Sunday, 30 March 2008

the moon, northbridge

The Moon has such a varied reputation in Perth. It's well-known as the late night munchie restaurant, and it's a bit smoky, and a bit skanky, whenever you pass on by.

At six, for an early evening meal, though, it's delightful. Last week a large group of us ventured in and sprawled out in the back room, taking up about half of that space. It was quite stifling, which was a bit uncomfortable, but the light was lovely and it was such a pleasant space to spend an hour of my evening.

The Moon's Vege Burger is a gigantic piece of work, piled high with vegetables and a delicious patty, spread across with pesto. The entire burger is vegan (or at least was last time I asked, and I assume it continues the same), and it's always too much for me to eat on my own.

The moon also does a tasty soy smoothie (not pictured).

There are not many other vegan things on the Moon's menu, but the burger, at the least, is worth it.

The Moon
2/323 William St

very simple noodle soup

There are many habits for which my mother would scold me: in this particular instance, I am referring to my use of pre-prepared stock. I love, on cold afternoons, to set vegetables to boiling on the stove, filling the house with the smell of stock and the warmth from my kitchen. My mother making stock, long afternoons with the smell permeating the house, is a constant from my childhood.

My mother would use the stock for many things, for curries and rice and for various soups; but this here is my favourite. This is my comfort food, what I eat when I am ill, or when I am sad, or when it is cold and stormy outside. Sometimes, though, I just want to eat it because it is my favourite, and it is at these times that I cheat and use a packet stock. I use the Massel cubes, as they are vegan and gluten-free.

very simple noodle soup

4-5 cups vege stock
1 carrot (sliced into thin circles)
2 bok choy (stem sliced widthways; leaves chopped in half)
various other vegies prepared appropriately
noodles of choice (I like to use rice noodles, or the instant noodles like you get in indomie)

Set the stock to boiling; add the carrots, and leave to simmer for ten minutes. Add the sliced bok choy stems and simmer for another little while (about ten minutes, maybe a little less). Continue adding vegetables as appropriate. At the same time, cook the noodles. Finally add the bok choy leaves, blanch, and add the cooked noodles to the broth just for thirty seconds. I usually like to add some bean shoots at the same time. Serve, and smother in soy sauce.

Wednesday, 26 March 2008

banana and apple cake

I was at a A's house ten minutes before he went to Swancon for the weekend, and he'd left four bananas and two apples in the fruit bowl. The heat of the weekend meant that upon his return, there'd be nothing but mush and a terrible smell permeating his apartment, so I took them from him and created this to use them up.

three mashed bananas
quarter cup melted nuttlex
1 tsp vanilla essence
half cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons applesauce
two ish cups of flour
1 tsp bicarb
1/4 tsp baking powder
one green apple (grated)
1 tsp (ish) cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg

Cream the bananas with the nuttlex and the vanilla essence. Add the brown sugar and the apple sauce, then sift in the flower, bicarb, baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg. Mix all in, then mix in the grated apple. Grease a baking pan and pour mixture in evenly.

Bake at 175C for about 45 minutes.

It was soft and moist, and I apologise for the lack of photos - I ended up taking it to the con for afternoon tea, and as such have nothing to show for it but an empty tin.

Tuesday, 25 March 2008

wong's, west perth

Met up for a quick lunch today with my mum at Wong's Asian Cuisine, on Wellington Street in West Perth, which is located where Sarawak Delights used to be. Selection was a bit average, but I was heartened by the fact that the 'vegetarian' section of the menu said "please inform if you are pure vegetarian/vegan." It suggests that saying "vegan" doesn't need to be followed by an explanation. The mee hoon I had was tasty, and the lunch menu was fairly inexpensive (for West Perth, at least).

Wong's Asian Cuisine
835 Wellington St
West Perth

Tuesday, 18 March 2008

the junction ice creamery, midland

Growing up in the hills, and going to high school at old Governor Stirling, the Junction Ice Creamery has long been a big part of my life. My friends worked there, and there was that desperately long six months where we didn't go because one of my friends was let go from there, and no matter what anyone says it's the best ice cream around. It has won awards both within the state and nationally, and their flavours are traditional with the occasional experimental success, like apple pie or black forest. Alas, apple pie and black forest are not vegan, but I will always remember them fondly.

Fortunately, the Junction Ice Creamery has a range of tasty sorbets and soy icecreams, most of which are vegan. My favourite is the passionfruit soya, though I do enjoy the slightly bitter taste of the chocolate soya.

The Junction Ice Creamery
Corner of Great Eastern Highway and Morrison Road

Sunday, 16 March 2008

little chutney's, subiaco

Last week saw us dropping in to Little Chutney's for dinner. It was a crowded Thursday night, but it was already half past eight by the time we were seated, so we didn't think this would lead to much of a wait. After randomly picking from the menu, we ended up waiting about forty-five minutes, which is not terrible but given the lateness of the evening, we were ravenous by the time the food arrived.

I was tempted by the cauliflower tandoori, having never tried any tandoori vegetable before. The cauliflower was soft and strongly spiced, and had an incredible flavour to it. We also ordered the pumpkin curry, which was slightly spicy and quite tasty, and some aloo parathas. Although our waiter had asked the kitchen if the curry and the cauliflower was vegan, I didn't think to ask about the parathas, and we think the parathas were basted at the end in ghee.

Still, my own culpability aside, the entire meal was delicious and enjoyable. Little Chutney's is a little expensive, but not prohibitively so, and I find that it is always worth the wait, and always worth the money, to dine there. The service is always friendly and delightful, and our waiter for the evening was friendly and giggly and attentive.

Gluten-free dishes are available, though they cannot guarantee dishes free from nuts.

Little Chutney's
67 Rokeby Rd

Sunday, 9 March 2008

istanbul turkish restaurant, fremantle

I was previously introduced to Istanbul Turkish Restaurant about six months ago, and since then have been looking for excuses to return. Yesterday D and I found ourselves in Fremantle at about lunch time, and sick of looking at menus where all we could eat was a fettuccine with tomato and basil sauce, I remembered it was located just one street over.

We seated ourselves at one of the footpath tables, and ordered the zebzeli patlican and the patatas ispanak pide, both to share. The zebzeli patlican, an eggplant and tomato dip, was slightly tart but the turkish bread with which it was served was fresh and crisp. The patatas ispanak was delicious, with the soft, slightly spicy potato adding a nice flavour to the spinach.

It was quiet, late yesterday afternoon, and the food was clearly freshly prepared and promptly served and it was a pleasure to people watch on the footpath in the afternoon sun. My previous visit was a Saturday night with a large group, the restaurant was packed and you had to weave to avoid the bellydancers but service was prompt then, too, and just as tasty.

The pricing is about average: the pide + entree cost $25. Gluten-free things are on the menu, though not a wide variety. A moderately-sized vegetarian menu with a few vegan choices, and a few more things that can be easily veganised. If you're dining with meat-eaters, the menu for them is also quite large, though they should just shut up and try the patatas ispanak, I was seriously delighted with it.

Istanbul Turkish Restaurant
19 Essex Street