Cooking = procrastination tactic #1

If someone asked me what my dream job would be at this moment in my life it would a recipe tester, cookbook author and/or a vegan food writer. I love the topics I write about, and, fortunately, many of them deal with food in some capacity. But, during my self-determined breaks - probably more than usual - as a freelance writer, I've been trying out different recipes. Here's some from today:
Granola
3 cups oats (I used 2 c. thick, rolled oats; 1 c. quick-cooking)
1/2 c. slivered almonds
1/4 c. raw sunflower seeds
1/2 c. chopped walnuts
2 tsp. cinnamon
healthy pinches of ground ginger, cloves, nutmeg
pinch of sea salt
1/2 c. (or less) of maple syrup
2/3 c. (or less) oil (canola, safflower or sunflower work best)
1/2 c. raisins and/or cranberries
  1. Set oven to bake 350F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Dump the oats, almonds, sunflower seeds and walnuts into a medium-sized bowl until well combined. Add in the spices and salt, and toss once again.
  3. Add the maple syrup and oil and toss until all ingredients are well coated. Pour the mixture onto the baking sheet, and bake for 20 minutes, stirring the granola on the pan in 5 min. intervals (4 times throughout the baking process).
  4. When finished, set aside to cool on the baking sheet. Once cool, add the raisins and/or cranberries. If there's another dried fruit or ingredient you'd like to add, this is the time to do it.
- The finished product will yield about 1 qt of granola and it will last up to a month in an air-tight glass jar.
Ok. So that's a snack and/or breakfast option. Here's what I had for lunch and dinner, because I know you're dying to know...
Curried carrot soup w/roasted garlic
2 Tbs. olive oil
4 large carrots, peeled, cut into think slices/rounds of equal size
1 red onion, peeled and diced
1 clove roasted garlic (you can use fresh, but roasting the garlic ahead of time gives it the taste that the soup has been cooking all day)
1-2 cups veggie stock
3-4 cups water
1 baked potato, skin removed and flesh chopped (opt., but adds a creamy texture to the soup and it just happened to be in my fridge)
healthy Tbl. of curry powder
generous grind of your pepper mill
pinch of red pepper flakes
  1. Heat the oil in a medium-sized pot and add in the onions until translucent and/or browns on the edges.
  2. Add the carrots and cook for 5-10 minutes to soften slightly. Add the curry powder and pepper. Add the broth and water, bring it to a boil and bring down simmer for 25-30, or until the carrots are cooked through. Add the potato and cook for one minute more.
  3. Remove from heat and blend with an immersion blender, or carefully place in a regular blender, to create your desired texture. Return to pot and warm through before serving. Serve with homemade croutons.
These recipes are easily adaptable and can be adjusted upon your tastes or quantity desired. And, they're all vegan, but don't really require any special ingredients. Happy procrastinating!

Side note: I'm currently looking to get a food license so I can sell granola and other vegan treats. But, in the meantime, if you want to find out about any of my specialities or have requests, let me know!