Potato Salad Plus!

April 29, 2012 by Cobi | 0 comments

My home state is Hawaii and a scoop of potato salad is offered with every plate lunch, bento or picnic we eat. But, the Hawaiian style mayo/salt/pepper potato mac is not a dish that makes my mouth sing. Thank goodness my mother makes a “family famous” version that everyone raves about. I’ve veganized her recipe and added some of my own flair, this one’s a winner!

The secret ingredients are Colman’s mustard and the Vegg. I use the Colman’s mustard because it does not have any vinegar in it and I am a fan of the distinct kick it gives to the dressing. The Vegg  makes the dressing thick and creamy and adds another level of savory flavor. The veggies add texture and a brightness to both the appearance and the taste of this potato salad.

Potato Salad plus!

by Veggietorials

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 40 minutes

Keywords: salad side dairy free nut-free vegan vegetarian potato summer

 

Ingredients (12 servings)

The Veggies

  • 6-8 large russet potatoes, skin on
  • 1 cup chopped celery or water chestnuts
  • 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/4 cup roasted red bell peppers
  • 3 tablespoons Italian parsley, finely chopped

The Dressing

  • 1/2 cup Vegenaise ( add more to taste)
  • 1/2 cup prepared Vegg
  • 1 tablespoon Coleman’s mustard
  • 3 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
  • 1 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1 tablespoon dill
  • 2 tablespoons citrus garlic seasoning blend ( or something similar to Old Bay)
  • salt & pepper

Instructions

Boil the potatoes with the skin on until easily pierced with a fork ( about 30-40 minutes). Remove from heat, drain and cool potatoes. Peel off skins and cut into bite sized cubes. Add to a large bowl with all of the veggie ingredients.

Mix all of the ingredients for the dressing. You may want to use more of the Vegg mixture for a creamier taste. Adjust seasonings and add salt & pepper to taste.

Pour the dressing over the potatoes and veggies. Mix until potatoes are well coated.Garnish with heirloom grape tomatoes, spicy pickled green beans or vegan bacon bits.

Left overs can be stored covered in the fridge for up to 2 days.

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You can purchase The Vegg – Vegan Egg Yolk online or retail stores

My week in photos- Colorado edition

April 29, 2012 by Cobi | 1 Comment

I want to live in Boulder,CO so I can enjoy brunch at Leaf Vegetarian Restaurant every weekend. Vegan biscuits and gravy were savory and satisfying, especially since I’ve been having a mean hankering for ‘um! The sprout salad with pickled radishes, pea shoots, and jicama was a refreshing contrast to the biscuits. My fellow food warrior had the baked brie and told me she wanted to lick the pan, it was THAT good. Bonus:Upbeat and friendly service with a smile.Leaf Vegetarian on Urbanspoon

And how can you call it “brunch” without a mimosa?

Stopped in to Tapateria for dinner with friends: Sangria, roasted garlic, artichoke & pepper salad, patatas bravas, gazpacho shooter and mushroom pan. SO good…I love to eat little noshes with distinct flavors. Fantastic service, casual atmosphere in Colorado Springs.TAPAteria on Urbanspoon

Just missed Happy Hour at Trinity Brewing Co. but tried the falafel salad and the seitan Buffalo wings. The menu is extremely veg*n friendly but I found the food to be just  ”meh” at best.

5 Fusion- Best of Bend

April 26, 2012 by Cobi | 1 Comment

My first visit to 5 Fusion in Bend, OR was for a random happy hour. By the time we had finished our nosh, I was smitten. Sipping martinis under the suspended celling of water felt like taking a mini vacation without having to leave the well appointed minimalist space. The attention to detail in the service, the food and presentation is exceptional.

Ordering from the happy hour menu, it was exciting to have so many plant-based options, sans de rigueur tofu. I started with the vegetable tempura, since I use this as my standard gauge for most Japanese restaurants. Is the tempura batter light and lacy? Yes! Are the veggies cooked to perfection? Yes! Is the assortment pleasant to eat? Yes, shiitake mushroom, asparagus,green beans, and sweet potato are some of my favorites. Next, we had eggplant prepared in a style reminiscent of eggplant parmesan but with an Asian twist. The eggplant medallions were deep fried in a panko crust and paired with a rich tomato sauce instead of being smothered in cheese. The textures and flavors made this dish divine!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Owner Lilian Chu and Executive Chef Joe Kim are creating culinary magic by blending flavors from both East and West and focusing on local, organic ingredients. ”There’s nothing better than fresh vegetables…just a little bit of seasoning and they taste wonderful,” says Joe Kim (pictured at right). I had to go back for more and lunch was the perfect excuse for more yumminess.

