Saturday, 5 July 2014

Summertime post

It wouldn't be Manchester if we hadn't had a heck of a lot of rain in the last couple of months, but we've still been having some proper summertime too. I've love to say I've been tending an impressive urban herb garden and tossing salads all over the place, but because I'm a very poor specimen of adulthood, I've mostly been killing shoots and ordering Chinese food.

Those days of skipping home to make a thrilling new vegan recipe to share with The Internet are, if not behind me, definitely on a long break. I barely manage to keep the plants watered, do the washing up and take my meter readings, but eh, at least I turn up to work showered every day and I have one happy pooch who takes up 3/4 of my king size bed every night!

But in the spirit of stubbornness or maybe just because I like to have a wee blog every now and then, I thought I'd look back over some of my vegan grub highlights of recent weeks. Oh, I also got a coupla new tattoos in order to begin fostering better tattoo habits. Kids - I'm 32 and one of these was my 4th cover-up. Don't have any tattoos until you're 25! Srsly.

A pretty typical scene these days. How ruddy marvellous is my Fortean Times mug though?

Proof that I still buy vegetables sometimes.

Ah yes, another familiar scene. I <3 you, Tesco Valpolicella.

Further proof that I still buy vegetables! Vulpe gives a leek the lick test.
Here's my beloved Twin Peaks tattoo en cours...


Totally amazing coverup by Hannah Clark <3

I remember getting this pentagram tattoo. I was about 17 or 18, and I was determined to get something daring and provocative emblazoned on my body in a prominent place. Did I ever mention how ridiculous and obnoxious I was back then? Anyhoo. I went to a dodgy backstreet tattooist off Piccadilly Gardens in Manchester and a guy who looked like a Kray twin set to work without even using a transfer or anything. Since I was too scared to protest I had to have it tweaked a few years later, to straighten the lines and make the circle more.....circular.

Getting this one covered was particularly liberating. Both were done by Hannah at Rain City, and I can't recommend her enough. She's also vegan, which means she's double extra ace. Obviously.

But here's some proper food I made too, which happens occasionally still....

Tremendous almost-actual-salad.

A REAL SALAD. With ace paprika baked tofu.

Side salad counts, yes?

Peach cobbler from Chloe's Vegan Desserts. This was AMAZING.

Of course, life's been going on for Vulpe too. She celebrated her 2nd birthday a few weeks back; she had a party and her doggy pals came over and we watched films with dogs in. It was ace!

Bone shaped vegan sarnies for the human guests.

Doggy bags for the human guests.

A typical Vulpe pose these days.

Another typical Vulpe pose. She learns all this stuff about snoozing from me.

Vulpe usually adopts the above poses when I make her sit through one of my thrilling new film discoveries. My most favourite recent find is this totally ace, somewhat prophetic, slightly dystopian, not-quite-werewolf flick....  I can't say why I love it without giving too much away, but it did make me wonder what kind of terrorism it'd be if Earth started fighting back. THE GOOD KIND?

So, we plod on, and soon we'll have been in this flat for a year. I was rather hoping to be doing a better job of adult life after all this time, but we're not doing too day I'll have my urban herb garden, by dog.... Mostly I'm trying to get to the point where I eat proper vegetables every day and don't subsidise the local Chinese takeaway quite so much.

Sunday, 30 March 2014

Vegan Donut Heaven

I just have to take a moment to share these images of homemade vegan donut delight with you. Last night was the perhaps ill-advisedly chosen (by me!) Twin Peaks theme Manchester Vegan Potluck. The complete absence of cherry pie could only be considered a victory, and the abundance of donuts even more so..... Dom, head honcho and vegan diner hero at/of V Revolution treated us all to black coffees in honour of the theme and fired up the soundtrack for us too. It was a small but appreciative gathering, and the more donuts for me = MORE DONUTS FOR ME THAT'S MY ONLY POINT.

Thursday, 27 March 2014

In Which I Take A Moment To Gush About A Polar Explorer Of Yore...

I'm still suffering from a distinct lack of kitchen mojo at the moment, and have been tucking in to far too many Chinese takeaways and veggie sausages. I was pondering a few posts about my Vegan Lifestylée, but you know that would just involve dog walks and vimto, so I figured that probably wasn't for the best.

Anyhoo, one of my strange little obsessions is the history of polar exploration, and I'm particularly fascinated (not surprisingly) by the Scott/Amundsen (British/Norwegian) race for the South Pole in 1911 which famously ended in tragedy for Scott's party, and victory for Amundsen's.

The great heroic tragedy of Scott's effort dwarfed the celebration of Amundsen's achievement, and I'm currently reading a book that talks about both men, their backgrounds and their expeditions.
I came across a passage that referred to Amundsen's efforts as a younger man to gain some experience of sailing in Arctic waters, in order to increase his chances of being recruited on a polar expedition. In 1894 he was allowed to spend a season on the ice aboard a sealer, whose crew were to slaughter thousands of seals and seal pups. This passage made me swoon, just a little bit, for the 22 year old Norwegian, whose attitude was pretty progressive for its time, and for a man raised in rural Norway...
"Amundsen was shaken by his introduction to the wholesale slaughter of wild animals. He was not particularly squeamish, but he was appalled by the cruelty he saw and the effect on his shipmates. Bjarne Aagaard, one of the historians of Norwegian sealing and whaling, wrote: 
'When the hunting fever comes over a human being, the beast of prey emerges, and he who maintains otherwise has never been after seal or whale. All the veneer of culture is wiped off, and it is just a matter of kill, kill at any price, trample underfoot. Finally even the best are so brutalised by seeing the blood and gore, the pleading, dying eyes, and seething flesh, that he no longer feels the revulsion that gripped him the first time he killed a defenceless animal.'
This was one of the experiences that moulded Amundsun. He hunted when he had to, but he questioned the necessity for such prodigal and inhumane slaughter. He turned his back on blood-sports. He could never understand those who killed a fellow creature for pleasure."