Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Bao in Noksapyeong

     I love dining out, I really do~ checking out new places and discovering new takes on foods...inspiration is always a potential. I think the easiest, and most cost-effective way to run a restaurant is to do some sort of stir-fry dish. Make that your focus or theme of your joint and there's not really a way to disappoint your customers or to run out of money...unless you really are awful or your customers just have not a clue of what they like.
     Simple. choose what veggies and proteins you like...point...wait, nom.
Bao in Noksapyeong is stir-fry focused, it's super straightforward and vegan friendly (HUZZUH!~) You choose your grain/carb: brown or white rice, thick or thin rice noodles...choose a sauce (malay is peanut based and vegan), it all comes with loads of veggies (mushrooms, broccoli, onion, garlic, ginger, bokchoy, bean sprouts, scallions, and peppers) and you can choose additional proteins (tofu, cashews, chicken, etc) I was hoping to avoid the carbs all together, but that wasn't an option, so I went with a small portion of brown rice, no peppers, the malay sauce, tofu, and cashews~ result...
     yum~ I know what I like and it doesn't hurt (at all) that I was surrounded by people I adore!
my dish (before I snuck in loads of lettuce) photo taken by VeganBeats

     Aiii~ This dinner event was to celebrate the beautiful and wonderful womyn Melissa! She is a brilliant individual that always inspired me and made Seoul so much (Korea so much) brighter~ 

I already miss you Yake!!

How to get there, 
     Noksapyeong station, go out exit 2, walk straight and go in the inderpass (tunnel) and go out the left stairs...when you get out, walk straight again and at the corner you'll see Noxa, Bao is on the right side of that!!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Beautiful Stars: Black Ilumin's Newest MV drops August 1st

     A couple weeks ago, I had the honor and freedom to do some artwork for Black Ilumin, a very talented and solid-Seouled hiphop artist. I've written about his talent before and am so glad that I've gotten the world of hiphop gifted to me through the likes of Scotty Seoul, Jkea Pains (Jake Pains), Wisecrue, and him.
     I'm more than happy that art has re-entered my life, and so grateful that I'm surrounded by like-minded artists, dream makers and chasers, beat makers, musicians, and photographers that not only have embraced my goals but support them as well! Having the opportunity to create something, be a part of something, and have something featured has brought a lot of warmth to my heart.  
me and the piece I did of Venus, goddess doesn't even sum her up~ photo by Jesse Lord
     My piece, along with some other amazing creations will be featured and shown (promoted and supported) through Black Ilumin's "Beautiful Stars" music video that drops on the first of August! Being a part of the video and the shooting was a blast! This MV was a beautiful collaboration promoting m\lots of love and an organic and real approach.

"You Are Awesome" is fact...and how all of us felt when wrapping up this shoot, and even still now!

     For a beautiful project, wonderful collaboration, and all sorts of brilliance, make sure to check out Black Ilumin, his music video for "Beautiful Stars", and have a look see at all the talent that worked together to support some Beautiful Stars~~

You can download "Beautiful Stars" at~ You can download the song: http://soundcloud.com/blackilumin/beautiful_stars

Friday, July 27, 2012

You CAN make friends with salad...Best Dressing!

     I love salads, eat them everyday if not always~ I always hear the snap attack
"You can't make friends with salad"
~~~jargon from omnis (primarily) and..well the vegan jams gets picked on often but hey...ignorance is an inevitable right?!
     Sometimes to make a salad satisfying for even the pickiest and animal-bit crazed folk, you need a great sauce, marinade~ a bangin' sexy dressing!! I've got it...lather greens in this and you got something everyone wants to slurp up...slutty greens!
salad with that special sauce! (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     I got this recipe from Kufner, a BQ crew buddy~ This dressing pairs some of my favorite things, vinegars and mustard...wait, that's vinegar!
     It's super simple, super flavorful, and mind blowingly addictive~

What you need:
  1. good quality olive oil (extra virgin!)
  2. balsamic vinegar (I go with Blaze...yummmm)
  3. 2-3 garlic cloves, minced (I like them BIG)
  4. 1-2 T of sweetener (I like maple syrup or coconut sugar)
  5. 2 T of whole grain mustard
What to do:
  1. get a 1:1 ratio of Balsamic to Olive oil going...about 1/2-1 cup each will do!
  2. mix them up and add everything together
  3. shake/whip/mix it all up, taste and add salt or more of whatever to make even more perfect for you...
  4. What, simple, done already?! Go buddy up with them greens friend!! ^ㅊ^*

Monday, July 23, 2012

Raw Meal loving~ featuring bangin high-fiber green pea hummus poser

      Over the past couple weeks I've been playing around with more complex raw foods/meals. I usually stick to carrots, cucumbers, and any type of vinegar (load up that mustard and balsamic) but I've been wanting to mix things up! I've also been trying to keep my wallet a bit thicker for the Philippines (^ㅊ^*) so using whatever has been kicking it in my food cabinet is the only choice! This raw meal (salad) started with chopping up everything I had in my fridge, every veggie that's been chilling (hahah) got sliced and diced and sat staring at me in a bowl...balsamic (hell yea) is my go to, but I ran out of that so...the closet hunt began. I had a can of peas...0.o# I wasn't craving the lovely circular form of peas and wanted something to coat and equally be divided amongst all the chopped bits...hummus-like spread was called for! Garlic, black pepper, jalapenos, and a food processor...BOOM!
photo taken by VeganBeats
     So it may not be pretty, but it's healthy, delicious, full of flavor, and I felt super good after it! I found myself full of energy post-nomming and not feeling guilty~ 았사!!!~
yum~ (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     So...everything involved: red, purple, AND green cabbage, carrots, romaine lettuce, iceberg lettuce, green onions, and cucumbers!!! Chop chop choppy~~~Then I threw in a bunch of this bangin high-fiber green pea hummus poser~
What you need:
  1. can of green peas (it's what Korea's got) so maybe 1.5 cups of green peas
  2. 1-2 t black pepper
  3. 1 jalapeno (or more!~~)
  4. 2-3 cloves of garlic (or more~)
  5. water OR olive oil (I opted out)
~> got a food processor? Blend that ISH!!

Mix that raw jazz up!! 

     The salad/meal is high in fiber, got lots of protein, full of natural flavors and super filling! Hella Chyea~

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Thursday Morning 고구마 loving~

      The only point of this post...
HEY~ photo taken by VeganBeats
     The only time I catch this kid NOT dancing around is when he's saying "heya~"

     ....and when he's pooped~
zzzzzz~ photo taken by VeganBeats

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

VeganBeatin' Curry Play

     I feel like parts of me are still in the "college"-zone of money stretching, penny pinching, and ingredient spreading~ When trying to keep the wallet filled and deal with all them veggies that might be approaching the end of their expiration I turn to one thing...curry! Some people go with stews, soups, casseroles but for me it's always been curry! It's a meal that keeps growing!!
     Sometime last week I decided to make a massive batch of curry, I had loads of stuff that needed to be used and myself and the kids couldn't get through everything...not in time anyways! Papadams, everything in a pot and well~
white peppered papadams~ (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     I had zukes, lentils, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, regular potatoes, onions, carrots, peas, and beans...all of it came together to make a super thick, rich, and loaded curry meal! Curry is great, but hella filling, super heavy, and a definite "stick-to-your-ribs" meal! Every time I make curry I think which tupperware I'll have to set aside. Leftovers are always bound to happen.

~ (I'm trying to make this post about money saving but...this was a dinner made for man ^^* meh meh meh
pot of curry~ (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     I usually eat curry like it is a stew but I'm not the most normal of folks~ I go to Indian restos requesting lettuce and salads versus naan, rice, or breads!! I made a lentil barley side that was spiced rasam style with some saffron in there!!
rasam curried lentil barley~ (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     Like most of what I make...measuring doesn't really happen, I throw everything together, cross my fingers, and hope for the best...

     Why is curry an easy way to feed yourself for a while...it gets thick...so when you want more, reheat and add water! It's the dish that keeps growing!! 

Monday, July 16, 2012

Vegan Crunk'n and in need of somethin'

     When you drink, what do you eat? Most people, especially in Korea, go for animal bits and pieces. Eating and drinking is a HUGE part all over the world. But Seoul-side...what's a vegan gal to do?
     There are classics, the essentials, the delicious and not to girthy, dotori muk, acorn jelly salad!
glory~ photo taken by VeganBeats
     It's great for a million reasons, even when I'm not throwing back alcohol, I'm secretly spying for places that have this! I LOVE it...it's got an interesting texture, super light, spicy, full of veggies, and slurp-worthy! yummm~
      Another easy vegan/veggie way to pack the tummy whilst marinating it...steamed tofu and kimchi. Make sure to ask if the kimchi is fried in butter, with pork, or has fishies in it! A lot of the time...vegan kids pull of lucky.
steamed tofu and kimchi~ photo taken by VeganBeats
     Usually, I go for the drink on empty route, but every so often...re-fueling is absolutely necessary and these are the two dishes that most, if not all Korean alcohol places always have available!! The Tofu kimchi is much heavier...but the body wants what it wants...


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Bread Experiments: More Itchn'n'the'kitch~

     I can do complications, I can do ornate, I can work with lots of ingredients...but when it comes to the minimals, the bare minerals of things, I seem to lose all face. When I was first playing with ingredients and food, meal creating...I could do casseroles, ratatouille, samosas, etc...ask me to make a grilled cheese (pre-vegan days) and I was a mess. I burnt things, didn't melt cheese, ruined pans...I can't work with simple. Give me trouble, hard work, intricate demands and I'm the lady.
     I've been trying to work with the simplest, and most difficult of creations~ bread. It requires four ingredients and provides the greatest of challenges. Here's my adventures with bread...(gluten free bread is no problem, over 15 ingredients....aiiii)
before I burnt the cheese~ (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     First challenge was 'za...A week or two ago I had the brilliant idea to make a za for one kick-Ass Seoul, one to thank them for being extra Vegan tolerant and to give myself a challenge! I threw on loads of ingredients, peppers, chunky tomatoes, mushrooms, leeks, onions, kale, spinach, garlic scapes, and cheese. The result was a burnt crunchy cheesy pizza that... "it doesn't look tasty, but it's good." 

     But the crust...what about the crust?!


     Next challenge was ciabatta and cinnamon raisin bread. I can easily jump on the subway for 20 minutes and find some ciabatta...but Phbbbt to that...let's see what I can do ehh?!
     I grew exhausted and honestly didn't measure (I'm a bit eye-measure-cocky) and just went for it...I never really measure for cakes...or cookies...or anything else really and I haven't ever gotten negative reviews. Meh...thanks Mamabeats!
     Anyways...what came out in ciabatta terms was a crusty-topped and fluffy bread, not really airy like a legitimate ciabatta but enough to please these taste buds!
Lotta Ciabatta~ (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     The cinnamon raisin bread was...ridiculous! I read some recipes that called for half cups of raisins, or "scant cinamon" and well...I don't follow rules. Half a cup...HALF...serious? If the bread is has some sort of title presenting it...I want minimum flour, "scant" carb and high whatever the hell it's nicknamed. I was generous with the cinnamon (think cinnamon challenge amount), used organic agave, and fistfuls of raisins...result~ better than all those other breads.
gooey in all the right places~ (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     And being the VeganBeatin snob I am...I ignored using one type of flour~ 4 SUCKASSSS

Here's my base "recipe" I did for all these kids:~

What you need:
  1. 1.75 c warm water (I just get the tap as hot as it'll go...)
  2. 1 T olive oil 
  3. 1.5 t green tea salt
  4. 1.5 t dry yeast
  5. 1.5 t organic coconut sugar
  6. 3 c whole wheat flour
  7. 1 c unbleached wheat flour
  8. 0.5 c flour blend of quinoa/rice/almond (why...because I want to)
What to do:
  1. Pour the hot water into a big metal bowl (it's got to stay heated!)
  2. Using a big spoon, mix the sugar, salt, oil, and yeast and stir it until it's combined...needn't be concerned if it's not all dissolved. 
  3. Add the flours and mix until everything looks pretty blended!
  4. Cover the bowl with somethng (I chose aluminum foil!) and let it rise for 2 hours
  5. Are you angry? Punch that dough!!! Add a bit more flour is it's too sticky!! 
  6. Let it rise again...until you're no longer patient and bake at 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) for a half hour!
FOR Ciabatta...get angry and punch it...

FOR Cinnamon Raisin Bread~~
What you need:
  1. cinnamon
  2. sugar or agave
  3. raisins...and anything else you're craving
What to do:
  1. How much do you want of either...go for it.
  2. Roll out the dough flat..sprinkle that ish in...
  3. bake that all the same way as step 6 for above...
  4. nom nom nom
Experiment Conclusions:
     I've got learning to do...novice okay~~

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Just a little bit of Sunshine~

photo taken by VeganBeats
     Ahhh~ so this week marks a break in my heavy work load and I'll be actually having afternoons!! I won't be kicking it homeside at 10 or 11 anymore...^ㅊ^*
     Gaining some extra time has definitely gotten me all sorts of eager and excited, maybe I'll start seeing friends more?! It's gotten me reflecting and attempting to be a bit more mindful, soak in that sun and load up on Vitamin D! I've also got some exciting things waiting around the bend, one being the Philippines!! Another VeganBeatin' destination is happening and I cannot wait to get a bit more culture and world lessons under my belt! I've missed traveling, it's been far too long since I've left this country for something new!
     I've also got three spanking new sketchbooks teasing me...creativity has been working itself up, marinating my overworked brain and life has been pointing to dispelling that ish all over some nude sheets! Creative vomit....do it!
     More time to devote to yoga, seeing the sun, stretching my legs elsewhere (besides subway tunnels and in between shifts), getting to have mindful meals (eating carrots on the subway sucks), daytime snuggles with my kids (Hamlet and 고구마)!!!!
     I'm on another positive upswing, mostly because there is SO much potential, at least lots of parts are feeling so due to time...placebo or whatnot, I'll take it! Positive jam is so much sweeter than that sour shiz!!
     Ahhh another great thing~ I got to do a piece for the talented Black Ilumin and it may very well be in his music video (it's in the works), we filmed it last weekend and I AM STOKED!!! Not only did he let me throw my creative jam on his walls, he granted me an artistic opportunity and freedom while letting me be a part of his MV and own musical projects (thanks Black Ilumin!)
     More, Hamlet is much healthier and back to her cuddly and lovey self!!!

It may be raining outside, but brightness ignites~~to think last week was blue skies?~!~
photo taken by VeganBeats~

More silverlinings~ the weekend is right around the bend...greatness is never dying...potential never disappears~

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Apgujeong Graffiti Tunnels

     Art is such a short word that holds a lot...A LOT in it's resume. Given how open-minded art is, I'm wanting to get closer to it, become better buddies with it...spend a couple nights a week getting to know more about it! The other week ago I wandered to the graffiti tunnels and got blown away with the sick writing that gave life to Seoul's little cave! Check this out~
Just do it~ (photo taken by VeganBeats)
photo taken by VeganBeats
photo taken by VeganBeats
photo taken by VeganBeats
photo taken by VeganBeats
photo taken by VeganBeats
     All the writers/artists are pretty well-known, but I'm still on the glimpse of the culture here...until Art starts trusting me more....
lights on the Han~ (photo taken by VeganBeats)
How do you see these tunnels?

Apgujeong station exit 1 (압구정역 1번)
walk out straight for maybe 10 minutes, when you see the Galleria, take the LEFT...you'll be going through an apartment complex...when you get to the end of the apartments, you'll be at a walkway...take a RIGHT. Keep going until you see an entrance on your RIGHT side...wander down and be inspired~~