Vegan Dining at Disneyland

coffee disneylandRight before my birthday last month, I visited Disneyland with my aunt Linda.

Since it was in the middle my vegan challenge, I had to keep to a strict vegan diet – vacation included.

I was initially a little bummed about skipping out on my favorite Disney confections, but it was surprisingly easy to find plenty of tasty vegan snacks and treats throughout the park.

So, if you’re headed to the Happiest Place on Earth, here is a roundup of the vegetarian and dairy free foods I tried.

Royal Street Veranda Disneyland VeganRoyal Street Veranda

Since we skipped breakfast, our first stop at the park Royal Street Veranda in New Orleans Square.

Linda raved about the sourdough bread bowls last time we visited, and I finally got to try the vegetarian gumbo. 

The gumbo is vegan as long as you order it without crackers, and sourdough is always vegan (did you know that?).

The gumbo was tasty and very filling, but I was a little disappointed in the temperature since it was served lukewarm.

chocolate disneyland

Pooh Corner

Our next food stop was a few hours later at Pooh Corner.

If you can get past that awful name, it’s a really cute treat shop and it’s fun to watch the baking staff make the treats right before your eyes.

Nothing in the display case is vegan (see the very non-vegan marshmallows above)  but if you call in advance, you can order a dark chocolate covered pineapple spear without the white chocolate.

Also, like all of the other treat locations in the park, the prepackaged kettlecorn is vegan and delicious.

Disneyland Dole Whip VeganAdventureland

Since I wasn’t aware that the chocolate pineapple spear isn’t vegan, I made a beeline for Adventureland (my favorite land) for my favorite treat, the Dole Whip Float.

Vegans: Adventureland is your friend.

Not only is the Dole Whip (and Dole Whip Float) at Tiki Juice Bar now vegan (order it without a maraschino cherry), but almost every item at the Indy Fruit Cart is as well.

The Indy Fruit Cart offers fresh fruit (watermelon, pineapples, berries,etc.), veggies and hummus, healthy drinks like coconut water, and juice, Mexican style chili lime mango slices, plain veggies, and even gigantic Dill pickles.

This Indiana Jones themed hut (hence the name) is a healthy eater’s retreat, and a very refreshing stop after a long day in the hot sun.

Sleeping Beauty's Castle Disneyland Cappuccino Stand

As the sun started to set and my jetlag began to kick in, we stopped at the Cappuccino Stand in front of the entrance to Frontierland.

I wanted to play it safe so I ordered a brewed coffee, black (seen above), and, sadly, this is the only vegan choice at any of the coffee carts at park.

In order to satisfy a dairy free latte craving, you’ll have to visit Blue Ribbon Bakery or Starbucks.vegan food disneylandTomorrowland Terrace

After the caffeine buzz kicked in, Linda and I had the energy to ride a few more rides in Fantasyland before becoming famished.

Knowing that we were leaving Captain EO and Astro Blasters for last, we opted to stop for dinner in the Tomorrowland Terrace.

The vegan option at this quick service restaurant is a Portobello and Vegetable Sandwich – sans cheese and sauce.

Even without the sauce the roasted vegetables were full of flavor, and the oatmeal bread is one of the better breads I’ve had at Disneyland.

The sandwich (like the other menu items) comes with a choice of side: fresh fruit or french fries. Both are vegan, so it’s up to you to make a healthy or choice… or not.

While were eating, a band literally rose from the ground on a platform stage and performed a few 80′s hits including a few from The Boss.

I had no idea that Disneyland has live music on Friday and Saturday nights so if you happen to visit on a weekend, make sure you take advantage of this performance.

After a pitiful score on Astro Blasters (I blame jetlag!), we did some window shopping on Main Street U.S.A. and called it a night.

What vegan treats you have tasted at Disneyland? Let me know in the comments!

 

RedStar sunglasses

RedStar Sunglasses Review & MAJOR Discount!

Disclaimer: a press sample was sent to me by RedStar for review. 

sunny sun rays

It seems fitting that on this dreary rainy day, I’m writing about sunglasses.

But, if last weekend’s weather is any indication for the upcoming season, I’m sure I will have plenty of opportunities to wear my sunnies in the near future.

I took these photos at the New York Botanical Garden and after wearing my new polarized, hand polished tortoiseshell glasses practically non stop for about a week, I’m really happy with them.

They offer amazing sun protection, improved visibility, and, of course, I love the style.

Tortoiseshell Since RedStar was kind enough to let me choose a pair of shades from their extensive new collection, they’re also passing on the niceties to you!

