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Veganuary 2017 Survey Results Are In!

The Veganuary 2017 Survey results are in and are as follows:

  • 77% ate vegan food for all of January!*

Of the 23% who did not eat vegan food for the month, 75% were vegan over 50% of the time. And of that 75%, most ate a completely vegetarian diet for all of January. Also, many people are including small slip-ups as failing to complete the entire month, whereas we regard it as a natural part of transitioning. It’s a learning curve! It’s also worth mentioning that a high proportion of omnivores (76%) and pescetarians (75%) completed an entire vegan month. That’s a really fantastic effort by all.

  • 97% feel healthier after taking part!**

And 87% have noticed an increase in their energy levels, with another 87% also confirming some weight loss.

  • 67% are staying vegan!*

Such amazing news! This figure is made up of 59% of the meat-eaters who responded to our survey, 64% of the pescetarians, and a whopping 75% of vegetarians. Interestingly, 21% are unsure of whether they’re staying vegan or not… If you are one of them, then we recommend you join our Facebook group for kind chat, recipes, and ideas. It’s helped (and helping) a lot of people feel more relaxed during their transition to veganism.

  • A huge number are reducing their consumption of animal products!*

95% have stopped eating or reduced their consumption of meat from cows, 94% have stopped eating or reduced their consumption of pigs, and 92% have stopped eating or reduced consumption of chickens. This is life-changing news for animals like Rocky, Ernie and Little Eric!

  • 99% recommend Veganuary!*

Veganuary is very much a sum of its parts… We’re nothing without the people who take part. Thank you for trying vegan with us, and for recommending the experience to others. It will make a world of difference to the animals, and to our planet.

 

2017-results-infographic

*Of Veganuary 2017 Survey respondents.

**Of those who answered this question in the survey.

 

Counter Culture Resturant Review

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While in Austin Texas a couple weeks ago,  I made it a plan to stop into the Vegan restaurant Counter Culture. The restaurant is located just east of down town at 2337 E Cesar Chavez St Austin, TX 78702  If you are looking for James Beard award-winning fine dining, this is not your place.  But if you want down home comfort food that will knock your socks off (and your cowboy boots), this place is for you. (The food looked much better in person than in the pictures below, lighting for pictures was not the best for my camera phone)

The restaurant is in an old brick building, the owner has done a nice job of creating a comfortable diner restaurant feel with an option of eating outside on the patio if you like.

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We were greeted immediately upon entrance by a very pleasant young lady. All the staff there are friendly and make you feel at home. Up front they have the daily specials nicely scribed on a chalkboard. They also have a board that continually thanks the customers.

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All their food I was told is made from scratch. They even make their own faux meats and all their own sauces and dips, even the ketchup. Also, most of their desserts are sweetened with dates, not sugar.

Their menu is a comfort food extravaganza as it would be in any diner. Also, every item on the menu if applicable, is marked with a designator indicating a special dietary needs category. An (R) means it is at least 95% Raw. A (GF) indicates it is gluten free. A (SF) means it is soy free and a (E2) indicates it is Engine 2 diet friendly. This makes eating here on a special diet easy.

The first day I visited. (Yes, it was so good I came back for breakfast the next day.) I ordered the Philly Seitan Sandwich with a side of Curry Quinoa Salad. The bread was soft and fresh, the cheeze sauce was warm and had a nice cheesy flavor everything on this plate was great.

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Philly Seitan Sandwich with a side of Curry Quinoa Salad (You get your choice of one side)

My companion ordered the Mac & Cheeze. I was told it was their best seller on the menu and one day I was there they sold out of it. It was also cheesy and had a great flavor. It was topped with a bread crumb topping. I was told by my companion that it was one of the best vegan Mac & Cheeses she had ever eaten. My other companion ordered the Sausage Sauerkraut Sandwich. She was also very very happy with her meal. The sausage is made in-house.

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Mac & Cheeze with a Ceaser salad and potato salad (You get your choice of two sides)

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Sausage Sauerkraut Sandwich with a Ceasar salad. (Your choice of one side)

We ended that day’s lunch with desert. I had the Brownie Sundae. it was out of this world good. The brownie was soft but not too soft. I am not a big sweets fan and the brownie was not real sickening sweet like brownies can be. I believe that this is because they use dates to sweeten their desserts, it was outstanding. We also had their Coconut Cream Pie, OMG another home run!

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Brownie Sundae

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Coconut Cream Pie

The next morning we arrived just before they opened to try their breakfast/brunch. We enjoyed a nice conversation with a local gentleman that was waiting to pick up his pre-ordered Christmas Dinner.

