I hope you all had a very happy Easter. Hopefully there was plenty of relaxing and feasting and time spent with the ones you love. I attended an awesome Easter Feaster on Saturday with friends where the cheese was plenty, as was the vegan treats (best guacamole EVER). I am now spending time in my home town where Mum is of course pleasing us all with her amazing ability to turn out a veritable and delicious feast at every meal time.
My own cooking has been fairly unimpressive of late, although I did have a week of motivation where I tried out a few new recipes. Remind me to post once I have my camera again! Although, I have been mastering some mega salads recently. Haloumi is my friend! Squeaky and salty…can’t go wrong there can you?
I thought I’d share a few more snaps from New York.
Firstly, a vegan pizza from John’s of 12th St in the East Village. This place is amazing. Picture an old Italian family style restaurant where the waiters wear bow-ties and Woody Allen-esque glasses, all carrying about as though they’re auditioning for a part in a movie. They have the traditional Italian menu but have added a complete vegan Italian menu as well! The vegan pizza was delicious, helped significantly by the daiya cheese. It’s difficult to find vegan cheese that actually melts, but daiya ticks all the boxes!
Next we have ‘The Peace Bowl’ from perhaps my favourite veggie restaurant in New York (of those I managed to try anyway), Peace Food Cafe. I even took a group of friends there on my birthday. Peace Food Cafe is completely vegan. Other things I tried there included the dumplings (amazing!), a vegan parmigiana, a savoury scone, some of their fresh juices, soy chai, tofu scramble and potato salad (yes, I went there many a time).
And lastly, something a little bit naughty! I cannot rave enough about S’MAC - a tiny little restaurant in the East Village dedicated to MAC AND CHEESE/CHEEZE (they have vegan options too). I’d heard a lot about it from a friend from work who lived nearby, so when my mate Tim came to visit I decided we should go and check it out. It didn’t disappoint. They have probably 20 different varieties of Mac & Cheese. I had the Parisienne which they describe as ‘Mac and cheese for the ‘Upper-Crust’. Creamy brie, roasted figs, roasted shitake mushrooms and fresh rosemary.’ Fancy huh!?! Tim and I stumbled out of this place feeling much rounder, but nothing a walk in the cool (actually, bloody freezing) night air didn’t fix.
That’s all for now, but before I go, I’d like to mention that if you have any questions or comments, or just want to give me a holler, please don’t hesitate to hit me up in my ASK BOX.
My goodness, it has been an age. An age in which a lot has happened! I have returned from my life changing trip to New York and am slowly getting back into the swing of a much changed life in Australia. Unlike I had promised, I obviously didn’t manage to keep this thing kicking while I was in New York. I did, however, manage to eat copious amounts of delicious food! It would be ridiculous to attempt to update you on everything I have eaten over the past five months, but I will give aim to give you a few snippets of some of the incredible things I ingested in New York.
I cannot rave enough about the quality and quantitiy of delicious vegetarian food in that city. I guess it comes down to the diversity of the population, but I was still in awe that there could be so much goodness! I truly miss it.
As I attempt to revive this blog, I will leave you with a photo of something I ate on more than one occasion. It is a vegan frittata topped with vegan sour cream from one of my favourite cafes in the East Village called The Organic Grill. My brother and I discovered this place when he came to visit in November. I decided we should head down to the East Village and find somewhere for lunch. After lots of walking in the cold and searching for something suitable for us both, we finally stumbled upon The Organic Grill with its cute yellow exterior. We were both stoked and much relieved to find somewhere warm to eat at last! From then on, I enjoyed venturing down there on weekends for a late brunch accompanied by a nice warm cup of organic chai.
Well life surely is fully hectic at the moment! As most of my readers probably already know, I’ve been accepted to do a four month internship at the Australian Consulate-General in Neeeeeew Yoooorrrrrk (concrete jungle where dreams are made of). I found out last Friday and I am set to start on October 28! Talk about a mad rush!!! I’m flying out with my dear papa bear on Tuesday 26th (that’s if I get my visa in time….which I will I will I will!). So in between scouring the internet for a place to live, waking up at obscene hours to check my email, scanning documents, filling out forms, buying bits and pieces, attempting to pack and all the while hanging out with the friends, siblings and boyfriend I am going to miss dearly, I haven’t really cooked anything decent.
