Sunday, 30 November 2008

Chocolate Chip Cookie Fest!

Ah yes, more chocolate chip cookies. They really are that ultimate go to cookie of awesome, are they not? Anyway, hot on the heels of last weeks Isa's Chocolate Chip Cookies, I decided to try another recipe I'd been reading about on blogs. I was reading what the lovely Becks had to say over at I am not a rabbit, and her delicious experiences with Dreena Burton's Homemade Chocolate Chip Cookies. And seeing as I had an entire eight hours off from work during the day on Saturday (oh, luck me!) I thought a batch of chocolate chip cookies was just the ticket.

And here they are! Once again, the dough was not super thick. But as the recipe didn't mention anywhere that it shouldn't be, I didn't worry too much. I baked the cookies for 11 minutes as requested, and they were indeed a golden colour when I removed them. They were also very soft when I took them out. This tends to happen, then I tend to pop them back in for short amounts of time and hope I don't accidentally over do it leading to the crispy cookies syndrome. Not that crispy cookies aren't great in their own right, but sometimes you want chewy. This time I decided to go with the recipe, and so took them out. They remained very soft and melt in your mouth evenwhen cooled. And were definitely handle with care cookies. I prefer my chocolate chip cookies a bit crisp on the outside but chewy on the inside, so next time I will definitely bake for a few minutes more.

But yummy! The Sunday crew at work also really enjoyed them today as well.

Saturday, 29 November 2008

Black Bean Bonanza!

I think I speak for most people when I say that I like to keep my pantry stocked with a range of tinned beans. Kidney beans, chickpeas, borlotti beans, cannelini beans, butter beans... so on and so forth. But there are some types of tinned beans I just can't get a hold of easily. Adzuki beans... navy beans... and black beans! When I lived in Sydney I could get quite a lot of choice at the GNC on Glebe Point Road, and I'm sure that Macro stocks a whole bunch. But since coming to Brisbane, I've been a bit stuck. I've been to Mrs Flannery's, but of late the selection has been very sad and one of their stores doesn't stock tinned beans at all in winter!

I was sick and tired of not having black beans, and so I bought a big bag of dried beans. A lot. And then I cooked them. Cooking beans from scratch is super fun and makes you feel very virtuous. The dried beans were beautiful, shiny and black. And when you first put the water on to soak them they look like pretty black river stones. So nice! By the next day they had expanded quite a lot! So I ended up cooking them in 2 batches so there would be enough room in the pot. Most of the books I have said that it would take 1.5-2 hours to cook, but mine cooked in under an hour, so the moral of the story is always check your beans regularly for being done.

I'm not sure how much I started with in dry weight, but I ended up with 14.5 cups of cooked black beans! Hurrah! I divided them up into snaplock bags in 1 cup, 1.5 cup and 2 cup quantities to put in the freezer, so now I can make black bean recipes whenever I wish - tee hee! Here they are all packaged up and ready to go in the freezer.

And here is my first black bean recipe!

Black Bean Burgers, from Veganomicon, which I had for lunch. Yummy! I had it on a turkish roll with baby spinach leaves, fresh roma tomatoes and ketchup, and it was absolutely wonderful. After years of dodgy vegan burger and ball recipes that just crumbled before they were even formed, it is wonderful to have recipes that form and stay formed.

Stay tuned for more adventures in black beans! 12.5 cups worth of adventures, in fact.

On my vegan soap box.

Normally I blog about light and fluffy stuff - vegan food, kitty cats and those exceptionally beautiful Supernatural boys. I'm not normally one for the serious blogging. But I read something in the paper this morning that just really made me cranky.

It comes from a new cookbook called 'Meat'. You can imagine this will not be on my shelf. In it he describes 'a stroll through an abattoir that is not for the squeamish'. I firmly believe that all meat eaters should indeed be confronted with the reality of how their meat goes from living, breathing, feeling animal to that slab on their plate. How many more vegetarians and vegans might there be if a trip to the abattoir was compulsory for all high school kids? So, let us read on...

