Wednesday, June 25, 2014

WIAW - New York Edition

Hiatus temporarily broken - I have to share the great food I had on my amazing trip to New York last week. I'm off to Vegas for work on Friday so will likely take another break from the blog. As always, follow me on Instagram if you want to keep up with food and other adventures.

Some of the breakfasts I enjoyed on my trip. I was able to make smoothies once I was at my parent's house!

My vegan plate at the wedding.

Me and my gorgeous cousins, congrats to Kirsten & Matt on their amazing ceremony!

An assortment of vegan eats/drinks: wheatgrass shot at the Newark airport, kale & sweet potato wrap at Blossom du Jour, stir fry veg at a random Japanese place, kale & radicchio salad at Etcetera Etcetera, summer roll from Trader Joes, hummus at a random place, mango boba from the Japanese place.

Decided to be spontaneous and get a tattoo! Had the design picked out for years. If you're in NYC check out Studio 28 Tattoos! 
Another amazing assortment: hand roll and roll of the month at Beyond Sushi, vegan s'mores pudding at Blossom du Jour, Tallarines a la Huancaina at Rockin Raw, and lentil pastries at Meskerem. 

Me housing the pudding. 

CINNAMON SNAIL. Wish I could have gone for lunch but I had to settle for these phenomenal choices: lentil puffed pastry and a pistachio cardamom donut

The BEST THING I'VE EATEN since I went plant based. The portabella and hemp seed burger at Pure Food & Wine. It had this ridiculous smoked cheese and sauerkraut and was so so so good.

PSA: Take the Staten Island Ferry at sunset, even if you don't live/stay there.

A mashup lunch while waiting for my train at Penn Station. A raw salad from Raw Organics topped with baked falafel from a little shop in the station.

Had to eat a big ass salad and home cooked meal at my parents!

Family dinner, NY style. Amazing white veg pizza topped with marinara.

Took myself on a hike to Hadley Mountain.

PSA 2: Hike the Adirondacks!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

What I Wrote Wednesday

Trying something new today. I've written a bit about my struggle with healthy eating and being too obsessive, and I wrote a poem about it recently. If you want food pics, check out Instagram.

Pound of Flesh
I write about love but I
haven't yet told of my
longest lasting love affair.

I don't know what to call it.
Food, flavor, gustatory delight,
always chasing the next mouthful.

I wonder if I'm wired wrong.
Every emotion leads to
Pavlovian drooling for the
brief explosion of taste
that will enhance my pleasure,
mitigate my anger,
soothe my sadness,
quell my fears.

Emotions fade but
homeostasis breeds
and even more unyielding
desire to chase the
next morsel of distraction.

I make rules so that I can
feed the hungry ghost
without the consequence of
a pound of flesh.

Rules are easy to follow
but the making is hard to quit.
Will there ever be a day
where I can relax?
Where my brain doesn't sort
every bite into a pattern
or a nutrient.

The junkie that can’t
avoid her vice
is doomed to a life
of control.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Small Step Sunday: Rest

My wellness advice for this week is probably the most difficult to do, even though it sounds easy. Our modern culture has conditioned us to feel as though we always need to be working to be making progress, and that we don't have enough time in our lives for all the tasks we must do. This makes it almost impossible to let yourself take breaks and rest.

A restful place

I struggle with this, and it's been even harder during a time of emotional unrest. Days when I'm not busy unfortunately are often paired with a low mood. I've realized that feeling sadness is okay, just as getting adequate rest is okay. Rest might mean putting your feet up, or spending time in a peaceful place, or doing light yoga/walking, or getting a massage.

Take some time this week to force yourself to take a break from your day to day, and from modern distractions. If there's something in your life that's causing undue stress, take some time away from it to see if it's genuinely an activity you need to pursue. On that note, I might be posting to the blog less frequently. I've enjoyed it but am not feeling the same passion. I'll be traveling for most of the rest of the month and am planning to re-evaluate after that. If you enjoy my food pictures you can follow them on Instagram, I'm hoping to eat some good food in NYC!

