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Vegan Adventures in Paris (Partie Deaux)

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

When Part One left off, we were just leaving the Musee Picasso…

**Day Two** (Continued)

Remember the Paris Passlib’? Well one of its perks is a free boat ride on the Seine, which sounded like a fun way to see the city from a different POV. It was a long windy walk but we made it to the banks of the Seine, just below the Eiffel Tower, where the boats are all docked. There are at least 10 different boat companies doing tours like ours, along with fancier dinner tours… but of course we went with the one that was free. 

We rode on the top deck, and it was breathtaking:

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

The sun was setting as we stepped off the boat, and we were starving. Luckily I knew exactly where I wanted to eat: Brasserie 2eme ART (either they don’t have a website or it’s down, so here’s their Happy Cow page). 100% plant-based, this spot had shown up on a number of “must eat at” lists for Paris. It was way over on the other side of the city but that wasn’t a problem- we were on one of our unlimited metro pass days, right? Right. Well, sort of. 

Turns out it was also one of the rail worker’s strike days, so while all the local (think subway) trains were running, the same was not true of the RER trains, which are sort of a regional option. And the ones that were weren’t making all their scheduled stops- our train skipped the only stop near the restaurant. Even with Google maps there didn’t seem to be an easy way to get back there via public transit, so we headed back up to the surface and called and Uber. It was rush hour and crazy expensive, and the traffic was INSANE! We had witnessed the traffic from the sidewalk of course, as we traipsed across the city, but being stuck in it, while starving, pushed me straight from hungry to hangry. It wasn’t pretty. By the time we got to the restaurant it was after 8pm. On a Friday night. The place was beyond crowded. The length of the wait, plus the fact that there were no other great options nearby AND we were still across the city from our own hotel may have spurred a minor temper tantrum, haha. Mom, I’m sorry 🙂

But, we did wait and it was worth it… the food was fantastic (although the pictures sadly, were not- VERY dark in there!)

I had the Kabob Wrap with some of the tastiest, most flavorful seitan ever! It was so delicious, if we had gone back a second time I definitely would’ve ordered it again. 

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Mom went with the Pad Thai, which she enjoyed as well. Lots of veggies in there- and I promise it wasn’t actually green IRL!

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

They also had some pretty great decor: 

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

**Day Three**

Pretty sure I bounced right out of bed on this morning because THE LOUVRE! First we stopped for coffee, then walked along the Seine on our way to the famous museum. It was early morning, and other than a few runners, we were the only ones out. It was lovely. 

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

As we approached the museum we thought were among the first… but if you squint, you can see there are at least a hundred people already lining up on the other side of the Louvre Pyramid. Which totally made me feel like I was in a Dan Brown novel! This is also another advertisement for Museum Pass– don’t wait in line when you don’t have to! 

Once in we zoomed first to the most famous pieces that we knew would be mobbed later in the morning: Winged Victory, Dying Slave, The Wedding at Cana, and the Venus de Milo:

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Seeing these masterpieces, some of which are thousands of years old, was truly moving. And humbling. Imagine creating something so important, that even thousands of years later people are traveling across the world just to stare at it. 

Probably the most famous piece of art housed at the Louvre is, of course, the Mona Lisa

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

While it wasn’t as striking in person, it was still very cool to see something so famous in person. Of course, we couldn’t get very close to it…

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

And yes, there were guards. 

There were also some heavily armed federal type soldiers patrolling around too. We never did figure out if they were always there, or if something had happened. But all that wondering did not stop us from just enjoying the beauty around us:

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Everything was lovely, nothing was simply functional. 

There weren’t a ton of vegan options in the cafe we stumbled upon (although admittedly I never looked at the menu at the places on the lower floors), but all I needed was coffee and a roll!

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

After the Louvre we headed back across the Seine to the Eiffle Tower. Here’s another tip: Buy your tickets with a reserved time in advance! You can do so through their official website (or along with your Passlib’) for no extra cost- and it’s definitely the thing to do. When we arrived 20 minutes before our reserved time, we were whisked right in. Past the ~300 people waiting in line just to get into the park. Never mind the hordes of people waiting to take the elevator or stairs up the tower- there were many more waiting inside. Definitely do this. Yes, it requires planning but it’s worth it. 

