I walked into the small shop with the large windows and took a deep breath in through my nostrils. A warm and sugary swirl of baked goods calmly wafted by as my eyes fixated on the glass case sitting in front of me that was filled with freshly baked donuts, cupcakes, and loaves of sweetened bread. I walked behind the line of people who took their time ordering their breakfast and coffee with the hopes of snapping out of their drowsy state of shortened sleep.
A short woman with rounded cheeks smiled and peered out through the glass that sat below the marble counter. “How may I help you?”
A visitor drives in from over the Grapevine and into the thin layer of smog covering the lid of the Central Valley that has been collected from cites all over. The non-local knows only of what he has been told. For the strange new face, Bakersfield is this mystic town filled with locals riding horses on city streets in barren desert. However, he eventually changes his tune after his personal tour guide and former local resident takes him on a journey.
The stranger is taken onto the fertile land, where the majority of the nation’s produce is grown. The visitor realizes how close everything is to the city at the base of the valley. The mountains of Tehachapi, Lake Isabella, Los Angeles, the beaches along the coast, and the family owned farms and dairies, surround the growing city creating new and exciting events and ideas for vacations. Continue reading “L is for the Locals”→
Easy Peasy Vegetarian Recipes: Quinoa Guacamole with Vegan Chicken
So, last week I realized that I had forgotten about a rogue avocado sitting next to my blender on the counter. I figured it was time, once again, to play my favorite kitchen game: “Let’s get rid of stuff that’s about to go bad and Google a recipe that includes these random ingredients.”
Serves 4 What You’ll Need
1 ripe avocado, pitted, peeled, and diced
Juice of 1 1/2 limes
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 cups cooked quinoa
1 cup of cooked brown rice
1 garlic clove, crushed with a press or minced and ground into a paste
1 Roma tomato, diced
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup diced red onion
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
4 servings of Gardein Chik’nContinue reading ““F” is for Food #VeganMoFo”→
After the removal of my wisdom teeth I was left with enough tomato soup to feed the entire state of Maine. I had made way too much tomato soup and it was on the verge of going bad. However, pared with potatoes and other veggies, my new tomato soup diet doesn’t have to be so bland. So here’s a veggie-friendly chunky tomato potato soup recipe that you can try at home.
What You’ll Need:
1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil
2 onions, chopped
4 cups peeled, cubed potatoes
1 1/2 cups chopped celery
1 1/2 cups chopped carrots
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
2 cups soy or almond milk
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 (14.5 ounce) can tomatoes
1 1/4 cups vegetable broth
2 tablespoons tomato paste
salt and pepper to taste Continue reading “Easy Peasy Vegetarian Recipes: Chunky Tomato Potato Soup”→
Traveling as a vegetarian isn’t impossible, and it doesn’t have to be such a difficult thing. If you have already been a vegetarian for a while and you are used to going out and eating veggie-friendly foods at restaurants then you can definitely find vegetarian food abroad.
It’s definitely more difficult being a vegetarian in France than it is in Italy and Spain and, by default, it’s even harder to be a vegan. According to the European Vegetarian Union, there is a law in France outlawing the serving of vegan meals at any public or private school in France. Similar laws have been proposed for kindergartens, hospitals, prisons and retirement homes.
One million French, or 1.5 perfect of the total population, in the 1990s called themselves vegetarians, and it has reportedly increased to 2 percent. With such dishes as basil salmon terrine, bisque is a smooth and creamy French potage, foie gras with mustard seeds and green onions in duck jus, french onion soup, and croque monsieur all made with heavy crème and meats, it’s no wonder there aren’t a lot f vegetarians living in France.Continue reading “The Vegetarians of Paris, France #StudyAbroad”→
There is a quite a difference between Barcelona, Spain and Florence Italy. Remaining vegetarian, or even vegan, is ridiculously easy in Italy, but the land of paella, seafood dishes make it a little more difficult than the country sitting across from two seas.
According a 2002 article El Mundo claimed that Spain had 1.5 million vegetarians at the time. In more recent times, Asociación Vegana cited that the numbers may be in two millions, while the European Vegetarian Union cites 1.800.000 vegetarians, a 4% of the population.
I walked a ways to the train station in Florence, took the train to Bologna, took a cab to the airport, to a plane with fellow study abroad students to Spain and then a bus to a hostel we all stayed at in Barcelona. We all, understandably, passed out on top of the thin sheets they gave us on our bunk beds.
We spent the next two days visiting famous sites such as La Sagrada Familia, Park Guell, La Catedral de Barcelona, one of Barcelona’s amazing beaches. We tried Sangria from Spain and had tons of tapas. The weather was cool, the city was great and, to be honest, I kind of liked it more than Italy. Continue reading “Adventuras en Espana #StudyAbroad”→
Camping while vegetarian or vegan is actually extremely easy. I recently packed way too much amazing food options with me on camping trip to Big Bear, California and had enough food for use as leftovers when I got back. So grab a cooler and your camp gear and take a look at some ideas to take with you on your next camping trip.
Greasy junk food and snacks are quickly being bought from stores and prepared for the Super Bowl that will air later today. The usual main dishes at parties aren’t always vegetarian or vegan, but a lot of the snacks are unintentionally made without animal products. The majority of the choices are not the healthiest options, but they can be considered as options for vegans nonetheless.