OK, ok. I fail. I fail at VegMoFo. Hands in the air here, admitting that.
Moving on....I just found out that Fifteen, Jamie Oliver's Amsterdam restaurant (and culinary school for disadvantaged youths) is going meat-free on Wednesdays!
This is a growing initiative in certain parts of the world (for instance lots of places in Ghent, Belgium are going meat-free on Wednesdays as well), but I do believe that this is the first restaurant in the Netherlands to do so!
Now, it is yet to be seen if there will be anything on offer for vegans, but surely this is a step in the right direction!
Three cheers for Fifteen!
I am going to interrupt my regularly scheduled VegMoFo blogging (regular? who am I kidding?) with a special post! I got my very first blog award- the Kreativ Blogger award!
1. Thank the person who nominated you for this award.
2. Copy the logo and place it on your blog
3. Link to the person who nominated you for this award.
4. Name 7 things about yourself that people might not know.
5. Nominate other Kreativ Bloggers.
6. Post links to the blogs you nominate.
7. Leave a comment on each of the blogs letting them know that they have been nominated.
This honor was bestowed on me by Lizzy from Lizzy Goes Dutch. Her blog is a fantastic vegetarian food blog (mostly- also about her life here in Holland as an expat with her Dutchie boyfriend) and her food is really, really amazing. Like...the girl can cook. So if she thinks that I deserve this award, well then that tells me I must be doing something right!
I will also be spending Thanksmas (a mix of Thanksgiving and Christmas which falls between the two holidays) with Lizzy and a whole slew of others, so I will get to taste her cooking firsthand! Lucky me!!!
7 things about me that you might not know about me
1. I went through a self-righteous vegan stage, but I think I'm over it. It was really just misplaced anger and emotion that people didn't care what they were doing to themselves, the animals of the world, and the earth. I wanted to help people, show them the way, and mostly cook for them. But in time I learned to take it easy. Everyone has their own personal cause, and for many people it's just not veganism.
2. I used to want to be a bartender as a career, because that's what my dad did when I was growing up. When I finally became of age, I worked in bars and restaurants for ten years before I finally realized that it sucks. Really bad. I like my nights and weekends for myself, thankyouverymuch. I hope the day never comes where I have to work in a bar again, but who knows.
3. I am sometimes lewd and inappropriate (I curse a lot and talk about sex and body parts a lot), and it always turns out that most of my friends are very prim and proper. So I spend a lot of time wondering "Did I overstep the line there?" Luckily most of my friends have awesome senses of humor (I know how to pick 'em!) and aren't bothered by my foulness. ...I hope.
4. The cursing is one thing that I would love to quit. Just....can't!....So....f*ckin....hard!
5. I love, love, love, love, love horror movies. The cheesier the better. They still make me jump and scream, no matter if the killer is a giant tomato or a babysitter slasher, and I don't actually watch the movie so much as listen to it while looking anywhere but at the film during the scary parts. It's all just too real to me.
6. I am an extreme bragger about the fact that I won Halloween costume contests for several years running. Last year's costume was pretty much my crowning glory. There will be no beating it, so I'm not even going to try. By now all my friends are like, "Yeah, we know. YOU WON. GET OVER YOURSELF. It's been a year." They're clearly just jealous.
7. I work from home and this results in insane amounts of time on facebook and wordpress writing my other blog. I sometimes wish that someone would come in and change my passwords so that I could more efficiently work during office hours. Any takers???
Blogs I'm nominating:
1. Bonnie over at Eating With Rabbits. Bonnie is a 19 year old expat in the Netherlands, and a vegan. She cooks the most amazing things, and I am totally learning vegan things from her, such as which brands of licorice are edible for vegans. And here I thought I was a know-it-all vegan! Turns out I still have so much to learn!
2. Faith at Cooking Vegan with Soul. Faith is in New Jersey, so that is automatic home-state points for Faith. She is also kicking vegan ass in the cooking department. I'm jealous in one of those good ways, where you wish you were as cool as someone else, but can only stand there in awe (and drool). Way to go, Faith!
3. I don't know her real name, but I love the Beats, Rhymes, & Cookies blog! She blogs in English and Italian- that can't be easy! But there seem to be less vegan bloggers in Europe, so I like that she's representing the southern countries!
