Tag Archives | tasty

VeJEWtarian Beginning of Spring Meet-up!

Vegan/ Veg­e­tar­ian? Jew­ish? Come to the veJEW­tar­ian begin­ning of spring meet-up! Please pass this on to any­one you know who might be inter­ested!
Thanks! Happy Spring 🙂

Oy Vegan!

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Indian Night, Oy!

Dis­re­gard the yid­dish def­i­n­i­tion of Oy for this post­ing as my din­ner and cook­ing expe­ri­ence was any­thing but a disappointment!

Last night my boyfriend and I decided to go on a bit of an adven­ture. We wan­dered down to Coxwell and Ger­rard in the east end of Toronto to lit­tle India/Pakistan. A lit­tle birdie had told us that the best place to buy spices was a shop called Kohi­noor Foods on Ger­rard Street. Boy, was this birdie right!

From the out­side it looks like a neigh­bour­hood con­ve­nience store. Inside, Kohi­noor Foods’ walls are lined with prod­ucts straight from India and Pak­istan. One wall is ded­i­cated solely to spices and legumes pack­aged by Kohi­noor Foods them­selves and priced quite rea­son­ably. We bought a large num­ber of spices for our planned feast. 200 grams of a spice is $2.99– not too shabby con­sid­er­ing the same spices cost up to twice that amount in Loblaws, Sobey’s and Metro. Not to men­tion, a lot of these spices are harder to come by in your aver­age gro­cery store.

The scene in the store reminded us of our time in India, many peo­ple came in and out demand­ing dif­fer­ent prod­ucts and the shop­keep­ers politely tried to cater to their needs.

Din­ner

For din­ner, we decided to make the fol­low­ing dishes using recipes from one of our favourite Indian chefs, Man­jula Jain. Watch below for a video tuto­r­ial on how to cook each of these recipes from Man­jula her­self! You can also click on the title to see the recipe writ­ten out.

1. Aloo Gobi (Pota­toes and Cauliflower)

2. Plain white bas­mati rice– Indian style

3. Bain­gan Bharta (Eggplant)

 

The Aloo Gobi (pic­tured below) was lighter than most, flavour­ful and almost trop­i­cal. We did  have to add quite a but more water than is writ­ten in the recipe. We also used less chilli as we can’t han­dle much heat. All in all a very tasty Aloo Gobi!

 

Fol­low­ing her direc­tions exactly yielded the per­fect Indian bas­mati rice (pic­tured below) . Yum!

The Bain­gan Bharta (pic­tured below) was deli­cious. The sautéed red pep­pers do make for a lovely light crunch. Again, I didn’t use as many chills as the recipe called for. We ate this with Dal Puri (type of Indian bread) which we bought at Kohi­noor Foods.

Cook­ing with all of these spices was a won­der­ful aro­matic expe­ri­ence. I’m so excited to try other dishes using these and other spices in the future. If you like Indian food, you’ll have a blast try­ing Manjula’s recipes. She also has a whole vegan sec­tion on her web­site which is really helpful.

Happy Cook­ing!

Oy Vegan!

 

 

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Totally Fabulous Vegan Bakeoff!

My stu­dents and I (photo by Bar­bara Allen), vegan cookie sam­pler plates, and my pre­sen­ta­tion! (Pho­tos by Sasha Arfin)

On Sat­ur­day Feb­ru­ary 4th, I par­tic­i­pated in the Toronto Veg­e­tar­ian Association’s Totally Fab­u­lous Vegan Bake­off with my gluten-free choco­late zuc­chini loaf. Check out my recipe below!

The event took place at 918 Bathurst Street — a cool com­mu­nity cen­tre with lots of space for events, classes and what­not. The last time I was in the main the­atre space, I was audi­tion­ing for Woody Har­rel­son for a com­edy he wrote and directed last year at Hart House The­atre. 918 Bathurst, while being a great space for audi­tions, was a lit­tle small for the amount of peo­ple who came out for this year’s bake-off. The turnout was amaz­ing! Appar­ently the line went all the way down Bathurst and almost hit Bloor St.

