O Olive Oil

20141107_131716Jane and I have always enjoyed dipping good bread in olive oil and balsamic. A few years ago we were introduced to Dukkah: a mix of ground roast nuts and spices, originating in Egypt, and used as a dip. You add a bit of olive oil and balsamic to your plate and then a small spoonful of dukkah (you can find our recipe below) and dip away. We've adopted this as a regular nosh for ourselves.

So when we were contacted by O Olive Oil and asked if we'd like to sample their products, we said, "absolutely."

We received a very nice package containing two olive oils and four vinegars. The first olive oil we tasted was the O Meyer Lemon Olive Oil which has a really nice light and summery taste. We also sampled the O California Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil. This is a basic olive oil that has a nice fruity note to it as well. Both are very good, and the Meyer Lemon Olive Oil works nicely in a salad dressing.

The vinegars we sampled included: O Fig Balsamic Vinegar, O California White Balsamic Vinegar, O California Port Balsamic Vinegar, and the O California Balsamic Vinegar. Yum. The plain balsamic tasted very good, the white balsamic was light and had less of a bite than the other vinegars, and both were very good. But the Port and Fig balsamic vinegars stood out as delicious. We're hoarding the remainder of those bottles for ourselves, and will be buying more when we finish our samples.

We sampled six of their many products. Jane has already earmarked a few of the other varieties she'd like as her holiday gift, and I'm all for that since I'll get to share in the bounty. O Olive Oil has a number of gift sets available if you're looking for a gift idea.

20141107_142312

Dukkah

2/3 Cup ground almonds (or hazelnuts)

1/2 Cup toasted sesame seeds

2 Tbs ground coriander

2 Tbs cumin

1 Tbs ground pepper

3/4 Tbs salt

Mix all ingredients together. Stays fresh for a few months. Dukkah recipes vary widely, and there are many of them on the internet. You can modify the recipe with any spice mix you enjoy.

 

You can buy O Olive Oil directly from the manufacturer or on Amazon

Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving has always been a special day in our house. Once we became vegan, our menu was mostly the same, simply veganized and minus the turkey. Over the years we've tried a wide variety of turkey substitutes, but our absolute favorite is the Gardein Holiday Roast.

gardein holiday roast

It is supposed to serve 8, but even though we cut it into 8 slices, we wind up eating two of them at one serving, so for us, it serves 4. The package even comes with two pouches of some pretty good gravy, eliminating the need to make your own.

Last year we found it at our local grocery store, where we can also find a wide variety of other Gardein products. This year, they didn't carry it, even though they've expanded their Gardein variety, but the store manager did offer to special order it for us. We were able to buy it at Sprouts, and it appears to be carried at many Target's here in southern California. Unfortunately it has also gone up in price (along with almost everything we are buying this year) from $11.99 to $13.99. We thinks it's a tad pricey, but we love it regardless. It is our Thanksgiving table centerpiece.

Review: Soyajoy G4 Soy Milk Maker

Soyajoy G4 Soy Milk MakerRecently, Soyajoy came out with a replacement for their top-selling soy milk maker. For 2013, Soyajoy now has the G4 soy milk maker, a replacement for their older, G3 model.

The product description (according to the manufacturer) is that the SoyaJoy G4 is the next model to the 5-star rated SoyaJoy G3. The G4 retains all features of the G3. Key improvements are the G4's all stainless construction of the cooking and grinding chamber, increased capacity, and the filter-less bottom heating with Perfect Grind Technology (TM). Not all soy milk makers are created the same. The G4 uses premium components such as the low noise DC motor, solid state power control, and #304 stainless steel. The microprocessor and the  sensors continuously monitor and control the grinding and heating process to
make perfect milks, soups, or porridges.