Beautiful. 

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

And amazing! Construction was completed in 1889 for that year’s World Fair (can you imagine what people must have thought of this engineering marvel in the 1800s!?), and Wikipedia tells me it’s the most-visited paid monument in the world with close to 7 million people ascending it in 2015 alone. Impressive! 

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Our reserved visit included the elevator to the second level (although I would’ve enjoyed climbing the 600 stairs!), and here was the view: 

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

And that concludes day three… we were up early the next morning to catch our train to Switzerland, but don’t worry- we do come back to Paris and I still have SO MANY food pics to share! 

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Buffalo Chick’n Pasta (Redo!)

Buffalo Chick'n Pasta - Vegan, made with Soy Curls, delicious and creamy! | www.thatwasvegan.com

Old favorites are favorites for a reason. But they’re also, well, old. I first made this creamy and spicy Buffalo Chick’n Pasta six years ago and while it was (really, really) good, the 2018 version was ready for a bit of an update. It’s still delicious though! Very creamy, with that wonderful buffalo sauce heat. What gives it the creaminess? Why, cream cheese of course! Oh and those soy curls… Still one of my favorite mock meats – not least because it keeps so well in the pantry.

Originally I made this with spaghetti, but nowadays I go more for a smaller pasta shape and one that really holds the sauce. Shells would be good, or penne. My personal fave though are cellantani: cute little twisty tubes that are bite-sized but hold a whole ‘lotta creamy goodness in them!

YUM.

Check out the (updated) original post for the recipe and some fun facts about soy curls!

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What I Eat When I’m Not Blogging #21

Every time I do one of these posts I’m impressed by all the fun vegan foods available to me here in Denver, and how much has changed since I first went vegan in 2010 (and all the times I attempted to go vegetarian in college and my 20’s). The sheer volume of products available to vegans and vegetarians today is amazing! My friend Cynthia and I attended VegFest Colorado last weekend (first time for both of us) and seeing all the brands laid out like that – old favorites and new favorites alike – was just very heartwarming. I also bumped into friends! JL and Dave were there promoting her books, and my friend Sarah was working at the Bob’s Red Mill booth. It was a great day… but here I am going on and on. Let’s get to some of the food I’ve eaten!

I had a gift card to use at Garbanzos (a Mediterranean chain with tons of vegan options), so one day I walked over during work with a book and had their Falafel Plate with hummus, cucumber tomato salad, pickles, pickled cabbage, rice, olives and roasted veggies with a fresh warm pita on the side. They have free sparkling water which I think is such a good perk! 

What I Eat When I'm Not Blogging

A few days later I went back and grabbed a big Marinated Mushroom Laffa (which is like a burrito) with rice and lettuce and pickles and pickled cabbage and hummus and I think they accidentally threw a falafel in there too, haha! This time I brought it back to the office with me, though. 

What I Eat When I'm Not Blogging

This was my 4th of July feast (yes, it’s been a while since I’ve done one of these posts)- my mom made vegan baked beans with peppers and LightLife Smart Bacon, and a pasta salad with veggies and vinaigrette. I made a potato salad with tons of relish, and she got us BBQ sandwiches from Moe’s BBQ, a local chain here in Denver. 

What I Eat When I'm Not Blogging

Up next… a very happy accident! I had ordered pizza from Uncle Maddio’s (also a chain- but across the country, not just in CO). I don’t even remember what kind of sauce I was trying to order but it sure wasn’t buffalo.. but somehow that is what I ordered… and it was DELICIOUS! The first bite was a little disorienting, but once I wrapped my mind around it, I was in. It was really spicy so I added some vegan ranch, and then it was perfect. Toppings were Daiya cheese, seasoned tofu, bell peppers and red onions. 

