Hey, lovelies! It’s been awhile!
In May I went to Toronto not once, but twice. I usually make it there a few times a year and am always eager to check out the city’s new vegan restaurants, as well as old favourites. One place I always like to visit is Panacea, Toronto’s all vegan store. They’re well stocked with vegan treats and I couldn’t resist picking up a bunch of chocolate goodies, including a box of vegan truffles made by Boardwalk Chocolates. If you have a chance to try anything made by Boardwalk, don’t pass up the chance! I brought these chocolates back to Ottawa and John and I savoured every single one. My faves were the White Cashew (cardamom cashew ganache dipped in white chocolate) and Peanut Butter Cloud (Ontario peanut butter and marshmallow topped with roasted peanut).
Here is the rest of my loot from Panacea. Everything was amazing! Especially the Sweets from the Earth peppermint nanaimo bar and the Treasure Bar from Eli’s Earth Bars. The peach slices made by Goody Good Stuff brought back some nice childhood memories of sucking on 5¢ candies. Tell me I’m not the only one who did this…
One night I went out for dinner and ate at Rawlicious with Lisa from Vegan Culinary Crusade and Nicole from A Dash of Compassion. The three of us had a lovely evening and enjoyed some delicious raw food. I had the raw pizza, which turned out to be some of the best raw pizza I’ve ever tasted thanks to the super soft and moist crust. Lisa had the onion sandwich and Nicole had a Caesar salad.
Lisa is such a sweetie! She brought me some of her homemade raw chocolate coconut truffles. They were amazing, of course! Her and Nicole have some awesome projects on the go. Check out their raw ice cream sandwich challenge (open to July 1, 2011).
After eating at Rawlicious, I continued with the raw food trend and went to Cruda Cafe the next day. They were featured on Groupon a few months before, and I bought the coupon knowing I’d make it there eventually. Having $28 to blow, I splurged and picked up two meals and an acai smoothie. I choose the Sweet Potato Mesquite Sandwich, which was made with really nice and soft dehydrated bread topped with a generous amount of guacamole, veggies, sprouts, olives and vegan kombucha cheese. I also bought the Quiche me Lorraine, a small almond herb crust filled with fennel, tomato and creamy vegan cheese.
One Love Vegetarian
Earlier in May John was in Toronto and returned home raving about a meal he ate at One Love Vegetarian. After seeing his pictures, I knew I had to try their food too. I was feeling adventurous (as usual) and ordered the Callaloo, a dish of steamed Jamaican greens served with boiled green banana, yellow yam, Jamaican sweet potato, avocado and plantain. It was a very unique meal and unlike anything I’ve ever had before. I liked almost all of the ingreidents, the one exception being the not so tasty boiled green banana. This place is really close to Panacea, the all vegan store, and definitely worth a visit. The prices are good, portions are big and they play some reggae music that makes for great vibes. Cash only.
Hot Beans! As soon as I heard about this new, all vegan Latin-inspired takeout joint, I knew I had to eat there. They’re conveniently located in Kensington market so there’s no excuse for missing them. The menu is short but solid. The choice for me was easy: jackfruit taco. It blew me away. I know it sounds strange but it’s freaking ingenious! The texture is awesome. For my side dish, I picked the chips and cheesy dip (made with a potato base) – also a winner. I somehow managed to forget my camera and missed out on taking a picture. Thankfully, I met up with a friend and convinced him to try the jackfruit taco too (not a hard sell!). In the picture above you can see the other side dish option of beans and rice, which was also super tasty! I’m sure you noticed the donut above…yep, that’s a Boston Cream donut. And yes, it was very yummy.
I’m so happy we’ve reached a point where conference organizers are able to accommodate special requests from vegans. Yes, their go-to meal is usually pasta but at least they’re getting a tad more creative and adding things like lentils and olives to standard tomato or olive oil sauces.
One night, I attended a fancy reception that had only meat, fish and cheese hor d’oeuvres. I asked if there was anything vegan and was very excited to be presented with a small bowl of guacamole and plantain chips. Worried that it wasn’t enough, the chef also sent out a bowl of spiced nuts. How kind! I always really appreciate the effort to accommodate and am so grateful when chefs get creative.
Fly Porter Airlines
Good news! Porter Airlines has made some small alternations to their in-flight meals and now has a VGML meal that includes a small grilled veggie sandwich that’s made without butter or cheese. How great! If you’re not flying during lunch or dinner, you can usually get a pita and hummus snack box or a bag of salted almonds. Porter is such a great airline and it’s so nice to see them making steps to accommodate vegans and vegetarians. Fly Porter!
So that’s Toronto! The city has no short of vegan options and new ones are popping up all the time!