Thursday, February 25, 2010

Tart N Round Closing :-(

I got the email in my inbox today informing me that:

Tart'n'round Cafe closing

Tart'n'round cafe/restaurant will be closed as of Monday the 1st of March. Come in this Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, for a meal and stock up on our yummy sweets , ice cream and vegan cheese.

Tart'n'round will continue to wholesale the yummy balls, biscuits, slices and ice cream.

If you have any inquiries please go to the website otherwise we will see you this week
I thank all of you for your support and patronage

Kind Regards
Andrew Schubert

And I seriously wanted to cry. The last time I was super sad about a cafe closing was when vegetarian orgasm closed but this is worse. Being able to go to one place and knowing that I can eat everything, that everything is both gluten free and vegan was just awesome and incredibly rare. Especially after being accidentally fed gluten at a vegetarian restaurant, and eating the horrible and possibly not vegan food at a gluten free cafe. It's where I felt safe as a new coeliac and I can't express how relieving and important that has been! It's also the first and currently the only place where I have found cereal that is filling, tasty and had the right amount of crunch. Please please please wholesale your cereal!

cereal-buckwheat kernals, nut clusters and lots of yummy dried fruit

Also, the savoury options just kept on improving. There served FILLING and pretty well priced gluten free food which tends to be expensive. I could go there and gets regular things like a gluten free burger and a pizza and feel less like a freak (I had a post coming up about my most recent visit but can't find the pictures). And they introduced me to flat gluten free bread. Plus I was going to have my birthday celebration there next month, I wonder if they will still make me a birthday cake even though that's really not wholesale business. I know a few people who thought the desserts were too over the top and unhealthy, but they were my type of dessert- rich, decadent and so delicious.

I think it makes me a little angry too because the owners are really nice, and I've noticed the smaller places like this and Las Vegan (who everyone begged to be opened in the evenings) are often empty in the evening yet large impersonal places like vegie bar that serve pretty average food are always super busy.

I'm going to squeeze in one or two last visits this weekend and stock up on cereal and other things, so please don't buy the last packet of cereal.

Thanks for listening to me rant!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Go Max Bars, Red Skins and one sweet blogger

In my last gluteny days, the very thoughtful Mandee (who I have never actually met) sent me some Go Max bars via express post so I could try them. They are unfortunately not gluten free due to one small ingredient- malt powder. I got to try one of each of them before I started eating gluten free, and here are my thoughts:

These pictures below are taken from the go max foods website because 2 of my bars didn't make then home in time for pictures :-)

Each chocolate bar is coated in rice milk chocolate, so even those crazy dark chocolate haters can enjoy them.

The Mahalo bar reminds me a lot of a bounty bar except it also has peanuts nestled amongst the coconut and top chocolate layer as you can see in the pic. (Toby pointed out Mahalo means thank you in Hawaiian)

The jokerz, was my favourite, it has roasted peanuts, caramel and nougart and reminded me a of a snickers bar.

The twilight, is super caramely, and also contains nougat.

The Buccaneer, reminded me of a milky bar, with it's simple but delicious nougat.

Thanks Mandee, it was incredibly sweet of you! You can read her post on them here. Now Go Max, please please please try to make them gluten free, or even just one gluten free version. They are available at the Cruelty free shop.

In other lolly news, Lidia alerted me to the fact the individual sized red skins and toffee apples lollies that you might find at a lolly shop or servo are in fact vegan. I found them at the lolly shop at Northland. But for some reason the smaller version that comes in a packet at the supermarket are not vegan. Now I just need to go back and check if they are gluten free. If you are interested in vegan food updates like this or know of other interesting vegan food updates, I created a facebook group called Aussie Vegan Food Updates.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Gluten Free potluck reminder and info

I'm having a gluten free vegan picnic potluck this Friday in Brunswick at 7pm. If you are interested in coming then email me at inthemoodfonoodles (at) (gmail) (dot) (com) and I will send you the details.

Also a reminder that wheat, oats, rye, barley are NOT gluten free. Also gluten sneaks its way into all sorts of unsuspecting food items and MAY be in your soy milk, spices, mustard, vinegar, soy sauce (Braggs and Tamari are fine), corn starch, icing sugar, and lots of other items. Also, spelt is NOT gluten free, neither is malt. Surprisingly though, under Australian food law, glucose, glucose syrup and caramel colour are "gluten-free", even if derived from wheat, as the wheat is so highly processed, there is no gluten detected. I found this list kind of helpful. If in doubt just drop me an email. If you check every single tiny ingredient though you should be fine though.

