Spicy Bowl! Small but beautiful counter eating in Crown Heights, Brooklyn. Delightful staff and decor!
Those are vegan crab cakes (Gardein), spicy chickpeas, summer squash and fermented cabbage carrot slaw over brown rice. Just your basic good for you yumminess with just a teensy bit of fried to the side.
Abyssinia Restaurant is the Ethiopian restaurant in Manhattan.
This is communal dining at it’s best. We won’t be breaking bread – we’ll be tearing it and using the bread for scooping up the delectable stews and salads. This food is delicious, light and extraordinary.
What about the lack of utensils? YOU have utensils – the best possible – your fingers. The injera is made from teff flour, the smallest grain out there. It’s super nutritious and protein packed. Let’s let Wikipedia do what they do best: “In making injera, teff flour is mixed with water and allowed to ferment (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fermentation_(food)) for several days, as with sourdough (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sourdough) starter (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bread_starter). As a result of this process, injera has a mildly sour taste. The injera is then ready to be baked (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baking) into large, flat pancakes (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pancake). This is done either on a specialized electric stove or, more commonly, on a clay plate (Amharic mittad, Tigrinya mogogo) placed over a fire. Unusual for a yeast or sourdough bread, the dough has sufficient liquidity to be poured onto the baking surface, rather than rolled out. In terms of shape, injera compares to the French crêpe (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cr%C3%AApe) and the Indian dosa (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dosa) as a flatbread (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flatbread) cooked in a circle and used as a base for other foods. The taste and texture, however, are unlike the crêpe and dosa, and more similar to the South Indian appam (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Appam). The bottom surface of the injera, which touches the heating surface, will have a relatively smooth texture, while the top will become porous. This porous structure allows the injera to be a good bread to scoop up sauces and dishes.”
Ok, enough! Let’s eat.
Meet at Abyssinia Restaurant at 6pm.
The restaurant is accessible.
Consult mta.info TripPlanner for accessible options to the restaurant. Closest elevator station is at 125th Street.
Subway: 2, 3, C, B, to 135th St
Bus: M2, M3, M10, BX33
We’re keeping our fingers crossed for a mild holiday Monday as we visit the most interesting parks in the South Bronx. We’re going to see/explore:
Soundview Park (205 acres)
Concrete Plant Park (7 acres)
Starlight Park (13 acres)
Barretto Point Park (11 acres)
The parks will be great for people watching! (and bird watching)
Some highlights will be:
1. a large boulder transported to the South Bronx by a glacier about 10,000 years ago. Repeat: 10,000 years ago!
2. the only river in NYC that changes from saltwater to fresh water.
3. fingers crossed – Ospreys (those wingspans)! And many more birds.
4. a salt marsh in NYC
5. salt marsh cordgrass – a true life saver. We’ll learn why.
6. a former concrete mixing plant turned into a landscaped artwork
7. one of several billion oyster project restoration sites
8. greenest building in the South Bronx – Bronx River House
9. site of the greatest maritime disaster in NYC history
10. an amphitheater with views to Manhattan and the nearby islands.
11. the largest food distribution center in the country. It won’t be open on a Federal holiday but the sheer enormity is staggering.
12. Yes, we’re dialing it up to 12 – the views!
We’ll learn about what the Bronx River Alliance is doing to ensure the health and sustainability of the aquatic environment and adjacent land as well.
Bring a bag lunch.
Be prepared to walk. There will be one short subway ride on our itinerary.
10:30am – We meet at the East 34th Street ferry terminal which is technically between East 35th and East 36th Streets just off the FDR drive. I can not find out right now whether the ferry is operating on a M-F schedule or weekend schedule for this day. I will update this page accordingly. We’ll either be on a 10:48am or 10:57am boat depending. It’s a nice half hour ride to Soundview.
We will enter Soundview Park through the salt marsh and explore everything this amazing acreage has to offer.
Approx. 20 minute walk to Concrete Plant Park.
Approx. 10 minute walk to Starlight Park.
Approx. 10 minute walk to Whitlock Avenue 6 train stop.
Approx. 25 minute walk to Barretto Point from Longwood Avenue stop.
Plus the walking in the parks – so wear comfortable shoes!
I hope you’re concluding that the Bronx is the most park friendly borough.
All parks but Concrete Plant have bathrooms.
More about three of our four parks can be found here:
Vystopia – the anguish of being vegan in a non-vegan world.
Vystopia is a noun defined as:
1. Existential crisis experienced by vegans, arising out of an awareness of the trance-like collusion with a dystopian world.
