Smack dab in the middle of a very, very good weekend.
This weekend I celebrated my 31st birthday! After last year’s 30th B-Day Bash-stravaganza, I was more than happy to keep my celebrating simple and sweet. And I was totally successful.
I spent the weekend lazing about with my two favorite menfolk. Laughing and laughing and laughing. Feeling like I was in love with the world (and my family!). And of course, eating really amazing vegan food. Lots of eating . . .
It started just like every day. A breakfast plate and play time. Coffee and cleaning. This magnificent mug (who needs the sun, right?)
We made a badass smoothie, the usual(ish) (banana, water, ice, spinach, sprouts, spirulina, protein, vitamin k2, maca, probiotics) plus a few frozen strawberries. Totally out of season but hey, it’s my birthday!
Not so pretty, but dang it was great.
Irish moss is so weird.
Raw ice cream! Strawberries N’ Cream
Raw pudding! Chocolate Chunk.
YUUUUUUUUUMMM. I didn’t write the recipes down, but it was my first time playing with fresh mature coconut flesh and I’d say it was a success. Great flavor, suuuper rich. Irish moss paste (it’s made from seaweed!) gives it an amazingly light and fluffy texture. I’m looking forward to playing with this pair a whole lot more in the future . . .
That night we dropped Waits off with our friends, and took a little trip . . .
I had been invited to the pre-opening of the brand new Veggie Grill in nearby Beaverton. Veggie Grill is quickly-expanding chain out of southern California, serving awesome vegan versions of familiar “fast food” fare. Of course, it’s a whole lot healthier than your typical burger joint, with sweet potato fries and steamed kale and tempeh on the menu!
We started with an appetizer of buffalo wings, which was salty and spicy and tangy and ohmigosh so good. It’s been a long time since I’ve tasted those flavors! (though I’m almost certain they use Gardein, and I wish they made their own meats in-house, a la Native Foods)
For dinner Damian had the Santa Fe Crispy Chickin’ with sweet potato fries:
And I had the VG-Cheeseburger with steamed kale:
Damian loved his meal and I thought mine was good, though a bit greasy. The kale was spectacular! All in all I think Veggie Grill is a great addition to the Portland scene. I actually really appreciate that they are taking a different approach to vegan dining. They are situated in a strip mall, in a suburb. They offer a clean, familiar, family-friendly atmosphere and an un-intimidating menu. This is the kind of place where veg-curious omnis will go, and I’m pretty sure they’ll come back, again and again and again. It’s an important component of the worldwide vegan takeover! But seriously, I do think it’s important and I’m all for it. Yay Veggie Grill!
Saturday was a run-around, have-fun-around sort of day. Foodie highlights include an enormous fajita burrito:
Afternoon treats and coffee:
And that night we had a very small gathering at a friend’s house. We pretty much ate guacamole and fancy olives and caramel truffles for dinner. Then we had cake!
The carrot cake that killed me this weekend (such a sweet way to go . . . )
Afterwards, we hit up the all-you-can-eat brunch buffet at Sweetpea. This time it was southern-style! Biscuits and gravy, taters, tofu scramble, and tons of kale. There were also grits and some sort of berry dessert but I didn’t try any of those. It was A-MAZING (as always):
Then we played in the rain . . .
. . . and ran some errands in our rain boots . . .
And finally, made our way home for an early Sunday supper. Fresh-baked bread (sprouted wheat sourdough), home-cooked chili (it had been simmering on the stove all day, mmm) and a big-ass bad-ass crisp romaine salad.
And that, my friends, is pretty much my idea of a perfect weekend.
Hope you had a great one as well! ♥ ♥ ♥