The changes between this year's model and the older model:

  • An Increased capacity (now 1.7 liters) and bottom heating technology
  • Important! - It is now made of all stainless steel for the grinding and cooking chamber. No food color stains on plastic or concerns of plastic leaching into food
  • Five automatic, one-button functions for fully cooked milk, soup, and raw vegan milk from beans, grains, and nuts.
  • 4th generation filter-less design for easy use and cleaning with Perfect Grind Technology (TM) for high milk yield.
  • High tech design complete with advanced temperature and water level sensors, and solid-state power controls for superior performance and durability

Here's a side-by-side comparison between the G4 and its predecessor, the Soyajoy G3 soy milk maker

Image
TitleSoyajoy G4 Soy Milk Maker - with All Stainless Steel Inside - New 2013 Model Introduction SaleSoyajoy G3 Soy Milk Maker - Newest and The Only Model for Making Hot As Well As Raw Milks From Beans, Almond, Hemp, and Othe
BrandSoyaJoySoyaJoy
Feature2013 new model replacing the 5-star rated SoyaJoy G3 with increased 1.7 litter capacity and bottom heating technology.
Important! - all stainless steel construction for the grinding and cooking chamber. No food color stains on plastic or concerns of plastic leaching into food
Five automatic, one-button functions for fully cooked milk, soup, and raw vegan milk from beans, grains, and nuts.
4th generation filter-less design for easy use and cleaning with Perfect Grind Technology (TM) for high milk yield.
High tech design complete with advanced temperature and water level sensors, and solid-state power controls for superior performance and durability
The newest and greatest milk maker from the most trusted brand with 2-year warranty ($20 value)
The only milk machine that makes fully cooked as well as RAW vegan milks from beans, seeds, nuts and grains.
3rd Generation filter-less design for easy of use, clean up in minutes. Dish washer safe stainless cooking pot
Large 1.6 litter capacity. 90-day full refund policy.
Full automatic, one-button operation, longer cooking cycle for thorough cooking and better taste
Warranty2-year warranty from date of purchase2 year limited warranty
Price$139.00$119.95
Height7 inch6 inch
Weight6.5 pound7 pound
Width6.75 inch9 inch
Length10 inch11 inch
Rating4.4 out of 5 stars4.8 out of 5 stars
ReviewsRead ReviewsRead Reviews
LinkMore InfoMore Info

Product prices and availability are accurate as of May 13 14:23:02 UTC but are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on the merchant site at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.

 

Here is a reviewer on Amazon's comments: Soyajoy G4 makes great tasting soy milk and requires very minimal effort from its user. That doesn't mean no work, but it's far easier to make soy milk with this product than using traditional kitchen tools like pots and blenders.

I used to buy soy milk from a grocery store, and there are several things I had to learn (or am still learning) when I switched to making soy milk at home:

1.Soy beans need to be soaked in water overnight before cooking (though Soyajoy G4 does have an option for both soaked and dry beans, soaked beans would yield better result according to the manual). So if you wake up in the morning and realize that you don't have enough soy milk left for your breakfast cereal, oops, too late.

2.Making soy milk yields quite a lot of okara (pulpy left over from milking process). Okara is nutritious and beneficial for one's health, but incorporating okara into my daily diet isn't so intuitive and I'm still learning how to make good use of this byproduct. Thankfully there are many blogs and websites that have recipes using okara as main ingredient.

3.The device needs to be washed right after operation. If the device is left unwashed for a while, soy residue would start to dry and stick to the stainless steel surface. This happens very quickly because the working part of this device remains pretty hot after operation. When this happens, I find it easier to run the device with hot water and a few drops of detergent before cleaning with sponge.

Overall I am satisfied with Soyajoy G4. It does require a bit more work than picking up cartons of soy milk from a store, but the taste of homemade soy milk is worth a little extra work in my opinion.

This is just one review. If you'd like to see additional reviews, click here.

Besides making soy milk, it is also great for almond milk. Jane used to buy almond milk from our local grocer's all the time, but now she always makes almond milk at home. It's easy and it's incredibly inexpensive.

