Labyrinth. Always appropriate. Via Trilladamclark @ Tumblr
I love Post Punk Kitchen’s annual list of ass-kicking vegan inspiration, the PPK 100, it is totally fuel for my culinary fire. Being a vegan-prone eater in a country like New Zealand is funny sometimes, because dairy is like a religion here; not eating cheese is sacrilegious. It is very serious, omnipotent business, and while vegetarian options are more widely available than ever, vegan options still tend to be thin on the ground. Shit ain’t right.
The situation is evolving – hey there, Little Bird’s Unbakery – but very slowly, and mostly in Auckland. I don’t live in Auckland. Sometimes a big-ass dose of food inspo is desperately needed, and that’s one of the reasons the PPK 100 is so great, it reminds me that there is a whole other, more highly evolved, food world out there, involving bakeries that stock vegan cupcakes, restaurants that know how to cook vegetables and cafes that aren’t blind to the pleasures of scrambled tofu.
Beautiful stuff. And delicious. It gives me hope!
This year’s PPK 100 list has just dropped online and you should definitely check it all out. Here are my 10 favourite nuggets of vegan food goodness from the list this year…
♥ 1 Miyoko Schinner’s Artisan Vegan Cheese
Why do I still not have this book?! Artisan Vegan Cheese by Miyoko Schinner is by all accounts game-changing – the internet has been abuzz with budding plant-based cheesemakers ever since the book was published and the results are fucking revolutionary. Miyoko is being feted as the Vegan Cheese Queen, using traditional methods of aging and fermentation to bring to the world recipes that include soft balls of ‘buffalo’ mozzarella, smoked provolone, cream cheese, sharp chedder, hard wedges of parmesan, wheels of brie. Can I get a witness:
Photo via Starfive @ Flikr
You can find Miyoko’s recipe for her Philly-style cream cheese here. If you’re keen to try your hand making an aged cheese, check out the recipe for the AVC sharp chedder here. Fuckin’ BOOM.
♥ 2 Vegan for Life by Virginia Messina and Jack Norris.
Image via How to Explain Veganism to a Dead Hare
Virginia Messina is a dietitian and animal rights activist who also runs a blog called The Vegan RD. Jack Norris is also a dietition, his site, Jack Norris RD, has a wealth of vegan nutrition information, organised by area of interest, that will also give you a lot of food for thought.
Vegan For Life is touted as a myth-busting guide to making the best possible choices for your health. A one stop plant-based nutrition shop. I am excited to get my hands on a copy.
♥ 3 The Vegan Experience on Serious Eats.
Beet & Citrus Salad with Pinenut Vinagrette
The slideshow of 28 recipes includes, intriguingly, a chilli that calls for marmite and vodka.
The Vegan Experience series, in which Chief Creative Officer J. Kenji Lopez-Alt goes vegan for a month and documents the ride, is a very cool idea. Creative, belly-rumbling recipes abound, including the likes of Miso-Marinated Portobello Mushroom Caps (mmm), as well as useful tidbits for new vegan cooks like these Top Ten Tips For a First-Time Vegan.
♥ 4 Soy Not Oi 2
Image via PPK 100.
The iconic vegan cookbook has risen from the dead and is going global: submissions are welcome from all over for the new incarnation. This is so awesome! You’ve got until April 15th to submit you lil piece of magic for consideration. Time to decide on a favourite recipe and fire it the way of the Soy Not Oi peeps.
The original, attitude-packed Soy Not Oi! (“over 100 recipes designed to destroy the government”) was published 25 years ago, and you can still get hold of a copy. Are there any other zines that are still around a quarter of a century after the first copies were made..?! The curious can hear the late Joel Olsen, one of the initiators of the original Soy Not Oi zine, talk about that project in a six-part interview here.
In among the vegan discussions, cute line drawings and sassmouthing are recipes including the likes of homemade tofu, doughnuts, ‘bring back Black Sabbath’ bean casserole, chickpea samosas and ‘oh shit, I’d better cook the vegetables before they turn rotten!’ stew.
“Jack and I like to eat this while bitching about the system.”
– Soy Not Oi
I’m definitely looking forward to round #2.
Image via Buzzfeed’s 28 Delicious Vegan Holiday Recipes
Buzzfeed seems to have hopped on board the vegan food train in 2012 and the result is lists such as 30 Delicious Vegan Meals You Can Making In Under 30 Minutes. Sweeeet. My favourites are Beer Battered Tofu Sticks with Ranch Dressing and Vegan Pad Thai.
♥ 6 Butternut Alfredo.
Image via PPK
Apparently this was one of the most popular recipes on the PPK blog last year, being both blindingly good and 100% omnivore-proof. I’m filing it away for the first chilly autumn days.
♥ 7 A Profound Hatred of Meat.
Image via A Profound Hatred of Meat
This blog is rad! Carly, the brains behind the blog, is a chef and it definitely shines through. Check out the chocolate attack of these Brooklyn Blackout Cupcakes, or the – possibly just as decadent –Double Chocolate Raspberry Brownie Bites (pictured above). Fuck. Yes.
Other meat-hating delicacies ripe for the making include Creamy Avocado Fettucini, Roasted Cauliflower with Chilli, Lime & Cilantro, Stuffed Bell Peppers with Mushroom Bacon and Roasted Tempeh, Creamy Garlic Broccoli & Accordian Potatoes. Go there now!
Image via Chef Chloe
If there is one thing my sweet tooth is ver, very grateful for on this year’s list, it is the heads up about Chloe Coscarelli’s recipe for Salted Caramel Pretzel Ice Cream. Coconut and almond milk based ice cream sounds A-MAZING. This goes straight to the top of my Must Make list – time to make a pilgrimage to Commonsense Organics for agave. And that salted caramel sauce… oh my. When celebratory dessert calls, spoon it over brownies, dip your cookies in it, pour it over pancakes. It is possible that everything is better with caramel sauce.
♥ 9 Cookbooks from the Library
Image via Don’t Eat Off the Sidewalk
I fell even deeper in love with Wellington Central library when I discovered their shelves of vegan cookbooks. You might be surprised with what your library has to offer – I definitely didn’t expect there to be such a decent selection available for hire in my own lil city.
Checking cookbooks out of the library gives you a chance to try a whole bunch of different styles of vegan cooking without committing to spending a lot of money on books that gather dust instead of inspire your culinary adventures.
My local library alerted me to the wonders of How It All Vegan, Vegan Brunch, Another Dinner Is Possible, Now Vegan! and Vegan Diner, among others.
Beware the wrath of kitchenmania-induced late fees, though! My library fines from not being able to part with How It All Vegan stacked up to the point where I could have just bought the damn book in the first place! I wish I could tell you this happened just the once.
Finally, and most amusingly, we have the simple pleasure that is…
♥ 10 My Drunk Kitchen does Raw Vegan Cheesecake
Holy crappé, that is some radness right there.