School soup

Chop (dice) and sauté in olive oil:

  • 1 bunch of celery
  • 4 leeks
  • 18 carrots

After the vegetables are soft, add

  • 8 sweet potatoes, chopped up
  • 2 cups red lentils
  • 16 cubes “Organic Gourmet” vegetable bouillon cubes(with salt)
  • 32 cups of water

Cook for about an hour until all vegetables are soft

Then add, chopped up,

  • 2-3 bunches of Broccoli, cut as you prefer
  • 4-6 carrots, if you want more – cut as you prefer
  • 1 Cabbage, cut up or torn up by the children
  • 1 bunch of Kale leaves without the stems, cut or torn by the children
  • 2 cups of Quinoa

Cook for ½ hour or so.

Kosher Gummi Bears from Amazon.com

B000FH15SY.01.MZZZZZZZ.jpg I just got a 16-pack of Planet Harmony Organic Fruit Bears from Amazon.com’s new Grocery service for a mere 15 bucks. It arrived in two short days because it was elligible for Amazon Prime; Amazon.com is actually stocking inventory for grocery items and not just acting as a conduit for 3rd-party supermarkets like Gristedes.

Plus, these gummi bears have a hechsher from Rabbi Eli Frankel’s Kosher Certification Service.

Sweet. (pun intended)

Chaat

Ever since we moved up to the San Francisco Bay Area, one of my favorite places to eat has been Amber India Restaurant in Mountain View. I was delighted to find papri chaat and pav bhaji on the menu. My colleagues in India call it “Indian junk food”. I call it delicious.

This past week’s Chronicle has an article entitled “It’s time to have a little chaat” which lists a half-dozen local restaurants that specialize in chaat. Next time we’re in Berkeley we’ll have to check out Viks Chaat Corner and see how it stacks up to Amber.

In the meantime, I can always remind myself of the goodies I ate last May.

La Fondue

fondue.jpg Gabriel and Rachel are visiting from the Twin Cities, so we went out to dinner at La Fondue in Saratoga. Ben & Lisa arrived late, but there was plenty of cheese and chocolate leftover.

We ordered a la carte since dipping vegetables in hot oil didn’t appeal to us (I suppose that phase of the meal is more appealing to meat eaters) and we were more focused on the “appetizer” course of the meal (dipping veggies and bread cubes into pots of hot cheese) and the dessert course (dipping fruit, cake, cookies and marshmallows into pots of hot chocolate). Very yummy. We’ll probably go back for dessert the next time we have out-of-town visitors

. After 10pm you can get seated just for dessert for $8/person.

That’s a lot of chili peppers!

One of the many dishes I did not eat tonight:

PA190094-closeup.jpg

Looks like it was 50% beef, 50% chili peppers. The entire conference (over 100 engineers) went out to dinner after a pretty full day of presentations. They stuck the two vegetarians (me and Tej) at the same table and gave us over a dozen dishes, but still managed to put another two dozen meat dishes on the table for the other 8 folks.

The schedule is pretty packed tomorrow, and I’m speaking again on Thursday, so it looks like I won’t get to do any sightseeing until Friday.

Amy’s Kitchen Kosher Certification

amys-vegetable-lasagna.jpg I’ve often seen Amy’s Kitchen vegetarian frozen meals at supermarkets but haven’t purchased them in the past because they didn’t display a hekhsher. Ariella sent email on Sunday to ask if they’d consider getting rabbinic supervision and they replied back with some good news:

Amy’s Kitchen’s Kosher certification is from Rabbi Dov Hazdan of Ner Tamid K in Staten Island, NY. Amy’s became certified in November of 2003. With one exception, Amy’s products are certified as Kosher Dairy or Kosher Pareve as noted below. The Low Sodium Marinara is the only Amy’s Kitchen product that is not certified Kosher due to the presence of non-kosher red wine vinegar.

I guess they haven’t updated their packaging yet, but they did put a note in their FAQ. I guess it’s been asked frequently enough that it deserves a spot in the FAQ!

The consumer relations rep went so far as to send us a list of their kosher products, which I’ll post here.

These products are Kosher Pareve. They contain no dairy or meat ingredients:

  • All American Veggie Burger
  • Apple Toaster Pops
  • Asian Noodle Stir-Fry
  • Bean & Rice Burrito – Non Dairy
  • Black Bean Enchilada Whole Meal
  • Black Bean Vegetable Burrito
  • Black Bean Vegetable Enchilada
  • Breakfast Burrito
  • Brown Rice & Vegetable Bowl
  • Brown Rice, Black-Eyed Peas Bowl
  • California Veggie Burger
  • Indian Samosa Wrap
  • Mexican Tamale Pie
  • No Chicken Noodle Soup
  • Non Dairy Vegetable Pot Pie
  • Organic Alphabet Soup
  • Organic Black Bean & Corn Salsa
  • Organic Black Bean Chili
  • Organic Black Bean Vegetable Soup
  • Organic Butternut Squash

    Real Food Daily goes kosher

    rfd-logo2.gif Real Food Daily‘s restaurant in Beverly Hills is now certified kosher. Ariella and I went there for dinner last night and saw a statement of rabinnic supervision in the window.

    Since they serve only 100% vegan food, RFD has always been “kosher by ingredient” in my personal opinion. Many people in the observant Jewish community will only eat in restaurants that have rabinnic supervision, so the fact that RFD is now certified kosher should open their cuisine to a wider audience.

    Apparently they’re also going to be opening a 4th store in Studio City, and are considering expanding to Northern California as well. Closest thing I can think of to compare it to is Herbivore in San Francisco.

    Vegetarian Guide to Fast Food

    burger-fries-drink.jpg The Vegetarian Resource Group recently published the 2004 edition of their Guide to Fast Food. If you’re a vegetarian and you eat out at non-vegetarian restaurants, it’s well worth the $6 investment.

    The VRG publishes updates of the 24-page book every couple of years. I first found out about the VRG a couple of years ago and bought a copy of the 2001/2002 Fast Food guide. As I was purchasing my 2004 copy today, I was delighted to see a checkbox that said “Please do not trade my name with other organizations.”

    The VRG also does a free bi-monthly VRG-NEWS electronic newsletter.

    An ode to TastyBite Indian Food

    TastyBite Kashmir Spinach A couple of weeks ago UPS dropped off a 30 lb. box of Indian food from TastyBite. Every box has been absolutely delicious.

    My personal favorites are the Kashmir Spinach, Madras Lentils, and the recently discontinued Curried Mashed Potatoes. They’re about $3 a box in the local supermarkets, but you can get them for as low as $2.09 a box when you buy them by the 6-pack online. And they do free shipping on orders of $50 or more. Twenty-four meals for fifty bucks is a pretty good bargain.

    Most importantly, all of TastyBite’s vegetarian Indian foods are 100% Kosher. We’re hoping that someday they’ll also get rabbinic supervision for their vegetarian Thai products, too.

    I’m not a big fan of the Malabar Mixed Vegetables. We bought a dozen of those because they were on sale for $1.25 apiece, but we haven’t enjoyed those as much as the more mainstream dishes. They’re a little too rich and creamy for my taste.

    It’s a shame that TastyBite is no longer selling their Curried Mashed Potatoes dish. Those were absolutely fantastic. Fortunately, there are no shortage of recipes for Pav Bhaji available on the Net.