Making it work

Traveling/being on the go/dining out with friends must be navigated more conscientiously as a veghead.

But I’ve come across some nice options and accommodations during my recent hectic few weeks.

First: Safeway is actually pretty all right.

I don’t often shop at Safeway anymore except for its gas station. I feel I find more options that fit my needs at local chain markets. But maybe I haven’t looked in the right places. More

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Portland: still awesome

A few weeks ago, my boyfriend and I both had separate work things going on in Portland, so we got an extra field trip there.

Seattle’s my city, but Portland is pretty fabulous. It contains elements of my two favorite towns – Seattle and Olympia – in one. Some of the sleekness, bigger-city advantages and pop culture influence of Seattle, with more of the hominess and hippie-ness of Oly.

I continued to find fabulous plant-based food there. Probably my favorite thing about Portland. We herbies are truly at home there.

Take a look at some highlights:

Not pictured is the wonderful beer I had at Burnside Brewing Company. Plant-based grub AND excellent beer make Portland heaven.

Brunch in my belly

Brunch is probably the best thing ever invented. A few times a month, Mike and I try to make it out to The Dish or Five-Point Cafe for brunch, or I like to meet a girlfriend somewhere.

As I’ve said before, weekday breakfast is a challenge for this sleepyhead. I can’t muster effort to do anything in the morning. Often I give up on trying to do my hair.

But on weekends or days off when I’m not out brunching or running around, I’ve taken to my own eat-in brunch. It’s nice. I’m cleaning out my fridge, I’m brewing up some coffee and there is no rush. And then there are leftovers, meaning I have a treat to take with me to work and get a good start to my day. (Boom.)

Everyday Happy Herbivore cheesy cauliflower hash and a tofu scramble. Top with hot sauce.

Everyday Happy Herbivore cheesy cauliflower hash and a tofu scramble. Top with hot sauce.

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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.

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.

Breakfast!

I dig a good weekend brunch, which I seek out once every couple weeks.

Breakfast on a weekday, however? I want to spend whatever 10 minutes it takes to prepare and eat breakfast SLEEPING.

Sleep in warm bed > everything

Sometimes I swipe a Clif Bar or two from the boyfriend. Sometimes I manage to make overnight oats to bring to work. Maybe oatmeal.

But the only thing I really bother with ingesting in the morning is coffee. With the combination of jitters and an empty stomach, lunch can’t come soon enough. Even when I do bring a small breakfast to work, I metabolize it so quickly that I’m still starving for lunch, anyway. More

Veggie VIP: St. Dames

I don’t get to try out all of the veggie-focused restaurants I so want to visit, because 1.) money, and 2.) I am not drowning in companions dying to try a vegetarian or vegan restaurant with me. When I do go out, I’m usually veganizing menu items at an omni restaurant.

But yesterday morning, my lovely friend Amy was kind enough to want to try St. Dames with me for brunch.

It’s located in Columbia City, which is a Seattle neighborhood I never frequent, but I would totally travel to this place from my Ballard/Lower Queen Anne haunts again.

It’s completely vegetarian, with a multitude of vegan or veganizable dishes – they’re totally friendly to making dishes gluten-free, too.

I was so excited about my brunch, I forgot to take photos. Sorry about that. Google image “St. Dames Seattle” and you’ll see. More