great news, folks! our favorite mashed potato peddlers on the planet, bangers and smashed, have come out with a new flavor: lemon artichoke basil!
we tried it and absolutely loved it, even more than the previously blogged about moroccan spices squash flavor. the marriage of tangy and creamy is a beautiful one, and bangers and smashed has it nailed. you have a chance to try the new flavor paired with italian pepper field roast this sunday at eagle rock brewery between noon and 6pm. i know you’ll probably already be in the area that day for our vegan @ verdugo III event, so why not make a day of it and hit up both.
this flavor rules, so be sure to check it out. follow bangers and smashed on twitter to keep track of their whereabouts.Tags: potatoes
heads up! gourmet mashed potato company bangers and smashed will be serving up food at the surly goat on monday night, and they’re coming equipped with vegan options!Tags: mashed potatoes, potatoes, weho
UPDATE: bangers and smashed has just confirmed that they will be selling VEGAN SAUSAGES as well as vegan mashed potatoes at the event! yes! the sausage plate comes with 2 sausages and 2 scoops of potatoes for ten bucks, or you can get 2 scoops of potatoes for $5! so stoked that this event is so vegan-friendly! cheers!
vegans like to celebrate st. patrick’s day by getting drunk, gorging on potatoes festive “irish” foods, and participating in a bunch of needless pinching just as much as other americans…right? right! that’s why surly goat in west hollywood is the place to be this thursday.
Tags: beer, holiday, potatoes
i’ve only been there once, but i’m head over heels in love with gracias madre. the entirely vegan restaurant in san francisco’s mission district serves up huge portions of organic mexican food that’s just fantastic.
we hit up gracias madre a couple months ago, and were shocked by how good it was. we were first taken aback by the amazing atmosphere. i’m used to vegan restaurants being small and often times dingy…but this was a huge wide open space with a clean and colorful decor.
Tags: bay area, caesar, mexican food, organic, potatoes, san francisco, sf, tacos
oh, the knish! i can’t believe i went through life for so long before trying one. the popular new york foodstuff was brought to america by jewish immigrants in the 1800s, and consists usually of mashed potatoes and vegetables encased in a thin layer of dough. of all the places to buy a knish in manhattan, yonah schimmel’s is known as the best, and by default their vegetable knishes are vegan.
we popped by the knishery on our recent trip to NYC, and the food was so good that i know we’ll be back every time we’re in the city. the moment we walked in, i knew we were entering somewhere special…
Tags: knish, manhattan, new york, NYC, potatoes
the baked potato shop in edinburgh scotland would have to be one of my favorite places on the planet. the all vegetarian establishment is more of a hole in the wall than an actual restaurant, and with a small ordering counter and just one booth to sit at, most of their business is take-out. as their name would suggest, they specialize in baked potatoes with various fillings, but also have several other menu items including vegan sausage rolls, samosas, soups, salads and cakes.
we arrived to a wet and dreary edinburgh in late september via the caledonian sleeper, and walked uphill in the pouring rain to open the baked potato shop at 9am. now please be warned: even though the shop opens at 9, baked potatoes are not available until 11am. since the weather was awful and most places were closed at that hour, we set up fort in a nearby shopping mall and decided to just wait until the potatoes were ready. 2 hours in a mall may not sound that bad, but the time we spent sitting in that food court under florescent lights with loud 80s music blasting felt like an eternity. anyways, i am happy to report that when we got back to the baked potato shop at around 10:50am, the potatoes were ready and well worth the wait.
we had a hard time deciding what to order, with the whole shop being vegetarian and over half the menu being vegan. there were cold fillings like hummus, cous cous, and pasta as well as hot fillings like beans, chilli, and curry. but when we saw that vegan haggis was an option, we knew we had to try it. haggis is a traditional scottish dish made from all kinds of disgusting sheep parts, but the vegan version was a quite delicious blend of kidney beans, lentils, nuts, vegetables, oatmeal and seasonings. i’ve never had the real thing so i can’t tell if it tasted “authentic”, but it sure was good. i really wish vegetarian haggis was available here in los angeles.
