Vegan's Chronicles + [vegetarian]

It's the second half of 2010!

Today started out less than stellar. I woke up incredibly groggy because I had a horrible night's sleep, thanks to a pesky mosquito! Mosquitoes are probably my least favorite thing about Korean summers- worse then the humidity. For some reason, no matter what I do, I can't seem to prevent them from weaseling into my apartment. I've blocked all the possible gaps or entry-ways in my windows and I don't have any stagnant pools of water where they might be breeding. But somehow, they find a way in! So last night, I kept hearing this mosquito buzzing by my ear, and I repeatedly turned the light on, hoping I could catch it, but to no avail. It was like a ninja mosquito. Eeesh. So I covered as much of my skin as I could by wearing leggings, long sleeves, socks, and I even put socks on my hands! haha. I'm sure I looked ridiculous, especially because it was sweaty hot last night. If I had a ski-mask, I would've put that on too. But all that still didn't deter this bugger because then he found the exposed sliver of skin between my socks and leggings and bit my ankles up, as well as delivering three itchy bites to my face. I counted all the bites this morning for a total of 8. Gee, thanks Mr. Mosquito, for the souvenirs.

This mosquito is still in my room somewhere, probably in a happy food-coma from the juicy vegan blood it feasted on last night. I'll most likely have to face the thing again tonight, but this time, I'll be armed with repellent that I bought today. Ha! Go away and let me sleep!

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Anyway, there's nothing quite like a bowl of pumpkin oats to cheer up a mosquito-bitten face. I also got an awesome email from Lili, my bestest college friend, who never fails to make me smile. Thanks Lil~^^

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The rest of my morning was spent painting! Every time I rediscover my creative mojo, I wonder why I ever let it go in the first place. Life just feels 'right' when I'm in the zone, painting away while listening to my fave podcasts and music. Oh, and sippin' on some iced soy English Breakfast tea.

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For lunch, I was craving some comfort food, namely curry and rice. I've always loved curry. When I was an omnivore, I used to make a lot of curry using the Korean Ottogi curry powder. But it's actually not vegan (contains milk products), so I haven't had that Korean yellow curry in a really long time. But thankfully, this Japanese S&B Golden Curry mix is vegan!

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Admittedly, it doesn't have the most natural or healthy ingredients list, but it is cruelty-free, and I only use a little at a time. Just a tiny chunk thickens everything up quite a lot!

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Normally, Japanese or Korean curries are made with chunks of potatoes and carrots, but I didn't have any of those on hand, so instead, I just threw in a bunch of chopped chard, onions, and a red chili pepper. It was pretty much like spinach curry, which I love. :) I enjoyed every bite of the curry with some Korean black rice and a sweet potato. Stuffed!

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The rice and curry all mixed together.

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After that, I "cleansed my palate" with some fresh apple slices for dessert (haha, I'm trying to sound like a posh foodie).

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This afternoon, I also did some grocery shopping at my neighborhood outdoor market. I like going there because it's a way for me to support local farmers and businesses, more-so than going to E-Mart or HomePlus. Also, the goods are cheaper! I bought all of this for exactly 5000 won. A bag of lettuce, 4 red and green bell peppers, 3 zucchinis, 2 carrots, and 5 apricots!

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I also hit up a Kim's Club supermarket where I found 2 old mangoes on sale for 1,990 won. Clearly, they're not in the best of shape, but they were the cheapest mangoes I've seen in Korea, and they smelled divine, so I had to grab 'em. I can't wait to eat them tomorrow~

Then in the afternoon, I went on a run. I was pretty tired from my lack of sleep, so I told myself that I would just do a slow 5k. Well, once I got into my groove, I felt really energized and kept going til I reached 7k. I probably would've kept going, but I had to quickly return home to shower, eat dinner, and rush off to my very last bread baking class.

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Today we baked Korean 'soboro bread,' aka streusel bread. Unfortunately, they're not vegan, so I can't attest to their taste, but they look pretty great, no?

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It's hard to believe the 6-week course is already over. It was fun, although rather exhausting having to go there at night after a full, busy day. I will admit that I skipped a few classes, mainly due to certain World Cup games, but also because I didn't always feel the motivation to go and bake non-vegan bread... But all-in-all, it was a good experience, and I'm glad I did something new. Oh, and can you believe we've entered the second half of 2010?! Goodness, where has time gone? Let's hope that the second half of this year is just as awesome as the first. :)

Anyway, I'm pretty pooped now and am gonna get into bed. Tooteloo!