 

 

It’s easy enough for a plant-based foodie to hit some great vegetarian/vegan/raw kitchens even in small towns. However, it’s a little more of a challenge to find an upscale dining experience that will make the omnivores rave and still be veg-friendly. 5 Fusion is the perfect solution without ever feeling compromised.

As an island girl, I have a special affinity for tropical delights. The first course was this “ah-mazing” dragon fruit, green apple and pineapple salad topped with shaved coconut. Fresh,bright and visually stunning.

 

My other weakness is for savory, crunchy snacks- the taro root chips satisfied the craving.

When the plate of wok-fried green beans was set down, I could not concentrate on anything else. The aroma was so intoxicating, all I wanted to do was eat the beans! *vegans: this dish is normally made with oyster sauce, so ask for a modification

My fellow food warrior tried the ahi poke salad served on a bed of mixed greens, seaweed, avocado and won ton crisps. Judging by the look on his face, I knew he was happy he didn’t have to share this one with me!

I always encourage people to tell the chef or their server about dietary restrictions because it can often result in a spectacular off the menu creation. One of the dishes Joe Kim made for me was this curried vegetable risotto topped with…kimchee!

Vegetable maki and vegetable tempura roll topped with sweet chili sauce served with micro greens

Shiitakes and soba noodles swim in a delicate blend of soy and deep umami flavor. It’s like a warm hug, a giant bowl of comfort and I’m pretty sure I could eat this everyday.

And if I was merely smitten before, this sushi roll made me fall in love. Green apple, inari, asparagus maki (roll) with a sweet chili infused coconut cream and topped with crushed macadamia nuts. WOW, wow, WOW! When Joe travels, he says he always visits the museums and restaurants in different cities. His passion for beauty and food is translated effortlessly onto each dish that leaves his kitchen. “That’s the best part, making a piece of art out of food” says Joe. Like Hokusai’s The Great Wave, the components of this sushi roll washed over me and left me floating on a sea of gastronomic delight.

5 Fusion hosts a charity dinner once a month for a different beneficiary and their fundraising efforts have been quite successful. In 2011, they raised over $35,000 for local charities. The next event will be hosted for Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Central Oregon on May 21, 2012. The tasting menus can be altered to fit dietary requests like vegan/vegetarian or to accommodate food allergies, so be sure to inquire.

It also came as no surprise when I learned 5 Fusion had won the “Restaurant of the Year” award from The Source Weekly. You can tell that this is not just a restaurant, but a labor of love. 5 Fusion definitely tops my “Best Of Bend” list and this leg of my Oregon food tour is now complete.

5 Fusion & Sushi Bar on Urbanspoon

Photo credit: Paul G. Ong

Road Trip to Angeline’s Bakery

April 16, 2012 by Cobi | 4 Comments

In my Universe, the weekends are made for indulging. Earlier in the week, I had already sampled the carrot cake and cinnamon rolls from Angeline’s Bakery in the name of “research”. I woke up Friday morning jonesing for more vegan sugary goodness and begged my cousin to drive me back to the town of Sisters, OR so I could get my fix.

With all the plotting and planning I did to find eateries suitable for the most discerning plant-based foodies while on this food tour, Angeline’s Bakery had somehow eluded my list. Thank goodness my cousin remembered eating Angeline’s sandwiches, which led us to the promised land. The cases of vegan and gluten free baked goods will make you think you’ve died and gone to dessert heaven.

We stocked up on more cinnamon rolls because these are some of the best I’ve ever had. I am a fan of the lower profile roll rather than a bigger bun type confection since it allows all of the sugary, cinnamon goodness to get in to the crevices without making it tooth achingly sweet. The brownies are so fudgey, nutty, and moist, I had to get two. It’s a toss up on whether I liked the oatmeal raisin or ginger molasses cookie better- best to just call it a tie. The cookies are big enough to share and remember when you share, the half you keep is always calorie and fat free *insert wink and smile here*

To balance all of the sweet, I picked up some of the raw foods selections like curry flax crackers, buckwheat pizza “crusts” and cashew “cheese”. The cashew cheese is quite addicting. I had to stop myself from eating half the container all at once, remembering that it would be nice to have some to savor later.

If you want a more savory meal, Angeline’s offers a breakfast filled with tender morsels like scones or bagel sandwiches. For lunch,choose from soups, salads,”wraptures”, polenta pizza, veggie enchiladas and daily specials. During winter hours (Nov.-early June) the shop closes up at 4pm, so get there early for the best selection. Or, call ahead to reserve your treats if you know what you want. The staff was kind enough to get a bag of goodies ready for me so I wouldn’t be disappointed if the cinnamon rolls were all sold out. Friendly service and fantastic food make Angeline’s Bakery the perfect small town gem.

