Friday, February 03, 2006

A Valentine's Vegan Lunch Box


Today is another noon release -- no lunch box! So instead here are some pictures of the Valentine's Vegan Lunch Box I created for the February issue of Satya Magazine, a wonderful New York-based magazine combining animal advocacy and social justice.
The lunch features Heart Beet Salad made with roasted beets and oranges, and Tomato Roses on a Bed of Cannellini Bean Purée, served with multigrain crackers or baked pita chips. For dessert there are scrumptious Cherry Almond Scones. Finally, a Valentine's lunch box wouldn't be complete without a little Valentine's Day card and a bite of sweet dark chocolate!
Speaking of sweets for the sweet, there are so many vegan chocolates on the market now. I noticed Vegan Essentials has an enormous selection of truffles and gift boxes. Does anyone have favorites to recommend? I'm ready to selflessly commit to sampling any and all vegan chocolates, purely in the name of research, of course...

47 comments:

Arline said...

Jennifer - amazing artistry . . . I think you have been holding back your talents and we have only seen part of them scaled down to schmoo size.

Here is your next book! (After we get the lunchbox one, of course). Vegan Holiday Lunchbox (you heard it here first, remember!)

Lol, and thank you for your beautiful work.

Arline

carla said...

You... are... amazing.

Simply amazing.

Looks delish, as usual, and so beautiful!

Beth Miriam said...

Congratulations, that's quite an honor to be their first guest chef.

Your Cannellini Bean Puree is the second one I've seen with rosemary. We're not a huge fan of rosemary but I love dipping as does my 21 month old, what other herb would you recommend in this dip? Thanks in advance.

jenny vorwaller said...

how CUTE is that beet salad with the heart shapes?? ? :)

Anonymous said...

My favorite chocolate comes from Dagoba--it's called Mon Cherri (which would fit the Valentine's theme) and has dried cherries, cranberries, and blueberries in their heavenly dark chocolate. I've also heard good things about their Aztec bar (I can't remember how to spell the acutal name) that has chili peppers in it.

Kourtney said...

Those roses are amazing! As to vegan chocolate, I'm working my way through a bag of Lindt Excellence 70% dark chocolate. My standby is Droste 72% pastilles -- they're a smooth, not too bitter chocolate. I also sometimes buy Just Us!, which is organic and fair trade. It has a slight gritiness to it, but is otherwise quite nice.

Mmm... chocolate.

Julie said...

How did you make the canellini puree?

The tomato roses are amazing!

-Julie

Julie said...

Ooops! I forgot to look at the link~sorry!


-Julie

Harmonia said...

Lovely!

Sweet Pea said...

I'm an avid fan of yours and without a doubt I'm in total awe of today's post. Amazing!

Regarding chocolate, I love Dagoba. I have a question for you...is it safe to assume that dark chocolate is vegan? What about chocolate chips? Is there such a thing as vegan chocolate chips? I'm always worried about ingredients that are in trace amounts and perhaps not written on the package. While I'm a vegetarian I'm trying to cut out dairy and eggs wherever possible.

Anonymous said...

I LOVE the Tropical Source chocolate chips. they also have candy bars of all sorts. Vegan. and gluten free!

http://www.nspiredfoods.com/tropicalsrc.html

Bryanna said...

Denman Island Chocolate is THE best! I know, I could be prejudiced because I live there, but it really is the best. Organic, vegan, and absolutely melt-in-your-mouth! It's a small family business, too. They make hot pink foil-covered chcolate hearts, available at veganessentials.com
Canadians contact
info@denmanislandchocolate.com

Bryanna said...

PS: Got my own website address wrong above! This is right...

Shannon said...

Beautiful!

And I have to concur that Denman Island Chocolate rocks.

BTW, I found you somewhere on Live Journal.

tanya said...

I love vegan Rose City chocolates - esp. the marzipan pistachio and any of their hazelnut truffles. They can create a customized selection for you if you contact them directly.

To Beth: I make a white bean puree with fresh sage and a bit of garlic. It's quite yummy.

Jennifer, you are an inspiration! Good luck with winning the bloggie!

Jennifershmoo said...

Hi, Sweet Pea -- No, a lot of dark chocolate still contains dairy so you always have to read the label. You should have seen how crushed I was when M&Ms Dark turned out to still contain dairy (although I later heard they sucked anyway).

There are definitely vegan chocolate chips out there -- Tropical Source is one brand as someone mentioned. I buy organic dark chocolate chips from the bulk bins section at my grocery store don't know the brand).

Yeah, I love Dagoba Mon Cheri! I'll have to check out the Denman Island and Droste chocolates. Yum! I bet I could still order some for V Day...

MommaSchell said...

Allison's Gourmet chocolates are the bomb! So are her cookies and brownies. Always 100% vegan and organic. Check them out at www.allisonsgourmet.com

Nancy said...

I second the vote for Rose City

http://www.rcchocolatier.com/veganselection.html

The chocolates we got were really good and the packaging was lovely.

I love the Heart Beets - it made me smile!

Lindsay said...

these are so awesome. the tomato roses are so cute! i cant get over it. sounds delicious too (though i dont care for beets).

sarchan said...