However, to celebrate, the lovely Ben took me to Kitami, a Japanese restaurant. It was such a nice night and I honestly felt like I was back in Kyoto! The food there is authentically Japanese, reasonably priced and damn tasty.
For entre I munged down on a massive bowl of Edamame beans (soy beans coated in salt. You lick the salt off the beans then pop the little beans out of the pod. Nummy). I ate these for the first time back in a bar in Tokyo with my pals. They had to teach me how to eat them but now I am an absolute pro. You should have seen me, out of control.
Possessed? Quite possibly.
I also sipped on some Ume-shu (plum wine) which is sickly sweet but delicious.
For entre Benny had some sushi.
For main I had vegetable tempura with a variety of dipping sauces.
Terrible photo but it sure was oishii (delicious).
I will continue blogging about food as much as I can while in New York. I’m definitely excited about hunting down all the cool vegetarian restaurants including all mentioned on this list of the top 10 vegetarian restaurants in Manhattan.
Until then, cheerio!
It appears that I’ve become rather slack at this blogging thing. Each time I cook something I think to myself, ‘I should blog this’, but then I either can’t be bothered or my camera battery is dead. So tonight as I set out to try a new taco recipe I was determined to blog it. I put the camera on the charger and got cooking.
I found the recipe on the Old El Paso website. The recipe makes 10 so there’s plenty of leftover mixture for me to take to work tomorrow and probably the next day too.
1 packet taco seasoning
Salsa or taco sauce, whatever you please
400gm pumpkin, finely cubed
1 large carrot, finely cubed
1 zucchini, finely cubed
100gm button mushrooms, quartered (I just used the ones that are already sliced)
1 small eggplant, finely cubed (or about half a large one)
2 tomatoes, chopped
1/4 cup finely chopped coriander
1. Heat a little oil in a pan then add the onion, carrot and pumpkin and cook for about 5 minutes.
2. Add the rest of the vegetables and cook for a further 5 minutes.
3. Add the packet of taco seasoning as well as 3/4 of a cup of water.
4. Let simmer until all the vegetables appear cooked (I was mostly just worried about the pumpkin being cooked).
5. Meanwhile whack your taco shells in the oven for about 5 minutes.
6. Top with salsa or taco sauce, guacamole, cheese or whatever your heart desires.
This was a really tasty and healthy take on the traditional tacos. My meat eating boyfriend ate them all up even despite the overload of funky vegetables hehe.
So much colour!
I couldn’t really get a good close up of the tacos but imagine all that, plus the taco seasoning and water in a taco shell, and voila!
Meanwhile, I am excited to announce that we now have a veggie and herb garden! We got this nifty little herb bed from Bunnings.
We have chives, basil, coriander (which I used in the taco recipe tonight!), thyme and two types of parsley as well as lettuce and cherry tomatoes. Very exciting indeed!
Howdy doody all. Again, another absence. My apologies! I have been on the move a bit lately between work and a stint of work experience in Sydney. As it turned out, I interned for three days with the Weight Watchers magazine. I hadn’t specifically chosen that mag, but contacted Pacific Magazines in general to see about work experience and that’s where I ended up. It was really enjoyable and great to see how the mag land works. Working with a bunch of health conscious people was actually pretty cool. They weren’t intimidating or judgmental which was nice. I thought for some reason they might be death staring my lunch choices every day but there was none of that (not that they would have reason to!). We even ate cake together one afternoon. Yes! The people that put Weight Watchers magazine together eat cake! I saw them with my own eyes ! What a scandal! A handful of the ladies had baked some goodies including the most amazing carrot cake I have ever eaten. It was MOIST, cinamonny and simply delectable. And how can a cake with CARROT in it not be healthy? ;)
Being away from home can sometimes be challenging when it comes to finding good veggie food. Luckily Sydney has so much to offer us vegetarians and the fact that I was staying in the Newtown area was a great advantage. Aaah I’m such a hipster. On my first night I had the pleasure of the company of two of my school friends, Bri and Anna. We dined at ‘Moo Burgers’ where I enjoyed a red kidney bean burger (moo-free). It was incredible!
Dodgy photo but you get the idea.