We ordered the East Side Quesadilla, Breakfast Burrito, and Seasonal Omelet.We also ordered two sides just so we could taste. A side of potatoes and one Egg Nog pancake.

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East Side Quesadilla and Roasted Potatoes with homemade ketchup

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Breakfast Burrito and Orange, Kale and Ginger juice.

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The Seasonal Omelet and Egg Nog Pancake with Cranberry Drizzle

All the food we had was outstanding!

The flavors were right on and presented well. The fruit was fresh and full of flavor. The breakfast burrito was huge and just as big on taste.

I was told by my companion that the Quesadilla was the best breakfast she had ever eaten, including non-vegan breakfast.

The omelet was light and fluffy full of fresh vegetables. Everything was so good that there was talk about driving up from San Antonio where we were staying later in the week just to get some more of the Counter Culture fare.

In a state that is known for and runs on Texas BBQ, Counter Culture is a breath of fresh air and a mouth of fresh food.

If you are ever in Austin Texas and in need of some good old Vegan comfort food then Counter Culture is a must eat at destination.

Counter Culture on Yelp

Portobello Vegan Trattoria Review

This last 4th of July weekend I traveled to the most Vegan friendly city in America, Portland, Oregon. While I was there I was determined to sample some of that cities great Vegan fare.

I ended up at the Portobello Vegan Trattoria, an Italian Vegan restaurant. It is located at: 1125 SE Division ST Portland OR 97202

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When we arrived with no reservations on a Friday night around 6pm. We asked for a table and were told that they were all booked up and the wait would be about an hour and a half unless we wanted to dine at the bar. My party and I where hungry and so we agreed to sit at the bar.

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The menu offered a limited amount of plates but this is a Trattoria which in Italy is larger than a cafe but smaller than a full restaurant and so the menu reflected that nicely.  The offerings hit some of the traditional Italian fare. Gnocchi, ravioli, manicotti and much more.

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They have a tasting menu, for $38, where you choose any three items from the menu and one desert. What else would any self respecting food blogger do than to order the tasting menu while reviewing a restaurant? I was there with two other people, so we all ordered the tasting menu and snuck tastes from each others plates, you know… so I could review a wide variety of their offerings.

We started with a basic kale caesar and an order of roasted rainbow carrots. Both were very good. The ceasar salad dressing was outstanding, they sell it there by the bottle. We were told that the portion sizes where a little smaller because it was the tasting menu size.

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In my Italian family gnocchi is the king, the dish of all dishes, served only with pesto and not red sauce, so one of the first things I look for on a menu at an Italian restaurant is the gnocchi and if its served with pesto or red sauce. Portobello serves a gnocchi that is the best I have had this side of my grandmother’s homemade gnocchi. They add a few wonderful twists by first pan crisping the gnocchi leaving it a bit caramelized and crispy on one side as well as adding some finely chopped broccolini and a few cherry tomatoes, wow! It was so good I ate half of it before remembering to snap a photo. (This happens way too often to me it seems).

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Seeing manicotti on the menu was a surprise to me because manicotti is mostly cheese and in my opinion is hard to make Vegan and still have that rustic Italian flavor and mouth feel. Well Portobello has done it well. Filled with spinach creamed cauliflower topped in marinara sauce and sprinkled with walnut parmesan.

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I also ordered the breaded abalone mushroom with potato celeriac gratin, wilted spinach and dill lemon dressing. It was good but reminded all of us of a piece of English style fish & purple potato chips.

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On to the desert.

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One of us had the salted caramel sundae. It was salted caramel ice cream, caramels sauce, hot fudge, coconut whipped cream and candied walnuts. It was so good. All the flavors worked so well together and was not too sweet as to make you want to put down the spoon for a break.

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We also enjoyed a s’more baked alaska.  It was a meringue (made from aquafaba) covered chocolate ice cream with a graham cracker bottom. (It is not on the website menu pic above). Again, another outstanding desert. Spot on!

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My understanding is that they change their menu items occasionally. While on Yelp looking at the reviews for Portobello I saw photos (290 of them) of plates that some of which were not offered the day we were there. All in all I will be back again. It was high quality food with friendly service and the only all Vegan Italian restaurant I have seen. 4 and a half stars out of 5.

New Vegan Show to Debut in July On A&E

A new Vegan life style series is debuting on the A&E channel July 27th @ 7:30am EST. The star and host of the show will be Nafsika Antypas. The show will be called PlantBased by Nafsika.

The show will have cooking demos, interactive segments, interviews with celebrity guests, nutritional experts and more, all while exploring the life style and living healthy.

I say its about time. Lets hope it does well and can continue on for years to come.

Below you will see the A&E show info.

