Portland!

After some tough weeks at work for the both of us, my boyfriend and I went to Portland for the weekend.

My main experience with Portland is my mom taking my brother and me to the Clackamas Mall (quite outside of Portland) for sales tax-free back-to-school shopping. Of course I’ve been to Portland proper, the metropolitan neighbor to the south, but I hadn’t explored it on my own.

Seattle is an easy city in which to be vegan, but in Portland they totally cater to you. I had a waiter volunteer to check on the veganness of a salad, went to places with special vegan menus and you can just say “make it vegan, please” and they know what to do (too many people don’t know what that means, so I always have to specify no mayo/sour cream/cheese/aioli, etc.). Portland is particularly vegan-savvy.

Now eating out with the man friend means seeking out omni restaurants that have something I can eat. Homeboy doesn’t quite get that it’s possible to have a meal without meat.

But it was so easy!

Oh and we drank lots of craft beer. So happy beer is vegan.

Not pictured: a grilled PB and J from the famous Bunk Sandwiches. Yeah I’m gonna make those at home now.

Recommended brewery: Pints.

Maybe next time I’ll go to Portland with girlfriends who will eat at the vegan joints with me.

What vegans eat

I always love vegan food porn where I can peep what other people eat, like what Bianca at Vegan Crunk does now and then.

So I’ll offer up my own food porn. Captured by my crappy cell phone camera. Sexxxxxi.

I need to try all of the places

My boss has kind of anointed me the unofficial food blogger at the Seattle P-I as of late, so of course I had to insert my own interests into my work.

A couple weeks ago I posted a Seattle guide to vegan and vegetarian restaurants. It was fun. And actually attracted lots of traffic. I think it surpassed my superiors’ expectations. We veggies crave to know where to go!

Anyway, if you’re in the know, let me know what I’ve missed. For the sake of limiting the scope of the piece, I stuck to places that are veggie-only. There are infinitely more places that are veggie friendly, of course.

You’re a lucky vegan when …

… your parents visit and decide to bring you a salad, but when the salad they bought for you unexpectedly was covered in cheese, your dad picks out all the grated cheese for you.

My parents are your run-of-the mill omnivores, but they support me.

Par-tay

I like to host semi-regular parties at my house. It allows me to share love with my friends via exciting food and, let’s be honest, it prompts me to keep my apartment clean.

Last month I hosted a birthday/housewarming, well, for myself. (My parents always think it’s funny when I throw parties around personal milestones. That’s just what my friends do. “Hey, it’s my birthday, let’s go out and do karaoke!” It’s not so much self-glorification as it is an excuse to hang out with your besties.)

This would be my first fully vegan party. When I last hosted a party (almost a year ago now, because I went for a long time without a place of my own), I tried to meld my personal burgeoning veganism with more mainstream tastes, making beef tacos and chickpea tacos.

When I dumped the beef into the pan of hot oil, the oil splattered all over my body (I was wearing a strapless dress), face and eyes.

Hot pink burns and blisters visibly formed throughout the night and I crankily, only half-jokingly told my guests to eat up the beef tacos because I sacrificed my body for them.

I visited the urgent care doctor two days later for treatment. I pledged never to make meat just to appease a bunch of people again.

Anyway. This party. I wanted to stick to a vegan menu, but not make it over-the-top obvious that it was vegan. More

This week in news of vegan interest

I know I’ve been an absentee blogger. I’ve had some awesome food going on, I’ve just been lazy. And some of the most exciting cooking I’ve been doing is recipe testing for a fellow Seattle vegan and I don’t want to blow her project. (Intrigue!)

I do have posts brewing in my head, though! Meanwhile, some interesting reads from the past week:

-Less meat = longer life?

-Good news in food and health<3 Mark Bittman <3

-Future of meat: no meat

-The badass Vegan RD debunks more vegan myths

-Cows and REM will be linked in my mind henceforth

-Big ag vs. animal welfare, round 934

Be well!

Update, 3/11/14: OK one more about the water resources dairy products require

Food rudeness

I’m a diplomat and a people-pleaser, so it’s not in my nature to assert my opinions unsolicited or rock the boat in any way.

Yet I also have a slight know-it-all streak and I get enthusiastic about things I learn, so I have to keep myself in check when people just don’t want to hear it.

I read this xoJane column today about “food rudeness”: when people decline food that is politely offered to them and qualify it with “carbs are evil”/”that is so fattening”/”x causes cancer,” etc.

It made me reflect on my food manners now that I’m a veggie hippie.

Your dietary choices are personal and you’re navigating what’s right for you. However, I think what vegans tend to believe — making choices that they feel are good for their health as well as good for animals and the planet as a whole — is that their lifestyle is good for society, too. I mean, yeah, I think I’m doing my itty bitty part to curb greenhouse gas emissions and support vegan foods, but I also know that I’m not going to convert anyone by qualifying my choices out loud to everybody. More

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