Last month I was in Atlanta for a convention and I am happy to say that finding delicious vegan food was not a problem. I had stuffed my suitcase full of “just in case” food items, but I didn’t even need to rely on them. Breakfasts were not anything extraordinary, but I am glad I could count on Starbucks to provide me with a healthier breakfast that had a little staying power.
I really try to avoid chain restaurants at all costs, but time was of the essence, and Starbucks was very convenient. They were all over the place. Not only was there one on the way to the convention center, but there was one in the convention center as well.
Dinner time, however, was the time to explore! Of course, it had to be within walking distance, as my friend/coworker and I were not eager to try Atlanta’s public transportation system. (Sorry MARTA.)
This particular meal was hands down THE BEST out to eat meal I had while in Atlanta! The restaurant was called The Terrace on Peachtree, which was conveniently located a few blocks from our hotel. Plus, it wasn’t busy due to the fact there was a bunch of loud kids hanging out on the sidewalk near the outside eating area. I believe this entree was called The Vegan Plate. It consisted of kale, red quinoa, sweet potatoes and tofu, a drizzle of olive oil, and some basil pesto. TO DIE FOR. (There is also a $5 bottle of water in the background…it tasted just like free water…imagine that!)
I thought a lot about that meal once I got home, and I decided I needed to recreate it in the comforts of my own kitchen. And recreate it I did. (Minus the $5 water.)
It was really quite simple. So here it is. My very first attempt at recreating a restaurant meal at home.
A Stacked Vegan Plate (serves 2 “ish”)
4 c. raw kale
1 c. cooked quinoa (I used regular, as I didn’t have any red on hand)
1 sweet potato cut into thick fries
6 oz. tofu (I use Wildwood-extra firm)
Prepare your tofu by draining the water, and then wrapping it in paper towels and then a dish towel. Place a cutting board on top, load with something heavy (books). This presses the excess water out. I have let it sit for as little as 20 minutes, or as long as an hour.
Cook your quinoa. I use a rice cooker, so it’s extra mindless. Dump 1 rice cooker cup (I think this is about 3/4 c.) full of dry quinoa and then fill the rice cooker full of water to the “1” line. Turn on and prepare your tofu and sweet potato. (You will end of with extra quinoa, but it keeps well and makes a delicious breakfast cereal!)
Next, cut tofu into 2 thick slabs (about 1/2 ” to 3/4′ thick). Put in a baking dish and drizzle with olive oil, and sea salt. Put this in the oven at 425 degrees. Cook for about 30-40 minutes, flipping half way through the cooking time.
Scrub your sweet potato, and trim off the ends. Cut in half the long way, and then cut each half into 4 “fries”. Put on baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and sea salt. Put in the oven with the tofu and bake for about 30 minutes.
Tear your kale into large pieces. Bring a pot of water to a boil. Submerge kale into the water and cook for 3 minutes. Immediately drain the kale and then submerge it in a bowl of ice water. Then drain kale again.
Once everything is ready, assemble your plate. Divide the kale between two plates. Top the kale with 1/2 c. cooked quinoa. Line up your sweet potato fries on top of the quinoa. Finally, balance the tofu on top. Drizzle with olive oil.