'I'm not denying it's a confronting and even brutal experience, but slaughtermen are skilled professionals and I've always been impressed by the pains that they take to give the animal as stress free and as comfortable death as possible. The whole process is surprisingly quick. The animals are received into holding pens at the abattoir a day or two ahead of time to let them settle. When the times comes they are herded, single file, through a corral. At the end of the line each animal reaches a small restraining pen screened from the animal behind it. It is held firm and the 'knocker' holds a bold gun to the forehead, which stuns and kills the animal instantaneously.'

Sounds lovely. Stress free and comfortable death? How nice. Letting them settle? Absolutely. And screening the animals? Perfect... you know, if they also happened to lose their sense of smell, sight, hearing, I am sure they have absolutely no concept of what is happening.

Anyway, I am possibly scaring off some of the nonvegans who read this blog, but I am sure all the vegans reading it will have their own thoughts on it. To be honest, I just found the entire passage really disturbing trying to sugar coat the abattoir experience.

So now I will get off my little vegan soap box, and back into the kitchen.

Friday, 28 November 2008

Everyone's doing it. Isa's cookies that is.

A while ago, Isa over at the Post Punk Kitchen posted her new chocolate chip cookie recipe of awesome. It became a world wide cookie making crazy. So, not one to shy away from peer pressure under the right circumstances, I gave them a crack. And YUM!

I found that my dough was not as firm as Isa's recipe implied it should be. It was actually quite runny still. I have this issue a lot. I am not sure why. Maybe because I use lite soy milk? Maybe because I used arrowroot instead of tapioca? Who knows! As such, it took me a bit longer than the 8 minutes to bake them, but only a bit longer. I might try and add a bit more flour next time to stiffen the dough up a bit.

They are delicious. Chewy on the outside and soft of the inside and scrumptious all over. And considering they take 15 minutes to make, one bowl to wash up and they bake in a snap, there really is no reason not to make them. Right. Now. Go on!

And on a completely random note, I am thinking that Van Helsing might be one of the worst movies *ever* made. So why not turn off the TV and make cookies instead? See how I totally tied that in to the main theme of the post? See?

Thursday, 27 November 2008

Can't go past the pasta.

I haven't really been blogging too much about what I have been cooking of late. Bad Susan. But here I shall make it up with a feast of CARBS. I love pasta in all its forms. I love that it is generally super quick to make, that it generally includes lots of fresh vegetables and interesting tastes, plus all the fun you can have with different types of pastas. The pasta section of my pantry is practically bursting with fettucine (I love the spinach variety), spaghetti (wholemeal - yum), fusilli, macaroni (straight and elbow), penne, ziti, linguine, vemicelli... it goes on and there are still more out there to try. Just the other night I stumbled across this fantastic pasta glossary. The different types of pasta available are just insane!

Anyway, here are some of my favourite pasta dishes that I've been making over the past few weeks, and a couple of old favourites as well. I will mention that, as a general rule, I always use less pasta than the recipe states. 1 pound (or 450g, which lets face it is pretty much just going to be a 500g packet) is what most cookbooks use for a 4 person recipe, and this just makes way too much for me, even with my big appetite and love of carbs. I also prefer it this way because it means it is saucier, which is always a good thing! I probably use a half to three quarters of the pasta required by the recipe.

This is meant to be Orecchiette With Cherry Tomatoes And Kalamata Olives, however at the time I was unable to find orecchiette (curse you Roselands shopping center and your lack of exciting pasta shapes!), so I made it with, umm, macaroni. Oh well. The fact is that this is blow your mind tasty. It's practically a tapenade all mixed up with your pasta, and then the cherry tomatoes add this burst of freshness. So yum! Oh yeah, and it is from Vegan With A Veangeance.