What I Eat When I'm Not Blogging

I’ve been trying to plan better afternoon snacks for work, because I realize that if I don’t, I’ll resort to something more along the lines of twizzlers. So this is the kind of snack I’m feeding myself these days- Earth Balance white cheddar popcorn along with mini peppers and hummus! Healthy, yet still something I’ll actually look forward to. 

What I Eat When I'm Not Blogging

Here in Denver we have an event Tues-Thu during the summer called Civic Center Eats, where tons of food trucks convene in Civic Center Park and we all stuff our faces. I’m lucky enough to work just a few blocks away and try to go at least 2 or 3 times a month. This year there are THREE vegan food trucks (one each day) and I’ve been splitting my time and money among them. Vegan Van is there on Tuesdays, and I recently had their Royale with Cheese: a housemade burger topped with lettuce, tomato, onion and mayo + fresh cut fries. Perfection. 

What I Eat When I'm Not Blogging

Then, on a Thursday I hit up Wong Way Veg, another all-vegan food truck that is there each week. This time I had the Thai Veggie Ball Wrap made with rice balls and an amazing slaw. Very flavorful and nice and light for a hot summer day.

What I Eat When I'm Not Blogging

Lunch was quickly followed by dessert: Ba-nom-a-nom’s delicious blueberry banana “nice cream” with granola! 

I’ve blogged about Mad Greens before, and I’ll say it again. I freaking love their salads. Especially the Pancho Villa with tofu!  Lettuce and flavorful tofu and warm quinoa and corn- it’s all just the best. Especially when accompanied by a good book! 

What I Eat When I'm Not Blogging

Finally, a sad-looking dinner that was actually pretty yummy. But yes, this is the brownest meal ever, I’ll admit it! Grilled cheese and frozen onion rings… total comfort food, and sometimes you just need that, right? 

What I Eat When I'm Not Blogging

What yummy meals have you guys been eating lately? 

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Summertime and the Grilling’s Easy

Veggie dogs

Nothing says summertime like lighting up that grill, whether you’re camping or just in your backyard. And you don’t even need a big backyard (or a grill!), just a source of heat- oh, and some veggie dogs! When LightLife offered to share some of their Smart Dogs with me, I was all about it. 

Veggie dogs

I tend to keep my veggie dogs simple- ketchup, mustard, maybe some relish or onions… although sometimes I get a bit crazy and go with Kimchi Relish… a bit more work but totally worth it! 

Kimchi Relish & Taco Fries | www.thatwasvegan.com

Or maybe Green Chile Baked Beans

Green Chile Baked Bean Veggie Dogs | www.thatwasvegan.com

Or even Sweet Basil, Corn, and Pepperoncini

Sweet Basil, Corn, Pepperoncini Veggie Dogs | www.thatwasvegan.com

No matter how you cook or top them, a very big thanks to LightLife and their Smart Dogs for keeping this summer tradition alive for vegans and vegetarians everywhere! (But I still prefer them cooked over my fire pit!) Find them near you before next weekend so you can enjoy them too!

Veggie dogs

*This post was sponsored by LightLife but the opinions are 100% mine!

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Chick’n Fajita Bowls

Vegan Chick'n Fajita Bowls | Flavorful, Spicy, Healthy, Delicious | www.thatwasvegan.com

I love love LOVE these Vegan Chick’n Fajita Bowls, and have made them at least 4 times in the last couple months, which is kind of record for me. Soy curls cooked in all my favorite seasonings, Cilantro Lime Brown Rice (easy peasy when made in the Instant Pot!), peppers and onions, black beans, and all the toppings you want- I went with fresh cilantro and Tofutti vegan sour cream. 

Vegan Chick'n Fajita Bowls | Flavorful, Spicy, Healthy, Delicious | www.thatwasvegan.com

I’m not sure why, but I had really stopped using soy curls much…  but the past few months they’ve really made a comeback in my kitchen. Besides these delicious fajita bowls I’ve also been using them in chick’n salad, soups, stir-fry, all sorts of different recipes. Not even sure why! I’ll tell you what though… they are ab fab when fried up in a little oil with fajita seasoning! 

