Seattle Food Porn, Round 2

Round 2 of the Seattle Vegan Food Porn from earlier this month!

How cool is Georgetown Liquor Co?  So damn cool. I think I have to give it the slight edge over Araya’s and hail it as my favorite dining experience of the short trip. It was just so…comfortable.

All vegetarian pub, nearly everything can be made vegan. Amusing, sci fi inspired sandwiches and appetizers.  Free game systems. I played Super Mario 3 on NES! My favorite! Tons of microbrews on tap. Fun cocktail list. I would want it to be my Hungry Tiger Too if I lived in Seattle.  I’ll try to write more about it for the other site – but here are the pics!

Arugula Artichoke Dip

georgetown liquor

Half a Picard and half a Darth Reuben. I do believe my friend Katie Jayne called the Reuben ‘the best sandwich’ she’s ever eaten.

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Lowell – with vegan ham, green chilis, vegan cheese, greens, tomato and spicy chipotle vegenaise with a side of Tofu Chicken Caesar salad.  So. Good. I’d go back and get this same exact meal. Multiple times.

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You can sorta see the game systems in the back.

Georgetown

So, I have this thing for digital jukeboxes…and this one is GIANT! Since I was with my class of 2000 buds, we played music from our high school days. Vijjy insisted on Jewel song after Jewel song, and we sang along sporadically to Semi-Charmed Kinda Life.

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We saw a sign for SOY YOGURT outside Citra Froyo, so we went.  Duh.

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I’m not big on the flavor of yogurt, and this was yo-gurt-y, so I passed after we sampled it, but look how IN SHOCK Katie Jayne is with her strawberry adorned cup!  Note – the counter girl stated it was vegan, and emails from the company bounced back – anyone know for sure?

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I ended up taking an afternoon train instead of a morning one on my final day, and after caffeination, took in a lunch at Plum Bistro on Capital Hill.

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Smoked Northwest Portobello and Tempeh Crepes

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Spicy Mac ‘N’ Yease

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Blueberry Truffle with Sea Salt from Sidecar for Pigs Peace.  Good stuff.

truffle from sidecar

Round 1 is here.

Phew. I’m sure I missed something

An Examination of Seattle Soy Lattes

Victrola Soy Latte

Victrola

Three days in Seattle, and I consumed three soy lattes within 24 hours.

Invincibility. Fortunately, I’d been taking it easy on caffeine the week before, and proceeded to take a few days off afterwards.

Each Seattle latte was, simply put, great. I have nothing but fond memories.

The most memorable was from the staple Victrola Roastery and Cafe on Pike St.

Victrola latte, shot 2

victrola

From my high table, I could see right into their roastery, nice.

seattle

victrola

Before the awesome lunch buffet at Araya Thai, my friends and I popped into Trabant in the University District. I’d been there in the past for a lovely chai, but this was my first time for coffee. My friend Evan, the growing NYC espresso guru, clued me in that they exclusively use 49th Parallel beans, roasted in British Columbia.

Trabant Soy Latte

trabant

This latte was a perfect part of my afternoon.

Well, what do we have here?

'town

On my final day, I had two lattes in the same early afternoon. I ended up taking an afternoon train instead of a morning one, so what else was there to do besides drink lattes and wander a bit? I wasn’t planning on it, but shortly after my Victrola stop, I saw this – and it wouldn’t escape my mind. Also, I had to use their bathroom. FYI, it still opens with a duck.

Stumptown in Seattle. Portland based, internationally renowned.

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Stumptown in Seattle, Soy Latte

stumptown, seattle

The End.

seattle

If you have a favorite Seattle soy latte I’ve missed, please say so!

More Northwest Latte Love:

An Examination of Portland Soy Lattes.

A Second Examination of Portland Soy Lattes.

Seattle Vegan Food Porn! Round 1.

The first of three installments of Seattle food porn! I was  up in Seattle with two dear friends last week for work & play & vegan foodz, no doubt.

In this post, we’ve got visits to Pike Place Market, Araya’s Vegan Thai, Bang Bang Cafe, Sidecar for Pigs Peace, Sureshot Cafe and a couple other sights.

