Tag Archives: Champaign-Urbana

The Red Herring is Back!

The Red Herring Vegetarian Restaurant is back in the lunch business after a long summer vacation. I ate a lot of vegetarian meals in college, but never visited the Herring until last year. What a shame! I guess I need to make up for lost time.

The Herring’s menu features a popular array of delicious vegetarian options, most of which are vegan or could easily be ordered as vegan. The sandwiches are served on hearty, homemade breads or pita. Portions are generous, and prices are very reasonable for fresh made (and often local and organic) fare.

Salads are topped with homemade dressings. A daily soup offering (vegan Cream of Broccoli on the day I visited) and vegan chili are great if you need a warm-up, and are served with moist, delicious cornbread. They also offer falafel plates, rice and beans, breads, a daily special entree, fair trade coffee, tea, juice, sodas, and desserts.

Red Herring Vegetarian Restaurant menu

Red Herring Vegetarian Restaurant menu 2

Red Herring Vegetarian Restaurant menu 3

I chose the BBQ Seitan sandwich because I really missed it this summer. It’s tender strips of seitan, dressed with a homemade barbecue sauce and topped with lettuce, tomatoes, onions, and vegan mayonnaise. It was served atop a little nest of popcorn with a pickle spear. Lance ordered the PB&J, and devoured it before I could take a picture. The raspberry jam tasted like it could have been homemade, and the bread was the same fluffy and hearty whole wheat english muffin bread pictured with my seitan.

Red Herring Vegetarian Restaurant BBQ Seitan sandwich

Though their processing machine was not working when we visited, the Herring now accepts credit cards. I don’t usually carry cash, so now I have yet another option for a great vegan meal on campus.

Be sure to “like” The Red Herring Vegetarian Restaurant on Facebook to get all the latest specials and up to date hours. You can also give them some love on Yelp.com. They’re located at 1209 W. Oregon Street in Urbana, IL. Here are some more pictures of the Herring’s funky and friendly atmosphere.

Red Herring Vegetarian Restaurant - welcome locavores!

Red Herring Vegetarian Restaurant artwork - let's make pie!

The monkey on the left says, “let’s make pie.” I’m down with that.

the john, aka think tank

the divine throne room - the seat of revelation

you are here.

Vegan Meetup Group: Salads in the Park

refreshing white teaLinda and Rob hosted the Champaign-Urbana Vegan Meetup Group last night at Davidson Park next to their home. It was a nice setting with enjoyable company, an abundance of great food, and slacklining.

I had about 30 seconds to snap some pictures from the time the dishes were unveiled until the feasting commenced. As usual, several dishes showed up later after we had filled our plates, so my apologies to those whose dishes did not get photographed. My favorite not pictured here was a zucchini bread topped with vegan cheese, made by Amelia.

Linda brewed some fragrant white tea in a nifty jar. White tea is great on ice. I think it would taste great over some chunks of frozen fruit.

channa masala and rice

Linda and Rob also made channa masala, with black tea, and no tomatoes. Interesting, and some of the best channa masala I’ve ever had.

tempeh saladThis is a tempeh/garbanzo bean “mock chicken-or-the-egg” salad from Kathryn, a long-time vegetarian, now vegan. She has forgotten what chicken or tuna salad is supposed to taste like. I don’t think that matters, it just tastes like good food to me.

slaw with daikon radishes Dana made a slaw with kohlrabi and daikon radishes. Way to use that CSA produce, Dana. She also brought the sought-after peanut butter cups, which proved too elusive for me to photograph. Or maybe I was too busy eating one.

broccoli salad with grapesI was too full to try this broccoli salad with grapes. It looks like there’s broccoli, celery, carrots, and grapes in here, with a vegan mayonnaise dressing. I see this salad all the time with raisins, but this grape idea has potential.

corn frittersKatie whipped up some delicious gluten-free corn fritters, with a top-notch presentation! I think the black bean spread on the right is also hers. The ceramic bowl containing it is adorable, with its little pocket for the spreader. Aww! Don’t you think these would make a great savory breakfast?

confetti ramen salad with hemp oil dressing closeup

I contributed a Confetti Ramen Slaw with Hemp Dressing.

Other offerings included Jason’s green beans with chili sauce, bread from Pekara, and delicious dessert bars from Robin, which turned out to be strawberry chickpea blondies, I think. (I may have found the recipe.)