| Register  | FAQ  | Search | Login 
It is currently Sat Aug 30, 2014 9:28 pm

All times are UTC - 6 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 23 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 3:40 pm 
Offline
Memorized Veganomicon
User avatar

Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2012 8:31 am
Posts: 97
Hey PPK, I am wondering if there are any dishes that you can find at Chinese restaurants that just happen to be vegan. What dishes do you guys get when you go to Chinese restaurants? Do you only haunt vegan Chinese places or have you managed to find good options at Chinese restaurants that aren't strictly vegan?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 3:45 pm 
Offline
Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 2:39 pm
Posts: 1871
Location: St. John's Newfoundland
There's a restaurant here that doesn't have a single vegan thing on the menu, but if you ask they will veganize anything (within reason of course) for you, I usually get the home-style tofu dish with spring rolls. There's a lot of Chinese dishes that are vegetarian at other restaurants, but I usually have to ask to make sure its vegan or can be made vegan on request.

_________________
I was really surprised the first time I saw a penis. After those banana tutorials, I was expecting something so different. -Tofulish


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 3:47 pm 
Offline
Dying from Nooch Lung
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 8:43 pm
Posts: 3267
Location: mt. pleasant
I would just caution against general tso's tofu as is usually contains oyster sauce in the sauce.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 3:55 pm 
Offline
Invented Vegan Meringue
User avatar

Joined: Sat Nov 06, 2010 3:25 pm
Posts: 3635
Location: Nashville, TN
Chinese places around here seem kind of untrustworthy when I ask questions, like they'll answer way too quickly or obviously not write things down when I make a special request. Dishes are going to vary from place to place. I think it mostly comes down to asking about broth, fish/oyster sauce, and small pieces of meat in vegetable/tofu dishes.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 3:59 pm 
Offline
Impressive boner
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 2:57 pm
Posts: 4036
Location: Nottingham.
None of the Chinese restaurants here are specifically vegetarian or vegan but tend to have a list of vegetarian dishes such as beancurd with different sauces (kung po, cashew nut, satay, etc) and has meat free side dishes too. My favourites are vegetable spring rolls and mock duck with pancakes.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 4:18 pm 
Offline
Spent a night at the Bates Motel
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 8:31 pm
Posts: 2090
Location: detroit, mi
We have a Chinese restaurant a few towns over that has vegan versions of nearly everything on the menu, made with seitan. It's pretty amazeballs but I'm not used to eating heavy, fried foods so I usually feel gross afterwards. The best thing you can do is ask about options. Steamed vegetables with rice and tofu is usually a safe bet.

_________________
I'm still buddhist & I still love cupcakes.
My crochet blog! http://threadbythreadzen.blogspot.com


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 4:41 pm 
Offline
WRETCHED
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 6:54 pm
Posts: 8476
Location: Maryland/DC area
It depends on the restaurants. There are chinese restaurants around here offering mock meat and then there are less friendly restaurants.

Things to be careful
1) Egg - When my husband and I were first vegans, we used to go to a vegan chinese restaurant. We decided to try a restaurant closer to our house, ordered same dish (it was on their vegetarian menu). I had never had the dish otherwise so I didn't think about it, but it came with egg.

2) Pork and tofu (this is apparently a common combo, so you'd want to specifically ask if any of the tofu dishes include meat)

3) Shrimp/oyster/whatever fish sauce - just ask

Overall, we've had fairly good experiences but we also live in a fairly vegetarian friendly area.

_________________
You are all a disgrace to vegans. Go f*ck yourselves, especially linanil.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 5:45 pm 
Offline
Dying from Nooch Lung
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 11:01 am
Posts: 3382
Location: Chandler, AZ
A joint near my place uses "chicken powder" in all but one dish. When you order eggrolls you have to ask if they have egg IN the roll, in the wrapper and if they use an egg wash to seal the wrap. Same for dumplings, I guess. P.F. Chang's has a lot of vegan options, but their sugar is supposedly filtered through bone char if that sort of thing bothers you. Another joint nearby has awesome deep fried orange tofu. Just tofu in a vegetarian sauce with a few carrots. Done.

Also, not exactly Chinese but try a Mongolian BBQ. You get to decide what goes into your stir fry so you know you're safe. And there's usually rice and wontons, too!

_________________
Half the lies I tell are not true.
"luckily us vegans dont go into cardiac arrest...but we do go into food comas" - Adam Crisis


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 5:47 pm 
Offline
WRETCHED
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 6:54 pm
Posts: 8476
Location: Maryland/DC area
There are vegan egg roll wrappers? I thought egg roll wrappers always contained egg, hence the name egg roll.

_________________
You are all a disgrace to vegans. Go f*ck yourselves, especially linanil.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 5:56 pm 
Offline
The Real Hamburger Helper
User avatar

Joined: Fri Dec 03, 2010 2:43 pm
Posts: 2254
Location: Wet and Windy Wiltshire
There's two Chinese takeaways in my (very small) town. One has umpteen tofu and vegetable dishes, and they are generally happy to make things up for me off-menu as long as it's something sensible. The other has one vegetarian dish, which tasted like the Devil's own bumhole and ended up being thrown away after two mouthfuls.

