Stuff I Ate Vol. 1

So I’ve been vegetarian/vegan for almost six months now. Besides dropping about 8 kgs, the biggest change I’ve noticed is that I no longer get sick as often as I used to. That is pretty huge for me. My digestive issues are under control and I don’t get the flu as easily anymore. One of main reasons I went vegetarian was that I wanted to improve my immune system, so to see such drastic results has me floored and given me more reason to really stick with this new lifestyle.

Also, I’ve noticed my hangovers aren’t as awful. These are all good things! Enough to make me want to do this for life. I’ve mentioned this before, but it bears repeating; going veg has also made me more excited about food. Back when we still ate meat, Joff and I relied a little too heavily on our tried and tested routine of roasting meat (usually, chicken) and pairing it with a salad. While it was delicious, I realise now how boring it became. Sure we ate other things and experimented with new recipes, but it’s only now that I feel like I’m really testing my mettle in the kitchen, and it just feels so much more gratifying.

Being vegetarian/vegan is my new passion. I know I might sound a little evangelical about it, but it’s been a while since I’ve felt this way about anything. So I thought I’d write about some of the stuff we’ve been eating/cooking lately.

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Since discovering them back in May, Joff and I have become a bit obsessed with Vietnamese com chay. Com chay are Buddhist eateries that serve rice (com) with an assortment of delicious vegan (chay) sides. The plate you see above is from our favorite com chay, Bo De Quan on Au Co street. The place stays open all afternoon, which is a godsend since I work til 2 pm, and has hands-down has the best tasting food.

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Vegan banh mi

I’ve been slowly making my way through Lucky Peach’s Power Vegetables! cookbook. Pictured above on the top row is ABC Squash, then from L-R it’s a simple tomato sauce, falafels, and tofu akuri. Peter Meehan is my hero. He takes the fussiness out of recipes and replaces them with something fun and, more importantly, simple. This is our third Lucky Peach cookbook (the other two are Easy Asian Recipes and All About Eggs), and we couldn’t be happier with it. I’ve been documenting all my Power Vegetables testing over at my Instagram account.

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This one was really good. I made the Power Vegetables simple tomato sauce and mixed in some cooked green lentils for a vegan version of bolognese. I topped it off with a sprinkle of nutritional yeast for some umami, cheesy goodness.

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Squash curry topped off with scallions and crispy shallots. Coconut milk just makes everything good.

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Black bean salad with a roasted red pepper sauce. The black beans were cooked with garlic, onions, cumin, smoked paprika, and chipotle peppers. I added some pickled jalapeños and chopped cilantro after taking this photo and it made it even better. The roasted red pepper sauce is one of my new go-tos. I’ll post a recipe here for that on my next entry.

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The Sunday Currently Vol. 3

Reading

Almost finished with Meet Me in the Bathroom, an oral history of the New York music scene during the 2000s. There is so much delicious gossip and funny anecdotes about the era that gave us The Strokes, LCD Soundsystem, The Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and the White Stripes, among a slew of other seminal bands. I thought I’d finish it quicker but even though it’s a really easy read, every time I read something extra juicy I have to put the book down for a while so I can process the information. It’s pretty much all I’ve been talking about to friends and Joff for a few weeks now and I think I might be annoying them already. Everyone needs to read this book!

Writing

I wrote this for FHM a couple days ago. And I’ve started working on my food zine again LOL. I swear to glob I’m going to finish it this time.

Listening

I was heavy on that Bodak Yellow tip a few weeks ago. Cardi B is a QUEEN. These days I’ve been listening to Rilo Kiley, Wilco, Frankie Cosmos, Father John Misty and Johnny Gallagher’s debut album Six Day Hurricane.

Thinking

I’ve been thinking a lot about to use my time more productively. I’ve got a lot of plans for September and I really hope I get everything done.

Wishing

We could get a dog already but we have to wait another month and it’s killing meeee.

Hoping

For better weather. I can’t with the insane humidity anymore.

Loving

The Good Wife! Lol. I’d been meaning to start it for years but just got around to it a couple weeks ago and I’m really loving it. I’m almost halfway through the second season.

Wanting

More fast food vegan options. Been craving hotdogs recently and wish I had access to good vegan sausages. This dude’s Instagram feed is not helping.

Needing

I ran out of my Sephora clarifying booster a month ago and started to notice a difference immediately. The stuff was so good for my skin! It got rid of redness and reduced the appearance of my pores. But since it’s still out of stock I’m gonna try some Cosrx products that I read about in this article (do check it out, it has some life-changing skincare advice).

Feeling

Pretty good! Joff and I went on a nice walk around the neighborhood this afternoon and got some delicious vegetarian pad thai and tofu with tomato sauce for dinner, then capped it off with pistachio and mascarpone gelato. A Sunday for the books.