Also, it would be awesome to bring copies of your recipes, so that I can double check items just in case and hopefully add a few more amazing gluten free vegan dishes to my repertoire.

Hope to see you there!

Chinese Radish Cake and Asian Ice-cream

Steph hosted a Chinese New Year's Eve potluck last Saturday. Kristy loves Chinese Radish Cake and insisted that I should make it. I found a recipe from Irene Wai's blog (It is in Chinese) and veganized it. To make Chinese Radish Cake, you only need to get one or two big juicy Chinese Radishes, commonly known as Daikon, and some very common ingredients:

- 1.5KG Chinese Radish/Daikon
- 4 Shitake Mushroom, finely chopped.

- 1 pack of Blue Lotus smoked Tofu, finely chopped

- Conola Oil (or Peanut Oil, if you wanna be more Chinese)

- 250g Rice Flour

- 150ml Water

- 2 tbs Sesame Seeds


- 2 tsp Sugar
- 2 tsp Massel "Chicken" stock powder

- to taste, white pepper powder
- to taste, tamari

- to taste, liquid smoke
- to taste, salt

1. Wash, peel and grate the Daikon. Drain the grated Daikon and save the liquid in a bowl.

2. Fry the smoked tofu and mushroom on medium/high until your smoke alarm goes off, season with tamari, salt and liquid smoke. You want it to taste A LITTLE BIT TOO SALTY.

3. Mix rice flour in the Daikon liquid until it reaches a gravy-like thickness. If it is too thick, add some water (little by little) but no more than 150ml.

4. Heat oil the wok or fry pan, fry the grated Daikon on medium/high for a couple of minutes.

5. Lower the heat, add the seasoning and cook the grated Daikon with lid on til soft

6. Add the smoked tofu/mushroom to the Daikon and fry medium/high for around 5mins

7. Turn the heat off, add rice flour paste to the pot and mix

8. Pour the whole thing to a greased cake tin and steam on high fro 1.5 to 2 hours. (Put a toothpick into the cake and if the toothpick is clean, it is ready.)

9. Sprinkle with sesame seeds.

10. Let it cool down and settle.

11. Store the whole cake in a big airtight container and consume within 10days.

And then, you slice and pan fry the cake:


Kristy made not one by two types of ice-cream from Vegan Scoop: Green Tea and Red Bean. We put way too much Green Tea powder in the first one but tried to fix it. But it still tasted way too bitter. We also used Chinese Red Bean Paste instead of the fancy Japanese version and Kristy thought it tasted like a generic sweet flavour.

Also read what other bloggers made for the CYN potluck:

Johanna's CYN potluck round up, pearl ball and Apricot Goodness Balls . (Both Gluten Free)
Steph's potluck blog post and her vegan pineapple tart. (Gluten Free)
Vicki's delish gluten free sponge cake. (Gluten Free)
Cindy's Orange Szechuan Pepper Ice-cream(!) (Gluten Free)
Michael's "Disaster" Dumplings (Almost Gluten Free)

On my walkman:
Teen Dream - Beach House

Friday, February 19, 2010

For females: Not food but vegan related...

I've been quite sick lately despite sticking to a gluten free diet, and Toby suggested that I should double check my medication for gluten. While I was laying on the couch last night curled up in ball in pain complaining, he looked up my contraceptive pill online and discovered that each tablet contains lactose. I knew that the inactive ones that you take when you have your period were lactose based and so avoided taking them. Given that I am vegan and lactose intolerant, this causes a few problems. I went to the doctor today and asked if I could switch to another brand which is lactose free, and she couldn't find one. She checked about 12 brands and every single one contained lactose in each tablet (both the active and inactive ones). So now, I'm stuck taking them until the end of the cycle even though they might be a factor in me being sick and are clearly not vegan.

So I'm wondering, have you checked your contraceptive pill? and have you found a brand which is lactose free? Also, what are your thoughts on taking non vegan medication? The type I take helps control problem periods and is good for your skin.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Bowl of Soul

I was sure that I had posted about Bowl of Soul before, but apparently not. I do have to admit that we don't go nearly enough because it's not a northside restaurant. Yes I know, so lazy! We went there as a part of the goodbye gluten tour and loved it. Bowl of soul is a small vegetarian cafe that specialises in mockmeat type sandwiches and burgers. You could easily grab some takeaway and walk the 10-15 minutes to the beach, if you felt inclined. The owners are friendly and most things can be made vegan by substituting soy cheese and vegan bacon. Most of the burgers/sandwhiches range from $10-$12 mark.

