Greetings from Baltimore!

Just a quick post tonight, because I’m tired, and I’m having trouble getting my pictures to sync.

Today was the first day that I attended Natural Products Expo East, and I’ll be going back again tomorrow. Let me tell you, that place is overwhelming, and I didn’t get to visit everything!

I made the mistake of going to Chipotle for lunch. Usually this is not a mistake, but I had not yet seen the food part of Expo. You don’t think you’re getting a lot because it’s just little samples at each booth, but when you add it all up… OMG.

I've become a bowl kind of person.  Makes me feel less bad about the chips.

I’ve become a bowl kind of person. Makes me feel less bad about the chips.

Fortunately I looked at my Expo map before I finished eating and stopped. It was however, a lovely meal right on the water.

After many samples and a bag full to go, I headed back to the hotel.  I will definitely need to go back tomorrow to finish seeing everything.

I did go out to dinner, despite that I wasn’t terribly hungry, because it’s not like I’ll get to come back to the area.  I’m so glad I did!  I went to Great Sage in Clarksville… and it was amazing.   More about that either tomorrow or in the next few days!

VeganMoFo2014

I love it when you follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest!

Posted in Travel | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Blackbird Pizzeria in Philadelphia, PA

As I was looking at the map for how to get to my hotel in Baltimore for Natural Products Expo East, I realized how close I would pass to Philadelphia on my trip.

Although I’ve lived in the Northeast my entire life, I’ve actually never been to Pennsylvania (well, the airport once, but that doesn’t count). I didn’t travel much as a child (it took me until I was 30 to visit all 6 New England states, despite growing up in MA), and then as an adult a lack of money and time and a pretty significant like of the familiar have been obstacles. Money has gotten a bit better, time a bit worse, but I’ve definitely gotten more curious and willing to travel.

I’d been trying to figure out a couple of days that I can got to PA. I work Monday-Saturday, so that makes it a little tough, but I have the luxury of being able to take some time off work, so it’s just figuring when. Bonus points if I can combine it with some kind of educational/trade event!

While there is so much vegan goodness in PA to see and I definitely need to make an actual trip, I saw no reason I shouldn’t take a little time out of my current trip and stop and get some very late lunch at Blackbird Pizzeria.

I got a later start on my trip than I had planned, so it was nearly 4PM by the time I got there. All I had “eaten” earlier was a green smoothie, so I was starving by the time I got there. Given the time, I figured I would also take something to go for dinner when I got to my hotel.

OMG hot!

OMG hot!

These are the best vegan wings I have ever had.  I am not kidding.  They were chewy and crispy and delicious and hot.  Did I mention hot?  A little too hot for my taste, but that dipping sauce helped a lot.

Why don't non-vegan places make this?

Why don’t non-vegan places make this?

This was delicious, but seems so simple.  With no cheese, there’s no reason why regular pizza places can’t make this.  So why don’t they?  I have no idea.

There was rosemary, caramelized onions and potatoes.  There’s nothing not to like on this slice.

Fried capers are the bomb!

Fried capers are the bomb!

I rounded out my meal to stay with this salad, which was amazing!  I don’t know why I don’t eat fried capers more often, but they are so, so good.  Crispy and briny!  I’m not a huge fan of artichokes, but they were a nice addition.

I was very happy to have this.

I was very happy to have this.

I got to eat this later, after arriving at the hotel.  I’m staying a bit further away from the Expo because I booked my hotel room too late, but on the plus side, this room has a kitchen.  No oven, unfortunately, but if you don’t put the slices in the microwave for too long, (about a minute each) they don’t get soggy.  Well, the thinner slice was, but what are you going to do?

The thin slice is pepperoni, and the other had roasted tomatoes.  I love roasted tomatoes.

Yes, that is a potato chip in there.

Yes, that is a potato chip in there.

They call this the “Kitchen Sink” cookie.  There’s potato chips, pretzels, pumpkin seeds and other things in there.  It was really, really good.

So that’s it for today. Can’t wait to see what tomorrow’s adventures bring!

VeganMoFo2014

I love it when you follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest!

