vegansaurus!

05/08/2014

NYC: A night of comedy to save dogs in need!  »

imageWhat’s more fun than a barrel of laughs?! A barrel of laughs for charity! So save the date, New York: Come out on May 17th for An Evening of Jokes to Help People Who Help Dogs!

My friend and mentor Phil Gable is not only a dog lover, he’s a talented stand-up comic! Phil and several other funny people are combining these two interests for one special night of comedy to raise money for Positive Tales: a Brooklyn-based non-profit dedicated to helping animals in NYC. A little more about them (excuse the length of the excerpt, I just thought this was so great sounding that I couldn’t decide where to clip! So I pasted the whole thing! ‘CAUSE I DO WHAT I WANNA):

Positive Tails will provide grants to assist animals in three distinct ways – to fight animal abuse, help displaced animals and the over-population of dogs and cats, and to provide support to individuals and families who cannot afford veterinary emergency or illness care for their companion animals.

Positive Tails is not a rescue organization, but an organization dedicated to providing critical assistance to animals and people in-need.  While we do work in conjunction with rescue groups in the city and support their missions, our focus is on providing medical treatment and helping people stay with their pets.  We will work hard to lessen the occurrence of “economic euthanasia”, because we know how important pets are to people’s lives and vice versa.  We want all animals to live out their doggie years and nine lives healthy and pain free with a loving family to call their own.

See? Doesn’t that sound awesome? The show is at Two Moon Art House and Cafe in Brooklyn. Tickets are $25 cash at the door and 100% of ticket sales will benefit Positive Tails. To guarantee a seat, RSVP to phil@cynicalbastardproductions.com. Get more info on FaceBook

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If you can’t make it on May 17th, you can still donate to Positive Tales. Or better yet, donate AND come to the show! Oh and when you get to the show, make sure you say hi to me! I will be the one knee-deep in a vodka tonic. A vodka tonic that will probably be full of lemons because of the gosh dang lime shortage. No amount of lemons will make it OK! They will just make it taste like carbonated floor cleaner! I know, I know, 1-800-alcoholic first world problems. 

04/28/2014

Vegan Divas releases high-end jewelry line to benefit the Humane Society!  »

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Meatpacking necklace

Fernanda Capobianco, the founder and owner of NYC’s Vegan Divas bakery, has created a beautiful line of handmade jewelry. Bonus: the line is made with recycled materials. SUPER BONUS: the sales benefit Friends of Finn, an HSUS effort to stop puppy mills!

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Greenwich necklace

The Friends of Finn committee was started by Amanda Hearst in honor of her beloved dog, Finn. Not very aware of the puppy mill epidemic, Hearst purchased Finn from a NYC pet shop. The seller swore Finn was not from a puppy mill. Then Hearst became involved with HSUS and as she learned more about puppy mills, she couldn’t help but wonder about her pet shop dog. After some research, low and behold, Finn did in fact come from an awful puppy mill.

Thus Friends of Finn was born to help educate others about puppy mills and raise money to put an end to those torture factories. And I’ll tell you, we seriously do need to educated people about puppy mills, like, yesterday! TWO people I know (not super well, but) recently bought puppies. I can’t believe people still do that!image

Park earrings

The line is on the expensive side but like I said, it’s handmade and benefits charity. And of course, the line is vegan! That’s means you won’t find any leather backings that I see on other beaded jewelry lines. Also important: the jewelry is beautiful! I love the bold colors of many of the pieces but the necklace at the top is my favorite. Who needs blood diamonds when you’ve got a blanket of beads!  

Fernanda was inspired by her Brazilian roots:

"I was in my home town in Brazil last December and fell in love with these pieces and their designers. They meticulously pick their materials and have such intricate craftsmanship. Each piece has been carefully crafted with a crochet technique using metallic wire with a delicate gold finish,” says Capobianco “We just added some mixed metals and dark colored crystals to give the collection that New York edge.”

Quão incrível! You can purchase the jewelry at the Vegan Divas shop (1437 1st ave, between 74th and 75th) or online. Make sure you pick up some of those mini donuts too! They are healthy and yummy! I recommend the chocolate topped ones. Those are my favorite! Bring me some!

04/25/2014

Worldwide Vegan Bake Sale begins THIS WEEKEND! Let’s get this party started!!  »

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It’s that time again! What time? Worldwide Vegan Bake Sale time! There are bake sales ALL OVER THE FREAKING WORLD. I bet there’s one near you and it’s not too late to bake and/or eat at one. SO DO IT TO IT.

FOR EXAMPLE, if you are in NYC on Sunday, May 4, there is an enormous and delicious bake sale happening at MooShoes vegan shoe store! Yay! Like cupcakes? We have you covered. Prefer muffins? Sorted. Savory more your thing? Done.

Details via Dayna R:

This year’s beneficiary is GooseWatch NYC, which advocates for tolerance of and co-existence with urban wildlife, and promotes humane alternatives to resolving conflicts between people and animals.

This is NYC’s sixth time participating in the Worldwide Vegan Bake Sale and we don’t mess around. We will have far more delights than you can eat at one time, so don’t forget to bring a container to bring food home and share the joy with your friends and family (or yourself on Monday). 

If you’d like to pitch in and bake, check out what other people are making and sign up hereFull details hereSunday, May 4, 12:30pm - 5:30pm. MooShoes, 68 Orchard Street, NYC.

For all other bake sales, check this link ASAP and get to eatin’!!

04/14/2014

Blossom Du Jour goodies now available at NYC Whole Foods!  »

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Check it out! Whole Foods and Blossom Du Jour have teamed up to bring you Blossom goodies on the go. They will be rolling out a lot of products over the next year but the first out are Almond Biscotti Chips, Chocolate Chip Cookies, Double Choco Brownie Bites, Oatmeal Cookies & Pot Pies. POT PIES?! YES!

The line debuted at the Chelsea Whole Foods last Friday. I haven’t tried anything yet but best believe I’m getting pot pies as soon as I can get my chunky hands on them. And if they box up the vegan cronuts OMG!!!

04/10/2014

Van Leeuwen Ice Cream has SEVEN vegan flavors! We try the Salted Caramel!  »

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The popular NYC ice cream company Van Leeuwen now has 7 vegan flavors you can buy in stores!!!! THIS IS THE BEST! Why didn’t you tell me? Well actually I saw the banana nut flavor but didn’t really feel like trying, though I thought it was cool they had an exotic vegan flavor. But I didn’t know they had a million vegan flavors! So I saw this Salted Caramel—with Maldon, my favorite salt! (SHUT UP)—at Union Market in Brooklyn and I had to try it because I am such a scientist.

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It’s delicious! Creamy, salty, caramel-goodness. It’s very rich, I don’t know how much I could eat in one sitting, but so good. Top a slice of vegan apple pie with a scoop of this and you’ll probably die of happiness. But it’ll be worth it!

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As you see, these are all soy-free. I know some of you like that. They didn’t have the Coffee Crunch at Union Market and YOU KNOW I love coffee ice cream! But Van Leeuwen’s FB says they have it at the Whole Foods in BK. I hope they also have the Peanut Butter Chocolate Chunk! 

More exciting news: looks like Van Leeuwen has branched out to LA! Their FB seems to have the truck in Venice mostly but they also said you can get all the vegan flavors at The Oaks Gourmet at 1915 n. Bronson ave. So there you go LA, you get all the good vegan stuff! 

Has anyone tried the Coffee Crunch? TELL ME ABOUT IT!

04/07/2014

NYC: Young’s vegan pop-up is back this May!  »

imageHello, friends! I told you I was going to Young’s first pop-up restaurant a few weeks ago but I’ve yet to tell you how it was. It was fun! It was pretty hectic but I assume that will work itself out as there are more events. It was also pretty cramped, so I think when I go back I will bring 3 friends so we get our own table. Otherwise, you share. People were nice though, I just like my space. Oh and the staff was so nice and so amazing! Seriously, our server was so nice and very knowledgeable about the food. But, most importantly of all, the food was yummy! My pictures came out dark so Young’s sent me some of these lovely photos Kate Lewis of my favorite dishes. 

Our favorite dish was the carrot spaetzele (pictured up top)! It was a sweet and savory noodle dish. The roasted carrots on top were a perfect mix of sweet and charred!

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Here’s the banana split of Neapolitan ice cream, black cherries and hot fudge. One hundred thumbs up! The chocolate ice cream was so chocolatey, I almost died.

We also loved the smoked hen of the woods mushroom dish but the hummus under it could have been more exciting. I like hummus but I’ve just had so much of it by now! But the mushroom was excellent. I loved the smoky flavor and the texture was perfect.  

If you missed this pop-up or just want more, I’m happy to tell you the next Young’s pop-up is here! Young’s will be hosting another all vegan dinner at Old Bowery Station on May 1st, 2nd, and 3rd. Get your tickets here! It’s $40 for dinner and then a little more for the beer or cocktail pairing (the beer and cocktail pairing have gone down a little, so I think I will def spring for the beer pairing). I hear tickets are selling out fast so if you want to go, get your ticket asap! The menu looks good! It’s 3 courses and stars fava beans (my favarite!), ramps, and beets. Quite the trifecta! 

04/02/2014

Get gourmet Philly pretzels right here in Brooklyn!  »

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You KNOW your friend Megan Rascal loves the Philly pretzels. So how excited was I when I heard about Pelzer’s Pretzels? Hint: SO EXCITED! 

Pelzer’s Pretzels, located in Crown Heights, BK, was started by a Philly transplant, in the hopes of bringing the Philadelphia soft pretzel game to NYC. Because really, Philly soft pretzels should be as ubiquitous across the country as the prison industrial complex! If not more so!

I emailed with Pelzer’s to find out if they had any vegan options. They have some meaty and cheesy pretzels but their everything, original and cran-mary are totally vegan! I even double checked because the pretzels were so shiny I thought they must be an egg-wash—nope! Veegs! Pelzer’s sent me those three varieties for free to try and some of their spicy beer mustard too. I shared the pretzels with my coworkers because I’m so nice to them. They were a hit! The spicy beer mustard went like hotcakes. 

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You can see just by looking that they are not like regular Philly pretzels, these are on some gourmet steez. They remind me of this super delicious pretzel I had at the Zurich airport once (Megan Rascal: International Hassle). The outside/skin/whatever is so amazing! It’s flavorful and thick and awesome. 

I liked the original of course, and I liked the everything. I thought the everything would be my favorite as I’m an everything-enthusiast, and while I really liked the everything, I’m head over heels for the cran-mary! It’s cranberry and rosemary, if you didn’t get the name. I’m not super into cranberries but they were SO GOOD in the pretzel. And the rosemary? HAVE MERCY. 

You’ll also like this bit from their about us: 

As the source for artisanal Philadelphia style soft pretzels in New York City, Pelzer’s Pretzels is committed to making wholesome and delicious pretzels from the best available ingredients, providing fair wages and promoting worker dignity, and investing long-term in our local Brooklyn community.

Love it! Totally Philly style too. Without the massive chip on the shoulder part. 

You can stop by their storefront or, if you live in Brooklyn, you can have them delivered for a few bucks! I wish I could have everything delivered. Work, love, etc. But especially PRETZELS! 

In conclusion, these are a can’t-miss for any pretzel-lover and a definite boon for the accidentally-vegan Brooklyn food scene! All thumbs up!

03/26/2014

NYC gets a cupcake ATM with vegan red velvet cupcakes!  »

Extra, extra! Sprinkle’s in NYC opened their cupcake ATM yesterday! I’d heard of the one in LA and it sounded so fun. I haven’t been over yet but I emailed Sprinkle’s and the rep informed that the ATM will always be stocked with their vegan red velvet cupcakes. Yay! I’ll report back on the flavor as soon as I make it over! Has anyone tested the ATM yet?!

Pics from Sprinkle’s fb page. 

02/28/2014

Vegan Drinks NYC Recap: Chickpea & Olive serves the yum!  »

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Chickpea & Olive was the food vender for February’s Vegan Drinks last night and boy did they have their act together! The menu was pretty fun because they had polenta bowls and you got to pick from a bunch of toppings. I got slow roasted chickpeas and roasted Brussels. I also got a half of a beet parmesan hero—delish!

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And I got one of the cannolis! I’ve never had a cannoli, which everyone thought was absurd, but I just never had one ok! But according to Deb, Vegan Drinks founder, this cannoli was good but a little different as the “shell” (thanks Abby Bean! It’s not called a “cookie thing” guys!) was thicker than it usually is I guess. And the cream had amaretto flavor the girls said—which I thought was just almond extract and very yum as I love almond extract. The chocolate chips were a nice touch too! And I thought cannolis were stuffed with whipped cream but it’s more like custard and I like that much better. 

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As you can see, there was a nice turnout! And this was an early pic. And yes that is Deb on the lower left. And yes that is Party Girl on the screen. And yes that movie RULES. So does Deb. And thanks to Jess Davis for organizing and bringing Wild Bird Fund in! I hope they sold some shirts and got some new volunteers. If you want to volunteer (you actually get to handle the birds! Like, for their own good! OMG!), check out their site. You can donate there as well.

Come to the next Vegan Drinks! They are the last Thursday of every month! Follow their FB for reminders

BONUS: Cute goslings at the Wild Bird Fund sanctuary! Pic from their blog:

02/19/2014

NYC: Young’s next pop-up dinner is almost here! Let’s get down with American vegan food!  »

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Young’s, a cool NYC vegan catering company, is now hosting a pop-up series! And the next one is happening March 6th and 7th. That’s soon! 

I had the pleasure of meeting Jessica Young, a founder and the chef behind Young’s. I’m not going to say I’m in love, because you know my heart is made of ice cold stone, but it’s something close to that. 

The event is at Old Bowery Station and it sounds super awesome (because BOOZE):

Sticking to our roots, we will be offering vegetable based menus with an emphasis on American foods. All dishes consist of both a food component and a beer or cocktail component (or neither, if you’re not a drinker).

The beverages complete the dishes - foods are chosen with drinks in mind, and drinks are chosen with foods in mind. We are working with some of the best vegetable-minded chefs and mixologists in the city to create this truly unique experience.

You can get tickets here! It’s only $45 ($65 with cocktail or beer pairing), which is the cheapest pop-up price I’ve seen in this city. So basically, my dreams have come true. 

Also, let’s have a party and hire them to cater! They have an ENTIRE MENU of CANAPÉS for passed hors d’oeuvres. Why do I ever eat food that’s not canapés? I don’t know what I’ve been doing with my life.    

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