I’ve been to Seattle quite a few times before, and I originally had the birthplace of grunge in mind for my Northwest move back in the day (credit Irene, Stephen, David & co) but Portland won out.  And that was right.  I adore my Portlandy life, but do I like visiting Seattle and becoming more familiar with it.  The journey is just under 4 hours on Amtrak and very convenient!

Towards the photo essay…

seattle

The obligatory market visit.  We were staying a few blocks away. Good morning!

seattle

Araya’s Lunch Buffet – This was my first visit, and I won’t say much more besides I had to stop working on this post before lunch today because it had me craving Thai food! -Additionally, I have a review written (on the train back!) for Stumptown Vegans – so look for that in the future, if you’re intrigued.

Vegan Buffet Greatness

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Katie Jayne’s delicious buffet plate (#12)

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Hot & Sour soup from the buffet (boo, cilantro.  oh, well)

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Vijjy’s fresh rolls (from the regular menu)

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Buffet spring rolls and dipping sauce! And more soup.

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Vijjy’s Spicy Mushroom Soup

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Buffet Action.

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Hotter Buffet Action.

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Leftover soup.

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I stopped in twice at Bang Bang Cafe -it’s a vegan friendly cafe in Belltown, as discussed on a recent Stumptown Vegans podcast. They’re veg-friendly and offer vegans Tofutti cream cheese, hummus, Seattle’s own Field Roast & have a daily vegan mac & cheese casserole.

bang bang

Vijjy’s grilled sammy with hummus & Field Roast.

bang bang

Katie Jayne’s patient bagel

bang bang

Roasted Vegetable & Bean Burrito from Bang Bang Cafe – with delicious, delicately roasted potatoes & whole beans.

I regret not adding their special Southwestern chilis, but alas..  bang bang

though I will say, this to-go packaging killed me a little inside to be presented with.

Pike Place Market – We stopped into this small market across from the main Pike Place Marketplace because I had a distant memory of seeing an unfamiliar soy cheese there and wanted to investigate. And that’s what vegans do.

We were all pretty delighted at how damn vegan friendly this little store was!
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Soydairy section.

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Now onto the real vegan store in Seattle -

Sidecar for Pigs Peace

Of course we stopped by Sidecar and picked up goodies, like all good vegan tourists.  I came home with a very good, locally made blueberry&sea salt adorned chocolate truffle, local tofu jerky, Sunrice spicy tofu and something else I’m forgetting.  I wanted to support them & pick up something I couldn’t get at Food Fight!

The storefront
sidecar

The vegan protein fridge

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Mmm, kombucha & marshmallows

sidecar

CHOCOLATE.

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Katie Jayne was pretty damn excited about the Nacho Chreese Dip.

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I also picked up my two cats a catnip ball to share.

SIDECAR

Sharing didn’t go over very well, but Huxley seemed to have a blast ripping it apart entirely.

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Which brings us to – the pet food section! All veg, with info pamphlets.  For the record, I feed my cats great food, but it’s not vegetarian.

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More Sidecart.

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Frozen section!

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Pizza section!

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Soydairy!

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We were really excited about stopping by the Korean Tofu House a few blocks from Sidecar, to share a vegan special and hopefully super fresh tofu – but alas, they didn’t open till 7pm. Next time!!

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The best vegan pastries in the state?

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The parent bakery of this shop makes vegan scones.  I got one for breakfast the next morning.  It was a good maple scone, and fresh, I can see it being better than average, but I think Katie Jayne likely makes the best vegan pastries in the state, sorry!  But great use of signage promoting vegan items! I think this cafe had a sign for every single item, it was amusing.

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Aforementioned maple scone.

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Vegan chowder! My Yelp  Blackberry App kept telling me to visit here for nearby vegan goodies, and I kept saying, silly Yelp, that must be mistaken!  Yet, while we were walking by we browsed the menu and they have a vegan chowda!

