Monday, October 20, 2008

World Vegetarian Day & VBC Picnic Edition!

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

This year was the 9th annual World Vegetarian Day in San Francisco & Sugar Beat Sweets was lucky enough to have a table selling vegan treats to the veg masses! While the focus of my booth was cupcakes (I made over 1,000 in 8 varieties) , I also decided to do some special treats which included cinnamon rolls, brownies in both chocolate & peanut butter swirl, & of course, the infamous candy corn from the recipe I shared last year.

As I'm sure you can guess, making 1,000+ cupcakes takes a bit of time, so I did 2 days of baking for the 2 day festival & also had to fill the orders for my regular customers! It was quite the undertaking, but luckily I had Mel from veglicious helping me on both a day of baking & a day of the festival. She also took the photos you see here, as I was busy slingin' sweets!

VegFest is always a great place to see old friends & make new ones; Amey from Vegan Eats & Treats, Laura & Meave of Vegansaurus, Megan of The Sisters Vegan, & Erin from Vegan Homemade are just some of the bloggers I was able to chat with! Also seen over the weekend, Colleen Patrick Goudreau of Compassionate Cooks, who had a booth next to mine, many of the Farm Sanctuary family who were repeat customers, chef Jesse Miner, who brought us goodies from his heirloom beans demo & of course, the crew at VegNews, who wrote a bit about us on their blog. I talked to so many awesome people, I know I am missing some here! By the way, SFoodie, the blog of the SF Weekly, did a piece on Sugar Beat Sweets, including a video. Check it out!

So, what else was there? Awesome speakers including John Robbins & Howard Lyman, food demos by everyone from Sarah Kramer to Antonio Magana, entertainment from musicians, belly dancers, & a vegan acrobat, plus free food samples! Coconut Bliss, Sheese, & Artisana were some of my favorite treats & I picked up an fabulous sampler with 11 flavors of Premier Organics spreads. Mmm, Goji Bliss!

VegFest was a fun & rewarding experience, I can't wait to do it again next year! Just don't ask me to bake 1,000 cupcakes until then. I'll have a booth at the upcoming Bazaar Bizarre, but the production scale should be much smaller.

On a beautiful sunny September day, the VBC convened for another brunch cartel. This time we opted for Dolores Park & an open invitation for all to join us, which didn't disappoint! Many new faces showed up & the food was outstanding! Best food ever? Maybe. I made a coleslaw & a Southern Style Banana Pudding with Vanilla cookies to stand in for Nilla Wafers; it turned out pretty darned good! Vanilla beans flanked the smooth, yet fluffy pudding mixture, while layers of bananas & cookies added texture.

Some of the other dishes we enjoyed were avocado potato salad, chickpea curry, tempeh sausages with roasted red pepper sauce, brownies, pasta salad, homemade beer brats with sauerkraut, & freshly baked rolls with cinnamon butter! Needless to say, it was quite the feast & I always look forward to future brunches.


Celine said...

I can't even begin to imagine making over 1000 cupcakes. I'm glad you got some help!

Anonymous said...

That is so cool that you had a booth, lived to tell about baking over 1000 cupcakes (and the brownies, etc.) and that you were next to Colleen P-G - I love her pod casts and her cook book. Great video, too!

Mihl said...

You really are a hard worker. 1000 cupcakes would have killed me. Great work, Melisser!
The video was awesome, locak, organic, and rock!

LizNoVeggieGirl said...

Ahhhh, I'm dying to try your treats, Melisser!!! And kudos to you for baking all of those cupcakes for the event!! Wowza!!

Lisa (Show Me Vegan) said...

Nice job on the video! And the brunch sounds like there was so much good food. I hadn't thought that Southern style banana pudding could be made vegan! My husband would be thrilled if I made that for him.

River (Wing-It Vegan) said...

You are my hero! I want to be you when I grow up! :P

Over 1000 cupcakes sounds like so much work, plus all the other goodies you baked. Everything on your table looks amazing! I can see myself sneaking under the table, attaching wheels to the legs and running towards the door with the whole thing! :)

I loved the video! You are so beautiful and inspiring!

Liz Ranger (Bubble Tea for Dinner) said...

that sounds like so much fun! at least, the trying samples and meeting people part. the 1000 cupcake part just means you should get a medal. :)
(oh, and that pudding - yes yes please!)

Leslie Richman said...

That's a power-packed post!

jessy said...

oh my goodness - over 1,000 cupcakes! that's just madness! congrats on making them all - and how cool of Mel to help you out, too! that rocks! glad the VegFest was so much fun, that's awesome that you met some fellow vegan bloggers, too! wahooooooo!

your banana pudding looks super stellar - i love the little vanilla cookies! hooray for some rock'n slaw, too! gotta love a tasty slaw. mmmmmmm!

everything looks awesome!

DJ said...

The first thing I thought when I read your post was 'Geez, hope she had some help... '!
I love the pic of your loaded plate at the end - looks like you stumbled into an Aladdin's cave of treats, or something!

Amey said...

It was so fun to see you and to eat your crazy good cupcakes. I always love VegFest. I hope you had good sales that weekend, it certainly seemed like your booth was quite busy!

I'm looking forward to the next VBC too, I hope I can make it next time!

: )

Unknown said...

dearest melisser,
1. did you sell out?
2. i once made 100 cupcakes and it took me all weekend. inquiring minds want to know, how did you do it? do you have cupcake tins that hold 50 cupcakes at a time?
3. plus cinnamon rolls and candycorn??? womigod. alos, i noticed you did a ganache dribble on top of the cupcakes as well.
4. did you make it to any of the speakers? i heard howard lyman speak once.
5. do you get lots of annoying questions about ingredients from pesky vegans wanting to know?
6. you look fresh!


Paula said...

1000 cupcakes! That's madness! Everything looks so awesome!
Especially those cinnamon rolls. Those are calling my name. I have to tell my bff in oakland to try some of your stuff stat!

Meg said...

Those cinnamon rolls made me want to die of happiness. NOM.

Bianca said...

OMG Melisser, you just gave me another idea for my Southern vegan cookbook. I gotta veganize my mom's banana puddin' recipe. I hadn't even thought about that....somehow I think I'm gonna work some rum in there Banana Foster Puddin'....thanks!

And I'm soooo sad that I don't live in SF cause I would have loved the the World Veggie Day fest...

tofufreak said...

ahhhh that looks like so much fun! and stress! 1000 cupcakes?! yeah. that's pretty insane--in a good way :D

Anonymous said...

Everything looks delicious! Glad to hear it all went well! My boyfriend has been dying for some banana cream pie....mind sharing your recipe?

Anonymous said...

Oy vey, a 1000 cupcakes! I usually start gibbering with madness around 250. You are a baking glamizon!

Vegfest sounds really rad. Love the video!

Vegan_Noodle said...

I still can't believe that you baked 1000 cupcakes and had the energy to keep standing! Very impressive. So wish I had been there for vegfest... maybe next year.

And another impressive VBC...

Anonymous said...

I'm so proud of you with your bakery now! wow! :)

Anonymous said...

1000 cupcakes! that sounds like my idea of heaven!

Aissa-sah said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Aissa-sah said...

Wow...that is awesome...maybe I can make it up there to next year's event. Congrats on your business...Selling vegan sweets has been a fantasy of mine...bake on!!!

Anonymous said...

that looks like so much fun, i've never been to an event like this and i am SO JEALOUS. you have the most awesome vegan life, ya know?

Jenn Shagrin said...

Thank you!
If you are for real, I'm definitely down. I'll be in SF the weekend of the 7th to be spoiled rotten by my parents :)

sarchan said...

Looks like a good potluck.

And 1,000 cupcakes--what an accomplishment! I baked a measly 100 one time and thought that was a lot. Amazing.

Cakespy said...

OK, there is way too much awesome and delicious going on in this post. I don't even know where to begin. I can't wait til I am one of the lucky ones who get to try your treats. Le sigh.

vko said...

you are too damn cute in that video- hurray for you baking 1000 cupcakes! What fun fun fun at World Vegetarian Day! I think SBS needs to come to NYC for a bake sale! x

ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

I wish I could've gone, just for the vegan cinnamon rolls alone!

Bethany said...

I was so tired after making 60 cupcakes for my mom's bday this summer.

1,000 in days! I can't imagine. And they look fantastic. Oh, yeah, and making candy corn and keeping up w/ your normal orders as well. Wow, I'm really impressed.

San Fran vegfest looks like so much fun!

Anonymous said...

Too cool, I wish I could have been there! But seriously, I don't know how you do it... I had to make 200 mini cupcakes and 4 cake layers in advance for the Boston VegFest, and that sent me scrambling!

Jenni (aka Vegyogini) said...

Congratulations on a successful Fest! I have a feeling all your hard work paid off, but making 1000 cupcakes plus other goodies must have been exhausting! Someday, I hope to try your candy corn. :)

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