Monday, November 25, 2013

A Little Friendly Activism

I'm not really the activist type, unless you consider cooking and sharing good vegan food activism. I actually feel that my specialty is "kitchen activism," but the other day I was asked to participate in a "tabling" with our local Vegan Meetup group.

There aren't many of us, but our fearless leader, Carrie, is an amazing little ball of energy, all directed at being a voice for animals. I agreed to help out for an hour or two in the morning, and ended up being there most of the day. It was freezing cold outside, and a storm blew in later in the afternoon, but that didn't stop us.

Several of us brought food samples to share passersby, and we all took our stations at the long table filled with pamphlets, snacks, and petitions. I was amazed at how many people stopped to chat, ask questions, and see what we were up to. They were (mostly) friendly, curious, open, and delighted to try our food. We offered little Tofurky sandwiches, cashew cheese on crackers, and pumpkin bars, also made with cashews. (Recipes below.)

Here I am, chatting with Bret, who just happens to be a butcher at Cid's. It could have been awkward, but he made a point of telling my friends that he's been to dinner at my house, and loved the food. Maybe he'll switch over to being a produce guy some day. Doors are open and seeds are planted. You never know!

Everything was a hit, and many people were surprised at how good it all was. I was happy I'd thought to print out the recipes to hand out. A lot of folks took them, and I happily imagine there will be some surprise vegan dishes on lots of Thanksgiving tables in Taos this year. Many thanks to Cid's Market for letting us hang out there all day, and to all the Taos Vegans who cooked and helped out. It was a great day.

The Recipes:

Tofurky Sandwiches
Rudi's Spelt Ancient Grains bread
Hickory Smoked Tofurky
Daiya Jack Cheese
Grapeseed Oil Veganise Better than Mayo

Pumpkin Bars
1 1/3 c soaked cashews
1/2 c maple syrup
1 can (or equivalent) cooked pumpkin (or winter squash)
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp EACH allspice, nutmeg, and clove
for pie: bake at 400 for 15 min, then at 350 for 30-40 min
*this also make a delicious pudding: after blending, put in fridge until ready to eat

Cashew Cheese Spread
1 cup raw cashews, soaked 1 hour or more
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/2 tsp salt (or to taste)
1 tsp garlic powder
1 T Herbes de Provence (or dry basil)
2 tsp miso
1 T tamari
1 T dijon mustard
1 T apple cider vinegar
water or almond milk (or any plant milk)
Drain the soaked cashews, and place them in your food processor. Add all other ingredients, except the almond milk. Blend everything well, adding the milk a little at a time, and scraping the sides of the bowl every so often, until you have a nice smooth consistency.

And don't forget to enter to win a free copy of One-Dish Vegan!

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