Hey there! Happy Monday! How was your weekend?
I spent half of mine with Stepfanie’s cats.
Oh, and with Stepfanie. She was there too.
The last time I saw Stepfanie was when we drank kombucha together at Rosetta’s in February, so I was thrilled when she invited me to her vegan potluck brunch this past Saturday.
I was also super excited to try out a new vegan recipe I saw in Vegetarian Times magazine a few weeks ago: Warm Potatoes with Garlic-Turmeric Sauce.
More on the food in a bit though… first, cats.
I got to Stepfanie’s place a little early, and instead of politely keeping her company while she got things ready, I chose to take 5,000 pictures of her cats…
In her beautiful, bright living room…
…and on her awesome screened-in balcony…
Priorities. I’ve got em down.
Stepfanie finally lured me away from her cats with the promise of an adult beverage.
Because Saturday brunch calls for Elderflower Sangria…
…with raspberry-infused ice cubes.
Topped off with white wine and sparkling water…
Oh, and rosemary-infused ice cubes, because Stepfanie’s a frickin’ genius.
After I drank all of the alcohol a little bit, Stepfanie’s other guests began to arrive and then it was time to FEAST.
And Stepfanie truly did prepare a delicious feast! I wish I could hire her as my private chef. Either that or show up at her house every night for dinner. I think she’d be cool with that. Right, Stepfanie?
Seriously though, just look at the menu she included on the invite:
Vinho verde, Elderflower Cordial, Rosemary
Hibiscus Iced Tea
Curried White Bean Hummus
Crudites: Cucumber, carrots, radishes
Mini BLT Pitas
Dulse Bacon, Avocado
Marinated Kale Salad
Maple-Dijon Vinaigrette, Pepitas, Dried Cranberries
Black Sesame-Ginger Quick Bread
Matcha Coconut Cream
I sort of felt like I was going to a restaurant and not to my friend’s house.
She also made an herbed vegan butter and herb crackers FROM SCRATCH.
She ended up using a tempeh ‘bacon’ on the BLTs because she thought Dulse (seaweed) might be a little too intense for those new to vegan food. I ate 12 three. I also tried the Dulse ‘bacon’ and really liked it but I’ve also been a vegetarian for six years and am used to plant-based substitutes. I can see how it might be weird for those who aren’t.
Here are my potatoes one more time because they were soooo good.
The grocery store didn’t have fingerling potatoes so I just used small multi-colored potatoes. I also couldn’t find purple cabbage and I was in a bit of a rush (I went grocery shopping the morning of the brunch…oops) so I grabbed a container of pre-shredded cabbage and carrots. It worked out fine. I think those were the only changes I made to the recipe and everyone loved it! Definitely try it if you need a quick, easy vegan side dish or a potluck dish.
Times 3. Because, brunch. Duh.
Stepfanie’s friend Sara brought these delicious Vegan Chocolate Balls:
And I ate them all. Just kidding, I had one. Yum!
Here’s a picture of Stepfanie and me to prove we’re friends and that I didn’t just crash her brunch.
Me: Hey, I’m here for brunch! I brought potatoes!!
Stepfanie: …but we didn’t invite you. I don’t even know who you are.
Me: Whatever. Just take a picture with me for my blog, or else…
And then there were more pictures of cats…because cats.
Stepfanie kicked me out when I threatened to steal all of her pets. Just kidding, I left when the party was over, like a normal guest.
Sunday was pretty lazy. I only took two pictures the whole day. I slept in and Jeff and I took our time getting out of the house. Eventually, after lounging around and eating breakfast, we decided to head over to Lake View Park in North Asheville.
Even after six months of living in Asheville I am still completely blown away by the fact that we live in such a beautiful place. We walked the perimeter of the lake and just soaked in the 75 degree weather and the gorgeous mountain views.
We were hungry for lunch by the time we were done walking and headed over to Clingman Café in the River Arts District to grab a couple sandwiches.
I ordered the Chickpea Salad Wrap: Chickpeas, Onion, Celery, Pickles, Dill & Spices with Romaine Lettuce, Roma Tomatoes in a Wheat Wrap
As a vegetarian, sometimes I miss tuna salad but I’ve found that chickpeas really do make a great substitute. I’ll have to recreate this at home because it was so delicious, especially with those chips stuffed inside (don’t judge- you know you do it too).
We spent the rest of Sunday lounging, meal planning and deciding on a wedding invitation design. My best friend/Maid of Honor, Dara, is designing our invites and I can’t wait to see how they turn out and what our guests think.
Today I’m going to Aqua PT and then to check out a restaurant downtown for our rehearsal dinner! Plus grocery shopping. Best. Day. Ever.
What did you do this weekend? Do you love where you live? What is your go-to potluck dish? Let’s chat!
Have a great Monday! <3
I’m linking up with Marvelous Monday!