Posted in Restaurants, Travel | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

A Day in NYC

I’m plugging along with VeganMoFo, but not as much as I had hoped.  I’ve been sick, sick, sick!

Today I’m offering a little glimpse at local travel- NYC, to be exact.

And while I was writing this earlier, I saw that NYC was named the most vegan-friendly city by  PETA today, so even better I write this, right?

So, NYC.  Yes, I go there often.  I’m 33 minutes away by train- but I don’t go nearly as often as I should.  Back in July, I went to a conference in Manhattan for the day.  Lunch there didn’t look too vegan to me, so I made a quick run out to Blossom DuJour.  I’ve written about this before, but this time was a different location (the one I’ve written about before has moved).

Sandwich, and a salad, because I try to be healthy sometimes.

Sandwich, and a salad, because I try to be healthy sometimes.

Outside Blossom

Isn’t that what you want to see when walking down the street?

This is the thing about Manhattan.  You can stand pretty much anywhere, pull out your smartphone, load up an app like Happy Cow, and find a place to get a good vegan meal in walking distance.  It’s so awesome.

Later, after the conference was over and a very long walk, a trip to Candle 79.  This place is just awesome.  You cannot beat this food anywhere.  Want to eat alone?  Take a seat at the bar and have your meal there.

And an excellent meal it will be.

I know the picture sucks, but this food is sooooooo good...

I know the picture sucks, but this food is sooooooo good…

Onion rings.  Just because.

Onion rings. Just because.

Does that not look delicious?

Short and sweet tonight- tomorrow I head to the Natural Products Expo East, so prepare for posts from the road!

VeganMoFo2014

I love it when you follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest!

Posted in Restaurants, Travel | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Plum and Jalapeño Glazed Tempeh with Picked Radishes and Butternut Squash Purée

Last week was not great week- I was exhausted and felt like I was coming down with something all week. The weekend has not been better. But… once I saw the Chopped challenge for VeganMoFo, I knew I had to enter.

With all of the time that I spend at work, I have not been a creative cook at all, lately. I follow recipes, I make tried and true favorites, and I’ve been doing some canning/preserving, but nothing truly creative. That makes me sad.

On Saturdays, my second job happens to be right down the street from a pretty good Farmer’s Market, and I had some time to kill. I was able to pick up three of the four Chopped ingredients: Jalepeno, Prune Plums, and Radishes. I had some Teavana Chai blend at home, which happens to contain oolong. I’m trying to stay out of grocery stores and use what I have on hand for now, so I wanted to avoid buying anything else.

I saw patients for the rest of the day and didn’t have much time to think about what to do for the challenge, but on my drive home, ideas started running though my mind. By the time I went to bed, I knew I was making some kind of plum sauce and pickling radishes, and using tempeh.

Once every few months, I make tempeh from scratch and freeze it (freezing is the easiest way to get it to stop fermenting, so it works out any way). I pulled a couple of blocks out of the freezer before bed, and let the thoughts keep coming. I would not be so good at this if I were really on a television competition!

In the morning, I did a quick pickle of the radishes and some of the jalapeño. I used a hot vinegar solution so that I could melt the sugar I used; so this had to go in the fridge early enough so that it would be ready for dinner time.

Figuring out how to use the oolong was the biggest challenge, and I used it four ways. First, I roasted the remaining 1 1/2 jalapeños in the oven with a bit of the dry oolong tea, sort of akin to smoking them (I do have a stovetop smoker, but my burners were otherwise occupied with other projects). I used the brewed tea to thin out my butternut squash puree, as the liquid in the plum sauce, and to steam the tempeh and the radish tops.

Plums were easy: they are the major ingredient in the sauce, which also contains the roasted jalapeños.

As you’ve figured, the jalapeños went into the sauce and the pickle.

Finally, the radishes were the primary ingredient in the pickle, and the greens were used in the final dish as well.

Overall, this is a spicy dish, but it is tempered by the sweetness of the plums and squash. A tartness was added with a bit of rice wine vinegar in the plum sauce, as well as the white balsamic in the pickle. The pickle was not overly salty, and the tempeh brings an umami flavor to the plate. It’s a balanced plate. I feel good about this.