*All of the bakery goods in the cases are clearly labeled as to whether they are vegan or gluten free. If they are not labeled, assume conventional.

Angeline's Bakery & Cafe on Urbanspoon

Vegan Hollandaise with The Vegg

April 12, 2012 by Cobi | 7 Comments

And you thought it only existed in your wildest dreams, right? Consider this a virtual *pinch*  You are now lucid enough to learn how to make a 3 minute Hollandaise sauce, with The Vegg – Vegan Egg Yolk. No double boiler or whisking involved. And get this, this sauce is unbreakable.

If you’ve never mastered the art of making Hollandaise because the egg yolks always curdle and turn your sauce into a hot mess, give this recipe a try! This version features The Vegg vegan egg yolk and is so decadent, you’ll want to eat it straight off the spoon. Also great on asparagus if you need a veggie vehicle for your sauce. Check out thevegg.com for more recipes.

*My recipe is modified from the original recipe on The Vegg’s website. Use my recipe if you do not want to mix your entire package of dry mix with water at once. If you have already mixed your packet of dry mix with 1 liter of water, use the recipe on The Vegg’s website.

Vegan Hollandaise Sauce

by Veggietorials

Prep Time: 3 minutes

Cook Time: 3 minutes

Keywords: blender side sauce dairy free gluten-free nut-free soy-free vegan vegetarian The Vegg

 

Ingredients (1 1/2 cups)

  • 3 tablespoons The Vegg powder mix
  • 1/4 cup melted Earth Balance (If using a microwave, do not over heat or it will separate. Microwave in 20 second increments and watch closely)
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 1/2- 2 cups hot water

Instructions

Combine first 5 ingredients and in a food processor or VitaMix. Add 1 1/2 cups water to start. You may need to add more water later to reach your desired consistency. Blend on high speed until smooth and creamy. Add more water as needed if you prefer a thinner sauce.

Use immediately, or the mixture will start to gel slightly. Store covered in the refrigerator for up to 1 day.

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Vegan in Paradise- Where to Eat Vegan on Oahu

April 10, 2012 by Cobi | 0 comments

Hawaii is a food obsessed state. When we’re eating breakfast, we’re thinking about what will be ono (delicious) for lunch. At lunch, we’re dreaming about dinner. And no meal is complete without something sweet at the end. I could write a dozen blog posts about this topic, but as a starting point for my PDX family that will be vacationing here soon, I offer this small sampling of my favorite spots to get a plant-based meal on the island.

Kailua Recommendations:

Z Pizza uses organic ingredients and offers vegan pies and calzones with Daiya cheese and Gardein sausage. My favorite is the Berkeley Vegan with extra zucchini.

151 Hekili Street  Kailua, HI 96734

(808) 230-8400

Mon-Thu 10 am – 9:30 pm

Fri-Sat 10 am – 10 pm

Prima offers a selection of small plates intended to be shared with the table. The menu is always changing, but there is always a nice selection of veggie options. Stop by Foodland or R.Fields next door to BYOB as they do not have a liquor license. Reservations strongly suggested.

108 Hekili St Suite 107  Kailua HI 96734

(808)888-8933

Dinner   Tuesday – Saturday 5p-10p

Lunch    Tuesday – Saturday 11a – 2p

Closed   Sunday & Monday

Kalapawai Café is a quick service joint in the heart of Kailua town. Daily breakfast specials, made to order sandwiches/pizzas and a full deli case with offerings like grilled vegetables, special salads and more.

750 Kailua Road  Kailua, Hawaii 96734

808) 262-3354

Sunday-Thursday 6AM-9PM

Friday & Saturday Kitchen closes at 9:30PM

Saturday & Sunday Kitchen opens at 7AM.

Down to Earth is Hawaii’s only all vegetarian market and café. Pay by the pound hot food bar with selections like stews, chili, roasted vegetables. Full salad bar. Prepared grab & go items in the refrigerated case. Made to order sandwiches, wraps and more at the deli counter.

201 Hamakua Drive
  Kailua, HI 96734

(808) 262-3838

7:30am – 10:00pm, 7 days a week

Lanikai Juice is smoothie heaven but the real treat is the Acai Extravaganza bowl topped with tropical fruit and granola.

