Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Guest post: “No Tell” Ro-Tel Cheese Dip

Hey guys! I’m Bianca, a vegan from Memphis who runs a little blog called Vegan Crunk. Glauce asked me to fill in for her while she’s away with a guest post on my favorite ingredient.

It didn’t take me long to decide what that fave ingredient was! Nutritional yeast! Or “nooch” as so many vegans affectionately call it. Glauce said nutritional yeast isn’t as popular in her area as it is in the U.S., and I know she has a lot of international readers, so let me explain.

Nutritional yeast is deactivated yeast that’s technically a fungus. But don’t let that gross you out! It’s produced by culturing yeast with sugar cane and beet molasses for several days, and it has a rich cheesy, nutty flavor. Some brands are also packed with vitamin B-12, which vegans need for good health. It’s also a great source of protein.

I use nutritional yeast in all kinds of ways. It makes a great base for a vegan cheesy sauce for macaroni or steamed veggies. Just mix the nooch flakes with water or soymilk, flour, garlic powder, mustard, and vegan margarine on medium heat, and you’ve got yourself a tasty sauce.

It’s also excellent sprinkled on popcorn, and it makes a mighty-fine breading for fried tofu.

But today, I’m going to share my recipe for No-Tell Rotel Cheeze Dip, a nutritional yeast based nacho cheese dip that will be included in my upcoming vegan Southern comfort food cookbook. My book is due to hit stands in the U.S. in January, and it’ll be available on Amazon and such. For now, I’m calling the book Cookin’ Crunk: Eatin’ Vegan in the Dirty South. Here’s a sneak peek!

“No Tell” Ro-Tel Cheese Dip
Yields 2 cups

1 package silk tofu
3/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 cup Ro-Tel (or any brand of canned diced tomatoes and green chilis), divided
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder

Process the silk tofu, nutritional yeast, 1/2 cup of the Ro-Tel, olive oil, salt, turmeric, garlic powder, and onion powder in a food processor until smooth, stopping once to scrape down the sides of the processor.

Transfer to dip to a small saucepan and stir in the remaining 1/2 cup of the Ro-Tel. Heat on low for 5 to 7 minutes or until bubbly. Immediately remove from heat and serve.

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Thank you so much, Bianca!
I love your blog and it was lovely of you to find time in this crazy life to be part of my blog :)
Hope you all enjoyed reading this guest post as much as I did and I can't wait to try the recipe! And don't forget to get a copy of her book in January!

Thursday, 12 May 2011

One more music and food trip!

Today I'm leaving for this:

Purification is Matteo's band and they're a vegan edge band. They'll play six shows in South America and I'll be playing the bass for them. It will be 11 days playing, meeting friends, eating vegan food, having fun and spreading the word about veganism. If you wanna check the band, go to their Facebook page!

Our first stop will be Sao Paulo and I can't wait to go to Vegacy, a vegan restaurant there that I really love!

After the tour I'll be heading my hometown to spend some days with my family. Can't wait.

Have to say I don't know how I'll be able to manager the posts here, but I have a few guest posts prepared and scheduled to keep the blog alive while I'm in South America.

See you all soon!

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Don't keep it secret!

I'm pretty sure you've heard before about the "Secret Society of Vegans" and if you haven't it's time to know all about it! SSOV has been producing vegan gear in London since 2004 and in 2009 they decided to open their first shop in Camden Town. In the beginning of 2010 they moved to a new place, called Vx, the new home of SSOV.

Since I've heard they had opened the shop I wanted to go there and never had the chance until last week! So, what's so special about the shop? For me, the most exciting thing is that it's not (just) a food shop (I know you don't believe, but I think about other things too!). They sell clothes, vegan shoes, books, grocery AND food.

We ended spending more than a couple of hours there and it was amazing. Everybody in the shop is very nice and we had the opportunity to meet one of the guys responsible for the Accidentally Vegan (they supply the shop with some of the most amazing vegan treats, include a vegan profiterole that is to die for!). It was a lovely afternoon and I bought some great stuff.

Besides the shop, they have a lounge in the basement where you can relax, drink some coffee while eating some of the delicious vegan treats and chat with the friends.

