I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas. The last few days have been a blur here in a good but stressful way. I’ve said it before, but for me the day after Christmas feels more like Christmas as a time to relax after all the chaos and stress and really enjoy the gifts and decorations while putting the planning, preparing, and cleaning behind. My mom used to say that a lot to me as a kid which I thought was crazy since the gifts and celebrations are over, but I get it now. This time of year is also a lot of work and planning for adults and especially parents of young kids – how do you do it?! In general this was a tougher year too trying to find the Christmas spirit and keeping the peace at family gatherings with seemingly more political divide and so much more negativity in the news and general, more anxiety seemed to be in the air. As a family, we know what topics to avoid when together, but that can be a challenge after the wine has been flowing for awhile! Thankfully no major blowups this year.
Eats have been a bit chaotic over the last week including a lot of easy leftovers and quick meals. Hubby made a huge batch of vegan chili with Beyond Meat crumbles that had a lot of leftovers.
A lot of simple veggie stir fries as we got ready for decadents holiday eating.
And I had to share veggies with my dinner lap buddy.
Simple tofu and cabbage tamari sautes.
Comforting vegan wonton soup from Pho Vegan Asian Cuisine.
Vegan pizza from Blaze Pizza Friday night and wow, they were crowded – seems everyone had that idea for a simple dinner!
Chocolate oatmeal for breakfast one morning, I just mixed a little stevia, cacao powder, and coconut milk into quick cook oats for a fun option to break the smoothie rut.
We found out last minute that my dad would be staying with us for Christmas Eve and spent a lot of Saturday and Sunday cleaning and preparing the house. After getting the kitchen perfectly clean, I was in no mood to mess it up for lunch and dug this Lightlife meal out of the freezer.
For under 200 calories, it wasn’t bad with satisfying vegan meat crumbles and savory sweet potato puree.
For Christmas Eve, we had my mom and dad over for dinner, so I went with a simple veggie tray with Follow Your Heart Vegan Thousand Island dressing for the dip for starters.
Because it was just the four of us, we kept dinner simple and didn’t even have a dessert. Hubby sweetly ventured to Whole Foods last week and grabbed two of the Tofurky Vegetarian Ham Style Roasts. It’s a new product this year and after seeing it online, I was sure we would not be able to find it after all the vegan roasts sold for Thanksgiving. But he did! The roast does bake for over 2 hours if from frozen and requires frequent glazing with a baster during. We actually still had a turkey baster and it was fun to dig out and use for this.
We served it in slices with roasted potato wedges, steamed green beans, and vegan mushroom gravy for dinner and I used the leftovers chopped in a tofu scramble for breakfast. The ham was a hit with my meat-loving dad, the smokey flavor and hearty texture did not disappoint. I hope this product sticks around because we’ll definitely get it again for Easter and just when we feel like a heartier holiday option.
Christmas morning I scored some great gifts including a new Scanpan wok to replace my aging, cheaper, non-stick wok – can’t wait to try more oil free stir fries in it!
Books and kitchen gadgets.
And we had a big family gathering Christmas Day at my sister’s house where the vegan options were plentiful too. I made a simple white been tomato dish with pasta from Veganomicon, a great rice dish, and roasted broccoli.
Overall it was a great Christmas with great family and food. And now into the limbo period between Christmas and New Year’s with time to reflect on the year and work on positive goals for the new year. To look forward to getting back into a healthy routine.