Monday, November 29, 2010

Thanksgiving at Native Foods

Since we are new to San Diego and have no friends here yet, Michael and I didn't really feel like cooking for just us two. When we went to Native Foods a couple weeks back, we noticed they were serving a huge vegan buffet at some of their locations on Thanksgiving. We knew we had to have our Thanksgiving there but we were worried I'd have to work. I found out my work schedule a week before and luckily I wasn't scheduled! We were able to snag a reservation in for 5:15pm. That's a late Thanksgiving for me since my family usually eats around 2 or 3, but I didn't care either way. We were both so excited!

Native Foods is about an hour and fifteen minute drive away, so we decided to make a day of it in Orange County and surrounding areas. We spent our day walking around downtown Disney and the hotels there as well as some parks in Huntington Beach. The parks were somewhat boring and we were pretty hungry (we decided to only snack on bananas and whole wheat crackers to save space in our bellies). Needless to say, we couldn't wait for 5:15 to arrive and to stuff ourselves!

We arrived at Native Foods at about 4:30pm (like I said, we couldn't wait). It was in this really neat area called The Camp. It's a small collective of retail shops, restaurants, etc. that all focus on nature and community -- there are hammocks to hang out on, fire pits, and even a trailer used for a plant shop. It was SO cool. I wished we lived closer to Costa Mesa or else I'd go there just to hang out!

Anyway, now time for the food. After standing there looking like dummies for a few minutes (we didn't really know what we were doing and it was a bit crowded at the time), we were finally seated -- RIGHT next to the dessert table! Very dangerous for me since I have such a huge sweet tooth. In any case, I made sure to get some "real" food before dessert [this time].

Here our both of our plates on our first round. Sorry for the crappy picture quality.

My plate, clockwise: Native Wellington, cranberry stuffing, polenta butternut squash terrine, green bean casserole, mashed potatoes.

Michael's plate, clockwise: green bean casserole, polenta butternut squash terrine (hidden), cranberry stuffing (also hidden), Native Wellington w/ mushroom gravy, wheatberry waldorf salad, cornbread, mashed potatoes.

Their Native Wellington consisted of a puff pastry filled with seitan, kale, portobellos, orange-glazed yams, stuffing, and carmelized onions. Holy crap, this thing was DELICIOUS! I was so filling, though, that I could only eat about 3/4 of mine until I had to give up. I think both of our favorites was either the wellington or the butternut squash.

My second plate, clockwise: polenta butternut squash terrine, mashed potatoes w/ mushroom gravy, green bean casserole.

Michael's second plate, clockwise: polenta butternut squash terrine, corn bread, mashed potatoes w/ mushroom gravy, and a green salad w/ maple glazed pecans and pomegranate pearls.

One of my dessert plates, clockwise: chocolate love pie, pumpkin cheesecake, and pumpkin pie (all with whipped topping). Note: I didn't take a picture of Michael's plate because we both ate the same desserts. They also served a regular cheesecake which I didn't not take a picture of.

Overall, the meal was absolutely phenomenal. I think my favorite out of everything was the pumpkin cheesecake. I probably ate 4 or 5 small slivers of it! The chocolate love pie wasn't my favorite -- I felt like it was way too sweet. Regardless, Michael and I had a great time stuffing our faces and eating like there's no tomorrow.

P.S. How cute are these mugs?!

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