Wednesday, October 20, 2010

A vegan food tour

of, well, no specific area of New York City. Perhaps this could be called a "best of" tour. DanT, my friend Alissa and I had an all day vegan eating fest (followed by watching a Yankees loss on tv... BOOOOOOOO!). Here's a photo essay of our day!

First up: FOODSWINGS! Vegan diner food. That's right. All vegan, all the time!
The beautiful facade of Foodswings!
Now I am going to show you all of the food we ordered. Do not freak out. It is a lot of food for three people. DanT and I took some of it home (I'm not going to lie, we didn't take much home...) and I had it for lunch the next day. There is a reason we ordered this absurd amount of food. A month or so ago, Groupon in NYC had a groupon for Foodswings! $7 for $15 worth of food! So, we had to get our moneys worth. We each spent $15-20 ($0-5 after the groupon), and at Foodswings that ends up being a lot of food. For proof, see below:

Mozzerella stix, a corn dog and creamy mac and cheese

Corn dog! Nostalgic for me, which is weird as I never had corn dogs as a child... Extra points if you saw my Sea Shepherd water bottle in the background of this pic.
Chicken Caesar salad
Grilled Cheese
Chicken cutlet sandwich
A Kickin' Veggie Slider. SO good!
Look how kickin' and tiny!!
Missing from all that gluttony is the large butterfinger shake DanT and I shared. Holy yummmmm. Chocolate ice cream and chik-o-sticks. If you have never had a chik-o-stick, you should find one. It tastes just like the peanutbutter-y, crispy part of a butterfinger. It is delish. I have only ever found them at Economy Candy here in NYC. I would check at old time-y candy stores. Worth the trip!
Post insane indulgence. Full. Leftovers include most of the salad, two mozz stix, a little mac and cheese and a little of the grilled cheese. Lunch!
DanT! Giving me bunny ears. Tiny bunny ears. And I'm wearing my Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary shirt!
 Post Foodswings, we needed a walk. We had a goal in mind. I'm not telling you where we went until I show you all what we saw along the way!
Pigeon central! Like one big crazy family.
Kitty manning the boat... The boat sitting in a parking lot... Weird.
Really cool, narrow as heck, apartment building! The blue section is made out of solar panels!
Our destination was...?

Champs. I have blogged about Champs before, so I will not bore you all with words. Here, have some pictures instead!
See the pumpkin pie in the corner? DanT wanted to take a whole one home.
On top of that display case is row after row of delicious cinnamon buns.
Alissa's berry scone. I tasted it. It was goooooood.
Top row: Black and white cookies! The real deal! I had one. My first black and white since loooong before I went vegan.
Alissa got that scone you saw above. DanT and I got a black and white cookie and a sweet potato marshmallow cinnamon bun. You will be happy to know that we did not eat our Champs baked goods until much later in the day as we had a plan for dessert already. Lula's Sweet Apothecary, of course!! Though the Champs goods were delicious, in case you were wondering. I would recommend any of the kinds of cinnamon rolls. They are huge!
Alissa and DanT being good little Lula's models!
It should be said that Lula's is Alissa's favorite ice cream. Alissa is not vegan. Lula's is not her favorite vegan ice cream, but her favorite ice cream. Ever. Seriously, just ask her.
Cake batter - Pumpkin spice soft serve twist!!
We all got soft serve... Alissa and I got the twist, DanT got straight up pumpkin spice. We were all extremely full and happy. All-in-all the best eating day I have had in a very long time. And my waist line says thanks! Hope to do it again soon!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Thanksliving at Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary

But first! What does one do when he or she is headed to the Catskills? Apple picking of course!
I want that one at the top! Damn my short legs!
Did you know that apples can grow out the side of trees? I sure as heck didn't, but as you can see below, it is possible!!

Joyous apples!
Off to Woodstock for some animal visiting and raising money for Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary. Thanksliving is WFAS's biggest fundraiser of the year. This year, a donor generously purchased the property next door for the farm, but the building and barn are 150 years old and need work before they will be safe enough for use. That's what we were raising money for at this year's Thanksliving. The barn will be turned into hay storage and quarantine for animals when they first get to the farm. The old house is going to get turned into a B&B! So exciting! Consider donating to WFAS and helping them reach their goals this year!

Inside the tent!

