Greetings, Bistro fans and vegan cuisine fans. The Tenant is finally back, with some time out for a cold. I regret to say that as a result of this cold, I decided not to attend the $10 wine tasting this week (I never want to risk making any of the other fine Bistro patrons, or the terrific staff for that matter, ill if I can help it). If you attended, however, and have a comment you’d like to make, please feel free!
As for “A Night in Budapest,” the latest Bistro venture into gourmet vegan cuisine last week, that was a fine evening indeed (as you know if you tried it yourself). The 3-for-$30 meal began with a first course of Tomato-Fennel Soup with Cornmeal Dumplings:
This dish was delightfully spicy with its blend of tomatoes, fennel, onion, paprika, and other flavorings. The cornmeal dumplings were deliciously tender, and the whole thing was topped with fresh sprigs of dill. A wonderfully warming winter soup.
Then it was on to the main dish, Vegan Chicken Paprikash with Potato Gnocchi:
This “chicken” was, as is true of many Bistro vegan dishes, made with gardein, which I’m told is made primarily from wheat gluten. Obviously not a choice for those with celiac or other issues requiring a gluten-free diet, but it does make an incredible chicken stand-in that is extremely difficult to tell from the real thing in terms of flavor. It worked perfectly in this dish, paired with classic traditional-tasting potato gnocchi and a sauce that, from my understanding, included cashew milk. It was rich, creamy in texture, and tasted just like something you might enjoy in a traditional home-cooking Eastern European ethnic restaurant.
The grand conclusion of the meal was Hungarian-Style Crepes with Apricot Preserves:
The crepes, made with almond milk and without eggs, were ultra-thin and delicious, layered with sweet fruit preserves, and accompanied by a snowing of powdered sugar, fresh berries, and “whipped cream” made with almond milk combined with a little tapioca to firm it up. A fantastic dessert and the perfect complement to the rest of the meal.
Altogether, “An Evening in Budapest” proved that even hearty, traditional ethnic cooking is possible using all vegan ingredients, and you won’t miss a bit of flavor!
Want more proof? Another opportunity is coming soon. On Wednesday, February 23, Bistro 185 presents “A Trip to India,” a three-course vegan dinner themed on Indian cuisine beginning to end:
Cilantro and Mint Chutney
Field Green Salad with Tamarind Vinaigrette
Cashew-Coconut Lemongrass Curry with Vegetables and Tofu
Organic Brown Basmati Rice
Coconut-Cardamom Panna Cotta with Mango Coulis
Sounds special, doesn’t it? The dinner will be available between 5 and 9 p.m.; to ensure yourself a reserved time, call 216.481.9635 now and prepay with your credit card. Cost is $30 per person, plus 20 percent gratuity and 7.75 percent tax additional.
At Bistro 185, vegan dining is more than just a meal; it’s a tasteful journey into everything this type of cuisine can be. Book yourself this passage to India now!