Product Review: Buddha Cups, raw organic dark chocolate almond butter cups!
Your Vegansaurus loves (vegan, fair trade, organic) chocolate, and your Vegansaurus loves almond butter, so when the lovely people of Buddha Chocolate offered to send us a sample two-pack of their fancy gourmet cups, you know we took them up on it.
I cut one in half to share with whoever else was in the apartment that day, namely one of my roommates, her boyfriend, and my brother, all omnivores.
The results were … mixed. While the chocolate was rich, the almond butter was dry and crumbly. The omnis all said they could “tell” the chocolate was vegan; I haven’t had dairy chocolate in like seven years, so I wasn’t really sure what they were tasting that I wasn’t (or vice versa?).
I suspected user error, though—they’d gone from a hot package in the mail to the fridge, and then right back out to a hot apartment—and the second one I let sit on the counter a while before eating it. Much better. The almond butter was softer, the chocolate melted into it, and it was really satisfying. Not too sweet, so you could totally eat one for breakfast (seriously, the fat and protein? Awesome to start the day) if you didn’t want to wait till dessert.
Buddha Cups are handmade in Brooklyn by a couple of awesome vegans, and are available at select Manhattan and Brooklyn locations, or you can buy them online. They’re like Justin’s, but almondy and harder to get! I recommend them. In fact, I’d eat one right now if I had it.
“The exponential growth of the human population will continue to pose a threat to other species. In other words, there does not appear to be a threshold above which population growth would cease to have an incremental negative effect.”—Just a friendly FYI from “Are We Pushing Animals Over the Edge?,” a study published this month in the Journal of Human Ecology. Can’t wait till the only non-domesticated animals only live in zoos!
Fry Bread tacos, you guys, am I right? They’re scrumptious. If you live in the Bay Area, I highly recommend that you visit Rocky at El Rio, because he will take care of you. I realize some of you don’t have that option, or are perhaps too lazy to hop on Muni (it takes like an hour to get there from the Haight), so this is for you. We’re doing a recipe here. Or rather, I’m linking you to the Food Network site, because their recipe worked out so well for me.
Back in March I went on a trip to Phoenix and the Grand Canyon, which I loved. Upon returning from Arizona and inspired by my trip to the Heard Museum, I decided to try my hand at Navajo fry bread.
I followed this recipe from the Food Network website. I was happy with the results. Now, I’m not claiming it’s like, super authentic or anything, but the fry bread was tasty and reminiscent of Rocky’s, so I was pleased. I simplified the recipe a little because I kneaded the dough right in the bowl, just until the ingredients were combined, instead of on a floured countertop. I’m also pretty sure I didn’t refrigerate the dough because it seemed unnecessary and I like to cut corners when I can. Hey, I’m a busy girl (there’s a lot available on Netflix to catch up on).
Let’s be real, I ate two of these guys before they even hit the paper towels.
I topped mine with Daiya cheese, refried beans, lettuce and homemade guacamole.
Try ‘em out, learn a little something about Navajo history and culture, and make a plan to go visit Rocky at El Rio sometime (isn’t it about time you booked that flight to S.F.?)
It’s Paul Shapiro's Animal News You Can Use! Yay, Paul! Yay, animals!
It was a roller coaster of a week, with the biggest news being that the House farm bill—which contained no animal welfare improvements but did contain Iowa Rep. Steve King’s anti-animal provision—was killed yesterday!
(Regrettably, the meat industry lobby prevented a House vote on federal legislation to help egg-laying hens. The fight continues.)
In related news, want to read a great Mother Jones story? The title says it all: “You Won’t Believe What Pork Producers Do to Pregnant Pigs.”
The New York Times editorial board this week slammed the animal ag sector, calling it an “industry that thrives on ignorance.”
And finally, check out this article: “Study suggests chickens are smarter than toddlers.”
P.S. Video of the week: Stephen Colbert’s take last night on the farm bill dispute between Rep. Steve King and HSUS. It’s truly amazing.
P.P.S. 140 years ago this week, Susan B. Anthony was arrested for voting. Oh, how societal norms change …
Tattoo review: James Spooner's vegan tattoos don't hurt (animals)
I was always intrigued by tattoos in my early years, but never thought enough about them to ever want one. Thoughts like Why does that guy love barbed wire enough to have it tattooed on his arm? or I wonder what “tribe” that tribal tattoo represents? would cloud my mind and sully the idea of ever getting something meaningful tattooed on the temple I call my own body. Fast forward to my (really) late twenties, here I am thinking of different designs paying homage to my parental units to be permanently drawn on my skin. I knew I wanted something and began my research about two months ago.