It's kind of blurry, but it is Spinach Linguine With Basil Mint Pesto from Veganomicon. I haven't made that much homemade pesto yet, and this was one of my first. And OMG - do eeeet! It was amazing. I think this dish would also be great with some strips of chicken style seitan or Fry's Schnitzels or something along those lines.

The next three recipes are all ones I have made in the last few weeks, and they all come from Vegan Planet. I am on quite the VP kick at the moment. Though there are 400 recipes in it, so it has lots to offer.

This is Alfredo-Style Fettucine. The Alfredo sauce is based on onion, white wine (or a teeny splash of white wine vinegar in my case, or just leave it out all together), almonds, silken tofu, miso, soymilk, nutmeg and cayenne. It is a really nice, creamy sauce that is not too heavy and sits really nicely with the spinach fettucine I used. It was excellent with liberal sprinklings of nooch, and with a nice salty green, like sauteed broccolini as pictured here. The sauce takes a bit of preparation, but the whole thing still comes together pretty quickly.

I am always a bit skeptical of anything with tahini, because the truth is I am not really a tahini fan. Sure, I love it all whizzed up into hommus and things like that, but otherwise I am always a bit worried that the taste will be overpowering. Not in Tahini Rotini (or fusilli) with Broccoli and Lemon. The sauce is basically a hommus-style sauce - in addition to the tahini there is chickpeas, garlic and lemon, but it is thinned with vegetable stock. It is wonderful. I also increased the broccoli content of this recipe from the required 2 cups to however much my two large heads of broccoli yield.

On another note - other excellent tahini recipes include the tomato tahini pasta sauce from Easy Vegan Cooking and Isa's tahini sauce recipe from one or possibly both of her cookbooks.

This final dish of the Vegan Planet Pasta Trilogy is Ziti, Artichokes and Kalamatas with Spicy Tomato Sauce. This is a really, really tasty little pasta dish. And it is insanely easy and quick to make. The recipe calls for 9oz frozen artichoke hearts that have been cooked according to packet directions. As far as I can tell, these just aren't available in the places I regularly shop in Brisbane. So I used a 400g tin of artichoke (the ones from the tinned vegetable aisle, not the fancy marinated ones from the olive aisle) which I rinsed and drained. I also chopped up the artichokes roughly. The recipe calls for chopped kalamatas, but who doesn't love big juicy olives all through their pasta? So I left the kalamatas whole. I served it with a side of roasted green beans, but I think steamed broccoli or a good green salad would rock it too.

And there ends this current musing of pasta. And I haven't even touched baked pasta dishes or noodles yet - no doubt topics of the future.

Thursday, 20 November 2008

Vegan in an omni world: Thai Pochana Cafe

Last night I was restless, so I rang a friend to see if she wanted to do something. She was going out to dinner with her housemate, so I came along too. The plan was to mosey down to Oxford Street in Bulimba to get some food. Possibly Thai, maybe Mexican. I was quite happy to come along and see what sort of vegan options I could ferret out for myself. After all, we can't go to the vegan places all the time.

There are a lot of different restaurants down that strip. After stopping off at the pub for a drink, the restaurant we went to was Thai Pochana Cafe, a nice little Thai place. As the girls took the table, I marched up to the waiter to have the 'vegan chat'... you know the one. Wow, what a lovely guy! Totally understanding, wonderfully accomodating. They have a vegetarian menu with some vegan looking stuff on it. After clarifying there was not hidden nasties like fish sauce, animal stocks or shrimp paste, I settled on Pra Ram Pak (steamed mixed vegetables topped with peanut sauce) and asked if they could add some tofu to it as well for extra yumminess. All not a problem

Here it is. I finally got over feeling strange about taking photos of food in restaurants. Though I didn't think about this until after I had already taken some, which is why there's stuff missing at the back. And it was lovely! Served with steamed rice and jasmine tea, as all things should be. The only thing missing was a glass of coconut juice! Sadly, not on the menu.