600 Kailua Road, #101  Kailua,  Hawaii, 96734

(808)262-2383

Mon-Fri 6am-8pm

Sat 7am-8pm ,  Sun 7am-7pm

Aloha Salads is right next door to Lanikai Juice, so while you’re waiting for your morning smoothie, pop over and grab a salad or a wrap to take to the beach for lunch. I am a creature of habit and always order the Satay salad with no chicken, substitute black beans for my protein and request an extra side of dressing.

600 Kailua Road #103
  Kailua, HI 96734

(808) 262-2016

10 AM – 9 PM Daily

Town bound destinations: 

Shirokiya is a feast for the eyes and your tummy. Full review and video HERE

1450 Ala Moana Blvd.
#2250
  Honolulu, Hawaii 96814  Food Court (2nd level)

Mondays thru Sundays 10a.m. to 9p.m.
(store hours subject to Ala Moana holiday hours)

Mana Bu’s is home to the master musubi maker using the freshest and highest quality ingredients he can find. Not your run of the mill spam musubi by a longshot. Really cheap eats that will fill you up, full review HERE

1618 S. King St Honolulu,HI 96826

(808)358-0287

Mon-Fri 6:30am- when sold out or 1pm ( whichever is sooner)

Sat 9am-1pm

Sunday/Holidays-Closed

Peace Cafe is Oahu’s only fully vegan café. I can’t believe I haven’t done a blog post with a proper review yet! My favorites are the Popeye sandwich, the Soy Soba salad, Caesar Salad if you want something really light or the BBQ Tempeh or Korean Bi Bim Bap for bigger appetites.

2239 S. King St.  Honolulu, HI 96826

(808)951-7555

Mon-Sat: 11am – 9:00pm
 Sun: 11am – 3:00pm

Take a ride out to Hawaii Kai and stop in to Kale’s Natural Foods. There’s a few grab & go items in the front of the store and made to order magic at the deli window in the back. Menu items feature local, organic ingredients with vegan, vegetarian and gluten free options. When you’re out that way, keep going towards Aina Hina and see Uncle Clay for shave ice with some unique flavors like at House of Pure Aloha

Hawaii Kai Shopping Center

377 Keahole St #A-1  Honolulu, HI 96825

(808)396-6993

Mon-Fri 8am-8pm

Sat-Sun 8am-5pm

Downtown @ the HiSAM
 is the perfect break from all the artsy fartsy happenings at the museum. Though the sit down menu doesn’t offer many interesting veg*n dishes, check out the take away bar for a few veggie treats made with local, organic produce. My quickie review HERE

Lunch reservations are recommended.

Hawaii State Art Museum

250 Hotel St, 1st Floor  Honolulu, HI 96813

(808)536-5900

Mon-Sat 11am-2pm (Lunch only)

First Friday 5pm-8:30pm

The Kailua Thursday Night Farmers’ Market
-

A rotating assortment of food vendors,fresh produce and baked goods. Bring cash and your appetite, ’nuff said

behind Longs Drugs 
on Kailua Road

Thursday 5 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Statewide Daily Farmers’ Market Guide:

http://hawaii.gov/hdoa/add/farmers-market-in-hawaii/Oahu.pdf

Lunch at Shirokiya- Ala Moana Center

April 10, 2012 by Cobi | 1 Comment

I know it bugs some of you to answer the ubiquitous question we get as plant-powered people : “Well, what do you eat?Tofu?” But, I get really geeked out and excited to share the foodie bounty we get to choose from as a veg*ns.

One of my go-to spots for a cheap and cheerful lunch on Oahu is Shirokiya in the Ala Moana Shopping Center. Shirokiya is a Japanese department store that features one of the most impressive displays of what a food court should be. It is not exclusively veg*n, but trust me, if you can’t find something to eat here – you’re just being difficult! If you enter the store from the mall level, you can peruse the baked goods from St. Germain Bakery. Stroll by the kiosks to sample waffle donuts or manju if you’re feeling adventurous.

Head up the escalators and prepare to have your senses overwhelmed. Each month, a different food is featured and a festival type atmosphere is created to celebrate. One month it may be tonkatsu (fried meats) and the next it might be mochi (sweets made with a rice flour base) or musubi (rice balls). Bentos, sushi, soups, salads, made to order dishes, tempura, and a buffet line are offered all year long.Take your time and be sure to look at everything before you make your selection. Two laps around the upper level is recommended because you may miss something delicious the first time around.