there are 3 sizes of potatoes available at the baked potato shop, and i highly suggest you get a small or a medium. the medium size is pictured above, and is more than enough for one person. if you look closely, i think it’s actually 3 smaller potatoes split in half. whatever it was, it was incredible. perfectly warm and soft on the inside and slightly tough on the outside.
we also got a medium potato filled with curry, and it was fantastic as well. the filling was a mix of chickpeas, carrots, and cauliflower in a tomatoey-indian sauce. honestly, the perfect food for a cold and rainy day. like the haggis potato, this one was massive even though we ordered the “medium”. so much food, and a damn good deal at under ₤4.
even though we were stuffed to the brim with baked potato, we couldn’t resist ordering some items off the “savouries” menu as well. first up we tried the vegan sausage roll, a long flaky pastry filled up with what i think was soy sausage. i could eat about a million of these things, and like baked potatoes, i think vegan sausage rolls need to become widely available here in the states.
there are also two vegan samosa options on the shop’s menu—one is filled with haggis, and one with traditional vegetables. after trying the vegan haggis on a potato, we went with the traditional samosa option and it really hit the spot. the enormous stuffed pastry was filled up with warm mushy potatoes, indian spices, and peas. so tasty, we couldn’t get enough.
while the food is amazing at the baked potato shop, the atmosphere and service are wonderful as well. the walls are lined with colorful gig posters and as i mentioned earlier, there one cozy booth if you are lucky enough to snag it. we were there early on a weekday and the place was empty, so we were able to sit in and eat. thank goodness, because the weather outside was awful and we had nowhere else to go!
as we were enjoying our meal and ordering item after item, the vegetarian shop owner struck up a conversation with us about everything from fake meat, to our travels, to black licorice. he was so genuinely nice and friendly, not something i’m used to here in los angeles. after we’d shared stories about visiting places around the world, he made us a special cup of tea with hibiscus he’d gotten in egypt!
it tasted so good, and on top of that, what a kind gesture. i will always remember this sweet little shop for its delicious animal-free food, and also for its friendly owner, charles.
seriously if you are ever in edinburgh, you absolutely MUST visit the baked potato shop. its such a charming little place, with such wonderful healthy food. i promise you will fall in love with it like we did. my advice: get there early so it’s not crowded, but not so early that they aren’t serving potatoes yet.
the baked potato shopTags: curry, edinburgh, haggis, potatoes, sausages, scotland, uk
56 Cockburn Street
0131 225 7572
Open Mon-Sun 9:00 (11:00 if you actually want potatoes) – 21:00
the spot is LA’s oldest vegetarian restaurant and most of their menu can be made vegan. we were inspired to go back after reading this blog post about the spot’s healthy options, and lemme tell you, they did not disappoint.Tags: hermosa beach, potatoes
i have made about a million recipes to date with daiya cheese, and so far this is my favorite.
this was adapted from a recipe my mom used to make all the time when i was a kid, and the daiya made it taste just as good as i remember. i really never thought i’d get to eat these potatoes again, so i am beyond thrilled.
recipe after the jump…Tags: daiya, potatoes, recipies
222 veggie vegan is a 100% vegan restaurant in west kensington, a rather nice area of london. they offer a daily lunchtime all-you-can-eat buffet for just £7.50, and an a la carte dinner menu every evening. i’ve never been to the lunch buffet, but have been in the past a couple of times for dinner and have overall been pretty pleased with the place. our last visit, however, left a lot to be desired.
we hit up 222 veggie vegan on a monday evening at around 6pm, and although the place wasn’t that busy, it took us forever to be noticed by the waitress. the entire place was being taken care of by just one server, and she seemed pretty flustered and miserable. when we finally got her attention, we ordered everything at once. an appetizer, two main dishes, and one side dish.
the appetizer arrived almost immediately and was definitely the highlight of the meal. the bean and tofu pancake didn’t taste like a pancake at all, more like rolled up and fried tofu scramble with a delicious sauce and a vegan sour-cream-type condiment. it was really beautifully presented and tasted great; we thought we were in for an awesome meal.Tags: black bean, england, london, potatoes, salad, stir-fry, tofu
UPDATE 9/17: as of sunday 9/20, THE VEGAN BRUNCH IS BACK!!! please go support flore cafe! we don’t want to see this brunch go away again!
UPDATE: unfortunately, due to slow business, the all-you-can-eat vegan brunch at flore cafe has been discontinued. you should still get over there ASAP though, as most of the brunch items are available on their menu.
in breaking los angeles vegan news, flore cafe in silverlake is now offering an all you can eat vegan brunch for just ten bucks every sunday from 10am to 3pm. they kicked it off today with an epic breakfast feast, and i was there to enjoy it.
flore cafe has sparked a bit of controversy on this site in the past, mainly because it occupies the same space as our all-time favorite restaurant, the vegan spot, which no longer exists. the only major grouse i’ve had with flore cafe in months prior is in regards to its decision to sell eggs in what used to be an entirely vegan restaurant…and also it’s owned by the same person who owns flore, an entirely vegan restaurant down the street. well, that issue doesn’t even come into play for the sunday brunch. everything offered is 100% vegan, and there wasn’t a single egg or blob of cream cheese in sight. pure, animal-free, sweet & savory goodness.
my husband and i showed up mid-morning, and the place was already buzzin’ with people. we piled our plates high with tofu scramble, french toast and breakfast potatoes…and even ended up going back for seconds! the orange juice and coffee were flowing like water, and we didn’t want for anything. tons of our friends went throughout the day, and all of them said the crowd was hoppin’ and the food was excellent.
i could really get used to a totally vegan all you can eat brunch in los angeles. flore cafe has stepped it up a notch and everyone should check out this sunday meal.
while i still miss the vegan spot more than ever, it’s great that flore cafe has decided to leave out the eggs and offer a cruelty-free brunch for us los angeles vegans. go and eat it up!
today the many brunch offerings included:
tofu scramble, french toast, waffles, potatoes, fresh fruit, bread & jam, coffee and orange juice.
check out the trays and trays of food, lined up right next to the health code department grade A on the window. flore cafe did raise a question today though (and lex of vegan-la also noticed) when they didn’t provide new, clean plates for each trip up to the buffet line. that could result in contamination and raise some eyebrows with the health inspector. i myself, go with the flow, though. that didn’t stop me!
i filled my plate with the mainly the tofu scramble and vegan bacon, both of which were out of this world! i’ve written about flore cafe’s tofu scramble before, and this stuff was just as good. the chunks of tofu were thick, not all mushed up like in most scrambles, and it came with a generous helping of spinach, mushrooms and tomatoes. the vegan bacon was really small and crispy, and had an absolutely delicious smokey taste. the fact that you can take all you want of this for ten bucks is total highway robbery.
i also got a slice of flore cafe’s french toast. i’ve never had any kind of vegan french toast before, but i can tell you this was better than the real thing. there was a thin slice of really nicely fried bread beneath an absolutely delicious cinnamon batter. i topped it all off with some maple syrup…total perfect decadence!
i asked for a vegan twinkie when i purchased my plate, but the dude behind the counter told me that they no longer stock them. total bummer. so no more vegan spot, no more vegan twinkies. wtf! i’m just so glad that flore cafe came up with the all you can eat brunch…it’s definitely something that will keep me coming back for more, no matter how disappointed i may be when my favorite stuff drops off the menu. and for all you twinkie stalkers, i hear from sources that they are available at native foods.
bottom line is, los angeles vegans, the flore cafe brunch is truly incredible! head over there on sundays from 10am to 3pm to get your share of all-you-can-eat 100% vegan awesomeness. you won’t be sorry, and the food is fuckin’ great.
flore cafeTags: bacon, breakfast, brunch, french toast, potatoes, silverlake, tofu scramble
3206 w. sunset blvd.
los angeles ca 90026
all you can eat sunday vegan brunch. 10am to 3pm, ten bucks per person!
Let me take you back to May 1992. Early one morning I arrived at my place of work in Camden Town, London to see my best friend and colleague of many years standing outside smoking a cigarette. The puffing away wasn’t surprising (heck, everybody smoked then, including me) but the fact that he was sobbing into a handkerchief was of some concern. Upon careful questioning, he told me that his childhood and adult icon, Marlene Dietrich, had passed away the evening before. If you could have seen Michael’s apartment back then, you could not have missed the carefully framed Dietrich posters adorning the minimalist walls, upstaged only by provocative paintings entitled things like “nude male in the snow” and “a man. studied from multiple angles.”
So there I was, in the early 90s with my devastated, vegetarian, gay best friend and colleague who really needed to be cheered up. I decided I was going to take him somewhere really nice for dinner, and set about researching a good place for us to go. I eventually settled on The Gate which at that time was one of very few vegetarian restaurants in London and wasn’t too many tube stops from our place of work. Not only that, The Gate had just won a national award and had been voted the “best vegetarian restaurant in London” as it has many times since.
Yeah, it was expensive, but it’s not every day that Marlene Dietrich passes away so I decided to splurge and treat Michael to a dinner he would not forget. Several courses, a number of beers and two bottles of wine later he was much more pleased with himself and life in general, as was I. To this day, I don’t recall what food we ate, but it was absolutely sublime. Probably not vegan, but I was just a vegetarian then, so the mere fact that stuff wasn’t made with chicken stock was more than enough for me.
Fast forwarding 17 years to last week, the wife and I happened to be in West London where The Gate is located, and I couldn’t resist wandering past to see if we could get a table. After all, the place would probably be packed at 7pm but it would be nice at least to see inside and remember the old days (The Gate is located in an old community hall/church that was tastefully reconstructed for high-end dining, so the architecture alone is worth a visit).
Well, we arrived and the place was empty. There was even some music playing loudly from the kitchen that was turned down just after we walked in. Let’s not forget, the UK is in a major recession now and so $75 a head upscale restaurants probably are not that popular. Regardless, we were seated at a tiny two-top table, served warm bread and handed two large menus (which if opened up together were actually larger than our table) that were stuffed full of amazing sounding dishes.
It was only after extensive scanning of the options on the menu that we discovered (after ordering a $50 bottle of wine, I might add, after which it’s impossible to leave a restaurant) that the amazing sounding stuff all had milk, eggs, cheese, cream or yoghurt in them. There were only three vegan options on the menu, one of which was an appetizer. OK, so it was a vegetarian restaurant, and had I been one, as I was 17 years ago, I would have dined like a king. Again. HOWEVER, The Gate is NOT for vegans. Don’t go there if you’re vegan. The dairy glorification on the menu of “home cultured yogurt” and “creamy sauce” was enough to make me fly back to LA and get a bad noodle salad from Pure Luck.
So, we ordered what we could and enjoyed having this cavernous restaurant to ourselves. The appetizer was a plate of steamed new potatoes and miscellaneous vegetables that was perfectly cooked and well presented. Our main dishes were Red Thai Coconut Curry and Sweet Potato Tortillas which were of high quality and extremely tasty. However, the limited vegan options and exorbitantly high prices ($23 for my coconut curry, and that’s with an exchange rate advantageous to the dollar) meant that we left feeling ripped off (the total bill was just under $100), and still hungry.
The Gate certainly isn’t what it was all those years ago, probably because I’m older, a vegan, drink less and don’t have a recently bereaved friend to console. Although I’m not entirely to blame – The Gate makes no apologies about being vegetarian and clearly caters to vegans as an afterthought. If you don’t eat animal products, this is definitely a place to skip.Tags: curry, hammersmith, london, potatoes, tortillas
It’s no secret that I’m a HUGE fan of Indian cuisine. Growing up in the UK where it is, of course, the national dish has enabled me to be quite discerning when Indian food is placed in front of me. So, I was delighted at the prospect of visiting the Samosa House in Culver City this past weekend to try their extensive vegan selection (they have seven vegan and three vegetarian entrees).
