I am not a silly yak!! :)

Ciao peeps! I am very happy to report that I am NOT a celiac. (Woohoo! Celebratory fireworks etc…) I got my test results back yesterday for gluten and iron and they came back totally healthy and normal.

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I am very very relieved about this as, although it is perfectly possible to be vegan and gluten-free, as lots of people are, it would have stressed me out so much and been a spanner in the works, as a lot of my favourite foods, including some meat substitutes, contain gluten. Of course, this is not to say that I might not be a bit gluten INTOLERANT. But at least I don’t have to avoid it completely for the sake of my long-term health 🙂

As well as that good news, I have another new eatery recommendation for you: The Lounges chain, who have just got a new extensive vegan menu: http://thelounges.co.uk/menus/ Alex and I went to one in Bristol a couple of days ago, where we tried their jackfruit burger and falafel & avocado wrap.

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Other adventures included Shakeaway, which has lots of vegan-friendly options if you use soya milk and an accidentally-vegan flavour, such as skittles, any fruit, jelly tots etc etc. 🙂 I tried Skittles and it was delish!

Info from Veganuary website this year:

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I will add both these places to the Shops & eateries page now too.

Until next time! 🙂

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I’m back! :D

Ciao peeps! Well it’s been a funny old few weeks, and both my blogs have been a bit neglected as a result (sorry!)

What I do have this time is a few new food pics and a new vegan-friendly eatery (wooo!) which I have recently visited with my boyfriend:

The eatery in question is called Oowee Diner; they have two branches and the one we visited is in Southville, Bristol. They do serve meat as well as veggie and vegan items, but the vegan options they do have are brilliant! Some of the options are greyed-out here cause they were sold out at the time I took the screenshot (but I suppose that’s good in a way, as it shows they’re popular!) I will add Oowee to the Shops & eateries page as well…

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And a few pics from my recent eatings out: gluten-free mushroom burger from Chapel Arts Cafe; mini brekkie from Green Rocket (lovely apart from the rather tough greens); and a Vego monstershake from VX (a thing of true beauty)!


We plan to do a lot of cooking together, probably using the Bosh! cookbook I mentioned last time – it looks awesome and I can’t wait to get cracking with some recipes 😀 He is vegetarian and is enthusiastic with trying vegan substitutes whenever I use them 🙂 I did cook some tacos on Tuesday which he enjoyed (yay!)

So yeah, see you soon when I will probably be a few stone heavier…! 😂

Bosh! book and another photo dump!

Hello everyone, wanted to mention the new Bosh! recipe book I ordered the other day, which I am very excited to dive into. Now I just have to find the time to buy a load of ingredients and actually cook something new! I have been watching their online recipe videos for months, so I’m very glad I now have all of them on paper to look at properly 🙂 Go and buy this if you can:

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This brownie from Chapel Arts Cafe in Bath was very photo-worthy:

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And here are pics from a Zizzi meal I had the other evening with my Dad: They have a new starter called “beetballs” which come in a tomato and vegan mozzarella sauce and it delicious. I also had my favourite ragu, and then their dessert calzone, which was much nicer than the one I had a while ago, so I think they must have improved the recipe.

In a couple of weeks, I have chosen to have a food sensitivity test to see whether I am at all intolerant to gluten or anything else. I really hope I’m not! Although I know there is a lot of support and advice available for people who are vegan and gluten-free, the thought of it feels a little overwhelming :/ So please send healthy thoughts to me as I am a bit anxious about it.

We can accomplish great things :)

Hello everyone!

It is 100 years since women first got the vote, thanks to the long hard struggle the suffragettes went through to achieve it. I think that is wonderful motivation for activists of all kinds; even though we may face an awful lot of opposition, ridicule and hatred from people who are reluctant to change “tradition” (read: “habits”), with enough determination, we can achieve anything! In time, the habits of previous generations will seem ridiculous…

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In other [equally important?] news, I love avocado so much that I married it:

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Lastly, a couple of local new things: Zizzi has a brand new vegan pizza, which I tried some time last week, and Tesco have introduced their new range of Wicked Kitchen convenience foods, all of which are plant-based and look delish! So far, I have tried the spicy frijole wrap 🙂

Ciao for now!

Hypocrisy: When I first realised…

Hello everyone! Today’s post will be a long, thoughtful one, which is quite rare for my blog, as I usually like to keep things cheery. I wanted to write this before I head off to stay with my dad for a couple of days. If we visit anywhere nice to eat, I will post some pics when I get back!

So here are my thoughts on a couple of matters which have been going through my mind these last few days:

Firstly, the time which may well have been when I first realised that I was being a massive hypocrite…

In 2013, I was lucky enough to be invited on a work experience trip to Italy. There were eight of us in total, and we were living together in an old house in the ancient city of Lanciano, in Abruzzo. We took part in lots of cultural experiences, one of which was a traditional meal at a local farm.

