Folklore and Veganism

My first week of class for second term is over, WOO! We’re now full swing in my folklore class and I think I finally understand the topic of the class. Folklore, according to my prof, is learning of anything in an unconventional manner. This can be learning a recipe from your mother, though she may have learned it from a book, telling scary stories around a campfire, or throwing spilled salt over your shoulder. It is really everyday interactions in an informal matter, the best part of the class is our final paper that is on any topic of our choosing! My topic is *drum roll* Veganism! I’ve always been extremely interested in this lifestyle and why/how others choose to live it. We need a few interviews for our paper and I’m planning on getting interviewees at a local health food store, Sundance! Also, if any of your are interested in filling out my questionnaire feel free to let me know, the more interviews I conduct the better my final paper!

I haven’t eaten anything too interesting lately, just the standard spinach salad with tofu for lunch and a veggie stir fry for dinner. They weren’t camera ready, BUT my fro-yo from the other day is always a beaut! I am only one punch away from a free 8 oz fro-yo!!! Mmm, this is such an addiction.

Cake Batter, Raspberry, and Tart! Always with sprinkles, I love all the colors!

Tomorrow evening is the Katy Perry concert, my first real concert and I am ECSTATIC! My roommate and I are planning outfits for tomorrow including fake eyelashes and lots of glittery make-up, can’t wait!

Who’s your favorite musical artist?

What was the first concert you attended?


Meatless Monday {FTW!}

In honor of Meatless Monday my roomie, a friend, and I whipped up a vegan meal last night. It was only by accident that it was vegan and it was absolutely delicious. I plan on making this again when I’m home for the weekend. (Prepare yourself mom and dad). I found this recipe after a WIAW while scanning other recipes and with a few gluten adjustments (for our friend) we hit the ground running.
For the original recipe check out Healthy Exposures’ blog.

Orange-Jam Tofu and Quinoa
(for 3 people)

What You Need:
For the tofu:
Large block firm tofu
1 Orange
2 T Jam (we used boysenberry)
1/4 t Minced garlic
1.5 T Balsamic vinegar
1/4 t Cinnamon
pinch of chili powder
olive oil to coat the pan

1. Slice tofu in to 1/3 in. thick triangles and place onto heated pan
2. When tofu is golden on one side flip
3.While tofu is cooking start preparing the glaze.
4. In a small bowl, juice the  orange, add the jam ,balsamic, cinnamon, seasonings and garlic. Mix well.
5.  As the tofu’s crust turns golden begin to spoon on the glaze. It should begin bubbling, let it simmer and then flip half way as the glaze reduces. If you need more moisture add a bit of water.

Before the glaze has been added to the tofu. It will be flipped again!

What You Need:
For the Quinoa:
2/3 C Dry quinoa
1 C Frozen corn (or peas)
3-4 Asparagus stalks
1/4 t garlic
2 medium carrots chopped
1/4 C onions

1. Cook quinoa following the directions on the box.
2. While that cooks in another pan let mushrooms and onions cooks until mushrooms release moisture.
3. Then add the rest of the vegetables, garlic, and vinegar. Cook approximately another 5-6 minutes.
4.Now plate your quinoa, top with with vegetables and then plate tofu.

Everything is simmering away
Lovely veggies after adding the balsamic.

This is quick and easy once you get started! The tofu is incredibly juicy with the glaze and with any excess you may have it can used as a dressing, pancake topping, or any other way you can imagine
. Such a great summer meal! I want to try it as a cold lunch on our next hot day. (Which may be a while, it’s raining as I type…Oregon needs to get with the program. Summer is suppose to be warm, right?!)

The finished dish!

Mmm, I want more.

Have you made any meals from other bloggers that you love?
Do you participate in Meatless Monday?

Smoke Alarms and Human Test Subjects

I’ve decided that I should not bake muffins. Or I should at least be supervised while I bake muffins. Two out my last three muffin baking sessions something has gone wrong.

I bought an extra banana last week with the intent of baking banana muffins later in the week. I ate a late dinner last night of leftovers and then immediately went to work on the muffins. I had all the dry ingredients measured and mixed with the banana in under 5 minutes.

