Wednesday, June 10, 2009

My 27th Birthday

Saturday was my birthday so my husband flew my brother and sister into LAX to spend the weekend in LA. We went to Venice Beach, Hollywood BLVD, drove down to Coachella, and witnessed some people getting spanked in an S&M club. Good times!

Ebony, Michael and me in front of Glauman's Chinese Theatre (my head looks ginormous!)

My sister wanted to see celebrities so badly while she was there. I tried telling her we wouldn't find any at the tourist spots. We did end up going to a bar in Hollywood where shots were 10 bucks! A little rich for my blood. Next door was an S&M club where you got in free if you dressed in black.

Met up with a friend from high school, Akemie, and I hadn't seen her in 10 years!

We stayed at the bar for a while. It was fun and the first time all of us were of age. My brother was checking out girls. This made me want to vomit.

My brother and husband drunk

We also managed to go to some restaurants. On Saturday we went to Cinnamon. It's a Mexican restaurant. My brother and I ordered chickn fajitas. My husband, Era, ordered the mango "salmon" and my sister ordered hummus. Yes. Hummus in a Mexican restaurant.

Ebony's hummus

My fajitas with black beans and rice

We dropped my brother and sister off on Sunday morning and went to eat at Vegan Village Cafe. They specialize in Mexican and Soul food. I will post a review tomorrow. SO GOOD.

The Soul Plate (greens, sweet potatoes, corn, fried chikn)

Era got the Sampler Plate (greens, sweet potatoes, bbq tofu, hot wingz, cajun shrimp)

We also did some shopping. Went to Locali and Figueroa Produce Market in search of Sheese. No luck! I did pick up some Dandies (ZOMG!), soya bleu, cashew spreads, and tamarind paste.

Raw Cashew Spreads

We had a fun weekend in LA and now I totally miss my family even more. Plus, it was awesome being in a city with something going on. Such a great way to begin my 27th year.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Vegan Brunch: A Review

Okay, I've had this book for about a week now and I am in love. I've been cooking and baking and freezing all week. My two favorites are the Puttanesca Scramble and East Coast Coffee Cake (apricot and cardamom version). But everything in the book is so inspired it's amazing. I have not run into a recipe I didn't love. I finally posted a review on Amazon today:
Vegan Brunch has changed the face of breakfast, lunch, brunch, and brinner for vegans everywhere. How many times have you been at a brunch picking over hashbrowns and fruit because those were the only vegan options? Well, fear no more! The most dreaded meal of the day has transformed into the most exciting.
With her latest book, Isa Chandra Moskowitz, upped her game completely. The book design is crisp and fresh with plenty of pictures throughout. Let's face it: we all eat with our eyes first. If just looking at this book doesn't have you salivating, then it's entirely possibly you are a cyborg incapable of human emotion. In fact, you might want to check yourself for a "shutdown" button.

All of the recipes are incredibly easy to read and many are as complicated as watching ingredients saute. There is a great balance between sweet and savory dishes with a range from normal brunch fare to international updates of classic dishes (such as the Samosa Mashed Potato Pancakes).

Recipes I highly recommend:

Tofu Omelet-It has an incredibly delicate texture with a well rounded flavor. The stuffing possibilities are endless; however, I highly recommend the roasted tomatoes, ricotta and basil variation.

Puttanesca Scramble-Eat this and pretend to be sitting in an Italian cafe. Tasty garlic, spicy crushed red pepper, fresh herbs,and piquant olives and capers blend together for an absolute explosion of flavor. All with your morning coffee.

Mushroom, Leek, and White Bean Pie-Ever wonder what Thanksgiving tastes like? Make this pie and get your answer. This is completely soy free (depending on your pie crust) and has an amazing depth of flavor from the mushrooms, thyme, and leeks.

East Coast Coffee Cake-This will change your life. The cake is super moist with an incredible crunch from the cinnamon and nutmeg topping. There are several variations, and I highly recommend the apricot cardamom version!

This book has and will continue to transform vegan cooking into a culinary force to be reckoned with. So order this thing already and get inspired! In fact, go ahead and make yourself a Bloody Moskowitz while you wait for those potatoes to roast.

Finally vegans have a food related reason to get up in the morning!