Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Sound Foods

I recently spent a lovely evening at Sound Foods on Vashon Island enjoying the music of the Riptide Ramblers and eating a delicious meal.

Three generations playing together

The menu at Sound Foods is small and focused on local high quality ingredients, which is something that I appreciate as long as there is a reaosnable vegetarian option, which there was. I believe it was called something like the "Tower of Vegetables," and that was a pretty accurate description of what I got.

The mainpart of the meal was a pile of grilled veggies, including peppers, squashes, eggplant, and a big slab of portobello mushroom. Accompanything this was a hearty scoop of beautiful black rice, and a salad with mixed greens and a variety of delicious pretty extras like edible flowers, chives and hierloom cherry tomatoes.

The best part about this plate was the exquisite sauces. The chef was most definitely a master of sauces and both the salad dressing and the sauce for the veggies was so fantasticaly delicious. THey were pungent without being overwhelming, savory without being overly salty, rich without being too oily. Just really good.

The meat eaters all seemed to order the fancy free range bacon burgers, with the exception of one salmon.

We topped the meal off with a really amazing (and giant) slice of homemade banana cream pie. The banana pudding was just salty enough to really explode in delicious flavor, and the chocolate cookie crust was good enough to eat by itself.

There has been a little bit of confusion about whether Sound Foods is open or closed: some time ago they closed down but have since undergone a change of hands and are most definitely open and kicking at this point!

Sound Food Catering and Events on Urbanspoon

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Moonlight Cafe

I made a recent attempt to to go one of my favorites, the Vegan Garden, to find that it is still in the dysfunctional throws of a remodel. At this point, I was extremely focused on the spicy tofu soup I had intended to order, and after a brief moment of exaggerated hunger and angst, remembered the Moonlight Cafe about a mile up the hill on Jackson.

Moonlight Cafe is a run down looking restaurant that was once a smoky, karaoke palace with a surprising second menu that is entirely vegan. Now that the non-smoking laws are well established, I found the place to be completely tolerable inside, and was able to enjoy it in a way I wasn't before.

My dining companion and I sunk into a high backed booth and perused the extensive vegan version of the menu. My choice was easy: Spicy tofu soup, made with soft (they call it "white") tofu. He ordered lemongrass "chicken".
Spicy soup straight from the kitchen: mounded plate of lettuce, cabbage, sprouts, basil, mint, jalapenos and lime waiting to be added

My soup was an absolute delight. It came in a big bowl with silky white tofu blocks, fat chewy rice noodles, lots of veggies, tasty, spicy (no-MSG!) broth, and a huge plate of fresh shredded cabbage, lime wedges etc to add. What really made this soup stand apart from others similar to it was the quantity of stuff on the fresh plate. I loved the fact that just about every bite had something in it other than noodles.
Soup with all the goods mixed in

The lemongrass "chicken" was also outstanding. The fake meat didn't look particularly like chicken, but who cares, maybe it's better that it didn't. It did provide the savory deliciousness that I'd imagine one would get from sausage (cue my omnivorous sister's laugh at my imaginary meat authority), and I was amazed at how satisfying it was. I'd be hard pressed choosing what to order next time.
Lemongrass "chicken"

I am definitely a fan and look forward to a return visit. Thanks J for the company, I am so happy you're back!!

Moonlight Cafe on Urbanspoon

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Fado Irish Pub

Was recently downtown looking for a lunch spot that could deliver a sandwich and a beer (per the particular cravings of my very hungry dining companion). We were kindly directed to Fado Irish Pub, which I've seen a zillion times and never been to.
We didn't have picture taking capabilities, but there was an unusual vegetarian item on the menu that is worth mentioning: a boxty quesadilla. Turns out a "boxty" is essentially a griddle cooked Irish potato pancake, and Fado uses them in place of a tortilla in both a meat and a vegetarian quesadilla.

The vegetarian one was delightful. It was filled with grilled caramelized onions, artichoke hearts and pepper jack cheese, and then drizzled in sour cream, really tasty marinated cherry tomatoes, a pile of very finely sliced cabbage and one fresh jalapeno ring. I found this to be a delicious use of a potato pancake. My only complaint is that I could have enjoyed a lot more fresh jalapeno to eat with it all.

The menu wasn't particularly vegetarian friendly ratio wise, but there were a few other vegetarian items including a caprese baguette sandwich, a tomato mozzarella flat bread, and a few salads. Vegans would likely be hard pressed to get a satisfying meal.

There was also a dessert that was especially intriguing (but we didn't order it this time): Brown Bread Ice Cream, which involved vanilla ice cream, caramelized brown bread, caramel sauce and whipped cream.

Felt a little spendy (never helps to add a $5.50 beer to lunch), but over all it hit the spot.

Fado Irish Pub and Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Both Ways Cafe

I don't tend to go out for breakfast very often because simply, I don't generally have much interest in breakfast foods. I don't really eat eggs, certainly not on their own, and I dislike the gross feeling I get after eating a pile of sugary pancakes or breakfast pastries in the morning. Of course I love to eat at breakfast time, but I'd rather eat real food, the same sorts of things I'd eat for lunch or dinner.

And this is why I enjoy Both Ways Catering Co. which is in the Columbia City/Seward Park/Mt. Baker area. They have all of the normal egg variants and standard breakfast/brunch items, but then they have the slightly misleadingly named "Tofu Scramble," which is without a doubt my favorite restaurant breakfast so far.

For starters, it isn't really a "scramble." Rather it is a savory, delicious stir fry of tofu and veggies in a tangy, ginger sauce. Then, it comes with two standard breakfast items that I DO love: skillet potatoes and a big fluffy, flaky, slightly sweet, tender on the steamy inside, crusty on the outside biscuit (there is also the theoretical choice of toast instead, which I'd imagine would make this a vegan breakfast.)

I also appreciate that, in a time when going out to breakfast can easily cost as much as going out to dinner (at least on the scale that I tend to eat on), Both Ways has managed to keep their breakfast prices in the $7, 8, 9 range.

Both Ways Catering Co. on Urbanspoon