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Hummus from the hotel restaurant. Woop, dried herbs & oil, baby.  At least it was only $5.

hotel hummus (with dried herbs)

Gum Wall

GUM WALL

Did you know Seattle has a famous gum wall?  Well, now I do.

gum wall

One more round of Seattle restaurant porn to go! Featuring Georgetown Liquor Co. (LOVE), Citra Soy Froyo and an interesting visit to Plum Bistro – and the Examination of Seattle Soy Lattes.  Oh, yes.

3 vegans, 1 hotel room

Wanted: Vegan Entrepreneur

What: To Open Vegan Boutique Hotel

Portland has the vegan population. Portland has the flow of vegan tourists. Where’s the vegan boutique hotel? Where’s the quaint vegan bed and breakfast located on super vegan friendly Alberta Street or blocks away from the vegan mini mall district?

Why: …because I’m staring at the photo below of local Go Max Go vegan candy bars in a hotel ice bucket.

3 vegans, 1 hotel room

I recently got together with two friends in Seattle for a couple days of being awesome and vegan and exchanging awesome, vegan goodies.  My friend Katie Jayne made fantastic vegan Tagalongs! Girl Scout style, without the hypocrisy.  This girl needs to open up a vegan bakery!!!!! And my Canadian vegan savior, Vijjy, brought us cartons of  Peppermint Chocolate Vitasoy. AMAZING. We also had the pictured candy bars, scheese, fancy Canadian dark chocolate and yeasted Voodoo Doughnuts.

We had a mini wine & scheese party, naturally.

vegans in a hotel room.

We didn’t have a knife and utilized the plastic corkscrew, like all crafty vegans would.

The wine was vegan, organic wine from Sidecar for Pigs Peace.

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Photo essay galore of vegan Seattle eats & soy lattes coming soon!

The Great Portland Tofu Scramble Census

Portland, OR: Tofu Scramble Capital of the USA?

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There is no denying that Portland is a vegan mecca. People seem to travel from around the world to sample deep fried vegan corn dogs, soft serve from Blossoming Lotus and biscuits and gravy from Vita or Paradox, among hundreds of other delicious ideas that immediately popped into your head. Well, here’s another crown you can bestow upon this city – Tofu Scramble Capital of the USA.

The Stumptown Vegans have joked about how we could spend a month eating nothing but tofu scrambles for future reviews, and have projects and podcasts up our sleeves, on top of recently being interviewed about all things tofu scramble, vegan breakfast and more on Breakfast in Bridgetown. The past few years have seen an expansion in tofu scrambles across this city, overall shifts from cubes to scrambles and a decrease in the many menus that used to say ‘sub tofu/pay more’. Why, I remember when I first talked my way into a ‘subbed’ tofu scramble with smoked tomatoes at Genie’s

So!

I decided it would be, well, fun, to see just how many tofu scrambles are available at different restaurants in Portland. I started making a list and couldn’t stop, and that became a table, which I’m calling a census.

Portland is home to excellent local tofu and some of the best produce in the country, and really, it’s an easy, cholesterol-free dish for any restaurant to offer during breakfast & brunch.  But who’s got your favorite? Who cooks that tofu just right and has the best sides?

The Great Portland Tofu Scramble Census.

