July 29th is National Lasagna Day! A few weeks ago I watched a friend make lasagna and thought to myself wait a minute, why have I never done this? Luckily for me, the powers that be (the President?) decided that late July was the perfect time to celebrate layered pasta. After a bit of searching, I found a recipe online for the ‘ultimate’ vegan lasagna and was super impressed by the delicious ingredients that it called for. Creating the filling and then putting the whole thing together layer by layer was such a hoot, I think I actually had a little too much fun with this food holiday. The only real problem? I don’t like lasagna! I never have. And while the adventure that was making it allowed me to enjoy this one, I still stand by the notion that the ingredients of lasagna taste far better on their own than they do baked together.
July 28th is National (ham)Burger Day! I was going to tackle a black bean burger recipe, but then thought who am I kidding- there’s nothing better than a portobello burger. I had never attempted to make one before and am happy to report that it’s simple and delicious! I followed a recipe that said to marinate the mushroom in olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and spices (I went with salt, pepper, and some garlic power) for about fifteen minutes, then just grill it up! Then I spread some vegenaise (Nonnie’s favorite!) and spicy mustard on a french roll (I find hamburger buns dull), grilled up some onions, sliced some tomato and avocado… and stuffed my face.
July 26th is National Bagelfest Day! I love bagels! Condensed bread with a hole in the middle – yum! A few minutes in the toaster oven, some vegan cream cheese, sliced avocado tomato and onion, and I’m a happy girl! (Confession: I took the easy route and bought bagels at the store- the thought of baking bagels today was just way too much!)
July 15th is National Tapioca Pudding Day! Honestly, tapioca pudding really grosses me out. I want to like it, really I do, but that texture is just… blegh. I was hoping that making it from scratch would convert me, and even went for the chocolate tapioca pudding recipe I found on the back of the tapioca box (because really, how can you dislike anything with chocolate in it?) ..but alas, no luck, two spoonfuls down and that tapioca hit the trash can.
July 11th is National Blueberry Muffin Day! I love muffins- they’re basically dessert that gets to pass off as breakfast food. Today I made blueberry-lemon muffins (upon recommendation from one of my baking books that said citrus and blueberries go well together. Agreed.) They’re delicious, and while I wish I could say I’m going to wake up and enjoy one for breakfast tomorrow, the truth is these suckers have been long gone for hours.
July 10th is National Piña Colada Day! A few years ago I vowed never to drink a piña colada again after consuming one that I bought outside the Paris casino in Las Vegas. It came in a massive Eiffel Tower shaped container, and if the amount of cheap booze they put in it doesn’t kill you, the amount of sugar they put in it will. For a while, even the smell of the drink would make me feel sick. But today I took my chances and luckily for me, I seem to have regained my love for this Caribbean cocktail. Drink up, America!
July 7th is National Macaroni Day! Confession: I’ve been wanting to make vegan macaroni & cheese forever, so when I realized that this food holiday landed on a day I’d be out of town and have no time to make it, I ‘cheated’ and planned to make the recipe ahead of time. So, yesterday when my niece came over in the morning to help me with a project I’m working on, we took a break at lunch and made some good ole vegan mac’n’cheese! Vegan what?! Let’s hear it for the cheesy quality of nutritional yeast! The end result? Downright deliciousness that hits the spot. Not gonna lie, I just had a bowl for breakfast!
Kickin’ off July with National Chocolate Wafer Day (July 3rd)! I made homemade thin mints. Aaaaaand they’re amazing. Take that Girl Scouts! We don’t need no stinkin’ $4 box of cookies! (Yes, I just made a Troop Beverly Hills reference. If you’ve never seen it- do not pass Go, do not collect $200, go straight to Blockbuster and rent it. Now. And grab Camp Nowhere while you’re at it.)