When you visit the website and enter the code MTA14, you’ll receive a $500 gift card to use towards any purchase.

No catches or strings – you just pay shipping (and, there’s no minimum!).

So, whether you’re looking for stylish frames to wear poolside or ultra protective glasses for sports, RedStar has you covered!

redstar sunglasses

beauty and the beast

Try the Grey Stuff It’s Delicious.. and Vegan!

beauty and the beast the grey stuff

Although I’ve spent some time recently at Disneyland, it’s been quite a while since I’ve been to my former employer, Walt Disney World.

There have been several changes to Fantasyland since my time being a CP (College Program for those not in the know), and although I don’t have plans to visit anytime soon, I’m excited to see the new additions when I get the chance.

I think the most exciting part of the transformation is the inclusion of two new princess castles: Belle, and my all time favorite, Ariel.

Inside Belle’s castle is a new restaurant appropriately named Be Our Guest.

Just like the film, “Grey Stuff” is listed on the dessert menu.

I was curious to see what the Grey Stuff is made from, and it appears to be a mousse/buttercream frosting hybrid, sometimes served on top of a cupcake.

However, upon investigation, the grey stuff clearly isn’t a sweet treat.

According the picture below, it appears to be an authentic French pâté served on top of a buttery cracker. Continue reading

greystuffSince I don’t care for traditional pâté and I’ve adopted a plant based lifestyle, I decided to make a vegan mushroom pâté instead.

The Chef de cuisine at Adam’s (also known as The Beast) castle chose to serve the grey stuff in a tea sandwich (shown above) as well, so I used sourdough since it’s vegan and garnished with a garlic filled green olive.

try the grey stuff it's deliciousMy favorite grey stuff – Zooey, my cat (picture above) was very interested in the (somewhat) strange appetizer, but the people (Walter and I) enjoyed the very flavorful tiny bites with a nice glass of full bodied red wine.

Try it, it’s delicious – and easy to make, despite the long recipe.

Bon appétit!

The Grey Stuff

  • 1 cup pecans
  • 1/2 cup dried porcini mushrooms
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1/2 lb. baby bella mushrooms
  • 2 tbsp. tamari (or soy sauce)
  • 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tbsp. nutritional yeast
  • 1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. chopped rosemary
  • 1 tsp. light (mellow) miso
  • 1/4 cup dry-packed sun-dried tomatoes
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • Vegan crackers of your choice (I found mine at Trader Joe’s)
Put the pecans in a bowl, cover with cold water, and let stand for one hour.
Meanwhile, in a small heatproof bowl, cover the porcini with the boiling water and let stand until softened, about 15 minutes.
Rub the porcini to remove grit and transfer into a small bowl, making sure to reserve the soaking liquid.
Thoroughly wash and slice the portobellos into 1/4-inch-thick pieces, and set aside.
lumiere cogsworth
In a bowl, whisk together the tamari, olive oil, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, rosemary and miso.
juice, rosemary and miso.
Add the sliced portobellos and toss to coat evenly. Let stand for 15 minutes, tossing occasionally.
juice, rosemary and miso.
In a small saucepan, combine the soaked porcini and sun-dried tomatoes.
juice, rosemary and miso.
Slowly pour in the porcini soaking liquid, stopping before you reach the grit at the bottom. Bring the liquid to a boil, cover and simmer over low heat until the tomatoes are tender, about 4 minutes.
juice, rosemary and miso.
Drain the pecans and transfer to a blender.
juice, rosemary and miso.
With a slotted spoon, transfer all of the other ingredients into the blender and puree into a coarse paste, adding about 1/4 cup of the porcini cooking liquid.
juice, rosemary and miso.
Add a little more of the porcini liquid if the mixture is too thick.
juice, rosemary and miso.
Season lightly with salt and pepper.
juice, rosemary and miso.
Served immediately or slightly chilled on crackers, preferably by candelight.
beauty and the beast the grey stuff
frozen movie, disney frozen

Disney’s Frozen Glog Recipe

We are five days into spring! While I’d like to say the weather resembles this scene from Frozen,frozen movie disney

The reality is, it’s still more like this:

frozen movie

Thanks, Elsa… Continue reading

disney frozen elsa

I was a little late to join the Frozen bandwagon, but when I finally saw the movie last month, I LOVED it!

It’s a musically stellar, and all around refreshing Disney film.

I appreciated the complicated yet still believable sisterly distance, and the sweet, but not saccharine storyline and message.

