Saturday, May 24, 2008

Garden update

Garden plot update: our basil was destroyed by creepy crawlies, that's the blank area in the front left. The lettuces, cilantro, and parsley have produced several salads for us, and they are flourishing. Peas and tomatoes growing well in the back row. Pumpkin seeds sprouted in the front right! I wish I had planted things more closely together. I followed planting recommendations, which for some reason have things spaced out way too wide. Live and learn. We just ate another terrific salad of romaine, red leaf, parsley, cilantro, and a vinaigrette made by Claire. Yum!

Friday, May 23, 2008

Too hungry to take pictures!

A partial list of scrummy restaurants meals I've had recently, which I devoured before remembering to photograph. I ripped off these pics of restaurant exteriors from the internet, mostly from other people's blogs -- sorry folks!

Por Que No (3524 N Mississippi, Portland. OR. 97227) Bryan's Bowl, made vegan with a "no dairy" modification. Rice, beans, veggies, guac, salsa, homemade tortillas. Also I always have a pomegranate margarita when I'm here. We're regulars here, especially during the summer when we can sit outside.

Cup & Saucer (8237 N Denver Ave, Portland, OR 97217): For brunch: cornmeal pancake, fruit bowl, lots of coffee. Our favorite brunch spot.

Veganopolis (412 SW Fourth Ave, Portland, OR 97204) Raw platter for lunch today -- organic greens, cashew ricotta, sliced apple, olives, tomato, onion, cucumber, red bell pepper, flax crackers, lemon and olive oil. Bolshevik salad for lunch yesterday -- organic greens, roasted beets, vegan chèvre, toasted hazelnuts, cucumbers, olives, onion, citrus vinaigrette. I avoid the lunch buffet here, which is priced by the pound and ends up costing more than entrees.

Colosso (1932 NE Broadway St, Portland, OR 97232) A tapas place, and I ordered candied nuts, olives, bread with olive oil, carrot & zucchini empanandas, two margaritas. Only the second time I've been here; I was pleased by the experience.

E'Njoni (910 N Killingsworth St. Portland, OR 97217) We're such regulars here that the owner knows us. Ethiopian food, rockin' injera, and I always order the veggie combo. The menu states that all their vegetarian dishes are vegan. Yay! The veggie combo usually includes split pea curry, spinach, beets, lentils, cabbage/carrot/potato dish, and probably more but my memory fails at the moment.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The Big Juice

When the 5-year-old son of a friend of mine first saw the ocean, he cried out, "The big juice!" I think of this whenever I think of juice, which used to be practically never, but now it's all the time.

Today I bought a Breville juicer, and about 20 pounds of organic produce for juicing: carrots, celery, cucumber, spinach, chard, apples, parsley, and beets. Twenty pounds! I know. I got a little carried away.

Claire is always game for new kitchen adventures. After school today, we set up the juicer, read the instructions, and made our first juice: carrot, celery, and apple. It was delicious! Sweet like apple juice, but a vivid orange color. We polished that off and made our second concoction: spinach, cucumber, parsley, and celery. This was more subtle. It tasted like cucumber, and went down like water, despite its deep green color (no pics of this one.)

I think I'm late on this juicing bandwagon. Wasn't it a fad years ago? Whatever, I missed it when I was busy getting a Ph.D. and a divorce. Good times!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Veggie patch salad

From our garden patch: red and romaine lettuces, parsley, and cilantro. I added dried cherries, pine nuts, and balsamic vinaigrette. It was good and it was local!

Friday, May 9, 2008

Self-medicating with cupcakes

I have a two-hour break between clients right now, and I'm preparing for a presentation I'm giving tomorrow on postpartum depression. I'm nervous about public speaking! I must have a cupcake to soothe my nerves! So, here I am at Sweetpea Bakery. I already discovered last night that the skirt of my red "power suit of confidence" is too tight, so I might as well drown my sorrows in sugar and fat, right? This beautiful cupcake, which is not only vegan but also gluten-free, has already been gobbled up by yours truly. I might get a second, maybe coconut. I'm really nervous about tomorrow!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Lighthouse Animal Sanctuary - Work Party

Last weekend, Claire and I joined a bunch of Portland friends for a work party at The Lighthouse Farm Sanctuary, outside of Salem. It was a great time, and it was hard to stay focused on mucking stalls with all of the adorable goats, sheep, pigs, cows, horses, chickens, turkeys, and more to pet and feed. We had a tailgate potluck lunch after our work, which was beyond delicious. I only wish I had pictures of the food. I forgot my camera, and these pictures are courtesy of Isa, except the group picture is courtesy of Katie. Thanks dudes!

Monday, May 5, 2008

Vegan Paella at The Maiden

My friend Mel hosts a reading every two months at The Maiden (previously called The Maiden in the Mist) at 639 SE Morrison. More info here: 1,000 Words. I highly recommend this event -- local writers and musicians, always good stuff.

Tonight was one of Mel's 1,000 Words readings, and that's what brought Nigel, Claire and me to The Maiden for dinner. I was a little worried that, under new ownership and with a completely new menu, The Maiden wouldn't be as vegan-friendly as when it was Maiden in the Mist. I just love it when my worries prove unfounded! The Spanish, tapas-inspired menu had plenty for me to choose from. In fact, the only paella on the menu was vegan! All three of us ordered it, and we all loved it. See the large orange thing on top of the rice? It's not a carrot, it's grilled cantaloupe, and it was divine. The dish also included potatoes, mushrooms, peas, red peppers, and of course saffron-infused rice. I also ordered warm bread and olives as a starter, which you can see in the second picture. And the pomarita (pomegranate margarita) really hit the spot.

I know we'll be back to The Maiden for the next installment of 1,000 words, but I hope to return even sooner than that.