Sunday, March 28, 2010

Prepping For China

It's been a crazy few weeks- trying to wrap up my taxes & planning a very last minute trip to quick trip to China! Will be traveling with my grandmother & SKO on Wednesday...we will be arriving in Shanghai, then off to the famed Huangshan Mountains, quick stop in Hangzhou and then to Beijing...Booboo is trying to grasp all that we have to cover in a short period of 11days.
Why the big rush? Well a combination of SKO's timed Easter break, traveling on mileage & grandma's sense of urgency to get to these steep mountains while she's still able to tackle the steps. This will be mine & SKO's first official trip to China! Technically, I was in Hong Kong many moons ago but before China took it back.
Way overdue for some new trainers & what better reason to get new kicks than a big trip that will require good walking shoes: enter the super cute Stella McCartney/Adidas Galbinata purchased through Zappos which is always painless & so quick.
In the mad rush of getting my taxes done via learning Quick Books in a matter of days & prepping for the trip, I have been a bit stressed. There were several things really made the ride easier:
NYC newest vegan sandwich shop: Terri
in Chelsea. Super cute & super yummy & vegan- what's not to love? Had the most delicious chickpea "tuna" melt, the bread was perfectly toasted & the Daiya perfectly cheesy, not the best pic but it's sooooo good, trust me.
So good that I had to have more chickpea melts at home via Happy Herbivore- so quick & easy to make, can't believe I've never tried before because tuna salad sandwiches were my favorite in my pre-vegan days.
Other good things from Happy Herbivore- mac & cheeze that I added sauteed mushrooms, broccoli & onions, oh and let's not forget the peas & cilantro- so perfect.
And let's not forget the gift which is One Lucky Duck's decadent raw mallomar, this is the most ethereal raw treat that you will ever eat and so good for you- hard to believe but true!
There were also roses which looked like peonies from our local florist in LIC, which were gorgeous but didn't fully open as they should have...
Well, now must run & prep on trip stuff like food supplies for China like Larabars & Primal Strips- though hoping not to have to rely on that too much since there are definitely a good number of vegan restaurants (especially near the temples!) that I'm psyched to check out in China. What I'm not looking forward to are the tons of Chinese vegetarian dishes in omni places flavored with a tiny bit of meat and ruining what would have been a perfectly vegan dish....nonetheless, despite my numerous travel issues: slight flying anxieties & anxiety about seeing starving strays- am looking forward to the trip.
Since Booboo opened the post, it's only fair that Thelonious bids you "Zai Jian" until I get back in April!

Monday, March 8, 2010

A Juice Fast & The Week In Raw

Is old news still good news? Well, by "good" I actually mean "interesting" and the answer is a resounding yes, since I never got to share my juice fast/raw journey from way back in January! Let me preface by saying that the end of the year was a bit tumultuous and I was seriously feeling exhausted, mentally & physically. What's a. weary, sluggish vegan girl to do?
Oh, maybe a juice fast? That was how I went vegan four years ago- did three days of juicing, ah, but remember  how sluggish & weary I am and so not in the mood to go buy organic veggies & prep & make juice...but how about one that's prepped for you already? Um, yes please!
Enter Organic Avenue, offering different levels of cleansing & delivery/pickup in NYC & pickup only in LIC, I decided to go L.O.V.E. Deep on the first Monday of the year. I love L.O.V.E Deep, well not the first day of course because that was my cranky weaning off food day, but by late afternoon Tuesday, I was feeling pretty good. Three of the six juices change daily which definitely made it more enjoyable not to be drinking the same juices for the whole week. Morning shot was always chlorophyll, which was gagworthy at the beginning but by my last day, I actually missed it because of how good it made me feel instead of coffee.

You also get a daily email with instructions & the juice menu & all the good stuff that it does for your body. And there's also a little pep talk/quote that was neat!
By day three, my body was definitely feeling better & filled with all kinds of good nutrients. The cleanse through Organic Avenue was not inexpensive, however, considering how much organic juice you get (6 16oz bottles & a shot), it really is a good deal. It's an investment in your health and boy, did I reap the benefits: clear skin, great energy & bye-bye 10lbs- hurray!

Am definitely planning on L.O.V.E. Deep again soon!
I broke my fast on the sixth day with homemade cashew milk & fruit. Had planned on going raw after the fast for a few days, loved it so much that I went for five days raw. And with all the amazing raw places in NYC, I definitely could have gone raw for longer but as I had mentioned there was tumult at home, so didn't want to create more tension with a new way of eating (which some of you may or may not relate to if you are vegan with an omni partner who considers the sharing of food an integral part of the relationship...)

Anyway, so many yummy raw places in the city- I stopped at Bonobo's many times for their nut pate sushi rolls and their coconut chai which is so delicious that it must be illegal, it is so creamy & flavorful- it's unreal how good it is.
Got to also check out Rockin Raw in Williamsburg with my bestest buddy,JK. Rockin Raw is a Peruvian-Creole raw restaurant. Yep, that's right Peruvian + Creole which equals pure yumminess! We started with "Crab Cakes", cornbread & the Jicama a la Huancaina. Huancaina is spicy cheese-like sauce from special yellow peppers. Um, let's just say that JK & I would have definitely duke'd it out over who gets to lick the plate were it not for people sitting near us. That stuff is sooooooooo good.

The thing with raw food is that you get full pretty damn quickly, so when my Rockin Raw Burger Platter arrived, I was completely stuffed, only able to try some of the N'Awlins Rings- yeah, those would be sickest (meaning best of course) onion rings ever. JK had the Raw Boy Sandwich which turned out good, but was still our least favorite of the evening. As full as we were, we still had to make room for dessert. We had the Blueberry Cake which honestly did not look so interesting but turned out to be so deliciously blueberry-y good. Can't wait to head back for a visit soon.
There were also quite a few visits to Quintessence one of the first raw restaurants in the city back in the day. My favorite things: Ginger Latte- warmed cashew milk & ginger, so comforting & a taco! Loved it so much that I took my grandmother over for a raw brunch, it was a day of firsts for her. First time in her forty years living in NYC being on Avenue A & her first raw meal, she loved it. So much so that she declared that she couldn't eat like this every day but she would definitely want to have a meal like this more often. Grandma & I have a raw food date soon!
I heart raw food & the way it makes me feel. Am going to try to incorporate more raw meals into my diet, if I weren't so damn lazy about the prep involved. Luckily, there's always Pure Food & Wine Takeaway!  So, I mentioned there was a bit of tumult in my life at the end of the year- well all of it had to do with this little creature below, but that will have to be for another post because it's way too long of a story to begin now...

Have a great week!
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