Tummies, Start Your Engines! Veggielicious Is Just Around the Corner

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I love food fests!  In less than 2 weeks, the first ever Veggielicious will be upon us in Toronto!  Brought to us by the Toronto Vegetarian Association, Veggielicious is a price fixe food event with the same concept as Winterlicious and Summerlicious.  A number of vegetarain, vegan, and organic and raw eateries are participating this first time around and I’m excited!  After checking out some of the menus on the Veggielicious website, I’m definitely interested in trying The Beet and Live Organic Food Bar.  My favourite, Mela Café will be participating (yay!) and I can’t wait to see what specials they’re going to have on their menu for the 2 weeks Veggielicious is running.  I brought my best friend there about 2 weeks ago (blog post and pictures to come soon!) and she loved it.  All she wanted to do was eat plate after plate of their fresh ravioli and after sharing one of the adorable, delicious vegan banana cream pie desserts, we could have noshed on 4 more because they were so good.   

Granted, even if I decide not to take advantage of the specific price fixe menus these places are offering, I’m still really looking forward to trying out new places and seeing what my favourites are planning on whipping up for the event.  It’s been so rewarding learning about vegetarian and vegan food and cooking, and incorportating it more and more into my diet.  Seeing what these places offer gives you inspiration to take home with you so that you can create your own homemade veggie meals.  I spend a lot of my free time reading up on food-related things and scoping out places for friends to try because sometimes it does take that extra bit of effort to find those holy grails you never knew existed.  The event will be great for exposure and of course, I’ll blog and post pictures of anything and everything I stuff my face with 😀  I’ll do a rundown of places closer to the date so in the meantime, mark your calendars from April 9th to the 24th becuase it’s going to be gooood.

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There are also places outside of Toronto participating in the event including Burlington, Oakville, and St. Catherines.  For more information and to print out your own Veggielicious posters to hand out and advertise, visit their website here.  I’m definitely printing out a bunch!

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Summer Days Drifting Away – Memories of Summerlicious at Southern Accent

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Summer days have certainly drifted away, that’s for sure!  Although there’s no snow on the ground just yet, it’s definitely scarf and mitten weather.  Even though it’s winter, I’m really excited to still share scrapbook layouts and meals from those sunny, languid days.  One of my favourite days from the past summer was when I went to Southern Accent for Summerlicious with Richard.  Located in Mirvish Village at 595 Markham St. (Bloor and Bathurst), it’s one of my favourite places not just for the food, but for the beautiful, adorable decor inside! *squeals*  It makes the scrapbooker in me prance around the room because, as the name of the restaurant alludes to, it’s a Cajun and Creole restaurant with colourful lanterns, streamers, and Mardi Gras memorabilia galore; it’s a dream and it makes me want to go to New Orleans even more.

Being the foodie that I am, Summerlicious is also a delicious dream.  Summerlicious (along with Winterlicious) is a food fest  during the month of July (and January-February for Winterlicious) devoted to price fixe menus across the city.  Over 100 restaurants participate, and if you’re like me, it’s an amazing way to try out a new restaurant or to order dishes you wouldn’t normally order because it’s out of your price range.  For me, price fixe menus for dinner are always at $25.  That’s my threshold.  Choice of appetizer, entree, and dessert, and we’re good to go.

Going to Summerlicious this time around was SO much fun and the price fixe menu made me so giddy!  Vegetarians be warned though: although they have fantastic vegetarian dishes, they don’t have a lot and they have a daily menu (in conjunction with the permanent menu) that changes each day, so it’s best that you call in advance to find out if there are enough options to suit your fancy.  Hush puppies, bourbon chicken, blackened shrimp, ugh, the food is SO GOOD.

I cannot tell you how much I enjoyed this meal.  EVERYTHING that I love so much rolled into one.  For my appetizer, I chose the roasted eggplant and bocconcini stacks with roasted red pepper and basil pesto.  I love bocconcini cheese and pesto like nobody’s business, oh my god.  The combination of olive oil and roasted vegetables was amazing.  My entree gave me, by far, the most delicious corn on the cob I have ever had.  Perfectly grilled and sprinkled with paprika.  Sitting on top of a light and fluffy rice pilaf were skewers of juicy pork tenderloin chunks with sweet grilled mango.  And the finale?

Richard’s pecan pie and for me, strawberry rhubarb crumble with oatmeal topping and vanilla bean icecream (!!!).  Needless to say, I was stuffed after this meal.  These pictures were so much fun to scrapbook and each and every single meal at this place is wonderful and memorable.

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Scrapbooking materials used: white, red, and golden rod cardstock by Recollections, patterned paper by DCWV, journalling tag by Anna Griffin (Darcy Collection), alphabet stickers by ATD and Recollections, starburst stickers by Sticko, 5-petal flower punch, adhesive gems.