Restaraunt Review

Mother’s Day Brunch On Broadway

Posted on May 9, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Restaraunt Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Happy Mothers Day! I have been loving today; it’s felt like my own very holiday even though I’ll never be a mom(and I’m OK with that)! And I think everyone else, including my own mom, has enjoyed it as well 😉

8 Miles 69:03

8 Miles 69:03

I ran a well-paced 8 miles while watching the newest Dr. Who(This episode freaked me out! for anyone else likewise addicted). I wanted to push it to 10 or even 12, but I just new my legs would appreciate me so much more if I didn’t, so I saved those miles for a rainy day.

Blueberry Chobani With Raw Almond Butter

Blueberry Chobani With Sprouted Almond Butter

I had some time before my family would arrive so I refueled with a blueberry Chobani and Better Than Roasted sprouted almond butter. Blueberry and almond is such a magnificent combination!

Better Than Roasted Raw Almond Butter

Better Than Roasted Sprouted Almond Butter

I couldn’t help myself from finishing off the almond butter jar(it was a small one) when my parents were running late. I’ve never made this parallel before in my mind, but isn’t nut butter straight from the jar like a vegan’s form of turkey jerky from a bag? I think so. Once everyone did arrive, we set off to this place for lunch:

Nick's On Broadway

Nick's On Broadway

Despite being in Providence almost a year, I haven’t been able to get myself to Nick’s On Broadway until today. It was highly recommended by Heather and Sabrina and was voted in the top 59 breakfast places in America! Even though the wait was an hour, I had a feeling it would be well worth it for Mother’s day brunch.

Open Kitchen

Open Kitchen

We watched the chefs in the open kitchen while we waited, and the smell of homefries, eggs, and toast with butter was absolutely intoxicating. We got a table earlier than expected and someone wasted no time:

Drinks Galore

Drinks Galore

That would be my grandmother with both a sangria and a bloody mary in front of her. She actually ended up with neither and drinking a decaf coffee instead, but I thought the photo was funny 😉 I sipped the bloody mary and even though I have nothing to compare it to I have to say it was really really good, and that’s from someone who hates horseradish. My one complaint was that the decaf coffee, which I did have, wasn’t terribly hot at all. I was so excited for my meal.

Local Hereford Beef

Local Hereford Beef

Homefries

Homefries

I ordered a local cut of beef with a side of homefries. Between Providence and the Garden Grill Cafe, I’ve grown a love for homefries and had to try Nick’s; they were deliciously and not overly oily at all while still being crisp and delicious.

Local Hereford Beef

Local Hereford Beef

The beef was perfectly cooked and seasoned, with a nice herby crust and a rare center. I love the emphasis on local, which is something I’ve found a lot of in Providence. It’s easy to want to eat from within your own state when it’s the smallest in the country 😉 On the way out the head chef, Derek, wished us well and a happy Mother’s day, which I thought was a great, personal touch. Overall I had a fantastic time at Nick’s and can’t wait to go back again.

Whole Foods Bag

Whole Foods Bag

We did some grocery shopping and I had a HUGE craving for what was in the bag. Can you guess what it might have been?

Sweet Scoops Madagascar Vanilla Frozen Yogurt

Sweet Scoops Madagascar Vanilla Frozen Yogurt

Ice cream! The real, dairy deal. No coconut milk would have sufficed for me, and this was so good. It tasted like straight up vanilla extract, which I know a certain blogger would appreciate if she could tolerate dairy.

Microwave Vegan Chocolate Fudge

Microwave Vegan Chocolate Fudge

And now for my dessert-dessert, I’m eating the last piece of microwave vegan chocolate fudge. This would be such a sadder moment if I didn’t also pick up earth balance and have something in the fridge cooling at this very moment 😉 Check back tomorrow for a new and delicious recipe! And now I need to get back to Leap Year; I have 3 hours before it expires which worries me even though it’s only 90 minutes long.

What do you order at brunch? I don’t usually crave eggs. And as much as I love the smell of toast I cant tolerate the gluten. But one thing my brunch has to have is homefries. I’m awful at making them myself and, when they’re done right, I could eat them as my main course!

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Makes Me Want To Shout

Posted on March 14, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Restaraunt Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Today has made me want to shout! Not like, “Hey, you kids. Get off my lawn!” kind of shout, but as in you make me want to shout, throw my hands up and shout, throw my hands up and shout. It’s been that good! It’s reminded me of how weekends should be: filled with friends, family, and fun, and not responsibilities.

1/2 A Munch Bar

After this morning, my parents and grandmother drove down to Providence. We quickly swung by the Brown gymnasium so I could shout at a high school friend who was visiting for a fencing tournament and say hi. After that we drove to Bellingham to pick some things up, and back to Providence for a late brunch. Since I knew we weren’t eating until 2:30, I broke off 1/2 a Munch bar to munch on.

Garden Grille Cafe

My dad and I liked Garden Grille Cafe so much Wednesday night, we thought it’d be great to bring my mom and grandmother. This time, of course, it was light out 🙂 Their brunch menu is full of good things. Everyone else seemed to want French toast but they were out of the batter 😦 That ended up being fine because no one had complaints with what we did get.

Grilled Sweet Potatoes With BBQ Sauce

For the table, we ordered a side of grilled sweet potatoes with BBQ sauce. Where else could you get a plate of sweet potatoes for $6? Love it. And so did everyone else! There were only about 3 wedges left after everything which we boxed up.

Homemade Tofu Bacon

When I saw “homemade tofu bacon” as a side, I knew we had to order some; I just wanted to shout it at the waitress. Since this was homemade from regular tofu and not made in a factory, it didn’t have to count for Lent as “prepared soy”. It wasn’t as crispy as regular bacon, but had good flavor. My grandmother even ate it and loved it! I don’t think, however, she realized this wasn’t made from real pig. She also loved her vegan blueberry pancakes, but was ready to shout when she didn’t get real heavy cream at first for her coffee(maybe that was a good thing).

Garden Tofu Scramble With Hash, Grilled Sweet Potato With BBQ Sauce, 2 Tofu Slices

For my plate, I ordered the garden tofu scramble “with grilled seasonal vegetables, served with home fries and toast”. I gave away the toast(not gluten-free) and also took a wedge of sweet potato and 2 strips of bacon.