Same with peppers and onions… 

Vegan Chick'n Fajita Bowls | Flavorful, Spicy, Healthy, Delicious | www.thatwasvegan.com

I really don’t use a ton of oil when I cook (although I wouldn’t identify as low-oil) but in recipes like this, I always opt for oil over water. The flavor and texture is just worth the extra calories to me.

Vegan Chick'n Fajita Bowls | Flavorful, Spicy, Healthy, Delicious | www.thatwasvegan.com

My other favorite thing about this recipe is how easy it is to change up, depending on the flavors and toppings you’re craving.  I feel like roasted butternut squash would be really good in here too… 

Vegan Chick'n Fajita Bowls | Flavorful, Spicy, Healthy, Delicious | www.thatwasvegan.com


Chick'n Fajita Bowls
Serves 4
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Ingredients
  1. I batch Cilantro Lime Rice
  2. 1 tablespoon fajita seasoning (packet or homemade- there are lots of good recipes out there!)
  3. 2 cups dry soy curls
  4. 2 bell peppers, any color
  5. 1 onion, yellow or sweet
  6. 2 tablespoons oil
  7. 1 can black beans
  8. Toppings of choice: cilantro, sour cream, avocado, etc!
Instructions
  1. Soak soy curls in warm water for at least 10 minutes. Drain and squeeze dry, then chop into smallish bite-size pieces. Thinly slice the peppers and onions.
  2. Heat ~1 tablespoon oil over medium heat, then add veggies and ~1/2 the fajita seasoning. I like to add a little water as needed, rather than more oil. Stir occasionally, and cook until crisp-tender.
  3. Remove the veggies from pan and set aside. Add the remaining oil and when it's heated, add the soy curls and the rest of the seasoning. Cook for ~5 minutes, stirring occasionally. You want them to be heated through and a bit crisp... maybe with a bit of char. Add the beans and the veggies back into the pan and make sure everything is hot.
  4. Serve with rice and other toppings.
Notes
  1. Serves 4-6
That Was Vegan? http://www.thatwasvegan.com/
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Cilantro Lime Brown Rice in the InstantPot | www.thatwasvegan.com

This recipe wasn’t intended to be an at-home version of the Chipotle rice, although I suppose it kind of turned out to be. This Vegan Cilantro Lime Brown Rice made in the Instant Pot was actually intended to be the base of my Chick’n Fajita Bowl (as you may be able to guess from the other ingredients in the picture…). The thing I love about this rice recipe, which I’ve made four times now, is that it’s easy (hello- the Instant Pot does all the work), and it’s so easy to switch up the flavor profile a little bit. You can add more or less lime and cilantro, or salt, depending on your mood. It’s a perfect side dish for all spicy or Mexican or Latin dishes. 

Also? Can we all please agree that it’s Instant Pot not InstaPot? I get that it’s easier to say and all but jeez people, it’s just a few extra consonants. I think we can put in the effort… although it is a lot to type. Maybe we can call it the IP?

Oh, and here’s that Fajita Bowl I mentioned…

Vegan Chick'n Fajita Bowls | Flavorful, Spicy, Healthy, Delicious | www.thatwasvegan.com

I do have a related confession to make. I’ve really only been using my IP for two things. Easy rice recipes like this one, and to “roast” butternut squash. You know, without heating up the oven. Because –oh did I mention- my central air died a week and a half ago? And it’s been hot af in Denver since then? We’re talking mid 90’s most days. Thankfully my home is brick and stays fairly cool, especially when I open the windows at night.

Of course, Denver is also having the worst pollen season in the history of the world* so sleeping with the windows open means waking up with my throat practically swollen shut, so that’s fun. 

Okay, done complaining! You didn’t come here to listen to read about me whining, you came here for some deliciously easy rice, so here it is! Be sure and check back in a few days for the fajita bowl recipe, I promise you wont wanna miss it!

