January 13, 2010


January 13, 2010 - .  

trader joe’s everything bagel with tofutti better-than-cream-cheese; orange juice

sweet potato and black bean enchiladas made by my mom; green salad with raspberry vinaigrette; mango and pineapple with grated dried ginger

dinner at sabai-dee, chicago’s only laotian restaurant.  there weren’t a lot of vegan (or even vegetarian) options on the menu, so we talked to our waiter and he told us we could substitute tofu for any chicken or beef dishes.  a lot of stuff was also made with fish sauce, and he said he could just substitute salt, but it wouldn’t taste quite as authentic.  we ended up having a spicy green papaya salad minus the fish sauce, the coconut-galangal soup with tofu instead of chicken, and a tofu curry, all excellent, plus warm tapioca in sweet coconut milk for dessert (all the desserts were vegan, and also included mango sticky rice and custard sticky rice).  probably wouldn’t be my #1 choice to take vegan friends since so much of the menu was off limits, but they certainly did a good job of accommodating.

the restaurant is byob, so we brought a bottle of cheap red wine from the grocery store down the block.  here’s the issue with my wine habits and veganism: i drink really cheap wine!  if i have wine needs outside of the vicinity of a trader joe’s, i usually grab whatever’s on sale or the second-cheapest bottle (to retain a semblance of class).  the problems: 1) when i try to figure out if the wine was vegan, usually hours or days later, i can never remember the name of it, and 2) now that i have started noting the names and looking them up, there’s usually no information to be found on these random cheap bottles.  this one was a shiraz from kanga reserve, which i could find nothing about on the internet.  it kind of looked like yellowtail, so i looked that up and found that yellowtail’s red wines are vegan, but the whites and roses contain gelatin and therefore are not.  good to know!

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