March 28, 2013


Before seeing a movie last week, Heath and I stopped by Nanoosh for a bite. 

We shared the Hummus Plate with spicy sun dried tomatoes and pita bread. They have two types of sauces on each table, one red and one green, both very flavorful and a tad spicy. They're both really great paired with the hummus. We put both sauces on everything!
And we also shared farro sauteed with corn, sun dried tomatoes and herbs. I love farro...I'm hoping it will eventually reach quinoa status.
I really love this place, everything is so simple and super flavorful. They have three locations in the city.

March 25, 2013

Parmela Parmesan

I recently came across Parmela Parmesan style cheese and decided to make a Cacio e Pepe - pasta with olive oil, parmesan, lemon and lots of black pepper. My husband gets this often when we eat out and I am always jealous.
The Parmela adds a great flavor - I think nut cheeses are the best vegan cheeses. Paired with the lemon and pepper, it's so so good. It was my first time making this dish and it is super easy. It is very rich, and therefore best served with a light salad.
Here's the recipe I used (I subbed Earth Balance for the butter).

March 20, 2013

NYC Vegetarian Food Festival

Earlier this month, I attended the NYC Vegetarian Food Festival for the very first time. They started this event, just as I moved to Omaha a few years ago and I've never had the chance to come back for it.

I scored a VIP ticket for half off on Amazon Local Deals, and I'm so happy I did. The line was at least two hours long out the door when I arrived on Sunday. And honestly, I don't think I would have waited. 

Inside, cupcakes galore from Jerusalem Bakery (I can't seem to find their website anywhere online...)
Raw vegan ice cream from the Raw IceCream Company
Cookies from Dauphin Bakery
Faux Gras from The Regal Vegan
White Cheddar Puffs from Earth Balance (have you tried these yet? They're phenomenal!), strawberry cream cheese from Go Veggie (delicious!), granola bars, smoothies, juices, dehydrated fruit bites, faux meats, and on and on and on. It was all so good, and great to just sample your way through.
For actual eats, I had the Jamaican Jerk Empanada from V Spot (most on those here).
And a Strawberry Chocolate cupcake from Jerusalem Bakery.
I loved everything about this event. It was so much fun, all the people were so nice and the food could not have been better.

March 18, 2013

Cranberry Orange Cake . Native Foods

Native Foods had a really great Cranberry Orange cake recently. I visited both their Chicago and Palm Springs locations and both offered it as their dessert special.

It's definitely sweet and decadent, so I love that their cake size, while still large, is not nearly as large as a typical slice of cake, which I think is way too much sugar in one sitting. 

I really love cranberries and I don't eat very much of them. They're so good in desserts and my grandma used to make a really great relish at Thanksgiving, which I still make every year.

March 17, 2013

milk + honey granola

I've been really into granola lately and one of my favorites is from milk + honey in Chicago. Even though it doesn't sound vegan, they do make a vegan option with papaya, cashews and coconut. It's so good with coconut milk yogurt.

March 12, 2013

Karyn's On Green . Sides

Heath and I went to Karyn's on Green with some very good friends recently and we tried a few new-to-me side dishes. 

The Crispy Mixed Basket is filled with tempura battered vegetables and steak fries with
Thai cocktail sauce and sweet BBQ sauce. This is so good it's crazy. The broccoli is the best part and I'm in love with the sauces. 
And the Caramelized Brussel Sprouts are served with grain mustard. Aren't brussel sprouts everywhere lately? I love them, and the crispier the better. 
You can see some of my previous Karyn's moments here and here.

March 10, 2013

Lake Street Kitchen + Bar

Last month, Heath and I had dinner at Lake Street Kitchen + Bar in Oakpark, just outside of Chicago. We started with the Black Bean Hummus, served with crudite and toast.
Then it was onto the Arugula and Roasted Garlic Flatbread, without the cheese. Roasted garlic is one of my very favorite things to eat, any type of garlic actually. And I love fresh arugula on top of my pizza!

If you're craving dessert, stop by Munch for a milkshake!

March 8, 2013

Bon Bon

Bon Bon is a great little Vietnamese restaurant in Chicago. 

My husband and I stopped by for lunch last month and shared the Japanese Korokke - fried potato and vegetable croquettes on a bed of shredded cabbage with bulldog sauce.
I followed with the Lemongrass Tofu Noodle Salad - lemongrass tofu and herb salad over rice noodles with lime dressing, peanuts and crispy shallots.
My husband had the Vegan Pho - broth simmered with Chinese mushrooms, onions and ginger, charred over an open flame with pan toasted spices. 
They have all kinds of vegan options on their menu, which is rare for a Vietnamese restaurant. The croquettes were my favorite - it's also very rare to find vegan croquettes - and these were really crispy and flavorful.

March 5, 2013


There's a new restaurant where Ciao used to be (more on Ciao here) in Logan Square (Chicago), called Reno. They're open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Bagels are their focus during the day, and pizzas at night. 

I ordered an Everything bagel with whipped tofu cream cheese and strawberry jam.  My mom used to make a grilled cheese with strawberry jam on rye bread and this really reminded me of it! 

This is the first place I've found in Chicago that offers vegan cream cheese...yea Chicago! Now...these aren't New York style bagels. These are a bit thinner and crispier, which was actually a nice change.
I would love to go back for dinner to try their Beetza - a pizza with shaved beets, hazelnuts, thyme and whipped tofu cream cheese. Doesn't that sound great? I know my friend Susan has tried it, so hopefully she'll comment below :) They also offer marcona almond butter - marconas are one of my favorites. Reno is definitely on my list for my next trip to Chicago!

March 3, 2013

Fritz Pastry . Sunday Brunch

In January, my husband and I spent our last few weeks in Chicago. We tried to hit all of our favorite spots, and some that we'd been meaning to try, before returning to New York. So this week, and next I'll be featuring some seriously awesome Chicago bites.

Fritz Pastry offers a really great Sunday brunch. The menu is always changing but there are always vegan options. 

Last month, our friends Susan and Todd met us there for brunch. Here are some of the highlights...

Mint Chocolate Doughnut. Fritz's doughnuts are my favorite vegan doughnuts, hands down. You can see more on them here.
Their Breakfast Burrito can be veganized, with black beans, potatoes and spicy salsa.
And they also offer vegan Biscuits and Mushroom Gravy, a very substantial and earthy option.
I've heard their vegan pancakes are killer (with flavors like Chocolate Cherry and Carrot Cake), so check their facebook page on Saturday or early Sunday for the menu that weekend!