I would head back here again if I was in the area. They have a few other vegan friendly dishes - Pad Pak (stir-fried mixed vegetables in soy sauce), Pad Prawn Wan (stir fried mixed vegetables in a sweet and sour tamarind sauce) and Pad Tofu (stir fried beancurd flavoured with garlic and chili with vegetables. They also have a couple of vegetarian starters (spring rolls and corn cakes), but futher investigation would be needed as to the vegan-ness of these.

Anyway, it was a lovely dinner. It is nice to have the freedom as a vegan to go to omni restaurants and be met with understanding, respect and options! To top it all off, on the walk back to their place I picked up a scoop of vegan mango sorbet. Bliss!

Saturday, 15 November 2008

Happy (belated) birthday to me!

Last week was my birthday. I have already blogged about the yummy dinner my friends took me to, but I had another special dinner as well. Monday is family night in our house, so for the family night closest to my birthday my brother and my mother cooked a birthday dinner for me. It is quite the novelty to have yummy vegan food prepared for me while I am watching TV!

While I make dinner most nights I am home, whenever there is a birthday or special occasion I always make a special dinner. They get to pick out whatever vegan yummies they want, and then I make it. So this time was my time to choose. I picked something pretty easy (mum doesn't like lots of fiddly cooking, crazy woman). I picked out of Veganomicon, that greatest of tomes.

For the main I chose the Vodka Penne Pasta. I had made this before and it is outstanding. It gets my five star, two thumbs up rating. The tomato sauce is amazingly creamy and fresh. And it is so quick and easy to make, it is just fantastic!

For dessert they made the Berry Coconut Crisp. It is not something I have made before. And I frakked up by hallucinating a bottle of coconut essence in the cupboard and only found out at the crucial moment that there wasn't any. But it was great anyway.

It was a lovely dinner. Thanks to them both!

Tonight I am on call at the clinic. I have spent the last several hours on my computer, discovering insane amounts of new vegan blogs. I also updated my list of blogs, and now all the vegan ones are marked as such. Easy peasy! I am also right now watching a really bad movie on channel 10. But how can I say no a Hilary Duff movie? Followed up by some Season 3 Supernatural on DVD. Heck yeah!

I haven't posted much about what I've been cooking lately. A while ago I bought a book called Tofu 123, which is just chock full or recipes involving - you guessed it - tofu! It's quite a good little book. On Thursday night I was feeling like baking up some tofu, and so I cracked open this book and I made Ilyse's Cripsy Tofu Cutlets With Mustard Sauce. The tofu cutlets were quickly dunked in a sweet soy marinade before being coated in panko and nooch then baked. They were pretty tasty. Not too crispy though. The mustard sauce is a combination of vegan mayo (I used the Vcon recipe), dijon mustard and something called relish. Which, as far as I can tell, is something similar to sweet mustard pickle, so I used that. The sauce is really yummy! I also served it with some mashed potatoes and some roasted asparagus. The asparagus was a mix of regular green and yellow. The yellow had a more subtle taste, but something about it reminded me of tinned asparagus. So I like the green best!

In retrospect, it was kind of similar to a Vcon menu I made earlier this year:

Only the Vcon one was better, because it involved the Chickpea Cutlets of Vcon legend, and also one of the best mustard sauces ever known to man kind!

Got to go and check on some kitties. I hope everyone is having a wonderful Saturday night!

Monday, 10 November 2008

Dinner at Gopals Pure Vegetarian

My birthday was on Friday, and on Saturday one of my best friends took me out to dinner. We went to Gopals Pure Vegetarian restaurant, which is on Sherwood Road in Sherwood.

It's not actually a restaurant, it's more a cafe and take away type place. The food is preprepared and kept in hot boxes or refrigerated sections. It's a fairly small selection, but it is very cheaply priced and very satisfying.