My personal favorite is the selection of okazu (side dishes) with every vegetable you could imagine. My mouth begins to water when I see namasu (pickled cucumbers, radish,seaweed) and the hijiki (seasoned seaweed). If you are garlic lover like me, try the pink pickled garlic for a taste delight. I could seriously eat that stuff like candy and BONUS-keep the vampires away. If you’re taste buds are steering you towards something heartier, try the nishime (vegetable stew) filled with lotus root, shiitakes, carrots and more. There are cases of salads and rows of fresh produce for the super health conscious but if you’re on vacation and feeling naughty, try the fried delights like vegetable tempura. I have a special place in my heart for kabocha (Asian pumpkin) and sweet potato tempura hot out of the fryer. If you’re head is starting to spin and you need to make a quick get away, grab a bento (mixed lunch box), an assortment of veggie sushi or a musubi set  to go with your oshinko (pickled veggies) and your meal is complete. Noodle-philes can get your carb on with yakisoba (fried noodles) or bowl of udon (fat noodles in broth) with different toppings.

The ingredient list is labeled on most of the packaged food, which makes avoiding certain allergens/animal products easy. One caveat: If you are a strict vegan, ask if them item you’ve selected is free of bonito (fish flakes), as this ingredient is often used in miso soup, broths and some dipping sauces. I tell the staff that I am allergic to seafood and they are very accommodating.

Pay at one of the cashier stations located on either ends of the top floor, find a table and enjoy the people watching as you sip on a glass of sake. Kanpai!
Shirokiya on Urbanspoon

Calabcitas!

April 5, 2012 by Cobi | 4 Comments

This is a recipe that I learned while working as a Cooking Instructor for The Cancer Project. It completely changed my relationship with zucchini! Growing up as a kid, squash was on my “most hated” veggies list. I’ve come to realize that I just didn’t care for the over-cooked, soggy preparation my mother favored. The cook and prep process for this recipe is so simple, you’ll have plenty of time to prepare my Wholly!Mockamole and still be out of the kitchen in less than an hour.

Pair this meal with your favorite vegan beer and you’re ready for Cinco de Mayo!

 

Calabacitas

by Veggietorials

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Keywords: saute entree side snack dairy free gluten-free nut-free soy-free vegan vegetarian zucchini Cinco de Mayo Mexican

 

Ingredients (4 servings)

  • 1 onion diced
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 large zucchini chopped ( or your favorite squash)
  • 1 cup cooked black beans
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • Green onions or cilantro for garnish
  • optional- 1 link of Chipotle Field Roast Sausage, diced OR omit this to keep the recipe gluten-free

Instructions

Heat olive oil in a large pan. Sauté the onions and garlic on medium high heat until the onions are translucent. Create a small space in the middle of the pan and add your spices, allowing them to hit the heat of the pan.Stir spices for 30 seconds. Add the sausage and heat through for about 3 minutes. Toss in the squash and cook just until slightly softened. Add in the beans last, season with salt & pepper to taste. Garnish with green onions or cilantro. Serve with tortillas,salsa and mockamole.

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Whollymole Mockamole!

April 4, 2012 by Cobi | 1 Comment

Another recipe for all the reluctant cooks and you’ve got time to practice before your Cinco de Mayo celebration. This mockamole has all the flavor of a traditional guacamole but a fraction of the fat. The real bonus: if you’re allergic to avocados like me, you can still indulge in this classic dip. If you leave out the optional ingredients, it’s also nut and gluten-free.

 

Whollymole!

by Veggietorials

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Keywords: blender food processor appetizer side snack dairy free gluten-free vegan vegetarian nut-free peas Cinco de Mayo Super Bowl Mexican

 

Ingredients (8-10 servings)

  • 2 cups frozen peas (you may substitute shelled edamame)
  • 1 jalapeño minced
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 2 tablespoons citrus, garlic, chile spice blend (I used Peruvian Chile Lime Seasoning from Savory Spice Shop)
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1/4 cup cilantro
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 green onions or chives, finely sliced
  • 3 tablespoons white miso
  • 4 tablespoons salsa
  • 4 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • garnish with chopped fresh tomato, green onions and lime
  • optional: for a richer tasting dip, add 2 tablespoons of tahini or 1/4 soaked macadamia nuts or cashews

Instructions

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Blanch frozen peas (cook for 20-30 seconds). Drain and rinse with cold water to stop them from continuing to cook.

Combine all ingredients except the chopped tomatoes in a food processor or blender. Blend until smooth and creamy. Taste and adjust seasoning.Transfer to a serving bowl and mix in chopped tomatoes, garnish with green onions. Serve with tortilla chips.

Unlike a traditional guacamole, this dip will not turn brown and will keep for 2-3 days if covered and refrigerated.

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