Tofu Scramble Location Neighborhood Variety Spices Notes
Asaase Ital Palace cart SW/PSU * * breakfast scramble
Bar Carlo SE scrambled Yes
Beaterville N pressed/grilled Braggs chewy and delicious
Beulahland NE scrambled * sub tofu for eggs
Bijou Cafe Downtown/SW * *
Blue Moose NE * *
Blue Pig SE scrambled * sub tofu for eggs
Bourgeois Z Vintage SE (outer) * *
Byways Cafe Pearl/NW * *
Chaos Cafe SE small cubes Yes wholesome!
Cricket Cafe SE cubed lots of black pepper seriously, lots of pepper.
Crush SE * * ‘Veganator’ + tofu, brunch
Cup and Saucer Cafe various scrambled varies order the special for flavor!
Equinox N/Mississippi cubed/scramble seasonal
Francis NE * *
Genie’s SE cubed No sub tofu for eggs on menu
Gravy N/Mississippi scrambled tur-mer-ic! hot stuff, but eh.
Hungry Tiger Too SE scrambled Yes, light, lots of garlic small and full sized options
Isabel’s Pearl/NW * *
Jam on Hawthorne SE scrambled Yes sub tofu for eggs on menu
Juniors SE Big chunks Yes, light the first to use spice?!
Laurelthirst NE * *
Morning Star Downtown/SW * *
Mother’s Bistro Downtown/SW scrambled/mush *
Old Wives’ Tales Inner Eastside baked Yes interesting.
Paradox Cafe SE squares lightly seasoned available as a side/in #2
Proper Eats N/St. John’s scramble Yes tempeh scramble!
Red & Black Café SE during Saturday brunch? *
Ruby Dragon cart N/Mississippi scrambled Yes tempeh scramble!
Schavone’s SE cubed No sub tofu for eggs
Slappy Cakes SE * *
Star E Rose NE scrambled * daily specials
Stepping Stone NW cubed/large pieces Ask for them (cajun) sub tofu for eggs
Sweetpea Brunch SE scrambled, buffet serving mild rotating brunch items
The Original Downtown/SW * * foie gras fig newtons here.
Tube Downtown/NW scrambled mild served in tacos!
Virgo & Pisces NW * * *
Vita Cafe NE scrambled Yes tofu and tempeh scrambles!
Wild Abandon SE scrambled No reach for the hot sauce.

*If you see something missing, retired or worth mentioning in this directory, please say so! There are places I haven’t managed to order a scramble yet, or I’ve blocked out of my mind.

Italics = my favorite places for scramble.

Onto some tofu scramble examples:

Superhero Scramble from Junior’s.

One of my favorite plates of food in this city (or their Vegan Potatoes + Tofu = Whoa, Yes).

Junior's

Curry Scramble from Jam - on a ‘big pieces’ day!

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Portland Scramble from Hungry Tiger Too. This one wears their cheesy sauce.

Portland Scramble

Greek Scramble from Hungry Tiger Too.

My go-to order here. Because I really love kalamata olives and garlic in my scramble.

Hungry Tiger Too

Vegan Scramble from Jam Cafe & Arthouse on Hawthorne. Adore their jams and hash browns.

Check out the Everyday Dish cooking video to learn the spice mix!

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Tofu Scramble Taco from Tube bar

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Cricket Cafe Make-Your-Own Tofu Scramble.

Tons of black pepper – this was gigantic, but I’ve heard a friend mention theirs was tiny.

Cricket Cafe

Genie’s (Subbed) Tofu Scramble – go for the smoked tomatoes! They have great roasted potatoes and an amazing cocktail menu.

march 2008

P.S. I have to give my friend Bazu credit for the origin of this idea, with her post on The Great Tofu Scramble Debate. Personally, I go all three ways – scrambled mush, cubed, and the in-between.  Oh, and don’t forget about baked scrambles! Not such a fan.

P.P.S. You probably make the best scramble in town.

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Obligatory Thanksgiving Post: w/ Brussel Sprout, Roasted Garlic, Potato & Almond Stuffed Mushrooms

Vegan thanksgiving dinners are up there in my ‘proudest culinary moments’ collection, along with every time I remember to wash my hands after chopping incredibly hot peppers.  As a vegetarian for years and as a new vegan, holiday celebrations tested my patience, as usual, and my attempt at culinary skills.

Potluckin’

potluckin'

Thanksgiving is a day you may make the decision to bring your best vegan cookies and tub of Earth Balance to impress/challenge the level of sanity of an omni table with family and friends, pull out all the vegan stops with a homemade* seitan roast or store-bought Tofurkey for an intimate group, or aim for comfort food greatness with a contribution to a vegan potluck.  Showcasing your North American-Vegan-Thanksgiving-Skills is a beautiful thing on a day revolving around stuffing yourself with a stuffed, dead bird.

It makes you want to Adopt a Turkey, naturally.

