Roadtrip 2014 – Honey Bun Cafe – Saskatoon

Honey Bun Cafe Buns Vegan

This is just a quick post in a series of posts about our 2014 Roadtrip around North America. At this point, we had driven from Toronto, through Michigan, taken an extended stop in Chicago, IL, and driven on through Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, stopping in Winnipeg, MB and Riding Mountain National Park. Our time in Saskatoon is winding down with only a couple more stops before heading on toward Edmonton. When I lived in Saskatoon, I attended a few sessions of the Rosebud Burlesque school of dance and fun, and one of the nicest things I got from those classes was connecting with people I hadn’t ever met before and lasting friendships. Conveniently, one of those pals saw I was in Saskatoon and gave me the heads up about Honeybun Cafe having some vegan stuffed buns that day. So of course we went, and picked up two of that day’s Featured Stuffed Bun – the Roasted Yam and Black Eyed Pea Chilli Stuffed Bun. They had non-dairy milk (for an extra charge) for coffee. We whipped out our computers and hung out for a while, connected to their wifi. It was tough to find a plug in, at least ones…

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Lazy Weekend, Snowy Weekend

I didn’t spend my weekend quite how I wanted to – we were going to go for a work visit at Cedar Row on Saturday morning, but as we looked out the window, and checked road conditions we ended up staying home because of heavy and projected snowfall. I’m not sure if we were over cautious, but I hope to attend a future one sometime. The night before I picked up a long pair of purple galoshes, hoping they’d be perfect for digging around in the mud. I guess I’ll have to wait to find out.   If you’re not sure what happens at a work visit, there are a variety of tasks to do, cleaning the sheds, the goat barn, getting rid of some of the poop and shovelling it into a wheelbarrow, taking it to a pile at the side of the house, and doing it over and over again. It’s hard work, but it feels meaningful, helpful, and the time passes quickly because while you’re scooping shovelfuls of shit, you are also talking to people and laughing and just generally having a good time. Occasionally one of the animals comes up and wants to know what you are…

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Roadtrip 2014 – The Mendel Art Gallery in Saskatoon

Mendel Art Gallery

I’m playing catchup on our writing about our 2014 Roadtrip around North America. At this point, we had driven from Toronto, through Michigan, taken an extended stop in Chicago, IL, and driven on through Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, stopping in Winnipeg, MB and Riding Mountain National Park. Our time in Saskatoon was winding down, and one thing I wanted to show JC was the Mendel Art Gallery – a place I viewed as a refuge from the blahs, and the occasionally rough Saskatoon winter. A place to see new and old art, a good source of regularly good fancy coffee (at Museo), and the lush greenery of the conservatory space. Sadly, as I found out while I was there, the Mendel Art Gallery is closing this year, on June 8th, 2015. I’m glad I go to see it at least one more time, because I do have a lot of great memories of that place. I’m hopeful that the Remai Modern centre will still touch on some of those enjoyable qualities – but that’ll be more apparent when they open up in 2016. Unusually, the gallery isn’t very pro-camera, so I couldn’t take any pictures of the other exhibits –…

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Road Trip 2014: Nosh Eatery & Tap – Saskatoon

Nosh Eatery and Tap

I’m currently catching up on my Roadtrip 2014 posts – This visit to Saskatoon happened in late July 2014, and this is still quite early on in our trip, but when we got back to Toronto at the end of August we had put thousands of miles on our new car, and seen & done some amazing and wonderful things. Nosh Eatery and Tap in Saskatoon was one of my favourite stops on our trip – mostly because it was incredible to see the caliber of food happening in a place that seems otherwise under appreciated, my dear old Saskatoon. Beautiful colours, fantastic service, creative plates, with a real appreciation for the versatility and functionality of vegetables. Vegan options were meaningful and exciting, and prepared with care for flavour and appearance. I had been watching Nosh from afar – because I still feel connected to Saskatoon despite no longer living there – so it was great to actually get to visit them in real life and have it live up to expectations. Menus might change, but Vegan, Gluten Free, Raw, Meat, Nut items are clearly marked, and there is something for everyone, but there is more of a lacto-ovo-vegetarian focus. We started…

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Things I Love Thursday – Chilis on Wheels, maybe other things

coupland words

So I’ve had a busy & short week this week because Ontario’s new Family Day holiday that happened this past Monday. JC and I spent the weekend mostly inside, with the exception of going to Sadie’s Valentines Day prix fixe diner (which by the way, was the first time this month we’ve gone out to eat – it’s a whole new world.) Like last week, my obsession with puffins has not gone away, if anything, I started looking for more information about them, including a visit to the Royal Ontario Museum to see if they had any puffin information. (& also to visit the Douglas Coupland Exhibit.) Chilis on Wheels A friend shared the story of Chilis on Wheels today and it was easily the nicest and best thing I read all day Michelle Carrara and her son delivering warm chilli to hungry people in Brooklyn and lower Manhattan. I’m especially touched by this because she’s working with her son to help people without losing sight of the larger systems involved in inequality and hunger. Post by Chilis on Wheels. She identified a hole in the existing support network and is actively working to fill it. That she’s using vegan chilli to fill…

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Seasoned Vegan – Amazing food in Harlem

crawfish Seasoned Vegan

On our last trip to NYC, we made a point to visit Seasoned Vegan – a soul food vegan spot in Harlem, just north of Central Park. We stopped in for dinner. Service was friendly, the atmosphere was cozy, with bench style seating and tables, pillows, and cool art on the walls. The first thing I noticed was the penny finished floor (check it out!) At this point, we had been following their progress for well over a year or so – when we spent a summer month in NYC in 2013 – Seasoned Vegan was just getting ready to open, but things stalled (regulatory things I believe) and it didn’t happen. Fast forward to now – they’re open, and seem to be thriving. The atmosphere was inviting and lively. Boisterous patrons near us were laughing, music was playing, and it smelled wonderful inside. To start they brought us a side salad to start off with. Lightly seasoned, but with fresh soft and crisp leafy greens (as part of our entree.) The Lemon Crusted Chicken Nuggets come in two sizes 8, and 20 pieces, and come with two different sauces – Jiggy’s Harlem Renaissauce (which is like a BBQ) and Uptown Tangy (which…

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Roadtrip 2014 – Keo’s Kitchen in Saskatoon

Spicy Massamun Curry with Fried Tofu Cubes

I’m catching up on posting all of our Roadtrip adventures from the summer. This is shortly after Riding Mountain National Park near Winnipeg, Manitoba, we were there at around the last week of July 2014. We went to Keo’s Kitchen twice during our stay in Saskatoon. First time was a bit of a let down, but the next was a huge improvement. I think service was essential towards a positive experience, and the other (for me) was spice. For reasons I don’t understand everything on menu at Keo’s Kitchen is not-spicy by default, as in, spice level zero. If you don’t specify spice, and your server doesn’t ask, then if you are me, you end up with an acceptable and tasty but not quite-what-you-wanted dish of food without heat. Then, again, if you are me, when you ask for more spice afterwards, and they charge you $2 for a small dish of chilli oil, you are even more annoyed. Anyway, it was still 100% edible, and JC seemed to enjoy it both times, perhaps enjoying the first visit even more as he collected several photos of me looking spice-less and grumpy for his own amusement (and eventually my amusement as well.) Both…

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Things I Love Thursday – These posts. Snow. Puffins. Basketball.

Puffin from Canada Post

Snow Last week it snowed heavily, or as heavy as it gets in Toronto, so I went out there with my (well – JC’s) trusty blue shovel and got to work first with our sidewalk and walkway, and then I move on to some of the rest of the neighbourhood or whatever I have time for that day. You see, I like shovelling. I like winter. I like snow. I like when people are able to walk or move along the sidewalk with ease. But after shovelling for around three or four hours, and working my way back to my house, one of my unfortunately nearby neighbours came out of his house and told me I was wasting my time and that the city would take care of it. It took me a second to even comprehend what he was saying. Maybe it was exhaustion, but I just felt fucking awful. I walked home dejected, after feeling pretty happy getting the sidewalk near Sorauren park cleared off and a far-away friend had told me about a less mobile friend that could use some de-snowing, and then I could just walk around shovelling people’s front sidewalks that hadn’t been done yet.…

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PeruVegan Review on T.O.F.U. MAGAZINE

tofu-review-meshell-peruvegan-cover

Inspired by her husband’s heritage, Vicki Cosio has been veganizing Peruvian recipes for years, and so, Peruvegan, a self-published cookbook full of creative traditional (and not-so-traditional) Peruvian dishes was born. I enjoyed reading through the book, and learning a bit more about Peruvian cuisine and a bit more about Vicki, a now retired tennis pro.  I really enjoyed how she blended her own Italian heritage with her husband’s Peruvian one and included a few recipes exploring the complimentary flavours of both cuisines. Read more about what I thought of the book over at the T.O.F.U Magazine Blog.

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Hello DF Mavens in St. Mark’s Place NYC

DF Mavens Cookie Dough Ice Cream

In December 2014, we were dropping off my laptop at a shop near St. Marks Place, for repair after a few failed attempts at finding a competent spot in Toronto ( by the way, I cannot recommend Simple Mac repair in NYC enough – they were amazing) When we just happened to walk by the new DF Mavens store/shop as they were setting up to open. I hadn’t known about this – and I saw the logo and thought… wait a second… no. This isn’t really here is it? But yes, it was real life, and a relatively big vegan ice cream shop was getting organized right before our eyes. The doors were closed – but looked like they were ready to open soon. I hoped to catch them before we went back home in a few days. Conveniently, we had to be back in the area to pick up my newly repaired laptop. I crossed my fingers we’d luck out and they’d be ready by then too. A day or two later we were back in the neighbourhood (picking up my macbook) – and the DF Mavens spot was bustling with activity and full of people. It was exciting to see a large totally vegan ice cream shop,…

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