Yep, it's survey time. You dig? I'm in the middle of the work week from hell (I know you hear this from me a lot, but when we have to file 69 responses to motions before 11:59pm this Friday you have to know I mean it) so yeah, I'm taking the easy road today. Behold! My adorable and quirky answers to the VeganMoFo III Super Quiz Challenge! (Thanks Woah Wren!)
1. Favorite non-dairy milk? Almond Breeze unsweetened almond milk by Blue Diamond! I'm so in love with this stuff. So many milks have so much frickin sugar in them, like really, like woah. And then the unsweetened versions, like unsweetened soymilk, for instance, taste like blegh. But my Almond Breeze? I can drink it by the glassful. Yes, it's something I feel strongly about.
2. What are the top 3 dishes/recipes you are planning to cook? Planning? You're just gonna throw that word around all lightly like that? Like I'm supposed to just have some kind of PLAN?
3. Topping of choice for popcorn? I don't eat a lot of popcorn, but when I do I love the sweet and salty madness that is kettle corn.
4. Most disastrous recipe/meal failure? We recently got a slow cooker, and I did not listen when my man told me that rice was a bad idea... although, me and rice have a history of not getting along...
5. Favorite pickled item? Jonathan's parents live in the mountains of Virginia, and in the past few years a huge Amish community has built up around them. As a result, the nearest place to their house to buy food is this tiny Amish market. And there, they sell the MOST AMAZING marinated mushrooms that I have ever tasted or will ever taste. I crave them. I've contemplated serving them whole, on toothpicks, at the wedding. Does that count as pickled?
6. How do you organize your recipes? Well, as per my normal ridiculum, I have three different sets of "organization", none of which are consistent. Some recipes are written out on large purple index cards. Some are written neatly into a journal that my friend Rosie gave me, which has Yoshitomo Nara pictures on the front and back covers. And many that I have printed out from the internet or torn out of magazines are shoved into a 1" black binder that I "borrowed" from work.
7. Compost, trash, or garbage disposal? Trash... and recycling! Thus is the life of an NYC apartment dweller. I know there are those of you who compost anyway, to whom I say you are braver souls than I! (And to whom I ask, assuming that you get to soil stage, what the heck do you do with it?)
8. If you were stranded on an island and could only bring 3 foods…what would they be (don’t worry about how you’ll cook them)? I'm going to assume that I don't have to worry about how to store them either? Smoked tofu, udon noodles, and polenta. (I snuck in a fourth. It's one of those pressed dried fig and almond cakes, made of absolutely nothing but those two ingredients.)
9. Fondest food memory from your childhood? My parents used to make these big, extravagant meals for just the four of us. They'd put on music and it would be like a party. Emotions always ran high and there was always a danger of things turning, but still, we had good times, and my parents are both fabulous cooks. Particularly memorable nights were when we'd make tempura and just stand around the stove eating it as it came out of the skillet, and pots-of-file-gumbo nights. My mom also always made the most amazing birthday cakes, completely from scratch.
10. Favorite vegan ice cream? Anything at Lula's Sweet Apothecary.
11. Most loved kitchen appliance? I'm not that big on appliances. I do have a Cuisinart food processor, and when you need one there's just no substitute.
12. Spice/herb you would die without? Cinnamon! And probably lemon pepper, if that counts. And basil, and garlic of course. Celery salt. Ginger! Oh god, ginger. Can we just go with "all of them"? I mean, I could probably do without cardamom, and maybe coriander and paprika, but... what kind of torture chamber is this anyway?!
13. Cookbook you have owned for the longest time? The first one I ever bought was "How it all Vegan", and that was long before I was any kind of veg. I'm not big on cookbooks though. I use them for inspiration, and to get measurements for crucial ingredients like how much flour in the cookies.
14. Favorite flavor of jam/jelly? I am a classic strawberry kind of girl. When I'm feeling more adventurous, apricot. And sometimes, ever since childhood, I get hankerings for marmalade - I think that's because of Paddington Bear?
15. Favorite vegan recipe to serve to an omni friend? I make a pretty rocking veg lasagna with tofu "ricotta". It goes over pretty well. Jon's parents love it.
16. Seitan, tofu, or tempeh? Tofu! Smoked is awesome, but I do other things with it too. Although I will say, the lemongrass seitan at Lan Cafe is mightyfine.
17. Favorite meal to cook (or time of day to cook)? Anyone who knows me knows I'm a dessert fiend. But probably more often I make dinner.
18. What is sitting on top of your refrigerator? A million plastic containers from Chinese / Thai / Indian / Japanese delivery that we now use as our tupperware.
19. Name 3 items in your freezer without looking. Veg gyoza, Key Foods brand pina colada fruit bars, and some half empty ice trays.
20. What’s on your grocery list? Basically every week we need two cartons of almond milk, five Whole Soy & Co. vanilla yogurts (my 11am snack at work), sometimes a box of cereal if I've run out, and whatever we need for cooking through the week.
21. Favorite grocery store? Sai Organics. They have two locations, both on 30th Avenue in Astoria, Queens. The owners live across the street from where Jon and I used to live, and we've only moved 6 blocks away. We're closer to the "big store" now, actually. The store is all vegetarian and carries almost all of our fave vegan products. Totally awesome.
22. Name a recipe you’d love to veganize, but haven’t yet. My mother's shepherd's pie. I so completely love this meal of hers, but I don't like using the LightLife ground "beef" and I don't know what else to use as a substitute.
23. Food blog you read the most (besides Isa’s because I know you check it every day). Or maybe the top 3? I love "Yeah, that vegan shit" because she is hilarious. I really enjoy "Vegan.in.Brighton" because I don't feel like I'm being left out of anything, like I often do with the massively followed blogs. And "Mosetta Stone" is pretty great.
24. Favorite vegan candy/chocolate? There's these wafer cookie thingies that come in this little paper package, a little bigger than a pack of cards I guess? I don't know what they're called; I just know where they are on the shelf at the drugstore. Anyway, this one flavor of them, each of the cookies has been dipped in chocolate... let's just say, half a day's calories in about ten minutes. I also truly love Jordan almonds, which I hear I picked up from my grandma.
25. Most extravagant food item purchased lately? At Dean and Deluca, they have these tubes of fresh marzipan. They also have marzipan mixed with a little pistachio, so that it's kind of green. They're like 12 bucks a pop, and I end up eating the whole thing with a spoon...
26. Ingredients you are scared to work with? Rice. Yeah, seriously. I just can't cook rice. I've conferred with the experts (i.e. Terry Hope Romero); I'm doing it right. It just hates me. So I buy it at the Chinese takeout place and get on with my day. I also have some sensitivity issues with onions. But then, what don't I have sensitivity issues with?
Everyone seems to be adding their own #27's, so I'm going to do the same:
27. How many servings of ice cream do you eat at one time? Tell the truth. Well, that depends. When I go to the ice cream shop, whatever they hand me on the cone is one serving, right? It has to be! So then, one. But if I have a pint... well... it's supposed to be four, and well... often, I eat four servings. But sometimes it's only two!
Happy VeganMoFo III y'all. The fun is just beginning.