Sunday, February 19, 2012

Sophie's Kitchen Breaded Vegan Shrimp

I posted a pic of Sophie's Kitchen Breaded Vegan Shrimp on the Laziest Vegans Facebook page a couple weeks ago and it got some pretty strong responses! I decided to buy these because I liked shrimp back when I ate meat and I was curious about how a fake shrimp would taste. I could care less about the connotations of eating "fake" meat. If it gets someone who loves seafood to go Vegan, I'm all for it.

You can either bake or fry the shrimp. I baked them because, shockingly, I don't have a deep fat fryer. The first bite was a little interesting. The breaded part of the shrimp is delicious but the shrimp part was tough, kinda like rubber. Perhaps if I fried the shrimp it might have been softer. I hate to diss a product, but Sophie's needs to work on the consistency of the actual shrimp. I didn't end up finishing my plate because eating became too cumbersome. My hope is that they can reformulate their recipe and I can leave them a glowing review.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Vega Sport Supplement System

So why is John McDevitt, the author of The Laziest Vegans in the World, reviewing a sports supplement? Well, I like to workout! Specifically, I go to the gym to when I want to forget about life's daily stressors. 5 years ago I was introduced to the Vega Whole Food Health Optimizer and I have never looked back. Out of all the products I blog about, the W.F.H.O. is one of my most used. So when Vega contacted me to try their Vega Sport products, I naturally said yes!

Now, the Vega Sport system seems like it's geared towards athletes or people who are hardcore about their workouts but you can break the system up to fit your needs. Every item in the system falls into one of three categories: Prepare, Sustain and Recover. Be it a powder you mix with water, a gel or a snack bar, each item has its place. And best of all, the ingredients are all natural. I know Vega products can be expensive but you definitely get what you pay for.

The Pre-Workout Energizer is a powder that gives you a boost before you hit the elliptical or the weights. The two flavors are Lemon Lime and Acai Berry. The Lemon Lime is a little strong but it does the job 'cause I was ready to rock.

The Electrolyte Hydrator is a powder you mix with water during your workout. Kind of like Gatorade, but actually good for you. You flavor choices on these are Lemon Lime and Pom-Berry. I tried the Pom flavor and it was decent. Nothing I would chug, but not bad.

The Endurance Bar is supposed to give you energy during your workouts. I can't eat during my workouts so I saved it for the drive home. I had the Mocha Bar but there is also Acai Berry. It was a pretty dense fulfilling bar. In this bar alone there are dates, dried apples, sprouted whole grain brown rice protein, pea protein, sacha inchi seeds, sorghum syrup, pumpkin seed butter, sorghum, quinoa, rice, tapioca, grape juice, natural rice dextrins, cocoa nibs, cocoa powder, rice crisps, white chia seeds, natural mocha flavor and coffee fines. Pretty wild!

The Endurance Gel is an interesting product. It reminds me of some sort of crazy gel candy from the 80's. While it doesn't taste like candy, it was fun to drink/eat while on the elliptical. I needed a drink of water to wash it down but I'm sure that helps the effect. The flavors on the gel are Orange Zest and Raspberry.

Now to my favorite part of the Vega Sport program, the Performance Protein! This is the stuff you take after your hard workout. There is nothing more satisfying to me than to drink a Vega shake after coming home, tired from a workout. Similar to the Whole Food Health Optimizer, I thought these tasted great! You can find them in Chocolate, Vanilla and Strawberry.

The Protein Bar was my 2nd favorite part of the system. They almost taste like chocolate dessert bars! These are great for the drive home from the gym but I would also have some on hand when you want a good, nutritious snack. You have a choice between Chocolate Coconut and Chocolate SaviSeed.

The Recovery Accelerator is a recovery drink that you are supposed to take within 20 minutes after your workout. I didn't enjoy it as much as the Protein Bar or Shake but it definitely has its place. Look for Tropical and Apple Berry flavors.

So to wrap up, I think Vega Sport is an excellent supplement program for you hard core athletes out there. For us novices, I think there are parts of the program you can use everyday.

Friday, February 10, 2012

The Laziest Vegans Top Ten Asks Kittee Berns

Kittee Berns is a Vegan gluten-free cooking queen. With her popular zine Papa Tofu, her blog cake maker to the stars and the gluten-free resource website xgfx, Kittee is the go-to person of the Vegan gluten-free universe. Although Kittee doesn't eat many pre-packaged foods, she was more than happy to share her knowledge with all of us. So if you are Vegan, gluten-free and lazy, this is a list you're gonna want to pay attention to!

What is your favorite store-bought veggie burger?
Organic Sunshine Burgers.

What is you favorite frozen dinner?
Tandoor Chef/Green Guru Pad Thai is an absolute favorite. I used to get it for lunch all the time when I worked at Whole Foods. They even use wheat-free tamari...

What is your favorite ice cream?
So Delicious' Turtle Trails.

What is your favorite chip or cracker?
Pico De Gallo tortilla chips by Garden of Eatin'.

What is your favorite cereal?
Kaia Buckwheat Granola-Cocoa Bliss.

What is your favorite candy?
Go Max Go Snap! chocolate bar.

What is your favorite cookie?
Cowboy bars by Petunia, but I would be delighted by any of their cookies.