Green & Black's!!!!! You have to buy their dark chocolate (the milk, obviously, isn't vegan); they are organic, source free trade, and amazingly good. The plain old 70% dark chocolate is good, but they also make Maya Gold which is (basically) chocolate orange, and Espresso. Really anything Green & Black and you won't be disappointed. I also like Endangered Species.

Miss Smartee Pants said...

OK . . . I just had a scary thought. Schmoo is going to have summer vacation one of these days. What are we doing to do then? Please tell me you keep posting, please, please.

I'm not a vegan, but I'm a chef and I check your site every day.

Beautiful job!

Anonymous said...

Rose City!

Dee said...

I love love love blood oranges and beets but I never thought to bring the two together! Thanks for the wonderful salad! I'm off to the grocery store!
Oh and I vote for Dagoba chocolate also!

erica said...

Bryanna is definitely right about the Denman Island chocolate. It's not widely distributed, so I had to request it for Christmas from my sister who lives in San Fracisco (a few stores there sell it). It's amazing.

Jennifer, I'm always in awe of your lunchboxes, but today you've really outdone yourself!

You actually inspired me to get a "laptop lunchbox," and today I took it to work for the first time, and I was able to pack a much more interesting lunch than I used to!

Thanks for being such a great inspiration!

Kamaile said...

Yum!

I have a laptop lunchbox too and it does make packing lunch more interesting and the portion sizes are perfect. It's fun to fill the containers (it would be great if I had someone to fill the containers for me!) and you can put all the pieces on the top rack of the dishwasher, love that. I love the small silverware!

strawberrygirl said...

My favourite is the Ritter Sport Dark chocolate with whole hazelnuts. I buy it at London Drugs. It is a square bar and is usually around $2. The hazelnuts make it taste even better!!!!

deva said...

green and black's chocolate, and chocolove makes good dark, but i am addicted to green and black's...

Anonymous said...

I third (at least...right?) the reccomendation for Rose City vegan chocolates. Their chocolate is amazing!

Sjaak's vegan assortment is great, too. They have vegan caramels!

Vegan Knitting said...

Denman Island !!! Wooo!!!

BTW - you can order it directly from them. By the case..

We discovered them by accident in a tiny health food store in Toronto while visiting lovely Canada. We then proceeded to buy 2 cases (24 bars) to give to friends and family at the holidays. They were a hit with everyone. They have amazing flavors and are sooooo tasty. They were $2 US per bar including shipping.

Angela said...

Neuhaus dark chocolate squares are my favorite. I was also happy to discover delicious vegan chocolate covered cherries in the natural foods store a few days ago.

Anonymous said...

Green & Black's organic chocolate is wicked especially the Espresso, Hazelnut & Currant, Cherry and Ginger but the Maya Gold has to be my favourite. Booja Booja do some lush truffles in about five varieties. Plamil Cayenne is also very nice. Check out www.hotelchocolat.co.uk, they do some really nice vegan chocolates and they deliver to the States! Sue in England x

Stacey said...

That's so great to see you writing for Satya, it's such a wonderful magazine. That salad is beautiful and with roasted beets, I'm sure it's delicious, too.

Catherine said...

Absolutely stunning! I love this blog!

michelleknits said...

Oh I love Satya. I'm going to be looking for your!

Sue said...

For vegan chocolates, I definitely recommend Allisons Gourmet (www.allisonsgourmet.com). My husband gave me a box of her vegan caramels/toffees for Mother's Day last year and I nearly cried as I finished the box.

I'll reiterate what you've heard countless times, your blog is fantastic. Little shmoo is one lucky little vegan!

emily said...

I LOVE the truffles from chocolate decadence. They make me want to sing.

emily said...

Speaking of chocolate, here is a photo of me in front of the WALL of chocolate at Whole Foods Atlanta. It was an ethereal moment in my life. Whole Foods' brand called "365" also makes vegan dark chocolate and cappuccino truffles that are amazing. (although I still prefer choc. decadence)

Anonymous said...

My favorite chocolate is Whole Foods 365 Brand Chocolate Truffles. They are divine.

--Melissa

Lisa said...

Where on earth did you get those heart-shaped cookie cutters? Too cute!

Jennifershmoo said...

Aren't they cute? The cookie cutter came with a set of hearts of all different sizes I found at Target years ago.

Cynthia said...

If you dont mind "may have traces of milk" then i HIGHLY suggest chocolove with raspberry chunks, though tose 365 truffles are GREAT for melting into sauces, or pouring over soy dream for a hard-sell effect.

Cynthia said...

OH!!! and dagoba raspberry with rosehips... mmmmm

Jennifershmoo said...

After reading all these great recommendations I can practically *taste* chocolate!

Nets said...

Lovely food:)

roses_rblu said...

ur so talented..i admire u very much being a mom.. i hope i can also like yours..

Lisa said...

Holy crow, those are tomatoes??? You're a better human than me! If it wasn't for frozen packs of mixed veggies, noodles, and Trader Joe's vegetable gyoza, I'd probably have starved to death by now. ;)

It's very heartening to see your website getting the attention it is. I have been a vegan almost 4 years, and I find that so many people are put off when the subject of my eating choices comes up. The dreaded "v" word can evoke such anxiety in people's hearts! So thanks for being here, and good for you! :)

Looks like I have lots of good stuff to look through here... mmmmm!

red said...

thank you



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