Monday, October 31, 2011

Vegan Chicago: Restaurant Review of Borrowed Earth Cafe

Haunted Trail
For a weekend trip, my friend (check out her website about teaching kids empathy) and I went to a family farm called Kuipers Farm in Maple Park, IL. It was a nice fall trip for us city dwellers here in Chicago. This farm was a great place for kids (and adults!). We specifically picked out a place to go that treated their animals in humane ways. A lot of the places we looked into had things like pig races and exotic animals. One even had a white tiger exhibit. Kuipers Farm had a corn maze, a nature walk, a haunted trail, a small farm area (where the farm animals had a lot of room to live and enjoy their lives - even an adoption program for the few cats there!), a hay wagon ride to the pumpkin patch, and kid-friendly areas with giant pumpkins and tractor truck tire playgrounds. They have duck races, but never fear... it is with plastic ducks! For adults, there is an apple orchard where one can pick their own apples and a large store with all sorts of local products including their apples and pumpkins. It was a very impressive place! They sell Christmas trees during the winter which I think would be a great outing for a family in order for children to see where their trees come from and the ecology behind it. The process of seeing where the tree is chopped to your living room I think is an important one because we often don't think about how items get from a to z (similar to factory farming and the meat at your grocery store).
Hanging Out With Goats
Corn Maze

Cheese Perogies
On the way back to the city, we stopped in Downers Grove to have lunch at Borrowed Earth Cafe. This place is a small raw, organic vegan restaurant. My experience with raw vegan restaurants has only been Karyn's Raw and raw. The meal was satisfying and the dessert was exceptional. For starters, we had the cheese perogies. It is a "cheese" filling with a jimaca wrapper. While I wouldn't necessarily call this a pierogi, the filling was creamy and scrumptious. 

Spinach Quiche
Egg Salad Sandwich
Oreo Cookie Ice Cream
For entree's, we shared the spinach quiche and the "I Can't Believe It's Not An Egg Salad" sandwich. The quiche wasn't really a quiche as I remember them, but the same concept was there. It had a base of nuts and chopped veggies combined with "cheese" to create the rest. The egg salad sandwich was creamy but not really an "egg salad". I made a vegan version a while back with tofu which I thought was better mostly due to texture. It had the same kick, but the texture was just too silky in this sandwich. It definitely wasn't bad, though, so I would get it again. It was wrapped in a zucchini flax seed wrap which was great. Both entrees came with three types of salads. One was a mixed greens, another a cabbage, and lastly a collard greens salad. The dressing was sweet yet not too cloying. My favorite was the collard green salad.
Raw Chocolate Cheesecake
For dessert, we split two different treats. My friend got a chocolate cheesecake and I had an oreo cookie ice cream sundae. I've had raw cheesecakes at the Chicago Diner, but this cheesecake was something to be said. It was amazing! The base was made of nuts and dates, while the cheesecake part was made of coconut meat, coconut oil, and other ingredients. I've never had raw ice cream, but I've seen pictures before. ...So tasty. It was also made of coconut meat, coconut oil, dates, etc. Everyone should go to Borrowed Earth Cafe just for desserts alone!
Your Blog Doll In a Pumpkin Patch

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