Plum and Jalapeño Glazed Tempeh with Picked Radishes and Butternut Squash Puree

Basic steps to making this:

  • Make the pickle.
  • Make the plum sauce.
  • Steam the squash and puree.
  • Steam the tempeh, coat with sauce and bake.
  • Steam the greens.
  • Assemble.

Gosh, that sounds easy, doesn’t it?

Radish and Jalapeño Pickle

  • 8-10 French breakfast radishes, sliced thin
  • 1/2 jalapeño, sliced thin
  • 1/3 cup white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 1/2 tbs vegan sugar
  • 1 tsp Himalayan pink salt
  • 1/2 tsp yellow mustard seeds
  • a few twists from the black pepper mill
  1. Layer the jalapeño and radishes in a 1/2 pint jar.
  2. Combine the remaining ingredients in a small sauce pan over medium heat. Stir until the sugar and salt are dissolved.
  3. Pour the hot liquid into the jar, filling to the top and cover.
  4. Once the jar is cool enough to handle, put in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours.

Plum and Jalapeño Sauce with Oolong Tea

  • 1 1/2 Jalapeños
  • 1 tsp Chai Oolong blend
  • 4 Italian Prune Plums
  • 1 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 1/2 cup brewed Chai oolong blend
  • 2 tbs vegan sugar
  • 1 tsp rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tbs tamari
  1. Preheat oven to 450F. Take two pieces of aluminum foil, about the same size. On one, place the tea in the middle. On the other, put the jalapeños. Fold up the jalapeños, and poke a few holes in the foil. Place it on top of the tea on the other one and fold it up into a neat package. Place it in the oven at 450F for about 45 minutes. You might want to do this a lot earlier than the rest of the sauce. Bonus: it will smell really nice if you’re woking in the kitchen preparing other things.
  2. Chop up the prunes and discard the pits. Add to a small sauce pan. Don’t peel!
  3. Remove the jalapeño from the foil. The tops will fall right off- discard as much of the seeds as you like, then add it to the plums.
  4. Add the ginger, garlic, tea, sugar, vinegar and tamari.
  5. Cook over medium high heat stirring frequently for about 10 minutes.
  6. Add the cooked mixture to a blender and blend until smooth. Add more tea if needed to thin.

Butternut Squash Purée with Chai Oolong

  • 1 small butternut squash, peeled and cubed
  • splash of tamari
  • 2 tbs brewed Oolong Chai
  1. Add the squash to a steamer basket and sprinkle tamari on top. Steam for 10 minutes.
  2. Add the steamed squash to a high speed blender with the tea; blend until smooth.

Plum and Jalapeño Glazed Tempeh with Picked Radishes and Butternut Squash Purée

  • 1 recipe Radish and Jalapeño Pickle
  • 1 recipe Plum and Jalapeño Sauce with Oolong Tea
  • 1 recipe Butternut Squash Puree with Chai Oolong
  • 4 oz homemade tempeh
  • 1 bunch radish greens
  • Brewed Chai Oolong blend
  1. Preheat oven to 450F.
  2. Using a steamer basket in a pot of boiling water with 1/2 cup brewed Chai Oolong, steam the tempeh for about 5 minutes. Fresh tempeh is delicate and does not need to be steamed as long as the packaged variety.
  3. Remove tempeh from the steamer basket.
  4. Coat with the Plum Sauce and lay on foil lined baking sheet. Bake at 450F for 5-10 minutes, until the sauce is darkened in color.
  5. Meanwhile, steam the radish greens with the same tea/water as the tempeh.
  6. Add butternut puree to the serving plate.
  7. Place glazed tempeh on top.
  8. Top with greens and pickle.
  9. Serve.

Truth be told, this was a complicated dish, but it was fun. If you’re spending the day cooking other things, this really isn’t much of a bother, as none of the components take a long time to make. The only long part is giving the pickles enough time to cool and absorb flavor; you could shorten this by using a liquid sweetener instead of the granulated sugar and not heating the liquid, but the flavor will be different.

