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Showing posts from December, 2017

Grateful Plate Philly

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It is now close to a year ago when I first met Michael from Grateful Plate Philly.

It was actually by chance that we did get the opportunity to meet. I was going through my six-months of rediscovering myself and essentially "shutting-in" for some self-reflection and for some reason, that day, I forced myself to go out and socialize and found myself at a local cross-fit gym's open house. Michael was one of the few local vendors that attended and to be honest, I can't recall if he had even brought samples or just some marketing materials. Either way, Michael and I started talking about local, sustainable, and allergy-free food options.

He had gone into great detail about Grateful Plate Philly's work-ethic and philosophy, making nourishing-meals available to all regardless of food allergies or preferences.

While I quickly felt a strong connection with Grateful Plate Philly and wanted to help promote their mission! Michael and I worked together on a couple project id…

P.S & Co. Philadelphia's Plantbased Gluten-Free & Vegan Restaurant

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P.S & Co. I have had a love-hate relationship with this company for years. I partook in one of their initial cooking classes, held my sister's bachelorette dinner here and have had a meal-or-two here and there. However, I always find myself loving one thing and absolutely annoyed with another. It is as if they can't seem to be consistent - one thing that is always consistent? Their cold restaurant. Almost as if they would prefer guests not to stay! I mean, yes, I am always freezing, but it is not just me. It appears to be an agreed-upon issue for all that I have attended with and then very obviously confirmed in that all the remaining patrons are also still snuggled into their coats and tend to quickly eat and rush out.

This really makes for an uncomfortable experience and always leaves me second guessing if I would like to drive all the way into the city for P.S & Co. or not....

This visit was encouraged in part due to the fact that I would be ice skating in the city …

Vientiane Cafe, West Philadelphia One of My Favorites (Gluten-Free & Vegan)

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Vientiane Cafe - oh I love you dearly. Not only do you always provide an affordable meal that all seem to enjoy - you are consistent, every dish is made to order, and OMG can you accommodate all food preferences!

This visit is bitter-sweet, as I am departing the Philadelphia area for a new career opportunity.
While I know I will be back from time-to-time, as I do have family in the area, I still can't just pop on over to one of my favorites when I need a good friend's couch to sit on. Because of all realistic measures, that is exactly what Vientiane is - a good friend's couch that you can come hang out in a laid back and chilled BYOB atmosphere.

It's that friend that makes you that big bowl of comfort food to help you celebrate the highs or to crush to lows... and for all of the amazing experiences I have had here - I thank you! I thank you for making eating out and being social a possibility for a gal who has multiple food allergies, is a bit of a food snob, and living…

Yoga, Surf & Cuisine in Portugal

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It's happening, retreat time!
Head over to Gina's blog for additional details, but do so quickly before the holiday sale is up!

What better time of year to think about yourself and self-care than now - the crazy hectic holiday season where it never fails that people just keep asking and asking for more - more time, more money, more giving. Where does the "you-time" come in?

It comes with the gift you can give yourself!

Feed your body, mind, and soul with affordable luxury in Europe this Spring.

HIGHLIGHTS:
   - 2 nights in Lisbon
   - 5 nights at the Living Lodge in Aljezur
- airport transfers from/to Lisbon
   - ground transportation between Lisbon and The Living Lodge
   - 6 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 6 dinners
   - daily yoga & meditation
   - wine pairing
   - guided hike to Rota Vicentina
   - day trip to the beach town of Lagos
   - SUP tour OR 4x4 off-road tour
   - free time to relax on the beach, at the pool, or exploring the Algarve Coast

LOCATION:
Nestled between Spain …

Savory Tea Oats (Gluten-Free & Vegan)

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Have you ever questioned what other uses this tea has other than steeping in my mug? Maybe I'm an oddball but I love tea and I always question - what would it be like if I made a dish using this tea instead of just a beverage.

Today, I was running low on produce, and not really wanting to stock my fridge up prior to the move - so I got creative.

I simmered a carrot green-tea curry bag along with two cloves of garlic and fresh scallions.

After a couple hours simmering, I added some gluten-free oats to the dish with steamed carrots and peas - and I really need to smack myself for not trying this prior to today. Honestly, what a fast and healthy dish! Perfect for these cold weather days.