TELEVISION SHOW: Plant-based, by Nafsika
RUN TIME: 30 Min
GENRE: Lifestyle / Food / Health & Wellness
AIRING DATES: July 27th, 2016 – August 31st, 2016
AIRING TIME: 7:30am – 8am
RECURRING DAY: Wednesday
WEEKS AIRING: 6

TOTAL ORIGINAL EPISODES: 12
REACH: 70 Million Households
REGIONS: National, United States

LISTINGS Cable / Satellite / IPTV
DIRECTV 266
DISH NETWORK 119
C-BAND AMC 18 Channel 201
AT&T U-VERSE 1272 / 272 (SD)
SOUTHERN FIBER NET: 1215 / 215 (SD)
(Available on most cable providers)

5th Annual Food Revolution Summit 2016 April 30th – May 8th Its FREE!!

The 5th Annual 2016 Food Revolution Summit is just two days away! If you want to be informed and empowered and if you want to find out how you can prevent heart disease, cancer, diabetes, fatigue, poor sleep and other heath issues with food as well as improve your over all life then the Food Revolution Summit is for you. The best part is that it is completely FREE!!!! And you don’t have to leave your home to take advantage of it!!

Listen, watch and learn right in front of your home computer!

Click Here To Go To The Website And Register

You will learn from 24 speakers and topics:

  • Dr. Dean Ornish, M.D. – The Four Pillars Of Lasting Health
  • Dr. Joel Fuhrman, M.D. – How to Eat And Live
  • Dr. Neal Barnard, M.D. – How to kickstart Your Health
  • Dr. Dan amen, M.D. – The Brain Warriors way
  • Dr. Jane Goodall, Ph.D., DBE – Sowing The Seeds Of Hope
  • Dr. Mark Hyman, M.D. – Foods That Harm & Foods That Heal
  • Senator Cory Booker – Sane Food Policy: We Can Do it!!
  • Vani Hari – Protect Your Family From Toxic Food
  • Andrew Kimbrell – The Truth About Genetically Engineered Food
  • Ritamarie Loscalzo, DC, CCN – Healthy Digestion for a Healthy Life
  • Dr. Michael Greger, M.D. – Affordable Super Foods For Lasting Super Health
  • Dr. Susan Peirce, Ph.D. – How To Achieve Permanent Weight Loss
  • Dr. David Perlmutter, M.D. – The Gut-Brain Connection
  • Gene Baur – How Compassion Can Change Your Life
  • Dr. David Katz, M.D. – The Optimal Diet For Human Beings
  • Ron Finley – Growing Healthy Food & Communities
  • Chris Wark – Use Nutrition To Fight Cancer
  • Ronnie Cummins – Cook Organic, Not The Planet
  • Marion Nestle – Taking On Big Soda (And Winning!)
  • Dr. Vandana Shiva, Ph.D – Stand Up For Your Planet
  • Dr. Mimi Guarneri, M.D. – Putting Integrative Heath To Work For You
  • Dr. Michael Klaper, M.D. – Our Best Hope For A livable World
  • Robyn O’Brien – Food Safety: What You Need To Know
  • Dr. Christiane Northrup, M.D. – Goddesses Never Age

Take advantage of these great minds in health, I know I am!

Click Here To Go To The Website And Register

 

 

 

 

Food Choices Documentary – Watch Free For a Limited Time Only!

You will never look at your food the same way again!

 

Do yourself and your body a favor and check out this outstanding new documentary “Food Choices”.  This film is chalked full of the latest health information from the leading scientist and experts in the field of health and nutrition.

You can watch this outstanding documentary for free during the world wide free viewing event that ends in just 14 hours from the time of this post. So get to the site and give the movie a watch you will be so glad you did!

Click on the link below and then click the “Watch the film NOW!” box. 

http://www.foodchoicesmovie.com/

The New Harvest Beat Restaurant Seattle

Late last year I found out that my favorite 100% Gourmet Vegan restaurant, “Sutra” was closing because the building that they where in was going to be bull dozed and apartments where going to be built in its place. The video below was made before Harvest Beat was a reality and the news of Sutra’s soon closing had just come out. The owners of the new Harvest Beat, Aaron and Jan Geibel, are the ones in this video and it shows their dedication to the food, farmers and you the customer. This is exactly what you get at Harvest Beat!

Well,  Aaron and Jan Geibel have now opened a new 100% Gourmet Vegan restaurant, “Harvest Beat” and its literally just a few doors up the street from the old Sutra location.