I really wish I had time to make something like this more often!

VeganMoFo2014

I love it when you follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest!

Posted in Recipes | Tagged , , , , | 8 Comments

G-Zen in Branford, CT

Long time readers know that when I started this blog, I had just moved to New Haven, CT. I was going to grad school and was über excited about all the vegan options in my new home, especially having been living on the not-then-vegan-friendly Cape Cod.

Vegan restaurants have come and gone to the New Haven area since I moved to NY, and one of the ones that came is G-Zen, a few minutes east of New Haven, in Branford.

Unfortunately, they have fairly limited hours, in the evenings and on Saturdays most of the day, so I didn’t think I was going to be passing by during business hours.  I try to travel when the traffic isn’t so bad… but, I ended up leaving the Cape later than I had originally planned, and got to Branford just after they opened for the evening.  Woo-hoo!

Since it was early, I wasn’t ready to eat yet, but they do have take out!

Who would have thought I'd like crab cakes?

Who would have thought I’d like crab cakes?

I started with the Thimble Island Crab Cakes.  Interesting fact: the Thimble Islands is a small archipelago right off of Branford.  They’re the kind of islands people own!

I hated seafood long before I went vegan, though I do remember having crab cakes once as a kid and liking them, which came as a surprise to me.  I liked these too!

Came with an apple butter and a vegan sour cream, just in case you can't decide.

Came with an apple butter and a vegan sour cream, just in case you can’t decide.

There were so many options for an entree it was a little crazy.  I was in a potato mood, so pierogi was it.  I figured they’d travel well.  They did!

My only complaint is that this restaurant didn’t exist when I lived in New Haven!  I would have been a regular visitor.  Then again, it’s only 1.5 hours away from here… so who knows?  Another road trip, perhaps?  I really want to go back to this place!

VeganMoFo2014

I love it when you follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest!

Posted in Food, Restaurants, Travel | Leave a comment

Where To Go On Cape Cod When You’re Vegan

To wrap up my travels to the Cape, I just want to recap all the new places I tried, as well as mention a few standbys I didn’t get to this time around.  This is by no means a comprehensive vegan guide to Cape Cod, and covers very little of the lower Cape, where you’re likely to find some other vegan options!

Green Lotus Cafe, Hyannis, MA

See?  Gray clapboard.  The building is *very* Cape Cod.

See? Gray clapboard. The building is *very* Cape Cod.

 

Siena, Mashpee, MA

It's a small menu, but it is one!

It’s a small menu, but it is one!

Whole Foods, Hyannis, MA

Hail Merry and Cafe Indigo!

Hail Merry and Cafe Indigo!

Earthly Delights, Mashpee, MA

Not the prettiest sandwich, but very tasty!

Not the prettiest sandwich, but very tasty!

And from a prior trip, Box Office Cafe, Chatham, MA

Sorry for the lousy focus!

Sorry for the lousy focus!

Those are the ones I have reviews for.  Cape Cod is now home to a Chipotle, located in the Cape Cod Mall in Hyannis, so that’s a vegan stand by.  I also heard about the Ice Cream Cafe in Orleans, which has a number of vegan ice cream options!

There are a number of smaller natural foods stores on the Cape as well, including Cape Cod Natural Foods in Centerville; Amber Waves in Falmouth; and the Cape Cod Natural Markets, with locations in Mashpee, Dennis Port and Chatham.

There’s even a Trader Joe’s.

So if you’re a vegan and you’re thinking about going to Cape Cod but worried you won’t find anything to eat, you can stop worrying and book that vacation!

Now, stayed tuned tomorrow for where I stopped on my way back to NY!

VeganMoFo2014

I love it when you follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest!

Posted in Food, Restaurants, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Green Lotus in Hyannis, MA

This is the post that you have been waiting for.