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View from my bedroom window, for random context 🙂

Part of the meal consisted of meat skewers. We all ate quite a few of them and, at some point, someone (it might have been me, I don’t remember) asked what meat they were made from. One of the Italians replied that it was dog meat. As you can imagine, I was horrified, and couldn’t tell if he was being serious. Eventually he admitted that it was a joke, and that it was actually lamb meat. I’m now very ashamed to say that I was relieved and carried on eating.

In the back of my mind, though, I was aware of my hypocrisy. Why should I care for a dog, but not care about a lamb? They are both sentient beings, and I love both of them! The answer was simple: social conditioning and cognitive dissonance. We are brought up to see some animals as pets and others as food, even though they are, in essence, exactly the same. Most people, especially children, think lambs are just as appealing as dogs (not that that should have to be a reason for us to respect them and allow them to live).

The fact that in some other parts of the world, cows and pigs are sacred, and dogs are eaten, proves this. Animals are completely at the mercy of our social traditions.

I think I am right in saying that that was the first moment I knew I was going to end up ditching meat. I had already started cutting out a lot of red meat by that point; I had never been keen on it anyway!

*****

The second thing I wanted to talk about is the fact that it is Holocaust Memorial Day tomorrow (27th January). I want to start off by saying that I think it is very important to acknowledge this and use it as a reminder of the dreadful events of the past, and that we should never allow anything like that to happen again.

But the horrible truth is that it IS still happening. In every slaughterhouse in the world. And it is still legal.

The last time I touched upon this subject was some time last year, after I had seen some distressing footage of pigs being killed in gas chambers for food, and I had a rant about it on Facebook. Even though my post was very logical, albeit emotional, I was immediately attacked by several people, and unfortunately had to go on an “unfriending spree”…

So that you hopefully understand where I’m coming from, I just want to outline a few key points:

  • The word “holocaust” does not solely relate to the terrible events of 1933 – 1945. The dictionary definition for holocaust is “destruction or slaughter on a mass scale”. Over 56 billion animals are slaughtered every year worldwide. If that is not an example of a holocaust, I don’t know what is.
  • Hitler was actually inspired by slaughterhouses for the concentration camps, and the comparisons are hard to ignore, from the transportation to the killing methods used, to the use of body parts afterwards. Many Holocaust survivors have also pointed out the similarities!
  • I am NOT disrespecting what people went through during that time; I am pointing out the horrors of BOTH things: the Holocaust of the war, and the continued holocaust of our fellow animals. The only reason people would be offended by the comparison is if they see humans as more important, or more deserving of life, than other animals. Or they don’t want the apparent inconvenience of seeing the truth.

Here ends my thoughts for now. Until next time…

2nd Veganniversary!!

Today (yes, I definitely have the date correct this time) is my second veganniversary! In some ways, it has gone very quickly, but it already feels like I have always been vegan – maybe because, in the back of my mind, I always knew I’d get here eventually 🙂

According to http://vegancalculator.com/#calculator, that means I have saved approximately 730 animals, 14,873 pounds of CO2, 21,915 square feet of forest, 32,872 pounds of grain and 803,533 gallons of water!! Certainly makes you feel accomplished when you can save that many things AND not miss out of anything 😀

Anyway, I just got back from a lovely meal at Zizzi with my mum. I had a voucher to spend which was valid for veganuary, so we used it well. Was too busy enjoying it to take pictures hehe 😀 But I had my favourite olives, ragu and then shared a chocolate praline torte and coconut ice-cream. We also were served by a fellow vegan, which was nice 🙂

#full

#ohgodIjustusedahashtag

#forgiveme

#ciaofornow!

Christmas 2017

Ciao peeps! I hope you all had a lovely Xmas, if you celebrate it 🙂

Weirdly, I don’t really have anything to write about this time (food-wise), as I have been under the weather with flu and a very sore throat for nearly two weeks, and haven’t had much of an appetite! 😦 I keep feeling better and then worse, but hoping I’m on the mend for good this time.

Mum did make a lovely Xmas dinner, with a loaf and all the trimmings, which I enjoyed despite the throat pain!

I also got some very nice prezzies, including some cosmetics from Buddha Beauty – a totally vegan, natural and cruelty-free company, and a beautiful pendant from Simon Says Fork Out, who makes jewellery out of recycled cutlery and is one of the most popular stalls at Bath Christmas Market.

Until next time! 😀

Bath’s two new vegan eateries!!