You can easily adapt this recipe to your liking - not loving oats, why not use rice, buckwheat, potatoes... really, you can use whatever your heart desires.

The moral of this story is simply - go out of your comfort zone and get creative. You might surprise yourself!



Home for the Holidays

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Life has been a whirlwind the past year.  I have grown...A LOT.  I have moved out of my comfort zone. I have sought out changes. I have made my own changes. Set my own destiny. Traveled to amazing Sri Lanka. I have emerged back to the "bad-ass" woman that I knew myself to once be.

With all these changes, I have had a couple of moments where I needed to stop and think / question myself - but for the most part, I have said - what have an I got to lose to any changes that I may have faced this year.

In any of the moments where I felt discomfort - I found comfort in being around loved ones (family).

I didn't need much from the loved ones, just needed to know that they were around and in return for their support, I made breakfast!

Apple Cider Waffles
- 2 cups flour (Could pick your favorite gluten-free flour blend)
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- Cinnamon and sugar ( I didn't measure)
- 1 - 2 eggs (Could use an egg replacer)
- 1/2 cups …

Ayurvedic Tea

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There is no better cup of tea than being able to mix and match fresh ingredients of your own!

For some reason, this never dawned on me as an option, until my recent Ayurvedic cooking class in Sri Lanka.

For this morning's cup of team, I have chosen to include: Cardamon, Star Anise, Cinnamon, Turmeric, Ginger, fresh lime juice.

I used a coffee grinder, received my desired consistency and then, without a tea bag - added some fresh tea directly into my cup of boiling water.

Pomegranet and Sweet Potatoe Salad (Gluten-Free & Vegan)

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Too many times I hear “How do you manage a life with food allergies?”.  For me, I have found it a blessing in disguise. I was forced to emerge from my own comfort zone and try new things. I’ve grown to become a foodie snob and I literally wake up- think about food and what can I create - eat- think more about food- sleep- repeat.

The lesson here is- never let a “set back” set you BACK. Find the positive in everything and learn to love your imperfections- which are really your perfections in their own unique forms.

I’m on Day 3 of 4 of an all-day training and I packed my sweet potato pomegranate salad- yum yum! 

Ingredients
- White Sweet Potato
- Orange Sweet Potato
- Fresh Cilantro
- Lemon Juice
- Ginger
- Tumeric
- Black Pepper
- Pomegranate seeds 

Directions
- Steam Sweet Potatoes. Prep your pomegranate. Mix all spices and herbs together. Mix all the ingredients together. Enjoy! warm or cold. 

Allergy Free Sri Lankan Thanksgiving

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I have to admit, I am still in denial that I need to return back to the "real-life" after having a life-changing experience in Sri Lanka.

Immediately prior to my flight home, I became very ill. I managed to make it through all of my flights (with some delays) and arrived back to the U.S in Philadelphia, PA - walked outside and BOOM - reality smacked me right in the face. The temperature was much lower than when I had left, snow was falling, and my sister, who thought she was providing a gift to me, was placing holiday music! NO! My brain was racing, can I afford to just turn right back around and head back to Sri Lanka?

Then reality sinks in and you realize that life goes on and for now, you need to get back to your normal routine as quickly as possible.

Monday was rough - still not feeling well, I struggled to get back to work and recall falling asleep at one point in time. Tuesday was another rough day and I escaped back to my parents' - (yes, I am a grown adult but so…

Airline Gluten-Free Foods

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One of my largest annoyances with Airlines today - they can't accommodate more than one food preference. So, me, being both gluten-free and at minimum vegetarian, I had to choose between one or the other.

With that being said, the gluten allergy will actually kill me, so....it looks like I am going to have to request a gluten-free dish and hope that some vegetarian options are also offered. 
For this particular journey, I was flying British Airlines and Sri Lanka Airlines, both operated by American Airlines.

My first meal was on British Airlines
Dinner: A Fruit cup, small side salad, rice cake and a gluten-free ravioli in a vodka red pepper sauce.
Verdict: This meal did not sit well with me. I felt extremely ill afterward. I also felt as if the entire meal sat out and was nowhere near fresh.

My second meal was on British Airlines
Breakfast: Yogurt, Melon Salad, a Gluten-free and vegan banana nut bar
Verdict: This was a decent meal, the bar was actually pretty delicious. I el…