Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Spicy Buffalo Cauliflower 'Wings'

This recipe was posted on the Peta site today . I just had to try it.  I love love love spicy food and this was completely amazing.  Although I must admit that we made to much so now I have leftovers for tomorrow!  This was completely delicious and we paired it with a salad.  On the Peta site they suggested vegan blue cheese but we used ranch instead.  


1 cup water or soy milk
1 cup flour
2 tsp. garlic powder
1 head of cauliflower, chopped into pieces
1 cup buffalo or hot sauce
1 Tbsp. melted vegan margarine

Preheat the oven to 450°F. Combine the water or soy milk, flour, and garlic powder in a bowl and stir until well combined.  Coat the cauliflower pieces with the flour mixture and place in a shallow baking dish. Bake for 18 minutes. While the cauliflower is baking, combine your buffalo sauce and olive oil or margarine in a small bowl. Pour the hot sauce mixture over the baked cauliflower and continue baking for an additional 5 to 8 minutes. 
yum and done!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Spinach Basil Pesto

I love pesto, I could most likely eat it every day of my life and be fine with that.  Taking my love for pesto to the next level I decided to experiment with adding some different veggies.  Okay truth be told, I have a rather large amount of spinach we need to eat before it turns.  So I decided to blend some in with my traditional pesto recipe.  The results - delicious!  The spinach makes it a bit more creamy, cuts the strong flavor of the garlic down as well.  As well as adding some other great vitamins to delicious pesto!  I added this batch to my pesto summer salad
• aproximently 8 ounces of fresh basil
• 1 cup to fresh baby spinach
• 3 cloves of garlic
• 3 tbsp olive oil 
• 2 tbsp pine nuts
• salt and pepper to taste

 Clean the basil and spinach and dry well and place in to your blender or food processor along with 2 tbsp olive oil and blend until the leaves are in small pieces. Then chop your garlic and add along with the pine nuts as well as the salt and pepper to taste. If the pesto seems a little dry feel free to add a bit more olive oil. 

Here is the pesto waiting!

And a happy salad with spinach basil pesto!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Don The Beachcombers

We went to Don the Beachcombers on Thursday April 27.  We arrived for a late lunch at 2:50.  The restaurant is located on Pacific Coast Highway, in a beach community and tourist destination.  The original opened in Los Angeles in 1934, and was only a cafe at the time.
Pretty nice sign!

The restaurant can be seen from a distance given it’s expansive parking lot and large sign, the restaurant itself has three separate banquet rooms as well as a large main dining room.  The parking area and the land around the physical space is filled with tropical plants and palms.  It feels like an oasis of the tropics.  

Just like many Tiki bars and restaurants it is dark in the entrance, as you are supposed to leave your outside worries behind, the inside has many skylights and a larger picture window with seating behind a thatched bamboo curtain to defuse some of the light. Upon entering the main dining area we were greeted with Hawaiian music, which was at a soft level so not to interfere with talking or listening. It was the best representation of a Tiki restaurant I have ever been in.  It was very clean and inviting and our booth seats were very comfortable. 

Our view from the table of the waterfall

The menus were laid out well although they did not have many vegetarian options, on the top of the main page it stated there were vegetarian options but you had to ask your server about them.  I find this generally annoying especially in a place like California where the population of vegetarians is higher.

The other direction from our table
We first ordered Mai Ti’s, with is a traditional Tiki drink, and they were exquisite.  It was also a fast turnaround to get the drinks delivered to us.  Which is impressive considering it is all hand juiced and mixed. 
Our Mai Ti's! 
Our server informed us that we could have a veggie burger instead of the meat burger and we both ordered it.  It came with either fries or hawaiian cabbage salad.  
My husband and myself were going to this restaurant to see it, we expected great drinks and  didn’t really expect great food.  Much to my surprise the veggie burger was hand made and very delicious.  A lot of places will use a frozen patty and charge to much for it.  This was well worth the $14.00 a piece we paid for them.  They tasted fresh and the vegetables served on them were also very fresh, consisting of hawaiian onion tomato and romaine lettuce, then toped with mango-ginger aioli on a brioche bun.  

All in all I would go back to Don the Beachcombers again, the only hesitation I would have is that they really have limited choices for vegetarians.  So it would be hard for me to choose that restaurant in Southern California, over so many others that have many more vegetarian selections.  Everything from the service to the atmosphere was top notch. It is a destination restaurant, just something that we had to see.  Maybe next time we go there it might be just for the Mai Ti’s!

What is this guy staring at?