Well, at least this is the place that might have kept me from ever leaving the Cape, had it been open a few years ago.  This is probably a good thing that it wasn’t open then, but still…

Green Lotus is an all Vegetarian/Vegan café in Hyannis.  As far as I know, it’s the only all veg-place on Cape Cod.  Most of their offerings are vegan; a few have options for cheese, and some sandwiches can have either a vegan or vegetarian sauce/spread/etc.  Their breakfast menu has a number of egg dishes, though mushrooms can be had in place of eggs for most.

Green Lotus has been around for about a year, which means it was on the Cape the last time I visited this winter, but I didn’t get a chance to go.  But a couple of Cape friends had mentioned it, so I really wanted to go this time.  My first full day on Cape, my mom and I were out running errands and decided to stop in for lunch.

See?  Gray clapboard.  The building is *very* Cape Cod.

See? Gray clapboard. The building is *very* Cape Cod.

I was a little overwhelmed by the menu, since there were so many choices!  It’s scary when you can have just about anything on the menu.  I’m a creature of habit, so this was a bit hard! When I go to a restaurant, vegan or not, I tend to find one thing I like and order it over and over again.  Since I had decided that I was going to blog about Green Lotus, I made myself get something different every time.  You’re welcome.

I got a Buffalo Tempeh sandwich on my first visit.  It was delicious.

My mom got  vegetarian sandwich that she loved.  I am lucky to have a veg-friendly mom, but she wasn’t just indulging me- she said she’d go back to this place for lunch when she’s nearby!  That’s pretty high praise from my mom.

Buffalo Tempeh

This can be made either vegan or vegetarian, as can just about everything. The tempeh was spicy but not overwhelming, and the dressing tempered it well.

So I went back again the next day.  I went with the Buffalo Caesar, this time.

Buffalo Caesar

Very similar to the previous day’s sandwich, with Caesar instead of bleu cheese, and including croutons.

Some of the kids where I work have been trying to get away with “crouton sandwiches.”  They pick up a couple of slices of bread, slather them with mayo, and put croutons in as the filling.  There’s a part of me that’s totally grossed out by that, but I have to say, croutons are delicious in this Buffalo Caesar sandwich.

Horseradish is no joke.

Horseradish is no joke.

After taking a day’s break since Green Lotus is closed on Mondays, I went back again.  This time I picked up a sandwich for my brother, too, but his had dairy cheese, so no picture.  I almost didn’t get a picture of my sandwich, either, as you might be able to tell from the mostly-eaten wrap here.

I’ve never been big on horseradish, and I wasn’t even thinking when I ordered.  It was a surprise when I bit in!  But a good surprise.  Really.

Fortunately I had a Diet Coke, but before that, I had myself a smoothie.

I like places that give away what's left in the blender to other customers to try!

I like places that give away what’s left in the blender to other customers to try!

This was far sweeter than I was expecting, but that’s okay, especially since I didn’t get to any of the ice cream places serving vegan options beyond sorbet on the Cape.  I couldn’t see any sweetener used in this, so I’m guessing that it’s the almond milk.  Very good, and very dessert-like.

All of the smoothies can be made vegan except the Nutella smoothie, seeing as Nutella has dairy.  Maybe they can switch over to Justin’s Chocolate Hazelnut Butter instead?

And then I went a fourth time.

They make good seitan!

They make good seitan!

This was actually right before I was leaving the Cape to go back to NY.  I also got another Buffalo Tempeh sandwich to take home with me, too.

The BBQ sauce is sweet, the wrap is full of crunchy vegetables, and the seitan is really good.  I’m not sure what else to say about it!

Considering that I was on the Cape for 5 days and managed to come here 4 times, I’d say this was the favorite!

You have the option of ordering online from their website so your sandwich is waiting for you, which is nice.  This place was really busy over the weekend, so it’s good to be able to do that.

The staff is friendly, and they work very fast to get your meal ready.  My only complaint is that every time I asked for no onions on my mom’s sandwich, they forgot.  Except perhaps the last time, because they forgot to put that one in my bag, and I left without it.  They were very quick to refund my money on that one though (I was already 30 mins away when I realized), so it’s good to know that they take care of their mistakes.

So there you have it!  My favorite restaurant on Cape Cod.  It’s so good to know that the Cape is hospitable to more and more vegan-friendly establishments!

