For those of you who have been following me for awhile now you know that last year my husband and I participated in a Winter CSA through Pete’s Greens of Craftsbury, VT. This year my husband’s work is subsidizing a Winter Food Basket that we get every 2 weeks starting November 9th. All the produce comes from local Vermont Farms:
What I love about this share is 1. it is vegan!, our share last year was a vegetarian localvore share and so we split it with an omni couple who took all the dairy and eggs, 2. not all the produce is coming from one distributer, 3. it’s cheaper than last year and still gives us the ability to pick up other items and stay on budget. My husband and I are both so excited to see what we will get- it’s like a new challenge each week to use all of our produce in new and interesting ways. Below is an example of what we can be expecting (does not show last week of share):
Winter Vegetable $395 (which breaks down to an average of $24.50 a week)
This share showcases the abundant Vermont winter vegetable harvest. You will recieve a variety of vegetables, ranging from fresh salad greens, mushrooms and potatoes to winter squash, carrots and onions. This share will also include apples and cider.
Last night my husband took me to a new spot for dinner, The Black Door on Main St in Montpelier, VT. Now we had been here before for drinks but never have had a chance to do dinner. Neil called to make reservations and check on vegan options and the hostess let him know that the Eggplant Bucatini without the shaved cheese was vegan and the Cumin Spiced Tofu was vegan. After hearing this I went on to check their wine list to see which ones were vegan and to my luck a variety of their wines, both red and white, were vegan.
We showered and got dressed up (it’s pretty nice and a bit pricey) and headed on our way. We were sat at a nice table for two and had great service and great wine and beer. Our meals came and everything was delicious! The meals came (we got one of each to share) and they were great. The Eggplant Bucatini was very good however the shining plate was the Cumin Spiced Tofu which was just amazing- my husband said it was one of the best meals he’s had in a long time, even better than anything I’d made! (I had to agree).
Our only issue with our meal is that they were particularly small and we were very hungry after having had a small lunch and working out we were ready for something filling. We came to the conclusion that this was the type of place you do appetizer, entrée and dessert- not just an entrée as we had done (oh well it was our first time). Just when we thought we’d have to go home and have a snack our waitress comes back to let us know that there is one vegan dessert tonight, our ears perked up, it was apple cinnamon sorbet. We ordered a bowl to share and let me tell you this was one of the best vegan desserts I’ve had. It was like apple pie in sorbet form without the crust. Overall our dining experience was great- great food, good service, great atmosphere. We’d definitely go back and the best part is they have a seasonal menu so we will hopefully get to experience a new and amazing meal once again.
Lately Neil and I have been so busy and out of town so needless to say little cooking has been going on. Last night we made grilled veggie wraps with hummus and this morning I made Vegan Crunk’s Peacan Waffles for her cookbook tester but when I went to take a photo of it my camera’s battery was dead.
Any ways here are some restaurant reviews from my Hubby wanted me post on here:
(transfered from old blog)
Since moving to Vermont from Fredericton, NB, Canada, I must say that I feel rather spoiled by the great options for veg*n dining throughout Vermont. In Fredericton, there were very few options available to vegans (for the most part french fries/salad and the occasional boca type veggie burger) and what was available was often bland and uninspiring. I’m not a food critic, so I won’t go into too many details, but here’s a quick run down of some of the Vermont restaurants that my my partner, Lindsay, and I enjoy eating at as vegans are:
This vegan friendly counter service restaurant has a great, always fresh salad bar, a number of veg*n friendly hot and cold sandwiches and fresh vegan baked goods! I love the vegan macaroons and the Vegan club sandwich!
The Bee’s Knees is a small, locally run cafe in Morrisville, Vermont with a really welcoming, community oriented feel to it. They often have many different veg*n dishes including great salads and sandwiches. My favourites are the mock pulled pork (mushrooms and eggplant i believe) and the tofu breakfast sandwiches (I love being able to get vegan breakfast that consists of more than just homefries). The menu indicates which options are vegan friendly and which can be made vegan friendly on request. They have local music acts playing there fairly regularly as well.
A Single Pebble
Classical Chinese cuisine in downtown Burlington. Offers many traditional Chinese dishes including many veg*n options including my favourites mock eel (made from mushrooms) and the Buddha’s Beef (made from seitan).
Pho Dang Vietnamese Cafe
This Vietnamese cafe makes up for what it’s lacking in atmosphere by it’s great, fresh food. It has a very lunch room sort of feel to it but that really doesn’t matter once you taste their great tofu dishes (veggie pho isn’t vegan). The portions are huge and the prices are cheap.
These two Thai restaurants are owned by the same family. Both restaurants seem to have very similar menus with slight variations between the two. They have many veg*n dishes and are willing to make changes to other dishes to accommodate veg*n customers as well. The menu is split into curries, noodle dishes, rice dishes and vegetable/stir fry dishes with your choice of tofu or meat. We usually start off our meal with the fresh rolls which is a soft rice paper roll with tofu, rice noodles and just a taste of mint with a nice light sweet and sour sauce for dipping. It’s a nice light and fresh start to the meal. The entrees we have had are the pad ki mao (my personal favourite, a wide rice noodle dish with thai basil and chilli), brocolli and tofu in a nice creamy peanut sauce, penang and massuman curries (personal favourites at home when my parnter cooks them and both very well done by the restaurants) and the pad thai (with no fish sauce or eggs). The pad thai is closer to a traditional pad thai than what people in New Brunswick knew as pad thai (spicy peanut sauce with rice noodles). While the Waterbury location seems to be a bit pricier, it also has a nicer atmosphere than the Montpelier location and I typically find the food to be a little better. Entrees are typically in the $10 range while the appetizers are in the $3 to $5 range.
Pacific Rim is one of my favourite spots to eat when we’re in Burlington. It is a mainly Korean Asian restaurant in downtown Burlington. There is a good selection of salads/appetizers and main courses that are veg*n friendly. The food is fresh, flavourful and very affordable. They also have a good drink menu with asian takes on popular drinks and lots of ginger! It’s a very informal seat yourself sort of atmosphere with fairly decent service considering how busy things can get there.
(*note Pacific Rim’s menu has changed since this review was created and the last time two times we have dined here the food has been dissapointing and not up to the same standards they once were)
Hidden away in downtown Burlington is Vermont’s only truly green restaurant, Magnolia Bistro. Magnolia focuses on eco-friendly, fair trade, local and organic foods and offers a twist on regular breakfast and lunch fare. They have many veg*n friendly options and the menu indicates what is vegan or can be adapted to be vegan. Some of the veg*n options you can order vegan french toast, substitute eggs for tofu in breakfast dishes or if you’re not in a breakfast mood go for a garbanzo burger. The food is fresh tasting, well seasoned and fairly affordable considering the quality of ingredients used.
(*note this review from fellow VT Vegan http://howtofeedavegan.blogspot.com/2009/01/recommendation-withdrawn.html)
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