Monday, 30 August 2010

Vegan coconut pie to celebrate!

If you come here frequently you know that I am a big fan of Hannah Kaminsky, her book and all her sweet recipes. To celebrate this blog 2nd anniversary I made our first giveaway and the prize was a copy of her e-book Mission: Impossible Pies. Last week I finally did the first recipe of this amazing book: Coconut Pie. It is delicious and very easy (and fast) to make it, being an wonderful quick dessert option.

With some vegan vanilla ice cream to make it even better

Everybody should try at least one of Hannah's amazing recipes, from heir blog or books!

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Aos queridos leitores brasileiros (e também portugueses, por que não?),

a autora me autorizou a publicar aqui a receita em português, o que faço com muita alegria, pois além de ser uma delícia, é rápida de fazer e todos os ingredientes podem ser encontrados no Brasil (diferente de algumas receitas que levam, por exemplo o vegan cream cheese, que não está disponível ainda para quem mora no país).

Então vamos lá!

Torta de côco vegana

340 gramas de tofu (a medida da receita é em "ounce", mas já fiz a conversão ao usar aqui também)
1 xícara de açúcar refinado
2 xícaras de côco ralado
1 xícara de leite de côco
1/2 xícara de farinha de trigo
1/2 colher de chá de fermento em pó
1/2 colher de chá de sal
1 colher de chá de extrato de baunilha

Pre-aqueça o forno a 180 graus e unte uma assadeira de 9" (eu utilzei uma menor, de 7" para que a torta ficasse um pouco mais alta e adorei). A minha assadeira é bem anti-aderente, então não precisei untar, mas por via das dúvidas não custa passar um pouquinho de óleo e farinha no fundo e laterais.

Escorra o excesso de água do tofu e o coloque em um processador ou liquidificador. Bata até que ele fique bem cremoso. Adicione o açúcar, o côco ralado, o leite de côco, a farinha, o fermento, o sal e a baunilha e bata até combinar todos os ingredientes. Tome cuidado para não bater demais, pois o ideal é manter os pedacinhos do côco ralado.

Coloque a mistura na assadeira e asse por 40-45 minutos, até que as laterais fiquem douradas, mas o meio ainda esteja um pouco oscilante (não totalmente firme). Espere esfriar e coloque na geladeira por 1 hora antes de servir.

Se quiser variar, sirva com uma calda de frutas vermelhas ou um pouco do seu sorvete favorito!

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Thanks, Hannah, for letting me post the recipe in Portuguese for my Brazilian friends and readers!

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

All about... falafel

Since I've became vegan I started to love falafel sandwiches and a lot of other foods of the Midle East (just read that the origin of the falafel is not clear, but it's believed that the first falafel was made in Egypt. What I really know is that falafel is one of the best fast food options to vegetarian or vegan people - being naturally vegan in most of the places - and it's easy to find places that sell it all around the world.

I'm really said that there is no Maoz Vegetarian in Dublin cause they made the best combination of quantity + price when the issue is falafel sandwiches. Maoz had saved me in a lot of places with a great (and cheap) option of food, mainly in the late night.

But recently I went to a very good place here in Dublin, with my good friend and awesome blogger Aoife from Adventures in Veg..., called Rotana Cafe. It's a restaurant specialized on Lebanese cuisine and, as usual, have a lot of vegetarian - and some vegan - options. I had lunch with Aoife there a few weeks ago, before she went to Edinburgh, and it was amazing. We shared three portions: falafel balls, hommus and potato harah (spicy potato). It was delicious but I didn't take any pictures that day.

But last Saturday I came back there with Matteo and took some pictures this time. In Brazil, when someone says that you have the eyes bigger than your stomach it means that you think you can eat more than you really are able to eat. Sometimes it happens to me and last Saturday was one of these occasions. Me and Matteo were so excited about the place and the vegan options that we asked (a way) more than we could eat (or, at least, that I could eat). So we had: one portion of the potato harah + 2 falafel sandwiches with extra hommus + one manakessh satar (a Lebanese Pizza topped with thyme, sesame seed and olive oil that we absolutely love!).

Everything was delicious. The falafel sandwich costs €5.40 (+ €1.00 for the extra filling) and it was worth it. It's really huge and I could stop eating after my first half of it. The portions - called "light bites" are a little bit expensive for my point of view (between €3.90 and €7.50), but not different for the usual prices in Dublin. They also have a take-away service. The opening hours are good too, being a great option to some nights out in the city.