The film is set in the fictional village Arendelle, but it’s clear – from the mentions of fjords, trolls, and the traditional attire – there’s a definite Scandinavian influence.

SPOILER ALERT

After Elsa unintentionally freezes the kingdom, Anna sets off to find her sister and coax her to bring back summer.

During Anna’s quest we’re introduced to the lovably goofy male lead,  Kristoff, and not one but two anthropomorphic snow creatures: Olaf and Marshmallow.

Back in Arendelle, Hans, Anna’s love interest (at the time), watches over the town, and offers its chilly residents shelter at the palace and warm mugs of glog.

You’ll have to watch the rest of the film to find out what happens with Anna, Arendelle, and Elsa, but today I will show you how to make a drink worth of melting a frozen heart.

Glog is simply a Nordic mulled wine served during Christmastime and throughout the winter months.

Most Scandinavian families have their own recipes and versions of glog, but the standard ingredients are usually red wine, sugar, and spices (cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, and orange peel are popular).

Stronger spirits such as vodka, port wine, and brandy are also sometimes added, and it is normally served with raisins, blanched almonds, and ginger snaps.

Given the unpredictable weather here in the northeast, I think I will be enjoying this drink for at least few weeks to come… and so should you.

If you’d like to make this recipe for kids, just omit the wine and spirits and replace them with the fruit juice (or juices) of your choice.

frozen movie, disney frozen

Frozen Nordic Glog:

  • 1 bottle dry red wine (such as Cabernet)
  • 1/2 bottle port wine
  • 1 cup dried figs, sliced
  • 1 cup golden raisins
  • 2 oranges, peel and juice
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 star anise
  • 7 whole peppercorns
  • 5 cloves
  • 7 cardamom pods
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 cup sliced almonds (optional)
Heat all ingredients in a large pot on low heat, being careful not to boil.
Let it go… and simmer for about 45 minutes.
Strain through a cloth or sieve to remove the whole spices.

Serve the glog immediately (or reheat later) in your favorite mug or glass, garnish with sliced almonds, and you’ll be warm in no time!

red carpet event

Red Carpet Green Dress

red carpet green dress Walter & I on the red carpet at the #RCGD 5th Anniversary Party.

With the exception of this post, I’ve been MIA for the last week or so.

I’m happy to report that I have completed the Beyonce & Jay-Z themed 22 Day Vegan Challenge (!!!!!!!) and will be posting the final recipes and a recap in the next coming days/week.

That being said, my absence was for a fantastic reason: I was chosen by the all natural and eco-friendly skincare brand, Previse, to travel to Los Angeles and attend the 5th Anniversary Party for Red Carpet Green Dress.

For the last five years, Suzy Amis Cameron (wife of director James Cameron) has selected an up and coming designer to fashion an eco-friendly dress for the Academy Awards – the first global sustainable design contest of its kind.

To celebrate five superbly sustainable years, a star-studded event was held at Palihouse in West Hollywood.

The event featured an all vegan appetizer menu, sustainable organic cocktails from VeeV Spirits, a silent auction, and a display of the previous design challenge winners gowns. Continue reading

red carpet green dress naomi harris Last year’s Oscars dress worn by Skyfall star, Naomi Harris.

Keeping with the eco-friendly theme, I chose to rent a dress from Rent the Runway instead of purchasing a new one. The dress I chose is from the Israeli designer Pas Pour Toi, and I was thrilled with the final look. My dress even impressed an event photographer who shouted “Love the dress! It’s Oscar worthy!” as I was getting out the car. Flattery gets your everywhere, people…

red carpet green dress The back of the dress on the red carpet.

Since I forgot my jewelry at home, I found the gold rope earrings, black bustier, and blush colored clutch at a store (H&M) on Sunset Boulevard.

I had my makeup and manicure done at a salon also on Sunset, Eden by Eden Sassoon, and the gorgeous vintage hair style was the work of a friend’s favorite hair stylist, Tilly.

5th Anniversary Celebration Of Suzy Amis Cameron's Ecofashion Campaign "Red Carpet Green Dress"Image via Getty Images

In attendance at the event was Suzy Amis Cameron and James Cameron, of course, Naomi Harris, and the actors chosen to wear the sustainable garments on the red carpet at the Oscars: Kellan Lutz (Twilight, The Legend of Hercules) and Amber Valletta (Revenge, Hitch).

This is the first year that both a gown and tuxedo designer were chosen as the winners and, I couldn’t be happier about eco-friendly designers embracing male fashion.

