A vegan diet has been proven to reduce your environmental footprint dramatically since meat and dairy production contribute heavily to greenhouse gas emissions. But it can be hard to eat vegan year-round. Luckily, we've found PETA's top 10 scrumptious vegan recipes of 2014 that provide many options for your next meal.
1/2 lb. lasagne noodles
2 10-oz. packages frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
1 lb. soft tofu
1 lb. firm tofu
1 Tbsp. sugar
1/4 cup soy milk
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
3 tsp. minced fresh basil
2 tsp. salt
4 cups tomato sauce
- Cook the lasagne noodles according to the package directions. Drain and set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Squeeze the spinach as dry as possible and set aside.
- Place the tofu, sugar, soy milk, garlic powder, lemon juice, basil, and salt in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Stir in the spinach.
- Cover the bottom of a 9-inch-by-13-inch baking dish with a thin layer of tomato sauce, then a layer of noodles (use about one-third of the noodles). Follow with half of the tofu filling. Continue in the same order, using half of the remaining tomato sauce and noodles and all of the remaining tofu filling. End with the remaining noodles, covered by the remaining tomato sauce. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes.
Makes 6 to 8 servings
Easy Vegan Cupcakes
1 cup sugar
1 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 cup oil
1 cup unsweetened soy milk
2 tbsp. vanilla extract
1 tbsp. vinegar
- Heat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Line two cupcake pans with cupcake liners.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the oil, soy milk, vinegar and vanilla.
- Pour the wet mixture into the dry mixture and whisk together until just combined.
- Fill the cupcake liners two-thirds full with the batter.
- Bake 15-18 minutes.
- Cool completely.
- Frost your cupcakes!
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1-3 tbsp. unsweetened soy milk
- Using a mixer, beat the vegetable shortening until light and airy.
- With the mixer on low, add the powdered sugar, vanilla and one tablespoonful of the soy milk at a time until smooth.
- Beat on high for another two minutes until light and fluffy.
Makes 24 cupcakes
Sumptuous Spinach Salad With Orange-Sesame Dressing
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 tbsp. rice vinegar
2 tbsp. freshly squeezed orange juice
1 tbsp. toasted sesame oil
1 tbsp. agave nectar
1 clove garlic
1/4 tsp. smoked paprika
1 bunch fresh spinach, washed, drained, and chopped
2 medium-sized sweet peppers, sliced and deseeded
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 orange, sliced into rounds or halves
Sesame seeds, for garnish
- Combine the olive oil, rice vinegar, orange juice, sesame oil, agave nectar, garlic, and smoked paprika in a food processor or high-speed blender and blend until combined. Adjust the flavors, as needed, then set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine the spinach, peppers, onions, and orange slices, then drizzle with the orange-sesame dressing. Garnish with sesame seeds and enjoy!
Makes 4 to 6 servings
2 slices rye or pumpernickel bread
1/2 avocado, pitted, peeled, and mashed
1/4 cup sauerkraut
- Spread one slice of bread with some mustard, the other slice with Thousand Island dressing.
- Place the bread slices, dry side down, in a lightly oiled skillet. Top one slice with avocado, and the other with sauerkraut.
- Over medium heat, grill the sandwich until lightly browned and hot, about 5 minutes. Put the sandwich halves together and enjoy!
Makes 1 sandwich
Chef Chloe’s Tiramisù Pancakes
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 tbsp. instant espresso powder
½ tsp. salt
¾ cup water
¼ cup maple syrup
1 tbsp. dark rum
1 cup nondairy semisweet chocolate chips
Vegan whipped cream, optional
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, espresso powder, and salt.
- In a separate small bowl, whisk together the water, maple syrup, and rum.
- Add the liquid to the flour mixture and whisk until just combined. Do not overmix; the batter should have some lumps in it.
- Gently fold in the chocolate chips.
- Lightly oil a large nonstick skillet or griddle and heat over medium-high heat.
