Last weekend I took advantage of meeting some incredible people via meetup.com. Have you used meetup.com before?
I’m in love with it. For those who are not familiar with meetup.com, I like explain it like this: Meetup.com is Match.com for friends.
If you’re new to an area, or just don’t know all that many people where you live, meetup.com can be an amazing tool in finding like-minded people and different activities to do. There are literally thousands of meetup groups to belong to and to join in on. And most are all free! Hiking, biking, walking, boot camps, book clubs, Paleo-eaters, vegan, raw, vegetarian, restaurant-goers, knitting clubs, blogging informants, networking groups, beer drinkers, wine lovers, the list goes on and on.
It’s a cool site, trust me.
Anyway, I joined a few different groups in my area and one just met up for a vegan potluck for some delicious food with great company. And I’m telling you, I have never, ever in my life had the most incredible, rich, chocolate cake, like the one I had at this vegan potluck.
For my potluck contribution, I made the original version of the Enjoy Life Mega Chips recipe for Blondies (found on the back of the package), which were a serious hit. I was going to make my Brunette’s version of Blondies but I decided just to stick with the classic. I think I liked my remake better, although the package recipe was pretty great.
There was a lot of food being shared that day.
Kidney Bean & Corn Salad
Vegan Mac ‘n Cheese made with Cashew Cheese
Sprouted Beans with Braggs Aminos and Apple Cider Vinegar (best dish ever!)
Juicy fresh figs
Vegan Peanut Butter Cookies
Rich, chocolaty, moist, decadent, sugary chocolate cake. Vegan and incredible.
There was way more food but these were the highlights of the sharing table. I brought some black bean burgers for myself and my mom, who accompanied me.
As a taste-test, I had a few people try my mango sundried tomato sauce. They were quite surprised how tasty it was. Honestly, I was surprised. And even more honestly, I’d like to bottle it and sell it in every grocery store. It’s that good. But I can’t take all the credit… just some, because I recreated it. 😉
Perfect Black Bean Sliders with Mango Sundried Tomato Sauce
Makes 8 vegan and gluten-free burgers and 2 cups mango sauce. Adapted from Chef Chloe’s Mexicali Sliders
- 3 cups boiled black beans
- 1/2 cup chickpea flour (may sub breadcrumbs or other gluten-free flour)
- 1/4 cup cornmeal
- 1/2 cup shredded carrot
- 1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
- 2 green onions, thinly sliced
- 3 tbsp golden raisins
- 1 tbsp chili powder
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. With hands or large spoon, mix ingredients thoroughly, taking time to mash as many of the black beans as possible.
Form bean mixture into small patties, or slider. Place each slider on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Spray the top of each slider patty with a few sprays of cooking spray.
Bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown around the edges.
Meanwhile, make your mango sauce…
Mango Sundried Tomato Sauce
- 1 mango, peeled and cut
- 1/3 cup sun dried tomatoes, whole or sliced and in oil
- 1 garlic clove
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1/8 tsp sea salt
Place all ingredients into a blender or food processor and pulse until creamy.
Pour onto black bean sliders and devour, or use as a dip or dressing for salads.
The thing I love most about meetup.com is that it gives you a (hopefully safe) way to interact with other people who may share the same values or energy or likes. You can meet some pretty cool people and increase your circle of friends. Did I mention it’s a great way to network and grow your little blog? Side perk, chocolate cake…