Rotana Cafe
31 South Richmond Street
Monday closed
Tuesday 4pm - 11h30pm
Wednesday - Sunday 11h30am - midnight

Thursday, 19 August 2010

More than music

Well, my post should have another title: more than pictures (or how to fail on taking pictures!). I can't believe my lack of pictures on Ieperfest. During this week I was trying to decide if I should write about the festival without having the pictures... It won't be a great post without them, but I still think it is worth it, so here we go.

Ieperfest is a DIY (do it yourself) festival that happens every year - in the last 18 years - at the Belgium city of Ieper. Three days of hardcore music, vegan food and interviews. The festival is getting bigger and bringing a lot of popular (and big) bands. When I say "big" please consider the hardcore scene. In this edition, classic bands as Madball, Agnostic Front, 7 Seconds and Converge had bands. And also bands of the new generation, like Cruel Hand, Trash Talk, Bitter End and Grave Maker. Around 20 bands play each day in two stages (a bigger one, open, and a smaller one, in a tend). This is not a post about the music, though.

Purification: Matteo's band played the first day of this edition

One of the most important things about this festival, to me, is that it's something more than music. For a lot of people that go there nowadays, it's just the music, but this is not everything and the collective that organize the festival wants more than that. There's a tend called "More tan Music" where interviews, spoken words, debates and films screens happen during the three days. Inside the tend it's possible to find tables with a lot of information about animal rights and human rights. Unfortunately, it's hard to compete with the shows, but there are always people inside, interested in what's going on. I have to say that I spent a lot of time there with my friends and could be part of a lot of great moments.

Live interview with Confronto, from Brazil, that played the second day of this edition

The second highlight of the festival is the food and the concern about the environment that the organization have. All the food at Ieperfest is vegan. This year we could choose between three pita options, three hot plate options, french fries and dessert options. This is a great way to show to the people that go there every year (and there are more and more people going for each edition) that vegan food is a good option. Inside the "More than Music" tend there was also more alternatives to eat vegan: organic soda, chocolate and pies (salty and sweet). There were options for everybody, for every taste. And the most important: without using animals as object. Also, there were recycling bins everywhere and for every plate returned to the food tend, they gave you one extra food "token" back. Check more about Ieperfest garbage politics clicking here (check the "garbage" section, please).

I won't say that everything in the festival is perfect, there are some things that bother me a lot, for example, people smoking inside the tents (and there is a huge open space there!), but Ieperfest is still the biggest and the best hardcore independent festival and they have all my support. Plus, it is a great opportunity to meet friends that I don't see too often and that share the same passion and some of the most important values that I have in my life.

A local newspaper covered the festival, so you can check some great pictures here, here and here!

Support the DIY collectives. Support hardcore.

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

2nd blog anniversary

Last Saturday, August 14th, this blog had completed 2 years. It's really amazing to see how many people are reading it and following the Facebook page.

I still didn't bake or cook anything special to celebrate it cause I was in Belgium during the weekend for a hardcore festival (post coming later), but I still will do something this week. It's never late to celebrate.

A big thank you to everybody that stop here ;-)

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Berlin strikes again

Can't describe how cool is this place!

I just realized that last time I went to Berlin (November 2009) I didn't write about it, just have one post about one of my favourite cities in Europe and this is so unfair. But, cause my BFF Clarissa (have to do it! ahahahah) lives there, I will always have opportunities to go and to try different places to eat. Or just come back to the ones I already love.

I went to Berlin two weeks ago to spend 4 days there. It was the first time I went there during the summer and it was amazing. We cycled, we swam, we cooked and I had a great time. On my first night there we decided to cook at home, so Clarissa made one recipe of the book Vegam Yum Yum and I had it with alcohol free beer ( I don't drink alcohol). It was delicious.

On the Saturday morning we had the amazing German breakfast. I love their bread and there are a lot of vegan options.

The other three places that we went were:

1. Vöner - this is a vegetarian kebab place. Yes, you read it right. Veg kebab. And you can eat other vegan options there as well (like falafel or burgers). The kebab sandwich (vöner) is huge and cheap, very cheap (2.90 euro). Address: Boxhagener Straße 56.