I had the stakeout sandwich deluxe with vegan cheese and bacon. This comes with fried onions, BBQ sauce, salad etc and is so damn tasty. The 'stake' texture is not particuarly steaky which is great because I always hated steak but it does have a slight beefy texture and I love the chilli rub that they apply to to 'stake' which gives it the slightest kick of chilli. I would so love one of these right now:
and Toby had the creole chic'n roll deluxe also with vegan cheese and bacon. This comes with cajun spiced 'chicken' with mayo and salad. I really can't decide which is my favourite between the two of these dishes., they are both awesome but Toby prefers the 'stakeout'.

Sometimes I think I could make these at home using mockmeat but the yummy bread, homemade sauces really do make it worthwhile. I think they are pretty filling and couldn't finish mine, whereas Toby being the crazy eater that he is, thinks he could eat 1 and a half.

Here's the standard menu (click on the pic to see a larger pic), which is pretty gluten heavy. But they do have a few gluten free meals and gluten free brownies (although not vegan) in their fridge section. I though the g/f meals looked pretty bland, but according to Carla they were pretty tasty.

As an added bonus, they sell my favourite juice- Charlie's old fashioned raspberry lemonade, so refreshing:
They generally sell vegan chocolate covered figs which are delicious, but were not available on the night we went. I've tried making my own chocolate fidgs, but they don't end up nearly as good, I'm not sure what their secret is, but they are well worth trying. Cindy blogged about them here.

I willl miss your gluteny dishes bowl of soul!

Bowl of Soul
118 Bridge St
Port Melbourne
9645 2470
Tue- Sat 12-4, 6-8

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Yong Green Food you make me ...

Edited to add: Ok the original title was yong green food you made me sad but since this negative review, I have received an apology (see comment), refund and had lots of gluten free meals there. See more recent reviews  here and here.

On the weekend, we wanted to eat out somewhere where I was confident that I could get gluten free meals and I remembered from a previous visit that Yong Green Food had several meals that were clearly marked as gluten free and lots of raw food which tend to be gluten free so I though I was pretty safe. I ordered the sandwhich with cashew bread, the filling was tasty and beetrootish, and the bread was raw and gluten free but kind of tasteless and cardboardy, still I was happy to have some bread.

yes more camera phone shots, ooops

Toby, being the sweet husband that he is, ordered a gluten free meal so I could have some. He chose the thai green curry. My first bite was what I thought was a piece of potato but turned out to be some mock meat. I thought it felt gluteny, but since it was marked gluten free maybe it was soy based. Toby asked the waitress what the mockmeat was, and she responded that it was wheat based chicken. She asked if it was ok and I explained that I was allergic to gluten. Instead of being assertive though, I just felt really disheartened and Toby and I really didn't know what to say. Eating even a small amount of gluten can damage the small intestine and cause a range of nasty symptoms for coeliacs! A friend asked later about it, and the staff explained that it was an error on the menu or the menu had changed or something lame. No refunds offered, no real apologies, nothing! If I can't eat at a mostly raw vegetarian cafe, where can I eat? I actually like the food at Yong Green Food like the raw cheesecakes, but how I trust you after this? I really need to employ some of Rachel's awesome letter writing skills

It especially sucked because the day before I had attended training Hotel Grand Chancellor where I was given a gluten free meal- a salad with croutons hidden at the bottom. I only discovered them when I ate into one. It was only my first proper g/f week and the two times I had eaten out I had accidentally eaten gluten. And to make matters worse, they weren't even tasty gluten bits. I'm going to stick to Tart n' Round for a while.

Yong Green Food
421 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Black Bottom Peanut Butter Silk Pie and Minies

Balaclava Coles rocks!

After our trip to Nostralis we went to Balaclava Coles (carlisle st), it has so many vegan Jewish foods that you can't find at a regular supermarket. We bought these expensive(about $18) but awesome tiny chocolate covered ice cream snacks called Minies. They are strawberry flavoured ice cream covered in a chocolate covering with a crunchy rice bubble type coating. I'm not sure if they are gluten free, they look ok except for the maltodextrin which might be derived from wheat or corn. I tried googling it but couldn't find anything. I'm not sure if it because I have been vegan for 7 years but I swear it is easier to find out if something is vegan than it is to find out if something is gluten free. I was a little worried that we wouldn't finish them before I went gluten free (a week later), but despite the quanity (32) they didn't last long at all.

I also found a graham cracker crust and after reading about graham cracker crusts on US based blogs and cookbooks, I was so excited that I literally jumped up and down in coles.