It is not 100% vegan. Every Wednesday is apparently Vegan day, so since I was going on a Saturday I rang ahead to check the availability of vegan food at other times in the week. And yes, they have options. Their curries and dhal are all vegan, not made with any ghee. And also their vegetable koftas and papadums. They have a fair few things with cheese in them as well (such as lasagne - not all is Indian), so just make sure to ask. I think the Malaysian noodles were vegan as well.

We had the $10 special. This involved a plate with coconut rice, a vegetable curry, koftas with a yummy tomato sauce, garden salad and papadum and a drink. The drink choices are lassi, obviously not vegan, and an absolutely devine lemon ginger mint juce drink. OMG... it is so good! Also included in the $10 special is halva with custard - not vegan. So to make up for this I had extra kofta on my plate. It was cheap and yummy.

I would be interested to go back on a Wednesday and see what is involved in Vegan Wednesday, if it means there are more vegan options and maybe some vegan sweet stuff. I shall report when I do!

Friday, 7 November 2008

The fabulous foodie holiday

Warning to all - many, many words and photos ahead! So settle in!

I got back yesterday from a brief holiday down at Broadbeach, on the Gold Coast. It was basically an eating extravaganza of fabulous proportions! And thank goodness for the food, as I ended up witha ground floor unit and a fabulous view of the building's pool, and could listen to the soothing sounds of other people in said pool and the traffic outside. Mmm.... restful! Moral of story - don't internet book. Always book over the phone so you know what you are getting!

I got down on Monday afternoon, and immediatey went out for stocking up at The Oasis Shopping Centre. I haven't been down for a couple of years, and I was thrilled to find out that opposite Woolworths there was now a Wray Organic shop had opened up! So I happily went in and impulsed bought up a storm! Below is my booty.

Clockwise from left: Redwood Vegan Thai Style Fish Cakes, Pure Harvest Oat Milk, Spoil Me Raw Vegan Chocolate Chip Ice Cream, organic Swiss Brown mushrooms, Cheddar Style Cheezly and Absolute Organic Beetroot Chips.

That night I headed out to Tian Ran, a fabulous vegan asian restaurant in Mermaid Beach, about 5 minutes drive from my unit. YUM! I had the mixed deep fried entree (curry puff, wonton, dim sim and spring roll), the hot and sour soup (excellent!), chicken in satay sauce on brown rice and, for dessert, lychees in vegan ice cream. The hot and sour soup was one of the best I've had, which is important for me because this is my favourite soup!The chicken is made out of soy protein, and was very nice. And a good peanutty satay sauce as well! But my favourite part was the vegan ice cream with lychees - something I haven't had for ages, but which I truly love! It was all beautifully presented. I wish I had some photos, but I still feel a bit funny taking photos in restaurants.

Tuesday morning dawned, and with it - awesome breakfast number one! I had come prepared for awesome breakfasts, with pancake batter pre-prepared and tempeh bacon marinating. So here it is:

It is Blueberry Cornmeal Pancakes from Veganomicon and Tempeh Bacon from Vegan Vittles, with fresh berries and smothered in maple syrup - YUM! One of the fun things about staying in these units is going from a fully stocked kitchen to a marginally stocked one. So all my frying was done in the one electric frying pan (ick). I enjoyed my first ever glass of icy cold oat milk with this - and I love it! I rapidly consumed most of the pack, I confess.

I spent the entire day reading with my non-view. Very nice to spend all day reading. Come lunch time, and the pancakes had finally worn off. So I made myself a TBLAT:

Tempeh Bacon, Leaves (in this case baby spinach and fresh basil), Avocado and Tomato (in this case a Cherokee Purple variety from my market frolic) with some soy mayo for extra fun all sandwiched between two slices of Sol Bread's Pumpkin And Pepita loaf. YUM!

For dinner I headed down to Threeworlds Organic Pizza Cafe, a vegan pizza shop down in Mermaid Beach. Fabulous atmosphere! And it is a pay what you feel concept. I got takeaway, so I do have photos.

