Saturday Sun 04.15.2023

Created by Laura Wright
An overhead image shows a hand splashing up some water in a galvanized metal stock tank that is full of water.

Welcome to the weekend! We’re working in the yard, grilling pizza, and going to the Skydome to watch our Blue Jays play this weekend (I will never call it the Rogers Centre). I’ll also be jumping in my ice tub/cold plunge each morning. I finally got my little setup going, and it’s been great! I’m using a 106 gallon stock tank from a farm and ranch supply store. For folks looking to do the same, everything I’ve learned about the setup and maintenance, I’ve learned from Reddit! I recommend poking around there.

Folks often ask me on Instagram what benefits I’m experiencing from doing it. I find it really motivational! Getting in the cold first thing and just gritting it out, doing the deep and slow breathing… you’re starting your day with a hard thing. All of my other work and tasks feel like nothing afterward. I’ve also been enjoying the mental health/nervous system regulation effects and the inflammation relief–all of that digging and gardening takes a toll, but the pain and discomfort just dissolves when I get out of the cold tub. I’m a fan!

Hope that you’re keeping well and enjoying the first bits of Spring. Lots of cooking inspiration for this time can be found in this Vegan Spring Recipes roundup that I just posted :)

5 Things I’m Reading:

  1. How to Do a Life Audit
  2. Can Cookbooks Teach Us to Waste Less Food?
  3. Small acts of kindness matter more than you think
  4. Lululemon Tried to Become a Tech Company. It Didn’t Work Out
  5. Effortless: Make It Easier to Do What Matters Most

5 Things I’m Enjoying:

  1. Playing around with vegan versions of green goddess dressing, and I’ve been enjoying every test so far! It really is just the thing for grilled veg, salads etc in the Spring. Hoping to share my final recipe soon.
  2. Guided meditations in the Plum Village app
  3. Received samples of these seedless lemons and they are truly the best. No little sneaky seeds, so I can squeeze them over my food with abandon.
  4. The new and improved Always Pan is a big hit in our house. The perfect shape for basically everything we’re cooking, oven safe up to 450 degrees, new ceramic nonstick coating, and the body is made with 100% post-consumer recycled aluminum. I was gifted this item by Our Place, but we really do love cooking with it.
  5. Loving the salted caramel granola and oatmeal cookie smoothie from Super Tonics, which just came out this week.

5 Questions:

  1. Tips on freezing batch cooked beans?
    I do this all the time. I batch cook in the Instant Pot, usually preferring to take them a bit under the normal cooking time, resulting in a much firmer bean. From there, I let them cool completely and scoop 1 3/4 cups drained beans into a Stasher bag (the sandwich size). I gently flatten out the bags, pushing out as much air as I can, and freeze them for up to 6 months! I find that taking the cooking time down a bit helps to avoid any mushy-ness upon thawing and reheating.
  2. Would you ever consider a nice glass of wine to go with your amazing vegan food again?
    A version of this question comes up a lot! I stopped drinking alcohol over a year ago because it just wasn’t for me anymore. I’m also keen to avoid anything potentially inflammatory in general, and alcohol is an easy one for me to eliminate. I do not struggle with addiction issues surrounding alcohol, so if I felt that a glass of wine may enhance a special meal, a moment on vacation, a special celebration etc, I wouldn’t be totally against it. The motivation and desire to imbibe would have to come from within me though! As it stands, I don’t feel drawn to wine/other alcohol-based drinks to fully appreciate a meal or moment in my life.
  3. Favourite face sunscreen?
    I love Salt & Stone’s lightweight sheer daily sunscreen. It doesn’t irritate my skin and I don’t find it to be too heavy on my skin. Also their bergamot eucalyptus body wash is one of my favourite smells ever. Number one body wash for life!
  4. Country you’d like to visit?
    I’m dying to go to Scotland. I don’t know if it’s just because I’ve been really into The Traitors, that I’ve been following this TikTok account, or what. Something about the extreme landscape and history is so appealing to me. My partner and I have been planning a trip to England, Scotland, and Ireland that we’re hoping to take in the next couple years.
  5. What is your favourite vegan coffee creamer?
    I’ve tried them all and Silk Half & Half is far and away the best. It isn’t sweetened, the texture is super creamy, and it doesn’t “chunk up” in my coffee ever ✔️

15/04/2023

7 comments

  • Jess

    Hi from a follower of yours from Scotland- it’s a fab place! Definitely come to Glasgow if you can, lots of fabulous vegan food, art, culture and cool people :) lots of places for a (very) cold swim nearby- I am just back from a swim in Loch Lomond with a view of snow capped mountains. I always appreciate taking a few minutes to read your Saturday Suns, and my partner and I looooved the sausage/fennel traybake dinner from a few posts back, thank you!

  • Meredith

    When I batch cook beans I freeze them on a sheet pan lined with parchment. Once frozen, I break them into smaller chunks and store them in a gallon sized freezer bag. Then I can take out how many beans I need for a recipe, or a smaller amount to add to a lunch salad. I freeze the bean broth separately in 2 cup containers. This has been my go to method for about 15 years now. Enjoy!

    • Laura Wright

      I love the sound of this method, Meredith! That’s how I typically freeze berries and other fruit, and it makes so much sense for beans too. Trying this with my next batch. Thanks for sharing!
      -L

    • sue

      Yes to your bean-freezing method! I do the same, without parchment. I try to do a single layer so the beans don’t clump!

  • Elle

    Yes to never calling stadiums by their corporate names.

  • Amy

    Thanks for answering my bean question. I’m going to do it! Also would love to hear more about your plans to travel to England/Ireland/Scotland. My husband are also thinking of Ireland/Scotland trip in the next couple years and we are both vegan.

    • Marie

      I lived in Scotland for a bit and I will say DO NOT go to Scotland in the Summer if you want to spend any time in the Highlands. And you DO want to spend time in the Highlands. Go in the late fall after a frost, or the midges will make you miserable. You can’t see the buggers but you can hear them buzzing and as North Americans (because you aren’t used to their bites) every time they bite it turns into a welt!

      Also, check out Mac Backpackers. Their trips are the best! I cannot recommend them enough.