4

Dinner at The Cornish Arms, visit 2

Today is a child free night for Husband and I as we have some stuff to attend tomorrow morning.  We didn’t actually plan to go to the Cornish Arms (which is why my photos were taken with my phone), we’d been driving around returning library books and as we were close enough to Sydney Road, we decided to go to dinner there.

I appreciate the effort the Cornish Arms go to to provide good vegan pub food options, though they are on the expensive side.  Today’s vegan options were:

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Decisions decisions!  On our previous visit I went for the vegan parma and I didn’t really want something with a big slab of seitan so I went for the Texas BBQ Pork Bun.  I think that’s what it’s called, the Cornish Arms website seems to have a different menu.  Anyway, it was as described: “vegan roast pork cooked with housemade BBQ sauce, roast veppers and cheez.  Served with a tangy slaw and deep fried pickles”:

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The deep fried pickles had a light, airy kind of batter.  Taste wise, they didn’t make much of an impact but for me the novelty was really in eating something puffy.  I told Husband that I better open one up to show the blog audience:

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The roast pork bun itself was pretty good.  Having a BBQ sauce would pretty much put it on the sweet side of things but I didn’t find it too sickly sweet like other BBQ sauces can be.  The bread seemed your standard bakery bread roll.  The slaw was nice and not too much of it which was good. Because really, this meal is all about the bun and the puffy pickles!

Extreme closeup:

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Husband ordered a non vegan meal (he said it was good) and we didn’t order drinks.  We always stick with the jugs of water.  Our bill came to $36.  Service was friendly and our meals took about thirty minutes to arrive.

I asked about the vegan dessert options and was told there was a peach cheesecake and a cookies n cream cheesecake.  Neither option appealed to me which was probably a good thing considering how much cake I ate the other day… anyway, as I said earlier I do appreciate the effort that has gone in to the Cornish Arms vegan menu but as with many other establishments offering vegan meals, I do wish there was more in the way of house made vegan dessert.

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The Cornish Arms is located at 163 Sydney Road in Brunswick. There was live music tonight but we chose to sit outside as it was a pleasant night!

16

Vegan Black Metal Chef, Isa Chandra M, Terry Hope R and dinner at the Corner Hotel in Richmond!

Plenty of vegans around the country are super pleased right now because we have just been bombarded with vegan chef amazingness.  All in the form of Vegan Black Metal Chef, Terry Hope Romero and Isa Chandra Moskowitz.  In fact, some interstate vegans are super pleased enough that they traveled to Melbourne for tonight’s vegan cooking demonstration and Q&A, held at the Corner Hotel in Richmond.

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I rocked up on my own and because I was way early, I decided to get a meal there at the Corner Hotel.  To be honest nothing on their online menu really appealed to me but I grabbed a menu from the bar anyway.  I’m so glad I did (I had been thinking of walking around a bit to find something), because there was this fantastic vegan menu for the night (I think it was just for tonight, that’s what I overheard someone saying).

Straight away, one meal jumped out at me: the roast vegetable soba bowl.  The description to me seemed like they were making Isa’s exact recipe from Isa Does It.  This really appealed to me because I have made it before but mixed up ingredients and it didn’t turn out like I’d hoped.  Purely my fault of course.  Anyway, I figured that if this indeed was Isa’s recipe, then I best try it because it was made by a real live proper chef person.  The other options were a black eyed pea burger with mango salsa and wedges; vegan Southern style fried chicken and a vegan shepherd’s pie.

You guys.  I am SO GLAD I chose this.  The dressing sauce was fantastic and I think… I think I now love the miso-tahini combination.  I neverrrr thought I’d be saying that, not this year at least. Previously, the miso-tahini combination kinda brought on the vommies a little. As soon as I go and buy some cauliflower, I’ll be making this following Isa Does It exactly:

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After hanging out taking my time reading newspapers and stuff, I noticed people going up to Isa and Terry to sign their books.  Isa and Terry were a few tables away and I talked myself out of asking them to sign.  Because having social anxiety can really suck.  But I had taken along Vegan Cupcakes Take Over The World and Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar, hoping to get them signed for DeeW and Arthur respectively seeing as they looove those books.  When I finally did go up, Terry wasn’t there but Isa kindly signed the books for my vegan cupcake lovin’ cookie scoffin’ kids.  My claim to fame for the night is that I was the only person in the audience to have visited Omaha, where Isa now lives and will be opening her restaurant.

 

Once inside, the stage was set up for Black Metal Chef who was up first.  I feel like such a dork now, because I’m not sure if I correctly remember what everyone cooked!  Black Metal Chef made a spinach potato curry, followed by a dish with udon noodles, seitan, mushrooms and capsicum:

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Yes, he really does cut with this:

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Please forgive the crappy quality of my photos, by the way.