Thanks again, Lizzy!
OK, I am clearly fighting a losing battle with this here VegMoFo 09.
The thing is, I'm not much for cooking these days. So any post to do with food would probably be: "Oh hi. It's fusilli pasta with sauce from a jar again. Because I can eat it for an entire week for less than 2 euros."
Three cheers for the recession!!!
HOWEVER. All is not lost. My contract just ended with Lush but I still have some free samples, including a box of all of the newest products that have been released recently.
Oat Couture Bath Melt, meet my bathtub. Bathtub, this is Oat Couture Bath Melt. For the next 30 minutes the two of you will be best of friends.
This product is so new that it's not even on the Lush website yet. Wowza!
Basically it is a cocoa butter bath melt with lots of oats and herbs like lavendar bundled up in a cheese cloth. So you plop it in your bath and it melts to make the water silky, milky and creamy.
Then! And here's the good part. THEN, my friends, you take the cheesecloth filled with wet oaty oats, and rub it all over you for an even more luxurious luxury! Because there is still some yummy cocoa butter trapped inside, and that ish needs to be all over your body to make it soft and smooth and lovely smelling.
I was in bathtime heaven, folks. No lie. I am a huge Lush fan and have tons of favorites, but this oat-milky bath melt just floored me. Plus, the lavender ensured that I had a great night's sleep, which just adds to the awesomeness.
Give it a go! Absolute decadent heaven, or your money back.*
*Kidding! What company in their right mind would take back a used, soggy lump of oats wrapped in cheesecloth? Lush is good and all, but not that good!
The only other place in London that I had time to seek out for vegan food was Red Veg on Dean Street.
I was running from one place to another so needed something fast, and voila! Fast (vegan) food!
Now, as for the standard fast food restaurants- I stopped eating at those about 6 years ago after reading Fast Food Nation (read the book, AVOID the movie!). But this is vegan fast food- a whole 'nother ballgame really.
I ordered a vegan hot dog with mustard and ketchup, and ate it up in about 3 bites. I had to stop myself from ordering three more and head out to my appointment, but day-um: I was in H-E-A-V-E-N.
Definitely make a stop there! "Vegan fast food" is almost like an oxymoron, so it deserves a peek if you're in London!
Ack! I just realized that VeganMoFo started yesterday! I was away in London and was flying back yesterday so I guess a good post to start with would be this vegan cafe that I stumbled across on a night out drinking in Camden.
There I was wandering a little drunkenly when I looked up and across the road was a sign that said: VEGAN CAKES.
We scuttled in just before they closed and I got a peanut butter chocolate slice of OH MY LORD GOODNESS with a side of rice whipped cream and a sprinkling of powdered chocolate.
This was a perfect happy little stumble-upon as I had very little time to eek out vegan places in London during the day (except one more which I will post about tomorrow). I gobbled that down and even my carnivore companion was pretty damn well impressed.
By the magical powers of the internet, I just found out that the place is called Inspiral Lounge. I'm so heading back there when I am back in London. The staff were super-friendly, the place was chill with an excellent menu (also a lot of raw foods and desserts), and the view over the water was amazing!
Also, I might very well skip Happy Cow for London, and just use Vegan-London instead. Seems a bit more up to date. (Also Vegan Europe is a growing forum for travel-related vegan needs in Europe! Check it out!)
OK, I admit this isn't in Amsterdam- it's in Glasgow, Scotland- but this was seriously one of the best vegan cafes I have ever been to!
This was the vegan breakfast found at Mono Cafe & Bar. Check it: it's GINORMOUS!!!!
This breakfast contained beans, bread, mushrooms, a tomato, veggie sausages, a tofu scramble, and veggie haggis! I couldn't even finish it but it broke my heart to leave some behind on my plate.
The menu was exactly how a vegan/vegetarian restaurant should be: eclectic, ethnic, and priced reasonably. Also (need I say it again?) the portions were insane.
Amsterdam is SORELY lacking in this department.
Otherwise known as Dolmades.
Otherwise known as Stuffed Grape Leaves.
Otherwise known as HEAVEN in a CAN (to me).
Found in my local Turkish shop on the Overtoom (somewhere around number 120).
Note that sometimes these have lamb in them, but this brand in particular, Sera, doesn't! Much to my tummy's delight!