The original Green Goddess Sandwich recipe  by Alanna Taylor-Tobin was featured in The Bonjour Gourmet. We made it vegan with the following modifications:
• In the dressing, we did not use anchovies
• We used Follow your heart Vegan mayo
• We used miyokos chive or favorite flavor cream cheese instead of mozarella.

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total: 15 minutes
Servings: 4 to 6 sandwiches.


       Pickled spring onions (makes enough for 4-6 sandwiches):

  • 2 spring onions, bulb thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup white wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black peppercorns, lightly crushed

       Per Sandwich:

  • 2 slices pan bread (I like something with a neutral flavor such as Josie Baker's Wonderbread)
  • 1/2 a small, ripe avocado, sliced
  • 2 fat slices fresh mozzarella
  • 1 medium-sized green zebra tomato (or other heirloom tomato), sliced
  • a few thin slices cucumber
  • several slices pickled onion
  • a handful of sprouts (such as broccoli sprouts), rinsed and dried
  • a couple of small lettuce leaves (butter or romaine), rinsed and dried

Making The Sandwiches


      Pickle the onions:

  • In a medium-sized jar, combine the onions slices, vinegar, sugar, salt, and peppercorns. Put the lid on the jar and let sit for at least 10 minutes, shaking a few times to dissolve the salt and sugar. Use immediately or refrigerate until needed, up to 1 week.

      Assemble the sandwiches:

  • Toast the bread and spread both slices with a thick layer of the mayonnaise. Top with the avocado, mozzarella, tomato, cucumber, pickled onion, sprouts, and lettuce. Sandwich with the other slice of bread and press down gently. Optionally wrap the sandwich in parchment or secure with two toothpicks, and slice in half with a sharp serrated bread knife or chef's knife.

Makes: 1 Sandwich  Prep time: 30 minutes Total Time: 45 minutes



Sundried tomato pesto: 

Makes approx 2 cups (enough for 8-10 sandwiches)

Recipe by: Alexa Weilbel

Here are some fun facts about the goat breed called "Saanen"! They are my favorite breed of goat!

🤓 The Saanen breed's scientific name is “Capra aegagrus hircus". They are also referred to by these other names in other languages: Saanenziege, Chèvre de Gessenay, and Capra di Saanen.

🌍 The breed originated Switzerland. This breed of goat lives better in cooler weather. They are the largest dairy breed of goats. They are descended from goats that adapted to high elevation swiss mountains. In Switzerland Saanen goats travel in herds of up to 100. Today, there are about 900,000 Saanens worldwide.

⭐️ Personality Traits: Known to "prance", they have an elegant carriage, and have calm mellow demeanor. Saanens are very gentle natured, sweet goats. Just like dogs, different breeds of goats can have different general personalities.

🐐 Size: Females average 130lbs,while males average 180lbs.
💪 Health: They are highly resistant to disease, they adapt well to really harsh climates, and have tough hooves. Give them shade as they are susceptible to sunburn because of their light skin. Their lifespan is about 9-15 years.

👨‍👩‍👦 Family life: Nannies and kids can recognize each other’s voices from the moment of birth. Saanen goats are excellent mothers who are very protective of their kids.

Goatlandia has been fortunate to have raised and rescued several wonderful Saanens through the years.

Featured: Liam; L-R below: Rainey, Nigel, Priscilla, and Bryce with Deb

Delicious double-chocolate vegan chocolate cookies! Both quick and easy, crunchy and soft, these cookies are perfect for satisfying all your chocolate cravings.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 20


Author: Alison Andrews
Added Tips: a few light suggestions from the Chef's at Goatlandia Kitchen


  • ½ cup Vegan Butter (112g)
  • ½ cup White Granulated Sugar (100g)
  • ½ cup Light Brown Sugar(100g)
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 cup All Purpose Flour(125g)
  • ⅔ cup Cocoa Powder (56g)Unsweetened
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • ¼ teaspoon Salt
  • 1 Tablespoon Soy Milk or other non-dairy milk
  • 1 cup Vegan Chocolate Chips (175g) + more for pressing into the tops of the warm cookies after baking


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C).
  • Add the vegan butter and brown and white sugar to the bowl of your stand mixer and cream them together. Add the vanilla extract and mix in.
  • Sift the flour and cocoa powder into a separate mixing bowl and mix in the baking soda and salt.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the wet, mixing in by hand until crumbly.
  • Add the 1 Tablespoon soy milk or other non-dairy milk and mix into a thick cookie dough.
  • Add the chocolate chips and mix in. Your cookie dough will be very thick, but sticky enough to easily roll into balls. Add a splash of more milk IF the dough is still crumbly, it should hold together easily and you want moist cookies once they are baked.
  • Roll into balls and space them evenly on a parchment lined baking tray. Aim to get 20 cookies from the batch.
  • Bake for 10 minutes. The edges will be firm but the cookies will still be soft in the middle. This is fine, they will firm up as they cool.
  • Press in a few more chocolate chips to the top of the cookies as they come out of the oven.

Deb says, “I love this recipe because it’s super easy to make and everyone loves it. I like to top it with berries that have been lightly sautéed in butter, cointreau or lemon juice, and sugar. And then vegan whipped cream of course 🙂 And you can add on top a few flakes of Maldon salt; this really makes the chocolate flavor pop!"

Chocolate Molten Lava Cake
Makes 12 individual lava cakes

Preheat oven to 350. Grease up small, individual ramekins on bottom inside and sides with a neutral oil and set on sheet tray.

2 cups Whole Wheat Flour
¾ cup cacao powder
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda

1 ½ cup sugar
2 cups cold water
8 T olive oil
2 T lemon juice or vinegar
2 teaspoon vanilla extract

to be added later:
1/2 cup chocolate chunks

Sifting dry ingredients:
1. Take a large bowl and place a sieve on it. Add your dry ingredients: whole wheat flour, salt, baking soda and cacao powder. Sift into bowl and set aside.
2. Prepare wet ingredients. Take sugar and cold water and stir with whisk until sugar is dissolved. Add oil and stir well. Add vanilla and lemon juice and stir again very well.
3. Pour wet ingredients into dry ingredients bowl and mix well with a wired whisk. Do not overmix!
4. Pour batter in greased ramekins and place chocolate squares in so they get immersed in the batter. Fill ramekins about 3/4 of the way full as they will rise when baked.
5. Place sheet tray in oven and bake for 15-20 minutes keeping oven door closed the entire time! Check on cakes and make sure they are cooked fully on the outside with a gooey center. Pull out of oven once completed and served immediately!

I wanted to share a topic with you that I ruminate on ALL…. THE…. TIME. In fact, I often lose sleep over this, because I love the animals I’m honored to share my life with and I want them to always be comfortable. 

Winter and Cold. Brrrrr!!!!

For the first several years that I was rescuing animals, I would often lay awake at night during winter wondering if everyone was ok. I was worried because it was cold outside for me, and I was nervous that my animal family members weren’t comfortable. One night (this was back in the early days) I even went out with a sleeping bag and slept in the barn with my three first goats. I woke up in the middle of the night cold, with goat poop on me, and I swear the goats had a very funny look on their face that said “mom, we got this. go back to bed.” Needless to say that was a one time experience. 

Anyway, I’m guessing some of you share my concern and want to make sure your animals are happy healthy and cozy during the winter. Here in California, we are fortunate not to have the deal with ice storms, blizzards, and feet of snow. But it’s still cold, so let’s talk about how to put our minds at ease, and help our family members that need it stay cozy. 

The fact is, animals have much thicker skin than we do, and they have fur and feathers. They are insulated in a way that we humans aren’t. Our pigs graze in the rain when it’s 42, our ducks run into 36 degree ponds in the morning when I let them out, and our goats sleep under the stars by choice when it’s freezing! They have their own coats that they wear every day! And we need to allow them to grow and use their coats. Much like with horses, putting sweaters or coats on them actually prevents them from growing their undercoats (cashmere, down, etc.) that will protect them in winter. This cashmere, in the case of goats, helps keep them warm when temperatures drop. I asked one of our vets about temperatures and goats, and he said that most ruminants are very comfortable around 49 degrees F, and start to get heat stress around 70! So what is an enjoyable summer for us can actually stress out our animal friends. They love it cold! That being said, there are always going to be those animals that need a little extra help in the winter; a mother giving birth in 10 degree weather, someone who is sick or recovering from surgery, a newborn kid lamb or chick, or an older guy or gal that needs help regulating their body temperature. And you can always consult your vet, or call us, if you need help with making that call. 

I’ve also visited many East Coast sanctuaries to whom I have supported and volunteered at over the years. They do not heat their barns except for the bird barns in severe storms. Their ruminants and pigs and horses do just fine, and it is far colder there than here in California. Whew! So good to know. Here are some great articles on how non-human animals are far more prepared to deal with cold than we are. These links are from a website called Thrifty Homesteader. While here at Goatlandia we don’t condone breeding, milking for human use, or eating animals, the creator of this website and blog has covered some topics quite eloquently. I hope you find them useful. 

We’ve had numerous animals here with physical limitations or disabilities; blindness, an ill-recovered fracture resulting in a limp, and amputated limbs. At the current time, we have a dog born with only three legs named Nemo (below).

We also have a goat who injured his leg as a kid and had to have it amputated. This goat’s name is Finnegan (main photo). He’s a big beautiful Boer and he is not afraid to “grab life by the horns”. We call him Fast Finny because despite only having three and a half legs, he’s pretty darn fast!

Self esteem is defined as “confidence in one's own worth or abilities; self-respect.” It’s basically how we feel about ourselves, and it includes any judgements or opinions we have of ourselves. Growing up in our modern world, the unrealistic images of perfection and high societal expectations can wreak havoc on our self esteem and prevent us from truly loving ourselves. Cases of anorexia, bullying, self-harm and low self esteem are sadly on the rise, especially in young people.

One thing I love about animals is that they don’t let self esteem issues affect their lives. They just figure out how to get life done, and they get about doing it. I love that! They don’t spend time worrying about how others see them, or feeling sorry for themselves because they are not “perfect”. They just get on living.

One of my favorite humans to listen to is Melissa Peer. She is a wonderful therapist that helps people clear the blocks to self love; allowing us to fully live the life we are intended. She has a mantra that I adore and it goes like this: “I Am Enough”. It means that we are all enough; we are all worthy of love, and we all have value, and that our past traumas shouldn’t haunt us moving forward. This mantra can help us humans learn to accept and love ourselves which is great! And, we can look to our spirit animal, the GOAT, to see that in action. Our animals with challenges don’t waste time worrying, they know they are enough.

I’ve learned a lot from my animal family, and especially from Finnegan. He doesn’t let his challenge slow him down, he just gets in there and runs like heck and gets things done. He loves his life, and he’s happy with what he has. And through our visitor program, our animal therapy, and our kids camp, he’s helping others find that joy too — including me.

This special edition of Ruminations is brought to you by Goatlandia's Sanctuary Manager, Meagan Dallas. She is responsible for animal care, volunteer coordination, and other organizational aspects of the sanctuary. Meagan is an active advocate for animals of all species and is vegan.

Summer is approaching and the weather is heating up here!

We are so privileged to live in such a beautiful place. I spend a lot of my days in sweaty work clothes taking care of the rescue animals. I walk the pastures to refill water buckets, clean up after them, and give out medications. I also stop to make sure they get their chins scratched, backs rubbed, and ears pet. I think to myself ‘there is no where else I would rather be’. I wonder if the animals feel that way too. Like there is no where else they would rather be.

Our sanctuary is a place of refuge, where we value each individual and each life. We rescue animals from trauma situations, neglect, abuse, and some of the most horrific conditions one could be subjected to living in. I’ve been rescuing animals for a lot of years and I have learned a lot from them.

One of the most impactful lessons I have learned from rescue work is not about handling a large goat or administering a vaccination, but about the nature of love. For one, I learned that love is forgiving. So many of our animals arrive here and have only known fear and sadness. Oftentimes they have never felt kindness from a human being before. These rescue animals have taught me you can forgive and open your heart to love someone even after you have been wronged.
The rescue animals also taught me that love is brave.

So many of these animals have been abused and exploited by humans. Yet, they come back to us humans showing incredible levels of trust and vulnerability. How many of us would have that emotional courage? I aspire to do the same with people who have caused me harm or fear. To be brave enough to reconnect. To trust. To love.

The most important lesson I have learned from these rescue animals is that love is forever. The connections we form with other beings, human and nonhuman, those go to the core of who we are. My heart is completely filled with faces of animals I have known over the years. Some who I see every day at Goatlandia, some who have found incredible forever homes, and some who have since passed away. Those connections will endure forever because our love is true.

I don’t know enough about animal psychology to know if our animals can truly comprehend their luck in landing at this small farm animal sanctuary in California, but, I do know that they feel happy and loved here. I know that they have been rescued, and through that process, I have been rescued too.

On February 23, 2022, I shared a video about four baby goats we rescued. They were being sold at an auction, but no one bid on them. This is a message I recorded after several sleepless nights, trying to save their lives.

Ah... love. We all want to love and be loved. And falling in love is one of the most thrilling human experiences. Scientific studies have shown that feelings of love cause our body to release feel-good hormones and neuro-chemicals that trigger specific, positive reactions.

But is this true for animals as well? Do goats feel love? Do they love others? I believe the answer is YES! Just like us, they want to love and be loved, and be close to those who they love.

Goats will show affection for people by approaching them calmly, leaning on them, and by showing positive peaceful eye and body contact. I’ve had the pleasure of having many goats both large and small approach me in the pasture, and sit or lay down with me and sometimes cuddle and fall asleep.

Goats show love and affection not only to humans, but to other goats and other animals! When in little herds of two or more, goats display friendliness to each other in many ways, including body language, closeness, and vocalizations. For instance, they will often huddle and cuddle together. They also make a point to do daily activities, such as eating meals and even sleeping at night or napping, with each other rather than alone. Mother goats (nannies) will call out to their kids (babies). They have distinct voices and recognize each other.

And goats feel emotions from others too! Frans de Waal, a primatologist and expert in animal cognition at Emory University, said: “Goats being sensitive to the emotions of others is a form of empathy. Empathy is a mammalian trait, so this makes sense.”

So do goats fall in love? Absolutely. And we fall in love with them right back.


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