_________________
dropscone - "Ack, I'm no help, I just like to imagine as many people as possible eating roast potatoes."


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 6:14 pm 
Offline
Sick of Cupcakes
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 11:44 pm
Posts: 6708
Location: Modesto, CA
There was a place we would go to down the street that was Chinese/Japanese with a veg menu in the back. We started finding chicken bits in our tofu so we stopped going.

Calling ahead is always an option. Also I find the language barrier is always a problem in communication for vegan safe food.

_________________
The Stay At Home Girlfriend: A zine that focuses on
vegan recipes, cat love and living with OCD.
https://www.etsy.com/shop/missmuffcake


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 6:21 pm 
Offline
Drinks Wild Tofurkey
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 5:17 pm
Posts: 2820
Location: Boston, MA
I dunno, I always ask and say "no fish sauce" and "no meat" but I'm usually skeptical. Most of time they just repeat what I say in a not very convincing way, but oh well. One memorable time the waiter said "no fish sauce" and laughed in a menacing way, which made me uneasy.

ETA: I think I once read somewhere that Szechuan dishes at US chinese places are usually vegan if they don't include meat, as the sauces are not made with fish. Anyone know if there's any truth to that?

_________________
"If I were M. de la Viandeviande, I would now write a thirteen page post about how you have to have free will to be vegan, but modern science does not suggest any evidence for free will, therefore it is impossible to be vegan." -mumbles


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 6:34 pm 
Offline
Drinks Wild Tofurkey
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 5:17 pm
Posts: 2820
Location: Boston, MA
missmuffcake wrote:
There was a place we would go to down the street that was Chinese/Japanese with a veg menu in the back. We started finding chicken bits in our tofu so we stopped going.

Calling ahead is always an option. Also I find the language barrier is always a problem in communication for vegan safe food.

One time years ago, I ordered a "tofu chicken" dish from a Chinese place, to go. For some weird reason I just assumed it gonna be "chicken-like" tofu, but when I got home it was tofu mixed with chicken. Totally dumb mistake on my part, in retrospect!

_________________
"If I were M. de la Viandeviande, I would now write a thirteen page post about how you have to have free will to be vegan, but modern science does not suggest any evidence for free will, therefore it is impossible to be vegan." -mumbles


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 7:04 pm 
Offline
Memorized Veganomicon
User avatar

Joined: Wed Aug 01, 2012 12:18 pm
Posts: 91
dakini wrote:
We have a Chinese restaurant a few towns over that has vegan versions of nearly everything on the menu, made with seitan. It's pretty amazeballs but I'm not used to eating heavy, fried foods so I usually feel gross afterwards. The best thing you can do is ask about options. Steamed vegetables with rice and tofu is usually a safe bet.


Ooh where is that? I don't eat out much but I'd like to try it.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 7:09 pm 
Offline
WRETCHED
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 6:54 pm
Posts: 8476
Location: Maryland/DC area
Quarantined wrote:
ETA: I think I once read somewhere that Szechuan dishes at US chinese places are usually vegan if they don't include meat, as the sauces are not made with fish. Anyone know if there's any truth to that?


I think that is generally true, considering they are traditionally from a landlocked area within China. We went to a traditional style Chinese restaurant with many szechuan dishes and very few of their dishes contained oyster sauce (according to them).

_________________
You are all a disgrace to vegans. Go f*ck yourselves, especially linanil.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 9:18 pm 
Offline
Not NOT A Furry
User avatar

Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2012 7:11 pm
Posts: 474
Genuine Chinese restaurants often have vegetarian options and are easy to veganize. A lot of Westernized Chinese restaurants bear little relation to actual Chinese food or practice, though. The more genuine it is, the easier it will be to get something vegan.

In China, you would look for a restaurant with the sù character (素) displayed; there are a lot of them. Tell them, "wǒ chī sù." That's close to, but not exactly, "I am vegetarian." Add "wǒ bù chī jīdàn" (I don't eat eggs), and you're pretty much all set. You might want to tell them you like garlic and onion, which are not considered sù.

Many Szechuan sauces are vegan. Even yuxiang which literally means "fish fragrance" is simply garlic, scallions, and ginger with doubanjiang (a paste made from spicy fermented beans and rice), soy sauce, and (often) chili peppers added.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 5:03 am 
Offline
Angrily Posting on Facebook
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jul 04, 2011 1:50 pm
Posts: 3145
Location: The Bene
Interesting about Szechuan sauces. There's a place near my work where you can get a stir-fry to go with whatever ingredients you choose. You get a choice of different rices/noodles, proteins and veggies, and several sauces. One of their sauces is just called "Szechuan sauce", and it's really good, but I was really curious what goes into it, so did some googling, and found a lot of recipes online that have chicken/beef broth as an ingredient. I realize these are probably Westernized versions (I mean, they're using "Szechuan sauce" as a generic when I assume there must be many sauces from the region) but the place is run by a Chinese family, so maybe it's fine. I haven't gotten up the nerve to ask at the place if there's actually broth in the sauce (it's not really common here to ask about ingredients) but maybe I should just bite the bullet and do it. I miss that sauce. (I've been ordering the curry sauce instead, assuming that's safe.)