AmazonSoyajoy G4 Soy Milk Maker - with All Stainless Steel Inside - New 2013 Model Introduction Sale

The SoyaJoy G4 is the next model to the 5-star rated SoyaJoy G3. The G4 retains all features of the G3. Key improvements are the G4's all stainless

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Sophie’s Kitchen Reviews

Jane and I were invited to try some of Sophie's Vegan Kitchen entrees.  They offer a line of vegan "seafood."  Both Jane and I loved seafood in our pre-vegan life, so we were excited to try these products.  As with all meat analogs, we expected something close, but not the real thing.  With that in mind, we picked up their Vegan Crabcakes, Vegan Breaded Scallops, and Vegan Breaded Shrimp.

Vegan Crab CakesWe tried the Vegan Crabcakes first.  This was the item Jane was most excited about.  She was a big fan of crab cakes in her past, so we tried to temper our expectations a bit.  After all, how close could these really be.  And really, they weren't.  The texture resembled lump crab meat, so kudos to Sophie's Kitchen for that feat.  The crab cakes themselves were good.  We heated them in the oven and both thought they'd be better sauteed in a skillet with a bit of oil and tartar sauce to accompany them.

The crab cakes come 4 to a box.  Each cake is supposed to represent a serving.  We each had two.  So we consumed 240 calories, 12 grams of fat, and 6 grams of protein (reminder, this nutritional info is for two servings).

 

Vegan Scallops and ShrimpFor our next meal Jane prepared both the Vegan Breaded Scallops and the Vegan Breaded Shrimp.  We both thought the scallops were the tastiest of the three dishes and the shrimp were the weakest.  We shared this meal with an omnivore friend.  He exclaimed that there was no way this would be confused with "real" seafood.  We both thought the scallops had the same texture and mouthfeel of authentic scallops, but we didn't care for the shrimp at all.  The scallops were only 50 calories and 1 gram of fat, but provided no protein.  The shrimp were 240 calories, 11 grams of fat, and 4 grams of protein.

Jane and I tend to look for "meat" analogs which actually serve as "meat" replacements.  By that I mean that they provide an adequate amount of protein as could be expected if consuming a meat based meal.  None of the Sophie's products we sampled fit that bill.  And while they were interesting, we don't expect to run out and buy any in the immediate future.

Have any of you tried this product?   What do you think?  What are your favorite meat analogs?

 

Vegan Black Pepper Steak Review

Jane and I were asked to sample a frozen entree of our choice from the vegeusa people.  They make vegan and vegetarian foods under the Vegetarian Plus brand name.  In all our time being vegan, we haven't actually sampled their products.  Jane isn't much for frozen meat alternatives, and the Vegetarian Plus foods are not available in our local grocery store, which means a trip to Whole Paycheck... I mean Whole Foods.  And these days, like everyone else, we have to be a bit more careful with our money.

Anyway, Vegetarian Plus offers a variety of  different products.  We opted to try the Vegan Black Pepper Steaks.  They were $6 and the box said there were 4 servings; we dished it out as two.  No way is that 4 servings!

Vegan Black Pepper Steak Nutritional Information:
Serving Size: 2.5 oz
Servings per Container: About 4
Calories: 170
Carbohydrates: 10g
Total Fat: 8g
Saturated Fat: 2g
Trans Fat: 0g
Sodium: 400mg
Sugars: 3g
Fiber: 2g
Protein: 13g

DSCF7009The texture of the meat was fantastic.  I haven't had any kind of red meat (knowingly) in over 20 years; Jane in over 7, so perhaps we are misremembering.  But this product actually had the mouthfeel we remembered steak to have.  More so than any other alternative product we have tasted.

Jane served the "steak" with her scallion-rice, and a large green salad.  I thought dinner was yum. While Jane enjoyed the "steak" she did not enjoy the sauce it was prepared with.  The package ingredients list "spices" so we're not sure, but Jane believes there to be Chinese 5-Spice among those spices.  It's a flavor she particularly dislikes.

