Archive for the ‘Raw/Live Food’ Category

I spent most of January in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia for work and had the incredible opportunity to also take a weekend trip to Ubud, Indonesia. I really enjoyed KL and spending time in-person with my colleagues. Here are pics of the awesome vegan eats in KL and Ubud, plus a few snaps of local sights for good measure.

Kuala Lumpur: A Melting Pot of Delicious Vegan Cuisines

Kuala Lumpur is a beautiful, sky scraper-filled city with a lot of vegan-friendly cuisine. My colleagues in KL took amazing care of me while I was there for work, and showed me some of the best local vegan eats, which most of the time were to be found in the form of sumptuous street food. Malaysian food is influenced by Chinese, Malaysian, Indian and other Asian cuisines, and it’s no wonder the country is one of the top foodie destinations worldwide.


Ondeh-Ondeh, dessert glutinous rice balls with coconut sugar syrup.


Delicious vegan Indian food in KL.


Vegan nasi lemak (image courtesy of https://rm2vegetarian.files.wordpress.com). Nasi Lemak is a staple savory Malaysian breakfast made with coconut rice, cucumbers, spicy sauce and beans. It can be made vegan by omitting the fish products and egg.


Cendol, a sweet dessert made with coconut milk and rice flour. Best enjoyed on the street.


Simple Life is one of the veg food chains in KL.


A yummy soup from Simple Life in KL.


Avillon Admiral Cove, Malaysia, where my colleagues and I went for our company teambuilding.


Tabur East hike with colleagues near Kuala Lumpur


No durian allowed! sign from lobby in hotel in Melaka, Malaysia


Batu Caves, KL, Malaysia


An “on the road” breakfast while traveling to Melaka for a work event. Featuring yummy Bao, sweet red bean paste buns with soy milk and coffee.


Vegan fruit and nut naan in Melaka, Malaysia.


A few from a KL skyscraper.


Fresh green juice and a ginger shot from La Juiceria in KL Sentral

Ubud, Indonesia

I had the opportunity to take a quick weekend trip to Ubud and I was so happy I did. I stayed at Yoga Barn, a relaxing cafe-yoga-hotel near central Ubud, and enjoyed yoga, chanting, meditation, relaxation, and delicious wholesome vegan food.




Tegallalang Rice Terraces



Vegan rice wraps from Yoga Barn in Ubud.


A restorative yoga class at Yoga Barn in Ubud.



A monkey friend in Ubud.


Raw vegan ice cream from Kokolato in Ubud. So refreshing.


Raw vegan curry from Yoga Barn in Ubud.


An iced coconut milk latte with green juice from Yoga Barn- the perfect beverages to start a day in Ubud.


A macrobiotic veggie bowl from Yoga Barn in Ubud.



A fresh coconut in Ubud.


Vegan pad thai from Bliss.


Vegan Rocket salad from Bliss in Ubud

Life Transitions And Gratitude

On a personal note, I still live in Boulder and am privileged to be frequently in the Bay Area for work. I run a local LGBTQ Tech meetup here in Boulder, and the events we put on are of course vegan-friendly. We recently put on a LGBTQ tech meetup at Twitter in Boulder, for instance, and worked with their awesome team to cater the event veg. There’s a much longer blog I could write about the intersections between queerness, veganism and tech. Now that I think about it I probably will spill some proverbial ink on this subject at some point.

In closing, thanks to you, readers, for the amazing advocacy work so many of you do for human- and non-human animals. One of my favorite things about this blog is getting to connect with incredible people like you who are changing the world. These connections motivate me to do more and help more and post more on this blog. Thank you for inspiring me. I look forward to continuing to share vegan adventures and queer vegan cuisine here and am grateful to be together on this journey.

xo, Sarah


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Today’s Raw Mint Chocolate Green Smoothie recipe pays homage to two of my all-time favorite smoothies:  Cafe Gratitude‘s “I Am Cool” milkshake, a minty, cacao nib-filled dessert treat, and HipCityVeg‘s “Groothie,” a Philly favorite with spinach as the key green ingredient. I am really happy with the way this smoothie turned out, bursting with fresh mint from the Clark Park Farmers’ Market and packed with superfood flavor. I hope you enjoy my twist on two classics!