Well, I can tell you that the experience started off really well. The restaurant is deli-style, where orders are placed and served from heated containers right in front of you in a very clean and orderly environment. The service is excellent – the nice man behind the counter described all the dishes, including which were vegan. We could not decide which of the seven to taste, so we ordered them all as two 3-side samplers (with rice and bread) for $7.99 each, and one side (for the odd man out, final entrée: more to come on that).
The seven dishes were as follows:
Potatoes: Pretty much as the name suggests – lightly spiced potatoes served dry in no sauce
Chickpeas: Your common chickpea curry served in a light sauce
Lentils: Usually my favorite side, lentils served in a dark, creamy sauce, of which more later
Potatoes with Long Beans: The name says it all – again, not a very saucy dish
Bitter Melon: Seemed to be small fruits in a tangy sauce. Much more of a condiment than a side, if you ask me
Spinach Tofu: Creamed spinach and small tofu chunks (although there were al most no tofu chunks in ours)
Jackfruit: Pure Luck style jackfruit in a dry curry sauce
We also had a very hearty serving of rice with each sampler (in fact, the rice accounted for around 60% of the volume of each container) and two small chapatti breads. Of course, we couldn’t help but order two of their signature samosas which were wrapped and fried right there. No microwaved samosas wrapped in foil here!
We ordered the dishes to go, and hightailed it through West LA as fast as we could to get home – largely because carrying Indian food in your car leaves a lingering odor that lasts in direct proportion to how long you carried the food for. Although our journey was only about 20 minutes, I could still smell the curry in my car the following morning — even though we carried it in the trunk!Tags: chickpea, curry, indian food, jackfruit, lentil, melon, potatoes, samosa, spinach, take-out, tofu, veganmofo
it’s no secret that i’m always on the lookout for new and delicious vegan food. i try to hit up as many vegan-friendly restaurants as i can in search of that perfect tofu scramble, veggie burger or burrito. that’s why i can’t believe sante la brea has been right here in hollywood, under my nose for the longest time, and i waited until yesterday to try it out.
it first came to my attention when someone from sante delivered the menu to my work. i skimmed through it and one thing immediately caught my attention. right there, printed on the menu was the fact that sante can prepare ANY item vegan by substituting fake for real meat. hell yeah. plus, i did some research and saw that vegan-la had some nice things to say about sante, and that pretty much sealed the deal.
so yesterday, the husband and i headed over to give sante a shot…and everything about it was absolutely amazing: the food, service, atmosphere and presentation were all impeccable. sante la brea gets an a+!
we arrived at around noon, so sante was serving both their brunch menu and their normal dinner menu. their brunch menu isn’t available online, but it was filled with really appetizing stuff. tons of scrambles and omelettes, and of course tofu could be substituted for egg in any dish. we shared the tofu scramble and it was incredible. the fluffy tofu was mixed in with tons of garden vegetables and a delicate seasoning. it was the perfect texture and tasted out of this world healthy. you know, the kind of feeling you get when you are eating stuff that’s super good for you. this tasted really good, and i know it was guilt-free. not much oil or fat, just the right ingredients. it’s so refreshing to eat a meal like this, because i am used to eating way too much junk food!
we also ordered off the dinner menu, and what we chose happened to be vegan, without any substitutions. yay us! the macro ended up being just as tasty, and probably just as healthy as the scramble. i love being married, because it means i get to try two different meals at lunch!
because it’s easier to share, we opted for the wrap, and man-o-man was it scrumptious. it was so simple, yet so full of flavor. the exotic vegetables mixed together with the seasoning and tofu perfectly, and were covered in tangy dripping tahini sauce. so divine. better than anything i’ve ever eaten over at m café, the los angeles macrobiotic headquarters. sorry, m, this shit was so much tastier.