Raffle prizes!
After the food (which I ate so fast I forgot to get any pictures of any of it), lovingly created by David Silver of Second Helpings, and dessert, Vegan Treats yummmmmm, it was time to visit the animals!
The cows enjoying the beautiful scenery.
Bunny! Pippin, don't be jealous. You will always be my favorite.
Look how freakin' cute he is, though. I mean seriously.
After many bunny visits, we came back into the tent for buying merchandise, raffle prize announcements and the live auction. Below you will see a very nice bowl I got for very cheap made by Daisy Dog Studio. Oh yeah, and something was funny. My partner in laughter is none other than Liz of Your Time Travels, a vegan owned voluntourism company! She is super awesome, so if you want to go on your very own trip where you volunteer for part of the trip and stay in lavish accommodations for the rest of the trip, Liz is your girl. Give her a ring. She rocks.
I think DanT said something funny...
Jenny Brown, cofounder of WFAS, speaking about the farm.
After Jenny spoke about what all the funds raised from this event were going to help pay for, she MC'ed the live auction. My friend and driver (to Thanksliving, that is), Jennifer won a really awesome flight around the Catskills with a local well known astronomer. Go Jenn!
Thanks WFAS! We had so much fun!
This guy loved to pose for cameras! If you have never been, get your butt to a farm animal sanctuary. I promise it will be a very positive and in-your-face reminder of why you are vegan (or if you aren't vegan, why you need to be!). Thanks for the amazing day, Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary!

Friday, October 8, 2010

I made up a recipe! And it was goooood...

My CSA is deep into fall veggies at this point. What does a girl do with a butternut squash, a buttercup squash, a bunch of potatoes and whatever is in the fridge? Make soup of course!
Potato-Squash soup!
Makes about 4 big bowls
  • Two 2-3 pound squashes. I used a butternut and a buttercup, but only because I had them. Go wild! Cut in half, scoop the seeds out of the middle.
  • Two pounds of potatoes. I had Yukon Golds. Cleaned and sliced in half.
  • One yellow onion. Cut in half.
  • One head of garlic. Trust me on this. You are going to roast it and it will be amazing.
  • Olive oil.
  • Salt and pepper.
  • Tofutti sour cream.
  1. Set your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. place all your veggies (except the head garlic) cut side down in baking pans. It took me two baking pans, but all my pans are small as I only have a 3/4 sized oven.
  3. Generously pour olive oil over the veggies.
  4. Place veggies in the oven uncovered. Bake for 45 minutes or until the squashes are easily pierced with a knife.
  5. For the garlic, slice off the top quarter of the head (do not remove all the papery stuff) exposing the cloves. Take a piece of tin foil and surround the garlic, leaving the top open. Pour olive oil on the top of the garlic, and then twist the tin foil closed. place in the oven and bake along with the other veggies, but only for 20-30 minutes.
  6. After everything has cooled, scrape it all into a strong food processor (we have a Vitamix. Highly recommended!). Scrape out the squashes, throw the potatoes and onion in. For the garlic, take it out of the tin foil, (take a moment to smell the awesomeness that is roasted garlic,) and squeeze the cloves out of the skin into the food processor.
  7. Depending on how thick you like your soup, thin with a little water or veggie broth. I didn't thin it at all. It was delicious.
  8. Blend. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  9. Portion into bowls and swirl in a scoop of Tofutti sour cream.
  10. Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

I'm Baaaaaack!

Hello all! Pippin had his surgery recheck today, and his vet gave him the okay, so I am back! It is lovely to have my furbaby healthy again. All the stress has been lifted off my shoulders! So I am sorry for not posting in a while but I am going to make it up to you all by doing a recap of the last two months. Only the good stuff. You will see that it involved a lot of pizza...
Red onion, kale and daiya. You wish you had some.

On one glorious day in September, DanT, our friend Austin and I went on an excursion to the New York Botanical Gardens in the Bronx. It is like leaving the city for a few hours, while remaining within subway distance of everything. DanT and I are members of the Gardens and head up there 3-4 times a year. This trip was for the opening of a former snuff mill that is on the grounds of the Garden. The Garden has ever so politically renamed the mill "the Stone Mill". We went to see said mill and enjoy the lovely weather and beautiful plants.
I think it's that way!
The backside of the Stone Mill
Me, looking at the river. The Bronx River, that is.
Look how low the river is. We had almost no rain all summer.
Me and Austin rehydrating on the tram ride.
A trip to the Gardens is never complete without a stop in the amazing gift shop. A hat-slash-lighting fixture.
After all that nature we treated ourselves to Red Bamboo in the village.
A few weeks later the lovely Lindsay of Kiss Me I'm Vegan came for a visit from her new home in LA. What do we do when we get together? We make pizza, of course! (I told you there would be a lot of pizza)
Lindsay DJing on my computer while I wash something in the sink! Oh yeah, that's my kitchen!
Pizza baking in my amazing toaster/oven. The best investment ever.
And now for an artsy shot:

DanT took this one. This was a few days before surgery.
Thanks guys for all your kind words during Pippin's surgery and rehabilitation. It meant a lot to me!