We will likely purchase this product again.  Jane has a hankering for Beef Goulash, a dish she had often as a child.  She's thinking she could make that dish by rinsing the sauce off the "steak."  It would be wonderful if vegeusa would start selling the steak unseasoned, so that people could prepare it as they desire.  This would also be a great transitional food for aspiring vegans, or those who want options for "Meatless-Mondays."

Vegan Kitchen Tools and Equipment

50s kitchenWhat are the most important appliances for the vegan kitchen? An article in Mother Nature Network lists their suggestions of the most important and useful tools and equipment that every vegan kitchen should have.


Both new and long-time vegans will definitely agree that the right appliances make cooking and baking easier and more enjoyable. Take cashew cream for example. Soaked, blended cashews make an amazing base for frosting, dips, raw desserts, and sauces … but a high-powered blender or food processor is a must!

The right appliances allow you to whip up new, creative ideas at home instead of buying everything pre-made, ultimately saving money and allowing you to customize recipes to your preferences. Check out the guide below to help you find the right appliance for your needs and budget.

Juicers:

Juicing fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs gives you a nutritional boost and allows you to mix together your favorite combination of produce.

Image
ManufacturerBrevilleBlack & DeckerHWI/Breville USA
ModelBJE200XLJE2200B800JEXL
UPC021614043283050875804753021614034205
Rating0 out of 5 stars0 out of 5 stars0 out of 5 stars
ReviewsRead ReviewsRead ReviewsRead Reviews
LinkMore InfoMore InfoMore Info

Breville makes a line of high-quality juicers that fit various kitchen needs. The least expensive, at about $150, is the Breville BJE200XL 700-Watt Compact Juice Fountain. It’s a compact juicer designed to save counter space. The deluxe model, the Breville 800JEXL Juice Fountain Elite 1000-Watt Juice Extractor, sells for around $300.

Trusted brands like Black and Decker offer more affordable juicers, like their Fruit and Vegetable Juice Extractor. This model is available for under $40.

Blenders:

A high-powered blender is a must for smoothie lovers and raw foodies! Smoothies are an amazing way to get a healthy dose of fruit and/or greens, and are a nice complement to juicing. A powerful blender is also the best way to make a variety of sauces, raw soups, and even nut milk.

Image
ManufacturerVita-Mix CorporationVita-MixVita-Mix Corporation
Model178213631732
TitleVitamix 1782 TurboBlend, 2 SpeedVitamix 1363 CIA Professional Series, PlatinumVitamix 1732 TurboBlend VS Blender
UPC703113017827703113013638703113017322
Rating4.5 out of 5 stars4.6 out of 5 stars4.6 out of 5 stars
ReviewsRead ReviewsRead ReviewsRead Reviews
LinkMore InfoMore InfoMore Info

There’s a reason the Vitamix has an almost cult-like following; vegans and raw foodies around the world will attest that it is the ulimate blender. Its powerful motor, various settings, and patented tamper stick allow you to do much more than with a typical blender. Ranging in price from $329 to $649, the Vitamix is definitely an investment, but you can use it to juice, blend, chop, powder and process with ease. The company’s unparalleled 5-to-7 year warranties guarantee your satisfaction.

There are also plenty of great blenders available for under $100. For example, this Oster Blender with a bonus food processor attachment is available for about $80 on Amazon.

Image
ManufacturerHamilton BeachOsterCuisinart
Model50242N004093-008-NP0SPB-600
UPC040094502417034264003262086279029874
Rating3.9 out of 5 stars3.8 out of 5 stars3.5 out of 5 stars
ReviewsRead ReviewsRead ReviewsRead Reviews
LinkMore InfoMore InfoMore Info

Food Processors:

A good food processor is indispensable for making raw desserts (like no-bake brownies!) and finely chopping vegetables. A number of models are available from well-known brands such as Breville, Black and Decker, Cuisinart, KitchenAid and Hamilton Beach.

Look for sturdy construction and adequate cup size, especially if you plan to use this appliance frequently, for large batches, or on hard to process foods. Food processors aren’t cheap these days, but you do often get what you pay for in the world of appliances.

Image
ManufacturerCuisinartHWI/Breville USAKitchenAid
ModelDLC-2009CHBBFP800XLKFP750PK
TitleCuisinart DLC-2009CHB Prep 9 9-Cup Food Processor, Brushed StainlessBreville BFP800XL Sous Chef Food ProcessorKitchenAid KFP750PK 700-Watt 12-Cup Food Processor, Cook for the Cure Komen Foundation Pink
UPC086279022301021614053817883049005713
Rating4.4 out of 5 stars4.7 out of 5 stars4.5 out of 5 stars
ReviewsRead ReviewsRead ReviewsRead Reviews
LinkMore InfoMore InfoMore Info

Dehydrators:

Dehydrating is a common practice, and it’s not just for raw foodists! This appliance is awesome for making raw pizza crusts, crackers, dried fruit, and much more. Like the Vitamix, a good dehydrator is an investment. But after making a few batches of “cheesy” kale chips or raw granola, the machine will pay for itself in a short time period.

The Excalibur 3000 Series Dehydrators are highly regarded for their superior quality and customized timer settings that simplify the dehydrating process. Their 5-tray dehydrator is available on Amazon for about $200, and the 9-tray version is a bit more.

A less expensive option is the Ronco 5-tray Dehydrator, which retails for about $50. The Ronco model provides a clear view of your food as it dries, and comes with the option to add additional trays.

Image
Feature5-Tray dehydrator, 8 square feet of drying space
Built in on/off switch
Perfect for families with small gardens
Includes adjustable thermostat
Easy to clean Polyscreen tray inserts
400-watts of drying power
Expandable to 7 trays
Clear top to monitor the drying process
Fan forced radial air flow means no tray rotation needed
Made in USA
125-watt food dehydrator with 5 interchangeable trays
Electrical heating coils produce convection air flow for evenly dried food
Internal operating temperature of up to 133 degrees F; quiet operation
Instructional booklet with recipes included; made in the USA
Measures 13 by 13 by 12-1/2 inches; 10-year limited warranty
ManufacturerOmega JuicersNesco American HarvestRonco
Model3500BFD-37FD1005WHGEN
UPC837654243152029517005513665860990146
Rating0 out of 5 stars0 out of 5 stars0 out of 5 stars
ReviewsRead ReviewsRead ReviewsRead Reviews
LinkMore InfoMore InfoMore Info



While this is a pretty good list of vegan kitchen appliances, we believe two other items that every vegan kitchen should have are immersion blenders and soymilk makers. We have a detailed review of soymilk makers, here: http://veganbits.com/soy-milk-maker-review/ and a immersion blenders, here: http://veganbits.com/gift-ideas/

Jane uses the immersion blender all the time. I think it's her favorite tool. Here are a few links to some soups that she's made with her immersion blender:

http://veganbits.com/vegan-kabocha-squash-soup/

http://veganbits.com/carrot-soup-and-homemade-bread/

http://veganbits.com/vegan-cream-of-asparagus-soup/

Are there other vegan kitchen appliances that you consider essential?

Soy Milk Maker Review

Soyabella+Soymilk+MakerWe've gotten a few queries lately from our readers about which soy milk maker we recommend.  As many of you know, we own the Tribest Soyabella Soymilk Maker.   Jane got it that soy milk maker as a Christmas gift from her mom way back in December of 2007.  We were very happy with it when we first got it -- we learned how to make soy milk -- but do we still love this machine?  And would we buy it again?  Are there other machines worth trying?  And some of you are wondering, with all the prepackaged soy milks out there, is it worth the effort?

Are Soy-Milk Makers Worth Buying?

I'll answer the last question first.   YES!  By making your own soymilk you save money, control your intake (you control the ingredients), and you also cut down on the inherent costs to the planet in packaging and transportation costs.  But the soymilk you make at home is not the same as the soymilk ysoyabella_soy_milk_maker_diagramou purchase in the store.  First, there is no binder in your homemade milks, so they do tend to separate out.  All you have to do is stir the product up before using it, but this does tend to freak out some people.

Secondly, with all the soymilk makers we've experienced, you have to strain the soy milk again, otherwise you'll wind up with a slightly gritty milk.  Thirdly, homemade soy milk has a very different taste than the soymilk you buy in the store.  If you do nothing to the milk (i.e. add vanilla and sweetener) it will have a "beany" taste.  Finally, the milk you at home is not fortified, so if you're counting on getting a healthy dose of calcium or vitamin D from your milk, think again.  Try some turnip greens or bok choy, or white beans instead.

Soy Milk Maker Reviews:

Image
BrandSoyaJoyTribestSoyaJoyJoyoung
FeatureThe newest and greatest milk maker from the most trusted brand with 2-year warranty ($20 value)
The only milk machine that makes fully cooked as well as RAW vegan milks from beans, seeds, nuts and grains.
3rd Generation filter-less design for easy of use, clean up in minutes. Dish washer safe stainless cooking pot
Large 1.6 litter capacity. 90-day full refund policy.
Full automatic, one-button operation, longer cooking cycle for thorough cooking and better taste
110V Model
Makes soymilk, nut milks, porridge, rice paste, and much more in just 15 minutes
Makes raw almond milk, cashew milk, and other raw nut milks in as little as 30 seconds
Easily converts into a coffee grinder with the included accessories
Concealed heating element for safe operation and easy cleaning
Temperature-controlled cycle yields perfect results every time
2013 new model replacing the 5-star rated SoyaJoy G3 with increased 1.7 litter capacity and bottom heating technology.
Important! - all stainless steel construction for the grinding and cooking chamber. No food color stains on plastic or concerns of plastic leaching into food
Five automatic, one-button functions for fully cooked milk, soup, and raw vegan milk from beans, grains, and nuts.
4th generation filter-less design for easy use and cleaning with Perfect Grind Technology (TM) for high milk yield.
High tech design complete with advanced temperature and water level sensors, and solid-state power controls for superior performance and durability
Special Cooking Modes for Grains Paste and Other Recipes!
Durable Stainless Steel Interior; No Heating Tube! No Internal Filter To Clean, Making Clean-Up Easy!
Micro-computer Control, Totally Automatic Operation; Patent "Water Diversion Technology" with Raphael Meshwork; Six intelligent protection functions for safe operation
Makes up to 1.3 Liter of fresh milk from soy beans, rice, mung beans, corn and almonds
FREE Bonus Pack: Include our exclusive best taste NON-GMO (not genetically modified) Soybean samples of 0.3LB gift bag, and a special discount voucher to order from our soybean farm store
ManufacturerSanlinx Inc.TribestSanlinx Inc.Joyoung
ModelSJ-11SB-130G4CTS-1098 Easy-Clean
UPC023445698779009375910006
Rating0 out of 5 stars4.0 out of 5 stars0 out of 5 stars0 out of 5 stars
ReviewsRead ReviewsRead ReviewsRead ReviewsRead Reviews
LinkMore InfoMore InfoMore InfoMore Info

Product prices and availability are accurate as of Jan 2 23:25:43 UTC but are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on the merchant site at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.

 

 

Soyapower Plus: If we were buying a machine today, this is the one we would get.  Jane's friend has this and adores it.

  • Pros:  Easy cleanup.  Power cord attachment in a better place than the Soyabella (our machine).  Insulated so it's pretty quiet, and the body doesn't get hot.
  • Cons:  When your milk is done, it doesn't stop beeping until you unplug the unit.  This could drive you crazy!

Amazon

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SoyQuick Premier 930P: This machine would get my vote, but it's $60 more than the Soyapower Plus (above)... so factoring in the cost, this machine gets my second place vote.

  • Pros: No internal filter so, easier cleanup.
  • Cons:  No internal filter, so you have to strain the milk after it's made.  If you are making soymilk, this means that you need to let the milk cool in the stainless steel body before filtering it through the plastic sieve.  For the price of the unit, the sieve should be better.

