Thursday, September 17, 2015

Free From Labels!

Today's Mofo prompt is an interesting one. Make or eat a local dish. Seattle doesn't really have a certain food that you instantly think of like some cities. So I did some searching around on the webz, and I still don't have a specific food. It just adds to my deep love of Seattle. Seattle is a mish mash of cuisine, and just like me, Seattle refuses to be defined by one certain thing. Like me, Seattle is extremely claustrophobic and does not want to be put in a box. I found certain common items in my searches, such as seafood, and this fast food burger place known as Dick's. People in this city lose their minds over this place. All they do is burgers, shakes and fries. I don't think they even offer any fresh vegetable choices for toppings, and I know they have nothing to offer vegetarians, let alone vegans. Poo poo on them. But it is seriously very important to Seattle, and I do feel like Seattle would be in deep mourning if Dick's changed, or went away.
Seattle is extremely vegan friendly. Even the dinkiest of grocery stores sell vegan cheese, and kombucha! And, Seattle has some great vegan restaurants. There is a fancy pants restaurant called Plum Bistro that is very beloved by vegans and many non vegans! I have never had the pleasure, and maybe never will, but I'm sure it's amazing. There are several fine dining vegetarian restaurants as well. There are vegan diners, like the Wayward Vegan Cafe which are more in my price range. And almost every pizza shop has some type of vegan cheese. Coming off of feeling so repressed from living in Erie PA. (seriously do not attempt to live there.) it is just crazy to feel so welcome and totally normal!
The word that comes to mind when I think of Seattle cuisine is diversity. I was raised in Ohio.What I'm trying to say is for a lot of my life pizza was considered exotic. So when I first moved to Seattle, I had never in my life had Vietnamese food, or authentic Chinese food, or proper Thai food, or Ethiopian food, or even falafel! And that is just scratching the surface of what Seattle has to offer. I had my first Banh Mi here, my first steaming delicious bowl of Pho! All of these amazing, exotic flavors that I have come to love, and use in my home cooking came from these amazing little restaurants I've discovered in Seattle! I also learned more about other cultures than I ever learned in school. Along the way I would favor certain little places with the best Pho, or the spiciest tofu, and I would develop a relationship with the owners.
Another thing that comes to mind when I think of Seattle is EXPENSIVE. Seattle is where I developed  my deep affection for lentils! They are as cheap and much more nutritious than Ramen! I also think of soup. Seattle is also where I discovered my love of soup(usually lentil) for breakfast. With so many grey, dreary days, I get the blues and need to start my day with cozy and comfort. This final word is what led to my "regional dish". I made soup out of stuff I had on hand, so as to not have to spend any money. I had a small box of wild rice, and I was very inspired by this chowder on the  lovely blog Tea and Sympatico  so I decided to take a stab at creamy wild rice soup! It turned out pretty dang good for my first attempt. I have never had creamy wild rice soup vegan or not, so I  don't know if it is authentic, but it is delicious!
Creamy and comforting
                                                                   Vegan Creamy Wild Rice Soup
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large carrot diced
  • 1C. diced mushrooms
  • 3 Small red potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1 T. Oregano
  • 1 tsp. poultry seasoning
  • S&P to taste
  • 1/2 C. wild rice
  • 1/2 C. brown rice
  • 1 T. Soy Sauce
  • 1/4 C. Nutritional Yeast
  • 1/2 C. soaked cashews
  • 5 cups water
  • 1/2 to 3/4 C. frozen peas
  • Juice of one lemon
Sautee the onion and garlic in a small amount of olive oil or water on medium heat for about four or five minutes. Add the carrot, mushrooms and potato along with the Oregano, poultry seasoning, and S& P to taste. Sautee for three or four more minutes, and Deglaze the pan with the soy sauce. Add the wild and brown rice, and the water. you can also use vegetable stock, I just didn't have any. You can also add the nutritional yeast, and bring it all to a boil, and turn the heat to medium low, and simmer away for thirty to forty five minutes. enjoy the heavenly smell of your house. When the rice is to your desired tenderness, (I went forty minutes) make your cashew cream. Blend the soaked cashews with one half cup water and a pinch of salt. Blend until smooth and creamy, and add to your soup. Stir to combine, and add your frozen peas. Allow the peas to cook for about two or three minutes, turn off heat and add your lemon juice. Adjust Salt and pepper, and serve with some crusty bread and a green salad and feel cozy and loved!


  1. Great post! I like the NO LABEL thing! Where in Ohio are you originally from?

    1. I was born in Canton, and lived in Columbus and Massillon and also Coshocton. As a later teen I lived in Sandusky, and Port Clinton. My first love lived in Huron!

  2. Yum, that soup looks extremely comforting! I am a huge soup fan too. It's my favourite lunch. I was in my local health food shop yesterday and the owner gave me yellow split peas for free as they were up to the sell by date. Can't wait to cook up a vat of split pea soup this weekend. Seattle sounds so great for vegans. I went to visit a friend in Vancouver a few years ago and we made a trip to Portland but sadly didn't gave time to visit Seattle too.

  3. I looove split peas! That's awesome to have some for free! I have heard Portland is the mecca for vegans! I hope to make it there soon. I linked your blog, and I don't know what happened. I'm going to see if I can fix it!