Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Christmas Crab Cakes

The Chef: Elizabeth

The Menu: A colorful composition of lemony crab cakes made with Match Meats and Le Grand Lemon Confit, sautéed spinach with garlic, peanut butter roll-ups with jalapeño jelly, a bright salad with red cabbage and mango, and hunks of warm bread.

The Goods: The inspiration behind this meal was clearly cleaning out the fridge before we leave for the holidays! Frankie and Kassie provided the roll-ups, and with so many ready-made ingredients on-hand, this complex-looking meal came together in just about half an hour. Oh, and there might be about 80,000 types of cookies, fudge, candy canes, and other holiday-type goodies hanging around the office, so we're all feeling pretty freakin' jolly. We're off for the holidays until the beginning of January, so we'll see you in 2010! Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Celebration Soup

The Chef: Liz

The Menu: A superb vegetable soup, which Liz made nice and hearty with cashew cream, blended rice, and other fresh veggies. Alongside we enjoyed a beautiful salad with kale, spinach, grated carrots, pine nuts, and black sesame seeds, and slices of toasted bread. It may well have been perfection in lunch form. Oh, and just to top it all off, we demolished the cinnamon rolls that were delivered to us this morning from Cinnaholic. Maybe they were candy cane and gingerbred flavored. Maybe they were absolutely delicious, and we are all currently in sugar comas. Consider, if you will, this these facts:
Yeah. Oh, and one of our guests, Katie, made pistachio fudge. She does that. Things are good. Speaking of which....

The Goods: Today's meal was stellar, but it was totally trumped by the company. We were joined today by our beloved Laura Beck, Aurelia d'Andrea, Katie and Dan Paul, and (from the non-human animal contingency) Cal, Khane, Fanny, Wawona, and William. Yes, Wawona is the cat Katie rescued while she interned with us ever so long ago, and William is the white rat that Joseph is holding in the photo below. Though it was a phenomenal group and a mighty good time, it was tinged with sadness as it's Miss Sara's last day in the office. Sara, you'll be missed! To abruptly change the subject so that we no longer have to contemplate her imminent departure, please note: we've compiled the Top 10 Veg Stories of the Decade. Check them out!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Brazilian Black Bean Stew

The Chef: Colleen

The Menu: A super delicious sweet-and-savory stew! This was yet another recipe from 1,000 Vegan Recipes, and if only for this one alone, the book is a hit! Black beans, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, cumin, mango, and banana all joined forces in this cozy stew. A light side salad with sliced mushrooms, chopped tomatoes, grated carrots, and a balsamic vinaigrette perfectly complemented the hearty main.

The Goods: Well, cookbook week has come to its close, but we still have one copy of Robin Robertson's latest work to dole out. Yes, we are totally like Santa. Minus the reindeer, semi-religious affiliation, and red suit. But otherwise, we and Santa are one in the same! Ok, so without further ado our final copy of 1,000 Vegan Recipes goes to livingroovy! Livingroovy, send us an email and we'll send your book right out.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Cookbook Week: Three-Bean Chili

The Chef: Abby

The Menu: A hearty, filling bowl of three-bean chili. This super satisfying main starred white and red kidney beans, black beans, and just the right amount of chipotle peppers and green chiles for an added kick. Abby complemented the spicy dish with fluffy quinoa and a light spinach salad with carrot, red pepper, and sliced mushrooms.

The Goods: First, the good news. Today we enjoyed another one of Robin Robertson's 1,000 Vegan Recipes, the sun is shining, our Parma! cup runneth over, and it's Friday. Now the bad news: We only have one more copy of Robertson's masterpiece to give away. On a happier note, congrats to PodPiper, who is the winner of yesterday's copy! Send us an e-mail, and we'll get your book right out. Our randomly selected winner touted Daiya as a current love obsession, suggesting a sprinkle makes everything better—including chili. While we didn't have any Daiya on hand today, the VN staff did debate over the best chili toppings. From classic to crazy, what's your favorite chili add-in? Leave a comment for your chance to win the final copy of 1,000 Vegan Recipes!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Cookbook Week: Pierogi with Fried Onions

The Chef: Sara

The Menu: A perfect plate of pert pierogi! These cute little dumplings were stuffed with mashed potatoes and fried onions, and they were just about as tasty as can be. Sara's spinach side salad was a stupendous supplement to the savory main.