In L.A., there’s really just one choice when it comes to 100 percent vegan tattoo joints. I came across a couple of artists that could use vegan inks, but James Spooner of Monocle Tattoo was the only one who would be using vegan-friendly soaps and aftercare, and, as far as I could tell, the only vegan himself. I remember either an old Quarry Girl post or tweet or something regarding Spooner a couple of years back, so when my own research came back to him, I shot him an email (or nine) with some basic questions. He was extremely helpful and informative, and once I met him in person and he was as excited, if not more, than I was regarding my idea. I knew it was a match. Plus the “Vegan Tattoos Don’t Hurt (Animals)” framed artwork in his shop warmed my heart more than standard adjectives can delineate.
I was ridiculously impressed on Spooner’s ability to put his art on paper based off of my descriptions. He sent me a drawing and the next day it was on my arm, permanently. I’ve never been as excited as I was, still am, about this tattoo. I have many more sessions left to fill in and have it colored, which I feel like a kid on Christmas morning in anticipation. This was my first tattoo but Spooner made it feel like I’ve been there before, and even after 3+ hours on the “table” (it was actually a chair) I was never uncomfortable (other than the needles-into-the-arm part.)
Southern Californian vegans would be making a mistake if they went elsewhere. And if you get a non-vegan tattoo because you like the artist’s work, it’s the same as eating a non-vegan pizza because you like the taste. Ya dig? If you want more information on vegan tattoos or if you’re serious about getting something done, for the first time or 100th time, hit him up. Tell him Vegansaurus sent you.
Andrew E. Irons is a blogger from Long Beach, California. He co-created and contributes to a Rhode Island based Hip-Hop website, The Echo Chamber Blog, under the pseudonym Verbal Spacey. You can track his daily diatribes by following him on Twitter.
Review time! Have you heard the news? Upton’s made a seitan bacon! My general rule on vegan bacon is pass the vegan breakfast sausage but I hear so many good things about Upton’s in general, I thought I’d give it a shot!
I was not disappointed! Of course it’s not exactly like bacon (um, thank god), but it has a good bacon-y flavor for sure. The texture isn’t chewy and crispy like bacon though, but still good. I think it would be better for eating in a BLT or something rather than straight but it was enjoyable off the stove all by itself. Damn, I kind of really want a bacon-avocado sandwich right now! I don’t have any avocados! Will my sandwish ever come true? Stay tuned.
It’s Paul Shapiro’s Animal News You Can Use! Yay, Paul! Yay, Animals!
Jon Stewart may not be on the Daily Show right now, but the ag-gag debate is! Watch this week’s must-watch hysterical segment featuring a former HSUS investigator pitted against the Animal Ag Alliance. You be the judge of who won.
“A tough opponent,” “formidable,” and “sophisticated.” In the rare chance you weren’t able to attend the World Pork Expo in Iowa this week, these are just some of the ways the meat industry is describing HSUS there. We’ll take it.
NPR asked the question last night, “Why is Bill Gates investing in chicken-less eggs?” Want to know? Check out yesterday’s “All Things Considered” great feature on Hampton Creek Foods.
The upcoming week is a major one in Congress, with the House set to take up the five-year farm bill, including consideration of a Farm Bureau-backed nefarious provision intended to harm farm animals, and the federal hen protection bill (which the Farm Bureau and nearly every national meat trade group opposes). Contact your member of Congress now!
Product Review: Sacha Vida Gelatinized Maca fuels your vegan libido!
No animals were hurt in the making of this maca. Photo via Sacha Vida.
Back when I was part of a raw food group out in the middle-of-nowhere Arizona desert, I learned that offering up a maca-laden smoothie was the most expedient and reliable way to getting into another raw foodist’s unisex hemp kilt. To be fair, maca’s aphrodisiac effects may be placebo in nature and we were all pretty bored out there, but the stuff still tastes amazing and has other great nutritional properties!
I didn’t know this, but a lot of people say maca is good for your stamina, hormones, energy levels, memory, and even your immune system and fertility! Zing! I recently tried a complimentary batch of Sacha Vida’s new gelatinized maca, which, despite the ground-dead-animal-hoof connotations of its name, is completely vegan! “Gelatinized” refers to the process the maca undergoes to remove the hard-to-digest starches, making it smooth smoothie sailing!
Highly delicious, no tummy problems to report, and I’m now ready for some kilt-jumping. Who’s with me?
Right now, Vegansaurus readers receive 30 percent off all products on Sacha Vida’s website by using the coupon code “vegansaurus”. Get on it, y’all!
Young women dressed in fake fur were seen chasing doughty nationalist supporters down London’s Whitehall as a large number of security forces in iridescent jackets looked on from police lines.
Led by Queen guitarist Brian May, protesters in fancy dress demanded an end to the government’s cull of badgers, brought in to stop the spread of bovine tuberculosis.
They chanted: “Smash the cull! Smash the BNP!”
BNP candidate Clifford Le May was left with a bloody nose after being caught up in a rival enclave of human rights activists.
”—Right on, British badger-lovers. Nuts to fascist political parties and nuts to people who fuck with the ecosystem and then try to fix it by fucking with it more. And who doesn’t prefer a badger to a fascist?
you’re probably already familiar with teenage baking sensation clara polito, who owns and operates her own vegan business in los angeles called clara’s cakes…after all we’ve posted tworecipe videos with her in the past. clara went vegan at the age of 12, and frustrated with the animal-free dessert options in her area, she decided to learn how to make her own treats. four years later, she’s got her own bakery with a menu that wows all kinds of eaters. in today’s video, we sat down with clara at her home in LA and learned about her most delicious creations and why she went vegan in the first place.
QG does it again! Laura’s in LA now and if she isn’t following quarrygirl’s exhaustive guides to the vegan shangri-la that is the city of angels, she’s not doing it right. Same goes for anyone else in SoCal.
National data show that more than 40% of domestic violence victims stay in abusive situations out of fear of what would happen if they left their pets behind. Plus, more than 70% of pet owners who enter shelter report that the abuser has threatened, injured or killed family pets.(*) Yet in New York City—the largest provider of domestic violence services in the country with more than 50 shelters—not one shelter currently allows pets in residence, until now.
URI is filling this critical gap by becoming the first organization in New York City—and one of few nationwide—to welcome pets into domestic violence shelters. The Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals will be working closely with URI to provide staff training, pet safety education, pet food and supplies, and foster solutions for any pets PALS may be unable to accommodate.
Right now the program is only accepting cats and small animals like hamsters but they also work to find foster homes for other animals (here’s a great example about a cute pup who was fostered until his family found a safe situation).
It’s Paul Shapiro’s Animal News You Can Use! Yay, Paul! Yay, Animals!
Huge news this week: The San Diego Unified School District Board of Education voted 4-1 to enact an exclusively vegetarian Meatless Monday policy at all K-8 schools in the district. Unsurprisingly, this was to the chagrin of the Animal Ag Alliance, which waged a losing campaign to defeat the measure.
If you liked that, you may also be impressed that Canada is poised to pass a national regulation curbing gestation crate use.
I’ve got a new piece on HuffPost about the increasing number of folks even within the ag industry who are starting to second-guess their ag-gag strategy. Feel free to leave a comment.
A number of papers, such as the Bakersfield Californian, are editorializing against Rep. Steve King’s (R-Iowa) nefarious attempt in the Farm Bill to erase numerous laws we’ve passed to protect farm animals. Meanwhile, King and his allies in the meat industry are also trying to kill federal legislation to ban barren battery cages for laying hens.
Finally, this week, a major story got a lot of media play announcing extensive new research showing that vegetarian diets are linked to longer lives. In that vein, influential UK members of Parliament are urging Britons to eat less meat as a way to increase food security.
NYC: Can we talk about Peacefood Cafe's chickpea fries?!
A new Peacefood Cafe opened a few months ago and they totally deliver to my work in Gramercy! And let me tell you, their chickpea fries are out of control. Whatever this “house dipping sauce” is, it’s freaking solid gold. I highly recommend. They have great sandwiches too! But for real, chickpea fries, whoa.
Show off your Mooshoes and your cute pets to win $50!
MooShoes and Raven + CrowStudio are running an Instagram contest that ends this Friday. They’re giving away a $50 MooShoes gift card to the person who submits the cutest awesomest photo of their companion animal and their favorite MooShoes purchase.
This is my entry of Mitsy and my super cute grey boots I got a MooShoes like 80 years ago. This is an old pic, the boots have since died. Mitsy is chilling though! Bad ass as ever.
To enter, post your pic on instagram with #mooshoescontest hashtagged and @mooshoes_nyc and @ravenandcrow tagged.
It’s Paul Shapiro’s Animal News You Can Use! Yay, Paul! Yay, Animals!
This year’s ag-gag fight has been a bruising one for the animal ag industry, with every single bill so far introduced failing, while generating enormous negative media attention for animal agribusiness. It’s gotten so bad that one dairy industry spokesperson just published a column with a revealing title: “Ag-gag bills do more harm than good.”
Speaking of ag-gag bills, what’s likely to be the final battle on this in 2013 is in full force. North Carolina had a hearing on its ag-gag bill this week, and you can watch HSUS’s TV commercial that we’re running across the state. The Fayetteville Observer—the hometown newspaper of the state Senator sponsoring the bill—condemned this ag-gag effort, summing it up well: “We hope [Sen. Wesley] Meredith will let this dreadful legislation die humanely in committee.”
NBC had a fascinating feature on a company making in vitro leather, calling it “The Company Leading the Future of Farming.”
Finally, here’s a very potent new TED talk by a former wildlife poacher turned vegetarian animal advocate.