*just my opinion, not an actual scientific fact


Cilantro Lime Brown Rice in the Instant Pot
Write a review
Print
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
32 min
Total Time
37 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
32 min
Total Time
37 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 cups brown rice, rinsed
  2. 2.5 cups water
  3. 1/3 cup cilantro, chopped (more to taste!)
  4. Juice and zest of one lime
  5. Dash of cumin
  6. Salt, to taste
Instructions
  1. Combine the rice and water in the IP. Lock the lid and set the steam release valve to 'sealing'.
  2. Use Manual setting for 22 minutes. When done, leave the rice in for another 10 minutes on the Stay Warm setting - but make sure you set a timer. You don't want to leave it in any longer than that, as it does continue to cook a little.
  3. Remove the inner pot from the IP. Stir in the cilantro, lime juice and zest. Add just a dash of cumin, and then salt to taste. Serve warm.
Notes
  1. This makes ~4 to ~5 cups of rice, depending on the type of rice you use.
Adapted from Instant Pot Recipe Book
Adapted from Instant Pot Recipe Book
That Was Vegan? http://www.thatwasvegan.com/
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Books + Movies + Podcasts

Books.

My reading goal for 2018 is 100 books, and I’ve read/listened to 42 so far. Some have been really good! Some… not so much. 

Loved:

  • Heartburn by Nora Ephron. Cannot say enough how much I enjoyed this book, and how much I LOVED having Meryl Streep read it to me! I think Meryl should narrate all audio books from now on. 
  • Townie by Andre Dubus III. Really good memoir about a childhood/young adulthood heavily influenced by an absent and difficult father. I started listening to this right after reading House of Sand and Fog, which he also wrote. It also inspired me to add some of his father’s works to my to-read list. 
  • The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead. This is one of those ‘wow’ books. Gut-wrenching and painful but beautifully written. 
  • I’ll Be Gone in the Dark by Michelle McNamara. What timing! I was reading this the day they arrested the Golden State Killer, how crazy is that? Fantastic book, if you like true crime. She wrote so well and there’s a ton of research.
  • Janesville by Amy Goldstein. The story of an ‘auto town’ in Wisconsin, and how their economy was torn apart during the great recession. It’s told from both sides (Rs and Ds, well off and struggling), quite fairly I think. 

Wouldn’t Recommend:

  • No Baggage by Clara Bensen. Basically the story of her traveling the world with a dude who mentally and emotionally abuses her, and she thinks it’s cute. 
  • Into the Water by Paula Hawkins. Maybe it’s because I was listening as opposed to reading, or perhaps it was just because there are 4,376 characters in this book, but it’s impossible to keep them all straight. 

Movies.

I got MoviePass a few months ago (when they were having that $7/month sale – making it an even better deal) and I absolutely love it. In case you’re not familiar with MP, how it works is you sign up and pay a monthly fee (although they charge you for the whole year up front) and send you a debit card. You can then use that debit card to purchase up to one movie ticket per day. And it works at all but a handful of theaters. I’ve gotten really into going to the theater by myself too, because the more often you go, the better deal it is, and who’s got time to waste always finding someone to go with? Here are the films I’ve seen so far, all of which I’ve really enjoyed:

RBG was of course FANTASTIC. I actually teared up a few times during that documentary. She’s an amazing woman, truly a national treasure. Tully was a mind-f***, and Black Panther was just as good as everyone says. I can’t wait to see all the big blockbusters this summer! 

Podcasts.

Here are a few of the new (or, at least, new to me) podcasts I’ve been in to lately:

  • Cover-Up – an all new investigation of Chappaquidick and Ted Kennedy and what happened on that fateful night almost 50 years ago. There’s only one episode so far (it’s that new), but I’m already completely sucked in. Growing up in New England I have always been fascinated by the Kennedy’s, and honestly I’ve always been such a fan of Ted’s achievements in Congress… Of course, no one really talked much about Chappaquidick. Can’t wait to learn more about the cover up!
  • 2 Dope Queens – Two best friends who are funny AF discussing sex, romance, and everything else. I routinely LOL on the bus while listening to this show and I don’t even care. If you’re easily offended or don’t like to hear about sex or unruly language, then not the ‘cast for you. But oh man if you want to laugh, these two ladies are amazing! Just a funny aside- when my friend Cynthia first told me about this podcast, I was expecting two bitchy gay guys- and I was excited about that too, haha!
  • The Habitat – “On a remote mountain in Hawaii, there’s a fake planet Mars…” This podcast is based on interviews and stories from the crew of 6 people who lived in this domed habitat for a whole year, to help NASA understand what life would be like for humans on Mars. Drama, love, fights… all of it! 