The Goods: Whoa! Did you know that the holidays are heavily breathing their candy-cane breath down our necks? Yeah, they are. What with all the frenzied gift purchasing, it's nice to be able to give something away for free every day. Here at the VNHQ, we've so far had a bunch of great lunches from 1,000 Vegan Recipes and today's was no exception. Congratulations to yesterday's giveaway winner, Josiane! Josiane, send us an email, and we'll send your copy of the book right out.

Now, today we had the pleasure of dining with Ms. Laura Beck. This lovely lady just returned from a whirlwind trip to NYC and Chicago, and still found time to spoil us with treats. She brought a box of S'mores Bars by Sweet Fritsy, and, um, wow. Incredible. Gooey marshmallow layer on rich fudge layer, topped with graham cracker crumbs and chocolate chips. We are in love. Here's our new sweetie:
Now that you've met our latest obsession, for today's copy of 1,000 Vegan Recipes, tell us in the comments: What are you totally in love with right now?

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Cookbook Week: Fettuccine with Figs and Walnuts

The Chef: Elizabeth

The Menu: A highly delicious, very filling meal of whole-wheat fettuccine, doused in a cashew-cream sauce with figs and walnuts, topped with toasted breadcrumbs. A simple salad with tomato and red onion balanced out the extremely rich pasta.

The Goods: As we're sure you're aware by now, all the dishes this week are recipes in Robin Robertson's latest work, 1,000 Vegan Recipes. Robertson mentions that this recipe is one of her favorites, as it's adapted from a dish that her mother would serve every Christmas Eve. Which leads us to two points: one, congratulations to phrog from yesterday's comments! Send us an email, and we'll send your copy of the book right out. Two, for today's copy, tell us in the comments: What is your most delicious holiday tradition?

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Cookbook Week: Roasted Vegetable Frittata

The Chef: Liz

The Menu: A bevvy of breakfast goodies from 1,000 Vegan Recipes! Liz busted out a delicious frittata with potatoes, mushrooms, red bell pepper, and onions, and accompanied the hearty main with hash browns and Match Meats Breakfast Sausage. Savory and filling, breakfast for lunch might just be one of our all-time favorites.

The Goods: The comments from yesterday told us that overwhelmingly Vegan Planet is your go-to cookbook from Robin Robertson. Thanks to our trusty random number generator that picked the winning comment, we'd like to wish congratulations to Olivia! Olivia, send us an email with your full name and mailing address, and we'll send your copy of 1,000 Vegan Recipes right out. For today's copy, let's talk holidays. Tell us in the comments: What's your favorite holiday dish?

Monday, December 14, 2009

Cookbook Week: Red Bean Jamaican Stew

The Chef: Lyndsay

The Menu: Our first attempt at making a recipe from 1,000 Vegan Recipes by our very own columnist, Robin Robertson. Lyndsay took the "Global Vegan" theme from Robin's column, and created this rich, delicious stew of coconut milk, kidney beans, sweet potatoes, and spices, which she served over brown basmati rice and artistically dotted with hot sauce.

The Goods: All this week we'll be making meals from Robin's latest work. Yes, picking five recipes out of a thousand—literally—but we managed to each find something that appealed to us. The good news? This means that there is a recipe for all the lunches we'll make this week, unlike our usual MO of throwing together whatever we have in the kitchen. The better news? We're also giving away one copy of this massive tome each day this week! To win today's copy, tell us in the comments: What is your favorite Robin Robertson cookbook?

Friday, December 11, 2009

Homemade Vegan Meatballs

The Chef: Colleen

The Menu: Oh, just your basic bowl of ziti and pasta sauce—with homemade vegan meatballs!! Seriously, we are not even sure how Colleen managed to make all this in just an hour, but she did, and we are stoked. Well, OK, we do know that she used Match Meats Ground Chicken as a base, but then loaded these baked babies up with spices, and cooked them perfectly. The end, love, meatballs.

The Goods: Well, it's raining and gross here at the VNHQ today, but the inclement weather has not dampened our spirits. It's Friday, we'll be doing a giveaway next week, and for those who are into this kind of thing, it's the first night of Hanukkah. Need some vegan Hanukkah recipes? Maybe you should head over to, where we just happen to have some.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Simple Lentil Soup

The Chef: Abby

The Menu: A perfectly easy lentil soup with potatoes, carrots, tons of garlic, and a bunch of yummy Indian spices. This was just about the best thing that could have possibly come out of our kitchen today, since all we ever want to eat is soup, what with the frigid temperatures we've had recently. Abby also made a lovely side of brown rice topped with marinated Match Meats Ground Chicken that she baked to perfection.

