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Pomegranate salad, pet food solutions & an Indian dessert

Hello Mindful Cooks,

We have two new cooks joining our circle this week, Elizabeth T, in Raleigh, NC, and Terry D here in Portland. Welcome, Elizabeth and Terry! There are 217 of us now.

Maybe you remember my last letter featured a recipe for Coconut Braised Chickpeas with Spinach and Sun Dried Tomatoes -- and it ended with a poem. I had several responses:

Thank you so much to both Eve and Susan for such a rich resource and for facilitating this community forum. I love the poem and the EarthSave graphic and (yum!) look forward to preparing the shared recipe. Thank you for your support!
TJ in Millersburg, Oregon.

Eve, what a beautiful poem thank you!!
~ Hilary in Portland

Dear Eve,
I smiled and thought of how grateful I am to have you there... watering seeds of happy tummies and happy hearts and happy planet...
Thank you for sharing the recipe- it looks divine...The youtube was great, too.
I will share these with my sangha!
with gratitude,
s u e --- in New Mexico

Hi, Eve-
Thank you for this recipe ... I made it earlier in the week and decided to serve it over rice. It was a smash hit with everyone! It’s delicious and (important for me as the cook) so easy to put together. I did so in the morning and then just had to layer in the rice and heat it up for dinner. I’m moving it to the head of the class! Oh, and I found a jar of sun-dried tomatoes already julienned at Whole Foods. Even easier with these already cut up.
I served it with the tomato and pomegranate salad as found in Ottolenghi’s “Plenty More.”
Susan G ----in Rhode Island

When I asked about the salad, she sent these links. Ottolenghi makes pomegranate seeding look so easy! The salad looks very special:

As for the tomato and pomegranate salad: here are a couple of links I found on line. One is for the recipe (available on several sites) and the other is of Ottolenghi preparing it. Fun!
Preparation of salad:
Many thanks again for all the support you provide for those of us who are trying our best to mindfully prepare and eat a plant based diet,
🙏🏼 Susan

Here's a great new way to include broccoli in your dinner plan --- Yellow Rice with Black Beans and Broccoli --- a dish Linda made for our winter potluck in Portland last week:
Yellow Rice & Black Beans with Broccoli

It was a small -- but enthusiastic -- potluck group this time. Here are the highlights of the food conversation:
Linda has been enjoying trying recipes from Dr. Greger's new "How Not to Die Cookbook". She also told everyone how much she enjoyed taking the Rouxbe/Forks Over Knives plant-based no-oil online cooking course, and how much she learned. This generated a lot of discussion about chef's knives, the benefits of preparing your mise en place, etc.

Cathy has been giving a lot of thought to cat food. She recommended Ami Cat vegan cat food, which is produced without slaughterhouse by-products, and is fortified with taurine. In the future there may be cat food made with lab-grown meat:
She also mentioned that Food Fight has a whole wall of vegan dog food.

Susan talked about how much time is taken up with food -- thinking and planning, buying, putting it away, cooking. One of her neighbors said, "I could almost be a vegan, but I just don't have enough time."

There was also talk of several vegan or vegan-friendly restaurants: Bete Lukas (Ethiopian) and Epif (Andean) are only in Portland - keep them in mind when you come for a visit. Virtuous Pie (handcrafted pizza) also has locations in Canada. And I can add a place I discovered just last night --- Next Level Burger, a chain now in California, Oregon, Washington and New York. I hope it goes everywhere -- it"s all vegan, sustainable, organic and delicious!

In other news, I learned that the movie, Plant Pure Nation, is now shown for free on YouTube. Plant Pure is an ambitious plan to change the world and the movie is the first step. Here is your chance to find out what it's all about:

I was pleased to hear from Ashwani in Chicago, who keeps us inspired with those wonderful Indian spices:
Hello Eve! Sending you warm greetings from cold Chicago. A local Buddhist temple is hosting a cooking class, and everything's vegan except this dish starting with a "W". I can't go to it but I did want to share a recipe I found for this delicious custard pudding. I also think the thickness could be made with either finely ground oats or also ground flax seeds or chia seeds.
Watalappam - The Lotus and the Artichoke

Is anybody up for writing our next "guest post" in a couple of weeks? I send you whatever comes to me, you weave it together in your own way and send it back to me for mailing. Easy-peasy.

Happy cooking,