Thursday, May 6, 2021

Sammies, Spaghetti, & Soup!

Memphis has a new sandwich shop, The Backlot Sandwich Shop, and they're working on some exciting vegan specials (a reuben made with roasted celeriac root!), but their regular menu features a pretty awesome veggie sandwich. The Mother Earth has marinated portabella with tomato and cucumber. It typically has a non-vegan aioli, but they can leave that off (ask them to sub with red wine vinegar, trust me!). Portabella sandwiches don't usually excite me, but this one is very well done. The marinade is fantastic! I recommend the Zapp's Voodoo Chips on the side. 

I had a little Just Egg leftover from camping, so I used it up in this Just Egg & Avocado Breakfast Sandwich. So good! I love Just Egg so much!

Last Friday, Paul and I made Spaghetti with Mushrooms, our favorite meal to cook together. Paul makes the mushrooms, and I handle the rest. He adds lots of spicy stuff to them!

Here's a quick Roasted Sweet Potato with Chili & Vegan Cheese. I had some leftover chili in the freezer, so this came together super-fast. I made Sauteed Swiss Chard on the side using some from my CSA.

And here's a quick lunch of Garden Sausage Minestrone & Grilled Cheese. Have y'all tried the Gardein canned soups? They're so good! I wish they were a little meatier though. The whole can had maybe six pieces of vegan sausage. 

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Watermelons, Nachos, & Broiche

Juan, the bartender at Global Café in Crosstown Concourse, is making these awesome cocktails using fresh fruit in crazy ways! A couple weeks ago, they came out with a new watermelon cocktail called Sandia Jolly Rancher, and it's served in a hollowed personal-sized watermelon! I had to try it! The cocktail is made with fresh watermelon juice, watermelon vodka, regular vodka, lime, tajin, and is garnished with fresh mint. It tasted as delicious as it looked!

My friend Mary just moved to Virginia, so we had a little going-away gathering for her at RP Tracks. Most of my friends are vaccinated now, so we've started going out to restaurants again. Yay! I ordered my usual BBQ Tofu Nachos minus the cheese, and I brought my own guac in (picked up from Moe's across the street) because they don't serve guac at Tracks. I always get my chips on the side, so I can save some for leftovers.

I saved half my nachos for the next day, and I dressed them up with vegan cheese, fresh avocado and tomato, and Simple Truth jalapeno-cilantro dip. RP Tracks nachos are good on their own, but mine were better!

And here's a Sweet Potato Brioche Cinnamon Roll with cashew cream from LuLu's at the Cooper-Young Farmers Market. This was a lovely pre-run Sunday breakfast!

Monday, May 3, 2021

Beltane Feast!

Saturday was Beltane, but I had a busy, fun day with friends — an outdoor birthday gathering for my friend Jen's birthday and Beltane celebration on Zoom with some other friends. So I decided to have my personal Beltane feast on Sunday! 

Beltane (aka May Day) is the halfway point between spring equinox and summer solstice, and it's the time to celebrate the Earth's fertility. Where I live, Beltane is the time when temps are finally getting bearable (I hate the cold!), and I can start wearing shorts. I live for shorts season. It's also a time when the garden has been planted, and we're just watering it and waiting for it to grow.

I've been using the Llewelyn's Sabbats Almanac to plan my holiday feasts, so I picked two recipes — neither of which were vegan — and veganized them. This Roasted Beet Salad was my fave of the two!

The recipe called for goat cheese, but I subbed Violife Feta. It was my first time trying it, and it was sooooo good. It really has the same texture and taste as dairy feta! The beets are roasted and coated with a red wine-olive oil vinaigrette. Plus, there are red onions and some tasty salt-and-pepper roasted walnuts. I will make this salad again! I love a well-planned, fancy salad.

I made this Pesto Pasta with Follow Your Heart parm in place of the dairy cheese the recipe called for. I typically make low-oil pestos, but for this one, I used the full half-cup of oil. What a treat! Also, I couldn't find Italian basil this time of year, so I used some Thai basil from the Vietnamese market. They carry it year-round, but it's purple, so my pesto is darker than usual.

Happy Beltane!