The Slide Inn

 

Hi guys! Have you heard of The Slide Inn? It recently opened in Portland (right next door to the Jade Lounge, on 23 and Ankeny). It’s got a German-theme going, so I wasn’t sure about it at first. (Vegan German Food? What would that entail?)

My friend and I had plans to get together yesterday for happy hour, and all the spots we wanted to check out happen to be closed Mondays. Of all the rotten luck. So when she suggested The Slide Inn, I hopped online, saw they were open Mondays (thank God), and their Happy Hour is from 530-7. PERFECT.

 

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The menu had quite a few vegan options. We weren’t terribly starving, but we decided to share a few things.

 

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The warm spinach salad with tofu, carrots and red bell peppers was good. It was sweet and slightly spicy. It was slightly over-dressed, but the flavors were spot-on. I would totally order it again.

 

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The salad rolls were a favorite of both of ours. The wraps were light on the rice noodles, heavy on the non-romaine lettuce, and served with a thick peanut dipping sauce. I will totally be back for these.

 

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The Yam Fries with horseradish ketchup were so good. I mean, how can you go wrong with horseradish ketchup? You can’t. I like that the fries are hand-cut. I LOVE that they’re served with horseradish ketchup. There’s also whole grain mustard available that goes splendidly with these little guys. I preferred the skinnier crunchier fries, but the thicker big ones sure got eaten too.

 

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The whole spread

 

The Slide Inn is the perfect spot for summer people watching. (All the single ladies: my friend and I conducted a scientific study and that corner sees A LOT of cute boys.)

It’s a quiet street, with families and friends walking around, bicyclists going by, and the occasional car whizzing past. For ever car that drove by, there were 5 bikes. (<—This one was not a scientific count.)

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I already have plans to  go back next Monday. White wine, boy-watching and vegan food on a sunny sidewalk? Color me perfectly pleased.

Kale Chips, Alpacas and Sunny Day Shenanigans

 

Hi guys! I have a blog! This is it. I seem to forget sometimes.

 

Guess what? I got a dehydrator for Christmas. It took me six months to plug it in, use it, and then read the instruction manual. Turns out it’s remarkably easy to use, and makes the most phenomenal kale chips. All I had to do was plug it in and turn it on—there aren’t even any temperature settings on there, so there are, like, minimal ways I can mess up using it.

 

Last week I made a cheesy nut-free sauce to coat the kale. I used tahini, yellow pepper, mustard, coconut liquid aminos (my roomie is soy-free, so no soy sauce), yeast, and jalapeño pepper.

 

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Into the beloved Vitamix went these ingredients. I tossed the Dinosaur Kale (RAWR. Doesn’t this kale LOOK dinosaury?) in the ‘cheesy’ sauce and laid out the kale on the 5 racks. I thought it was going to take 14 hours or something ridiculous.

But, no—they were ready in just over 2 hours! I wonder if it’s because the internal temperature is higher than normal for dehydrators? Dunno, but I was stoked.

This week, today, I’m making lemon dill kale chips.

I didn’t feel like going through all the work of making my Vitamix dirty (it’s my Saturday, I’m lazy). I mixed together olive oil, lots and lots of dill, fresh lemon juice, coconut aminos, a touch of rice vinegar, sea salt and cayenne.

They’re dehydrating right now, but I tried a bite before I trayed them up and they’re going to be great, I can feel it in my vegan bones.

FYI: My brand of dehydrator is called Nesco.

 

What else have I been up to, besides finding new and exciting ways to eat kale and using my Christmas present for the first time in July?

I’ve been drinking a lot of Vega. I love the berry kind in smoothies, but recently got sent a few samples of other kinds to try.

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It took me awhile to get into the taste of Vega (and I still can’t behind the chocolate) but I’m loving the berry and the tropical flavors. I add ‘em to my morning smoothies (usually a spinach/kale mix with banana, frozen fruit and orange juice) and they give me SO MANY NUTRIENTS and added energy.

 

What else have I been up to? Oh, so much.

I’ve dined on the rooftop at Departure (BEST and current vegan food favorite in Portland);

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picked cherries from my mom’s cherry tree on a recent visit home;

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Fell in love with some alpacas on the same trip;

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I call this one “Grandpa” because just LOOK at those eyebrows.

 

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This one I call Ringo.

 

drank way too much cider on a sunny patio with friends (on multiple occasions);

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ran (<—I use that term loosely) a muddy 5k in the woods with my bestie;

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played in the kitchen a few times;

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Chocolate cupcakes with vanilla frosting and fresh raspberries made for my mom’s birthday

 

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Chickpea Blondies. My new favorite recipe. I’ve made them three times this summer already.

 

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Potato shells stuffed with kale and corn

 

…and dined at Portobello with some Vida Vegan Con friends:

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I’ve also been hard at work on Vida Vegan Con; our early bird registration tickets sold out within 24 hours!! Don’t worry, we still have tickets available; if you’re interested in spending a weekend in Portland with a bunch of amazing inspirational fellow vegans and eating as much vegan junk food as your body can handle, come to Portland next May! Info on tickets available here.

And here’s one more picture to close out this post:

 

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Portland’s pretty.

Early Summer Shenanigans {Photo Essay}

 

Even though June 21st is the Summer Solstice and marks the longest day of the year, summer doesn’t really arrive in Portland until July/August. Which sort of stinks, but just means that when we get the random days of sun once a week, we Portlanders really know how to take advantage.

So even though it doesn’t quite feel like summer yet here in Portland, I’ve been intentionally enjoying the long days of sunlight and the brief opportunities for summer dresses and sangria.

 

The following photos were taken with my Instagram camera. I discovered gramfeed through Jess’s recent blog post. It’s rad to know there’s an Instagram app for the web. I’m so confused by technology.

 

Cinnamon Soft Serve from Blossoming Lotus

cinnamon soft serve

 

Hendricks and St Germain Martini from the bar at my house

Hendricks Martini

 

Out and About at PNCA graduation after-party with coworkers

instagram fun

 

Pearl District

Pearl District

 

Pioneer Courthouse Square

Pioneer Courthouse Square

 

Roses.

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Nickel Arcade on Belmont

avalon

 

Summer Dress and blue shoes

summer dress

 

 

The following photos were taken with my plebeian point-and-shoot camera.

 

Sunset on a bike ride home from work

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Fun at the Nickel Arcade:

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The Farmer’s Market that’s 2 blocks from my house just opened last week. I know what I’m doing every single Sunday morning all summer long.

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And that’s my early summer so far. Coming up next: a short visit home to visit my mom and little brother (my friend Millie is taking the Greyhound down with me and hanging out with my family for the weekend—it’s going to be a blast.) and other than that, I don’t have many plans  yetfor the summer. Working a lot (at the BrewPub and Vida Vegan Con—fall AND summer events), and hopefully getting in a couple camping, hiking and swimming trips. I really want to make a visit to Hood River, and would love to get up to Washington to do a wine tasting tour.

What are your plans for the summer?

Veggie Grill Downtown

Thank you so much for the incredibly sweet and supportive comments on my post last week about my dad. The comments, and the intention behind them, mean a lot to me.

 

I’m going to switch things up a little bit now. I’m going to talk about Veggie Grill. Within the last few weeks, I was invited to try their new menu items and to be one of the first to dine at their new downtown Portland location.

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I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: I love Veggie Grill. In part because I think it’s cool they don’t pay for advertising; instead they just invite people to check them out and hope they spread the word. (Recently they had a day where if you bring in a Veggie Grill virgin who had never enjoyed Veggie Grill, the virgin ate for free. That’s pretty cool.) In part because I really like the mission of the company—the founders and CEO’s really want to spread the word that eating vegan is convenient, affordable, and most importantly, delicious. And in part because the food doesn’t just sound good; it is good.

Veggie Grill makes my favorite buffalo wings (now in salad form!!), my favorite Thai-style salad, and my new favorite whatever-it-is VG Rollers. Is it an appetizer? An entrée? Both? Whatever it is, I’ll take a full order, please.

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B-Wing Salad: Buffalo wings over chopped romaine, avocado, celery, roasted corn salsa, and ranch dressing. $9.95 * New Item

 

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VG Rollers, served appetizer-style in first picture and entrée style in second picture (minus the 2 I already ate): Blackened chickin’, cabbage, creamy Santa Fe spread rolled in grilled flour tortillas, served with salsa and chili $7.95 *New Item

 

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Thai Chickin’ Salad: Chillin’ chickin’, romaine, cabbage, corn salsa, green onion, mandarin oranges, sesame seeds, cilantro, wontons and spicy Thai dressing $9.95

 

Veggie Grill opened on May 31st in the old Carl Jr’s spot in downtown Portland on SW 5th and Taylor. Centrally-located affordable and convenient vegan food? YES PLEASE!!! I occasionally miss Veganopolis (you guys remember that place?) because it was convenient and had a pretty extensive (though expensive) menu. While there are a handful of vegan options downtown, most of them are carts. I don’t work downtown, so when I’m down there, I typically want a sit-down option with a roof over my head.

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I like that they offer beer and wine, though the peach iced tea is my jam. I can never seem to stray from it. Don’t even waste your time with the other drinks. Sure, strawberry lemonade sounds good, but seriously, try the peach iced tea.

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In addition to offering the B-Wing Salad and the VG Rollers, the new menu items also include a Crab Cake and Buffalo Bomber sandwich, and 3 new Homestyle Plates (with gluten-free options available, too). Oh, and we can’t forget the new dessert: Chocolate Pudding Parfait.

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This was a sample of the crab cake, cut up with a side of the tarter sauce that comes on the sandwich.

 

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Crispy Chickin’ Plate:Fried chickin’, cauliflower-mashed potatoes, porcini mushroom gravy with fresh rosemary and steamin’ kale (with a terrific ginger dressing!) $9.95

 

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Urban Plate (Gluten-free option): Blackened tempeh-caramelized onion-portobello mushroom stack, steamin’ kale, sliced tomato salad and chipotle ranch $9.95

 

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Blackened Chickin’ Plate: Papaya salsa topping, steamin’ kale and quinoa pilaf $9.50

 

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Buffalo Bomber: Crispy chickin’ tossed with spicy buffalo sauce, tomato, red onion, lettuce and ranch dressing $8.95

 

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Chocolate Pudding Parfait: Made-from-scratch pudding, topped with chocolate sauce, crushed cookies, walnuts and VG crema $3.50. (This is SOOOOO GOOD.)

 

One last pic:

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Jess’s cute freckled arm.

Oh, and one more picture of the B Wing Salad:

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