Honeymoon – San Antonio

We had a blast with our short time in San Antonio. 

We started the day early by wandering around the city, just taking in the sights. I loved the brightly colored houses and murals celebrating the hispanic culture.

Lunch was at Señor Veggie, a little vegan restaurant nestled in the downtown area. Peter had the veggie street tacos with jackfruit carnitas, slaw, pico de gallo, and cashew cream. It was served with a side of freshly fried potato chips. 

These tacos, I can’t even write about how amazing they were, I would know since I stole one from Peter. The carnitas were chewy, the slaw added a fresh bite, and the pico was a mild compliment to it all. If you visit Señor Veggie, please get these.  

I ate the eggplant torta with a side of Texican lentil chili. The chili was just generic lentils with spices, similar to something I could make at home. The sandwich though was a show stopper. 

The combination was a strange one, but delicious. Fluffy bread spread with ranch, black beans, and topped off with a fried eggplant patty, lettuce, and pico de galo. I’m going to attempt making this at home next time I get the gumption up to try frying something. After lunch we walked to Market Square. It’s a bit of a tourist trap with shops full of postcards and Texas shot glasses. But some of the buildings contain shops run by local craftspeople with interesting trinkets, clothes, decorations, and even toys.          

It was ridiculously hot in San Antonio, so we stopped to sit on a bench and have a cold drink. While there, we watched the plethora of birds running around the Square. Among them was a pigeon we nicknamed “Carl” who was the head pigeon and spent his time bullying the smaller birds over breadcrumbs and stray french fries.Our evening was spent visiting the Alamo. We went about an hour and a half before closing time, so the majority of the crowd had dispersed. We had a great time exploring the old buildings on the grounds and reading about their history. The area was also very beautiful with a lot of greenery, sculptures, and even a koi fish pond.  

A great way to finish off a wonderful day in San Antonio.       

Honeymoon – Houston

Houston was… interesting. First off, two weeks before we left I received an email saying that our hotel was cancelled. Upon further investigation, I learned our hotel had out of the blue decided to shut down. 

The city’s other hotels were packed due to an oil conference, so we were forced to get a super sketchy hotel (like sketchy enough for us to shove our coffee table against the door) on the outskirts of town.

  Despite this set back, we decided to start our one day in the city early by taking the bus into the downtown business district. Although it was cheaper than a taxi and fairly fast, the ride was a bit of an ordeal due to the homeless woman on board who was swinging a crutch at people and screaming obscenities. We got off as soon as we got remotely close to the city center.Lunch was at Green Seed Vegan,  a little neighborhood eatery and juice bar. The staff was a bit unfriendly, but the atmosphere was nice and honestly we were just relieved to be someplace with ice cold air conditioning after wandering around in the Texas heat.  Peter got a portabello cheese steak and dill fries. The sandwich was just okay, not a ton of flavor and bread was a bit stale seeming. The fries were spot on though, I never would have thought to put dill on themMy jackfruit barbeque sandwich was equally mediocre. The sauce tasted good, but the jackfruit had been cooked down to a mush and the bun was a bit stale too. While I was happy to find a 100% vegan restaurant in the middle of the city, I probably wouldn’t return because the food wasn’t anything to call home about.We decided to walk to the museum district instead of taking a bus (still a bit freaked out by our earlier encounter), which I’m glad about because otherwise we would have missed some of Houston’s awesome street art.         Some of the ways we walked were truly beautiful and suprisingly green for being in the middle of a city.       The Houston Museum of Natural Science was awesome with a large dinosaur section (with a very excited Peter because he had previously never seen a dinosaur skeleton), Egyptian exhibit, and a huge pendulum that was fascinating to watch.Dinner was at the Hobbit Cafe, a bizarre restaurant we found through Yelp.   While some of the sandwiches had themed names like Smaug’s Delight and Bilbo the Magnificent, the menu mainly consisted of tex-mex food. I got the portobello mushroom fajitas without cheese or sour cream and our very helpful server offered to bring extra salsa and guacamole on the side to replace the non-vegan items. Peter got the cheese enchiladas. 

The food was amazing. The fajitas were well-seasoned with finely sliced vegetables, and even the side items (brown rice and black beans) which I assumed would be plain, were full of flavor.And while the food was great, nothing could beat the decor. Everyplace from the entrance to the bathrooms was Middle Earth themed. It was a great place to go if you’re interested in Tolkien’s work, but even if you’re not a big fan, you can still appreciate the delectable menu offerings.  

Mawwaige 

I have been quite absent from the blogging world because of a recent event:

      

Peter and I got married! We had a tiny little ceremony, complete with a Star Wars-themed vanilla buttercream cake.

Planning that, combined with an amazing month-long honeymoon has kept me busy. Get ready though, because our honeymoon (taking trains from Birmingham, AL to San Diego, CA with stops at all the major cities inbetween) was full of adventure and plenty of awesome food, all of which will be described in several new posts coming up.

Watch the short video below for an overview of our trip:

Two Dollar Tuesday: Double Protein Patties 

By the end of yesterday I found myself without both the time to write a Two Dollar Tuesday or even a recipe to photograph. The fact that these veggie burgers disappeared so fast speaks to the fact that a combination of quinoa and mashed beans make a great (and high protein) patty.