1.5 frozen bananas

1 cup fresh spinach

3-4 fresh mint leaves (I used peppermint leaves)

6-7 drops stevia (optional)

3/4-1 cup frozen pineapple

1 Tbs cacao powder

1 tsp maca

2 tsp chia seeds

3/4 cup ice


Blend all ingredients. Enjoy topped with raw chocolate shavings, fresh berries, buckwheat groats, granola, goji berries, etc.

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Blueberry Ginger Kiwi Kale Juice

There comes a time in a twenty-something vegan’s life that she realizes it’s time to make juice out of blueberries for the first time. I don’t know why I’ve waited this long. While I’ve been drinking yummy juice for years, it wasn’t until a recent trip to New York City’s Blossom on Carmine with Erin Red and Ivory that I tried Bilberry juice–another delicious choice–which reminded me that little adorbs berries can indeed be crushed and strained and turned into liquid antioxidant heaven.

I’d love to make bilberry juice at some point, but my local co-op here in West Philly currently doesn’t stock them so blueberry juice was the order of the day. I mixed in some kiwi, a big head of kale, a bit of apple and some ginger and a squeeze of lemon for good measure. This Blueberry Ginger Kiwi Kale Juice will rock your day, I promise.

Bilberry is a great option to juice instead of or in addition to blueberries if you can get a hold of some.

Blueberry Ginger Kiwi Kale Juice

Serves 2


1 lb blueberries

1 kiwi

1/2 inch ginger

1 bunch curly kale

1/2 lemon

1/2 golden delicious apple (optional)


Juice all ingredients using a juicer or my juice in a blender method. Enjoy!

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I did a fun interview with the wonderful Vance Lehmkuhl of VegCast. We chatted about veganism, Philly, and The Queer Vegan Food Cookbook.

Mentions: Defiant Daughters Carol Adams Ashley Maier Food Empowerment Project lauren Ornelas Hip City Veg Vedge Restaurant Nicole Marquis and more . . .

Listen: http://www.vegcast.com/vegcast114.mp3

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Sarah Brown-Queer Vegan Food-E Book Cover-r4-01

About a year ago, I dreamed of creating a charity cookbook project to benefit Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary in Woodstock, NY. I absolutely LOVE Woodstock, and am in awe of how much they do to help better the lives of non-human (and human!) animals. My vision for the cookbook was to assemble the weirdest, most unique, and delicious recipes from top vegan chefs, bloggers and authors around the world and sell this collection to benefit the sanctuary and donate 100% of proceeds to go towards helping the animals. Today, my dream has come true! 

Introducing . . .The Queer Vegan Food Cookbook!

Queer Vegan Food-Contributor Collage-r1-02

The Queer Vegan Food Cookbook features recipes that do not use animal products of any kind and are truly queer in an effort to expand the vegan culinary canon beyond traditional vegan cuisine, which tends to imitate the non-vegan food world (vegan ice cream, hot dogs, hamburgers, fake meat, mac n’ cheese, etc.) Recipe contributors include: Carol J. Adams, Gena Hamshaw, Rory Freedman, Jason Allen, Allyson Kramer, Christy Morgan, Mish Wish, JL Fields, Lisa Pitman, Courtney Pool, Rande McDaniel, Marlie Centawer, Erika Reir, Eric Levinson, Mariano Caino, Sara Jane Kurpeski, Rochelle Koivunen, Jason Das, Joan L. Brown (my mom!), Stephanie Austin, Heather Pace, Kelly Peloza, Mark Hawthorne, Rachel Lee, Alessandra Seiter, Lee Khatchadourian-Reese, and Heidi George. All recipes were generously donated by these beloved vegan chefs and bloggers to help the animals!

The most delicious part of this culinary assemblage is that 100% of proceeds from The Queer Vegan Food Cookbook will go to Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary in Woodstock, New York!