Okay, those are all the books, movies and podcasts I’ve been into lately. What are your suggestions?? 

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What I Eat When I’m Not Blogging #20

Let’s reminisce together about some of the delicious eats I’ve had recently, shall we? 

In no particular order…

Mother’s Day also happens to be Grandma Josie’s birthday, so we celebrate them together. This year we ordered from the Imperial Chinese restaurant (on South Broadway) because they’re yummy and they have vegan faux meats, and none of us felt like cooking. Here’s my plate: Peanut Curry with Tofu and Veggies, Sesame Tofu, Tempura Veggies, and a Spring Roll

Also! I baked a cake! It was just a basic vanilla layer cake, but I took the buttercream frosting from Minimalist Baker and added in some maple syrup. And then I toasted walnuts with more maple syrup and some avocado oil and salt. It was freaking fantastic, if I do say so myself. 

And here’s the birthday girl enjoying her slice- can you believe she’s 89??

Sticking with the Asian food theme… These next two were delivery, the day after I got back from France. I was just too tired to care cook and we all know how easy it is to grab the ipad and order, right? Well, it is for me. I’m trying to get better about that, but in the meantime I really enjoyed my Orange Chick’n and Veggie Lo Mein! They’re from Fortune Kitchen, which I reviewed a lot time ago for my Mile High Vegan Eats series. 

I also visited Phonatic with my friend Cindy, and had the Noodle Bowl with Tofu. I almost always order the pho, but I also really love the noodle bowl. 

Denver locals all know about Sweet Action Ice Cream- they sell their pints in local groceries (including Nooch Vegan Market) and always have vegan flavors and vegan ice cream sandwiches. This was a Strawberry Shortcake Cone. It was really hot one day so for lunch I took the bus there (it’s about a 5 minute ride) and then walked back to the office while savoring it…

Two nights before I left for Europe I went to HH with some dear old friends I used to work with. Two of them I hadn’t seen in years (one actually lives in Alaska now!). We forgot to get a group pic but I did (of course) insta my beer haha- a La Cumbra SLice of Hefen. And as you can see, I was being good and also drinking water because it’s important to hydrate 😉 

And finally, right before the trip my mama and I went to the mall to buy me a new iphone (I got the 8Plus and I can’t even remember how I lived with such a “small” phone before). We had lunch at Tokyo Joe’s and I had the Build Your Own Bowl with brown rice, tofu, water chestnuts, sweet potatoes, asparagus and snap peas- with the peanut sauce. SO GOOD!

That’s it for now… have a great weekend everyone!

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Vegan Adventures in Paris (Partie Un)

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

After an absolutely epic trip to France and Switzerland, I’m at a loss of how to blog about it. How does one organize a series of posts that go back and forth across countries, from Paris to Lucerne, Switzerland and back to Paris then on to Normandy then back to Paris again? I thought about chronologically, but then I thought these posts would be more useful for future travelers if they’re organized by country and by region. 

So, I’m going to break them into parts. Three Paris, one Normandy, and one Switzerland. And mix them up with some of my regular food posts, so no one gets bored. 

Let’s do this. 

**Day One**

I suppose this is why our tickets were so cheap, but we were routed through San Fran on our way to Paris (yes, totally wrong direction from Denver), but whatever. We got SUCH a good deal on these tickets, it was totally worth it. We had an hour to kill at SFO after we made it to the International terminal, so we sat at a restaurant near our gate for some wine and snacks. 

We had delicious black-eyed pea hummus and sweet potato fries, which were probably the only vegan options on the menu. Which was fine, because they were good!