VeganMoFo2014

I love it when you follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest!

Posted in Food, Restaurants | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Siena in Mashpee, MA

How do you find vegan eats when you’re somewhere new?

I’m sure that social media figures in there somewhere, along with recommendations from family and friends.

Social media helped me find this one. I stumbled across the Facebook group Cape Cod Vegans, looking for any recommendations for restaurants that weren’t from Happy Cow (not that there’s anything wrong with Happy Cow, there just weren’t a lot). And here I saw that Siena, an Italian Restaurant in Mashpee had its own vegan menu!

I eagerly looked up their website, but couldn’t find anything about a vegan menu, though it looked as though many of their vegetarian dishes could probably be made vegan. Since I couldn’t confirm anything online, I actually picked up the phone and called (if you knew how much I hate the phone, you’d be impressed). Indeed, they have a vegan menu. Look!

It's a small menu, but it is one!

It’s a small menu, but it is one!

I didn’t ask a whole lot of questions about the rest of the menu. For instance, I have no idea if the pasta is made with eggs, since I didn’t order any. I suspect at least some of it is fine, but I can’t vouch.

I did feel confident in ordering the Crispy Chickpea and Kale Salad, sans cheese, of course.

Fried chickpeas are the bomb.

Fried chickpeas are the bomb.

My big folly of the evening was not asking about the bread and olive oil (not pictured). I’m fairly confident that the bread was fine, but the olive oil plate apparently had cheese at the bottom, under the oil, that I did not see.

I dipped.

Fortunately I didn’t dip deep enough to get any visible cheese on my bread, but my mom did. She didn’t tell me until after we left, because she didn’t want to ruin my meal.

Had I known, I would have simply asked for a plate without cheese. I can’t imagine they would say no!

But there is your lesson on always ask.

Lastly, the entree.

Please forgive the B & W photo.  It got dark in the restaurant and my picture wasn't very good- but I wanted to share this, because it tasted delicious!

Please forgive the B & W photo. It got dark in the restaurant and my picture wasn’t very good- but I wanted to share this, because it tasted delicious!

I’m sometimes a little wary of artichokes, but this dish delivered! Again, I am so sorry that the picture is black and white- but it’s a dish worth ordering!

I hope that I can find some other restaurants with hidden vegan menus!

Siena is located in Mashpee Commons, next to the movie theater.  There’s outdoor seating as well, but there was a pretty long wait for that.  I’d suggest reservations if you want to dine outside!

While it would be nice if they incorporated the vegan items right on to the regular menu, I’m thrilled that they do have clearly marked vegan options.  Thanks, Siena!

That now makes five posts for VeganMoFo!  I am 25% to the finish line.  Stay tuned next week for my new favorite place on Cape Cod, a wrap up on the Cape and heading through CT and back to NY.  After that?  Who knows!

VeganMoFo2014

I love it when you follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest!

Posted in Restaurants, Travel | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Zucchini from Cape Cod

I’ve been continuing to write biweekly on a blog for my local paper’s website, a column that was started by JL of JL Goes Vegan before her move to Colorado.  So for today, I’m going to link to to my post over there about zucchini.

How does this relate to my theme?

My zucchini is from Cape Cod, of course!  Straight from my mother’s garden.  I made up these zucchini fritters over the weekend.  So make sure you check out both the post and the recipe!

They're tasty, if not a bit soggy.  Don't make my mistake squeeze out more water than you think you need to!

They’re tasty, if not a bit soggy. Don’t make my mistake squeeze out more water than you think you need to!

And stay tuned tomorrow, to hear more about my trip to Cape Cod!

VeganMoFo2014

I love it when you follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest!

Posted in Food, Travel | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Whole Foods in Hyannis, MA

The last time I visited the Cape, in the works was a Whole Foods- the first on the Cape. I’ve been watching my Cape friends’ Facebook pages with excitement as everyone geared up for the opening this past spring!

