Remember the famous vegan restaurant on Kauai? The world-famous, award-winning, delicious Blossoming Lotus
? The restaurant where my carnivorous husband said, and I quote, "I could eat here every night?" Well, they haven't re-opened, sadly. Let's take a moment to mourn Kauai's loss. It still brings pause to my day, and I am not exaggerating when I say that. Especially this time of year when I'd like to treat myself to a fabulously prepared vegan meal--and here's the important part--made by someone else. Because vegan cooking--and I mean the uber-yummy dishes that chef Mark Reinfeld created for Blossoming Lotus--are a tad time-consuming. For someone living on Kauai, they typically require multiple trips to a few different grocery stores and markets and, at that, you have to be prepared to make substitutions. Cooking to a recipe can be challenging when you live on Kauai. (For those of you reading this who live here, am I right?) It's a good lesson in flexibility, a reminder that I can often use.
Now, I haven't always eaten vegan, and I don't profess to always eat a vegan diet in the future, but I did attend a vegan cooking workshop last weekend on Maui presented by the one-and-only Mark Reinfeld
. Mark shared a variety of amazing tricks in the kitchen--the garlic one still gets me--and said a plethora of quotable things. My favorite could be, "I like a mellow kitchen. That's just how I roll."
I'll be writing more about my experience at the Maui cooking retreat, but, for now, I want share a recipe for the holidays. One that won Mark yet another award--2011 Recipe of the Year, in fact, by people who know vegan cooking. While I haven't made or eaten it, I'd bet good, hard-earned cash that the dish will satisfy the carnivores in your life. Because that's how Mark rolls--satisfying, good food for for all palates. And, yes, I am flying in the face of food writing gurus
everywhere, Dianne Jacob
included, and gushing again. But seriously.
Here it is: The award-winning Mediterranean Pistachio Crusted Tofu with Saffron Quinoa Pilaf