News Roundup By Mercedes Aspland / June 4, 2015 I’m sitting here watching TV and trying to write something vaguely interesting. I am currently suffering from a very heavy cold and am feeling a bit sorry for myself. I had intended to finish this post on Monday but it has been a bit of a battle to get my brain in gear. So I am going to start with the recipes pictured above, detailing them starting at the top left hand corner and working in a zigzag: My first recipe is this beautiful Balsamic Roasted Strawberry Italian Cream Soda from Gourmande in the Kitchen. It is not often that I come across drink recipes that really impress me but this is special, who does not love fresh strawberries and coconut milk. A definite winning summer drink. The second I saw this Mexican Chocolate Tortilla Chip Pie from Our Four Forks I knew that it would make it into this month’s roundup. This stunning recipe is a tasty blend of chocolate, chilli, tortilla chips and coconut plus you get extra creaminess from the addition of avocado. If you want to impress your guests at any time then I am sure this will do the trick. The next recipe is a guest post on Vegan Miam from Miss Marzipan (a new blog for me) and it is actually a whole meal which is a massive bonus. So if you are thinking about what to make on your next meal why not try Marisa’s Swedish (No)Meatballs with Creamed Kale Mashed Potatoes and Sugar-free Lingonberry Jam. Doesn’t the name of this recipe just make you hungry, it does me and is so original, I love it. Who doesn’t love chocolate treats (my friend who is allergic to chocolate, but let’s forget her for now) and ones that are good for you and take next to no time to make are even better. These 10 Minute Magical Chocolate Almond Butter Superfood Seed Bars from Half Baked Harvest fits the quick, healthy, chocolate treats perfectly and I will definitely make some of these to take on a road trip I will be taking and will tell you all about soon. Summer Garden Linguine with Corn, Tomatoes and Fresh Herbs from Heather Christo is a perfect recipe for this time of year. Fresh and crisp it is something that you can share with friends or just make as a quick lunch on the run. Full of colour and flavour it is a perfect meal that just looks beautiful too. Now I mentioned above about making snacks for a road trip and these Vegan Pistachio Lemon Truffles on My Wife Makes are perfect for that. Simple to make and full of so many good things they are sure to keep me full of energy and feeling great, plus I love pistachios. The problem with these will be only eating one at a time. Now I’m sure you all know that I am a massive smoothie fan and then there is the fact that everyone loves peanut butter and chocolate don’t they? So when I saw this Post-Workout Chocolate Peanut Butter Smoothie from The Glowing Fridge I just fell in love with it. Not only is it full of flavour but packed with ingredients like spinach, chia seeds and maca powder to name but a few, it is also so good for you. Go get an energy boost! I love it when I come across an original recipe and especially when it looks super tasty so when I saw this Crispy Coconut Lime Baked Cauliflower Tacos on Veggie Inspired I knew it was going to be on this roundup. This is easily one of the tastiest recipes I have seen in a long time so I could not have done this post without sharing it with you. So now we are talking soup. I love a summer soup and this Green Goddess Asparagus Soup from The Fig Tree looks really amazing. The thing I love about it the most is that there are only a few ingredients and it is very quick and simple to make. Plus, added bonus is that is it bulked up with cashew nuts and so is very filling too. Carrying on with my theme of road trip snacks I loved these for their simplicity and ease to make. Plus these No-Bake Cherry Vanilla Protein Bars from Hummusapien are very filling and look so damn yummy. I can just see myself driving across France and filling a space in my stomach with these. I have really got into homemade BBQ sauce recently and these Barbecue Baked Tofu Sandwiches from Veggie and the Beast look really yummy. I have to admit that I don’t eat massive amounts of tofu but sometimes I like to indulge and this sandwich looks like somethng I would absolutely love. My final recipe is just so beautiful and the way it looks just grabbed me straight away. Then when I found out it was The Forbidden Fruit – Frozen Choc Mousse in Berry Chocolate from Tales of a Kitchen I just fell in love. If you really want to impress then I would suggest you make this one. So now for other bits from around the web and what is going on with me: The first thing I should probably tell you about is his road trip I have been talking about. It is more of a long trip with a few stops but it sounds good calling it a road trip. I am going to be travelling around France for 9 weeks and enjoying various beaches and getting some real relaxation time in. Some of the things I am looking forward to is making some yoga videos in beautiful surroundings and having plenty of time to cook and take pictures. I will keep posting and send you little updates of things I am doing along the way. I just need to plan my vegan stops! You should check out this eyesight test on Care2.com, I saw Einstein but then I wear contact lenses so I guess it is a bit of a cheat. I still need to try it without them in. On the subject of yoga videos, I tried making some this month and did a great one only to realise the camera was slightly out of focus. I thought, a bit frustrating but I will just remake it and then I got hit with this cold so now I sound ridiculous. So it is going to have to wait and you will get the great video when it is ready! I read this really interesting article on Tiny Buddha this month about How to Overcome Unhealthy Cravings When You Feel Down. This particularly spoke to me because when I get tired or stressed I find it really difficult to stick to healthy eating and actually find myself craving fatty unhealthy foods as well and none vegan things like cheese. Last year I shared with you my joy at Arsenal winning the FA Cup and this year they did it again and it was even better. Again there was a pitch invasion and a great party. Plus this year I went down the road the next day to watch the parade and the players pass by in an open top bus. I have put my iPhone pictures below, they are not the best but I was too excited to concentrate on taking pictures. One of my favourite blog posts this month was How to Create Your Personal Manifesto on Peaceful Dumpling. I found it really inspiring and I will be creating my own one soon and sharing it with you. I can really recommend this process, it is quite cathartic and the best thing about it is it allows you to focus on where you are going in like and what you really want. I read that France has made it illegal for supermarkets to waste food (on Mind Body Green) which really surprised me as why would they want to stop the food going to homeless people. As far as I am aware in England all of our supermarkets make provisions for waste and I have seen how some of them use their food waste to power stores and the local area which cannot be a bad thing. It is just a shame that others don’t just do things and need to be told, but at least we are making progress. Jamie Oliver has jumped on the plant based band waggon and urged people to eat more vegetarian food. This cannot be a bad thing but I wonder how much of this is just for marketing. A couple of years ago I went to one of Jamie Oliver’s food festivals outside his restaurant Fifteen as it is just down the road from where I live and I only stayed about 10 minutes as there was literally nothing to eat other than meat. To say I was disappointed would be an understatement but maybe it was put together in a rush and he did not know what was going to be there. At least he is trying to make some good changes now and anyone advocating meat free diets has to be doing a good job. I read this post about Why Bragging Doesn’t Work and it really made me smile. I am sure we all know someone that feels they need to tell you everything that happens to them, especially the good stuff. I know I should share in their happiness but I can’t help feeling “Well bully for you”. Totally out of order right and something we really shouldn’t admit but there you go I’ve said it and I really don’t need to know! Following on from the last article is this one on Tiny Buddha – Remember This Before Judging Someone Who Annoys You. Ok so enough said really. So that is about it for this month, I just have one more thing to share with you and that is my new haircut. Ok, so I officially had this done on June 1st but I won’t tell if you don’t. I used to have curly hair down below my should so it is quite a drastic change and is actually taking me longer to style every morning (I don’t want a curly mess on top of my head) but I rather like it. There I go boasting online again!