Growing up on the Cape, you get used to doing a lot of shopping “off-Cape.” Every end of August while I was growing up in the 80s and 90s, there was at least one day where you took a trip off-Cape to go clothes shopping for the new school year, for more variety and cheaper prices. Such trips would often include a stop to a really cool restaurant that we didn’t have on Cape, like uh, Olive Garden. At least I wasn’t looking forward to a trip to McDonalds, like friends from Martha’s Vineyard, right?

Fast forward a number of years and we got our own Olive Garden; chain stores take over, ending the need for off Cape back to school shopping; and the Cape starts to look like the rest of suburbia. Except there’s light gray (mostly fake) clapboard on all of our buildings.

But vegan food shopping was one of those things that I still frequently did off-Cape. I worked part of the time off-Cape, and I did live on the dreaded “other side of the bridge” in Buzzards Bay my last three years on the Cape, so that made those trips not so bad. It still would have been nice to do all my shopping on the Cape without breaking the bank, though.

Yeah, you’re laughing that I’m suggesting that I’m about to suggest shopping at a Whole Foods on the Cape would help one not break the bank, but when it comes to vegan convenience foods, it’s true. And some of the prices on the Cape are better than they are here in NY, so there’s that. Plus Whole Foods has vegan products that are exclusive to their store.

In my last few years on the Cape we did get a Trader Joe’s, and there are a few independently owned or small chain natural foods stores, but different stores are better for different things. You want cheap tofu or tempeh? You can’t beat Trader Joe’s. You want to buy beans and spices in bulk for cheap? You might do a little better at the small store. You want to buy Daiya? Whole Foods is your man. I mean, store for the best price, most of the time.

For your eating-in or take out needs, Whole Foods in Hyannis also has a smoothie bar with a number of vegan offerings, a prepared foods section with vegan hot dogs and a vegan pizza (with a cashew sauce instead of Daiya, no less), in addition to the salad bar.

This is one of the smallest Whole Foods stores that I’ve ever seen, if not the smallest. It’s housed in a building that was originally a Border’s Books, if that gives you an idea of the size. Despite that, they seem to be really focusing on what they can bring to the Cape that’s different than their competitors. Sure, they have nice produce, but the produce department is pretty small. I was surprised that some of their packages greens are coming from New York- not exactly local. Go to a farmer’s market for those. Not a ton of supplements- you want those, go to one of the smaller stores like Cape Cod Natural Foods. But if you want Earth Balance Mac & Cheese? This is where you belong!

No, it's not on sale- the sign was on the wrong shelf.  But I didn't even see this stuff at my White Plains store earlier in August, so I was very excited to see it here!

No, it’s not on sale- the sign was on the wrong shelf. But I didn’t even see this stuff at my White Plains store earlier in August, so I was very excited to see it here!

This stuff?  A full dollar cheaper at the regular price in Hyannis than in Westchester.

This stuff? A full dollar cheaper at the regular price in Hyannis than in Westchester.

Need fake meats?  You won't find Beyond Meat anywhere else on the Cape!

Need fake meats? You won’t find Beyond Meat anywhere else on the Cape!

Lots of vegan cheese.  I unfortunately couldn't find any Kite Hill, but they're stocked with all the major brands.

Lots of vegan cheese. I unfortunately couldn’t find any Kite Hill, but they’re stocked with all the major brands.

Hail Merry and Cafe Indigo!

Hail Merry and Cafe Indigo!

I haven't seen the Whoopie Pies in Westchester, so that's pretty cool!

I haven’t seen the Whoopie Pies in Westchester, so that’s pretty cool!

And blueberry muffins, in case you want to pick some up for the morning!

And blueberry muffins, in case you want to pick some up for the morning!

Not pictured: Tofurkey pockets I bought here because I can’t find them in Westchester. How do you like that?

Personally, I love that there’s now a Whole Foods on the Cape. I don’t want it to displace the smaller natural foods stores throughout the Cape, but I hope that WF and the smaller stores can coexist. Because that would be awesome.

I guess all this talk of travel to Cape Cod is a little trip down memory lane, too. Hope you’re enjoying!

VeganMoFo2014

I love it when you follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest!

Posted in shopping, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment