Northwest Veg
March
2011
Vol. 55
 e-Thymes
"The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated."
--Mahatma Gandhi

Latest News...
» NW VEG Events and Bites
» Race for the Animals 2011
» The Vegan Village Experience at the 4th Annual Better Living Show
» Who is a Volunteer?
» Featured Volunteer Opportunities
» Veganic Gardening Chatter
» Support Food Safety Bill
» Sophie's Crisp Vegan Omelet Recipe
» Vote with Your Fork
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info@nwveg.org
volunteer@nwveg.org
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503.746.8344

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NW VEG Events and Bites

NW VEG's next dine-out is at the lovely vegan bistro Sweet Lemon on Saturday, March 12 at 6pm. We have spots for 20 hungry, enthusiastic folks, so RSVP soon: monroycathy@hotmail.com. For more dine-out info, click here.

The next meeting of the NW VEG Book Club will be March 5, from 2 to 4 p.m. in the upstairs Community Room at People's Food Coop. The featured book will be "The Unnatural History of the Sea" by Callum Roberts. Interested in joining the club? Email Ann at annwaw@hotmail.com. For more book club info, click here.

Monthly Portland Potluck on March 20
Join Northwest VEG for our monthly potluck event being held on Sunday, March 20 from 5:00 to 7:30 p.m. At 6:30 p.m., join us for a talk, "Taking Advantage of Vegan Portland," being given by Jess of the popular GetSconedPDX.com blog. The potluck will be held at the Friends Meeting Hall located at 4312 SE Stark Street in Portland. Come for the talk, the potluck, or both! Click here for more potluck info.

Monthly Vancouver, WA Potluck on March 24
The Vancouver potluck is being held Thursday, March 24 at 6:30 p.m. at the Clark County Public Utilities Community Room, 1200 Fort Vancouver Way in Vancouver, WA. The location is right over the bridge at I-5, exit 1C and is very quick to reach from Portland. Immediately following the potluck at 7:30 p.m. will be a guest presenter, TBA.

Note: For the potlucks, please bring a plant-based (no animal products, including honey) main dish, salad, or dessert; a card listing its ingredients; and plates and utensils for your use. If you come alone, figure the amount to serve 4-6 generously; increase the amount 4 servings for each additional person in your party/family. Northwest VEG potlucks are alcohol-free events.


 
Race for the Animals 2011

Registration is now open for Northwest VEG's 2nd annual Race for the Animals event on June 25. This 5K and 10K trail run/walk is held in Forest Park and begins at Lower Macleay Park. Last year over 200 participants of all ages and paces ran, hiked, and walked the beautiful course. Following this year's race, all participants are invited to enjoy vegan goodies, energy bars and fruit to re-fuel those plant-strong bodies!

Race for the Animals is a fundraiser for Northwest VEG's education and outreach programs. The registration fee is $25 (before June 20). Late registration (June 20-25) will be an extra $5. An organic cotton Race T-shirt is an additional $10. Northwest VEG members will receive a $5 discount on participation.

This year's event will use "chip timing" for fast and accurate results! For more information and to register visit www.nwveg.org/race_for_animals.php

Interested in becoming a race sponsor? Or volunteering at the event? Please email info@nwveg.org.


 
The Vegan Village Experience at the 4th Annual Better Living Show

Blue Ocean Events is excited to welcome the Vegan Village, for the third year in a row, to the Better Living Show being held March 25-27 at the Portland Expo Center. This year, Vegan Village is sponsored by Mary's Gone Crackers, one of the top gluten-free, vegan cracker and baked good companies in North America.

According to Vegan Village co-coordinator, Donna Benjamin, "It's Northwest meets green meets vegan meets fun meets sustainable, all in one impactful section on the show floor." Companies bringing their vegan presence to the Village include Bob's Red Mill Natural Foods, Book Publishing Co., Adventist Medical Center, Cafe Yumm!, Chef Al and Donna B!, Dave's Killer Bread, Doctor Kracker, Eat In the Raw, Frey Vineyards, HealthForce Nutritionals, Mary's Gone Crackers, Northwest VEG, Fungi Perfecti, LLC, People's Food Co-op, Numi Tea, Oregon Spay and Neuter, Out to Pasture Animal Sanctuary, Wear Your Veggies, and Turtle Island Foods. More companies are signing up all the time: BetterLivingShow.org/Portland-Vegan-Village.htm


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Who is a Volunteer?

By Anne Goldfeld, NW VEG Volunteer Coordinator

To me, a volunteer is a person who carries out acts of compassion, love, and peace to help restore balance to our planet.

Maybe you think it's not really that big of a deal to hang a few Forks Over Knives posters or to serve some samples at VegFest, but I believe it is! Regardless of the extent of your contribution as a NW VEG volunteer, your service is an invaluable part of the synergistic effort that fulfills our mission to educate and empower people to make vegetarian choices for a healthy, sustainable, and compassionate world.

Some ways in which your volunteer acts of compassion, love, and peace can help restore balance to our planet may include the improved health of people who have changed their eating habits, the saved lives of animals not consumed by new vegans, and less pollution in our environment resulting from decreased demand for factory farmed food.


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Featured Volunteer Opportunities

NW VEG would not exist if not for passionate and dedicated volunteers! Whether you're looking for a one-time project or a longer term commitment, there's a good chance we have a match for your interests, skills, and goals. Here are a few featured opportunities:

Thymes Newsletter Editor
This stellar opportunity puts you right in the middle of the action. Each month, the editor puts out a call for and gathers incoming articles. The editor also inspires contributors with new ideas. You will edit articles and work closely with a fabulous team of volunteers, including the layout designer. Each month you will coordinate the monthly e-newsletter and every other month you will also organize the print edition of the Thymes. And, if you feel so inspired, you can also write articles!

Business Membership/Discount Program Coordinator
Identify and recruit businesses meeting NW VEG criteria. The purpose of the business and discount programs is to nurture relationships with veg-supportive businesses operating in the Portland-Vancouver area, fostering a mutually beneficial experience for both NW VEG and partners.

Community Outreach Champion at the Better Living Show, March 25-27
We need several volunteers to staff the NW VEG table for a 3-hour shift distributing educational materials, answering questions, and promoting upcoming classes and events. We’ll also need volunteers to help set up on March 24.

VegFest Volunteers
Mark your calendars for September 17 and 18! We will need over 300 volunteers to help make our seventh annual VegFest a reality. We'll also need volunteers to help set up on September 16. One 3-hour shift earns you free admission to BOTH days of VegFest.

For more opportunities, please visit NWVEG.org/volunteer.php. To learn more or get started, contact Anne at volunteer@nwveg.org!


 
Veganic Gardening Chatter

How many of you caught the Veg Bite last month about the metamorphosis of the Northwest VEG Veganic Gardening Group? After a series of garden gatherings over the past 3 years, we're evolving into a more timely group of veggie gardeners, with a nascent webpage of veganic resources and a Google Discussion Group giving us the opportunity to ask for advice, as well as hash over ideas and successes. Some of us are new to gardening while others have been doing it for a lifetime, but it's fun to share the experience and to learn more about veganic methods.

Two weeks into the Discussion Group, we've had 19 members sign up and 6 discussion items. Members have the option to receive emails as they come, to sign up for a daily digest (1 email max) or to view them only at the site. The items of discussion have included:


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Support Food Safety Bill

Oregon HB 2336 passed 45-13 in the House and now needs our support as it moves to the Senate. This bill clarifies Food Safety regulations for Farmers' Markets and Direct Farm Sales, plus permits farmers to continue selling low-risk produce and up to $20,000 in sales of low-risk processed foods, such as pickles, relishes and jams.

Current regulations have been inconsistently interpreted by inspectors, leading to contradictions on what's permissible. Plus there is the threat of expensive new regulations, designed to meet the food safety problems inherent in industrially produced foods, being applied across the board, thus endangering the viability of Farmers' Markets and the innovative entrepreneurship of small farmers.

The February 17th Oregonian had a front page, concise overview of the bill, which can be accessed on their OregonLive.com website.

Information on how to contact your senator can be found at leg.state.or.us/senate, where there's also info to help you identify your senator.


 
Sophie's Crisp Vegan Omelet Recipe

I have been asked over and over for the recipe for my vegan omelets. Since I don't like complicated dishes with too many ingredients, these omelets are pretty simple to prepare and they keep in the fridge for up to a week. So make a batch, refrigerate it, and whenever you feel like it, voilà! The neat thing about this dish is that because it is made of flour (instead of the usual egg mixture), you do not need to eat bread with it. You feel satisfied and energized for many hours just with this one dish and a little salad on the side. By the way, they are great for brunch, lunch and dinner too!
  1. Measure 2 cups of unbleached flour* with 1 cup of rice flour, 2 tsp turmeric powder, 1 tsp salt and mix with 2 cups of coconut milk and a little water.
  2. For extra flavoring and protein, you can add ¼ cup vegan cheese like Daiya (optional) or 2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast.
  3. If too thick, add a little water and make sure there are no lumps.
  4. Cook one ladle at a time in an oiled skillet at medium heat.
  5. Fill with onions, mushrooms, any vegetables you like.
  6. Serve warm with a salad.
*For a gluten-free alternative, substitute a mix of potato and tapioca flour instead of the wheat flour.

Tips: If you have made the batter ahead of time and refrigerated it...


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Vote with Your Fork

It's sort of, almost, spring, even though it's hard to believe. Fresh flowery scents taunt us as early as February, but any real sign of spring waits until the end of March, if not later. Nevertheless, even if months of overcast skies and low temperatures have made us forget, bounties of fresh produce are in our near future. Soon, farmers' markets open, and now is a great time, maybe the greatest time, to "vote with your fork."

Why? Oregon's farm land is disappearing, our farmers are retiring, and the few new farmers tentatively taking their place hesitate, wondering if they can make a living producing food for all of us.

I heard one of these young farmers speak recently, and he said he thinks of consumers as "co-producers." How we - you and I - shop and eat largely determines what is grown, where, how, and by whom.


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