A beautiful creature gets the love and respect deserved at Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary!



Check out some of the recipes featured in The Queer Vegan Food ECookbook!

Blueberry Avocado Salsa by Allyson Kramer

Blueberry Avocado Salsa by Allyson Kramer

Supercharged Superfood Nori Love by Mish Divine

Supercharged Superfood Nori Love by Mish Divine

Cabbage Pie by Mariano Caino

Cabbage Pie by Mariano Caino

Glorious Green Wraps by Lisa Pitman

Glorious Green Wraps by Lisa Pitman

Ube (Purple Yam) Ice Cream by Allyson Kramer

Ube (Purple Yam) Ice Cream by Allyson Kramer

Easy Black Bean Enchiladas by Mark Hawthorne

Easy Black Bean Enchiladas by Mark Hawthorne

My Goodness, Green Goddess Smoothie by Marlie Centawer

My Goodness, Green Goddess Smoothie by Marlie Centawer

Chocolate Covered Potato Chips by Allyson Kramer

Chocolate Covered Potato Chips by Allyson Kramer

Donut Balls by Sara Jane Kurpeski

Donut Balls by Sara Jane Kurpeski

Avocado Lime Cheesecake by Heather Pace

Avocado Lime Cheesecake by Heather Pace

Berry Lemongrass Granola with Coconut and Cashews by Ali Seiter

Berry Lemongrass Granola with Coconut and Cashews by Ali Seiter

Pau d'Arco Tea Elixir by Marlie Centawer

Pau d’Arco Tea Elixir by Marlie Centawer

Buy The Queer Vegan Food Cookbook!



All proceeds from The Queer Vegan Food Cookbook will go to Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary in Woodstock, New York!


Thank you, and I look forward to hearing how you love the recipes! – Sarah 😉

[Note: The Queer Vegan Food Cookbook is currently available as an E-book PDF, which is sent to your Inbox immediately after you order.]

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Last week Courtney and I took a little vacation to Montréal, Canada! After a scenic half-day of travel (we decided to go Eco-friendly and take the train), we arrived at our hostel Auberge Bishop near the Guy Concordia metro. The hostel was a lovely place to stay, and our private, warm room was just a few blocks from Beaux-Arts, downtown sights, and raw vegan restaurant Crudessence and vegan restaurant The Green Panther. It was great to map out our travel plans and warm our bones at Auberge Bishop after excursions in the city, and if you’re ever visiting Montréal, I’d recommend booking there in a heartbeat.

Old City, Montréal.

Our sightseeing tour was a whirlwind in the best sense. We visited Beaux-Arts museum, Old City and Place-d’Armes, Jardin Botanique (the Japanese gardens were still lovely this late in the season), Basilique Notre Dame, St. Joseph’s Oratory, Mont Royal, LGBTQ-friendly cafe Le Cagibi,  a farmers’ market and a cafe near Laurier metro, shopping and people/dog watching on Saint-Laurent and more.

Overlooking the Bota Spa on the Saint Lawrence River in Montréal.

View of the grounds of St. Joseph’s Oratory

Traveling to Montréal in late fall meant much shorter lines and fewer crowds everywhere we went, which was a big boon. Though many attractions in Montréal get into full swing in summer, we were happy as clams bundling up and traipsing around the beautiful city in the cooler season.

Basilique Notre Dame

Jardin botanique.

A splendid cow we met near Beaux-Arts museum.

In addition to our sightseeing, we also visited some lovely vegan restaurants in the city:

Mushroom soup and the daily salad at The Green Panther.

Spirulina macarons from Crudessence.

“The Living Salad” With Wakame and Sprouts at Aux Vivres.

Polenta fries, beans, guacamole and salad on the brunch menu at Aux Vivres.

Coffee and soy milk at Aux Vivres.

Drinking green juice outside Aux Vivres

In addition to these wonderful vegan restaurants, we also ended our trip with dinner at O.Noir.

O. Noir is a restaurant unlike any I’d been to before: The dining experience takes place in the dark! The entire waitstaff at the restaurant is legally blind, while the front of the restaurant staff and chefs are sighted. After ordering our special vegan meals in the light area and storing belongings in a locked cubby, Courtney and I made a train by putting our hands on the left shoulder of our waiter and each other and ventured into the darkness.

The waiters at O.Noir are legally blind.

What ensured was unlike any fine dining I have ever experienced. While we ordered all-vegan options, we had no idea what those dishes would be. When the appetizer came, we were told it was marinated mushrooms. Reader, I wish I had photos because I’m sure they were as beautiful as they tasted, but alas, no flash photography was allowed and the dish’s appearance is a mystery even to me since I enjoyed it in the pitch dark. While I mostly used my fork, I will admit I did poke around a bit with the tip of my finger to get a better sense of what I was enjoying. The main course, which the waiter informed was a polenta dish with roasted veggies, was also truly wonderful. Not being able to see the food, just listening to Courtney’s voice and the live music in the dining room, was truly a unique experience. I put a lot of trust into the staff to see that the meal was vegan, and I also longed to appreciate the look of the food. I realized that a lot of my gastronomic pleasure comes in admiring the aesthetics of the food, and that without sight I had to fully rely on just what my mouth and sniffer were telling me. After the main course, we sipped mint tea and reveled in the magic of our trip.

I highly recommend booking a reservation at O.Noir if you’re near one of their locations, or even blindfolding yourself and/or a friend and trying to eat your meal in the dark sometime!

Thanks for reading about my trip to Montréal! Courtney also wrote a fantastic blog post about our trip, which you can read by clicking here.

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Drink this juice, feel amazing.

Green juice flavor balancing is somewhat of an art. Folks like Gena, Kris and Courtney juice expertly, and I have to say I often combine juice ingredients pretty well myself. Too much spice or tang overpowers the juice, while too much sweet and the libation tastes weird. My friend Ivory puts jalapeño in juices! There really is a spectrum in terms of what our unique palates can handle!

Today, I made this juice incorporating beets, fennel, chard and kale, and with a little experimentation realized that for the whole juice to come together it needed a bit more sweet for me to get it down. After all, the best green juice is the one you actually like to drink. I added a bit of cucumber, apple and lemon juice and it really changed things! Here’s the recipe I used. I’d love to hear what you like to put in your green juice!


Slightly Sweet Beet Fennel Kale Juice (serves 1-2)


1 beet

1 bulb fennel

1 cucumber

1 apple

1/2 lemon

bunch of kale

bunch of chard


Juice them in a juicer, or try my “juice in a blender” method.



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This is a large sea veggie salad rich with wakame, spirulina, kelp, sesame seeds, sesame oil and locally grown greens, made into a sandwich by harnessing the power of large cabbage leaves (substituted for bread). Queer Vegan Food is all about crossing boundaries, transgressing social culinary norms and straddling multiple identity categories. With that in mind, I ask you to accept that this is not a salad, but rather a sandwich. Or call it whatever you will–make it, and I bet you’ll agree with me that it’s absolutely healthfully delicious!

Raw Vegan Cabbage-Sea Veggie Sandwich

Close-up of the filling: spirulina-coated sea veggies, greens, almonds and more!


Sandwich filling:

3 cups chopped greens (I used kale and romaine)

1/2 cup chopped cabbage

1/2 cup pre-soaked wakame

1/4 cup nori strips (optional)

handful raw almonds (optional)

1/4 cup chopped plain tofu (optional)

2 tsp sesame seeds (optional)

Spirulina dressing:

1 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar

1 Tbs spirulina

1-2 tsp olive oil or sesame oil

dash high-quality salt

dash kelp flakes

Cabbage “bread”:

4-6 large/medium outer cabbage leaves


Toss all salad ingredients and mix in spirulina dressing in a large salad bowl. Use large cabbage leaves to make sandwiches out of the salad filling. Enjoy!

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I thought I’d do a little round-up of my favorite vegan dishes in Philly! As you can see, some of them are raw, some aren’t, but they’re all vegan, mostly gluten-free (I think!) and are completely delicious. They are in no particular order.

10. “Clean” Green Juice

Where to get it: Jar Bar in Center City

My favorite juice in the city, hands down. “Clean” contains: cucumber, celery, romaine, spinach, kale. $5.50 for 16oz is very fair and makes this my go-to juice when on the go in Philly.

9. Chickpea Salad with Falafel

Where to get it: SweetGreen in University City.

This salad is delicious. SweetGreen is amazing, and so close to where I live it’s almost criminal. (Image.)

8. Banana Whip, aka “Frobana”

Where to get it: HipCityVeg in Rittenhouse Square

A long time ago, Gena Hamshaw figured out how to make frozen bananas into truly magical soft-serve ice cream using only a food processor or green star juicer, empowering legions of vegans to make the treat for themselves. HipCityVeg, which opened a little while ago, serves this healthful vegan twist on soft serve from 10a-10p each day of the week! I love that I can get this whenever I’m remotely near Rittenhouse Square. Everything is remotely near Rittenhouse Square, and for that I am very, very grateful. (Image)

7. Brussels Sprouts shaved and grilled with smoked mustard

Where to get it: Vedge Restaurant, when it’s featured on the “Dirt List”

This dish is unreal. Shaved, grilled and smoked, these Brussels Sprouts are unlike any I have ever tried before. Crisp, savory, and slightly crunchy bits grace each sauce-coated shaved Brussels sprouts mound. I ordered this dish both times I have had the privilege of dining at Vedge and was consistently thrilled. Pure vegetable bliss. (Image)

6. Brown Rice Inari

Where To Get it: Mizu (in various locations throughout the city)

Inari is so amazing. It’s traditionally made with sushi rice wrapped in fried bean curd, but Mizu makes a version with brown rice that’s a tad more healthful and really delicious. You have to specially request it with brown rice but it’s totally worth it! (Image.)

5. Sea Vegetable Salad

Where to get it: Vegan Tree on South St.

Generous chunks of wakame, fresh greens and other veggies, plus sesame seeds and well-prepared tofu. A truly delicious option for pre-made seaweed salad–the best I’ve found in Philly so far. (Image)

4. Vegan Bubble Tea

Where to get it: Vegan Tree on South St.

While some controversy abounds as to whether bubble tea is safe, for now I’m a huge fan of the bubble tea options at Vegan Tree. Completely vegan bubble tea is semi hard to come by in Philly, so these are a real find. I love the green tea, coconut, and Jasmine green tea flavors best, but have a (tapioca) ball and enjoy what you will! (Image)

3. Chocolate Coconut-Based Vegan Soft-Serve

Where To Get it: Pure Fare, Center City

This soft serve is out of this world good. Coconut-based soft serve has arrived to Philly and it’s unbelievable. (Image.)

2. Gluten-Free Vegan Cake Balls

Where to get it: Sweet Freedom on South St.

Sweetened with low glycemic coconut sugar, these gluten-free, soy-free, corn-free confections from Sweet Freedom are made with high-quality ingredients and taste like a chocolate Universe just collided in on itself to form black (brown?) holes of deliciousness. These are gone in just a few bites. Perfect. Image.

1. “Green Delight (w/ Spirulina)” Popcorn

Where to get it: Atiya Ola’s Spirit First Foods in West Philly.

This spirulina-coated popcorn is like crack for those of us who love algae snacks. And who doesn’t love algae snacks?

Thanks for reading! I’d love to hear in the comments which dishes you love to enjoy in Philly that I haven’t listed here 😉

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Green juice and locally-grown flowers in my kitchen.

While I’ve been known to down glasses of liquified mustard greens, radish, beet greens, arugula and other “strong” plant ingredients, I’m a huge fan of mild green juice now and then. Appease your palate while boosting your veggie intake with this cool twist on a classic:

Delightful Mild Mint Green Juice

Serves 1-2


1 medium or 3/4 large cucumber

1/2 head romaine lettuce

5 stalks celery

1/2 green apple (optional)

4 peppermint or other mint leaves


Juice, drink deeply and enjoy!

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