October 09, 2016
Most things that have come out of my kitchen in the past week or so have been from Vegan Bowl Attac...
Most things that have come out of my kitchen in the past week or so have been from Vegan Bowl Attack by Jackie Sobon. I was lucky enough to win a copy in a giveaway from Vegan Eats & Treats, so I've been making lots of bowls to enjoy lately! As I'm sure you know, bowls are my fave. I use my bowls way more than I use my plates. I have even documented on the internet how much I love bowls here, here, here and again here.
I love a good white bean soup. Puree a white bean, mash a white bean, leave it whole, or anything you feel like doing to the white bean, I'm sure it will taste delicious. It's my favorite bean, but ask me what my favorite bean is the next time I eat a pinto bean and maybe my answer will be different. White bean soup sounded especially amazing to me on this early fall evening, so I chose to begin Vegan Bowl Attack with this recipe. But I have to admit, when I opened the book to read the recipe through, I felt myself get all twitchy and sort of changed it up.
First of all, I am an accomplished vegan unicorn indie princess, and am capable of far better soups than ones where you just dump ingredients into a blender. I decided to sauté an onion in a soup pot first, then add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil first. Also, I may be made of sunshine, humor and pop-culture references, but I am certainly not made of cash. It would be pretty irresponsible of me to puree a bunch of pine nuts in a soup, as they cost about $10 for half a cup. I used some pine nuts I had in my cupboard sparingly by toasting them and sprinkling them over the top for maximum impact. Cashews are a little more economical, so I pureed those in the soup instead. I also felt it was way too thick, more like a hummus. I added at least double the amount of broth the recipe said to add. Overall, the finished product was totally great. I just marked up my copy with lots of notes to myself for next time.
This isn't from Vegan Bowl Attack, but I decided to make the Orange Chicky Seitan from the stir-fry section of Isa Does It. I actually had opened The Great Vegan Protein Book to make their Fake-Out Sesame Seitan and Broccoli, but then realized that the version of Orange Chicken in Isa Does It was way less complicated, and I had everything I needed on hand for it. Also I just realized that I put mushrooms in there. How did that happen?
Back to Vegan Bowl Attack! Next I made the Cashew-Crusted Tofu Stir-Fry. Alex loves stir-fries, and I love that he loves them, because they are so amazingly easy to make. The cashew breading was easy to do, just pureed the nuts, mixed them with rice flour, pressed the tofu into the coating and pan-fried them. By now, us vegans can basically make a stir-fry while we do our nails, so this dish was a piece of cake to make. Making cake is much harder than this. You get my point.
In other news, I got a job! Woot Woot! The day I accepted my offer, Alex took me out for happy hour at Front Street Cafe. Everything is so cheap during happy hour, so we split a bunch of stuff. It's a great place to bring anyone, because at least half their menu is vegan, and there's plenty for vegetarians and the omnivores in your life, too. The food is also amazing.
I'd been wanting to try the buffalo cauliflower for a while, but I never ordered it, since they give you so much that it's almost enough for your entire meal. But since we were just doing Apps & Zerts, it was the perfect opportunity to seize the cauliflower. It was super crispy, great buffalo sauce, vegan ranch, and even Alex ate them. He "hates" cauliflower, so it was a win for everyone, especially this underappreciated vegetable.
We split the vegan cactus taco, which had sweet potatoes and slaw and other good sauces and condiments, the blood and soul of any taco. After all this, potato wedges and a few beers, we'd had ourselves an extremely pleasant Tuesday.
Next from Vegan Bowl Attack, I made the Mezze Fusion Bowl. Toasty pita triangles are included in this lovely medley of quinoa tabbouleh, olives, artichokes, hummus and tofu feta. The recipe called for homemade baba ghanoush, but I went for store-bought hummus because Alex is an eggplant-hater. The tofu feta was almost no work to make, it just required some marination. Not much to argue with here, everybody loves a mezze-platter. Also, don't be a dringus and buy your artichokes in a glass and not a can. These canned artichokes were the pits. Sorry for talking about pits on my food blog.
Once I start working, I'll miss spending sunny afternoons out on my patio with my very good-looking husband.
One time I ate seitan tacos for all three meals in a day. Since that day was yesterday, I chose to start this morning with this apple pie smoothie bowl from Vegan Bowl Attack. This was a perfect use for my many apples I still have from apple-picking. I might have made too much... But I topped it with lots of chopped almonds and pecans and a little maple syrup because I had no time or sense to make the actual topping that goes on this, and my hunger is a serious thing. I think I was just sad that I couldn't top it with my granola, which contains hemp protein, which I was afraid would make me fail my drug test. I think it won't. I dunno, can never be too careful!!
Oh look, some of the tacos I mentioned! So I think I've mentioned this before, but Barcade has a special on Fridays, from 12-5pm wherein you can obtain 2 vegan tacos, chips and a beer for $10. The chips usually have cheese on them, so we left it off, but the bartender brought us over some salsa for them because he was so nice and concerned about our bare chips. These were great, as always. I'd probably keep coming back for them even if they weren't great, because it's so damn cheap.
We went to Pabst Fest this weekend at Electric Factory. There were a lot of great bands playing, and it was a really great deal, moneywise, because it'd cost sooo much more to see them all separately. They had all sorts of activities outside in addition to the bands, such as a van to spray paint, arcade games, dancefloor, a Philly photo set (a doorstep that looked like Rocky's with a 215 on the door and other Philly things), and all the PBR you could fathom. I fathomed none.
The first band we caught was Diarrhea Planet. I've been told to check them out many times, but never had until this show. Not really sure if it's my thing, but it's good for what it's trying to be.
Next, we saw Beach Slang, a Philly band that Alex has been into. The singer reminded me so much of someone I used to know who played music in our hometown and I could barely pay any attention because I was thinking of that the whole time. Dude obviously likes The Cure a lot though.
The main reason we got these tickets was to see Guided by Voices. They played 20 songs in one hour as promised. Obviously very lucky to have an opportunity to see them play.
We saw Mac Demarco and Hop Along play afterwards, but I failed to document them. They were both great, even though Frances took some digs at NYC... I forgive her. Kind of.
Vegan Bowl Attack has an extensive and impressive salad section. The first one to catch my eye was the Walnut Chorizo Taco Salad! I am so obsessed with the chorizo taco salad from byChloe that I knew I had to make this one asap. It was super easy to make the walnut chorizo, just dump walnuts and spices into a food processor and then sauté it for a few minutes. You can just chop all your accoutrements while your chorizo is toasting. I didn't make the sour cream, even though that would have been easy too, I just drizzled some Just Ranch dressing from Hampton Creek over the top of mine. Alex required a vinaigrette instead, so I figured the sour cream would just go bad before I could eat it all anyway. I opted to leave out the tortilla bowl, and by opted I mean I had no large tortillas. This salad was awesome regardless of the lack of edible bowl.
For dessert I thought I'd better get on the giant apple haul I have in my kitchen before they go bad, so I made Apple Crisp from Vegan Pie In The Sky. I topped it with So Delicious Cashew Cream Ice Cream, my favorite vanilla-style ice cream. You can't beat the creamy texture, not icey, doesn't melt too fast, exactly what you need in a vanilla ice cream. It may be a tie between them and Van Leeuwen's in NYC. They make seriously amazing vegan ice cream, too!
I am anxiously anticipating vegan mofo coming up for the month of November!! I plan on participating on Instagram and on this blog, so let me know if you are also participating and I'll make sure to visit your site during mofo!
Sending all my good vibes,