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Tex Mex Sweet Potatoes & Reading with Intention in 2015 (May)

Tex Mex Sweet Potatoes | www.thatwasvegan.com

My obsession with baked potatoes continues… This week it just happens to be sweet potatoes. Specifically, Tex-Mex Sweet Potatoes with beans and corn and jalapenos! I also realized that I never posted my May reading round-up, so I’ve added it down at the bottom, if you’re interested.

But first we’re gonna talk taters! Baked potatoes are so comforting and healthy and delicious and you get to decide how simple or complicated the toppings are. Here, for example, I went with:

  1. A sweet potato, microwaved for about 5 minutes
  2. Half a can of “chili seasoned” black beans
  3. A heaping half cup of sweet corn, and
  4. One jalapeno
  5. Salt

Truly, that’s all that’s in there! You could make a bit more decadent, sure, by adding some vegan butter or cheese, but I was like eh, why bother? 

This potato was perfect in it’s simplicity, so why mess with a good thing?

Tex Mex Sweet Potatoes | www.thatwasvegan.com

There’s seriously no actual recipe for this one. Bake your potato (or be lazy like me and probably die someday of microwave-induced brain tumors, it’s your call), heat your beans and corn, and dice up some jalapenos. If you’re using the chili beans, the only seasoning you’ll really need is a little salt. If your beans aren’t seasoned already, I’d go with cumin and chili powder and salt and maybe a little garlic! 

Tex Mex Sweet Potatoes | www.thatwasvegan.com
Reading with Intention, May 2015 | www.thatwasvegan.com

I didn’t read a ton in April, but here they are!

  • Loving Frank by Nancy Horan … I’m a huge fan of Frank Lloyd Wright’s work, and of his love story with Mamah Borthwick Cheney. There’s just something about star-crossed lovers that always gets me! I had read this book years and years ago, maybe when it first came out. It’s very sad. This time around it really made me wonder what the universe was up to with them. I don’t want to give away the ending… but it’s dark. 
  • Where Men Win Glory: The Odyssey of Pat Tillman by Jon Krakauer …  This book was okay but I just didn’t love it the way I usually love his books. Very sad story though! Especially the fact that he was doubling back to save his own brother when he was shot!
  • The Monopolists: Obsession, Fury, and the Scandal Behind the World’s Favorite Board Game by Mary Pilon … This was a great book! It’s not surprising that the board game business (being just that… a business) is a patriarchy, but I was surprised by the lengths these men went to screw over the woman who actually created the game – to steal the fame and money. It was maddening, but a great read.
  • The People Who Eat Darkness: The Fate of Lucie Blackman by Richard Lloyd Parry … I read a post of Jezebel’s Fly Girl about Tokyo’s sex industry, and the writer mentioned Lucie Blackman. A commentor pointed to this book as a great way to read more, which I did. She was a young British woman who moved to Tokyo with a friend to make some easy money being a hostess (basically a modern day geisha, not a prostitute) and was murdered. This book is the story of her life and the investigation and trial that followed. As someone who moved away at that same age and also made some questionable choices, I found the story very touching. 
  • Gray Mountain by John Grisham … Living in an energy-producing state is great and all, but after reading this I’m really glad I don’t live in a state with mountain top removal. This was a pretty good book, although I didn’t much care for the end. If you like Grisham though, it’s a good sort of mindless read. 
  • Stuffocation by James Wallman … Didn’t get to read it, bummer! It came available from the library at the exact same time as 3 other books and I just ran out of time. Maybe it’ll show up on the list again later in the year…
  • The Murder of Marilyn Monroe: Cased Closed by Jay Margolis … Worst. Book. Ever. Don’t read. Awful. Blech.

Books for May 2015


  • Pioneer Girl: The Annotated Autobiography by Laura Ingalls Wilder, Pamela Smith Hill … I am BEYOND excited to read this book. I’ve been withering away on the library waitlist for what feels like YEARS, but finally it’s in my grubby little hands 🙂 
  • Revival by Stephen King … Yes. More mass market fiction. Stop looking at me that way! 
  • Fingersmith by Sara Waters … After reading The Paying Guests a few months back, I’m excited to read more by Waters. This one is about a young girl, raised by thieves (“fingersmiths”) who takes off on a plot to rob one innocent victim blind. I’m guessing her morality stops her? 
  • Spinster: Making a Life of One’s Own by Kate Bolick … Ahh the pitfalls of being a single woman over 30. Being asked when you’re finally going to get married is sort of like us vegans being asked where we get our protein from. Ugh. This book has already raised quite a few hackles in the literary community, so I’m curious to see what all the fuss is about! 
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{ 4 comments… add one }
  • Reia@TheCrueltyFreeReview May 22, 2015, 9:27 pm

    I love how simple this is! It’s perfect for when I get home and just don’t have the energy to do much more than push buttons on the microwave. And it’s so easily customizable to what you have on hand.
    So, I have read The People Who Eat Darkness, and I thought it was a fascinating look at the culture of hostessing in Japan. I knew a little about the practice, but clearly was unaware of how dangerous it is. Such a sad story. It was a good true-crime read, though I thought it dragged a bit in parts.
    I’ve also read Revival, and absolutely loved it. But then again, I love almost everything King writes (not Hearts in Atlantis, that was an epic fail ). There’s nothing wrong with mass market fiction if it’s good! Revival has one of the creepier endings he’s penned in a while; I’ll be curious to know what you think.
    Have you read Three Cups of Deceit by Krakauer? It’s on my Amazon wish list; I can’t find it in any bookstores. I’ll also be interested in reading his new book, Missoula, when it comes out in paperback.
    Happy reading, and let me know if you ever need any suggestions!

  • Angie May 24, 2015, 10:06 pm

    Oooo…I am interested to hear your thoughts on Pioneer Girl!

  • Ana @ Ana's Rocket Ship February 29, 2016, 1:42 pm

    Laura Ingalls Wilder for the win!!! I’ve got a few days at home with my parents as a break from studying coming up… and the almost complete set (minus Farmer Boy) waiting for me that I FINALLY got at Christmas (they’re actually really hard to get hold of a lot of them over here)… still pristine….. just waiting. And this dinner is simple and wouldn’t take up a lot of time away from reading. Weekend sorted 😀

    • Barb February 29, 2016, 7:42 pm

      Good for you! LOVE those books… And I haven’t read them yet this winter darnit!

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