Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Ginger Hot Chocolate

Neal's Yard Salad Bar is one of my favorite veg restaurants in London. Don't let the name fool you, vegetarian Brazilian comfort food is their specialty and much of what's on the menu. It's a tiny little place tucked in the middle of Neal's Yard, a quirky little side street brimming with brightly painted shops and quaint cobblestones. There is plenty of seating outside for the warmer months, but in freezing January I opted to sit inside, on the second floor, where the rest of the tables are. I know this is a food blog and I'll get to that in a minute, but first I have to gush over the interior decorating first. It's so cozy! Mismatched antique chairs surround the tables; a perfect mix of bohemian and gothic styles. The vibrantly painted walls add to the bohemian feel and vintage chotchkies and picture frames tie it all together.

Aaaanyways, when you go to Neal's Yard Salad Bar, be sure to get the ginger hot chocolate! I don't really know what else to say about it. I'll let the picture speak for itself.

Foodwise, I'd reccomend the pumpkin polenta pie. It's listed as an appetizer, but it's massive and I usually can't even finish it.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Fettuccine Fondue-Fredo

Forgive the lame name of this next meal. It's da mornin' and my coffee's not kicked in yet.

Anywho, just a quick post on what to do with all those fondue lefovers (see fondue recipe a few posts down).

So easy. Ready? Ok:
Boil pasta. Heat up leftover cheezy fondue. Combine. Nosh.

(I topped mine with some red chili flakes, cayenne, and oregano.)

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Spinach & Split Pea Soup from The Breakfast Club, plus bonus exhibition

Ergh. It's dark, rainy, and gross gross gross outside. Perfect day to start classes up again, eh? Grumble.

It's been a good few days back, though...très relaxing. Tasha and I went to an exhibition yesterday, at the Parisol Unit, which I highly recommend. Visible Invisible: Against the Security of Real showcases the work of artists Cecily Brown, Hans Josephsohn, Shaun McDowell, Katy Moran and Maaike Schoorel.

The work was mostly painting with a few sculptures. My favorite piece was this painting by Cecily Brown; Aujourd'hui Rose (2005).

Brown had another collection of untitled paintings, all of which, while being far from realism, have an undeniable human quality to them.

One of the untitled

Anyways, after the exhibition, we decided to get coffee at our faaavorite breakfast/coffee/everything place. The Breakfast Club in Hoxton Square. If you're ever in the area, you have to go to The Breakfast Club. No excuses. I haven't been to the the other BCs (there's on in Angel and the original in Soho), but when the Hoxton one opened last May, it immediately became our local hangout, coffee joint, and breakfast haven (plenty of vegan options, although you might have to specify for no cheese, eggs, etc.) We moved flats this year and, even though we're now a half hour walk away, we still go to The Breakfast Club all the time. It's just that kind of place; totally worth a little hike.

I decided to get my usual soy cappuccino, along with the soup of the day which was spinach and pea soup. The soup was really nice, although the bread that came with it was outstanding! Yes, the bread. Best part of the meal.
Alright, now that you know about The Breakfast Club...GO!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Cheese Fondue

Sorry I haven't posted lately. I was enjoying a much needed vacation from the stresses of uni and visa applications. I went back home to Massachusetts and spent time with friends and family and it was lovely! I didn't get around to doing as much cooking as I'd originally hoped, but I did make this fondue several nights. I first discovered this recipe last year around the holidays and my family LOVED it! It's now a wintertime staple in the house (at least when I'm home to make it). Super fast and clean up isn't that bad (although I'm messy so I tend to get tahini, flour, and nooch everywhere). The recipe is easy to double too, so you can have more and use the leftovers in other dishes (I'll post some of my experiments in the next few days). I got the recipe from WikiHow, although it's originally from The Uncheese Cookbook (thanks evolution from the PPK!). I've tweaked it a little.

2 cups white wine
1 cup water
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
1/3 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup tahini
4 T flour
2 T lemon juice
1 T onion granules
1/2 tsp mustard powder
1/4 light soy sauce
a drop or two of sriracha sauce
  • Put the wine in a sauce pan and bring to a boil. Let simmer while moving on to...
  • Put the rest of the ingredients in a blender or food processor until smooth.
  • Combine the mixture with the wine and heat on medium-low, stirring constantly, until it's the thickness you want it to be. Add salt and pepper to taste (I like to make it extra salty. The salt makes it taste exactly like non-vegan cheese fondue!)
Pick your favorite veggies or, really, any bite-sized veg food to dip in! We used whole wheat bread, brussel sprouts, broccoli, and cauliflower.

Also, sorry the picture's a bit fuzzy....and there's more where that came from. I can't find my camera's charger so I've been taking all my pictures on my iPhone.