Thursday, February 21, 2013

The skinny on going vegan in Cleveland

Raw and vegan key lime pie and macaroons courtesy of chef Anna Harouvis

From my latest effort for Fresh Water:

Cleveland is quietly transforming from a meat-and-potatoes to a beets-and-tomatoes kind of town -- at least around the edges.

Oh man! I want kale chips. I want avocado spring rolls. I want a raw vegan burger. Is it lunch yet?

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Joe said...

That means there is more meat for me!

Yay beef. Whoo bacon. Yahoo chicken. Mmmmmm BBQ pork.

Jack Cluth said...

Being vegan myself, I'm surprised. My Cleveland experience has been meat, meat, and yet more meat. Progress comes in many forms, I suppose. ;-)

Erin O'Brien said...

I DEFY Joe or anyone for that matter to resist the raw/vegan key lime pie!

I loved the kale chips. I loved the raw vegan burger.

Jack, if you come to town, do revisit this article and the embedded links, particularly this one. Vegan options abound in gritty ol' Cleveburg.

Bill said...

Ever notice how mnost vegans are depressed?

Joe said...

key lime pie -- any time any place.

I like meat. I also like veggies (except peas).

dean said...

I went to a raw vegan restaurant once.

Interesting. But I will not go again.

Kalei's Best Friend said...

here's a cool raw bean dip one of my bloggers posted: 2 cans of black beans (drained and rinsed), your favorite salsa or pico de gallo, shredded cheddar, chopped cilantro.. mix all up and get your chips out!. naturally the ingredients are all to your own taste.
kale chips are essy to make... roast washed and dried kale, sprinkle sesame seed oil and salt and rosst at 400.. keep an eye on it so it doesn't burn.

Erin O'Brien said...

The crust for Anna's pies are made with crushed nuts, Joe.

Well, Dean, at least you tried it. And thanks Kalei's BF. I'll bet it's really good after it's set up for a bit.

Jon Moore said...

Boy, somewhere in all this I'm picking up a Green Eggs and Ham vibe. But if yer buyin' I'm tryin' Erin O'Brien.

Erin O'Brien said...

These deets weren't in the article, but the Cleveland Vegan Society held a fundraiser last October. Tickets were $35 each.

Local restaurants offered up their best vegan fare for sampling. They had to provide all the food/servers and pay a table fee.

The group had to stop selling tickets when they hit 400--which they never anticipated. And almost 30 eateries participated.

All 150 slots for a "Vegan 101" workshop held earlier this month were filled a week before the event.

Vegan is big in CLE.

Joe said...

I made a desert at Christmas or Thanksgiving time that had a crushed nut crust. Good stuff, and a bit healthier too!

Anonymous said...

'Kalei's BF', did you know that aversion to cilantro is a genetic trait? My guinea pigs love the stuff, and I'm stuck with iceberg.

Dennis Kucinich is vegan. A vegan Vulcan.
I mention Dennis because I operated a concession stand at the late, great Slavic Village keilbasa festival. It was entertaining watching him trying to negotiate the throngs* of drunken omnivores without getting any meat DNA** on himself.


*throngs...a subtle pattern begins to emerge.
** If I had known this morning that I would have cause to use the phrase 'meat DNA' today I wouldn't have been so grumpy getting out of bed.

Erin O'Brien said...

I love cilantro to a fault.

I do remember the Harvest Festival. Sure got rough toward the end. The saddest thing was all the little 13 and 14 year old girls with a baby on the right hip and a cigarette in the left hand.

May the Velodome do something for that old neighborhood.

Jack Cluth said...

One of my all-time favorite bumper stickers:

"I'm not a vegetarian because I love animals. I'm a vegetarian because is HATE plants.

DogsDontPurr said...

I think it's funny that a lot of the people who won't eat vegan food because they don't know what's in it or because Tofurky doesn't taste or look like real turkey, etc., will gladly eat chicken nuggets or filet o' fish sandwiches or packaged lunch meat, etc.

I think part of the problem is that people are looking at vegan options as substitutions for "the real thing," when they should really look at vegan selections as something new and different to try.
I also think the word "vegan" creates a sort of a psychological stumbling block for die hard meat eaters. When they go out for a steak dinner, I bet most of them will also have a salad or a baked potato...but not consider those items to be "vegetarian." So if we could just get past the mindset of vegan items being "Vegan," I think more people might be willing to try it.

Also, vegan doesn't always mean low fat, low calorie, and diet. I've had some pretty rich and decadent vegan dishes that were to die for.

Erin O'Brien said...

DDP +1 +1 +1

Bill said...

DDP. It's not the 'word' vegan that creates a psychological stumbling block. It is the vegans themselves and their, holier than thou, humorless attitudes that make other people not want to join that club.

Erin O'Brien said...

How's the membership drive going over at the Bill Club these days, William?

Bill said...

E: I just usually hang out at friends of the friendless. Between that and chatting with Father Larry, down at Starbucks, I'm pretty booked.

Erin O'Brien said...

Bill, here's what I can tell you: You come here to CLE and go to chef Anna's cafe. First you will meet a woman who is filled with love and light, which she shines out on everyone who ambles in.

Then she will cook you wholesome beautiful food that is imbued with the best intentions. And when you eat it, you might even make like the Grinch and grow your heart a size or two, although there will be no roast beast.

Bill said...

E: A beautiful Greek woman. Me. An Italian villa. A private cleansing party. I'm not sure about bigger heart but I'm sure I'd grow in some way. It does sound inticing.

Mrs. C said...

Oh, God, Bill. GAH!
So, I run with a very diverse crowd, among them many, many vegans--and their more frequent cousins, vegetarians. All are wonderfully cheery, laughing and loving people. Well, accept that one. But he has a helluva good reason to be morose occasionally, what with the PTSD that stretches a-l-l-l-l-l-l the way back to 'Nam. We love him always, just the same, and can usually nudge some spirit outta him. Go out into the world and look for some stereotypes you can break, why not?

@Kalei's Best Friend--canned beans are cooked and so that ingredient would not qualify in a raw recipe. I have seen people do hummus from raw, and it was delicious.

Al The Retired Army Guy said...

Vegan - Native American for "bad hunter."