All posts tagged: featured

Animal Resistance. The animals are not voiceless.

The book Fear of the Animal planet, by Jason Hribal (2010) documents the numerous accounts of animal resistance in modern history: elephants and tigers who escape from the circusses and attack their abusers, monkeys who manage to flee from laboratories, orcas and sea lions who show their resistance to captivity and abuse. The zoos, circusses and other facilities uphold a narrative of these being exceptions and very rare occassions, they portray the animals as having gone ‘wild’, denying them agency, they promise to take measures so this can’t happen again, and they strictly control the info that gets out to the public. But as becomes clear from the numerous stories in the book, these are all but exceptions. And the animals certainly do have agency, and they firmly resist their oppression and abuse. They are not voiceless and we shouldn’t portray them as voiceless.

Delicious food and inspirational talks at VegfestUK, London 2018

A couple of weeks ago at the end of October, we went to VegfestUK, a vegan festival which is held annually in London at the Olympia.ย We had already visited VegfestUK in 2016, and were really impressed by its scale and the intersectionality conference which was held then. The festival not only houses nearly 300 stalls (food, body and care products, organisations, etc) but there are also dozens of presentations, on a wide range of topics: from health to veganic gardening, from radical veganism to bodybuilding, or environmental aspects to animal rights. Really interesting! We ate a lot, we bought some products that were new for us, and we listened to a lot of inspiring talks! And meeting up with friends and getting to know new people! Here is an overview with a selection of pics from the weekend: I also gave a presentation, in the Justice room: Ableism, bodyshaming and health shaming. On intersections and inclusiveness. (Geertrui Cazaux). I Previously posted an introduction to that talk hereย . It took me a while to get the …

#197 Loved it! Lunch (twice!) at vegan resto Wulf & Lamb, London

restaurant review #197 – Wulf & Lamb is a vegan restaurant in the city center of London. It is located south of Hyde park, about a 10 minute walk south from shopping gigant Harrods and west from Buckingham Palace (just mentionning these as a geographical reference, not as an endorsement of any kind ๐Ÿ˜‰ ). We went here twice during our trip to London a couple of months ago (Spring 2018). There are only a handfull of places downstairs (some tables, and a bar-like area with higher chairs). There’s also an upstairs area, but that was not accessible (did not see an elevator, only stairs). The interior is bright and stylish, very modern and everything seemed new. The menu is noted on the large boards above the counter. When we arrived for lunch the first time, the breakfast menu was still up, but was soon changed into the lunch menu. One goes up to the counter to place an order, pays at the counter, and then the food is served at your table. So much …

#194 Lovely lunch at new resto Organic Vision, Ostend

restaurant review #194 – Organic Vision is a new restaurant in the city center of Ostend. It is located near the main shopping street. Organic Vision is the long awaited successor of De Graankorrel, which was a vegan – macrobiotic restaurant in Ostend, but closed about 2 years ago. Unlike De Graankorel, Organic Vision is not a vegan restaurant. There are however several vegan dishes available (the plat du jour is also always vegan) and all desserts are vegan and sugarfree. And as the name suggests, it is an organic restaurant. Since it opened in the Spring of 2018, I have already visited Organic Vision a couple of times. The restaurant is in a nicely renovated place, with a sober yet fresh and elegant design. There are also seating places outside, just in front of the restaurant, where you can have a relaxed lunch, albeit very close to the touristy heart of Ostend. The vegan plat du jour is 19,60โ‚ฌ. Another vegan dish is the chanco-nabe (20,30โ‚ฌ). Or if you are not really that hungry, …

#187 Delicious dinner at vegetarian restaurant Rasoterra, Barcelona

restaurant review #187 – Rasoterra is a vegetarian restaurant in the old city center of Barcelonaย (More reviews of Barcelona HERE). It often pops up as one of the best places to go dining on vegan or vegetarian lists of Barcelona – or even the world! So we really wanted to visit Rasoterra. I made a reservation when we passed by the day before, which was absolutely necessary, as many other patrons were turned away during the evening we were there. We could choose between a menu, or choose our dishes seperately. The waiter informed us that the dishes are more tapas style, and suggested we orderย several smaller dishes, which were to share. A great idea! That way, one gets to taste more dishes than just a main course. There’s more variety. This is what we had for dinner (this came down to 61โ‚ฌ for 6 courses, shared by two persons, or 30,5โ‚ฌ per person, which we found very reasonable!) Free hummus appetizer Croquettes with spinach (8โ‚ฌ) Trinxat potatoes (8โ‚ฌ) Autumn: sweet and purple potato and …

Can I look at you in peace now? Premiere of Dominion in Ghent

A couple of weeks ago, the documentary Dominionย was shown for the first time to a public audience in Belgium. The premiere was in the Sphinx cinema, in the heart of the city of Ghent (next to the McDonalds, oh the irony). The screening was organised by the โ€˜Dominion Movement Belgiumโ€™. Dominion is anย Australian documentary (2018)ย and is announced as following (website): Exposing the dark underbelly of modern animal agriculture through drones, hidden & handheld cameras, the feature-length film explores the morality and validity of our dominion over the animal kingdom.

Recommended literature: Animal Rights, Human Rights (David Nibert)

I recently read ‘Animal Rights. Human Rights. Entanglements of Oppression and Liberation‘ by David Nibert (2002) and found it truly inspiring. The thesis of the book is that human oppression of other animals is primarily motivated by economic interests, and is profoundly and permanently intertwined with oppression of other humans. The economic forces fueling oppression have intensified with the development of capitalism. The oppression of humans and other animals developed in tandem, each fueling the other. Nibert uses a three fold theory of oppression. This theory explains how oppressions takes place through mutually reinforcing social and economic mechanisms. There are three interactive forces: Economic exploitation, competition. The exploitation of other animals (and humans) is driven by economic forces. The motivation for the development and institutionalization of oppressive practices is primarly material, not attitudinal. Prejudice is the product of these arangements. Not the cause. The importance of power. A powerful elite (pivileged humans) uses political force over the oppressed, and they wield the power of the state. Ideological control. Oppression requires rationalisation and legitimation. Ideologies like …

#166 Very nice lunch at Hashtag Food, Bruges (4)

restaurant review #166 –ย ย Hashtag Food is a restaurant at the edge of Bruges. It is not a vegan restaurant, but they have several vegan options standardly available.ย  Hashtag Food used to be in the city center, but in the Fall of 2017, the restaurant moved to a quieter area at the edge of the city, near the Scheepsdalebrug. We have visited Hashtag Food on several occasions throughout the years. Previous reviews of Hashtag Food are here. But this was our first visit to the new location at the Scheepsdalebrug. This review is from a visit at the beginning of this year. The new location is a nicely renovated place, with earth and wood like colours dominating the atmosphere. The old vinyl records as placemats have remained. I love the idea, but as a music lover, also have some heartache using vinyl this way! The menu options have changed somewhat. The only vegan appetizer is a tapas selection. Options to make combinations (eg potatoe wedges on the side) are gone, as it became too difficult to …

Recipe: Vegan cheese croquettes!

Cheese croquettes! I have eaten a lot of these in the old days, but since going vegan have only had a couple of occassions where I could eat vegan cheese croquettes. Vegan cheese croquettes are not so easily found in shops (at least not around here). I had bought some at vegan shop SHAVT (now only webshop) and also eaten these at aย bistro in Louvain, but the SHAVT webshop doesn’t sell these cheese croquettes any more. DIY it is! And yes, I call these cheese croquettes! Even if there are no animal ingredients involved. I simply consider ‘cheese’ to be a processed product, that just as well can be made from cashews, coconut or other plantbased materials! Up till now, we have always used cheese from the brand Wilmersburger to make these, but any other firm cheese, with a neutral taste, will probably do.ย ย Wilmersburger can be bought in most organic shops around here.ย 

#156 Fine dining at ‘t Aards Paradijs, Nevele

restaurant review #156 – ‘t Aards Paradijs is a gastronomic restaurant in Nevele, which is just outside of Ghent and 40km from Bruges. In 2010, chef Lieven Lootens was awarded the title of best vegetable chef of the year (beste Groentekok) and I had seen ‘t Aards Paradijs mentionned in a facebook group as a place where one could ask a vegan menu. And so we did! I inquired before making the reservation and it was said to be no problem. The lady of the house warmly welcomed us, and later on the chef also personally came to greet us.ย He inquired how strict vegan we are (which we do find an odd question, see this post). We chatted a bit about vegan dining out, products and he also showed some products which he planned on using in the dishes, and asked us if these were OK (some brands of soy and rice milk which we hadn’t seen before). He was very welcoming, friendly and open to our questions and suggestions. It felt reassuring. This was …