I remade the recipe today and I asked Peter, while he scarfed down a burger, what he thought of them. He managed to mumble “If you keep making these, I’ll keep eating them!”

The original (which was what I based the pricing on) was made with different toppings than the one photographed below, but both combinations are equally delicious.

Double Protein Patties 

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Recipe total: $3.52

Servings per recipe: 4

Cost per serving: 88 cents

Ingredients:

  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed (59 cents)
  • 3/4 cup cooked quinoa (45 cents)
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped chipotle in adobo sauce (33 cents)
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice (20 cents)
  • 3 tablespoons all purpose flour (3 cents)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper (5 cents)
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder (6 cents)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin (12 cents)
  • 4 slices red onion (10 cents)
  • 4 slices tomato (16 cents)
  • 1 avocado, mashed (99 cents)
  • 4 hamburger buns (44 cents)

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

With either a fork or potato masher, mash the black beans until a coarse paste forms. In a large bowl, mix the beans, quinoa, chipotles, lime juice, flour, salt, black pepper, garlic powder, and cumin. 

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Take the bean and quinoa mixture and form 4 patties and place them on the lined sheet. Bake for 15 minutes, flip, then bake for another 15 minutes. 

Serve on a bun with all the fixings (in this case it’s red onion, tomato, and mashed avocado)

 

Slow Saturday: Onion BBQ Tofu

Today I tried something I’m surprised I haven’t attempted before: tofu in the slow cooker. The recipe I tried was roasted onion BBQ tofu and it was good. Like, I must resist licking the plate good. The sauce with the onions was the star, but when you cook the tofu for a long time (8 hours on low is what I did) it absorbs all that flavor and becomes equally delicious.

To make the recipe even easier, I just chopped up the onions and sautéed them in the olive oil and then dumped it with the rest of the ingredients into the slow cooker.

I served it with fried potatoes and cabbage. I’ve already got this on my menu for next week and plan on making a little dishes for all my tofu-hating friends. I will convert them all, someday.

Now I’m off to Pinterest to find more tofu slow cooker recipes, because this has opened a whole new world for me. *cue Disney music*

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Glasgow

Glasgow was probably my favorite city that I visited this summer. Something about it’s vibe just made me happy to wander around the streets and chat with the people I met. It may have also helped that they had a lot of amazing vegan restaurants to choose from.

The one I visited the most was Stereo, a hidden gem in a dark alley plastered with band posters. They had a set menu and also daily specials to choose from.

My favorite meal of the entire trip: loaded nachos.
It was corn chips topped with cheese, seasoned refried beans, salsa, sour cream (best vegan sour cream ever, by the way), and jalapeños. It’s so ridiculously good that I ate this a total of three times over my two trips to Glasgow.
The other meal I tried at Stereo was the cheeseburger. The bean burger was delicious with a flavorful creamy sauce and stretchy vegan cheese. Served on the side was a lightly dressed salad with a hint of citrus, and home fries.
The Duke of Wellington statue was on my must see list.
It was conveniently near the Gallery of Modern Art, which had an amazing showcase of a project featuring cardboard models of every religious building in town.
IMG_0324.JPGThe other vegan restaurant I frequented was Mono. Sadly something seemed to get in the way every time I ate, so I never managed to snap a photo of my meals. I went twice and got the portobello mushroom burger with beer battered onion rings (yum!) then the chili dog with aioli fries. Everything was delicious.

One of the coolest things about Mono though was the fact that it had a record store and zine shop in the same building. While I waited on my food to cook, I wandered through Good Press and its array of interesting zines.This was my personal favorite.
A bit sad to see what is considered to be “American” food here.
The best place to visit on a sunny day was the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. It’s a beautiful building and has lovely grounds to lay around on.

Atlanta – Pizza and Sword Fights

Last week we celebrated Peter’s 22nd birthday a few days early with a day trip to Atlanta. We were originally headed to Dulce Vegan Cafe, but forgot to account for the time difference between Alabama and Georgia, and sadly arrived right as they were closing. 😦

But all was not lost! When we asked where else was good to eat, they pointed us two doors down to the pizza joint Urban Pie.

Urban Pie, a vegan-friendly Atlanta Pizza Joint - Gallivanting Vegan

DSCN0973We got their garden variety pizza with Daiya. It was great, with a thin crispy crust and loads of veggies. It made the meal even better that the weather was nice enough that we could sit outside.

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After lunch, we wandered around some of the shops in the funkier part of Atlanta.

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This included the highly intriguing Junkman’s Daughter store. My favorite of their window displays was the mutant corn man whose name tag read “Hello, my name is GMO”.

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For that evening’s entertainment, we attended the Medieval Times show. I’m happy to say their vegetarian meal (which you choose when ordering your tickets) is entirely vegan! The arena was dark, so I took a picture of the table setting before the lights dimmed.

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The meal was three courses. The appetizer was tomato soup and hummus with veggies and pita bread. The main course was a stew with brown rice, beans, and a vegetable-rich tomato sauce. Dessert was a cinnamon apple turnover (Peter’s included a birthday candle).

Peter had a great birthday trip to Atlanta and we happily went back home with crowns on our head and bellies full of veggie food.