Lazy Vegan Friday – Vegan Egg from Follow Your Heart

We’re in New York City for the holidays again, and paid a visit to Haymaker’s Corner – an all vegan grocery store in Brooklyn, NY. We had pre-ordered a holiday meal from them, and some stuff from Vegan Treats – and luckily, the night before, they also got in a shipment of Follow Your Heart’s new(ish) Vegan Egg. I also ordered two boxes from Rabbit Food Grocery in Austin and had it shipped to NYC. At the moment if you wanted to order it to Canada, Vegan Essentials and Food Fight Grocery are the only two places I’ve seen offering this product with shipping to Canadian addresses. Like I mentioned when reviewing The Vegg, I never liked cheese, which seems like the ubiquitous missed vegan item (though that’s changed with all the amazing alternatives) but I have missed the occasional scrambled or over-easy egg. Of course – never enough to consider eating a non-vegan egg. So when I saw this product appear online during the Supply Side West convention in Las Vegas earlier this year, I was pretty excited to find out more. The Vegg is great for those over easy eggs yolks I was missing (with some spherification), but did not work out quite as well as I hoped as a scramble. The promo images from the trade show showed the VeganEgg was something that could be scrambled with a similar looking texture, so I was curious and interested in trying it, and ever since have been trying to figure out an effective way of getting some…

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Toronto Vegan Holiday Gift Suggestions 2015

For the last few years I’ve been trying to put together a vegan-friendly gift guide, with a focus on local items and charities. Usually, I put out one post, with everything on it, but we’ve gotten so full of options, that yesterday I started with the Vegan Holiday Menus that are available in our dear city, and now on to the gift list. This is, of course,  not all encompassing, since it’s limited by what I’ve found myself, but I’ve tried to poke around as much as time allows. Please feel free to add suggestions in the comments. Gift Baskets I’ve seen a few prepackaged gift baskets around the city from vegan or vegan-friendly vendors. so I’d like to start with those (in alphabetical order) D-Beatstro D-Beatstro has a variety of fun looking gift baskets that are mostly priced under  $35. Packages that feature teas (blended by their in-house herbalist) or coffee or hot chocolate packs. There is something for everyone on your list, just pay them a visit.  Forbes Wild Foods This Gift Basket Includes: Single-source Ontario Maple Syrup, Pure Birch Syrups, Wild Forest Mix, Wild Balsam Fir, Wild Spruce Tips, Wild Mushroom Mustard, Wild Canada Plum, Wild Strawberries, Wild Saskatoon Compote. If you ever go to any of the Toronto Farmers Markets, you’ve probably met someone from Forbes Wild Foods selling preserves, mushrooms, and other (mostly) foraged plants & fungi from nature. They also have a variety of other smaller baskets too Live On Chocolate’s – Truffle Gift Boxes Pre-order one of Live On Chocolate’s Organic fair-trade raw vegan…

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Toronto Vegan Holiday Menus, Events, & Meals 2015

For the last few years I’ve been trying to put together a vegan-friendly gift guide, with a focus on local items and charities. Usually, I put out one post, with everything on it, but we’ve gotten so full of options, I’m just going to start with all the Vegan Holiday Menu’s I’ve found so far. Tomorrow I’ll post more gifty items and suggestions found and made around the city, I’ll also link to a variety of other general vegan gift guides from this year. Much like last year, and the year before that, and the year before that, we’re leaving the city for a little while over the holidays and to celebrate my birthday, but some of these locally made menus totally have me salivating and wishing I could get them earlier! Holiday Menus Several vegan bakeries and restaurants are offering special holiday menus this month – most are focused on Christmas, since pick up tends to be well after Hanukkah is over. All of this is subject to change, and for up to date information, please contact the restaurant/bakery/store directly. In alphabetical order: Apiecalypse Now! Pizza and Snack Bar You can pick up an order form in store, or print out the above form and bring it in or email them. Or call them. (calories@apiecalypsenow.com/phone: 416.516.4555) They’ve got Holiday Pies: Apple Pie with a Shortbread Top Organic Pumpkin Pie Mixed Berry pie with sugar pastry top Squares: award winning magic squares gluten free fudgy brownies Other things:  Pulled turkey (made with…

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Another Pregnancy Post. Somewhere in the Second Trimester

