November 1, 2013
GHOULS and goblins aren't our only primal fears. There's also the fear of trying certain foods. Don't get spooked, now, but I'm talking about vegan foods. It's odd. Take eating insects: Everybody's hipster-brave about that now, testing their mettle at tastings premised on a global shift to bug-based cuisine. And macho meat-eaters long ago conquered all the more "unsavory" body parts of animals, even if only by way of hot dogs. But vegan cream cheese? Drinkable kale? Weird-looking plants?
October 25, 2013
Company description: "A shredded tofu braised with chipotle chilies, roasted poblano peppers and a blend of aromatic spices," available in a burrito or bowl. Chain: Chipotle. Calories: A serving of sofritas has approximately 145 calories, 11 grams of protein and 710 mg of sodium. Location: 4030 City Ave. Order time: Four minutes. Price: $6.45. Review: The nation's vegan-friendliest chain earned kudos this week by extending its test of sofritas from western U.S. locations to Chicago and many East Coast cities, including ours.
October 18, 2013
CHEMISTRY! Cooking is an art, sure, but it's also a science - specifically chemistry. Especially in the creation of delicious chocolate desserts that are 100 percent animal-free. Fran Costigan has been doing the science since the late '90s, and her new book, Vegan Chocolate: Unapologetically Luscious and Decadent Dairy-Free Desserts , shows great chemistry, not just in the recipes but between her and Philadelphia publisher Running Press. The internationally known desserts diva (just back from Paris Vegan Day 2013)
October 17, 2013 |
New Jersey, this is so unfair. You have a rock-star governor and, Wednesday, you will likely elect a rock-star senator, both potential presidential candidates. In Pennsylvania, what do we have? Bupkus. OK, two workhorse senators and Tom Corbett, who CapitalWatch noted is "unpopular with Republicans, Democrats, and independents," basically everyone except his wife and Airedales, Penny and Harry. How special is Jersey's special Senate race to replace the late Frank Lautenberg? It's been nasty, brutish, short, and exorbitant, costing taxpayers $25 million so Republican Gov. Christie - who acts as though he fears no man - would not have to appear on the same November ballot as Twitterholic and Democratic Newark Mayor Cory Booker.
October 4, 2013 |
Rich Landau and Kate Jacoby, the husband-and-wife chef-owners of Vedge restaurant, are riding a wave that has yet to crest. The couple are reveling in our current vegetal love affair and, more specifically, with the sophisticated cooking that has brought their vegan fine-dining restaurant such critical and popular success. Witness the last several months: Vedge was named one of the country's top vegetarian restaurants by Food & Wine magazine; Landau and Jacoby cooked dinner for one of the world's most famous vegans, Bill Clinton; the couple developed a line of vegan sauces for Williams-Sonoma; and Gwyneth Paltrow even interviewed them for her blog.
September 20, 2013
AH, FALL: Time once again to rake the leaves, pull out the flannel and petition Starbucks for a vegan Pumpkin Spice Latte. Yes, this is a thing: Apparently the base syrup has condensed milk - never a secret, but suddenly, in its 10th year, the seasonal beverage has its own change.org petition. Will it spur Starbucks to change the recipe? Hey, who knows? The company did just that last year when people learned that the red coloring in one of its strawberry drinks was made from crushed bugs.
August 2, 2013 |
What's the best way to end a long workday? Small bites at a fair price. Good company. And, of course, a cocktail. And the best place to get all three? Happy hour. What follows are some road-tested recommendations for good deals at fun post-work hangouts that will surely cure any case of the stuck-in-the-city-in-the-summer blues. For good, inexpensive small plates and groups who can't decide between a party atmosphere or a professional setting, check out Sampan - where you can get a little of both, plus an extensive menu of $2 to $4 small bites.
July 12, 2013
THIS RECIPE by Ganesh Selvakumar, of Broomall, was the winning selection for Pennsylvania in the 2013 Healthy Lunchtime Challenge. LENTIL-SPINACH SOUP AND MINT CHUTNEY 1/2 cup dried, split chickpeas 1 teaspoon olive oil 2 cups packed fresh mint leaves 1 cup chopped onion 2 fresh green chilies, seeded and thinly sliced 1 clove garlic, minced 1 teaspoon tamarind paste 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup water ...
July 5, 2013 |
It was one of the first pasta dinners I made after my sister and brother-in-law announced they were going vegan. We were in their kitchen in southern Maine, where I spent last year helping them with their homestead, and I was making a sauce from the best of the early summer produce, right from the huge garden outside. It was based on the classic French side dish of braised lettuce and peas, but I turned it Italian by tossing it with curly pasta and a touch of mint. As it neared readiness, I needed to make ask them to make one - OK, two - little exceptions to their diet in service of the dish and its integrity.
June 28, 2013
IT'S NO surprise to find a veggie burger on a diner menu. Nowadays, anyplace with burgers that lacks a veggie option is self-consciously retro. Surprising to some, though, is that the same thing is now happening with pizza. To celebrate Vegan Pizza Day - a national event taking place this Saturday - let's survey the local scene. Just a few years ago, vegan pizza in Philly was as scarce as a medium-rare unicorn, but today you can find it at a dozen places, as more businesses apply the veggie-burger principle (don't give a party of people that includes a vegan a reason to go elsewhere)