Easy Bake Tofu

How to bake tasty tofu

Pre-heat oven 425-450° – 1-2 packages extra firm tofu sliced into squares (or other shapes) on non-stick pan.
Splash with soy sauce, marinade, or other yummy flavorings (liquid smoke).
Broil each side 5 min. Turn off oven and let tofu bake as oven cools. Serve as is or dice and add to other dishes. Stores well in fridge.
In the past I pressed the water out of the tofu before cooking it, but this method bakes away most of the moisture as the oven cools.
The texture is chewy with crispy edges. Cooking tofu on a pancake griddle does just as well.

Easy Veggie Burgers


Easy Veggie Burger
1 can fat free refried beans (or other beans pureed)
2 tablespoons soy sauce (or marinade)
2 tablespoons potato or corn starch
1/2 – 1 teaspoon liquid smoke flavoring (if desired)
spices (if desired) (black pepper and sage make sausage flavor)

Stir in:
1 1/2 to 2 cups uncooked old fashioned oats (depending on how moist the beans are)

Option: use cooked brown rice instead of oats.

Form into 6 patties

Cook on pancake griddle with non-stick spray or thin film of oil
Bake in oven on non-stick surface
…until brown on both sides

Each patty has approximately:
7 grams of protein
2 grams of fat (from oats)
160 calories


Marathon Complete

The Making of a Middle-Aged Athlete – Part 1, The Beginning

I didn’t grow up aspiring to be an “athlete” although I was considered a “tom boy” and would play high intensity games like football and dodge ball with vigor. My story actually started around the time I turned 40. Like many, 40 is a turning point where it started to hit me that maybe I needed to think about the things I wanted to do before I was too old to do them. I put together a bucket list and at the top was run a half marathon. The furthest I had ever run in my life was about 6 miles, so more than doubling that would be a huge accomplishment. Around that same time (turning 40), I noticed something changing inside of me. Despite going to the gym 3-4 days a week and walking my dogs, I still felt sluggish and my head was always foggy. I couldn’t think straight and found it tough to get out of bed some days. I had a feeling it had to do with how I ate, but couldn’t figure out what or why. A friend told me about a “cleanse” where I could detox my body and feel great. Being desperate to try anything, I did it. For five days (I was supposed to last 10 days), I drank a concoction of lemon juice, water, cayenne pepper and maple syrup. No solid food. I was sick for the first four days and by day 5, I felt light, clear-headed and hungry. On day 6, I started transitioning back to solid food and about two weeks later, I felt as bad as I did before I started the cleanse.

Something Big had to Change

I noticed how much better I felt when I consumed more fruits and vegetables with my meals and thought if I went vegetarian, I could get my life back. In January 2012, I decided I would gradually transition to a vegetarian diet and since my “addiction” was cheese not meat, I figured it was doable. I started out with a goal of eating vegetarian 2 days a week, and then increase to 3 days, 4 days until I hit my goal. By June 2012, I became vegetarian.

Running the Half Marathon

In addition to transitioning to vegetarian, I started training for my first half marathon. I teamed up with a couple of friends and we put a plan together and started running. After running my first 10 miles ever, I came to accept that I was officially hooked on running. On March 4, 2012, I completed my first half marathon in New Orleans in 2:41:47 at 12:21 pace. It was a great day. Flat course, beautiful weather, fun crowd, and I could check that off my bucket list.

MSveg.com T-shirts

MSveg.com t-shirt

New MSveg.com T-shirts!

We now have MSveg.com T-shirts available for sale at our cost, $8.50 each (plus shipping, if needed, $4.50 for one shirt or $6.00 for two). We will have them for sale at MSveg events such as Fondren after 5 in Jackson, 2nd Tuesday Meetups in Hattiesburg, and 2nd Thursday Meetups at Bravo in Jackson. The shirts are printed on natural cotton and available in S, M, and L sizes (sorry, we sold out of XL). To order a shirt by mail, send email to dfanim@yahoo.com for specifics.

Vegan Gourmet Dinner

We just got word that Bravo! will be hosting a special 7-course vegan gourmet dinner on Monday, July 14th. Chef Matt Mabry is still finalizing the menu, but this is what its looking like so far… Can anyone say YUM?!?!

Amuse: Lychee- jasmine and lemongrass tea- sesame sugar snap pea salad- local borage- Maldon sea salt

1. Smith county watermelon gazpacho w/ local cucumber and spiced almond

2. Heirloom tomato caprese: local heirloom tomato- micro thai basil- crispy capers- housemade “mozzarella”- charred micro radish- 25 year old balsamic and herbed olive oil

3. Abalone mushroom “filet”- smoked sweet and spicy lobster mushroom- black lentil and fiddle head fern ragout, charred baby leek- local blackberry marmalade- shaved summer truffle

4. House made local purple hull pea ravioli- meyer lemon “cream” sauce- local sugar pea shoot, pickled rainbow chard- local sweet corn

Palate Cleanser: Chilton County peach sorbet- candied ginger- chocolate micro mint

Dessert : TBA — at BRAVO! Italian Restaurant and Bar.
[Thanks to Gigi Carter for this news]

We had three veggie events this week

The MS-veg folks had a full week with two monthly meetups and a special lunch event. The Hattiesburg MS-veg group met at Thirsty Hippo on Tuesday, then Thursday the Jackson group met at Bravo! Italian Restaurant and Bar. High Noon Cafe invited us to help celebrate and say goodbye on Chef Tony’s last day at the cafe.

Vegan sausage

Vegan red bean sausage & three bean salad. 

Thirsty Hippo is very accommodating to vegetarians and vegans. Many veggie choices are listed in their menu and they are all highly praised by the group.

Hattiesburg MSveg Thirsty Hippo

Hattiesburg MS-veg group at Thirsty Hippo

The group enjoyed the restaurant enough to schedule next month’s meeting at Thirsty Hippo again on the second Tuesday, July 8.

Vegan gourmet three course meal

Vegan gourmet three course meal

Bravo! always surprises us. Thursday we had local butter bean salad, grilled eggplant with something akin to couscous, and berry-peach cobbler. Excellent. Enjoyable. The Jackson MS-veg group has a meetup there on the second Thursday each month, but Bravo! has vegan three course meals every Thursday. Some of the group members go nearly every week. 

High Noon Cafe - vegan Pad Thai special

High Noon Cafe – vegan Pad Thai special

High Noon’s menu is all vegan, organic, and non-GMO. Thursday they said goodbye to Chef Tony who is taking over the food services department at Nissan. He will still be available for catering and events. The folks at High noon say their other cooks are well-trained to continue Chef Tony’s traditions.