Grilled Veggie Salad

Grilled Veggie Salad with Tahini Dressing. Pic by M.C.

Grilled veggies on lettuce with tahini dressing makes a great summer salad. I was inspired to make a salad when I ate at the Lotus Café and Juice Bar in Encinitas, California. I added shiitakes, serranos, and tomatoes to make it my own. It’s a meal in itself and pairs well with chilled Pacific Rim Sweet Riesling that is gluten free and vegan friendly. The salad is so good Renaissance Man said, “This is so good, I can die happy now.” I hope my recipe translates.

1 bundle asparagus, chopped
1 eggplant, sliced
2 medium zucchini
2 bell peppers
10 shiitake mushrooms
8 serrano peppers
8 tomatoes
Oil to brush on, no oil for Ninja Foodie

2 handfuls lettuce-spring mix

1/3 c olive oil
1 lemon, juiced
2 Tbsp. tahini
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp. Himalayan salt
1 Tbsp. agave syrup

Yield: 4 salads

I use a Ninja Foodie. But if you have a grill use a grill. Slice veggies in large pieces. For the Ninja, I suggest not brushing oil on the veggies, but do brush on oil if you are using an outdoor grill. The veggies take too long in the Ninja to grill with oil and really don’t crisp up. Brush olive oil on veggies for an outdoor grill. If you don’t have a Ninja or a grill you could roast all your veggies on a cookie sheet under the broiler of a gas oven. Either way, watch the veggies so they don’t burn. Some dark spots are okay.

I slice the eggplant so they look like circles. Having large pieces of veggies allows me to use leftovers for a grilled veggie sandwich or dice later to top on gluten free pasta. Slice zucchini in half then slice in quarter inch slices. Chop asparagus and bell pepper into bite sizes. Grill mushrooms, serranos, and tomatoes whole. Try Roma tomatoes if using an outdoor grill.

Grilling time is about 25 minutes.

After grilling, take seeds out of serrano peppers. I put on disposable gloves then slice off the top. Slice the pepper in half and cut out the seeds. Or use a spoon to scrape out the seeds. Warning serranos are spicy so don’t eat them if you can’t handle hot spices.

Place two handfuls of lettuce on a plate. I use a local mix of baby oakleaf that looks like red lettuce, baby green leaf, and some kind of endive that looks like frisee or curly. My local farmer doesn’t label the bag.

Slice warm veggies. Use two slices of eggplant and four pieces of zucchini and slice smaller. Plate those in the middle of the lettuce. Scatter about eight pieces of asparagus, which is about two spears, scatter four pieces of bell pepper, two mushrooms on top, two or four tomatoes, and then the sliced serrano on the sides of the salad.

Put all ingredients for the dressing in a Mason jar and shake it up. Drizzle three tablespoons of dressing on each salad.

The first day you’ll have warm veggies on your salad. The second day you can eat cold veggies on your salad. Or rewarm veggies in toaster oven.

After we ate at good vibes Lotus Café and Juice Bar we sauntered over to the Self-Realization Fellowship Meditation Gardens. I’ll make that into a separate post. It’s a beautiful place to watch the waves quietly if you’re passing through San Diego this summer or ever since the weather is always good.

Pacific Rim Sweet Riesling is Gluten Free and Vegan Friendly. That’s a dragon on the back of the bottle. Cheers! Pic by M.C.

Happy Vegan!

Recipe from blog of

Copyright 2021 Melissa Crismon

Vegan Wine & Vegan News

Dry Creek Vineyard’s Sauvignon Blanc Vegan Wine. Pic by M.C.

I don’t go around screaming I’m a vegan, but I keep reading or meeting people struggling with vegan issues—hence, so many vegan posts. Recently, a British gal on Twitter said she couldn’t find vegan wine. Perhaps some of you will have to shop online.

The gal on Twitter wrote bugs are used to strain wine. That one I hadn’t heard. According to an article on Eco Warrior Princess, animal-derived products are used as “fining agents” that filter out protein, yeast, and other parts of wine. Casein, isinglass (fish bladder by-products), gelatin, chitin/chitosan (crab or lobster shell), and albumin are used as fining agents. The article also lists more vegan wines and some are gluten free.

Renaissance Man came home with a new vegan white wine so he could make vegan risotto. So I tasted Dry Creek Vineyard’s Fumé Blanc Sauvignon Blanc which happens to be gluten free. I paired it with VioLife vegan cheese, green olives, and walnuts while we waited for my homemade veggie soup to warm up. It’s supposed to have characteristics of Meyer lemon, lemongrass, kaffir lime, and herbs. I don’t drink much, but all I know is I liked it.

I’d like to share a short video with an interview of Author Carol J. Adams by The Bearded Vegans. A new edition of her book The Pornography of Meat will be out in October 2020. I like to hear other people’s points of view, especially if it’s unique. How interesting it is that we are mind controlled to believe eating meat is manly.

Toronto Veg share their platform with The Bearded Vegans

The Pornography of Meat (Carol Adams and The Bearded Vegans) TorontoVeg YouTube Channel.
The breakdown:
0:01 Introduction

3:20 Oct. 29, 2020-Updated version of The Pornography of Meat.

4:14 “What is pornography? And how do you intend to use that term as it relates to the exploitation of animals?” Paul asked.

Carol Adams said, “Let’s say the pornography I’m talking about is in Catherine MacKinnon’s terms making inequality sexy. Pornography of objectification, dominance, violence that figures man as dominate as women as submissive or receptive to violence is making inequality sexy. And it not only makes gender inequality sexy. It makes racial class ethnic inequality sexy. Say featuring Asian women who want to be dominated. Or African American women depicted as though they’re still enslaved. One of the epigraphs in The Pornography of Meat is from Patricia Hill Collins—Black Feminist Thought—one of her books—she says that in contemporary pornography women are objectified through being portrayed as pieces of meat as sexual animals awaiting conquest. So we’re also going to see in a book like mine how the images and representations from animal agriculture present animals sexualized awaiting conquest. But what Collins is trying to say is that it’s not that pornography existed and black women were kinda stirred in. It’s that pornography, as we know it, evolved from a white supremacist culture that viewed the objectification of black women’s bodies as acceptable, normative, and natural in order to dominate them. And so we end up with media representations that is drawing in a pornography that got defined by white supremacy. So issues of objectification, dominance, control, animalization, and the mixing of violence and sex is all what concerns me. So in a sense, my book, The Pornography of Meat, is trying to show how these images and representations make inequality tasty.”

6:39 “Would you say all pornography is inherently unethical?” Paul asked.

8:35 Gender binary system

11:39 Masculinity and eating meat

15:48 Deconstructing the images in advertising

21:00 Suicide food

23:00 Depiction of animals

26:09 “The pandemic has brought to attention the problem with animal agriculture and zoonotic diseases,” Carol Adams said.

31:05 How does veganism and other social causes come into play?

32:28 What can we do?

“Every vegan meal is a boycott of animal agriculture. And I’ve always felt that teaching veganism and spreading veganism by presenting yourself as a non-anxious vegan, who loves to be vegan has its own role. And we often forget that grassroots activism and grassroots people are the source of so much change . . .” Carol Adams said.

And remember, even if you’re not vegan you can at least make the choice to buy a vegan wine because you don’t need animals in your wine. Let’s toast to that. Cheers!

Happy responsible drinking!

Copyright 2020 Melissa Crismon