I entered the com­pe­ti­tion in the gluten-free choco­late cat­e­gory. I didn’t win, but I’m pretty sure I came in sec­ond. How­ever, it wasn’t about win­ning or los­ing (says the loser), it was about the expe­ri­ence! So many veg­ans, veg­e­tar­i­ans, and non-veggies came out to sam­ple the many fab­u­lous treats. Local celeb vegan chef Doug McNish judged best in show and even Cana­dian TV and radio gem George Strom­bolopolous made an appear­ance. Appar­ently, Strombo is try­ing out the vegan lifestyle and I have to say, he looks great!

Pho­tos by Sasha Arfin

There was fab­u­lous local cof­fee sup­plied by Kens­ing­ton Market’s Moon­bean Cof­fee  as well as reg­u­lar, vanilla, and cap­puc­cino flavoured soy milk from Nutrisoya.

Many thanks to my par­ents for help­ing me plate my choco­late zuc­chini loaf and for trans­port­ing the sam­ples and dis­play to the venue. Also, a shout-out to my sis­ter Sasha Arfin for mak­ing an incred­i­bly beau­ti­ful sign for my loaf! (See below for sign and recipe!)

Pho­tos by Sasha Arfin

 

Check out this mini high­light video by Richard Arfin!

My gluten-free Chocolate Zucchini Loaf

Jamie’s Gluten-Free Chocolate Zucchini Loaf
This loaf is deli­cious! The zuc­chini adds mois­ture and an amaz­ing tex­ture to the loaf. That com­bined with choco­laty goodness–trust me, it won’t last very long.

Ingre­di­ents:

  • 2 cups brown rice flour
  • 1 1/2 tea­spoons guar gum
  • 1/2 tea­spoon salt
  • 1 1/2 tea­spoons bak­ing soda
  • 1/2 cup unsweet­ened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup gran­u­lated sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tea­spoon cinnamon
  • egg replacer — equiv­a­lent to 2 eggs worth
  • 1/2 cup organic canola oil
  • 1 tea­spoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 3 cups grated unpeeled zucchini
  • 3/4 cup semi-sweet choco­late chips

Prepa­ra­tion:

Pre­heat oven to 350° F / 176° C

Lightly grease or oil two 8-inch loaf pans OR two 12-cup muf­fin tins

Place flour, guar gum, salt, bak­ing soda, cin­na­mon and cocoa pow­der in a medium bowl. Use a wire whisk to combine.

In a large bowl, place oil, sug­ars, egg replacer and vanilla and mix until fluffy. Stir in apple­sauce and shred­ded zuc­chini. Stir flour mix­ture into bat­ter until just com­bined. Fold in choco­late chips.

Divide bat­ter between pre­pared loaf or muf­fin pans and bake for 50 min­utes for loaves or 25–30 min­utes for muffins or until a tooth­pick inserted in the cen­ter of loaf or muf­fin comes out clean.

Allow to cool on wire rack for 10 min­utes before turn­ing out.

Yields about 24 muffins or 8–10 slices per loaf

 

Oy Vegan!

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Happy Chinese New Year! Welcome the year of the Dragon!

 

Kung hei fat choi!

Wanted to share some great veg­gie Chi­nese recipes for the Chi­nese New Year! This year is the year of the dragon!

On new year’s day, it is cus­tom­ary to eat Jai, a Bud­dhist Chi­nese veg­e­tar­ian dish. Jai is meant to bring good luck for the com­ing year and is also served because veg­eta­bles cleanse the body. So true, so true! So on Mon­day, eat some Jai and get a fresh start on the year of the Dragon.

Restaurantbaby.com has a pretty awe­some recipe for Jai. You can also check out chow.com’s cook­ing with Grandma series below.

 

Other lucky foods to eat on the new year are:

• long noo­dles– the longer the bet­ter as they are sym­bolic of long life

• tan­ger­ines and oranges– these sym­bol­ize wealth and luck

• long leafy greens and long beans– these sym­bol­ize long life and luck for your parents

So, Kung hei fat choi every­one! Click here to see your Chi­nese Horo­scope for 2012– the year of the Dragon.

Oy vegan!

 

 

 

 

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veJEWtarian meet-up!

Just doing a last call to those who are inter­ested in attend­ing our Jew­ish veg­e­tar­ian and vegan group in Toronto. We’ll be meet­ing tonight at Sadie’s Diner. Can’t wait to see you all there!

Oy Vegan!

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Top 5 Hanukkah Recipes!

