Mad Cowgirls: vegan goodies close to home

Bookcase at Mad Cowgirls

Mad Cowgirls vegan grocery shop in Preston is a treasure trove of vegan goodies. The big advantage of this shop over the Cruelty Free Shop (for me) is that I can drop in quickly to grab something for dinner – because I can easily park nearby (with no parking metres!). They stock everything from Botanical Cuisine nut cheeses to chocolate-coated honeycomb (no honey, of course) to cute vegan jewellery and t-shirts, and even humane mousetraps.

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Miss Chu and Madame K feed us

Tempura banana with strawberries

Computer problems sort of fixed…for now. So I’m back with a post I originally wrote with an actual pen, on actual paper, last week, when I couldn’t use my computer at all. It’s all about last weekend…

I’ve just had a really fun weekend. Great weather, delicious food, comedy, vegan lollies, gardening, catching up with old friends – and, as I mentioned in my last short post, finding palm-oil free Panko breadcrumbs!

There’s just too much for one post, so I’ll start here, with a couple of the places we ate: Miss Chu and Madame K’s Vegetarian.

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Update: Palm oil free Panko breadcrumbs

Just a quick update on my What’s that ingredient? post from last week.

Kooka Crumbs Panko breadcrumbs

In the post, I mentioned that the Nisshin Seifun Panko breadcrumbs contained palm oil. I hadn’t realised that until I got them home, and thought I’d have to search far and wide to find palm oil free Panko breadcrumbs.

Coincidentally, a couple of days ago I heard that there is another brand that is readily available in Australia, which doesn’t contain palm oil. Hooray!

Kook A Krumb (above) use canola oil instead. I found them in my regular supermarket, in the baking section.

That sick feeling

I’ve had a big weekend, and have a couple of new posts on the go…but I’ve had hideous computer/iPad problems today and…well, I don’t want to go into it, because I get that sick feeling. I’m sure you know the one.  :-/

Hopefully it’ll be sorted soon, because I have to report on all the food I bought and/or ate this weekend. And there was some really good stuff! :-)

Curry Cafe: It’s Thali Time and everybody’s happy!

H's dinner

Wednesday was exhausting – work, appointments and parent-teacher-student meetings. It was only 6.30 pm, but we were all exhausted, we hadn’t made it home – we needed food and we needed it fast.

We all (yes all 4 of us!) agreed to meet up at Curry Cafe in High Street, Northcote (or Westgarth to Westgarthians) and happily, we lucked out – it was Thali time!

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What’s that ingredient? Cheat sheet for new vegans

Panko Bread Crumbs

Yesterday I found Panko Breadcrumbs in the supermarket! This was exciting stuff for me. I come across lots of recipes that use them (thank you Isa Chandra Moskowitz!) and have never had any idea what they were or where to get them, and I’d given up looking. This time, I wasn’t even looking for them but they practically jumped off the shelf and hit me in the face.

This reminded me of all the ingredients I’d never used before I went vegan – and how much time I spent trying to figure out what they were, and then find them.

To help new and confused (particularly Australian) vegans, I thought it might be helpful to put together a list of the ingredients that stumped me.

So, if you don’t know your nooch from your Bragg’s, and have no idea where to start in finding besan flour or vital wheat gluten, this is the list for you!

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Winning the lottery at Smith & Daughters

Paella for 2

A daggy middle-aged couple walk into the newest and grooviest restaurant in town. The place has been open less than a week, and it’s buzzing and packed full. They have no booking. All the tables are reserved. What happens next will amaze you!

[Did that sound enough like one of those silly social media articles trying its best to go viral?]

What actually happened was that the pair were welcomed, quickly found a couple of stools at the end of the bar, and had a great meal!

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