The Goods: Yes, we could easily eat soup every day and be totally happy at lunchtime. Come next week, however, we're going to bust out of our comfort zone and delve into a sampling of Robin Robertson's latest work, 1,000 Vegan Recipes. Will we be giving away one copy each day? Why yes, yes we will. Speaking of giving things away, in case you missed our Holiday Newsletter that launched this morning, check it out here. Maybe it has tons of holiday recipes, tips, and ideas, and maybe it is also really, really cute. We're just saying.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Free-Form Fajitas

The Chef: Elizabeth

The Menu: A fairly monochromatic plate of beef-free fajitas. For the "beef" she used Match Meats Ground Beef, and then served quinoa topped with spiced zucchini, black beans, and crimini mushrooms alongside. Whole-wheat tortillas and sliced avocado make anything better, don't they?

The Goods: As you might or might not be aware, it's cold here. Like, really cold. Like, so cold that while Elizabeth was in the kitchen making lunch (which is in a part of our office that doesn't have great heating), she donned her sweater, heavy jacket, and borrowed a knit hat from Abby to keep her ears from freezing off. If anyone is interested in sending hot-cocoa reinforcements, we'd be fine with that!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Lemon "Chicken" and Vegetable Soup

The Chef: Liz

The Menu: A lovely, blended vegetable soup of potatoes, carrots, celery, and just a touch of something spicy, a side of brown rice, a slice of yummy ciabatta, and a sample of Match Meats Ground Chicken that Liz prepared with a Lemon Confit and Pumpkin Seed sauce. Hearty? Check. Warm? Check. Totally contrasted the near-freezing (literally!) temperatures we experienced today? Check.

The Goods: It is definitely winter. Everyone was back in the office and this slightly spicy soup was just the thing to revive our staffers who are fighting colds and to warm up the rest of us who were turning into popsicles. Really, it's very chilly.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Burgers and Fries

The Chef: Lyndsay

The Menu: A classic burger-and-fries combo complete with homemade, oven-baked French fries and delicious, hearty veggie burgers made with tofu and red beans. To get some greens in, Lyndsay topped the meal off with a robust salad doused in a lemony vinaigrette dressing. We may or may not have washed down our lovely meal with some Candy Cane Joe-Joe's and soymilk. Hey, 'tis the season.

The Goods: Things are strangely quiet today at the VNHQ, with Ms. Elizabeth and Ms. Abby both out sick. We wish them a speedy recovery! In other news, our stick-to-your-ribs lunch was the perfect meal to satisfy our appetites on this chilly San Francisco day. We've certainly learned our lesson—whether indoors or out, bundling up during the harsh winter months is an absolute must!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Chef's Table

The Chef: Colleen

The Menu: A lovely roasted butternut squash soup, Colleen's signature holiday salad, and a delicious quinoa salad with chopped bell peppers, carrots, and red onions. In case you haven't been near Colleen during the holidays, her salad consists of mixed greens, candied pecans, dried cranberries, and sliced apples.

The Goods: Today we enjoyed the excellent company of Bryant Terry and his lovely partner Jidan. The weather was slightly chilly for an al fresco lunch, but we had fun none the less. Here's a photo of the whole, freezing group:

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Soup and Pasta Salad

The Chef: Sara

The Menu: A lovely, spicy tomato soup with a side of toasted tortilla triangles, and a big pesto pasta salad with fresh veggies. Sara chopped up zucchini, broccoli, red onions, carrots, and greens, and added a ready-made pesto by Maison Le Grand for our dining pleasure. Yum. We then proceeded to drown the memory of our healthy lunch in ice cream, which is just not a bad idea at all.

The Goods: We are thrilled to announce that for the first time ever, VegNews has our own, customized holiday cards on sale! They are pretty stinking cute, so you should probably go check them out. Unless you want us to be sad and drown our sorrows in Candy Cane Joe-Joe's, which we might be doing anyway.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Hot Pink Soup!

The Chefs: Abby and Susy

The Menu: One of the most colorful ways of using Thanksgiving leftovers we've ever seen! Though the photo doesn't quite do it justice, this soup—which was an amalgamation of mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, and roasted root vegetables—was hot pink in real life, thanks to the roasted beets it contained. Susy (aka Elizabeth's mom) brought the soup makings, some stuffing, and a highly delicious cranberry-Cabernet sauce from the Castoria family Thanksgiving. Abby whipped up her signature biscuits and a big, beautiful salad.

