Vegan chocolate spread round-up! »
Hello young world! Who likes chocolate? EVERYBODY! So today I present to you the three vegan chocolate spreads that are near and dear to my stomach. Warning: they are all kind of expensive. Sorry.
Let’s kick things off with I.M. Healthy chocolate soy nut butter. This is not as chocolaty delicious as the next two but for some reason I feel healthier eating this one. Maybe it’s because of the janky graphic design? It makes it feel like old-school health food. Or maybe it’s because it states “I.M. Healthy” on the label—who can say? I generally just spread this on a toasted Van’s waffle. I was actually introduced to this spread by these kids I used to babysit. They were hilarious little rich kids and they went to some fancy school where you weren’t allowed to bring any peanut butter in your lunchbox. How cruel! JK, it’s probably nice for those peanut-allergy kids, then they don’t have to worry. I can’t imagine being allergic to peanut butter! It sounds scary. Well, with this stuff, you don’t have to worry because it’s made in a peanut-free (and dairy-free and egg-free!) facility.
Next we have Dark Chocolate Dreams from Peanut Butter & Co. They actually have a sandwich shop in New York but I’ve never been—what’s wrong with me?! It’s a rhetorical question, jerks!
This chocolate peanut butter is AMAZING in a grilled banana sandwich. You just get two slices of vegan oat bread (the softer, the better), spread the chocolate peanut butter on the bread (I spread it on each piece of bread so the sandwich really sticks together), add some sliced banana and put it in a frying pan with some Earth Balance. It’s the best sandwich EVERRR. Seriously, I would eat this as my last meal on death row (btw, abolish the death penalty!).
Last but super-delicious, we have Dark Chocodream from Natural Nectar (there’s two chocolate varieties but only the dark chocolate is vegan). This stuff is like straight-up chocolate, no nuts to get in your way (that’s what she said?). It’s also the most expensive, but it’s got fair-trade ingredients (social justice isn’t cheap!). I’ve never tried it in the grilled banana sandwich but it’d probably be awesome. I just eat it on waffles and it’s great. A delightful way to start your day!
And that, my friends, is the vegan chocolate spread round-up! Let the chocolate spreading begin! In bed!
These are inside-out peanut-butter cups, by Cakespy for Serious Eats! And they are so easy to veganize!
All you have to do is use non-dairy butter and non-dairy milk—and, obviously, sugar that was not refined with bone char, but you knew that—because the rest of the ingredients are vegan by default. I made them yesterday and they are super fucking delicious. Nearly makes up for the fact that there is still no word on the state of my Macbook.
While the nice weather lasts, enjoy them with a big iced coffee, no sugar—the bitterness will contrast beautifully with the sweetness of the peanut butter and chocolate. When the rain comes, warm them up a little and serve with afternoon tea.
[image by Jessie Olsen, a.k.a. Cakespy]
A native New Yorker’s guide to real bagels in San Francisco »
I’m in New Jersey right now, hiding out and hustling from my parent’s dining room. My mother bought me a package of bagels from New York and I have been slowly devouring them, with my coffee in the morning/afternoon (can’t quite get on East Coast time), which made me want to talk about where to get bagels in San Francisco.
Now, if you live in California and you’ve had the pleasure of biting into a New York bagel, let’s make something very clear: bagels in San Francisco are a compromise, a test of your true love. Your palate will adjust, but there’s nowhere on the West Coast that has bagels that are as good (something about the water, I hear?).
That being said, I only consider two places in town as bagel contenders.
Katz Bagels in several locations: Lower Haight, the Mission, and SOMA
The bagels themselves are OK; when eaten fresh they are doughy and satisfying, and certainly not as sweet as a Noah’s Bagel, but I mention Katz here because they are vegan-friendly. They carry Tofutti, including the Herbs & Chives variety, which you can then load up with vegetables if you wish. You can also get peanut butter or hummus on your bagel if the sometimes plasticky taste of Tofutti bugs you.
House of Bagels in the Inner Richmond
Personally, I like House of Bagels the best. They’re a very close approximation of a NY bagel and they even taste okay if you don’t toast them (I have never toasted a bagel until moving to California, TRUE FACT!). However, no vegan-friendly toppings here, so you’ll want to buy a dozen and take them home and do with them what you will. There are a few places in town that sell them, including Real Food and Rainbow, so you don’t have to go to the Inner Richmond if you don’t want to.
What are your favorite places to get bagels in town?
[photo by Rusvaplauke]