Within two days, Jacob and I have had the pleasure of trying out Bath’s two newest 100% vegan eateries: Chapel Arts Cafe and Nourish 😀

Chapel Arts used to be a veggie/vegan cafe, but it has recently changed its menu to be totally plant-based, and is also open during some evenings. We went along at lunchtime and were very impressed; we had a flatbread and a cake each. Mine was a garlic mushroom flatbread, and then a brownie, to which they plated up and added chocolate sauce, which was a nice touch:

The next day, we were in town late, before the midnight showing of The Last Jedi (which you must go and see in 3D if you can!), and so we decided to join a group of local vegans for a taster menu at Nourish, which is a vegan pub on London Road (formerly The Beaufort).

The food was lovely, but ended up taking a very long time to arrive (I think probably because the owners had underestimated how long everything would take, and there were a lot of us!), and we actually had to skip dessert because we had a bus to catch to the cinema. Oh well – we’ll just have to go another time 😛 What we did have was very nice: mushroom and chestnut soup, jackfruit taco, falafel, pakoras, nut roast and pie with roasted veg. Thankfully it was reasonably priced, and they kindly took dessert off for us:

P.S. I have finally got around to watching the comedy Red Dwarf, and heard a good quote the other day:

To give a bit of context, the four main characters are stuck without food, and Kryten manages to rustle up some cooked “chicken”. It transpires that it is not, in fact, chicken, but human meat. Obviously the others react with disgust, and Kryten says, “It seemed to me that if humanoids eat chicken, then obviously they’d eat their own species; otherwise they’d just be picking on the chicken.”

Bristol Viva! Vegan Festival :)

Ciao peeps! I had a lovely spontaneous day out on Saturday, visiting the Viva! vegan festival in Bristol. There were two floors packed full of food, treats, gifts and informations, and it was very encouraging to see it so busy with people of all ages 🙂 It was far too busy to take photos, and I spent most of my time eating and awkwardly standing around, but here is a link to the event page, in case you want to go to their future events:

https://www.viva.org.uk/festivals/Bristol-2017

I will content myself with posting a photo of a lovely Bakewell tart, which was from The Vegan Cakery and which I enjoyed with a cup of tea when I returned home 🙂

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Also, just a couple of new finds in my local Tesco: vegan cheesy dorito-like chips (which are great with salsa), and vegan Ben & Jerry’s has finally arrived too!! There were three flavours available, and I chose chocolate fudge brownie:

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THE NORTH!

Ciao peeps!

I recently returned from a few days up north near Manchester seeing family. Sadly we had a funeral, but it was nice to also catch up with a lot of people I haven’t seen for a long time.

I was slightly concerned about the food situation before I went, as none of my family are vegan. However, it turned out to be fine, as everyone was very accommodating and made sure I was well catered for 🙂

I also spent a few hours in Manchester, going around the Christmas market and visiting one of my favourite places, Afflecks (a department store for quirky, alternative clothes and products). The Northern Quarter of Manchester is quite vegan-friendly (including the famous V-Rev vegan diner), and I found a little place called Go Falafel, which is just down the road from Afflecks and provided me with a very substantial lunch! Afflecks is also very vegan-friendly with, not one, but two 100% vegan cafes. I got a delicious slice of banana and caramel cake from one of them.

I also want to mention M&S: they have been well-known for being not very vegan-friendly for a while now, but they seem to have upped their game… Even in a small M&S food hall in a Birmingham service station on the way home, I managed to pick up all these goodies:

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Their new vegan sandwich, a snack pot of hummous and carrot sticks, crisps and many many sweets (letting the healthy meal down a bit there!) Jacob has always wanted fruit pastilles to be vegan, so I was pleased when I found these 🙂

And now a few randoms, as per usual…

Sainsbury’s now do a ready-to-cook vegan pizza by The White Rabbit Pizza Co. – I was sorry to discover that I wasn’t keen on this, because it is also gluten free and had a bit of an odd texture and could have been more flavoursome, in my opinion. However, I am pleased that a quick and easy pizza option has been introduced for gluten free vegans! Sorry for the awful quality photo:

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I enjoyed a lovely dessert, though! This lemon cheesecake from Food Heaven is just delish, and is also from Sainsbury’s (although I’m sure it’s available in a lot of places). I just took a photo of the packaging, as we had already demolished the cheesecake by the time I remembered… expert blogger that I am.

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Lastly, something from today: I was shopping in Bath and went into Pret for a snack. I bought their new vegan Christmas sandwich and a mint hot chocolate (which is totally vegan if you ask for it to be made with non-dairy milk, as there is no powdered milk in the hot choc powder, unlike in a lot of other coffee chains) 🙂 Both these things were really yummy, and I would recommend very much.

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Bye for now 😀