The Goods: Today we had the pleasure of Susy's company and celebrated the birth of our beloved Frankie. OK, so technically Frankie's birthday isn't until tomorrow, but she has celebration plans that don't involve coming into the office, so we took the opportunity to whoop it up with her today. Fun ladies and great eats? We like that.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


The Chef: El Burrito Express

The Menu: Well, what's it look like? Oh, that's right, burritos! Yep, our black-bean and guacamole-filled staples served us well today, alongside their trusty chips and salsas.

The Goods: Today, we got in the proofs of the January+February 2010 issue, and since we had a breakneck editing schedule once they arrived, we thought it best to conserve precious editing energy by having lunch catered. By "catered" we mean that Joseph picked up burritos from our favorite local joint, and we demolished them. The end. Love, VN.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Wellington Returns!

The Chef: Joseph

The Menu: An eclectic mix of Thanksgiving-ish leftovers, which included the very last of our beloved Native Foods' Wellington, some stuffing, a quinoa and green bean salad with walnuts, roasted sweet potato slices, inari, and crudités. We were, of course, both thrilled to see the Wellington on the menu, and sad to see it go, since this was the last of it.

The Goods: It's going to be a busy week here at the VNHQ after our long Thanksgiving weekend! We hope that everyone who celebrated thoroughly enjoyed their holiday, and that everyone else had a good, non-holiday weekend. A few important notes: tomorrow is the deadline to apply for our 2010 Wedding Feature, so if you had a vegan wedding this year, don't forget to apply! Also, keep an eye out for awesome guest Bryant Terry, who'll be joining us for lunch on Friday.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Too-Good Tacos

The Chef: Peter

The Menu: Some of the fanciest tacos we've ever eaten! Peter, whom you may remember from a number of our Press Pass adventures, was kind enough to stop by and guest chef for us today, and, um, wow. So, on top of either blue-corn or whole-wheat tortillas, we piled rice, a super-flavorful black bean sauce, a delicious tomato-corn compote, caramelized onions and garlic, and a fresh basil chiffonade. See that plating? Yeah. We like that. Also, Peter made an absolutely perfect side salad with homemade balsamic vinaigrette and lots of fresh veggies.

The Goods: Anything less than today's stellar meal would have badly paled in comparison to yesterday's insanity. Thankfully, Peter's a great cook, and we'll be coercing him into cooking for us again as soon as possible. Here's hoping that everyone enjoys a happy, turkey-free Thanksgiving! See you next week!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Pre-Thanksgiving Feast

The Chefs: Everyone! And Native Foods and Babycakes NYC

The Menu: Thanksgiving! We went all-out today with an amazing holiday spread. First of all, let's talk about the Native Foods' Wellington. Holy heck. This thing is puff pastry wrapped around delicious layers of seitan, kale, sweet potatoes, and portabello mushrooms, caramelized onions, and some magic. OK, OK, it was mostly magic. Seriously, we could eat this every day. Moving on from the Wellington's majesty, we enjoyed perfectly garlicky mashed potatoes made by Liz, which we doused in a cashew gravy that Elizabeth whipped up. Abby made her signature chive biscuits, and Colleen roasted Brussels sprouts to perfection and made her traditional Thanksgiving salad with candied pecans, dried cranberries, sliced apples, and a homemade balsamic vinaigrette. Oh, and then we had dessert. Apple-crumb cake from Babycakes NYC? We'll let this photo speak for itself:

The Goods: This may well be the most epic lunch ever eaten at the VNHQ. Easily one of the most delectable meals we've had, this pre-Thanksgiving smorgasbord was a wonderful treat for our hard-working staff, and might just have us in fighting shape for the actual T-Day. ("T" is for "Thanks for not eating turkey," obviously.) We'll be back with one more post this week, and then it's off to our respective holiday celebrations/mashed potato-induced comas.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Biscuits and Brussels Sprouts

The Chef: Lyndsay

The Menu: Ms. Lyndsay is into her savory treats, and we're ok with that. Today she made—from scratch, mind you—whole-wheat biscuits, which she topped with Match Meats Breakfast Sausage crumbles, and a rich, Hollandaise-esque sauce. Her roasted Brussels sprouts were perfectly done: bright green, still slightly crisp, and with their natural bite intact.

