Feelin’ Fresh: Take 1

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Hey guys,

I have recently come to discover that living alone RULES! I will definately get lonely by the end of the summer and be super stoked to have a roomie, but for right now, I’m loving it. I recently moved out of a house of 6 (2 of which were subletters….aka strangers) so being able to lounge in the living room without fear of having to interact with anyone has been awesome. hey, sometimes a girl just wants to get her food network on and not make polite conversation!

Also I have had nothing to do but unpack, cook, and run along the pier….is this what being a housewife is like?? Cause maybe I should rethink my career path….(I kid. I would go crazy. Also I’m pretty sure most housewives do more than that. )

I was running around Kingston yesterday, and couldnt help but notice how much nicer it is here in the summer!! During the school year it is generally beautiful for about a minute in the fall, then its covered in a blanket of snow, grime, and slush for the remainder of the year. But now? It’s all blue water, blue skies, flowering trees  and green errythang. As a person with seasonal allergies, the flowers and shit can actually be a bit of a downer, but I frolic outdoors regardless!!

I was feeling a little down the other day about not being in Toronto for the summer (really, for the year). Thinking about how beautiful Kingston is, and how much I love this new little apartment helped a lot. Here are a few of the things I’ll miss about Toronto:

toronto

1. Fam and friends…..duh. I’m actually pretty close with most of my high school friends, and will miss being able to hang out with them more.

2. Value Village. They have one in Kingston, but the contents are just not as interesting.

3. QUEEN WEST. It’s probably better for my wallet (and “savings account”) that I’m not able to wander around Queen st this summer, but I’ve always loved that part of Toronto. I worked at the Lush on Queen and Spadina, and also swam for years at the U of T complex at Spadina and Harbord, so I really feel at home in that area.

4. Related to 3, Fresh restaraunts. I have a serious and deep relationship with this restaraunt. If I ever live in Toronto again (and not with my parents), I would pick an apartment based on its proximity to Fresh. If you have never been go. Go now. I have literal anxiety over what to get from their menu because it’s all amazing.

Now that you know how much I love this place, let me describe it for you. Its a vegan/vegetarian restaraunt that has a fresh juice bar and seriously delicious food. A lot of the food I make is based off of the fresh style of meals (aka big bowls of grains, greens, healthy fats, and a protein). It’s somewhat affordable, although I can’t say I have ever let that be a factor in whether or not I should order it. They also have a pretty good brunch (banana nut pancakes are the way to go), but their lunch and dinner menu is better, in my opinion.

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{Fresh, I worship at the altar of your sweet potato fries}

Some of my favourite menu items are:

-The buddha bowl: rice with crispy tofu, pea sprouts, tomatoes, and cucumber in peanut sauce.

-Banana nut pancakes: Actually recreated those this morning!

-Black bean burrito

-Sweet potato fries

And just so many more!!

Since it has dawned on me that I won’t be able to go to fresh whenever I want, I have a fresh-shaped void in my life that I need to fill. And, typically, I will fill it with food.

ENTER THE FEELIN’ FRESH SERIES ON CHOCO CHILI CHAI!!!!

I’m gonna attempt one of the Fresh recipes once a week and blog about my successes and failures. But they will mostly be successes, obviously. I have one of their cookbooks (yeah, they released a cook book. I nearly fainted), and hope to get another this summer. So here’s the first one!!

Fresh Restaraunt Chopped Caesar Salad

This is a vegan take on the caesar salad: capers replace the anchovies in the dressing, tempeh bacon subs in for real bacon, and pine nuts fill in for the parmesan cheese. This salad is soo good, and really filling, although I wouldn’t call it a caesar salad replacement. It’s delicious, but kind of its own thing. You got the smoky bacon, crispy bread, creamy dressing thing down, but it is very much a vegan interpretation of the Caesar.

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{look at that lighting…!! also those are decorative peacock feathers in the background, not some weird hairy things}

Ingredients

Makes 1 meal-sized salads, or two small appetizer salads

For the salad

Chopped romaine

-pine nuts

-Sprouts: see what’s available in your local grocery store, I used baby onion sprouts and they were good!

-1/4 red pepper, chopped

-1/2 cup thawed, shelled edamame beans

-3-4 strips of Tempeh Bacon: I’ll be posting a homemade recipe for tempeh bacon soon, but I used the smoky maple pre marinated Tempeh available at metro (I know they also sell it at loblaws)

-Whole grain baguette: instead of croutons (I’m lazy. and love bread), I just broiled some garlic and vegan cheese to make garlic bread. It was very satisfying. Feel free to use store bought croutons if you want!

For the dressing

1/4 cup silken/soft tofu

-1/2 cup olive oil

-2-3 cloves of garlic

-4 tsp capers (very crucial ingredient, so dont skip!)

-2 1/2 tsp dijon mustard

-1 tbsp apple cider vinegar

-2 tbsp lemon juice

-salt and pepper to taste

Directions

1. Puree all dressing ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Here is a good time to make cheezy garlic toasts if you’re so inclined.

2. Its a salad. You know what to do. Mix everything together and eat.

Alright I’m headed to bulk barn to stock up on my favies (you can buy maple syrup in litre tubs there….) and chill with a friend, so have a good night!!!!!

Peace out

Today’s jam

Yes, that’s one direction. I’m actually fan girling so hard to them right now. Living alone means theres no one around to shame me into having better taste in music. Yes, its embarrasing but can you honestly tell me you’re not jamming to that song right now?!

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2 responses »

  1. Pingback: Cookbooks for the vegetarian-inclined, creative, 20 something cook+ Baked Banana | Chocolate Chili Chai

  2. Pingback: Brussel Sprout Caesar Salad | Chocolate Chili Chai

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