I had no idea what Santa Fe would be like before I arrived, but it's amazing! It has a small-town feel without feeling like there's nothing to do. There are tons of art galleries, health food stores, farmer's markets, and cool shops. It has a sort of alternative feeling, like it hasn't quite been completely taken over by chain stores or shopping malls.
First stop, farmer's market.
Next, the Plaza, where there are jewelry sellers and more touristy shops with handmade goodies.
Also, Canyon Road, which is entirely art galleries.
I also came to Santa Fe expecting there to be no vegan food, but I was happily mistaken. Behold:
Body, a popular spa/yoga center/cafe right in town. As you can see from their menu, they do organic, vegetarian, raw, vegan, healthy and gluten-free food.
Vegetarian Masala w/ Tempeh
Ginger Iced Chai Latte w/ Soymilk
And it's amazing!!
We drove out to Taos to see what we could see, but mostly for the beautiful views along the highway.
We stopped in Chimayo, a small village about 30 minutes outside of Santa Fe. It is still very much a Native American area. There are lots of art galleries along the way with traditional leatherwork and weaving. We stopped at a small church in the village.
The village of Chimayo is known for their chile peppers. So of course we had to get some (and roasted pine nuts, too).
The landscape started changing as we continued to Taos.
My aunt, who I am visiting out here, is a genius and looked up "vegan food in Taos" and found this:
El Gamal, a vegetarian Middle Eastern food truck. Sweet!
I got the roasted portobella pita with vegan aioli and my aunt got the roasted red pepper pita. Oh my god. Words cannot even describe how amazing this was. If nothing else, I want to know how to make their pita pockets because they were the best thing I've ever had.
Also, the view was pretty nice.
We drove on to the Rio Grande, where we were both almost too afraid of heights to snap any photos. Luckily, we overcame our fears.
Not much to report here, it's mostly been some last-minute shopping and exploring Santa Fe a bit. We did get to go to the International Folk Art Museum, which was awesome. We couldn't take photos inside, but it was nice outside.
The most incredible thing is the mountains out here. I can get used to the buildings and the immediate landscape, but not the mountains. Every time I look into the distance or slightly up I'm awestruck, over and over again.
And now, my favorite part. The food we have been cooking at home.
All our goodies from the farm market
Raw Carrot & Beet Salad w/ Avocado, Pine Nuts
& Balsamic Vinaigrette
Mushroom Bread from the farm market
Polenta w/ Tomato Sauce and Mixed Veggies
Raw Beet & Carrot Salad #2
with Daikon and Sunflower Sprouts and Lemony Vinaigrette
Mixed Sauteed Veggies
Mole Sauce (scroll down for recipe)
My plate, with some fresh corn tortillas
Salad with lettuce, shredded carrots and beets, sprouts, walnuts,
Tomorrow I'm off to Yosemite for 10 days, and San Francisco's after that. I will take lots of pictures but I probably won't have a chance to update until I get home. So you'll just have to wait. Until then, here's the recipe for my mole sauce:
Santa Fe Mole
1/2 onion, diced
1 tomato, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1-2 tsp chile powder, depending on your spicy tolerance
1/4-1/3 c water
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
2-3 oz dark chocolate
Put the onion and garlic in a saucepan with about 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil. Saute for 2-3 minutes, until the onion starts to become translucent. Add the spices and saute for another minute. Add the tomato and let cook 1-2 minutes, just until softened. Then add the chocolate, and stir until it is melted. Put the recipe into a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Add water as needed to achieve desired consistency. Add more chile powder if needed.