In July this year, we packed our bags, whipped up some peanut butter and chocolate cookies, grabbed our friend Laura and got ourselves to Sydney to embark on a most excellent adventure to the slightly bewildering land that is the United States.
Chadwiko’s insistence on devouring a sack of napalm orange ‘cheese’ corn during a stopover in Chicago aside, we were pleased to find that American food was not entirely the deep-fried-heart-attack-on-a-stick fare of our nightmares. Vegan options seemed endless, and our feeble, Australian-bumpkin minds were sufficiently blown by the abundance of easily accessible treats, cheeses and double-down burgers.
Back in Canberra, I found myself yesterday wishing for two aspects of America: snow, and a decent meal from one of our many favourite restaurants. Quickly realising that I haven’t done nearly enough good deeds for either of these wishes to come true, I was faced with a choice. Do a lot of good deeds in record time, or just make something to eat myself. Ever taking the lazier option, I chose the latter.
We caught an overnight bus to Chicago from Toronto, and it proved to be one of the less intelligent decisions of our trip. We got in at 5am and only had the one day to explore before jetting off to San Diego for Comic Con. The day was a sleepless blur of rushed public art-viewing, and we collapsed into our bed (singular, we couldn’t afford our own) for a nap at 6pm. We eventually dragged ourselves out for something to eat, and found ourselves at Karyn’s Cooked, where we had a meal good enough to wake us up and make us stop hating the world.
This was where Chadwiko had BBQ seitan ribs, coleslaw and corn on the cob- a meal that he begs me to recreate for him with irritating frequency. I use this foolproof recipe from Fat Free Vegan, and to put it lightly, he’s a fan.
We had a more leisurely ten days in New York City, and each one of those brought us something new and delicious to eat. An obvious standout was Babycakes bakery, or ‘Laura’s second home’. I loved their lemon cupcakes, which aren’t featured in the Babycakes cookbook. Chadwiko’s favourite chocolate cupcakes, however, are.
These cupcakes are rich, and much denser than the cakes I usually make. The Babycakes icing is gloriously good, but melts easily. Since some of these were heading into work the next day and would have to be out of the fridge and in the sun on the way there, I went with a more well-behaved, basic cream cheese icing.
The recipe is available online at GOOP- I know. I find it insufferable, too. But all the more reason to buy the book, right?
Now, if only someone could point me to a recipe for Red Bamboo’s brownie-bottom cheesecake.