posted by on Mexican, Upper East Side, Vegging Out

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One of the best things about 2011 is the fact that my best friend has moved to New York, and I’m getting to indulge in all the amazing girl talk and girl grub I’ve missed out on without her here. I went to visit her new place on the Upper East Side recently, and before I took the grand tour of her beautiful one bedroom, we settled down to a nearby taqueria, Casacabel, where we noshed on guacamole and tacos—the cornerstones of girls’ nights if you ask me.

What’s in it for you: Vegetal tacos (with oyster mushrooms, fingerling potatoes, poblano, queso, fresco house made crème); organic quinoa with queso cotija, cilantro

What’s in it for them: Sopa de Tortilla (soup with chicken, queso fresco and tortilla); pollo asado (rotisserie chicken, cascabel chili, creamed corn and cilantro); chorizo tacos (house made mexican spiced sausage, smoked paprika and onion); Carne a la Plancha (hanger steak grilled medium, house made crème fresca and refried beans)

There clearly aren’t a ton of veg options, but what’s nice is that the one main entree for vegetarians, the Vegetal tacos, besides being delicious, were different from usual beans and cheese tacos. Oyster mushrooms, fingerling potatoes—a tad gourmet, no?

{Super fresh guacamole served with tortilla rounds that were divinely fried to perfection}

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posted by on Chocolate, Dessert, East Village, Gifts

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I moved out of the East Village in September, and whenever I go back I feel like there’s always a new store, but it’s usually for the worse (think Subway, a bank or a fratty dude bar.) Thankfully, when I strolled around last week I came across The Chocolate Library, a store specializing in gourmet versions of the sweet stuff.

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posted by on Chelsea, Comfort Food, Italian, Pizza, Vegging Out

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Ahh the Artichoke pizza from Artichoke Basille’s. It’s drenched in cream sauce and dotted with spinach and artichoke, creating a slice that rivals Chicago stuffed pizza in heaviness. (I usually limit myself to one slice per year because that’s just how rich it is!)

The company started as a tiny, seat-less shop in the East Village but has expanded to Greenwich Village, and more recently, to an actual brick-and-mortar restaurant all the way on 10th Avenue. We got to test it out a couple of weeks ago during a birthday dinner celebrating my good friend Shyema, over at Beauty and the Feast.

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posted by on Indian, Murray Hill, Vegetarian, Vegging Out

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After a disastrously disgusting meal at Haveli and sub-par eats at the cabbie joints in Curry Hill, I’ve been pretty skeptical of Indian restaurants in the city. True, I love Tamarind, but it’s a little bourgeois, not to mention pricey. Tiffin Wallah, a vegetarian kosher restaurant in Murray Curry Hill, was the antidote to my worries. I ventured out in the cold with a girlfriend last night and when we walked in, the amazing aroma was a wonderful precursor to a truly tasty meal in a casual, not cabbie, setting.

The menu offers both South Indian (dosas, idlis, uttapum) and North Indian grub (curries, Gujurati curries), but last night, I was in the mood to move north.

I try not to get appetizers too often because entrees are usually so big and add extra dollars to the bill, but I JUST HAD TO HAVE THIS BHAJJIA in their deep-friend glory.

{Bhajjia: Assorted vegetables deep-fried in chickpea flour. Heaven.}

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posted by on Appetizers, Italian, Sides, Vegetables, Vegging In

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I’ve made baked and breaded zucchini before, but there was something about this recipe for zucchini sticks that caught my eyes—and I think it was because they looked so much like French fries. They’re obviously so much healthier, and in my opinion, could still go well with a side of ketchup or BBQ sauce.

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posted by on Uncategorized

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I’m not one to revisit NYC restaurants too much, since there are just so many options that I always try to venture some place new. But the upside of going back is getting to photograph tasty food that was either P.B. (pre-blog) or not taken to avoid annoying a large table of friends.

Last week, my friend and I ventured to Pan-Asian restaurant Cafe Asean in the West Village, which I first went to two year’s ago for my old roommate’s birthday. I loved it that night and it’s crazy that I hadn’t been back since.

Until last week!

{Try to get reservations because the place is small. We tried and they never picked up the phone—perhaps because of the blizzard—so we ended up in the back roofed patio. It was a smidge chilly, but with heat lamps and our coats, no worries.}

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