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

We also each had a glass of wine. I went for the house Chardonnay but my fancy mom ordered a glass without a price, and it ended up being $20 which was pretty funny. I feel like you really can’t stress about money when you’re traveling, because it’ll ruin your trip. Plus I knew it would be evened out by allllll the free wine we were about to consume on the flight 😉

It was a long flight, close to 10 hours. I drank, napped, watched a movie, napped some more. And ate. United did come through with a good vegan meal and a snack later on. Here’s the meal- it was an Indian curry with rice and beans, a simple salad and roll, and a chocolate chip cookie. 

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Before we knew it, the captain was announcing our initial descent into Paris! The countryside just looked French!

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Here’s my first tip: If you’re going to Paris, stay in the 4th Arrondissement. It is what you’re picturing in your head when you imagine Paris. Narrow, winding streets. Locals on scooters. Locals walking their little French Bulldogs. Cafes and restaurants and shops everywhere you look. Cobblestone and brick. We stayed at the Hotel Grand Malher and it was perfect for us. The rooms are small and you’re going to want to take the stairs to avoid the tiny elevator, but that’s just how Europe is. It was right near the Saint Paul Metro stop, which was perfect for us as well. 

This was what we saw when we first popped up out of the metro, rubbing our eyes like the mole in The Wind and the Willows:

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com
Perfect, oui?

We quickly checked into our hotel, freshened up, and headed back out to enjoy the sunshine. Everyone knows the trick to beating jetlag is to stay awake that first day, and we were determined to do just that! Also to drink some French wine. 

We set out on foot to explore the 4th Arr. and stopped at one of the first cafes we came to for a glass of wine. All of the cafes are organized with the chairs facing the street, which makes for fantastic people watching.

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

We spent the whole afternoon wandering the the streets, not caring how lost we got because we had no destination in mind anyway. One of my favorite places that we just happened upon was the Place des Vosges, the oldest planned square in Paris. It was built by Henri IV in 1612, and is just beautiful. 

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

The Parisians were just sprawled in the grass enjoying the sun or the shade, reading, talking, relaxing. I think we fit right in:

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

We stopped at another adorable cafe set on the most adorable intersection for another glass of wine. The amazing thing about Paris is everywhere you look, you’re surrounded by the most beautiful architecture!

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Finally it was time for dinner. We walked to Le Potager du Marais but they were closed. Thank goodness for Happy Cow who informed us we were also pretty close to Hank Vegan Burger, and that’s where we went!

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

I had the L’Allume burger with a smoked BBQ sauce and sweet peppers and veg, along with Potato Wedges, smothered in cheese sauce because why not!?

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Full tummies + all that wine + 8 hour time difference had us ready for sleep after that, so we headed back to our cute little hotel…

**Day Two**

Up early and ready to experience more of Paris! After a quick stop at the Starbucks near our hotel (literally the only place open this early- nothing/nobody in Paris seems to get going before 9) we hop on the metro and begin our trip out to Versailles. But before I share those gorgeous pics, here’s my second Paris tip: If you’re planning to squeeze a lot of museums and metro travel into your trip (or part of), definitely look into the Paris Passlib’! It’s a combo of the Museum Pass and an unlimited metro pass. It’s not cheap, and wouldn’t have been worth it for our whole visit BUT was very worth it for the two days we had it. 

Okay, so Versailles! Opulent, ridiculous, beautiful. Yes, it’s a train ride there, but admission is included with your museum pass PLUS there’s a beautiful town to explore afterwards as well. 

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Literally everywhere you looked was gold and crystal and marble. These pictures don’t do it a fraction of justice.

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

We were pretty fancy too though 😉

After a few hours of walking around with our mouths open, we decided to check out the town (village?) of Versailles and find some lunch. We ended up at Pur Etc, a tiny little place where all the dishes were pre-made in mason jars. If the dish you ordered is warm, they pop it in the oven. Mom went for a vegetarian lasagna that shall not be pictured here, but I had the Buddha Bowl, aka the bol de legumes frais et cereales, a salad of peas, kale, carrots, chickpeas, corn, radish and quinoa with seeds and a balsamic vinaigrette. Delicious!

