Each year since I moved here, I've promised myself that I would get to the orchard for Honey Crisp picking the following year. This year, I held good on my own promise--barely, but I did it. Part of the convincing myself to make the trek out to New Hope was not only the allure of picking my favorite apple directly from the tree myself, but the awesome vegan restaurant not too far from the orchard.
Solebury Orchards, it is not an event I particularly enjoy going it alone for and I usually grab a friend if only to have someone to endure with me the inevitable crews of unwieldy children and their oblivious parents. While I do have to admit, some of the little rugrats are cute, they (and I) do not have the patience for their parents incessant need to pose them with the tractor, eating an apple or propped up in some other variety of treasured memory. However, given the short window allowed to pick your own Honey Crisps, I had not time or available friend to force into my car for the adventure... so I went it alone. And, despite having to weave my personage and my apple picking bag through throngs of adults shouting, "Bobby, pick THIS apple!!" I managed to fill a bag to the point where carrying it was, at best, difficult, in almost no time. Partly because the some of the apples were as big as my head. Ok, a slight exaggeration, but only slight as many are two-handers. In the end, I netted 28.1 pounds of Honey Crisps.
From the orchard, it was onto Sprig & Vine. I've still not had a chance to make it there for their dinner menu (though I desperately want to), their lunch menu is amazing. Perhaps it is the simple excitement of knowing that I can order anything on the menu without having to ask for something removed or having to compromise in any way my vegan diet, but the choices on the menu are not easy... but in the end, I had to go with the sandwich that has literally been on my mind since the first visit there--the Oyster Mushroom Po'Boy. Bearing in mind that before going vegan I wouldn't have eaten a traditional Po'Boy (a fan of shellfish I never was), this version sold me as mushrooms and pickles make almost anything better with their very presence let alone being the mainstays of the sandwich. Simply stated, it is amazing.
Having learned my lesson previously, I had half the sandwich wrapped for later. I was just about ready to finish up my iced tea and pay my check when the waitress casually slipped me the dessert menu (clever pixie, of course as a former waitress myself, I would have done the same). My will weakened and still having over 30 minutes on the parking meter, I decided a few bites of the chocolate mousse pie garnished with a coffee ice cream wouldn't be so bad... and it wasn't, excepting I ate more than just a few bites. Still, it was worth all the calories I'm sure I will have to run an hour to burn later this week.
CSA share this week... so with the pies in the oven, I decided I would give a try to the chili recipe I found earlier in the week in Veganomicon... well, sort of... their recipe was for a verde chili and I adapted it to using red tomatoes since that's what I had on hand. A rich combination of poblano peppers, jalapenos, onion, garlic and other spices coupled with a hint of lime and loaded with potato and, you guessed it, apples. I realize this may not sound very good on first presentation, but I can assure you, it all works together--and nicely. And since I still have over 20 pounds of apples, I'm now taking some suggestions.
japanese vegetable pancakes
6 days ago