Roadtrip 2014 – The Mendel Art Gallery in Saskatoon

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 – but if you go in the entrance you’d see this bronze sculpture of a Girl With Cat which you can take photos of if you want to. I remember seeing this and delighting in the sculpture every time I went in. I have to share the story of this sculpture, because…

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Roadtrip 2014: Hello Again Saskatoon.

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. After a couple of lovely days at riding Mountain National Park we decided to drive into Saskatoon. JC had never been to Saskatoon, where as I lived there for four years during university. And I tried to like it, even when it was so cold the buses weren’t running, but the university was still open. I liked it, because it was so easy to dislike it. Too easy. Too easy to complain, and too easy to sit at home. And I’m stubborn. I found the things that made me happy. I created the things that made me happy, and to some extent I still feel connected to the city with my work helping out SCAT Street Cat Rescue. I feel protective over Saskatoon, and the Prairies. As someone that’s now an outsider – Saskatoon seems to have only gotten better with time, and in my absence I’ve watched it grow from afar, with new vegan-friendly businesses & restaurants, an active and evolving arts community, and more. I mean, just recently I saw they had their own Nuit Blanche, it has a community that can sustain these things, sometimes it’s just a matter of someone starting it up. We got into town around mid afternoon, just an hour or so before Keo’s Kitchen was due to close. After…

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Vegan Mofo The End: Saskatoon, SK – The Land of the Living Skies. aka, The Passage way to Elsewhere.

Once upon a time I lived in Saskatoon, SK so I’m ending MoFo where I began writing this blog. Parts of me hated living there (the parts that don’t like to be cold) and parts of me loved it (the parts of me that loved finding fun stuff to do against all odds). People tend to pass through Saskatoon on their way to somewhere else. While I get it, Saskatoon has a surprisingly large amount of things that are actually pretty cool, so maybe you’ll consider sticking around for a day or two on your way to elsewhere. Resources: While I’ve written most of this from experience and memory there are quite a few resources you can check out if you want to learn more. Planet S Magazine – If you’re in town for a while you can check out the special events happening online or in paper form on every street corner downtown. Happy Cow Saskatoon Vegan Saskatoon Meetup Group Raw Food Potlucks: where you can eat stuff like this:

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Saskatoon, Vulcan, Calgary, Edmonton.

The last remaining days in Saskatoon were pretty uneventful. I went to Keo’s on 2nd again, this time with my mom. I was a little nervous taking her there because in the past she didn’t like anything too unusual, or atypical. But she loved the massaman curry just as much as I did, and wondered how I could eat the pad thai in all of it’s hot spicy glory. I spoke with the owner’s son, and found out that there was a sibling restaurant in St.Albert (a suburb of Edmonton) but he wasn’t sure of the name. I’m guessing it’s probably Thai Mekong Restaurant (506 St. Albert Road, St.Albert, AB). So I’ll try and check that out soon. I got into Edmonton on Saturday afternoon, so I missed the Worldwide Vegan Bake sale that was happening at Planet Organic, but I did end up following tradition and going with Jen to Double Greeting for a quick evening snack. We decided to go to Calgary the next morning. While in Calgary we stumbled upon Le Chein Chaud. My normal go to place, Buddah’s Veggie house has turned into a meat veggie “Fusion” restaurant, so I was less interested in heading out there this time. So we were walking down 4st towards 17th, and there it was. The Chicago is vegan without modification. The consensus was that the veggie dogs were undercooked, but the toppings almost made up for it. We decided to drive the two hours to Vulcan, just because… we were already in Calgary……

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African Kale Stew – First try.

I’m back in Saskatoon with a bit more permanence now, it’s kind of nice to know I’ll be in one place for more then a month. New years was spent in the magical land of Portland, with a few trips to Sweetpea Bakery, Diablo’s and Bete Lukas. Though I didn’t take pictures of any of it, which was a change from the usual. My main reason for going was to spend time with friends, and to celebrate my birthday. It was actually quite nice to go back there so soon after the last visit. I miss those folks a lot. Anyway, enough of that stuff. I’ve been cooking a lot, and it’s probably because I feel very comfortable in my now entirely vegan kitchen. A friend of mine passed on a recipe for “African Kale Stew” that I am now in love with. I’m not sure where he got it (neither is he), but if you recognize it let me know. AFRICAN KALE STEW 4 c. vegetable soup stock 1/2 c. green onions, chopped 2 cloves garlic, chopped 1 c. chickpeas 1/2 c. brown rice 1/2 tsp. salt 1/2 c. natural peanut butter 2 c. kale, chopped 2 tbsp. lemon juice Soy sauce, to taste Chili sauce, to tasteSauté onion in a large pot with garlic. Add stock, potatoes, chickpeas, rice, salt, and kale.  Simmer, covered, for 45 minutes. In a small bowl, blend peanut butter with1/2 c. of liquid from the stew and lemon juice. Mix into stew, adding…

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