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VBMC signed my guitar pick and took a photo with me.  The photo was for Arthur, he really likes watching VBMC’s videos.  Then Arthur walks around in a deep scary voice saying stuff like “Mummy… cook the tofu… be careful not to burn it…”:

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Terry Hope Romero was up next, making a lovely sounding cashew dressing for her to-be-released-soon cookbook called Salad Samurai.  She also cooked up some tofu which smelled amazing.  I had a seat front and centre, best spot in the house:

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Isa made her red pepper Mac and Cheese recipe, one I am determined to make very very soon.  She also made some breaded tofu which was torture, because by that time I was getting hungry again and the divine smells weren’t helping:

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I had a great night, got that ooooh lovely bass-pumping-out-of-your-chest from the live music, and of course I got to meet Isa and Black Metal Chef (not Terry, waaaah).  I’d say I did pretty well!

 

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Sliiiight skinnying of the arms…

3

The National Hotel, Richmond

Today Husband and I met an old friend for lunch at the National Hotel in Richmond.  As there were quite a few people in the party, a venue was chosen to suit everyone.  I had looked at the menu online and quite a few things seemed suitable.  The actual menu only seemed to listed one vegan option (as in, the word ‘vegan’ was printed) so that’s what I went for: the Thai veg green curry:

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This was nice and spicy, with a smaller bowl of rice on the side.  Now, as I’m watching my portion sizes this smaller bowl of rice was fine.  But when I’m in my non-portion-size-watching mindset, I’d think more rice was needed.

The National, or the ‘Nash’ as my dad would say– he used to work nearby and he and his colleagues would go to the Nash often.  Dad even found rabbit poos in his salad, but that was twenty years ago– is quite spacious with tables set well apart.  There’s an outdoor undercover area and the old school style toilet blocks are outside. Staff were friendly and I think everyone enjoyed their meals (vegetarian and omni).  All in all, a good option for a nice Sunday lunch.

The National Hotel is located at 344 Victoria Street, Richmond. We ordered our food at the bar and paid straight away.

7

A Vegan Parma at The Cornish Arms

Before I was vegan, chicken parma (that’s short for parmigiana) was probably one of my favourite dishes to order in an eatery, though I’d often pick off the cheese because it was always big blobs of grease.  Anyway, I’m a sucker for anything in a crumb coating so you can see why this was a fave.  I did intend on making my own version at home with a Fry’s shnitzel but you know, mehhh.

Husband and I had some us time.  Which is the more-than-one-person version of ‘me time’.  I suggested we go for dinner at The Cornish Arms as they have a great looking vegan menu as well as non-vegan options.  Unfortunately I’ve had to give up my fantasy of Husband willingly eating at vegetarian/vegan establishments so when we go out to eat together, I look for places that cater fairly for us both.

We got there at 7:00pm which was lucky for us because about half an hour later all tables were taken and newcomers had to wait.  Our meals did take a while to come out (forty eight minutes to be exact) but I didn’t mind as I wasn’t ravenous.  I also enjoyed hearing the staff taking orders to tables and noting just how many people ordered the vegan dishes.

The Cornish Arms menu had quite a few temptations for me but well, I see ‘vegan parma’ on a menu and I’m putty.  Now some of my readers may be saying VEGANOPOULOUS YOU SAID YOU’D BE AVOIDING GLUTEN.  LIKE, 4623O04834^38453040 YEARS AGO.  Yea verily, the parma was seitan.  BUT tomorrow I should be getting a coeliac antibodies gluten shmuten blood test thingy done and I’m supposed to eat gluten apparently.  And secondly, I’m never going to make seitan at home to create my own parmas so really, the best option for me was to eat one that was made properly. Like this:

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It was massive.  I don’t know if you can tell just how big it is by looking at the photo but folks, this was MASSIVE.  And thick!!! I knew there was no way I would finish it.  I gave half the chips to Husband and I ate the salad but managed half the parma.

The parma itself was tasty and dare I say quite meat-like, though softer than what a chicken parma would be.  But the crumb coating was great, the sauce was nice and the cheese was just the right amount for me.  However there was a flavour of some kind of herb (or spice) in there that really got to me after a while and I had to put the fork down.  I was stuffed full anyway so this wasn’t a big deal.  I don’t know for sure what it was as there are a few things I don’t like that taste the same to me (but different to others.  I have weird tastebuds).  It tasted like allspice and I find even a teensy amount of allspice is too much for me.  And even if this wasn’t allspice, it tasted allspicey.

I’ve finally satisfied the curiosity about trying a chef prepared vegan seitan parma.  It was like my last hurrah vital wheat gluten meal.  Although I won’t be having it again, anywhere, I’m glad I tried it.  I can definitely recommend it if you’re a seitan parma fan and don’t mind an allspicey taste  🙂

Here’s an extreme food closeup.  Nom!


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The Cornish Arms is located at 163 Sydney Road in Brunswick.