2. Yoyo Foodworld - my favourite place in Berlin. Top 1. This is the best fast food place ever. They have a lot of vegan options (burgers, wraps and pizzas). This time I got the salmon burger (4.99 euro with french fries). I was never a fan of fish before becoming vegan but I decided to try the fake one. And I didn't regret! It was a little bit weird when I saw the burger cause it had the salmon colour but the taste was really good. Have no idea if it's like the real fish, but I don't care. I enjoyed it a lot. Address: Gärtnerstraße 27.

3. Café Vux - this is a place that I was looking for to go in Berlin. First, cause it's owned by a Brazilian guy that used to play in a punk band that I really like. Second, cause I've been reading a lot of good reviews about the place. So, we went there to the Sunday brunch. You have to arrive there early (they open the doors at 11 am, so be there by this time) cause it gets full quickly. And it's easy to understand the reason. The food is amazing and everything is vegan. And, once again, cheap (the brunch is 6 euros). I wish I could try the cakes they have too (it's not included on the brunch but they look so good!), but I had no space in my stomach to try them. Next time! Address: Richardstraße 38.

And of course I had some ice cream in the city! An amazing peanut and lemon vegan ice cream (L)

I have to say that I really love Berlin and that the city is one of the most vegan friendly cities that I know in Europe. I could say that it's better than London cause of the relation places + price. But this is just my opinion. Do you know Berlin? Where did you go to eat there?

Friday, 6 August 2010

Today is the day: giveaway winner!

First of all, a big thank you to Hannah and her publisher and everyone who entered and promoted the giveaway. Thank you!!!

And the winner is
mama2lilev! Congratulations, you'll receive an email to download the e-book Mission: Impossible Pies.

Thursday, 5 August 2010

Italy, (not too much) vegan, Italy

My husband is Italian, so for the last 5 years and a half I've been learning a lot about Italy and I go there often. Most of the times is just to visit family and to have amazing vegan foods at home. But this time I did a week as a tourist cause my mom came to Europe for the very first time and one of her dreams was to go to Venice. So, to Italy we went. Me, Matteo, mom and a friend of her. 7 days, 4 cities.

The first stop was Matteo's city, Soresina. It's a small city part of Cremona and very close to Milan. We spent the day there and had a early birthday lunch to celebrate my 35 years old. On the second day we went to Milan. After that it were three days in Venice and three days in Rome.

Lunch time at Matteo's house - Soresina

My lovely vegan b-day cake, made by my sister-in-law

Vegan fruit ice cream

Vegan biscuits that you can find in the supermarkets

Vegan biscuits that you can find in the supermarkets

I don't have too much about vegan food to share with you this time cause we went - most of the time - to regular restaurants. But there are some things that I think it's important to know: some cities in Italy doesn't have too many vegan or vegetarian restaurants. Check Vegan Cow to good tips, but it's really hard to find specific places. But, no vegan will starve in that beautiful country cause some typical food are naturally vegan! You will always find spaghetti al pomodoro or spaghetti aglio olio e peperoncino. If you go to a restaurant that is also a pizzeria, you will have the marinara pizza and the best thing about it is that you can ask for a marinara with any vegetables you want (Matteo's favorite is with artichoke and mine is with black olives). Most of the places serve ciabatta bread free (you can ask for the oil to eat with the bread, it's too good) and it's vegan.

Marinara pizza

Spaghetti aglio olio e peperoncino

Fresh cherries in Venice

And when in Rome... Try two typical Roman food: pizza bianca and pizza rossa. They're perfect for an amazing breakfast. And there are (at least) two places in Rome that you should go: Mondo Arancina (they have one vegan option of this snack called arancina ant it's made with rice and tomato sauce) and, at the same block, Gelarmony Arte Del Gelato Siciliano (they have many vegan ice cream options - soya and rice - and an awesome homemade whipping cream! And I don't need to say that it is my favorite place in Rome too, do I?).

That's it for now. I hope I can go to visit some other cities in Italy this year to make more useful posts for vegan people traveling in Italy.

Mondo Arancina
Via Marcantonio Colonna, 38

Gelarmony Arte Del Gelato Siciliano
Via Marcantonio Colonna, 34

Summer, hot Summer, in Rome


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