Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Spring Is Coming!

Today is the halfway point between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox. Some call it Imbolc, Saint Brigid's Day, or Candlemas, but whatever you call it, it's the time when we recognize that spring is on its way. It's also the reason we have Groundhog's Day on February 2nd, and lucky for us, Punxsutawney Phil didn't see his shadow so maybe spring temps will come early (although he got it all wrong in 2013!).

It actually already felt like spring in Memphis today! The high was 75 degrees and we had some strong storms and tornado watches, just like a typical spring day in the South. But the weather will most certainly grow colder again before actual spring comes on March 21st. Until then, I'm just holding out hope that time passes quickly. I really hate winter and detest the cold.

Traditionally, folks eat dairy products to celebrate the Gaelic spring festival of Imbolc. Imbolc translates to "ewe's milk." Back in the day, during the last cold winter weeks, people relied heavily on dairy products because winter veggies were scarce. But this is 2016, and we know better than to contribute to factory farm cruelty by consuming dairy. So I typically always eat some sort of plant-based dairy alternatives on this day. Tonight, that meant pizza — specifically Daiya Fire-Roasted Vegetable Pizza.

I always crave pizza after a month of cleansing, and I typically go to Mellow Mushroom or Imagine Vegan Cafe and order a big ole pie for myself. But then I'm stuck with days of leftovers (not that that's a bad thing, but I'm already working on lots of other leftovers). So I got a Daiya frozen pizza, which makes two servings (the box says three, but it's a liar). It was just the right amount and so perfect for celebrating the feast of Imbolc. 

On the side, I made the Winter Greens from Cooking By the Seasons, a vegetarian cookbook with recipes for pagan holidays. I figured this dish could symbolize the coming spring since it's so green! It's wilted spinach with a dill-mustard dressing. Very yummy.

One of the great things about holidays is that they totally call for an awesome dessert. On Monday, when I arrived at work, there was a cupcake on my desk with a note that said "Happy Retox Day!" It was from my co-worker Susan, who joined me on the cleanse throughout January. She'd stopped at Muddy's Bake Shop on the way to work and picked me up a vegan Plain Jane Cupcake! I saved it for today to enjoy after my Imbolc feast of pizza and spinach.

Muddy's is a cute little bake shop/coffeehouse, and while they're not entirely vegan, they generally have a couple vegan cupcake flavors (and they make the greatest vegan peanut butter bars). Plain Jane is my fave of their cupcake flavors because, despite my eccentric exterior and strong opinions, I'm a vanilla girl at heart. 


Janese Maricelli said...

I love this blog. I just found it so not that deep yet...

Happy Imbolc! I am totally inspired that vegan holidays can be fun again. Wish I would had found you prio to the holiday season :)

Mantis Hugo said...
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Holy Food said...

Simple, delicious, and so nutritious. What could be better.Thanks for sharing!