The Goods: It's going to be a crazy (and short!) week here at the VNHQ, and we're pretty danged excited for it. Don't miss our pre-Thanksgiving celebration lunch report tomorrow, and don't forget to check VegNews and VegWeb for all your holiday recipe needs!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Wrap-It-Up Wraps

The Chef: Colleen

The Menu: Some hearty, delicious wraps that may have been inspired by what we had in the kitchen. What we had, it turns out, were whole-wheat wraps, pinto beans, greens, mushrooms, carrots, and potatoes. Colleen roasted the spuds, sautéed the beans, 'shrooms, and carrots, and wrapped everything together with mashed avocado. Yum.

The Goods: We're not bragging, but this week we might have whipped up one of our all-time favorite covers, double checked our document, and talked endlessly about Thanksgiving. Oh, did you know that's happening next week? If you are in a panic over what to serve, take the advice of one of our favorite chefs, Jesse Miner. He'll be chatting away over on VegWeb this Sunday, answering all your vegan holiday questions. The guy knows his stuff, including knowing the way into our hearts, which—as if there were any question—is through chocolate. Jesse joined us today and generously brought along chocolate-covered peanut-butter truffles. Um, yeah. That's how you wrap up a week!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Mighty-Good Moussaka

The Chef: Sara

The Menu: A truly yummy moussaka, which featured layers of eggplant, zucchini, and potato, all doused with a savory tomato sauce and tofu ricotta. Sara also make a spinach salad with broccoli, cherry tomatoes, and sliced mushrooms. Suffice to say, both were delicious.

The Goods: We are pretty stinking excited about getting close to putting the finishing touches on our cover for the January+February 2010 issue! Maybe it looks really good, and maybe we like that. Speaking of things that excite us, Thanksgiving is right around the corner. Do you have questions? Maybe we have a chat all lined up on VegWeb with expert veg chef Jesse Miner, who'll be joining us for lunch tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Fat Bottom Bakery Mac 'n' Cheese

The Chefs: Carolynn and Ashley from Fat Bottom Bakery

The Menu: A mighty good mac 'n' cheese. In fact, this is the very same recipe which garnered our guests second place in the SF Food Wars mac 'n' cheese competition, when they battled both vegan and pork-laden versions of the homey favorite. Our beloved Laura Beck of VegWeb fame brought some radically roasted Brussels sprouts, and we whipped up a salad. Oh, and maybe Carolynn and Ashley also brought us some cupcakes:

Yeah, what you're seeing there are coconut, red velvet, and carrot cake cupcakes. The one with pink dinosaur sprinkles was for Laura, obviously.

The Goods: Today's lunch might just have been one for the record books it was so delightful and delectable. Here's the team—very, very full of mac 'n' cheese and cupcakes at this point. These darling bakers are welcome back any time, and you can sample their wares at the next SF Vegan Bakesale!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Multi-Vegetable Soup

The Chef: Liz

The Menu: A rich, delicious soup, baked potato, and salad. Liz told us that she originally intended to make a cheddar-broccoli soup, but then discovered that somehow all the Wayfare Foods cheesy dips have disappeared from our fridge. Yes, this is highly suspicious—or it would be, if we hadn't been slathering the stuff on anything that wasn't nailed down for the last week. The soup ended up having broccoli, cashews, carrots, and potatoes, and was extremely satisfying. And can you really go wrong with a baked potato covered in Daiya? No, it turns out that you cannot.

The Goods: You may have noticed that there was no post here yesterday, and we have a pretty simple explanation for it: we didn't have lunch. As a way of saying "thank you" for the team all taking shifts at our SF Green Festival booth, we took the morning and lunch off. To make up for it, please find all the details (including Gavin Newsom and Woody Harrelson) of this weekend's festival on Press Pass.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Quick Ribs

The Chef: Colleen

The Menu: Frankie's amazing meatless ribs and barbecue sauce, cumin-roasted sweet potatoes, and a side of fantastic, garlicky Swiss chard.

The Goods: This delicious, simple meal totally hit the spot for our small staff today. About half our team had already left for the Green Festival by lunch time, and those of us who were left devoured these goodies. We hope to see everyone at the festival this weekend, where we'll have a special present for you: subscriptions for just $15! For a whole year! Yeah, we're excited. Oh, and in case you were hoping to not have to cook for Thanksgiving, don't forget that we're giving away a gourmet meal featuring Native Foods and Babycakes NYC over on!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Vegan Crêpes!

