Happy Herbivore Blog

Vegan fun in Portland!

Posted by: Lindsay S. Nixon |

Category: Travel

Portland, by reputation, is synonymous with vegan. That's what first attracted us to Portland 2.5 years ago. Scott & I were living in Boston back then but were looking for a new home on the West Coast. We traveled to and checked out San Fran, Seattle and Portland because we'd heard those cities were vegan-friendly. Unfortunately, I was newly vegan at the time and completely unaware of happycow and other online veg sites. Thus, we were at the mercy of luck, popping into any random restaurant or cafe and hoping they had something vegan to offer. While appreciative that just about every place we tried in Portland had at least 1 vegan option on the menu, nothing we ate was spectacular. Worse still, the one 100% vegan restaurant we went to was expensive and pretty bad (and it has since closed). Needless to say, I was wondering if I would ever have a meal that left me speechless ever again.

Thankfully, I continued on with my vegan journey, learned to cook delicious meals at home and have enjoyed many wonderful vegan meals at vegan and non-vegan restaurants since (for photos of awesome food I've eaten in the last 2.5 years, visit this flickr group).

Anyway, these experiences only made me more excited to come back to Portland and have a second chance to sample the vegan food and vegan restaurants I've heard so much about.

Unfortunately, it wasn't in the cards for us. Our first night here, we had planned to dine at the famous Portebello with Meg. We arrived with youthful excitement but were turned away. Even though it was before 6 p.m. and every single table, inside and out, was painfully empty, they wouldn't seat us because we didn't have a reservation.  Sad.

The next day, July 4th, was Scott's marathon! It was his first marathon and he did great! 4 hours and 5 minutes! It was also brutally hot -- in the 80's -- so kudos for Scott for still doing so well!

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After the marathon all we could both do was talk about all the vegan food we planned to eat. However, because life can be so cruel sometimes, EVERYTHING WAS CLOSED. No joke. I placed calls to eight vegan restaurants and every one was closed - all day! Even Food FightGrocery and Herbivore had the day off. It was heart-breaking. Thankfully, I'd heard about the Hungry Tiger Too, a pub that offered an entire vegan menu (in addition to their omni menu) and they were open. In fact, they were the only place open so we ate both lunch and dinner there. While not the healthiest of choices, the food is amazing and it's vegan soul food done right. Here are two of the five dishes we shared (the rest are on flickr):

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Eggplant Chimichanga

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$1 vegan corndogs

We were hoping to dig in on some awesome vegan brunch or breakfast before leaving town Sunday morning, but every place serving breakfast opened around 10am. Since we needed to be the on the road by 11, we left with our tails between our legs.

On the plus side, we went to Voodoo Doughnuts. a lot. The last time we were in Portland there were only about six vegan choices and now the entire menu -- of some 20+ donuts -- is available to vegans. This is very good but so very bad, too. I think I managed to eat 3 the entire time I was in Portland. oink oink. (More food porn on flickr).

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Old Dirty Bastard (Chocolate, Oreos & PB) Ugh, yeah.

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Grape Ape (I picked it because there were too many choices and it matched my shirt)

Good-Bye California

Posted by: Lindsay S. Nixon |

Category: Travel

For the last two days we've been driving through California, making our way to Portland, Oregon. Our travels thus far have been full of beautiful surprises and good vegan eats. Gosh, I hope this good fortune continues! I'd always heard "you must drive the PCH from LA to SF once in your life" and now I know why. The Pacific Coast Highway is absolutely breath-taking! Here are some of the photos -- for the rest, check flickr (even catch some photos of Scott & I!!) In 800 miles, it's been both brutally cold and smothering hot. We've driven adjacent to the coast, alongside endless grape vineyards, through acres of produce, acres of dry, barron plains, over and around mountains, through enchanting dark green forests and next to a snow capped mountain (in July!). I think it's fair to say no other state is quite as diverse as California!

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Pismo Beach, CA

elephant seals

Elephant Seals

near bixby bridge

Near Bixby Bridge

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Bixby Bridge

vegan pizza

Vegan Pizza @ Croces in Monterey, CA

"sausage" biscuit at Herbivore

"Sausage" Biscuit at Herbivore in San Fran, CA

golden gate

Driving across the Golden Gate Bridge

Lily Bean

Lily Bean's first day at the beach! Muir Beach, CA

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Quaid at Muir Beach, CA

beer

Sampling Beer @ the Sierra Nevada Brewery in Chico, CA

  mt.shasta

Mt. Shasta near Weed, CA

Vegan Tofu Fish Filet Recipe

Posted by: Lindsay S. Nixon |

Category: Recipe

This is the kind of recipe where I wish I had my own cooking show. For starters, I'd give this recipe a longer and swankier name such as "Succulent Tofu Fish Fillet over a bed of crisp Romain lettuce topped off with fresh papaya salsa and tucked into a warm pita bread." (Are you drooling yet?) I'd also take the time to tell viewers that the heels of bread make for the best bread crumbs. All you have to do is throw them into your food processor and let the motor run until the crumbs are formed. Homemade crumbs are not only cheaper, but they taste better too. They also don't have salt and other preservatives in them. But alas! This is a blog - not a cooking show - so here's the recipe!

Tofu Fish

Recipe:Tofu Fish Fillet

Description

Kelp is what makes the tofu "fishy". Serve it as a fillet or cut up small pieces for "fish sticks." Fresh papaya chunks can be used in place of the salsa.

Ingredients

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. Cut tofu into 5 slices (or smaller pieces for nuggets) and set aside. Place bread slices in food processor and process until crumbs form. Add spices and Old Bay to taste, a few dashes of black pepper to bread crumbs and process for 1 more minute. Transfer breading mixture to a shallow bowl.

From here, you can bread the tofu one of two ways: lightly spray one side of the tofu with your oil spray can and press the breading into one side of the tofu (giving one side a thick, flaky crust) or dip the tofu into soymilk and lightly batter the entire fillet. Bake 25-30 minutes and serve tucked into warm pitas with chopped lettuce and papaya salsa.