Wowweee! It’s been a whirl­wind Hanukkah sea­son! I thought I would take a moment to big up some deli­cious vegan Hanukkah recipes for those of you who are won­der­ing what the heck you can eat at your fam­ily and friends’ gatherings.

1. Latkes– OBVIOUSLY! Check out my recipe below!

Jamie’s Vegan Latkes

Ingre­di­ents:

1 1/2 pounds of organic potatoes

3 large yel­low onions

3 or 4 large car­rots (optional)

Hand­ful of  fresh pars­ley (3 or 4 table­spoons chopped)

Fresh or dried thyme (2 table­spoons) (optional)

1/3 cup of spelt flour

1/2 tea­spoon of bak­ing powder

1 tea­spoon of egg-replacer in an egg’s worth of warm water

Salt and pepper

Organic Canola Oil

Prepa­ra­tion:

Pre­heat the oven to 250 degrees F. After you’re done fry­ing them, you can keep the latkes warm in a casse­role dish or on an oven safe plate until they are ready to be eaten.

Peel pota­toes and grate them. Remove outer skin from onions and coarsely chop in a food proces­sor or grate. Peel and grate car­rots. Place pota­toes, onions, car­rots, flour, bak­ing pow­der, salt, pep­per, pars­ley and thyme in a large bowl and mix together. In a sep­a­rate lit­tle bowl, mix egg replacer in about 2 table­spoons of warm water. Mix until all the egg replacer has dis­solved. Pour mix­ture onto latke bat­ter and combine.

Put a fry­ing pan over medium high heat and wait until the pan is thor­oughly heated before pour­ing canola oil. Tip: to ensure the latkes won’t stick, let the pan heat up for 3– 4 min­utes before pour­ing the oil in.

Splash some oil in the pan (enough to cover the bot­tom of the pan). Use a table­spoon to scoop out latke mix­ture and drop into pan. Watch out as the oil is hot! Repeat with how­ever many latkes you can fit into the pan depend­ing on its size. Let fry for 2–3 min­utes or until golden brown then flip and let them fry on the other side for 2–3 min­utes. Repeat with rest of the latke bat­ter until you’ve use it all up. You will need to keep adding more oil to the pan as needed.

I like to put out a sheet of paper towel to place my cooked latkes on to absorb the oil while I’m fry­ing the rest of the bat­ter. Then I place them in a casse­role dish and throw them in the oven until peo­ple are ready to nosh!

2. Vegan Sour Cream.- (Note: recipe at the bot­tom of page– under taco salad recipe)

3. Apple­sauce

4. Maple Roasted Brus­sels Sprouts

5. Rugelach- I use Rasp­berry Jam instead of Apri­cot– feel free to sub­sti­tute nuts as well! ( I also don’t use raisins– it’s really up to you)

 

Enjoy your Hanukkah! Here at Oy Vegan, we want to wish you a new year filled with miracles!

Oy Vegan!

 

 

 

 

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Oy Vegan takes London! Restaurant Review: Manna

Here it is! The final install­ment of Lon­don restau­rant reviews. We did visit some oth­ers while we were there, but these were the best!

It just so hap­pens that the old­est vegan estab­lish­ment in Lon­don is also the best! Manna has been open for forty-five years accord­ing to the owner, whom I chat­ted with after my meal. You wouldn’t know it from the looks of it. The décor is mod­ern and upscale. And the food is… well, superb.

We came for brunch with friends and were so impressed that we came again that evening for din­ner with dif­fer­ent friends! For brunch I ordered a full tra­di­tional Eng­lish break­fast. It was lovely. It came with beans, fried mush­rooms, scram­bled tofu, grilled toma­toes and pota­toes. It was hearty and well sea­soned. A great way to start a full day of sight­see­ing downtown!

Above: Tra­di­tional Eng­lish Breakfast

Then we couldn’t resist order­ing dessert. We ordered the banof­fee tri­fle which is a pop­u­lar British dessert. This tri­fle was com­posed of cubes of dark choco­late cake, bananas, sliced almonds, tof­fee sauce, and cus­tard. It was all topped with whipped cream. If you served this to a non-vegan, they would have no idea. It was amaz­ing. It also hap­pens to be gluten free!

Above: banof­fee trifle

Later, for din­ner, we ordered a vari­ety of dishes. For starters we ordered the spiced jerk tofu, plan­tain & sweet potato kebab and the raw maki rolls. Both were delight­ful. I espe­cially like the wasabi pea coulis driz­zled all over the plate that accom­pa­nied the maki rolls. The jerk tofu was well sea­soned and the plan­tain was scrumptious.

