Vegan Heaven– Found

05Jun09

Hello gorgeous people! I swear I don’t mean to be obnoxious, but Thursday was exquisite. What makes me happiest, other than being around my friends and family, is being around the kindest people in the world and enjoying downright delicious food.

The day started with a drool-covered wake-up call. At least I know I was sleeping well. After showering and slipping into my robe, I kicked off the day a non-vegan way:

TJ's High Fiber Fruit and Nut Multigrain Medley with almond milk and a red grapefruit

TJ's High Fiber Fruit and Nut Multigrain Medley (silly whey) with almond milk and a red grapefruit

This breakfast reminded me why I don’t eat citrus in the morning. It upsets the usually happy walls of my tum. Does that happen to anyone else? I still loved that tart and juicy grapefruit, though.

I got dolled up in Audrey Hepburn-inspired ankle-length black pants and a short-sleeved turtleneck, a face of light makeup and a head of straightened blonde strands.

When I arrived at work, no one was there! I was only five minutes early, but normally there’s at least one person in the office. I have keys, though, and let myself in, opened the blinds, turned on the lights, filled the tea water and got to work. Everyone showed up in a few minutes!

I sipped a black tea and then a coffee while I fact-checked and edited a story of mine. The cereal and grapefruit held me from 7:40 a.m. until about 10:30 a.m., when I recognized audible sounds from my stomach. Only two more hours till lunch! Haha, only. I somehow made it, though.

Today we had an incredible guest eat with us at lunch. Tal Ronnen, who was Oprah’s personal chef for her 21-day vegan cleanse, sat with us and shared great stories and insider veg news. He was unbelievably nice, humble and fascinating. We ate an awesome spread made by Colleen, one of the co-founders of VegNews:

Incredible! Miso soup, black sesame seed-coated salad, Vietnamese (maybe?) pancake and veggie dumplings!

Incredible! Miso soup, black sesame seed-coated salad, Vietnamese (maybe?) pancake and veggie dumplings (so good I had five)! We had a dessert after-- it was a bean-paste cakey, sesame thing. Yum!

All these ridiculously amazing meals have me terrified for when it’s my turn to cook! AHH! Until then, I’ll continue to enjoy the fruits of my co-workers’ labor. This was one of the best miso soups I’ve ever had. It had broccolini, kale, carrots and tofu, all in big chunks:

Savory but not salty-- perfect

Savory but not salty-- perfect

Tal stuck around for a while after lunch, and we got a sneak peek at his upcoming animal-free cookbook! It’s beautiful and everything looks wildly delicious!

One of our staffers is on vacay until Monday, so I got to take over some of her jobs. One of them was taking pictures of the items we received throughout the day and then blogging about it. So my thang! (You can check it out at VegNews’ website under “This Just In.”) I got to play with Photoshop, which was fun but took me a while. A perfectionist+ Photoshop can be a dangerous thing.

Almost as dangerous were today’s INSANE goodies! The VN staff ordered a box of baked goods from Sticky Fingers Bakery for me and Charlotte (Charlotte–hurry up and get here so you don’t miss out!). At 5 p.m.-ish we sliced up some treats:

Baked goods and my notes

Baked goods and my notes

Holy. SHHHH!!! Okay, so what we have here is a slice of a “Little Devil,” which is a chocolate cake with a creamy filling, coated in a chocolate shell. This was fabulous, but it was nowhere near as fabulous as the “Cowvin Cookie,” two oatmeal cookies sandwiched with a creamy filling. These are vegan, but they tasted so buttery, so rich, so unforgettable:

Vegan Heaven--Found! :)

Vegan Heaven--Found! 🙂

I went back for seconds on the Cowvins…and then thirds.  Have I mentioned I love my job?

I didn’t leave the office until 7:45 p.m. because sistah was busy workin’! I had news to write, yo. I also had to clean out our spam, and by the end of that my eyes were on fire. (Missy Elliot always plays in my head with the word fire: “ya’ll I’m on fiyyaaah!”)

I came home ready for savory food and made exactly what I wanted. New groceries make me so excited, and I just want to try everything at once! Thus:

Dark picture- I'm sorry!

Dark picture- I'm sorry!

In the whole wheat lavash wrap: huge scoop of TJ’s Cilantro Jalapeno Hummus (a-freaking-mazing), spinach and mushrooms. On the side: TJ’s Vegetable Masala Burger with TJ’s ketchup.

You know what the Masala burgers taste like? Burger King’s French Toast Sticks!!! I am not even kidding you. The whole time I ate them I thought,”these are fantastic, but what do they taste like?” About 3/4 of the way through, it hit me! So naturally, I love these!

For a dessert course–in case I hadn’t had enough today– I had zeese:

Pear and TJ's Peanut Butter-filled Pretzels sans salt on pretzels. Eloquently written, I know.

Pear and TJ's Peanut Butter-filled Pretzels sans salt on pretzels. Eloquently written, I know.

Then I made the choice I knew was destined: I sat down with the bag of pretzels. How can people stop at just a few of these? Not happenin’ here.

