Wednesday, March 8, 2017

My Vegan Valentine's

Welp; another year, another candy day to recap.

 

I try to eat only heart-shaped things on V-day. 2017 was perhaps my best work.

  • Center and bottom: Gone Pie lemon tahini heart specialties with chocolate kisses to the left and right. 


In the interest of full disclosure, I ate the points off of each so that I wound up with a plate full of butts.
Why?
Because I'm a hopeless romantic with exceeding levels of maturity.

I also ate an entire 2-level box of chocolates in just two sittings, sharing only the flavors I don't love (read: fruit).
Why?
Because chocolate is the best.


And then there were non-edible festivities...like this valentine I made for 89.


And this great shirt I picked up from VeganPolice.


The Valentine fairy (OD) left flowers for the nerd.


And for meeeeeee (still alive, btw).



89 was more thematically dressed than any of us in the days leading up to V-day- including, but not limited to: pjs.



Her favey gift was this plush dog she smooched for the longest...until she ripped his guts out.


Sounds about right!

Stay tuned, someone has a bday coming up...

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Beyond Burger- Quick Review (by a vegan and an omnivore)

It took me a bit of time to procure the Beyond Burger for two reasons.


  1. I wasn't really sure I wanted to try it. Things that are "just like the real thing" aren't really marketed to me because I never liked meat.
  2. Once it was hyped enough that I did want to try it (am I the only one who talks to people on line in the supermarket when their baskets are full of vegan stuff?), I couldn't find it. Pro-tip: not all supermarkets are stocking it in the meat department as originally stated. In fact, some Whole Foods' butchers will hotly contest it with you because "it's not meat." BUT, extra credit to Beyond Meat's uber-helpful stock guide (are you seeing this, Ben & Jerry's?) that confirms the item is in the store so that even if you can't find it, you can confidently ask for help.

But, I digress.

Ultimately, the Beyond Burger was found in the refrigerated veg section of the Whole Foods I was in: near Tofurky, Vegenaise, and the like. It looked as though it had been shipped frozen and, from what I can discern from the package, you can re-freeze it as long as it's not open (the package contains two burgers in a single, sealed compartment). Overall, pretty darn realistic-looking.


A lot of people reported a meat smell while cooking, but the smell I detected was relatively faint and kind of indescribable- albeit familiar. Perhaps beets? Certainly not unpleasant, just unusual.

Luckily, a friend had already cooked his Beyond Burger in a George Foreman grill only to watch all the juice/flavor drip out, so I was forewarned to use a frying pan (this was a winter-winter day as opposed to one of our recent spring-winter days, so the grill wasn't an option). Note: this is a small pan; the patty is a decent size, but not mammoth.



I don't really remember what a cooked cow burger looks like, but this looked pretty enticing.


And, even more so once dressed (sriracha ketchup, lettuce, FYH american cheese, pickles, no onions, on a sesame seed bun).


This isn't a great interior shot, but I hope you can see the texture of the burger, which was the most off-putting part for me. The burger itself had a very neutral taste, but the "mouthfeel" was too realistic for me: kind of granular-ly lumpy like chopped meat burgers.


I gave OD the other half of my burger to try- expecting him to take one bite and hand it back. Instead, he gobbled it up. I told him the one taste was enough for me and that I'd leave the other one in the fridge for him to have the next day. HE DID NOT PROTEST.

Because it was so obvious that he actually liked it, VM and I kept smirking. Because he can't stand smirking, he insisted that, although it was the best "veggie burger" he'd ever tried (highest compliment in all the land), he probably liked it mainly because of the toppings (big vegan cheese fan, OD?). So, I'd say this was a success.

This is no ordinary veggie burger, my friends. VM and I will stick to black bean-type burgers, but this could really be a game-changer for those looking to replicate meat.