Empty Plate

Obviously, I hated it and wanted to shout out my frustration 🙂 This was amazing and I need to go here more often(it’s only about 2.5 miles down the road–an easy run). It was all a little heavily oiled, but isn’t that how brunches are supposed to be? The hash was easily the best part; next time I come, I’m just going to order that as my main because anything else was just filler. Likewise, the sweet potato seemed a little bland compared to the hash with regular and sweet potatoes in it. Have I shouted enough about the hash?

Vegan Chocolate Chip Hemp Cookie

On the way out, I picked up one of their vegan chocolate chip hemp cookies. This was shouting my name, even though it wasn’t gluten-free. I just love over-sized and soft cookies 🙂 Everybody loved the restaurant; my grandmother who couldn’t even tell you what a vegan meal would look like wants to go back for dinner some time! Hehe, too bad it’s so far from home(but not from me :-)).

New Bowl

We went grocery shopping and wound up at Targe where I was able to get a new bowl! Isn’t this so radically different from my last one 😉 What can I say? I know what I like. This really is what reminded me of a good ol’ care-free weekend, because I was able to enjoy just riding around and going places without thinking “Oh shoot, I have to write that paper!” I still do have to write that paper; I just wasn’t thinking about it.

Whole Foods Groceries

All the groceries were more-or-less the standards: copious amount of yogurt and soy yogurt, some grass-fed beef(on sale this week!), tofu, chickpeas(why don’t I keep a few cans of this around more often?), and agave nectar(been going through this a bit too fast lately…).

Eastside Market Groceries

At Eastside Market, I grabbed 2 gingerade kombucha(still on sale, woohoo!), nutritional yeast, sweet potato, avocado, and pumpkin. Again–it’s not like I’m radically changing my diet this week.

Jokerz And Raw Caramel Chocolate

I did “treat” myself to 2 “fun purchases”: another Jokerz bar and a new raw chocolate. Normally, dropping $10 for so little chocolate would make me want to shout(I mean, I better be buying a cacao tree for that price). But since I won that prize for my Greek exam and then another $583 for tieing for 1st in the Latin exam(did I forget to mention this?), I thought a little self-indulgence was due. I can’t wait to see if they were worth it!

1/2 Vegan Chocolate Chip Hemp Cookie

1/2 Vegan Chocolate Chip Hemp Cookie

As if I needed any more self-indulgence, I broke in to my cookie. I cut half and ate it from my new bowl just because I could. This reeaaallly made me want to shout!  It was so soft and chewy–absolutely perfect for how I like my cookies. It wasn’t at all filling, probably not whole-grain, and sugary/butter as all hell; it was the perfect over-sized cookie 🙂 I like how the sweetness of the chocolate contrasted with slightly-savory hemp, too; I never would have thought to do that flavor combo. All that cookie adoration/putting away of groceries made dinner a real quickie:

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Smart Balance Peanut Butter, Nutritional Yeast, And Sea Salt, Soy Yogurt With Hemp Seeds

I was going to make a burger with sweet potatoes, but since I had so much potato at lunch and didn’t get the ball going on cooking them, I just shouted out a c’est la vie and went with a breakfast-for-dinner motif. I love how savory this meal turned out; the nutritional yeast on pumpkin with saltiness tastes just like a vegan cheddar cheese, and the soy/hulled hemp seed combo was more savory, protein goodness. Not going to lie: I also love savory meals because they give me a sweet tooth for dessert 🙂 Until tomorrow!

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Jokerz And Gardens

Posted on March 10, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Restaraunt Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I love how much bloggers sympathize over dropped tableware! Only you guys would understand, haha.

Jolly Beans

With the sun shining in, I knew an outdoor run would help me feel energized. I pushed it about as late as I could–10:30–and got ready to run. Right before heading out I popped the jelly beans from the Whole Foods bulk bins for quick energy. They’re all-natural, vegetarian, called “Jolly Beans”, and absolutely delicious; just like with other brands, my favorite colors are the white, orange, and yellow. Which are your favorite jelly beans?

9.4 Miles In 1:20:46

I ended up running 9.4 miles in 1:20:26, which was a really good pace for me. I had to hit the Providence hills because on my way back I made a pit stop at University Heights Whole Foods to grab a Jokerz bar. I think I’ve found a new addiction! I also swung by the dining hall before coming into my room right at 12 with the rush; that was not timed well, and there wasn’t even much for me to work with 😦 I stilled managed a tasty and quick lunch.

Kidney Beans With Ketchup And Hemp Oil, Maple Tofu, All Over Spinach

Another bean salad–I’m just loving these! Red beans are definitely not my favorite(I prefer chickpeas or black beans), but it’s what they had so I worked with them and made a dressing from organic ketchup and Foods Alive hemp oil sweet & sassy dresing. It reminded me of BBQ beans. On top, I threw on the maple tofu I roasted Monday but ended up not eating. What turned out being thrown together from stuff on hand was actually a great meal. Do you have a favorite type of bean?

Jokerz Go Max Go Foods Candy Bar

Wednesdays win for my long days: 3 1/2 hours straight class in the afternoon. I definitely needed something to look forward to in my Object History class to keep me sane. The funny thing? This weeks “object” was sugar and other food in colonial America. We also talked a lot about the potatoes role in society from it’s origins as a South American crop to Europe. As much as I love food, I feel like class is the one place I can escape from having a single track mind. C’est la vie.

Vegan Milk Chocolate Enrobing Vegan Caramel, Nougat, And Peanuts

It felt a little ironic to be eating this Go Max Go Foods Jokerz while we talked about the expansion of sugar in the 18th century English diet and how 1 ton of sugar equated to the life of a slave at the time. Guilt? I don’t know the meaning of the word–this was downright delicious! So sweet and good. And, yes, it’s a candy bar and not at all healthy. But it is all natural 🙂 And I had a surprise waiting for me after class…

Dad

Guess who was in town! Literally, he was in town on a special business conference, and since he got off dinner when I got out of class, meeting up for dinner seemed natural. First we stopped at a store to get avocadoes, kombucha, a new bowl, and jelly beans(aka, all of my staples). After that, we found a little local restaurant that Heather recommended.