Above: Raw Maki Rolls — raw ‘riced’ parsnip, car­rots, beet­root, and avo­cado, served with tamari, pick­led gin­ger and wasabi pea coulis

For our mains, we ordered the root veg­etable tagine, the organic spaghetti and veat­balls, the chef’s spe­cial pasta and the ravi­oli, which I ordered. The ravi­oli were big­ger and fried. They were stuffed with wal­nut and wild mush­room paté and cov­ered in a fen­nel cream sauce. They were deli­cious.  I also tried the other dishes. I espe­cially like the chef’s spe­cial pasta. It was in a cream sauce as well with fresh yel­low bell peppers.

Above: root veg­etable tagine — served in a roasted pump­kin bowl, topped with bean curd sesame falafel, warm quinoa & pis­ta­chio tabouleh, harissa & minted yoghurt and pitta bread

Above: organic pasta of the day

Above: organic spaghetti & veatballs

Above: ravi­oli — a crisped ravi­oli filled with wild mush­room & wal­nut pâté with fen­nel cream sauce, sun­dried tomato pesto & bal­samic reduction

Finally, we were stuffed but we couldn’t resist order­ing dessert. We ordered the fruit salad and the petits fours. The fruit was super fresh and flavour­ful and the soy based vanilla ice cream was delec­table. The choco­late truf­fles were rich and deca­dent. I was espe­cially impressed with the Ital­ian style almond cook­ies. Some had a bit of pre­serves and oth­ers were plain. The con­sis­tency of the cook­ies were fab­u­lous. They were chewy and per­fectly sweet. A great way to end an incred­i­ble meal.

Above: Fruit salad with vanilla vice cream

Above: Petits Fours– a plate of truf­fles, choco­lates & small biscuits

You can read more of Manna’s menu here.

The friends we brought for din­ner are non-vegetarians/ veg­ans and they were rav­ing about the food. They said they wanted to come and bring other friends. This is what good upscale vegan din­ing can do. Manna is the per­fect place to bring non-veggies and impress the heck outta them. Any­thing to make the lifestyle more attrac­tive is a great in my opinion!

Manna was the per­fect end­ing to our stay and I highly rec­om­mend it to any­one and every­one vis­it­ing Lon­don in the future. We need more restau­rants like this in Canada and around the world. Let’s knock the culi­nary socks off non-veggies and show them what vegan eat­ing can really be: deca­dent, ele­vated, and healthful.

Oy Vegan!

Manna is located at 4 Ersk­ine Road, Prim­rose Hill, London

Clos­est tube sta­tion: Chalk Farm

Hours: Tues-Sun 6:30pm-10:30pm/ Sat-Sun 12-3pm

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Oy Vegan takes London! Restaurant Review: Itadaki Zen

Japan­ese food and the term ‘vegan’ aren’t com­monly uttered in the same sen­tence. When I was in Japan last year, it was quite dif­fi­cult to find food that didn’t have fish in it in some form or another. So it might sur­prise you to know that in the heart of Lon­don, near King’s Cross tube sta­tion there exists a Japan­ese restau­rant that is com­pletely organic and vegan!

Itadaki Zen  even sources its veg­eta­bles from its own organic farm just out­side of Lon­don. We went there on a Fri­day evening when the city was really buzzing. After being seated, I was delighted to read their mis­sion state­ment as a vegan organic restau­rant on the first page of their menu. You can read more about their vision here.

There were many options rang­ing from tra­di­tional Japan­ese food to a few Korean options such as home­made Chap che (sweet potato glass noo­dles with veg­eta­bles and shi­take mush­rooms). I regret not order­ing it as it looked really deli­cious when I saw it come to our neigh­bour­ing table.

We ended up order­ing a num­ber of items à la carte instead of choos­ing one of their set menus (which looked tasty as well). I started off with Miso soup and we shared a salad.

Above: Tofu steaks with spe­cial sauce and salad with seaweed.

Then we ordered Tofu Steak in Yangyeom (a spe­cial home­made sauce) and assorted veg­etable and sea­weed tem­pura. We also ordered an assorted sushi plate and an udon bowl. Both were delicious.