Selon légumes du moment : Pois gourmands, chou kale, carottes rapées, mélange pois chiche maïs et quinoa, radis, graines de courge, vinaigrette balsamique (huile de tournesol, huile d'olive vierge, vinaigre balsamique (ANHYDRIDE SULFUREUX), MOUTARDE, sel, poivre)

We hopped back on the train (thanks Passlib’!) and headed to the Arc de Triomphe. 

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

This is one of those landmarks you see in movies and on tv your whole life, so it’s pretty incredible to be standing right up close to it! We got in with our museum pass (skipped the line even!) and climbed the 11 billion stairs to the top…

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

The view from the top was breathtaking, and that’s really not an exaggeration. It felt like you could see forever. It was a bit windy, though…

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Back down all those stairs (as an aside, by the end of the day my fitbit was claiming we did 80 flights of stairs and close to 20,000 steps) and it was time for more wine. 

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

We had a good chunk of the afternoon left, so we decided to hit up the Picasso Museum, since it was really close to our hotel. Again, can I please tell you how beautiful the 4th Arr is!?

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Vegan Adventures in Paris! Food and fun from a plant-based POV | www.thatwasvegan.com

Although the Picasso museum hadn’t originally been on our list, I’m glad we went. It was free and there was no line, thanks to our museum pass.

Also they were displaying Guernica, one of his most famous works and generally regarded as ‘one of the most moving and powerful anti-war paintings in history’. Wikipedia says so, therefore it is true, haha!  But seriously, it was amazing to be that close to such a famous painting. 

And that’s where I’m going to leave you… for now… 

{ 4 comments }

Beet Burgers

Beet Burgers | Flavorful and easy and 100% plant-based | www.thatwasvegan.com
Whew, it’s been a busy few months! Between work, the trip to NYC (which you can read about here and here), working on getting darling Elmer house trained, and my trip to France and Switzerland, I haven’t had much time for blogging. Or, like, cooking. There has been a lot delivery and take out consumed at my house. Like, A LOT. 

But the weather is nicer and life is (hopefully!) slowing down a bit, so I hope to be cooking and blogging more. I definitely need to go through all my pictures and post about the Europe trip- so much delicious food and wine! But for now, I have these really flavorful beet burgers for you.

I enjoyed them a top my favorite massaged kale salad but they’d be equally delicious on your favorite bun. Or however you eat your burgers. I’m not here to judge! 

Beet Burgers | Flavorful and easy and 100% plant-based | www.thatwasvegan.com

Don’t you just love that color? And the flavor! 

These patties are made with:

  • Roasted beets
  • Chickpeas
  • Fresh, sweet basil
  • Garlic
  • Lemon

And other delicious, wholesome ingredients too. And they’re easy to whip up, which is an added bonus. Roast the beets, throw everything into the food processor, then heat up a pan. Easy, right?

Beet Burgers | Flavorful and easy and 100% plant-based | www.thatwasvegan.com

Beet Burgers | Flavorful and easy and 100% plant-based | www.thatwasvegan.com


Beet Burgers
Yields 4
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Ingredients
  1. 1 bunch beets (3 medium or 4 small)
  2. 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  3. 3-4 leaves sweet basil
  4. 1 vegan egg (I used Follow Your Heart)
  5. 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  6. 1/2 cup quick oats
  7. 1/2 teaspoon salt (more to taste)
  8. 1/4 teaspoon garlic (more to taste)
  9. Oil, for pan
Instructions
  1. Peel and slice the beets. Roast at 400 degrees for ~30 minutes or until tender. Allow to cool slightly.
  2. Combine all ingredients (including beets) in food processor. Pulse until well mixed. Taste and add more salt if needed.
  3. Form patties, and cook in oiled pan over medium heat for 5-7 minutes each side, or until crisp and heated through.
Notes
  1. Yields 4-6 patties depending on size.
That Was Vegan? http://www.thatwasvegan.com/
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