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Friday, August 23, 2013

Mom's Vegan Dinner Party

Whoa, when I tried to write this post it took me a while to even find the button to write a new post. Has it been that long? I have been cooking a fair amount but on Monday I let my mother take over the vegan dinner duties.
She invited G and his parents to dinner and she came up with a wonderful, seasonal, mostly locally-sourced (!) all-vegan menu (her first [deliberately] all-vegan meal!) I didn't even really help, except to stir some quinoa, as I was running errands in the city all day. You've seen the celebrations G's family can throw. I think my mom stood her own.
Cicero and Seneca helped set the table:

Haha sorry if this was unsanitary.
G's parents arrived with some dolmas and hot peppers and G himself arrived with back-up olives. We put those out with some hummus (Greg, it was Athenos original,) and sliced bread. Plus wine and/or champagne for whoever wanted.
We then adjourned to eat.


I'm sorry I didn't get separate photos of each dish because everything was wonderful, BUT, clockwise from the top: grilled summer squash, quinoa with black beans, an awesome carrot salad with cilantro, apple, sesame oil, and sesame seeds, and a tomato and raw corn salad. So good, and so fresh. The tomatoes and corn were from the farmer's market, maybe the squash was too?
I may have mentioned this before, but G's dad is diabetic (though he will eat anything.) Not sure if my mother knew that but I think this was all appropriate for him. Also, note the protein without the presence of fake meat! Beans and ancient grains all the way. All really delicious.
For dessert, my mother made an apricot and blueberry fruit salad, also sourced from the farmer's market!


She poured a little almond extract on top and it was incredible. G kept giving me his blueberries (whatever, dude) which went perfectly with the extra dessert I brought - vegan brownies and carrot cake from local Ridgewood bakery, Rudy's.


The carrot cake is a new addition to Rudy's vegan offerings and I am SO happy it was there. I love, love carrot cake (there used to be a bakery across the street from Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx where I ran track meets in High School and to reward myself for the 5+ mile runs, I'd scarf a huge piece of carrot cake afterward...mmmmm) and both these offerings were fantastic. G was really happy with them. They aren't greasy or too sweet or anything.
G also brought along non-vegan chocolate-covered espresso beans, which probably went well with everything else.


All-important water between multiple glasses of really tasty wine.
So thanks, Ken and Gerri for coming over, thanks to my folks for hosting, thanks G for being wonderful, thanks Cicero and Seneca for not knocking over any wine glasses. Cheers to families and friends and vegan food.
Nice job, mom!! (N.B. She and I went to a Mets game the next night and she even ordered a vegan hot dog! However, she didn't like it. The quinoa was definitely a better choice than fake meat.)

32 comments:

  1. What a feast! Everything — your mom's cooking plus the contributed food — looks delicious and beautiful. Sounds like a perfect evening with great guests. Not sure about the cats on the table, but that's probably because I have a dog.

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    1. Ha! I always think the same thing; I can't picture the dog on the table. Probably because I work for her and if I accidentally toss a toy that ends up there, she barks for me to get it instead of trying to get it herself.

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  2. What an awesome dinner!! I am super impressed by your mom, everything sounds really good- esp that carrot salad. And the tomatoe corn thing. And, um, all of it!
    Love the run ending with carrot cake. Not the same at all but after spin classes i always make a detour for an iced soy latte- its the little things.

    Soooooooo.......... Is this the first time mr and mrs G met mom?? It sounds like a really great evening all around.
    Ttrockwood
    Ps
    Athenos hummus is so good! I tried Abraham's the other day (sale at fairway) and its maybe even better- smoother at least.

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    1. We all have to look forward to a little treat now and then.
      G's folks have met my parents one other time...neither was a disaster. I never buy Athenos! But it was really good. Abraham's is good, too, but I wish they had a broader selection of flavors.

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  3. Well done, Mom! Btw, lovely cats, haha, they did the table really well! Mmmm dolmas, when did I have dolmas?! I really want some and plus hummus, I tried a Greek hummus product at a grocery in Spain, and it was pretty creamy and delicious, not as nutty as some hummus products in the U.S. I wish I can feast on all of these beautiful components in your dish: grilled summer squash, quinoa with black beans and a refreshing carrot salad. Mmmmmm, I want some carrot cake and vegan brownies. I haven't seen any vegan desserts like this in Spain, except for Loving Hut Valencia, but they close temporarily until Sept 9th due to holidays.