- Pour ¼ cup batter onto the skillet. When bubbles appear in the center of the pancake, flip it.
- Let cook on the other side until lightly browned and cooked through, about 1 minute more.
- Remove from the skillet and keep warm in the oven.
- Repeat with the remaining batter, adding more oil to the skillet as needed. If the batter becomes too thick, add a little more water, 1 tablespoonful at a time.
- To serve, dust the pancakes with powdered sugar and top with a dollop of vegan whipped cream if desired.
Makes 2-3 servings
Easy Vegan Pad Thai
1 cup water, plus more for soaking the noodles
1 10-oz. package rice noodles or ramen-style noodles
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1/2 12-oz. package extra-firm tofu, drained and cut into chunks
4 Tbsp. soy sauce
2 Tbsp. peanut butter
Juice of 2 limes
3 Tbsp. sugar
Sriracha, to taste
Sliced green onions, for garnish
Chopped peanuts, for garnish (optional)
- Fill a large microwave-safe bowl with water and heat in the microwave until boiling. Carefully submerge the rice noodles in the water and let soak for about 15 minutes.
- In a large frying pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat and add the garlic cloves and tofu chunks. Drizzle 1 tablespoon of the soy sauce over the tofu and sauté until golden brown.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the peanut butter, lime juice, sugar, Sriracha, remaining soy sauce, and 1 cup of water.
- Add the soaked noodles and peanut butter mixture to the tofu and cook through, about 5 minutes.
- Garnish with sliced green onions and chopped peanuts and serve right away. Enjoy!
Vegan Pizza in 5 Steps
3. Add some optional toppings to spice things up, such as vegan bacon for a salty crunch or fresh sliced bell peppers and/or mushrooms for a savory veggie fix.
4. This is the best step! Grab a few kinds of your favorite vegan cheese and sprinkle them all over your pie. My personal favorite is Daiya mozzarella with a smattering of GO Veggie! parmesan sprinkled on top and over the crust.
5. Bake the pizza in an oven preheated to 550 degrees (yep, you read that right!) for eight to 10 minutes or until the cheese has melted and the crust begins to brown
That’s it! Go enjoy your delicious vegan pizza, maybe with some fresh herbs sprinkled on top! If you’ve got some time to spare before dinner is served, check out our delicious Caesar salad to serve alongside your pizza.
Creamy Dill Potato Salad
3 lbs. Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 celery stalks, finely diced
1 cup vegan mayonnaise (try Vegenaise)
1 small red onion, finely chopped
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
1 1/2 tbsp. cider vinegar
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1-2 tbsp. Dijon mustard
- Place the potatoes in a large pot and fill with enough water to cover completely. Add some salt and bring to a boil. Cook for 20 to 25 minutes, until just tender but not falling apart.
- Drain the potatoes in a colander and let cool.
- Combine all the remaining ingredients in a large bowl.
- Cut the cooled potatoes into 1-inch cubes and add them to the bowl, stirring carefully until coated.
Makes 6 to 8 servings
Italian Stuffed Zucchini Boats
2 medium zucchini
2 garlic cloves
1 medium tomato, seeded and finely chopped
1/2 cup finely chopped fresh mushrooms
1/2 tsp. dried basil
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
2 Tbsp. olive oil
3/4 cup vegan grated Parmesan cheese
2 Tbsp. fresh basil, chopped
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Cut the zucchini in half lengthwise. Scoop out the pulp and seeds, leaving a 1/4-inch-thick shell (use a spoon for this). Chop up the pulp from the zucchini.
- Combine the zucchini pulp, garlic, tomato, mushrooms, basil, oregano, crushed red pepper flakes, olive oil and 1/2 cup of the vegan Parmesan cheese in a medium bowl. Divide the mixture among the zucchini shells.
