Vegan December Holidays

We’re in New York City, continuing a holiday tradition JC started when he surprised me with a trip away for my birthday in 2012, and we spent new years eve/day in Las Vegas. Then last year were spent it in New Orleans. And now this year, NYC. It spawned from one of those silly ideas where you think… where is the biggest party – where it the place people go to ring in the new year? So we’re in NYC this year, conveniently staying in someone elses otherwise empty and extremely beautiful apartment because a friend of a friend that usually lives here needed someone to take care of her cat. Sometimes lucky doesn’t begin to cover it. Before we left town though, there were a few holiday celebrations to be had. We celebrated Hanukkah on the first night with JC’s family. Or rather, I arrived late after a harrowing day and still had plates full of awesome homemade latkes. And we all exchanged presents. (here is a great collection of Latke recipes from One Green Planet) The Depanneur Hanukkah Party And no Hanukkah week would be complete without at least one trip to The Depanneur for one of Emily Zimmerman’s vegan latke parties. No visit to The Depanneur is complete without a picture of the outside dinner board. Plus it helps remind me exactly what everything was called.  These were the Golden latkes with a really delicious spiced apple sauce, and a root vegetable slaw. I wasn’t keen on the coconut sour cream,…

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Vegan Pre-Passover Supper Club from Emily Zimmerman

Chag Sameach to those who are observing Passover this week. Yesterday was the first night of Passover, and we celebrated at JC’s childhood home with family and friends. There was lots of reading (though not by me), and lots and lots of delicious food. Passover retells the story of the Jewish people’s escape from slavery from the Pharaoh, and of course, for me, with my general focus on social justice ties in really well with conversations on the realities of oppression and slavery in modern times as well. So I’ll be reflecting on the world I want to be a part of this week, and actively continue to participate in activities that further those positive goals. However, the night before we had a pre-Passover style supper club with Chef Emily Zimmerman, cooking out of The Depanneur. We had a great feast of cozy hearty Jewish cuisine, and I snapped a few pictures along the way. It’s wonderful to eat traditional style food, where it’s all very similar, you have some idea of what to expect, but everyone has their own unique spin on things. If you’ve never been to a Rusholme Park Supper club, I give a basic run down of what it’s all about in my first taste of the Depanneur post from all the way back in 2012! The supper club isn’t all vegan all the time. Supper club memberships cost $40 and include the cost of the meal. Memberships are only valid for one day so the way…

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Things I Love Thursday – Local Vegan Toronto Gift Ideas 2013 Edition

For 2014 – please go here. There are lots of general vegan gift idea lists out there, so please do check them out (I’ll link to some of them at the bottom of this post), but it’s worth looking locally to tap into the great community of creators and crafters, bakers, makers, and ingenuous entrepreneurs that we have in our city. There are also some wonderful organizations to support this time of year, as well as food and products to buy, made right here in the GTA. So this year, yet again, is my totally biased, occasionally random, list of local/GTA/Vegan Gift ideas. You’ll see some repeat names from last year, because they’re still awesome, but you’ll also see some new faces (because the vegan business community has really grown in 2013.) I welcome your suggestions for other local vegan friendly businesses and organizations to support, please add them in the comments. Vegan Food Apiecalypse Now! With exciting news just around the corner, there are also APieCalypse Now!’s mega awesome gift baskets to take advantage of. Available in both gluten free and glutenlicious varieties, in large baskets and in small, you have a lot to choose from. The baskets are full of almost entirely hand-made things, made with organic locally grown flour, fair trade sugar, and horizontal trade chocolate from ChocoSol (They’re even on the Food Empowerment Project’s Chocolate list.) Check out what else is on offer in the ApieCalypse Now! online store. (you have until December 15th to pre-order the big stuff…

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Special Event Sunday! Vegan Thanksgiving

We did our small thanksgiving a little early (today), because J has his family’s one on Monday (the real day). I’m not a big fan of the smell of roasting turkey, to the point that it makes me pretty nauseous, so I’ll be skipping the big family event tomorrow and spending it chopping cranberries finely and sprinkling them all over one of Emmie’s wet food cakes in an attempt to be Thanksgiving festive. picture by Eye of Einstein on Flickr used under CC Last year I prepared a feast for myself, and ate it while house/cat sitting during other people’s long weekend getaways. This time, I tried to cook, while fasting for Yom Kippur, preparing a Break Fast meal (vegan matzo ball soup), and also cat sitting during other people’s long weekend getaways. Goal for next year: leave town. (I’m kidding… or am I?) Real goal for next year: Invite people over for a Turkey-less vegan thanksgiving. My menu this year includes: – Cornbread Muffins, solely because I love them and they make me happy. – Onion gravy from Colleen Patrick-Goudreau’s 30 Day Vegan Challenge – Smashed garlicky potatoes. – Grapefruit Blackpepper Cranberry Sauce based a bit on last year’s recipe – The same cranberry stuffing from last year – Stuffed pepper squash. Originally planned to make this cranberry-pear rice stuffing, but ended up making a lentil white rice stuffing with spiced veggies. – The Apple Walnut Kale salad from Cupcakes and Kale listed below, except I used pecans and…

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Free For All Friday. – Kreplach Ka’plah

Note: I wrote this yesterday (friday), and didn’t post it before falling asleep. oops. Yom Kippur begins tonight (friday) at sundown, so I’m preparing a little meal for tonight of rutabaga carrot ginger soup and kreplach. I didn’t have a plan for today, mostly because I hadn’t known there was a prefasting meal till a few hours ago. I started searching the internet for ideas, and found some lovely little dishes, one of which included kreplach. Kreplach is a small dumpling usually filled with ground meat, and usually boiled and served in chicken soup. When I saw them I thought… oooh triangular pierogi, and set off to make some for this early evening. Of course my version was missing real meat or chicken soup, but I did try to keep it close to the original dish. Normally, the dough contains eggs (in addition to flour and water), but mine just had oil, water and flour. And the resulting dough was beautiful. Just the way it felt while I was kneeing it, I just knew it was the good stuff. After mixing it, and kneading it, and then I had it on my kitchen table ready to be turned into flat little squares. Well, that’s the moment that making kreplach also reminded me of the one major thing missing in my kitchen: a rolling pin. Or at least a real rolling pin. I’ve been using parchment paper wrapped bottles of wine, but I think it might be time to get the real deal soon. Vegan…

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