Life at the Little Green Kettle: Kitchen Adventures, New Projects, a Doggie Filled Birthday and More!

Life at the little green kettle: kitchen adventures

If I tell you that my life has been C-R-A-Z-Y lately it would be the understatement of the century! Here’s the good part, it has been crazy in regards to time, being extremely busy, juggling about a million things at once, but it has also been CRAZY GOOD! There comes a time in every year where opportunities and new projects and challenges seem to come out of the woodwork and I just can’t seem to be able to say no! Here’s the only downside to these past crazy weeks, I haven’t been able to post on my beloved blog and hang out with you guys! As usual whenever I spend some time away from posting, I love to kick it off with a little Life at the Little Green Kettle update. By the end of this post you’ll see one of the main reasons why I’m about to put a sleeping bag in my kitchen, you’ll get a glimpse into my little birthday and the new fitness challenges I’ve set for myself, you’ll get my awesome kitchen trick for keeping leftover naughty treats without throwing yourself off track, and we’ll talk a tiny little bit about the secret project that is going like gangbusters! Are you ready?

One word: ROUXBE, a.k.a putting a sleeping bag in my kitchen!

Ok, so you heard me talk about beginning the Rouxbe professional plant-based certification course in our last post right? Well, so much has been cookin’ since then! I have practically moved into my kitchen. The Rouxbe program is so comprehensive and extensive and requires so much time and focus that the training is literally priceless. I’ve loved it, but it is serious business! Especially when juggling it with work, life, blogging, projects, exercising and the normal stuff we all fill our days with. Regardless of how busy I’ve been and how I find myself doing ingredient lists in my sleep, it has taught me SO MUCH! And I’m not even halfway through it! Oh boy…

I thought you’d love looking at some of the yummies I’ve been making around here (and yes, my husband has been having a blast at home lately).

Adventures in cooking school

This has been one of my favorite dishes so far, a tagine with a ton of spices I toasted and ground myself. What a difference a good balance of spices can make!

Creamy tomato soup and crostini

This week has been all about making soups (including the awesome vegan Vietnamese Pho you saw in the top photo!). This one was one of my favorites because it reminded me so much of my childhood!  A creamy tomato soup (without any kind of cream), crispy shallots and leeks on top, and some avocado crostini on the side. Yes please!

IMG_5561Vegan burger sliders

One of my favorite type of assignments is when they give you a list of ingredients and leave the dish up to you. I of course decided on some mini burger sliders with crispy onions and portobellos, some onion fries (with ketchup of course!), and, since I wanted them to look absolutely beautiful I made the bread too! Beer and poppy seed buns. So delicious.

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We’ve also been practicing making gelées (I made mine with raspberries and plums and then turned them into delicious mocchi desserts with a warm chocolate and peanut butter sauce!).

This doesn’t even cover half of it! We’ve made salads, bean dishes, amazing desserts (you’ll see one towards the end of this post), risottos, grain dishes, salad dressings, starters, smoothies, we’ve cooked veggies in as many ways as they can be cooked, made a gazillion breakfast staples. So yeah, I’ve been busy and the doggies have been keeping me company in the kitchen.

Making delicious salad dressings Spices

The Little Birthday that Could!

A few weeks ago I celebrated my birthday, and I was so tired from all the multitasking and cooking that I decided not to celebrate in a big way with the party I had been thinking about having. Instead we went to my favorite restaurant for brunch Rayen Vegano, with the doggies in tow of course! They had a blast receiving compliments from all the diners and the owners, and as always they were the center of attention. We had a delicious meal and as we were about to head out, the owners of this amazing place had the coolest present for me! None other than Kristy Turner’s book ´But I Could Never Go Vegan!´. Talk about being pampered on my birthday! The book is amazing by the way, full of decadent comfort foods made with simple ingredients and is filled with stunning pictures, which I love in a cookbook.

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After our little breakfast outing we took the dogs to the park and set up our little blanket on the grass while they ran and played with the other dogs and stole potato chips from us. You would have thought it was actually their birthday from the look on their faces!
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Something else happened on my birthday, or a couple of days earlier actually! By the magic that is instagram I found something I was craving but hadn’t realized until then. A new, inspirational challenge and fitness routine. There always seems to be a time each year in which I’m exercising as usual but feel I need a little novelty and a challenge. Boy did I find it! I’m talking about none other than the amazing trainers Karina and Katrina, creators of the Tone it Up program. I’ll be talking more about these awesome gals very soon (they deserve a post all on their own!), but rest assured that if you’re looking for total motivation, a new exercise routine and a challenge, you’ll love hanging out with them and checking out their stuff, they have a rockin’ youtube channel with tons of workouts, a nutrition plan you can order in its vegan version (Yeah! You heard me!), and an awesome community and tips, recipes and more in their website. So as soon as we returned from the park, instead of sleeping all afternoon which is what I was planning on doing, I laced up my trainers and got in a serious sweat session! I’ve always tried to resist that ´I’ll start tomorrow´ mentality that always creeps up on even the most athletic of us, so I guess you could say I started my new year with a bang (and a sore booty the next day!).
Tone it Up program
Then of course it was time for some chocolate cake and some candles. Yes, I had to make the cake as a Rouxbe assignment, yes, it was only going to be for my hubby and me, no, we didn’t eat it all… why? First of all I didn’t want to ruin all my hard work from earlier in the day, and second, I made the discovery of the century! My hubby and I hate to have tons of leftover dessert around the house because it’s just too tempting, and we always end up eating it all. Normally we call some of our favorite neighbors for a leftover pickup, but that day I wanted to see if my method for keeping other leftovers would work on cake: freezing! So after we had some birthday cake, I cut it up into individual pieces, wrapped them in foil and put each piece in a freezer friendly plastic baggie and froze away. Two weeks later when we were having a total chocolate craving I let a piece thaw on the counter, and let me tell you it blew our minds! It was exactly like the cake we’d had on the first day! Even the frosting survived! So that’s my little tip for you today, when making a big cake (jury’s still out on whether this would work on pies or tarts), instead of finishing it off within the next few days, freeze your leftovers and have some cake when you really want it! Happy birthday to you!
IMG_6088 Vegan Chocolate cake
The Little Project that Could!
Ok, I’m just about to let you go here, but not before telling you that the secret project I’ve been hinting at for weeks is growing and growing! It has come into our lives, taken over, and the process has been one of the most fun times we’ve ever had! It’s so much work but we’re having a blast with it! I’m still under strict instructions not to let anything slip, but rest assured you’ll be the first to know all the details. Let’s just say our blog is kind of having a baby and the baby is slowly becoming the mom! This means our blog is going to be moving house in a few months, and it also means that the content will keep coming and will get a total makeover, while still including all your favorite posts of course. It will be bigger and better. Stay tuned!
I hope you all keep having a wonderful spring! Our doggies have been loving the flowers!

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2 responses to “Life at the Little Green Kettle: Kitchen Adventures, New Projects, a Doggie Filled Birthday and More!

  1. Dear Kim, can you give a recipe for that awsome cake? and how did you make the base of the ramen soup with the mushrooms?

    love Franziska
    where is the next post? 🙂 love your blog

    • Hi Franziska! Thank you SO MUCH!! The new post is coming up, so thank you for your patience and for commenting! Great exciting things are coming which is why I’ve been away for a bit. The recipes for this cake and for the soup are from the plant based certification program I’m enrolled in at http://www.rouxbe.com They might have those recipes open to the general public but you’ll have to check. We hope to have new recipes including a scrumptious chocolate cake very soon!

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