Sunday, February 1, 2015

The Expert and The Elf

The 'Pinked' Elf

What do you get when a disorganized, never-plan-ahead, impulse shopping, and aging vegan (that would be ME..The Elf) links up with an uber-organized, nutritious recipe creator and resource for vegans everywhere, nationally known and respected food blogger, photographer and generally all ‘round great gal (that would be The Expert…aka Susan Voisin)? As different as we are, Susan and I both are recent breast cancer survivors, so there is an increased awareness of the joy of life as well as the role plant based nutrition plays in our overall health.

Well, The Elf got to thinkin’ the other day about how to add some variety and life to our eating lives; vegans can get in cooking ruts just like anyone else and while Big Solid is easy to please, there are just so many times one can offer a tofu scramble or bean/rice and kale before it begins to get old. So, the light bulb went off and I thought of that movie ('Julie and Julia') where Amy Adams played a blogger who decided to cook her way through Julia Child’s sentinel work, The Art of French Cooking. Hmmm…so I got in touch with Susan Voisin (The Expert) to see if she would be interested in being the other half of this effort. I would cook from her wonderful site/blog, FatFree Vegan Kitchen at least twice a week and record how we (me’n Big Solid) fared.

Susan Voisin

Y’all also have to know that Susan is a nationally known and recognized veganista with her focus on fat awareness and fat reduction in her recipes. In fact, if you want to know JUST how WELL KNOWN Susan is, let’s just say that one of the premier Health groups in the country (Kaiser-Permanete out of California) recently cited her blog (let me repeat…FatFree Vegan Kitchen) as a resource for healthy, plant-based recipes that include taste and variety without added fat. 
This link should get you to the document where Susan’s blog is mentioned and supported:

This challenge which we cleverly call “The Expert (that would be Susan) and The Elf (that would be myowns-Elf)” will get the Elf to focus on planning rather than a sudden awareness at 4 pm that I have NOT a CLUE what to fix for supper AND a chance to prepare low-fat, well-rounded meals.  In addition, there will be an Elf-fort on preparing a LIST of ingredients to buy, STICKING with the list and NOT running to the grocery store on a daily basis. That SHOULD result in a decrease in the amount of money spent on food and more money that can be spent on ME!! And last but definitely NOT LEAST -- this will hasten my recovery from what I call 'VitMi-phobia' or my terror of fully utilizing my newly purchased VitaMix. Yes, I have made some smoothies and some hummus but I seem to be paralyzed with fear to go beyond that. I am besieged with a barrage of 'what ifs'...what if I blow it up? what if I break it? what if I run it on High too long? what if it spins off the counter? It took me forever to save up for it so I really need to get over mys-Elf and use it. See how excited I was when it arrived?

So follow along as Susan and I work together to promote and prepare vegan meals/foods/snacks and all that. We’ll keep you posted on the positives that result from this exercise as well as issues and other things that might be of interest. Our first meal to launch this project will be and we will prepare this for Wednesday's evening meal. Big Solid is not particularly fond of eggplant, so maybe he won't read this. In any event, I'll pretty much bet he'll like it.

Stay tuned…”The Expert and The Elf” is about ready to launch!! Wish us well and we’ll do the same!


  1. Good luck...hope you get the bugs worked out soon. I love Susan's blog and recipes, and I'm in the same age range as you and your hubby. I look forward to reading your experiences with all this--and learning from you!

    1. Thanks so much...I will see if Susan can help me work those bugs out and make things easier for everyone.

  2. This is a great idea and will motivate me to try more things. Wish you had a "follow" button for blogger so it shows up in my blog list!

  3. Here's hoping your blog is a huge success. I'd love to subscribe but your subscribe button isn't working...and having some problems with publishing with my email (

    1. Thanks, I will check with Susan to help me get that fixed. Such a newbie, I am. Thanks so much for your support!!