Hey, everyone! This is Kristyn, eldest daughter in the Vegan Gypsy clan. One of my mom's darling fur kids knocked coffee onto her keyboard just after I sent her a picture of this crazy delicious breakfast I made, so I was presented the opportunity to finally write the guest post I've been promising her since she started this blog. Since I have your attention and have been given full creative control, I want to do a little bragging about my mama. When people ask about (or I'm forced to defend) my dietary choices, I usually just say I was raised this way - conscious, compassionate, adventurous. My mom was an animal rights activist from a young age, and when she started eliminating meat from her diet, I was begging to be allowed to do the same.
Five years or so ago I started to hear about people I knew going vegan. I chalked this up to extremism at best, and possibly even a guise for eating disorders. I couldn't imagine my life without cheese. Milk and eggs, I could take it or leave it, but what would I do without pizza? But when my mom decided to take the next step and cut out dairy, I felt safe to do the same. "Just for a month, to see how it goes! A jump start to a better diet, and then I'll go back to 'normal'." Within weeks, people were telling me how great I looked. My skin was clear and glow-y, I didn't wake up with a stuffy nose every morning, and I shed a few pounds. Some of these effects I attribute to avoiding dairy, some to the outdoor summer camp where I was working at the time, but most of the benefits come from what I've replaced all of that cheese with. Today I eat a well-balanced, plant-based diet full of local, fresh and flavorful ingredients. I go out to eat often and try not to worry about butter that may have made its way onto my plate, and most of the time, the only animal products in my house are what I feed my pets. Every step of the way, my mom and I have encouraged each other; although we have always been passionate about food, going vegan has created a new bond between us - something in common to chat about every day, and to share with each other, and I'm so thankful and proud that I've learned my good habits from her.
Now let's get to the "meat" of my story, haha. This morning, I made the most amazing breakfast. I can't take all of the credit, because the recipe came straight from the new staple cookbook in my kitchen, The Vegan Stoner - a Christmas gift from mom, of course! Every recipe I've tried from this book, and the blog where it all started, has been insanely successful with a wide variety of tasters - omnivorous ravers, grouchy tattooers, Krishna-conscious school teachers, veggie-averse Cuban-Hondurans and little kids alike. (Seriously, I'm not exaggerating, these are all people in my life.)
I was so excited by the ease in which these crêpes came together as a delicious batter, cooked up brown and bubbly, slid effortlessly from the pan, and gently curled around the local strawberries I sliced and nestled in the center of each thin, chewy round. I had tried to make egg-based breakfast pockets before; lots of burnt, ragged omelets and crêpes were the only result. So this recipe - substitutions and all! - felt miraculous, and I was thrilled to wake my sleeping bearfriend with a tasty breakfast in bed. Topped with maple syrup and dusted with powdered sugar, the photo op was there, but I told myself my kitchen was too messy to take a nice picture. So many times, my mom asks me to send pictures of the meals I've prepared, outfits I wear, and things I do in general - and I don't, because whether it's my lack of photography skills, or my face looks weird, or I don't have any dishes clean but a plastic plate with flamingos on it, my photo won't look like the near-professional shots I see other home cooks post online. Maybe it's all the positive vibes I'm getting from doing so much yoga, or from reading Women Who Run With the Wolves, or Suzin Green's goddess-heavy mantras I've been listening to nonstop, but today, I was like ...
So my crêpes effectively became vegan female empowerment crêpes, because we shouldn't be ashamed of the mess it takes to just create. And here are the pictures I took, although you can probably guess which one made the Instagram cut.
So, thank you, Vegan Gypsy readers, for visiting with me, and thank you, Mom, for letting me take over your blog for the day. I have a little more time on my hands lately, and I'm spending most of it in the kitchen - I'm looking forward to sharing my future successes with you all!