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Yesterday, October 1st marked World Vegetarian Day.  I love this event because it gives me an opportunity to reflect on how I became vegan and the reasons why I continue to live this lifestyle.

I think it’s crucial to note here that veganism is not about superiority, intimidation or bullying.  As vegans, while it’s important for us to stand up for what we believe in, it’s equally important to do so in a way that is kind, caring and with good intention.  We need to create gateways instead of putting up walls.

It’s essential for me to live a life of compassion for all beings.  Colleen Patrick-Goudreau perhaps puts it best, “being vegan is about saying yes to my values of compassion and wellness.  It’s pretty amazing to wake up every morning knowing that every decision I make is to cause as little harm as possible.”

With that in mind, I created a beautiful curry dish.  What started out as a random assortment of ingredients, turned into a warm, comforting meal. 

Coconut Compassion Curry


1 tbsp coconut oil
1 small onion, chopped
1 tsp ginger, chopped
1 tbsp curry seasoning (I use Arvinda’s Curry Masala)
1 tsp garam masala (I use Arvinda’s Garam Masala)
1 can full-fat coconut milk
1 can tomato paste
1 28oz can diced tomatoes
1 15oz can of Adzuki beans
1 cup firm tofu, cubed (I use Wildwood Organics Sprouted Tofu)
pinch of sea salt
2 cups butternut squash, cubed and steamed
2 cups sweet potato, cubed and steamed


1. Heat coconut oil on low-medium and add onion.  Cook until slightly translucent.

2. Add ginger and cook for 2-3 more minutes.

3. Add curry seasoning and garam, masala, cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.

4. Add coconut milk, tomato paste and diced tomatoes.  Increase temperature to medium and bring to a gentle boil.

5. Let boil for 3-5 minutes, stirring often.  Reduce heat to low-medium and add adzuki beans and tofu.  Season with a pinch of sea salt.

6. Simmer for 30 minutes, continuing to stir often.

7. While curry sauce is simmering.  Steam butternut squash and sweet potato.  (I have a steamer and it took about 12-14 minutes for each root vegetable to become tender)

8. Once butternut squash and sweet potato are steamed, add into curry sauce and stir.

9. Serve over brown rice and red lentils (a complete protein!) or quinoa.

Note – to enhance digestibility and decrease cooking time, soak grains and pseudo-grains over night.  This helps to break down the phytic acid which reduces the bioavailability of many minerals.

“If you want others to be happy, practice compassion.  If you want to be happy, practice compassion.-Dalai Lama”

This afternoon, my lovely co-worker turned to me and declared that she needed chocolate.  I understand that feeling because I need chocolate like every day. 

She went to the vending machine, grabbed a chocolate bar and promised me that later she would eat veggies and work out extra hard.

I promised her I’d come up with a healthy chocolate alternative for those afternoon cravings.  And I did! 


Raw Coconut-Cacao Balls


1/2 cup raw coconut
2 tbsp raw cacao
1 tbsp raw cacao nibs
1/2 cup almond butter
1 tbsp maple syrup
5 Medjool dates, pitted
1 tsp raw honey


1. Place all ingredients in a processor and blend until thoroughly mixed (mixture can be slightly chunky)
2. Roll into balls and cover in flaked coconut
3. Can be stored in fridge

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