The Chef: Sara

The Menu
: Um, maybe it's crêpes. Maybe Sara is a sneaky chef and prepared the batter last night, so she'd be all prepped and ready to make today's totally stellar lunch. She filled one of these whole-wheat wonders with a mashed sweet-potato and caramelized-onion mixture, and the other with roasted broccoli, cashew gravy, and Daiya. Hell yes. And, sure, there's also a big, beautiful salad, but we're not talking salad now. Now we're talking crêpes because they are awesome and delicious and you should make them.

The Goods: We were a small team for lunch today, since a couple of our staff were over setting up for the Green Festival this weekend. Do you like things that don't hurt the environment? Do you like all-veg food? Do you like VN subscriptions for only 15 stinking bucks?! Then you should probably come say hi at our booth this weekend! The fun begins tomorrow, so don't be shy!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Mexican Mash-Up

The Chef: Elizabeth

The Menu: A Mexican-food inspired mish-mash of tofu, black and pinto beans, tomatoes, tortilla strips, potatoes, and spices. A fresh green salad with spinach, grated carrot, avocado, and halved cherry tomatoes finished off the plate.

The Goods: Today we enjoyed the lovely company of Noelle and Rebecca from PCRM, who are in town for this weekend's Green Festival. It should be a fantastic event, so if you're in San Francisco, come by the VN booth and say hi!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Double Cheese Quesadillas

The Chef: Liz

The Menu: Some of the best freakin' quesadillas we've ever had. No joke. Liz not only stuffed these crispy tortillas full of Daiya, tomatoes, onions, and mushrooms, she also added a sneaky layer of WayFare Foods' Mexi Cheddar-Style Dip to the rich filling, and yeah. Let's just say that there are not leftovers today. Though Liz did incorporate leftovers from yesterday's lunch into her salad, which made a hearty addition to the standard romaine and avocado. She also fried up some homemade tortilla chips, which we totally devoured with more of the Mexi Cheddar. And, just for kicks, Liz whipped up some brown rice. We like brown rice.

The Goods: Yes, quesadillas with two varieties of vegan cheese are pretty thrilling. A note of caution: if we had the means to prepare our own body weights in 'dillas, we would, and we're pretty sure that you'll be similarly enthused/addicted. Eat with care.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Stuff on a Shingle

The Chef: Lyndsay

The Menu: Maybe when Lyndsay presented this savory meal of simmered garbanzo and pinto beans she didn't say "stuff." Maybe she used another word that begins with "s" and out of deference to the fact that this is a food blog, we decided to replace it. Evidently, stuff on a shingle is an actual recipe, which Lyndsay found in Cozy Inside. Of course, we covered everything in Daiya, like we do. Lyndsay served a lovely side salad with her "stuff."

The Goods: So, did you know that Thanksgiving is like, right around the corner? Like, we can smell the homemade dinner rolls and stuffing from here? In case you're not so much the chef type, but still want something insanely delicious to devour once the holiday is actually here, take heart. We're giving away a Native Foods Wellington and BabycakesNYC Apple-Crumb Cake to one lucky commenter this week on It would be really difficult for us to recommend more strongly that you go comment, since we're just about positive that there isn't anything better than having a five-star Thanksgiving delivered to your door.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Black Bean Soup

The Chef: Colleen

The Menu: A delicious, savory, slightly spicy black-bean soup, dolloped with vegan sour cream. Colleen is a whiz at making something out of, um, close to nothing, and this soup was a very tasty example. She served cumin-seed-roasted potato wedges and slices of toast slathered with WayFare Food's We Can't Say It's Cheese alongside.

The Goods: And so another week at the VNHQ comes to an end. It's been and awesome and busy week, and we hope everyone has a fantastic weekend!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Polenta Lasagna with Jonathan Safran Foer

The Chef: Barry Jones Horton

The Menu: A stunning, delicious, incredibly lovely three-course meal. Chef Barry totally spoiled us today with one of the best lunches we've ever had. It started with off with his take on a Cobb salad. Romaine, cornmeal-crusted tempeh, tomatoes, and roasted shiitake "bacon" combined for a stellar salad. For a main course we devoured his polenta lasagna with fresh puttanesca sauce, sautéed kale and mushroom filling, and baked tofu ricotta. As a special accomodation for us, each plate was dusted generously with Parma!, because Chef Barry knows how obsessed we are with it. For dessert, we had a perfectly done raw apple crisp. Yes, we died of glee.

