Jun 28, 2012

Traveling Vegan: North America Part II NYC

I've always been enamoured by big cities and New York has been my favourite for a while now. As excited as I was to be in New York, I also had other agendas for the trip. I wanted to hit at least one exclusively vegan place everyday. By the end of the seven days, I was ready never to eat a cupcake again. Just as I was sorting through the pictures the other day, K and I had a cupcake craving and I just had to make some. And I thought I was done!

I had a two page list with streets and avenues, phone numbers and websites to make sure I found every single one of them. Of course Google Maps eventually won over paper maps, but I can't get myself to trust technology yet.

What I observed is that vegan food at vegan places is much more expensive than I thought it would be. May be even more expensive that what it should be. There is a price to pay for eating healthier but I didn't imagine it would be that much of a difference. Sometimes it puts people off that vegan cafes are so expensive but I wish everyone understood what actually is happening with the food and how the subsidies favour the promotion of unhealthy foods like soda, meat and dairy.

A few of my favourites that didn't quite make it to the pictures:

1. The 'Shroom Burger at B.A.D. Burger, Brooklyn - Grilled Portobello with an amazing pepper cream sauce. Just have a Portobello Burger any chance you get anywhere!

2. The Ancho-Seitan Burger at Cinnamon Snail

3. Udon Thai Curry at Loving Hut

4. Ice Creams from Trader Joes

5. Vegan muffins from Whole foods

So this is what I was doing when I wasn't walking around the city...

A Roasted Red Pepper Harissa with Sauteed Portobello on Pasta
The first of my many delicious meals in NYC (Thanks Rahul!)

A vegan bistro that serves organic wines

Curried Unchicken Salad

Black-eyed Peas Cake with the most awesome Chipotle Aioli

Crispy Pine nut and Basil Seitan


How can one choose?!

Not making things any easier

Chocolate cupcake with vanilla frosting
Wish I had one in my hand right now

Bruschetta in Little Italy

Couldn't get enough of this one


Yummy Quesadilla
I'm not used to so much cheese in anything, but I now know how much cheese goes into a regular quesadilla. Thank heavens this was vegan!

Union Square Farmer's Market
On every alternate day of the week, farmers gather here to sell fruits, vegetables, plants, cheeses, honey and lots of other things.

Check out all the Summer Squash varieties

Pattypan Squash
How cute are they!



Shiitake and Maitake Mushrooms

Yes, I managed to find a vegan stall!

 Pupusa stuffed with Loroco
A traditional Salvadorian dish which is much like a paratha from the Red Hook food trucks in Brooklyn 

Horchata -A traditional Latin American beverage
This one was made with Rice, Cinnamon and Vanilla.

Ethiopian Dinner in Brooklyn
They serve a dosa made of Teff with many different types of vegetable and lentil dishes on top

One of the most famous vegan bakeries in NYC, they even have two books to their credit.

Spelt Cupcakes

Chocolate Chip Donut
The most amazing donut ever

A hoarding at High Line
(Thought I should leave you with a non-food picture)

Jun 19, 2012

Traveling Vegan: North America Part I

While I was getting ready to travel to the unhealthiest country in the world, I was also making lists of what food I am going to get back. Needless to say I overdid it and wished I had booked myself on an airline that allowed two bags per person. The anxiety associated with weighing the bag at the check-in counter was more than I could handle. I could not imagine taking anything out of the bag.

My moto for this trip was EAT EAT EAT. While I was wary because it involved eating a lot of processed food and adding a tyre or two, I was also looking forward to being there during the berry and grilling season.

Apart from how big the serving sizes are there, the fruits and vegetables are also humongous. Most of them might not have as much flavour as the ones we get here, but it's amusing to see an onion bigger than my hand and a strawberry as big as my palm. The sugary foods aren't as sweet as we make it here in India which is a good thing and they are way ahead on the organic, vegan path. I think our generation in India is going to be the unhealthiest and unfortunately we are aping the wrong choices the Americans made.

Okay enough talk. Here's some vegan food porn.

Mushroom and Spinach Pizzette at Nino's 

A typical Canadian confectionery the Nanaimo Bar is available vegan and gluten free 
(By Sweets from the Earth) at certain cafes in Toronto. It has a sweet peppermint filling which is sandwiched between  melted chocolate on top and a chocolate wafer-crumb layer at the bottom. Totally gave me a tooth ache, but totally worth it!

My dear friend Lisa Pitman who took out time to meet me on a working day!
Thanks for breakfast and the awesome goodie bag!

Try choosing from that! And that is only one shelf

 Some raw tarts

Gluten Free Scones

My Gluten Free Sundried Tomato and Olive Scone with vegan butter

 This is how my cupcake looked by the time I got to it! 
Note to self: Just eat it at the store.

All hot dog carts in Toronto have veggie dogs

You can choose your toppings from the display on the side of the cart

Veggie Hot Dog

A huge Vegan Tiramisu from Red Velvet Cafe
Took me a while to eat that

 Veggie Wrap made vegan, again from Red Velvet Cafe

These few pictures are from the Westside Market in Downtown Cleveland. The Market was abuzz with activity on a Friday morning since it was celebrating a 100 years! 

Fresh Mushrooms ready to grill 

 Greens for Salads

Potatoes in many different colours 


Peaches, Avocados, Kiwis, Apricots, Bananas and more 

Jalapenos anyone? 

Coloured Peppers/ Capsicums 

Of course there was a meat and cheese section in the market, but they also had a whole bunch of vegan meats, spreads and cheeses

That's about it for now. The next lot of pictures will be up soon are here!

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