Garden Grille Cafe

Garden Grille Cafe is a small, hole-in-the-wall restaurant over in East Pawtucket. I have ran right near this so many times without even paying notice; I wasn’t even 1/4 mile away twice on my run this morning! The menu is all vegetarian, highly vegan/gluten-free, and they even have some raw items. Though it didn’t say, I would bargain all the ingredients to be all-natural. They even had organic brews on tap(not that I was getting any of that action), along with fresh squeezed juices and blended smoothies. Now those sounded good. I’ll definitely be planning to end a run on a nice sunny day by here.

Eggplant Rollatini

For my entree, I chose the eggplant rollatini, described as “grilled and stuffed with herb tofu nut cheese, crispy polenta, garlic sauteed spinach with homemade pomodoro sauce””. The flavors were just what I was craving at the time. It also appealed to me that this was vegan, gluten-free, and–at least I would say so–didn’t compromise my Lent give-up of “prepared soy”(it had some tofu, but less than any other menu item, and since the house probably used raw tofu and just prepared it tonight, it’s less “prepared” than the ones I had in mind). The eggplant rolls with the tofu-nut cheese were amazing; I could have ate 5 more! The polenta I just had a sliver of; it was well formed, but even well formed polenta is pretty boring unless you dress it up with heavy cream or a sharp cheese(and this dish was vegan). Overall, it was a great experience and I’ll probably be eating there again. Did I mention they have vegan cinnamon rolls on the Sunday brunch menu? They do.

A few last things: first up, Katie alerted me to this article fronting Newsweek this week; apparently, I’m a good writer 😉 And I also agree with a lot I have to say! Go figure. And check out this ch-ch-chia seed giveaway from Lucky Taste Buds that comes with a sweet recipe! happy end of humpday, ya’ll!

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Eating Raw With Bloggers

Posted on February 7, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review, Restaraunt Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Good morning! I meant to set something up last night that’s exciting to auto-post, but clearly that didn’t pull together in time. Such excitement will have to wait for the week, but I can show you what exciting things did happen. Lunch was about a 7 on the excitement scale.

Brussels Sprouts, Broccoli, And Cauliflowe With Grass-Fed Steak And Colby Cheese

Brussels Sprouts, Broccoli, And Cauliflowe With Grass-Fed Steak And Colby Cheese

I think 7 is very good for leftovers. I steamed some vegetables and shredded some raw & probiotic colby cheese on top(but remembered not to stick it in the microwave because that would defeat the purpose of raw!). On an inside grill, I reheated the leftover steak in grass-fed butter, and then poured the drippings after cooking on top. OK–the steak was good, but the drippings were fantastic. Butter and beef fat–yumm. After lunch I made a little dessert.

Raw Vegan Brownies With Frosting

Raw Vegan Brownies With Goji Berries And Hulled Hemp Seeds

Before you start drooling too much, this was only 1 pan. The first photo was a before and the second an after shot 😀 But I didn’t make these all for myself(though I could have); last night there was a Boston blogger meet-up at Grezzo’s Restaurant which is all raw so I thought this would be an appropriate(and tasty) dessert, recipe here. Let me also show you my new adoration:

Bob's Red Mill Hulled Hemp Seeds

Bob’s Red Mill hulled hemp seeds. I don’t know where to begin. The nutrition? Fantastic. The preparation and care they put into providing and packaging their product? Amazing. The inherint, nutty vanilla flavor? Sock it to me. These were perfect for an afternoon pick-me-up.

Chocolate Avocado Pudding With Chocolate Coconut Oil And Hulled Hemp Seeds

Now that’s exciting. Unfortunately, it wasn’t quite as filling as I was expecting. Was there not enough fat? o_O Sooo, after reading other blogs, I decided vanilla froyo must be the missing secret ingredient. We may not have self-serve frozen yogurt around Boston, but we do have freezers and delicious varieties of name brands.

Elan's Vanilla Frozen Yogurt

My favorite, for anyone keeping track.

Elan's Vanilla Frozen Yogurt

That hit the spot and held me over for dinner. It’s cool. It’s creamy. It’s everything a vanilla should be. Unfortunately, that’s all she wrote for it.

Empty Container

:-/ At least I made plenty of space in the freezer for another container!(which will probably be an exact replacement of this one :-P). Right before leaving, I found more evidence of my exciting insensibility: Something that I thought I brought to school, looked all over for, decided I left at home, looked all over for and could never find turned out to be in my backpack all the while. Thank God I can laugh at myself because I give me a kick 😀

At 7 I arrived at Grezzo’s and found a great number of bloggers and readers. There were 9 of us in total; it was all set up by Melissa at Crunches For Cupckakes. Thanks, Melissa! I think I was the only one to have eaten there before(documented here). That didn’t matter much because the menu had completely changed for dinner. I wasn’t sure what to order but I ended up going with a pasta dish(I know–I was surprised with me here, too!) that 5 other people also got.

Gnocchi Carbonara

The “gnocchi” were made out of cashews and oat flour, I believe, and in a nut-cream sauce. It was delicious! They were soooo rich and doughy and simply melted in your mouth. I think I liked them way more than regular gnocchi. The cream sauce was also good, but I only ate about 6 peas; I’m just not a fan of raw vegetables.

Bloggers

One of the interesting things brought up at the table was if we thought we could eat like this much. The easy consensus was no. For 1, raw takes sooo much preparation; some of our food was made and sat for days in advance. That’s simply not easy to do on a working schedule. The other reason was simple: We love hot food! Oatmeal, baked vegetables, microwaved vegetables–I know I, for one, couldn’t give up things like that. A big bowl of baked veggies and tofu with maple syrup is totally my comfort food. At first I wasn’t planning for a dessert, but… c’mon 😉

Chocolate Mint Cookie With Chocolate Frosting

Surprisingly, this was one of their less extravagent desserts; can you believe it? Check out Lauren’s blog for a shot of her brownie sundae. Next time I go, I most definitely want to try their gelato. The rawest ice cream I’ve had is banana soft serve so that would most definitely be a kick. All in all it was a great night and my first chance to meet some awesome bloggers. I even got a few new ones to add to my blogroll! After stopping at a party where my parents were to say hi to old friends, we didn’t get home until late. Let’s just say it’s been a while since I’ve seen Saturday Night Live live. I also wasn’t terribly tired and a little voracious. I think the cookie had ton of agave nectar, which won’t spike your blood levels but will keep you going and going and going(I was like the Energizer Bunny!). The other half of that was that eating raw meant so much less volume of food, even if it was calorically dense. The solution?