The Goods: The food wasn't our only source of excitement today, as renowned author Jonathan Safran Foer joined us at the table. Sandwiching lunch in between speaking at a local high school and doing a phone interview in the car on the way to a radio interview, Foer chatted with us about his book, Eating Animals, his family, and his role as chef at home. (Lentils are a favorite with his son!) Maybe you caught his recent clip on Ellen? If not, you probably should. Here's Jonathan, Chef Barry, and the whole VN crew:

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Pesto Pizza

 The Chef: Sara

The Menu: A yummy pizza and tons of veggies! Sara topped a Clean Cravings Perfectly Pesto Pizza with some of our supply of Daiya, and we totally devoured it. She also roasted carrots, sweet potatoes, and broccoli, and whipped up a yummy tomato and avocado salad with pine nuts. 

The Goods: Um, things are pretty awesome. We've eaten pizza two days in a row, and we followed up today's meal with an impromptu cookie dough taste test. Our amazing guest chef from Monday will be returning tomorrow. Why the fancy food again tomorrow, you ask? Well, that would be because we're going to host one Jonathan Safran Foer for lunch. Yes, that Jonathan Safran Foer. Maybe we're excited. Maybe it would be nearly impossible for us to be more excited. We're just saying.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Stuffed-Crust Pizza

The Chef: Liz

The Menu: So, the title says "stuffed-crust" for a reason. It's because Liz stuffed the homemade crust for today's pizza with Daiya. Yeah, about that. Tomato sauce, bell peppers, mushrooms, and, of course, more Daiya, topped the incredible crust. Yes, that's a big pile of extra pizza toppings you see at six o'clock, and a fresh spinach salad with green olives, more Daiya, and black sesame seeds rounded out the meal.

The Goods: Well, if you're curious about the fastest, and tastiest, way to transport yourself back to a middle-school pizza party, the stuffed-crust route is definitely what we recommend. Liz's lunch was totally thrilling, and to make the day even sweeter, we are ecstatic to annouce that our first-ever cookbook—the super-sleek, totally digital, in-freaking-credible Holiday Cookie Collection—is on sale now at We are so, so excited about the collection that we pretty much can't stand it, so you should probably go check it out.

Monday, November 2, 2009

A Magical Menu

The Chef: Barry Jones Horton

The Menu: An incredible, three-course delight from our star guest chef. We started with a perfect kale salad that featured pomegranate seeds, sliced persimmons, sprouted mung beans, red onion, and a fresh lemon vinaigrette. We take kale salad pretty seriously around the VNHQ, and this one blew us away. Then, we dined on tofu skewers with a citrus-peanut sauce served over rice with citrus as well. Um, we could have pretty much eaten this sauce on everything in our lives forever. Really. Though we sadly didn't get a photo of it, dessert was an amazing chocolate tart covered coconut-coffee crème, which pretty much made us die.

The Goods: If there's anything we like better than having guests (which we like a LOT, for the record), it's having fancy chef guests who cook for us! Barry is the former Executive Chef of The Ravens restaurant, and he recently moved to the Bay Area, where he's working on starting up a catering business called Local Love. Yes, we will keep you posted. Yes, as soon as you can you should book him for something, because, um, did you see that sauce? Ridiculous.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Ribs and Biscuits

The Chefs: Abby and Alisha

The Menu: Hello, lovely. This meal might have been the most hearty, savory lunch we've ever had. Abby, and her sister Alisha who's in town visiting, busted out some delicious meatless ribs, a perfect spinach salad with sunflower seeds and homemade dressing, broccoli with grated carrots covered in melted Daiya, and, the grand finale, Daiya biscuits. Um, maybe Abby makes the best biscuits on the planet, and maybe they are even better filled with Daiya. We're just saying.

The Goods: Boo! Happy Halloween (Eve), everyone! Don't forget to go see Lyndsay and Liz at the Boston Vegetarian Food Festival this weekend, where they'll be giving out a free Go Max Go candy bar with every subscription. It is entirely possible that some of our staff tried to renew their (complimentary) subscriptions today to try and snag one of these bars.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Pancakes A' Plenty

The Chef: Lyndsay

The Menu: Pancakes! Lyndsay whipped up a batch of gluten-free pancakes from Purely Elizabeth, which were lovely. She also roasted a bunch of root vegetables, which were seasoned perfectly.

