Recently in MeetandEat Category

Wanted: "Authentic" Mexican food in Orange County

veggiemex.jpgAlmost exactly two years ago (while writing at Liberal Atheist Vegetarian), I set out to find the best vegetarian Mexican food in OC. Judging the difference between a good enchilada platter and a bad one is the easy part - the real challenge is actually finding "authentic"-style restaurants that are vegetarian friendly. From the original post:

I'm looking for the best Mexican restaurants in (and around -- I'm willing to make a short drive) Orange County. They can be large chain restaurants, small mom-and-pop places, fast food, even non-traditional styles. Where do you like to eat?

There are a few rules. All of the base ingredients must be vegetarian. This includes the beans, rice, tortillas (corn and flour), and chips. They must use vegetarian cooking oil, and there should be something vegetarian on the menu beyond a bean and cheese burrito. If you're not sure, suggest a place and I'll do the research.

These don't have to be all-vegetarian restaurants - in fact, I'd kinda prefer if they weren't. I'm looking for a good Socal-style Mexican restaurant experience that I can share with my meat-eating friends, but where I'm not limited by ingredients. 

So I need your help. Throw out ideas of locations you like to eat - either places you already know about, or somewhere that looks promising. I'll compile results (with a breakdown of both their vegetarianness and tastiness) and list them here. If you're interested, I'd even like to go out to your favorite places with you, so there's a meetup aspect to this as well.

What's good?

Cookie Meet 'n Eat today!

Join me at the Tustin Marketplace today around 1pm and help me eat the cookies I baked this week. It's also a good chance to get out from behind the computer and sit down for lunch with old friends and new (plus there's about a thousand restaurants within a short walk of there).

I'll be at a table near the Sandwich World and Jamba Juice (by the old Tower Records, across the street from Taco Bell and El Pollo Loco). Let me know you're coming so I can look for you!

Ice cream meetup?

This morning, I made a maple crunch ice cream, as my cream needed using and the maple candy I made last week wasn't getting any fresher. It turned out really well, and got me thinking: Are there enough LA/OC folks out there who make their own ice creams to have a meetup and tasting?

I've thought about doing it with cupcakes, and while it'd be fun, there are only so many cupcakes you can try in an evening. But with ice cream, you can get the full experience with a spoonful, leaving you open to five to ten more spoonfuls are the night goes on. I'm not sure, though, if many/any of my blogging friends even make their own. Your thoughts and input welcome!

Meet and Eat tonight!

Due to a response I certainly wasn't expecting, we're having today's "Meet and Eat" cupcake giveaway in the evening instead of lunchtime - that way, more people will be able to stop by. We'll be at The District in Tustin starting around 8pm, in the courtyard in front of the AMC movie theaters. We'll either be at one of the round cafe tables, or in one of the couch-fireplace deals they've got there. Good times!

Other notes of interest:

Speaking of The District, my friend Elysse James has a review of the newest restaurant there, Marmalade Cafe. While meat is certainly their thing, they've got a good number of menu items that look vegetarian. Check it out.

On a totally unrelated subject, I recently got Sur La Table's "The Art and Soul of Baking", and I'm going through it now. So far, it's a great mix of recipes, techniques, terms and science. I'll have a full review sometime soon.

Advice for the day: Make yourself a "Thanksgiving"-style dinner sometime soon (in the Spring, at least) - last night we had a Tofurky roast (and stuffing), gravy, roasted vegetables, mashed potatoes, and cranberries. It was wholly satisfying.

See y'all tonight!

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