The following day my eats included a toasted turkish sandwich with various roasted veggies from the cafe in the building where I was doing work experience (a hot spot for Aussie TV stars, the excitement!). That night we visited Broadway shopping centre where I got a small gnocchi in the food court which was pretty damn good as far as food court food goes. I then fell in love in the centre’s Coles were they had self serve salad bars (Newcastle is so behind). I filled up two containers. One with three different veggie salad mixes…beans galore! (for my lunch the next day)…and the other with yogurt, muesli and strawberries which made for an excellent after dinner snack.
After a very restless night on Monday I felt like a zombie at work experience on Tuesday. I honestly felt sick from tiredness and so getting all the salady goodness into me at lunch time really helped. As did a can of coke. Yes I’m a human too! I did not regret that purchase one bit (as I might usually when buying coke, a rare event for me) as it was like a magical potion for my body at the point in time making me feel like I could face the rest of the afternoon. Although I must admit hoping no one from Weight Watchers saw me with the coke hahaha.
Tuesday evening I again had some lovely company over dinner with my friend Alyssa. We went to her stomping ground, Leichardt, for some Italian (what else does one eat when in Leichardt? Italian galore!). I had some pesto spaghetti followed by some amaaazing panacotta gelato. Wowsers.
I am now home and happy to be able to cook again. But I haven’t even done that yet as this evening my lovely boyfriend surprised me by cooking up this incredible veggie lasagne. He had been slaving away in the kitchen all afternoon getting it ready and it was cooked by the time I got home from work. It was all kinds of delicious and I’m rather proud of him as this was his first attempt at lasagne! He definitely knows that the way to my heart is through my stomach.
Perfection! Oh and did I mention that I also arrived home to these?
Not edible, unfortunately. Just kidding!
And in other exciting news, I am getting my braces off tomorrow! New straight chompers for me!!!!
Will post some recipes soon once I get back into a semi-normal routine. I am heading off to Port Macquarie for the weekend and have been informed that Mum is cooking her little heart out for us. Such a sweetie :)
Have a good weekend friends :) Xo
How are you all? Sorry about the lengthy period of time between this post and the last!
I haven’t got any recipes for you today, but I thought I would share some food finds and pics anyway.
Thanks to my lovely friend Katee, I’ve been introduced to this here amazing website: Food Gawker! By clicking on that link, you will be taken to a magical land of mouth watering goodness (in the form of the page’s vegan results). The site brings together food linkage from all over the interwebs. There is nothing I love more than a good recipe bookmarking session and it is even more wonderful when as a result you stumble upon new and amazing veggie food sites such as this: Veggie Num Num. With a name like that, how could you possibly go wrong? One recipe I will be trying in the not so distant future is the Tempura Tofu Burger with Chilli Satay Sauce . I also think these Indian Inspired Burritos sound like more than a bit of alright!
On other fronts, my parents visited on the weekend and we enjoyed another one of our famous Lewis family picnics. The menu included sweet potato flan (must attempt to make myself AND post recipe), lentil patties, quinoa tabbouleh salad, roasted vegetable cous cous, garden salad and a variety of condiments. Mumsy outdid herself once again. How blessed I am to have such loving and talented parents. :) Here is a pic I stole off my brother’s facebook of his plate of treats:
And here’s Brother Bear, myself, Benjamin Bunny (the boyfriend) and Sophie Boph (the sister) plating up. THE EXCITEMENT!
And finally, I would just like to praise Fry’s Vegetarian Delights for their ‘Veg Out Cottage Pie’ which I thoroughly enjoyed upon returning from a gym sesh this evening. It was seriously tasty and exactly what I felt like (read: was too lazy to cook). Head over to their flashy website to view their range of products. I’m a fan of the nuggets and schnitzels as well. And hey, while you’re there enjoy the snazzy elevator music that plays as your peruse the veggie treats. It’s been playing the entire time I’ve been putting together this post, and personally, I couldn’t think of a better sound track.
Well, last night I had a teeny cooking failure. Nothing too disastrous, just a bit of a flop on the presentation side of things.
I decided to make these Carrot, Zucchini, Chickpea and Halloumi burgers. I found the recipe via Photo-grazing on the Serious Eats website (I searched vegetarian), which allows you to peruse and drool over tonnes of food pics. If you see something you like then you can click on the pic and it takes you to the recipe. Genius! Anyway, I thought these looked like a bit of alright so decided to give them a go.