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Vanilla Peanut Butter

Pumpkin oats! Another example of why I could never go raw 🙂 I certainly enjoyed my night and I can’t wait to go to my next blogger meet-up someday!

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If I Ate Like This Every Day…

Posted on January 23, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Restaraunt Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

If I ate like this every day, I’d be

  • poor by the end of the week
  • happy as a clam
  • the “healthiest” me I could be(in my opinion, though this is completely relative)

Really, words cannot express my gratitude just for being alive today. To recap from my breakfast post, I kicked off the day with a full core and cardio, after convincing myself that a core wouldn’t be that bad if the promise of a raw vegan raspberry brownie was attached(I totally bribed myself with food here :-)). I followed that up with a bangin’ breakfast of greek yogurt and oatmeal with a couple of cage-free organic Eggland’s Best eggs. Have you heard that they now test higher in vitamins and minerals than supermarket eggs? Fascinating.

After breakfast, I was off to the city(which in my case means “Beantown”, or simply Boston) to meet with an old friend from high school. I suggested a cozy little restaurant I’ve been wanting to try.

Grezzo Restaurant

Grezzo is the only raw vegan restaurant around Boston that I know of and as I learn more and more about that cuisine, I’ve been dying to eat here. I arrived a bit early and got to look at the menu before my friend, Eury, arrived.

Grezzo Menu

Not like that extra 10 minutes helped me at all; I still had no clue what to order after reading all their good options. I wanted to ask the waitress about everything because the descriptions were all very brief and you know at a raw and vegan restaurant a “slider” is very different. I ended up just taking a leap of faith and choosing the burger(that’s a safe choice wherever you go, right?).

Seaweed And Wild Mushroom Bistro Burger With Guacamole

Sweet Potato Chips

The burger was made with seaweed and mushrooms, topped with guacamole, and served between cucumber “buns”. The burger had a great meaty texture, but it might have been a tad bit underseasoned. The guacamole was absolutely delicious and pure and I ate it by the spoonful. On the side came “sweet potato chips”; they were very thin slices of sweet potato dehydrated overnight. They were sooo good; they actually sort of reminded me of dry marshmallows, but in a delicious way. Maybe I need a dehydrator next Christmas?

Big House Salad

Eury got the big house salad. I had a lot of fun explaining my knowledge of raw food and explaining how the “cheese” was actually made of nut milk. You know you’ve been a blogger for too long when you are surprised that someone doesn’t know what a nut milk is. We had a great time catching up; I had yet to giver her her graduation present  8 months gone by and it was hilarious not remembering in the least what I wrote on the card.

We ended up walking around a bit afterwards down to South Station were we went our separate ways. On the way home my dad and I did weekly grocery shopping at Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s. Note to self: Saturday afternoon in the city is not the time to go grocery shopping; I’m surprised we got out with our limbs! There was a cute baby behind us in one of the register lines who kept on saying “Hi”. When we finally got home, I was so happy to put away the groceries, brew up some decaf coffee, and break out this baby:

Raw Vegan Hemp Seed Brownie With Chocolate Frosting

I took a dessert home from Grezzo, namely their hemp seed brownie with chocolate frosting. Another raw brownie? Sure, why not 😉 The raw frosting was simply amazing. I’m guessing it was agave nectar, cocoa powder, and avocado from my limited knowledge of raw foods and how they work together. The brownie was OK I thought. It had a nice chocolate flavor without any fruitiness; it might have been a bit too hard and dry for my taste, but seeing as how I can’t get my recipe to be hold together better I was very impressed that there’s is so firm.

If the day had just ended there, I would have been very content. To my blessing, it continued. For the past two weeks, I’ve been hearing about the dishes Tomasso has been making with 1/2 of a local, 100% grass-fed cow they received. Do you get where this is going? We wanted to go Thursday night, but then ended up closing for a private party. Thankfully, they still had the beef for a special tonight(though by far a pricier cut).

18oz Local Grass-Fed Sirloin Steak

Rather than eat there and all order entrees, we decided to simply get the special take-out along with an appetizer-size pizza, and cook our own vegetables as sides; we figured just the one entree should be enough for the 3 of us( I mean, we aren’t that big eaters).

Local Grass-Fed Beef

Steamed Broccoli With Sea Salt

Holy. Freaking. Yum. This was absolutely everything I could have hoped for. The meat was so tender that parts of it just melted away in my mouth. I had 3 big ol’ slices of the meat. I have no clue how much that totaled up to and quite frankly I don’t care; when the beef is grass-fed like this was, the quality is through the roof, the fat is omega-3 rich, and in my line of thinking it’s all “healthy”. Portioning out and only eating 3oz would have been a shame, so I didn’t bother. As a simple side, I steamed up some broccoli; just like the beef was grass-fed, so was I 😀

And now, with today as a memory, I will not at all mind returning to eating oatmeal and beans for every meal this week(and with me returning to school soon, that’s not that big an exaggeration). I’m stuffed. And I can hardly fathom(though I will) eating something for dessert(cheap, like a banana processed with cocoa powder). Perhaps I could add to the menu some Honest Food Granola Bars if I won this giveaway or some Zevia if I won this one.

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Feeling FRESH

Posted on January 17, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review, Restaraunt Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Good morning afternoon! Actually, I “gave myself the morning off”, which doesn’t mean much when you don’t do much but has a great psychological boost behind it 😀 Have you done something little for yourself that’s made you feel 10 times better than you thought it would? Do tell, because I’m always looking for little things like that. When I make a lunch in the oven or anything more intensive than the microwave, that always has me feeling like a million bucks.

