This week, we have a very special episode of Talkin’ Tofu! Atlanta VegFest organizer, Leigh Saluzzi, is joining us for a breakfast sandwich cook-off!
Leigh Saluzzi is the Executive Director of Atlanta Veg Fest. Atlanta Veg Fest is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to support the community and promote the benefits of a vegan and plant-based lifestyle founded in compassion for animals, people and the environment.
Leigh has been vegan since 2001, and loves to show people how easy veganism can be. After operating a vegan business with her husband and exhibiting at festivals and conferences across the country, she decided to start Atlanta Veg Fest in 2012.
This year's Veg Fest is on November 6, 2021 from 3-7pm in the North Lot of the Atlanta Expo Center. They've scaled down this year's show, so that it could be outdoors.
Along with founders Wes and Julie Allen, Leigh also serves on the Board of Directors for the Atlanta-based non-profit Tommy’s Holiday Fund, and always seeks to encourage people to consider veganism a viable lifestyle option.
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News: Doja Cat's vegan makeup line
This week's news item is about makeup! Doja Cat is releasing a line of vegan makeup.
According to VegNews, the prices runs from $9 to $36 and includes makeup and brushes.
If you're familiar with Doja Cat, you probably know her iconic looks include bold eye makeup with rich colors. Her goal with this line was to give fans what they need to re-create those looks.
We made vegan breakfast sandwiches!
On the morning that we recorded, the three of us took over the kitchen and each made our own, epic breakfast sandwich.
Y'all, this was supposed to be a competition, but all three were just so good. And since we all got to eat them, we really all won! Let's go through everyone's sandwich.
Leigh's 'The Right Boot'
Leigh named her sandwich after a line from Roadhouse, because she used Miyoko's Roadhouse Cheddar Spread in it.
Y'all. What a sandwich!
She griddled flatbread until it was crispy, then layered on a Just Egg Omelet with Trader Joe's Sofrito Seasoning and Sweet Earth Applewood Smoked Ham that she "fried, like a proper southern lady would do."
On the bread, she spread a generous portion of Miyoko’s Roadhouse Cheddar Spread and sriracha garlic mayo.
So so good! It gave me elevated Egg McMuffin vibes, and I mean that in the best way. The flatbread was just the right amount of breadiness, and it balanced out the strong, rich flavors of the spreads that she used.
Just an incredible sandwich.
My 'hot honey' chicken and waffles
I went super simple with my sandwich. It only had five ingredients, because I knew the kitchen was going to be hectic.
I wanted mine to be a vegan chicken and waffles sandwich, and it was!
The bread was two Kashi Whole Grain waffles, toasted and buttered. Then, I layered on an agave-buffalo sauce mixture with two Fry's Chick'n Patties, which Live Kindly had sent me to try a few weeks ago.
The sandwich was a sweet-savory dream! My only wish is that I'd put more buffalo sauce into the hot honey mixture. The heat kind of got lost in the fray.
Dave's breakfast Dagwood aka the artery
Y'all, Dave's sandwich was fully. LOADED. It had so much good flavor and was very balanced!
He started with buttered English muffins, and layered on an air fried hash brown patty and spicy Beyond Breakfast Sausage, scrambled Just Egg, Daiya pepper jack shreds, sliced jalapeño, and Hooray Foods Bacon.
Side note on the bacon: The first time we had it, we used the oven directions on the package, and the texture was not great. This time, at Leigh's suggestion, we fried it up on a griddle. What a game changer! It was crispy perfection, and we were all snacking on the extra as we cooked.
This was a huge sandwich, and I could not stop eating it!
The jalapeños were a bit hot for Leigh, but when she pulled them out, she dug this sandwich, too. Dave's garden has produced some very spicy ones, and these were especially hot.
The artery had a lot going on, but I felt like it worked very well together. I loved the crunch that you got from the hash brown patty, bacon, and jalapeño slices. And we all felt like the English muffin was a great bread choice for this combo.
We had a snack fiasco!
You know what you need after eating a ton of breakfast food? Snacks!
This snack segment was a hot mess, y'all.
First, we tried Spero vegan goat cheese, and we were not fans. Which is putting it lightly. I don't know if we got a bad batch, but this stuff was awful. The cheese was sunflower based, and that flavor was very strong, but the bigger issue was that it tasted very over-fermented. It felt like an attack!
Then, I tried to fix everything by revealing that I'd found the miniature Justin's Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups. You may remember that Dave isn't a fan of Justin's, and a few folks -- myself included -- suggested that he might like the chocolate-to-peanut-butter ratio in the mini cups better.
But, you know how sometimes Justin's cups look fine, but the peanut butter inside is a terrible, dry powder?
So, no hearts or minds were won in this snack segment, and I'd like to once again offer my heartfelt apology to our guest for every second of it.
Where to listen
Thank you so much for listening (or reading!). We record these episodes for you, and we'd love to hear from you.
Got a favorite vegan treat that you think we should cover on the podcast? Send your suggestions to [email protected]!
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