I went to my first vegan thanksgiving potluck of the season on Sunday night; my friends Michelle and Aaron host an annual pre-thanksgiving vegan thanksgiving potluck.  I know I’m mentally checked out on Sunday evenings (work in the morning!), so I signed up to bring something I’m comfortable with – stuffed mushrooms.  For some reason roasted garlic and brussel sprouts were calling out to me, so Side Dish Stuffed Mushrooms surfaced. I’m calling them Side Dish Stuffed, but really they’re Brussel Sprout, Roasted Garlic, Mashed Potato & White Wine stuffed, but that’s a bit of a mouthful.  My go-to method for stuffing mushrooms is to reach for the wine & nuts and expand from there, and these have that basis, combined with a tribute to holiday side dishes.

Happy plate. Joanna’s seitan* ruled my world.

potlucky

Side Dish Stuffed Mushrooms (gluten-free)

Ingredients:

  • 3 lbs of white/cremini mushrooms, stems separated and minced (optional: scrape out the gills with a small spoon if you so choose)
  • half a head of roasted garlic
  • 1 clove of minced garlic
  • 6 brussel sprouts, trimmed and chopped
  • 1/4 cup of roasted almonds, finely ground
  • scoop of mashed potatoes (russets mashed with plain soymilk)
  • generous pinch of black pepper
  • dash sea salt
  • dash crushed red pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of dried marjoram
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • generous pinches of rubbed sage and thyme
  • generous pinch of nutritional yeast
  • 2 tablespoons of white wine
  • 1 tablespooon of tamari
  • dash of balsamic vinegar
  • olive oil for sautéing and greasing the baking pan
  1. Preheat oven to 375F and lightly grease a 9×13 glass casserole dish.
  2. Saute the minced garlic, minced mushroom stems and chopped brussel sprouts in a teaspoon or two of olive oil in a large pan for 5-7 minutes, being careful to keep the heat below medium and not burn anything.
  3. Add the herbs, crushed red pepper, salt, pepper, wine, tamari and vinegar and cook for another 2-5 minutes, until much of the liquid is absorbed.
  4. In a large bowl, combine the cooked ingredients, the mashed potatoes, ground almonds, nutritional yeast and roasted garlic with a fork, mixing until well combined.
  5. Using a half tablespoon or other small spoon, fill each mushroom cap with the stuffing. Do not overstuff.
  6. Place filled side up in the casserole dish.  If you have extras, feel free to place overlapping bottom layer mushrooms.  Spritz with oil and drizzle with additional white wine.
  7. Bake for 23-28 minutes until golden brown, checking on them after 20.

Side Dish Stuffed Mushrooms, pre-baked (with chopped extra chunks of garlic tossed in)

mushrooms, pre-baked

Baked:

shrooms

As for the actual holiday this year, I’m bringing homemade seitan and cabbage stuffed gyozas to a vegan potluck, and pumpkin pie brownies from Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar to a Turkey-roke/Faux-turkey-roke. woo!

More Get Sconed! Thanksgiving-ness (since holidays are all about memories, and pie).

Thanksgiving for 2.

More Damn Vegan Pecan Pie.

Sweet Potato Pie Casserole.

Thanksgiving, Schmanksgiving.

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The day my camera died (I was at Slappycakes)

The day my old Powershot died, I was at the start of a boisterous visit with friends to the new Slappy Cakes on SE Belmont.

Emily watches the dramatic first squeezes…

slappy

Where you can make your own pancakes at your own table on a hot grill.

Where their vegan batter is multigrain and remarkably light.

Where the lights are bright, service is prompt and novelty abounds.

Where I felt like I was in Seattle, style wise.

Where the chocolate chips were not vegan.

Where I’d go again, but my impatience and previous squeeze bottle batter experience would give way to ordering my own pancakes and passing on novelty, but cheering my friends with their cute and crude pancake shapes.

Where I was a tourist in my own city, and left with a smile on my face.

Squeeze, Squeeze, Squeeze – Chelsea worked it!

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Side of potatoes

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My attempt at a cat

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I think Liz was making a TV here…

slappy

The adorable addition of bananas = yes, please.

slappy

That’s all for now..no finished pancakes because again, my camera busted and my tears mixed in with the maple syrup on my plate (and then the strawberry balsamic…and then the blueberry).

Look for a review on Stumptown Vegans in the future! Webly is the real pancake pro!  I want to try their tofu scramble options next, I’m all about savoury for breakfast/brunch…