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    1. Aren't they pretty? So funny all the international foods you are trying just in Spain!
      I've gotta get to a Loving Hut.

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  4. Very nice job, mom!! That's wonderful that she'll do this sort of thing and everything she made sounds delicious.

    I love that the meal came complete with kitties. Crystal would always sit by our plates while we ate. I miss that.

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    1. It was delicious; I think she did a great job. During the meal, the cats were banned from the table - they were pretty well behaved. I wish my cat would do that!

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  5. Ok, how can I convince my mom to do this? Or maybe I can just hire yours? ;) I love that she used locally sourced ingredients and didn't load up on the faux meat and cheese - GO MOM!

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    1. maybe throw her a dinner party, and she'll throw you one in return?

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  6. You say, "note the protein without the presence of fake meat!" like it's a good thing. I'm sure everyone had to stop off for a Veggie Burger on the way home.

    Cooler than having a Mom who can put together a vegan dinner party: Having a Mom who lets cats on the dining room table. You're really getting her in line.

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    1. I think the champagne filled us all up enough.
      She definitely spoils those little kittens. my dad is a bit less forgiving, ha.

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  7. What a delectable feast Dolmas <3<3<3 plus I love fresh fruit for dessert and don't do it often enough.

    My kitties also table-surf and I've given up on chasing them down. They are cleaner than most people I know, anyway :P

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    1. I don't either! And I never change up the fruits I eat. The apricots were wonderful.
      There's no rationalizing with kittens :)

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  8. This is so lovely. I miss multi-course-yet-casual meals with my family back home. Love.

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    1. It was very sweet. When are you returning to Australia??

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    2. I have a visa deadline, so that will make me go home at some point.

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  9. Oh, everything looks super great! I love that your mom did this. I was still eating corn from a side dish when my parents had me over for dinner, until I met my G and started having kids. Your mom is getting a head start!

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    1. It was very nice of her. my mom did it now; she'll never have to again!

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  10. Wow, go mom!!! What a beautiful feast, I'm so impressed by her vegan fare! You know I love my mediterranean apps and I am so wanting the quinoa with black beans and carrot salad (minus cilantro, ha!).

    When we had our cats my mom used to let them on the table and it drove me crazy :X Although we know I'm a bit of a germophobe so I was always a little bummed out about that. I just got home from babysitting Tyler and the cats for the week and their cats would jump up on the island. I may or may not have cleaned them out of antibacterial wipes ;)

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    1. Yes, you and the dolmas!
      I'm a bit of a germaphobe too but somehow cats sneak under my radar on that one.

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  11. Your mom is awesome, especially because she didn't even use storebought vegan meat! Do your parents and Greg's parents hang out every now and then? Sometimes I find it hard to bridge the gap between two families. I love chocolate-covered espresso beans but they throw me into a state of jitters, just like their liquid kin coffee. Sounds like good times!

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    1. And this was her first time using quinoa! This was only the second time our parents had met each other but I think it went smoothly. Perhaps even moreso next times... G and I are both from nearby so it's easy to get the two families together - I don't know how it is for you and michael. maybe if you hosted something first?

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  12. Wow; has your mom ever considered working for LifeThyme...or Whole Foods? I'd definitely buy those dishes by weight on the regular. I think that vegan parties are so much more fun; who needs a whole meal to be arranged around a single dish not everyone likes anyway?

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    1. She's a little busy with her current job... maybe LifeThyme would be a nice break ;)
      It's true - once you are confident with the ingredients, vegan meals are really easier and you don't have to plan a specific dish for one person to eat all alone.

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  13. I want some of that carrot salad RIGHT NOW. This sounds like such a great dinner & a great party too!

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    1. It was awesome! I never have the patience to grate carrots, but I wish I did. And the sesame oil was really special.

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  14. Now that is a good lineup - the food looks great, plus there was booze and cake. BOOZE AND CAKE. Love dolmas, and quinoa. Not sure if I love it as much as booze and cake though.

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    1. Booze and cake! Bordered with dolmas! Pretty perfect.

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  15. How awesome that your mom cooked an entirely vegan dinner! It looks like a great party.

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