September '09
The VegNewsletter arrives in your e-mailbox just once a month and clues you in on vegetarian news, dining, recipes, products, activist alerts, reviews, culture, giveaways, and all the other good things in life.

In This Issue
Back to Basics
V in the News
What's Hot on
Event Showcase
Quinoa + Sweet Potato Timbale
Product Review
Project Promote
Book Bash!
VegNewsletter Preview

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 Back to Basics

Ah, fall. While it's still technically warm enough to count as summer in most places, we know that autumn is just around the corner, with its colorful leaves and crisp air ready to go. If there's anything better than cozying up with a magazine this time of year, we don't even want to know about it.

 V in the News

Timely Exposé
A recent Time article gets to the root of America’s cheap-food addiction: the meat industry. Bryan Walsh candidly discusses the “food industry’s degradation of animal life” and the fact that one dollar can buy 1,200 calories of potato chips versus 250 calories of vegetables or a measly 170 calories of fruit. Considering all the vegetables cycled through farmed animals to produce meat, something is definitely wrong here!

Prison Compassion
Thanks to the Vegan Prisoners Support Group, UK prisoners now have a right to vegan products. Soymilk, dairy-free yogurt, chocolate bars, and soy-based protein as well as vegan soap, shampoo, and moisturizer will be available to order from Holland & Barrett and Honesty Cosmetics. While some products, like cellulite oil, might not seem strictly necessary, VPSG has also ensured that inmates have access to more crucial items like soymilk and nuts.

 What's Hot on

You know what's hip? The internets. Here are our top three picks for hot stories you should probably check out right about now.

1. Vegan Fashion Takeover The word on all fashion-lovers' lips this season is "vegan." We brought together three top cruelty-free designers to talk trends, materials, and how the world of veg style is evolving.

2. Campus Chow Think going back to school means starving for another semester? Think again. College campuses all over the country are offering more and more veg options.

3. Vote-O-Rama! Want to weigh in on all of the polls? Here's our whole collection, which just might get you addicted. See what our other readers think on pressing issues, like whether or not to date an omnivore and what base—soymilk, coconut milk, or hemp milk—makes the best ice cream.

 Event Showcase

DC VegFest
This awesome, yearly one-day festival will be held on September 12, and features fab speakers, incredible food, and plenty of perks. Oh, and maybe DC's mayor made a formal welcoming statement to all who are participating. Next stop, keys to the city!

Gala Goes On!
Despite having to evacuate due to the fires in Southern California, the Animal Acres Gala will be held on September 12 at the Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades. The black-tie affair will be emceed by Hal Sparks and catered by Madeleine Bistro, which means it's sure to be a blast.

Fashion in Action
As you probably already know, Vaute Couture makes veganism look good, and this month the indie label is pairing up with Mercy for Animals. Join the two groups in Chicago on the 14th, when $100 will be donated to MFA for every Bomono, Pea, or El style coat ordered.

SnackFest ’09
Hello, big fat vegan festival! There’s food and fun to be had at Portland’s largest vegetarian shindig, VegFest. Celebrate the festival's fifth anniversary on September 19 with renowned speakers like Kathy Freston, and tons of super snacks. We're just saying, Coconut Bliss will be there. Just saying!

 Get Cookin'

Quinoa and Sweet Potato Timbale

It's possible that we're pretty freaking excited about Chef Tal Ronnen's The Conscious Cook, due out next month. We recently got a copy in the office and have been feverishly passing it around, drooling over the gorgeous photography and incredible-looking recipes. Naturally, the best thing to do at a time like this is test out the 75 rockin' recipes, and this yummy quinoa salad is about the fanciest little thing we've ever seen.

Serves 4

What You Need:

For the quinoa:
1 cup quinoa, cooked in vegetable stock according to package directions and cooled to room temperature
½ jalapeño, minced
1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, minced
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Juice of 1 lime
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

For the sweet potatoes:
1 sweet potato, peeled and ½-inch diced
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the dressing:
2 tomatillos in olive oil, skins removed
3 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon light agave nectar

For the tortilla strips:
Canola oil
2 corn tortillas, cut into ¼-inch strips
1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning

To serve:
2 avocados, diced

What You Do:
1. In a medium bowl, place all of the quinoa ingredients and toss to combine. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a small bowl, toss sweet potatoes with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Spread in a single layer on a baking sheet and roast for 15 minutes, or until soft in the middle and lightly browned.

2. Lower oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl, toss tomatillos with 1 teaspoon of olive oil. Place on a baking sheet and roast for 15 minutes. Transfer to a food processor, add vinegar, cilantro, and agave nectar, and pulse to combine. With the motor running, pour in remaining olive oil in a thin stream and continue blending until emulsified. Season with salt and pepper.

3. Into a small, heavy pot add 2 inches canola oil, and heat until oil shimmers. Add tortilla strips and fry until crisp and browned, 1 to 2 minutes. Drain on paper towels and sprinkle with Cajun seasoning.

4. Place a 3-inch ring mold in the center of a salad plate. Fill with ¼ of the quinoa mixture and press down to pack the mold, smoothing the top. Place ¼ of the sweet potato pieces on top of the quinoa and press down gently. Top with ¼ of the avocado and press down gently. Carefully remove the mold. Repeat on the remaining salad plates.

5. Carefully place 2 tortilla strips parallel to each other about 1 inch apart on top of each timbale. Place 2 more tortilla strips perpendicular on top of those. Top with microgreens and drizzle dressing around the timbales.

 Product Review

Coconut Bliss Bars

It's not often that a company's name is a fully accurate description of its products, but Coconut Bliss has pretty much nailed it. The recently released line of coconut and chocolate ice cream bars make us all swoony. Or, as one staffer said, "these are like soft serve on a stick!" Yeah, we like that. For the soy-free set, good news! These bars are deliciously devoid of soy.

 Project Promote

Here at VegNews, we understand the importance of effectively promoting vegetarian businesses and organizations. After nearly 10 years in business, we know how vital it is to get the word out about the great work you and your team are doing. This is why we're thrilled to announce the 3rd annual Project Promote program. VegNews will be awarding a one-year advertising campaign (including professional design services) to the organization our staff feels will most benefit from the exposure. The group must promote vegetarianism to be considered, and the advertising package is valued at more than $7,000. To be considered, simply download an application and submit it by Thursday, October 1. The 2010 Project Promote winner will be announced by October 15. Good luck!

 Book Bash!

Do you like feeling like a rock star? Want to give people the impression that you are close personal friends with one of the best-loved vegan cookbook authors of all time? Then get ye one of our stash of signed copies of Sarah Kramer's Vegan à Go-Go! for only $15 a pop, including shipping! You could get, like, two of them, and tell people that Sarah herself absolutely insisted on signing more than one for you. We won't tell!

 Preview: October VegNewsletter

Satisfy your between-issues cravings with this complimentary supplement, featuring exclusive product reviews, musician, artist and event spotlights, slammin’ recipes, giveaways, plus the lowdown on how vegetarianism is bettering the world—one delicious bite at a time.

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