Amazon

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Joyoung CTS1048:  Another of our friends has this model soymilk maker.  She's had to return it to the manufacturer twice for repairs.  The manufacturer graciously replaced the machine both times, but who wants to go through all that trouble.  We're not sure if this is indicative of a quality control issue, or if she just wound up with a lemon.

  • Pros:  Easy to clean.
  • Cons:  Gets hot to the touch (as a tea kettle would).  This machine also has a plastic pitcher you are supposed to pour the hot milk into.

Amazon

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Buy.com

$84.00


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$99.00


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$99.00

used from: $75.00

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$99.99

used from: $115.00

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$119.99

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$139.95

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Soyabella:

  • Pros:  The machine is very easy to use.  We've had no issues until now.  In making soy milk, we've never had it boil over, but the machine does get a little hot to the touch.  But you wouldn't put your hands on a tea kettle, would you?  Makes hot and cold milks (soy, nut, rice, oat).
  • Cons: After 2 1/2 years of making almond milk weekly, the blades are beginning to dull a bit and it isn't grinding as well as it used to.  Unfortunately, Tribest (the manufacturer of this soy milk maker) doesn't seem to sell replacement blades, and the warranty period is up, so I can't wholeheartedly endorse this product.  My blender, which I use daily is still going strong after 9 years, I would expect my soymilk maker to do the same.   With power connections on the top and base, you need to ensure that they don't get wet when cleaning.  Not a huge issue, but poor design.  The milling cycle is very noisy.

Buy.com Soyabella Soymilk Maker

TBS1051: The elegantly easy way to make fresh soymilk and a variety of other delicious recipes in your own kitchen. Simply add soybeans and water and

$98.99


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AmazonSoyabella Soymilk Maker (SB-130)

Tribest SB-130 Soyabella Soymilk Maker

$109.95

used from: $81.92

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AmazonSoyabella Milk Maker - Soy Milk Almond Milk and More!

Features & SpecificationsSoyabella Soy Milk Maker - by Tribest Make soymilk easily and quickly right at home! The Soyabella Soymilk Maker is great

$109.95

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AmazonSoyabella Soymilk Maker and Tofu Kit (SB-132)

The Deluxe Soyabella Soy Milk Maker package comes with a tofu kit. Making homemade tofu has never been easier -- simply make soy milk using your

$128.95

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As with all the soymilk makers out there, you have to make sure that you don't overfill the machine.  All the ones we've seen have easily identifiable water fill markers on the inside of the canisters.  Also it's a good idea to pre-soak your soybeans before making the milk.  It will help improve the taste of your finished product.

We use our soy milk maker predominantly to make almond milk.  The real reason behind this is that Jane has a strong history of breast cancer in her family and there is so much conflicting information out there as to whether or not soy should be avoided... so we err on the side of caution.  We know we're getting some soy product through the limited amount of processed foods we eat (there seems to be soy in everything these days!), and Jane likes to cook up a soy stir fry or tofu scramble for dinner at least once a week.  Plus we enjoy edamame and miso soup (remember to watch out for bonito flakes in your miso).  One further reminder to those of you considering venturing out to make your own soy milk:  most soy is genetically modified.  So you should look for soybeans which are non-GMO.

Recommended Soy Milk Maker

So, in summary, Jane and I would recommend the Soyapower Plus soy milk maker, rice milk maker, nut milk maker. If you would like to see all of the popular models available, you can check out the current best selling soy milk makers, just click here.

Alternative milks cost much more that conventional cows milk.  If you are committed to making the transition to non-dairy milk, or have already done so, you may want to consider investing in a soy milk maker.  A good soy milk maker can save you a lot of money over the course of a year.