Vegan Meatloaf With Smokey Ketchup, Broccoli With Nutritional Yeast

This lunch yesterday was neither “fresh” or made in anything but the microwave, and yet still had me feeling like a million bucks. I decided to finish off the vegan meatloaf. My first thought was “Wow, this is really a lot. Maybe I should portion better.” followed by “Oh well, it’s all healthy foods so it’s OK to go a bit over on.” ended with “This is all healthy?! I need to make another one this week!” Clearly, we know what I’ll be doing at some point soon 😉 I topped it with ketchup and liquid smoke(love this combo) and some nutritional yeast; I think I need to get a pound of nutritional yeast next time I go to the Dedham Whole Foods and I’m not even exaggerating.

After lunch my mom went her way and my dad and I went ours and I feel like we went everywhere! First up was Job Lot, which always has fun finds. This time it was maple and blueberry flavored agave nectar, but I passed on any of those. Then I happened to stumble on an unbelievable sale at Price Chopper while waiting for my dad to pick out socks.

Lightlife Soy Beef And Buffalo Wings

Lightlife products were buy 1 get 1 free! I only bought 1 and got 1 and now I’m thinking I should have grabbed more but oh well. I’ve been wanting to try their Buffalo Wings forever so now was my opportunity! I’d never have paid $5 for them had I not gotten a log of soy beef for free–love that last part. I can’t wait to make beefy things with it(a burger? Ooo Summer’s been gone for too long).

After Price Chopper I pretended to be an educated individual and took us to Borders. I love the idea of book stores; there’s so much variety! Buuuut… I always end up looking at the same food books. Haha, one track mind much? And I ended up buying one!

Cook This Not That

I think the Eat This Not That series is one of my guilty pleasures, and I was able to get this for $14 with a coupon. This is my 3rd or 4th, and it’s all about recipes of restaurant favorites. Normally I don’t bother paying for cookbooks and just use the internet or my own head but I love ones like this that also have interesting and unique facts and articles. Did you know the pecan is the most antioxidant-full nut? Fascinating. I also looked at Michael Pollon’s new book about food rule, which looked awesome. It also looked like a lot of things that seem like “common sense” to me after reading In Defense Of Food, though, which I did not feel like paying $10 for. But words like “You can eat all the junk food you want so long as you make it yourself” is what people need to here!(and good news for me with all my peanut butter cups ;-))

Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Chunky

Well, not a peanut butter cup, but still some wholesome junk food I packed for a snack instead of a granola bar. After that we ended up at Target followed by a trip to the eye doctors. Good news and bad news–I’m just as blind as I was a year and a half ago 🙂 I remember when I first got contacts and the employee had to sit with me for 30 minutes while I tried to figure out how to put a lens on my eyeball. I felt soooo bad taking forever, I just wanted to give up. Now I pop them in and yank them out like putty, haha. Oh how times change. And on the way home we dropped by Whole Foods where brussels sprouts were on sale! We didn’t have these at all this week, so I grabbed 3 pounds. Will that be enough? I doubt it.

Thai Peanut Primal Strip

We decided to be fun and funky and go out for dinner last night, mostly through my own persuasion 😉 Before we left I wasn’t really hungry but had this thai peanut Primal Strip I was sent to review so I wouldn’t get hungry waiting for dinner. I hate being hungry at restaurants; then you can hardly enjoy the delicious food! I liked this strip as a quick and portable protein source–definitely an upgrade to the sugary granola bar and held me over well. I really wanted somewhere I could eat vegetarian and not pasta, which is a rare breed around here. We ended up driving back to Framingham past the eye doctors to Big Fresh Cafe. I’d never been there before, but you can just look at their website to see how awesome they are and how tough it was to choose one thing from their amazing menu.

Teryaki Vegetables And Tofu Over Organic Brown Rice

I ended up going with the teryaki vegetables and tofu over organic brown rice. It was awesome! I think this might have been the first time I’ve had someone else prepare tofu for me–so good. What I loved most was how this was basically fast food, with no fuss ordering and quick cooking. You’d also never a place devoted to natural, fresh food was here; it’s next to a Papa Gino’s and across from a McDonalds and has the tiniest sign. But we’ll definitely be coming back again! This was what was left of my plate.

Leftovers

Don’t worry; we took it home in a container and I’m going to make fried rice one of these days for lunch. Why let some good organic brown rice go to waste? On the way home we stopped at Whole Foods again(I know; we live here) because my dad and I didn’t actually get any protein for dinners that my mom would eat. We left with a hunk of beef and enough chicken breasts to fill Playboy. When we got home, I was held over well by my meal, but inevitably reached for some chocolate.

Goat Milk Yogurt With Chocolate Raspberry Jam And Original NibMor

Don’t you hate finishing a really good bar? This was my last piece of NibMor original–so sad. Then again, I can’t really say I have a chocolate shortage. Even my jam has chocolate in it! Or at least this one did; it was a fun twist on the raspberry and goats milk combo. I didn’t think I’d be hungry for a bowl of oatmeal later on but I was, much to my pleasure.

Egg White Oatmeal With Chocolate Cherry Peanut Butter

I got to try out my egg whites I bought at Whole Foods; they add such great fluff to the oats! Now I get why bloggers love them. It’s a bit more expensive than just buying the eggs but I’d hate to waste yolks. In my dream-filled mind, the yolks to these were all used well in pudding and custards. Likely? Probably not, but I can hope. And I tried out the new chocolate cherry peanut butter I bought with X-mas money. A little low on the peanut flavor but I suppose there are mroe reasons to eat and like it than peanut.

This morning I very much just wanted a good, full workout. I started off with my core while watching some Sunday morning cartoons. What else is more motivating during push-ups than Cartoon Network? Beats me. When I got to the stair portion, I decided to give a new bar a try.

