Tuesday, June 30, 2009
Friday, June 26, 2009
All this food for just $15 a head (generous tip included)—what a deal!
I suggest you guys check out Best Thai this Sunday. Since both Spiral Diners will be closed for their annual family vacation (scoops on that later), I can’t think of a better place to stuff your face with so many fabulous vegan dishes!
Thursday, June 25, 2009
The celebration includes all kinds of fun stuff – art, music, dance, theater, food, ancient pagan rituals…a little something for everyone (yes, I said ancient pagan rituals).
But possibly the best part of the celebration is that it’s catered by Crosby Catering – a vegetarian/vegan catering company based here in Dallas!
I have not been to the Summer Solstice Celebration before, but I went to the Spring Equinox festival last year (hosted by the same organization) and it was a blast! This one is sure to be just as great.
The menu includes vegan Nachos and Root Beer Floats, which pretty much seals the deal for me – but you can check out the rest of the festival menu here.
Summer Solstice Celebration
Saturday, June 27, noon to 10 p.m.
Bath House Cultural Center
521 East Lawther Dr.
Apparently, summer means these creepy things are hungry for peppers in my garden :(
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
Monday, June 22, 2009
Friday, June 19, 2009
“Is it possible there are 7-foot tall drag queens by the wig shop next door scaring people off?” Nope. No drag queens in sight. Plus, peeps around these parts know they’re harmless anyway…mostly.
My follow up visit to Manow was during dinner rush. Again—empty!
So why is this place so dead during the busiest dining hours? And why is the KFC down the block always packed? Sad, really.
I encourage everyone to check out Manow. The service is great, drinks are stiff, and the food is excellent!
Thursday, June 18, 2009
Last weekend, I attended my first biker rally in Austin (more on that later). Having not been on an extended stay to Austin since becoming vegan (or vegetarian for that matter), I was excited about the trip. I was curious to see, as a Dallas vegan, what life was like in a notoriously vegan-friendly city. Even though the rally was on the outskirts of town, I figured I could make my way to a few veggie restaurants.
The first spot we hit was Guero’s Taco Bar, which is a great tex-mex place near downtown that’s non-veg, but has many vegetarian options. When I found an item that I thought might be vegan, I began to ask my round of questions - “Does this have any ch…” – and before I could say cheese, the waitress interrupted to say “It’s vegan”. Wow…that’s awesome!
Here in Dallas it seems that '”vegan” is still a relatively foreign term to a lot of restaurant workers – but in Austin, it’s second nature for them to know what on their menus are or can be made vegan. This was at least the case at all of the 3 non-veg restaurants I visited.
Speaking of the other non-veg restaurants - they all had a separate vegetarian section to their menu. They weren’t necessarily vegan, but they all made an attempt to provide some kind of option on the menu for going meatless – another something you won’t find at most restaurants in Dallas.
The next day I was also able to stop by the Daily Juice Cafe, a raw/vegan restaurant with a new location just near the UT campus. Their raw “Texicali Tacos” were great and the “Manic Organic” smoothie (banana, chocolate chips, Texas pecans) was even better. Eating there makes me even more thankful that Bliss, Dallas’ own fabulous raw cafe, is now open – so we don’t have to travel 200 miles for awesome raw food.
My last visit was to Mother’s Cafe & Garden, an all-vegetarian institution in Austin (thanks for the tip, Eddie G!). Not only did this restaurant have great food, but it had a long-haired dude playing harp. Can’t get that in Dallas (then again, is that a bad thing?). I had a fabulous tomato-artichoke bisque to start. It was such a treat to get a vegan bisque – this one was rich and creamy with just a hint of artichoke so as to not overpower the smoky tomato flavor.
For an entree, I had the (vegan) Veggie Burger, voted “best in Austin.” This made me think…do we even have enough places in Dallas that offer a vegan veggie burger (let alone a homemade one) to necessitate a “best in Dallas” competition? I can’t think of many, which is a shame. I think there are so many great restaurants in Dallas that could produce some great burgers if they only gave it a shot.
I can see how Mother’s veggie burger could win a competition – crispy on the outside, moist but firm on the inside, with a slightly sweet taste and nutty texture that went great with the fresh fixins’ & sesame seed bun.
Overall, I have to say that Austin definitely lives up to its reputation as a very veggie-friendly town, but I am still proud of where Dallas is and where it is heading. With a few more of us speaking up and a few more restaurants listening, I think we have the potential of making Dallas a notoriously veggie-friendly city as well.
The rally itself – well, not everything in Austin is vegan friendly. Needless to say, the food here was your typical meat-on-sticks type fare – which, I suppose, is what I expected. I did meet one guy out of the bunch walking around with a PETA no-fur sign – so there was at least one other vegan in attendance. But this weekend was much more about motorcycles, drinking beer, and various other extracurricular activities that take place when 40,000 bikers get together in a fairground in 95+ temps (this a PG-rated post, so I won’t get into details). Luckily, I was able to eat great vegan food, enjoy the rally, and make it back to Dallas unharmed and well fed.
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
Okay--so Ingrid Newkirk is extreme. "A necessary tactic in order to get noticed and change the world," so she puts it.
But regardless of how you feel about the president and cofounder of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), the world's largest animal rights organization, it would be a shame to miss the opportunity to hear Ingrid Newkirk speak in person!
Newkirk will be in town next week signing and discussing her newest book The PETA Practical Guide to Animal Rights: Simple Acts of Kindness to Help Animals in Trouble. The book provides tips and resources to connect with a whole new community of animal lovers.
The event will be held on Tuesday, June 23, at 7 PM at Barnes and Noble (7700 West Northwest Hwy. Ste. 300).
A note to all you young activists: leave your red paint at home. This will be a civilized event. And don't be shocked when you learn that Ingrid is not quite the monster the media has made her out to be. Sorry ;)
Monday, June 15, 2009
Dallas vegans already know that Pizza by Marco is the only pizza joint in Dallas offering a wide selection of vegan toppings. So I’m sure we’ve all voted for PbM on the WFAA-list, right?
Red Bell Peppers
Fresh Sweet Basil
Follow Your Heart Cheese (which may soon be replaced by Teese!)
And Frank wants to know: What else do Dallas vegans want?
Leave your comments here, and I’ll forward our votes to Frank.
Friday, June 12, 2009
Since going vegan, I’ve spent many hours in my kitchen trying to create a good BBQ “beef” sandwich…one that any self-respecting Texan could be proud of. Well—after years of trying, I think I finally got it! The recipe is quite elaborate (and will definitely test your patience), but I guarantee these sandwiches will be a hit at your next pool party!
1 cube Not-Beef bouillon
1 tablespoon tahini
1 teaspoon vegan Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon liquid smoke
3/4 cup warm water
1 cup vital wheat gluten
3 cubes Not-Beef bouillon
6 cups water
In a large bowl, combine 1 bouillon cube, tahini, Worcestershire, liquid smoke, and 3/4 cup warm water. Mix well. Add wheat gluten and knead until well combined. Cut uncooked seitan into 6 even chunks.
In a large pot, boil 6 cups water and 3 bouillon cubes. Place cuts in boiling broth. Lower heat, and simmer for 45 minutes. Drain cooked seitan and refrigerate overnight.
1/4 cup onion
3 cloves garlic
15 oz. can tomato sauce
1/4 cup water
1 tablespoon canola oil
2 tablespoons liquid smoke
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup evaporated cane sweetener
1 tablespoon vegan Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons Tabasco sauce
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional...but not really)
In a food processor, purée onion, garlic, and tomato sauce. Place all ingredients in a large saucepan and simmer on low heat for 30-45 minutes, whisking often. Store sauce in refrigerator overnight.
Cut seitan chunks into thin slices. Sautée cuts in a large skillet until almost crisp. Pour entire batch of sauce over seitan and lower heat. Simmer on low heat for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Lightly grill or toast 12 slices of white bread. Dress 6 slices with vegan mayo and pickles, and the other 6 with BBQ. The recipe easily makes 8 sandwiches, but I like a big ol’ Texas-sized ‘wich to pair with an ice-cold Texas beer!
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Monday, June 8, 2009
Click HERE to learn more about the event sponsored by Taco Joint and Bliss Raw Café & Elixir Bar.
Monday, June 1, 2009
I recently had the pleasure of meeting with Susan at a demo at the Highland Park store and got the scoop about some new products she’s been working on—a Meyer Lemon tart and an assortment of frozen treats for kids. It may be a month or so before those are available, but east siders will now have easy access to Hail Merry’s Chocolate and Mint Chocolate Miracle Tarts, Macadamia Dip, Grawnola, and Chocolate and Blonde Macaroons.
If you haven’t tried these tasty snacks yet, you don’t know what you’re missing! But don’t take my word for it—sample the goods yourself at any of Susan’s tasting events this weekend.