Vegan's Chronicles + [Vegan]

A day of many firsts

Today happens to be a special day of many firsts:

First #1: The first full day of living in my new apartment!!!!!
Yesterday, I moved into my new Seoul apartment. AHHH! I'm so happy!!! Thanks to my parents and all their help, moving went smoothly and pretty much everything is already unpacked and in its place. Even though the apartment itself is smaller than my old apartment (way tinier kitchen and bathroom), there is one significant feature that makes the downsizing all worth it:

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My very own outdoor patio! This in itself is a big 'first,' and it's the sole reason why I was willing to wait a whole month in Cheonan before moving into this apartment. When I saw this patio, my mind was made up and all the subsequent apartments I saw after just didn't cut it. The patio is simply perfect for Bunny to run around on, for drying clothes, getting some daily vitamin D, and even growing plants. Oh, and I plan on getting some used patio furniture so that I can enjoy breakfasts outdoors, before it gets too cold!

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Actually, the previous tenant left all her plant boxes there, and some of them even have peppers growing on them!

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I shall be harvesting those soon~ free food! Assah~

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Bunny's not used to getting her paws dirty, but she's exploring all the nooks and crannies of our new home. Although, I do plan on cleaning the patio a bit, to reduce the amount of debris getting stuck between her toes and on her bum.

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I already woke up this morning and enjoyed my first cuppa soy coffee while watching Bunny run around in her new 'backyard.' Can you see her in the background?

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Another thing that I love is that this apartment gets a lot of natural light, which is something my previous apartment sorely lacked. My old room was tightly surrounded by other buildings, which blocked out almost all sunlight, save for a few hours in the morning. But now, I don't even have to turn on the lights until evening, which will save electricity and will also be ideal for all my food photography. :) In the morning, I can feel the sunlight coming in and it just warms the soul. And even though I'm going to have to work around the small kitchen area, I'm thankful that at least everything is clean and somewhat new. Oh, and check out my new-to-me, used fridge! It's almost double the size of the fridge that was in my old place! Woooot~

So that was a sneak peak into my new home sweet home.

First #2: Today is October 1st- omg, the year is almost over and I'm getting old... . (*insert panic attack here*)

First #3: And with the first day of October, comes the first day of Vegan Mofo!

Things have been so hectic lately that I haven't even had a chance to think much about Vegan Mofo this year. This is not my first year participating (third actually), but I'm still excited for all the new vegan blogs I'm gonna discover through the Mofo RSS feed. I don't think I'll be able to blog every day like I know some people are doing, but I'm gonna do my best!

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So to kick off this year's Vegan Mofo, I present to you another first: some heart-healthy Apple Raisin Bran Muffins I baked in Cheonan earlier this week. I used the bran muffin recipe from The Joy of Vegan Baking, but added chopped apples and reduced the wheat bran and raisins.

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These came out dense, chewy, and quite delicious! There's a lot of ground flaxseeds in this recipe, so it had a nutty flavor, in addition to the earthy, nuttiness of the wheat bran. Definitely a rustic, healthy muffin to keep your gut happy and regular.

Apple Raisin Bran Muffins (adapted from the Joy of Vegan Baking)
makes 22-24 muffins

6 Tbs ground flax seeds
1/2 cup water
1 medium apple, chopped into small cubes
1 cup wheat bran
1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
2 1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 cup organic unrefined sugar
1 tsp salt
1 cup soy milk
1/3 cup grape seed oil (or canola)
1/4 cup raisins

Preheat oven to 350F or 180C and prepare your muffin man. First, peel and chop your apple. Next, sift and mix all your dry ingredients together. In a separate bowl, whisk flax seeds and water until it gets thick and goopey, then add the other wet ingredients and the apple chunks, and mix well. Combine the wet with the dry and mix until just incorporated. Spoon the batter into the muffin tin and bake in oven for 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

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In my humble opinion, these are best enjoyed warm with some homemade kumquat jam!

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Oh, and you don't want these to sit around longer than two or three days, because the moisture from the apples could make these spoil sooner than other muffins. Not that these muffins would last long anyway~ :)

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muffin love~

So that's about it for now. There are a lot of 'firsts' in my life these days, and a lot of changes to adjust to, but I feel a sense of renewed energy and gratitude. May this be only the beginning of many more happy 'firsts' to come.

Have a fab weekend!