I probably should have stopped the process when I realized we had oat bran and not rolled oats. Experimenting with a recipe the first time doesn’t usually turn out well. I also should have stopped the process when we realized the oven won’t preheat at 350. It will bake at either 250 degrees or 395 or higher. Two red flags and in went the muffin batter. It smelled absolutely delcious! The aroma of cinnamon filled the apartment with a hint of banana. 6 minutes pass and I checked on the batch, they are rising to perfection. Almost done. 5 more minutes pass we both comment on the great smell and I then check on them. HUGE WAVES OF SMOKE escape the oven! It takes less than 30 seconds for the smoke alarm to madly sound.
Then we have the following chain of events play out:

I thrown muffins on stove.
Roomie starts fanning the alarm with a pillow.
I open apartment door.
I turn on a fan.
She grabs a wall fan and holds it up to the alarm.
I madly fan the alarm with a towel.
We fan and blow on alarm for another solid minute.
Finally the alarm slows and the beeping and stops.

I wish we had this on film.

We checked the muffins and the edges are, to put it lightly, burnt. Instead of instantly throwing them out we grab forks and dig into the center. It has a pudding texture and tastes sweet and not at all burnt. We could only salvage two or three bites out of each muffin. If they weren’t singed so badly on the edges they had potential to taste good.

I don’t know if it was the oven or the rolled vs. bran oats , or a timing issue. I do know, I won’t be making muffins in the near future.

Ingreidients gathered
Mixed and ready to bake!
What I ate instead. PB&J wrap

In other news, I am a paid research experiment participant.

As a way to earn extra money this summer because I am unemployed I volunteered to be a participant in a paid research experiement. I went in for my baseline tasting last night and returned home with $20 and a hand grip exerciser. For the next three weeks I have to respond to text messages every few hours about the progress on my personal projects. I did reaction experiments in the lab, a personality survey, and finally concluded with stating my personal goals or “projects.”The text messages ask me how on a 1-10 scale how well I’m progressing on my projects, and how distracted I am from the project. In addition to each 1-10 survey text, once a day I also have to use the hand grip and measure my strength at that time. It is an easy way to earn an extra $100 over the course of three weeks. It is also a great way to motivate me towards my goals! Believe me when I say I am looking for more on-campus experiments!

Have you ever set off the smoke alarm?

We are old ladies

“We are old ladies” was a common theme throughout the day. After my exam in wellness today my friends and I decided to go to antique stores and to St. Vincent de Paul’s. We were not shopping for any particular reason, we hoped to maybe find a cool decorative piece for the apartment or possibly a book.  Our shopping excursion was far more successful than we had planned. We found books, puzzles and boardgames! [I couldn’t help but chuckle as I typed that.] It’s undecided, are we 7  years old or 70?  The puzzle is an awesome history puzzle 600+ pieces with a time line from 1900-1940 and names of the important persons’ on the board. We are nerds. Our other great finds include Taboo and the book Tabloid Love (sure to be a guilty pleasure).We had planned to go to Bootcamp today, but we were too engrossed in the books and clothing at St. Vincent’s and lost track of time.

For dinner,  an old friend  from HS that I ran into on campus came over to the apartment. We cooked up a quick vegetarian dinner. Other than a few issues with the rice boiling over (I never make rice! I though it was easier) and the broiler automatically turning off we had a great dinner. The tofu was marinated with soy sauce, garlic, ginger and sauteed with onions. We had originally planned to roast the cauliflower, but the oven had other plans for us. The cauliflower was then thrown in a pan and we also sauteed the cauliflower. Dinner was ready in 30 minutes.It wasn’t the most colorful, but if we’d been prepared with more vegetables and a satiated appetite; the presentation could have greatly improved. Despite lacking in presentation, the flavor was well accounted for.

First we attempt to roast
Plan B! Saute everything.
Vegetarian dinner

After dinner we played a few rounds of Taboo and then later on in the evening it was back to assembling the puzzle. Simple Pleasures.

What do you do for fun in the evening?
Have you ever cooked tofu?

WIAW- Waffle Edition

I am never eating a waffle anywhere else ever again.

For breakfast today my roommate, our friend and I drove to Off the WaffleThis place is everything it is hyped up to be. The waffles are of a different breed! The batter is different than all others because they are Liege waffles,  yeast is included in the batter. (I’m sure more than yeast is added!) The waffle is perfectly crispy and chewy, as well as perfectly portioned! Off the Waffle offers sweet and savory waffles, fried eggs, organic yogurt and vegan options (!).

I indulged in the H-bomb! Melted Havarti, Apple and Cinnamon topped my waffle. The picture does not do it justice. I walked in to class and immediately recapped my meal to my group member. He is already making plans for his maiden trip to Off the Waffle.

Food: A
Service: (we ordered to-go) A
Ambiance: Small, family friendly, very casual/hippie feel. A
Cleanliness: A
$4.50 for my waffle. Worth every penny.

Heaven! Havarti, Apple ,Cinnamon, Waffle

I have class 10am-2pm and was full from breakfast the entire time. (waffle is worth every penny!). I then holed my self up in the library for 3 hours trying to read my philosophy text. Today we were assigned Metaphysics by Aristotle and I may have nodded off for a new minutes during the reading. Did I ever mention this stuff is dense? Lunch in the library included a Chocolate Almond Fudge Clif Bar (my favorite!) and a banana. It was filling, but disappeared quickly!


My roommate and I went to Zumba Fitness before dinner tonight. We ended up discussing how we are completely different in our workout choices. I like longer workouts with periods of intensity and she prefers short but intense sessions. Tomorrow we are trying Boot Camp, it will be interesting for sure! I heard a new song  in class that I want to add to my own routine! I forgot to ask the instructor tonight, but on Friday it’s my mission to get the title. After Zumba Fitness we came home and I whipped up a light dinner. Tuna salad, salad with balsamic vinegar and tons of broccoli.  We are both obsessed with broccoli. Which is great because it is high in vitamin C, fiber and fights multiple types of cancer. Power food!

Dinner #1- tuna/broccoli/salad
My roommate requested her 2nd dinner be displayed. Shrooms, Toast, and Chips/Salsa!

*Tonight we are going grocery shopping and I can get some real lunch food and possibly my first trip ever to TRADER JOES!!! I am beyond ecstatic.


What is your favorite vegetable? How do you prefer it to be cooked?
Do you prefer short high intensity workouts or longer workouts with intervals?

Homemade Sun Dried Tomatoes

Get ready for lots of little posts! I personally don’t like reading posts that go on for pages, so I am going to break this into three.

Yesterday I had a strong craving for sun dried tomato hummus. After scouring the grocery stores I discovered that sundried tomatoes are not something you can buy on a budget. Seeing as I am a college student without a current income, I got creative!

Making the sun dried tomatoes:
1. I took two medium tomatoes and chopped them into fourths and then into eights.
2. On a baking sheet I placed the tomatoes and took notice that they were not crowded.
3. In a cup I mixed a few “glugs” (percise measuring! Right?) of olive oil and garlic salt.
4. I then took the mixture and generously brushed the tomatoes.
5. Finally, I popped the pan in the oven at 195 degrees for 6 hours.
6. I turned the oven off (it was 11 pm) and let the tomatoes sit in the oven until morning.
Isn’t that easy!? AND affordable!!

You can easily store the tomatoes in a little olive oil in a mason jar and have great sun dried tomatoes anytime. My tomatoes appeared in my fritatta at lunch today and it was heavenly!

Hello Foodies!

Welcome to Tacoma Aroma Eats! I ensure that you will enjoy following the successes and “failures”(nothing is a failure, just a less than desired outcome..right?)of my cooking.

I also intend to share any exciting eats I have outside my own kitchen. Currently, I am home for two more weeks of  trial run cooking (and the luxury of parents purchasing groceries)until I move in with my friend for the summer at UO.

For my first post I’m sharing last night’s dinner. It was inadvertently a Vegan meal! My family normal has meat every night, so this little gem is a rarity.

June Celebration Dinner

Clockwise: Quinoa Stuffed Roasted Tomato, Quinoa, Roasted Peppers and Steamed Broccoli. Salad was included, but visually, it cluttered the plate. {Note: I did not cook this meal, I was busy baking.}

Dinner= Success, ie: Tantalizing

This was a perfect meal to end the day after baking Red Velvet Cupcakes with mi amigas. Thanks to the Barefoot Contessa for providing our afternoon entertainment.

The cupcakes were absolutely beautiful! Rich color, rich frosting, and a rich aroma. Having discovered seasonal sprinkles during the baking process we held no reservations while decorating. I think all seasons are represented on our cupcakes.

No one would ever guess looking at these delightful cupcakes that we forgot the baking powder and baking soda…

Cupcakes= Dubious Quality. Slightly dense.

[Mind you, this did not stop us from eating the frosting with graham crackers.]