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Embracing New Passions

I spend a lot of time on this blog talking about health and wellness, and that discussion is primarily based on nutrition and moving your body. Often those choices influence our state of mind, but I don't know that I've adequately addressed the importance of taking care of your mind and spirit when you aim to be the best version of yourself.

I am not a religious person, I find my connection with the Earth and nature to be the most soul satisfying and I nurture that by spending time outdoors. I flirt with meditation and can unequivocally state that it's a wonderful practice to heal the mind, body, and soul. Lately, especially with the nagging foot injury and more free time as a single person, I've been obsessed with expressing myself through poetry.

I wrote a post a few weeks ago about writing, but now I finally feel comfortable to share a poem on here. Thanks to all of you who choose to read it.


Coconut scented sunscreen
sprayed liberally on pale skin.

Soft sand supports the
weight of my supine spine.

Steady winds dance across my skin,
tempering the heat of the sun.

Roaring ocean fills my ears,
broken only by giddy screams
of children at play.

Solitude hurts less at the sea.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

What I Ate Wednesday

Taking food photos and posting them every week has become ingrained. I enjoy the habit because I love photography and food, but it also helps me identify patterns in my taste/preferences. I am currently on an South Indian kick - I am craving dosas! I'm also learning how to cook for one person and figure out which foods I won't get sick of eating repeatedly. Here's this week's bounty.

New meal for me and it came out great! It's sauteed peppers, onions, peas and shredded kale/cabbage/brussels sprouts mix with Asian flavors. Topped with fresh bean sprouts. Making it again this week!

Blurry proof of my first run back. It went well at the time, but my foot protested a little too much. I am hoping to try again tomorrow. 

Gluten free mega veggie pizza with tempeh from Mellow Mushroom. It was excellent, but a little pricey. 

DOSA! I love these things. If you've never seen/had one, it's basically a lentil flour based crepe with a small pile of spicy potatoes in the middle. You tear off the pieces from the side and scoop  up the filling. Amazing! This one was from Bombay Cafe

My roommate's birthday was this week and he wanted to go to Kings Bowl for his celebration. They had some surprisingly good food - hummus duo with veg, mango salsa & guacamole, and a strawberry salad with no cheese/dressing. All fresh and delicious!

Random collection of favorites: oil free braised chard, roasted brussels sprouts, kale chips, and sweet potato topped with almond butter.

I saw a deal on Facebook to try this Graze box for $1. Best dollar I've ever spent! You set up your preferences on their site and they mail you four snacks. I got a seed blend, chili lime pistachios, a tropical dried fruit blend, and an edamame snack mix. 

I think this is my favorite meal ever. Rawsta with hummus and chickpeas. 

I think life works better when I have half a bottle of kombucha a day! When I get back from my crazy month of traveling I'm going to attempt to start making my own. 
Took myself to the beach this weekend. There's nothing better than spending time in nature!

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Small Step Sunday - Break Your Fast

One of the easiest habits to start is also one that many people skip: eating breakfast. Depending on when you eat your last bite of food at night and the time you get up in the morning, you may be without food for 8-12 hours. This might surprise you, but our bodies were designed to run on food! ;)

It's important to start your day with nourishment, to break the fast from the night before, and to set yourself up for a day of positive eating habits. If you are already a breakfast eater you can make an attempt to eat healthier breakfasts. If you are not, get started!

The timing of your breakfast will depend on your day. I usually work out first thing in the morning so my pattern is to work out on an empty stomach or eat a small bite before I start. After my workout during the week I eat about 100 calories worth of food after, and then eat my full smoothie when I get to work. On the weekends I usually make my smoothies from scratch and eat them when I am done exercising.

Here are some filling plant based breakfast ideas:

  • Smoothies
  • Oatmeal, rice, or quinoa with assorted toppings (nuts, nut butter, fruit, dried fruit, seeds, coconut, spices, etc.)
  • Whole grain or gluten free toast with nut butter, mashed fruit or natural jam
  • Pancakes
  • Tofu scramble
  • Cereal, muesli or granola with nut milk and fresh fruit
  • Chia pudding
  • Breakfast cookies
I'd love to hear your favorite breakfast and welcome any recipes!