Here's my pizza! I got the large zised half and half. Half was the Margarita and the other half was Potato And Herb. It smelled amazing and tasted great! The cheese is the yellow spiral stuff. It seems to be a liquid cheese that is then baked. Tasty! It also had rocked leaves and sprouts sprinkled all over the top. Scrummy!

I enjoyed some more Heirloom Tomatoes - here is Green Zebra, Yellow Peach and an unknown red variety. Let me just say, the flavour in these tomatoes in mind blowing! Especially compared to the watery red things pretending to be tomatoes in most supermarkets and green grocers.

Threeworlds also has raw vegan desserts! They had two while I was there, so I just had to get a piece of both!

Raw Chocolate Avocado Tart. With my raw vegan ice cream and fresh strawberries. OMG - NOOOOMMMMMMMM! It was so rich, chocolate and decadent!

The other one was a raw coconut, banana and lemon tart. I was not such a fan of this one. It definitely tasted like it wanted to be baked!

Wednesday morning dawned, and it was cold and raining! I prepared another awesome breakfast:

Here we have scrambled tofu (firm tofu, baby roma tomatoes, baby spinach leaves, basil leaves, parsley leaves, mushrooms, kipfler potatoes, nooch and apple cider vinegar), more tempeh bacon, fried mushrooms and a slice of pumpkin bread with avocado. All washed down with some take away fresh juice - apple, carrot and ginger (the best combination ever!).

Eventually I decided to leave the dry hotel room and venture out for some lunch at Magic Apple Wholefoods down in Burleigh Heads. Yummy! This is a vegetarian place with a lot of vegan options. Because of the cold and rainy day, I opted for a lentil and mushroom pie, which came with a homemade tomato sauce. They have a great selection there - pies, pasties, a selection of yummy hot meals (thai curry, morrocan bean stew and dhal were all on offer) and some of the largest and yummiest wraps ever seen! They also have sweet stuff!

This is my piece of Orange Almond Cake. It had a kind of cream cheese icing. I took this down to Point Danger, on the QLD/NSW border. It is one of my favourite and prettiest places ever. Don't believe me?

Here is the point itself from up above on the lookout.

And here is the beach next to it, also from the lookout.

The weather abated to allow me to walk down to the actual point itself.

Then I headed back up, just in time as it started raining again, and spent a couple of hours reading in the car, listening to Hamish and Andy on the radio and watching the beautiful view. I stopped off form some more Tian Ran take away on the way home. Tonight I had some lovely Shanghai Pan Fried dumplings, which were truly tasty. For the soup I had the Sweetcorn and Vegetarian Chicken Soup, which was a bit lacking in sweetcorny taste to be honest. The star was the main - beef in black bean. They make their beef using soy protein and mushrooms, and it is delicious, melt in your melt stuff! For dessert I enjoyed some of their sago with coconut milk and palm sugar with soy ice cream. Even though I had this at the unit, I forgot to take photos - doh!

My final morning. Before check out, I had a quick breakfast snack of vanilla soy yoghurt, berries and maple syrup. YUM! This was just to boost my energy, before packing up, checking out and heading off to One World Love Cafe for the breakfast proper. I had the sausages (really nice, I think some sort of nutmeat), tomatoes and toast with a banana smoothie. I also had a lovely chat with Margaret, one of the ladies working there. This is a great, zen little place and I think my favourite of the trip! They also do group meditations there. It is abeautiful place too, with a lovely courtyard and some of the nicest bathrooms you ever shall see. Did I mention the food was great?

Then home and back to the real world. For dinner last night, I had some vegan fish and chips. Well, to be precise Redwood Vegan Thai Style Fish Cakes, chips and more yummy tomatoes.

If you are still with me, congratulations and thanks! It was a great holiday of eating, and I would be happy to drive back down just to eat at any of these places. Check them out if you are in the area, or if not, drive up or down and check them out anyway!

So, today is my birthday, so more food will be forthcoming soon!

