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Baked Penne Casserole & Luscious Lemon Cake

17 May 2011

Today was Perth’s first full day of rain of the season. I had two work meetings in the morning, and then was meant to pick up my sister from the airport, but her first flight was delayed so long that she missed her connecting flight and will get here tomorrow instead of today. I was really disappointed, and she went through quite an ordeal in LA after missing her connection.

She arrived in LA past midnight, waited in a loooooong line to get new flights arranged, was given a voucher for a hotel as well as meal vouchers to use in that hotel, then got to the hotel to be told there were no rooms available! She waited in the hotel lobby all night long so when a guest checked out that morning, she could then have a room and sleep during the day until her next flight. The hotel was under renovation so their restaurants were closed, making her meal vouchers useless as well. My poor sister! At least she is now on her way from LA to Sydney, and tomorrow at lunchtime I’ll pick her up from the Perth airport.

This meant that I had the whole afternoon wide open with no plans. I took a friend of mine to a cafe called The Bodhi Tree which we hadn’t been to in Mount Hawthorn and we chatted for an hour. It was a fun cafe-cum-bookstore with lots of ethnic and antique furniture. I’ll have to take a photo the next time I go there. Then I came home and chose two recipes for tonight: one dinner and one dessert. Here is the dinner I made:

I followed the recipe for “Baked Ziti Casserole” from Beverly Lynn Bennett‘s cookbook “Vegan Bites: Recipes for Singles,” but I used spelt penne instead of ziti, I omitted the nutritional yeast because I couldn’t find it at the store, I used real onion and garlic instead of their powdered forms, and I added mushrooms. I am so proud of myself, it was DELICIOUS!!

I have enough left over to share with my sister tomorrow and to freeze some for myself at a later date.

While dinner was baking, I prepared this dessert:

From the same book, this “Light and Luscious Lemon Cake” is truly light and luscious! I couldn’t wait until the whole cake had cooled to try it, so I cut a piece and spread vegan cream on top, then sliced strawberries. When the cake is cool, I will do this to the whole thing. And tomorrow I will take a piece to my friend who I had coffee with today, as it was her suggestion that I bake something this afternoon. It was the perfect day for it; rainy, a totally free afternoon, and I was in the mood to do or make something. Perfect!

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