- Place the stuffed zucchini in a 13-inch-by-9-inch baking dish and cover with foil. Bake for 25 minutes, or until the zucchini is tender.
- Bake uncovered for 5 minutes more. Top with the fresh basil.
Makes 2 to 4 servings
SpicyBuffalo Cauliflower ‘Wings’
1 cup water or soy milk
1 cup flour (any kind will work—even gluten-free!)
2 tsp. garlic powder
1 head of cauliflower, chopped into pieces
1 cup buffalo or hot sauce
1 Tbsp. olive oil or melted vegan margarine
- Preheat the oven to 450°F.
- Combine the water or soy milk, flour, and garlic powder in a bowl and stir until well combined.
- Coat the cauliflower pieces with the flour mixture and place in a shallow baking dish. Bake for 18 minutes.
- While the cauliflower is baking, combine your buffalo sauce and olive oil or margarine in a small bowl.
- Pour the hot sauce mixture over the baked cauliflower and continue baking for an additional 5 to 8 minutes.
- Serve alongside vegan blue cheese dressing and celery sticks.
Makes 4 servings
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Fireworks Can Trigger Flashbacks<p>Hyperarousal, a core component of PTSD, occurs when a person is hyper-alert to any sign of threat – constantly on edge, easily startled and continuously screening the environment.</p><p>Imagine, for instance, stepping down the stairs in the dark after hearing a noise; you're worried an intruder might be downstairs. Then a totally unpredictable loud sound explodes right outside your window.</p><p>For people with PTSD, that sound – reminiscent of gunfire, a thunderstorm or a car crash – <a href="https://theconversation.com/veterans-refugees-and-victims-of-war-crimes-are-all-vulnerable-to-ptsd-130144" target="_blank">can cause</a> a panic attack or trigger flashbacks, a sensory experience that makes it seem as if the old trauma is happening here and now. Flashbacks can be so severe that combat veterans may suddenly drop to the ground, the same way they would when an explosion took place in combat. Later, the experience can trigger nightmares, insomnia or worsening of other PTSD symptoms.</p><p>Those of us who set off fireworks need to ask ourselves: Are those few minutes of fun worth the hours, days, or weeks of torment that will begin for some of our friends and neighbors – including many who put their lives on the line to protect us?</p>
Who Else Is Affected?<p>Millions of others, though not diagnosed with PTSD, may similarly be affected by fireworks. <a href="https://adaa.org/about-adaa/press-room/facts-statistics" target="_blank">One in five Americans</a> have an anxiety disorder, many with symptoms of hyperarousal. Also impacted are those with autism or developmental disabilities; they find it difficult to cope with the noise, or just the drastic change from life routines. Then there are people who have to work, holiday or not: nurses, physicians and first responders, who have to be up at 4 a.m. for a 30-hour shift.</p><h3>How to Reduce the Negative Impact</h3><p>There are ways to reduce how fireworks affect others:</p><ul><li>For those with PTSD, the unexpected nature of fireworks is probably the worst part. So at least make it as predictable as possible. Do it in designated areas during designated times. Don't explode one, for instance, two hours after the designated time window. And avoid setting them off <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/society/2018/jul/04/fireworks-ptsd-fourth-of-july-veterans-shooting-survivors" target="_blank">on the 3rd</a>. People are less prepared then.</li><li>If you're aware that a veteran or trauma survivor lives in the neighborhood, move the noise as far as possible from their home and give them prior warning. Consider putting a sign in your front yard noting the time you'll set the fireworks.</li><li>Remember, it doesn't have to be super loud to make it fun. Consider using <a href="https://thehill.com/opinion/energy-environment/504964-its-time-for-silent-fireworks" target="_blank">silent fireworks</a>. And you don't have to be the one who lights the fireworks. Simply enjoy watching while your city or township does it safely.</li></ul>
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By Jeff Berardelli
For the past year, some of the most up-to-date computer models from the world's top climate modeling groups have been "running hot" – projecting that global warming may be even more extreme than earlier thought. Data from some of the model runs has been confounding scientists because it challenges decades of consistent projections.
International Effort to Evaluate Climate Models<p>For the past 25 years the international community has been evaluating and comparing the world's most sophisticated climate models produced by various teams at universities, research centers, and government agencies. The effort is organized by the World Climate Research Programme under the United Nations World Meteorological Organization.</p><p>Climate models are complicated computer programs composed of millions of lines of code that calculate the physical properties and interactions between the main climate forces like the atmosphere, oceans, and solar input. But models also go a lot further, incorporating other systems like ice sheets, forests, and the biosphere, to name a few. The models are then used to simulate the real-world climate system and project how certain changes, like added pollution or land-use changes, will alter the climate.</p><p>Every few years there is a new comprehensive international evaluation called the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP). In the sixth such effort, known as CMIP6 and now under way, experts are reviewing about 100 models.</p><p>Information gleaned from this effort will act as a scientific foundation for the U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) next major assessment report, scheduled for release in 2021. The goal of the report – the sixth in 30 years – is to inform the international community about how much the climate has changed, and, importantly, how much change can be expected in coming decades.</p>
A Conundrum Emerges<p>Over the past year, the CMIP6 collection of models being reviewed threw researchers an unexpected curveball: a significant number of the climate model runs showed substantially more global warming than previous model versions had projected. If accurate, the international climate goals would be nearly impossible to achieve, and there would be significantly more extreme impacts worldwide.</p><p>A foundational experiment in every report addresses "sensitivity": If you double levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) that were in the air before the Industrial Revolution, how much warming do the models show? This doubling is not expected for a few more decades, but it is a quick way to communicate the critical role of greenhouse gases in changing the climate.</p><p>The amount of CO2 in the atmosphere has increased by 35% since the 1800s because of the burning of fossil fuels. As a result, global temperatures have already increased by more than 2 degrees Fahrenheit.</p><p>In the first IPCC assessment report, published in 1990, the answer to that question about the impact of doubling carbon dioxide gave a fairly wide range of results – between 2.7-8 degrees F of global warming. Since then, four more assessments issued six to seven years apart reached nearly the exact same conclusion on sensitivity.</p><p>But that sensitivity may, for the first time, change significantly in next year's assessment. Why? Because starting last year, numerous models in the CMIP6 collection displayed even bigger spikes in temperature upon doubling of CO2 concentrations. We're in serious trouble if the climate sensitivity falls in the mid or upper range of the previous assessments. But if the new, higher estimates are correct, the impacts on civilization would be catastrophic.</p>
In the above CarbonBrief interactive visualization, the bars offer a comparison in the range of sensitivity in the CMIP5 models (gray) and CMIP6 models (blue).