Chocolate Cherry Almond Luna Protein

I also picked the chocolate cherry almond luna protein up at Whole Foods, and unfortunately it just did not rock my socks 😦 I don’t know what it was about it that was so unappealing; it really did taste like chocolate cherry almond! But still did nothing for me. I ate half and gave half to my dad. So when I got to breakfast I was ready for something anything other than chocolate, cherry, or almond.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Nutritional Yeast And Smart Balance Peanut Butter

So Delicious Soy Yogurt With Vanilla Sugar

Organic Red Delicious Apple

Organic Red Delicious Apple

I just love the nutritional yeast and peanut butter combo! I’m going to need to buy a pound from Dedham Whole Foods before I go back to school in a week and a half. I mixed 1/2 a tablespoon in with the pumpkin and reserved 1/2 a tablespoon for topping along with a big glob of Smart Balance Peanut Butter–holy yum was this good! Alongside, I felt like a plain So Delicious soy yogurt agave sweetened and topped with vanilla bean sugar. This “held me over” but didn’t really “fill me up” so I reached for an organic red delicious apple at the end which did the trick.

I enjoyed my morning off with some SNL and web-browsing. How ugly will the Jay Leno and Conan thing get? Really, I just wish something would be resolved because they’re two great hosts and it’s sad to see all this bickering mar their good names. After my parents went to a birthday party, I whipped up a lunch for one, inspired by the cafe last night and all the FRESH foods I’ve been seeing.

Lightlife Buffalo Wings, Carrots And Broccoli With Cashew Almond Dressing

Where to begin? The wait on the buffalo wings–totally worth it! I just loved these; if I ever were to really go vegetarian(that’s a HUGE if right there), I’d be content with living off these. Hell-I don’t think I’ve had a real buffalo wing in sooo long and I’m still content with these. There was a creaminess about them that was unreal. For the veggies, I steamed them while whipping up 1 tablespoon cashews, 2 tablespoons unsweetened vanilla almond milk, and a squirt of lemon juice in the mini-processor. So sweet! It was really perfect with the vegetables in place of something bleu cheese which I don’t have. And then, to end my being veggie streak of almost 48 hours, I had… chocolate?!

Vosges' Bacon Milk Chocolate Bar

That’s right 🙂 I finally broke into this bar that I bought a while back with my Christmas money. I actually think I’ll be just nibbling on it throughout the afternoon while I do work around here because all those fresh veggies filled me up. Tonight we’re getting a storm! Hopefully, it will bring plenty of snow for the long weekend 🙂 I’ve thrown on a FRESH pot of coffee and now I must flip through my Cook This Not That book to find out what’s for dinner.

Contests

A giveaway for Theo Chocolate

Here’s a giveaway for a chocomize bar!

A Zola beverage giveaway(never tried these, but I will if I win)

And an Oogave beverage giveaway(also never tried)

And last(but certainly not least) an awesome vitamix giveaway!

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Foodie Gallery

Posted on October 11, 2009. Filed under: Restaraunt Review, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Warning: If you’re prone to drooling on your keyboard, get out a napkin for this post. Ironically, my morning was very disorganized and ugly. I was running way behind yesterday morning(not so much literally as figuratively). Apparently, there was a tornado warning and my room was affected:

Dorm Room

Dorm Room

Thankfully(or not), somebody was also a bit late leaving my house that morning, so I had more time than I thought to pack. For a 3-day trip home, I feel the need to pack as though all I’m eating is what I pack. 4 jars of nut butter and my coffee machine were necessities, of course. Because I was still eating breakfast in the car, we skipped the Whole Foods on the way home and got there by 1. I was very excited to see not 1 but 2 packages waiting for me:

Packages

Packages

So many exciting goodies here. In one of the packages was 2lb’s of peanut flour I ordered. I really liked my gift from The National Peanut Board, so much so I ordered these 2 pounds for myself. I can’t wait to see how the dark roasted contrasts in flavor to the light roast. The second package was an amazing surprise from my friends over at Nature’s Path:

Nature's Path Organic Products

Nature's Path Organic Products

Wow. I am so spoiled 😀 My good friend, Joy, from Nature’s Path Organic sent these over for me to sample and review.  Thank you, Joy, for all these great sounding products. She asked me if there were any in particular I wanted to try and I mentioned how among all their products their Pumpkin Flax Granola really stood out to me so she was sure to include that. Now, normally I reserve oatmeal and yogurt–as much as I love it–as just a morning and dessert thing. Well, special exceptions were made in this case because I just couldn’t wait, so I made a unique lunch:

Pumpkin Oats With Chocolate Butter Toffee PB And Pumpkin Seeds, Pumpkin Yogurt With Pumkin Flax Granola

Pumpkin Oats With Chocolate Butter Toffee PB And Pumpkin Seeds, Pumpkin Yogurt With Pumkin Flax Granola

Did I mention I also got my dad hooked on Naturally Nutty, so much so that he ordered some for himself and this was his Chocolate Butter Toffee I was stealing trying? Well now you know. Overall what can I say about this meal but that it was pumpkinrific. I actually wasn’t blown away by the chocolate butter toffee because of how remarkably similar it was to the regular butter toffee. But since I love their butter toffee I wasn’t too disappointed. The Pumpkin Flax granola was exactly what I was hoping for. I liked this a lot. It was crispy without being dense. A lot of granolas are either light and get soggy or crispy but very hard and dense; this was light but it remained fresh even after spending quality time with my yogurt. I could definitely make this a daily whole grain. We needed to do some Trader Joe lovin’ while I was around so I grabbed this and jumped into the car:

Peanut Butter Vitatop

Peanut Butter Vitatop

It’s definitely not one of my favorite because the peanut butter is a bit scarce and lacking in flavor, but as with any chocolate vitatop: even when it’s not good, it’s still pretty good. I also translated my Greek homework, which was a great break because I actually translated the exact story last year in another book. Lucky, huh? I can’t wait to be tested on it for the 3rd or 4th time. We hit up Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s in a reasonable amount of time. I picked up ice cream at the first store so that really got my booty moving in Trader Joe’s to get in and out as quick as I could. Overall I would call it a great success:

Grocery Trip Loot

Grocery Trip Loot

I grabbed fruit, because apparently that doesn’t exist to my parents besides bananas. I also got 2% greek yogurt from Trader Joe’s; this is part of why I love the pineapple Chobani so much and I completely forgot TJ’s made their own! There was also english muffins and whole wheat cinnamon raisin rolls via my new favorite bakery. They’re 200 calories each with little sugar and a great, yeasty base–heaven. I grabbed my favorite ice cream on sale, snickerdoodle! And to round it off I picked up some more vitatops and Stonyfield plain lowfat yogurt. Oh, and I got some Trader Joe pumpkin whoopie pies which I bought especially for when we see my relatives today; trust me, it’s taken a lot of restraint to keep away from those. Well I definitely needed a snack, and boy this was a good one:

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Raisin Roll With Vanilla Bean Sugar Frosting

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Raisin Roll With Vanilla Bean Sugar Frosting

I channeled my inner Jenny to make this, and oh my God was it good. I heated up a cinnamon roll and mixed 1 tablespoon greek yogurt with vanilla stevia to make an icing. Then I sprinkled on my special vanilla sugar from Whole Foods. This was perhaps one of the best cinnamon rolls I’ve ever had. When I say that I mean this actually topped the ones from the mall with 1000 more calories. I’ve never been lucky enough to have a Holey Donuts cinnamon roll, but I bet this beats that, too. Oh my God. You have no idea. Ok, ok, I’ll stop gushing. My afternoon “project” was to make something for seeing the relatives. Of course I went with my new favorite recipe:

Vegan Pumpkin Molasses Cookies

Vegan Pumpkin Molasses Cookies

Vegan Pumpkin Molasses Cookies! Holly definitely showed her inner genius here. I modified her version a bit but it’s impossible to improve on perfection. My cousins’ grandmother made a great molasses cookie. These aren’t quite as good, probably because they’re way lower on the butter and sugar, but I’m hoping they’ll enjoy them along the same strand. And, you know, if they don’t love them I certainly do 😉

Well we(read: I) decided we should go out for dinner tonight. The first and only place to pop into mind was Tomasso. It’s definitely the classiest, most amazing restaurant within 30 minutes of here, and makes Italian food we just love. Best yet, the restaurant is very conscious about serving “food” that’s local and organic when possible. You’d be hard pressed to find anything processed in their kitchen. The entire menu looked amazing and deliciously seasonal. I decided to order of the menu and go with the special of the night.

Local Albacore Tuna With Vegetable Salad Medley

Local Albacore Tuna With Vegetable Salad Medley

This fish was absolutley delicious. When they say local and fresh, they mean it; my guess is this was caught this morning or yesterday. And it was so rare that I couldn’t have (not) cooked it better myself! Yum. I felt a little naughty adding some sea salt to it, because it was so nicely seasoned; the truth is I just salt everything including the soups at my dining hall, so I salted it in secret. My parents decided to get a pizze:

Margharita Pizze

Margharita Pizze

I’ve had this as my main before, and let me tell you this: It’s the best pizza I’ve had within the United States. I had to cut myself off a piece just because it was there. They also ordered a ton of appetizers to split amongst themselves. The only one I tried was the polenta fries:

Polenta Fries

Polenta Fries

It was OK, but not something I’d order. It tasted a lot like something I could make myself with some polenta, milk, and a mild cheese. When I go out to dinner, I really like to focus my meal on a great protein like fish or beef rather than something carby; I can always make myself pasta but I’m not going to go out and butcher a cow for my dinner(I let someone else do that because it’s less messy). Overall it was a great night and I’m glad everyone enjoyed their meal.

While my dinner was fantastic, it wasn’t as filling as my usual veggie-fest nights, so I quickly grabbed this from the freezer:

Purely Decadent Snickerdoodle Ice Cream

Purely Decadent Snickerdoodle Ice Cream

I love my snickerdoodle and I can not lie. I had to enjoy this with a cup of coffee; I’ve never understood desserts that involve coffee on top of ice cream, but to each their own. The perfect show for me was on TV at 8: Good Eats Salt. I never learned so much about salt. Thanks, Alton Brown! I never liked Good Eats when I first started liking Thee Food Network. I always thought it was too much talk and not enough cooking, plus the recipes always confused me. Once I got a food scale and realized that recipes really were all about the science behind them, I started liking the show a lot more. For instance, I know that yeast makes things rise which makes them light and airy and makes me want to eat them again:

Vegan Cinnamon Roll With Greek Yogurt Vanilla Bean Icing

Vegan Cinnamon Roll With Greek Yogurt Vanilla Bean Icing

I used a little less vanilla stevia in the yogurt which gave it just the right sweetness to not overwhelm the roll. I seriously think this could convert the fickiest of healthy eaters. I intended to catch up on TV shows on the internet and homework for the night. What actually ended up happening was the 10th anniversary of Good Eats! What a great special that was; I love how he sat down, came up for the concept of some crazy cooking show that’s never existed, and got it done. For some reason, the night did not seem complete until I had my oats:

Oatmeal With White Chocolate Wonderful

Oatmeal With White Chocolate Wonderful

I love that I’ve corrupted people in this house enough that I don’t need to bring certain flavors because I’m positive if I crave them there’ll be there. Case in point: White Chocolate Wonderful. This was good eats for Good Eats. And I forgot how good of a melting peanut butter this is. Peanut Butter & Co., 365 Brand, and Crazy Richard’s are all my staple for oatmeal because they get so liquidy that it’s joyous.

This morning was a bit of a mess again, but a mess I’m glad to have done. You see, I greatly underestimated how cold it was when I decided to run. Now Mr. Weatherman is telling me it was 30’s and 40’s, and I’m definitely an 80’s and 90’s boy. Well even though I couldn’t feel my fingers a mile out, I figured I’d keep going while I was already running. Towards the end of the run I had major digestion… let’ just not go there and instead say I was dashing for the bathroom when I got back before thinking about stretching. On the bright side, it was a goregeous run through the back roads of Marlborough and Southborough and I got to listen to my country songs which really helped me feel grounded. And those issues probably sped me up to finish 8.5 miles in 1:09:25. If Sunday’s good for anything it’s breakfast and circulars:

Pineapple Chobani, Nature's Path Maple Nut Oatmeal With Mighty Maple Peanut Butter

Pineapple Chobani, Nature's Path Maple Nut Oatmeal With Mighty Maple Peanut Butter

I’d be lying if I said this wasn’t on my mind the whole run. The pineapple Chobani is simply one of my favorites; my mom who almost never eats yogurt had one and liked it, too! I think it must have been the cream because she uses 2% in her coffee and it’s obvious she misses the real stuff. Normally I don’t do packeted oatmeal; it’s much better in my mind to do 20g oatbran, 20g irish oats, and liberal salt and make my own. That being said, Nature’s Path Organic sent me some of their instant oats to try and this one really appealed to me. Rather than have me gush about it here, however, I’m going to gush about it here. This is how I hope for my whole Product Review section to look in the future. Let me know if you like it; I think it makes things much neater and simpler for me and you, not to mention I don’t have to worry about deleting pictures or old posts for space.