I spoke with Kellen as he was exiting the party and asked about the texture of this tuxedo. He said that despite the fabric used (a blend of repurposed water bottles and organic silk), it is very comfortable to wear and soft to the touch.

kellan lutz oscars Kellan Lutz and Amber Valletta at the Academy Awards.

In addition to celebrating the designers and all things eco-friendly, the party was also held to support a fantastic cause: The Muse School.

Founded by Suzy Amis Cameron and her sister, Rebecca Amis, the Muse School’s mission is to “inspire and prepare young people to live consciously with themselves, one another, and the planet.”

For a limited time, Previse SkinCare is offering a special deal on their amazing “ZeroSilicone” products.

When you purchase one of the Red Carpet SkinRescue Kits tailored for your specific skin type (I’m type 3) now until March 31st, not only will you save $34 on the list price, but 97 cents of every dollar will be donated to the Muse School to help support financial aid for underprivileged children  - so act fast!

previse skincare

Not only will you get glowing, radiant skin, but Previse products are free of harsh preservatives, skin clogging silicones, petroleum and synthetic oils and protect against sun exposure and skin cancer.

I want to give a big than to my gracious hosts, the entire Previse team, for making this trip possible and producing such amazing products, and Red Carpet Green Dress for inspiring me and the world to embrace sustainable options in all areas of our lives.

Below are a few more photos from the amazing event!

1619231_10152293339310610_1163807955_nPictured with Samata Angel, the 2011 RCGD designer and Taryn Hipwell, eco-conscious media maven.

red carpet green dress party

 

red carpet event Red carpet selfie!

Red Carpet Green Dress 5th Anniversary Party

red carpet green dress party

 

Shamrock Shake Recipe

Healthy, Vegan McDonald’s Shamrock Shake

Shamrock Shake Recipe

One of my least favorite holidays, Saint Patrick’s Day, is thankfully over.

And, with it goes the elusive yet annually reliable Shamrock Shake from McDonald’s.

Whether or not you’ve sampled this treat, you can avoid the often fruitless search and make it at home.

My version doesn’t include any harmful chemicals from food coloring, and instead uses the healthy and greener alternative, chlorophyll. Continue reading

Chlorophyll is not only responsible for my seventh grade science teacher’s favorite word (photosynthesis), but it so closely resembles our hemoglobin, that it detoxifies and oxygenates our blood and helps build new red blood cells.

Liquid chlorophyll is fairly easy to find at a health food store or online, and I definitely recommend the mint flavored version (for the purpose of this minty shake and because it tastes better).

Once you have your ingredients, use a blender (or in my case, a Magic Bullet) to blend the mixture until foamy, and you have a delicious frothy ode to the Emerald Isle. Slàinte!

The shakes were first launched in the U.S. in 1970 and were initially called the "St. Patrick’s Day Green Milkshake" before adopting the name "Shamrock Shake".Image via soundadvicefortoday.com

Vegan Shamrock Shake

  • 2 tbsp. mint flavored chlorophyll
  • 2 scoops vegan vanilla bean ice cream
  • 1 cup vegan milk of your choice (I used almond)

Using a blender, blend the ingredients until well combined and frothy. Serve immediately.

Harold Rosen, a McDonald's franchisee owner in Enfield, Connecticut, claimed to have invented the shake in 1966. The McDonald’s Corporation has disputed Rosen's claim.
Image via cerealbits.com

Beyoncé + Jay-Z Vegan Challenge Day 13. Flawless: Overnight Chia Seed Pudding

Beyonce FlawlessI woke up like this.

Wake up to a Flawless breakfast with this super easy overnight chia seed pudding recipe!

Because chia seeds are so absorbent, they soak up all of the almond milk and form a semi-gelatinous pudding – similar to tapioca.

No need to heat – just give it a good stir and set in the fridge for a few minutes (or overnight if you want to save time).

It’s thick, creamy, hydrating, and filling – and chocolately. Top with your favorite fresh or frozen fruit (I like raspberries) and pair with a good cup of coffee. Continue reading

beyonce vegan challenge

Overnight Chia Seed Pudding

  • 1/4 cup chia seeds
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp. raw cacao powder
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened coconut flakes

Put chia seeds, almond milk, vanilla, and cacao powder into a glass jar with a lid. Tighten the lid and shake well to thoroughly combine. Refrigerate overnight. When ready to serve, stir well. Spoon into bowls and top with fruit and coconut.

IMG_4178

Today’s Activity: Dress up, go out with your best friends and, Say “I look so good tonight!”. We Flawless.

Food.Fashion.Fun.Travel

%d bloggers like this: