Friday, 25 September 2015

Vegan MoFo #25: My favourite cuisine.

25. Share your favourite cuisine.

I'm off to Sydney in an hour for another weekend working at OzComicCon. Once again I have all my posts lined up to go out each day, but I will catch up on everyone else's properly once I am home on Monday. :)

This was another tricky one, because I love lots of different cuisines! I managed to narrow it down to two that I do consider my favourite. It came down to a tie (hee) between Thai and Japanese.

Actually, when I think about it there are a lot of Thai dishes I need to be careful with, because I am sensitive to coconut fat (and there is a lot of coconut cream or milk in many curries) and also I don't like things spicy, but Thai gives us one of my favourite dishes of all time - the Pad See Ew. If I see this on a menu, I just have to order it! I also love thai peanut sauce (either for dipping or as a stir-fry sauce), and Pad Thai is pretty great as well. Eating out at Thai restaurants can sometimes take a little bit of discussion to work out with the kitchen what has shrimp paste, oyster sauce, fish sauce or animal stock in it, but generally you will end up with something delicious.

My favourite Thai place is the all-vegan Araya's (in Seattle, of course). Their tofu satay has the best peanut sauce in the world!

Tofu Satay from Araya's Place (Madison)

One of the better Pad See Ew's I've had recently was from In The Bowl (also in Seattle). It had the right ratio of noodles to tofu and veggies and had a great sauce.

Pad See Ew from  In The Bowl

When I lived in Sydney, I used to love going to a Thai place called Green Palace, and they made the most amazing pineapple fried rice. No pineapple fried rice has come close.

Pineapple Fried Rice - Green Palace

Eating out at Japanese restaurants brings its own challenges, as bonito or fish seems to be in everything! However finding delicious, vegan friendly Japanese food is well worth it (and if you ever do travel to Japan, there is plenty to be had in the major cities!). My favourite is eggplant dengaku, which is so delicious! Eggplant in miso sauce? You could not go wrong.

I love Japanese Curry, like this one I had last year in Melbourne at Yong Green Foods.

Japanese Curry at Yong Green Food

Of course I love sushi as well. Here are some delicious sweet potato rolls from Departures in PDX.

Sweet Potato Sushi at Departure

One of the highlights of actually eating in Japan was the beautiful set lunches, so many options all on one beautifully presented tray. This was the weekly special set meal from Brown Rice Cafe in Tokyo.

Brown Rice Cafe - Weekly Special Set

To celebrate my two favourite cuisines, I made a new dish from each of them!

Thai Hangover Noodles with Tofu and Thai Basil from Vegan Without Borders (by Robin Robertson): I loved this noodle dish! I used a sprinkling of red pepper flakes rather than fresh chilies, because fresh chilies are far too spicy for me! I also subbed out capsicum and used zucchini instead. The sauce is a delicious blend of soy, vegetarian oyster sauce and sugar, I ended up doubling that to get enough to coat the noodles properly. The recipe suggested using Golden Mountain Sauce if you could find it instead of the oyster sauce, I did find it but it had an ingredient derived from fish in it, so I left it on the shelf. For the noodles I used some great brown rice vermicelli I found in the supermarket. All up delicious!
Rating: :D

Thai Hangover Noodles with Tofu and Thai Basil

Sukiyaki and Cucumber Salad with Wa-Fru Dressing came from a book called Japanese Cooking. Before she was a cheese and pantry queen, Miyoko Schinner wrote this beautiful book. The sukiyaki is extremely delicious! I used all tofu (rather than a mix of tofu and seitan), a delicious mix of mushrooms, butternut, zucchini, shiritaki noodles, wombok and green shallots. I had to leave off the bean sprouts because when I opened the bag they had gone slimy, gross. I only used a half quantity of ingredients (and got two and a half servings), but made the entire amount of sauce (is is so good!). Served over Japanese rice. The cucumber salad was light and refreshing as a side dish.
Rating: Sukiyaki :D, Cucumber :)

Sukiyaki and Cucumber Salad with Wa-Fu Dressing

Cute Kitty Photo of the Post: Month of Gizmo

Gizmo with her 15th birthday present

I got this great Fuzzyard bed for Gizmo for her 15th birthday, she loved it! Sahara loved it to, and continues to love it to this day.


  1. Did I finally find another vegan who has problems with coconuts?! I am really not liking the current coconut oil trend!

    All this food looks so good, I need to explore East Asian cuisine more.

  2. It must be hard trying to avoid coconut. It's in so many things. I have issues with fresh chilli. I have hyper sensitive cough reflex syndrome and it is one of my triggers. I've heard Jojo mention Pad See Ew and she has chilli issues too so I must look out for it or try to make my own.

  3. I love Japanese and Thai foods. I think I have that Miyoko Schinner book but I haven't made the Sukiyaki yet (or much else from it) but you have inspired me, it looks so good! On the other hand I do not have Vegan Without Borders - this situation must be rectified so I can make those noodles!
    I am loving your month of Gizmo, such a beautiful girl :)

  4. I had a hard time picking too - I like your tie.
    I really love sushi. I haven't found a place around here that serves good vegan sushi... I haven't looked that hard though as I'm scared they won't properly understand what vegan means.
    And Thai food is great! I have never tried Pad See Ew - it sounds fun though.
    And I LOVE pineapple rice in a pineapple boat! It's so fun. I have made it myself a few times. Ridiculous amount of work, but worth it =)

  5. Great plate presentations!!!!!

  6. oooh! Interesting. I really haven't learned enough about Japanese food. I"m always freaked out by all the fishy biz, and that's put me off. Would you recommend Miyoko's book in general? I know how rarely you hand out ":D" ratings! ha ha.