Archives For Holidays

Easy Holiday Vegan Nut Balls

December 22, 2016 — 2 Comments

The holidays can be a very stressful time for many people.  Recently, I created a simple recipe that helped ease the anxiety of trying to determine what to bring to a holiday party or potluck. These nut balls are very easy to make, and it takes only about 10 minutes. They can be served as an appetizer or a dessert. They are delicious!

Christmas Nut Balls vegan

For a raw vegan version of this recipe, soak the walnuts for 8 hours and then dry them in a dehydrator overnight.

Ingredients:

2 cups walnuts (soaked and dried for a raw vegan version)

¼ cup dates, pitted and soaked

¼ cup shredded coconut or coconut flakes

2 Tbsp. agave nectar

1 tsp. cinnamon

Process:

  1. Optional: Soak walnuts overnight (about 8 hours) for a raw vegan version. Dry in dehydrator.
  2. Grind walnuts in a food processor until fine.
  3. Add the rest of the ingredients except the coconut and blend until creamy.
  4. Form mixture into small balls.
  5. Place coconut into a large jar. Add one or two balls at a time into jar and shake until the coconut sticks to the nut balls.
  6. Refrigerate until serving.

Enjoy!  

Happy Holidays!

© 2016, Vilma Reynoso, VEGoutwithVilms.com, VEG out: go Vegan. save Earth. be Good to animals

 

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Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays! I celebrate differently than most people, however, because I live vegan. I celebrate all that is good in my life and spend the holiday with other vegans. I do not partake in eating turkey or animal products like milk, honey, eggs or butter. I believe, as vegans do, that the violence that is perpetuated onto turkeys (or other animals) is unnecessary and cruel. I believe that there is a better way to live that would include life, peace and compassion for all living beings. And, I believe that living vegan is the first, necessary step to transforming this very disturbed world into more sustainable place for all of Earth’s inhabitants. So, for this Thanksgiving holiday, I wanted to pass on some information. Here are 3 reasons why a vegan Thanksgiving is the way to go!

  1. Animals – Turkeys are beautiful animals who want to live like we do. Read here about turkeys and Thanksgiving.
  2. Alternatives – You do not have to sacrifice anything by eating a vegan meal for Thanksgiving. There are delicious, vegan versions of all the meals you are accustomed to eating on the holiday! There is even scrumptious version of turkey called, Tofurky, that is cruelty-free! Check out these recipes!
  3. Abundance – Living a vegan lifestyle is nothing less than abundance! As a vegan, you do not partake in adding violence (a dead carcass of a tortured animal) to your body. Remember, we are what we eat. A vegan lifestyle is healthier, easy, and less costly. Vegans live longer, increase their changes of living disease-free and feel lighter. And, veganism is the best way to alter the ongoing destruction of the only planet we have to inhabit. Below is a short and fun video by EVOLVE Campaigns about the vegan lifestyle! Enjoy!

 

Wishing you a wonderful, cruelty-free, vegan Thanksgiving!

© 2015, Vilma Reynoso, VEGoutwithVilms.com, VEG out: go Vegan. save Earth. be Good to animals.

 

As a vegan, the holidays can be difficult. As Christmas approaches, I am pondering about customs and traditions. Every family is different, and every family cherishes their own traditions.  But what is it that we cherish so much and makes holidays so special? Is it the delicious meals, the gifts, the time with family and friends or the religious celebrations?  Some of us are fortunate to have loving families with whom we spend our holidays, and some of us are not so fortunate, so we choose not to partake in holiday celebrations. We all, however, cherish tradition and custom to one extent or another. They are part of us. They are pinpoints that mark moments in time to remember and experience again and again.  Tradition and custom inspire us to feel happiness, joy and contentment.  We desire to experience those moments over and over, so we pursue them every year; we even fly across the country for sometimes a minimal amount of days for “tradition.” And, all families have their specific customs.

The custom in my family is no exception. Food was an integral part of my Christmas celebration with my family when I was a child. As a first generation American who immigrated from Argentina to the United States, I grew up celebrating the holiday on Christmas Eve with my family and friends with a large meal in the evening consisting of pan dulce, nuts, fiambre and Argentine sandwiches, empanadas, a large ham, delicious side dishes, Argentine flan and mate for dessert, and a glass of Sidra as a toast at midnight. We all could not wait to partake in the delicious food! After midnight, we opened our gifts. We sometimes attended midnight mass and sometimes did not. We spent Christmas day enjoying our gifts, each other, and munching on leftovers.  I remember great times, laughter, celebration, love, and feeling happy and joyful every Christmas. However, even though I loved the holiday celebrations with my family, I am now not able to participate in the family tradition anymore.  As a vegan, the food, which was an integral part of our celebration at Christmas, does not appeal to me anymore for ethical and health reasons. So, where does that leave me? Am I to ignore my family traditions completely? What is the best that I could do in this predicament?

I decided I needed to start my own new family traditions eliminating the animal consumption without eliminating the people. This year, I will be having a vegan Christmas dinner with friends. I have also decided to perfect a vegan version of most of the foods that were part of my family’s Christmas tradition! This might take time and practice, but my goal is to recreate those special moments with a new, healthy, and delicious cruelty-free versions of our family Christmas dinners. I will mesh the old with the new! I am starting with one item this Christmas!

If you are a new or seasoned vegan and struggling with whether you will partake in a holiday celebration consisting of animal-based foods, or if you are feeling anxious about spending the holiday with non-vegans, here are a few suggestions that might help:

  • Realize that the food is not what is truly important. The people are. There is no replacement for each and every one of us, and we all matter.
  • If you have not done so, explain to your family that you are now vegan and explain why you are vegan for your health, for the animals, and for the planet (see Why Vegan). Explain how it has changed your life for the better with enthusiasm and grace. Hopefully, they will respect your decision and not become argumentative.
  • If someone should try to start an argument, take a deep breath and remember that their attack is about them and not about you.  If you do not have an answer for their particular question, simply tell them you don’t know but will find out.
  • If you should have a very argumentative person at the table, simply tell them you are not there to argue, and if they are interested in learning more about veganism, a good book to read is The World Peace Diet by Will Tuttle.
  • Contribute to the family meal by bringing one or two vegan dishes! Everyone will be curious, and they will love them!
  • The dinner table, especially during holiday times, is not the place to preach about being vegan.  Remember that many people will already feel threatened by your diet. They know they are not eating healthy and are not willing to face that truth for whatever reason. Your very presence might be a threat. This is the time to enjoy your loved ones and not the time to assert your choice of lifestyle. If they should be genuinely interested, fantastic! Spread the truth with grace, patience, and with all your knowledge.
  • Focus on what you like or love about the particular people at the dinner table. You will enjoy your time with them more!
  • If for whatever reason, all of the above should fail, start your own Christmas or holiday traditions with cruelty-free, vegan, delicious meals! You will be contributing to making the world a better, more compassionate place for all living beings.

Wishing you a peaceful and cruelty-free holiday!

© 2014 Vilma Reynoso, VEGoutwithVilms.com, VEG out: go Vegan. save Earth. be Good to animals.