Well kidlets, I’m going to bed early tonight so I can get up tomorrow and fit in a 4.29-miler before work! And as I’ve been typing I’ve been petting my eyebrows. Yes, they’re that hairy that I can pet them. Time to groom. On that note, love you boos!

Ciao for now,

Kailey

QUESTION: Do you know of any fabulous vegan restaurants around the globe?
I’m just curious how far-reaching veganism is. I’d love to hear about your experiences!

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26 Responses to “Vegan Heaven– Found”

  1. 1 The Novice Berker

    Holy cannoli (I don’t think cannoli is vegan though)! Those desserts look AMAZING. I think vegan desserts are generally pretty close to normal desserts since you can sub egg replacer and oil a lot of the time, but to get a really buttery, rich flavor without butter sounds like a feat!! I wonder what the bakery’s secret is.

    Um yeah, I really shouldn’t have clicked on the Sticky Fingers link. Now I want, uh, EVERYTHING on their menu. 🙂

    The citrus thing definitely happens to me too! No orange juice in the morning (or any kind of juice, for that matter) and definitely no oranges/grapefruits. I think the acid is too harsh on my stomach when it’s empty. 😦

    P.S. I’m totally cleaning up my brows tonight too; they are beastly. Totally ew, hahaha.

  2. 2 Bri

    Honestly I don’t think you could have landed a better internship! I can’t eat citrus in the am either or before i go to bed because i get some nasty acid reflux – not fun! 4.29 miler in the am before work… dedication sister! But the endorphins will make the day that much better! Night kailey!

    xox bri

  3. Kaileyyyyy, you have got me drooling girl…just drooling over those vegan treats!!! I love how creamy vegan desserts can seem, but it’s just a trick!-totally dairy free!

    Carob and vegan carrot cake are ESPECIALLY the bombbb!
    Have you started saying “hella” yet, now that you’ve been in SF for almost a week?!!? haha!!

    I’m so glad you’re loving the internship, it sounds better and better everyday!! And all of the tasks they’ve got you doing (taking pictures and tasting vegan treats), doesn’t sound too bad at all!!! 😉

    Enjoy your run my love!

  4. 4 homegirlcaneat

    Boo! I love how you are having lunch with celebs and eating amazing vegan food and treats! The life! I am so glad SF is treating you so well! Everyday sounds like such happiness and excitement! I want your job too, not gonna lie. Photoshop can be crazy fun but then again, just straight up CRAZY trying to perfect it. I feel yo pain.

    AND HAPPY end of your first work week!!! WOooooo! I think a CELEBRATION IS IN ORDER. Watch yo back for a text!!

    Have a glorious run! I love that path..it’s so pritt-tay along the watafront!

    P.S. Do you realize what today is? It rhymes with pookie and ends with -riday. 😉

  5. 5 rediscoveringlauren

    im so jealous of your awesome job and free food hun haha 🙂 a serious plus of your job is having cool chefs cook for you for sure! im so glad your loving your job, its great!!
    i think citrus upsets my stomach first thing too, i used to drink hot water and lemon juice everyday till recently when i started feeling sick and getting pains after drinking it, so maybe i developed some intolerance to it first thing??
    anyways, enjoy your run tomoro hun
    xxxx

  6. Those vegan baked goods look to-die-for!!! So does your lunch. I am a huge sucker for oatmeal cookie desserts…I’ve never had any vegan desserts except for at Whole Foods and it’s suprising how good and non-vegan they can taste. You have a kick-ass job, I’m jealous hahaha!!!!
    Have a glorious Friday my dear!!!

  7. 7 Emma

    Um, has anyone told you that you have an amazing job? Because, er, you do. Everything looks like it is falling into place for you. SF and VegNews sounds like wonderful places to be.

    Have another (!) amazing day!

  8. 8 Shelby

    You are not being annoying it all! I’m so happy for you that you are enjoying your new home =)

    You have the best job in the world. Doing something you love + eating delicious vegan food…I’m so jealous!

    I never thought of the burgers tasting like french toast sticks…hmm I’ll have to taste them again haha

    I actually just went to my FIRST vegan restaurant. I’ll be posting about it either tonight or tomorrow

  9. 9 Anna

    So those pb pretezels are vegan?!? I must find my way to Trader Joe’s and stock up IMMEDIATELY.

  10. Shoot girl, you are making me insanely jealz of your job! Hob-nobbin’ with all these great people and eating vegan eats! I’m about ready to strap on the Pumas and walk to San Fran!

    That cowvin cookie needs to be in my stomach ASAP! French toast sticks?! Really!? Glad you like them!! Now I’m craving one!! Viel Gluck with the run today!!

    There’s a new vegan restaurant by me!!! I’m super pumped about it but haven’t been yet!

  11. Go here for vegan/vegetarian restaurants around the globe:

    http://www.happycow.net/browse.html

  12. I’m learning about veganism all from you, so I have no such restaurant knowledge to impart.

    haha that’s funny about the burgers, I definitely know what you’re talking about though…

  13. 13 april

    They taste like french toast?? Are they sweet? How interesting!