I put the question out on facebook about what to make and my genius friend Marisa suggested that I make the no bake black bottom peanut butter silk pie from vegan with a venegance for a mini potluck. It was pretty awesome. Although I used coconut milk which I think definitely overshadows the peanut butter a little. It's almost as amazing as the sm love pie. It could easily be make gluten free though by using gluten free cookies to make a crust. The recipe doesn't specify what type of agar (powder, flakes or whole) so I used the actual seaweed and just cut it up with scissors. It was the first time I had made it from whole seaweed and was a little worried but it worked out fine. Here's the recipe:

1 prepared graham cracker crust or chocolate cookie pie crust
4 ounces/113 grams dark chocolate

12 ounces silken tofu
3/4 peanut butter
1 1/2 cup icing sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup of rice milk/soy creamer/ rice milk or soy milk
1 1/4 cup boiling water
3 Tbsp agar

Melt chocolate, mix in soy misk and whisk then pour over prepared pie crust. Transfer to fridge.

Combine tofu, peanut butter, sugar, and vanilla in blender or food processor and blend until smooth. In a saucepan over moderate heat boil the agar in 1 1/4 cup boiling water. Stir constantly until dissolved (about 10 minutes). When dissolved pour into glass measuring cup (or if you have plastic let it cool a little). Add 2/3 cup of milk to the tofu mixture and blend and then add the agar and blend again.

Slowly pour the peanut butter mixture into the pie crust. Drizzle the remaining chocolate over the pie, run knife to create a pattern. Refrigerate covered for at least 3 hours.

Also check out Theresa's interesting version here

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Nostralis Wholemeal Vegetarian PIzza, Eclipse, Protest,

Warning: photos are pretty blurry

Kristy and I love Pizza. We normally get our pizzas from Plush, Eat Pizza and Stefan's. On her Goodbye Gluten Tour, we went to Nostralis Wholemeal Vegetarian Pizza, as recommended by our friends Bec and Craig.

This joint is purely vegetarian and caters for vegans and silly-yaks, I mean coeliacs. They also use wholemeal flour, (mostly) organic fresh vegetables and beans. The price of their pizzas and the Cheezly surcharge is much cheaper than other vegan friendly pizza joints in Melbourne.

Craig and Bec raved about the Garlic Pizza. It was simple, greasy and sinfully yummy. I haven't seen that much cheezly on one single pizza (slightly more than Eat Pizza).

Garlic: Cheezly + Garlic overloaded!

We also ordered a Eggplant Pizza (minus egg) and a Chickpea Pizza. The eggplant Pizza was pretty nice but the bean shoots on the Chickpea Pizza made it taste very salad-ish.

Eggplant: not bad

Chickpeas: meh

I tried a piece of the Vindaloo Pizza (Tomato, Cheese, Banglore Beans, Peppers, Sultanas, Hot Spices, Banana, Onions & Vindaloo Curry Paste). It wasn't spicy at all and full of flavour.

We will go there again to have Garlic Pizza and Vindaloo Pizza, on their gluten-free base.

Nostralis Wholemeal Vegetarian Pizza
55 Hawthorn Rd Caulfield North 3161
Phone 9528-49-61

In other news, there is a new (ish) cafe opened near Satay Bar called Eclipse Specialty Coffee. The coffee is pretty awesome. Worth checking out if you are near by.

Also, there will be a very special rally to support live music venues in Australia on Tuesday, 3 Feb 2010. It will start around 4pm in front of State Library. You can also sign the petition here.

Sarah D, a music loving vegan made this tee:

Photo: Sarah D

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Gluten Free Eat Pizza and Jelly Beans

Today is my first official gluten free day, and I have loads of gluteny posts from all of my last gluteny meals but right now I want to talk about my first gluten free day. Two things make it better, first vegan strongman Ivan gave me gluten free vegan jellybeans. They are pretty awesome and taste quite fruity, except for the green flavoured one, why do green jellybeans suck so much?

It was far too hot to cook, so we went to Eat Pizza. Eat pizza, is a regular pizza place that just happens to have soy cheese (cheezly) and vegan salami. Their wholemeal and gluten free bases are vegan, but I'm not sure about the regular pizza base. They have a store in Glenroy, and Maribyrnong but I've only ever been to the Maribyrnong one, although it looks like the Glenroy store is just as yummy. Ivan and Toby shared a small garlic wholemeal pizza:

It was Ivan's first trip to Eat pizza and like us he was impressed with the amount of the cheezly, although both Toby and him agreed that they thought the garlic pizza wasn't garlicy enough.

They also shared a margarita with vegan salami and both agreed this was their favourite. Sadly the salami is not gluten free though. And again check out how much cheezly?