Harvest Beat has been open now for three months and I was able to dine there this last weekend. Wow, the quality of the food and service was top notch and I think Harvest Beat has kept the quality that Sutra had. Harvest Beat has a few things over the old Sutra through. First, the dinning area is around four times bigger which translates to more comfort, with real tables & chairs, not stools & small tables like Sutra had. Also the larger dinning area allows more customers to be served in one seating, so you will have a better chance of getting reservations.  (You do need to call and make reservations sometimes a week or two in advance).  The kitchen looks like it is at least four times bigger as well, which helps with the speediness of food being prepared and served.

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Here is a photo of the menu the night I dined there. The menu changes regularly (about every two weeks) and is driven by what is in season at that time. Everything is picked or harvested that day or week from the local area and state. (Please excuse the poor photo quality)

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Here is a photo of the first and second courses – Smoked carrot and ginger bisque with black lemon orange mirin gastrique served with a red stem wood sorrel roasted beet salad finished with candied walnuts black lava salt and a lemon tarragon vinaigrette

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Third courseRoasted cauliflower truffle celeriac mousse napoleon on a saffron caper tomato sauce topped with fried sage

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Fourth course – Wild foraged stinging nettle gnocchi in a leek garlic grilled abalone mushroom broccolini rague with a urfer beiber sweet potato hemp seed sauce finished with fried nettles and micro radish

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Fifth course – Flowerless vanilla peanut butter chocolate cookie on a scoop of vanilla orange blossom coconut ice cream with a berry coulis

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So if you are in Seattle and want to enjoy a gourmet, five course, 100% vegan meal then I say beat your feet down to the Harvest Beat for some great food and wonderful customer service, its like eating with family.

New Movie Alert! “Eating You Alive”

“Eating You Alive” the movie will be out sometime this year. No definite date at this time. Until then check out the trailer below.

 

 

 

Vegan Gourmand’s Beefless Stroganoff

Growing up in a non-vegan household in the 70s, my mother would make beef stroganoff. As a kid I really didn’t care too much for it but it was what was for dinner so I ate it. Now, as a Vegan adult somehow I find it to be a comfort food for me. I haven’t had a stroganoff since I was a kid but thought it couldn’t be too hard to replicate a beef stroganoff with all the creamy flavors but as a vegan dish. So here is the recipe I finally came up with and enjoy when I get in the mood for beef stroganoff. It has all the flavor notes and rich creaminess I remember as a kid. Enjoy! Side Note: I know I usually always post images of my recipes but the last time I made this I was soooo excited to have some I completely forgot to take any pictures, sorry….sometimes my stomach overrides my brain.

Ingredients:

1 package (4-5 cups) of your favorite pasta, I use Barilla Rotini (or I like to make garlic or regular mash potatoes and pour the stroganoff over the top)

1/4 cup vegan butter (I use Earth Balance Soy Free)

1 medium sweet onion, diced

3-4 Portobello mushrooms (I have also used Gardein Beefless Tips instead of mushrooms, although you do need to change the process a bit, cooking & browning them separately from all the other ingredients)

3 large garlic cloves, minced

Olive oil or vegan butter for sauteing

1 tablespoon vegan Worcestershire sauce (Just read the ingredients on the bottles at the supermarket to make sure it does not have anchovies in it, some brands do, some don’t. I use the Kroger Brand)

1 12oz tub of vegan sour cream (I use Tofutti Sour Supreme Brand)

2 1/2 cups of vegetable broth (I use organic Vegetable broth)

2 heaping tablespoons of powdered vegan beef style broth seasoning (I use McKay’s vegan special instant broth and seasoning)

2-4 tablespoons of corn starch with water for thickening

Directions:

Start to boil your pasta.

Rinse and clean mushrooms then slice them either in chunks or strips.

Saute the onion and mushrooms together in a little olive oil or vegan butter until onions are translucent and mushrooms have cooked their liquid out.

Add the minced garlic and continue to saute for 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat.

In a medium sauce pan or large skillet add broth and whisk in the powdered vegan beef style broth seasoning then bring to a boil, then lower heat to med-low and add the Worcestershire sauce.

Combine the mushroom mixture into the broth mixture.

In a small bowl or cup mix some water with the corn starch to make a thin slurry. Stir the slurry slowly into broth and then turn the heat back up to a slow boil, stirring constantly. Do this until you get a thicker consistency.

Turn down heat to low and stir in the 1/4 cup vegan butter until incorporated.

Stir in the vegan sour cream until completely incorporated. Do not allow it to boil. Salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately over noodles or mashed potatoes.

 

 

 

 

Vegan 2015 – The film – a must see!

This 24 minute film is a must see! Veganism is gaining in popularity and this short movie is very encouraging! Watch and enjoy!

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