Sunday, February 7, 2010

An Ode to Allentown

Aside from the Billy Joel song and the fact that my beloved Buja lives there, I had had little affection for Allentown (sorry). But my friend, a steadfast ambassador to her city, recently discovered the perfect marketing tool for her little holistic health junkie. Vegan treats.

With the same excitement I once had for school field trips, Nirali and I visited Vegan Treats Bakery in Bethlehem for a sampling of mouth-watering confections: Spice, Mocha, and Brownie Fudge cakes. To a girl with a sweet tooth who cannot have dairy, this place is Mecca.

My friend and I nibbled on the spice and mocha delights and saved the brownie cake for her co-workers. The verdict: We loved loved loved the spice cake but thought the mocha was missing something. It also seemed too sugary. But then again, my co-worker raved about the piece of it I saved for her. To each her own. One palate does not fit all :)

While we are on the subject of non-dairy food in Allentown, I want to mention another vegan gem: Cali Burrito's Nepenthe Burrito. I get a bit frustrated with burrito joints these days because I am always tempted to add sour cream or cheese, two things over which I still easily salivate but cannot have. As a result I never feel quite satisfied and my burritos seem half-assed. When Nirali and Ambrish wanted to grab some dinner at Cali's this past weekend I was hesitant. I even picked up some tomato pie slices beforehand to avoid it altogether. But, to my surprise, there was one vegan item on the menu and it happened to be very tasty in it's own right.

If you're going dairy-free and happen to be visiting or passing through Allentown, grab yourself a Nepenthe burrito with falafels, rice, black beans, pickles, and tahini dressing. We recommend getting extra pickles. Yum. Yum. Yum. We all liked it so much we went back for seconds on Sunday.

And when you do make your way to Allentown, tell Ms. Ambassador that I sent ya! ;)

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