I tried their gluten free base, with the traditional vegetarian toppings plus pineapple. Gluten free bases tends to be thinner, but this was by far the best gluten free pizza that I have had so far, although I must admit I have only had 3 g/f pizzas. They made their own g/f bases, the crust was still a little hard, and the pizza itself is hard to cut into it, but it was really pleasant to eat. No major issues at all and really not that different to regular pizza. Big thumbs up from g/f me and the gluten eaters.

Eat Pizza
44 Raleigh Rd,
(03) 9317 7977


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Italian Beans and Rice from Vegan Yum Yum

Toby got me the vegan yum yum cookbook for our wedding anniversary, he even marked all of the recipes that are either gluten free or can be made gluten free. There are lots! I've been a long time fan of the blog vegan yum yum and made a number of successful recipes and can already tell that like the blog, the most of the recipes in the cookbook are simple, healthy, tasty and don't require too many crazy ingredients.

Toby made me two dishes from it: Italian beans and rice and coconut lime tofu. I love both dishes, especially the Italian beans and rice. I'm not really a beans and rice type of gal, but this dish is really quite unique. The flavour of the beans dish is really rich and bursting with flavour, the nuts give it a nice crunch and the lemon and vinegar some acidity.

Italian Rice and Beans
Serves One Hearty Meal

1/2 Cup Brown Rice, uncooked
1/2 Can Great Northern Beans, rinsed and drained
1/4 Cup Oil Packed Sun-Dried Tomatoes, sliced into strips
1/4 Cup Pine Nuts
1 Large Handful Baby Spinach
1 tsp Balsamic Vinegar
1/4 tsp Kosher Salt
1-2 tsp Italian Herbs of your choice, (basil, oregano, marjoram, rosemary, etc)
Zest from 1/2 Organic Lemon
Almond Cheesy Sprinkles, optional

Start your rice, when nearly finished (or actually finished), heat 3 Tbs of olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add herbs, tomatoes, and pine nuts. When pine nuts start to turn golden brown, add the beans. Toss gently, trying your best to keep the beans whole. Add salt and vinegar, stir gently. Turn down heat to low.

Place spinach in one layer on top of the beans. Place hot, steaming rice over spinach and leave for 30 seconds or so, until you see the spinach start to wilt. Mix gently and plate.

Grate lemon zest on top of rice and beans, and finish with a sprinkle of almond cheesy sprinkles if desired.

I didn't take any pictures, but the next day I had leftover beans on garlic bread, like a weird but wonderful alternative to bruschetta.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Jelly cakes and Samosa pancakes

We have a massive backlog of blog posts, so this is old news but still news worthy I think.

When Lisa announced a last minute potluck, I jumped at the chance to bake one more gluteny dish. Steph and Cate have already posted nice summaries. I've wanted to make jelly cakes since I saw the recipe that posted on Rose's blog. I was a little hesitant about the lack of vanilla essence but it was fine without it. I've never seen let alone eaten jelly cakes before so didn't really know what to expect. The first time I made these I left the jelly a little too long and it started to set and so they didn't coat the cakes, but the second time I got it right. I wanted to make them pretty and add cream on top just like Rose, but my soyatoo cream container broke and I couldn't get anymore cream out. These were yummy though and I look forward to trying it again with g/f cupcake type recipe.

Here's the recipe:

Jelly Cakes
(makes approx 12)

90g margarine
3/4 C caster sugar
Organ No Egg equal to 1 1/2 eggs
1 1/2 C Self-raising flour
1 C rice milk
1 packet non-gelatin jelly
3 C desiccated coconut
1/2 C soyatoo cream

- Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Grease a 12 cake patty pan.
- Using an electric mixer, cream margarine and sugar until light and fluffy. Add no egg, a little at a time, beating until well combined. Using a large spoon, gently fold in half the flour and half the milk. Repeat with remaining flour and milk.
- Spoon mixture into patty pan. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool cakes on a wire wrack.
- Once cakes are cool, cut each in half horizontally and spread approx 1 teaspoon cream over one side and then sandwich cakes back together.
- Make jelly, mixing jelly crystals with hot water. Place coconut in a bowl.
- Using a slotted spoon, when the jelly has cooled (so not to melt the cream) lower a cake into the jelly coating all sides and draining excess jelly, immediately toss in the coconut. Repeat with remaining cakes.
- Refrigerate for an hour.

Toby made mashed potato samosa pancakes from Vegan Brunch, these was ok, and gluten free (if you use chickpea flour) but slightly bland. Mango chutney helps though.