vegansaurus!

09/03/2013

Product review: ChocoSol vegan chocolate!  »

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ChocoSol is an artisanal dark chocolate company in Toronto. They sent me some free samples to try and now I will tell you all about them!

I knew you guys would like the company because, well just read this from their about:

Our artisan chocolate is made right here in Toronto using organic, forest garden, shade-grown cacao, sourced directly from indigenous communities in the Lacondon Jungle of Chiapas and the Oaxacan mountains of Southern Mexico. Our horizontal trade relationships go beyond the exchange of commodities and bring symbolic products, whose story is as important as the product itself. Our relationships are based on reciprocity, friendship, respect and mutual learning.

Our chocolates are made without dairy, gluten, soy and nuts, and are also vegan. We specialize in both eating chocolate and drinking chocolate (xocolatl), and offer a number of other sustainably grown ingredients that are sourced directly from farmers (such as coffee, cacao nibs, agave, hemp seeds and vanilla pods, among others).

Right?! And I love the packaging, it makes quite an impression. But! How is the chocolate, you ask? In a word: intense. It’s chocolaty-intense. As usual I had the whole office try it and ChocoSol was very popular among the suits. I liked the Darkness bar the best, though coconut-lovers were fond of the coconut-flaked bar. But if you are a milk-chocolate-only person, this is not your chocolate. This is super dark. But if that’s your style, you will love this!

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They also make “drinking chocolate” which comes as these super awesome chocolate hockey pucks you see below. Again, very intense but really good. The vanilla adds a little sweetness which is nice. If you are into old school chocolate drink, this is for you. It’s really fun, the hockey pucks just seem so hardcore. It would be so smooth to pop these out after a dinner party, am I right? You’d be the coolest!

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Unfortunately, it looks like the easiest place to buy ChocoSol is in Toronto. Any of our Canadian readers tried this before? Buy some at the farmer’s market and send it to your vegan friends to the south!

01/11/2013

It’s National Hot Chocolate Friday! What’s that? It’s a holiday that Isa Chandra Moskowitz just made up! But we love her so much, we’re all in, right?
She posted the rules on The PPK’s Facebook Page:



"Happy National Hot Chocolate Friday! Are you simmering up an inventive new cocoa or sticking to the classics? Take a pic of your creation and tag me or post it here, and I’ll put together a collage. Then we can all look at the collage and be like ‘That was a great day. Sigh.’"



I’m stuck at my office where all we have is corny, non-vegan Swiss Miss, but you should totally do it! 
Props to Krista O’Reilly for the goodies in the photo: “Homemade cinnamon hot chocolate with both Sweet & Sara AND Dandies marshmallows. Delicious madness.” Can I come over later?

It’s National Hot Chocolate Friday! What’s that? It’s a holiday that Isa Chandra Moskowitz just made up! But we love her so much, we’re all in, right?

She posted the rules on The PPK’s Facebook Page:

"Happy National Hot Chocolate Friday! Are you simmering up an inventive new cocoa or sticking to the classics? Take a pic of your creation and tag me or post it here, and I’ll put together a collage. Then we can all look at the collage and be like ‘That was a great day. Sigh.’"

I’m stuck at my office where all we have is corny, non-vegan Swiss Miss, but you should totally do it! 

Props to Krista O’Reilly for the goodies in the photo: “Homemade cinnamon hot chocolate with both Sweet & Sara AND Dandies marshmallows. Delicious madness.” Can I come over later?

12/22/2011

I told you I’d put up some latkes today! And these latkes are extra special because you get to make them with Vegansaurus fave, The Sweetest Vegan! She really is the sweetest. 

I love latkes like more than I love the baby Jesus. My Philly neighbor Josh makes THE BEST latkes but they have an egg in them so I haven’t had them in years. Maybe if I make him some vegan gingerbread he will make me vegan latkes! I used to use his recipe but I made them even better because I got fancy and fried them in olive oil! More expensive but so worth it! I love olive oil more than I love the Virgin Mary. 

The Sweetest Vegan has a bunch of other great recipes for this time of year including vegan eggnog and hot chocolate. Check them out!

Sorry if there was a commercial at the beginning of the video but we want money going into the vegan community! You get it, girl!

10/26/2011

Occupy Vegan  »

Read to the bottom for more about this awesome dog!

That Occupy Everything movement happening right now? You should get involved. Here’s why.

Around 11 p.m. on Tuesday, as Denver’s first big snowstorm of the season began to nose in, a friend and I started wondering about how our city’s little band of protestors were doing with the harsh weather. We hatched a plan to go find out. Then we hatched an even better plan: We’d bring the protestors hot chocolate. 

Once we had the idea, everything fell into place. The thermos, paper cups, vegan marshmallows, and sleeves of Oreos I had lying around seemed joined in unified destiny. Good thing I had like four jars of cocoa powder in the cupboard and had just made a fresh batch of soymilk too. I made sure this cocoa was rich and hella good, because I wanted to show the Occupiers some love and also felt like I was proving something about vegan food.

There were only about 10 people hanging out on the sidewalk next to Lincoln Park as light snow fell, but another 40 or so were huddled like giant burritos underneath soggy tarps (Denver police won’t let the protestors set up tents, even in the snow. Fuck, just writing about this and looking at their website I feel guilty that I’m huddled warm inside here. It’s like we can never do enough!).

Obviously people loved the hot chocolate, but they loved it even more than I imagined they would. And they wanted to hear more about it being vegan. Minds were blown that Oreos have no dairy. Vegan marshmallows were declared “Way better than the regular kind.” In about 20 minutes, I had done more truly positive, accidental evangelizing than I could have pulled off in a week’s worth of PETA flyering. 

I’m not that good an activist, you know? But I made hot chocolate. It was tiny. But it helped.

Beyond what you think about the wider Occupy Wall Street cause, this is an excellent opportunity to help people think about their food and experience the deliciousness of the vegan world.

Our Hen House has a really smart and well-researched post up about all this, so I’m going to quote liberally from them because I’m lazy efficient.

Those passionate about speaking up for the underdog—even if the underdog constitutes 99 percent of the population—are the perfect audience for the message, “you are what you eat.” In other words, as we stand against injustice, as we embrace the notion of breaking down the walls that marginalize and subjugate many of us, let’s not forget the non-human victims of oppression.

Also, let the cynical-me point out that cold, hungry people really love the food you give them. Context is everything. Not-cynical-me response: They say that hunger is the best sauce, but I’d add that a sense of community is pretty damn tasty also. 

More Hen House wisdom:

"This is, famously, a leaderless movement. So start connecting. Go down to your local Occupy protest, talk to people, find out who is providing food, learn and follow the Twitter hashtags (like combining #OWS and #vegan), and get involved with reshaping our world.

So consider this a nudge. I’m going to try to do more. You could too. We have a place in this thing.

[Ed.: I know a lot of our readers are in the S.F. Bay Area, which means there’s even more reason to get out to Occupy Oakland or Occupy San Francisco tonight. And if you can’t tonight, the next night. And if not the next night, the night after that. Or all the nights! And bring vegan cookies, yo! —Laura]

[Image via david_shankbone]

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