Sofritas at Chipotle

October 10th, 2014 by NashVeggie 3 comments »

 

Chipotle Sofritas

Every vegan has been in the situation before: Going out to eat and no vegan options so you settle for the burrito joint. You’ll be able to get a black bean and rice burrito with a spoon of guacamole if you’re lucky. Now nothing is wrong with black beans and I’m never one to shun some guacamole but sometimes you need a little extra on your burrito and I don’t mean lettuce and cucumbers.

Chipotle has been rolling out their Sofritas, a spicy seasoned tofu, for a while now. Presently, it is available in 24 states. On October 13th, that will expand to the south and southeast US. That means you’ll be able to get a little extra protein on your vegan or vegetarian burrito in Nashville.

I was invited to try Sofritas last week and even though I have traveled out west a couple times this year where Sofritas is now served at all Chipotle restaurants this was my first time trying it.

As you go down the line and and get you rice and beans the Sofritas is right there next to the chicken and beef. I know what you’re thinking – CROSS CONTAMINATION! – because, let’s be honest, vegans think about those things. If you’re vegan don’t lie, you think about it every single time someone touches cheese and then asks if you want it on your burrito making an assumption. Well, this is a fast casual eatery so things happen but it has it’s own spoon and at the restaurant I was at the Sofritas was behind all other animal products so no dripping would occur as other items were served. Set you mind at ease or don’t eat out, right?

Chipotle is a restaurant that is big on local and fresh ingredients. Of course sourcing local tofu all over the country is not an easy task so they have chosen one supplier, Hodo Soy of San Francisco, as their tofu supplier. Chipotle goes as local as possible with their other ingredients. They source from a 350 mile radius of the restaurant’s market for ingredients such as tomatoes, which are hand chopped each day in the restaurant, and lettuce. The rice used in the Nashville restaurants is grown in Arkansas. Bet you didn’t know there were rice patties in The Natural State!

When I tried the Sofritas I was expecting a bit of heat, just a mild bite, since it is seasoned with roasted poblano and chipotle chilis but it was a very mild, sweet flavor. The tofu is a super firm tofu and it is in tiny bits. It is very chewy and holds the flavor of the sauce very well.

A Sofritas burrito is $6.50. While you may be accustomed to getting your vegetarian burrito at Chipotle with a heaping scoop of guacamole included that is not the case with a Sofritas burrito, guacamole is extra. I opted for guacamole on my Sofritas but in the future may leave it off as I thought it didn’t blend well with the spices of the Sofritas and it made the burrito too heavy flavored. I would rather have the guacamole on the side with chips.

Now is your chance to try Sofritas courtesy of Chipotle and Nashveggie.com. I will be giving away cards for a free burrito. Leave a comment below tell me, and Chipotle, your favorite thing to order at Chipotle.  I will also choose another winner on Twitter. To enter there just retweet this tweet and be sure you follow @nashveggie:

 

All winners will be chosen at random on Friday, October 24.

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J. Alexander’s Update

May 30th, 2014 by NashVeggie Leave Your Comments »

For a while J. Alexander’s had had an excellent veggie burger that has been vegan. However, on a recent visit I inquired about the veggie burger once again. I was told that the recipe for this burger had changed recently with a menu revamp and now contained eggs and that the bun now had an egg wash. Unfortunately, for the local veggie burger fans this is one less choice.

Do you have a favorite veggie burger in the Nashville area? Let us know in the comments where you find it and be sure to specify if it is vegan.

 

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Happy 2014

January 1st, 2014 by NashVeggie 2 comments »

Saying goodbye to 2013 for me is easy. It happens to be one of the worst years I can remember. I am ready to move on and hope you are, too.

 

With the new year I hope to find more time to spend here as lately I’ve neglected Nashveggie.com.

 

This post is a simple Happy New Year and to ask if you have made a resolution going into 2014. Will you be trying a vegan diet? Giving up a certain food? Making other lifestyle changes? If you need help along the way feel free to post questions and I’ll help all I can as well as many others who read this site are likely to chime in with assistance.

 

Happy 2014!

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EZ Tofu Press

September 26th, 2013 by NashVeggie 9 comments »

Some like to use books. The heavy cookbooks are best. The larger the better and don’t stack them too high because they will topple. Some like large cans of various vegetable from the kitchen cabinets. Those fat 28 ounce cans of tomatoes are great but I don’t recommend stacking those over two high. The cans will crash to the kitchen floor or roll off onto the counter and knock over your spice rack leaving a mess to clean up.  My mother used two 10 pound hex-shaped dumbbells. This worked well and they would not roll off or topple but, like the books and cans, they still left you with a lopsided block of tofu a few minutes later.

I’ve tried all of those methods to press a block of tofu. I’ve tried others that I would rather not mention. I’ve just recently been able to try the EZ Tofu Press after being sent one to test drive. I’ve seen other presses available and considered purchasing but never thought those to be worth the price. After all, I’m simply pressing a block of tofu. I’m not doing such a task everyday, maybe once a week. Some of those presses just look complicated. Parts to lose. Springs to break or wear out. I just don’t see the need for the extra hassle. It should be a simple tool and not one that looks to be a piece of over-thought MIT engineering. The EZ Tofu Press is the simple tool.

The EZ Tofu Press i a vice. Two plastic boards with two screws on each end press your tofu somewhat evenly (more on that later) and leave it ready to marinade. One of the best things is it can be done in as little as 10 minutes if you are in a hurry.

All it takes to press is to place the block of tofu between the two plastic boards and screw each plastic nut down evenly until the tofu block is lightly pressed. After a couple minutes tighten each nut evenly to press more liquid and repeat until you have pressed the block to about half its starting thickness.

The only fault I can find with the EZ Tofu Press is the thickness of the plastic boards. They are not exactly thin at 1/4″ each but they do tend to bow slightly enough in the middle to not distribute pressure evenly across the block and thereby pressing the ends of the block more than the middle. increasing the thickness of the boards by 1/8″ or adding a 1/8″ -1/4″ piece of plastic on top of each board, opposite the pressing surfaces, between the screws should give a more even press.  Still, I am very happy with the results.

If tofu is in your kitchen there’s no reason you shouldn’t have the EZ Tofu Press. You can have one in your kitchen thanks to Ben, the inventor of EZ Tofu Press. To win an EZ Tofu Press all you need to do is leave a comment below and tell me your favorite way to enjoy tofu.  For an extra entry, follow me on Twitter and tweet a link to this post. Be sure to mention me (@nashveggie) so I can count your second entry. I’ll pick a random winner on October 11.

 

EZ Tofu Press at Amazon.com

 

EZ Tofu Press

EZ Tofu Press

EZ Tofu Press

EZ Tofu Press

EZ Tofu Press

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Chipotle Pinto Beans Are Now Vegan (and Vegetarian)?

September 18th, 2013 by NashVeggie Leave Your Comments »

Chipotle Pinto Beans Vegan Vegetarian No Bacon

Most of us know that Chipotle’s pinto beans have long contained bacon as an ingredient, as plainly stated on their menus. This leaves the vegan or vegetarian looking for a burrito at Chipotle with black beans as their only option.

I recently received an email form a reader to inform me that his local Chipotle was serving pinto beans that are vegan. I had to confirm this news so I called each Chipotle location in the Nashville area as well as the restaurant in Huntsville, Alabama just to get an outside-of-the-area report. With each call I was told that indeed the pinto beans are now bacon-free.

Checking the Chipotle website the ingredients for the pinto beans still list bacon. This ingredient change may be gradually moving out to locations and is still in progress. Be sure to ask before getting pinto beans on your burrito.

So, if pinto beans are your favorite burrito bean feel free to safely munch away at Chipotle. Also, let me know in the comments if your Chipotle is serving the new pinto bean recipe.

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