not to mention, both meals came with breakfast potatoes that were unbelievable. it’s so great to have a side (that at most restaurants is so full of disgusting grease) be so light AND delicious. i don’t know how they do it, but sante really puts the time and effort into making genuinely healthy food that doesn’t sacrifice taste in the slightest. we need more restaurants like this.
not just the food is da bomb at sante though, the service and atmosphere are killer as well. the place was empty on sunday at lunch time (a total crime, considering how great sante is!) but our waitress was all over us. very attentive, friendly, and quick when it came to refilling our water glasses. the outdoor seating area was quite lovely too, big wooden tables shaded by curtains and benches with huge fluffy cushions. it was great relaxing in the sun and enjoying our lunch as calming chilled-out electro music played softly in the background.
overall, sante was a great find. they have TONS of vegan options, plus anything they offer can be made vegan. oh yeah, and a grip of vegan desserts as well. hmmmm. i can’t think of a reason not to try them out asap. delicious all the way around.
Tags: breakfast, brunch, potatoes, scramble, tofu, wrap
navigating a new city veganwise can be very difficult and miami, FL is no exception. that’s why i rely on trusty sources like happycow and yelp to tell me all the cool meatless places to try out. the husband & i like to eat at as many all-vegan restaurants as we can, just to support them and make sure they stay in business. so when we heard about om garden, we knew we had to pay them a visit.
located in downtown miami, om garden was just a short drive away from my beachfront hotel. the atmosphere was bright and relaxing, the staff was friendly, and OMG the food was delish. this is one of those places that serves up really great meals that are guilt-free and astonishingly “healthy” tasting. everything is fresh, nothing is greasy, and there is something so light and refreshing about each bite. after eating a vegan burger at most places, i feel like someone has implanted an anchor in my gut. but after the burger at om garden, i felt energized and alive, active and alert.
the whole wheat “bun” was actually more like a thin pita pocket, which suited me just fine. who needs a bunch of thick bread overpowering the delicate tastes of a vegan patty? speaking of the patty, it was superb. vegetables, grains, and other good stuff all mashed together and seasoned perfectly. i don’t remember how much the burger cost, but i think it was around $10. well worth it. especially since i could tell i was eating something made with the finest ingredients.
the roasted potatoes were also excellent. bursting with flavor and not too oily, they tasted so good and like they were so good for me.
the other entree we ordered was the supersonic sandwich. it came with a choice of tofu, tempeh or portabella. in keeping with the healthy theme, we opted for the mushroom. while my favorite was definitely the burger, this sandwich was still scrumptious in its own right.
this sandwich was also, i think, around ten bucks and came on a pita instead of a bun. it was great, except it had to be eaten with a fork because the savory sauces and mushroom juices made the pita too soggy to pick up. that doesn’t matter though, it still tasted amazing. the succulent portabella was huge and juicy—who would have thought a plain old mushroom could be such a perfect meat substitute?
because i eat everything with hot sauce, i was a little disappointed that om garden didn’t have any. what they did have, though, was a little bowl of hot powder. sprinkled on the sandwich, it totally did the trick, without all the evil sodium that’s packed into my favorite liquid.
lastly, i definitely have a penchant for falafel…so when i saw on the menu that om garden sells them by the ball, i had to indulge. who the hell orders ONE falafel ball? me. and it was gone in one bite.
he was a pretty healthy tasting falafel ball, and even came decked out in a little hat made of hummus. doesn’t it look like he’s smiling in the picture. awww. very nice.
in addition to the tasty food and fresh ingredients, the ambiance at om garden is very pleasant. colorfully decorated with lots of windows that look out on green surroundings, om garden is a great place to relax and enjoy your big plate of vegan goodness.
so when in miami, add om garden to your list of places to check out. dine there when you want a light healthy meal, not something decadent. it’s the perfect thing to eat before you go strut your stuff on the beach with all the fit and beautiful locals.
Tags: falafel, miami, portabello, potatoes, veggie burger