  14. 14 Katharina

    Those vegan treats from the bakery sound good 🙂

    My favorite vegan places that I’ve been to are Sublime in South Florida and Harrison Street Coffee Shop in Richmond.

    (Check out Sublime’s crazy awesome menu) http://www.sublimeveg.com/

  15. 15 elise

    i have a Q for you (and possibly your staff?). im planning for my wedding in aug 2010 and im vegan, so im looking into vegan wedding cakes. the wedding will be in the bay area, since thats where im from, but i live in nyc right now, so researching bakeries is hard from so far away. i never hread of vegnews until your blog, so now im scowering the site (and loving it!) but please let me know if you have heard of or have a list of vegan cake shops that can do wedding cakes? i think you have to irder them pretty far in advance, so im trying to get on top of it now. THANKS!!!

  16. 16 lowandbhold

    Hmmm… I’m not sure how I would feel like a veggie burger that tasted like french toast… haha.

    Glad you’re week is going SO fabulously. Can’t wait to read about your first weekend in San Fran!

  17. Hi Kailey!! This is the perfect post for me, because I was wondering what kind of sweeteners vegans use! I’m not the most educated on veganism at all, but vegan means = super healthy or raw (to me), and since im’ currently hunting for the best sugar substitute there is out there, (i’m trying despeartely to wean off the artifical sugars…*gulp* splendaaa) and have no idea what to make of my options…honey, agave, truvia, maple syrup?!?!

    On that note, you really are in heaven. hahaha personal chef, TJ’s, fresh fruit…great weather…oh mannn. 🙂

    • 18 snackface

      luckytastebuds- Hey chiquita! You pose an excellent question! I’ve actually been wondering what is best for me as well. Luckily, the VegNews kitchen is stocked with all types of sweeteners, namely raw agave nectar and stevia! I’ve been using the stevia (Truvia is one brand), as it contains no calories and a tiny bit is super sweet. Therefore, even if a container of it costs a bit more, a very teeny bit goes a very long way. As a former Splenda-holic, I think stevia is a phenomenal replacement. I’ll let you know what I think of the raw agave nectar when I try it!

  18. What an amazing day you had! So awesome! It must have been fascinating talking to someone like Tal Ronnen!You do have a fab job!

    And all the food you get to munch on! Wow- so great!

    I am not sure where the vegan places are here in Toronto but there must be some! I will do some research. I would love to hit one up myself!

    Have a great Friday!!

  19. it’s ok, drooly sleep is sometimes the BEST because you know you slept like a rock. no shame in the drooling game 🙂

    speaking of drooling those vegan baked goods had me salivating! they look so good, you have such a stellar work arrangement!

    ohhh when is it your turn to cook? cant wait to see what you bust out for everyone.

    i have some vegan loves and they just got back from rome, they said there was some prime vegan noshing going on there! so i think it is pretty world wide! when i was in norway i hung with a group of kids who were all vegan as well and they took me to some tasty spots.

    french toast sticks? haha.. random. i have never tried those (the burgers..you can bet your sweet ass ive tried the BK sticks!) but i always imagined them to be really savory when i see them on blogs.. now i will think of them in a whole new light!

  20. 21 Emily

    I used to live a couple of blocks from Sticky Fingers in DC; I miss it!

    Sounds like your summer is off to an amazing start. Have fun!

  21. I love hearing all about this new job of yours and how much you love EVERY SINGLE DAY so far. That’s incredible! The people, the FOOD… oh so jealous. Beyond cool that you guys get lunch guests. OPRAH chef, seriously. I can’t wait to see what else comes out of the woodworks during your internship. WOO!

    I also love that you guys have different people making lunches every single day. How cool is that? And the awesome variety you get… wow. DO you think you’ll be enlisted for lunch duty soon? I’m sure you’ll wow em. You should include your cheetah taters haha.

    That “Cowvin Cookie” seriously does look incredible. SO incredible. I can practically taste it just by staring at the picture.

    I’ve sadly never been to a vegan restaurant. I would love to though! They seem to have MUCH better and more exciting eating fare than standard restaurants. Maybe I’ll go on a hunt, there must be SOMETHING within decent mileage of my area!

  22. 23 Bec

    Ok I want to come steal your job just for the food!

  23. don’t feel bad about being HAPPY and having a FAB time!! Love all of your fantastic food and experiences 🙂 keep it coming! yay for awesome and amazing jobs!

  24. man that food is dreamy!! sounds like you couldnt ask for a better first week!!! i am glad everything is going so well. i can tell you are gonna get so much out of this job!!!!! how happy are you that this job was clearly worth the summer move to the west coast?!? have a fantabulous weekend!

  25. 26 Lyss

    GIRLLLLLLLL.

    Okay — totes jeal, because you eat phenom food all day long and I don’t even get a lunch break because the office is so crazy! Meetings and phone calls and conferences… blah! SEND ME SOME VEGAN TREATS! Hahhaha, I kid, I kid.

    But for real, I’m glad to see you are loving your California adventure so much. 🙂 This week was worlds better than my first week here, mainly because of the big move, and I know that we both made the right choice making this leap!!!!

    Now, when we meeting 1/2 way girllllll?


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