_________________
Ain't no guarantees in life, and nothing that comes out of my vagina can change that. - Erika Soyf*cker

I'd rather have a cupcake and a matte stomach. - Desdemona


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 7:25 pm 
Offline
Spent a night at the Bates Motel
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 8:31 pm
Posts: 2090
Location: detroit, mi
ZoeTate wrote:
dakini wrote:
We have a Chinese restaurant a few towns over that has vegan versions of nearly everything on the menu, made with seitan. It's pretty amazeballs but I'm not used to eating heavy, fried foods so I usually feel gross afterwards. The best thing you can do is ask about options. Steamed vegetables with rice and tofu is usually a safe bet.


Ooh where is that? I don't eat out much but I'd like to try it.

It's called Red Star and it is in Dearborn! It's really good.

_________________
I'm still buddhist & I still love cupcakes.
My crochet blog! http://threadbythreadzen.blogspot.com


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 8:17 pm 
Offline
Should Spend More Time Helping the Animals
User avatar

Joined: Tue Dec 07, 2010 4:57 pm
Posts: 6417
Location: Boston, MA
Pyewacket--you are awesome! I'm going to try that. Maybe it'll give them a laugh anyway.

Dumb question: what does Szechuan sauce mean? Like I get it's from that region, but which dishes are from that region. I usually get General Tso's tofu, but now I'm worried about oyster sauce. I did ask and say strict vegetarian, no fish no egg.

_________________
I would eat Dr. Cow pocket cheese in a second. I would eat it if you hid it under your hat, or in your backpack, but not if it was in your shoe. That's where I draw the line. -allularpunk


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 9:09 pm 
Offline
Baking In The Flavor
User avatar

Joined: Fri May 04, 2012 12:58 pm
Posts: 191
Location: New England
They have vegan meats at the restaurant I go to, but I totally forgot to ask about fish sauce. Do you think they could use stock in garlic/blackbean/brown sauce as well?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 9:11 pm 
Offline
Invented Vegan Meringue
User avatar

Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2010 2:18 pm
Posts: 3882
Location: Portland, OR
I've found the most alarming ingredients to be meat-based broths and oyster sauce. I think your odds are best if the restaurant has a Buddha's Delight, since that, in principle, should be strictly vegetarian (aka vegan).

Basically, if your sauce tastes like soy sauce, garlic and sugar, it's probably vegan!

_________________
get sconed!
& @jdfunks on that thing


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Wed Dec 19, 2012 4:23 am 
Offline
Not NOT A Furry
User avatar

Joined: Sat Sep 15, 2012 7:11 pm
Posts: 474
ndpittman wrote:
Pyewacket--you are awesome! I'm going to try that. Maybe it'll give them a laugh anyway.

Dumb question: what does Szechuan sauce mean? Like I get it's from that region, but which dishes are from that region. I usually get General Tso's tofu, but now I'm worried about oyster sauce. I did ask and say strict vegetarian, no fish no egg.


There isn't really a standard Szechuan sauce; lots of different recipes go by that name. It's sort of a variation of guaiwei, with ginger, garlic, soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame, peppercorns, chilis, sugar, rice wine ... or at least trying to mimic that flavor profile. One time I saw a jar of Szechuan sauce in the store that had oyster sauce in it. Whaaaat?!

I was surprised to find that, in Sichuan Province at least, some places will use beef tallow in their málà (literally: numbing hot) sauce. Good grief. I've bought jars of mala and never came across any with beef tallow in it. I've made it, seen others make it, gotten recipes from people, and I've never even heard of using beef tallow before. I guess you have to check every damn thing.

Chengdu is the culinary center of the region. Mapo doufu, dan dan noodles, Chengdu hot pot. Of course, there are dishes from that area like Kung Pao chicken, bang bang chicken, tea smoked duck, which are really good with substitutions. Buddhist vegetarian cuisine is all over the country, and each region has their own variations.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Vegan Options at Chinese Restaurants
PostPosted: Wed Dec 19, 2012 6:47 am 
Offline
WRETCHED
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 19, 2010 6:54 pm
Posts: 8476
Location: Maryland/DC area
Wow, I love numbing hot sauce. I haven't had any in a while because there is only one restaurant I know near me that has it. My local vegan restaurant used to have one when they had dim sum but they stopped that. I had a lot of it too when I went to China but I wasn't vegan at the time.

_________________
You are all a disgrace to vegans. Go f*ck yourselves, especially linanil.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 23 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 6 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: gunk, masuphl and 7 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group
Template made by DEVPPL/ThatBigForum and fancied up by What Cheer