Thursday, November 11, 2010

Vegan Mofo: From Mexico to Mississippi

For the past couple of days, I've shared photos of my vegan breakfasts, lunches, and dinners on our family Carnival cruise to Cozumel, Mexico. While I found plenty to eat on the boat, I also ate pretty well on land during the trip.

On Saturday, our ship — the Carnival Triumph — docked in Cozumel, Mexico just after breakfast. Another Carnival ship, the Ecstasy, docked right next to us a few minutes later. Check out this view of the two ships from the shore in Cozumel:

By the way, you might have noticed that I misspelled "Cozumel" in my last two posts (both have been corrected). Thanks to a commenter for catching the error. I was spelling it with a "y" as "Cozymel" instead of a "u" as "Cozumel." I blame that on the fact that Memphis used to have a restaurant called "Cozymel" with the "y." Oops!

Anyway, after a bit of shopping in the tourist area of Cozumel (yes, I bought LOTS of Mexican wrestler masks!), we wandered off the beaten path in search of a quiet place to eat lunch. An employee at a nearby hotel suggested we try Las de Guanatos .... and he gave us a coupon for three free drinks!

I chose a plain margarita on the rocks, and it was one of the best I've ever had:

My parents opted for blended mango margs:

Their menu didn't have any vegetarian options, so I asked the server if they could make me some vegetarian fajitas. He said that wouldn't be a problem, and then he brought us these homemade corn tortilla chips with the world's most perfect dish of pico de gallo for snackin' while we waited:

When our food finally arrived, I was so delighted to see what the chef had concocted for me — French Fry Fajitas!

Some healthier vegans might have been disappointed, but I can think of no greater meal than sauteed French fries, peppers, and onions piled onto a homemade corn tortilla. Carbtastic! This reminded me of a Mexican version of my favorite New Orleans sandwich, the French Fry Po' Boy. I wasn't so sure about the beans being totally vegan, but I ate them anyway. Sigh. And the guacamole was out of this world!

After lunch and more shopping, we boarded the boat to head back to New Orleans. You've already seen what I ate on the ship Saturday night and Sunday. On Monday morning, we docked in NOLA, made our way off the ship, and piled into the car for the six-hour drive from NOLA to Memphis.

As if by fate, we just so happened to be passing through Jackson, Mississippi around lunchtime. Since it was a weekday, that meant my favorite vegan lunch-only diner — the High Noon Cafe — was open. The High Noon Cafe serves delicious vegan fare inside the Rainbow Grocery Co-op, but it's a three-hour drive from Memphis so I only eat there about once a year ... when we're passing through for a New Orleans trip.

This time, I opted to start with the soup special — Tomato Lime:

This chunky tomato soup was well-spiced with only a hint of lime. It was served with a half-slice of sprouted grain bread.

Since we'd been pigging out on the cruise all weekend, I wanted something a little healthier for my entree (had to make up for those French fry fajitas!). I decided on the Blue Bowl:

Brown rice is topped with flavorful baked, marinated tofu, lightly steamed carrots, cauliflower, and edammame. And it's topped with a yummy Thai peanut sauce. The perfect end to a lovely family vacation.

On another note, y'all should get over to Rick the Health Sleuth's blog to enter his giveaway of Nacho Mama's Vegan Queso. This stuff is all natural, low-cal, animal-free vegan cheeze dip. I wish I coulda had some of that to top my French fry fajitas. The contest is open through Nov. 17th, but get over there now!


The Health Sensei said...

french fry fajitas FTMFW!!!! whoa!

get in my giveaway lady, you'll love the Nacho Mom's Queso!


panda with cookie said...

I think there is nothing disappointing about a french fry fajita.

Erin said...

Oh my gosh, the french fry fajitas are hilarious! That's actually a pretty creative and resourceful dish for a place that may not do vegetarian stuff too often. I bet it was awesome.

aimee said...

French fry fajitas sounds fabulous...especially on vacation! I've never been on a commercial cruise. Do you recommend the experience? Thoughts on the subject?

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Suzanne said...

I agree with Erin about the creativity and resourcefulness of the french fry fajitas!
But how I miss the High Noon Cafe!!! I had my first "Buddha Bowl" there(sigh)way back when they were just about the only option available in Jackson.....I need to plan a visit back home for sure!

Amey said...

french fry fajitas... a new food group!!

Sophia said...

I've been wanting to go on a carnival cruise for awhile now! Knowing that the food seems to be pretty good, and they really seem to make a really great offer for us Vegans, although I'm actually allergic to dairy. So might be a little more difficult for me. But its nice to now that it is actually a possibility. Thanks for writing all about your trip, I enjoyed it!


Kristen's Raw said...

Sounds fantastic. :) Love the french fry fajitas - lol

Janessa said...

those mango margaritas look heavenly. and the french fry fajitas--oh my goodness! i may need to recreate those at home.

Jenn said...

Looks like a fantastic vacation. French fry fajitas sounds pretty interesting.

Anonymous said...

Those fajitas are hilarious! It seems like the chef was not only inventive, but a bit of a comedian,too! I'm glad you liked them - what perfect vacation food!

Monique a.k.a. Mo said...

Margaritas! Chips w/ pico! Sounds like a good time.