Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Summer Potluck Season; currently in full swing!

Please head over to my new blog at TheUrbanHousewife.com, where you'll find this post & more!

It's been a whirlwind start to summer & although San Francisco's temperatures are their typically chilly selves, we're still celebrating with all sorts of food & fun! It seems like my social calendar has an Eat-A-Thon scheduled for just about every weekend until the end of time, but I don't mind, it gives me more to share with others!

A few weeks ago, Ryan, Strummer, & myself headed down to sunny Santa Cruz for a PPK potluck hosted by Amey from Vegan Eats & Treats. The weather was perfect & we stuffed ourselves with savories like Empanadas, Stuffed Mushrooms, homemade Bagels, Broccoli Quiche, Spring Rolls, Macaroni Salad, & more! Avocado Key Lime Pie, Rice Krispie Treats, Coffee Cake, & Banana Pudding made up some of the sweets, plus I made a Chocolate Butterscotch Chip Cookie Cinnamon Swirl Cake Pie with toasted Marshmallow Meringue. Yes, you read that right. Inspired by Jessie at Cakespy, I made a pie crust, chocolate butterscotch chip cookie dough, & cinnamon swirl cake batter, layered & baked them together, then topped it with Julie Hasson's Marshmallow Meringue from Everyday Dish TV. The most fun of this dish was busting out the kitchen torch & toasting the delicious fluffy topping, yum!

City from New Zealand, aka the NZ Cupcake Queen recently made her way through the United States & we were lucky enough to have her here in San Francisco! We had a great time showing her & husband Chris the sights of the city, but we also had to have a proper American cookout (all vegan, of course), as they were here for the 4th of July! We deemed the day the "Sausage Fest", as we had at least 6 types of veggie dogs & sausages to grill up. Erika made adorable Onigiri with Nori faces, while the rest of us seemed to fill the table with sugary confections from cookies to Lemon Bars. Thanks to Dandies Marshmallows, I was able to make a proper Ambrosia Salad, so the Kiwis could taste the classic potluck dish loved & feared by many!

Speaking of sausages, inspiration struck recently & I decided to make Pretzel Dogs! I started with a homemade seitan hot dog recipe, then made soft pretzel dough. After the dogs were steamed, I wrapped them in the pretzel dough, baked them golden, & boy, was this gluten wrapped gluten delish, ha! I made some classic soft pretzels as well, which were also a hit, & I can see these being a repeat offender in our household.

This weekend a milestone birthday occurred & friends Gina & Adam from the PPK were in town, so of course, an epic celebration with lots of food was in order. Since our friend Nate turned 40, his wife Jen threw the party, which was a surprise for the birthday boy! We had a good potluck assortment with dishes like Quinoa Salad & Pav Bhaji, then also fired up my chocolate fountain with an awesome spread of dippables like fresh fruit, Dandies Vegan Marshmallows, Chocolate Cake Truffles, Pound Cake & pretzels. As if that wasn't enough sweetness, Jen, Jordan, Erika, & I decided to construct the most metal cake around! Chocolate cake & chocolate frosting with oozing strawberry "blood" inside & out, we wrapped the cake in over-the-top marzipan decor & a decapitated groom to honor "40 Years of Brutality"! Not a bad way to celebrate a birthday, eh?!

By the way, voting is winding down for the 2009 Veggie Awards by VegNews Magazine & all votes must be in by July 31st. The Urban Housewife is nominated for "Favorite Blog" & you can win fabulous prizes, just by voting! Get to it already!

40 comments:

Peanut Butter Swirl said...

wow everything served for breakfast sounds so good :) So jealous of all the food!

Vegan Deluxe said...

This inspires me to start up a Vegan Potluck here in Jacksonville, Florida!

Sal said...

ooh it all sounds good especially "Chocolate Butterscotch Chip Cookie Cinnamon Swirl Cake Pie with toasted Marshmallow Meringue"!!! WOW! (I had to cut & paste that, I'd never have remember it all). Sounds freakin amazing.

Kiersten said...

I am so amused at the birthday cake you made. It looks awesome.

paula said...

That bleeding cake is amazing!

¡Yo Soy Liz! said...

please please please tell me where I can find your Ambrosia recipe. I have been trying to duplicate my mom's ambrosia recipe for eons and can't get it right. yours looks perfect! please help i will be forever grateful!

Josiane said...

Your Chocolate Butterscotch Chip Cookie Cinnamon Swirl Cake Pie with toasted Marshmallow Meringue sounds like the most decadent thing ever!
I would usually stay away of food as redundant as gluten wrapped gluten, but when it looks so delicious, I can't resist! I may have to make a batch sometime soon...

Bianca said...

Your life sounds wonderful! Potlucks every weekend. That is my dream life. Oh, and that butterscotch chocolate marshmallow pie deal sounds like the best thing ever.

Erin said...

I missed a chocolate fountain??? Damn. I oughta know by now that personal plans should be dropped to hang out with you guys :)

Your pretzel dog sounds amazing! Now I want one badly.

Alyssa Franchetti said...

Hahahah totally stealing your idea for that "Brutal" cake!

Megan said...

Nate's cake turned out great! I love that you put the decapitated head on top of the cake too.

julie hasson said...

Oh yum Melisser! If only I lived near SF!

By the way, how'd you like the pepperjack?

halfeaten said...

That horror cake is KILLER! (no pun intended) It sounds tasty too.

nora said...

Chocolate Butterscotch Chip Cookie Cinnamon Swirl Cake Pie with toasted Marshmallow Meringue?! You are insane, in the best possible way, Melisser!!

Vegan_Noodle said...

I haven't had ambrosia salad in ages! Used to love that stuff. You gonna share your recipe?

Looks like you've been well fed this summer! Your metal cake looks awesome.

thriftylittleblog said...

I would love to be at one of your potlucks. Yum!

swellvegan said...

Whoa, I wish I could go to awesome vegan potlucks and birthday parties like you have over there! I guess I'll have to start throwing my own soon. Everything looks amazing and delightfully sinful!

Monique a.k.a. Mo said...

Y'all are so awesome! I wish we had that kind of action in Southern California.

Adriana said...

You know how to do it right! Darn you for posting such deliciousness!

Your arm looks great!

Thalia said...

I would love to know what your pretzel recipe is. I haven't had a soft pretzel in years nor can I find a good recipe. Can you help me out? I'm a pretzel fanatic and yours look fantastic!

quarrygirl said...

DUDE next time you are in LA, can you come over and make pretzel dogs? that sounds like the most delicious thing ever, and i remember you tweeting about it. JEALOUS.

thanks for the fun potluck pictures and stories. they are helping me survive this bloody 200 degree LA heat.

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dreaminitvegan said...

It's a food fest! So much good food and the cake looks awesome. yum!

Anonymous said...

I just got some Dandies and would also love to have your ambrosia recipe (I've never had it--but the Dandies are inspiring me). Thanks!!

Bianca said...

Hey Melisser! You won the MixMyGranola contest! I couldn't find your email address though. Could you email me at bphillips[at]memphisflyer[dot]com and then I'll forward your info on to Raoul at MixMyGranola. He'll email you a gift certificate code.

I'll be leaving town tonight for a PPK camping trip, so if you don't hear back from me immediately, I promise to respond when I return on Tuesday.

Hannah said...

Oh, marshmallow meringue... Sounds like a fantastic treat all by itself, even without the pie!

JennShaggy said...

Thanks!
I've got several jars in my fridge. If you make it down here before it's gone, there's one with your name on it :)

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Brittany said...

i want a kitchen torch & some dandies to use it on. oh, and one of those cookie dough cinnamon swirl pies to stuff in my face, please.

VeggieGirl said...

You always have the best foodie adventures, dear Melisser!!

Veg-a-Nut said...

OMG!! Pretel dogs! Now I am really hungry!

DJ said...

That cake looks AWESOME!!! Those eats and treats look delicious, as always!

aTxVegn said...

I read about the meetup on Amey's blog and it was amazing!

I love the pretzel dogs, and that cake - you totally outdid yourself.

textual bulldog said...

Yum yum yum. I envy your always-incredible vegan potlucks!

TravelingVeg said...

Hmmm, I've been wondering what to do with these Dandies...

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