A HUGE excitement during this trip was that I got to meet my "west coast twin." After about 2 years of emailing each other, Facebook stalking each other and sending care packages, Melissa and I finally met!
I should have gotten a photo of the Westerly Market because this little natural foods store was amazing! They had tons of grab-n-go vegan sandwiches, vegan knishes and the best selection of raw foods Mel and I had ever seen. We're talking the full line of Dr. Cow nut cheeses, two whole endcap displays of raw chocolates and an entire aisle of raw crackers and chip-type-things. Crazy!
I didn't get a photo of the food from our picnic in Times Square, but we had and awesome raw foods snack: Kimchi crackers and dehydrated onion-y daikon chips with Dr. Cow cashew cheese, nutritional yeast-y kale chips and a naturally fermented ginger beer.
I also got to meet up with my friend Luis who used to work with me at the co-op. Hooray! We went out to Sacred Chow for a super yummy meal. I had the 1/2 Orange Barbecue Seitan Hero with a Caesar Salad and an Original Sin cider (made in NY). Yep, that hero above was a 1/2 sandwich. I don't think I could have eaten a whole one! The sandwich was really filling and the seitan was awesome. I usually prefer my barbecue sauce to be more tangy, but this one had really great flavor- even if it was on the sweet side. Melissa's Dijon Marinated Kale was so delicious- I'm going to have to try to replicate that at home!
Hmmm... This post is all out of order, but that's okay. The first night in NY, Melissa and I went to Hummus Place. Guess what I had? Hummus! This hummus was really something special- Drizzled with olive oil and topped with sautéed mushrooms and served with fluffy, hot pita bread! I also had some yummy pickles and this "Mediterranean Mojito" that had a ridiculous quantity of mint in it, lime juice and wine instead of hard liquor. And it was frosty-frozen. I am definitely making this at home sometime! The kids would really love a non-wine version.
On my last night in NY I headed to Candle Cafe with my old friend Monica (again, who I used to work with at the co-op) and 3 new friends from west coast co-ops. We started with some rockin' quesadillas filled with veggies and Daiya cheese- we all agreed that this was the best part of the meal! I had the Cajun Seitan Sandwich with coleslaw. The seitan was really crispy and tasted deep-fried. It had a fantastic texture! But the flavor of the sandwich overall was really bland. A little sprinkle of salt on the avocado and greens would have helped. And some cajun spices on the seitan would have been great. I was expecting something a little bit spicy. The ancho chili aioli saved the day with its Veganaise-y goodness, though, and made the sandwich overall pretty good.
After our dinner we took the subway over to Lula's Sweet Apothecary. I knew that I'd regret it if I didn't make it to this ice cream shop on my trip. It was close, but we arrived an hour before they closed on my last night in New York! I tasted the caramel, marshmallow, graham cracker flavor and it rocked my world...but I really wanted a malt without hunks of things in it, so I opted for a classic chocolate malt. Oh. my. goodness. I had never met a malt I couldn't finish until this one. Made from cashews, this ice cream is incredibly rich. I couldn't make it through this whole shake even after sipping nearly the whole trip back to the hotel! It was thick, gooey and malt-y. Yum!
I really enjoyed my time in New York- I got to see tons of landmarks all by accident while exploring and hunting down these restaurants! But, homebody that I am, I am really happy to be back home right now: just sitting in my kitchen, eating biscuits and sipping decaf while I type to you.