Reviews From People Who Bought This

The buying public completely agrees with us. Those consumers who have purchased this soy-milk maker and have reviewed it on Amazon have given it a collective score of 4.85 out of a possible 5.00 ratings. That's nearly a perfect score!  It's very rare to see any product get such a high score after it has been reviewed by many people.  Here's a sampling of some of the comments that real consumers have written about this soy-milk maker:

  • Overall, I am very happy with it. It is so simple to use, almost foolproof!
  • The Soyapower Plus soy milk maker makes absolutely delicious soy milk.
  • This is the best Machine EVER. it is so easy to use. And cleaning it is so simple and fast. I have their other SoyaPower and this is even superior.
  • Finally, a product that does what it says!
  • I love my SoyaPower Plus Soymilk Maker.

Where Can You Buy It?

We have shopped around and looked at prices for this particular model. We have found that the best price that you can get for this soy-milk maker is from Amazon.com. Currently, Amazon is also offering free shipping on this (and other) soy-milk makers that they sell directly through their website. So when you factor in the cost of shipping into the total price, the deal from Amazon is unbeatable.

Ready to buy: CLICK HERE



Eating Animals

Firstly --- Happy 2010!  We wish you all a peace-filled new year.

Secondly -- Sorry for the vanishing act.  We're still here, and still vegan.  Life has been getting in the way of blogging.  We've both been very busy and when we've had a break, neither of us has been motivated enough to blog.

And thirdly -- If you had to fly through Newark tonight, you have our deepest sympathies!

But enough with the excuses already...  Back to the blog.

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While I've been MIA I had the opportunity to read  Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer, and I can't recommend it highly enough.  While none of the information presented was new to me, it was presented in a manner that I found easy to read and entertaining.  Often this material can be very difficult to read.  Safran Foer lays it all out in its gruesome details, but he also alternates that information with stories from his personal life, and his personal experiences with food.

Best of all, I think this book will be easy to read for the disinterested omnivore.  Safran Foer is able to present the information in such a way that the facts are simply that, the facts.  He explores all sides of the argument so that you, the reader, can decide for yourself.  The logic he uses is inescapable.  You cannot consider yourself to be an environmentalist if you eat meat (water, pollution, etc.)  He recounts his decision to stop eating meat, and all that that entails, in an intelligent and non-judgmental manner.  Really, this is one of the better books on the ethics of eating than any other I have come across.  The omnivores in my life will be getting copies of this book to read during the coming year.

Mezzetta Vinaigretta Review

Mezzetta Southwest Vinaigrette

Mezzetta Southwest Vinaigrette

Jane and I sampled two of the Mezzetta Vinaigretta salad toppings recently.  We tried both the Southwest (pictured)  and Mediterranean toppings.   The product comes ready made in a jar.  Their tag line is "just add lettuce."  Jane loved the idea of the product as something quick to prepare for those days when getting a meal together can be a challenge.  I was  a little leery.  I'm not a huge fan of things like this... I feel that the ingredients all tend to gelatanize over time and become a soft mush.   But I'm not the cook, and if the cook needs to have the occasional quick fixins I'm not going to complain.

We were concerned about the lactic acid and "natural flavors" on the ingredient list.  This is the email we received:

The Vinaigretta is indeed Vegan (except for flavors with honey, which is debatable). Regarding your questions:
1) The lactic acid we use is produced from the fermentation of sugar.
2) The natural flavor is derived from spices.

Let me know if you have any further questions, thanks so much!

So how did it taste?  Neither of us loved the Mediterranean Vinaigretta.  It had an odd taste and was rather oily.  The Southwest Chipotle Lime Vinaigretta was better.  I liked it, Jane thought it was okay.  Neither of us in any rush to run out and buy more, but it makes a nice meal if you don't really want to think about putting together salad dressing and fixings.

Food, Inc. on DVD

food incJane and I went to see Food Inc. in June (here's our review in case you missed it).  Many of you emailed us and expressed interest in the movie, but it had a limited run and so you may not have had the opportunity to even get to a theater to see the movie.  But now you can pre-order from Amazon.  The movie will be released on November 3rd, 2009.  It will change the way you think about food!

UPDATE: CLICK HERE to reserve your very own copy of Food, Inc. now: