When we finally got to the hotel, we did our photo shoot first, which you can watch in the previous vlog. And by the time we got finished with that, we were STARVING. And I mean we were HANGRY! Especially me! I was like we need to find somewhere to eat NOW! The hotel we stayed at was in a area called Lakeway and was far away from the city, and we literally went to the first place I found on yelp! Even then, it was 15 minutes away.
It was a Vietnamese place called Saigon Cafe, and we started out with tofu spring rolls with peanut sauce. I ordered myself a vegetable pho and we shared this red coconut pineapple curry. And my friend ordered a vermicelli bowl for herself. The waitress was surprised that we ordered and ate so much food. But like i said we were so hangry! Usually when you're trying to find vegan-friendly food, a good rule of thumb is to find any Asian restaurant. So that means Vietnamese, Chinese, Thai, Japanese... And that is because these restaurants usually have a good amount of vegetarian-friendly items on their menu.
I know that when you first go vegan or are thinking about transitioning, it may seem difficult or inconvenient. You might think "Oh that's too much trouble," or "What do I do? I'm going out of town in a few days and I don't know what to eat!" Well let me tell you it is not hard to be a vegan while traveling or going to a new place. And if you haven't seen my How to Find Vegan/Vegetarian Restaurants No Matter Where You Are video, I encourage you to watch that to find out what I do to make sure I'm covered and don't go hungry wherever I go.
Alright! So after that huge late lunch we had, surprisingly we still had a good appetite for dinner. We ate at 24 Diner our first night in Austin. And I ordered the Betsy's Veggie Burger, which I read was one of the best vegan burgers in Austin. They make the patty at their restaurant, out of beet, mushroom, lentil, bread crumbs, rice, pumpkin seed, and golden flax seeds! I mean don't those ingredients sound AMAZING?! My friend also had the veggie burger even though she's not vegan, so I'm happy she gave it a try and liked it! And the waitress asked if I was vegan and informed me that their buns are not vegan so I chose rye bread instead, and without cheese. See? I love it when the waiter is careful about these things and understand! The beet patty really tasted good and it was actually kinda scary to me 'cause the beet made it pink on the inside, and the patty had a really smoky savory flavor, almost like it was real meat! So that was a bit strange for me at first. But for someone who enjoys or misses the taste of meat, I highly recommend it!
Our second day, I ate at a place near UT called Zocalo Cafe with my friend's family after her graduation. I had the calabacita stew, which is made of mushrooms, bell peppers, squash, and cilantro. It was listed under vegetarian but I asked the cook to make sure and he confirmed with me that it is vegan. Sometimes when you're not sure if something has butter, or chicken broth in it, all you have to do is ask! It's that simple.
Our last meal that night was with the family of another friend who graduated. They went to a steak house and I tagged along. I'm proving to you here that you do not need to sacrifice your social life when you go vegan! I always welcome going out to eat with other people because I am never fazed by going to any restaurant, not even steak houses! And luckily, they had several salads on their menu, so I ordered a salad topped with fruit and a raspberry vinaigrette dressing! When my plate arrived the rest of the table actually leaned over to look at it and said how good it looked.
And I almost forgot to mention that I brought a bag of bananas and oranges before leaving on this road trip for me to have in the mornings at the hotel and as snacks. I hope you enjoyed this video, I'll see you next time!
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