourne’s Advanced Technologies Centre by H2O Architects looks like a gigantic LEGO brick The new supercapacitor ’s ultra-quick charging time—just seconds compared to the minutes or hours needed by a lithium-based battery—is its primary selling point, as it eliminates the inconvenience of long charging times. The graphene-enhanced battery also costs less than a traditional lithium ion battery over the course of its lifetime, due to its unique ability to withstand more recharges without losing strength. Han presented his new supercapacitor at Fresh Science Victoria 2016 earlier this year. + Swinburne University Via Phys.org Images via Fresh Science and Wikipedia 1 2

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RECIPE: Organic rainbow cake made without artificial food coloring

July 16, 2016 by  
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Make your kid’s next birthday party the most magical ever with this delicious, organic rainbow cake. This cake is made without artificial food coloring and tastes as good as it looks. Read on for the full recipe.

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RECIPE: Organic rainbow cake made without artificial food coloring

10 great plants for a living roof

July 16, 2016 by  
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Rooftops are tough place for plants: they’re vulnerable to intense heat, cold, wind and drought, plus they can’t support a lot of weight, so the plants need to grow in just a few inches of soil (actually, ultra-lightweight soilless growing mediums are typically used). Thus, it’s plants that grow naturally on desert cliffs, alpine crags, and other such inhospitable places that are used for green roofs . Fortunately, these include many truly stunning species—some exquisitely beautiful, others absolutely bizarre and even a few that are edible or otherwise useful. Green roof plants fall into four general categories: Related: Need a Rooftop Farm? Call this Company Succulents These are the mainstays of any green roof and should form the bulk of the planting, unless provisions are made for the roof to support soil deeper than the 3 to 4 inches that is typical. These tiny succulents thrive with virtually no water or soil. They are available in a kaleidoscope of colors, giving a broad palette with which to design your living roof . Sedum spp. Also known as stonecrop , because the succulent foliage resembles smooth, polished stone, sedums are the royalty of living roof plants. There are literally hundreds of varieties, found growing in cliff-side cracks and crannies around the world and were the first species employed in the green roof industry. With so many distinctly colored varieties available, you can paint a beautiful picture on your roof. Sempervivum spp. Called houseleeks (because they were used as a traditional Scandinavian rooftop plant) by some and hen and chicks by others (the mature rosettes “give birth” to tiny replicas of themselves as they spread), sempervivum means “evergreen” in Latin, indicating that your roof will be attractive year-round with this type of succulent. Like sedums, they stay low to the ground and come in many colors. Delosperma spp. are spreading succulents grown for their daisy-like flowers , which bloom throughout the growing season. There are white, yellow, red and purple varieties and most have the habit of changing their shade of color as the flowers fade, creating a monochromatic effect Aenoium arboreum is a variety of houseleek that grows as a tiny tree (usually less than two feet tall) that looks like it would be more at home on Mars than planet Earth. It’s not a spreading ground cover like the other succulents in the list, but it can create a bit of vertical variation in your roof garden. The variety Zwartkop  or Schwartzkopf (black head, in Dutch or German) will create plenty of interest with its color as well—it’s such a deep purple that it’s almost black. Related: How to Make Your Own Green Terrarium Grasses Most grasses would fail on a living roof , unless they were watered constantly in the summer. However, there are a few that have what it takes to withstand the conditions. To be honest, most green roof grasses are not considered as such from a botanical perspective, and are more accurately termed “grass-like plants”. Like the succulents, they are good for covering a lot of territory and create a pleasing contrast when combined with succulents. Many seed themselves, making your rooftop garden a self-replenishing landscape. Armeria maritima is not at all related to what grows in lawns, but the foliage appears as a tidy green clump of grass. In nature, it grows in ocean-side cliffs and dunes (hence the name maritima ), making it well adapted to rooftop conditions—especially those by the sea. It is also called sea thrift and, unlike any grass, it is crowned with pink or purple flowers in summer. Carex nigra is technically considered a sedge and is often used on living roofs, because its roots require less soil than most other grasses, or grass-like, plants. Wildflowers These are used more sparingly and benefit from a bit deeper soil than the other species listed here. This can be accomplished by mounding the planting medium here and there to create little wildflower hummocks. Use them for a taller accent in sporadic locations in your living roof design . Aster alpinus is an aster from alpine regions, meaning it is no stranger to intense weather and thin soil. Nonetheless, it produces brilliant sprays of deeply saturated purple flowers with yellow button centers, which attract hordes of butterflies. Achillea millefolium is commonly known as yarrow; a wildflower that, unlike asters, will spread across the surface of your living roof as a ground cover. This powerful medicinal plant has ferny, aromatic foliage and tall flower stalks capped with broad concave blossoms which make great landing pads for butterflies. Yarrow has the added benefit of tolerating light foot traffic. Related: The Biggest Hospital in North America to Feature a Green Roof with Medicinal Herbs Aromatic Herbs This is where a living roof crosses over to become an herb garden. Many of the most common culinary herbs happen to grow in dry, rocky places, making them ideal candidates for a green roof . The varieties listed here are low-growing, wide-spreading groundcovers; the other key trait for a living rooftop carpet. Thymus vulgaris is the standard garden variety of thyme that creeps along just a few inches tall and, like yarrow, can tolerate being walked upon.  It makes a luxurious aromatherapy bed for rooftop sunbathing and, of course, can be harvested on demand for the kitchen. Origanum vulgare is common oregano . Like thyme, it is native to the rocky hills of the Mediterranean basin and it can bring that special flavor to your rooftop if you choose to plant it. It’s also a ground cover, growing 4 to 6 inches tall. All images via Shutterstock  

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10 great plants for a living roof

HOW TO: Cook a vegan and hearty Irish stew for St. Patrick’s Day

March 13, 2016 by  
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If you’re looking for a vegan Irish recipe to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day , you’ll love this delicious and hearty stew. While most Irish stews are heavy on the meats, we’ve whipped up an alternative recipe with 100% vegan ingredients that still has that same stick-to-your-ribs taste. The secret for the meat-y flavor? Roasted mushrooms. We’ve also added a lot of other vegetables to round out this delicious meal. Keep reading to see how it’s made! READ MORE>

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HOW TO: Cook a vegan and hearty Irish stew for St. Patrick’s Day

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