Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Weddings and Diabetes

Most of the time, I take care of my diabetes on autopilot. I test before I drive (or walk or ride) anywhere. When I walk to the grocery store, I grab some glucose tablets along with my reusable bag. But some activities require a bit more planning. Like tubing down the Brazos River (hint: diabetes supplies can be bungee corded to your inner tube).

I'm getting married in about a week and a half. Besides the usual decisions to make (what will we eat? how will I keep great aunt Martha from fainting in the heat?), I had a few diabetes related questions.

I don't pump, so I didn't need to sew a pump pocket into my wedding dress, but I still needed somewhere to put my supplies. I don't like to let my supplies get out of my hands anywhere I go, so letting someone else hang onto them wasn't going to cut it. There's actually a company that sews custom diabetes bags, including one meant for weddings. But I'm not really a pink and white flowers kind of girl.

So I sewed my own. It's a pretty basic bag, and I used a pattern. But it's definitely the most complicated thing I've ever sewn. Most of my pants need to be hemmed at least four inches, and my house is full of draw string bags that I've sewn. But this thing is lined! And there are round handles. Needless to say, I'm really happy with how it came out.

Friday, July 10, 2009


Turns out the second yeasted thing I made wasn't foccacia or challah but pizza. Dewey and I have been making our pizzas using dough balls from Whole Foods up until now. I think we'll be making all of our own pizza crusts from now on because this was one of the best pizzas I've ever had.

The crust recipe is from Vegan with a Vengeance as is the pizza sauce. The pizza dough recipe made enough dough for four 6- or 7-inch pizzas, so we froze half of it for another time. Making your own pizza sauce is incredibly easy, especially if you don't mind chunks of tomato or have an immersion blender. (We blend ours. Tomato chunks are on Dewey's avoid-list.)

We each topped our own pizzas. I took this separate-but-equal food opportunity to eat lots of things Dewey won't touch. I topped my pizza with a thinly-sliced heirloom tomato, black olives, artichoke hearts, and pesto. Basil is the one thing I'm growing successfully in my garden.

Saturday, July 4, 2009


Recently, my grandmother bought Dewey and me a stand mixer (thanks Barbie!). One of my goals this year is to get more comfortable working with yeast. I've made bagels and pretzels a few times before, but I'm not very confident doing it. So Dewey and I knew exactly what we wanted to make first with the stand mixer's dough hook.

These are some bagels we made earlier this year with the recipe from How to Cook Everything by Mark Bittman. This is the first time that cookbook has let me down. The instructions were both too complicated and not detailed enough. They suggested spritzing the oven with water to create steam, but failed to mention that the
water mixed with the yeast should be warm. They turned out too tough and unusually brown.

But with our new mixer in hand, we tried the recipe from Vegan Brunch by Isa Chandra Moskowitz. And this recipe turned out perfect for us. Crisp on the outside and chewy on the inside. And they're nicely browned (but not brown), too. Just perfect.

And this recipe has fewer steps as well. Only one rise instead of two. No fussy water in the oven. And Isa's instructions for shaping the bagels worked out much better for us.

Now I'm excited to try more yeast recipes. I think focaccia is next on my list.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Vegan Frito Pie

Dewey has asked me to make my Texas chili four or five times since I first made it. He brings the leftovers to work for lunch (almost unheard of for him). He even brought a triple batch to work for a potluck and then called me up excitedly to tell me they made great frito pies.

So we had frito pies for dinner the other night. Fritos, Texas chili, chopped white onions, and Ctate's Queso. (The recipe is temporarily offline because they're going to bottle and sell it.)