The Goods: We are thisclose to leaving for the last SF Vegan Drinks of the year. If you're in The City, come see us!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Ike's Sandwiches

The Chef: The team at Ike's Place

The Menu: Um, Ike's. These are the best sandwiches in the world. You can disagree if you want to, but do so knowing that you're wrong and making a mockery of yourself. Fresh, soft Dutch crunch bread, tons of veggies, Dirty Sauce, and any number of fillings make these sammies the be-all-end-all sandwiches. We ordered the Backstabber, a couple Womanizers, Nacho Boy, Chester the Cheetah on gluten-free bread, Eli Manning, and the Meatless Mike—all vegan, of course. When you eat an Ike's sandwich, there's no room for salad.

The Goods: Today has been semi-calamitous here at the VNHQ. Yes, the internet likes to go out when we're working on e-newsletters; yes, the printer decided take a little unexpected break in the middle of printing; and yes, we've all been thinking Office Space kinds of thoughts all day. But! Today is also a special occasion, as it's the one-year anniversary of our relaunch of To properly punctuate this momentous milestone, we had lunch generously catered by Ike's Place. Let's just say that after these sandwiches, all seems right with the world.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Curry and Rice

The Chef: Liz

The Menu: A super-flavorful Indian curry with tons of veggies! If there's anything a team of vegans likes better than a plate full of vegetables, we don't even want to know about it. Brown rice made the base for our satisfying meal, and we topped it with a yummy curry of potatoes, carrots, broccoli, mushrooms, and chickpeas. Then we sprinkled Daiya over everything, mostly because we could.

The Goods: Today's meal was totally fantastic in its own right, but, sadly, it really didn't stand a chance in comparison with what we're having tomorrow. In celebration of a spectacular, surprise event, we're having lunch catered by none other than our beloved Ike, of Ike's Place. OK, there might be one thing vegans love more than a plate full of vegetables: a smorgasbord of sandwiches!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Mexican Medley

The Chef: Colleen

The Menu: A delicious serving of black beans that we sprinkled generously with Daiya, and a too-good savory tofu scramble with grated carrots, spinach, and Mexican spices. What goes great with any main course? Dollops of Vegenaise and Frankie's barbecue sauce, of course!

The Goods: It's a fast-and-furious week here at the VNHQ—oh, and it's only Monday. We're putting the final polish on the editorial for our January+February issue, and just finished our first-ever cookbook! That's right, this time next week you'll be introduced to our totally digital, completely amazing, drool-inducing Holiday Cookie Collection. This is the big time, people.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Grilled Cheese Friday

The Chef: Colleen

The Menu: Delicious open-faced grilled-cheese sandwiches with fresh halved cherry tomatoes, basil, and Daiya on whole-wheat bread. Colleen made an incredible marinated kale salad with carrots, red cabbage, and the perfect balsamic vinaigrette.

The Goods: It's Friday, and Colleen arranged for a little surprise. Lyndsay's mom decided to fly out for a surprise visit from St. Louis, which made us all jump around with glee when we saw her come into the office. It's always wonderful to have lunch guests, and is even more so when we're not expecting them! (OK, so long as at least one person is in on it...) It's also sunny and gorgeous, and all over things are pretty much fantastic. We hope everyone thoroughly enjoys the weekend, and we'll see you Monday!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Italian Tomato Soup

The Chef: Sara

The Menu: A delicious, chunky tomato soup with pasta, garbanzo beans, spinach, and black beans, which we heartily topped with Daiya. The Italian theme continued to the salad, which featured cherry tomatoes and pine nuts, along with avocado and romaine. Finally, slices of toasted rustic bread with Earth Balance rounded out the meal.

The Goods: We have tons of good news today! First, congratulations to Caitlin H for her winning comment from yesterday's giveaway! Caitlin, please send us an email with your full name and mailing address, and your Sjaak's Peanut Butter Cups will be on their way to you! Next, it should be noted that Sara did a fantastic job as chef today, but there is one other chef about whom we are pretty excited. Tal Ronnen, who penned our Book of the Year, is appearing on The Oprah Winfrey Show today (or has already appeared on it, depending on your time zone!), and we're absolutely thrilled for him, for veganism going totally mainstream, and for the animals.