New and Encouraging Evidence Is Emerging<p>At first, scientists were uncertain whether the new model runs were on to something, so the international modeling community dug in to produce multiple studies. The results are not yet conclusive, but a gradual collective sigh of relief seems to be materializing.</p><p>"Evidence is emerging from multiple directions that the models which show the greatest warming in the CMIP6 ensemble are likely too warm," explains Dr. Gavin Schmidt, director of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies.</p><p>For example, <a href="https://www.earth-syst-dynam-discuss.net/esd-2020-23/" target="_blank">a study</a> released April 28 evaluated the past performance of the models making up the CMIP6 ensemble. The team assigned weights to each model based upon historical performance of their warming projections, weighing the poorer performing models less. By doing so, both the mean warming and the range of warming scenarios in the CMIP6 ensemble decreased, meaning the warmest models were the ones with weaker historical performance. This result supports a finding that a subset of the models are too warm.</p><p>That conclusion is supported by another new study evaluating one particular model – the Community Earth System Model (CESM2) – that showed greater warming. Using that model, the researchers simulated the climate in the early Eocene era, about 50 million years ago, when rainforests thrived in the Arctic and Antarctic. The CESM2 simulated a historical climate that seems way too warm compared with what is known about that era from geological data, indicating that the model is likely also too warm in its future projections.</p><p>Two other recent studies of the CMIP6 models being evaluated use clever analysis methods to <a href="https://www.google.com/url?q=https://www.earth-syst-dynam-discuss.net/esd-2019-86/&sa=D&ust=1589209938203000&usg=AFQjCNHYwFB-1KqndGfJ4sXdrrm9DpbLaQ" target="_blank">narrow the range</a> of future warming projections and also <a href="https://www.google.com/url?q=https://advances.sciencemag.org/content/6/12/eaaz9549&sa=D&ust=1589209938203000&usg=AFQjCNEhKY1YZ19qgjSZ_hJM14JmzqXOXw" target="_blank">reduce the projected warming</a> of the CMIP6 models by 10 to 15%.</p><p>Through the intensive research spurred by the CMIP6 climate-sensitivity curveball, scientists have been able to turn a confounding challenge into a confidence builder, providing even greater certainty than they had before in both the abilities of the climate science community and in the computer models used. Moreover, the experience has helped unearth uncertainties remaining in the modeling process.</p><p>Experts conclude much of this uncertainty probably lies in the complexity of clouds. "We have been looking as a community at why the models with greater warming are doing what they are doing – and it's tied to cloud feedbacks in the southern mid-latitudes mostly," explains Schmidt.</p><p>In fact, <a href="https://advances.sciencemag.org/content/6/26/eaba1981" target="_blank">a new study</a> addressing the increased sensitivity was published in Science Advances stating, "Cloud feedbacks and cloud-aerosol interactions are the most likely contributors to the high values and increased range of ECS [sensitivity] in CMIP6."</p>
Understanding the Complexity of Clouds<p>It's long been known in climate modeling circles that cloud processes and interactions are a potential weak link for climate modeling. That reality has been brought front and center by the urgent challenges posed during this CMIP6 evaluation period, but the current evaluation of models also provides an opportunity for discovery and improvement.</p><p>Cloud complexity comes from the reality that clouds have a multitude of sizes, altitudes, and textures. Some clouds cool Earth by providing shade, reflecting sunlight back into space. Others act like a blanket, trapping heat and warming the world.</p><p>Given that about <a href="https://www.nasa.gov/vision/earth/lookingatearth/icesat_light.html" target="_blank">70% of the globe</a> is covered by clouds at any given time, it's no surprise that they play an integral role in regulating the climate. The challenge is to figure out which types of clouds will increase, which will decrease, and what the net effect will be on cooling or warming as the climate changes.</p><p><a href="https://www.nature.com/articles/s41561-019-0310-1" target="_blank">One study</a> last year reached an alarming conclusion: Left unchecked, the release of CO2 into the atmosphere may lead to a tipping point where shallow low clouds disappear – leading to runaway, catastrophic warming of nearly 15 degrees F. While scientists see that outcome as only a remote possibility, it drives home the urgent need to better understand clouds.</p><p>"We have a saying at NOAA: It isn't rocket science – it's much, much harder than that," quips Dr. Chris Fairall, ATOMIC's lead investigator. "One of the major problems for modeling is there is not clean separation of scales." The photo below is one that Fairall took from the NOAA P-3 aircraft.</p>
Investigating the Secrets of Clouds<p>To address the urgent question about the dynamics and role of clouds in a warming world, NOAA and European partners launched their ongoing research effort unprecedented in scale. The U.S. contribution, ATOMIC – short for Atlantic Tradewind Ocean-Atmosphere Mesoscale Interaction Campaign – is an international science mission that was featured recently on "<a href="https://www.cbsnews.com/video/study-aims-to-examine-links-between-climate-change-and-clouds/" target="_blank">CBS This Morning: Saturday</a>."</p>
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