Well, as some of you know, I’m pregnant, and if you want to read about the fun of the First Trimester, it’s over here. I’ve set out to be honest in these pregnancy related posts (and every post), because I feel like I was so surprised by a lot of the things that happened during this time, so if I can be helpful to anyone out there, or make someone feel a little less alone, then I’m happy. I also want to remember this time in my life, because I know things are going to get even busier, and even more frenetic and it’s nice to be able to go back in time and read about past experiences with fresh eyes. Pregnancy is not all sunshine and roses. In fact… come to think of it, I’ve only gotten roses once, and they were unrelated to my pregnancy. I’m somewhere in the second trimester and that’s the time when things are supposed to get easier and energy is supposed to return, and you get an increase in appetite, and you can do more things, and just end up getting bigger along with your developing fetus. Well. You might have noticed I used the words “supposed to” a lot up there. Because that doesn’t necessarily happen. Everyone is different, again, I will say everyone is different – for me, I’ve mostly gotten my energy back with a few random days of spontaneous exhaustion that don’t seem to reasonably correlate with my days…

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Weekend in Detroit

I’ve needed to get out of town. Somewhere new(ish). Somewhere interesting. But still something close enough to drive to on the weekend. So we decided to visit Detroit last weekend. When we left Toronto it was windy and rainy, as we continued on the highway it got worse and worse. Visibility was low, you could see large commercial trucks weave into adjoining lanes with nearly every gust of strong winds. It was no joke. When we pulled into the Ingersoll En Route, it seemed like our trip was over. It was windy, raining heavily, and a lot of cars didn’t seem to be driving with consideration for the weather.  We grabbed a couple of teas and dry toasted everything bagels from Tim Hortons (yes – they’re vegan [most of the time]) and decided to spend the night somewhere close by, maybe Ingersoll, maybe London. Probably not Detroit. At least not that night. I booked us a night at a hotel in London and we started driving there. The road seemed a little calmer, and a little less hectic. Traffic wasn’t as tight. When we got to the hotel, a computer glitch meant we hadn’t been booked in that night, but a week later. And they were totally full. Whoops. We took it as a sign to keep going. The only negative part about the full hotel (other than the 3 hours more of driving) is that it guaranteed we would definitely be missing London’s VegFest on Saturday. When we got to the Windsor-Detroit…

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Simple Pickle Soup – Zupa Ogórkowa bez śmietany

In the middle of the day last night I had this craving for Pickle soup. I started thinking about it, and then could not wait to get home and make it. JC and I stopped in to a grocery store to pick up a few white potatoes and a carrot (because I knew we had a bunch of onions and pickles at home), and I was ready to get cooking. Making this soup felt like I was running on some kind of deep genetic pickle soup knowledge when I got into the kitchen, because of course, zupa ogórkowa (ZOO-pah, Oh-goorr-Koh-Vah), is a thing I’ve eaten since I was a kid. I’m sure I watched my mom make it when I was growing up. Maybe even helped peel or chop potatoes (maybe.) This recipe is simple and perfect for preparing after a long day. Not too many ingredients, and doesn’t take too much time. It could conceivably serve four people, but the two of us ate all of it.   Ingredients: 3 small chopped yellow onions 2 small chopped rinsed leeks a splash of oil 1 medium sized carrot 4-5 diced potatoes, you can peel them if you want to (I didn’t) 6 cups of vegetable broth (I used Go Bio’s veggie broth) 4 large chopped pickles 2-3 cups pickle juice salt & pepper to taste (the pickles/pickle juice is already pretty salty) extra chopped pickles as a garnish Serves 4 (or 1 MeShell, 1 JC) Directions I used a heavy dutch…

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Brunch at Cosmic Treats, Toronto