Today like I mentioned we’re going to see the relatives. There will be something bright red on my dish that was living about 20 minutes before I cracked it open. Ok, not the most appetizing description, but any guesses what that might be? 🙂

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Tomasso

Posted on July 19, 2009. Filed under: Restaraunt Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

This morning I pumped out a record 6 times around the neighborhood(about 6.75 miles). My legs are barking after them hills–maybe I’ll just take an easy 5 tomorrow. Post workout eats:

Breakfast

Breakfast

Carrot Juice, an English muffin, 1/2 with blueberry peach cobbler and amaretto jam and 1/2 with mighty maple peanut butter, and a parfait with plain Chobani, 1/2 a peach, blueberries, and agave nectar. I’m glad I’m a slow eater because I do not want this to end.

Anyway, after posting yesterday there was a quick run to the store to get some Spicy Black Bean Morningstar Veggieburger because I was craving this:

Lunch

Lunch

A spicy black bean burger with grilled mango on top. This tasted as good as I thought it would; I feel oddly proud of myself for dreaming up this concoction and making it happen lol.

After that there was various shopping. I needed a new mouse for my laptop, grabbed 3 boxes of kashi granola bars while at Target(peanut peanut butter, trail mix, and honey almond flax ftw). Then we stopped in a little health food store I’d seen but never been in; it was basically all the natural stuff at Hannafords, but concentrated into one store. They didn’t have a great selection, but still some cool stuff. I want to get the soft snickerdoodle vegan cookies from there and see how they are(not homemade, but some brand I haven’t seen other places).

After that, there was some arm twisting and negotiating; basically I did not feel like eating out, but certain other people had been grouchy all day and were dead set on going out and insisting I come as well. So, for a compromise, I got to pick out the restaurant. I chose this Italian place near by that seemed pretty fancy to which I’d never been, called Tomasso

Tomasso

Tomasso

I loved the homey, Italian atmosphere. The chef was very friendly and quite knowledgeable about all the dishes(as he should be since they were his lol). We decided to get 2 antipasti and pizze to share for the whole table, which worked out perfectly because I was debating between which pizze I wanted.

Comocoro

Comocoro

Proscuitto e Melon

Proscuitto e Melon

Our antipasti were the comocoro and proscuitto e melon. Both of these dishes were absolutely remarkable. The comocoro had grilled watermelon with goat cheese and mint. The creaminess of the goat cheese blended beautifully with the warm melon, and the mint was a nice subtle back-flavor. The prosciutto e melon was ok but a little bland. The meat could have used a stronger flavor; I ended up sprinkling salt over the cantaloupe and eating it that way(does anybody else do this? I feel like it makes it 10 times more delicious).

Pizze con Fichi

Pizze con Fichi

Pizze Margharita

Pizze Margharita

Not only were the pizzi a work of art, but both were incredibly flavorful. The margharita had an incredible thin crust with a light tomato base, bufala mozzarella, and basil; it tasted just like my favorite pizze from Rome! And the pizze con fichi was in a league of its own; this pizze had black mission figs, goat cheese, and vin cotta. The figs were warm and went perfect with the sweet vin cotta. the goat cheese added a great saltiness and creamy texture to the dish. If you live anywhere in the Southborough area, please do check out this restaurant

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Where To Eat: Ufood Grill

Posted on June 13, 2009. Filed under: Restaraunt Review | Tags: , , , , , |

Boston has a lot to offer culinarily(is that a word? doesn’t matter). There’s a lot to decide when you want to go out for lunch: Should I eat at a chain resteraunt or a mom and pop joint? What type of food do I want? Is this going to put a hole in my wallet? Clearly, it would take quite the restaraunt to be able to satisfy all these questions and more.

Ufood Grill is located in 4 locations around Boston. I have visited the Commons and Fenway buildings. Both of these have a tiny yet cozy interior, though truth be told they could use an expansion(then again, space is hard to find in Boston). Most of their menu options range between 5 and 8 dollars, offering sandwiches, salads, wraps, burgers, and a medley of side dishes including their famous Unfries. The small chain boasts using the finest and freshest ingredients which are good for you, as well as complete cutomization of your meal; you can switch out whole wheat wraps and buns and substitute tofu for any of their meats in their wraps. Lastly, in every Ufood Grill is a Uberry which has a complete line of protein smoothies as well as their own frozen yogurt which has 90 calories per 4oz

Untitled

I thoroughly enjoy this restaraunt for many reasons. First of all, after reviewing the nutritional information on their site, http://www.ufoodgrill.com/index.html, it’s quite clear that you’ll have a hard time making an unhealthy decision. The menu truely has a variety of flavors, from the simple chicken caesar salad, to an italian meatball wrap, to an asian tofu bowl, to the American standby: burgers. The chain even offers bison burgers, certainly a rare find in Boston! This health chain never skimps on the flavor of the sauce as others might making all of their dishes enjoyable. Their famous side, the Unfries, certainly have a lighter, almost soggier, texture than their fried cousins, but are an enjoyable healthy indulgence nonetheless. I would suggest, however, that you stay away from the Uberry; the flavor of the yogurt is deliciously tart but an 8oz serving will cost you 3.50 and their fresh toppings add a dollar to that. Certainly, the things to try here are the bison burger and the Chopstick Chicken Ubowl

Untitled

So next time you’re in Boston and need a reliable place to eat that’ll satisfy any taste bud, be sure to check out Ufood Grill.

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