Hi readers! Wow, the past two weeks or so have felt like a roller coaster! There are so many things going on and big decisions to be made regarding the future studio, I haven’t been able to think much about blogging~~ boooo, I know. At one point I was drowning in so much paperwork that my eyes we bugging out of my head. But thankfully that part is soon to be over and then we can focus on more fun stuff, like actually setting up the shop.
Over the past few weeks, I’ve learned that starting a business in Korea is so much harder than it seems. There are so many hoops to jump, especially if it’s anything related to food. You would think it’s pretty easy considering there are so many restaurants and cafes all over the place~ and to some extent, it is, but it’s not like you can just set it up without going through an extensive process involving the government and food regulatory division. I’ve gained a whole new respect for business owners.
A lot of the construction work has been delayed due to some complications and also rainy weather, so that has pushed back our schedule a bit. It’s frustrating, but we’d rather take our time and get things right the first time, rather than winging it and having to face bigger problems later. I want things to hurry up and be done-and-settled, but then at the same time, I don’t want to rush things without sufficient planning. I can’t wait until I fall into a happy routine and can just spend my days baking, trying new recipes, and hanging out with people at the studio with old and new friends. I really want it to be a place where anyone can feel welcome to just come, hangout, and enjoy some yummy vegan eats. We will do our best to make this a reality.
When I’m not working on the studio stuff and planning, I’m baking for Botton Cafe, TaiLor Coffee, and also other lovely customers. Here’s a chocolate cake with caramel buttercream and caramel sauce on top, with black hawaii salt.
Gnoa gave me this huge jar of homemade basil pesto with home-grown organic basil, pine nuts, almonds, and olive oil. This pesto sauce is so simple yet so flavorful. I added such huge spoonfuls of this stuff into all my meals that I finished the whole jar in about 3 days. :( Booooo.
Here’s a dinner I made using the basil pesto awesome-sauce. All I did was heat up a pan with some olive oil, brown 1 bunch of enoki mushrooms, then add 1 eggplant, 1/2 block of tofu, salt and pepper to taste, and 1 heaping tablespoon of the pesto (I always like to add a bit more after). Then at the very end, I threw in some pepper leaves and tossed it for like 1 minute, just until they got a bit wilty. Done.
This month’s issue of Bakery Monthly magazine~~ I shared a recipe for vegan cinnamon rolls, which is pretty much the same recipe as the cinnamon pull-apart bread, just in roll form.
Last but not least, my dear friends Kia and Sean (who I’m sure some of you readers also know) are leaving Korea and they had some people over for a late lunch last week. I’m honestly so sad to see them go. They were my very first vegan friends! I’m not even exaggerating. Kia was my first real-life vegan friend and we did several vegan bake sales together, and she has fed me soooo many amazing meals and desserts. I’m genuinely saddened to have to say goodbye. Alas, this is something I should be used to by now…. seeing everyone leave while I get left behind… boohoo. *cry* The good thing is that I know I’ll have a place to stay if I ever go to their neck of the woods. I’m so grateful for their hospitality and generosity. They taught me so much about what it means to be generous to people as well as animals. I don’t know many people who love and care for furry animals as much as they do. In addition to their 2 cats and 3 dogs, they have fostered so many others. I truly wish them all the best back home.
Even though she was in the middle of packing up her life, for our last get-together, Kia whipped up some yummy food like it was no big deal~ Banana & Carrot muffins, with vegan french toast in the background!