Above: Assorted veg­etable and sea­weed tempura.

Each dish was expertly sea­soned. You could tell that they use fresh organic qual­ity ingre­di­ents. There was a beau­ti­ful sim­plic­ity to the dishes that let the ingre­di­ents speak for themselves.

Above: cucum­ber and mush­room assorted sushi

Above: Kabocha (Japan­ese pump­kin), jujube and chest­nut cake with vanilla tofu cream.

Lastly, we indulged in a dessert. Usu­ally, I don’t get dessert at Japan­ese restau­rants, but the Itadaki Zen muf­fin descrip­tion looked too good. I’m so glad we got it. It was del­i­cate and divine. The pump­kin cake was won­der­ful, not overly sweet which I appre­ci­ate, and the tofu vanilla cream was the per­fect accompaniment.

All in all, Itadaki Zen is a must for any veg­head in Lon­don. Read more of their menu here. The ambi­ence was lovely, the ser­vice was great and the food was top notch.

Oy Vegan!

Itadaki Zen is located at 139 King’s cross Road, London

Hours: Mon-Thu 18:00-22:00/ Fri,Sat 18:00–22:30

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Oy Vegan takes London! Restaurant Review: Inspiral

Who knew Lon­don had so many scrump­tious vegan estab­lish­ments? Actu­ally, I had an inkling. I mean, the term “vegan” was coined there after all.

So for all you veg­gie jet set­ters, I want to share some of my expe­ri­ences and reviews of the hottest veg­gie spots in Lon­don. Watch out for Ams­ter­dam restau­rant reviews com­ing soon!

After a short overnight flight across the pond, I was ready to eat some­thing fresh and healthy. Luck­ily, my boyfriend was already in Eng­land and was ready to eat! After drop­ping off my bags, we walked down Haver­stock Hill to Cam­den Town to a lovely vegan café called Inspi­ral.

Here you can choose from their hot food bar and fill up a small (£3.95), medium (£5.95), or large bowl (£7.45). The bar boasts dishes rang­ing from bean sal­ads, daal, and roasted parsnips, to scram­bled tofu, roasted mush­rooms, and quinoa. They also have cold sal­ads, and var­i­ous main dishes that you can choose from. I opted for the Spelt Crusted Chunky Veg­etable Rata­touille upon rec­om­men­da­tion of the girl behind the counter with Amy Winehouse-esqe black cat eyeliner.

Above: Spelt Crusted Chunky Veg­etable Rata­touille, steamed greens, mush­rooms, bean salad and vegan gar­lic mayo.

We set­tled down to eat at a table over­look­ing the river and Cam­den mar­ket. The food was flavour­ful and fresh. A relief and a com­fort after a day of trav­el­ling! They also offer a gen­er­ous dol­lop of their home­made vegan mayo on the side for dip­ping pur­poses. I chose the gar­lic mayo. It was light, fluffy and delicious.

They also sell pre-packaged foods such as assorted tasty flavours of kale chips. Inspi­ral was a great vegan din­ing expe­ri­ence and very well priced for Lon­don. Need­less to say, we came back to eat here a few more times before leav­ing for Holland.

Oy vegan!

Inspi­ral is located at 250 Cam­den High St, London

Hours: Mon­day to Thurs­day 9:00 — 22:00/ Fri­day — Sat­ur­day 9:00 — 2:00 (late)/ Sun­day 9:00 — 23:30

near­est tube: Cam­den Town

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Awesome Vegan Halloween Recipes!

Hi All,

So, like many of us veg­ans and veg­e­tar­i­ans, you might be won­der­ing what you’re going to indulge on this Hal­loween. Good news! I’ve com­piled some awe­some recipes from some super cool blogs to help you have a spook­ier and more fes­tive Hal­loween! muha­hah­ha­ha­haha! (evil laugh)

THE LIST!

1. Check out these mummy piz­zas from Vegan Miss!

2.  Munch on some pump­kin quinoa gra­nola from I Heart Well­ness!

3. Chow down on these spooky spi­der­web brownie bites from The Fam­ily Kitchen!

4. Indulge in some vegan gluten free twix bars (made these. They’re awe­some!) from Forks and Beans!

5. And, of course, you should read the Offi­cial Guide to Vegan Hal­loween Candy from Veg­News!

 

Happy Hal­loween!!!!!!

Oy Vegan!

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