What three pre-packaged food items would you take to a desert island?
Any brand Vermicelli Noodles, Red Star Nutritional Yeast and GT Kombucha.

Name a product you would like Veganized?
This is a long reach, but I would die for a xgfx stromboli!

What are your favorite local and/or online stores for Vegan products?
Back to Eden Bakery Boutique, Food Fight and Petunia's!

And that concludes The Laziest Vegans Top Ten. Thanks Kittee!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Trader Joe's Vegan Chips: Part II

It's Super Bowl Sunday and you are probably huddled up on the couch with your chips and soda. No Super Bowl party for me this year, but let's pretend. Known to change up their product selection (check out Part I), Trader Joe's has a couple new chips for me to try and this is the perfect day for it!

Before anything else, I have to say that I'm a huge Fritos fan and my one gripe is that they aren't organic. So I was pretty excited to see these Organic Corn Chip Dippers and tore them open right in the store (not really). The flavor is actually tame compared to Fritos. I know they are supposed to replicate Fritos Scoops size-wise, but flavor-wise the salty, oiliness wasn't there. Not to say they were bad, just not what I expected. It's still a great organic chip for dipping.

Trader Joe's Vegetable Root Chips are made of sweet potato, taro, batata and parsnip pieces. I like the wide variety of earthy flavors. Also, aesthetically they will brighten your spread.

Trader Joe's never fails to surprise with new and interesting products. Trader Joe's Crunchy Curls are pretty innovative. It's a lentil and potato puffed curl. Texture-wise I would compare it to a super puffed Cheeto or something similar. It had strong potato flavor, which I found delicious.

If you are lucky enough to have a Trader Joe's by you, go grab some of these chips and tell me what you think!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Vegan Valentine's Day 2012!

It's that time of year again and I'm back with my Valentine's Day picks. You still have 11 days to get your loved one some sweets. And if you don't have a honey, don't forget about your Moms! She misses you and wishes you would stop by more often.

Sweet & Sara Chocolate Dipped Strawberry Marshmallow Hearts. Sara is back with her Strawberry Marshmallow Hearts, but this time they are HUGE! Buy at least two so you can eat one. And buy me a pb smore while you are at it.

Obsessive Confection Disorder I Lubz U Sampler. This cute sampler from Obsessive Confection Disorder is the real deal. You get the Hippy Dippy Crispy Treats, Rose Caramel, Vanilla Bean Caramel and Caramel Not Corn. All of that PLUS 25% of the proceeds goes to Animal Rescue Corps. Shockingly it's only $20. The caramels have gold leaf, people! The chocolate heart here is made of toffee and crisp rice and the red heart lollypops are hard toffee, perfect for sucking on.

Sjaak's Valentine's Day Organic Vegan Truffle Assortment Birdie Box. Once again, I have a Sjakk's box of candies in my V-Day arsenal. This years variety of truffles: Vegan Milk Hazelnut, Dark Chocolate, Vegan Milk Cappuccino, Vegan Milk Pecan Cinnamon, Dark Pistachio, Vegan Milk Almond, Dark Orange Mate, Dark Coconut & Ginger and Dark Cherry.

Cookies for Me Valentine Heart Iced Vegan Sugar Cookies. I haven't had a real sugar cookie in FOREVER, so I was ecstatic that these were so good. If you miss those yummy sugar cookies you grew up with, these are it.

Surf Sweets Organic Fruity Gummi Hearts. What would Valentine's Day be without some kind of tiny heart candy? No chalky ones for me this year, but I've got gummi ones! Watermelon and cherry flavored, to be exact. <3 <3 <3

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Amy's California Veggie Burger

If you haven't noticed, I started a Pinterest. When scanning through all of the categories I noticed the Vegan Burger Board was a little bare. And not only that, I was missing my favorite veggie burger of all time, Amy's California Burger. So I figured enough is enough, time to share my love of the California Burger!

When I first went Vegetarian (oh, you know, 11 years ago, holy crap!) I was really dependent on fake meats like Boca Burgers and Morningstar Foods Crumbles. One day I tried a California Burger because I enjoyed Amy's Veggie Loaf frozen dinner so much (ps Amy's- please dump the honey so I can buy it again, pretty please). From that day on, I have been a militant California Burger supporter. If you don't see in my hamburger bun, you'll see it crumbled up in my spaghetti sauce. I find it really versatile and it doesn't have that fake meat taste.

It's nice that Cali Burger isn't trying to be something it's not. What it is though, is pure brilliance: organic mushrooms, organic onions, organic bulgar wheat, organic celery, organic carrots, organic oats, filtered water, organic walnuts, wheat gluten, organic potatoes, sea salt, sunflower oil and organic garlic. DELICIOUS! Like, I could eat this thing plain with no condiments, no bun. It's that good! And only one minute in the microwave!

So in closing, maybe now you'll know why I have such admiration for Amy's as a company. Yes, sometimes their stuff is more expensive, but I truly feel like you get what you pay for. You can get organic mushrooms as an ingredient or you can get something not so natural. And while we are at it, please sign the petition at Just Label It to force the FDA to label GMO foods. Who the hell is for GMO foods anyway? Satan?

Bottom line: if you've never had an Amy's California Burger please give it a try. It may very well become you favorite veggie burger too.


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