Saturday, 1 November 2008

Happy 12th birthday to Gizmo!

Yay! Today is Gizmo's 12th birthday. Though I cannot believe my love is 12 years old! She was only 4 when I got her. Time is going far too quickly for my liking!

I found her the perfect present a while ago, and today it came out of hiding in the closet! She *loves* it. Observe...

It is a super duper 'Cuban Catnip' heart. Gizmo adores catnip. Which puts her in the 50% of kitties who have receptors for catnip. Not all cats will react to it. Gizmo doesn't go crazy on it, what she does love to do is to lick it and chew it and sniff it. And this stuff is strong - you can actually smell it! Imagine how much fun she must be having with it.

It says 'Lick Me. Bite Me. Bunnykick Me.' Bunnykick... hee!

So happy birthday to my marvelous girl!

Green Flea Markets at West End

Today I finally made it to the Green Flea markets at West End. I had been wanting to go for ages, but my abilities to get to a market early on Saturday morning are pretty much always hampered by work. But this week I am on holidays - so hurrah!

The markets are at Davies Park on the corner of Montague Road and Jane Street in West End. Drive all the way to the end of Vulture Street and turn right, and it is just up on the left. There is free street parking around, though be prepared to take a little bit of a stroll as there are lots of people wanting to park.

The markets were wonderful! Produce stalls were mixed in with other market stalls through a lovely, windy park. With trees! Very nice and open air, but no under cover so keep this in mind if it is raining. The pathways between stalls are also quite narrow, so be prepared for a bit of hustle and bustle.

There are several very large produce stalls, along with smaller ones. There is were two special mushroom stalls, a stall that specialised in heirloom tomatoes (see below), a few organic stalls, jam stalls and then some. All of this was mixed in with clothes, bric a brac, massage, fabrics and various other stalls. Plus the most awesome portable barber ever seen. There was also a variety of fast food stalls.

Sol Breads is an organic sourdough bakery that has a lot of vegan breads. It also had a stall at the markets - hurrah! This is a yummy loaf of Pumpkin And Pepita Bread I bought. I am going to take it down the coast with me on Monday to make lots of yummy sandwiches.

And what market trip is complete without yummy fruit and vegetables? Pictured below is my haul for today, though I am very cranky I forgot to get mushrooms despite the presence of TWO mushroom stalls! Anyway, moving on. To the left of this photo is a lare variety of heirloom tomatoes. There is a great stall there that has boxes of all these different and amazing tomatoes, and you can just mix and match for $10/kg. I am not sure of all the names of them, but I am looking forward to exciting salads and I shall let you know how they measure up.

And finally, the most exciting find of all - VEGAN CUPCAKES! Hurrah! Take that other non-vegan cupcake stall. Like, whatever. These cupcakes are cruelty free and the money made goes to charity. I forgot to ask what the charity of the week was today, I was so excited about the cupcakes. The cupcakes are $3 each, and they also had mini cupcakes for $1. They are packed up in brown paper bags, so that is why the icing is a big smooshed. Next time I will take my own containers to put them in and preserve all the beauty! Below, starting from the left and moving clockwise: Chocolate Peanut Butter, Lemon and Cookies and Cream. Thus far I have eaten the lemon - yummy! And licked up some of the other frostings from the paper bags - also yummy!

One vegan experience that I saw, but did not partake in, was the YKillAMooCow food stall, selers of the famous vegan dagwood dog, as well as pies and sausage rolls and other such things. Dagwood Dogs didn't go on sale until 10am, and I was there at 8am. I would have tried one, even though I was never a fan of the dogwood dog, just in the name of research. But I wasn't going to wait. The early hour of the day and the increasing heat of the day also just meant I couldn't actually face the prospect of a meat pie or anything like that, even to take home. Sorry vegan troopers, next time!

All in all, a great morning spent. And I will try and go back there again, on the few times I can. Damn working! Interferes with the shopping and the eating! Tee hee. ;)