Everything was going swimmingly until it came to the part where I had to form them into burger patties. I tried my best to make perfect little patties but the mixture didn’t stick very well and I was left with a crumbly mess in my fry pan. In the end I resorted to haphazardly frying everything up, scooping portions onto my bun and forgetting that they were supposed to be burgers. Anyway, despite all this the crumbly vegetable…thing..tasted fantastic!
Tonight, I decided to try again. A lot of the time I think cooking is about experimenting until you get it right. So that’s what I did. I took my leftover burger mixture and put it through the food processor. Part of the problem last night was that I hadn’t cut the halloumi into small enough pieces. Once blended, the mixture was much more obedient and formed into lovely little patties for me. It also helped that the mixture was cool as it had been refrigerated. Success!
I served the patties on toasted turkish bread with lashings of hommus on one half and pesto on the other. Topped with rocket leaves, tomato and cucumber.
Also, I have to comment on the fact that this recipe required lots of grating. A whole carrot and whole zucchini. Grating is the bane of my existence! If you saw my grater you would know why. It is a pathetic excuse for a grater! Dear Santa: for Christmas I would like a new, whiz-bang grater. Thank you, Hannah.
Hello my friends!
Hoping you have all had a fantastic week. I have been busy as a beaver selling many teapots! My work is holding its annual teapot festival. We have literally thousands of teapots for sale! It’s nuts. As you can imagine I am thoroughly enjoying myself being surrounded by all things tea. I even rewarded myself with a red riding hood tea for one set. It is the cutest ever! Photographic evidence will be given in an upcoming post.
It has been a tasty week on the food front. I must say I have been quite resourceful this week having avoided eating out/taking my lunch to work every day. Earlier in the week my boyfriend and I had fun making our own pizzas. Mine was heavily influenced by Miss Katey at Bonnesante. We both used pita bread as the base and Ben whipped up the pizza sauce from a mixture of crushed tomatoes, tomato paste and fresh oregano and basil. My toppings were baby spinach, onion, green capsicum, mushrooms, black olives, zucchini, baby eggplant, pineapple and some dollups of hommus on top. After Benny inhaled his pizza he commented on it being the best pizza he has ever eaten. And trust me, that is saying something coming from him (he even works at Pizza Hut).
The second photo is a delicious pasta dish I whipped up the other night. It was one of those cases where I stumbled upon a great looking recipe and happened to have all of the ingredients in my fridge/cupboard! Amazing. The recipe can be found here. I really enjoyed using tofu in my pasta sauce. The soy sauce was also a nice addition!
Hope you’ve all been eating well. :)
Photos by my dear brother, Sam.
When it comes to Marieke Hardy I tend to get a little excited. I was fortunate enough to meet her at the beginning of the year which was a very exciting experience. I think she is a wonderful human being and I very much enjoyed reading this interview with her about veganism. When I met her we chatted about vegetarianism/veganism. Maybe one day we can eat dinner together!
Click here to read the article. Trust me, it’s an entertaining read! She talks about why she became a vegan (a dare from Lyndsay McDougall, another awesome vegan), reactions to her veganism, the vegan stereotype, the way veganism has impacted her health AND there’s even a bunch of her favourite recipes and food ideas! There’s also a clip of her reviewing the cookbook Veganomicon (on the ABC’s Tuesday Book Club of which she is a regular guest), which my brother actually owns! I should cook more recipes from it.
Go on, read it!
Will be posting some of my own food pics/recipes soon.
Hello folks! I come bearing a delicious recipe for Mixed Nut Moroccan Rice. Thanks to my mother bear for recommending this recipe. This one is a winner.
The recipe calls for a tablespoon of ‘moroccon seasoning’ blend which can be made easily. The following quantities make more than enough to have on hand for future makings of the rice!
5 tsp nutmeg
5 tsp ground cumin
5 tsp ground coriander
2 1/2 tsp all spice
2 1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
A handy hint: if you are as accident prone as me, make a mental note not to inhale while measuring out the cayenne pepper. It will result in a coughing fit and watery eyes. But you’re probably not as silly as me.
Mixed Nut Moroccan Rice
You shall need:
2 1/2 tbs olive oil
1/3 cup pine nuts
1/3 cup slivered almonds
1/3 cup raw cashews
1 tbs moroccan seasoning blend (recipe above)
6 shallots, finely sliced
1 1/2 cups long grain rice
3 cups vegetable stock
1 whole orange
1/3 cup currants
2 tbs parsley, roughly chopped
And it all goes a little something like this: