Simply Vegetarian in Richmond

Update 07-Dec-2010: This restaurant is closed. Must have been closed for a while already.

We bumped into Steven a couple of months ago in Chapters. Steven used to work with Ben. To our surprise, Steven knows about chowtimes and being a vegetarian, he invited us to try out vegetarian food. We had never visited a vegetarian restaurant before and quickly accepted his invite.

Steven brought us to a restaurant called Simply Vegetarian on Akroyd in Richmond.


With Steven’s recommendation, Ben ordered a combo meal for $6.95. The combo meal comes with a miso soup.


Ben ordered this 3 cups of Treasure which is veggie meat made from soy bean starch cooked in ginger, basil, peanut and satay sauce. We were surprised by the taste of the dish which is pretty good.

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Alleluia Cafe in Richmond

We dined out at Alleluia Cafe in Richmond a few weeks ago. This was from a recommendation from Polly who told us how they enjoyed discounts at the cafe because the owner of this place worships in the same church. We did not know where it was until Ben came across the small-ish sign along Westminster Hwy (northside between No 3 Rd and Buswell St).


Alleluia Cafe is a another HongKong style cafe which we have recently loved to dine in. The cafe was very busy and we had to wait for 10 minutes before we got a table. Unlike a the other HK-style cafes, the decor in this place is much more contemporary and nicer.

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Minstrels are chocolate buttons with a hard glazed shell sold in the United Kingdom. It’s pretty much like M&Ms and Smarties. Ben brought some home after his London trip this summer. They are indeed very much different from the types that we have ever come across. They are much richer and chocolatey.

Ever since then, we had been scouring them all around the Lower Mainland but could not find any. When my sister visited England in Fall, I took the opportunity to get her to buy some for us. At the same time, Ben also visited Malaysia. So this batch of Minstrels, went virtually around the world. From London to Malaysia and then to Vancouver.


Minstrels are like a larger version of M&Ms and its a chocolate candy. They don’t come in other colours other than chocolate.


For us, the best way to enjoy this is let the outer candy melt in our mouth down to the chocolate core. The chocolate core is unbelievably rich. M&Ms really pale in comparison to this. We just simply love this.


Ben also found them selling in Singapore Changi Airport.

Have you tried this? Do your country sell this at all? Anyway, Ben will be in Washington state later on this week and he’ll try and see if they sell it there.

Sweet Rice Soup/Congee

I love dessert soup but it takes a long time to make and my kids do not like them. So, I don’t make it at home. Whenever we eat out in Chinese restaurants which end the meal with a dessert soup, I would usually finished my kids helpings too.

Tanni made this Sweet Rice Soup in the South Arm Community Kitchen this week.


This Sweet Rice Soup is made from pearl glutinous rice, black glutinous rice, peanuts, lotus seed and slap sugar.

To make this soup, bring a pot of water to a boil (about 4-5 litres). Wash and rinse all the ingredients. Once the water comes to a boil, add in:

  • the glutinous rice (about 1 cup),
  • black glutinous rice (about 1/4 cup),
  • peanuts (1/2 cup) and
  • lotus seed (1/2 cup).


Bring it back to a boil and cover and simmer on low heat for 1 hour until all the ingredients are softened and the soup is thickened. Add 2 pieces of slap sugar depending on your preference and cook until the sugar melted. Serve warm.

Tanni also made some garlic toast as an appetizer. She buttered the sliced French baguette and sprinkled them with some garlic bread herb powder she bought from Costco. The garlic bread is toasted in the oven until the edges browned.


Tanni. thank you for sharing all the yummy dishes.

Green Curry Lamb

Tanni is a another talented cook of the South Arm Community Kitchen. This week, she prepared a set menu (printed out nicely and put on display) for the cooking class. Her initial plan is to make a salad and garlic toast as the appetizers, Green Curry Lamb as the main entree and finally a sweet rice soup/congee as dessert. But unfortunately, with the boiling water advisory still on, she decided to drop off the salad as a safety precaution.

I’ll start off with the main entree. Green Curry Lamb. It was a great dish to be served with steam rice. The Green Curry Lamb is loaded with rich flavour from lemon grass, coconut milk and palm sugar.



  • 2 lbs lamb shoulder, chopped into bite size
  • 2 pcs garlic, minced
  • 2 onions, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons green curry paste (add more if you like it spicy)
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 lbs potatoes, peeled and cut into bite size
  • 2 shallots, sliced
  • 2 sticks of lemon grass, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 3 tablespoons palm sugar
  • 1 can (400g) coconut milk


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Lemon Chicken

It’s Florence turn to share with us in the Gilmore Park Church community kitchen. She made Lemon Chicken, chicken corn egg soup and stir fried some sweet peppers. The dishes go well with steam rice.

Florence told us that this is the first time she’s making the Lemon Chicken. Nevertheless, the Lemon Chicken turned out great.


The Lemon Chicken dish is colourful and appetizing.


  • 4 whole chicken breasts, cut into 2″ pieces and pounded lightly.
  • 1/2 cup corn flour
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 4 egg yolks
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 6 spring onions
  • oil for deep frying

Lemon sauce

  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 3/4 cups chicken stock (or 2 chicken stock cubes dissolve in 1 3/4 cups water)
  • 2 tablespoons corn flour
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger


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Il pappagallo Caffe – Home of Ultimate Cheesecake

With the recommendation from Stephanie, Polly and I went to Il Pappagllo Caffe at Hastings St and Sperling for our third cake meet. It was quite a long drive from Richmond.

Pappagallo Caffe is a small, cozy caffe with lots of retro posters decorating its walls. The caffe has a good flow of customers.


There are a few cheesecakes to choose from; blueberry, strawberry, caramel, turtles, tiramisu, etc.

Polly went for the turtles cheesecake. It was topped with chocolate, caramel and nuts. It is a very rich tasting cheesecake. The crust is quite thick and crumbly though.

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Celery Chicken Fingers

The other chicken dish which Angela made was Celery Chicken Fingers. The crispy fried chicken fingers are served with a sweet dipping sauce.


The chicken fingers were made from thinly butterflied chicken breast (which has been seasoned with salt and peppers) wrapping around a celery stick and fastened by tooth picks. The chicken fingers are floured, dipped in egg wash and then rolled in breadcrumbs.

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Chicken Jelly Fish Salad

Angela made two chicken dishes in the Caring Place Community Kitchen. This is the first dish which is Chicken Jelly Fish Salad. This is a cold salad. It’s great as an appetizer.


Angela marinated a chicken breast with salt and pepper and steam the chicken breast for 30 minutes or until it’s cook. Then she shredded the chicken breast into thin strips.


The other main ingredient in this dish is the instant jelly fish which can be purchased from many Chinese groceries stores. The jelly fish is ready to eat.

Angela seasoned the chicken and jelly fish with sesame oil, chicken seasoning (optional) and sar geong fern (a kind ground ginger seasoning). Angela also garnishes the dish with cilantro and toasted sesame seeds.


The Chicken Jelly Fish Salad has a very distinctive flavour from the sar geong fern. The jelly fish gives the dish a very nice crunch.

Nanzaro loves jelly fish and I will certainly make this for him.

Suey Choy (Napa Cabbage) Pork Dumpling

Betty made Suey Choy Pork Dumpling in the Caring Place Community Kitchen a couple weeks ago.

This is the pan fried version which I find is more tasty than the boiled version. The boiled version is best served in hot broth to keep it warm. You can check out the technique of making the boiled version at this link.



  • 1 package of fresh dumpling skin (about 50 pieces)
  • 1 lb lean ground pork
  • 1 1 small suey choy (napa cabbage), finely chopped
  • 3 green onions, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon of minced ginger
  • 2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt


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