Gosh, I’ve really been the worst blogger ever. Here it is mid-July and I think this is my first post of the year. I pretty much abandoned this baby for a while, mostly because I had my second (actual human) baby in December and managing two wee ones full time takes up pretty much all the time and energy I have. But like I said in my last post, about a million years ago, I really miss it. I really, really miss connecting with people and I miss the creative outlet that this blog provides me. And I miss the fun of posting vegan food porn.
This is the sweet pea, Dahlia, two months in this photo but seven months old already, who is taking up so much of my time and attention these days, along with her very active toddler brother. (This awesome vegan onesie was courtesy of Marisa, from Vegucated fame.) Just when I was barely getting a handle on being a mother of one, along came this little bundle to again turn everything upside down. I’m happy to say though that this time ’round feels a lot easier, even though it’s still crazy hard work. I don’t know if it’s because girls are easier than boys, or because she’s just an easier baby, or because this is the second one so maybe we know what we’re doing this time, or what. But at any rate, it sure is an adventure with these two little peanuts, and damn if I’m not freaking exhausted all the time.
Which is to say that I’ve really lost my cooking mojo over the last several months. Or year. Years. Two years. It’s hard enough finding the time and energy to just get SOMETHING, ANYTHING ready in time for dinner, let alone the colossal task I face now of preparing meals to satisfy the grown-ups, a picky toddler, and an infant who is just starting solid foods. But lately I’ve been finding some inspiration again, leafing through cooking magazines and books, catching up on some long-forgotten blogs, and even some recipe testing for my friend Annie’s forthcoming second cookbook (more on that in a minute). So I’m dipping my toes in the water, hoping I can carve out some time to begin posting regularly again.
My own home-cooked meals have been less than blog-worthy lately, but I can at least share with you a few good eats we discovered on a recent trip to Cape May, NJ. I’m so out-of-practice that I forgot to photograph many items we ate (breaking the cardinal rule of food bloggers), but here are a few good things:
Our first stop in town after a 2 1/2 hour drive with emergency stops for breastfeeding was at The Wild Burrito. They actually had tons of vegan options, like all-day tofu scramble breakfast tacos, and a BBQ seitan burrito, and everything tasted super fresh, especially this perfect batch of just-made guacamole, which we inhaled within minutes. Super friendly service and the guy (owner?) even mentioned to us that they always use separate pans and cookware for the vegan items. We would definitely stop there again.
Another place we visited was Good Earth Organic Eatery. A small, somewhat hidden, friendly cafe, they do serve fish but are mostly vegetarian. There were plenty of vegan options though, and a surprising find was this spaghetti with fresh-squeezed carrot and ginger sauce (above). I’m not going to lie, when my husband ordered it, I thought it kind of sounded like a hippie health food dish, and you should know by now I’m not really that kind of vegan. But I was pleasantly surprised, the ginger was subtle and this was really a fresh, warming, very satisfying and delicious dish. I am definitely inspired to try to recreate this one at home.
I ordered the Sunflower Seed Pesto pasta (below) which was also really delicious. Creamy, nutty, nicely spiced, Bodhi and I ate this one together and loved it.
We really enjoyed our entrees at Good Earth, but the cake we took back to the hotel for dessert left a lot to be desired. And the fish smell in the restaurant was kind of overwhelming. I sort of feel that even if a restaurant serves fish, if it’s fresh, it shouldn’t smell, you know, fishy. But at any rate, it’s one of the few veg-friendly places in the area, and they do have some good things going for them, so I’d still say they’re worth checking out if you’re in the area.
The best place in town for breakfast was at Bella Vida Cafe. A super casual, diner-type spot, it offers vegan pancakes, waffles, and the tempeh scramble above. I loved the tempeh scramble, it was hearty and chock full of vegetables, black beans, and topped with Daiya cheese. Sorry about the photo – I forgot to take it until I was almost finished eating. I told you I’m out of practice with this food blogging thing.
That’s all I’ve got for now, but as I mentioned earlier I’ve just started some recipe testing for my friend Annie’s second cookbook, her follow up to the ever popular Betty Goes Vegan. I’ll be posting about that soon, to give you a teaser of what to expect. Hint: it’s good.
The Wild Burrito
6300 New Jersey Ave
Wildwood Crest, New Jersey 08260
Good Earth Organic Eatery
600 Park Blvd
West Cape May, New Jersey 08204
Bella Vida Cafe
406 N Broadway (Eldredge)
West Cape May, New Jersey 08204