Vx is totally wort it a visit when in London! And don't keep it secret, spread the word as much as you can.

73 Caledonian Road
Kings Cross

Monday, 9 May 2011

Music and food trip to London

Oh, boy! I thought I had written about London here before and now I realized I didn't. I wrote about the trip we've done last year but in my old column in a Brazilian website. Shame on me. But well, better late than never and now I have even better tips and photos, so here we go!

London must be in every TOP 5 cities for vegans. It's very vegan-friendly and the prices are decent too (well, I always compare to f***ing-expensive Dublin!). And being a tourist there rules too. Me and Matteo went there in the end of April to see Descendents for the first time. The show was on of the biggest frustration of my life cause Milo (the singer) lost his voice after the third song. But well, this is not a blog about music so this was just an introduction (you know how much punk/hardcore is a big thing in my life!).

We stayed three days in London and went to some places to eat, including the vegan Thai place in Camden Town that is a must (it's all you can eat and it's basically in front of the tube station and close to most of the venues we go to). The place is not hard to find but I can't remember its name (sorry about that!) but there's a sign in the front door "vegetarian Thai buffet" and the place is big enough to see it :P Just one note: it's almost impossible to go there two days in a row cause the food is heavy, everything there is fried and in your first day there you will really want as much as you can, so do it right!

Second food stop was Gallery Cafe. The guys from the Vx store (I'll write a separated post about it) recommend us their vegan pizza. It's served after 3:30 so we decided to go there before the Saves the Day gig on Tuesday. Can't describe how good was the super cheesy vegan pizza! One of the best vegan pizzas I've ever had. Could eat there every day (yeah, you know, I do love pizza). The place is vegetarian, not vegan, but they have vegan options and the staff is pleased to help you to "build" your favourite pizza.

St. Margaret's House
21 Old Ford Road

Bethnal Green
Third stop was Ms. Cupcake. When I read that they had opened a store in London I got so excited and couldn't leave the city with a least one visit. They're located in Brixton so we took the tube and, have to say, I had the best cupcake of my life there: a Ferrero Rocher cupcake. We had the honor of meeting Ms. Cupcake in person too and she's a lovely lady. The shop is big and it's in a nice gallery with a coffee shop in the next door, where you can order your vegan favourite coffee to have with your cupcake. Matteo had the Triple Chocolate one (which also comes with homemade vegan marshmallows on top!) and I had another one, Raspberry Cheesecake. So, next time you're in London, make sure you'll stop by Ms. Cupcake, it's 1000% worth it!

408 Coldharbour Lane

And our last stop before coming back to real life was Maoz Vegetarian. I know it's not a meal, but I love falafel and Maoz is handy, cheap and tasty. The filling options in London are great and the falafel balls are delicious too. And the shop is at Soho so it's always a good idea to walk around the area too.

43 Old Compton Street

This is it! There are at least a million other vegan places to go so I'm sure I will have to keep going there to keep this blog full of tips.

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Worldwide Vegan Bake Sale in Dublin

Yesterday Dublin had its Worldwide Vegan Bake Sale 2011 promoted by the Vegetarian Society of Ireland. Since I've heard about the worldwide week I wished I could be part of it and organize or even be part or something but I couldn't and I was very frustrated about it. So going to the only event organized in Dublin and show my support was the minimum to do.

This was the second year that the Vegetarian Society of Ireland promoted the event and it happened in a very cool venue in town called Exchange Dublin. During the Saturdays there's a market there and in the street in front of it so it's always packed with residents and tourists walking around.

The Vegan Bake Sale was very good! I've met a vegan Brazilian girl and also had the chance to chat with one of the people involved in the Vegetarian Society of Ireland for the first time. The place was bustling and the atmosphere was great! The only thing is that I was expecting more. Probably my bad cause I know how is hard to promote this kind of thing in Ireland and to get people involved but I was expecting to find more vegan treats. So I really hope that next year more people will collaborate with the Worldwide Vegan Bake Sale in Dublin!

For now, well done to the Vegetarian Society for promoting a vegan event and giving people the opportunity of trying good vegan treats and to have more information about veganism.


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