2. Awareness of the greed, ubiquitous animal exploitation, and speciesism in a modern dystopia.
I recently had the good fortune to meet Clare Mann, a vegan psychologist, who coined this term Vystopia. Demetrius Bagley – Vegan Extraordinaire! – introduced us over breakfast. Clare was stopping over in NYC after giving three presentations at the Animal Rights Conference. Clare is onto something big time and has formulated her thesis into a remarkable and compassionate book. She has empathy for the vegan as well as the non-vegan. Most of us have been the non-vegan, right?
We’re getting together to have a conversation about our experiences with Vystopia. We’re going to be giving this one more overlay – the lens with which we experience veganism as LGBTQIAs. Yeah. You’re already marginalized and now you’re even further pushed to the margins by being vegan. Good times.
But let’s not despair! There’s hope!
We’re going to take an in-depth look at this topic through our eyes as LGBTQIAers.
It is not necessary to buy the book to attend but supporting Clare’s work would be a wonderful token of gratitude for her effort to define Vystopia and put it out into the world. Hopefully you will be inspired to purchase this useful guide after our MeetUp.
More about Clare Mann and ordering the book can be found here:
Watch her video to get further insight into Vystopia.
Accessibility: WeWork is entirely accessible.
Sacred Chow has been serving up delicious vegan fare since 1995. It is amazing that the little engine that could began as takeaway and eventually morphed into it’s own bricks and mortar storefront. For almost 25 years we’ve had the pleasure of dropping in and experiencing a consistently reliable meal.
Let’s let New York Magazine further describe this venue:
“There’s a reason why the logo is a meditating cartoon cow: Sacred Chow serves serious vegan cuisine without taking itself too seriously. Chef and owner Cliff Preefer, a former Legal Aid lawyer, founded Sacred Chow in 1995 as a take-out store on Hudson St.; this Sullivan St. venture is his first restaurant. The snug space has red- and mustard-colored walls accented with Middle Eastern antiques, like glass-bejeweled hanging lamps and a mosaic-inlaid fountain. Using organic and kosher-certified ingredients, Preefer conjures up an enticing meatless array of tapas, salads, and sandwiches. Salads are fresh, substantial, and lively. The Nama Gori Kale Caesar is a credible rendition of the cheese-draped, crouton-studded classic, topped with grilled tofu steak slices. Sandwiches are engaging, like Mama’s soy meatball sub with soy protein orbs flavored with oregano, thyme, and garlic in a spicy rosemary-infused tomato sauce. Triple chocolate brownies may be gluten-free, but manage to be resplendent in rich, bittersweet chocolate.”
So let’s meetup and have a lovely summer supper at Sacred Chow!
Who doesn’t love the world’s largest rodent? Who doesn’t love a really good Brazilian vegan restaurant?
First, the rodent. Capybaras can weigh up to 146 lbs. Enough about the Capybara. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capybara
Second, the restaurant! Capybara has been open just over a month. The food and drink are exceptional. The photo above is of a partially drunk La Chacahua which is mezcal, lime, avocado (shaved and shaken with ice), agave and chili salt. It was fantastic. Their vegan beef tacos are fresh and bright in taste. I can’t wait to share this with you all!
Our plan: Arrive anytime between 6p-630p. It is deep into the borough on the L & M trains. The Myrtle/Wyckoff Avenues stop for the L/M or the L Halsey Street stop both work as Capybara is exactly between the two stops.
Accessibility: The restaurant itself isn’t accessible. The dining area is up a few steps and the bathroom is not accessible. The Myrtle/Wyckoff L/M stop is accessible.
Afterward, if anyone is interested we can head a few blocks up to Nowadays and catch an outdoor screening of Wag the Dog (https://nowadays.nyc/2018/07/25/outdoor-film-night-wag-the-dog/) or just hang out in the indoor lounge if it’s really hot. If you haven’t seen Nowadays it’s worth the trip! https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/20/style/indoors-at-nowadays-bar-ridgewood-queens.html
So we’ve done Double Zero and Bar Verde. Let’s continue our Second Avenue food crawl through Matthew Kenney’s empire, shall we? This time we’re venturing to Japan – Kenney style. You know it’s going to be good and it’s going to be vegan. Win/win for us and animals!
If there proves to be a waitlist for this event I’ll make another reservation for four or six depending upon interest. They don’t do parties larger than six. Smaller parties create for more intimate conversation. So if we’re two tables ultimately, it’s all good!
All things Arata can be found here: http://www.matthewkenneycuisine.com/arata-nyc