Up until last year, when I was fortunately invited to meet up with some Los Angeles vegan bloggers, I had never been to a potluck besides some family holiday affairs. Recently though, it seems like every weekend I’m trying to make something to bring to an event. The most amazing part is that most of these have been vegan potlucks which is extra awesome because you get to try a bunch of treats made by other vegans.
There is always the dilemma of what to bring. Ideally one should bring actual food to a potluck so that everyone can eat. It’s no fun to show up when there is only various flavors of chips and dip. A few weeks ago I attended the BBQ/potluck after Feel My Legs, I’m a Racer, a bike race up the ten steepest hills in Los Angeles. I did not race up any of the hills, instead I biked a macaroni and chreese with broccoli casserole in my basket across town. I managed to arrive right on time, coming right around a corner to meet Shawn just as him and the other racers finished. Everyone was super hungry and most everything was devoured including veggie hot dogs, homemade seitan, vegan corn dogs and pasta salad.
Just the next day I got to attend another BBQ at a friends house. When I asked what to bring, I got the go ahead to bring dessert and was quite excited because there are few things I like more than baking cupcakes. I decided to try out a new recipe for spiced tea cupcakes. Since I wasn’t sure how many people would be there I went ahead and made mini versions. The spiced tea cakes were sweet and simple, a subtle black tea flavor with a bit of a kick. Even though it was an omni BBQ, our hosts made us an awesome vegetarian chili with extra beer, veggie dogs and grilled corn (with earth balance!). There was also homemade sangria to be enjoyed. Delicious!
We were also lucky enough to visit the new home of Sunny of Vegan Beauty Review and her husband along with some other vegan friends. We chowed down on vegan mushroom pate made by George from Sante la Brea and fried faux shrimps from Garden Wok brought by Lex and Kristen of Vegan LA. Vegyogini from Hugger Food made some tasty vegan cadbury cream eggs and Foodeater from To Live and Eat in LA brought a ton of adorable, colorful mochis (which I gobbled up quite a few of). I made cupcakes (again!) this time going for a simple strawberry shortcake cupcake. You can’t see the surprise filling of fresh strawberries hiding under the extra fluffy frosting. Unfortunately I was so full of other food I didn’t even get to try one of these, but Shawn assures me they were delicious and in fact still hold the place of his favorite cupcakes.
On a non-food related note, something I’ve been meaning to show off for a bit is the wall scratcher I made for my cats. When I first got Meeme and Mochi I was enthralled by all the modern looking cat furniture that was nothing like the carpet covered trees I’ve always seen. On the other hand, I was not excited at all about the prices. I decided to take matters into my own hands and make my own version of a wall scratcher. I ordered a piece of lovely orange carpet and obtained a leftover piece of wood shelving from a construction site, glued it together with some industrial adhesive and voila! While my custom piece cost less than $25 all together, the much smaller version it was based on cost double that. Most importantly though, Meeme and Mochi love streching out and scatching it so I have deemed it a complete success.