This weekend we finally checked out Brunch at Cosmic Treats. I haven’t been in there since they opened, but JC brought me a few of their baked goods shortly after they opened. and I liked ’em. But we decided to actually go and eat inside since they are so much more than a candy and ice cream shop. Kensington showed its friendly face to me in the street with a random stranger bullying me on the sidewalk. After that, I was ready to just go home and stay home for the day or week. But instead we walked into to Wanda’s Pie in the Sky and drank soy lattes while I pretended to read books for about two hours before Cosmic Treats opened for brunch. Cosmic Treats opens at 11:30 am, and we stood there like hungry cats in the rain (except there was no rain, and you should really keep your cats indoors at all times anyway) until a line up of other hungry people formed behind us. I considered scratching at the door, but resisted. They let us sit a bit sooner than they were ready, and the restaurant filled up steadily after the door opened. But frankly, I liked them a lot and I think they could be busier. We started with a couple of hot chocolates with marshmallows and the Sweet Chili Heat Doritos encrusted fried tofu. Which was delicious as you might expect. It came with a bbq sauce. I ordered the All Day Breakfast, which…

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Roadtrip 2014 – Alberta – Waterton Lakes National Park

I’m continuing my series of posts from our Summer Roadtrip in 2014, you can see some of the past & present posts on this helpful map on Pinterest, or just click on the Roadtrip 2014 tag to peek at some of our past summer adventures sightseeing and eating delicious vegan food across Canada and the USA. After we left Head-Smashed-in Buffalo heritage site and Vulcan nerdville, we drove on the hour or so south to Waterton Lakes National Park. It was cloudy and blustery in the afternoon when we left Calgary, countering the very hot day we’d had the day before, and the wind was escalating as we moved southward – it turned out that the day we were there was the windiest day of the entire year. I get a bit nervous in National Parks during storm conditions, but mostly we were trying to get there before sundown (which shouldn’t have been hard since it was still one of the longer days – sunset was nearly 10pm officially) but the clouds made it less obvious. I spent a nonzero amount of time during the trip checking out sunrise and sundown levels, especially when we were planning on setting up camp through our travels. Conveniently, google has a feature that lets you just type in sunset or sunrise and it will give you that information for whatever location you’re in. As we entered Waterton Lakes National Park, and checked in at the ranger station and got our site pass, it started to rain heavily. Like…

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Roadtrip 2014 – Vulcan, Alberta

I’m continuing my series of posts from our Summer Roadtrip in 2014, you can see some of the past & present posts on this helpful map on Pinterest, or just click on the Roadtrip 2014 tag to peek at some of our past summer adventures sightseeing and eating delicious vegan food across Canada and the USA. After we left Calgary, we had two stops in mind before heading over to Waterton Lakes National Park. First of all, we had to go to Vulcan, Alberta. The town was actually named by a surveyor for the Canadian Pacific Railway in the early 1900’s, after the roman god of fire – but since then, they’ve capitalized on it’s name with Trekkie tourism. (since for those not in the know – Vulcan is the planet where vulcans are from, an extraterrestrial humanoid species that tries to live by reason and logic, rather than emotion, in the Star Trek universe.) We didn’t get there on a particularly busy day, a Wednesday afternoon, but the Vulcan Visitors Centre was open and we got to wander around and take pictures in the museum. The staff seemed pretty bored, just generally tired of weirdos like us, they were nice enough as we wandered around gleefully looking at some of the silly or ancient things in the store/museum space. We bought a few postcards, and mailed them off at the Vulcan Post Office, but if you do find yourself passing through or visiting, you’ve got to get a picture with the Enterprise, just outside the…

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Sudbury, Ontario – Tucos Taco Lounge

When we travel, we often travel for food. Our anniversary was a couple of weeks ago and we went and celebrated the day of with a fancy tasting menu dinner at Alo restaurant. But I think we were both feeling a little flighty, I know I was, and I wanted a change of scenery for a couple of days. Two years ago, JC and I celebrated our not-honeymoon in a cottage up in Tobermory and the Bruce Peninsula. It was easy to fall in love with the area, when we were both basking in our love for one another, but it’s hard not to when the leaves are beautiful shocks of red, gold, and orange – mixed in with evergreens, and fresh crisp air. So we answered the call of nature, but decided to spend it in the Sudbury area. If Ancient Cedars Cafe had been open – we probably would have found a way to pass through Tobermory again, but we had the good sense to check if they’d be open in advance – nope. Closed for the Season as of the week before. Someday we’ll make it out there in time. Someday. We arrived on Saturday afternoon after an easy 5 hour or so drive from Toronto. The day before there had been reports of snow flurries on the highway, so we were a little nervous, but other than being a little chilly, it wasn’t that bad out there. We’d see some snow later in the evening, but nothing before. I…

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